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Bill Starr's 5 x 5 program... Variation per Madcow2 (thanx) So here it is! K up now!


Welcome to the EliteFitness.com Bodybuilding Site! Please join this discussion about Bill Starr's 5 x 5 program... Variation per Madcow2 (thanx) So here it is! K up now! within the Weight Training & Weight Lifting category.

Excerpt: Content by Madcow2 Last Revised 1/11/2006 UPDATE - I have updated program descriptions, template downloads, and an updated Table of Contents on my Geocities site (i.e. lots more topics and better organization). This will be the final update of this TOC in the thread (and it's an incomplete one because there's just too much) but the one on that site essentially links all the topics below and more, many of which come to this very thread. This is easier on me and the better descriptions with

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  1. #111
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    Re: Bill Starr's 5 x 5 program... Variation per Madcow2 (thanx) So here it is! K up n

    Quote Quote posted by Madcow2
    If you working weight (not 1RM) is going to be > 2x bodyweight during the volume phase then 3x5 will likely put less strain on the system. The DL is very taxing and with the abundance of squating for very strong trainees may prove detrimental. I believe it's been mentioned before (Animalmass has it in there I believe on page 1) but I didn't make a big point of it in my own posts. There is no alteration for the intensity phase. This 3x5 adjustment may or may not matter to a given individual but the stronger a lifter is the more taxing and DL becomes on the CNS which is one of the reasons why Westside used to try to avoid it like the plague as their elite lifters hoist some major tonnage and can burn themselves out easily if training it consistently (another reason why I don't understand them not using olympic lifts or more dynamic pulling variants).
    For some variation, what would benefit me the most after these 10 weeks? (Im on Week 7 starting today) I would like to go to a regular split for a few weeks and then hit this routine up again. but what do you suggest? I miss upright rows, leg extentions, and other basic things. What place do these, and other lifts have as far as incorporating / cycling these with the 5x5 routine?
    Bionic

  2. #112
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    Re: Bill Starr's 5 x 5 program... Variation per Madcow2 (thanx) So here it is! K up now!

    I weigh 122.5 Kg (270 lb) so I'm not anywhere near 2x bodyweight in the deadlift. I don't really know my BF% but I'd guess around 22-24%. I'll just play it by ear with the deadlifts. I'm so new to them, anyway.

    Thanks for the advice to take a recovery week (or two) before launching back into another run at the program. I'm not sure I'll be able to resist attempting a new 1RM on the bench next Monday, though. I'm planning to switch gyms next week, having found a real gym rather than a "leisure center" not too far away, and was thinking of spending a week really just playing with the new facilities so this fits in nicely.

    I'll print out and take a good read through the squat posting. I also came across a link in another thread to a 10-week deadlifting routine from Coan and Philippi which struck me as following the dual-factor theory.
    http://www.powerpage.net/coanphildead.html
    Assuredly too advanced for me at this stage but interesting nonetheless.

    I followed your program as closely as I could and did only 3 gym visits per week. Off days I'd do maybe 40-60 minutes walking with spouse and dogs but that was about it. You can laugh at the places where I went wrong when I post the logs.

    I'm very pleased with the progress I've made as when I started I really had no idea whether I'd be able to cope with the work I knew it would place on my back since I was (and am) still coming through a rehab for a chronic bad lower back. I decided, also, from the start, that I wouldn't use a belt. The difference it's made is highly gratifying.

  3. #113
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    Re: Bill Starr's 5 x 5 program... Variation per Madcow2 (thanx) So here it is! K up n

    Quote Quote posted by BionicBC
    For some variation, what would benefit me the most after these 10 weeks? (Im on Week 7 starting today) I would like to go to a regular split for a few weeks and then hit this routine up again. but what do you suggest? I miss upright rows, leg extentions, and other basic things. What place do these, and other lifts have as far as incorporating / cycling these with the 5x5 routine?
    Bionic
    See how you feel closer to the end before making a call.

    My personal opinions are that leg extensions are more appropriate for rehab purposes (I use them in for periods to balance out my quads as I can get lateral tracking of the knee cap over the patella due to an imbalance). They are fairly close to total garbage otherwise and put your knee in a very bad position - funny how most people think this is better than full squatting but this is the king of shit for your knees.

    Upright rows - better to invest some time in learning how to do OLs and variants. You can work 1/10th as hard (or 1/10th as dedicated would be better) and make 20x the progress. The applicable best lifts would be snatches performed from the hang and snatch grip high pulls. I also like the muscle snatch and performing it very slow without momentum as I feel it's a good exercise for strengthening the rotators and other small muscles. Overhead squating is also decent. If you to www.usaweightlifting.org (or visit the OL forum at www.goheavy.com they might point you to a coach in your area). Coaching is very cheap and they want to promote the sport and are totally psyched to see anyone interested so you will be well received. The clean/snatch and the variations are invaluable. They lower the load from deadlifting, are concentric only and easier to recover from, and the back/traps/shoulders respond like nothing else to dynamic pulling. A huge addition to one's arsenal and with some a few sessions with a coach you can be up and running fast - plus, you might even like it and want to go further.

