Frequently Asked Questions


When do I use the app?

At the gym. Use Sheiko Gold in real-time as you do your workouts. It’s intended to function like a coach training there with you. The UI is not optimized for use as a post-training workout log and you may run into difficulties trying to force that way of use.

How long do the workouts take?

Typical length is 2 hours plus or minus 15 minutes.

Can I do shorter workouts?

Yes, but you’ll have to trim down what you’re given. Workouts are main lifts (e.g. squat, bench, and deadlift stuff) plus additional exercises (e.g. lats, triceps, abs). If you want 1 hour training sessions, do the main lifts one session (competition lifts and variants typically take ~35 minutes each if you follow the rest periods) and additional exercises in the next session (additional exercises take ~12 minutes each). For your additional exercise session, you can also add a second or third exercise for a given body part if you want to emphasize something (e.g. Sheiko Gold gave you preacher curls and you added barbell and cable curls.)

I don’t plan to compete and just want to lift to maintain my health. Can I still use the app?

Of course! We train with our eyes on the big three lifts because they serve as benchmarks we can use to organize a long-term plan and measure its effectiveness over time. In order to develop these three lifts, you’ll need to also develop all the supporting musculature of the rest of your body. So we’re not neglecting anything. If you were to compete, you’d also need to fit into the right weight classes for your height to maximize your strength to body weight ratio. That means maintaining a good diet is part of the plan. What else were you looking for when wanting to lift weights? It’s all here.

How can I preview the coming workout so I know what to bring with me to the gym?

After the observation period, tap “Sheiko” on the dashboard to generate a workout for today. Take a look at what you’ve going to do then exit without saving. You can return to this workout anytime within 8 hours by tapping the “Sheiko” button again on the dashboard. Note: if you wait longer than 8 hours to perform the given workout, Sheiko Gold will let it expire and give you a fresh one.

What do the colored dots under the weights mean?

The assigned weights should be close to the ideal working weights. In the case that they are not, Sheiko Gold will sometimes adjust the weights up or down between sets.

  • Green: the AI coach might increase the weights for this exercise during the workout
  • Red: the AI coach might lower the weights for this exercise during the workout

It gives me 100kg for Bench Press (w/bands or chains). How much weight should I put on the bar?

The bar should weigh 100kg, just as it says. Then add your bands/chains as extra weight (that is not recorded). A good rule is that the extra resistance added by your bands/chains should be about 10% of your 1RM. So if you bench 150kg, the bands/chains should add an extra 15kg to the bar (7.5kg each side).

Why doesn’t the app learn my individual 1RMs and use those instead of basing everything around the competition lifts?

This is a design decision. Doing things this way helps you identify weak points so that you can figure out what areas you need to work on. For example, board presses or deadlifts from blocks are commonly done with 90% of your competition bench/deadlift 1RMs. If you find those easy, you can look for progress elsewhere. If you find them hard, you can consider your strength on those below standard and something you need to work on. If the app used independent 1RMs for all lifts, this relationship would disappear and you might spend time working in the wrong areas.

After you finish your workout you can do a self-evaluation of how things went.

You can find a collective view of your ratings by going to Dashboard > Exercises > Deadlifts, for example. You’ll see your post-workout self-evaluations there. If you see some that have been rated low you might consider switching to using those more often until things improve. Below we can see that this deadlift variation looks fairly proficient already.

I have pain in X area. Can I still use the app?

Most likely. You can tell the app you are injured during the pre-workout readiness questionnaire. You can then do work in other areas while your injuries rest. As you start to feel better, you can tell the app to gradually ramp up the stress. For example, you can progress from Injured > Warmups Only > Easy > Medium/Hard.

What do all the charts and tables on the main screen tell me?

These give you a snapshot of your current state. See this page for more info.

How do I record the weight for body weight exercises?

For full body weight exercises, such as pull-ups, record the weight as your actual body weight plus any additional weight you strap to your body while doing them. For partial body weight exercises, such as sit-ups, it’s convenient to record those as half your body weight plus any added weight you use while doing them.

I’ve added some new exercises I want to use. How do I know if an exercise is classified as Basic or Additional?

Did you read the Help section on the Exercises page? Do that. A quick shortcut you can use is this: if the exercise is mechanically similar to its competition variation AND so is the weight you use, then it’s a Basic Exercise. For example, Bench Press with a 2-second pause — that’s essentially the same mechanics with only a 5-10% weight difference on the bar. Anything else not satisfying similarity in mechanics and weight is an Additional Exercise.

What does “High/Low x (Quality + Calories)” mean in the pre-workout question about nutrition?

You have 5 options for this:

  • High-quality nutrition and a high-calorie intake = 2 x High
  • Either a high quality of food or high-calorie intake = High
  • Quality and calorie intake neutralize each other = Neutral
  • Either a low quality of food or low-calorie intake = Low
  • Low-quality nutrition and a low-calorie intake = 2 x Low

What should I do if I’m mainly interested in hypertrophy?

Go to the Setup screen and set your training period to Preparation I. This period fulfills many of the common requirements for a “hypertrophy block”. Next, go to your Exercises tab. Select “Squats” and then disable any strength specific variations such as bands, chains, partials, and pauses. You should be left with full range of motion lifts with differing bar grips/stances. These will be programmed for you at higher rep ranges. Repeat for bench/deadlift if desired.

Weight increases aren’t as predictable when doing the Sheiko workouts. Is that a bug?

Most likely the app wants you to take it easier on that particular day/exercise even though you could do more. Rest up and save it for the next time the app lets you go for it.