Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 33

Thread: Do you need longer rest periods the more advanced you are in weight training?

  1. #1
    Banned
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    76

    Do you need longer rest periods the more advanced you are in weight training?

    My brother keeps telling me that people who have worked out alot and put on solid mass need to rest longer and workout fewer days. Is this true? Obviosly for people who arent on roids.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Anthony's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    12,020
    No.
    Facebook - BW166 SQ585 BP405 DL660 CL310

  3. #3
    Wannabebig Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    35
    Yes.

    That has been true for me personally at least.

    Look at it this way, your body will gain muscle by some sort of ratio. ie - your muscle can increase in size by 0.02% each time you lift. As you progress that is a lot more muscle each time. In order to provide your muscles with the nutrients and blood to grow that extra 0.02% your body needs to use your organs, which (hopefully) are not increasing in size at all. That means that your organs have to work harder to allow your body to recover when you are big versus when you are small.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    161
    Cancer, rest periods and frequency of training depend upon a number of factors, including your own recovery ability/work capacity, and goals.

  5. #5
    Om. Avocado. MM's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    3,204
    Short answer: No.

    Longer answer. No way.
    Don't hate the player. Hate the game.


  6. #6
    Wannabebig Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    35
    I would be interested in hearing an explanation a little longer than "no" from one of the experts.

  7. #7
    Go Heels! MixmasterNash's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Chapel Hill, NC
    Posts
    10,215
    Quote Originally Posted by rickyj
    I would be interested in hearing an explanation a little longer than "no" from one of the experts.
    Rest period length has nothing to do with the time you have spent training. Smart lifters will use short, long, and everything in between, depending on their goals.

    If you have a question about rest periods, rest for two minutes between sets. And two or three days between working out the same muscles.
    Last edited by MixmasterNash; 11-07-2005 at 11:12 AM.

    The journal / I live here.

    If I were to start from scratch as a young 13 year old again, I would do every press, squat, and perhaps deadlifts, for my entire career with chains. -- Dan John

  8. #8
    Senior Member Anthony's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    12,020
    There's a variety of ways to discuss this. We can talk about rest periods between sets. We can talk about rest periods between workouts. We can talk about how a 0.02% muscle increase each workout is so horribly flawed that it's not even worth addressing.

    Basically it boils down to what was already said above: training goals, work capacity, recovery ability, and active recovery tools.
    Facebook - BW166 SQ585 BP405 DL660 CL310

  9. #9
    Push powerlifting heathj's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    WA, USA
    Posts
    5,234
    I have shorter rest periods then ever. My muscular endurance has increased so I don't really need a long rest period.

    But it also depends on your goals (strength/hypertrophy).

  10. #10
    Wannabebig Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    35
    Quote Originally Posted by Anthony
    There's a variety of ways to discuss this. We can talk about rest periods between sets. We can talk about rest periods between workouts. We can talk about how a 0.02% muscle increase each workout is so horribly flawed that it's not even worth addressing.

    Basically it boils down to what was already said above: training goals, work capacity, recovery ability, and active recovery tools.
    So it all comes down to just goals. LMFAO!

    Rest periods between workouts. Recovery takes an active process in the body. If you have more muscle - you need more maintenance period. Maintaining and building muscle is a metabolically ACTIVE process. Period. Your body has a limit on metabolic activity. Period. If you have a lot of muscle your body has to work harder to maintain this muscle and has to work harder to build more muscle. Period.


    ETA - I am pretty sure the OP was talking about rest between workouts, not sets.
    Last edited by rickyj; 11-07-2005 at 10:50 AM.

  11. #11
    Grammar Nazi BG5150's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    NJ
    Posts
    3,977
    But isn't the recuperation of muscle something that happens unilaterally. ie that it is happening all at once? Or, at least, something close to that? It's not like the body repairs one muscle cell, then goes onto the next one, does its job on that cell, then moves on again.

