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Thread: Bodyweight Questions

  1. #1
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    • starting strength seminar december 2023
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    Hi guys
    Iím a little over 6 foot 5

    Started the program weighing 185, now 3 1/2 months in weighing 225.

    Was admittedly scared of extreme caloric surplus during the first month, (lost 198 pounds through diet/distance running/road cycling) but followed the program strictly, 0 missed lifts, studied form as best as I possibly could. My chest(42 to 45 inches) and arms(12.9 to 14 inches) and thighs(24.5inches) have all grown a few inches but now Iíve got a 36.5 inch waist and am starting to feel fat. I know lots of guys come from a weight loss background and I track macros/calories hardcore. Have for years now.

    eating 3800-4K calories and always hitting a minimum of 250g protein.

    Kind of stalled on my lifts and reread the book/dropped the weights down (for a second time) to get my form right which sucked but was necessary. numbers are still light for a guy my size because of two stall outs due to form. need some coaching. May try and post some videos to the forum. 3.5 months in I am at


    275 Squat (single)
    205 Bench (single)
    125 OHP(5)
    365 DL (single)(ugly)

    I want to keep pushing the LP as long as possible. Feel like I have longer to go since my form has improved with less weight over the last couple weeks. 4K calories enough? Too little? Too much? I eat 0 junk food ever, literally. Feel like i am cramming food down at 4K sometimes but I dont want to be limited by lack of calories. Im eager to get stronger. I am okay with a little extra BF with as part of the strength and muscle gains but just dont wanna over do it.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    4k calories is a good start and given that you've gained 40 lb, it's probably sufficient but you'll need more when those loads get up there. Where are you measuring your waist?

    Let's get some eyes on your lifts as well. Technique is critical here and it sounds like there may be some room to improve there as is often the case.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Santana View Post
    4k calories is a good start and given that you've gained 40 lb, it's probably sufficient but you'll need more when those loads get up there. Where are you measuring your waist?

    Let's get some eyes on your lifts as well. Technique is critical here and it sounds like there may be some room to improve there as is often the case.

    Robert,

    thanks for the feedback. I am measuring my waist right above my belly button/hip bones.

    I wonder if having atrophied back muscles spinal erectors/abs and obliques could be a small contributing factor to increased waist size as well. Either way, my measurements are increasing more rapidly in all the places where I want them to.

    I have gotten some helpful feedback on my form here on the SS forums and plan to continue to do so. Since creating this original post, I was able to hit a 315 squat, 225 bench and 135 OHP so things seem to be progressing. Really studying the book and practicing with lighter weights and working back up helped me out a lot.

    If I understand you correctly, your it may be necessary to increase caloric intake slightly more once my bodyweight/lifts increase? Or at least, if I stall out on either of those metrics more calories may be a way to squeeze out as much from the LP as possible?

  4. #4
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    Atrophied erectors can shrink the waist which means growth in those muscles will increase it. Fat gain is happening though and no getting around that so just tune it out for now. You will need to eat more when the lifts get heavier. Stay on top of that and don't wait to stall out to add calories. In short, yes more food will maximize LP.

  5. #5
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    Hi Robert;

    Update/correction/question

    Squat 1rm-340
    Bench 1rm-250
    DL 1rm-405
    OP 5rm-130

    Iím 6í6Ē

    Bodyweight still sitting at around 225, and my really started at around 193, not 185. My current waist is more like 35-36, I was crazy bloated when I took that last measurement.

    Looking back at my records, I had already put on some weight before I truly started the LP. Did a lot of my LP as a vegetarian, (used to be 175lb vegan, donít tell Rip) due to a dogmatic adherence to a veg diet since it helped me to lose 200lbs, but SS has really helped me to see how flawed my thinking was, and am now eating plenty of chicken, turkey bison, fish and other lean animal protein sources. Hitting protein macros is so much easier now, and SS has positively impacted my relationship with food.

    Still hitting around 4K calories a day, but often closer to 3800.

    Within that caloric range of 3800-4200
    Macros are
    Protein 250 minimum (closer to 275)
    Carbs-around 400-420
    Fat around 100-130

    I track religiously, is it time for more calories? Is 250 minimum a good plan for protein? Iíve been at 225 for a while, and Iím very excited that the numbers keep going up, and I want to get as much out of the LP as I can! Iím tracking my sleep/taking a break from running/ micro loading to maximize progress. Would love to hear your thoughts On the nutrition side! Thanks so much.

  6. #6
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    Probably time for more calories yes. You need to get to 275 quickly. Remember 20 lb weight gain for a guy who is 6'6" appears less noticeable than the same weight gain for a guy who is 5'6." Keep getting stronger and do not hesitate to gain weight. You may even need to touch 300 but let's start with 250, then 275.

  7. #7
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    Okay, thanks so much! 250 here I come.

  8. #8
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    Update;
    Body weight is now 235

    Hit a bit of a wall on my LP. Squatted 325 yesterday. My first set was strong, and looked good on video. Missed 5th rep on second set and just couldnít mentally or physically get my shit together for the rest of the lift. The failed squat has caused some rib pain. Couldnít hit a single set of 5 on bench. Hit 222.5 4-3-deload to 205x5

    DL still looking good at 360x5
    OP has stalled pretty hard at 137.5. Can only hit 5-4-3.

    Iím still pushing on to 250lbs bodyweight

    I have had 3 other resets already to fix form issues. 2 misguided ones on my own, 1 after seeking coaching on the forums here, and Iím 6 months into the program. Iím thinking of a small backoff as described on pg. 95 of the grey book, but wondering if I should move to TM style training or just advanced novice as described on pg. 97 of the grey book. Until my last lift, everything was moving along pretty nicely. May be worth noting that Iím a teacher wrapping up the semester and worked 2 extra hours and was lifting right up to bed time.

    Just donít want to make a stupid mistake but feel like Iíve reached a pivot point.

  9. #9
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    You will want to be 250 lb if you are going to run TM. How are you wearing your belt? 3" or 4"? Where on the rib is the pain?

  10. #10
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    starting strength coach development program
    I will make sure to hit 250 before I move on to TM. Im getting there!

    Iím going to run advanced novice taper programming, to milk the novice gains as much as I can.

    3x3 with a light squat day, (70% 3x5 to keep some volume in my program) and a chin up day; and may switch up to a ďcondensed TMĒ plan for upper body I read from an SS article yesterday if the upper body lifts stall out with 3ís.

    The rib pain is on my left side, at the very bottom of my ribs (floating ribs?) I definitely did I it with a new, very stiff 4 inch lever belt worn too high and too tight on a squat where my form fell apart and I did a good morning on the way up. Then, I failed two squats over the past few sessions, which made the issue worse. Getting out from under the bar on the pins of my rack caused the belt to dig in the same spot again. Unfortunately learned my lesson the hard way on the thick lever belt. I know 3 inch belts are recommended here. I prefer the feeling of a 4 inch, and I think I am plenty long enough in the torso, but I just have to remember not to wear it so high.

    I have another thinner 10mm more supple belt that Iíve switched to, which is a prong belt, not a lever. Weirdly, itís the actual tightening of the prong belt is the only thing that really hurts. Once itís tight, Iím okay.


    Also, wanted to say thanks so much for the help here, Robert! Iíve had family members, coworkers, and friends approach me and tell me Iím looking a lot better these days, and some have even told me that I looked unwell before I started lifting/eating. If it wasnít for SS, Iíd still be a total bag of bones who was worried about getting fat. Would not have been able to progress without your advice on this thread!

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