There’s something very satisfying about moving up a plate size.
Plates are different from dumbbells, because when one increases weight while using dumbbells, one merely uses a larger dumbbell. At the University of Toronto Athletic Centre, there are these very excellent in-between sizes for dumbbells (i.e. there are 27.5 lb dumbbells instead of only 25 and 30 lb ones), which is convenient since jumping 5 lb isn’t always desirable.
As a side note, a few weeks ago I was doing hammer curls and meant to use 25 lb dumbbells, but someone else was using them, so I tried the 27.5 lb ones, which was a terrible idea because I died. Last week, I was able to use the 27.5 lb ones, no problem! It’s always a nice feeling to be able to do something that was either very difficult or impossible to do before.
Back to the subject of plate sizes: when benching, when one increases the weight gradually, one will tend to add weight in small increments, such as 2.5 lb and 5 lb plates. It gets so messy after a while, when there are, say, a 25, a 5, and a 2.5 lb plate on each side of the bar. So many plates! But then…there comes a time when those plates can all be discarded and replaced with a new plate!
Today, I reached 115 lb for my bench working weight, yay. 115 lb means that I can use a 35 lb plate on each side of a 45 lb bar. It looks so clean and simple and, dare I say it, badass. The bigger the plate, the more impressive it looks. Always. I will always choose to go for the bigger plate when working out/testing, even if I was working with a smaller plate earlier and have everything set up so that it’d be more inconvenient to switch out all the little plates for the big one. Why? Likely because of ego issues. But hey, it cannot be denied that a 35 lb plate looks better than a 25 lb one! Plus, I’m proud of it, even if it’s not a full 45 lb plate. I’ll get there yet!
Luckily, Chris (who is also my gym buddy) doesn’t care as much as I do about using the biggest possible plates, and will stack the plates in the most convenient formation in order to work out with me. Usually, that involves something like a 25, a 5, a 2.5, and then a 45 and a 10 lb plate, in that order. Lily once asked “do you just hate kittens or something?” upon seeing how he stacked his plates. I think she was mildly offended.
P.S. We’re not technically allowed to take pictures at the AC, so I took the above picture very sneakily.