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Rpe rant

qbkilla

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Kilo Klub Member
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Apr 20, 2009
Messages
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Is anyone else so sick of seeing on social media rpe scales and rir? It's shoved down our throats...

Use rpe, rir
Failure is bad, skip failure so you can do more volume

I find it a horrible way for most to train for many reasons ....

It's not difficult to quickly find how many sets to failure you can tolerate and adjust volume as needed
If you guess short on how many reps you have left, your essentially wasting a set
You can not accurately track progressive overload and ensure your getting stronger if you are not hitting failure in my opinion. You may be doing more reps each week, but you don't know how many you could do so you can't garuntee your getting stronger

Just had to vent. I feel like these guys are parroting bad advice. Traditional bodybuilding training as I learned it you hit failure. Even programs like 5x5 you are not using failure each set but you aren't using rpe and trying to guess how many reps you have left and base your entire routine on a guess
 
It's the new angle to keep the followers following. It's seems there are more fitness "experts" than actual people now. LOL
I agree with this. Across my feed I get advertisement for people I don't follow, Joe blow with the dad bod demonstrate how to do a cable kickback or target the upper hamstring lol.

But the recurring thing seems to be rpe rir, seems like Mike Israetel started it. I think a new study came out they are all posting it to bash the horrors of failure. God forbid I take my preacher curls to failure I'll never recover lol
 
Maybe it's a marketing angle to attract those who don't like to train to failure. Which I would have to think is the majority of the hobby lifters. We all know people look for confirmation of their preferred ways. Provide that confirmation and gain a shit ton of followers.
 
I don't listen to any of these so called gurus or experts on social media. None of them know what works best for me. I however am an expert on the subject.
 
Completely agree with dens on this. It’s people having to invent the wheel to try to get noticed. Pro bodybuilders have been reps in reserving for years just by doing a set and ending it when they want. It’s just creating a generation of overthinking. It’s like I have no interest in studies when they show a study of 8 untrained people.
 
you REALLY hate this concept lol
I really do lol, it goes against everything I was taught and I'm guessing against most of the views here based on my years on this forum.

We were taught each set is intense, then you adjust volume based on recovery. Maybe you can do 7 sets of chest me 10. But we first train hard.

Now they are telling people based on studies, don't creep to close to failure. Because you are not creeping too close to failure, you can do more total sets so you will be bigger!

Essentially the opposite of Hit or DC training.
 
So I’ll be the contrarian here…

I very very rarely max out or go to “true failure”.

We use accelerometers heavily. I know for instance if I am moving 535 on dead’s at 1.75meters per second I can dead 600 as a max. 555 at 1.75 meters per second squats to a 645 dead for me.

We have new tools and tricks allowing us to minimize the potential of injury and maximize output.

This allows me to train multiple high output CNS events without overly taxing my system multiple times per week and often per day.

Only things I got failure and beyond is band assisted pull and push ups. Sets of 75 pulls and 250+ Push with bands (and proper form) leave one absolutely demolished.
 
I think you're mischaracterizing and conflating some of these points. Mike Israetel never says "don't go to failure or beyond." Whoever told you that has never really seen any of his videos or read his work and are the ones parroting bullshit. RIR is a tool in gauging progression. Mike explains a typical 5 week training block would look something like:

Week 1: 2 RIR
Week 2: 2 RIR - add weight or reps and sets
Week 3: 1 RIR - add weight or reps and sets
Week 4: 1 RIR - add weight or reps and sets
Week 5: Failure and post failure techniques on the last set of each exercise. Add weight or reps and sets
Week 6: Deload
Week 7: Repeat block, but start with close to the same weight you ended block on.

Doing HIT is great and works well. But don't kid yourself, nobody and absolutely NOBODY goes to absolute failure and beyond every training session and continuously makes gains. CNS takes a fucking hit and you need to recover.

I grew up idolizing Dorian and I know HIT works. But people forget Dorian used RIR as well. He's talked about it frequently. His training blocks looked something like:

Week 1-5 or 6: 1 set each bodypart to absolute failure, with post failure techniques every set
Following 2 weeks: 1 or 2 RIR, "Just short of Failure."
Then repeat.

