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Exercises Movements, technique & proper execution

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Old 08-21-2007, 08:04 AM   #1
Franklin Shogie
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Starting "Starting Strength"

Because the book Starting Strength has been highly recommended by members of this board as a way of increasing strength, I have purchased the book.

I would like to implement the program and have figured out what my 1RM is for each of the lifts.

My question is what % of my 1RM should I use as my starting weight for my 1st workout?

For the subsequent workouts there is enough discussion in the book for me to make an educated guess at how much I should add each time.
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Old 08-21-2007, 08:16 AM   #2
Tom Fetter
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Re: Starting "Starting Strength"

I spent the first couple of weeks really learning form, focusing on what Rippetoe had to say were optimal coaching cues etc. My kids took delight in calling me on form faults - and it had the great benefit of ingraining the cues for proper form in them too.

By the end of that learning time, I'd a good idea of a 5RM considering the limitations of my familiarity with the exercises ... esp. power cleans. Just went on from there.


OTOH, if you're well versed in the movements, there are websites that can estimate your 5rm on the basis of your 1rm. I'd be inclined to work at or slightly under that 5RM, for sets straight across. Or at least, that worked well for me. The book does give some suggestions on how much to add each time - but only does so for the initial "beginner" periodization. For stuff beyond that, Rippetoe goes into detail in the followup book "Practical Programming."

t
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Old 08-21-2007, 08:28 AM   #3
Victor Cruzeiro
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Re: Starting "Starting Strength"

When I started SS back in February the first workout with any lift got me to my starting weight.
As Rippetoe describes, start with the empty bar, do a set of five. Add 5 or 10 pounds and do another 5 reps. When you get to a set in which your reps start to slow down, do two more sets of 5 at that weight. Thats your first workout. If you're doing squats for example, you can add 10 pounds onto that and do three sets across the next workout.
I don't think your one-rep max really matters at this point, particularly if you're a beginning lifter. You'll be adding weight onto the bar every workout, so start light, get the form right, because the bar will get really heavy sooner than you think.
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Old 08-21-2007, 09:45 AM   #4
Gant Grimes
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Re: Starting "Starting Strength"

Exactly what Victor said. In other words, read the book.

Don't worry about your 1RM right now. If you're a beginning lifter, your 1RM will increase every workout for awhile. You also need to adapt to 5x5 and condition your body to handle the intensity of maximum effort lifting. Good luck.
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Old 08-21-2007, 10:22 AM   #5
Tim Donahey
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Re: Starting "Starting Strength"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Victor Cruzeiro View Post
When I started SS back in February the first workout with any lift got me to my starting weight.
As Rippetoe describes, start with the empty bar, do a set of five. Add 5 or 10 pounds and do another 5 reps. When you get to a set in which your reps start to slow down, do two more sets of 5 at that weight. Thats your first workout. If you're doing squats for example, you can add 10 pounds onto that and do three sets across the next workout.
I don't think your one-rep max really matters at this point, particularly if you're a beginning lifter. You'll be adding weight onto the bar every workout, so start light, get the form right, because the bar will get really heavy sooner than you think.
I echo what Victor says. 1RM, 5RM or any other RM are of absolutely no value to you at this point. For a beginner form quickly degenerates as weight increases and this consequently makes lifting maximal loads potentially dangerous and absolutely counterproductive to proper adaptation. The first few weeks on SS are focused on technique, form, and range of motion, and any effort needed to force a heavy load will equally detract from your focus on technique, form, and ROM where it is assuradly better spent. Simply ramping up the weight until the bar slows is exactly where you need to start from and after you've got the moves down solid then you can shift your concentration toward moving some heavy a@@ weights.

Good luck and get strong!
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Old 08-21-2007, 10:32 AM   #6
Jeff Martin
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Re: Starting "Starting Strength"

Franklin,
Gant used to have a signature that said something like "I just do what Rip tells me to." This is a case where that should apply. Victor pretty much lays out what Rip recommends. Follow that advice and you'll make good gains.
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Old 08-21-2007, 10:48 AM   #7
Roark Marsh
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Re: Starting "Starting Strength"

Yeah, I'll chime in with another "what Victor said"

The point of the starting strength program is starting. You want to start a little light if anything, and then make progress. Starting light means better form, and more linear progress before stalling.
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Old 08-21-2007, 10:56 AM   #8
Franklin Shogie
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Re: Starting "Starting Strength"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Victor Cruzeiro View Post
As Rippetoe describes, start with the empty bar, do a set of five. Add 5 or 10 pounds and do another 5 reps. When you get to a set in which your reps start to slow down, do two more sets of 5 at that weight. Thats your first workout. If you're doing squats for example, you can add 10 pounds onto that and do three sets across the next workout.
As soon as I read what Victor had written, I instantly remembered that section of the book...

Thanks for the responses.
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