    So steping down off the soapbox, as far as fitting in the exercises between 5x5 cycles you could do a 4 week period (or 2 two weeks) where you incorporate these and work on targeted weak points. I'd spend some time on strengthening the core, some speed work, maybe some interval sprinting. Basically a 4 week period of specialized tune up where you concentrate on some of the more detail lifts and train light/explosively in the core lifts concentrating on accelerating the bar throughout the range of motion. You can do 2 light weeks first to deload if you've suffered through the 3x3 phase or jump on it if you haven't. If you decide to run the 4 weeks like a more standard loading program, push hard but not too hard in weeks 2/3 and scale back in 4, starting the volume phase moderately for week 5 (week 1 of volume).
    Last edited by Madcow2; 09-Mar-2005 at 03:41 PM.

  4. #114
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    Re: Bill Starr's 5 x 5 program... Variation per Madcow2 (thanx) So here it is! K up n

    Quote Quote posted by Blut Wump
    I weigh 122.5 Kg (270 lb) so I'm not anywhere near 2x bodyweight in the deadlift. I don't really know my BF% but I'd guess around 22-24%. I'll just play it by ear with the deadlifts. I'm so new to them, anyway.

    snipped
    You might also concentrate on some core work during the deload and possibly even incorporate it into your next cycle. Hypers are excellent for rehab purposes and I've used them myself many times. Pullthroughs are also valuable. Goodmornings are also something to look into to strengthen the whole posterior chain. Spend some time checking out Westside barbell's programs - they do a lot of core conditioning and posterior chain work. Chances are your back will be stronger than ever now that you are incorporating full body pulling and direct core work which is essential.

    Belts are helpful for max attempts or very heavy lifts. For standard training, try not to use one too much and just keep the weight to what you can do with good technique. Eventually you may wish to push yourself and a belt really helps to give you something to push your abs against when holding your air and tighten around your core but for basic conditioning I prefer to avoid unless one intends to specialize at some point.

    The Coan/Phillippi is setup much the same way except that it is peaking for a competition. For this deloading is taken to a larger extreme to make sure one comes in at 100%. To be honest, most athletes rarely fully deload during a year except for critical competitions where top performance is expected. You can see an example in the Smolov article where I believe it covers the weeks just before competition - you'll notice the frequency dips considerably and the volume is slashed while intensity tends to remain high in general. The more you look, the more you'll find dual factor in very very common use worldwide. I don't exagerate when I say single factor training is mostly BBers who have never heard of dual factor training and couldn't name a good training book/researcher/or coach if their life depended on it. It is a damn desolate camp with very very few serious coaches using it (yeah the HIT proponents are there - someone hit them with a plate and knock some sense into the psuedoscience inclined).
    Last edited by Madcow2; 09-Mar-2005 at 03:38 PM.

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    Re: Bill Starr's 5 x 5 program... Variation per Madcow2 (thanx) So here it is! K up now!

    Just as I had thought - I have two other concerns which I forgot to address.

    First off, I may have misunderstood something - for those unsure of their work capacity, a 2x/week split should be used during the INTENSITY PHASE as well as the fifth week, which is deloading? I was thinking you dropped to 2x/week frequency for one week, the fifth, then back up to 3x. The reverse would make more sense, though.

    Second, what lifts do you set records for in the 3/4 and 8/9 weeks? I figured squat, bench, and row, and the rest are just bumped up 5-10 lbs. when you feel you can add it. Is this correct, or am I missing something?

  6. #116
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    Re: Bill Starr's 5 x 5 program... Variation per Madcow2 (thanx) So here it is! K up n

    Quote Quote posted by Tom Treutlein
    Just as I had thought - I have two other concerns which I forgot to address.

    First off, I may have misunderstood something - for those unsure of their work capacity, a 2x/week split should be used during the INTENSITY PHASE as well as the fifth week, which is deloading? I was thinking you dropped to 2x/week frequency for one week, the fifth, then back up to 3x. The reverse would make more sense, though.

    Second, what lifts do you set records for in the 3/4 and 8/9 weeks? I figured squat, bench, and row, and the rest are just bumped up 5-10 lbs. when you feel you can add it. Is this correct, or am I missing something?
    1) So the 2x per week variation would be run from week 5 (what I break out as a specific deloading week) through the end of the intensity phase. Week 5 is actually part of the intensity phase but I always mentally break it out because the weights are constant with final volume week and aren't part of my ramp up. The reason I offer the 2x is that it is really essential that one deloads fully and most people are following the 3x variation I happen to use verbatim without adequately monitoring themselves for extra days off and cutting volume as needed. Meaning - the 3x load is pushing people to the limit before they realize that they need to adjust, although they seem to have kept the weights light enough in the early 3x3 to recover from the volume phase which is ideal so they are really just reloading at the end. I'm sure a bit more experience with this style program will allow them to better monitor their own tolerances and gradually increase those tolerances over time but the 2x serves the purpose by simply taking judgement out of their hands and ensuring the total volume is adequate to deload nearly every individual. If you intend to use the 3x - either plan on some extra days here and there maybe slash off some volume as needed or be prepared to take a week or so between week 9 and your next volume phase with some light speed work (good contrast to heavy 3x3 and 1x3) in the core lifts and frequency at 2x per week. Of course, that all depends on your individual tolerances but if followed without deviation it tends to be too much for the vast majority of people. Those with some years of high volume/intensity training under their belts will likely fare better.

