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PostPosted: Tue Dec 07, 2010 9:37 am 
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Deific Wizard of Sagacity
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Don't ever admit you're old. I'm not that far behind you and I intend to keep denying my age for some time.

I'm wondering whether heavy lifting every week is part of the problem. I just read about Steve Justa doing 70-80% multiple singles. The frequency is daily, volume is moderate and the intensity is low. It still builds strength. It might give the tendons a break. My deadlift seems to weaken every week, mainly because my back feels vulnerable. I think I might try that and get off the 5-3-1 for a while.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 07, 2010 11:28 am 
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You just might want to back off on the frequency to what you were doing before. You lift a lot more frequently than I do, and I keep myself down to what works for me.

I do MMA 2-3x a week, plus weights 2x a week, plus a supplemental conditioning workout close to once a week. At most that means 6 training sessions with 2 complete days off. Any more than that and I start to break down immediately. Less and I don't progress quite as quickly. It took me a long time to identify that balance. I'd suggest you try backing back down to 3x a week and see if that helps. You can do ABC/DAB/CDA/BCD/ABC style, or something like ABC/ABD/ABC/ABD where C and D are your heaviest and most draining lifts. But I'd try to find the frequency that doesn't accumulate more stress than you can handle.

And BTW it's Zercher, not Zurcher - it's attributed to Ed Zercher, a strongman.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 07, 2010 12:20 pm 
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It's definately finding the balance that's key. There is some combination of recovery, intensity, volume and frequency that's right for each person but that balance is going to keep shifting.

Unrelated, I thought you would be interested in this blog: http://www.kurzweilai.net/how-to-achiev ... -naturally


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 07, 2010 4:32 pm 
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Well, you're both right. As I think about it, the soreness has probably been accumulating since I increased the frequency.

I read a post a few weeks ago on someone's blog or web site, one of the "big name" fitness people, but I can't remember who, nor find it again. But they talked about "light day creep" or something like that. Basically, the lifter feels like the light lifting isn't doing anything, so he keeps gradually making it heavier, until he gets to the point that light days are interfering with recovery from the heavy days, and the heavy days erode. I think I've really done that. My light days have been relatively high-volume, a few warm-up sets, then 5x10, sometimes doing dead-stop lifts, or pushing the speed hard. At first I DL'd once per week with an assistance lift the light day. Lately I've been doing Sumos on the "light" day. I've also been doing most of my warm-up DLs froma deficit.

But still, I really think that going 9 or 10 days between a given lift is not optimal for me. I think I need to lift at least weekly, but really make the light days light, or strictly assistance lifts.

I think I should cut out full squats and DLs for a couple of weeks, and do single-leg work, then come back to them much lighter. I'd still do a 5/3/1 progression, but reset my working max by 20 or 30%.

Stu, can you tell me more about Steve Justa. Where did you read about him?

The other idea I had played with is to modify the 5/3/1 progression, like do 2x5 or 2x4 in the first week, 2x3 the second and then 3/2/1 the third week. Or something to reduce the volume a little. I also think I may be doing too many warm-up reps, which is adding to the total volume.

Have either of you (or anyone else) seen Schuler's new book? The title is something about abs, but he claims in the Fitcast interview that it's not really about abs (so why give it that title?), but about mobility and core training. He says that he now does way more mobility and core work, much less traditional lifting, claims to feel better, be more agile, faster, and to still be strong. Hmmm....

Anyway, thanks to both of you and anyone else who is reading this for "listening" to me ramble.

Upper body doesn't seem to be bothering me, so I'll keep the intensity up, but cut the frequency.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 07, 2010 5:45 pm 
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I saw Justa mentioned in that site I found the horse lifting picture. This time I was reading Gubernatrix after you posted a link to her site. She had an interview with Justa. He lifts every day but rarely heavier than 80% load and always singles. It's so different it's probably something to try for a while. I'm going to try a 5 day/week version of my own. He has a new book out so several sites are writing about him.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 07, 2010 10:13 pm 
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I knew it sounded familiar, and that's where I read about him. It seemed like he was talking about only training a single lift. I didn't understand if he actually only does one, or if he does a similar program for several lifts at a time. If so, it would get pretty time-consuming by late in the week when he is doing many singles of each lift. I'll try to check it out again.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 08, 2010 5:54 am 
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I'm going to have to read his book. It's the concept of frequent, low intensity workouts that is appealing to me. I think that was just an example. Some other sites had different examples.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 08, 2010 9:37 pm 
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So here's what I'm going to try for a while. Still 5/3/1, lifting 3 days per week this way:

A Squat, light bench, chins, cleans
B DL, press, DB row, fallouts
C Bench, light squat, pullups, light press

I'm going to keep the light lifts truly light, but try to lift for speed.

