Your Program Works!  You have made my life better.  Thank you!  46 year old male. Your Program Works! You have made my life better. Thank you! 46 year old male.

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Thread: Your Program Works! You have made my life better. Thank you! 46 year old male.

  1. #1
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    Talking Your Program Works! You have made my life better. Thank you! 46 year old male.

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    Rip,

    I know you probably get a million emails telling you thank you. Whenever I get them in my business I always appreciate them, so I figured one more couldn't hurt. For background, I am 46 years old. I have been running on mountain trails, many times in the mud and snow, for the past few years. I have run 35 miles twice through the mountains. I have hiked and climbed many mountains, though for many years I was "too busy" to exercise much and my waist showed it When I got back into exercising a few years ago, I learned about Crossfit and did that for two or three years straight. I thoroughly enjoyed Crossfit. I follow Glenn Reynolds on his www.instapundit.com blog and I noticed he kept mentioning you and your Starting Strength book. For quite some time I encouraged Glenn to try Crossfit and bail on the barbells. One day we were talking and Glenn turned the tables on me when I asked him, once again, to try Crossfit. He simply said, "Mark Rippetoe's program works for me. YOU should give it a try." I respect Glenn, so I clicked on his Amazon link to your book on his blog and...here I am. I am amazed at what your program has done for me. You have changed my life and I can not thank you enough.

    I have religiously followed your squat program for 3 months now. When I started, I was in terrible pain. I am not flexible at all. I have never been able to squat down all the way. But I was determined to try. I was so pathetic I had to start with the empty bar. Anything else was just too painful to squat "all the way down" with. I stretched and stretched my arms to grab the bar. I stretched and stretched my hips and legs to get low. Over 2 months I worked my way up to 250 pounds on the squat and I was pretty proud of myself. All the while I read your book over and over to check my form and make sure it was right. One day I asked my buddy to video me. On checking the frame by frame I realized I was not even close to parallel--let alone below parallel. I just couldn't get there. Frustrated, I took 50 pounds off, got back "under the bar," gritted my teeth, and tried again. This time I yelled at my buddy to keep telling if I was as "low as the book showed." He kept telling me to go lower and I kept yelling back it couldn't possibly be that low! We kept the video camera rolling because the frames don't lie. When I thought I was finally going to explode--I made it. Now, about 1 month later, I will be loading 240 back onto the bar tomorrow. My goal is 300 pounds by the end of the year--an unimaginable weight when I started. It make me happy just to think I could even imagine such a weight. My change in strength after three months of squats had been nothing short of unbelievable.

    Now, here is where it gets interesting. Keep in mind I have been running for years and I had done Crossfit for almost three years before all this. On off days, I still trail run. I love it too much to give it up. The other day while I was running I tripped on a root (it happens EVERY time you trail run--it's just part of life on a mountain trail). I was running down hill so momentum was against me (along with Mean Old Mr. Gravity). I knew this one was going to draw blood. I flew through the air with my arms out--ready for another tumble in the rocks and weeds. Then, ONE leg caught my stumble, straightened me out, and I just kept running. I barely lost stride. I was stunned. Talk about an asymmetric muscular event! I am amazed my full weight, at top--unbalanced speed--was caught with one leg almost effortlessly. I have one thing to say to people who say your program won't help asymmetric muscular events, "YANDTP!"

    This made me think. Trip and fall is what sadly kills many elderly people. They fall, break a hip, never recover, catch pneumonia, and die. If they squatted, their femur would be denser, their balance would be better, their neuro-pathways would be keener, and they would be very likely to have the strength to catch their fall in the first place (as I did on the trail) before any damage ever happened to them. Barbells may be cheaper--and more effective--than Obamacare.

    Your squat program works! I have added 5 pounds every workout for 3 months now to my squat. I lift 3 times a week. I have added at least 10 pounds/week to my deadlift. I started at 195 pounds with my dead lift. Last night I dead lifted 340 x 5 reps.

    My only complaint is your dang forum keeps me up ALL night!!! Good reading.

    I'm pretty sure God squats.

