T Nation

Need Advice About Training, Strength Fluctuations

Hi everyone.I need advice about training metodology.Because of my job I have big fluctuations in strength during a week and even bigger during a month.My 5rm on monday is my 0rm on thursday.I cant do linear progression no set percentage work or anything predetermened set rep and weight.I think I should ramp to daily max for 1 2 or 3rm.Than back off sets.How would you set this up for strength and size but mostly strength.

If youf doing this everyday you are likely burning out your CNS, which is why you cannot hit the weights hard on thursday… Some people are just not built to lift heavy everyday.

No man.I train twice or three times a week.I go squat bench deadlift ohp.But I cant plan my training because I trash myself at work.So every workout has to be for itself.

1 Like

Not every workout need to (or should) be all-out. Everytime you goup to your limit (especially with low reps) ona big compound lift the stress on the nervous system is signficiant. This can lead to several issues, it can get really complex really fast but I’ll try to make it simple:

  1. The more force you have to produce the more you “amp up” the nervous system.

  2. Amping up the nervous system (called excitation) is done mostly by dopamine and adrenaline (glutamate can also contribute).

  3. Going to the limit also increases nervous system excitation.

  4. The more complex a lift is, the more it amps the nervous system up.

From these first 4 points it is easy to see that going heavy, to your limit, on big lifts will cause a HUGE nervous system excitation.

Let’s move on…

  1. When you finish your workout, your nervous system stays excited for a while. How long depends on the content of the workout (how heavy, how intense, the lifts used, volume, emotional arousal, etc.)

  2. when excitation is maintained it means you keep producing adrenaline or that adrenaline stays connected to the adrenergic receptors.

  3. Adrenaline is made from dopamine. The more adrenaline your produce, the more you risk depleting dopamine.

  4. The adrenergic receptors are like the NOS in a car: they are not meant to stay activated for long. If they stay activated for too long they very easily get desensitized and respond less and less to adrenaline.

9 Symptoms of dopamine depletion: lack fo motivation/drive, lethargy, negative mindset, harder time getting in the zone, anhedonia (lack of pleasure), loss of competitiveness, decrease in libido, drop in discipline.

  1. Symptoms of adrenergic desensitization: lack of motivation, lower self-esteem, feeling weaker, depressive state, mood swings, laziness, procrastination, softer muscle tone, hard time getting in the zone, decrease in force production.

As you can seeif you reach a point where either your dopamine is depleted (or low) or your adrenergic receptors become desensitized, your performance and well-being will suffer greatly.

  1. If your nervous system stays amped up for a long time after the workout you drastically increase therisk of either desensitization or dopamine depletion occuring. Those who have the brain chemistry to easily calm their nervous system down after an intense session will be able to lift very heavy daily without any problem. Those who have lower levels of Gaba and/or serotonine will have a harder time calming the brain down, meaning that if they lift heavy/all-out it will take a lot more out of them.

  2. When we talk about “burning the CNS” what we really reffer to is either dopamine depletion or adrenergic receptor desensitization. Normally with the former you will have the desire to eat “crap/pleasure food” and in the later you will actually have a drop in appetite.

  3. The more stress you have in your life, the more your nervous system will be impacted by those grueling sessions because you already keep your nervous system amped up throughout the day to face the stress.

  4. Another issue is that when you keep your nervous system “excited”, what we call the “sympathetic system”, your body keeps pumping out cortisol. Of course cortisol can have a negative impact on recovery (by reducing glycogen storage and making it harder to be in a positive nitrogen balance), muscle growth (by increasing muscle breakdown, increasing myostatin levels and decreasing nutrients uptake by the muscles) and, if it is chronic it can make it harder to lose fat (by reducing the conversion of T4 into T3, decreasing metabolic rate).

Not everybody can ramp uo to a 1,2, 3 or 5RM every day… some can’t do it more than once a week. Some shouldn’t do it at all. Strength-skill work(submaximal lifting with a weight that still provides maximum fiber recruitment, like 5 x 3 @ 85%) can be a good approach to keep working on improving strength. Maybe you will only be able to have 1 "max effort’ session a week but 2-3 strength-skill workouts and 1 “minor/bodybuilding” sessions. But that would still provide better long term results than constantly playing with fire when it comes to nervous system readiness.

1 Like

Obviously I can’t offer anything as insightful as the advice in CT’s response. But, what about an RPE based training system or 5/3/1? With RPE, you could work up to a low RPE on days you’re feeling trashed and higher RPE when you’re feeling fresh. Follow that top set up with some strength-skill work for additional practice/volume. You could use 5/3/1 in a similar manner.

I am on 531 right now.Problem is than on many days weight is too heavy and on others its too light depending on amount of work I do at my job.I have never done ramping it was just to make a point.My question was if finding daily max and working with percentages of that weight for that day would be good idea and if so how to set it up.I am naturaly explosiv and mentaly I like to see progress from workout to workout but its not gonna hapen.English is not my first language so sorry everyone for confusion.Basicly I was asking how to make every workout for it self and still make progress if that makes sance at all.Thank you and sorry again.