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Strength Training Frequency...

J72FITJ72FIT Member Posts: 5,870 Member Member Posts: 5,870 Member
Curious what others thoughts are on this article. Not sure what to make of it...

https://www.painscience.com/articles/strength-training-frequency.php

Replies

  • ninerbuffninerbuff Member, Greeter Posts: 45,641 Member Member, Greeter Posts: 45,641 Member
    I've stayed in quite good shape training one bodypart, each day of the week. Which means I won't train it again till a week later. And except for legs, my sessions are like 30-40 minutes long.




    A.C.E. Certified Personal and Group Fitness Trainer
    IDEA Fitness member
    Kickboxing Certified Instructor
    Been in fitness for 30 years and have studied kinesiology and nutrition

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  • Theoldguy1Theoldguy1 Member Posts: 2,084 Member Member Posts: 2,084 Member
    CDC says 2 or more days a week of resistance training exercises that work all major muscle groups. Go with what science says instead of broscience.

    https://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/basics/adults/index.htm
  • J72FITJ72FIT Member Posts: 5,870 Member Member Posts: 5,870 Member
    Theoldguy1 wrote: »
    CDC says 2 or more days a week of resistance training exercises that work all major muscle groups. Go with what science says instead of broscience.

    https://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/basics/adults/index.htm

    Did you read the article? How is it bro-science?
    edited July 28
  • NorthCascadesNorthCascades Member Posts: 10,667 Member Member Posts: 10,667 Member
    J72FIT wrote: »
    Curious what others thoughts are on this article. Not sure what to make of it...

    https://www.painscience.com/articles/strength-training-frequency.php

    Overall I agree with this. There's a sentence about how the same thing is true of cardio, I don't agree with that, when I follow the foot note it defines this narrowly and in a way I don't think most people would necessarily agree with. Other than that bone I had to pick though, yeah.
  • J72FITJ72FIT Member Posts: 5,870 Member Member Posts: 5,870 Member
    ninerbuff wrote: »
    I've stayed in quite good shape training one bodypart, each day of the week. Which means I won't train it again till a week later. And except for legs, my sessions are like 30-40 minutes long.




    A.C.E. Certified Personal and Group Fitness Trainer
    IDEA Fitness member
    Kickboxing Certified Instructor
    Been in fitness for 30 years and have studied kinesiology and nutrition

    9285851.png

    Did you train at a higher frequency when you were younger? And if you did, do you notice much of a difference now?
  • heybalesheybales Member Posts: 19,220 Member Member Posts: 19,220 Member
    Interesting, been seeing this referenced for many many years.
    https://exrx.net/WeightTraining/Volume

    But, how many people are willing to have just strength gains though, and if interested in that, slowly?

    Strength can be gained for a while before the body feels a need to add muscle mass, I don't see this as pertaining to hypertrophy aspect as much though he references it.

    Much of the studies referenced support Lyle McDonalds comments about maintaining on 1/3 of the training plan that got you to some point.
    https://bodyrecomposition.com/training/weight-training-while-dieting

    Which if 1/3 maintains it, then anything more is just a slower improvement.


    I think in the scheme of so many on MFP commenting they lost fat with no resistance training, and ended up skinny fat - this type of recommendation for minimum to be done to still see slow improvements won't cut it for the desired speed of improvements - especially with most of it being about strength gains, not muscle gains.

    But I think the same way you can calm people down that 1 day of blown deficit won't kill the diet, this can be very useful to calm people down that missing a few workouts, or not doing what you planned - won't kill your gainz, or that if you can't swing that 3 x weekly full body program, 2 x is still of great benefit.

  • J72FITJ72FIT Member Posts: 5,870 Member Member Posts: 5,870 Member
    heybales wrote: »
    Interesting, been seeing this referenced for many many years.
    https://exrx.net/WeightTraining/Volume

    But, how many people are willing to have just strength gains though, and if interested in that, slowly?

    Strength can be gained for a while before the body feels a need to add muscle mass, I don't see this as pertaining to hypertrophy aspect as much though he references it.

