Making Gainz With Tempo Training
The following are some of the most common questions that we get from our readers:
What is Tempo Training?
Tempo training refers to using different types of exercises with one another at varying tempos. It’s essentially a combination of strength and speed workouts. For example, if you’re doing squats with a low number (70% 1RM) then you might do deadlifts with a high number (85%) or even front squats with a higher number (95%). You could also perform all your exercises at the same tempo.
Why use Tempo Training?
It’s a great way to train various muscle groups simultaneously. It’s also a good way to increase strength without having to lift heavier weights. If you have lower back problems, it may be helpful for them too! It will also improve your cardiovascular fitness because you’ll be working harder and faster than normal.
How Long Does It Take To Do Tempo Workouts?
You can start doing tempo work immediately. Most people don’t need to wait until they feel better before starting their workouts. However, it’s always best to make sure you’re not overtraining first. So if you’ve been suffering from injuries, stop what you’re doing right now and go see a doctor or physical therapist ASAP!
How To Do Tempo Training:
1. Usually you will pick an exercise, for this example let’s use squats. The first digit is how long you should take to lower yourself (eccentric), the second digit is the pause in between, and the third digit is how long you should take to rise out of the squat (concentric).
So if you are performing tempo squats with 135 pounds you would:
2.5 – 1 – 2.5
The first number (2.5) would be how long you should lower yourself. In this case you should lower yourself for a 2.5 count.
Then you hold at the bottom for a second before you start coming back up. So this would be a 5-count before you start back up. Now, while you’re coming back up you pause for a 1 count. Then you start lowering yourself again for a 2.5 count. So that’s a 10 count for one rep.
Here is a chart for the rest of the exercises that we will list in our guides:
Exercise Type of Movement Lower Paused Upper Eccentric Speed Strength Rest Paused Speed Strength Rest Paused Squat 2.5 1 2.5 135 10 90 5 55 3 40 Bench Press 2.5 1 2.5 120 10 80 5 50 3 33 Overhead Press 2.5 1 2.5 105 10 70 5 35 3 20 Deadlift 2.5 1 4 225 10 115 5 80 3 60
3. After you perform your first exercise, move on the second exercise in the chart and perform it in the same manner. So when you’re performing bench press you should do:
2.5 – 1 – 2.5
Perform all your exercises in this manner. After you finish the last exercise, start over from the beginning.
Now that you know how to do tempo training, you can move on to learning about the benefits.
Benefits of Tempo Training:
There are many benefits of tempo training. The most important thing is it improves your conditioning. Most people who start using this form of training report it takes about two to three weeks to get used to it.
After that you should feel great!
People who use tempo training have also reported that their bench press has increased after using this form of training for a few months. So if you’re looking for a new challenge in the weight room, try tempo training!
Now that you know about the form of training, it’s time to move on to how to use it. The first thing you need to know is when to use it.
When To Use Tempo Training:
Basically, you can use tempo training for everything. If you’re a beginner you should just focus on getting the form down. So just use the chart above and perform the exercises focusing on one of the types of equipment.
Once you feel like you have a good grasp of the form, then you can start using the other types of training.
After that, it’s all up to you and how much you want to progress in your training. Some people have used tempo training for years and made great gains off of it. Others didn’t feel anything from it and quit using it after a few weeks.
You decide when it works best for you!
Tempo Training Guide 2: Rest Pause Training
Rest pause training is another form of training that is very popular among weight trainers. It’s a great way to put yourself through a grueling workout that will challenge you to your core!
It uses a method called “post-tetanic potentiation” to improve the strength of your nerve cells so that they can “fire” more efficiently. This works by taking a heavy weight and lifting it until failure. Then you set the weight down and rest before lifting the weight again.
This may sound easy, but trust me, it’s not!
Here is an example of what it would look like:
Exercise Sets Reps Heavy Weight: 8 reps Rest: 15-20 Seconds Light Weight: 12 Reps
As you can see, you pick a heavy weight that you could only lift 8 times. Then you rest and pick it up again for 8 more reps. Then you set the weight down and rest for 15-20 seconds.
Next, you pick up a lighter weight that you could lift 12 times. You keep on this process until you’ve completed all your reps.
There is one thing to remember when performing this style of training. Always make sure that you rest at least one minute after your last set before starting another training style. This is called “alternating sets,” and is important to let your body rest and prevent over training.
Now that you know how to perform this style of training, it’s time to learn why it should be incorporated into your program.
Benefits of Rest Pause Training:
I’ve already talked about post-tetanic potentiation earlier in this guide. It helps increase your strength by firing the nerves in your muscles faster. By doing this you can lift heavier weights for more reps.
This style of training is helpful if you compete in power lifting or any other strength sport.
Along with increasing your strength, rest pause training also helps you to increase your endurance. After you’ve been performing this type of training for a few weeks your endurance will greatly improve.
As I said before, make sure you always take at least one full minute break between each set. This is very important when using this style of training. If you don’t take the breaks then you run the risk of over-training which will greatly slow down your gains.
As with any training program, rest pause also takes time to see improvements. Don’t get discouraged if you don’t see results right away. Stick with the program and you’ll start seeing them soon enough.
Make sure you pick a weight that is heavy enough. This is very important. If you don’t pick a heavy enough weight then the benefits won’t be as great.
Always remember, no pain, no gain!
Now that I’ve gone over the basics of rest pause training, it’s time to give you a basic program to get you started. Remember, you can incorporate this into any type of program you’re on. I would recommend performing this on your “heavy” days since these are the days you should be focusing most of your energy into.
Rest Pause Training Program:
Week 1: 3 Sets of 9 with 15 second break in between each set.
Week 2: 3 Sets of 8 with 20 second break in between each set.
Week 3: 3 Sets of 6 with 30 second break in between each set.
Week 4: Deload Week (Light Training)
After week 4, you can either start the program over or increase the weight you’re using.
Any time during the week you can perform supplemental exercises. This could include things like dips, pull-ups, and various other types of presses. Just don’t over do it!
Well, there you have it. I told you there wasn’t much to it. The simplicity is what makes it effective.
Now that you know how to train with rest pause training, get out there and put it to use!
If you have any questions about this style or any others, feel free to ask in the forum. I’ll be more than happy to answer any that you may have.
Remember, hard work and dedication is the key to your success.
-Josh “Warmachine” Pastner
Sources & references used in this article:
- The Best Training Frequency for Strength Gains (NB July – thepowerplantgym.com)
- SEE POLIQUIN & KLOKOV LIVE!–’Training for Strength Sports’ (IWTO REGISTER – sensei379.rssing.com)
- Get More Gains with Ergogenic Aids (NB June – thepowerplantgym.com)