Lactic Acid Training For Fat Loss

Today in tune with summer being right around the corner, I am addressing lactic acid training and how to effectively use it to satisfy your fat loss goals.

Lactic acid training is effective in losing fat, not because it has a magical property that directly targets fat, but more of the environment it creates as a result.

First off, lets familiarize ourselves with Lactic acid then move on to the workout.

What is Lactic Acid?

Explaining lactic acid can get technical, so ill try to make it as simple as possible.

Simply put, lactic acid is a by-product of oxygen deficiency. If you have been an avid reader of my articles, you are now aware that the body uses glucose as energy. Glucose is stored In the body (particularly in the muscles) as glycogen. It’s the primary source of energy for the body.

When we exercise, the body converts glycogen in to ATP which is used to provide energy for the muscles to contract with the support of oxygen. Once those stores are depleted, the body resorts to an alternate source of energy; anaerobic energy systems. As those stores are depleted, lactic acid floods the muscles creating that “burning feeling” in the muscles.

Lactic Acid & High Intensity Exercise

As you exercise, your body uses up the glycogen stored in your muscles, as you continue to exercise with intensity, your body taps into alternate stores. With continued exercise, your body is unable to keep up with the demand for oxygen and fuel to facilitate muscle contraction.

As a result, lactic acid is created. The liver is responsible for clearing up the lactic acid build up that develops. Your body produces lactic acid as a safety precaution when you remain in a constant anaerobic state (non-stop activity without rest) to prevent muscle contractile failure. Think of it as you car’s hand brake. Its your last resort to prevent an evident accident from happening.

Lactic Acid Training & Fat loss

This kind of training involves a large caloric expenditure due to shortened rest periods and high work volume. All the latter leads to an elevated heart rate further increasing energy demands post exercise. This relates to Exercise post oxygen consumption. Which elevates your body’s demand for oxygen even after cessation of exercise leading to an increased metabolic activity.

Increased Growth Hormone levels also increase the use of fat for energy during recovery after intense exercise. This means your body will be burning fat in order to help you recover from your training (not in a literal sense, but with a caloric deficit, your body has no choice but to resort to stored energy)

Lactic Acid training taps your Type I muscles fibers (endurance) which are rarely trained in normal training capacity. This can create great hypertrophy gains even while on a caloric deficit. No to mention increasing mitochondria activities which tend to use fat as the main fuel source. This means that fat oxidation will increase.

Now we know that lactic acid is produced under the following conditions

  • High volume
  • High intensity
  • Minimal rest

Knowing the latter, lets move onto the program. Before the workout set-up I want to outline a few parameters; beginner and intermediate lifters will have different parameters to work with

There are 3 rep ranges




Rep Range

4 – 6

8 – 9

14 – 16

Total Reps




For Beginners, the rep range will be Medium and light versus Intermediate lifters; Heavy and Medium rep ranges.

The method is quite different from what you’re used to. There is NO number of sets, only target reps. In other words, there is no limit to the number of sets as long as you reach the target reps for each workout. The rep ranges and number of reps used are advocated by Chad Waterbury. He outlined the ideal rep ranges in his book based on different studies conducted; the Set Rep Bible. A great read!

For each specific rep range, you need to pick a weight that will allow you to perform the range on the first set. If you can still reach the target range on the second set, then you need to choose a heavier weight.

The most important factor here is Speed. You need to perform each rep in an Explosive manner. I.e. perform the concentric part as fast as you can. Once you feel that your speed is slowing, you stop. That was your first set.

Rest a maximum of 30 sec and resume till your speed slows down then stop. That was your second set. And you keep doing that till you reach the target number of reps.

I know ive lost some of you so let’s try an example;

Exercise: Dumbbell Chest Press / Medium (8 – 9 RM) / 40 Reps / 30 Sec rest.

Lets say you usually use 65 lbs. Dumbbells to hit 9 Reps. So you get at it making each rep as explosive as you can. Once you reach 9 Reps your speed slows down, STOP!!. Rest for 30 sec MAX. Now continue, the first rep will be a continuation I.e Rep number 10. You can only rep out 5 Reps this time before your speed slows, STOP!. Rest and resume at your 16th rep. Continue in this manner till you hit 40 Reps.

Once you’re done, you move to the next exercise and follow the same protocol.

It doesn’t matter how many sets it takes you, SPEED is what matters here.

Now, for the Good Stuff….The Program.