    Much of the studies referenced support Lyle McDonalds comments about maintaining on 1/3 of the training plan that got you to some point.
    https://bodyrecomposition.com/training/weight-training-while-dieting

    Which if 1/3 maintains it, then anything more is just a slower improvement.


    I think in the scheme of so many on MFP commenting they lost fat with no resistance training, and ended up skinny fat - this type of recommendation for minimum to be done to still see slow improvements won't cut it for the desired speed of improvements - especially with most of it being about strength gains, not muscle gains.

    But I think the same way you can calm people down that 1 day of blown deficit won't kill the diet, this can be very useful to calm people down that missing a few workouts, or not doing what you planned - won't kill your gainz, or that if you can't swing that 3 x weekly full body program, 2 x is still of great benefit.

    For me the article was liberating since it allows me to take my foot off the gas a little and not feel like I'll fall apart.

    Admittedly I am a mental case...
    edited July 28
  • nossmfnossmf Member Posts: 1,589 Member Member Posts: 1,589 Member
    heybales wrote: »
    But I think the same way you can calm people down that 1 day of blown deficit won't kill the diet, this can be very useful to calm people down that missing a few workouts, or not doing what you planned - won't kill your gainz, or that if you can't swing that 3 x weekly full body program, 2 x is still of great benefit.

    This is more what I got from the article, allowing yourself to relax a little bit and not suffer your training, so you can take a week here or there for vacation with the family, or a week or two away from the gym after suffering an injury, and be just fine.

    I just think some caution is needed for new gym goers, because while gains may be made by going from zero to once a week, the article doesn't address technique. Mastering proper technique not only leads to gains but also injury prevention. So some exercises (leg press, many machine lifts, pushups) may be fine for such a limited schedule, but I'd argue against LEARNING how to bench, squat or deadlift doing it that infrequently. Once you have it mastered you can back off, but learning in the first place requires repetition.
  • J72FITJ72FIT Member Posts: 5,870 Member Member Posts: 5,870 Member
    nossmf wrote: »
    heybales wrote: »
    But I think the same way you can calm people down that 1 day of blown deficit won't kill the diet, this can be very useful to calm people down that missing a few workouts, or not doing what you planned - won't kill your gainz, or that if you can't swing that 3 x weekly full body program, 2 x is still of great benefit.

    This is more what I got from the article, allowing yourself to relax a little bit and not suffer your training, so you can take a week here or there for vacation with the family, or a week or two away from the gym after suffering an injury, and be just fine.

    I just think some caution is needed for new gym goers, because while gains may be made by going from zero to once a week, the article doesn't address technique. Mastering proper technique not only leads to gains but also injury prevention. So some exercises (leg press, many machine lifts, pushups) may be fine for such a limited schedule, but I'd argue against LEARNING how to bench, squat or deadlift doing it that infrequently. Once you have it mastered you can back off, but learning in the first place requires repetition.

    Agreed. I do believe he mentions this...

    From the article...
    "Warning! Please do not use this article as an excuse for not exercising. That’s not the point! Strength training is still a valuable form of exercise that requires an investment of your time and energy — less than you probably thought (which is pretty neat) but still an investment! Sorry, this information does not get you off the exercise hook..."
  • psuLemonpsuLemon Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium Posts: 37,699 MFP Moderator Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium Posts: 37,699 MFP Moderator
    I think it largely comes down to goals. Obviously, the bare minimum is better than nothing but if there is a goal of muscle gain (not just sustaining strength), then increasing training frequency would be beneficial. But I do think that there are people who need exercise breaks, and reducing volume will be beneficial, without fear of losing their gainz. The reduction in volume could come through a reduction in days or reduction in total load.

    The other thing to consider is how often will people form habits by only going to the gym once a week. Personally I would find it difficult. I think going four to five weeks from me makes it easier to form a habit. This habit makes me consistent. In my experience, I rarelu find minimalist having consistency and achieving the goals they want.
  • Theoldguy1Theoldguy1 Member Posts: 2,084 Member Member Posts: 2,084 Member
    J72FIT wrote: »
    Theoldguy1 wrote: »
    CDC says 2 or more days a week of resistance training exercises that work all major muscle groups. Go with what science says instead of broscience.

    https://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/basics/adults/index.htm

    Did you read the article? How is it bro-science?

