Time Under Tension

So when it comes to training it’s one thing to hit the gym for an hour, and throw some weights around. It’s a whole other thing to spend an hour with an organized plan of how you are going to get the most out of your 60 minutes. I can't tell you how many times I’ve seen people spend an awesome amount of time in the gym getting nowhere. It’s like for them going to the gym is the payoff, not the results. I'm going to spend the next couple of minutes doing my best to break down a basic understanding of using the gym to dump as much energy as possible in whatever amount of time you have available to invest.

On average a person will spend right around 2 seconds per rep on a piece of equipment. If you are doing 3 sets of 10 reps this equals around 60 seconds of total muscle engagement over the entirety of this one exercise. If you do 10 different exercises during your training session you will get right around 10 minutes of engagement over your 60 minutes of training. The rest of the time is spent getting your much needed rest between sets, rehydrating yourself, chit chatting about form, and your favorite exercise, or getting that perfect swellfie to post on your favorite social media platform. While all of this serves to get you kudos from the people in your life who look up to those that hit the gym, it does not play into your results as effectively as it could.

If you changed just one of the fundamentals of your lift to include 3 to 5 seconds of contraction per direction per rep with a steady internal focus on engagement. The benefit increases to around 40 minutes of time under tension for the same exact workout listed above. You still get 20 minutes to spend on whatever you choose, but in your 60 minute training session you get four times the amount of work done compared to the original plan of just tossing weight around for an hour. That's like getting four of your old workouts done in the time it used to take you to do one.

This is just one of many small changes that can be implemented in your training plan to make your investment worth the return. Next time you hit the gym give this a try, and see first-hand the difference it makes.


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