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  1. #1
    ricky_rocket is offline Joe Blow
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    Multiple short workouts vs. Long one

    I like to try and get 90 minutes per day in walking/running on the treadmill to get in shape/lose weight. But I prefer shorter workouts to longer ones.

    I've been breaking my workouts into three sessions per day. My thought is that it's less boring and I do one in the morning, one in the afternoon, and one in the evening/night. I do the same total distance/speed whether I do one long one or three short ones.

    Does doing 3, 35 minute workouts (5 minute of warm ups) have the same effect as doing one 90 minute workout ?

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  3. #2
    corple is offline Second Set
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    if your talking about strength training? dont break up your workouts throughout the day, your muscles need time to rest after a workout. the 3 hours after a workout are most critical in restoration. ( that doesnt mean, after 3 hours go and lift weights again. just do 1 workout )as for cardio, iuno about anybody else, but ill do as much cardio as i want. and i dont care what you say

  4. #3
    Man of Steel is offline First Set
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    You'll probably get better results if you break your weight training workouts up into one in the morning and one in the afternoon.

  5. #4
    Prometheus is offline Warming Up
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    As always, it depends on the parameters. But doing 3 35 minute workouts (or even 3 30 minute workouts) would generally give you superior results compared to 1 90 minute workout. I know I have always made better gains this way. Your metabolism will also likely be elevated slightly higher. But unfortunately, most of us aren't able to do 3 small workouts in a day so the 1 will have to suffice. If you are able to then go for it. Just make sure you do it right.

  6. #5
    spockafina is offline Fourth Set
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    What I've always read is that by splitting up your work-outs throughout the day, you will actually burn more calories during the course of the day because you are getting your heartrate adn metabolism up 2 or 3 times, instead of just once.
    It makes sense and I appreciate the facts from the research. My only concern is that since you're doing cardio, it's far too much and unneccessary. There really is no reason to be running 3 times per day, for such a long time as 35 minutes. Sure, you could be making progress, but there are other, more time-efficient ways to be going about this.

  7. #6
    ballast is offline Second Set
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    Quote Originally Posted by spockafina
    What I've always read is that by splitting up your work-outs throughout the day, you will actually burn more calories during the course of the day because you are getting your heartrate adn metabolism up 2 or 3 times, instead of just once.
    It makes sense and I appreciate the facts from the research. My only concern is that since you're doing cardio, it's far too much and unneccessary. There really is no reason to be running 3 times per day, for such a long time as 35 minutes. Sure, you could be making progress, but there are other, more time-efficient ways to be going about this.
    There was soem research done on this very topic (it was only two cardio sessions however, not three) from the Washington State website, which is currently under construction, but it concluded that, from the testing they had done, the two sessions produced better results than one session.The multiple sessions were kept fairly short though, 15-20 minutes I think.

    In regards to multiple sessions per day using weights, I believe it can be effective if used infrequently and for short durations.Charles Poliquin and Charles Staley have both written articles on effective ways to incorporate multiple workouts per day as has Bill Starr.If anyone is interested, I can try and dig them up again.

  8. #7
    Fil
    Fil is offline Fourth Set
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    If you want shorter workouts, and you're not training for endurance (sounds like you're training more for weight loss and tone), run intervals. They take a fraction of the time of a regular endurance workout, but you burn fat and keep the muscle (whereas you'd burn more muscle as well as fat in an endurance workout).

    Check out the HIIT forums here or do a search for "intervals" or "interval training".

  9. #8
    Slig is offline In Orientation
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    Its the quality and intensity not the quantity or length timewise of your workouts, this is why 95% of us have slow progress because a human naturally will go towards pleasure rather than pain its a known fact. The saying ''no pain no gain'' in way is very true in a way that if you want quick results you got to work above your ''comfort'' level. Many people have this idea in their heads that they will be fit overnight if they do really long workouts or that they will get fit quickly by doing lots of workouts in a week but not very intense, this is not the case. It is possible to get fit in a month if you put your mind to it and work hard.

  10. #9
    Fil
    Fil is offline Fourth Set
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slig
    Its the quality and intensity not the quantity or length timewise of your workouts...
    For strength building and weight loss, intensity is key. However, for muscle size (rather than strength) and heart health, time and low intensity are beneficial.

    Quote Originally Posted by Slig
    It is possible to get fit in a month if you put your mind to it and work hard.
    This isn't necessarily true, not for people just starting out. Even if you worked your brains out your first month, you're going to see decreased results relative to someone who has been doing it for several months already due to the body not being adapted properly to the training. Do a search on these forums for "neuromuscular adaptations" to find out why this is.

    My tip: track your progress as far as:

    1. Food you eat each day, and the calories in each meal
    2. Weight (weekly)
    3. Body fat (monthly)

    Then you can fine tune what you're doing as you go along.

  11. #10
    Slig is offline In Orientation
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    you are correct in what you say yes, but when i say fit i mean fitter. Also I have this book about a personal fitness instructor who got a guy fit in 4 weeks and he wasn't even able to run once round his block. He was a fat business man. I think the website is www.simonwaterson.com

  12. #11
    gregh is offline Registered User
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    if you are doing cardio you need to go for longer than 30 minutes, you just need that high heart rate for around 25-40 minutes before it actually does you any good. Generally when doing cardio I like to go around 45-50 minutes. It is fine to do it more than once a day, but you need that substained heart rate.

  13. #12
    Fil
    Fil is offline Fourth Set
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    Quote Originally Posted by gregh
    It is fine to do it more than once a day, but you need that substained heart rate.
    In fact, it's better to do multiple workouts in a day, studies have shown!

  14. #13
    Dax
    Dax is offline In Orientation
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    Quote Originally Posted by gregh
    if you are doing cardio you need to go for longer than 30 minutes, you just need that high heart rate for around 25-40 minutes before it actually does you any good. Generally when doing cardio I like to go around 45-50 minutes. It is fine to do it more than once a day, but you need that substained heart rate.
    But what if you're doing HIIT? From what I've read around here, if you're doing HIIT and doing it properly, then you don't need to go longer than 20 minutes - and physically shouldn't be able to.

  15. #14
    Fil
    Fil is offline Fourth Set
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    The primary idea behind HIIT is that you can activate particular energy-producing systems in the body by alternating between rest and high-intensity activities at particular intervals. To activate the fat burning energy system in your body (oxidative system) you should have a 1:1 ratio of rest:activity, and the activity should be at 20%-30% of your maximal force production (which means, extremely intense cardio).

    The thing is, it's less time, but since the activity periods are so intense, it's the same amount of work. There's no way to magically use up more energy without requiring it, so it's still going to be tough (for me, personally, it's tougher than an endurance workout).

    In a regular endurance workout, the first 20-30 minutes are relying on mostly non-fat burning energy systems (note: mostly. Usually all your energy systems are being simultaneously utilized - but some to a negligible extent). With HIIT, you activate that energy system during the rest and activity cycles.

  16. #15
    Skull Pilot is offline First Set
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    Intensity is as if not more important than duration.

    If you work out for 90 minutes, I guarantee you that you're intensity level is not high for most of the work out. You see people all the time in the gym for 90 minutes and they probably only do 40 minutes of intense work.

    If you do 3 30 minute work outs and you are working intensely for 20 minutes you will be better off.

    Check out Ross Enamait for some real intense conditioning drills that are sure to whoop your ass and make you puke.

    RossTraining - Bridging The Gap Between Ordinary and Extraordinary

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