When someone says they reached X reps before failure I have two questions:
1. Does that generally mean first failure?
2. Does that X include or exclude the first several reps where you find the pace, that is ignore failed reps? I.e. does 12 reps before failure mean 12 total reps done or the 4-6 reps ignoring pace then 12 reps making the total 16-18 total reps?
I can only speak for our group. When I say we reached a certain amount of reps before failure it means the first failure. We keep track of total before first failure and total before 3rd failure though so we have both numbers.
We include the first 4 reps in the total number. 12 means 12 for us.
"Most people have the will to win. Few have the will to prepare to win."
Ya, same here. first failure/miss and I say “abandoned” when the set is over without doing all the reps (3 total failures).
I count every rep. It’s just easier that way. You either find the pace in the first 2-4 reps or you are missing your pace badly and need to stop or change one of the variables. I sometimes practice a pace rep for the next set at the end of the previous recovery period to try and lock it in early.
We do a “last good rep before 1st fail” and “total good reps”. The first ignores any fail-reps within the “grace” or “gimmie” reps on the front end. The second value takes everything into account and is straightforward: how many reps were you at goal time or faster.
My team took a while to wrap their heads around these concepts. The first value above is worded oddly and can certainly be done more easily. “First fail rep” is probably easier to understand as long as they know we mean “after the gimmies”. It’s the same number as what we do now plus 1. Easy to normalize in a spreadsheet.
The second value we collect is easily grasped, but they struggled at first to remember that with 25s a fail rep actually means you take 3 reps off (except for a 3rd fail or 2nd consecutive fail) and 50s it’s only 2 and so forth. They all worked backwards from the number of reps offered or the rep number they failed out of the set on. The concept of the value we’re collecting is easy, but calculating the number this way seems to require taking a moment or two to recall the fail reps in one’s head. On the upside I liked how little operational details like this made the swimmers engage their brains just a bit more.