For us as athletes we are always striving to drive our performance to new heights, we obsess over the smallest details that will allow us to get most out of our training and to maximise our results. For many individuals, they believe the way to achieve this is by finding the next product or a new secret technique but, sometimes less is more! The belief that all improvement takes is a little more work along with some extra blood and tears is a frame of mind that is prevalent within the lifting community but, just because some is good DOES NOT mean more is better. Sometimes it is not a lack of work that holds back progress but a lack of structured recovery, that is why today I wish to explore the importance of deloading and the place it should hold within your programming.
First things first, what classifies a deload and how should they be structured? A deload is defined as a pre-determined or self-regulated period (usually a week), in which your volume or intensity is titrated to...
Are you maxing too often?
Constantly testing your 1 rep max is a pitfall myself and many other people have fallen into. I remember hitting a max squat every week for about a year. I made zero progress and had no idea why. Looking back, I’m honestly amazed I didn’t pick up an injury.
Maxing is fun. I get it. Unfortunately, it doesn’t help you get ahead at all.
I believe ‘Powerlifting training’ works for people often because they have set numbers to hit. They have numbers based off of their 1RM’s to hit for particular days and this is a tool which can force you to keep progressing. Good bodybuilders and other sports do this too but it’s less common as our whole sport is based on hitting these maxes.
So, 1RM testing can give you an indication of how you are progressing and allows you to implement the correct training percentages for each main lift as you go from training block to training block. Keeping your training honest and focused on your...