Updated: Mar 22
I have a confession. Working out with gym rats from way back has me feverishly looking up gym slang on my phone and pretending I know what the hell they're talking about. Worse than looking like a weakling is looking like an idiot!
So, today we're going to take a look at some of the gym terms that had me speed searching Google before I got on whatever apparatus they were talking about to do an exercise I had no idea existed.
AMRAP: As Many Rounds As Possible
EMOM: Every Minute On The Minute
Rx'd: You completed the exercise as it was prescribed. I.E., weight, motion, and reps.
WOD: Workout of the Day
Working Sets: Sets that are at your 100% capacity and do not count warmups.
LISS: Low-Intensity Steady State (i.e., walking)
Lagging: When a certain muscle group isn't growing at the same rate as other muscle groups.
HIIT: High-Intensity Interval Training. CrossFit is a type of HIIT, but don't tell them that.
Metabolic Conditioning: Think CrossFit and HIIT.
Pause Reps: Holding a rep of any exercise for 1-5 seconds at the top, middle, or bottom of the lift.
Plyo (Plyometric): Mostly associated with jumping exercises from a dead start. Box jumps are one of the most recognizable plyometric exercises.
PR: Personal Record
Progressive Overload: Incrementally adding weight week after week to your PR to gain strength.
Protein Synthesis: Body function that generates new protein to repair microtears in muscles.
Superset: Pairing two exercises that focus on the same muscle group with little to no rest between sets.
Train to Failure: Literally do an exercise to the point of failure or are no longer safely able to do the exercise.
Hypertrophy: Literally means more nourishment. This is the fancy name for muscle growth.
Giant Set: A superset from hell. You do four exercises back-to-back instead of just two.
Drop Set: Perform and exercise to failure. Grab a lighter weight. Repeat until you throw up. Not really, but... do it.
DOMS: Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness. You work out, and then you get this if you do it right.
Dead Start: Starting a rep with zero momentum.
Compound Movement: Lifts requiring the use of multiple muscle groups. Most Olympic lifts fall into this category.
Circuit: A group of exercises performed one after another until the circuit is complete.
BMI: Body Mass Index. A pretty crappy way to measure if you're gaining muscle.
1RM: One Rep Max. The weight with which you can do an exercise only once.
Accessory Work: Isolation exercises to bolster a strength training program.
Macros: Macronutrients refers to the number of carbs, fats, and proteins we take in each day.
Bulking: Gaining muscle and strength by consuming an increased number of calories.
Cutting: Eating a small calorie deficit to lose body fat and minimal muscle loss.
Negatives: Purposely slowing down the portion of the exercise that elongates the muscle you're working on.
Ok, I certainly hope this keeps you from looking like a total noob in front of whoever it is that's been trying to get you in the gym for so long!
Get them gains, friend!