T Nation

Progression on 5,4,3,2,1


Hey there,

Just to mix things up recently i've being doing 5,4,3,2,1 reps (with progressivley heavier weight) on Deads,bench and OH press (which turns out to be more of a push press at the end lol).
I'm adding 5kg per set but am wondering if this keeps the weight jumps too close together. Should i start lighter (than i currently am) and make them really fast reps?
What way would you progress on a weekly basis? Add weight to every set or just one set per week (say for 5 reps) then the next up the weight on the 4rep set etc etc.
Any input appreciated (hope i've explained myself reasonably well)


I don't know if I can say this sensibly but I'll try.

For my first run through I would make my last set of 1 aprox 15-20lbs less than your known 1rm. Now--depending on the exercise I would go in reverse order and subtract let's say 10-15-20lbs to the set of two. Continue this progression back to 5 reps.

In following weeks/workouts increase the weight for all sets 5lbs or so. In four weeks you are pushing past your previous 1rm.

This may be a bench progression for someone lifting 275-300 max. If your talking squats and rep max of 500, your jumps may be 30-50lbs per set.

You aren't trying to 'max out' on each set. It is quite normal and adviseable in fact, that some sets would be 'easier' than others.