The Advantages of the 3x5 Workout

The 3x5 workout can guide your quest for a better body.

The 3x5 workout can guide your quest for a better body.

Getting in shape is no picnic, but it is particularly frustrating if you aren't quite sure of what you're doing. Not having an adequate plan for exercise can make it difficult to reach your goals, so you may want to try a program such as 3x5 -- pronounced "three by five." This workout program can help you enhance your physique and provides advantages over many other training strategies. Always ask your doctor before you take on any workout plan, so you avoid injuries.

Easy to Follow

While some workout plans might offer insane results, they can be difficult to follow. Some programs feature unpredictable change, with a different selection of exercises and repetitions introduced every day. A 3x5 workout offers an easy-to-follow routine, as you perform three sets of five repetitions each for every exercise. This simplicity makes it easy to remember the program and simplifies weight selection, as you won't have to guess how much weight you can lift in a random assortment of repetition ranges.

Reduced Likelihood of Overuse Injuries

With the 3x5 workout, you will be performing a reasonable number of repetitions for each exercise -- for 15 total reps. This stands in stark contrast to some workout programs, which may suggest up to 12 repetitions per set. Keeping rep ranges reasonable may help you avoid overuse injuries. notes that overuse injuries can be caused by "doing too much of one type of physical activity," and a workout plan with a very high number of repetitions could meet that description.

Ideal for Building Strength

Whether your daily routine involves carrying kids around or playing sports, improving your strength is always beneficial. A 3x5 workout program is well-suited to building strength, as it falls within the American Council on Exercise's suggested range for strength training. The council suggests that performing four to eight repetitions for two to six sets is the best way to boost strength. This setup is different from the recommended workout protocol for building muscle size, so you won't have to worry about getting too bulky.


Unless you're being paid to be there, chances are you don't want to spend all day at the gym. With a 3x5 program, you don't have to. By requiring just a few sets for each exercise that you perform, a 3x5 program allows you to get a great workout in a reasonable amount of time before getting on with your life. Not having to perform six or more sets of each exercise can also prevent your workout from totally wiping you out physically.

Permits Variety

Although bodybuilders may want to spend hours giving a ton of attention to each individual muscle, you might not want to. With a 3x5 program, you'll have time to try out a wide range of different exercises, as you won't be stuck doing biceps curls for insanely high numbers of reps and sets. If you want to improve your whole body or just try new things, a 3x5 program can help you meet both goals.

About the Author

Brian Willett began writing in 2005. He has been published in the "Buffalo News," the "Daytona Times" and "Natural Muscle Magazine." Willett also writes for and He is an American Council on Exercise-certified personal trainer and earned a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from the University of North Carolina.

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