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How to Tell If You’ve Recovered from a Workout?

I’d like to see some talk on with how to tell exactly when you’ve recovered from a workout and when you haven’t .Example: I worked out hard my last workout and took extra days off to recover. Feeling recovered I tried again today but felt weak . On a 10 rep set I was 5 short. It’s all just guess work. Maybe I recovered , maybe I didn’t? There must be some definitive way to tell if you’ve recovered enough so you can work those same muscles again ?

I have heard grip is a good indication of being recovered. Some guys set a baseline time holding a barbell with 225 or 315 double overhand just out of J-cups. They have an idea that they will have a good session when they can hold it their baseline time or more. The baseline time will have to be adjusted if you get a stronger grip.

I guess that assuming you use heavy bars in your workout. I don’t .

You could do it with 135, or heavy dumbells too. Just pick a weight in which you are not holding it for super long. I think 20-30 seconds is a good time to go for.

How about a scale?

Like grab with both hands and squeeze?


Reps on a captain of crush grip trainer would work (or any other grip trainer, I just mention those ones because they actually make ones that you can fail at a few or no reps). Pick one you can do 5-10 times, and do it every workout. When you get less than before, you probably are not fully recovered, if you match you are probably pretty good.

I wouldn’t try to break your record every time, otherwise, you will end up feeling like you are under recovered a lot. Just set a baseline. Something like if I get 8, I know I am at least pretty good.

Why do you think this grip test will tell you if you are recovered ? I mostly use Nautilus machines so grip isn’t a factor.


I have heard a few reputable coaches recommend it. Not that a coaches recommendation is proof, but this is an internet forum. Try it out and see if you see correlation.

Grip is supposed to correlate to other strength. Fluctuations in grip strength seem to correlate to other lifting strength. So much so, that even gripping harder during a lift seems to increase how much can be lifted. I squeeze the bar really hard during stuff like bench, OHP, squat…

I mostly use Nautilus machines so grip isn’t much of a factor in my workouts . This must be more for a power lifter ?

If your grip is weak a certain day, I bet you perform worse on the Nautilus machine too.

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There has been some research done on grip strength, a type of tap test, body temperature and other indicators of recovery.

Like, as a response to oxygen debt your metabolism increases until that debt is rectified. Your body temp increases with metabolism, so when your body temp returns to its baseline, it could be said that you have fully recovered.

To my knowledge there are really only indirect methods to gage a state like this due to the somewhat ethereal nature of the fatigue <---->recovery continuum.


Body temp . I can start taking that and see how that fluctuates ?

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There is no interest in me sharing my opinion here, haha


IDK, one could do a set of 50 deadlifts. If they only get to 40, not recovered, if they get 50+, they were recovered until they did their recovery test.

Its not specific to activity or type of machine used, but as a somewhat direct measure of the ability to exert force.

It’s also correlated to mortality. Older people with good grip strength are more robust.


“If its time to lift and you still have a pulse, you’re recovered enough, now grab the bar and lift”


More that Scott and I have discussed before and we are on two different worlds with this

Oh, yeah. I remember that. There is significant differences in both philosophy and applications.