How to SPEED up your workouts – Spend LESS time in the gym


As much as we all love the gym, we also all have life and you can find yourself spending ages in the gym. I don’t like to be in there more than an hour myself, I have other things to do. Some people, love spending time in the gym, whoever some people don’t. Sometimes you just can’t help it, once you have done your workout you can find yourself spending ages in the gym. So let’s speed up your workouts.

In this article, we have put together a few ways on how to speed up your workouts. Ways to increase efficiency. Hopefully, some of these tips and tricks will help you spend less time in the gym and more time focusing on your life. If you enjoy spending a long time in the gym then this article isn’t for you, we are not saying that everyone needs to be as quick as possible, just that some people might!


This is something everyone should do but many people don’t, including me on occasions! Timing your rest periods! If I asked you how long are your rest periods? Would you know? Do you think all your rest periods are the same? This is not only a great way to speed up your workouts but also increase the intensity!

Time your rest, start with 60 seconds between sets and you will find out how long you have been resting between sets! Once you have been resting for 60 seconds for a while you can decrease it to 45 and then to 30 seconds. This will help you get a grip of your rests and you will find you won’t take such long rests and also your works will speed up. 


This is the biggest one that will save time! Training on your own will effectively half your workout time! What will take you 1 hour on your own might take you 2 hours with a friend. Not only will you not have to wait for your gym buddy to perform their sets but you will also find you won’t talk as much between sets. This brings in the tip above as well with timing your rests.9

Now obviously, not everyone likes training on their own or wants to, this is fine, I would say this is the last resort to speed up your workouts! All the other tips in this article can apply to people who work out with friends! So if you love to train with friends and gym buddies then you can, you can.


This is something that will slow a lot of people down. Have a plan! The number of times I see people just wandering around the gym looking for something to do. You need to walk into the gym with an idea of what you are going to do in what order.

Not only should you have a plan, but you should also have a rough alternative, if this bit of equipment is taken then what can I do, or a different order. So that in any situation will be able to continue your workout. We aren’t talking about writing every workout out and carrying around a notebook (Although this is the best way to see progress), but at least have a mental note of your workout and what you can do in case something is busy! 

For example, I am going to start with the Incline Dumbbell press and if that is busy I will go for a Barbell Bench press, this way you won’t be waiting for equipment or even thinking about what you need to do! You can just fly through your workout.


Something else you can do to help speed up your workouts is to try doing shorter but more intense workouts, There are two ways you can do this. The first way is to use super and giants set to help, We have a range of workouts available on the blog (like this one) These use a short but intense format to put a good amount of volume through a muscle group in under 20-30 minutes.

Another way you can increase the intensity of a workout is to drop the number of sets you do per exercise but give more. So instead of doing 3-4 sets at around 80% effort, try doing 1 100% set, give it everything you have got, till you can’t lift the weight anymore. Then rest then do another set at around 75-80% effort. These two sets will cover all the reps and also allow you to push your output and volume each week, all while keeping the number of working sets down.


The first one you should look at doing is changing up your split. As a beginner, you might start with a 2-day week split, something like Upper & Lower. While this is good, it isn’t the best if you are short on time as you will have a lot to get through each day. So what you can do is add another day and do a Push, Pull, legs split. Or you could do a full-body, Upper, Lower split. Splitting up how much you do per day will drastically reduce the amount of time you are in the gym for. 

For me, my perfect split is an Upper, Lower, Rest, Push, Pull, legs split. This allows me to hit everything twice a week but also keeps the time and recovery are a good level. You will have to work out what you can do, times you can do the gym etc. Everyone has a different reason to do different things. Find what works best for you.


So there are a few tips and tricks to help you make the most out of your gym session, and speed them up! Like we said at the start if you want to spend ages in the gym, you can! We aren’t saying you can’t or shouldn’t, we are just giving some tips for people that might want to speed up their sessions. If they are working out on their lunch breaks or something along those lines.

If you are after some quick and effective workouts we have a few on our blog, you can visit the workout section. You will also find hundreds of workouts on our app! We have loads of workouts including some designed for people without much time! You can download it here!

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Written by Kieran Blacker

Kieran is the CEO and Founder of Sets & Reps. He decided to make an application that helped people get a gym workout when not at the gym. He designed, Coded and built the application himself.