T Nation

Bench Theory

Alright- Ive Read many articles about failure. Too many reps to a set, or too may sets altogether may cause overtraining, and prevent signifigant strength gains-
Here Is my Theory-
my bench max is 275-
I usually do eight sets of 3 with 240-

Alright here it goes- What If I loaded the Bar With 250 lbs. -
and I benched it once, took a 10-20 second break, and repeated this 50-100 times- 1 time a week- The goal would be to increase my overall bench by targeting the nervous system- without causing failure- whaddya guys think?

If you are aiming for pure strength, I think 8x3 is a little much. I’d do 4-6x3.

About the singles, 250 is 90% of 275. I wouldn’t want to try 50-100 singles at 90% of my max of anything.

I would find some kind of template, and look at what has worked for other lifters, pick a different exercise(Bench, Floor Press, 2-Board, Incline) and max out on it every week or rotate those same exercises doing one for a few weeks varying up the reps and sets, don’t try to re-write was has worked for 1000’s of guys. Good luck!!!

I say try it. Is it stupid? Yes. Should you do it every week? No. But what do you have to lose? Nothing…as long as you have a good spotter.

This reminds me of Dan John’s article chronicling his 100 rep challenge with deads. It was stupid but sometimes you need to try something new and shock your body and mind. It could be just what you need.

Don’t let established dogmas keep you from trying something new. If people always followed what others did, we’d still be using Sandow Chest Expanders.

Good luck


p.s. you will need more rest between reps once you get high enough. Take the time or you will start missing reps.

Well - first off - I am not sure it could hurt you as long as you kept your form tight. However, I am not sure it is really possible. 50-100 reps with that close to your max with only those small breaks. I could be wrong but I bet by rep 20 or so you would be pretty burnedout.

If you do try it - let us know - I will be very curious about the results and of course would try it myself if it increases your max!

You can’t. Doing 50 singles at 90% with only 20 seconds in between would be nearly impossible. You might be able to churn only 5-10 reps with that method.

If you could complete that, then you wouldn’t be using 90% of your true max.

Maybe if you worked up to 10 sets of singles and took 2 minutes rest in between sets of singles you’d see progress.