Question on CNS Fatigue; Repeated Effort vs Submaximal

Hey guys,

With the repeated effort method are the prolonged use cns fatigue effects the same as the maximal effort method? In the program I have now I make sure to not go into repeated effort because when the maximal effort days come I want to know that I’m ready to go 100%.

I’ve experienced the negative effects of prolonged maximal effort training in the past twice before because of ignorance. Therefore in order to maximize benefits I worked out what I think right now to be a perfect balance between maximal effort training by leaving about 3 weeks rest between each time I do my sets of it (usually 1 day a week for 3 weeks each big lift). The other time is taken up with submaximal effort days.

That last part was unnecessary really, my general question is this;

Are there negative prolonged use effects associated with repeated effort similar to that of maximal effort?

Thank you,

Not if your recovery protocols are up to par. The CNS will fatigue with any method, maximal, repeated, or dynamic. It’s the lifter’s job to program the routine properly so that fatigue of the CNS does not become detrimental to the lifter.

That being said, repeated effort in my opinion begets a lot more delayed onset muscle soreness than the other two methods, and most of your accessory work is probably repeated or sub-maximal in nature. Depending on the intensity of the lift (% of max) it can be used for strength, hypertrophy, and recovery. Try doing DB Stability Ball Benches with a very light weight for 1-2mins, killer, but aids recovery. Try it, and note any changes in resting heart rate upon waking, trouble sleeping, loss of appetite, etc etc. Any other questions feel free to PM me.

And I find that if I rotate my max effort lifts enough I achieve little fatigue, and once I reach a PR or near my old PR I stop and go a little more sub max and it helps.

As long as you don’t work till failure you should be fine. I’m confused by what your max effort schedule is though.

Can you outline the routine including your submaximal work, say for the bench press including % of max for your RE work ? Like Steve said, it depends on your intensity level. I have had success doing light rehab work for two to three days between sessions, really helps with recovery and great for aching joints and tendons

LOL @ CNS fatigue.

[quote]IrishMarc wrote:
LOL @ CNS fatigue. [/quote]

I second that.

[quote]IrishMarc wrote:
LOL @ CNS fatigue. [/quote]

Right I remember hearing something about not calling it that because it’s not actually THAT. What would it be called? I was specifically refering to the effect that after prolonged max effort sessions over time my muscles actually started to get weaker despite the fact that they were fully rested and healed. For instance I remember vividly I went from a 265x5 incline bench one week to barely being able to put up 225 the next, and then the drop continued the following week.

For my submaximal days, whenever a phase of maximal efforts is done I usually recalculate my 70%, then begin off by doing 4 sets of 6 reps, making sure not to fail during the sets. The next session (min 3 days rest max 4 days rest) I do the same but increase the sets appropriately (usually add 1 set increase over last days). Until I get to 7 sets, then I increase weight by about 20lbs and start over. Pretty basic stuff really.

Also in my routine I assumed 3 weeks between maximal efforts of single lifts (say bench) is ample time for recovery so as to avoid the negative effects, is this in fact sufficient time? I work on a 3 week on 3 week off.

Another question, maximal effort lifting, is it safe to assume that you can do it constantly as long as you switch up the muscle worked? For instance, I do maximal effort lifts only for the big 3 (bench, squat, deads), so when I am resting from bench I am doing another, etc. While this lead to the same prolonged use effects or is it safe?

So how does rotating ME days with three weeks or so of RE work at 70 % ? What type of strength gains are you seeing ? I have followed a WSB style routine in the past and made decent gains week to week on ME days while rotating 3 weeks of different ME work ( Floor press, CG Incline Bench, Reverse band bench, etc) followed by a 4th week of RE work (DB Press).

I don’t rotate between ME and RE, I rotate between ME and SMM (submaximal method). It’s actually working excellently so far for me, but mind you I just started this custom routine a few weeks ago. But the gains have been massive in such a short time. I went from a 275x6 rep x 4 set deadlift to a 315x6 rep x4 set deadlift in about 4 sessions (about 2 and a half weeks). But I began deadlifting in November and I went up pretty fast so I think I just have a natural strength in it.