Is the order in which you exercise important?

  • Hi there


    Another question from a newbe:

    if I am doing Upper Body today and I get to the gym floor and the equipment used for chest is occupied can I start with sholders and then do chest later on in my workout, or must I stick to the order: Chest, Back, Shoulders, Biceps, Triceps?

    Thanks in advance




  • Phil,

    You want to lift the major muscles first if possible. Another way of putting this is, you want to do the lifts that incorporate multiple muscle groups first. For example; bench press is primarily for the chest, but the triceps and back muscles are recruited in the bench press as well. If you lift triceps first, your triceps are likely to be very tired when you go to bench. If that's the case, you probably won't be able to exhaust your chest because your triceps will tire first.

    This isn't a hard and fast rule, but recommended. I typically do chest first. If the bench and all press machines are taken when I get to the gym, I'll maybe switch to flys for my first 5 sets and do bench for my final set. Every once in a while, I'll change the order just to keep things fresh and to promote muscle confusion.

    On LB days, I typically start with the quads, followed by the hams, followed by calves, followed by abs.

    I hope this helps.

    John Chisholm

    2011 Body-for-LIFE

    Grand Master Champion