Search This Blog

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Drop Sets

Drop Sets are one of my favorite workouts at the gym. I love to do them when I'm looking for an intense workout and haven't had a heavy lifting day in a while so my muscles are nice and fresh. I don't recommend it for newbies but challenge you to work up to it as you get more and more fit. I especially love to use the cable for drop sets, as I can do several exercises without changing my location at they gym. Be sure you don't have people waiting to hop on it while you hog it though, as these exercises do not give you a lot of downtime for rest. I also like to use the upright row machine, the leg machines, the lat pulldown machine, etc. Any machine with the adjustable pin and stacked weight system will work. I also find it easy to go over to the free weight section as all of the dumbbells are lined up and ready to adjust as needed but it can get tricky if it's busy over there. You want to make sure you have access to a variety of weights so if there's a lot of people using the free weights, the ones you need might not be available and you would not be able to continue your drop set pattern. Here's how to perform your drop set workout.

Try to choose 10 exercises to perform, but you can do more or less depending on the amount of time you have at the gym. For each exercise start with an amount of weight which is tough to lift, but not impossible. For example, I normally use 15 pound dumbbells for my biceps curls so I choose 20 pound dumbbells to start my drop sets. Do as many reps as you can without compromising your form, then switch to the next lowest weight and lift as many as possible. When you can't lift another one at that weight without sacrificing form, downsize to a lower weight and continue lifting until fatigue. So, after I perform as many reps as possible with 20 pound dumbbells, I put down the 20s and pick up the 15 pound dumbbells and continue to lift as many as possible. When I can't lift any more, I switch to 10 pound dumbbells, then 5s, then I'm done. You'll do each exercise until exhaustion, working your way all the way down the weight rack or weight stack. When you're done with each drop set, rest 1 minute before moving on to the next exercise.

Be sure not to do 2 exercises using the same muscle group back to back. For example, if you do biceps first, do triceps next, not another biceps exercise. Also, do not do more than 2 drops sets per muscle group. Do not perform this intense workout more than once a week. You don't want to end up hurt, just stronger and more fit. It's a great get in, kick your butt really fast, and get out kind of workout.

Here's a sample drop set workout I have used at the gym. Feel free to do this workout as is or adjust it to meet your needs or equipment.

Cable biceps curl (on cable machine)
Triceps pushdown with rope (on cable machine)
Cable machine chest flyes
Seated upright row machine
Overhead press machine
Leg extensions machine
Leg curl machine
Bench press machine
Stiff legged deadlifts with set barbells or dumbbells
Ab crunch machine

Be sure to rest a minimum of 1 minute between each drop set and be sure to get in a good stretch and a good recovery meal within and hour following your workout. Have a fabulously fit day!

No comments:

Post a Comment