Widowmaker: More Than 20 Reps?

So, I got injured because I was a moron on the Morning Star program, and took a hard look in the mirror and went to the Limited Time template where I did BBS for the deadlift and bench and worked up to a PR on the squat and press. At the end of the anchor, for the final PR sets, I got 12 reps on the DL, 12 reps on the squat, 14 reps on the press, and 6 reps on the bench. All of these I say were 2-3 reps shy of absolute failure.

Now, I’m on a 7th week protocol and after that I’m thinking of doing the PR/Widowmaker option. My question is could I go past 20 reps on the widowmaker sets if I feel I can do more reps or is this a bad idea?

I’m just pondering options and it’s either this or reverse the BBS and do it for Squat and Press.

I wouldn’t go past 20. I would find a way to make 20 reps harder.

1 Like

I’ve done Widowmaker limited time, and it’s a tough program. You do PR sets on two lifts, and widowmakers on two sets. Personally, I don’t go past 20 reps on the widowmaker sets.

I’d use a weight where it’s not possible to go past 20. It should suck at 5-10. At 10-15 you should feel like you cant get anymore. At 20 reps you should literally feel like you’re going to die.

This is not quite true. The weight is your “First set” weight for the widowmaker, and you should be able to get that close to 20 (or right there to it). It’s your heavy, “PR” set where you might get 5-10 reps, not the Widowmaker.

This is true by the book. Yes. But in my mind the whole point of the widowmaker is it should suck real bad. Depending on the training max that should be right around your fsl weight. I’ve only ran a widowmaker template once. Personally I had to go a little heavier to get the challenge I wanted out of it. So for example my squat max was around 400ish when I ran it. My training max was around 300. I had advanced far faster than my training max. The widowmaker by the book would have been 195-225. I bumped it up to 245-275. I saw in the widowmaker not only as a hypertrophy tool but as a mental toughness tool. I wanted it to be an extreme challenge. I would assume that if your training max is closer to your real max it would be more difficult at the prescribed weight. But this guy is getting 12 reps on his or set. I’d rather increase weight than go past 20 reps. Personal preference. Most things I stick by the book but I also believe there’s room for common sense adjustments as long as you stick to the core principles of the program.

1 Like