    And the above situation (MORE muscle) would seem to subscribe to the theory of hyperplasia (adding new cells) as opposed to hypertrophy (existing cells getting bigger). I don't see how or why the body would have to work harder or take more time to refresh bigger (volume-wise) muscles than smaller ones.
    Last edited by BG5150; 11-07-2005 at 11:04 AM. Reason: punctuation
    There are no stupid questions, just stupid people.
    Two wrongs don't make a right, but three rights make a left.
    Are you eating while you are reading this? You should be... --hrdgain81
    Remember, kids, if you type well the Grammar Fairy will leave a quarter under your pillow. The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation

    Well, the Blog's (finally) back (again!): Love and Hope and Sex and Dreams Feel free to stop by and comment.
    Here is my newly-created World of Warcraft Blog: BG's WoW Blog. Once again, feel free to stop by and comment.

  12. #12
    Just watch me ... Built's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    9,912
    Okay, here's my take on this question:

    In the beginning, you really aren't strong enough to lift all that heavy. Your rest breaks needn't be all that long.

    As you progress, you get strong enough and well-conditioned enough to lift a LOT heavier than when you started. Short, heavy, strength-range training demands longer breaks between sets.

    Perhaps this is a source of confusion?

  13. #13
    Senior Member Anthony's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    12,020
    Quote Originally Posted by rickyj
    So it all comes down to just goals. LMFAO!

    Rest periods between workouts. Recovery takes an active process in the body. If you have more muscle - you need more maintenance period. Maintaining and building muscle is a metabolically ACTIVE process. Period. Your body has a limit on metabolic activity. Period. If you have a lot of muscle your body has to work harder to maintain this muscle and has to work harder to build more muscle. Period.
    A few flaws in your argument. First, you assume that each workout causes damage to the entire muscle. If this were true, you'd be in a lot of trouble after training. Second, the amount of daily energy required to maintain one pound of muscle tissue (not water, not fat, but actual muscle tissue) is found in a half scoop of protein. Third, you fail to understand how external factors (sleep, diet, active recovery, work capacity, massage, etc) can affect recovery ability.

    But if you can show evidence of your claims, I'd be happy to read them.
    Last edited by Anthony; 11-07-2005 at 11:15 AM.
    Facebook - BW166 SQ585 BP405 DL660 CL310

  14. #14
    Senior Member Anthony's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    12,020
    Quote Originally Posted by BG5150
    But isn't the recuperation of muscle something that happens unilaterally. ie that it is happening all at once? Or, at least, something close to that? It's not like the body repairs one muscle cell, then goes onto the next one, does its job on that cell, then moves on again.

    And the above situation (MORE muscle) would seem to subscribe to the theory of hyperplasia (adding new cells) as opposed to hypertrophy (existing cells getting bigger). I don't see how or why the body would have to work harder or take more time to refresh bigger (volume-wise) muscles than smaller ones.
    I think these are interesting points. Something worth looking into.
    Last edited by Anthony; 11-07-2005 at 11:17 AM.
    Facebook - BW166 SQ585 BP405 DL660 CL310

  15. #15
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    161
    IMO, recovery is more a CNS issue than a purely muscular one. Chad Waterbury at www.t-nation.com and quickly becoming something of a CNS guru - you may want to head over there and search for some of his stuff - alot of it discusses recovery.

  16. #16
    Do that voodoo that he do
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Bangor, ME, United States
    Posts
    4,173
    Quote Originally Posted by Pats Fan
    IMO, recovery is more a CNS issue than a purely muscular one. Chad Waterbury at www.t-nation.com and quickly becoming something of a CNS guru - you may want to head over there and search for some of his stuff - alot of it discusses recovery.
    This is pretty much the issue, or at least a main portion of it.

    It will mostly break down to how a lifter lifts.

    An advanced powerlifter will tend to need more time between sets, and more time between sessions, as they work in a much higher range of their CNS capacity.

