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How Long Should You Wait to Train a Muscle Again?

Recovery is important.

How long should you wait to train a muscle again? More commonly, people ask how often can they work out. Well, keep scrolling to find out.

If you ask someone how often can you train, or when can you do that workout again, there is a lot that goes behind the answer before simply saying “48 to 72 hours.” Yes, that can be the answer for some people, while it might be different for others.

The duration of your recovery will be impacted by the training variables – for example, the number of sets, high reps vs low reps, load, going to failure or not – and non-training related factors such as sleep, stress, injury-prone, and nutrition.

So how can you come up with the answer yourself? Is it 48 to 72 hours? Should you wait that long to train a muscle again? That is what a video shared by House of Hypertrophy decided to talk about.

Source: Anastasia Shuraeva on Pexels

How Long Should You Wait to Train a Muscle Again?

Perhaps, the best way to know how long you should wait to train a muscle again is to use scientific studies in your favour. The video at the bottom of the page begins by shining a light on two studies.

In them, two groups of people would do the same workout. One group would wait 24 hours to do the workout again, while the other waited 48-72 hours to train again. At the end of a certain period of testing, it would be measured how much muscle mass each group gained and compared.

The first study from Singapore showed that on all exercises (leg press, lat pulldown, leg curls, shoulder press, and leg extensions) subjects saw similar muscle growth, despite having differences in their waiting period.

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Another study from Portugal had two groups doing a pull workout for seven weeks. The bench press and leg press showed similar muscle growth, with a bit of an edge for the group who rested only 24 hours between workouts.

So, in essence, you don’t need to wait 48 to 72 hours before training a muscle group again. Waiting only 24 hours does not kill your gains either. “High-frequency training has also been documented to be perfectly fine for muscle hypertrophy and strength.”

Check out more findings about how long you should wait to train a muscle again and about recovery and fatigue in the video below.

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Overall, it is imperative that you always listen to your body. No matter what kind of information you are given, you must listen and obey your body.

If you are still sore from a previous workout, don’t train the same muscle group again. That is a good tip that your body is still in the recovery process and, perhaps, you should wait another day before hitting the same muscle group.

Reverse crunchSource: I Yunmai / Unsplash

That is not to say that you cannot go to the gym every day. Depending on your level of fitness, it is actually recommended that you go to the gym more often than not, especially if you have ambitious fitness goals.

As a rule of thumb, we do recommend waiting at least 24 hours before training the same muscle again. If you are a beginner, full-body workouts will be great to build muscle and improve fitness overall. This, in turn, will not let you go to the gym every day of the week.

If you are more experienced, check out these workout programs for you to try which will have you going to the gym more often and boost your gains.

Upper Lower Workout – 3 Days a Week

Upper Lower Workout – 4 Days a Week

Push/Pull/Legs Workout

4-Day Split Program to Build Muscle

Ultimate Guide on How to Get Shredded

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