Are heavy workouts longer than 60 minutes that bad for strength/growth?
- 08-15-2012, 11:29 AM
as a general rule, it is not advised to train 90min+, simply because "natural state" ie no anabolics combined with the usual layman's lack of knowledge on nutritional/supplemental preparation for these sessions, is a recipe for overtraining.
your nutritional approach seems solid, rest periods on those heavy days appropriate..as long as your other days are not suffering, i see nothing wrong with your approach.
end point: it is not simply a matter of making a general statement of "x amount of time is too long to be in the gym"
there are many variables to be considered to quantify what is appropriate for "how long"/qualify what is deemed "too long".
- 08-15-2012, 11:37 AM
I'll break down what I do: 5/3/1 with Periodization Bible assistance work (high volume for assistance)
With 5/3/1, you focus on the big 4 movements. Squat, deadlift, OH strict press, bench...but not necessarily in that order.
Each day I train, one of these movements is the focus for that day. So on my squat day, I will squat heavy according to the 5/3/1 method, then for assistance work I will do things like split squats, GHRs, lunges at high volume. This takes less than an hour, but my workout is not yet done. I then usually do conditioning work after each session. I will take the prowler out for 20min or so, or do barbell complexes. Sometimes when pressed for time in a given week, I will squat and press on the same day, and also fit in my assistance work. On these days I definitely break between my lower body work and upper body, eat a macro bar and some extra protein then continue on.
To make a long story short, none of my full workouts are less than an hour, but I am not training heavy throughout the full workout. I train heavy/then medium for assistance work/then light for conditioning work. It works out well that way for me. I don't necessarily break for 10-15min while I eat a snack though. Sometimes I will sit for 5 min, munch down a bar and my coconut water and continue on. Depends on the day.
08-15-2012, 11:41 AM
i would not advise eating solid foods within the training period, for a variety of reasons.
liquid nutrition for extended training periods is best..
even bcaas preferable to drinking whey within the session.
08-15-2012, 11:44 AM
08-15-2012, 11:47 AM
08-15-2012, 11:58 AM
08-15-2012, 12:04 PM
08-15-2012, 12:15 PM
this "amount" is different for each individual, depending on a few factors (weights being moved, experience, etc etc)
look at your powerlifters, performing in a meet..they don't do set after set of warm-ups. it would simply tire them out.
very few "warm-ups" are needed to perform at maximal strength.
for me, i hit 2 warms:
then. i hit my working sets @ 275+
my main warm-up is the 7-minute light cardio i do before i touch a weight, to get bloodflow going.
08-15-2012, 12:19 PM
08-15-2012, 12:23 PM
08-15-2012, 12:30 PM
Thanks for all the replies.
As for how tired I am at the end, I am capable of still doing 20-30 minutes of moderate cardio (which I rarely do after the heavy lift). I generally am tired after I do deadlifts, but I find if I do deadlifts first, I am still tired. It is also the "hill" when I do HIIT. Thats the exercise where I mentally say "I will WIN." Last time I lifted, just to see how I tired I am, and I went and benched the heaviest weight I did when I started the day. My last two sets were 275, and I got 4 and 3 (maybe 2.95 I don't trust the spotters honesty). Going back, I was able to squeeze 275 about 1 3/4 times, and I think it was my shoulders that were the limiting factor. So while I am tired and I burned a lot of energy, I am not completely drained.
I really appreciate the comments, I really do appreciate them.
Btw, on the glycogen debate, in a couple of weeks I will be going pure keto diet with AndroLean up. Right now I have a low carb diet. I find when I am on atkins or modified atkins diet, I have nearly unlimited energy. I used to rune 3.5-4 miles at a sub 7 minute mile after doing lifts, and still didn't feel drained. I have stubby legs (29 inches) and was sizeable, so that time was very good for me. I know it doesn't work for everyone, but I actually need to have low carbs to lose weight/maintain. AndroLean, atkins, and 2 weeks into Alphamine, and super strict workouts: I haven't been so psyched to lift in years.
08-15-2012, 12:36 PM
^ Agreed. I am sorry snagency but what you are saying is incorrect.Originally Posted by Rodja
Both articles provide information on performance enhancing effects of warm-up techniques. The articles both explain how warm up techniques result in greater CNS activation in preparation for working sets. This activation results in greater motor unit recruitment and a phenomenon called post activation potentiation.
