Weight Training for Women –
How Long Before My Muscles are Recovered?
Training a body part (muscle group) twice a week is a common way to train. For people who train with REAL high intensity it may takes a muscle as long as 7 to 10 days to fully recover naturally. Therefore, training a body part twice a week is worthless. You will probably produce far better results by training each muscle group once a week.
Other factors that affect recovery are adequate sleep, proper nutrition, and supplementation. Sleep is important for muscle growth and you should get a minimum of 8 hours a night. Added power naps throughout the day are a benefit. Nutrition is important on the days you train, as well as the days off since growth takes place away from the gym. Many people fail to make the off training days productive by eating haphazardly. Your off training days are just as important as your scheduled training days.
Rest Between Sets for Muscle Growth
Just as resting between training sessions is important, so is resting between sets. This is often neglected when it comes to recovery.
Lactic acid is the little culprit that causes the soreness in your muscles the days following training. It is also the burn you feel when you lift to complete failure toward the end of a set, lessening your movement. Because of this burn we tend to stop our session short or lighten the load of our weights, cheating ourselves of a good workout.
For indirect growth, you want to allow enough rest so that you are fully recovered, but not to the point where you are cooling off. Therefore, two minutes of rest works well for gaining mass, power, size, and strength. If you start your next set before the two minutes, you can lack strength and intensity. Save the short rest periods for your “cutting phase” when your load is somewhat lighter and you are training at a faster pace.
Karen Sessions NSCA-CPT
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