Starting Strength Weekly Report

November 18, 2019

Starting Strength Radio
Starting Strength Channel
  • Strength Training and BJJ – Jeff Hairston, SSC and brown belt under the Mendes Brothers at Art of Jiu Jitsu discuss strength and BJJ with The Strength Co. owner Grant Broggi.
  • Quit Putting Your Plates on the Bar the Wrong Way! Mark Rippetoe explains why the plates face in when loading a barbell and face out when loading a plate tree. Get it right.

  • From the Archives: In Back Rehab: A Case Study, Lt Col Mac Ward describes how he rehabbed his back by getting it stronger during deployment.
Training Log

In the Trenches

anthony squats 275 low bar
Anthony taking 275 for a ride during the Squat and Deadlift Training Camp at Broward Barbell Center in Plantation, Florida this past weekend. [photo courtesy of Pete Troupos]
eli locks out a deadlift
Eli at the top of his deadlift, rocking that sweet ’stache at the same event. [photo courtesy of Pete Troupos]

Best of the Week

Wi-Fi Internet and Sleep Disturbance

I wanted to post this here in case it may help some who are struggling with sleep. It will be a mix of anecdotal evidence along with minor hypotheses in consideration of my professional engineering background.

The other day, I was going to have someone move into the apartment so I switched from a guest room I was staying in to the master bedroom where the wi-fi box is located. After a nice jog (I know) I was feeling sleepy and ready to get to bed after a nice day. While almost asleep, I felt a jolt as I was on the verge of sleep and woke up, like a defibrillator. I decided it may be the Wi-Fi which was in the room so I moved back to the guest bedroom and went to sleep there while closing the door. Sleep was a bit better away from the Wi-Fi radiator (Wi-Fi radiates off of the modem). The second piece of anecdotal evidence, is that I was playing a DOS game on my computer, and when I had the Wi-Fi on, the game ran super choppy like it was overloaded, after turning the Wi-Fi off, the Dos game runs smoothly like it was supposed to. The Wi-Fi was literally frying my frail made in China laptop.

The next morning I woke up and dusted off my metric conversion textbook and to my surprise (I know it shouldn't be) I realize that 5Gigahertz is a 5 billion cycles per second signal. I'm sure the magnitude of frequency is low, but the sheer speed of the signal wave I'm hypothesizing may have an effect upon the heart, brain and the blood, (I'm sure everything, but those are the important ones). The heart is an electro-magnetic organ, metallic in nature, run by electric signals sent by the brain. I think for me the 5G Wi-Fi may have been affecting me as I have had trouble sleeping the last 4-5 years. Since unplugging the Wi-Fi on Friday, my sleep has been decent the past 3 days. I think I'll also post an update later on if this sustains. Additionally, I believe that the hemoglobin that transports oxygen to our cells is also affected by the 5 G radiations. Iron in our blood that carries oxygen is metallic, meaning it has its own electric field, and would therefore be affected by 5 billion cycles per second in my opinion. I'm sure it affects the brain as well, which is also a highly metallic organ, even more so now that we focus so much on education. If you look up a chart, "New Cases of Diabetes Diagnosed Among U.S. Adults Aged 18-79 Years, 1980-2009" you'll see that in the early 90s there was a minor spike in new diagnoses (IMO the introduction of the desktop computer, but I don't think that's bad, we adapted and the new cases leveled off) but in 1998 the cases took off in a linear upward fashion at a pretty good slope. Wi-Fi was invented for retail use in 1997-1998. I remember that I never used it because I was a nerd, and the Wi-Fi didn't run the games over the internet very well so we used the cable modem with wires plugged into it. But later on certainly I was exposed to wi-fi.

I believe that people are being exposed to a whole host of health issues (metabolic food cravings, inability to sleep, anxiety) due to these radio waves microwaving us. The human body is certainly electro-magnetic, that is science, and to ignore the possible effects of a FIVE BILLION cycle per second radio wave on a highly complex electro-magnetic system would be folly in my opinion. Trust me, I'm a professional engineer LOL. Either way, the main point of this post is to let people know if you are really having a hard time sleeping, maybe try turning off your Wi-Fi box. I'm not saying don't use the internet, I'm saying wire in, take out the radio waves and see if that helps. It may help with pre-diabetic symptoms as well (which I was having). I'll post an update a week from now if there's any interest.

Mark Rippetoe



Ever considered the radiation output of that huge bright yellow thing, or cosmic radiation?

m s

So what? You realize that visible light is also an electromagnetic wave with frequencies on the order of hundreds of Terahertz? That's 5 orders of magnitude greater than your little wifi signal. And visible light isn't the only wavelength of radiation we are constantly bombarded with.

All electromagnetic waves travel at the same speed – namely the speed of light. Visible light is hitting you at the same speed as the wifi signal.


If your wifi is "affecting" you like that, you better just get yourself situated in a lead box right the fuck now, lest all that higher energy, ionizing, higher intensity source of radiation that we call the sun royally fucks your shit up. Just try not to lick the walls.


Don’t be fooled: the government wants you to think that foil hats will protect you, but foil hats actually concentrate frequencies that are reserved for government use: On the Effectiveness of Aluminium Foil Helmets: An Empirical Study.

