Rest periods 101 👉🏼Long rest intervals allow you to fully recover strength between sets and replenish as much ATP as possible which subsequently allows you to then train with more power/force in the following sets. Salles et al. (2009) confirmed this, showing rest intervals of 3–5 minutes allowed for greater repetitions over multiple sets when training with loads between 50 and 90% of 1RM. As we know that progressive overload/mechanical tension (MT) is the number 1 key to hypertrophy, by being able to lift more in every set you can thus overload a muscle more more and maximise hypertrophy. Now, although mechanical tension is maximized by long rest periods, metabolic fatigue (MF), which is another driver of hypertrophy (2nd most important imo) is compromised and this may then blunt anabolic drive and reducing the potential hypertrophic response.
👉🏼This is where short rest periods come in as they have shown to generate significant metabolic stress and heighten anabolic processes associated with metabolite build-up (Goto et.al., 2004) such as alterations in anabolic hormones, cell swelling, free-radical production and an increased activity of growth-oriented transcription factors (Gordon et.al., 1994) BUT the body will fight back and though you may reap the anabolic benefits of MF, these benefits seem to be then counterbalanced by impairing muscular performance in your following sets (Pincivero, et.al., 1997) thus making short rest intervals suboptimal for maximizing hypertrophic gains.
In order to achieve MAXIMUM hypertrophy, rest 3-5 min on compound lifts and 30-60 sec on isolation exercises. Get the best of both worlds.
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