Managing CNS fatigue on the deadlift Managing CNS fatigue on the deadlift

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Thread: Managing CNS fatigue on the deadlift

  1. #1
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    Default Managing CNS fatigue on the deadlift

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    Hi Coach Santana,

    I would have put this in the recovery forum in the past, so I hope this is the right place to post it. Sometimes after heavy deadlifts lately my CNS is fried (which I used to think wasnít a thing). So far this only lasts for a day or two, but itís bad enough to change my personality (Iím much jumpier and more anxious the next day) and interfere with my sleep. Aside from sleeping as much as I can and eating like a horse, Iím not sure what else I can do to manage it. So my questions are:

    1. Is this a common experience or is it something peculiar to my physiology?
    2. What actually causes this? CNS fatigue seems like a really vague explanation.
    3. Are there any special steps that can be taken to manage it?

    I want to clarify, itís not as if deadlifts are brutally hard on the day (at least, not harder than they should be), the weirdness starts when I wake up the day after.

    Thanks in advance for any insight you might have.

  2. #2
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    Height/Weight/Age/lifts??

  3. #3
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    "Do you do any other sports" as Rip would say? I thought I had this but it turned out to be just a brain tumor.

  4. #4
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    Sorry, I thought my post was waiting for approval, but I think It just got eaten by the internet.

    Age: 31
    Height: 6í
    Weight: 210

    Recent PRs (singles, but not 1RMs, just from running things out or cycling them):
    S: 345
    B: 205
    P: 140
    D: 390

    My ďother sportĒ is commuting. I spend around twenty hours a week traveling, mostly on one of the worldís most crowded public transportation systems. Itís not uncommon to be so packed that it literally restricts your breathing. I donít think this was a factor on the day in question, though.

    Eating around 3,000 calories a day, P/F/C 220/80/350, but more when I can manage, running a four-day split, resting around six minutes between sets on volume day but much more before top sets of deadlifts, sometimes fifteen minutes if Iím truly gassed.

    Last deadlift top set was 380x2. Slowed down a bit around the knees, but no grinding. Nothing weird during the lift or that night, but the next couple of days I was acting funny, especially the day after.

  5. #5
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    Well, i find that when volume squats get heavy it can interfere with deadlift strength. You still have room to gain more bodyweight too. Now, what is your current split looking like?

  6. #6
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    Thanks for your response. I agree that I can gain some weight; my weight has actually trended down recently, which Iím trying to reverse. Iíll try to describe my split without making the post too long.

    D1: Press 3x2/2x3/1x5, bench 5x5
    D2: Squat 5x5, snatch-grip deadlift 5x2
    D3: Bench 3x2/2x3/1x5, press 5x5
    D4: Squat 5x3, deadlift 3x2/2x3/1x5

    Volume weights are at >80% of intensity triples (less offset for presses and bench, more for deadlifts, squats somewhere in-between) and cycle when they get liminal. Iíve reluctantly added curls and LTEs recently when I have time, and I do 15-20 pull-ups a week. Iíve just run out the squat and found that intensity day weights werenít driving volume day weights, so Iím now trying to get my strength base up with my fives, doing heavy / medium with day 4 at 90% of day 2, and Iím hoping the spread in weight will also keep them from interfering with the deadlift. A week averages nine days but depends on my work schedule. I do snatch-grip deadlifts because I find they help me keep my back position honest when deadlifts are at an offset, which I canít seem to get myself to focus on otherwise.

    Would you suggest taking volume squats down in weight? I donít want them to interfere with the deadlift (or vice-versa), but I also donít want to make them so light that they arenít providing an effective training stimulus.

  7. #7
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    Hey sorry for the delay here. Your volume day weights should be driving your intensity day weights not the other way around. SO if I'm reading this correctly you are doing 3 doubles, 2 triples, and a set of 5 deadlifts? In that order? You may want to try out 4 x 5 squats instead of 5 x 5 and see if that works. What were your last VD and ID loads this past week?
    Last edited by Robert Santana; 08-19-2019 at 01:03 PM.

  8. #8
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    No problem at all, Iím happy to be getting free advice at any pace. Iíve written weight x reps x sets above, so Iím actually doing triples, doubles, and then singles. And I may have solved my issue, since on another pass through the intermediate programming chapter of Practical Programming I couldnít find anything recommending so many sets of heavy deadlifts. Last successful intensity day deadlifts were doubles at 380; I missed my top single yesterday due to having to rush my training for work reasons and then had to run out the door, but Iím pretty confident Iíll get it back next week. Volume day weight was 290, which went fine. Iím trying extra hard to get sleep and calories to overcome fatigue, too.

    Iím happy to answer more questions about my training, but Iím also conscious that this might be getting outside of the scope of free advice on a forum. Thanks again for all the help so far.

  9. #9
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    We typically advise against volume deadlifts on a program like this. It's not always bad but the assumptions of these programming templates is that you aren't pounding the deadlift too much. Try it with a little bit less and see if that works. if not try hiring one of us if it's an option for you.

  10. #10
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    Thanks Coach, Iíll try taking volume down a bit first and see if that helps.

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