A Guide to Our Workout Structure & Terminology
Sets, Reps and Weight
When reading our workouts there is a consistent structure in which the sets, reps and weight is displayed. The following examples should help serve as a quick reference for you to easily transcribe the workout structure terminology.
3 x 10 (80)
In the example "3 x 10 (80)", the:
- 3 represents the number of sets
- 10 represents the number of reps
- (80) represents the percentage of one-rep max weight to use.
So, if for instance a bicep workout has an exercise for "3 x 10 (80) - dumbbell curls", that means perform 3 sets of 10 repetitions of dumbbell curls with a weight of 80 percent of your one-rep max for that movement. If your one-rep max for dumbbell curls is around 50lbs, than use 35-40lb dumbbells for the 3 sets.
Superset - (3 x)
1. 8 (BW) - dips
slow, controlled repsS
2. 10 (70) - dumbbell skull-crushers
on decline bench if available
3. 10 (60) - dumbbell bicep curls
hold dumbbells parallel to each other, alternating with controlled reps 2 seconds concentric, 3 seconds eccentric
The superset example above is a sequence of the exercises outlined below the title "Superset - (3 x)". The "(3 x)" in the title represents the number of sets to be performed. The individual exercises to be performed are delineated by the numbers: "1.", "2.", etc. In the example, one set would consist of 8 dips, 10 dumbbell skull-crushers, and 10 dumbbell bicep curls performed consecutively before taking a short rest and performing the next set. The reps and suggested percentage of one-rep max weight to use is spelled out the same as our usual structure. Notice that in the example the first movement in the superset (dips) is supposed to be performed 8 times using "(BW)". BW is the abbreviation for bodyweight. For a complete list of abbreviations please see below.
With any movement, never sacrifice form for additional weight. In other words, if we suggest using 80% of your one-rep max for 3 sets 10 reps and you have to start swaying, or using ancillary muscles to do it...stop. Use less weight and keep your form solid. Also, and this should go without saying, never continue an exercise if pain or injury is felt.