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  • Finished with LP?

    I'm a 42 yo woman. I started lifting for general health purposes in 2014 and have been consistent with it since then, using I guess what would be medium weight and reps. I never pushed very hard with heavy weight/low rep work because I've spent a lot of that time eating in a deficit (going from 220 to 160 lbs @ 5'6") and found that my energy level was too low to handle very heavy work. Last fall after spinning my wheels at 160 for a year I crashed a bit and went back up to 173. I decided to take the winter off of dieting and take the opportunity to do the SS novice program.

    My lifts are at:

    Bench 103x3x5
    Press 70x3x5
    Squat 142.5x3x5
    DL 220x3x3 / 205x5x3

    I've been increasing the upper lifts by 1 lb. I stalled at 70# for press and reset 10%, and when I hit 70 again still stalled. I just failed at 104 for bench on the first set of 3.

    With squat, I'm increasing 2.5# only after I go through 5x3, 4x4, and 3x5. Deadlift I've been doing twice a week and move up 2.5 lbs and it is going fine.

    My questions are, am I finished with my LP because of where I am with my upper lifts and squat? I'm still at 173 lbs and when I look at where other (smaller) women get, it seems like my lifts are low Especially squats. However, if I consider that I am a 42 yo woman with no athletic inclination/gifts and who works a very sedentary job, maybe I'm okay? I don't want to "wuss out" and quit the LP early but I don't want to spin my wheels if it's time to move on. And, yes, I'd like to finish losing weight, which will require me to cut calories.

    Thanks in advance.

  • #2
    Hi there,

    My questions are, am I finished with my LP because of where I am with my upper lifts and squat? I'm still at 173 lbs and when I look at where other (smaller) women get, it seems like my lifts are low Especially squats. However, if I consider that I am a 42 yo woman with no athletic inclination/gifts and who works a very sedentary job, maybe I'm okay? I don't want to "wuss out" and quit the LP early but I don't want to spin my wheels if it's time to move on. And, yes, I'd like to finish losing weight, which will require me to cut calories.
    This is a very common situation that we deal with.

    There is a vast spectrum of individual variability in terms of responsiveness to the novice program, and how far people tend to get on it. There has unfortunately been a bizarre, almost religious significance attributed to "squeezing every last ounce" out of the novice LP before moving on. This is silly, shortsighted rather than focused on long-term progress, and tends to result in more anxiety and psychological burnout in training together with wasted time in general ("spinning your wheels" as you noted).

    You are doing fine. You have tried the reset and run up against the same walls, which suggests you are not exposing yourself to sufficient stress to make the lifts continue going up. In our opinion, you need additional training volume to continue to drive progress. The additional training volume will also be beneficial during your weight loss phase.
    IG / YT

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    • #3
      I just want to chime in that I am in a similar situation with regards to age/weights/lifts.

      I have spent the last year resetting and resetting and trying to ‘hack’ the LP to get the most out of it. In retrospect I see this was a massive waste of time as all I’ve gotten is 10lb on my squat and deadlift.

      I just saw women seemingly cruise to body weight squats on their LP and thought I must be doing something wrong to keep stalling out well before that point.

      I have only just gotten an SS coach this weekend so hopefully I can finally start making some progress now. Kicking myself for not doing it sooner but hey-ho live and learn.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Austin Baraki View Post
        You are doing fine. You have tried the reset and run up against the same walls, which suggests you are not exposing yourself to sufficient stress to make the lifts continue going up. In our opinion, you need additional training volume to continue to drive progress. The additional training volume will also be beneficial during your weight loss phase.
        Great news then. Thank you for confirming that for me, Austin. It looks like it's time for me to move to the Bridge and cut calories a bit.

        I have one follow up question, which is part training and part nutrition. Do you suggest any adjustments to training (e.g., more conditioning/cardio) or nutrition for a woman with PCOS? I just listened to one of the podcasts and thought I heard Jordan comment that people with metabolic syndrome should do some conditioning during LP so i wasn't sure if the level prescribed in the Bridge is sufficient or if that should be increased.

        Randomnav, I'm glad you posted. It's nice to read of another person in a similar spot. Good luck with your new coach.

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        • #5
          Yes, the prescribed conditioning should be sufficient to begin with. As for nutrition, if you carry a bit of excess bodyfat (or if your waist measurement is elevated), we'd recommend reducing that via our standard nutrition recommendations that have been described elsewhere.

          Hope that helps!
          IG / YT

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