I have googled like crazy, talked to trainers at the gym, and looked on here, and I cannot find an answer to my question. I have been pyramiding my workouts, increasing weight and decreasing reps with each set. What I want to know is how do I decide to increase the over all weight selection? When the bottom weights are too easy, or do I increase the bottom weight reps until I'm doing tons of them? I feel like that's really confusing. :) Here, I'll give an example:
I'm 44, female.
Bicep Curls, current:
30lbsx12R >Is ridiculously easy
75lbx4R >Is about 85% of my 1RM
Should I increase the 75lb until it's 8 reps, then go up on all of them? So that I am lifting 45, 60, 75, 90? Or just increase the reps on the bottom two weights (which is what the trainer said, but I don't feel doing thirty reps of 30lbs is a good use of time).
If you do or have done pyramid weight training, can you tell me what you do?
asked byCrowbar_1 (7370)
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on February 27, 2013
at 08:28 PM
I am not a trainer nor do I have a kinesiology degree, but I have lifted this way for many years. I treat this situation in terms of setting a goal for your workout, or in this case an exercise. If your goal is to increase strength, then set a rep goal for your last (heaviest) set, somewhere in the 3-6 rep range, and keep all prior sets constant but go to failure on your last set, ideally getting one more rep or so than you did the previous workout. When you hit the goal reps on the last set, then move the weight up for that last set and start the process over. You can choose to move the weights up on all of your sets, some of them, or just the last one, but the goal is always to go to failure on the last set while still having some in the tank on the previous sets.
For example, if you decide that your goal is to get 75x6, you might get it x4 this week, x5 next week, and x6 the following. The week after that, you might get 80x4, and then work that up to 6 reps in the same fashion.
This doesnt take into account the rate of your increases based on your stage of lifting or deloading weeks, etc, but it gives you a starting point to play with.