question about number of reps & sets for heavy lifting

I've been lifting heavy for about 6 months, mainly lifting 3 sets of 8, with a weight that makes it difficult to complete my sets. I would still like to lose another 15-20 pounds, so my main focus right now is on losing fat. Should I keep up the 3x8, make the weight a little heavier & do 4x6, decrease the weight a little & lift 3x12, or does it really even matter if my goal is fat loss?

Replies

  • TrailRunner61
    TrailRunner61 Posts: 2,505 Member
    I lost 40lbs just by walking an average of 3.8 miles per day from Jan to May 1st last year. Not that weight training isn't good, I do that too now, it's just that walking keeps you in a 'fat burning' zone more than other exercises do.
  • taso42
    taso42 Posts: 8,981 Member
    Doesn't really matter all that much. What you're doing sounds fine frankly.
  • SideSteel
    SideSteel Posts: 11,069 Member
    Doesn't really matter all that much. What you're doing sounds fine frankly.

    ^ That.

    The changes you're talking about making are still putting you within a range of volume and intensity that I'd call "reasonable" for your goal.
  • cordianet
    cordianet Posts: 534 Member
    If you're really just looking for weight loss and not increased strength, I honestly don't think it matters. At 6 months in, you're still a beginner lifter so just about anything you do is going to be effective. The more important thing for you is not whether you do 3x8, 5x5, or something else in the 3-12 rep range. In my opinion, it's much more important to focus on intensity, total load (how much total weight you move) and something called TUT, Time under Tension. Increase any (or all), three and you'll continue to make gains.

    On the other hand, if you also want to get stronger, you'll progress a bit faster with a higher weight and lower rep count.
  • suelegal
    suelegal Posts: 1,282 Member
    are you increasing weights as you go along? if so then 8s x 3 are fine, though my trainer presses me to do 12 x 4 when I'm doing his workouts. New Rules of Lifting for Women uses 8s x 3
  • I lost 40lbs just by walking an average of 3.8 miles per day from Jan to May 1st last year. Not that weight training isn't good, I do that too now, it's just that walking keeps you in a 'fat burning' zone more than other exercises do.

    Congrats on your weight loss, but your "walking keeps you in a 'fat burning' zone" statement isn't true.
  • marie_2454
    marie_2454 Posts: 881 Member
    Thanks everyone! I'll keep with the 3x8 for now :)
  • dave4d
    dave4d Posts: 1,155 Member
    3X8 is a good rep range. Just make sure to try to improve with every workout. Either add weight, or on your next workout try for 9 reps. When you can do more than 10 to 12 reps, increase the weight and go back to 8 reps.
  • Just wondering what program you're doing? As a beginner, that will make more of a difference to you right now. {noob gains FTW!}
  • marie_2454
    marie_2454 Posts: 881 Member
    3X8 is a good rep range. Just make sure to try to improve with every workout. Either add weight, or on your next workout try for 9 reps. When you can do more than 10 to 12 reps, increase the weight and go back to 8 reps.

    This is an excellent idea! I'm going to start doing this instead of just randomly increasing the weight. Thanks!

    I should maybe add that I'm not really a newbie to lifting; I've been lifting off & on for 10 years, but I just got back into a regular lifting schedule 6-7 months ago after about a year long break from regularly lifting.