T Nation

Missing Prescribed Reps

If you are looking hit 8-10 reps at 75% MAX and only hit 8-10 reps on your first set, what do you do?

a. drop the weight to get in your reps
b. do an extra set at same weight to make up the lost reps
c. do some extended set variation (failure training be damned) to get the reps in
d. recalculate your 8-10RM because if you can only hit it for one set,its not your true 8-10RM?
e. make this your progressive resistance variable. Work to improve prescribed reps over the next few training cycles

Don’t you feel like you are over-analyzing?

So you calculated your 8-10 RM? How about you just experiment a bit and stop using calculators?

Pick a weight you can do 8-10 reps with… then, next session, do another couple reps, another set, or increase the weight. And make sure you log it.

I would keep the weight and work as close as I can to the prescribed reps for each set. With the following workouts, I would keep using the same weight until I hit the prescribed reps before adding reps/sets/weight.

However, if you’re prescribed reps are 8-10 and you can only hit this on the first set while hitting only 3-5 reps on the second/third/fourth sets. I would re-evaluate the weight I was using/extend the rest between sets.

What type of rep scheme are you using? 3x8-10 or something? I like 4-8 reps or whatever, and use the same weight until you can hit all 8 reps, and then add weight. I wouldn’t get too hung up on prescribed reps.

Prescribed by what/whom?

[quote]howie424 wrote:
Don’t you feel like you are over-analyzing?[/quote]

this and the question was confusing to me… if you’re lifting your 8-10RM, are you not gonna fall within there, lol… if you do 2 less or 2 more, adjust

[quote]LoRez wrote:
So you calculated your 8-10 RM? How about you just experiment a bit and stop using calculators?

[/quote]

Never used a calculator and felt I was just spinning my wheels. I did 8-10 on loads I could have done much more with.

[quote]DoubleDuce wrote:
Prescribed by what/whom?[/quote]

idk, the “bodybuilder” goldylocks zone?

8-10, 4-6, 12-15, doesnt really matter though, just was looking for the prefered strat when you cant hit the targeted reps for all the sets.

Example: BP at 75% Max (170) target 3x8-10. Hit 8 the first with 1 in the tank, then 5 the next 2. Decided to go for a 4th set to make up the reps… others drop the wieght? others rest-pause, etc??? Basically looking for a T-Nation 2 cents.

I certainly do understand Chris Shugart’s 8 Ah-ha moments #2 effort trumps training programs, which is why the dude that does nothing right looks better than me. Trouble is I just dont really know what this “effort” is short of going to failure all the time and 60s rest, which wrecks my recovery.

[quote]giograves wrote:
Example: BP at 75% Max (170) target 3x8-10. Hit 8 the first with 1 in the tank, then 5 the next 2. Decided to go for a 4th set to make up the reps… others drop the wieght? others rest-pause, etc??? Basically looking for a T-Nation 2 cents. [/quote]

This is not representative of anyone but me. For most everything, I’ll drop the weight to actually get the reps in; if that means the 3rd set is at a lighter weight, then it’s at a lighter weight. Sometimes I’ll stop mid-set, drop the weight, and finish the set. For leg work, I’ll rest-pause to get the reps in.

On the other hand, if I’m feeling good and manage to hit my reps just fine, I might add an additional set and then bump the weights up next session.

[quote]giograves wrote:

[quote]LoRez wrote:
So you calculated your 8-10 RM? How about you just experiment a bit and stop using calculators?

[/quote]

Never used a calculator and felt I was just spinning my wheels. I did 8-10 on loads I could have done much more with.

[quote]DoubleDuce wrote:
Prescribed by what/whom?[/quote]

idk, the “bodybuilder” goldylocks zone?

8-10, 4-6, 12-15, doesnt really matter though, just was looking for the prefered strat when you cant hit the targeted reps for all the sets.

Example: BP at 75% Max (170) target 3x8-10. Hit 8 the first with 1 in the tank, then 5 the next 2. Decided to go for a 4th set to make up the reps… others drop the wieght? others rest-pause, etc??? Basically looking for a T-Nation 2 cents.

I certainly do understand Chris Stugarts 8 Ah-ha moments #2 effort trumps training programs, which is why the dude that does nothing right looks better than me. Trouble is I just dont really know what this “effort” is short of going to failure all the time and 60s rest, which wrecks my recovery. [/quote]

First of all, why would you listen to Shugart regarding how to get big and nasty? He’s not a dumb guy by any standards, but he has a very specific specialty(that I am aware of)…fat loss. So change who you listen to for advice on getting stronger and bigger.

Intensity is the biggest factor in determining if you have the potential to get super big and strong. NOT the only needed factor. I don’t care how intense you are, if you aren’t making actual progress. Lately, I’ve been squatting every 3-4 days, as my primary leg work. Really, it’s a throwback to when I first started training legs seriously. The thing it, all I do after squats is 1-3 assistance exercises on average, and a bit of rolling. The workout might be an hour or so long, but the first 30 minutes are just me warming up on squats, then 20ish minutes usually doing 2 exercises (today, RDLs and Leg extensions), stopping short of failure, then 5-10 minutes rolling out my glutes.

And it’s working quite well. I hit 460x6 today on squats, no sleeves, belt, wraps, nothing. Not ridiculously strong, but pretty good for 200 lbs.

