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Attempting 1RM: How Often?

How often should one attempt max effort lifts. every 5 weeks ,every 7 weeks

Should one limit there training to 3-5 weeks in the 90% range before taking a easy week and then repeat or go for a max

Well, if you’re asking that question, I don’t reckon you have an awful lot of experience in the iron game. That’s okay, though. There is a myriad of models of periodisation and to describe here we’ll be mission impossible. What I can say is that 5 weeks at 90% of max or more will burn you out big time. 90% work should be kept to 2-3 weeks at the most. I really recommend referring to Dave Tate’s Periodization Bible part one and two. Should be a series eye opener for you.

All the best,

Check out the 8 Keys series of articles by Dave Tate, it is about powerlifting but will answer your question and provide you with a model by which you can attempt maxes almost every week.

depends on the exercises your using. For example, a max hang snatch is in no way as stressful on your CNS as a max dead/squat or GM, also the amount of experience you’ve had maxing & how long you’ve been lifting come into play. the archives will give you plenty of info thats useful


You can max out (1-3 rm) every week as long as you change the exercise in some way evry 2-3 weeks. For example I may perform 1rm on close grip bench press for 2 weeks trying to beat last weeks best effort. Then I would swith to somthing like bench press w/ 3 boards for 2 weeks. Then to a 4" rack lockout for the next 2 weeks. This way (conjugate method) you don’t incur repetitive motion damage and you don’t go stale mentally or physiologically

In order to fully answer this question tell us your actual age,training age, and whether you have been training on a consistent basis or not. I believe he is asking about only maxing on the classical lifts. Is that correct?

I am 30 years old and I have been lifting weights for eighteen years the first six years I did it all wrong ,training 5 days a week 2 hours at at time,using too much weight and partisal range of motion etc. The last 12 years I trained much more intelligently. this includes having kept a training log for the last 12 years and also a lot of focus on full body workouts with deads,squats bench rows etc. since I have been training for a number of year I prefer low rep sets ,mutiple singles(auto clusters),and sets of 5 or less reps. So I am usually training at 85-90%+ of RM. I do attempt maxes but I think I should try them more often.
Current best 1RM are
265 Bench Press
335 squat
405 dead
215 Clean
100 One arm snatch
100 lb pullup
I usually try to bring one or two lifts up at a time as it nearly immpossible to increase all of your lifts at once.I attempt maxes about 2 times a year and I think it should be more like 6-8 times.

I think at your level evey 8-12 weeks is ok. If your max does not go up in the eight weeks then you need to make the time span longer. I would personally only max on the Squat, bench, dead, and clean, but its up to you.