Take the 2-minute tour ×
Physical Fitness Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for physical fitness professionals, athletes, trainers, and those providing health-related needs. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I've started working out several month ago at home. I'm building my own training routines and using mostly Super-sets. (as for the equipment I use dumbbells, exercise bands and body weight).

Mostly I use 5-6 sets of 2 exercies (a super set). I perform each set twice.

The objective is full-body exercise while building the core and muscles.

The problem is I don't know if I workout too much or too little... How would one know that?

Sometimes I can't finish a routine and sometimes it's too easy. Sometimes if I don't eat much carbs before the routine - I break in the middle (feel deep fatigue and can't move).

Ideas? :)

Thanks!

EDIT: I've been asked to elaborate more on my goals.

I'm looking to beef up a little and shape up. I've got a pretty average body structure - 1.81 m / 90kg (little over weight).

So the goal is to lose some weight (fat) and gain more muscle.

I'd like to get a great core (health, posture, muscle) and more strength with toning (arms, chest)

share|improve this question
    
Great question @Bob, its often hard to get a feel for how hard you should be working out so you don't get injured and don't progress too slowly –  Ivo Flipse Dec 8 '11 at 12:41
    
@Bob it might be helpful if you expanded on your goals a bit more. When you say "building the core and muscles", are you looking primarily for strength, mass, body composition, or...? Very specific goals will likely change the answer. –  Greg Dec 8 '11 at 16:19
    
@Greg - you're right. I've added a little more info –  Bob Dec 8 '11 at 18:00
    
Consider the question turned on its head: What is the minimal effort/intensity that you need to do in order to get the maximal effect of any possible training routine you could do? To that end, I recommend that you read "Body By Science". I used to do a very time -intensive workout, but now I do an effort intensive, time-efficient workout that seems to be packing on the muscles. ( I now have shirts I can no longer wear due to muscle hypertrophy. ) –  Ross Rogers Dec 8 '11 at 19:36
    
@RossRogers - Thanks for the tip. It seems there is pretty harsh debate going on about the benefits of the program. I must agree with them that 12mins/week won't beef you up or make you leaner. –  Bob Dec 8 '11 at 20:01
show 2 more comments

1 Answer

up vote 0 down vote accepted

I'm pretty sure there's no 'science' to determine intensity - you need to do that by results: both positive and negative. You'll know in 3-6 weeks if your routine is good if it's starting to provide the results you want - on the flip side, if you're getting injured, sick, etc. you know it's a bad routine....and if there are no positive changes - not a good routine (so, you have good, not good and bad).

If you based your routine on one of the hundreds used by trainers, that are available in either books or web (many for free) - they you can be assured that (depending on the author/trainer) that it's well rounded.

Your description of 5-6 sets x 2 reps x 2 exercises - seems like the reps a light UNLESS you're going heavy on the weights (which is something you probably shouldn't consistently do). The 'typical' set/rep pattern is 3 sets of 8 reps (even if you superset) for size/endurance and 5 sets of 5 reps for strength....

The statement that 'sometime I can finish easily sometimes I can't' seems to indicate that your supersets and/or daily routine is not well balanced or focused. Think about what supersets are for: either to allow extra rest on the focus area while working auxiliary muscles (ex: the focus is on chest so you're doing bench presses, the second exercise could be calf raises or lunges)....OR to add more strain to the focus area (ex: focus on chest so you're doing bench presses, the second exercise could be over head press).

share|improve this answer
    
Isn't doing 'experiments' what science is all about? ;-) –  Ivo Flipse Dec 8 '11 at 22:59
    
According to Jeff Atwood, yes. Don't be afraid to use the science. –  Matt Chan Dec 9 '11 at 14:17
    
Science? Maybe...but people don't systematically approach to show the positive and negative affects...just for change.......So, maybe in a very narrow scope of what science is. The definition is: 1. a branch of knowledge or study dealing with a body of facts or truths systematically arranged and showing the operation of general laws: the mathematical sciences. 2. systematic knowledge of the physical or material world gained through observation and experimentation –  Meade Rubenstein Dec 9 '11 at 14:20
    
Thanks. I guess I'll try using different approaches to find the best one. –  Bob Dec 11 '11 at 9:22
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.