Classic question in reverse

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Classic question in reverse

Post by KenDowns » Sun Dec 22, 2013 1:06 pm

I want to ask the reverse of a commonly asked question here.

Every so often somebody asks, how do I know if I'm over-training? The answer is easy enough to understand: mood goes flat, sleep and appetite may go erratic, and of course, your numbers go down. If you've been going heavy for along time and otherwise your life is fine, these may be signs of over-training.

But here is the question in reverse: how do I know when I've supercompensated? Put another way, how would I know the best time to go in and hit it for all it's worth? I realize now I've never really asked this question and would not know how to answer it.

The best advice I ever got here is "learn what works for you." Knowing your own recovery cycle would seem to be a pretty important thing. But I've always gone either with a strict monthly cycle like 5/3/1 or gone with a "keep going as long as you are going up" system. Looking at the logs, neither has done any better than the other (though the second is a LOT more fun).

In some ideal world, I would feel this point just as I feel the onset of over-training. Is such a thing possible? Does anybody have experience thinking this way?

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Re: Classic question in reverse

Post by Oscar_Actuary » Sun Dec 29, 2013 2:52 am

you mean some concurrently occurring sensations that will tell you "today will be the best day to go for broke" ?

One thing, like with over training, you can keep going and it gets worse. With "super compensated" perhaps, it's a local max, but in a week, it hits another level - a new max. So, are you looking for keys that its the day to go for it and then expecting the next day to be worse?

ken it's good to see you active, always going to the drawing board

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Re: Classic question in reverse

Post by Khronos8 » Mon Jan 06, 2014 2:05 pm


Keeping in mind that I dont compete, and generally dont attempt max limit tests, it's a daily discovery thing, not something that I plan for. I recently hit two maxes significantly above what I thought I could do, mainly attributable to my not testing such maxes regularly. In both cases my general thought was "I've been feeling pretty good the last few weeks/days, I'm going to go heavy today." Then, when I got to my planned top set... it felt like I had significant margin available... so I went for what turned out to be personal bests.

The downside of this is that I'm not sure what, specifically, in my training led to the advances. I have ideas and theories to test, but nothing concrete.

So... no help in how to plan or program for such a thing. Sorry!

The key indicators for me though are lack of pain anywhere and a feeling of strength in my lower back and grip (forearms). That is, going close to what I thought my limit was, and not having those parts register any "complaints".

I'd be very interested in what others have to say about programming for such though!

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