Escalating Density Training (EDT, for short) is a fast way to build muscle wherever you are. EDT has only been around a few years, but has been used by many people to build muscle, lose fat, and generally get in better shape.

Escalating Density Training was invented by Charles Staley who is a world renowned strength training and performance coach. He said that the idea behind EDT was to get in the best workout in the least amount of time.

The name comes from the idea of the workout routine. Each consecutive workout routine will build on the last, literally. The goal for each EDT workout is to increase the number of repetitions you do in each time interval. For example, let's say you do 50 pushups in 15 minutes. The next workout, you need to do at least 51 pushups in 15 minutes. You will be doing more and more work in the same amount of time in each workout, so your training density (50-51 reps) is escalating each workout.

Things You Will Need


Time: only as much as you want to spend.
Weights: only if desired-you can also use bodyweight exercises.
Timer or watch.

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Step 1

First, decide how much time you'd like to take exercising. If you haven't worked out in a while, then you should definitely consider only spending 10-15 minutes for the first few times of doing an EDT workout. When I first started EDT or when I use a new exercise for the first time, I only go for 10 minutes. You can always add more time later.

As a general rule, you should do one exercise for each 10-15 minute interval. If you only have 15 minutes to spare, then you should only be doing one exercise. If you've got 30 minutes, then you can probably do 2 or even 3 different exercises.

Step 2

Next, you need to decide what kind of exercises you'll do, or what you'll be able to do in the time allotted. I prefer to use only bodyweight exercises because I don't have to setup any exercise equipment or waste time moving between pieces of exercise equipment.

If you plan on using weights, free weights are usually best for Escalating Density Training. If you have some type of exercise machine, then more power to you. You should always work with whatever you're most comfortable with.

Step 3

Once you've decided how long you'll take, set a timer for that long and get ready to start whatever exercise you've chosen.

Example workout: Pushups

Set timer for 15 minutes.

Start timer.

Do as many pushups as possible until the timer goes off.

Rest as often as necessary during the 15 minutes, as long as you continue the pushups when you feel you're ready. The ultimate goal is to do as many as you possibly can within the time period.
By doing Escalating Density Training, you can honestly expect results the next day (in the form of feeling like you worked out more than a mere 15 minutes).

After a few weeks of working out for only 15 minutes a day, you will notice increased muscle mass and you'll probably even notice some fat starting to melt off. When you build muscle, your body requires more calories to maintain the new muscle, so you burn fat.

Escalating Density Training-builds muscle, burns fat, all in 15 minutes a day.

Tips & Warnings

Start out slow (10 minutes) if you haven't exercised in a long time.

Your goal is always to beat the last number of reps you had for that exercise. If you had 30 reps in 15 minutes last time, your goal this time should be 31 at the very least.

Take as much rest as you need during each workout. If you can only squeeze out 10 reps and need to rest, go ahead. Don't kill yourself trying to go further than you need to at this point.

Don't do reps until failure. You should rest before you get to the point of failure.

If you really feel inclined to do even more during your workout, then you can do exercises for opposite muscle groups. i.e. if you do bicep curls, while you rest from those, you can work your triceps. This way, you're never actually resting and doing nothing. You're resting from working one muscle group while working another.

Do different exercises each day. I do pushups one day, then squats another day, then bent over rows another day. This way you spread out the work being done with each muscle group and never overwork any.