T Nation

Training Really is Incredible


Hey Everyone-

Just a little background:

I'm 23, 6'3 at 210lbs. I've trained for about 3 years, although truth be told my progress just didn't say that. I'd physically been going to the gym consistently for that long... but I didn't have the physique or numbers to show for it.

One of my biggest weak-points was/is my chest. Weighing 210 lbs -and having trained for 3 years consistently- only being able to muster 225x2 was/is pitiful.

But my thread isn't just to call myself out for being a girly-man. Over the past 4 chest sessions I've added an additional repetition of 225. I did 225x7 yesterday. I then went on to do 235x4 and finally 245x3..

I just don't know what has caused my recent "success". I've been thinking about all of the variables. I've been eating the same, sleeping the same, etc.. I just suddenly am able to lift more.

My theory is that I've just been a wussy who wasn't pushing it hard enough, and now I'm finally going into the gym with the "I'm going to get another rep" mentality. Does mentality take you guys that far though? Can I really be adding reps every time in the gym now (from 225x2 to 225x7 in less than a month).


That's how training works... You stay the same for a long time and 1 day have an amazing day or week. I don't buy it when people say you should try to make a little bit of progress every workout, just not gonna happen.


Yes, that's the way it works... it just so happens that you can do something like one more rep one a exercise on a great day. A better and more caloric intake, breaking away mental barriers, and notching up the intensity, being more methodical, etc. etc.... has nothing to do with it.

How long have you stayed the same? This phenomenom of not staying the same here on T-Nation is backed up with progress numbers and pictures of people who will come foreward and backup their claims.

Go troll somewhere else.


Eat more.


haha I didn't want this to turn into a flame-fest.


Congrats on your progress. I've been stuck at an even more wussy 155x3 for almost a year, but I've been dealing with shoulder issues where my right arm loses power after my work up. Going to the doctor soon so hopefully that gets resolved.

Making good progress on all my back workouts and my incline press is probably stronger than my flat bench. Also hit 185x3 for a front squat, when 185 was a 1 RM a year ago. Started training consistently and eating more now so things should be looking up. Hopefully I can keep my blown disc in check and keep making progress. It'll be slower than I'd like, but it's something!


Progress is progress ridethecliche, don't knock yourself for making it!

It's funny, just 3 months ago I remember thinking "Yeah, when I get to 225x10 on the bench that will be all the chest development I need.. It'll be a strong point not a week point anymore!"... and now that I did 225x7 yesterday I'm thinking "You know what, 265x10 sounds like the perfect chest development for me"... and we all know where that goes from there. 315x10 here I come.


stop thinking, stop being pussy and just do this fucking one more rep. If you're healthy men, if you have good caloric diet but you can't progress, there is no other reason - YOUR MENTALITY SUCKS.




Just make sure to not use heavier and heavier weight while losing up your form.

It's pretty easy in the action and excitation of progress, to begun to use momentum and not going as deep and full range of motion on bench press. It's begun with half an inch, then 2 inchs and you finally performing only 2/3 of the range of motion to break the last session record.


get a training partner who is stronger than you and then see how long it takes for your stats to go up. i bet 2 weeks any takers.




Your mind is everything. It can act as a catalyst, or it can serve as shackles. Whether or not you choose to utilize it's strength is up to you.


False and true, if you are doing things right, you should be able to make progress in some way, shape or form frequently, but I will agree that there will definitely be times where you will plateau and it may take some weeks to bump up the weight on a lift. The key is consistency, not giving up on yourself and doing everything in your power to make progress.


You're telling that to a guy 80 pounds heavier than you with 8 years more experience lifting weights, nice.


For a beginner or intermediate lifter, he's right. And maybe if you had some sort of stats or pics or something in your hub...

Even if I only add 5lbs to my first work set of a ramped 5x5, that's progress. Next week, I come back and add 5lbs to the second set... etc., etc. You can't expect to add weight to your top set every time, but you can add to something. All that micro-progress adds up over time.


Thanks for all of the insight everyone.

I really do think that incrimental progress is very real and progression is the one of the cornerstones's of lifting (that, eating and resting). That being said, I was just so surprised that my reps were increasing so consistently like they have been recently. I realized one change that I have made during this recent success is a pretty significant reduction in warm-up sets. I used to do some shoulder stretches with bands, then I would bench 135x8, 135x8, 155x5 and then onto work sets (around 205). In contrast, recently I've kept the shoulder warm up (I've had issues in the past, I'm very deltoid dominant, I feel my shoulders working in a lot of my lifts) but I've reduced the bench warm up to 135x5, 155x5 and then onto work.

Where do you guys stand on warm ups? I think we all have different work capacity and what some of you do for a "warm-up" would exhaust others of us before we get into the real "work". I think I've been having success lately because I've toned down my warm-up.




I normally do 1 or 2 warmup sets with the first exercise of that muscle, 15rep sets with light weight. Take DB military press for example- 15reps with 40lbs, then 15 reps with 50lbs, then i move into my 4x8 routine, bump to 80 to start my working sets, and end on 140.
Notice the warmup is significantly lighter, i also do these slower, pausing at the bottom and the top of the movement. Thats basically it for me, 1 or 2 sets for 1 exercise, and then let the ramping begin.


haha you should see my training log on here. Its full of this kind of stuff that most wouldnt care for.


Progress usually occurs in jumps,after prolonged periods of stagnation.Training progress is only linear for beginners.