T Nation

Duration of a Workout?


#1

Hi! I couldn’t find a definitive answer with Google so I am asking you; how long should one workout? I am currently doing Agile 8 as a warm up which takes 10 minutes, then my actual exercise takes about 60-70 minutes (crowded gym so must queue on the racks etc). After my exercise I would like to do a little conditioning for example 10 minutes of rope jumping. I originally planned on doing 20 minutes of light cardio after lifting and asked about it here on the forums but I figured a way of adding cardio on my rest days. This all means that I will be spending over 90 minutes in the gym on one sitting, is this ok? I got some maltodextrin and bcaa for a bargain so I will be having them as an intra drink during my workout to prevent catabolic effects.


#2

Length of time is immaterial to success. Get through your program and you will be good.


#3

Not trying to be a dick here but honestly, it’s a vague question so don’t be surprised to get some vague answers.

Can range anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 or even 3 hours for some. Just depends on your goals and your approach to those said goals.

I’m no expert in the nutrition/body building aspect…but…isn’t that the point of working out? to cause damage to the muscle? so that they repair themselves in a way that they will be able to handle whatever hit them in the first place? Just seems that your reasoning for taking those supplements are wrong. I could be wrong though, again, I’m no expert in the body building and supplements and what not.


#4

That depends on what you’re doing in said workout. And how well conditioned you are to long workouts.

Find a program that fits your goals, do said program in however long it takes, get on with your life and stop worrying about it.


#5

Some of this is preference, but what I have found to be a key to longterm success is to do leave the gym feeling energized and refreshed. Long slogs of a workout suck. I prefer about a 10 minute warmup, then completing the “workout” portion within 45 minutes. I never do cardio right after lifting, unless a vigorous shower and 10 minute walk across campus count.


#6

The ammount of time spent in the gym is not related to the exercise you put in. When I started strong lifts and it took me 30 mins to get through it. After 5 months it took me 20mins just to do my squats.
Then i had bench and rows to do.
Like wise if I’m in a hurry I can and will power through a 3-4 exercise work out inclining hiit at the end in under 40 mins.


#7

Same here. Haha


#8

I fucking hated it. 5x5 squat, bench. I would be there hours.
Oh well - it served a purpose.


#9

I’m starting to hate it. Hit 100kg (220 lbs) for squat for 3 sets of 5, deloaded, and decided to just keep progressing with 3 sets of 5 instead, same for OHP at 40kg (88 lbs). I don’t want to reach the point where I’m failing reps left and right anymore.

Agree with the purpose part. The most important principle I’m taking from it is that programming is important - ironically. Hahaha.


#10

that’s not really the same thing…

His reasoning is fine. Consuming amino acids and carbs to help jump-start the repair of the damage done to the muscles during a workout absolutely makes sense. You’re limiting the duration that you are in a catabolic state. Yes, cellular damage occurs via weightlifting, and yes that is the mechanism that sparks the recovery that leads to strengthening and enlarging of the muscles. But in the absence of proper nutrition, all you do is break down the muscle and repair doesn’t happen at a sufficient level.

Just not seeing why you took issue with his reasoning, unless it’s like a technicality of language that you want to turn into a ‘gotcha!’ moment.


#11

I see I see. Thanks man. Not really taking issue, sorry if it sounded like that, poor phrasing from me perhaps. Really just wanted to learn about it from guys like you for example, cause I don’t know squat shit about nutrition and bodybuilding. That’s why I always start with the disclaimer statement. I’m sure you’ve noticed. It’s not the first time you’ve corrected me with those kinds of things, and I appreciate it. Thanks @flipcollar


#12

Thanks for the answers! The reason I want to improve my conditioning is to get in more work and reduce rest time or in other words to become more efficient. I normally don’t use supplements apart from protein powder but I managed to get my hands on cheap bcaa that is barely any more expensive than whey and I’ve been struggling to get in enough calories lately so I figured I’ll give maltodextrin a try! I guess thats the better alternative over just eating dirty…


#13

Yeah 90 mins not really necessary especially as a beginner.

Do one /main lift/rack lift for the day and take your time then do the rest of your workout as giant sets/supersets/resistance based metabolic work. Then finish with purer cardio or HIIT stuff.
Can throw in 15 mins beach work once or twice a week also, likewise all supersetted.
Good ideas here…



#14

Anything more than 60 minutes and your genitals will fall off from the sudden rush of cortisol into your bloodstream.


#15

I don’t think you should set a cap, this is why I like to train in the evening (as opposed to before work), so I don’t have a set time I have to be somewhere by. I set a rough time I’d like to be home to have dinner with my family.

I think my sessions take 2-2.5 hours if I’m doing lots of volume. If I’m doing triples or less, it’s like 40-60 minutes. I also lift with friends and teammates, so I spend more time at the gym.

But more importantly, get stuff done, do whatever prescribed accessory you have,


#16

Like the guys have said, there is no definitive answer. Period. A workout takes as long as is necessary.

Yes, that’s very okay, especially since 20ish minutes aren’t lifting.

Superset with fillers/active recovery. I explained how in this article. Basically, instead of “do an exercise, rest, do another set of that exercise, rest, repeat”, it’s “do exercise 1, do exercise 2, rest, do exercise 1, do exercise 2, rest, repeat.”

The details will depend on a few variables, but anything from mobility work to bodyweight stuff to more intense training can boost conditioning if programmed properly.


#17

Take as long as you need. I personally put “time limits” on my exercises, but that is to ensure I am working hard and keeping my conditioning up. No other reason besides I only get 30-90 minutes to train daily, so I have to make sure to get my work done.


#18

Shit I take an hour just to do my main lift. My next heavy squat session is 2 sets of 3 @ 200kg then a drop set of 12 @ 155kg so I tend to take my time getting to my max weight for the day. I do an anterior/posterior split, so after heavy squat I’ll do some volume leg press then start bench press and all other upper push work. Between the lower work and upper work I dick around a bit and have a break.
By the time I’m finished the workout it can be 3.5 hours.
I might add I’m running a test cycle right now.

Like the guys above said it just depends on your goals and how you approach them.


#19

Damn dawg, that’s a long ass workout lol.


#20

how many times do you workout in a week?

has nothing to do with workout duration, or frequency.