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Would you recommend Mark Rippetoe's Starting Strength for Novice's Program?
Yes 77%  77%  [ 10 ]
No 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
Undecided 23%  23%  [ 3 ]
Total votes : 13
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 Post subject: Starting Strength
PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2008 9:19 am 
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Hey guys, just wondering if anyone here has tried the Mark Rippetoe Starting Strength Novice Program?

I am pretty sure it is what I need and I've been reading up on it the last couple of days. I just want to hear from anyone on here who has had success or problems with it!

I am pretty sure I will have success but probably not overly rapid as I'll be trying to lose fat at the same time! I have also used all the lifts in previous training but due to decreases in strength and flexibility it would be good to go back to basics and re-train the lifts to get my form and flexibility back!

I'm also debating on buying the book or just usign the wikia etc. to do the program. I have found a free preview of the first 2 chapters (Introduction and The Squat) and will read those as well so my decision is as informed as possible!

Anyway any feedback would be good!

John

P.S. sorry if this is a topic that keeps popping up, I did do a search but it mostly pointed to this program being mentioned to corealex and KaiX7! lol


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2008 9:30 am 
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It's a program that is ideal for 2 types of people.

1) Those who have worked out but have never trained for strength. They know a bit about weight training but don't currently squat or deadlift.

2) People who used to lift heavy but have been away from it for some time and your lifts are well below what they used to be.

The thing that both these groups have in common is that they will both make rapid progress. That is the main benefit of this program. If you are already very strong and train the heavy lifts now, you probably need a program that has more recovery built into it.

If ou are in one of the 2 groups, and I think you are in group 2, it's highly recommended.

Stu


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2008 9:31 am 
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I've never done the program myself for various reasons, but I can't see how it is possibly a bad choice. Mark Rippetoe has worked with lots of novice lifters and you'll get the benefits of that experience.

The only problem is if you are an older lifter, or if you've got a lot of demanding sports practice outside the weight room or both, you won't last as long on the program. The upside of the program is that it's aimed at simple, linear gains in compound, basic lifts - you don't do a lot of lifting, just work hard, rest, and then lift again with a tad more weight on the bar. You don't fool around with various rep ranges, different sets, accessory exercises, etc. You just learn to do the basic lifts and then do them a lot.
The downside is, if you aren't a beginner (or regaining lost strength, I suppose), this kind of program isn't going to work for you for very long...but it's worth trying and seeing.

I'd highly recommend getting the book. The wiki is good, so is the bodybuilding.com forum post, but it's not nearly as informative as the book. 90%+ percent of the book is dedicated not to this program, but to good exercise form for the big lifts and lots of accessory movements. You'll walk away with a much better understand of what to do, how to do it, and why to do it than you would sticking to the online resources.


Let me sum it up this way - I haven't done the program, and I'm not the kind of lifter it's aimed at (I'm 36, battered with injuries, and I train MMA constantly), but I got at least my $30 worth out of buying the book.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2008 9:37 am 
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Thanks guys!

I definitely fit in to category 2 Stu!

And I am trying to rgain lost strength Pete!

My only sporting commitment over December and January will be beach voleyball once a week so the recovery time will be there for me! In February I'll be taking Basketball back up on a Sunday night and indoor Volleyball will be Wednesday and/or Thursday nights, but that's a good 2 months of progress I can get in before then!

John[/list]


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2008 9:40 am 
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I voted yes, too.

I've never used it. I never knew about it when I started training. However, if you could turn back time to when I was a newbie, I would deffinitly do starting strength or something very similar to it.

KPj


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2008 10:27 am 
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KPj wrote:
I've never used it. I never knew about it when I started training. However, if you could turn back time to when I was a newbie, I would deffinitly do starting strength or something very similar to it.


That's exactly what I would say. I look back on the bench-three-times-a-week, no-squats, no-deadlifts program a friend gave me when I started and cringe. It was chest, bis, and shoulders 3x a week. How much stronger would I be now if it was squat 3x a week, alternating deadliftings and cleans, bench pressing and pressing, plus maybe some chins to round it out? How much better off would I be?


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2008 10:50 am 
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Eeexcellent (Monty Burns style!)

I found a .pdf of the whole first edition of Starting Strength and promptly didn't download it! I will however read the free preview I found of the first two chapters and possibly download the whole book! Unfortunately I've not been able to track it down in the UK and unless I want to pay extortionate amounts for postage it'll take too long to get to me here from the US! I'll buy it back in Australia in December! Rip will get some money out of me evetually, don't worry!

