Wednesday, December 7, 2016

How Long Should I Rest Between Sets?

How Long Should I Rest Between Sets?

Honestly, I have no idea but I can give you some rough guidelines.Large muscles like the legs need more time to recover-up to 5 minutes (More or less). Smaller muscles need less time to recover. Heavy sets require more oxygen and require more time to recover.

And yes, you may have seen some rest periods noted in programs I've written. But, if you see a rest period spelled out, those programs are usually for beginners (or for someone who I know little or nothing about or for a general audience) and are only meant to be guidelines-not a dictate. An intermediate or advanced lifter will have figured out for himself/herself how much rest they need.

The short answer is your rest period should be long enough to allow you to do the next set with equal or greater intensity than the last set- but no longer. That means the answer is very subjective and will depend on the attributes of each individual, what the exercise is and what body part is being trained. The correct answer is what works best for you.

That doesn't mean you should take up space sitting on a bench, spaced out or looking at your phone for five minutes between sets of barbell curls. Nor does it mean resting for five minutes just because you're having a "I don't give a damn" day.

It means paying attention to physiological signs. Is you heart rate back down to within 20-25% above your normal resting heart rate? Is your respiration back down to near normal? Has the "burn" subsided in the muscle? Have your legs stopped shaking from the last set of 20 all out squats? You're ready for the next set.

 Still feel like you're about to cough up a lung? Still seeing the face of God after a set of heavy deadlifts? You're not ready.

Not as ready as you thought you were? No big deal. You'll know better next time.

There are no hard and fast rules. It's a learned skill you only get from experience. Don't worry about the seconds or minutes. Learn to gauge your readiness for the next set by what your body is telling you.

You'll learn to do it without even thinking about it after a while. Your body will say "I've got this. More please.."

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments are moderated and will posted once approved