Thanks for all the information. I’ve looked into extensively now. I’m a pretty good gauge of how my body is feeling after a couple warm up/ramp up sets, so this seems like it could be useless and productive.
I don’t know what it is about 5/3/1, but I’ll get 5 months into it where you’re taking basically your first month 1+ set and supposed to do it for 5+ and suddenly I can’t get even 5 reps with a weight I hit for 6+ reps. My muscular endurance goes up with lighter weights, but I’m not developing strength.[/quote]
You might want to try Wendlers 5/3/1 for powerlifting template or throw in some joker sets if you want to continue 5/3/1. [/quote]
The problem is that I was already doing that and regressing on squats. Deadlifts always respond great to 5/3/1, but squats regress even with joker sets.
The thing that I like about true autoregulated training vis-a-vis 5/3/1 (or any other percentage-based program, for that matter) is that I come into each training session without a concrete number in my head in terms of what I need to lift for my top set.
So if my program says I have to work up to a deadlift double at RPE 9, I’ll go through my normal warm-up (60 kg x 5, 100 kg x 4, 140 kg x 3, 160 kg x 2, 180 kg x 1, 200 kg x 1) and then see how I feel. If the last warm-up single felt easy, I’ll do another single at 210 kg and then go for 220 kg. If that felt too easy, I’ll do another double at 225 kg or something. If the last warm-up single felt hard, though, I’ll do my double at 210 kg and move on.
I found myself being too bound up in thought prior to each workout on a percentage-based program, knowing that I had already hit a particular number of reps at the programmed weight and that I would need to hit at least that many reps if I wanted to continue to make “progress”. But autoregulatory work really teaches you that linear progression isn’t always possible or even desirable.