Starting Strength Weekly Report

December 19, 2022

Snow Globe Edition

On Starting Strength

From the Coaches
  • A slick lifting platform can cause a lot of problems, whether you're clean-and-jerking, squatting, pressing, etc., so Phil Meggers lets you in on a very simple (and rarely discussed) method to make sure you've got good grip between your shoes and the platform.
  • A barbell that sits too high on the back causes problems in the squat, but so does a bar that sits too low. How do you find the correct position for the bar when squatting? Phil Meggers shows you in less than 2 minutes.
  • In this short episode of the PRS Podcast, a conversation about when to breathe when to breathe in the press.
  • The sled or prowler is an extremely effective conditioning tool, and while it is often pushed, it can be pulled as well. Phil Meggers provides a couple of cheap and easy options for constructing a DIY harness for pulling the sled.
  • If you’re considering competing in powerlifting, strength lifting or weightlifting, you may be faced with choosing a weight class or even “making weight.” This episode of of the PRS Podcast discusses weight manipulation.
Get Involved

In the Trenches

grace squats 83 lb for sets of five at testify strength and conditioning
Grace squats 83 lb for sets of five at Testify Strength & Conditioning in Omaha, NE, while being spotted by her sister, Jordan, and her mom, Nicki. Grace plans to lift in the Testify Strengthlifting Challenge on April 1st and is endeavoring to convince her sister and mom to join her. [photo courtesy of Phil Meggers]
mark diffley coaches the squat at a starting strength training camp
SSC Mark Diffley from Starting Strength Austin cues Eric to set his upper back tight at the recent Starting Strength training camp held in Chicago. [photo courtesy of Jon Fraser]
alex ptacek coaches the deadlift using a tactile cue
SSC Alex Ptacek uses a tactile cue to help Jason properly set his back for the deadlift at the training camp hosted at Starting Strength Chicago. [photo courtesy of Strah Rajic]
camisha noble coaches a lifter through a set of squats at starting strength cincinnati
Camisha Noble coaches Tanvi through her last set of squats at Starting Strength Cincinnati. [photo courtesy of Luke Schroeder]
carl raghavan coaches a lifter in the squat
Gary in the bottom of his squat at the recent Starting Strength training camp held under SSC Carl Raghavan in London. [photo courtesy of Byron Johnston]
donna lears to actively shrug in the press lockout
Donna learning how to actively shrug at the top of the press during the camp in the UK. [photo courtesy of Byron Johnston]
group photo of the new 9 am class at starting strength cincinnati
Here's the brand new MWF 9am crew at Starting Strength Cincinnati. This new session time launched this past week and is already down to just one remaining spot. [photo courtesy of Luke Schroeder]

Meet Report

Fivex3 Training held their 4th Annual Stronger Together Partners Meet on Sunday, December 4, raising over $4500 for the Music Therapy Program at Gilchrist Hospice.

ralph deadlifts 325 at the 2022 stronger together meet in baltimore
martha presses 62.5 in the stronger together meet in maryland
1st place Masters winner, Ralph Youngs, age 77, deadlifts 325 for his second attempt while his partner, Martha Selonick, age 72, presses 62.5lbs for her third attempt. [photo courtesy of Fivex3 Training]
bruce benches 475 at the stronger together meet 2022
1st Place Open Winner Bruce Carpenter benches 475 lb for his third attempt. [photo courtesy of Fivex3 Training]

Best of the Week

Training with a Pacemaker


6 months or so ago I started having some episodes of my heart racing and beating "loudly" for a few seconds. I told my GP and to be on the safe side they arranged for me to wear a 24 heart monitor.

Being the NHS, I didn't hear anything for 3 months or so but it seems a cardiologist finally looked at it and told me I have a 2nd degree heart block and to stop driving immediately. He asked me if I had any periods of faintness (I hadn't) and said if I had he would have told me to go to A&E (ER for Americans).

[Obviously the heart trace was like schroedinger's cat - I was perfectly safe to drive for the 3 months until a cardiologist looked at the trace]

Thanks to my private health insurance I managed to get seen by a specialist yesterday. He did another ECG and an ultrasound and is sending me for a heart MRI. Unless the MRI finds anything worse, it seems likely that I will need a pacemaker.

Anyway - my main question: I told the doctor I train and lift heavy (compared to a non-lifter) and he said he would put the pacemaker under the muscle. However he also said I might have to be careful with heavy weights for benching/pressing etc due to mechanical damage to the wires. Is this something you have come across? Anything I should be careful of?

Mark Rippetoe

I have seen pacemakers installed like this, and you can easily manage it. Have you ever had an episode in the gym?


I've never had an episode at all. Not fainted in 30 years.

Best of the Forum

Army returns to gender and age based PT testing

Gerald Boggs

Looks like the US Army is back to admitting female soldiers are weaker and have less endurance than male soldiers, but in spite of that, will still be able to serve in occupations that require a high level of S&E. Which means that it stays the same as it ever was, with leaders having to ensure that female soldiers are always paired with male soldiers for any task that requires S&E.

Army Combat Fitness Test launches April 1 with scoring based on a soldier’s age, gender

Mark Rippetoe

Nothing in this article will make the Russians nervous.

Starting Strength Weekly Report

Highlights from the StartingStrength Community. Browse archives.

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.