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2013-10-02 8:41 AM

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Subject: Time between sets.

I'm currently doing Stronglifts 5x5.

As I get closer and closer to "stalling" (not lifting 5x5 on my planned weight for the day) my time between sets is growing.

At what point is the time between sets "too long" and it is no longer 5 sets of 5?

Does it matter?  For instance, right now I'm taking about 5 minutes between sets on my squat, with 210lbs on the bar.  I weigh about 190 pounds.   On that last set of 5, I'm huffing and puffing quite a bit.

I am receptive to your thoughts and feelings.



2013-10-02 4:12 PM
in reply to: moondawg14

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Subject: RE: Time between sets.

Your goal is to increase strength, so your time between sets (within reason, which you are) shouldn't matter; actually, you should be as fully recovered as you can be when you are doing high weight/low reps sessions.  If you were also trying to get a cardio benefit out of weight training, by alternating upper and lower body exercises and allowing for very little rest, your rest interval would matter.

The most efficient way to train for strength gains should be to get to failure (or very close) by your last set without compromising form.

Out of curiosity, why are you doing 5 sets?

Do you always do five sets?  Do you ever try three sets with higher weight?  Might be good to mix it up, if you don't already.

2013-10-02 5:56 PM
in reply to: switch

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Subject: RE: Time between sets.
Originally posted by switch

Your goal is to increase strength, so your time between sets (within reason, which you are) shouldn't matter; actually, you should be as fully recovered as you can be when you are doing high weight/low reps sessions.  If you were also trying to get a cardio benefit out of weight training, by alternating upper and lower body exercises and allowing for very little rest, your rest interval would matter.

The most efficient way to train for strength gains should be to get to failure (or very close) by your last set without compromising form.

Out of curiosity, why are you doing 5 sets?

Do you always do five sets?  Do you ever try three sets with higher weight?  Might be good to mix it up, if you don't already.

I do 5 sets because that's "the program" and it's working.   Even after a stall, I deload and then work back towards where I was, eventually surpassing it.     The guy who designed this workout also has follow-on programs that are 3x3 and such... for when you stop gaining with 5x5.

It works, it's free, and I have an app to track the workouts.  So... not going to change until one of those things stops being true! :^)

Thanks for the reply! ;^

2013-10-02 8:14 PM
in reply to: moondawg14

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Subject: RE: Time between sets.
Cool. I don't know much about tri, but teaching people how to weight train was my job for many years
2013-10-03 5:08 AM
in reply to: switch

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Subject: RE: Time between sets.

Originally posted by switch Cool. I don't know much about tri, but teaching people how to weight train was my job for many years

 

kickazz.  Guess I know who I'll come to when 5x5 stops working. :^)  I'm definitely getting some cardio benefit out of what I'm doing.

I should wear the Garmin again this week, it's been quite a few weeks since I've worn it.

2013-12-08 11:24 PM
in reply to: moondawg14

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Subject: RE: Time between sets.

5x5's are awesome and have been around for a long time.  The purpose in doing a low rep workout is to focus on strength, not hypertrophy (size and mass).  I train my son for off-season football and my program for him uses 5x5's because he needs to build a high strength to weight ratio to maintain speed.  I also use 5x5's and my goal is a 400lb bench by my birthday in April.  

A good android app for writing up your 5x5 workout, and setting your rest time is jefit.  We use 90 seconds of rest between sets on compound exercises (most of ours).  After his "lift-a-thon" in May, I'll switch him to do 3x12 workouts with a shorter rest period to put on a little extra mass for a couple months ahead of football season.  Any weight he gains will come off in the form of fat when he hits camps in July and August.  More importantly, we will shorten rest times and force more endurance.

Our goal is for him to hit a 200lb bench by his school lift-a-thon next May.  Overall in bench, power cleans and squat, we are shooting for a 270lb improvement over his freshman year.  



2013-12-09 7:05 AM
in reply to: 0

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, Florida
Subject: RE: Time between sets.
I’m following Bill Starr's 5x5, and feel it’s a great program. My rule of thumb if you will, is on ‘heavy’ days…I take more time between sets, (as I need it) and on the light/medium days of the program, I take less time between sets. I’d say, do what your body feels. With deadlifts and squats, I tend to need a little extra time between sets…especially on heavy days. You liking the program, OP?

Edited by SGirl 2013-12-09 7:06 AM
2013-12-18 5:31 PM
in reply to: SGirl

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Subject: RE: Time between sets.
I just started Stronglifts a month ago. I am still following the 90 second rest rule. But as I am squatting 150lbs at a weight of 208 lbs I am hoping that I have a lot of steady linear progression ahead of me.

I wonder though. If you are taking 5 minutes of rest at 210lbs are you any stronger than when you were taking 3 minutes of rest (whenever you were taking 3 minutes of rest).

Do you do a 1 Rep Max to see if you are really still experiencing strengths gains. Should you be? Seems to me if you are lengthening your rest times you should. Maybe someone with some actual knowledge could chime in on that. You said you deloaded and then made greater gains so obviously you are moving forward.

Oh, I just remembered, I was reading this thing the other day, can't remember where. Anyways, buddy said that he would do a couple months of 3 rep sets. So he would start lower than where he was at 5 reps. Ramp his way up way past where he was having trouble at 5 reps, then go back down with the 5 reps. He didn't say anything about rest time though.

2013-12-18 8:00 PM
in reply to: BigDH

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, Florida
Subject: RE: Time between sets.
Originally posted by BigDH

I just started Stronglifts a month ago. I am still following the 90 second rest rule. But as I am squatting 150lbs at a weight of 208 lbs I am hoping that I have a lot of steady linear progression ahead of me.

I wonder though. If you are taking 5 minutes of rest at 210lbs are you any stronger than when you were taking 3 minutes of rest (whenever you were taking 3 minutes of rest).

Do you do a 1 Rep Max to see if you are really still experiencing strengths gains. Should you be? Seems to me if you are lengthening your rest times you should. Maybe someone with some actual knowledge could chime in on that. You said you deloaded and then made greater gains so obviously you are moving forward.

Oh, I just remembered, I was reading this thing the other day, can't remember where. Anyways, buddy said that he would do a couple months of 3 rep sets. So he would start lower than where he was at 5 reps. Ramp his way up way past where he was having trouble at 5 reps, then go back down with the 5 reps. He didn't say anything about rest time though.


I 'test' my 1 rep max every 6 weeks, to see progress. I also have incorporated two nights per week, in addition to the 3 night 5x5 split, for accessory work. (to stay sane) lol The 5x5 program can become mentally tedious at times, but it's exciting when you hit PR's!

The important thing to note about time between sets, to me...is do what your body needs. I tend to make that my rule of thumb with running, cycling, and weight lifting. Everyone is different, and if you are lifting heavy one night...you will need more time between sets. If you want to super set, then, I wouldn't do that on heavy nights...as to avoid potential injury. But, again...everyone's mileage varies.

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