How is your week? Mine has been wonderful. I am busy as always, but I am having fun doing what I do, so I don’t mind it. Check out which questions I decided to answer this week and then I’d love to hear your opinion, which you could share in the comments below.
Ines, I have a weird question. It has to do with the rest between sets. Sometimes, when I perform squats and deadlifts with a higher intensity, something strange happens. Let’s say that I rest about 2 minutes between sets and I feel rested and ready to go. But when I get under the bar, the weight feels so heavy and I feel exhausted. Why does it happen like this? First I feel rested and when I am ready to do another set, it feels just the opposite.
Thank you for this question. I intended on writing a whole post about it, but after somebody had the courage to ask it, I will go ahead and take the chance to answer here.
Rest is the most underrated element of a training session. Most people are in a rush to go through all the exercise and the sets, as if somebody put a gun to their head and their life depends on the time it takes them to finish the workout.
Especially when your workouts include mainly compound, multi joint movements, it is absolutely normal to feel as if you are rested between the sets, and then when you are under the bar, to suddenly feel exhausted and even fail to complete the set. Exercises, besides the fact that they load your muscular system, are really demanding for your nervous system. If the sets are performed with higher intensity, the nervous system needs around 5-6 times more time, in order to recover, compared to the muscular system.
That’s why when you perform such sets, you might feel as if your muscles are rested and you are ready to crush another set, but your nervous system still needs more time to recover. And if you do not give it enough time, you are putting yourself to a higher risk of an injury and I doubt it that you will perform your set properly.
That’s why this is a call to all my clients…when I say rest….for God’s sake REST! I have something in mind! 😉
Ines, I found your blog and the last couple days all I am doing is reading it. But I am wondering why you are such a fan of multi joint movements and why do you deny isolation movements?
Denying is a strong word and I don’t deny anything. I am completely ok with using isolation movements, but just in some cases. Usually I use them when the person I train with has some kind of an injury that wouldn’t allow for the use of a multi joint movement.
Besides that I do not deny the fact that with a traditional body split, you could achieve the aesthetic goals, you chase.
The key to my love for multi joint movements is in a whole another direction. First of all, everybody that has a slight knowledge of the human body and the way it functions, would be shocked every time he walks on the street and observes people passing by.
Most have a bunch of imbalances, which influence their posture and their health in a negative way.
If I had to sum up in one sentence, what most people need to include in their training program, I’d say this: “ People need to strengthen their posterior chain, do a bunch of stabilizing exercises and release their anterior chain.”
The best thing about multi joint movements, besides the fact that they train your whole body in a complex way, is that they load your stabilizers. The muscles which for most people are “sleepy” and have long forgotten how to function properly.
When you do isolation movements, some muscles become stronger, but the stabilizing muscles fail to become stronger proportionally. I assure you, that you will never be able to squat with free weights( bar or dumbbells) , with as much weights, as you’d be able to squat using the Smith machine for example.
Stabilizing muscles are in huge support of bigger muscle groups and only when you train them you could feel optimally healthy, strong and have a good, balanced posture.
That’s why I love multi joint movements!
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