Breathing Squats

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20 Rep Squats

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Have you ever tried 20 rep squats? Have you heard of them? 20 rep squats are beleived by many experts to be one of the most stimulating, growth producing workouts you can do in the gym. If done correctly, they are brutally hard and will leave your legs sore for days.

The theory behind the 20 rep squat is to take a weight that you can only do 10 regular reps with. You are supposed to take that weight and take 2-3 deep breaths between each repetition until you reach 20. 20 rep squats are also sometimes referred to as "breathing squats."

My arguement is this: If you can get 20 reps with a weight that you normally get 10 reps with, then you sure as heck aren't going to failure on the 10 normal reps. I don't care how many breaths you take between reps. However, most people don't go to failure on squats, so this might be a good starting point for you to try. For me, it's closer to a weight that I can get 12-15 normal reps with. You have to experiment your first workout to find a weight that is right for you.

You will definitely need a spotter for this exercise. It's also nice if you have someone urging you on the last 5-6 reps and won't let you quit until you hit 20 reps. If you truly hit failure at your 20th rep; your legs, glutes, hamstrings, and quads will all be burning like you've never felt before. Your lungs will be scorching for air and all you'll be thinking is, "How am I going to get this weight back into the rack?!"

The first time you hit failure, you will probably only be able to do one set of 20 rep squats. The next time you try them, try that same weight and try to do 2-3 sets of them. You'll need to take about 4-5 minutes between sets to catch your breath. You'll be breathing like you just ran a 400 meter dash after each set. You may even start to feel like you're going to vomit. You may vomit. This is all normal. :-) I wouldn't try these unless you've have a small meal at least 1 hour prior to working out and preferably something light like a meal replacement or protein drink. Solid food meals before 20 rep squat workouts often times end up with the trainer in the bathroom.

20 rep squats are a highly intense workout and should be attempted only by advanced trainers. Please consult your physician before partaking in any workout.

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