Starting Strength Weekly Report

January 03, 2022

Gatherings Edition

On Starting Strength
  • The Great Cholesterol Con – Dr. Malcolm Kendrick and Rip discuss cholesterol, the medical establishment conventional wisdom on its role in heart disease, and why the medical consensus is wrong.
  • Some Help for Your Deadlift – Starting Strength Coach Adam Fangman goes over the steps of the deadlift setup and explains how to fix common errors.
  • Deeds of Arms – Nick and guest John Valentine discuss challenging and testing oneself, fight and firearms training, and the upcoming Lift, Shoot, Fight training camp.
  • A Weightlifting Meet: What I’ve Learned, Part 2 by Carl Raghavan – Welcome to the second installment of what I learned from my last weightlifting meet. I’d like to begin where I left off, discussing my taper...
  • Things You Should Never Do by Phil Meggers – Here are a few training-related situations that you should try to avoid. At all costs. Watch out...
  • Weekend Archives: Your Back Trail by John Musser – "A man who travels wild country gets to studying where he's coming from, because some day he might have to go back, and a trail looks a lot different when you ride over it in the opposite direction."
  • Weekend Archives: New Year's Resolutions and Your Lazy Ass by Mark Rippetoe – The “New Year’s Resolution” must be one of the most ridiculous of human customs. You identify a problem you’re having, and then you wait until January 1...

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In the Trenches

jim deadlifts 600 for a pr
Jim deadlifts 600 pounds for a PR at Starting Strength Denver. [photo courtesy of Jen Pfhol]
mike squats 290 for sets of five testify strength and conditioning
Mike squats 290 lb for sets of five at Testify Strength & Conditioning in Omaha, NE. [photo courtesy of Phil Meggers]
starting strength chicago construction
Starting Strength Chicago is starting to look like it’s sister gyms. Flooring, walls, and equipment coming soon! [photo courtesy of Jon Fraser]
starting strength boston 2021 holiday meetup
Group photo from the 2021 Holiday Meetup Party last Saturday. Great food, great drinks, and great people! [photo courtesy of Arthur Frontczak]
evie setting up for a 10x bodyweight deadlift
Evie is setting up for a 10X bodyweight Deadlift! What a beast! [photo courtesy of Maxine Lisot]
christmas eve starting strength selfie
Christmas Eve Class Selfie. (Front) Victoria Diaz, (Left to Right) Karin, Jim, Andres, Matt, Sebastian [photo courtesy of Victoria Diaz]
merry christmas group shot starting strength dallas
Merry Christmas ya filthy animals! (Left to Right) Jeff, Fred, Dr. Mike, Lisa, Karen, (Bottom) Brent. [photo courtesy of Brent Carter]

Best of the Week

Hot and Cold - Stress or Recovery?


I tried saunas and cold showers to aid recovery for years. I feel they were actually mini stress events which added nothing (at best) in my endeavors to lifting more weight. Better sleep and more food took care of that.


1) Why do so many elite sports teams and ex phys journals promote the values of hot and cold therapy because I’m really not sure the theory transfers into reality.

2) In my experience, a hot bath does a better job of deeply relaxing the muscles than a sauna. Sauna after effects made me feel tired in an energetically drained way but the bath made me feel “bone deep super relaxed”. Why is this so and am I alone in observing this?

Mark Rippetoe

1. This is Athletic Trainer mythology. My experience was the same as yours: a serious contrast shower is very stressful, and actually made me break a cold sore on several occasions (I was rather dense). Same as ice bags all over athlete's knees and shoulders -- seems like it ought to help, but it really doesn't. But the momentum is there, and they're going to keep doing it.

2. I haven't had a bath in years, so I don't remember. I like saunas, but I don't have one so I don't get to use it.

Best of the Forum

Deadlift Lockout


I'm a competitive IPF Masters 2 female powerlifter and read a lot of your material.

I'm struggling with my deadlift lockout, always fast off the floor, but struggle in the last third, get "stuck" mid thigh and wondering if you have an article or advice which may provide some pointers on what's wrong with it?

Funny thing is my squat has improved dramatically and will overtake my deadlift soon - which seems to indicate to me my strength is ok but my deadlift technique is off.

I do have an SI issue in my right hip, which leads to an imbalance and really annoying high hamstring problem on the left leg.

Currently squating 1rm 140 kilos but can't get past 145 kilos on deadlift.

Deadlift conventional, have trained sumo, but definitely stronger conventional.

It's almost like I can't get my hips through to lock it out. Wondering if that's a problem that accessory work might help?

Mark Rippetoe

This is a classic case of the correct application of Rack Pulls, as described in the book.


Will review book advice and add into the program.


Did the first session of Rack pulls. Could feel the benefit - helped tightened up lats and got the hip hinge working better. Also using strap's (which wouldn't normally) allowed me to concentrate on form technique, just getting over the bar a little more than the rack allows for makes a big difference. Great exercise, looking forward to alternating with the halted deadlift next week.

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