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The ‘Timeout for Muscle’ Mass-Gaining Workout

Boost your size and strength — and burn more fat — by manipulating rest periods.

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  • Goal

    Hypertrophy, Burn Fat, Increase Strength

  • Skill level

    Intermediate

  • Duration

    8 weeks

  • Days per week

    7

  • Type

    Strength Training

  • Goal

    Hypertrophy, Burn Fat, Increase Strength

  • Skill level

    Intermediate

  • Duration

    8 weeks

  • Days per week

    7

  • Type

    Strength Training

When it comes to designing training programs, we tend to focus on things like sets and reps, exercise order, and weights. The training variable that most often gets short shrift in this equation, however, is rest. Typically speaking, we don’t give too much thought to the downtime during gym work. Taking a minute or two to muster the strength to knock out the next set is de rigueur for most gym rats; and while they may switch up the moves in their routines regularly, their rest periods remain static in perpetuity. It’s time to rethink this strategy. Because, by playing with your rest times, you can improve the results of your training in terms of size, strength, and fat burning. 

It’s a Matter of Time 

The rest periods between sets for each week of the Time Out program look like this.

Week       Rest Period Between Sets

 1                          2:00
 2                          1:45
 3                          1:30
 4                          1:15
 5                          1:00
 6                          0:45 
 7                          0:30 
 8                          0:30
 

The Plan

  • Goal

    Hypertrophy, Burn Fat, Increase Strength

  • Skill level

    Intermediate

  • Duration

    8 weeks

  • Days per week

    7

  • Type

    Strength Training

Weekly split (Repeat with different rest periods for 8 Weeks)
  • Day 1

    Chest, Biceps, Abs

    90 minutes

    11

    Yes

    Chest, Biceps, Abs

    Week Rest Period Between Sets 1 2:00 2 1:45 3 1:30 4 1:15 5 1:00 6 0:45 7 0:30 8 0:30

  • Day 2

    Legs, Calves

    90 minutes

    8

    Yes

    Legs, Calves

    Week Rest Period Between Sets 1 2:00 2 1:45 3 1:30 4 1:15 5 1:00 6 0:45 7 0:30 8 0:30

  • Day 3

    Shoulders, Traps, Abs

    90 minutes

    9

    Yes

    Shoulders, Traps, Abs

    Week Rest Period Between Sets 1 2:00 2 1:45 3 1:30 4 1:15 5 1:00 6 0:45 7 0:30 8 0:30

  • Day 4

    Back, Triceps, Calves

    90 minutes

    10

    Yes

    Back, Triceps, Calves

    Week Rest Period Between Sets 1 2:00 2 1:45 3 1:30 4 1:15 5 1:00 6 0:45 7 0:30 8 0:30

  • Day 5

    Active Rest

    --

    --

    No

    Active Rest

  • Day 6

    Active Rest

    --

    --

    No

    Active Rest

  • Day 7

    Active Rest

    --

    --

    No

    Active Rest