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Lance Neumeyer 09-25-2013 11:24 AM

Starting Strength - Adv. Novice Program
Just started this today, holy crap didn't think it would be that tough! 3 sets of 5 @ 5RM about killed me on deadlifts.

Two questions -

1. Since I've been lifting steadily for a year, I chose the advanced novice program - is this the best choice?

When I started a year ago, I was using a 5x5 program and saw tremendous gains. When those slowed down, I went to 5/3/1 - and saw very little gains. I felt it wasn't giving me enough volume (I have never trained with such low reps before). Since I had never done Starting Strength, figured I'd give it a try.

2. How much time between sets? I took about 1.5 - 2 minutes rest between sets on bench once I hit the 3 sets of 5; probably closer to 3 minutes on the last 3 sets of deadlifts.

Robert Fabsik 09-25-2013 11:46 AM

Re: Starting Strength - Adv. Novice Program
I haven't read Starting Strength in a while, but if you just started it today aren't you supposed to take 80% or something like that of your 5RM to start and slowly ramp up so you can cruise by your actual 5RM in 4-6 weeks?

Sounds like you started too high.

In the early weeks 2 minutes seems reasonable, as you near your 5RM and beyond, 3-5 may be OK.

Lance Neumeyer 09-25-2013 11:57 AM

Re: Starting Strength - Adv. Novice Program
That's referred to as a "training max", right? I used the downloadable excel SS, and it didn't have that option. I just punched in my maxes and it spits out the lbs. for each set.

Benjamin Smith 09-25-2013 12:02 PM

Re: Starting Strength - Adv. Novice Program
I think you should buy the book and follow the guidelines. You'll have much better results if you do the program correctly. You should not be starting with the advanced novice program, and you should not be starting anywhere near your 5RM. And you should not be doing 3x5 deadlifts.

Read the book for please.

Lance Neumeyer 09-25-2013 12:39 PM

Re: Starting Strength - Adv. Novice Program
Thought I was doing the program correctly - book ordered.

It would be much more helpful if instead of saying don't do this or that - either say why or what I should be doing.

Michael Loucas 09-25-2013 02:07 PM

Re: Starting Strength - Adv. Novice Program
As far as starting weights, if you're already familiar with doing these lifts with good form, start at about 80% of your 5 rep maxes on each. Increase 5 lbs each workout.

If you're working with someone who has never worked out before, (or has never done these lifts) first teach them the correct form on each with just the bar. Once they've got that down, have them do sets of 5 while gradually moving up in 5-10 lbs increments until the bar starts to slows down. Once you've got to this weight, repeat that set two more times. That is the first workout. Then increase 5 lbs each workout from then on.

Start by alternating the following 2 workouts Monday Wednesday Friday.

Workout A:
Squat 3x5
Bench 3x5
Deadlift 1x5

Workout B:
Squat 3x5 +10lbs from last squat
Press 3x5 +5lbs from last press
Deadlift 1x5 +15lbs from last deadlift

As you progress, your rest time between sets should get longer and longer, and the jump in weight between workouts should be lower. You want to rest long enough to be fully recovered for the next set, but not too much that you go cold. Toward the end of Starting Strength, I was resting 10-12 minutes between each set on squat.

When deadlifts get hard to recover from doing them 3 times a week, start alternating them with 5x3 power cleans and/or reduce weight jumps to 10 lbs.

When press/bench press starts to get tough, start microloading your increases.

When deadlifting starts to affect recovery again, start throwing weighted chin-ups into the mix and maybe reduce the deadlift jumps to 5 lbs.

When squatting gets tough, change Wednesday into a light day of 2x5, and/or maybe reduce jumps to 5 lbs.

Near the end, your week might look like this:

Squat 3x5
Bench 3x5
Deadlift 1x5

Squat 2x5 @ 80% of Mondays weight
Press 3x5 +2.5lbs or 1.25lbs from last press.
Chin-up. (Could be 3x5 weighted, 3 sets of max reps, or just working on getting your first chin-up)

Squat 3x5 +5 Mondays Weight
Bench 3x5 +2.5 from last Press
Power Clean 5x3

The idea of these slow changes, is to gradually move toward the volume/intensity model named The Texas Method (which would require another entire forum post to describe).

Remember when you cannot complete all 3 sets of 5 on a given workout, repeat it next time. If after 3 repeats you can't get it, it is time for a reset of about 10%-20%, depending on how strong you are. A weaker person would want to reset 20%, while a stronger person would probably want to dial it back about 10%.

Very important, make sure you get enough sleep (8-9 hours) and if you're 5'10+ and under 200 lbs, eat at a calorie surplus, or drink a GOMAD. If you're obese then start eating cleaner.

If you've exhausted all the tweaks and adjustments I made above, you're eating and sleeping enough, then it is maybe time to move on to a more advanced program (such as The Texas Method)

Good luck

Lance Neumeyer 09-25-2013 02:17 PM

Re: Starting Strength - Adv. Novice Program
Thank you!

Also found this which was able to answer many other questions I had - [url]http://****************[/url] (WFS other than some language)

Andrew N. Casey 09-26-2013 01:18 AM

Re: Starting Strength - Adv. Novice Program
texas method.

and if you weren't getting enough volume on 5/3/1 then the assistance work wasn't right. you might also look into GSLP. or westside (conjugate).

Bill M. Hesse 09-26-2013 06:48 AM

Re: Starting Strength - Adv. Novice Program
[QUOTE=Andrew N. Casey;1197057]texas method.

and if you weren't getting enough volume on 5/3/1 then the assistance work wasn't right. you might also look into GSLP. or westside (conjugate).[/QUOTE]

*tosses hat in with Texas Method*

I think it is one of the best general strength cycles. Others like 5/3/1 etc are good too. TM happens to be the one I like the most though.

Mike Doehla 09-29-2013 04:49 PM

Re: Starting Strength - Adv. Novice Program
Deadlifts are supposed to be 1X5 not 3x5

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