Day 1 ( 20 Reps / 30 sec / 4-5 RM)*

Back Squat

Chin up / Lat Pull down

Dumbell Bench Press

Turkish Get Up

*Beginners will use ( 40 Reps / 30 Sec / 8 – 9 RM)

Day 3 (40 Reps / 45 Sec / 8-9 RM)**


Bent Over Row

Military Press

Hammer Curls

Leg Raises

**Beginners will use ( 50 Reps / 45 Sec / 14 – 16 RM)

Day 5 (40 Reps / 30 Sec / 8 – 9 RM)

Push Ups


Decline Chest Press

Lat Pulldown / pullups

Hand Walk Outs

Day 6/7 – Circuit

6 Sets

20 sec Speed Squats
10 sec rest
20 sec Mountain Climbers (keep neutral spine)
10 sec rest
20 sec Burpees
10 sec
20 sec Jumping jacks
10 sec rest
20 sec Speed Squats or Jump Squats
10 sec rest
20 sec Push Ups or Knee Push Ups (if you can’t do 8-10 regular pushups)
10 sec rest
20 sec Mountain Climbers (keep neutral spine)
10 sec
20 sec Jumping jacks

*Concept of “Velocity Training” – tnation

A few things to consider:

  • You shouldn’t use a spotter. There should not be someone helping you with your reps, remember, you stop once you slow down. There are no forced reps
  • Remember to stop once your speed Starts to slow down, not after.
  • Stick to the Maximum rest times, do not go beyond that limit
  • Do not sacrifice your form
  • Try to figure out your weights before starting the program.
  • The weight does not change with every set. Pick a weight and keep it constant. If it’s too light, change on the second set but not after that.
  • The pump you get will be INSANE !!

Give it a shot, and post in with your results and experience.

Don’t 4get to like and comment 🙂


24 thoughts on “Lactic Acid Training For Fat Loss

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  2. Thank u for the work out schedule…I have questions about lactic acid workout:
    1. When will i drink my protein, casein, creatine, glutamine, amino supplement, etc? 3 hours before and after training?
    2. Do I need L carnitine before workout?
    3. Should i do little stretching/warm up before/after doing lactic acid training?

    I will try your workout, thanks. Hopefully you can posting other workout variation. Thank you.

    • Hi Albert,

      – for your supplementation, it all depends on the rest of your diet and when you train. Casein and glutamine are mostly taken evenings closer to bed. Creatine and protein beforre, after or during is fine.

      – You dont “need” it, but if your targeting fat loss, it will help, slightly.

      – Stretching is best when the muscle is warm and not on cold muscles, even better stretch through dynamic movement drills

      Hope that helps

  3. I like it.

    If you’re cool with it, I’d like to use one of you diagrams for a post I’m writing on about lactic acid while doing speed work. I’ll link back to this page, and credit you for the image. If that’s a problem, let me know and I’ll gladly remove it!

  4. hello,

    sometimes I train my abs so hard, I put quite a lot of weight and do reps like crazy, then move to the next exercise with no rest, then the next…. Then I take a max 1 minute rest after a while and start again. I can feel the burning like hell but I keep going no matter what. Suddenly I reach a point where my abs get numb and I cannot feel burning sensation anymore…I could go and go, I feel so ventilated, I could continue forever non stop and can feel soreness. Is this a good thing? should I stop after this? I feel like my lactic acid empties down or something, I do not know if it is dangerous to keep going after…

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  6. Hi there, I do alot of exercising and I have had two massages in the last two months and on both occasions I have been told I have a build up of lactic acid. Is this dangerous? Am I doing too much or not enough?. Any help would be appreciated.

    • Hi Pauline. You don’t have to worry too much. Lactic acid is a by-product of working out and is a result of carbon dioxide build up in the muscle. Just try to make sure you stay hydrated and get plenty of potassium and magnesium. Dynamic stretching is a great way to rid muscles of excess lactic acid levels post workout.

  7. I noticed that cold shower after acid inducing workout reduces or completely eliminates pain next day. I know cold shower boosts testosterone. Does it interfere with GH production? Should I rather be in pain to rip maximum benefits?

    • Hi Aelexy. Im not too certain the cold showers boost testosterone is a fact, since sensational pathologies do not directly influence hormonal responses however, you can use cold showers to flush muscles with nutrient and oxygen rich blood to improve recovery

  8. Hi, I understand that the focus is primarily on the fat loss… However, for instance, even drop sets giant sets etc helps to work using the lactic acid, and they are used for growth as well… can we use this program on a regular basis as part of our mass building workout while dieting according to it, of course…????

    • Definitely, the only difference would be ensuring a caloric surplus and making a few programming tweaks. Its also a great way to break through growth plateaus

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  11. Hi there. Gonna use thus for mut cut, thanks. I was wondering a couple of things though: 1) how long of a rest do you advocate between exercises and 2) do you recommend a specific TUT for the reps? Thanks so very much.

    • Hey george. The rest periods will be governed by your recover and goals. Given your looking for fat loss keep rest below 90 sec. TUT will depend on your programming but heres charlea poliquins recommendations. For muscular hypertrophy, he found that 30-70 seconds per set was optimal. For strength and size gains, or functional hypertrophy, Poliquin suggests training on the lower end of that range, around 30-50 seconds. If you want maximum hypertrophy without a strength emphasis, train on the higher end of that range, or around 50-70 seconds. Hope that helps !!

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