Most of the time it will be A on Tues, B on Thurs, C on Sat.

For the first couple of weeks, I'm going to substitute single-leg work for the squats and DL. I'm going to reset the DL 30%, the squat 20% and press 10%. I haven't decided about bench yet--for the moment I'm going to keep going with the present progression. Today would be my usual bench day. I'll take it off, and start the new schedule on Saturday.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 02, 2011 10:26 pm 
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I see I posted the first workout of 2011. You should not let the time-zone difference diminish your worship of my awesomeness. :lol:


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 07, 2011 2:31 am 
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Well, it seems that either my attempt to return to training was premature, or I didn't decrease the weight enough, or something outside of the gym is affecting me, especially my back. Restarted a cycle last week. DL went just fine, while I was doing it, and in the gym. I felt fine. By evening I was hurting, but it decreased over a couple of days so I convinced myself that it was just DOMS from coming back after a couple of weeks off. Then Tuesday this week I squatted. Again, I felt OK doing it, or I would have stopped. By evening, again I was hurting pretty badly, and the pain continued over the next several days. I didn't lift Thursday (which would have been DL again). I'm also feeling tired, moody (down emotionally, but not really depressed), drained physically and emotionally. Maybe this is what the fabled over-training feels like. Then on top of things, I have gastroenteritis. So I've decided not to work out at all for about 2 weeks, then start lighter than I did this past time. And work at keeping the light lifts light.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 12, 2011 11:56 am 
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Take care of that back, Andy.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 13, 2011 2:27 pm 
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How can a hospital be closed...?


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 14, 2011 10:51 pm 
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So I'm at a fancy resort in Thailand. There's an organization in the US that organized a huge medical conference for medical missionaries like me every 2 years. It give me a chance to get a huge number of continuing medical education credits for courses that are actually relevant to my practice, and not just high-resource, developed-world practice. It also gives an overview of things that are happening in practice in the West, so that if people have to return home for some reason, they won't be completely at sea.

So anyway, we traveled early because there only 2 flights per week from PNG coming this direction, and we've tried to get the most we could out of the time--zip line in the mountains, white-water rafting, seeing things. Came out to the resort yesterday, but I have no meetings until tomorrow.

For a nice resort it has a really bad "gym". There's an old worn-out multi-station weight machine. I thought that at least I'd use the pec deck, but half of it is gone, and unilateral pec deck just doesn't work. There is a dip station, so I used that. There are 3 old, flimsy stationary bikes, a very cheap stepper with hydrolic ram things that look like screen-door closers. There is a thing with a turntable to stand on and handles to hold so you can twist back and forth. There's an "Ab Swing" which is a seat with an attached bar with foot rests and handles. You apparently rock your hips forward and back, which puts very little load on abs or anything, just flexes and extends the L-spine. There are dumbbells up to 10 Kg.

So, I'll have to improvise. This morning I did towel chins at the playground, then dips and hip thrusts with the 2 10 kg DBs. Not bad. Next I'll do pushups and shoulder presses, and of course, pull ups of some kind.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2011 4:49 am 
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pdellorto wrote:
You just might want to back off on the frequency to what you were doing before. You lift a lot more frequently than I do, and I keep myself down to what works for me.


Peter--you were absolutely right here! My training has been crap since I started screwing with a plan that was working (back in November!). Slow progress is definitely better than slow deterioration! I'm going back to 4 day microcycles, 3 workouts/week. I'm also going back to doing the Boring but Big assistance, mostly. I'm still going to work in 2 pull-ups twice, and heavy DB rows once per microcycle. I'm resetting the training maxes, quite a bit on squats and DLs, moderately on press, but not on bench.

I'm in transition to home assignment for 4 months. A lady we're staying with in Hawaii goes to a gym, but the day pass is $25! We're going to the Big Island, so I'll look for a place there for next week.

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Our greatest fear should not be of failure, but of succeeding at things in life that don't really matter.--Francis Chan


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 Post subject: Re: Re:
PostPosted: Fri Mar 18, 2011 11:27 am 
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Jungledoc wrote:
Peter--you were absolutely right here!


It's unusual, but it's been known to happen. :wink:

Whenever problems occur, I've learned to say, "What can I cut out to get back to things that work?" not "what can I change or add?" It's usually subtraction that does the trick.

On the Big Island I guess you'll just have to go bodyweight for a while. Find a park and do pullups.

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