Add Weight, or Reps to Increase Strength

January 2023 home Forums Supplements Add Weight, or Reps to Increase Strength

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    When trying to increase strength what have you found to be the best way to overcome a sticking point or a plateau?

    I’m lifting a weight that I can barely hit 12-reps for on Incline Bench, I mean RIR = 0. I give it all I’ve got on that twelfth rep.
    Should I add a set and increase weight and lower the reps? Maintain same weight with additional set, and do AMRAP?
    I know there are lots of approaches, just figured I’d ask the pros what they’ve found to be the best method of increasing weight on the bar and increasing strength.

    Thank you for any feedback or methodical approaches to this. I’m grateful for any knowledge I can add to the toolbox 👍🏼👍🏼

    Xavier Szyszko

    Is it barbell or dumbbell? If barbell I’d recommend microplates (1.25lb). I add 2.5s to the sides on any plate lifts (ex. hack squat) and keep reps the same (ex. 8 top 12 backoff) as it is a smaller percentage increase than keeping weight the same and adding reps (Joe goes over this in an Insta reel) 1.25s could be just enough to keep you progressing but preventing plateus


    With progression I’d always err on the side of being conservative – whatever that means FOR YOU. Personally I like beating the top end of my rep range before making the smallest jump in weights possible – other times if I’ve already beaten my rep range despite the minute weight increase I’ll focus on improving execution – are my eccentrics really as controlled as I want them to be? Am I being able to generate the kind of strong concentric that I want? Can I pause it at the start and end of the range of movement for just a moment before the turnaround? Sounds over complicated I know – but progression is not unlimited, indefinite, or 100% predictable so to me it makes sense to get to a place where everything about the set is so perfect that a slight weight increase won’t see a huge deviation in execution and it’ll give you the chance to re work on perfecting execution with a new load. Else you kinda risk the chance of driving up load comprising execution and improving the lift but not necessarily the work done by the muscle(s) you’re trying to target


    Wow, phenomenal response. Thank you to everyone who replied. You’ve given me a lot to learn from and grow from. (pun intended) 💪🏽💪🏽

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