A thank you & question from a fat guy
Mark, first of all I wanted to say thank you for Starting Strength. The book is simply awesome, and it's got me doing barbell exercises for the first time in years. I used to be a little hesitant about squatting, because back in high school power lifting class and football I messed up one of my knees because of the bad form that my teacher/coach taught me. The reason I first bought your book was because I read off of one of the reviews on Amazon about how in depth your chapters were on squatting technique (and all the other lifts as well). Since reading your book, I've been lifting every Mon/Wed/Fri and have'nt had a problem yet! (except trying to get down the proper form for power cleans, don't worry, I'm not adding any weight until my form is better).
Anyway, thank you, I can't wait to read your other books. I already ordered both Practical Programming and Strong Enough shortly after I finished Starting Strength.
Now, a little about me. I'm about 6ft 1, and I weigh 245lbs. I want to lose weight and improve my conditioning, so I wanted to add some conditioning work outs to the program. After looking through this forum for a bit, I found this thread relevant:
In it you say:
"LSD is really not good for humans. Middle distance efforts and sprints can be quite useful for metabolic conditioning, and CrossFit makes good use of them. If you are working up through your novice SS progression, I'd recommend holding off a while until your initial plateau is reached; this linear strength improvement will be more valuable in the long term than met/con, which is easier to obtain and comes more efficiently when you are strong. If you are already an intermediate-level trainee, you could add a sprint day to your week, and then add your middle distance day a month or two later after you have had time to adapt the rest of your training to the added work."
That makes very good sense, so I guess my stupid question is do you think someone as out of shape as me should wait also for an initial plateau, or would starting now on improving my conditioning and body compostion carry over any benefits in getting stronger? Also, how long does it usually take for the initial plateau to happen? I know that fat loss in mentioned on page 302 of SS, and it says that it will kind of naturally happen on the program, but I'm not sure if it will also improve my conditioning like hill sprints or other fun stuff.
One more dumb question. I know this sounds funny seeing as how I'm fat and everything, but would there be any point in trying to improve my pull ups when I'm this big? I used to really like doing weighted pull ups and dips, but right now I can do about 1 chin up, and can't even do a single pull up. Should I wait until I weigh less before I try to improve these and add pull ups as an additional exercise to the program?
I apologize for the long post. Any feedback is appreciated. Thanks again!