    I skimmed it, didn't read all the references. What turned me off was the title:

    "Strength Training Frequency
    Less is more than enough: go to the gym less frequently but still gain strength fast enough for anyone but a bodybuilder"


    To me this reads too much like the covers of the magazines a the grocery store checkout touting how you can lose 10 pounds by this weekend.

    One thing I noticed in skimming the article was multiple references to intensity. Personally, left to their own devices, I don't think most people will, or are able to, train at the intensity required for this to work. To me it's sort of like the science around intake of a certain nutrient. There are studies out there that can prove a benefit but the benefit is either so small in the big scheme of things for the average person (might be great for the athlete who is in the top 1% of his/her sport) or too hard (or perceived too hard) for the average person.

    The whole thing sort of reminded me of the research Dr Ellington Dardin did with Arthur Jones of Nautilus fame related to high intensity training (yes I'm old enough to have worked out at one of the first Nautilus training centers in the late 1970's). I was in college and in what most people would say good shape. They had trainers that would push you throughout the facility. There were several puke bucket around the exercise floor that got used including a few times by me.

    I'm guessing there is some reason the CDC and the major personal training certification groups haven't jumped on this approach and continue to recommend 2 or more resistance training session a week working all major muscle groups.
    edited July 30
  • J72FITJ72FIT Member Posts: 5,870 Member Member Posts: 5,870 Member
    Theoldguy1 wrote: »
    J72FIT wrote: »
    Theoldguy1 wrote: »
    CDC says 2 or more days a week of resistance training exercises that work all major muscle groups. Go with what science says instead of broscience.

    https://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/basics/adults/index.htm

    Did you read the article? How is it bro-science?

    I skimmed it, didn't read all the references. What turned me off was the title:

    "Strength Training Frequency
    Less is more than enough: go to the gym less frequently but still gain strength fast enough for anyone but a bodybuilder"


    To me this reads too much like the covers of the magazines a the grocery store checkout touting how you can lose 10 pounds by this weekend.

    One thing I noticed in skimming the article was multiple references to intensity. Personally, left to their own devices, I don't think most people will, or are able to, train at the intensity required for this to work. To me it's sort of like the science around intake of a certain nutrient. There are studies out there that can prove a benefit but the benefit is either so small in the big scheme of things for the average person (might be great for the athlete who is in the top 1% of his/her sport) or too hard (or perceived too hard) for the average person.

    The whole thing sort of reminded me of the research Dr Ellington Dardin did with Arthur Jones of Nautilus fame related to high intensity training (yes I'm old enough to have worked out at one of the first Nautilus training centers in the late 1970's). I was in college and in what most people would say good shape. They had trainers that would push you throughout the facility. There were several puke bucket around the exercise floor that got used including a few times by me.

    I'm guessing there is some reason the CDC and the major personal training certification groups haven't jumped on this approach and continue to recommend 2 or more resistance training session a week working all major muscle groups.

    All good points. That said, I could also see it as an entry way for people into fitness. Pare it down a bit and make it less intimidating. That said, I can see it being a slippery slope...
    edited July 30
  • J72FITJ72FIT Member Posts: 5,870 Member Member Posts: 5,870 Member
    psuLemon wrote: »
    I think it largely comes down to goals. Obviously, the bare minimum is better than nothing but if there is a goal of muscle gain (not just sustaining strength), then increasing training frequency would be beneficial. But I do think that there are people who need exercise breaks, and reducing volume will be beneficial, without fear of losing their gainz. The reduction in volume could come through a reduction in days or reduction in total load.

    The other thing to consider is how often will people form habits by only going to the gym once a week. Personally I would find it difficult. I think going four to five weeks from me makes it easier to form a habit. This habit makes me consistent. In my experience, I rarelu find minimalist having consistency and achieving the goals they want.