After reading your posts, the FAQ, the praise for the book on Amazon and Google books and deciding on my goals for the next 12 months I'm 100% that this is for me!

I'll keep my journal up to date with what I do between now and December and then I can be a forum Guinea Pig for Starting Strength. I'll post my progress so you guys can check up on what's going on and also point other noobs like myself there so they can see what someone has been able to achieve or not achieve on the program!

Cheers guys!

John


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2008 11:05 am 
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Ach... What would we give to get our first 6 months back?

But then again, sort of reminds me of some stuff I was reading from Dave Tate. Such as, if he never tore his pec, he would never of went to Westside Barbell.

Similarly, if I never tore my RC, I can't think how I would be training just now. That whole experience infuriated me into learning - it was the proverbial rocket in my a$$, and the momentum continues to build. It's almost scary. Hopefully it will lead to something good.

A friend of mine has recently came and trained with us. 'Us', being, another friend of mine that I train with some/half of the time. We all grew up together but only 2 of us started lifting. It looks like he's getting the 'bug' - it's hard not to enjoy my training. Lift heavy things, talk about lifting heavy things whilst resting between sets of lifting heavy things. Then some assistance exercises which will ultimately help us lift even heavier things.

He's skinny, bad posture, injury free, and potentially very strong (judging by his grip). I'm very excited to see if he will stick it out. Because if he does, he'll be training with me 4x/week, and you know if he trains with me, he won't be wasting his time on curls and kick backs. I'm excited about it because it's almost like a clean slate. He could potentially have that start to his training that experienced lifters everywhere wish they could of had.

Oh, in an effort to add some relevance to the OP and not hijack this too much - He will be doing a similar program to starting strength. If he comes in 4x/week (which is what I do), then he'll just more mobility/stability stuff, more rowing, and single leg work. Not that I think starting strength needs to be changed, it's just if I have him for 4 days per weeks, then I have more time to work on other things.

KPj


Last edited by KPj on Mon Sep 29, 2008 11:10 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2008 11:06 am 
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Just remember, downloading illegal copies of an author's book makes babies cry.

Also, remember that subbing rows for the power cleans makes Mark Rippetoe cry.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2008 11:09 am 
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I am one of the undecided votes, believe it or not. To me, I think ANY novice would benefit with a wider variety of exerises to become accustomed to weight training, for a 2-4 week "induction period". At that point however, it would depend on the person's goals as to which avenue they should take. If its for overall STRENGTH, then yes, a push, pull,qat formula would be, IMHO, the correct, or a more optimal way to go, be it Rippetoe, Starr, Askem, or whatever. However, if a person was more interested in general conditioning, or God forbid bodybuilding, I would recommend a ore diverse program with ones similar to the ones listed in the sticky, or on a program such as cossfit. It all really boils down to WHY are you playing with the iron. There really isn't one size fits all.
Tim


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2008 11:40 am 
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I am also one of the undecided's. And that's because, I am a Novice/Newbie who has only been lifting for the past few months.

However, I just started the SS program yesterday, and Tomorrow is Day 2 and Workout B.

Now Keep in mind, I'm not the teenager who is a beginner. I am 31 and have a family (wife and 2 small children), Job, and Softball 1 night a week (only for a few more weeks).

After the short time I have been in the Gym, realize that I am Truly Weak, and even worse is the fact that my previous routine was very light on Leg Exercises. Therefore, My Starting Bench Press is higher than my starting Squat :frown: . I intend to fix this problem as well as build a good base of strength in the process. All while spending LESS time in the Gym and more time with the Family. Read about my decision making process here.

Cliff


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2008 12:43 pm 
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Tim and Wilbur,

I too am one of the undecided votes! I know I've said I am 100% going to do this, but that doesn't mean I can recommend the program yet!

Wilbur, I'm 27, job, wife but no kids. I have been a strong guy previously and I'm still strong-ish, but I want to be stronger! I mostly want to build leg strength for jumping and 'sprinting' in Volleyball and Basketball. The exercises used are ones I used in my old work outs as a teen. At the time I was 6' tall (hasn't changed), weighed 200lbs, had a 28" vertical jump able to grab a BBall hoop with a standing jump (but not dunk :cry: !), and I was squatting up around the 395lbs mark consistently!

I had the benefit of an "Olympic" Weightlifting coach (he coached 3 Commonwealth Games reps for Australia in their junior years) teaching me technique. However I lost interest when I found cars, booze and women! My goal is to use the exercises to build vertical jump, sprint power (speed work will be done seperately later on) and the bench press and press will improve upper body strength for spiking, keeping position under the basket and throwing elbows at the other teams dirty players!!! So it's in line with my goals to give this a try and see if it helps me out!

