T Nation

Weight Training and Plyometrics?

How many sets with 85% and above of my 1RM of the bench press and squat should I limit my weight training to each week, if I want to put a day of upper plyo’s and a day of lower plyo’s each week? The reason I ask is because I’m already training my nervous system through this heavy weight training and now if I put plyo’s into it, I will be working my nervous system even harder, so I am afraid I’ll start to overtrain it. So should I put a limit to the amount of plyo’s I do or should I keep my sets to a certain amount with my heavy weight training? Which brings another question up. I weigh 135, when I first bench pressed I could do maybe 135 lbs, now I can do 250 lbs weighing still 135 lbs. So wouldn’t this mean each week when I could only do 135 lbs, I could do more plyo’s, because now that I can bench 250 lbs I may start to overtrain trying to do the same amount of plyo’s each week. So with that in mind I would think I need to either rest more or do less sets of plyo’s or weight training to not overtrain. Am I correct about this and does this make since what I’m asking?

nice bench.
as far as you question goes, who knows…
its a very individual thing. it looks fine to me tho, but then again iknow nothing about you

Hey dmj,
What are your purposes for incorporating Plyo’s? Aside from weights what other training do you do? How have you been thinking of incorporating them so far/ what exercises?

without knowing your goals etc.
I apply plyo’s on my exlosive days(I split westside style).
Alternatively you can research complex training and either periodise this somehow into your training split or just periodise.
Keywords/searchwords: periodisation, complex training, contrast loading, westside, dave tate, louie simmons.

So wouldn’t this mean each week when I could only do 135 lbs, I could do more plyo’s, because now that I can bench 250 lbs I may start to overtrain trying to do the same amount of plyo’s each week. - Mike Mentzer would say so, and I can see how he comes to that conclusion. The more muscle you add to the same bone structure, the greater strain. How this carries over to your exceptional case with no weight gain I am not sure, but the neural, structural and soft tissue strain is likely to be much more severe.
Try using a training diary and use excel to graph each set to compare recovery perhaps.

I want to put plyo’s in so i can get a better stretch reflex, more power output, and increase my vertical. I am 5 foot 6 inches and I can hang on the basketball rim, so I would like to use them to get my vertical up about 10 more inches so I can slam. The last comment is something I don’t have to have, but would by awesome if I could. So this is what I wanted to use plyo’s for and I was just worried about overtraining my nervous system.

Periodise. Try complex training/contrast loading too.

Hey djm e22,
How about some other stats, age(Gives a better idea of recovery ability) and current weight training(esp. Olifting, current posterior chain work and how quickly do you move the bar), also what plyos and how you are looking to incorporate into training.
Also you are talking about increasing your verticle jump…you mention your bench and not your squat? Does a big bench help you jump better(rhetorical question)?

I am 20 years old and I can squat probably somewhere’s between 260 and 280lbs. About the how quickly can I move the bar, are you talking about when I’m doing the squat. For my posterior I do good mornings.

Hey djm e22,
Yah that helps more. I was asking mainly about bar speed on the squat. You have plenty of max strength to attain what you want. Whether you can or not I don’t know. Spud Webb was your height I think(can’t remember if he was 5’6"or 5’8"), so it is possible.
Do you currently do any “Dynamic Effort” work, or Olifts and hybrids? Your age should allow for excellent recovery ability, what does your current volume look like? If you want to focus on vert, I’d probably ditch the 85% and above for a while and do dynamic and submax training for a while. Emphasize barspeed - move it as fast as possible esp. switching from eccentric to concentric. Rather than ass to grass squats just do 1/4 squats (more task specific and the quad recruitment is equal to parallel squats) and probably add in a variety of jumping pulls. First off make sure you are thoroughly warmed up before doing the plyos. From what I’ve read on plyo’s twice a week is about the standard, more than that and poorer performance has been noted (you can do 2 upper and 2 lower plyos a week).
It takes about 8 weeks to notice the effects of plyometric training, and my experience (I’ve only just started to use it on me)is that around end of 2 to end of 3 weeks seemed like a decrease in performance, but perked back up. Start with a lower volume to begin with and gradually increase it. Also don’t start with high depth drops or jumps. Start with triple jumps around 4-6 reps. You can try lower box jumps too about 4-6 reps and barrier jumps. Also if you do nonweighted GPP make sure you are doing burpees. Another exercise you may want to add for the weights is jumping wood choppers.
If you get in touch with coach davies or Christian Thib they may give you more specific pointers.
Hope that helps a bit more.