    Always. The answer always seems to be, "it depends..."
  • Theoldguy1Theoldguy1 Member Posts: 2,084 Member Member Posts: 2,084 Member
    J72FIT wrote: »
    Theoldguy1 wrote: »
    J72FIT wrote: »
    Theoldguy1 wrote: »
    CDC says 2 or more days a week of resistance training exercises that work all major muscle groups. Go with what science says instead of broscience.

    https://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/basics/adults/index.htm

    Did you read the article? How is it bro-science?

    I skimmed it, didn't read all the references. What turned me off was the title:

    "Strength Training Frequency
    Less is more than enough: go to the gym less frequently but still gain strength fast enough for anyone but a bodybuilder"


    To me this reads too much like the covers of the magazines a the grocery store checkout touting how you can lose 10 pounds by this weekend.

    One thing I noticed in skimming the article was multiple references to intensity. Personally, left to their own devices, I don't think most people will, or are able to, train at the intensity required for this to work. To me it's sort of like the science around intake of a certain nutrient. There are studies out there that can prove a benefit but the benefit is either so small in the big scheme of things for the average person (might be great for the athlete who is in the top 1% of his/her sport) or too hard (or perceived too hard) for the average person.

    The whole thing sort of reminded me of the research Dr Ellington Dardin did with Arthur Jones of Nautilus fame related to high intensity training (yes I'm old enough to have worked out at one of the first Nautilus training centers in the late 1970's). I was in college and in what most people would say good shape. They had trainers that would push you throughout the facility. There were several puke bucket around the exercise floor that got used including a few times by me.

    I'm guessing there is some reason the CDC and the major personal training certification groups haven't jumped on this approach and continue to recommend 2 or more resistance training session a week working all major muscle groups.

    All good points. That said, I could also see it as an entry way for people into fitness. Pare it down a bit and make it less intimidating. That said, I can see it being a slippery slope...

    I'm going to disagree with this a bit and go the opposite direction. As @psuLemon mentioned a new person needs to build the exercise habit which once a week won't work for most people. In addition, I doubt if most entry level exercisers would train at the intensity this would require.

    As an alternative for an intermediate/advanced weight trainer when life gets in the way of training time may be the best application IMO.
    edited July 30
  • J72FITJ72FIT Member Posts: 5,870 Member Member Posts: 5,870 Member
    Theoldguy1 wrote: »
    J72FIT wrote: »
    Theoldguy1 wrote: »
    J72FIT wrote: »
    Theoldguy1 wrote: »
    CDC says 2 or more days a week of resistance training exercises that work all major muscle groups. Go with what science says instead of broscience.

    https://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/basics/adults/index.htm

    Did you read the article? How is it bro-science?

    I skimmed it, didn't read all the references. What turned me off was the title:

    "Strength Training Frequency
    Less is more than enough: go to the gym less frequently but still gain strength fast enough for anyone but a bodybuilder"


    To me this reads too much like the covers of the magazines a the grocery store checkout touting how you can lose 10 pounds by this weekend.

    One thing I noticed in skimming the article was multiple references to intensity. Personally, left to their own devices, I don't think most people will, or are able to, train at the intensity required for this to work. To me it's sort of like the science around intake of a certain nutrient. There are studies out there that can prove a benefit but the benefit is either so small in the big scheme of things for the average person (might be great for the athlete who is in the top 1% of his/her sport) or too hard (or perceived too hard) for the average person.

    The whole thing sort of reminded me of the research Dr Ellington Dardin did with Arthur Jones of Nautilus fame related to high intensity training (yes I'm old enough to have worked out at one of the first Nautilus training centers in the late 1970's). I was in college and in what most people would say good shape. They had trainers that would push you throughout the facility. There were several puke bucket around the exercise floor that got used including a few times by me.

    I'm guessing there is some reason the CDC and the major personal training certification groups haven't jumped on this approach and continue to recommend 2 or more resistance training session a week working all major muscle groups.

    All good points. That said, I could also see it as an entry way for people into fitness. Pare it down a bit and make it less intimidating. That said, I can see it being a slippery slope...

