Programming question for a masters novice female Programming question for a masters novice female

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Thread: Programming question for a masters novice female

  1. #1
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    Default Programming question for a masters novice female

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    So I've recently taken on coaching my mother through a novice progression. It's been going well for a couple weeks. Been doing a standard first stage novice program, though I've halved the weight jumps due to considerations she is both female and an older lifter. Doing remarkably well nonetheless, she was able to squat right out of the gate with a lighter bar, no need for some kind of work-up to it. She's at the point now where her deadlift is definitely about to fail in the next workout or two. In the sample in the grey book, the programming change made is to alternate between pulldowns and the deadlift on workout days. I am debating whether she would personally benefit from a lighter deadlift day. I think she could potentially benefit from more deadlifting practice, but 3 heavy deadlift sessions a week is obviously at the point where she's starting to get fried. So I guess the real question is, should I give the deadlifting muscles more of a break with an alternating pulldown session, or give her more chance to practice her deadlift with an alternating light deadlift session?

  2. #2
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    If she's been training for a couple of weeks and her deadlift is about to fail, you fucked something up pretty bad.

  3. #3
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    Well, I started her off light, and we did 5 pound jumps for a number of sessions. Bar speed is getting fairly slow and she's having to take short breathers between reps. I feel like another 5 pound increase or two can potentially present a problem and I want to err on the side of caution here. Maybe I used the term "fail" incorrectly, by "fail" I mean I think within a workout or two of continuing to bump the deadlift up 5 pounds every time, she is probably going to end up missing rep 5, or at least have to take a more extended breather to get it. In examples in the grey book it shows adding a lat pulldown alternation after 2-4 weeks when progress gets slower. This was for a 55 year old male in the example, but it seemed applicable here. For all the older lifter examples it seems to show a lat pulldown alternation with the deadlift being added early on.

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    Are you saying I should have switched to smaller jumps than 5 pounds before alternating with the lat pulldown? I can't really control her diet, though she's been putting in the effort to get more protein in. And I've been increasing her rest interval before doing her deadlift work set, as well as having some breaks between the warmups since some of those can fatigue her too.

  6. #6
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    Five pound jumps usually works fine for 6 weeks, unless you started her too heavy. But if she's getting stuck you've got to do something, so that the jumps to 2.5. If she won't eat, it's not your fault. But that's not usually an issue in the first 2 weeks.

  7. #7
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    It's been 3 weeks looking at the training log. She admitted to me today she's had some days where she was kinda slacking on the eating. So we discussed some ideas for getting more protein in. I shared some of my own tricks, like a big 16 ouncer of milk with any meal I think might come up a bit short on protein. I stressed carbs are also important, but she seems to think she's good there. Also trying to sell her on creatine, but I've still got to combat some weird boogeyman myth she heard about it damaging your kidneys. Is there anything in The Barbell Prescription about it? She just bought it recently, I haven't had a chance to look it over myself but asked to borrow it after she's done with her first read through.

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    Apparently, she doesn't regard you as an authoritative source of information about training. Maybe you should come to a seminar and get your SSC. Might help.

  9. #9
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    Was actually going to go to the one here on Long Island before COVID fucked everything up. Don't think I would've applied for the SSC though, it seems like I need more experience to have a shot at that. I think I still have a lot to learn about coaching.

  10. #10
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    starting strength coach development program
    So is it generally best to resort to shrinking the weight increases before making other programming changes?

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