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Fitness Theory and Practice. CrossFit's rationale & foundations. Who is fit? What is fitness?

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Old 08-07-2007, 01:43 PM   #1
Jason Rambo
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Hi. My name is Jason.

I am going to start the beginner's routine outlined in Starting Strength very soon.

But before I start, I want to structure this in way that will allow me avoid a mistake I made in my old workout regimen. I did squats, pull-ups, deadlifts, bench press and a couple of other lifts pretty religiously for three days a week. But I didn't vary my routine enough and the exercises became stale; I lost strength in the lifts I was doing.

Starting Strength divides the beginner's routine into A days and B days. Squats are common to both routines but the other exercises are different.

If you've done this regimen, does this split into A days and B days provide enough variety to keep you from stagnating? How else would you vary the routine in the long term to keep it fresh and productive? Would you use different set and rep schemes?

Many thanks in advance.
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Old 08-07-2007, 03:28 PM   #2
Jason Lopez-Ota
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In your old program you didn't recover enough. If you start to lose strength drop the weight by 10% in all lifts for a week, then build back up.
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Old 08-07-2007, 05:06 PM   #3
Steven Low
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Agreed with Jason. If you're doing excellent exercises like that you should see pretty good progress until you at least hit around 1.5-2x bodyweight all of those lifts.

Your strength should not decrease -- therefore we know you probably have suboptimal diet, sleep, stress levels, etc. You should've backed off and then restarted like Jason said. IIRC if you have SS it would suggested some ways to program and break plateaus like restarting the weight.

You'll learn about programming as you progress... but for now you probably don't need it unless your lifts are already pretty high.
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Old 08-08-2007, 11:22 AM   #4
Jason Rambo
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OK. Decrease the weight a little bit. Eat right. Don't let life get to you.

And don't overthink the process.

Thanks for your advice! I'll probably pick up a copy of Rippetoe's "Practical Programming" as well, which goes more into detail about these sorts of subjects.

Again, thanks.
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Old 08-08-2007, 11:33 AM   #5
Anthony Bainbridge
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A big key is to start with weight that doesn't push you to a 5RM within the first 2 weeks. Start light, much lighter than you think is necessary, and gradually build up. If you increase the weight too fast, you'll plateau.

And yes, definitely get a copy of Practical Programming. Awesome read!
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Old 08-08-2007, 12:28 PM   #6
David Bennett
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I encourage you to go ahead and pick up "Practical Programming" as you have planned to do. PP addresses the issue of when you start changing the SS routine from the A and B days, what to do if progress stalls, and when to move to an intermediate routine.

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Old 08-08-2007, 12:59 PM   #7
Elliot Royce
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I found that I could sub in the O lifts for the deadlift (worked by pulls or full C&J) and the bench press (worked by jerks or full C*J). That way you have a technical component to it.
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Old 08-09-2007, 10:24 AM   #8
Victor Cruzeiro
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I've done SS since February and have just now after 6 months started to add some Crossfit routines back into the mix.
I followed the SS program as exactly as I could and I have to say it's an absolutely fantastic program, for getting your strength up efficiently. I think it's part of the modern body building mentality that you need to do x number of excersices for things to happen but you don't.
You focus on the core lifts and lift big weights and you get stronger.
So why are your lifts getting worse rather than better?
I reccomend you pick up Practical Programming. The two books really are complentary. You learn the reason why such a simple program is perfect for the beginning lifter.
When you get to the advanced level as Rippetoe says, you get strong enough that you can't recover from a big back squat in time for your next workout. Your workouts have to adjusted to a weekly schedule rather than the day to day one the beginner is on.
Maybe you are at that level? Maybe not. Either way its probably a work vs recovery problem.
So read Practical Programing, it explains it all.
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Old 08-09-2007, 03:49 PM   #9
Kevin Perry
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+1 million on SS and Practical Programming. They are they holy grail of strength training.
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