    I'm going to disagree with this a bit and go the opposite direction. As @psuLemon mentioned a new person needs to build the exercise habit which once a week won't work for most people. In addition, I doubt if most entry level exercisers would train at the intensity this would require.

    As an alternative for an intermediate/advanced weight trainer when life gets in the way of training time may be the best application IMO.

    True. Build the habit doing a little, a lot. Then let your goals show you the rest of the way. But first, build the habit...
    edited July 30
  • Theoldguy1Theoldguy1 Member Posts: 2,084 Member Member Posts: 2,084 Member
    J72FIT wrote: »
    Theoldguy1 wrote: »
    J72FIT wrote: »
    Theoldguy1 wrote: »
    J72FIT wrote: »
    Theoldguy1 wrote: »
    CDC says 2 or more days a week of resistance training exercises that work all major muscle groups. Go with what science says instead of broscience.

    https://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/basics/adults/index.htm

    Did you read the article? How is it bro-science?

    I skimmed it, didn't read all the references. What turned me off was the title:

    "Strength Training Frequency
    Less is more than enough: go to the gym less frequently but still gain strength fast enough for anyone but a bodybuilder"


    To me this reads too much like the covers of the magazines a the grocery store checkout touting how you can lose 10 pounds by this weekend.

    One thing I noticed in skimming the article was multiple references to intensity. Personally, left to their own devices, I don't think most people will, or are able to, train at the intensity required for this to work. To me it's sort of like the science around intake of a certain nutrient. There are studies out there that can prove a benefit but the benefit is either so small in the big scheme of things for the average person (might be great for the athlete who is in the top 1% of his/her sport) or too hard (or perceived too hard) for the average person.

    The whole thing sort of reminded me of the research Dr Ellington Dardin did with Arthur Jones of Nautilus fame related to high intensity training (yes I'm old enough to have worked out at one of the first Nautilus training centers in the late 1970's). I was in college and in what most people would say good shape. They had trainers that would push you throughout the facility. There were several puke bucket around the exercise floor that got used including a few times by me.

    I'm guessing there is some reason the CDC and the major personal training certification groups haven't jumped on this approach and continue to recommend 2 or more resistance training session a week working all major muscle groups.

    All good points. That said, I could also see it as an entry way for people into fitness. Pare it down a bit and make it less intimidating. That said, I can see it being a slippery slope...

    I'm going to disagree with this a bit and go the opposite direction. As @psuLemon mentioned a new person needs to build the exercise habit which once a week won't work for most people. In addition, I doubt if most entry level exercisers would train at the intensity this would require.

    As an alternative for an intermediate/advanced weight trainer when life gets in the way of training time may be the best application IMO.

    True. Build the habit doing a little, a lot. Then let your goals show you the rest of the way. But first, build the habit...

    Yeah the person that shows up consistently wins.
  • springlering62springlering62 Member, Premium Posts: 3,808 Member Member, Premium Posts: 3,808 Member
    It reminds me of the thread “what’s the least I can do”.

    You do the least, you’re gonna get the least returns.

    But, like @J72FIT I’m a lil craycray, too.
  • lynn_glenmontlynn_glenmont Member Posts: 9,150 Member Member Posts: 9,150 Member
    heybales wrote: »
    Interesting, been seeing this referenced for many many years.
    https://exrx.net/WeightTraining/Volume

    But, how many people are willing to have just strength gains though, and if interested in that, slowly?

    While I see some marginal intrinsic benefits to muscle mass gain, I'm an older woman and I care more about the strength gains/retention, to maintain functional independence in the decades to come. I'm not in any particular hurry for gains so long as I'm staving off losses.
  • sgt1372sgt1372 Member Posts: 3,925 Member Member Posts: 3,925 Member
    WhenI was actively lifting and doing a Stronglifts or Starting Strength type routine, I was lifting 4-5 days/WK for less than a hr/day.

    Only did compound lifts (mainly squats deadlifts, bench press and OHP) and little or no lifts isolating specific body parts.

    Got pretty strong very quickly just doing a t w)in the 1st 3-4 months but never botheredtrying to take it to the "next level because I that was never an objective of mine.
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