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I have no idea how my body works

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  • I have no idea how my body works

    About two months into RPE ratings and I just don't get it.

    Last week on my sqwats I hit an RPE 8 single of 535. Today I stopped my RPE 8 single at 455. Then I backed down to sets of 4 reps at 405. by my 4th set of 4 I was like, this is a RPE 5, imma keep going, and ended up with 10 reps at 405, and felt like I could have ground out 2 more, so I marked it an RPE 8.

    Literally my notes show a single RPE 8 at 455, 3 sets of 4 at 405 with RPE 8 ratings, then a set of 10 at 405 with RPE 8. That 4th set just moved fast and felt good and kept going, but the first 3 really felt like 8s...

    I suck at this stuff and have no idea how to know where I'm at....

    Do you guys think maybe I should just spend more time warming up with heavy weight? I usually do 10x45, 8x135, 6x225, 5x315, 3x405 as my warm ups...

  • #2
    This a regular thing or just a weird day? Weird days happen.

    I'm still on the fence with regards to warmups. I've mostly done scaling back reps as the weight increases, but I've also done just keeping the sets constant and as I get close to expected working weights I gauge that. I'm not sure what I like better. To some extent with the top set single then back offs, I like ramping up singles. So if I expect to hit 405x1 @8 followed by 325x5x5. My warmup would be something like:

    45x5x2 (or x10)
    375x1 (this would tell me how things are going)

    But I've also done it where I just keep reps constant and when "warmups" hit about where I expect my work sets would be, I count them towards my daily work. So then:
    325x5 (counts)
    375x1 (this would tell me how things are going)

    In general, I find the former leads to "better feeling" worksets, whereas the latter, the first workset usually feels worse than at least the first couple following the top single. But on the plus side I save a little time, get in a bit more meaningful volume, and probably improve my intra-set recovery ability in the long-run. So I dunno.


    • #3
      You jump up from 3x405 to [email protected] @535? I don't lift anywhere near that but I always try to make my last warmup a single at 10% down from the expected 8 and it has worked out remarkably well.


      • #4
        How was your form? If I have some form slippage it can make my RPE come in artificially high. I take that into account. Better warmups might help. Maybe make your last warmup a single @7 (take your planned @8 -3-5%) so you can get a better judgment of your readiness for the day. I have started doing this myself because it is a good leading indicator as to whether I can auto-regulate up my single @8 and push for a PR that day. You also might be better at certain rep ranges than others, and if you see a common pattern there you can account for that by customizing your RPE chart.


        • #5
          Are you writing your own programming?

          just to echo everyone else, if you aren’t rating your last few warmups and picking weights that are based off the previous warm up’s rating (warm up was @7, so next warm up set add 5% for [email protected]), that would totally throw you off.
          Last edited by tfranc; 09-28-2018, 08:50 PM.