    Early in their career they might have been squatting 405x1 for a max. Let's say this involved 50% recruitment, but was as much as they could manage. Flash-forward ten years and now you've got a gargantuan that is squatting 855x1 for their max effort work with a finely tuned recruitment pattern (~80%). Which is going to be more taxing for two lifters:

    Young Lifter A: 355x1, 385x1, 405x1

    or

    Old Lifter A: 755x1, 805x1, 855x1

    ?

    The answer is the old lifter. The CNS is notorious in its length of healing time being much more so than the muscular system. This becomes an issue here. Think about a newbie to lifting. The first time they come into the gym they can barely bench the bar for a few reps. Within a month they're benching 135 for the same number of reps. Did they get sore every time they lifted? probably. They were probably also only sore the next day then could come in on only a day or two of rest and make progress. How many advanced lifters do you know that can really hit failure, not be sore for days at a time, and come right back in and progress? None. That's mostly because of CNS refinement. Also, because of the greater recruitment they'll experience more muscular damage/fatigue than a young lifter will in less reps.

    More advanced lifters may or may not be in better shape and overall conditioning (they should be, but some aren't). If they are, their capilliarization has been built up and so on, then they should be able to recover from muscular fatigue and damage faster than newer trainees. This would only be different in the case that they are causing more overall damage. BG5150 indicated that muscle damage is repaired simultaneously rather than on individual cells. True, but if there is more overall damage than it probably will still take longer to heal. Even a well trained body can only move damaged tissue and substrates around so fast.

    There is some research on older individuals losing some CNS ability/recovery as they age as well. I wouldn't be too concerned about calculating this as it is somewhat inevitable and not something to be looked at unless talking about spans of tens of years. Also it would vary greatly by individual.

    If an advanced lifter is lifting more as a bodybuilder such as hitting multiple sets of 8-12 reps and avoiding failure, then they are minimally taxing their CNS. The primary system being trained is the muscular system, and their recovery should be quite quick. I personally think they would still need a bit more off time between sessions than a fairly new trainee (much less than someone who is operating at 90%+ of their 1RM), but probably should be in better overall condition and actually need shorter rest times between sets.
    Be a man. Be awesome at it. Be proud of it. Beyond the Barbell

    "Borris is correct. That sounds logical if you ask me."
    -galileo

  17. #17
    Senior Member Anthony's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    12,020
    Borris, let's assume age and/or improved conditioning isn't a factor with your example lifter. I'm not convinced the heavier weight would cause more damage. Let me see if I can explain ...

    Then: lifter squats 135x8, causes X amount of damage.
    Now: lifter squats 135x8, causes Y amount of damage.
    Now: lifter squats 315x8, causes X amount of damage.

    I'm not sure if that makes sense, but my argument is that damage is related to your capacity. Your thoughts?
    Facebook - BW166 SQ585 BP405 DL660 CL310

  18. #18
    Do that voodoo that he do
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Bangor, ME, United States
    Posts
    4,173
    Quote Originally Posted by Anthony
    Borris, let's assume age and/or improved conditioning isn't a factor with your example lifter. I'm not convinced the heavier weight would cause more damage. Let me see if I can explain ...

    Then: lifter squats 135x8, causes X amount of damage.
    Now: lifter squats 135x8, causes Y amount of damage.
    Now: lifter squats 315x8, causes X amount of damage.

    I'm not sure if that makes sense, but my argument is that damage is related to your capacity. Your thoughts?
    I think in the 8-rep range you're probably half right.

    Think how this works cellularly. How do you get stronger?

    1) CNS adaptation = better recruitment = more fibers firing at once. This means more damage per lift.

    2) More actin and myosin within the cell (muscular hypertrophy), unless you want to debate possible hyperplasia and I don't.


    I'm going to assume everyone understands point #1, which won't come into play as much here in the 8+ rep range.

    Point #2: There are more contractile proteins within each muscle cell. Every time these are used they are damaged to some degree (Z-lines are torn, etc). The severity of damage is variable depending on load and repetitions. So there's more protein that needs to be repaired within each cell.

