What is a Workout Rep?

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  • Written By: Troy Holmes
  • Edited By: W. Everett
  • Last Modified Date: 20 January 2020
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A typical exercise program is made up of multiple exercises that require performing a particular exercise in a specific number of repetitions. A workout rep is the term used for defining the number of repetitions to be performed for a specific exercise. The total repetitions are combined into a full program and commonly referred to as a set within the exercise routine.

Weightlifting is the most common exercise to make use of the term workout rep. Each exercise within the weightlifting program includes a specific number of repetitions that are required to complete the exercise routine. The typical weightlifting programs include a repetition range that enables the bodybuilder a minimum and maximum rep for a specific exercise.

The workout rep is critically important to monitor depending on the expected outcome of the exercise program. Within the human muscle structure, there are two primary types of muscle fibers that are utilized during weightlifting activities. These muscle fibers are geared toward strength or endurance depending on the number of the workout reps in an exercise.

Muscle fibers are typically referred to as fast-twitch endurance-type muscle fibers or slow-twitch, strength-and-power-type muscle fibers. It is a good rule of thumb to remember that the higher the repetitions of an exercise program the more usage of fast-twitch muscle fibers. Likewise, the more weight and resistance that is generated during an exercise program, the more usage of slow-twitch strength and power muscle fibers.


Power weightlifters focus more on slow-twitch fibers and require fewer repetitions of an exercise. This is also an important technique for football players, as they require quick burst of power for a limited time period. Lower repetitions of extremely heavy weight are typically used to generate maximum power and size.

Endurance athletes are better served to create an exercise program that focuses more on the usage of fast-twitch fibers. This program will typically involve the creation of a higher workout rep within the exercise program. Generally any exercise program that requires repetitions greater then nine reps per set is considered to be a fast-twitch fiber exercise geared toward endurance.

Another important element to consider with the workout rep is size versus fat- burning tone exercises. Greater strength and burst exercises require larger muscles, whereas longer endurance exercises requires more muscle tone. This is important to consider as individuals aspiring to grow in muscle size should refrain from high workout rep programs that focus more on fast twitch fibers.


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Post 3

@Oceana – Everyone is different, so I agree that it is best for the individual to decide how many reps is enough. I know that when I started doing my abdominal workout, there was no way I could have done the number of reps I can today, just as doing as few reps as I did then would have no effect for me now.

I started out doing fifteen crunches at a time. I would rest after that, and then I would do fifteen more reps.

Over several months, I slowly worked up the number of reps. I can now do a 100 rep workout program, and I do these fifty at a time.

I have hard, etched abdominals now. It took awhile to accomplish, but I did it the best way that I could, and that was by slowly increasing the number of reps.

Post 2

I like creating my own exercise routine, because I can determine exactly how many reps of a certain exercise works best for me. Someone else's limit might be too high or too low, because only I know when I've done too much or not enough.

I have an exercise machine that lets me set the resistance. I usually set it to somewhere between twenty and thirty pounds.

I can move a metal pin around to enable the machine's arms to move in different directions. Some are harder than others. The chest press is the most difficult, so I only do about ten reps.

Pushing the arms outward simultaneously is easiest, so I do fifteen reps. I rest

a minute, and then I do fifteen more.

I'm sure that my husband could do far more reps than this. I'm also certain that my little sister could not do as many. This is simply what works best for my body, and I am seeing nice results from it.

Post 1

I have a high rep workout routine, because I am not interested in developing large muscles. I only want to build good muscle tone and endurance, so I pace myself.

I use dumbbells weighing only five pounds each. I do about twelve reps of various curls and lifts, resting between each set of different exercises.

This way, I don't tire out my muscles. I can tell a difference in the tone of my arms since I started this workout. By no means do I have bulging biceps, but I have really nice muscle tone, and I feel better about wearing sleeveless shirts.

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