T Nation

Stand Alone Complex Workout Length?


I've read a few articles here on complexes and gave them a try today. After searching through the articles and the threads accompanying them I didn't find a general rule for the length of a complex workout. I'm guessing 30 to 45 minutes should suffice, but I was looking for some insight.



If I recall correctly, in Shugart's article about complexes, he said his entire workout was under 10 minutes. Someone please correct me if I'm wrong.


Yep...15 minutes is about right.


As part of my re-conditioning after my hernia surgery I've been doing complexes. I've been doing Cosgrove's Evil 8 (but for 5 sets of 6 reps) and Ferruggiaâ??s Timed Complex (5 sets of 6 reps) and am getting them done in about 12 minutes. Before I start with the complexes I do a thorough warm-up, mobility work and stretching that takes another 12 minutes. After the complexes I try to do some sort of light assistance work for higher reps.

I starting to like the complexes and am considering doing them on one off day a week and doing some intense sled pushin on another.


I like to do complexes starting with 12 reps, then minus one rep every set till i hit 5 reps. Since i feel stronger when i start the complex, it gasses me out early so that when i hit the 5 rep set, i feel like my heart is going to explode.


I like this idea and I think I'm going to steal it ... Thanks tcsimon :slightly_smiling:


I have a few complexes I work, but my favorite is done with 95lbs and goes like this: 21-18-15-12-9 repetitions each of deadlift, Hang power clean, front squat, push jerk. Depending on your level of conditioning this will take between 20-30 minutes, though many who are lacking conditioning will take longer or not even be able to finish.


I am such a geek. I saw the title of this thread and I was wondering who the hell would name a workout after a Japanese anime series?


sadly, i thought the same for a few seconds then, doh...complexes. right.


I read this yesterday, and gave it a try this morning; same reps and weight.

Ho-leee shit. That smoked my bags. I was sweatin' like a whore on nickel night. Thanks for the workout!


30 minutes? Good luck.

If you're doing it right you'll be smoked after about 10 - 20. That is the beauty of this conditioning method -- short and sweet.

Anything more than that and you are venturing into aerobic mode and you loose lots of power.


Tend to agree. If I get to 170+bpm during rounds there is no way I'm doing these for more than 12-15 mins.