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  • Qs about Beginner Template

    First of all, I wanted to thank you for developing the Beginner’s template because it enabled me to achieve a goal that’s been elusive for me: I finally deadlifted my bodyweight! (I know that is not an achievement most of the folks here have to work for. My sons could do it first time they tried deadlifting, but I am mid-60s, had my muscle mass decimated by chemo 9 years ago, and tried on and off for several years with no idea of appropriate programming.) So I am thrilled with it! My next goal is 1.5 x my body weight, even if it takes a year or more to get there.

    I am still on the Beginner’s Template, phase 2 and have some questions. Q’s 1 & 2 pertain to whether I may need more recovery or just to modify or keep things as they are.
    1. I find that on day 1 and day 3 that have both a squat and a deadlift type movement, that I am too fatigued to do the last lower body exercise. (I can do all three exercises on day 2, since 2 are upper body.) I am taking the max rest time by the time I’m at the working sets. I do lifting MWF and cardio T, Th, Sa. I’ve been doing the leftover lower body exercise the following day . I do it first, then do cardio later in the day. Thoughts/advice?
    2. I find that my RPE for back off sets is most typically 8.5-9.5, sometimes 10, even though it’s 5-10% less weight. Is that normal?
    3. For all but deadlifts, I use a 15 lb bar. I was trying to work up to 45 lbs for warm ups (was at about 35 lbs) but my adult son thought that was proportionately too heavy for warm ups for me. (Eg. Max on TnG bench is 63 lbs, max on front box squats is 80 lbs.—ROM disallows anything but front squats)
    4. Are the GPP exercises supposed to be done on weightlifting days or off days or does it matter?
    5. For small muscle GPP like biceps and triceps, should those have a day in between or can I do them more often than 2x week?

  • #2
    NG,

    Nice job on the deadlift! That's fantastic A few thoughts here:

    1) I'd recommend trying to go a little lighter on the 3rd exercise if that makes it more accessible to you given your current fitness level or selecting a different exercise that you'd prefer.
    2) It can be. What would happen if you took off 15-20% weight? That'd be the recommendation.
    3) I'd keep the 15lb bar until you're > 100lbs for your work sets (or thereabouts)
    4) Doesn't matter! Whatever you prefer.
    5) Given your current fitness level, I don't think we should be doing > 2x/wk and yes, I'd prefer these to be on nonconsecutive days.

    -Jordan
    Barbell Medicine "With you from bench to bedside"
    ///Website /// Instagram /// Peri™ Rx /// Whey Rx /// Barbell Medicine Podcast/// Newsletter /// Seminars ///

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    • #3
      Thanks for the input and quick reply, Jordan! I'm very enthusiastic about this program and appreciate your help tweaking it.

      1) So you'd prefer that I back off a bit but do all 3 the same day. (I would prefer keeping it to the same day, too.) I can try taking off a higher percentage for the back off sets as you suggest in 2). Could I also go lower by doing warm up reps with the bar and then doing fewer reps for the "steps" until I get to my working sets and then do full reps? (eg squat x10: bar 4x 10; step-up weights 1x5, working weights [email protected],@8,@9)?

      I know the higher reps &more volume helps with hypertrophy and muscle mass is important to me b/c I lost 60+ pounds after cancer diagnosis. (I lost 20 pounds from the effects of the chemo alone). I read the research about weight loss in your 50s (9 years ago) and decided that the evidence against losing weight was probably because of muscle mass lost, so I made the decision to go ahead and lose weight but exercise hard.

      3) Son will be glad to hear that he was right.

      5) The weird thing about my fitness level is that my aerobic fitness is quite good. I use the highest heart rate from my last echo as my max and tend to feel best working just below and somewhat above 70% of that (so between 114 to 132 or so.) I have to deliberately dial it back when I want it below 70%.(Lower range feels moderate; upper range, moderately hard.) I think because I was an athlete in college (field hockey and lacrosse) that that range is what still feels "right" to my body. I am currently stationary biking 50 min T,Th, Sa, with between 10-20 min of that in the vigorous range and that feels good. (I was already doing a lot of aerobic stuff before I started the Beginner template, like it, and want to get in my 150 min per week. But way back in the day when I was playing sports, strength training was not a "thing" at least for female athletes so I don't think I had a great baseline to start with except for whatever I had from a lot of running around chasing balls. So I will stick to 2x/wk for bi-triceps work.

      Also, I hope someone takes the hint and orders me a safety squat bar for my birthday, so maybe the weight on the squats can go up a bit! I currently have to do the front squat with the "criss-crossed arms" hold (lots of scar tissue reduces ROM) and sometimes have to fight pitching forward as the lift gets heavier.

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      • #4
        NG,

        1) Yep.
        2)I don't think it matters without knowing more about the availability of weights you have. My preference is to keep the rep schemes uniform while altering the load, if you can.
        3) Ha!
        5) Excellent

        Keep up the good work!

        -Jordan
        Barbell Medicine "With you from bench to bedside"
        ///Website /// Instagram /// Peri™ Rx /// Whey Rx /// Barbell Medicine Podcast/// Newsletter /// Seminars ///

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        • #5
          Thanks so much. The support you guys so generously provide makes your templates really invaluable. I refer many people to this site.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Naturegirl View Post
            Thanks so much. The support you guys so generously provide makes your templates really invaluable. I refer many people to this site.
            *internet hug*
            Barbell Medicine "With you from bench to bedside"
            ///Website /// Instagram /// Peri™ Rx /// Whey Rx /// Barbell Medicine Podcast/// Newsletter /// Seminars ///

            Comment

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