Only play your next set of muscle building when you feel 100% recovered from the earlier set. Some people suggest resting between sets should be 2-3 minutes, some use 4-5 minutes. One study shows that longer rest between sets can enhance muscle strength (1).
However, the drawback of such a brief rest period is that you will not rest long enough to keep enough power. If it is not possible to maintain strength, then the weights you can lift with shorter rest will not be heavy enough to assist your muscles to build.
3 Minute Resting Between Sets
You are in the gym with the aim of moving as much weight as possible for as many reps as you can. There is no way to divide an absolute time between sets to rest.
Sure, having a fixed 3 minutes time between sets provides the workout more organized and guarantees you can finish all of your activities in the targeted time frame, but that’s not the best way to make you’re putting 100% effort into each set.
Some sets will use more energy and force you to rest longer while others will not have an impact. It all relies on what practice you do, how much weight you move and how you feel on any specific day.
The key is to listen to your body and perform your next set only if you feel you have recovered from the previous set and can execute the set with intensity and strength of 100 percent.
You may rest for 3 minutes and you may rest for 6 or 7 minutes at other times. Because your workout should last no longer than 60 minutes including 15 minutes warm-up, it’s vital that you always watch the clock to make sure you don’t rest longer than you need.
The Bottom Line
You need to move around the gym enough to allow maximum rest between sets. while still completing your workout in less than 45 minutes is important.