    In your above example the advanced lifter using 135x8 probably will see minimal damage because his recruitment need will be so low. He just doesn't need that many of his (stronger) fibers to squat 135x8. As he goes up in weight more fibers will fire and more damage will be caused to them. It's going to depend on lifter ability as to whether 315x8 will cause more damage to the advanced lifter in question than 135x8 will to the new lifter. If your advanced lifter is a 500x12 squatter, then probably 315x8 won't. If they're a 335x6 squatter, then 315x8 will be pretty close to their top end, so they will be using everything they've got.

    The heavier weight might not cause as much overall damage because of more selective recruitment. It'll vary depending on how heavy the weight really was for the lifter.

    Here's a test for you:

    Take a new lifter and have them do 5x8 at their 8RM with fairly short rests and someone helping them get any reps past failure. See how they feel in a couple of days.

    Take an advanced lifter and have them do the same. I assure you they will be ****ed up for a couple of days.
    Be a man. Be awesome at it. Be proud of it. Beyond the Barbell

    "Borris is correct. That sounds logical if you ask me."
    -galileo

  19. #19
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    161
    Quote Originally Posted by Borris
    I think in the 8-rep range you're probably half right.

    Think how this works cellularly. How do you get stronger?

    1) CNS adaptation = better recruitment = more fibers firing at once. This means more damage per lift.

    2) More actin and myosin within the cell (muscular hypertrophy), unless you want to debate possible hyperplasia and I don't.


    I'm going to assume everyone understands point #1, which won't come into play as much here in the 8+ rep range.

    Point #2: There are more contractile proteins within each muscle cell. Every time these are used they are damaged to some degree (Z-lines are torn, etc). The severity of damage is variable depending on load and repetitions. So there's more protein that needs to be repaired within each cell.

    In your above example the advanced lifter using 135x8 probably will see minimal damage because his recruitment need will be so low. He just doesn't need that many of his (stronger) fibers to squat 135x8. As he goes up in weight more fibers will fire and more damage will be caused to them. It's going to depend on lifter ability as to whether 315x8 will cause more damage to the advanced lifter in question than 135x8 will to the new lifter. If your advanced lifter is a 500x12 squatter, then probably 315x8 won't. If they're a 335x6 squatter, then 315x8 will be pretty close to their top end, so they will be using everything they've got.

    The heavier weight might not cause as much overall damage because of more selective recruitment. It'll vary depending on how heavy the weight really was for the lifter.

    Here's a test for you:

    Take a new lifter and have them do 5x8 at their 8RM with fairly short rests and someone helping them get any reps past failure. See how they feel in a couple of days.

    Take an advanced lifter and have them do the same. I assure you they will be ****ed up for a couple of days.
    Hey borris, I'm trying to find the article - however, I remember reading that although more advanced lifters will have more efficient neuromuscular systems (more efficient at neural system instructing muscles what to do), the CNS does not evolve in regard to the loads it can handle. Therefore, although an advanced lifter is better able to recruit a greater % of his muscle fibers vs. a newer lifter, their CNS is no better able to recover from heavy loads as it was when newer to lifting.

    Bottom line, as one lifts heavier loads, the CNS takes longer to recover. Avoiding muscular failure, keeping volume and intensity in check (and varying through progression), and utilizing restorative measures (cryocup, hot/cold alt baths, massages, etc.), proper post-workout nutrition, etc. can accelerate recovery of muscles and CNS.

  20. #20
    Do that voodoo that he do
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Bangor, ME, United States
    Posts
    4,173
    Quote Originally Posted by Pats Fan
    Hey borris, I'm trying to find the article - however, I remember reading that although more advanced lifters will have more efficient neuromuscular systems (more efficient at neural system instructing muscles what to do), the CNS does not evolve in regard to the loads it can handle. Therefore, although an advanced lifter is better able to recruit a greater % of his muscle fibers vs. a newer lifter, their CNS is no better able to recover from heavy loads as it was when newer to lifting.

