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-   -   Heavy Singles Versus 7 x 3 or 5 x 5 (

Scott Allen Hanson 07-10-2007 06:51 PM

Does anyone have advice on the efficacy of heavy singles versus 7x3 or 5x5 for building strength? I'm just shy of about half way between intermediate and advanced on the chart of "Basic Strength Standards" for back squats (scheduled tomorrow) and trying to decide if I should do the singles or another scheme with more reps per set. My gains have come slowly, but steadily, I'm guessing because of age (48). I've been doing WOD's with the occasional Starting Strength work-out thrown in every week or two. Thanks in advance for any advice.

Andrew G. Greenberg 07-10-2007 08:10 PM

singles never really did too much for me. 5x5 has always worked well, though. but i don't have much of an explanation why.

Veronica Carpenter 07-10-2007 09:04 PM

IMO, at some point you'll have to work in some heavy doubles and singles if you're gonna get your 1RM up.

Albert Carr 07-11-2007 12:06 AM

The only way that you are going to have signifigant increases in lifts like the squat and deadlift is to do singles. If you are fairly new to these types of lifts I would do a variety of reps and schemes. 10x3, 5x5, 7x1, 4x8. If you are lifting at home I would suggest lifting a weight that you can handle at least 5 times so you can dump it if needed. You will still get strong doing this but you will never reach your maximum potential.

Gant Grimes 07-11-2007 08:13 AM

Scott, your suspicions are correct (for squats). The way most people do this workout only yields 1-2 work sets at maximum effort (the rest are warmups). At 1 rep apiece, you don't get the volume of a good set of three. Unless you are an elite lifter, you will benefit more from the volume of 3-7 work sets of 3-5 reps.

Throw in a 3-3-3-1-1-1 workout every 3 weeks to keep your mind keen for ME, and your numbers will increase.

Scott Allen Hanson 07-11-2007 08:48 AM

Thanks all. I already did the singles this morning, but wish I'd done your 3-3-3-1-1-1 instead, Gant. Does Rip's Practical Programming go into these types of issues?

Gant Grimes 07-11-2007 08:58 AM

Scott, you didn't lose anything doing heavy singles, so don't feel bad about a good workout. Starting Strength has a good section on this topic. Stay with the low reps, but mix it up.

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