July 4, 2017 Avi Silverberg in Programming

VOLUME is one of the most important metrics you can track in powerlifting. It's commonly referred to as 'how much work ' is done and impacts the amount of fatigue or recovery created .

Do too much volume? You put yourself in a recovery deficit, which might lead to overtraining, burnout, or injury. Do too little volume? You put yourself in a recovery surplus, which might lead to detraining or insufficient stimulus for new adaptations .

How to Calculate Volume

Calculating volume on a high level is straight forward.

Volume = Number of sets * number of reps * bar load

So someone who does 5 sets of 5 reps at 375lbs would complete 7,875lbs of volume. 5 sets * 5 reps * 375lbs = 7,875lbs total volume.

Tracking Volume

We know that as we train, the result of one workout or training week might impact more training days and weeks. That 's why it's key to track volume over different time periods.

• Daily Volume: The amount of volume completed within a single training session.

• Weekly Volume: The amount of volume completed over a full training week.

• Monthly Volume: The amount of volume completed over a month, or training cycle.

How Do You Put Context to Your Volume?

As you get stronger, it will become important to track not only your total volume but also the factors that make up your volume and the changes in volume levels over time . If you had a fantastic week of training, or set a new personal best, you'd want to know where that result came from, right? Lucky for you, we can break volume into 3 elements:

Relative Intensity: 

This considers the intensities and rep ranges used to achieve your total volume.

Volume Split by Core Lift: 

This shows how much of your volume was achieved over squat, bench, and deadlift movements.

Baseline Volume: 

This compares your total current volume with the average amount of volume you typically handle.

Each of these elements will be explored more in our NEXT ARTICLE.

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