08-15-2012, 12:44 PM
This is just wrong. I warm up to around 75% on all three lifts. This equates to ~ 6-8 sets. If my wt class is big, I'll go back and do some triples w around 60-65% just to stay warm every 20 minutes or soOriginally Posted by snagencyV2.0
08-15-2012, 12:48 PM
M.Ed. Ex Phys
08-15-2012, 12:54 PM
if your worried about glycogen.. drink a gatorade brah..... i dont believe in the minute mark, i work concrete 10 hours a day and workout for 2 hours after that... accoridng to "scientific research" i should be burning all my muscle but im not ya know why?.... because i eat to support to physical activity... its simple, the more you workout the more you eat and you will be golden IMO
08-15-2012, 12:54 PM
When I am attempting an all out set with a heavy weight, I do warm ups, but each set is only 1-2 reps, not counting a very light first set or two. Like this (example):
135 x 8
185 x 5
225 x 2
250 x 1
275 x 1
Working set being 300lbs with as many reps as I can do (say 2-4 reps)
08-15-2012, 12:55 PM
and yes - def agree w/ the misconception on reps for warm-ups..
but my point is: for the majority of ppl, there will MANY different viable ways to warm up. no one set pattern/protocol is going to be the ticket, or optimal, for ALL ppl in EVERY scenario. even differentiating between strength/max lifting, or more mainstream lifting.
thanks all for the feedback and links, appreciate your input.
08-15-2012, 01:15 PM
My warm up starts before i start my workout and they start wirh ex 1.... Dont see the need to do a warm up after i warmed up and already did 3-4 working sets,4th to failure...why waste energy on warm ups dor every exercise..i dnt get it,ur already warmed up,lolOriginally Posted by snagencyV2.0
08-15-2012, 01:18 PM
Once I hit my heavy set for 531 and my nervous system is primed, I like to rip through accessory work ASAP.
08-15-2012, 01:34 PM
08-15-2012, 02:57 PM
I've been trying the Jason Ferrugia system for awhile now (he pretty much preaches the "get in, get out fast" style of working out) and I have seen the fastest, most pronounced gains by working out for only 45 mins to an hour max. On bi-tri day, only 30 mins. My whole life I worked out for
almost 2 hours in some cases, and although I saw some gains, nothing as good as getting in and getting out quickly. I have also went WAAAY down in reps and sets, but UP in weights and intensity.
For as long as I can remember it's always been preached to "do as many set, reps, exercises" as you can. For years cardio was always "jog as long as you can". Now it appears that shorter, more intense workouts AND cardio work better, for me at least. Instead of doing low-intensity cardio for over an hour, I do 3-4 sprints and RUN for about 30 minutes, and I am SOAKED when I finish that! I don't work out for hours like I did before, but when I work out now, I work out HARD for a good 30-45mins at a very high intensity, and I am fully pumped after that!
I mean, would you rather have the limp, muscle-less frame of a long-distance runner, or that of a toned, muscled 100 meter sprinter?
I like to work out hard and fast, get out and start my day. It works so good for me that a guy at the gym asked me "if I was on something" because my gains were so quick and my development was of a higher quality than when I stayed longer. I love to see other guys in the gym work out far longer than I do and still look like crap, but I'm in and out in 45 mins or so and have developed at a greater pace. I've put on a good 5 lbs or so of muscle recently and can't be happier with my progress, too bad I wasted YEARS of slow development to find out that less really is MORE!
08-15-2012, 04:17 PM
That's about what I do. Rest and focus mentally for the "payday" set. I will superset accessory work if I'm short on time. If I have time and am feeling frisky I will do singles in the 95 percent range.Originally Posted by boogyman
08-15-2012, 04:39 PM
As this is my first post, I preface it with the fact I am 48 and have been bodybuilding since 1978 - started at 15.
I tried both types of workouts for many years each - volume (warmups followed by several sets half-pyramid style) with several exercises per body part, and "high intensity" (although NOT the Mike Mentzer "extreme" where you work out one set per body part for once a week or sometimes even less).
I made my BEST progress on EVERYTHING (size, endurance, strength) by using a rep-range of 8-12 on average, ALWAYS going go failure on final set for each exercise (which was usually one set per exercise), used VERY STRICT form, and did a half-body split alternating days with 2 days off on weekends. Don't know if any of you remember his name - it escapes me right now: he used to ride a bike to the gym in the early 80's with a basket on the front
When I went to absolute failure on each set, it was not only my muscles that were being taxed, but also all "support systems" (hormonal, such as cortisol - which you want to try to stop before "exciting" it too much, HGH, adrenal, CNS, etc.). Your body simply cannot take the stress of a 2 hour a day workout every day, 6 days a week. By experience and watching others for 34 years, I saw NO difference in non-steroid users between those who worked out 2+ hours a day for 6 days a week vs. those who worked out 3 days a week for no more than 1 hour a day. Conclusion: (and yes, I realize it was not a double-blind study that should be used to render a statistically defensible conclusion) why work out as much as 5 times more than you need to accomplish the same goal, unless you just like to hang around a gym?
1. Someone asked if steroids played a role. The answer is obviously yes. They enable people to stay in the gym longer and return sooner because they are enabling your body to recover much faster than the non-steroid user (unless you are a true genetic anomaly like Flex Wheeler, whose body was tested and was shown to have a myostatin/cortisol gene "defect"; even Arnold said Wheeler was the best bodybuilder he had ever seen).
2. Genetics are ALWAYS going to trump the non-gifted person, no matter how hard the non-gifted person works out. I am NOT saying "don't work out - you don't have a chance", but why do people view bodybuilding differently than they do any other professional sports? Guys, people become professional athletes BECAUSE they are genetically gifted in their chosen field/profession. How many people do you know as small as former pro basketball player Spud Webb being able to regularly dunk a 10 foot basketball goal??? How many people do you know who could run like Jim Brown or guard a line like Dick Butkis? The weightlifting sports are no different.
