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Ascending and Descending Rest Intervals

Welcome to Month 9 of the Workout of the Week Series! This week, we are going to be utilizing some complex, but extremely effective, rest intervals, so make sure you read this carefully! I promise it’s not as confusing as it may seem.

As stated, we will be using Ascending and Descending rest intervals this month, so we’ll explain each one at a time. Ascending Rest Intervals (weeks 1&3) are sets of exercises that strategically increase rest in between each set. This is done to allow more recovery time, as each set increases in repetitions and weight. We will be looking to increase weight 5-15% each set, and each set will increase in rest time by :30 seconds. Strategically increasing rest will allow you to handle the increase in overall volume better than you would generally. By utilizing this strategy, we will be looking to increase strength and endurance.

Conversely, we will also be using Descending Rest Intervals (weeks 2&4). Descending Rest Intervals are strategic decreases in rest time in order to stimulate muscle hypertrophy. In our Descending Rest Interval sets, we will still be increasing the repetitions, but we will strategically decrease the weight lifted each set (once again by 5-15% each set). Think of these as similar to drop-sets, but with strategic rest times. By utilizing this strategy, we will by trying to stimulate muscular hypertrophy and tone those muscles.

It is important to pay close attention to the designated rest intervals, as they are key to getting the most out of each workout. Each workout will generally require a variety of different weights as well. Therefore, make sure you read each workout before beginning it. We recommend creating a game plan for each movement, so that way you don’t exceed rest periods due to changing weights. This is especially important for the descending rest intervals, so keep that in mind when preparing for each workout.

Happy Lifting!

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