Weightlifting Test Day

The weightlifting test day is used if you do not have a current 1-8RM for Squat, Deadlift, Bench Press, and Press. Please follow these steps if you don’t have those numbers handy and recent.

Step 1 – Test Day

On this test day, you’ll determine your 5 RM’s for the Back Squat, Deadlift, Bench Press, and Overhead Press. You can either do all the movements in one day or spread them out over two workouts. If you decide to do it over two workouts do Squat/Press on one day and Deadlift/Bench on the second day. Preferably at least 2 days between workouts.

[tabl colalign=”center|left” colwidth=”15px|500px” caption=”Training Session to establish 5RM on Test Day “]

, Task

1, Perform a general body warm-up for 5 minutes. Choose between running – rowing – or jump rope.

2, Up to this point you should have a general idea about where your 5RM is. For example – likely you know that your 5RM DL is around 200 lb and not 300 lb. Before warming up have an idea of what your ‘ball park’ number is for each of the squat/deadlift/press/bench press. If you have a current 2-8 RM you can use that instead of finding a new 5RM on test day.

3, For each movement the warm-up percentages will look like this based on your ‘ball park’ 5RM estimate: 10 Reps with bar – 5 Reps at 40% – 4 reps at 60% – and 2 reps at 80%. The warm-up can vary tremendously based on the movement and how far along you are in your strength development for the movement. For example – if your 5RM press is ~50 lb you’ll only need 1 warm-up set. If your DL is 400 lb you’ll have 4 or 5 warm-up sets.

4, Once you’re warmed up it’s time to attempt a 5RM. The goal of a 5RM is to do all 5 reps within the bounds of good biomechanics. If after a set you feel like you could have done a few more reps then it wasn’t a true 5RM and you’ll need to add some weight and see if you can go higher.

5, The order in which you’ll perform the movements in the training session are as follows: Squat/Bench Press/Deadlift/Press.


Step 2 – Determine your movement levels

This is where it gets fun. Please download your respective spreadsheet and open it in Excel:

[tabl colalign=”center|center” ]

Male, Female



Enter your body weight and your 5RM’s for the squat, deadlift, press, and bench press. You’ll end up with something like this below. Take note of your current movement levels, mark this lesson as complete, and head over to step 3 of Program Design where you will pick how many days a week you’ll do RX Athlete strength sessions.

Sample Test Week Outcome