Starting Strength Weekly Report

June 27, 2022

Ennead Edition

On Starting Strength
  • VAERS Data Analysis with Dr. Jessica Rose – Dr. Jessica Rose joins Rip to discuss VAERS data, conflicts of interest, misaligned incentives among pharmaceutical companies, government oversight agencies, and how it affects you.
  • Why You Need to Set the Bar Straight Down after a Deadlift – Starting Strength Coach JD Shipley demonstrates the proper way to put down a deadlift in order to maintain an efficient setup.
  • How to Open a Starting Strength Gym – Siblings and Co-Founders, Ray, Ben, and Jen Gillenwater explain how to open a Starting Strength Gym. Spoiler: It’s terrible and then it’s great.
  • The Truth about the Starting Strength Method – The Starting Strength Method uses the basics of biology and arithmetic, refined through logic and analysis over decades of testing and millions of hours of practical refinement to produce the most effective and efficient strength program in existence. The Starting Strength Method is essentially strength engineering.
  • Weekend Archives: Strength Training with Scoliosis by Andrea Signor – At 12, my doctors diagnosed me with scoliosis. I had a 36-degree curvature in my lumbar spine and a 15-degree curvature in my thoracic spine – a classic “S” curve. For 23-hours per day for five years I wore a plastic back brace...
  • Weekend Archives: A Clarification by Mark Rippetoe – Okay kids, it has come to my attention that quite a few of you are not doing the program and then bitching about the results...

From the Coaches
Get Involved

In the Trenches

dani benching at starting strength boston
Dani benching at Starting Strength Boston. She started a year ago and has progressed from a starting weight of 60 lb to a 1 rep maximum of 125 lb last month. [photo courtesy of Austin Khamiss]
keegan pulls his last deadlift rep at starting strength cincinnati
Starting Strength Cincinnati member Keegan stands tall as he pulls his last deadlift rep. Keegan joined the gym one month ago with the goal of becoming the strongest bass player in the world. [photo courtesy of Tony Maldonado]
upperclass cadets at west point learn to deadlift
Upperclass Cadets learn and practice the squat and deadlift in preparation for their role as Cadet Cadre during upcoming New Cadet Basic Training at West Point. [photo courtesy of Greg Hess]
julie squats 185 as she trains for ironfest at testify strength and conditioning
Julie squats 185 lb (and works on keeping her knees shoved out) as she prepares for the upcoming IronFest meet - a team competition at Testify Strength & Conditioning in Omaha, NE. [photo courtesy of Phil Meggers]
alexanne trains even though she is in a foot cast
Alexanne shows up and does work despite a foot injury that put her in a cast. There is always a reason to show up no matter the circumstances. [photo courtesy of Josh Wells]
mark rippetoe plays a set at wichita falls athletic club summer solstice party
Rip playing a set at the Wichita Falls Athletic Club midsummer solstice gathering. [photo courtesy of Nick Delgadillo]

Meet Results

The 2022 Testify Strongman Summer Showdown contest was held this past weekend. The Epic Strongwoman award (Morgard the Manatee) went to Ashley Bryant, and the Epic Strongman award went to Chris Charvat. Full results

chris throws the 50 pound sandbag to clear 14 feet
Chris Charvat launches the 50 lb sandbag and clears 14 ft at the 6th annual Testify Strongman Summer Showdown this weekend in Omaha, NE. [photo courtesy of Testify Strength & Conditioning]
brianne holm pulls the truck at testify strongman summer showdown
Brianne Holm pulls the truck 100ft in under 30 seconds at this weekend's Testify Strongman Summer Showdown in Omaha, NE. [photo courtesy of Testify Strength & Conditioning]
nathan and michael compete in the deadlift medley at testify
Brothers Nathan and Michael Oehler (left and right, respectively) go head-to-head as they wrap up the deadlift medley at this weekend's Testify Strongman Summer Showdown in Omaha, NE. The deadlift medley consisted of 1 rep with a truck tire deadlift, 2 reps with farmer carry handle deadlifts, and then as many reps as possible of axle deadlifts until the 1 minute cap was reached. [photo courtesy of Testify Strength & Conditioning]

Best of the Week

When to skip a lift?


Quick question with regards to skipping lifts. Working through the NLP and am supposed to lift today, however for the first time in a while I pitched fast pitch softball in a tournament this weekend and am pretty sore in the shoulders, glutes, etc. and all around pretty stiff. My lifts have been pretty heavy (for me) the last few weeks, and I worry that if I lift today I will not be able to make my weight jumps/overloads and may fail due to the soreness/fatigue from the weekend.

In a situation like this, am I better off trying to push through my lift today, or skipping a day to get to feeling 100% before I lift again? Thanks!

Mark Rippetoe

As I have pointed out several thousand times, your subjective perception of how you feel is irrelevant, because it is unreliable. If you don't want to train today, don't train, but if you can't train when you're tired and sore, you're going to have a very short career under the bar.


It is ironic that the Prime Directive (~ your feelings are irrelevant) is not in the book (I think).

Mark Rippetoe

May have to add a section.

Best of the Forum

Additional Metrics

David A. Rowe

Rip, one of the things I've run into as an amateur coach and person who's tried to get people into strength training is the usual resistance from the un- or ill-informed. Typically, the people who are first-in-line to get under the bar for duty or general fitness are the people who have experienced life events, injuries, or dealt with critical situations and illnesses where it was immediately apparent that they needed the benefits.

What are your thoughts on tracking something simple that can be performed easily in most locations like a 100m sprint time to show that strength really is foundational, and won't make you slow, fat, or likely to "gas-out" quickly? Would it be useful as another metric, or a waste of effort? I've learned enough to zen-out when people say "no" or lack the gumption to do the work, but ignorance still irks me a bit. I wonder if being able to say, "Here's the data on my lifters who did solely strength training for 2-3 months" might work.

Mark Rippetoe

See if you can find the interview I did with Nick Berringer for RangerUp regarding this topic. I just tried, and maybe you can find it better than I can.

Oso Rojo

Is this the one?

Are you Strong Enough? An interview with Mark Rippetoe - | @TheRhinoDen | Home Of All Things Military

Mark Rippetoe

That's it. RangerUp took it down, but we have the permission of Nick Barringer to reprint it here.

Are you Strong Enough? An Interview with Mark Rippetoe | LTC Nick Barringer

Starting Strength Weekly Report

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