Not sure why your are ranting. There are a lot of different ways to train and make progress.
 
So I’ll be the contrarian here…

I very very rarely max out or go to “true failure”.

We use accelerometers heavily. I know for instance if I am moving 535 on dead’s at 1.75meters per second I can dead 600 as a max. 555 at 1.75 meters per second squats to a 645 dead for me.

We have new tools and tricks allowing us to minimize the potential of injury and maximize output.

This allows me to train multiple high output CNS events without overly taxing my system multiple times per week and often per day.

Only things I got failure and beyond is band assisted pull and push ups. Sets of 75 pulls and 250+ Push with bands (and proper form) leave one absolutely demolished.
The difference is that you know and understand where failure is. You have enough training experience where you are now using tools to effectively help you not destroy your CNS. The RPE stuff is being fed to novice lifters who have never truly gone to failure before.
 
Mike is a pretty big fucking human, as is the Chinese guy and jarrod feather….yea yea cue huge doses comment

Powerlifters have been doing this RIR shit for years…..

5x5 at 65% pretty easy
3x5 at 75-80%…a little tougher
1x 90% AMRAP….try to meet god….

Add 10lbs to your working max, repeat.

Mike just applied it to bodybuilding specific exercises, and uses double progression.

Also, before shitting on volume waving. PLs from years back also waved volume. Called step loading. Usually accessories…..

2x10 RDL week 1
3x10 RDL week 2
4x10 RDL week 3
Repeat
 
The difference is that you know and understand where failure is. You have enough training experience where you are now using tools to effectively help you not destroy your CNS. The RPE stuff is being fed to novice lifters who have never truly gone to failure before.
Very good point.

I’d never tell one of my 16yr old kids i train to stop 3 short. Hell they will quit squatting, and be like “I can’t”…..

I’ll yell at them and the fuckers will do 5 more
 
I think you're mischaracterizing and conflating some of these points. Mike Israetel never says "don't go to failure or beyond." Whoever told you that has never really seen any of his videos or read his work and are the ones parroting bullshit. RIR is a tool in gauging progression. Mike explains a typical 5 week training block would look something like:
The problem is that the vast majority of Mike's audience is young lifters...and he's teaching them points that are only understood by semi-advanced ones. In order to understand what RIR is, you need to understand failure. And most 24 year olds dont. Therein lies the problem. Big, advanced dudes dont listen to Mike lol
 
I’d say you’d need at least 2-3 years in the gym before knowing true failure and your RIR gauge, unless you played college sports, or got lucky and trained under someone who knew wtf they were doing early in your career
 
Lot's of thoughts on this. In training/bodybuilding there are loads of terms people use for a variety of things. Often it's just a way for people to be known because and they create eye catching names for training systems or even intensity techniques. It's to stand out and hopefully have their terminology copied and known. Nearly all these terms have been created for things many people do all the time they just didn't create a term for it because they aren't bothered. All of us train at a different intensity set to set. We all have different terms and it could be as simple as a "failure set" or a "hard set" or a "warm up" but I have to state nothing is more descriptive that a scale of 1-10. We have the 1-10 scale for many things such as rating films for example. I couldn't care less who came up with RPE but the scale 1-10 is a simple way of explaining how hard you took a set when talking about training to others.

I understand being annoyed by all the new shit in bodybuilding and people trying to reinvent the wheel but I don't really understand the hate with this. It's merely a scale of how hard you took a set. Well I do understand the point of your post because you are implying (which I am constantly saying) just to train hard and not make things too complicated. Most of the guys at the top literally just train hard and don't ever go into a set thinking this will be an RPE7 so I have to calculate a certain number of RIR. I never think like that but at the same time it's something all of us do and knowing when to pull back is key to continued progression. As posted above you can't just train as hard as possible for every set and every workout non stop because you will hit a brick wall.

