Periodization is a systematic approach to planning your strength training program that will maximize your growth and avoid plateaus. It involves dividing your training into specific periods or phases, each with different goals and training parameters.
A macrocycle is the period of your complete training program, typically several months or even a whole year.
Finally, microcycles, which are the shortest cycles and typically last a week, describe the specific training structure of each week.
Within each training cycle, you will perform sets of exercises. A set is a collection of reps that are done back-to-back without stopping. Usually, they have a set intensity and several specified repetitions. For instance, a set of bench press might include eight repetitions at 80% of your one-rep maximum.
You might run into the phrase RIR, or "reps in reserve," while reading a periodized program. It relates to how many repetitions you could complete with good form before failing. For instance, stopping a set when you could still complete two more reps is known as having two reps in reserve.
Deload periods are also included in periodization. Usually occurring after a period of hard training, a deload is a planned reduction in training volume and intensity. Your body has a chance to recover from and adjust to the demands of your training during deloads. They support long-term improvement, lower the risk of injury, and prevent overtraining.
Use the Alpha Progression app to track your progress and enable effective periodization. This strength training app lets you log your exercises and create unique training plans with built-in periodization tools.
It allows you to arrange deloads, modify your sets and repetitions, keep track of your RIR, and organize your training cycles. Using the Alpha Progression app, you may efficiently plan your training program and maximize your strength training outcomes.