It’s a matter of preference, but not counting the weight of the bar hands you a mental disadvantage!
To Count Or Not To Count
For some people training with weights it might look like a more exotic question, yet I have seen it time and again.
Does the bar count when you write down how much weight you lifted?
Let’s check how much difference the weight of the bar makes in the typical beginner dumbbell set:
Be Precise And Weigh The Bar!
To be precise about how much weight you lift through the bar alone, weigh it. For a dumbbell you just need a kitchen scale.
For a barbell do the following: step on a bathroom scale without it and note your weight. Step off, grab the barbell and with it step on the scale again. The difference in your weight before and after is the weight of your barbell.
In both cases measure with the locks on! They too weigh something and that’s not too little! The collars on Olympic bars, for example, each weigh 2.5 kg (5.5 lbs).
One Way Or The Other – Not Both!
The bar isn’t a weightless wisp of smoke that happens to be solid enough to handle heavy things.
But no matter what you prefer in the end, you either count the bar or you don’t. Count it for some exercises and not for others, and you confuse yourself about how much weight you are able to lift and where and where you didn’t count the bar.
Picture courtesy of “Usodesita“.