Starting Strength Weekly Report

September 07, 2020

On Starting Strength
    • A Visit with Mike Israetel | Starting Strength Radio #72 – Mark Rippetoe discusses exercise science, academia, nutrition, Renaissance Periodization, and other topics with Dr. Mike Israetel.
    • Low Back Positions - Flexion, Extension, and Overextension – Mark Rippetoe demonstrates the three different possible low back positions under the bar and clarifies how you should set your low back on a squat.
    • Common Deadlift Errors and Fixes – Starting Strength Coach Pete Troupos goes through some common deadlift errors and how to fix them. Originally broadcast on FB Live with Q&A.
    • The Snatch-Grip Deadlift by Robert Santana & Mark Rippetoe – "One of the common errors we see in a squat is the flexion of the thoracic spine out of the hole..."
    • The Task At Hand by Daniel Oakes – "I stepped through the double doors onto a yellow-speckled blue carpet and was greeted by thump thump thump and a loud voice monotonously chanting..."
    • The Squat: Thumbs-Around Grip by Darin Deaton – "Adherence to the barbell movement form model is a consistent theme throughout Starting Strength. The classic “Your Not Doing The Program” (YNDTP) applies not only to programming but to form..."
    • The State of Strength & Conditioning Coaching by Mark Rippetoe – "This essay is about the state of the Strength and Conditioning profession[...], most of which is practiced in high schools, colleges and universities, and at the professional sports level..."
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    In the Trenches

    adam sets up for a squat starting strength training camp
    Adam sets up for his final set of squats during a recent Squat and Deadlift Training Camp at CrossFit Kingfield in Minneapolis. [photo courtesy of Pete Troupos]
    james sets up his last set of deadlifts
    James gets set for his final set of deadlifts at the Minneapolis Camp, using a stance modified to get him into position. [photo courtesy of Pete Troupos]
    karl gettings strong with deadlifts
    Masters lifter Karl also attended our training camp in Minneapolis. At 60, he’s come to the realization that he’ll need to get stronger to maintain independence later in life. [photo courtesy of Pete Troupos]

    Best of the Week

    Vitamin C the steroid for old folk

    Mark have you come across a study such as this – Lower Dietary and Circulating Vitamin C in Middle- and Older-Aged Men and Women Are Associated with Lower Estimated Skeletal Muscle Mass – suggesting that vitamin C helps to maintain muscle mass in older people? I don't see anything regarding strength training, maybe it is nonsense.


    What else might the people with higher lean body mass have in common, besides higher vitamin C?


    Or what do the people with lower lean body mass have in common, besides lower vitamin c? Probably shit nutrition and no exercise habits to speak of. It's hard to isolate one thing like that and say for sure it has this profound effect.

    Mark Rippetoe

    It's the age-old cause-and-effect/correlation confusion. Science is hard sometimes.


    Here’s another good one: Use of creatine and protein powders linked to alcoholism later in life, study claims

    Such strong, compelling evidence!

    Matt James

    Creatine and protein powders are "performance enhancing substances?" No bias there. I had a 16oz performance enhancing ribeye last night too. Chock full of protein and creatine.


    Uh oh, I have been craving a whole lot of booze lately. But I think that's just the effect of this fucking year.

    Best of the Forum

    SS and Jiu Jitsu
    Jack Kennedy

    Over the last year, I tore my left meniscus and suffered a partial tear to my right MCL (meniscus in Aug 2018 and MCL in March 2019). I finally had my meniscus trimmed Aug 2019 and a few weeks later I was ready to start training again. I’m 6 weeks into your program and my strength gains are coming baking nicely. 2 weeks ago I started training Jiu Jitsu again. My typical classes are Monday, Wednesday, and Friday nights... the same days I lift (I lift early in the morning before work). Due to some competitions coming up, many of our grapplers are in comp prep mode and we are rolling pretty hard, which means I’m pretty sore a day or two after class.

    Do you suggest I continue this current schedule or bump my lifting days a day back to tues thurs and sat? I know that I’m going to be sore no matter what, but it doesn’t seem to be affecting my strength when I’m lifting.

    Mark Rippetoe

    Since I have no way of knowing how hard you're actually training, I suggest you try it both ways for two weeks each and see which works best for you. Make sure you're eating enough.


    The biggest concern here is not the soreness - further injuring a joint is. Training post-injury with people preparing for competition is not something I'd recommend. If they hurt you (even if it's just a random fuck up), neither you nor they are going to be better for it.

    I have not had a meniscus tear or repair, so I can't specifically tell you what results you're going to get. However, training with active competitors is grueling and injuries happen far more often as a result. When I'm injured and want to roll with someone, I make sure they understand I'm not looking to roll like it's Worlds. If they are training for competition, they may decide they don't want to roll with me. That's fine.

    How long have you been training jiu jitsu?

    Nick Delgadillo

    If you can be disciplined enough to not go ape-shit on the mats on every single roll, it doesn't matter too much when you lift. Just do the version that will keep you compliant with your workouts in the gym and try to keep your ego in check on the mat. If everyone else is in competition mode and you're not, you're just going to get tapped a bunch more.

    Jack Kennedy

    Thanks for the input... I’m not really concerned about the soreness... that’s temporary because I just got back into rolling hard after close to a year of light rolling while injured and then recovering from the surgery. My knee feels fine now. My concern is recovery from workouts... I’ll continue with the M, W, F workouts for a few more weeks and then switch to T, T, S and see how I feel and how I’m progressing in the program.

    I’ve been training for 13 years. Got promoted to brown belt last year. I tore my meniscus shortly after and my training came to a screeching halt.

    Nick Delgadillo

    I really think that you're going to be perfectly fine. The advice to take it easy at Jiu Jitsu is for people with less experience rolling. You already know how to manage your stress level on the mat, so lift whenever works best for your schedule to stay compliant three days/week. You'll move your programming along to advanced novice and then intermediate sooner than someone not doing Jiu Jitsu, so just progress your training variables when you need to - don't miss lifting workouts, eat more than you're used to, and keep adding weight to the bar workout to workout at first, then twice a week, then once a week.

    Andrew Lewis

    Then forget what I said.

    You know where you stand, and Nick's advice is right.

    Jack Kennedy

    Thanks again... The eating more part is the biggest change for me, but it's been pretty easy because I've been starving ever since I got back to training BJJ. Because of the knee surgery in Aug, I started with relatively light weight for most of the movements but am now getting into some challenging weights. The heavy weights plus hard BJJ sessions has me wanting to eat constantly.

    BTW, I started week 6 of my program today and my working set on the press was more than I've ever done for a 1RM... I guess this stuff works.

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