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  • Lowering rpe in light of new data

    I just watched a new candito training video where he had the data driven strength guys on where they discussed research which basically lead to findings that lower rpe like rpe 5 were more effective and generated less fatigue than typical rpe dosages prescribed in bbm templates. Bbm templates weren't mentioned in the video, but I have used them.exclusively for the past several years for all of my training. Do you advocate the use of these lower rpe sets or do you all have a different opinion or rational for keeping most work in the 7 to 9 rpe range? Would it be a worthwhile experiement to just lower rpe across the board in say powerlifting 2 and evaluate outcomes compared to results in previous cycles with the same program? Thanks!

  • #2
    We talked about this in podcast episodes 115 and 129.
    IG / YT

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    • #3
      Thanks! I'll check those.out..

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      • #4
        I was actually about to open up a thread exactly about this, and I recalled you mentioning this in your podcasts. My take-away from your podcasts was, very simply said, that you bascially agreed with the concept that the lower RPE work could yield better strength outcomes (i.e., benefiting from the high force production during the early reps without the fatigue which comes with higher RPE sets).

        However, how would you practically apply this in programming?
        As JCalvin noted, what I saw in most BBM templates was a top set at RPE 9, followed by an approx. 5% drop until at RPE 9 again. Usually, for me -5% from the top set is an RPE 8 set (considering the fatigue from the top set), so the top set and the back-off work would mostly be sets in the RPE 8-9 range.

        Would you suggest going significantly lower with the back-off sets and cap them at, say, RPE 7?

        E.g., assuming my current protocol for the main lift would be as follows: [email protected], [email protected], sets of for at -5% from [email protected] until @8 again.
        Would it make sense to go even lower with the back-off sets, and if so, what would be an appropriate ballpark number to strike the sweet spot?

        And would you still advocate regular RPE 9 sets in programming for main lifts? If so, what would be the benefit?

        Thanks!

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        • #5
          We talked about exact implementation in both of those podcasts and the majority of our templates incorporate this idea at some level, though not necessarily across all lifts all the time.

          You could take it further and work up to a set @ 7 and then maintain the RPE there for the entirety of your work sets, adjusting reps per set to make that happen or keep the reps per set the same each set and end it when the RPE creeps up.

          Your current protocol isn't necessarily far off from that.

          And sure, as discussed in the podcast higher intensity work can be useful for developing the skills necessary to lift heavy weights, among other things.
          Barbell Medicine "With you from bench to bedside"
          ///Website /// Instagram /// Peri™ Rx /// Whey Rx /// Barbell Medicine Podcast/// Newsletter /// Seminars ///

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Jordan Feigenbaum View Post
            We talked about exact implementation in both of those podcasts and the majority of our templates incorporate this idea at some level, though not necessarily across all lifts all the time.

            You could take it further and work up to a set @ 7 and then maintain the RPE there for the entirety of your work sets, adjusting reps per set to make that happen or keep the reps per set the same each set and end it when the RPE creeps up.

            Your current protocol isn't necessarily far off from that.

            And sure, as discussed in the podcast higher intensity work can be useful for developing the skills necessary to lift heavy weights, among other things.
            What I found most interesting is they general argue that the idea that 3 sets of RPE8 is just not something that is typically repeatable - is this something you would factor into to future templates?

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            • #7
              Thank you for the comments on this topic. I have run Strength III a few times and would like to transition to some added, lower RPE volume work. I know it has been suggested to try applying the volume prescription from the Comp lifts to the supplemental lifts. For squats and DL, this seems pretty straight forward - simply take the secondary squat and DL movements and use the same "dose" as the comp lifts. Both for bench, there are five additional bench/press slots. Would I pull one lever at a time - possible adding the additional volume only to the secondary slot and leaving the others be? That would give room to pull additional levers later?

              Also, would these adjustments be appropriate only during the development block? Or could they also be applied during Specialization and Sports Form blocks?

              Thanks!

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              • #8
                Originally posted by jurke View Post

                What I found most interesting is they general argue that the idea that 3 sets of RPE8 is just not something that is typically repeatable - is this something you would factor into to future templates?
                I think it depends on the person, the lift, and the total volume so I'm not sure I agree. The real question would be why do 3 @8 in the first place? There are reasons for this and if those reasons outweigh the risks, then it's likely a good decision to include.
                Barbell Medicine "With you from bench to bedside"
                ///Website /// Instagram /// Peri™ Rx /// Whey Rx /// Barbell Medicine Podcast/// Newsletter /// Seminars ///

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by servo View Post
                  Thank you for the comments on this topic. I have run Strength III a few times and would like to transition to some added, lower RPE volume work. I know it has been suggested to try applying the volume prescription from the Comp lifts to the supplemental lifts. For squats and DL, this seems pretty straight forward - simply take the secondary squat and DL movements and use the same "dose" as the comp lifts. Both for bench, there are five additional bench/press slots. Would I pull one lever at a time - possible adding the additional volume only to the secondary slot and leaving the others be? That would give room to pull additional levers later?

                  Also, would these adjustments be appropriate only during the development block? Or could they also be applied during Specialization and Sports Form blocks?

                  Thanks!
                  I think you could day 3's squat, day 4's deadlift, and day 4's bench to start with.

                  I think they can be appropriate for the right individual in all training blocks.
                  Barbell Medicine "With you from bench to bedside"
                  ///Website /// Instagram /// Peri™ Rx /// Whey Rx /// Barbell Medicine Podcast/// Newsletter /// Seminars ///

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