length of workout - what is too much?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Sep 26, 2011 5:19 PM GMT
    Is there something that is true for all people, or is it different for each person?

    Some people say don't work out more than a half or three quarters of an hour or you will lose muscle because some chemical is released? Other people say an hour. I know many who work out for an hour and a half or two hours.

    It depends on what I am doing. My workouts last from an hour, though are usually an hour and a half to two hours. I eat my supper after my workout, and drink Modern BCCA during my workout.
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    Sep 26, 2011 6:21 PM GMT
    I think it is different for each person, and even different for one person at different times. You should work out to acheive the "burn" or pump. Quality workouts with good form can take different lengths, on different days. Just let your body tell you when it feels worked out. That's my approach.
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    Sep 26, 2011 6:25 PM GMT
    Everything I have read says that if you WORK during your workout, you can do everything you need to in one hour. Working out for two hours is unnecessary unless you are working at less than your general max.

    That said, I see guy at my gym who are there when I arrive and still there when I leave. What are they doing, other than chatting with each other and playing with their little music boxes?
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    Sep 26, 2011 7:41 PM GMT
    It depends on the intensity of your workout. Highly metabolic and drawn out exercises are not good for you if you do them on a regular basis, but they're fun once in a while. The duration and the intensity of your workout should be inversely proportionate. In other words, the more intense your workout, the shorter it should be. Think: 7 minutes of non-stop barbell work vs. 30 minutes of running. Both are good workouts.
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    Sep 28, 2011 5:31 AM GMT
    I believe it varies for everyone as well. My general rule of thumb is, if you can't complete your workout because run out of energy, that means your workouts are too long. Or maybe you need to come up with a new routine that doesn't exhaust you too soon.
  • studflyboy87

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    Sep 28, 2011 5:39 AM GMT
    At one hour, I get up and leave the gym. I normally aim for 45 minutes to one hour.
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    Sep 28, 2011 7:13 AM GMT
    I usually go for about an hour. I kind of know when its time to go when I have to really work to get the excercise done or I feel close to failure regardless of rest duration. Then its time to go icon_razz.gif
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    Sep 28, 2011 7:16 AM GMT
    For strength training, I usually do 45 minutes to an hour, not including my warm-up and stretching. For cardio, I do an hour or so, depending on how I'm feeling. It will depend on how you feel and your body type.
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    Sep 28, 2011 9:17 AM GMT
    Depends what you are training for, but for general training (ie something that is not super specialized like training for olympic level body building or whatever) you can get most of your potential benefit in an hour (ie 2 hours is nothing like twice as good as an hour).
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    Sep 28, 2011 10:15 AM GMT
    I honestly think "less is more" and "quality not quantity".

    It is like running practice - I think you are better doing intensive sprints than jogging for hours on hard streets or paths.

    I think 20 minutes should be enough for each muscle group, as long as the breaks are only in the region of 30-60 seconds.
  • Latenight30

    Posts: 1525

    Sep 30, 2011 1:35 PM GMT
    Much more than an hour of the weight training it won't have the same effects.
    Cardio work outs don't kick in to at least 20mins of activity.
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    Sep 30, 2011 1:57 PM GMT
    I usually lift for an hour. That seems to be about all the time I need to feel the workout.

    Occasionally if I'm feeling rested up, like on a weekend, I will have a super breakfast, give it two hours to digest, and then I like to do an intense workout for 1.5 hours. On those days I will finish my normal routine in an hour, but in the last 30 minutes I will go back and hit everything again once or twice more. That really seems to give me some benefits, although I only do it once or twice a month.

    I think the most important thing to remember is to not over-train. The recovery time is important (and so is the fuel you give your body during recovery!) I never work out longer than 1.5 hours and I always give at least 48 hours of rest before I return to the same muscle group.

    I tend to get way more cardio than I need and it's hard for me to gain weight...so some guys may not need to be as careful about recovery time as I do. When I get my cardio, it's usually in the form of a 3 hour bike ride or 8-12 hours in the mountains.
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    Sep 30, 2011 1:58 PM GMT
    I do an hour for split sets. I do another 20 mins of cardio to get my body fat down then hit the showers to look at dick. I am out in an hour and half usually unless its a hottie explosion, then it might take a little longer.
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    Sep 30, 2011 2:09 PM GMT
    It looks like it's working for you.
  • Markebri

    Posts: 110

    Sep 30, 2011 2:20 PM GMT
    I usually go for an hour. Within that hour, without dicking around, I can usually fit in 8-9 various exercises and reach exhaustion for that muscle group. I always know that its time to go home during a upper body workout if I can't do more then 3 reps of push-ups after completing all of my exercises..haha.
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    Sep 30, 2011 11:20 PM GMT
    My personal rule of thumb: If it takes more than an hour to recover, you overtrained.
  • coastguy90814

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    Sep 30, 2011 11:30 PM GMT
    If you're trying to grow muscle mass or lean muscle you really shouldn't be working out more than 45 minutes. After about 45 minutes the body starts to release cortisol, a catabolic hormone that reduces protein synthesis and prevents tissue growth. It does the opposite of testosterone. If you're working out properly, you really shouldn't have to work out more than 45 minutes anyway.

    As for cardio, there's no concrete science that says too much cardio breaks down muscle, the only concern would be excessive cardio. As long as you have proper nutrition and you're doing resistance training, going more than 45 minutes on cardio is fine. Good luck!
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    Sep 30, 2011 11:31 PM GMT
    Dallasfan824 saidI do an hour for split sets. I do another 20 mins of cardio to get my body fat down then hit the showers to look at dick. I am out in an hour and half usually unless its a hottie explosion, then it might take a little longer.


    I like your honesty haha.
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    Sep 30, 2011 11:46 PM GMT
    I sometimes do it all in 35-40 minutes but about an hour seems right. If you're taking longer than that you're probably not gaining cardiovascular benefits by grouping moves together or just wasting time.
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    Oct 02, 2011 4:42 PM GMT
    coastguy90814 saidIf you're trying to grow muscle mass or lean muscle you really shouldn't be working out more than 45 minutes. After about 45 minutes the body starts to release cortisol, a catabolic hormone that reduces protein synthesis and prevents tissue growth. It does the opposite of testosterone. If you're working out properly, you really shouldn't have to work out more than 45 minutes anyway.


    This cortisol issue worries me. I take it seriously not only for the reasons cited but but it also is known, to my knowledge, to cause mood problems, anxiety and depression. It may? also have other damaging effects to the body.

    Is there a healthy, non-harmful way to get rid of the cortisol after 45 minutes? Some type of supplement or ? I am not sure if I heard of this?

    It would be good if I could do my workout in 45 minutes and have it productive. I don't question that this is the case for some people. The problem is I just cannot accomplish that. Three exercises per major muscle group just doesn't do much for my body.

    (Incidentally, I don't quite understand this after 45 minutes idea because what does this mean for doing anything more than 45 minutes that demand physical labor or effort?)

    ***Postcript:
    After I wrote this, I went to the gym today and worked out for an hour. Cut this workout down as much as I could, used to take 1.5 to 2 hours. Not as fun, felt limited and rushed. Maybe it will do more good than I realize. I will find out.