Giant Set Or Circuit Style Training?

giant set or circuit

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I Just started working out and was wondering if I am doing it right by working on 1 machine for 10-12 reps then doing the next machine for 10-12 reps, so on and so on.

And when I have done 5-6 machines, start at the beginning again and go through the second set of reps, from machine to machine? Or should I stay at 1 machine and do 3-5 sets of 10-12 reps before moving on to the next machine?


Submitted by Tim


Hi Tim,

I'm not entirely sure what it is your asking.

I really don't know what you're trying to accomplish with your weight training program.

Are you trying to build muscle? Power? Fitness? Without knowing what it is your trying to accomplish, it's hard to know what to recommend.

The workout you are describing sounds like a circuit training program where you do either your upper or lower body or your whole body in one “giant” set.

For example, let's say you start with leg extensions, you do 10 to 12 reps and than go on to pull downs and do 10 to 12 repetitions and than do the bench press for 10 to 12 repetitions until you have gone through your entire routine. This is more like a circuit training program and is used more or less to improve your cardiovascular endurance and to burn fat. However, this type of weight training routine can be customized to high intensity training for building strength and muscle mass.

By sticking with the exercise and performing 3 sets of 10 for a specific body part, you are not doing a “circuit” style training program. Instead you are exercising the muscle according to a body specific exercise. For example, doing 3 sets of 10 for chest on the bench press; 3 sets of 10 for the shoulders on the shoulder press; And doing 3 sets of 10 for the leg extension. These types of sets and exercises are more or less for split routines.

Again, it all depends on what you are trying to accomplish. Here are some resources for you to look through:

Benefits of circuit training

Circuit training program to burn fat and build muscle

Full body workout or split weight training workout

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As the owner of Building Muscle 101, I am committed to providing you the best practical weight training advice. I've been training for over 24 years (and still train to this day!) and the advice and guidance I provide comes directly from my experience and knowledge.

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