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My first workout on The Bridge 1.0

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  • My first workout on The Bridge 1.0

    I finished up my SSLP, Two weeks ago I tested for 1RM: Squat 335, Press, 160, Deadlift 315, bench press 200.
    I decided to go with The Bridge 1.0 to begin my journey as a post-novice lifter!
    I am new to RPE and I was hoping for some feedback on if I am doing too much or too little warm up. All input from experienced users is greatly appreciated in advance!

    Week 1, Day 1 calls for:
    Squat with belt [email protected], [email protected], [email protected]
    Close grip bench press [email protected], [email protected], [email protected]
    Rack pulls [email protected], [email protected], [email protected]

    My actuals were:

    Squat warm ups: 4 or 5 sets of 5 reps with the bar, 95X5, 135X5, 185X5, 225X5.
    Work sets (with belt): [email protected], [email protected], [email protected]

    Close grip bench press warm ups: 2 sets of [email protected] bar, 75X4, 95X4, 115X4
    Work sets: [email protected], [email protected], [email protected]

    Rack pulls warm ups: 135X7, 185X7, 205X7
    Work sets: [email protected], [email protected], [email protected] (with belt).

    As you can see I didn't exactly hit the RPE on target, but I'm still learning

  • #2
    Good stuff for starting on The Bridge 1.

    Your warm ups look fine. I end up only doing 2 or 3 sets for warm ups, possibly 4 sets at most (not including @6).

    Rack pulls, being a supplemental variation movement, are usually done without a belt. The same will go for the pause squats, tempo squats, etc in the next few days. Belts are usually only used for the competition lifts (as the description will call for a belt e.g. "Press with Belt"). Everything else is without the belt.

    On an initial look, your work weights seem a bit high for the squat as compared to your tested 1RMs. You did 295x5. Looking at the table in The Bridge it probably should have been around 275x5. The preferred way is to be a little conservative on your RPEs as if you use too much weight (i.e. assign a lower RPE when the performance was in actuality a higher RPE, say assigning an @8 when it was probably more a @8.5 or @9), you will get crushed in weeks 3 and particularly 4. Don't worry, this is part of the learning curve for RPE. It has been a while as many threads on this were posted around 6 months or so ago, but definitely start more conservatively. The % chart is a good starting point to get the feel for things.

    Remember that part of BBM programming is based on evidence showing that volume at the appropriate intensity is the driver of strength gains, not absolute intensity. One needs to keep their ego in check and it is one of the harder things to do. It is particularly hard coming off SSLP as it has been ingrained in one's head that hard is the only way, when that is actually not the only way, and seemingly not an ideal or optimal way. I had this conversation with myself yesterday under the bar doing squats as well and had to remind myself that so long as my E1RM is going up, I am getting stronger (although I am also on a fat loss phase so less of an issue, but I still had the thought that I wasn't grinding enough).


    • #3
      Hey thanks for the feedback, I’ll definitely consult the RPE/% chart next time.
      As far as belt, it’s safe to do heavy rack pulls with no belt? I can see that eventually I’ll rack pull more weight than my deadlift.


      • teddyd
        teddyd commented
        Editing a comment
        Yeah, the %/RPE chart is good as a guide and particularly for someone starting out. Don't wed yourself to it as everyone is different.

        Yup. Without the belt is itself a limiting factor. Remember, it is a supplemental variation to add volume without adding huge amounts of fatigue. Thus rack pulling without the belt will keep fatigue in an appropriate range. Remember, we are not trying to destroy ourselves and beat ourselves into the ground on every set.