Reps at different phases

Does anyone bother with reps of 15-20 during the winter months or do you just keep to less than about 10 and leave the speed endurance to the track.

After the post comp season break I tend to use the following for my general weight conditioning (all workouts twice/week, only showing approx time periods, and reps per set usually at 0-2 reps less than RM):

October-November 3x20
November-December 3x15
December-January 3x8
January-April 3X3 (or 3x5 or 5x3 or similar)
Outdoor season 1-3x3 at 2-3 reps less than RM.

I also perform some jump squats/ cleans etc throughout January-August using lighter weights.

The higher reps before my true strength phase certainly seem to help my winter training distances of 200m upwards, and by the time I reach the season I seem to have lost any excess weight gained by the higher reps.

What do you think?

15 - 20 reps sounds like a lot to me. Personally, I stick to 8 or less even when (rarely) working on hypertrophy. However, it sounds like you have had good results so, go figure!

BTW, how many working sets (don’t include warmup) do you use in each phase?


3 working sets for the 8-20 rep sessions and 1-5 working sets for the sessions under 8 reps

Wow, 3 sets at 20 reps! That must take some serious muscular endurance.


Yeh sure, and I’m wondering if its needed for the 200m

if you trawl through the archives, this has been discussed extensively. Save the gym for enhancement of general strength. Improvements of specific endurance for the 200m are best found on the track.

Fair enough.

So what are the highest reps that anyone goes up to. I still think a month of 3X15 reps as a circuit during october maybe useful to help condition for repetitive 300s during winter etc

I would use some form of non-weighted GPP to help develop the muscular endurance and energy systems, of course don’t neglect the track, and leave the weights for strength and power development. Otherwise you may lose some strength. Remember strength endurance is a function of strength. Who can bench press 225 for more reps the person with a 250 bench or the person who benches 400? ofcourse 400, 225 would be a warm up weight.

I know I’ll kick myself when you tell me, but what does GPP stand for?


GPP means

General Physical Preparedness or

General Preparation Phase

I was using the first defenition
General Physical Preparation

I occassionally do reps over 12 but very rarely. Mostly below 8 generally 4 to 6.

Maximum of 20 sets per workout, generally 10-12 total.

Actually Im a hardcore powerlifter but why not reps of over 12. Have you ever run the 200m. The arms tire out so quickly. Why not seperate one or two lifts for high reps?

Obiously the higher reps the lower percentage of your max it would be. This is an interesting topic.

Last time I run a 200 - it wasn’t my arms that died. Back spasmed.

Why don’t I do >12 reps. I’m in the gym for strength, and I don’t do alot of auxiliary exercises. These are the ones done over 12 reps.

At gym recently - somebody challenged me to arm curl comp. I did it to shut him up.At gym recently - somebody challenged me to arm curl comp. I did it to shut him up.

I don’t thinkit is necessary unless for specific purpose such as remedial or injury prevention to do >12 reps

Ok but how bout the lactic acid that builds up wouldnt high rep low rest weightroom workouts have some place for a 200m/400m sprinter?


Maybe, but personally I think other areas than in the gym are better suited to that. My philosphy in gym is you are there for strength.

Tempo, specifc endurance or even bodyweight work.

If you want to work on endurance from a non running point wouldn’t body weight be the way to go.

My 2cents.

DMA I know. I am trying to imagine myself doing more then 12 reps in the weightroom and I cant picture it. Actually to tell you the truth I hate to do more than 6 reps in any excercise.

I know that for sprinting higher reps is generally of little benefit, however the use of lighter reps is vital imo when trying to strengthen tendons and joints for heavier weight lifting later on.
In classic Periodisation modelling I always throw in a few weeks of 15 rep training at the start of a season for the GPP phase.
Because the reps are lighter the movements are often more controlled, there is more time for more exerecises and while heavier weights are not yet being moved - the conditioning effects are very effective.
Xlr8 - do you not use a higher rep scheme at the beginning of the season?

I agree with syco to an extent. It is important to strengthen the connective tissues which is one of high rep training’s benefits. I just feel that you could use the weight room for better things like improving strength and power.

I really like the use of non weighted gpp ala davies and weighted gpp ala WSB. This will improve work capacity, serve as active recovery (as fitness and work capacity improve) and due to the high rep nature strengthen connective tissues. Those are some great benefits for something that takes so little time.

This will afford you to spend less time in the weight room working on developing these qualities and more time working on the more important issues at hand (ie. power, etc).

Remember that GPP training is General not really sport specific and is not the focus of the training process rather it is a small component that can have big benefits.

"GPP, as Verkhoshansky defines it, refers to “conditioning exercises designed to enhance the athlete’s general, non-specific work capacity” (Verkhoshansky, 1988). In this definition, work capacity is a used to refer to the ability of the person to handle increasingly greater volumes of work. The greater the work capacity, the easier it becomes for the body to adapt to increases in the physical demands of training (Bompa, 1999). " (Mosher, 2003)