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Unable to maintain estimated RPE Calculator prescription

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  • Dbg
    commented on 's reply
    Leah, thanks! I will take the advice on utilizing tapers more effectively (for the long term). And I hear the group on what to expect from a taper, coming off one, and how the numbers should be used from the calculator. I appreciate the help!

  • Leah Lutz
    replied
    Dbg I would suggest only testing 1-2 times a year, unless you have another reason to do so. Most competitors do not test more than 3, I'd say. 4-6 comps each year would equal quite a bit of "lost development" training time when you consider any taper/peak and post-meet recovery.

    I'm not sure I really understanding your calculator comparisons, so some concrete numbers compared to the training prescription might help. It's normal and expected to lift MORE on a test day, provided you are taper and allow some of that accumulated fatigue to dissipate. That's the goal of a taper, to push your testing numbers a bit higher than you would see in everyday training.

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  • Dbg
    commented on 's reply
    Thanks Nate!

  • Dbg
    commented on 's reply
    Thanks! I used Leah's response as a springboard for my response.

  • Dbg
    commented on 's reply
    Leah, thanks! What would be a recommended train/test cycle? It didn't seem far off to test every 2 to 3 months as that would only amount to 4 to 6 comps per year (for those that compete). Is that a lot spread out over a year?

    And I will say that I do use the calculators sparingly and moreso around "meet" times to see if I can actually meet the work prescribed. However, when I do compare some of my [email protected] (i.e. 2 or 3 weeks out before a meet), I am seeing that I generally am not lifting the estimated loads (generally lower). For example, I may find that my [email protected] were somewhere in the 260 to 285 range leading up and then find I can throw up 325 on that meet day (vs a [email protected] with a max of 325 is 300, using the calculator). Why doesn't that 300 feel like an 8 vs maybe a 9 or 9.5? And sorry I am not trying to be so rigid in my thinking but am honestly trying to either 1) understand how normal this scenario is or 2) am I not working hard enough in those [email protected] sets 3) if #2 is true and says I should work harder then how do I work harder if I can't physically sustain or do it?

    In summary I feel like my 1-RM are generally higher than predicted and the difference is "interesting". I just don't think I can work any harder while maintaining an RPE. I know we all differ and some bodies may be built and perform as such but I am trying to understand if that is the case for me or if I am not training 'optimally'.

    Thanks!

  • Nate B
    replied
    You were just peaked for your test day/mock meet. The objective of a taper in this context is to shed accumulated fatigue that may be masking your peak strength for a 1RM attempt. You basically altered your programming for a few weeks to train yourself to lift as much weight as possible for one rep. Thus, your work capacity and ability to display strength in higher rep ranges (especially across multiple sets) is inherently going to be a little lower after peaking and it'll take some time to build that back up. It's pretty normal to feel a little weaker, out of shape, and even have some DOMS the first couple weeks or so after a meet or test day when you start incorporating higher rep ranges and volume into your training.

    As an aside, I probably wouldn't recommend truly testing your maxes after completing every 8-12 week template.

    Edit: waited a few minutes to hit post on this reply and didn't realize you got two that basically said the same thing already lol.
    Last edited by Nate B; 04-30-2021, 03:37 PM.

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  • Leah Lutz
    replied
    Hmmmm, sounds like there are a lot of things potentially going on here, but one that stands out is that you might the peaking and testing far too often. Using a 3 week taper after each template is more frequent than I'd suggest, so yes you are then cutting down your work capacity potentially with these peaks.

    And then I generally think it's common to have the first couple of weeks at a new rep range, like your example, to be a bit off from the RPE calculator, but then you should pick up some progress and get closer again.

    And then finally, if your RPE is generally overshot leading into the peaks, this can artificially bump your RPE targets up and then you see that drop again later as you can't sustain the on-going overshooting.
    Last edited by Leah Lutz; 04-30-2021, 03:35 PM.

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  • 4l3x
    replied
    I don't have the calculator you're talking about, but I'll assume it's the same as virtually all the other RPE calculators and charts (based off the numbers you gave, it is). That doesn't strike me as being particularly far off. The calculator estimates a set in the same conditions. In this case it is a fresh set, after a 3 week taper. The entire point of the taper is to get a short term performance boost, it's not surprising you can't quite reach that level regularly in training.

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  • Dbg
    started a topic Unable to maintain estimated RPE Calculator prescription

    Unable to maintain estimated RPE Calculator prescription

    After a training cycle (e.g. BM template) we will typically use the 3-week taper cycle and end with a simulated meet (home gym, wife and I). After that I try to use the RPE Calculator (found in say the Powerbuilding template) with my 1 rep max to determine some new weights at certain RPE and rep ranges in order to start the new cycle. For example, max of 325# of squat would give a weight of 255# for [email protected]

    Yes I do understand RPE-to-reps-to-% conversion is not perfect and really RPE guides a workout and not numbers (i.e. do not just add 5lb each week) but I am wondering why I generally am not close to what the calculators say. I may really only be able to get 230-240# at the example [email protected] Maybe less, or if I can then I can't sustain it more than a week or two. I do know there will be some difference in a first set of squat for a [email protected] vs a fifth set of squat at [email protected] Maybe the calculator estimates a fresh set?

    My thoughts for the cause are either work capacity or form? I feel like I am cognizant of both. What are thoughts and using these calculators to judge performance? Thanks!
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