I am doing a full body split now and occasionally I will do a few days running and there is no way I am taking every bodypart to complete failure. Although I should add I think counting all gym goers their idea of a failure set is really RPE 5-9. Guys who are more advanced and what you get on all the forums I would say their idea of training to failure ranges from RPE 7-10 (7-8 for most). I have trained with many big guys and very few of them have gone to what I consider a 10 especially with leg training (most a 7-8). Anyway my point I will do an RPE10 for most body parts in the day but a few won't be for a few reasons. The other day my back felt tight so I was going to miss it out but there was a bar with 1 PPS on the floor so I figured do 2 easy sets of deadlifts and just feel the movement and get a pump and that was it so probably no more than a RPE-5. My knees were a bit sore the other day so I done a few sets of leg extensions with no more than a RPE7 for another example. If I am pressing lot's of weight frequently I will also add in a day of approx RPE8 for my pressing for the same reasons. I either skip the bodypart or I don't go crazy with the set.

None of the above applies when I am doing another split though because the frequency of training is much less. If I am doing PPL I pretty much go to the complete max for all my working sets. Someone just posted the Dorian Yates example and that is ideal when training his style of HIT because after many weeks you will need to back off (periodization) but I really struggle going to the gym and backing off in all working sets. I can back off for a few for the reasons discussed but I don't like to train with RIR every set as that is boring to me. I can do it if I know it's needed but I usually just back off a little or have 3-7 days off if I really need a deload.
 
The problem is that the vast majority of Mike's audience is young lifters...and he's teaching them points that are only understood by semi-advanced ones. In order to understand what RIR is, you need to understand failure. And most 24 year olds dont. Therein lies the problem. Big, advanced dudes dont listen to Mike lol

One of his vids came on the other day and I watched a few mins and had to turn it off. I haven't a clue if his other vids are full of great info but definitely not for me. Even quite a lot of big guys don't train to complete failure even if they think they do. For the average person in the gym their idea of failure is miles away from where it truly is. Some naturally have that pain threshold but even if they do it takes years to be able to get to the stage that RIR would be beneficial because for most thinking like that whilst training would result in them simply not training hard enough. Although training isn't rocket science and if everything is in place having some RIR isn't going to stop someone looking good. For someone wanting the best possible results they need to forget all the jargon and just train hard and take their final sets as far as they will go.
 
I think you're mischaracterizing and conflating some of these points. Mike Israetel never says "don't go to failure or beyond." Whoever told you that has never really seen any of his videos or read his work and are the ones parroting bullshit. RIR is a tool in gauging progression. Mike explains a typical 5 week training block would look something like:

Week 1: 2 RIR
Week 2: 2 RIR - add weight or reps and sets
Week 3: 1 RIR - add weight or reps and sets
Week 4: 1 RIR - add weight or reps and sets
Week 5: Failure and post failure techniques on the last set of each exercise. Add weight or reps and sets
Week 6: Deload
Week 7: Repeat block, but start with close to the same weight you ended block on.

Doing HIT is great and works well. But don't kid yourself, nobody and absolutely NOBODY goes to absolute failure and beyond every training session and continuously makes gains. CNS takes a fucking hit and you need to recover.

I grew up idolizing Dorian and I know HIT works. But people forget Dorian used RIR as well. He's talked about it frequently. His training blocks looked something like:

Week 1-5 or 6: 1 set each bodypart to absolute failure, with post failure techniques every set
Following 2 weeks: 1 or 2 RIR, "Just short of Failure."
Then repeat.

Not sure why your are ranting. There are a lot of different ways to train and make progress.
That does look like progression based on what Mike would advise. I personally think it is overcomplicated and not the best way for most people to train. Some points ..

I do think I know what failure is on most exercises I do. Chest and overhead machine, arm movements, cable exercises for back, traps. Squats and deadlifts are willpower and most do not hit true failure, I concede that.

But if someone tells me I don't know failure on triceps press down, preacher curls, hammer incline press I disagree. If I were to agree, then I would argue since I don't know failure I also don't know how many reps in reserve I am doing either, so that unit of measurement seems invalid.

Also in this type of training, how does one know when to add weight or add a set? We can just pick?

I used to follow his recommendation to add sets each week until I need to deload After a while I asked myself why? I could keep volume the same and train for more weeks and continue to get stronger, and the body will tell me when I need to deload. Vs chase volume which creates the need for a more frequent deload.

Just my perspective. Week 1 was great, 2 and 3 ok, 4 and 5 the volume was getting high and I forced a deload by insisting I had to add sets.
 

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