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  1. #1
    Registered User Animal2692's Avatar
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    Why is progressive overload easier with medium reps than low reps?

    I'm finding that when I train with grindy lowish reps of 3-5 on every set, I'm just plateauing workout to workout unable to do one more rep or add weight for weeks on end. But when I do sets with 8-10 reps where I have a lot more control and things feel smoother, I end up finally being able to progress again. Why is that?
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    Registered User WolfRose7's Avatar
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    sounds like you are just overshooting and pushing the low rep sets to far
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  3. #3
    Registered User Animal2692's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by WolfRose7 View Post
    sounds like you are just overshooting and pushing the low rep sets to far
    Could you elaborate on overshooting?
    Weighted calisthenics>weights anyday. Relative strength>absolute strength
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    Registered User air2fakie's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Animal2692 View Post
    I'm finding that when I train with grindy lowish reps of 3-5 on every set, I'm just plateauing workout to workout unable to do one more rep or add weight for weeks on end. But when I do sets with 8-10 reps where I have a lot more control and things feel smoother, I end up finally being able to progress again. Why is that?
    Didn’t you say a while back that the only optimal way to train is five days/week full body? And all the rest of us are half a**ing it? Post your routine if you want specific feedback, since the problem may be there.
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    Registered User Animal2692's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by air2fakie View Post
    Didn’t you say a while back that the only optimal way to train is five days/week full body? And all the rest of us are half a**ing it? Post your routine if you want specific feedback, since the problem may be there.
    No longer doing full body 5x a week, doing 3x a week now, was too much of a burden logistically with my schedule. I still think 5x a week is optimal if you're total weekly volume is 15 sets+ per muscle. I think that 3 hard sets for a muscle in a workout is about the max you can do before performance really declines so right now I'm doing 3 sets per muscle per workout for 9 sets weekly. With full body 5x a week, I was doing 2 sets per muscle each workout for 10 a week.

    Anyways my routine now is alternating between workout A and B 3x a week:

    Workout A
    3 sets ring dips
    3 sets ring pull ups
    3 sets pistol squats
    3 sets dragon flags for abs
    3 sets superman plank holds 30 sec

    Workout B
    3 sets handstand push ups on parallettes
    3 sets inverted ring rows
    3 sets pistol squats
    3 sets dragon flags for abs
    3 sets L-sit holds 30 sec

    Basically A rest B rest A rest rest

    I also do 3 sets false grip hanging ring holds because I'm trying to learn to ring muscle up so I can combine the dips and pull ups into one exercise for workout A. I do another 3 sets every workout of 30 sec. wall handstand holds so I can start doing free handstand push ups. I have a 40lb adjustable weight vest I would use but ended up not using it anymore for the meantime, it was making the exercises way too hard.
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    Registered User DCSpartan's Avatar
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    You can make gains with submaximal efforts. But its hard to make gains when every workout is a maximal effort.
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    Originally Posted by Animal2692 View Post
    Could you elaborate on overshooting?
    pushing sets to close to failure/past technique failure
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  8. #8
    WOATbrah of peace :) sooby's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by WolfRose7 View Post
    sounds like you are just overshooting and pushing the low rep sets to far
    probably this, and maybe not pushing the effort enough on your high rep sets.
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  9. #9
    Registered User Filmbuff81's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Animal2692 View Post
    No longer doing full body 5x a week, doing 3x a week now, was too much of a burden logistically with my schedule. I still think 5x a week is optimal if you're total weekly volume is 15 sets+ per muscle. I think that 3 hard sets for a muscle in a workout is about the max you can do before performance really declines so right now I'm doing 3 sets per muscle per workout for 9 sets weekly. With full body 5x a week, I was doing 2 sets per muscle each workout for 10 a week.

