Growth hormone: Optimal response from your weight training session

How to get the best Human Growth Hormone release from a workout…


Growth hormone is an anabolic growth factor that helps to increase lean muscle mass.

The two greatest factors which affect growth hormone release the most is sleep and exercise.

And to get the greatest release of growth hormone from a workout, one has to train a certain way.

Two important factors that play a big role in the secretion of growth hormone in a workout, is the intensity and the rest intervals.



The greater the load, the greater the intensity is. One does not always have to train with heavy weights to get the best hormonal response.

In this study (1), 4 groups did a resistance training program, 5 reps with 1 min rest, 5 reps with 3 min rest, 10 reps with 1 min rest and 10 reps with 3 min rest. It showed that the group that trained with the heavy load (10RM with 1 min rest) got the greatest growth hormone release.

And this study (2) also shows that a greater hormonal response is elicited from moderate training intensities (such as 10RM, with short rest) than from high intensity training (such as 3-5 reps).


Rest intervals

As I explained here, growth hormone is secreted when high lactate is present in the blood.

Exercising at lactate threshold for a minimum of 10 minutes elicit the greatest GH (growth hormone) response. (3)

But…no one really wants to do a set for 10 minutes straight to get that kind of release… so…

this study shows that resting 30-60sec between sets also elicits the greatest growth hormone response. (4)

However, resting for 2 min or 5 min shows no difference in growth hormone concentration over long term strength training. (5)

So it’s crucial to rest round about 1 minute, and no more.



So it’s quite clear that you’re going to have to train high volume, moderate intensity, with short rest to get the best growth hormone release possible. 

Another thing to consider is that doing exercises with a bar (such as rows) shows a significant greater growth hormone release than doing uni-lateral exercises (such as one arm rows). (6)

If you’re worried by any means that you might not get adequate muscle activation from lighter weight, don’t fret as training at 3-5RM and at 10RM shows to have the same muscle activation. (7)

The best kind of program to get this growth hormone boost from, would be to follow a program like German volume training (GVT).

GVT consists of taking an exercise and doing it for 10 reps x 10 sets with 1 minute rest in between. 

Be sure to give GVT a try for a great growth hormone release.

7 thoughts on “Growth hormone: Optimal response from your weight training session

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