Maximizing your strength gains with a simple rep scheme is one of the most common questions asked by beginners. There are many different ways to do it, but there is only one way that works for me:
1) Use the same weight every set (or even multiple times).
You will get stronger if you use the same weights over time. If you want to increase your bench press, start using 5 pounds instead of 3 or 4 each workout. If you want to add 10 pounds to your squat, start using 8 or 9 instead of 6 or 7.
2) Do not rest between sets.
Resting makes you weaker and increases fatigue which decreases performance. A good rule of thumb is to take no longer than 30 seconds off the clock between sets.
3) Always perform all reps with perfect form!
4) Perform the exercises from the bottom position.
For example, if you are doing squats, don’t stand up until you have performed all your reps.
5) Don’t go beyond failure!
Failure means complete loss of strength and muscle mass. If you fail at any point during a set, stop immediately and try again later without stopping. If you cannot finish a set with perfect form, then stop right away and do something else for awhile before trying again.
6) Sleep as much as possible!
The average person needs at least 8 hours of sleep a night. When getting into weight training, this may decrease to 7 hours or less. This decrease is temporary as your body will slowly get used to sleeping less over time. That being said, if you are not sleeping at least 7 hours a night on a regular basis, then you are probably not recovering properly.
7) For the love of God, REST YOUR BODY!
You do not need to work out your entire body each and every time you step foot in the gym. For example, if you work your chest and triceps one day, then do not go to the gym for chest and triceps again until at least 3 days have passed since the last time you trained them.
These guidelines are by no means complete (such a thing does not exist), but these are very important guidelines for maximizing your strength gains.
Sources & references used in this article:
A 10‐week randomized trial comparing eccentric vs. concentric hamstring strength training in well‐trained soccer players by R Mjølsnes, A Arnason, T Østhagen… – … journal of medicine …, 2004 – Wiley Online Library
Diversity and multiplexing: A fundamental tradeoff in multiple-antenna channels by L Zheng, DNC Tse – IEEE Transactions on information theory, 2003 – ieeexplore.ieee.org
How To Get Your Gains Back After A Training Break By Jordan Rhodes May 29, 2020 One Comment by N Plans, RG Gear – jeffnippard.com
Manipulating resistance training program variables to optimize maximum strength in men: a review by B Tan – The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research, 1999 – Citeseer