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Eric Wallace 04-26-2012 02:26 PM

Bill Starr's 5x5 heavy, light and medium days
I have been crossfitting on and off for about two years with several sabbaticals where I have been sucked back into LSD running, moving, and a month or two of not doing anything. During the last two years, it has become obvious that I need to get stronger, and about a month ago I decided to go on a dedicated strength program for the first time sense high school...about nine years ago.

I read several of Bill Starr's articles on the journal (wfs). His programing was easy to digest and targeted the three major muscle groups: shoulder griddle, back and legs and hips. He wants you to lift, Mondays, Wednesday, and Friday with five sets of five each day. Mondays are the heavy day, Wednesday is the light day (your last round on wed is your third round on mon), and Friday is the medium day (your last round on fri is your fourth on mon). The plan was to lift mon, wed, and fri with a quick meticon directly after, and depending on how I was feeling, a shortish work out on Tuesday and Thursday.

After a month into his program, I was starting to feeling beat down ( that may also have something to do with being deployed and my sleep cycle and diet not being optimal). I have only been working out three times a week because I feel like I need the extra recover days. So this past week I went on 5x3 routine. Here is my work out log its mostly wfs

So after all of that set up here, are my questions: 1) Should I stick with 5x5 three times a week because I have seen significant gains or 2) Should I go to 5x3 three times a week and try to mix in more meticons.

One final note, I should get home in about six weeks and will be rejoining a box so my adventure in trying to create my own programing will end...

Luis Fernandez 04-27-2012 12:30 AM

Re: Bill Starr's 5x5 heavy, light and medium days
If I recall correctly the program you are referring to has a lot of squats. For this reason I would drop the metcons entirely and focus only on strength for now. Metcons will affect your recovery.

Bill M. Hesse 04-27-2012 08:36 AM

Re: Bill Starr's 5x5 heavy, light and medium days
Seems like your recovery is the issue. Either back off the volume or eat more and try to rest better. You mentioned you are deployed, if you are conducting a lot of operations that might not be helping you with squat recovery.

Damon Stewart 04-27-2012 09:03 PM

Re: Bill Starr's 5x5 heavy, light and medium days
You may also consider moving to box squats. Not sure why but for some reason I find them easier to recover from. I've also had good success doing 5, 5, 5, 3, 3 rather than 5x5.

Graeme Moore 04-28-2012 04:23 AM

Re: Bill Starr's 5x5 heavy, light and medium days

Originally Posted by Eric Wallace (Post 1056148)
...shoulder griddle...

Hey sorry, I know mistakes happen, but this really made me chuckle!

Martha Bralkowski 04-28-2012 11:42 PM

Re: Bill Starr's 5x5 heavy, light and medium days
I, too have been recently working my way through Bill's program. The first four weeks I felt well rested and recovered enough to supplement with short metcons after lifting or even on my rest days. Week 5 things got weird. Week six and I'm pretty much feeling banged up on my rest days, and metcons are out of the question. Eat, sleep, lift seem to be the mantra of this progression as of now. The program itself is working, really really well even, and if building strength is your goal, and it's working for you, by all means keep up the great work. I plan on getting as far as I can with this program, and when I start stalling out, rest a little, then go back to my regularly scheduled Crossfitting - hopefully a lot stronger than where I started off at.

Scott Currington 04-29-2012 08:52 AM

Re: Bill Starr's 5x5 heavy, light and medium days
I've done a few Bill Star cycles and found that a deload week around 4-6 weeks in helped a lot. I would do something like a week using the "light" day as a template, 4x5 of Squat, Bench, alternating cleans/deadlifts without ever really getting into a work set weight.

I never did much metcons with it, just ran 5k's on the off days. Kept me fresh for all the lifting and my dog liked it.


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