How Many Sets Are Needed During Your Workout Program

One big problem that far too many people get into is the 'black and white' mindset.

Essentially, they start to convince themselves that if they aren't going to give full effort each and every time, it's just not worth their time.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

In fact, any effort you give is going to put you closer to where you want to be.

Placing this in the workout context, the issue is that some people will think that unless they're in the gym for a good 45 minutes to an hour, doing three sets per exercise, six or seven exercises per session, and of course, finishing that up with thirty minutes of cardio, they're wasting their time.


Fact of the matter is that many times the reason progress is not happening is because the person is actually doing too much.

It's when they back off that the results start happening because then it's at this point that they are giving their body more time to recover.

Now, this said, just how many sets are really optimal in a workout?

Should you be doing three or four sets per exercise? Or will two do?

This will depend - like many things in the fitness world.

While in some situations three or four sets would be a good plan, for many others, two - or even just a single, good set will work fine.

Dieting Individuals

This is even more prevalent if you're on a diet because then you're giving your body even less fuel to recover from your workouts.

If you're going in there and doing set after set after set, you're going to run out of steam - fast.

Reducing your total set number is often one of the biggest recommendations in terms of adjustments to a workout program while dieting.

Quick Workouts

This principle is going to apply really well to those of you who just don't have the time to be in the gym for an hour plus each day - which is the situation far too many of us are in.

If you need to shorten your workout - to say 30 minutes max, here's what I'd recommend you do:

*5 minutes - a light warm-up to get the blood flowing and body ready for lifting
*2 sets of each of these core lifts:

-bench press
-bent over row
-military press

*5 minutes of whatever ab work you'd like to do
*5-10 minutes cool-down

If you're really pressed for time, you could even omit the ab work because abs are really made in the kitchen, not the gym.

The important thing to remember here though is that you go hard and heavy.

That is what will help you progress and see results.

You can easily get away with fewer sets as long as you really make the sets you do do count.

So, next time you're in a time crunch and only have twenty or thirty minutes, do not just skip the gym because you don't think it'll be worth it.

You can still get great results whether your goal is weight loss or building muscle in just twenty minutes three times a week.