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How often should I do strength training?

Adam Krueger
Fitness
On average if you can strength train 3-4 days a week that is fantastic. 1-2 days is ok but you will not see results as quickly after a few months of training, you will plateau. 4-5 days is difficult for a lot of people but will show great results, you just have to be careful when doing this to not overdo your training and ensuring you are resting muscles for at least a full day after a workout. Alternating upper body one day lower body the next tends to work the best for this.
David Slovik, MD
Endocrinology Diabetes & Metabolism
The 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines recommend strengthening exercises for all major muscle groups (legs, hips, back, chest, abdominals, shoulders, and arms) twice or more weekly. One set is effective, though two to three sets may be better, according to limited evidence. A set is a specific number of repetitions of an exercise; we recommend repeating each exercise eight to 12 times. Your body needs at least 48 hours for recovery and repairs between strength training sessions.

Studies show you should perform 2-3 sessions of weight training a week with 24-48 hours in between sessions that work the same muscles. For example if you do an upper body workout on Monday do not perform another upper body workout again until at least Wednesday. Most health experts recommend performing workouts that focus on all major body parts each session to ensure you develop the entire body equally.

Aim for a minimum of three 10-minute sessions per week. You may want to devote a larger percentage of your workout to strength training as you get older.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.