We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
My entire daily program is designed and updated (and monitored - "Whatcha do yesterday?") by my genius trainer. I do what I am told by him. As Mrs. BD says, he is the only person I obey besides God.
My current program is 2 days of heavy weights with trainer, one day of accessory weights mostly by myself, one or two conditioning classes at the gym (tough and fun in a sick way) or replace one of those with an hour of my own calisthenics, one day of endurance cardio and one day of misc HIIT cardio. Everything is progressing nicely but slowly of course. I'm not 18 anymore.
Speaking of which, have you noticed so many people checking their iphones at the gym? They aren't looking at texts. They have their exercise plans du jour on their phones, and are checking what their next circuit should be. Luddite that I am, I write them on paper.
But to my issue of 5 vs 3 sets of resistance work.
My approach with the powerlifts is one light warm-up set of 5-8 reps, then 5 working sets of 5-8 reps of increasingly heavy weights. 5 is my favorite number, but some days my boss pisses me off by making me do 8s. When we go near my max, say, with deads or barbell squats, only 3 reps. My modest one-rep goal is 300 for deads. I am not a big strong dude.
With accessory resistance work which I do on my own once weekly, I generally do one warm-up and 3 working sets. It's partly a matter of time (because 60-90 seconds rests between sets), and to fit in everything on my list with 60-75 minutes. It's rare than I can fit in everything on my plan.
What sorts of things do I do on my accessory weights days? It's below the fold -
Pullups alternating with pushups, leg press or goblet squats, calf presses on the leg press machine, kettlebell farmer walks, curls, Roman chair leg lifts, kettlebell step ups, inclined dumbell chest presses, kettlebell lunges, kettlebell swings, inclined pulls on those strap things, etc.
Usually I throw in heavy ball squat throws and jump rope as active recoveries. Often I do 5 sets of pullups because I am working on a specific goal there. Golly, they are difficult for a middle aged guy. Skinny women seem great with them.
I am fortunate in having many hobbies and interests - too many to keep up with - but my daily workouts are probably my most valuable hobby. My happy routine: Grab a Dunkin at 4:30 AM and get to the gym by 5 ready to rock and roll. I should mention that daily workouts are great for people to do with a spouse or girl/boyfriend. Another thing to do together, and mutually-inspiring.
Number of pushups men can do may indicate heart helth.
If you're a 40-something guy and can't do 40 push-ups in a row, maybe it's time to do something about it.
A new study suggests the number of push-ups a middle-aged man can perform might be an indication of his overall heart health.
Men who can do more than 40 at a time have a 96 percent reduced risk of heart attack, stroke and heart disease compared with men who could muster fewer than 10, according to findings published online Feb. 15 in JAMA Network Open."As you can well imagine, there are people who are world-class marathon runners who can't do very many pushups, and there might be people who are bodybuilders that can do a lot of push-ups but can't run very well," he added. "But we found in this study and other studies we've done, in general, push-up capacity and aerobic capacity are pretty well correlated."
"...one light warm-up set of 5-8 reps, then 5 working sets of 5-8 reps of increasingly heavy weights."
Different nomenclature than I've seen. Typically only sets done with the heaviest weight are called the working set, the ones leading up to it are all warm up sets. The working sets are the ones that can apply the stress needed to cause disruption of homeostasis and therefore muscular/strength adaptation. The warm up sets are there to get you warm, provide practice for the movement and get you ready to move the work set weight, while not using up the energy you need to complete the work set(s). For my squat workout, I typically do 10 empty bar reps, then 3-5 (depending on work set weight) roughly equal weight jumps up to the work set, reducing number of reps for each weight jump. So, using 225 as an example, warm up and work sets might look like this: 45 x 10, 95 x 5, 135 x 3, 185 x 2, 225 x 5 x 3 (3 sets of 5 reps each).
Just curious, how does your trainer decide to have you do 8 reps instead of 5 (or 3)? How many work sets do you do for squats and deadlifts? It sounds like 5 sets of 5-8 reps. That's a lot of volume, especially for an older lifter, and doubly so for the deadlift. But on the other end, a single work set of 3 squats is probably not enough stress to drive adaptation appreciably.