T Nation

Last Set Problems


so before I was doing 5x5 on bench but my friend recommended I do 3x10. I started doing it and and I like it a lot more. I also switched up my upper body routine like Mondays (bench, incline, lat pull down, deadlifts, and assited pull ups). Wednesday(bench, bicep curls, assisted dips, shoulder press, and dumbbell shrugs)

anyway back to my problem. on my last set I can’t do 10 reps at once. I am usually tired after my second set. 1st is 10x95 2nd is 10x105, 3rd is 10x115. I usually make it to around 5 straight than I rack the bar take a minute rest and attack it again and do the rest. the most I have done straight with 115 is 7 reps in a row. average I would take atleast 2 little 30 sec breaks during my last set.

is this good or bad. should I stop doing this.

also question about my lifts. I noticed on Thursday that I struggled a lot more on bench than I did on Tuesday. on Tuesday I did 7 reps in a row of 115lbs. than after the set I tested out my 1rmx and was able to do 135lbs. one Thursday I struggled a lot more with 4 reps of 115lbs. I took a total of like 3 breaks during my last set.

Workout Routine Problem

I don’t understand.

If you want to hit 3x10 and not fail a rep, then why not choose weights that let you do this?


Exactly. Also if you want to do 3x10 and complete all the reps, why are you even ramping up the weights every set so that you can’t complete the last set?


sleep, food, recovery,time of day ,level of concentration different things can cause this[quote=“libanbolt, post:1, topic:215269”]
1st is 10x95 2nd is 10x105, 3rd is 10x115
try; 10xbar 10x whatever 10x95 10x105 whatever x115
where on last set each week you try to beat previous rep count
or lower weight on last set to a weight you can hit 10 on

or keep doing this
i think people have said before
hard work
program does not matter to much


I don’t really understand the confusion.

I’ve always thought that if you could actually get 10 reps on your last set, the weights weren’t heavy enough.

So say 100k was your last set, your sets could be like:

-80k for 10
-90k for 10
-100k for 8

Once you can manage 100k for 10, you’d go up in weight for next time, so that might look like:

-85k for 10
-95k for 10
-105k for 7

and you’d keep on like that until you got 105k for 10, then up the weight again.


If you are following your friend’s advice on how to train, why don’t you ask him?


He’s baaaaaack.

He listened to his friend after how many posts???


Ya, but that’s intentional.

This fellow is asking whether it’s a good thing to fail to hit all 10 reps on the last set.


didn’t I answer that?


You’ve tried T-Nation for advice.

You’ve tried your friend for advice.

Brah, its time to go full youtubez for tha gains…


I’m going to let you in on a little secret: you get weaker as you lift in the gym. If you do a hard set to failure with some weight, you won’t be able to do it again without some significant rest.

Sounds like you’re doing rest pause (intra set resting?), without realizing it. It’s a legitimate method for getting more hard work in.

Are you improving over time? If you can do 115x7 with “2 little 30 sec breaks” one week, then the next you do 115x8 with “2 little 30 sec breaks”, isn’t that an improvement?

The only danger with this is if you start letting those “2 little 30 sec breaks” turn into “2 little 60 sec breaks”, then even though you went from e.g. 115x7 to 115x8, it was because you rested longer, not because you’re stronger.

If you can avoid that con, and taking those “little 30 sec breaks” is allowing you to continually move up in weight, then keep doing it, IMHO. But keep in mind that keeping those small rest times in check week to week will not be easy.


Amazingly, when I did some web surfing to see what “pyramiding up the weights” means in today’s context, I found articles recommending something like this:

Set 1: 100kg x 12,
Set 2: 110kg x 10,
Set 3 :120kg x 8,

All sets done to failure with 1min rest because, err, science says so.

Bravo, internet authors!