    Basically my error in presenting a deloading cycle that I knew would overtax the majority and leaving it to judgement when I knew most people didn't have enough experience with this program style to judge properly and would likely follow it until it ran them down. As I've watched people work their way through the program, I've been kicking myself for making such a bonehead and obvious error. Oh well, an extra week or so to deload again won't kill anyone and there are definietly some strength and foundation benefits to be had from the 3x version with its single sets of triples.

    2) Actually, you are ramping to records in all lifts and all days (except for the Wednesday squat which is a given % less than Monday's record 5x5). For the bench/squat/row you have two independent records that week - one is your 5x5 record and the other is your best 1x5 record (which will be higher than your 5x5 so these ramp independently of each other although there is obviously a relationship). Deadlifts, military, and chins are also ramped to 5x5 records although the chins IMO are a bit less important so if a weight belt isn't there just handle your best 5 sets or hang a dumbell between your calves. This is the same for the 3x3/1x3 intensity records - or the 2x variation records.

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    Re: Bill Starr's 5 x 5 program... Variation per Madcow2 (thanx) So here it is! K up now!

    For myself, I'm sure I could have had a much easier time of this week if I hadn't done a double-jump in weights from last week. I found weeks 5 and 6 to be very easy, which was appropriate, but I recall, at the time, being very tempted to add more to the workouts, which I resisted. Actually, I did end up adding some abs works and grip work.

    Week 7 started to feel like a workout again but I hurt my back slightly in the deadlift which I think was just due to some bad form. In week 8 I was nailing everything easier than expected and so in week 9 I have used weights a notch up from where I'd been planning in the bench and deadlift. This might have been a step too far for me.

    For myself, 2x per week would have been too little. Of course, I'll now never know how I would have been had I not taken that extra bite in week 9 but taking a week of deloading between program cycles is no big deal and is something I would have done anyway due to a switch in gyms.

    I haven't felt overloaded at any stage of this program except as week 4 finished I was glad for the the changeover. Also, despite yesterday's slightly over the top straining in the deadlift, which was down to my being unable to stick to my own intended weights increases, I feel fine today: no lethargy; no loss of mental focus etc. I'd be happy to run this program again and almost certainly will.

    One thought: dropping just weeks 8 and 9 down to two sessions might work and be worthy of consideration.

  8. #118
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    Re: Bill Starr's 5 x 5 program... Variation per Madcow2 (thanx) So here it is! K up now!

    Quote Quote posted by Blut Wump
    I weigh 122.5 Kg (270 lb) so I'm not anywhere near 2x bodyweight in the deadlift. I don't really know my BF% but I'd guess around 22-24%. I'll just play it by ear with the deadlifts. I'm so new to them, anyway.

    Thanks for the advice to take a recovery week (or two) before launching back into another run at the program. I'm not sure I'll be able to resist attempting a new 1RM on the bench next Monday, though. I'm planning to switch gyms next week, having found a real gym rather than a "leisure center" not too far away, and was thinking of spending a week really just playing with the new facilities so this fits in nicely.

    I'll print out and take a good read through the squat posting. I also came across a link in another thread to a 10-week deadlifting routine from Coan and Philippi which struck me as following the dual-factor theory.
    http://www.powerpage.net/coanphildead.html
    Assuredly too advanced for me at this stage but interesting nonetheless.

    I followed your program as closely as I could and did only 3 gym visits per week. Off days I'd do maybe 40-60 minutes walking with spouse and dogs but that was about it. You can laugh at the places where I went wrong when I post the logs.

    I'm very pleased with the progress I've made as when I started I really had no idea whether I'd be able to cope with the work I knew it would place on my back since I was (and am) still coming through a rehab for a chronic bad lower back. I decided, also, from the start, that I wouldn't use a belt. The difference it's made is highly gratifying.
    that's just like me
    I'm 265-270 lbs with ~23% bodyfat
    but your deadlift is much higher then mine
    or rather it might be,I havn't checked on my max tripple
    it's probubly lower then 350 lbs tho
    I'm new to deadlifts to!
    it's like we were seperated at birth, are you Italian...

  9. #119
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    Re: Bill Starr's 5 x 5 program... Variation per Madcow2 (thanx) So here it is! K up now!

    I too would love to see some of the workout logs.......diet logs.....rep and set schemes if anyone has.........mucho K!

  10. #120
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    Re: Bill Starr's 5 x 5 program... Variation per Madcow2 (thanx) So here it is! K up now!

    Quote Quote posted by Kane Fan
    that's just like me
    I'm 265-270 lbs with ~23% bodyfat
    but your deadlift is much higher then mine
    or rather it might be,I havn't checked on my max tripple
    it's probubly lower then 350 lbs tho
    I'm new to deadlifts to!
    it's like we were seperated at birth, are you Italian...
    Hell yes! Well, half Italian, anyway, on my father's side.

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