3. Finally, about cardio. I have no interest in Arthur Jones's former businesses (Nautilus, which became MedX) nor his son's, so what I say is not impacted by either of them. But Arthur said a long time ago one thing that always stuck with me, and I asked several professors (all PhD's in the "body field" - kinesiologists, bio-mechanical engineers, sports medicine MD's) about it and every one agreed: when you work your body intensely so that your raise your heart beat to a certain level and keep it at that level for a set amount of time, your body is basically "doing cardio" because your brain has no idea WHAT is causing the increase in heartbeat and length of that increase!!! Most people think that "cardio" must involve training with something OTHER than weights - nonsense! If you start working out your legs doing squats with a huge load and are puffing and blowing like a freightrain, and continue training your legs with very little rests in between sets until you are finished, do you think your brain registered "Oh - we were just doing bodybuilding leg workouts, so that doesn't count for 'cardio'"? Of course not. Your brain registers an intensity overload that increases heart rate and length of elevated heart rate, REGARDLESS of what is causing that heart rate.
P.S. - another instructive thing to just view/look at the bodies of runners at not only the recent Olympics, but all running sports: look at the bodies of sprinters vs. long distance runners. Why do sprinters look like bodybuilders and sprinters look like Lance Armstrong? Usain Bolt is a true genetic anomaly because of his body's ability to fire impulses to his legs like no other man seen before AND, something that many people forget because they marvel at his speed - Bolt's 6-5 frame enables him to cover the same distance (100 meters) taking 44-45 steps while all other runners take up to 49-50 steps. It does not take a study to figure out that if someone can fire his synapses just as quickly as other runners but has to take less steps to cover the same distance, that person will more often than not beat the other runners, all other things being equal.
08-15-2012, 05:12 PM
Not necessarily true. While I do understand your point, it is broad and not thoroughly correct. This depends primarily on what energy system is being utilized ATP-PC, anaerobic glycolysis or aerobic glycolysis. The huffing and puffing you referenced is is a phenomenon that occurs after cessation of anaerobic exercise called EPOC. Where the body has accumulated an O2 debt that needs to be replenished. The manner in which you refer to "cardio" is a broad term covering any exercise that has an affect on the cardiovascular system. The difference between what society has deemed "cardio" and not "cardio," which I believe is what you are referring to, lies in the primary energy system and muscle fiber type being utilized. Now it is not to say crossover between fiber recruitment and energy system utilization does not exist, it's just a matter of what is the primary aspect with respect to the work being completed. Also I can't help but say that with regards to the number of 2 hours being the teetering point, you are mistaken as well. There are two many contributing variables, including but not limited to, age, sex, genetics (covering all things from hormone levels/sensitivity, fiber type and density, etc) training style, goals, diet, rest time, and so on. To place a definitive marker on time is just not feasible.Originally Posted by Salvatore123
08-15-2012, 06:22 PM
I agree with what you say.
I should have prefaced my comments with an even more "general caveat", that the remarks I made and quantities I listed were "averages" and not definitive points for any particular person. I think if we took a sampling size of 100 people, we would probably be able to tailor 50 different "workouts" in terms of time, amount, rep-ranges, rest-between-sets, days worked out per week, etc. for a group as small as 100.
Second, what I meant by "cardio" is what most DOCTORS and, as you correctly noted, the "public", refer to as "cadio": elevating one's heartbeat to a certain number of beats per minute and keeping it at that elevated level for a certain period of time. THAT is what most people think of "cardio". I was not referring to "cardio" as you defined it.
Finally, I think your comments about the different glycolyses fits into what I referenced in my PS: look at the difference in physiques of sprinters vs. long distance runners. I doubt that anyone would put the long distance runners more in the "cardio" arena (as commonly thought of) than the sprinters. Different muscle types are recruited, along with a different CNS response/recruitment. I believe that after Lance Armstrong won his 7th Tour de France, exercise physiologists and MD's actually took muscle biopsies from his leg muscle and registered his CNS muscle impulses via SINE wave detection, AND finally, measured his lactic acid buildup and oxygen depletion. Conclusion? Another genetic "freak" in the sense that NO ONE ever studied in this manner even approached the difference between Amstrong's response to long term muscle use and others subjected to the same stress. In fact, every other person tested had to stop the testing because of sheer pain caused by lactic acid builduup, while Amstrong's muscles were still working with little or no buildup because his body somehow was suffling the acid so that it never had a CHANCE to buildup.
I recall reading an article on Casey Viator's training with Jones where Viator's strength was so much that he was "too strong" for the machine, and thus had to continue working out until the pain was too great for even Viator to bear because of the lactic acid buildup. I wonder if Armstrong - albeit with much lesser weight - could have gone on much longer . . . I think so, given what we know him now.
NYIron - thanks for your comments.
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