Obviously, right now I’m training for strength primarily, not hypertrophy. And I do phases of hypertrophy work, where I don’t worry quite so much about strength, and just concern myself with making the muscles as pumped as possible, while using moderate/light weight on most stuff.

I guess what I’m trying to say is, decide exactly what you’re trying to train for right now, pick some goals if you don’t already have them. If you are unsure of how to get there, ask a couple experienced guys if they’ll help point you in the right direction, and then LISTEN to what they say. Don’t be one of those guys that asks for advice, then wastes those kind individuals’ time by not following it.

Depends on the program

You have to realize we are individuals. 75% is an average, so we have to fine tune.

  • a little less load on each set is an option,
  • a little less weight on last set is …
  • a short pause 5-15 sec is …
    Just taking notes is helpfull to fine tune.
    Common sense goes a long way.
    All the best !

[quote]giograves wrote:
Trouble is I just dont really know what this “effort” is short of going to failure all the time and 60s rest, which wrecks my recovery.[/quote]

Most intermediate people do this intuitively. For beginners, a handy tool is the “Rate of Perceived Exertion” (RPE). It’s a numeric scale and works like this:

0-6 too light to be of much use.
6 and below is warm up work - that is, I can increase the bar speed by bringing more force to the bar.
7 the weight is such that I can maintain bar speed for my set while putting maximal force on the bar, but I can’t increase bar speed.
8 means I have 2-3 more reps “in the tank”.
9 means I have 1 more rep “in the tank”.
10 means no more reps left in the tank.

So next time you work-out, you could plan to do for example
Deadlift: 3 sets of 3 Reps @RPE8

This takes care of the intensity part and the fact that your ability to display strength is not all that predictable.

Sounds too complicated. If he is doing 8/5/5, I see no problem. Sometimes you just gotta lift the weights. Like I said, it’s just easier to do 4-8 reps, when you hit 8 reps increase the weight. I believe it was CC who taught me that way, and it worked quite well. I’m not the strogest guy here, but it worked great and it is it’s own progression model.

I would guess he is training same body parts frequently so to target different fibers he is trying to avoid overlap/training same fibers too soon. Common sense when he knows what he is attempting to do should solve things with taking notes.
It is like a recipe you get better at it by practicing. A little off is still good.
Not that 4-8 is not good but probably designed for less frequent retraining same parts.
It smells close to Chad Waterbury, weekly train heavy-medium-light.

When CC initially taught these ways to me it was similar to what might be called a Yates 3-way? Each bodypart was trained twice every 8 days or so, working up to 1 work set per exercise at 4-8 reps. Pretty standard stuff.

But even at 3x8-10, either choose a weight that would get you something like 10/8/8 or whatever, or find a weight you can get 8-10 on in the first set, and the second two sets are just whatever, 5-6 reps or something.

You leave that exercise and you go squat.

[quote]howie424 wrote:
But even at 3x8-10, either choose a weight that would get you something like 10/8/8 or whatever, or find a weight you can get 8-10 on in the first set, and the second two sets are just whatever, 5-6 reps or something.[/quote]

So (based on your experience/thinking) which would you say is more important: weight used, or hitting the reps?

Given the options, which would you prefer to do?

  1. 100# x 10, 6, 5 (total load 2100#; total reps 21)
  2. 100# x 10, 95# x 9, 90# x 9 (total load 2665#; total reps 28)

Assuming equal rest times, etc.

LoRez, there is not enough info to answer.
If on a leg press with plates slim the load it takes 2 sec.
If you need to get up unload in 20 sec. when tired, do keep your load.
Plus going from 10 to 6 reps is not a real life situation in my experience.
Without the program/weekly scheme it is speculation about the best way to adapt.
Common sense will compute more info than what is available now before deciding.
At home with 1 bar or at gym with more options the decision wich is optimal might be different.
Is the gym busy ?
Are you in a hurry ?

By the way thanks for suggesting me to try shoulder pressing. So far it works. I started 12 reps with body weight(not a typo). Than 20 reps with small peas cans, 15 reps witn large peach cans, 2x5pounds, 2x10pounds. You can see i was not confident but the pain is not back.

All the best !

[quote]LoRez wrote:

[quote]howie424 wrote:
But even at 3x8-10, either choose a weight that would get you something like 10/8/8 or whatever, or find a weight you can get 8-10 on in the first set, and the second two sets are just whatever, 5-6 reps or something.[/quote]

So (based on your experience/thinking) which would you say is more important: weight used, or hitting the reps?

Given the options, which would you prefer to do?

  1. 100# x 10, 6, 5 (total load 2100#; total reps 21)
  2. 100# x 10, 95# x 9, 90# x 9 (total load 2665#; total reps 28)

Assuming equal rest times, etc.[/quote]

10/9/9 will be a more conservative weight than 10/6/5, so you can’t really use 100# for both examples, and from there this just becomes a nonsensical discussion to have.

This guy is sweating small details on assistance work.

EDIT: To answer your question, I think that weight used is more important. I like to lift in the 1-8 rep ranges, and I feel that for me any of them will build strength or size. I frequently do heavy triples, doubles and singles, and some extra work for 4-8 reps. Anything over that and I lose focus.