Have you ever had the feeling when you've walked into the gym & thought there is no way you're lifting the prescribed weights - based on how you were feeling that day? Don't worry we've all been in that position & you have two options!
Option 1: You feel discouraged, feel as though you are failing (Training isn't working). So you try and hit those weights, miss lifts & produce inner negative self talk. (NOT A GOOD OPTION) Option 2: Here our second option we use Rate of Perceived Exertion (RPE) as our training guide for that day. It's a great way for cultivating a healthy positive inner talk. The question we have now is "WHAT IS RPE?" According to the Cleveland Clinic (1), RPE is a scale of intensity for your exercise. RPE works on a scale of 1-10. The numbers below relate to phrases used to rate how easy or difficult you find an activity. For example, 0 (nothing at all) would be how you feel when sitting in a chair; 10 (very, very heavy) is how you feel at the end of an exercise stress test or after a very difficult activity.
0 – Nothing at all 0.5 – Just noticeable 1 – Very light 2 – Light 3 – Moderate 4 – Somewhat heavy 5 – Heavy 6 7 – Very heavy 8 9 10 – Very, very heavy Now the interesting thing about the RPE scale is that one day your 78% Front Squat might feel like an 8 but on another day it may feel like a 3. How to use the RPE Scale? On the days where a 78% Front Squat feels like an 8 (The reason for this could be from a number of factors - Poor Sleep, Stressful day, not enough food) don’t be afraid to adjust your weights and workouts accordingly. Reframe the percentages around what feels light, moderate, heavy, and very heavy in your mind and for your body that day. Yes it may mean that you're lifting less than usual, but thats okay! Give yourself permission to prioritize quality movement over the amount of weight you move – that is the secret to staying healthy and having longevity in your training!
Resources (1) https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/articles/17450-rated-perceived-exertion-rpe-scale