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"Spent" a set early (Percentage-Based)

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  • "Spent" a set early (Percentage-Based)

    So recently, I have experienced an issue with certain set/rep schemes in my template. These are based on percentages, with no target RPE given. However, I'm finding myself hitting a wall after the third set, even though the first two seemed to go as planned, and I know there's no way I can get the last set doing it as prescribed without something giving. Here is a sample of the sort of set scheme I'm struggling with:

    Incline DB Bench Press
    70% e1rm x AMRAP x 1 set
    63% e1rm x 12 x 3 sets

    With 2-3 minutes rest between sets

    So I start the first set of 70%. Assuming for this exercise my e1rm is 100lbs, that makes this a 70lbs lift. It goes as thus:

    Set 1: 70lbs, 10 reps, RPE 9

    So far so good. I rest for a couple minutes, then begin my 63% sets

    Set 2: 62.5 lbs, 12 reps, RPE 8

    Alright, that sounds about right, if I'm not mistaken. I take my rest, then the next set:

    Set 3: 62.5 lbs, 12 reps, RPE 10

    Uh-Oh. That last rep was a huge grinder. And with how much of a jump in RPE, there's no way I'm going to get 12 reps out of the next set in one unbroken sequence. What should I do here? The way I look at it, my options are thus:

    a) Take a longer rest
    b) Lower the weight
    c) Stop this exercise and move on to the next, you hit RPE 10 and are spent
    d) Break the set up by doing as many reps as I can, taking a few moments to rest (10-20 seconds, maybe), do more reps, repeat until I hit 12 (this is what I had done last week)
    e) Something else

    What would be the suggested move here?

  • #2
    The scenario you've described is 100% fine. I wouldn't change it, but rather would lower the weight on the 3rd set.
    Barbell Medicine "With you from bench to bedside"
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