    Anyways my routine now is alternating between workout A and B 3x a week:

    Workout A
    3 sets ring dips
    3 sets ring pull ups
    3 sets pistol squats
    3 sets dragon flags for abs
    3 sets superman plank holds 30 sec

    Workout B
    3 sets handstand push ups on parallettes
    3 sets inverted ring rows
    3 sets pistol squats
    3 sets dragon flags for abs
    3 sets L-sit holds 30 sec

    Basically A rest B rest A rest rest

    I also do 3 sets false grip hanging ring holds because I'm trying to learn to ring muscle up so I can combine the dips and pull ups into one exercise for workout A. I do another 3 sets every workout of 30 sec. wall handstand holds so I can start doing free handstand push ups. I have a 40lb adjustable weight vest I would use but ended up not using it anymore for the meantime, it was making the exercises way too hard.
    Well it’s not surprising you’re struggling on lower reps.

    You’re doing a bunch of calisthenics that are hard to progress in such a low rep range.

    Unless you’re banging out massive amounts of reps of these at your BW, you have to load these so minimally to progress otherwise the % increase is too high.
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  10. #10
    Han shot first! TolerantLactose's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Animal2692 View Post
    Workout A
    3 sets ring dips
    3 sets ring pull ups
    3 sets pistol squats
    3 sets dragon flags for abs
    3 sets superman plank holds 30 sec

    Workout B
    3 sets handstand push ups on parallettes
    3 sets inverted ring rows
    3 sets pistol squats
    3 sets dragon flags for abs
    3 sets L-sit holds 30 sec

    Basically A rest B rest A rest rest
    If you can't do basic a body weight routine for high reps, drop body weight or do the assisted exercise versions.
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    Originally Posted by air2fakie View Post
    Didn’t you say a while back that the only optimal way to train is five days/week full body?
    5 days a week full body may work on another planet, where there are 10-18 days in a week. I can not tell you OP what the force of gravity will be on this other planet, or how many hours in a day, or days in a week. So maybe try to come up with a routine for planet Earth.
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  12. #12
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    Originally Posted by paulinkansas View Post
    5 days a week full body may work on another planet, where there are 10-18 days in a week. I can not tell you OP what the force of gravity will be on this other planet, or how many hours in a day, or days in a week. So maybe try to come up with a routine for planet Earth.
    Uh, it’s actually something that has been gaining traction recently. I believe SuffolkPunch for instance is currently doing full body 5x a week and has talked about it quite a bit.

    Obviously it’s a routine MUCH more tailored to advanced trainees, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have a niche in which it can be effective.
    Last edited by Grizvok; 02-15-2020 at 06:35 PM.
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  13. #13
    Registered User air2fakie's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Grizvok View Post
    Uh, it’s actually something that has been gaining traction recently. I believe SuffolkPunch for instance is currently doing full body 5x a week and has talked about it quite a bit.

    Obviously it’s a routine MUCH more tailored to advanced trainees, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have a niche in which it can be effective.
    Correct, but it’s just another way to structure your routine. OP’s past post was that it’s literally the only optimal way to train for everyone, people aren’t different and just want to think they are, and that all other routines are inferior.

    Based on that post, I asked OP to post his routine since I assumed the real issue may be how he sets up his workouts.
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  14. #14
    Registered User WolfRose7's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by paulinkansas View Post
    5 days a week full body may work on another planet, where there are 10-18 days in a week. I can not tell you OP what the force of gravity will be on this other planet, or how many hours in a day, or days in a week. So maybe try to come up with a routine for planet Earth.
    huh? plenty of us have trained 5 day full body.

    It's worked for decades
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    Weak and foolish OldFartTom's Avatar
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    You can make more progress in an area where you are currently less adapted.

    If you've already thoroughly trained your very low rep range, you should already have thorough neuromuscular adaptions (i.e. already very skilled at contracting the muscle fibres)

    If that's the case you may find that a higher rep range which is more dependent on muscle fibre bulk and endurance adaptions, will be less adapted (compared to your low rep skill) and so you should make better progress.

    If the above describes your situation you should read up on periodization.
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