Pete, I don't like illegal downloading either! But I want to be read up by the time I'm ready to hit the gym in December, so it's a forgivable evil if I buy a copy, right? :roll:

I'll also have a friend joining in with me but he is slightly more advanced so his plan is to do SS with me then hang back at the gym for a few auxillary moves to finish off! Will let you guys know what he plans for himself too!

Cheers guys,

John


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2008 7:39 pm 
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jeffrerr wrote:
But I want to be read up by the time I'm ready to hit the gym in December, so it's a forgivable evil if I buy a copy, right? :roll:


It's just a sore point with me...I guess it's not so different from taking the book out of the library to read it, but at least then someone paid for the copy. I actually had a friend of mine illegally download a copy of something I wrote. I was pretty annoyed...I mean, author income on books is generally pretty low without your friends gyping you out of royalties! Only the best-sellers make anything, and very few of them make enough to live off of.

The other point I'd make is the second edition is apparently a big improvement. I've only read the second edition, and it's a useful book.

TimD wrote:
It all really boils down to WHY are you playing with the iron. There really isn't one size fits all.


I agree with you here, Tim. I'd put it this way - there isn't one size fits all, but there are some programs which give you a better start than others. Starting Strength isn't going to be all things to all people, but for someone starting out, or someone looking to regain form and strength on the big lifts, it's a good one. It's simple, to the point, doesn't require a lot of gear, and helps build good habits (liking squatting and deadlifting often!).

So that why I say it's a good way to go. So are the other routines in the sticky; so is Eric Cressey's Maximum Strength (if you've got access to a lot more than a bench and a rack), a friend of mine has had excellent results on New Rules of Lifting (ditto, need lots of toys), and I'm sure doing well getting back up to and beyond my previous strength on Westside for Skinny Bastards. I'd just say if you're looking to get strong, don't want to deal with a lot of exercises or gear, and stick to the basics, Starting Strength is a pretty simple one.

It's not the only way to go, but it's not a bad way to go for that!


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 30, 2008 3:45 am 
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I agree with Tims reasons, too. To be honest, if I recommend a beginner program over the net, i'll say Starting Strength. If i'm helping someone in the gym, I can actually SEE them. What they end up with is something based on starting strength. By 'based on' starting strength, what I mean is, it's based around the basic big exercises. I just add some things to it, since over the last few years I now feel strongly about certain aspects of training. Such as,

I feel that you shouldn't even think about the benching until you can do at least 20, good form push ups. I don't think you should be squating if you can't knock out atleast a few, but preferably 8-10 single leg squats. I actually took those numbers from Alwyn Cosgrove.

The negative with that is that single leg squats aren't much fun. And push ups are boring when you have a bench press sitting there waiting to be used. It's hard to believe in a program that's boring. So I would start them benching and squating meanwhile progressing them to single leg squats and getting them competent at push ups and other exercises that challenge the stability of the upper back and core. If you have the time, you can do all this at once. If you don't have the time, you can periodise to get the job done.

What I really like about starting strength is the simplicity. I THINK I would start conditioning and bodybuilding folks on exactly the same kind of program to be honest. From what i've seen, most newbies lack the control to perform the most basic of movements competently (squat, DL, press, row). So even if someone is wanting to do cross fit type work outs, I would start them on something like starting strength, BUT, i would progress them to more movements as soon as they becamse competent at performing them. Unlike the strength trainee, who I would prefer to take full advantage of the strength gains starting strength will get them.

In terms of Bodybuilding, I think most newbies would be best served just focusing on getting stronger (and eating)...

Bear in mind, bodybuilding and 'conditioning' isn't exactly my niche. Just my opinion.

KPj


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 30, 2008 3:56 am 
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wilburburns wrote:
After the short time I have been in the Gym, realize that I am Truly Weak,
Cliff


Hey - as Mike Robertson said in his latest article - you've got to be weak before you can be strong.

And as I say to people in my gym - it doesn't matter WHAT you're lifting. What matters is HOW you're lifting (technique and effort) and whether you're numbers are going up or not. So, if you're only lifting 50lbs on something, then the only reason you should be mad with yourself is if that 50lbs has been the same for a long time. If 50lbs was 40 or 45lbs 2weeks ago, then you should be happy, and keep at it. If it's not moved in some time, then change something. The weight on the bar is just a number.

KPj


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