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  1. #1
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    Default Good routine for first Strength routine

    Been doing muscle building and endurance routines up till this point. I was wondering what would be a good workout to make the switch with? Would like something that will still help add a bit of size, but mostly looking to get my big lift numbers up.

    Thanks!
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    M&S Power User hpglow's Avatar
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    Riptoe's stuff is good for that. Also 5/3/1 I think is another useful tool for building strength.
    Slow bulking to 190 lbs.
    Current weight 181.2 lbs.

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    SFHW = Win Aurik's Avatar
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    The first question I'd ask is, what do your #'s look like in the "big 4" lifts? Bench Press, Squat, Deadlift, and Military Press? (Barbell, not dumbbell or machine) A good strength routine coupled with a calorie surplus can definitely result in size gains as well as strength.
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    1 RM (from calculator)

    Squat: 323
    Bench: 184
    Deadlift: 234 (this really needs to go up, been making progress here but trying to keep the form)
    Military press: 146

    Deadlift is likely lower than im actually lifting as gym has proper deadlift setup but the weights are only kilos, so I'm trying to calculate based on memory.
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  5. #5
    SFHW = Win Aurik's Avatar
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    Hmm... your deadlift is REALLY low compared to everything else -- generally it should be deadlift > squat > bench > military. If you start deadlifting weekly, that number will shoot up pretty quickly.

    As hpglow said, Rippetoe's "Starting Strength" routine is a fantastic first strength routine which will really increase your major lifts. It's a really simple effective program that will increase your strength, and with the right diet should put on some real muscle mass. The program comes in several flavors (you can get an overview of the program at http://startingstrength.wikia.com/ ), but the simplest has an "A" workout and a "B" workout:

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

    Workout B
    -------------
    Squat 3x5
    Bench 3x5
    Power Cleans 5x3

    To start the workout, take your 5RM for each lift, and then drop about 10-15% off of each -- err on the side of "too light" instead of "too heavy". (Normally there's a protocol for someone who hasn't ever benched/squatted/pressed before, but that doesn't apply to you). On the first workout, do all work sets at that weight. Assuming you get all 3 sets with proper form, add 5 lbs to the bar for your next workout for squats/bench/overhead press, and 10lbs to the bar for the deadlift.

    This may seem like an "easy" program, but you will be squatting 3x a week and adding weight to the bar every single session. In 4 weeks you'll put 60lbs onto your squats and deadlifts, 30lbs onto your bench and press.

    For more information on the program, I'd highly recommend picking up a copy of Rippetoe's book, "Starting Strength: Basic Barbell Training (2nd Edition)". It's full of a wealth of information on all the major lifts involved (including learning, coaching, and fixing common problems).

    Two other good strength programs I'd consider would be Wendler's 5/3/1 program, or Erik Knight's Modified Westside Program (Both can be found under the "Strength Building Workouts" section of this site.

    If you're looking to do a hybrid of building strength AND building muscle, there are several options as well. A number of people have had good results with the Power/Muscle/Burn routines (there are 3 day, 4 day, and 5 day splits), and also Wendler's 5/3/1 can be tailored to add some muscular growth as well as strength.

    Really, *any* of these programs can and will add muscle AND strength, provided your diet can support the growth.

    Hope this helps.

    Edit:
    PS: You can just google "convert XXXkgs to lbs" and it'll tell you right there based on the built-in google calculator. No reason for NOT knowing how many lbs you're lifting.
    Last edited by Aurik; 12-04-2010 at 02:19 PM.
    Go freakin' heavy or go freakin' home!
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    Eat. Train. Mate. Sleep. Palmer's Avatar
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    Great post Aurik..

    OP, if you're smart, you'll soak in anything Aurik is trying to teach you, like a sponge. And never let it go, because he's one smart ****er
    "You will do well. The beauty of being your age is that it is difficult to overtrain." -jesseisrael

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    Westside barbell incorporates strength training with higher rep training, get that on the go.
    **30 day no fap challenge** Join me brothers!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aurik View Post
    Edit:
    PS: You can just google "convert XXXkgs to lbs" and it'll tell you right there based on the built-in google calculator. No reason for NOT knowing how many lbs you're lifting.
    Its not that I havent converted it, its that instead of having like 45 lb plates, there 10, 15,20,25 kg plates and I'm not 100% I've remembered the weight right (Also do SLDL)
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    Think I'm going to go with the 5/3/1 and run two mesocycles of it. Like that it focuses on the big 4 lifts. Not 100% on the assistance lifts I want to choose, there seems to be a huge difference between the natural strength and body builders assistance lifting. Also is it best to pick assitance lifts in the same muscle group as the big lift, something unrelated or something complimentary (say tricep extensions on bench day).
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    Did first day of the 5/3/1 today. Started with deadlift day as my last two gym sessions were legs and chest. Slightly confused with increasing weight, do I do this after each mesocycle or try and go up during the cycle.

