T Nation

Cycle at the Same Weight?

I’m in my deload week at the moment but just taking a moment to think about my performance the past week. My lifts weren’t all that great and I’m not confident in my ability to hit a good amount of reps if I progress the weight for the next cycle.

My reps on the 1+ sets would be around 4 on average but I have to admit my dieting and rest was not great this past month. I didn’t put in the effort to make sure I was furling enough and resting.

I feel like if I just had another go at it, with way more commitment to rest and what I eat, I can do well with the same weights on my lifts. I will drop my TM if I have to, but I do believe I can rebound and grind from this. Can I leave the weight the same for a second consecutive cycle?

I just did this for my squat. The other 3 lifts increased but that stayed for an additional cycle. Performance was much better the second time around, give it a try.


Start too light & progress slowly. A second cycle at the same weight likely can’t hurt, going up too fast absolutely can and eventually will.

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Don’t raise training max until your are dominating 5 reps on 5/3/1 week. I wait until I hit 10 on that week.
As others said, start too light and progress slowly. You won’t get weaker.

If you did 4 reps on the 5/3/1 sets your TM is probably to high.
You don’t mention wich program/template you’re doing.
If it’s the OG you could either stay the weight or increase.
If It was me, I would swallow my EGO and reset to a TM you can hit for a strong 5 RM.

Read Jim’s response

Again, read Jim’s answer.

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Currently on BBB. Taking a deload after the hard cycle 2.

Jim recommends 5’s pro for BBB, 5 reps of all sets of main lifts.
I would highly recommend dialing back the TM to a weight you could do 5 strong reps with.
If you did say 4 reps of 100 E1RM: 113 then 97 would equal E1RM 113.
NEW TM 97.
Do 2 cycles of 5 pro with BBB supplemental do the 7th week delod then 1 cycle of OG 5/3/1 with PR sets and supplemental FSL 5x5.
increase TM every cycle.
I would then do 7th week test week. Take your TM and test if it’s good for 5 reps. If it is, your ready for a new cycle.
It looks like a long time plan, but your are in the game for years. And dialing back using the right TM is the best you can do. IMO.
It is your training, you know your body, and what it responds best to.
But BBB is a volume program and should be treated like that, lots of tonnage and lots of food to grow from.

So I can bench a plate for a good 7-8 reps. Use that as my 1+ starting point, or go a little heavier?

that is 135 for 7-8 reps E1RM 165 - 170 lbs.
140 x 5 E1RM 163 145 x 5 E1RM 169.
TM would be around 140 - 145 lbs.
If 135 x 8 is a grind, go with TM 140
That would leave your first 5/3/1 week 133 lbs or a plate for 5
Next cycle it would be 138 lbs and then on the PR cycle it would have you PR set on 142 lbs. If doing the 7th week test week the week after would have you do 150 lbs for atleast 5 reps, and you are good to go for another cycle.
From here NEVER increas TM more than 5 pounds even if you do very high reps. It will stall at a time why rush to that point.

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Recalculate TM using your recent heavy sets. At least on the lifts you feel less comfortable.

Alright, I’ll be setting my TM to 140. It’ll hurt my ego but my bench has actually declined so I want to do whatever I can to just keep progressing. You think a deload week for me is okay even if it’s one after every cycle due to the fact my cycle was probably much more difficult than cycle 2 should be?

An injured ego heals relatively easily, a torn labrum, rotator cuff or pectoralis is a long slow painful heal.

It depends, if you recover well do it after 2 cycles.
If you just do 5’s po you should not be that beat up

If you’re honest with yourself and had a shitty cycle due to poor sleep, poor eating, life stuff and such, by all means, repeat it. I did it in the past for those reasons and helped.
But put ego aside and make sure you’re using the right TM (especially while running BBB), otherwise you’re bound to grind yourself out and stall for good.
If you’re concerned about your bench one option you have is to bench twice a week with BBB sets - once after the press on the press day, the other after the bench on the bench day.
And change your main work to 5’s pro while running BBB, it’s much a better idea. Keep PR sets for the Anchor phase with 5x5FSL as supplemental

I’ve recently just started programming myself to run the same training max for 2 cycles with no deloads. I do 3/5/1, don’t push it on the 5s week, and always leave at least one rep in the tank. Just something I cobbled together from a Dicenzo post on EliteFTS and my personal needs and long term goals. I’m too old to get into any hurry anymore.

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