Originally Posted by aramini
I love my weightlifting but all the chumps in the weightlifting gym are for the most part worthless in a fight, unless they are super big and strong and grab you. I believe in the sports specific training: you get better at boxing by boxing, better at wrestling by wrestling.
Pros of weight lifting: improved tendon and muscle strength, holistic increase in pushing type strengths and ring "presence", good for clinches, aesthetic (a little muscle looks better than being Erik Morales)
cons: possible weight gain making you short for the weight (not so bad for low center of gravity in wrestling, bad for range of attack if you are used to being a distance attacker in boxing), increased oxygen requirements, "gassing" a very real possibility if overmuscled, tightness and pulls common if flexibility is not assiduously trained
I honestly believe if you look at guys who fought before real weight lifting permeated the sport (leonard, camacho, whitaker,pryor) you will find they were much quicker of hand than guys their size nowadays and tired a bit less even late. Their opponents looked quicker, too. When I had a travelling job and didn't really lift for three years the things I noticed where that my range of motion was excellent when I sparred and that my hand speed was way way way better than I remembered. Then I started lifting again seriously and I think its back to the same somewhat limited range of motion, heavy thudding blows, slightly less fluidity, but still quick, just relatively slower and a need to conserve my punches IMO.
Funny you say Whitaker, he was an avid weight lifter (big fan of benching) and he didn't do much roadwork.
When you were lifting weights you probably had residual effects that would affect your boxing training. Weights won't slow you down unless you do them alot and neglect your boxing training, best to incorporate weights as part of a periodised program so when you are focusing on boxing you don't have the residual effects that made you think that weights were slowing you down.
Explosive lifting is the best, olympic lifts etc. as they increase your rate of force production. There's no point in being really strong if you can't apply it quickly or being really quick if you don't have anything behind it. Lifting heavy and training for speed separately can increase your rate of force production but studies have shown that explosive lifting has a superior effect as you're training both ends of the force curve at the same time. So when boxers think 'weights' they need to be thinking Clean and Jerk, thinking snatch