ok ive always heard different opinions on this. if your training for strength, should u go to failure or not? if not, how close to failure? sorry if this seems like a newb question, but i just wanted to get you guys' opinion on this. thanx.
subscribed, i've heard diff answers and i wanna know too.
There are many different opinions on this. I read a thread where Bobo said he "usually" does not recommend going to failure. I'm not sure of when it'd be ok to train to failure. I have read a few articles stating that the difference between the amount of stress placed on your cns when going to failure is significantly larger than when stopping just shy of it.
Personally I usually train until I feel I can barely squeeze out 1 more rep and stop.
I think that its good for someone to train to failure early in the lifting life as it teaches intensity and how to keep your form right to the end.
Without ever having trained to failure its a little difficult to stop just shy of failure.
Originally Posted by 200wannabe
Great response. I think that once you truly no how to lift and know your body....lifting to failure under most programs is counterproductive. Your CNS can get fried, you start overtraining/overreaching and just can't recover fast enough (at least with your CNS).
With that said, there are A LOT of people, especially internet-savy message board people (IMO), who just don't know how to train hard. People come from all different backgrounds. Some have been upper tier athletes who have busted ass in the gym. Others just pick it up at a point in life completely clueless, and then they get 'information' on how to do things from others. Subjective failure is hard to determine unless you have hit objective failure a few times...and then you can really know what 1 rep short means.
Recently I have been taking my last set for each exercise to failure. It's working well and I don't ever feel burned out. The important thing to watch for is are you improving with each workout (or just about). I don't understand when some say they never train to failure. Our workout routines should constantly be changing and evolving to suit our current needs. No one way will work forever. One week I may train like a PL, the next with 3:2 ratio. Keep the body guessing is the name of the game.
I've just started NOT training to failure for the first time long-term and my gains have been phenomenal again...just like when I first started up. I'll probably go to failure again sometime t obreak through any plateuas, but for now, I'm a happy camper.
Doing a very limited amount of lifts to failure will produce better strength gains than doing no lifts to failure. However, when you do a heavy lift to failure it tends to create a psychological situation where you now expect failure at a given point, which is part of the reason that the WSB method never goes to failure in full range low rep bench, squat or deadlift. The 5-8 week rotation of max effort exercises also gives you enough time to get significantly stronger, so usually hitting a PR is doable, and often people will go for a second PR after the first...
Yeah a while back I stopped failure training and my gains skyrocketed. I believe the main reason failure is not recommended is because of the stress on the CNS and the fact that is slows recovery because of this. However, from experience I noticed that taking some sets to failure actualy helped, like three sets out of 10 or 12 or so, usually the last set on each exercise.Originally Posted by lifted
So I guess what I am trying to say is that it depends on volume. If you are doinga lower volume strength routine then failure probably wont be as bad.
Bobo would be able to tell you a more detailed response as I am only going from personal experience
I disagree - I think the potential for injury is the greatest early on: one hasn't built a base of strength yet, one's tendons and ligaments (and their attachments) have not yet adapted to bearing heavy weights, and one has not had a chance yet to develop a true sense of proper form.Originally Posted by 200wannabe
Until one has achieved these things, IMO, training to failure is risky - and therefore not advisable until then.
It also has to be said that even though tendons and ligaments may not be the strongest....weights used as a beginner are very light...the only reason I bring this up is that I have taken my sets to failure for years and only NOW have I recently been training to just before failure! I am still trying to teach myself to HOLD back....as it feels like I ain't pushing myself enough if I don't go to failure, but I like the gains I make for now, so we'll see!
I definitely don't recommend a newbie to train to failure right away, it's almost a gaurentee that he'll get injured, no matter how good of a trainer he has spotting for him.
You don't just have a newbie kid to baseball, swing at balls in the cage until his arm gives out. I mean you could, but an extra 3 hours total training a week, doesn't make up for the 5 weeks he'll probably be out when he tears something.
Go ta failure!! Do it!!! Your body will love you for it!!!
What about training to failure when the goal is hypertrophy?
Originally Posted by Sticks
This is what I was saying abotu recovery. All depending on volume and frequency used but if it is anywhere near high then you shoudn't be failing much at all.. Maybe 2-3 times per workout but that is just my opinion. Some people obviously recover much faster than me.
I'll pick one or two sets per workout that I'll take to failure. This is the key to training without a spotter, for me. I can lift heavy for 1-2 sets then on the last set I'll do as many as possible then drop the weight and do some more.
Volume, intensity, and food intake all play a huge part. But in now way do I think you should go to or beyond faliure for each set.