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How often to train

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  • How often to train

    I am setting out on a new fitness journey.

    I have played a lot of sports in the UK and that has usually kept me pretty busy although I try to keep fit by doing quite a bit of kettlebells and the odd weights session.

    I am now focusing purely on weight training - looking at stronglifts because it is simple and just want to see how it goes before It starts getting technical.

    Wanted some advice on how often people hit the gym here?

    I do a KB class on Wednesday nights (which I am going to still do) which is pretty tough so was thinking 2 days a week of heavy lifting - Monday/Friday and maybe some sprints at the weekend.

    Is doing 2 lifting days enough though? I guess that is the real question I was wondering.

    thanks for any input. always appreciated.
    2010 - 5,11 and 101KG

    2012 - 5,11 and 77KG

    Train hard, eat well and love life

  • #2
    I think lifting twice a week can be fine, if you follow a good program that is made for twice a week. I wouldn't personally go below that. I'd go with your plan, and take it from there.

    At the moment I'm personally experimenting with lifting most days, using auto-regulation, and that seems to work just fine as well.


    • #3
      personally, I've been doing my heavy lifting twice a week for a while now. and I'm still making progress and gains nearly every week. and i'm by no means a novice lifter. I do a push/pull split, with my push day being bench press, squats, overhead press, and dips and my pull day being deadlift, rows, and pullups/chin-ups. I warm up extremely well, do 2-3 warm-up sets for each exercise, then do 3 heavy working sets of 5 reps, with 5 being the last possible rep I can get.

      I rarely ever take a full day "off" of exercise though. I do metcon circuits, mountain bike, hike, kayak, jog, ski etc most other days. even on my off days, i'm walking my dogs for at least an hour


      • #4
        Originally posted by AdamC29 View Post
        Wanted some advice on how often people hit the gym here?
        Body by Science will say once a week is enough, so as to allow the muscles to recover from their exertions. Al Kavadlo advocates three times week for body weight exercises in his Pushing the Limits book. I started off with BBS last year and it certainly worked as I consistently showed strength improvements. Being a tight git, I have moved on to pure body weight so that I don't need a gym membership or any kit at all.

        It all boils down to what exactly it is you as an individual want to achieve.
        Why use a sledge hammer to crack a nut when a steam roller is even more effective, and, is fun to drive.


        • #5
          Arthur Saxon used to be the strongest man in the world about a century ago, and he and his brothers used to only do 2 workouts per week. That was WAY before they had supplements and steroids. I always say, if 2 workouts was good enough for him, then it's good enough for me.

          I have also known A LOT of excellent and world class powerlifters who only train twice per week as well, several with world records in the bench press and also phenomenal numbers in the squat and deadlift.

          So I would have to say, 2 heavy sessions per week is plenty. I've done it that way for a handful of years now and it has always worked well.

          Keep it simple and heavy and focus on progressive resistance, and you can't go wrong.


          • #6
            Your main lifting should be for the results you want. On your other days, just stay as active as possible, because it's good for you.

            I personally wouldn't lift heavy twice per week and add another hard session plus sprinting, but that's just me. I'm 35 and beat up. Instead, for me, I like 2 heavy sessions + as much enjoyable activity on other days that I can, typically walking, swimming, etc..


            • #7
              For me lifting twice a week and alternating half of the routine works best for me. I also do about 5 hours a were
              K of bike commuting and another 5-8hours on the weekend doing more intense road biking in the hills.