Use Rest Pause Training for Muscle Growth

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“If the bar isn’t bending, then you’re pretending”

“You gotta lift heavy weights for high reps to grow”

There’s a ton of mottos and sayings that sound macho when it comes to building muscle. Look – gaining muscle requires hard work. But the idea of just piling more and more weight on the bar exposes a personal trainer as a really bad one. Constantly trying to push yourself to life more weight is a road that can lead to injury. In a best case scenario, you’ll get burnt out rather than hurt. But you can’t build muscle when you’re system is fried out.

So what are you supposed to do then? 3 sets of 10 has ran its course and 4 x 8 is old hat. Is your muscle building journey over? Of course not – you just need a slightly more advanced approach. This is the case for rest pause training.

Rest pause is exactly what it sounds like – you lift a weight with small little breaks towards the end of the set. In a nutshell, you’re basically giving your muscles a small window to replenish the energy needed to give you a couple more reps. As a result, your muscles are spending more time under tension with a heavier weight – which is just a fancy way of saying that you’ll tap into some new found mass.

In order to do this, you need to pick a weight that you can get for about 6 reps. If you can crank out more than 6 reps then you need to go heavier. After your 6 reps, set the bar/dumbbells down and rest for 10-20 seconds. Knock out a few more reps, set the bar down. Go at it one more time and terminate the set. It looks like this:

  1. Lying Leg Curl x 6, 3-1-1-0, rest 20 sec

Get 2-3 reps @ 3-1-1-0, rest 20 sec

Get 1-2 reps @ 3-1-1-0, rest 120 sec

At the end of the set, you’re getting 10-12 reps with a weight you normally could only get 6 reps. Think your body isn’t going to grow from that? Give rest pause training a try and watch your body change.

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