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1 RM Week

back-squat-torrance-crossfitNext week we will be finding our one rep max for back squat, shoulder press and deadlift, on MWF respectively. For some Solcanauts, this may be the first time you have ever worked toward finding your heaviest single in a given lift. The 1RM is an opportunity to see how far you’ve come, to challenge yourself in a unique way, and to celebrate growth. However, it can be an intimidating process for new lifters. Here are some tips for working through a one-rep max:

1. Find your focus

When we are working through a series of lifts in the gym, your mental game might be all over the place. You might be chatting with the coach, hanging with another Solcanaut or thinking about whatever else is going on your life. This is all fine and good when you are lifting weights that you know you can get with ease. On a 1RM day, you will find that you need to hold a very different level of focus. Everyone in the gym needs to be hyper-aware on a 1RM day; ready to work and ready to spot another lifter. Not only will it help you stay safer, but it will also help you be more successful. One of the best methods to increase your focus on a lift is through visualization. Picture exactly how you will approach the bar, which parts of your body will be tight and exactly how it will look for you to do a perfect lift. As silly as it may feel, this type of visualization will help you be more prepared before you step to the bar.

2. Don’t fail too often

When you find your 1RM you may hit a set where you reach failure. You literally can’t lift the weight anymore and you need to bail. Once you hit this point, game over. Don’t attempt that weight again because your daily work in the gym is not meant to model a competition, and it is not meant to bring you to your breaking point. Too much repeated failure can quickly lead to central nervous system fatigue, which will make you feel exhausted and weak. After completing a powerlifting or weightlifting competition, athletes need to rest and recover for sometimes over a week because they put their body through great stress, even if they only completed 6-9 lifts. Trying to do 3 days of 1RM in a week means you have to be even more conscious of the possibility of CNS fatigue. Instead of adding another 10 lbs to a lift just to see if you can do it, work until you reach a point where your lift is a struggle but achievable, and then stop. You have the rest of your life to keep gaining strength and building your numbers, don’t put yourself out of the game now and set your training back for the next several weeks.

4. Sleep. A Lot.

Next week you will be asking your body to do more work than you have done so far, so you will need to compensate by sleeping more and eating more. Allow your body to recover.

5. Pull back on your metcons

Our programming next week will include very short metabolic workouts, so you won’t be under the burn for too long. Your immune system can become depressed for several hours after an intense CrossFit workout. Paired with a massive CNS fry like a 1RM can lead to you feeling  weak and tired. So, expect our post-lifting workouts to be very short. Feeling weak? Go slow, in the end you will still get a great workout even if you don’t get the best time of the day.


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