What Does PR Mean in Gym/Working Out?
In sports, gyms included, abbreviations such as BF%, DL, SQ, BP, etc., are often used. From time to time, we can hear people speaking about PR, which has nothing to do with "Public Relations."
Generally, in sports, PR means Personal Record, although sometimes PB (Personal Best) is used as well.
Most often, Personal Record (PR) is the best result in one discipline - for example, if somebody asks You how much can You bench press, You will tell them your bench press PR (or PB, as one may call it). But, a few more things can relate to Personal Records, especially in the gym.
Published: July 14, 2022.
Types of Personal Record/Personal Best
When discussing personal records or personal best results, people are often talking about the biggest lifted weight in a single rep.
"What is your best bench press?" is a very common question in gyms when people want to know how strong an athlete is.
However, there are other personal records or personal best results, especially among the trainees that don't have a single rep as the most important result - here are some of them.
German Volume Training (GVT) is based on 10x10 weight training (10 sets x 10 reps for a total of 100 reps) and is intended for muscle volume, as its name suggests.
When comparing GVT from workout to workout, or among athletes, people usually count total reps done with proper form with a certain weight, for example, 87/100 with 200 pounds means that a trainee can do 87 total reps (instead of aimed 100) with the weight of 200 pounds.
Tabata Training is 4 minutes brutal workout where the trainee works out 8 (eight) 30-second cycles, each consisting of 20 seconds of workout and 10 seconds of rest.
Tabata workouts are simple and at first look easy - many trainees unaccustomed to Tabata workouts get sore muscles, cramps, and some even injuries when starting Tabata sessions without being mentally prepared.
For example, some people do pushups or pullups using the Tabata method, and after eight cycles (4 minutes), they count the total reps. So, what is your Tabata Pull-Up PR would be the maximum number of pullups that You can do in a period of 4 minutes, doing pullups for 20 seconds, then resting for 10 seconds, for a total of 8 cycles.
Circuit Workouts usually consists of several exercises that must be done with proper form, one after another. The best of all is that some of those exercises can be aerobic exercises, while others can be anaerobic.
Circuit workouts can significantly differ, but when standardized, they allow the trainers to compare the physical fitness, agility, strength, stamina, etc., of many individuals at once or in a short period of time that are perhaps preparing for a specific athletic event or for a specific job - for example, various branches of the military have many different circuit workouts to test the physical fitness of people, but also to keep the physical fitness at a certain level.
In such situations, questions like "What is your personal result on **** circuit?" simply mean the best time You need to finish the circuit/course.
These are just a few examples of potential PR or PB questions.
But, for most situations in the gym, what is your PR simply means the biggest weight that You can lift in a certain exercise, mostly bench press, although squats and deadlifts are often used as well.
Note: to avoid injuries as much as possible, leave your ego/pride at the gym's entrance... better safe than sorry ;)