How much rest between sets?
Sets, reps and rest periods are the basis of any weight training program. The amount of reps you use or the rest periods you follow will differ depending on your training goal e.g. fitness, hypertrophy, strength, power or endurance.
The rest period refers to the time spent recovering between sets, allowing your muscles to recover sufficiently to repeat the movement. It is a fundamental contributor to the success of any strength training program. Rest periods usually range between 30 seconds – 2 minutes, but can last up to 5 minutes. A rest period can be an active rest for example, jogging on the spot or push-ups or a passive rest where you sit or stand. The length of your rest between sets will depend on your training goal and the amount of weight (if any) you are lifting.
If you look around a busy gym you’ll notice that most people use their rest periods to either have a quick scroll through social media, check out what others are doing or have a chat. If this sounds familiar, its time to change your ways, avoid the dead time in the gym and think of the rest period as an opportunity for your muscles to grow. A good training program will specify the type and length of rest as well as the required reps and sets.
Muscles require metabolic stress to increase size, which means working the muscles to the point lactate builds and muscle suffers internal damage. It is a combination of rest and how you fuel your muscles that will help the muscles to grow bigger and stronger.
Strength training requires longer rest periods because it takes your body about 3-minutes to fully recharge allowing you to lift more weight and get stronger faster. Hypertrophy training requires shorter rest periods between, 30sec – 90sec because shorter rest periods result in greater hormones release helping increase muscle size. Endurance training i.e. CrossFit, shorter rest periods are recommended to help muscles become more resistance to fatigue.
The table below provides a guide for the suggested rest period for different training goals.
|Training goal||Rest period|
|Strength and power||2-5 minutes|
|Muscle Hypertrophy||30-90 seconds|
|Muscle Endurance||30 seconds or less|
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Whey protein has proven to be the most effective way to stimulate acute post-exercise muscle growth. Ingestion of around 20g of whey protein during and/or immediately after each exercise session is recommended to allow maximal post-exercise muscle repair and re-build. Musashi 100% Whey contains 24g of protein helping athletes and bodybuilders maximise lean muscle and optimise recovery.