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S&C UnderGround >> Strength building question.


1/11/13 12:05 PM
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andyman011
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For example if my Max deadlift is 400. Would my strength increase more if I did one rep of 400 or 3 reps of 350. This question applies in bench also and squats. What if I manage to pull up 400 2x but do 8x 325.

Is it always best to do your Max or should you drop a little bit and pump out an extra rep or 2 Phone Post
1/11/13 12:43 PM
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Wiggy
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Training at or near maximal levels for any sort of sustained period of time is only going to end up leading to CNS fatigue - esp if you're not rotating exercises.  Not advisable at all.

A good plane is to stay in a moderate set/rep range (4-6 sets x 4-6 reps).  Back way off in terms of percentage.  Micro-cycle your way up (progress forward for 3 weeks, back off one week, start over at a slightly greater percentage and repeat) over several months.  Jim Wendler's 5/3/1 is a great way to do this.

Another good method that I'm starting to really like is to always train in the 70-80% range, and do a sort of constant weight training, progressing in a long-term linear fashion.  Do sets of 4-6 reps.  It should require a bit of effort, but nothing too crazy.  Repeat this for 3-5 weeks.  By that point, what you're doing should now feel easy and effort level should be lower.  Slightly increase the weight so that effort level goes up again.  Stay there for another 3-5 weeks.  Repeat for the long-term.  The goal is to be continually adding weight over the long haul, and letting your body adapt slowly.  Over the course of say 6-8 months or even a year, you've got quite a bit more weight on the bar.  Your true intensity (i.e. - how much weight you're using as a percentage of your 1RM) will likely be staying the same, as while you're adding weight, your capability (what you can 1RM) will be increasing along the way - you just won't be testing it.  But all the while, you're never having to put in more than that sorta 70-80% effort level.

Saves on physical wear and tear, doesn't burn out your CNS nearly as much, and if you're like me, you end up leaving the gym feeling a lot better than you did when you went in.  I've been experimenting off and on with this kinda thing off and on for a little over a year and it's my favorite training method.

Wiggy - http://www.workingclassfitness.com

1/29/13 9:31 AM
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AdrianK
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Max lifting "Displays" your strength, lifting for reps "Develops" your strength.
1/29/13 7:23 PM
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factchecker
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If you want to increase 1RM, it's better to use heavier weights with low reps, long rests in between, but heavier weights put much harder strain on joints and tendons, which, if injured, take longer to heal than muscles.

So, perhaps you have been training mostly lifting heavy weights, chances are that you have sustained some kind of minor injury somewhere, however negligble it may be. In that case, you should start lifting lighter weights paying attention to how those "injures" are healing.

If you don't feel no pain at at all in any bodyparts that are used in the exercises mentioned, I would say go ahead and keep lifting very heavy. Make sure you take long rests.

If you begin doing new exercies, that is a different story. You should be patient with new movements even if you can litt heavier weights easily. Joints need more time than muscles to get used to new movements, so you should give thm plenty of time to "grow."
1/29/13 7:30 PM
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andyman011
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factchecker - If you want to increase 1RM, it's better to use heavier weights with low reps, long rests in between, but heavier weights put much harder strain on joints and tendons, which, if injured, take longer to heal than muscles.

So, perhaps you have been training mostly lifting heavy weights, chances are that you have sustained some kind of minor injury somewhere, however negligble it may be. In that case, you should start lifting lighter weights paying attention to how those "injures" are healing.

If you don't feel no pain at at all in any bodyparts that are used in the exercises mentioned, I would say go ahead and keep lifting very heavy. Make sure you take long rests.

If you begin doing new exercies, that is a different story. You should be patient with new movements even if you can litt heavier weights easily. Joints need more time than muscles to get used to new movements, so you should give thm plenty of time to "grow."
The only pain I get is in the side of the arm about 2 inches from the ball on the wrist. Feels like my forearm is cracking. A pain in my bone Phone Post
1/29/13 7:39 PM
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factchecker
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Edited: 01/29/13 7:43 PM
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Then I would say slow down a bit and use "lighter" weights(which are heavy enough for most other folks). Maybe you could add supplementary exercises to help deadlifts, such as squats and weigted hyperextensions neither of which stresses your forearm. I feel that you already know what movements to do if you can pull 400.

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