The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness
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The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness

Itís no secret that when people contradict themselves, it has the effect of making the flaws in their actions or statements seem glaringly obvious. But what about when WE ourselves get caught contradicting ourselves by someone else?

By: Nick Tumminello Added: January 6th, 2014
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  1. #1
    Senior Member ELmx479's Avatar
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    Squats getting weaker on 5/3/1?

    Ever since I stopped doing squats 3 days a week and started the 5/3/1 program I feel weak under the bar. I like everything about the program but I feel weaker since I started it. Nothing else has changed with my diet, sleep, stress, etc... I know it is a proven program and has worked very well for many people but after 2 months of doing it I feel weaker.

    This is what I was doing.. Monday-Squat, Wednesday-Front Squat, Friday-Squat. To the 5/3/1 which would have you doing squats on say Monday and then not again til next Wednesday.

    What do you guys think? Give it some more time or go back to what was working good?

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  3. #2
    Senior Member Sensei's Avatar
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    Could you post a link or give more details about your entire program? It's tough to look at one exercise and give advice... Without seeing the whole, it's difficult to comment on the parts.

    If I was trying to bring up a novice-intermediate's squat, I'd generally recommend that they squat more than once every ten days...
    A child does not learn to squat from the top down. In other words, he does not suddenly make a conscious decision one day to squat. Actually, he is squatting one day and make the conscious decision to stand. Squatting precedes standing in the developmental sequence. This is the way a child's brain learns to use the body as the child develops movement patterns. Therefore, a child is probably crawling, rocks back into a squatting position with the back completely relaxed and the hips completely flexed, and stands when he has enough hip strength. This approach makes a lot of sense and can be applied to relearning the deep squat movement if it is lost. -Gray Cook
    Lifting Clips: http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=johnnymnemonic2
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  4. #3
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    What are your numbers at? Do you mean 5/3/1 as in leading up to a 1 rep max? If so, you will burn out quick with this. I recommend the bill starr 5x5... I think its the best workout ever when you hit a plateau. I have been using it the last 6 weeks and I went from 225 x 5 to 285 x 5 just today. You gradually go up 5-10 pounds a week but you never feel burnt out because its ramping sets. Great routine. Also, make sure you stretch your IT band, hips, glutes, hamstrings at least once a day. If any of this is tightening up it will affect your numbers.

  5. #4
    Resolute -JM-'s Avatar
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    Elm, what are your assistance exercise choices?

    I do front squats on deadlift day as an assistance. I keep Deadlift day as a lower day and everything has continued moving in the right direction.

    If you were doing M,T, Th, F that gets you squattin' twice within the week.

    And BTW, I know what you mean about not having the bar on your back often enough or heavy enough.
    This is the true joy in life, the being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one; the being thoroughly worn out before you are thrown on the scrap heap; the being a force of Nature instead of a feverish selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy - George Bernard Shaw

  6. #5
    Senior Member Jorge Sanchez's Avatar
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    ^^

    I think this is the approach to take. You obviously need to work in some more squat volume if you're only squatting once a week/every 10 days. Front squats or back squats on deadlift day would be a good way to do it, as would adding a few backoff sets or sets across at the top weight on the squat day.
    quidquid Latine dictum sit altum videtur

  7. #6
    Senior Member ELmx479's Avatar
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    This is what I am doing now...
    Monday- OH Press, Pull Ups, Dips
    Wednesday- Dead Lift, Good Morning, Hanging Leg Raise
    Friday- Bench Press, Incline DB Press, Rows
    Monday- Squat, DB Lunge, RDL
    Repeat cycle.

    I was doing this...
    Monday- Squat, Bench, Row, Good Morning or Pull Through.
    Wednesday- Front Squat, OH Press, Dead Lift, Pull Up.
    Friday- Squat, Bench, Row, Dips.

  8. #7
    Moderator joey54's Avatar
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    Go back to your old routine if that is what was working for you.

  9. #8
    Senior Member ELmx479's Avatar
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    I may just do that and see what happens. It's all about figuring out what works best for each of us I guess. Another thing I may do is follow my body instead of a program. If I feel good on that day I will go heavy and if I don't I will stay with some medium weights and get a good workout in.

    Also, my numbers are.. Squat 240x5, Deadlift 335x5, Press 125x5, Bench 225x5. I have been doing squats for 7 months.

  10. #9
    Get Some! KoSh's Avatar
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    I'm sure you could just incorporate 5-3-1 into a westside style routine as well. I don't see why not. *shrug*
    "Donít fall for the crap that people are peddling on message boards, in magazines or on TV. Get your **** in order, and get your training in order. Start kicking ass, and take out the crap that doesnít matter. Start doing and believing in the stuff that works, and do it today and forever. You want science and studies? **** you. Iíve got scars and blood and vomit."
    Jim Wendler, 531 Method

  11. #10
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    What do your squats look like under 531? With a lower max, you may not be getting much volume between warm ups and then working sets.

  12. #11
    Senior Member brihead301's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by joey54 View Post
    Go back to your old routine if that is what was working for you.
    This is what I'd go with.
    How to Find Your Dream Job
    My personal blog/website dedicated to giving answers on the age old question - how to escape the "rat race". I now play guitar for a living!

  13. #12
    TJW Keith's Avatar
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    Odd, I'm actually experiencing the exact same thing. I'm almost certain it's because of the lack of volume. Front squats are a great idea to add on the deadlift day. I should either do that or go back to Westside which worked wonders for me.
    Age: 24 Height: 5'9" Weight: 185

    Gym PRs: 365/240/440=1045

    People need to quit ****ing asking what they need to do, exercise wise, until they reinforce their technique - Dave Tate

    The never-ending pursuit of becoming Strong(er) - My Westside journal

  14. #13
    Senior Member ELmx479's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by =Travis= View Post
    What do your squats look like under 531? With a lower max, you may not be getting much volume between warm ups and then working sets.
    That's just it, when I was squatting 3 times a week I did either 5 ramping sets or 3 sets across like starting strength vs. doing only one all out set on your final set using the 5/3/1 method. It's an awesome program but I may not be advanced enough for it. While doing the full body routine was taxing, I felt bigger and stronger on it.

  15. #14
    Moderator joey54's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ELmx479 View Post
    That's just it, when I was squatting 3 times a week I did either 5 ramping sets or 3 sets across like starting strength vs. doing only one all out set on your final set using the 5/3/1 method. It's an awesome program but I may not be advanced enough for it. While doing the full body routine was taxing, I felt bigger and stronger on it.
    That right there tells you something. You don't want to be changing things up on a weekly basis, but in this case a change is obviously warranted. Good insight.

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