One of the things that I see that happens the most is that when people get excited to get into the gym they are always maxing out. They start lifting weights and seeing those numbers creep up and then they want to keep doing it over and over again.
Generally, what that looks like is, they get started and let’s say it’s week one, and they go on the bench press and max out. Then instead of building off that max, they try to beat their max the following week. Then on the third week it’s back to, “I want to max out again and see if I can do more now.”
This constant level of testing and testing and testing over and over and over again results diminishing returns. You’re not getting anything out of constantly trying to test your numbers to see where they are. The whole point of a training block and a training cycle is to have consistently progressive training.
Always Going Heavy Can Be Dangerous
We should not be testing our maxes all the time, especially a one rep max every single week. You can’t max out every single week and expect that you’re going to make progress. Especially as you become a more advanced lifter.
It’s too fatiguing on the body and nervous system when you constantly put your body through such a high amount of stress. You may want to argue this point and say that it works. Well, it does work, but only in the beginning.
It works because it’s your body trying to overcome all the strain that you’re putting on it from lifting. But it really only works because you are a beginner lifter. As a beginner, you can increase your max just about every week because your body hasn’t even learned how to tap into its potential yet, so your numbers will always be lower the week before the next.
Maxing Out Is Not A Program To Follow
The issue is that eventually that progress stalls out and it stalls out pretty hard. And now you do not have a plan on how to actually train smarter to increase your lifts.
If we want to see progress month after month in the gym, we have to make sure that we stick to a program. We also have to make sure that we are sticking to only one program too. We can’t skip from program to program week after week. They do not fit together and will leave your frustrated or injured in the end.
The more we jump from program to program, the further behind we get. So a year or two down the road you could be consistent in the gym and eating right, but because the training is so inconsistent, the progress we have made over this period is really low.
Our lifts aren’t a whole lot higher than when they first began and now we are stuck in a plateau. But what ends up happening with the person who is maxing too much is they think the way to get over it is to max through it.
Maxing through a plateau is the worst thing to do. If you want to increase your numbers, add muscle and strength, and to feel like you’re constantly seeing progress, you have to follow a good program.
A good program is able to identify weaknesses that you have and target them directly. Because everyone has different weaknesses, you will want your own personalized program. Someone who has overhead mobility issues will have a different program than someone who has no issues and is a competitive athlete.
Lionheart Knows Programming
This is where we come in! We have 18 tier levels built out to meet every single person at their current physical activity level for our group classes. A generic program is not fit around you and your life, so don’t waste your time with them.
If we feel like you need more attention to focus on your weaknesses, we direct you to personal or individualized programming. Doing the individualized program you will target every weakness you have and do a program that will help you reach your goals.
If you feel stuck or have no clue what program to follow or what to do moving forward, reach out. We are a Topeka, KS based gym, but offer online remote coaching to everyone.
If we aren’t a good fit for you, at least listen to this. “You gotta stop maxing!!” No more testing week after week. Work at the level that you are at and build off your strength. And then test when you get a little bit of work in. Don’t keep maxing.