I've been lifting off and on for a number of years now.
My natural weight is very low relative to my height. I'm 6'1 and without regular exercise and excessive eating stay at around 155lbs. When I first started lifting this weight was more like 140 but with age and enforced body changes from the weight training my natural weight seems to have shifted over the years.
Each time I have trained in earnest I have hit a wall with not only my max possible lift but the amount of weight gained.
My maximum weight to date is just under 200lbs - this I'm not too worried about as 50lbs over my natural weight is significant.
However, I recently started a workout roughly similar to the ripptoe regime. I was very interested to see if I could improve upon my previous wall. It's been 4 months since I began and my weight has shifted from 160lbs to 190lbs and still growing. However, I am starting to hit a wall in my lifts.
I also recently started seeing a physiotherapist who does a lot of olympic lifting. Who said something interesting.
He mentioned that as I am naturally very skinny, even though I can put on weight very quickly, I am likely to hit the walls I have come up against pretty quickly as my raw strength can only ever be so much.
For example my wrist measurement is under 6 inches in circumfrence at the most narrow point which will significantly limit my overall capability.
I would like to know if this is the case or if I should continue to examine new mechanisms to improve my weight training. I would appreciate anyone's $0.02.
Your raw strength, whatever the hell that is, may be maxxed out at your current body weight (although I doubt it). But who cares about that? If you continue to add muscle to your body your strength will increase, guaranteed.
Don't let what the physio said bring you down. What are your goals?
Remember one thing, as you gain weight, you need to eat more to keep gaining weight. For example, for me to gain (I'm at 255-260 and 6' tall), I need to shovel in around 5000 cals a day. If I want to keep gaining when I hit 275, I will need to eat more than 5000 cals a day to do that. By building muscle and strength, the body requires more just to maintain itself. Currently, I eat between 3700 and 4000 per day and I'm maintaining 255-260.
As you gain weight and muscle, your entire body should get bigger. I started at 6' and 125 and WAS very skinny all my life. Using my left hand, I could grab my right wrist and have the end of my thumb reach the first knuckle on my middle finger (at 125). Now, I cannot touch my thumb and middle finger together around my wrist, there's about an 1/8" gap. That's about 3/4" on my wrist of added size.
A routine like Rippetoe's isn't meant to do forever and ever, amen. You go with a routine until you stall, then you change it up.
A kind of agree and disagree with your friend's statement. At some point, keeping the same weight, you will probably reach a limit of how strong you can be, but as a guess, that won't be for a really long time. I was told at 40 years old that I'll never be big and strong and reaching my genetic potential was long since past. I'm here to tell you I'm not there, yet, and I continue to get stronger and bigger at 46.
Give chalk a chance.
49 years old