    Anyways, heres what I did today comments appreciated:

    Deadlift: warmup, 5x175, 5x190, 5x200
    Hanging leg raises: 5x10
    Chin ups: 5x8

    This took roughly 50 minutes to complete, felt good afterwords but the deadlift felt a bit light.
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  11. #11
    SFHW = Win Aurik's Avatar
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    Weasley,

    The "training 1RM" stays the same throughout each mesocycle. You increase it after each deload week. During the course of the cycle the weights you'll lift will go up each week, think of them as a light week, a medium week, and a heavy week followed by a breather to let your body rest and prepare for the next cycle.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aurik View Post
    Weasley,

    The "training 1RM" stays the same throughout each mesocycle. You increase it after each deload week. During the course of the cycle the weights you'll lift will go up each week, think of them as a light week, a medium week, and a heavy week followed by a breather to let your body rest and prepare for the next cycle.
    Thanks man, sounds good. What if the training 1 RM seems to have been estimated to high or too low? Between cycles how do you determine what your new training 1RM will be?
    Last edited by Weasley; 12-06-2010 at 01:13 PM.
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    Busy for the next few days with exams so won't be making it into the gym till thursday, planning on starting something then. I was wondering what peoples opinions of Steve's strength and density plan are? Thinking this would be good as a first strength workout to give me more room for progression and maybe move to the 5/3/1 when the progression slows?

    Thanks
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  14. #14
    SFHW = Win Aurik's Avatar
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    Weasley,

    Have you read the article here:
    A Hardcore Look at Wendler's 5/3/1 Program?

    That'll answer almost all of the questions you've been asking.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aurik View Post
    Weasley,

    Have you read the article here:
    A Hardcore Look at Wendler's 5/3/1 Program?

    That'll answer almost all of the questions you've been asking.
    Actually ended up grabbing the e book and have been reading it through, tons of good info, especially when he goes over the lifts. It did answer my questions. However, one final question would this be a good starting workout, to get my lifts such as deadlift up, and then move on to the 5/3/1? Steve's 4-day
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  16. #16
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    Personally, I would go with the routine that Aurik had posted above, even just for a couple of weeks while you build your deadlift.

    I would run it like this:

    A.
    2 days off...
    B.
    1 day off...
    A
    2 days off...
    etc..

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Shadow View Post
    Personally, I would go with the routine that Aurik had posted above, even just for a couple of weeks while you build your deadlift.

    I would run it like this:

    A.
    2 days off...
    B.
    1 day off...
    A
    2 days off...
    etc..
    Sorry guys, been so busy with school haven't really had a chance to read these posts in detail. I'll give Auriks original post a go, the starting strength and likely run that until I can get my numbers in order, ie deadlift at the top. One more question, should I do I run through to test my 1RM first and make sure my numbers are right?
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  18. #18
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    Not if you know what your work sets are. Work to improve your work sets and your 1RM will follow. If you want, you can do an estimated 1RM and then recalculate it after you've been doing some work to see where you're at in terms of progression of your estimated 1RM.

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    Thanks for all the info, I grabbed the log book for starting strength and I'll be using that. Thoughts on what good numbers to move on from this plan are? Also, I've never done power cleans before, thoughts on how I should go about starting?
    Last edited by Weasley; 12-07-2010 at 12:03 PM.
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  20. #20
    SFHW = Win Aurik's Avatar
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    Weasley, I'd highly recommend you pick up a copy of Rippetoe's book, "Starting Strength: Basic Barbell Training, 2nd Edition." It has an entire chapter on power cleans along with a step-by-step approach to learning them, along with similar chapters for all of the 5 lifts covered in his program. It's only like $25-30 USD, but it'll be the best money you'll spend on gym-related stuff.
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    started today, heres the log weasleys-starting-strength-log
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