- You should never watch TV while resting between sets!
- Don’t answer the phone if it is not an emergency.
- Don’t sit, or lay down to rest on the fitness equipment, that you are using in multiple sets.
- If you are working out with friend, don’t start a long conversations.
- Don’t do anything that will take your mind away from what you are doing.
The time between sets is where the mindset plays the biggest role.
Let’s take a look on what happens to your muscles during workout and what science will teach us.
ATP ( adenosine triphosphate) is your muscles energy source. There are three biochemical stages associated with muscles pulling energy in the form of ATP.
- Phosphagen system – Exercise that last less than 10 seconds need energy stored inside your muscles.
- Glycogen – lactic acid stage – During exercise that lasts 10 to 120 seconds your body converts carbohydrates, which are stored inside your muscles, into energy.
- Aerobic respiration – Aerobic energy production kicks in during continuous exercise activity that exceeds two minutes. Aerobic energy comes from body fat, and liver carbohydrates.
If you want to stay in the aerobic respiration stage (for burning fat), you will need to take short breaks, that are not longer than 30 – 60 sec.
If you want to stay in the glycogen – lactic acid stage, or the phosphagen system stage (using weights for building muscle tissue), you will need to take breaks in between the sets for no more than 1 – 3 min.
Here are a few advices of what you can do in those minutes in between the sets. Something I do and believe will work for you too.
- Stretch exercises between sets will help maintain your flexibility and range of motion. For me stretching is relaxing and it just feels good. I usually target the muscle I am working out at the moment. Always make sure, that your muscles are warm before stretching.
- Walking around in between the sets helps me staying warm and concentrate at my workout.
- Building a plan in between the sets, about my workout, is something I really enjoy and something that helps me stay concentration top of my game. I like to experiment with exercises and reps. Sometimes the momentum and the way I feel in between the set could give me courage to try heavier weight or longer set.
The time between sets is the time when your muscles take a quick brake, recharge and are ready for the next set.Use that time right and it will pay back.