Lifts going up but not body weight; programming some sport-specific exercise Lifts going up but not body weight; programming some sport-specific exercise

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Thread: Lifts going up but not body weight; programming some sport-specific exercise

  1. #1
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    Default Lifts going up but not body weight; programming some sport-specific exercise

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    I started doing the Starting Strength program about three weeks ago. I come from a background in pretty high-level rock climbing, and the conventional wisdom in the climbing world isn't exactly in favor of a training program like this. First, climbing is an incredibly skill-intensive sport, so the conventional wisdom is that climbing is the best training for climbing, and that any other training that takes away from climbing time is not helpful (though most people would acknowledge that for an elite climber, skill acquisition has slowed to the point that external training is required for continued climbing gains.) Additionally, the conventional wisdom is that a climber's strength-to-weight ratio is far more important than his raw strength. This makes good sense as every pound of body-weight is an extra pound that has to be dragged up the wall. Nothing brings more joy to a lot of climbers then seeing a musclebound guy struggling to get off the ground on a beginner climb.

    Anyway, I suffered my first major climbing injury back in August when I fell off a mountain. When I got back into climbing after recovering, I had lost a huge amount of strength. After a few months of putzing around on easier climbs, I decided to get serious about regaining the strength I had lost. I'm counting my participation in Starting Strength as a form of periodization. Even though my climbing grade will inevitably go down as I temporally shift the majority of my training time over to barbell's, I'm hoping that in the long term, the strength gained will help my climbing get back to where it was. So I'm pretty invested in this working out, and in seeing that my climbing grades aren't going to go down (as a result of the decreased climbing load necessitated by training) for no good reason.

    First, I'm wondering how worried I should be about my body weight not going up, as long as my lifts are going up. I also feel stronger and think I can see more muscle. On my first day of training I weighed myself at 141 pounds (I'm about 5' 9"). Since than, I've gained what seems like a statistically insignificant amount of body weight (two pounds.) However, my squat went up 10 pounds each session for the first 6 sessions, and 5 pounds per session after that. My deadlift continues to go up 10 pounds per session. Does the fact that I'm not putting on more body-weight portend an impending plateau? Or is it possible that my lifts have not yet exceeded my body's ability to compensate through neurological adaptation? Or that I'm one of Rip's genetic freaks?

    I'm also wondering what you all think of including some sport specific exercises in the program. The pull-up seems like the compound exercise most applicable to climbing. So I had been including weighted pull-ups in my routine every session, usually after the three main lifts for the day. As my weighted pull ups have gotten heavier, this has come to seem like less of a good idea. But I definitely do still want to include weighted pull ups at some frequency. I also want to include weighted hangs in my routine. This extremely sport-specific exercise involves hanging with the fingers on a 20mm edge for 10 seconds with weight hanging from a harness or belt followed by a 3 minutes rest repeated four times, with the weight progressively increased over time. This exercise seems extremely important both to keep my climbing-specific strength up during my period of low climbing volume. Plus it will hopefully adapt my body to the strain that will come with climbing with a heavy body, when my body weight does start going up. Previously, I had been doing weighted hangs as a Saturday exercise as it also let me justify a day of fun climbing to warm up my fingers for the hangs. Now I'm thinking of having my fourth exercise after the big three alternate between weighted pull ups and weighted hangs. Does this sound like a reasonable idea?

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by PrettyWeakChris View Post
    I started doing the Starting Strength program about three weeks ago. I come from a background in pretty high-level rock climbing, and the conventional wisdom in the climbing world isn't exactly in favor of a training program like this. First, climbing is an incredibly skill-intensive sport, so the conventional wisdom is that climbing is the best training for climbing, and that any other training that takes away from climbing time is not helpful (though most people would acknowledge that for an elite climber, skill acquisition has slowed to the point that external training is required for continued climbing gains.)
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