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  1. #1
    Registered User Payton1221's Avatar
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    8-Week Intensity/Volume Experiment

    While recently listening to an older Pavel podcast, I heard him say how most of the time Russian lifters are using 1/3 to 2/3 of their max reps. So even if they could lift a particular weight 9 times, most of the time they're only lifting it 3-6 times. I almost always lift one set to near failure every workout and I have for years, but I figured I'd give this a try. On May 2, I incline benched 185 for 7-reps and this was essentially failure for me (I know that I couldn't have completed the 8th rep). For the next eight weeks my pressing workouts consisted of only three sets approximately every third day. So on May 5 I did three sets of seated DB press (and these were taken to failure/near-failure) and then on May 8 I was back to the incline bench BUT doing three sets of 185 using 4 reps, then 3 reps, then 3 reps. May 11: three DB press sets; May 14 Incline bench 185 x 4,3,3; etc.

    My hope was that at the end of ~8 weeks that my strength would be the same, but one huge plus that occurred was that a nagging shoulder issue that I've lived with since September has nearly disappeared completely! I hurt it doing incline DB benching after an inadequate warmup. The discomfort is only noticeable when articulating my arm in a certain way: predominately when I bench.

    So this morning I figured I'd see how many reps of the Incline Bench I had in me. I was pleasantly surprised that I not only got 7 reps, but I got an 8th!!! Video results are below. Does this mean that in another 8 weeks I'll get 9 reps? I doubt it; I might even get 7 as strength can fluctuate somewhat from day to day, but it has strongly indicated to me that going to near failure as frequently as I had been isn't necessary for maintenance. I will revert back to the 185 x 4,3,3 for another eight weeks and test my strength again.

    Here are the videos: May 2 and then this morning (excuse the bed head )



    Pull-Up PR: https://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=177233951
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  2. #2
    Weak and foolish OldFartTom's Avatar
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    If you've roughly maintained strength (or increased a little) and been able to recover an injury at the same time, then there's something good going on with this scheme.

    I heard the same when I recently listened to his Joe Rogan interview.

    I've done too much grinding myself down and suffering set backs about the same as my progress, not smart training. When I get back to gym I'm definitely going to try this approach. Less progress is more.

    Last edited by OldFartTom; 06-27-2020 at 12:55 PM.
    Faith in Jesus first and faith in squats second.
    Then other details will start to slot themselves into place.
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  3. #3
    Humble Megalomaniac ElrondHubbard's Avatar
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    That's interesting stuff. I'll have to read up on that.
    I'm out, standing in my field.

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