    David

  2. #2
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    Great job, David. Thanks for the data point.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by David Kirkham View Post
    I learned about Crossfit and did that for two or three years straight. I thoroughly enjoyed Crossfit....

    I have religiously followed your squat program for 3 months now. When I started, I was in terrible pain. I am not flexible at all. I have never been able to squat down all the way.
    Were you doing CrossFit at home, or was there a coach involved?

  4. #4
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    Freakin Awesome, David!! Good work so far and keep at it, brother! Very well presented also - -excellent post.

  5. #5
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    We built a nice gym here at our office to work out in. My brother (who has been doing CrossFit, lifting, MMA, etc. his entire life) worked with me for many months, coaching me on the lifts and the moves. He is extremely knowledgeable. That said, I was never able to do the full depth squat. I couldn't reach back and grab the bar with my arms and I couldn't squat down far enough. I just wasn't that flexible. So, we just modified the work outs when squats were called out. My brother and I decided it was better to work on other things because getting hurt is a powerful deterrent to most things in life. If you hurt you won't keep with the program--especially if you are just starting out. If you don't do the program--you circle the drain. Instead of squatting with a barbell I would, for example, squat with a kettle bell or a plate or whatever. I needed the weight out in front of me as a counter balance. With a weight I could get a reasonable depth (not parallel, however). I am just not that flexible.

    However, after I read your book I realized how important squatting is. So, I determined I was going to get under the bar. I'm glad I did. It has changed my life for the better. When my brother read your book, he immediately changed a lifetime of lifting habits--literally overnight he changed how he lifted. Your book is very powerful because it goes over, point by point, why the exercises are important and how to do them correctly (and how NOT to do them).

    I'd like to throw in a note here. One of the problems with CrossFit is you never really know how good a coach may or may not be. Certainly, a CrossFit coach can be certified, but that doesn't mean they are a good coach. Like EVERYTHING in life, there are good ones and bad ones--think doctors, coaches, politicians (well, maybe politicians--they pretty much all stink). Please understand I am not knocking CrossFit. I am grateful for what it did for me. It got me moving. It got me strong. I was able to do 40 pull-ups (kipping) and got to where I swung a 100 lb kettle bell. I could run 35 miles through the mountains with over 10,000 feet of vertical assent. I was in pretty good shape (but I never quite got my waist-line where I wanted it).

    But, I wasn't Starting Strength strong. We read your book very carefully and we couldn't argue with the reasoning or the facts. So, we changed what we were doing--and now I am far stronger than CrossFit ever made me. I am grateful for it. Thank you!

    My only complaint is I am gaining weight again. I need to cut back but I don't want to lose all these wonderful strength gains I have made. I need to figure out a nutrition program--any suggestions?

    Thank you once again! I love your program.

  6. #6
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    Contact Jordan through the nutrition forum. He specializes in this.

  7. #7
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    Thumbs up

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rippetoe View Post
    Contact Jordan through the nutrition forum. He specializes in this.
    Done. Thanks! I even invited him to our party on the 30th.

    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Jones View Post

    Freakin Awesome, David!! Good work so far and keep at it, brother! Very well presented also - -excellent post.
    Brian, thank you. That means a ton to me coming from you. I blew the 240 squat last night. On rep 2 I dropped like a dead fish. Good thing I have this killer rack I made with plans from SS--I did PR the press, however.

    I posted your unbelievable story on my Facebook. I was overcome when I read it--you, sir, are an animal. If you are in Utah on the 30th of Sept I'd love to have you come out and see us.

    David

  8. #8
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    starting strength coach development program
    Quote Originally Posted by David Kirkham View Post
    Done. Thanks! I even invited him to our party on the 30th.



    Brian, thank you. That means a ton to me coming from you. I blew the 240 squat last night. On rep 2 I dropped like a dead fish. Good thing I have this killer rack I made with plans from SS--I did PR the press, however.

    I posted your unbelievable story on my Facebook. I was overcome when I read it--you, sir, are an animal. If you are in Utah on the 30th of Sept I'd love to have you come out and see us.

    David
    At this point I will not be in Utah during that time frame, HOWEVER, I will make it a point to make it through sometime now that I know I got a buddy there. Deal?

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