Are You Getting Stronger? Calculating a 1 Rep Max Based of Training Lifts

How do you know if you are getting stronger?  One objective measure is to calculate your estimated one rep max (E1RM) based off the weights you are hitting during your training.  Without going into the gory details, at MTN RDY, we rotate through weeks of light sets, medium sets, and target sets in the weight room.  The weights you lift during your target weeks should determine your new E1RM for the next block of training.   To calculate your E1RM use the following formula (credit to Boyd Epley, University of Nebraska).

  • Estimated 1RM = (Weight Lifted) x (Number of Reps Performed) x (0.03) + (Weight Lifted)

    • For example, if you performed a 200 lb. deadlift for 8 reps during a heavy workout your E1RM would be

      • E1RM = (200) x (8) x (0.03) + (200)

      • E1RM = 248 lb.

This athlete would use the new E1RM to base his/her training intensities off for the next block of workouts.  As with all estimations, there are limitations.  This formula is most accurate for 10 reps or less.  This is not the only formula there is to estimate your max.  As long you are consistent with which formula you use, you can determine if you are getting stronger.


Stay Strong,