Attack your workouts with a plan!
CJ Lyons
June 21, 2023

Rate of Perceived Exertion (RPE)

The difference between a gym member and an athlete, is that when an athlete takes a look at a workout, they start to dissect it and attack the workout with a plan. I want you to approach your daily workout with a plan, and that plan should have a goal/stimulus in mind. We talk about the stimulus during our whiteboard brief and explain what the intended stimulus is. Most times, this requires us to focus less on RX'ing each workout and scaling appropriately to hit the desired stimulus. We'll talk about stimulus at a different time, but today, let's dig into RPE or Rate of Perceived Exertion.

To make the stimulus easier to follow, we often use RPEs as a guide.

The RPE scale ranges from 1-10. An RPE of 1 would signify little to no effort, while 10 would indicate a maximum effort. Interestingly, the RPE typically translates to an athlete's heart rate percentage. Therefore, if I am working at an RPE of 7, I am more than likely working at 70% of my maximum heart rate - crazy, but true! Here are the RPEs we will follow:

RPE is a measure of how "hard" you feel you're pushing yourself during a workout and how "heavy" a particular weight feels relative to your current fitness levels. RPE is relative to YOU. It's based on how YOU feel and/or how heavy a weight feels to YOU on any given day.

We represent RPE on a 1-10 scale with 1 being the easiest (little to no effort) and 10 being the hards (maximum effort). Each number in the scale represents and appropriate measure of your perceived exertion based on a percentage of 100% (For example 1 is 10%, 2 is 20%, and so on...)

RPE Strength Scale (NCFIT)
RPE Workout Scale (NCFIT)

Continue Reading

pushpress gym management software for boutique gyms and fitness studios