I would recommend enclosing your home in a Faraday cage, sleeping in an Orgone Collector, and wearing a titanium colander on your head if you absolutely must venture outside.

Mark Rippetoe

I don't think you guys understand: The man is a Professional Engineer.


I want to know why "professional engineer" needs to go to a "metric conversion textbook" to figure out that 5 gigahertz is 5 billion cycles per second.


Professional engineers don't refer to themselves as such.


A cage mainly shields against the electric field, but not the magnetic field. Plus the cage is only good for the frequencies it’s designed to shield, so best to line his whole room with a continuous metal surface so there is no potential difference and so he is completely shielded electrically. For the magnetic field, he'll have to redirect the magnetic field with an outer skin of magnetic material with high permeability. If anything, a tedious application of Maxwell's equations will surely give him a good night’s sleep- it always does me.


We are talking about waves here, aka oscillating fields, not static. If one day you manage to read the equations without falling asleep partway, you will find that oscillating E and B fields are coupled together (see the Faraday and Ampère equations). If you kill the electric field, it's going to cancel the magnetic field too.

Being a "professional" doctor of physics, not medicine, it's a bit out of my area of expertise. But, in a case of self-diagnosed electro-sensitivity, wouldn't an homeopathic treatment be just as effective as living in a Faraday cage to treat the "symptoms"? It would be much cheaper and more convenient, with the added bonus that any homeopathic medicine would work just as effectively regardless of whatever is written on the label.

Best of the Forum

Educating People

In one of your recent podcasts (#35, I think), you related the story of how you refused to go talk to a group of parents of high school athletes because you thought it would be a useless endeavor to try to educate the "stupid parents." How does this square with the fact that you regularly write articles and produce podcasts on this and other websites such as PJ Media (where I first learned about SS in 2014, thanks to Instapundit), pointing out the advantages of the SS model? Clearly you believe that there is some merit in trying to convince people that the SS model works and would benefit them, or else you wouldn't waste your time with the articles. If you think the readers of your articles could learn something, why wouldn't the parents learn something hearing it directly from you?

Mark Rippetoe

Do you see no difference in writing a piece for the media that maybe 5% of the people who see it will read and of those maybe 20% will understand, and me personally getting in the car and driving to a meeting of parents here in Wichita Falls, perhaps 20% of whom know who I am and of those perhaps 50% willing to believe me when I tell them that their Head Coach has been incorrectly managing their S&C program? Which scenario makes the most sense for the numbers/time/gasoline/aggravation?

Christopher Anderson

Also people who are reading Rip's articles are people who are generally interested in learning about strength and getting stronger. A room full of parents, whom the vast majority if not all of them, are not always going to be interested in getting stronger or the process. It just falls on deaf ears and blank stares, or in some cases the Dad who played college ball somewhere pipes in because he "knows" better than Rip. I know we see the advantages of Rip speaking to parents, but that's because we are already interested in the program and in getting stronger.


Which scenario makes more sense is of course entirely up to you. I might have misunderstood as I thought the coach was trying to get the parents to see that what he wanted to do was the correct path and you were to be there to bolster that argument.

Your articles are written with extreme clarity and conciseness, which requires quite a bit of time and effort (for me, at least). In the video of your lecture "The Case for the Starting Strength Model," you spoke, seemingly effortlessly, for over 45 minutes (without notes). Now I have no idea of the background prep that went into that lecture, but my impression is that an informal get together with the parents would be like falling off a log to you. But again, I'm not the one putting in the effort to either write the articles or give a lecture.

In any case, my larger point was that I was surprised you thought that talking to people in general was an almost complete waste of time, despite all the effort you put into writing articles that very clearly and strongly make the case for the SS model. They certainly worked on me. This of course is different than getting people to actually get under the bar and follow the program once they are there. That's something the person doing the lifting has to actually want, as has been noted here many times.

But again, I suppose I shouldn't be surprised. I've been lifting at my gym for over two years now and am the only one I've ever seen squatting over three plates and deadlifting over four. Several people have commented on how they are impressed with the weights I'm moving (I know they are not much compared to most people here) and I give them a brief rundown of the SS model and how well it's worked for me. But I still have the squat rack to myself pretty much every time I go.

Andy Baker

I did this kind of thing for years here in my local area with parents. It's a waste of time. If you want to do local public speaking type deals (which are effective) get yourself in front of older people (50+). You'll convert much better.

Mark Rippetoe

I spent about 5 minutes making a mental outline for that lecture, because that's all that was necessary after 40 years of preparation. I am a very effective communicator, and people often mistake being articulate for intelligence – not the same thing. I would go so far as to say that there is nobody in this business more capable of communicating this message than I am. It's still a waste of time, because of who I'd be trying to communicate with. Audience selection is the most critical component of communication.


Rip (and others), Thanks for the thoughtful responses (I was worried I was coming off sounding like a bit of a dick there). You are indeed an effective communicator, but if your methods hadn't gotten me to a 440 lb deadlift at 55 years old, I wouldn't still be listening.

Human nature is interesting.

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.