Training To Failure

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Should You Train to Failure?

Many people ask me "Should I train to failure or not?" and also "Is it good to train to failure every workout?.

In this article I will do my best to answer those questions as clearly as I can.

To build muscle you have to subject your body to progressive resistance, this means you have to add reps or weight to your lifts on a regular basis. Look at it this way, if you are bench pressing 275 pounds for 8 reps this month and in two months you are still only bench pressing 275 pounds for 8 reps, then your muscle size will not change.

If you want to grow you will need to push yourself by adding more reps, more weight or both, for example if as above you are now able to bench press 275 pounds for 8 reps, you need to over the next few or many workouts work up to 9, 10, 11 and finally 12 reps, when you reach 12 reps you would then add 5 to 10 pounds to the bar while lowering your reps back to 8 and start the process all over again.

In doing the above you will need to at least occasionally push your limits, and you do this by training to failure - meaning you keep going until you can't do another rep no matter how hard you try.

This is a very intense way to train and to avoid injury you need to both make sure you are doing your reps in good form and that you have a spotter or training partner to help you.

Also training to failure is not for beginners, you need to first learn proper exercise form and get over the initial muscle soreness that comes when you first start weight training.

Ok, so we know that training to failure can help your progress. But should you do it every set of every workout?


Training to failure all the time is too stressful for most drug free trainees and can quickly lead to burnout followed by illness or injury.

What I suggest is for 2 weeks take the last set of each exercise to failure and then for the next 2 weeks stop about 2 reps short of failure, I have made some of my best progress training this way, I rarely get sick and I am injury free.

A final tip is that an occasional complete lay off from all weight training for one to two weeks can also do wonders for your progress.

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Disclaimer: This information is for entertainment purposes only. We strongly recommend that you consult a physician before beginning any exercise program. is not a licensed medical care provider. The reader should understand that participating in any exercise program can result in physical injury and agrees to do so at his own risk. The findings and opinions of authors expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily state or reflect those of

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