How to Use 'Giant Sets' for Massive Results Inside the Weight Room

You should be able to finish this entire workout in roughly 30 minutes.

Time is the one commodity we can never get back.

Therefore, we've got to make the most out of every second—including those spent in the weight room. As much as athletes may enjoy training, no one can do it all day. Not only do they need time to recover, but the modern student-athlete must balance many responsibilities outside of training that require their time and attention. This is where "Giant Sets" come in handy.

What Are Giant Sets?

Giant Sets have nothing to do with using excessive amounts of weight. Rather, Giant Sets are simply big supersets. They require you to perform a number of exercises (at least four) in consecutive order without any rest in between. You can focus a Giant Set on one individual area, or you can diversify the movements as a way to train the entire body (which may offer greater benefit for athletes.)

Since Giant Sets require a lot of uninterrupted work, you may find it more beneficial to utilize lighter weights and really hone in on your form and technique. Here's a sample of a full-body Giant Set:

  • Pull-ups
  • Dips
  • Lying Leg Raise
  • Leg Press
  • 10 reps on each exercise

If you performed that Giant Set four to five times, that would equal 16-20 individual sets. If you rested three minutes in between each Giant Set, you should be able to finish the entire workout in roughly 30 minutes.

What Are the Benefits of Giant Sets?

Giant Sets can help athletes improve muscular and cardiovascular endurance, increase athletic performance, and save time in the gym. If you know you've only got 30 minutes or so to spend in the weight room, that's a great time to utilize Giant Sets. They'll make your training time very effective both in terms of burning calories and in building muscle.

Sample Giant Set Workouts

Below are three Giant Set workouts you can incorporate into your routine.

The first one is a full-body routine, while the other two isolate the upper and lower body, respectively. You can utilize each of these workouts once a week, taking a day off between each workout.

In regard to load, you shouldn't reach complete failure on any set, but you should feel like you're struggling to complete that last rep. Perform four rounds of each workout with three minutes rest between each Giant Set. Once you feel like that's no longer a challenge, cut the rest time to two minutes. After that, try to do five rounds of each Giant Set with two minutes rest.

Full-Body Giant Set

No rest between individual exercises. 3 minutes of rest between each set. Perform four total sets to complete the workout.

  • Leg Press (12 reps)
  • Lying Leg Curl (12 reps)
  • Incline Barbell Bench Press (12 reps)
  • Bent-Over Barbell Row (12 reps)
  • Lateral Raise (12 reps)
  • Plank (45 seconds)

Upper-Body Giant Set

No rest between individual exercises. 3 minutes of rest between each set. Perform four total sets to complete the workout.

  • Flat Dumbbell Bench Press (15 reps)
  • T-Bar Row (15 reps)
  • Rear Lateral Raise on a Bench (15 reps)
  • Preacher Curl (12 reps)
  • Rope Pressdown (12 reps)
  • Dumbbell Shrug (12 reps)

Lower-Body Giant Set

No rest between individual exercises. 3 minutes of rest between each set. Perform four total sets to complete the workout.

  • Dumbbell Squat (15 reps)
  • Lying Leg Curl (15 reps)
  • Walking Lunge (15 reps each leg)
  • Seated Calf Raise (15 reps)
  • Standing Calf Raise (15 reps)

Photo Credit: ADDRicky/iStock

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Topics: PULL-UP | LUNGE | BENCH PRESS | PLANK | BUILD MUSCLE | DUMBBELL EXERCISES | ROW | SUPERSET