    Bottom line, as one lifts heavier loads, the CNS takes longer to recover. Avoiding muscular failure, keeping volume and intensity in check (and varying through progression), and utilizing restorative measures (cryocup, hot/cold alt baths, massages, etc.), proper post-workout nutrition, etc. can accelerate recovery of muscles and CNS.

    Yeah, that's what I've been saying.
    Be a man. Be awesome at it. Be proud of it. Beyond the Barbell

    "Borris is correct. That sounds logical if you ask me."
    -galileo

  21. #21
    Senior Member Anthony's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    12,020
    So really, it has nothing to with size to any measureable degree ... but CNS plays a role. I'd be interested in learning more about that. I mean, it makes sense, but I'm wondering how much of a difference it would make from a 135x1 squat to a 405x1 squat to a 585x1 squat, etc. For the same person, of course.
    Facebook - BW166 SQ585 BP405 DL660 CL310

  22. #22
    Do that voodoo that he do
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Bangor, ME, United States
    Posts
    4,173
    Quote Originally Posted by Anthony
    So really, it has nothing to with size to any measureable degree ... but CNS plays a role. I'd be interested in learning more about that. I mean, it makes sense, but I'm wondering how much of a difference it would make from a 135x1 squat to a 405x1 squat to a 585x1 squat, etc. For the same person, of course.
    Size only would be an issue in that there would be more contractile protein damage to repair. From a 135x1 to a 405x1 or 585x1 growth on the same person would probably be a noticable difference. Nutrition, rest, conditioning, blood flow, etc all would play a role.

    Like I said, cellular repair can only happen so fast. This is one of the primary ways that anabolics work. They hasten protein synthesis through testosterone manipulation.
    Be a man. Be awesome at it. Be proud of it. Beyond the Barbell

    "Borris is correct. That sounds logical if you ask me."
    -galileo

  23. #23
    Senior Member Anthony's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    12,020
    So have you personally noticed an increase in recovery time as you get stronger? I haven't, that's why I'm curious. Maybe I'm not strong enough.
    Facebook - BW166 SQ585 BP405 DL660 CL310

  24. #24
    Grammar Nazi BG5150's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    NJ
    Posts
    3,977
    Quote Originally Posted by Anthony
    So have you personally noticed an increase in recovery time as you get stronger? I haven't, that's why I'm curious. Maybe I'm not strong enough.
    With my experience, it has been intensity, not weight, that has been a factor in my recovery.
    There are no stupid questions, just stupid people.
    Two wrongs don't make a right, but three rights make a left.
    Are you eating while you are reading this? You should be... --hrdgain81
    Remember, kids, if you type well the Grammar Fairy will leave a quarter under your pillow. The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation

    Well, the Blog's (finally) back (again!): Love and Hope and Sex and Dreams Feel free to stop by and comment.
    Here is my newly-created World of Warcraft Blog: BG's WoW Blog. Once again, feel free to stop by and comment.

  25. #25
    Do that voodoo that he do
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Bangor, ME, United States
    Posts
    4,173
    Quote Originally Posted by BG5150
    With my experience, it has been intensity, not weight, that has been a factor in my recovery.
    Right. That's generally what I've been saying when Anthony starts posting about 315x8 and that type of thing. 315x8 will not be an issue if someone can squat 585x8. It will be something to recover from if someone squats 335x8. However, intensity becomes more of an issue with the more advanced a person gets because of the CNS development.

    Basically, 95% of a 800 lb squatter is going to be a lot tougher on him than 95% of a 200 lb squatter.


    As to Anthony's question: I notice it on deadlifts. I used to be able to work up to a heavy deadlift every week with no problem. Now I can do it for one or two weeks at most. After that my entire system is fried. If I try to push it for 3-4 weeks even my non-deadlift lifts tend to go down and I show many of the classic symptoms of CNS burn-out.
    Be a man. Be awesome at it. Be proud of it. Beyond the Barbell

    "Borris is correct. That sounds logical if you ask me."
    -galileo

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •