I'd like to get more serious with slow strength

Sean M

Quadruple-Digit Post Count
My only thoughts are:

I believe you mentioned you’ve done 370 for doubles before, so it’s not really your 1RM.

To my recollection, you haven’t done sets of 5 before, so it’s a new training stimulus for you. You may just have work capacity holding you back. How much rest between sets?

You missed a step and might be starting too low, but I guess it’s better to be too low than too high. After the RM@80% test, you have to do a proper 5RM test (which becomes the 5x5 goal for week 4). What I don’t know is if you could do 5 reps with 300 as your 80% “for reps” test, does that make it your 5RM? 5RM should be closer to 88%. If 300 is 5RM, you are starting too low. If 300 is actually less than true 5RM, you are starting even lower. If so, give yourself less rest (2-5 minutes, no more than 5) to build work capacity.

That said: maybe starting lower is ok this time, being new to high volume deadlifts. If I do the program, I will “round down” because I’m not accustomed to high volume DL either.

Will be interested to watch your progress!
 

Kozushi

More than 2500 posts
My only thoughts are:

I believe you mentioned you’ve done 370 for doubles before, so it’s not really your 1RM.

To my recollection, you haven’t done sets of 5 before, so it’s a new training stimulus for you. You may just have work capacity holding you back. How much rest between sets?

You missed a step and might be starting too low, but I guess it’s better to be too low than too high. After the RM@80% test, you have to do a proper 5RM test (which becomes the 5x5 goal for week 4). What I don’t know is if you could do 5 reps with 300 as your 80% “for reps” test, does that make it your 5RM? 5RM should be closer to 88%. If 300 is 5RM, you are starting too low. If 300 is actually less than true 5RM, you are starting even lower. If so, give yourself less rest (2-5 minutes, no more than 5) to build work capacity.

That said: maybe starting lower is ok this time, being new to high volume deadlifts. If I do the program, I will “round down” because I’m not accustomed to high volume DL either.

Will be interested to watch your progress!
I'd rather play it safe. I'm in no hurry. I'm after a routine that gets me stronger and keeps me fit.

I just did 5 sets of 5 reps with the 220lbs with only very short rests in between, maybe a minute. So, I did an extra set too, and I can certainly "feel it", so I think it went well. My heart rate is up. I've got some big callouses on my hands now from all the deadlift tests and sets I've done this week including today, hahaha. Good!

I never in a million years would have guessed that starting at such a low weight is the thing to do, but I certainly feel it. Good stuff! I certainly feel like I got a real workout, even if it's short.

I think I'll do some more reps during the week, maybe daily to keep in shape with it, unless that's not good idea. Maybe like PTTP - 2 sets of 5 reps?

I know what Steve Friedes meant by not doing presses afterwards. I couldn't do good presses right now. I'll do them after some serious rest later today.

All very exciting!
 

Bauer

More than 500 posts
I'd rather play it safe. I'm in no hurry. I'm after a routine that gets me stronger and keeps me fit.

I just did 5 sets of 5 reps with the 220lbs with only very short rests in between, maybe a minute. So, I did an extra set too, and I can certainly "feel it", so I think it went well. My heart rate is up. I've got some big callouses on my hands now from all the deadlift tests and sets I've done this week including today, hahaha. Good!

I never in a million years would have guessed that starting at such a low weight is the thing to do, but I certainly feel it. Good stuff! I certainly feel like I got a real workout, even if it's short.

I think I'll do some more reps during the week, maybe daily to keep in shape with it, unless that's not good idea. Maybe like PTTP - 2 sets of 5 reps?

I know what Steve Friedes meant by not doing presses afterwards. I couldn't do good presses right now. I'll do them after some serious rest later today.

All very exciting!
Why not try it as is once per week for one cycle? In two months you'll know if it worked. And since you are only doing tje DLs I guess you could still do 2-3 S+S sessions with a day off before your DL day.
 

Anna C

More than 5000 posts
Elite Certified Instructor
This thread is making me dizzy. @Kozushi, I'll just appeal to your proclivity for talking at length about a program and how it's working for you, as have done with S&S: As far as I'm concerned, whatever you have to say about Reload after the 8 weeks of doing it will be invalid if you don't follow the program's instructions for load selection and the rest of its details about how to run the program. Proper load selection is critical for a successful run of a barbell program. There are very specific instructions on pages 12-14 for load selection. Why not test your 1RM, as it says? Further, the Reload page specifies, "Choose your 2 to 5 lifts to get strong in: Squat, Bench Press, Deadlift, Military Press, Barbell Row." What are your 2-5 barbell lifts going to be?
 

Kozushi

More than 2500 posts
This thread is making me dizzy. @Kozushi, I'll just appeal to your proclivity for talking at length about a program and how it's working for you, as have done with S&S: As far as I'm concerned, whatever you have to say about Reload after the 8 weeks of doing it will be invalid if you don't follow the program's instructions for load selection and the rest of its details about how to run the program. Proper load selection is critical for a successful run of a barbell program. There are very specific instructions on pages 12-14 for load selection. Why not test your 1RM, as it says? Further, the Reload page specifies, "Choose your 2 to 5 lifts to get strong in: Squat, Bench Press, Deadlift, Military Press, Barbell Row." What are your 2-5 barbell lifts going to be?
Okay, I'll run the proper 1RM test and reconfigure.
I thought I could run it for just one lift.

My goals are these: get higher with the deadlift and press the kettlebell beast. I assumed Reload was the best way to go higher with deadlift.
 

Kozushi

More than 2500 posts
This thread is making me dizzy. @Kozushi, I'll just appeal to your proclivity for talking at length about a program and how it's working for you, as have done with S&S: As far as I'm concerned, whatever you have to say about Reload after the 8 weeks of doing it will be invalid if you don't follow the program's instructions for load selection and the rest of its details about how to run the program. Proper load selection is critical for a successful run of a barbell program. There are very specific instructions on pages 12-14 for load selection. Why not test your 1RM, as it says? Further, the Reload page specifies, "Choose your 2 to 5 lifts to get strong in: Squat, Bench Press, Deadlift, Military Press, Barbell Row." What are your 2-5 barbell lifts going to be?
Again, physical education is not my strong point. I'm a linguist (therefore the penchant for writing too much).

I only really care about the deadlift and the kettlebell press at this stage (outside of judo and S&S). Therefore is Reload NOT the program to follow for deadlift, since I'm not pairing it with other barbell lifts?

Something inside me tells me I'm going to go back to just S&S and heavy deadlift singles like usual after this little "adventure into the unknown" hahaha! I feel like I'm quite out of my league! It took me how many years to figure out just S&S?
 

Anna C

More than 5000 posts
Elite Certified Instructor
Okay, I'll run the proper 1RM test and reconfigure.
I thought I could run it for just one lift.

My goals are these: get higher with the deadlift and press the kettlebell beast. I assumed Reload was the best way to go higher with deadlift.
Good! I really think if you run it as written with deadlift and barbell press, this will help you towards your goals.

Something inside me tells me I'm going to go back to just S&S and heavy deadlift singles like usual after this little "adventure into the unknown" hahaha! I feel like I'm quite out of my league! It took me how many years to figure out just S&S?
You can do it. I think the main thing to "get" about written programs is that you have to read them, read them again, re-read them once you think you understand, and re-read them several times as you run the program to pick up the details you missed the first few times. The words just don't sink in at the same rate. Keep referencing back -- it is carefully written, and has everything you need. On the rare occasion that it doesn't, the forum can help.

I just want you to get the knowledge and experience (and results!) that you can get out of running a program as written.

And selfishly, I want to avoid forum threads spinning out of control when you do things differently than the program calls for and get a dozen people trying to steer you back on track in different ways and with discussion that leaves everyone confused about how it's supposed to be run.
 

Kozushi

More than 2500 posts
Good! I really think if you run it as written with deadlift and barbell press, this will help you towards your goals.



You can do it. I think the main thing to "get" about written programs is that you have to read them, read them again, re-read them once you think you understand, and re-read them several times as you run the program to pick up the details you missed the first few times. The words just don't sink in at the same rate. Keep referencing back -- it is carefully written, and has everything you need. On the rare occasion that it doesn't, the forum can help.

I just want you to get the knowledge and experience (and results!) that you can get out of running a program as written.

And selfishly, I want to avoid forum threads spinning out of control when you do things differently than the program calls for and get a dozen people trying to steer you back on track in different ways and with discussion that leaves everyone confused about how it's supposed to be run.
I think this is the thing right here. It is indeed complicated stuff.

So, can I just do deadlifts with it? I don't care about barbell press. I have kettlebells and I want to press the Beast. That's it for pressing.

If I *&&^ up at least I can go back to S&S and I know what I'm doing there. :) But my gosh, how long it took to get the details down! Little stuff like even getting the bell on a diagonal in the palm when doing TGUs, where to feel the force transfer in swings and the angle, when to breathe and how, holy smokes! Do it right eventually and the magic works wonders. Ridiculous wonders that a hack like me is never going to work on his own.

But anyways, please let me know if I can run the reload template for just deadlifts, and if not then what program should I be running for them?
 
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Anna C

More than 5000 posts
Elite Certified Instructor
So, can I just do deadlifts with it? I don't care about barbell press. I have kettlebells and I want to press the Beast. That's it for pressing.
I'm actually not sure -- I was going by the suggestion of 2-5 lifs on the web site. And strength building has a synergystic effect. So if your goal is to "increase your deadlift weight", do a deadlift-only program. If your goal is to "get stronger", run a comprehensive program with two or more lifts. Make sense? Anyway, I will re-read Reload when I get home to see if it says for sure. Or maybe you can find it.

I also strongly believe the barbell press will help you in your quest to press the Beast...
 

Kozushi

More than 2500 posts
I'm actually not sure -- I was going by the suggestion of 2-5 lifs on the web site. And strength building has a synergystic effect. So if your goal is to "increase your deadlift weight", do a deadlift-only program. If your goal is to "get stronger", run a comprehensive program with two or more lifts. Make sense? Anyway, I will re-read Reload when I get home to see if it says for sure. Or maybe you can find it.

I also strongly believe the barbell press will help you in your quest to press the Beast...
I got the impression from some others on the forum (like Steve Friedes) that I could do Reload for deadlifts alone, and then pursue the beast press in an ROP format.

Gosh, I want to get it right this time! I messed up so bad on S&S for so long, now I want to do something right, and get to a like 500lbs deadlift. Just lifting 370lbs a few times a week for the past few years hasn't increased my max at all. Evidently hacking it just does not work with lifting weights.

Steve's suggestion to do the S&S swings with the 40 in sets of 5 got me up to doing the entire S&S routine with the 40. Science and others' experiences are key I guess. It isn't just about lifting heavier and heavier weights, for if it were, I'd be Hercules by now.
 

Sean M

Quadruple-Digit Post Count
I also strongly believe the barbell press will help you in your quest to press the Beast...
Believe her, @Kozushi, I had a similar experience. A few months of barbell bench and press made my “struggle with” 1-rep press bell go up easily for 2 reps per side with no warmup.
 

Kozushi

More than 2500 posts
I reread portions of Reload just now.
1. Direct testing of 1RM is acceptable. I've done that and it's 370lbs. I couldn't pick up 380lbs when I tried it.
2. I tested my 5RM at 300lbs and found it was accurate - I could not do a 6th rep.
So, I think I have it all correct.

As for Reload being shrunken down to a minimum, the smallest in the book is two days a week - deadlift and press. But why is the deadlift dependent on the press? I'm doing kettlebell presses. Progress with the deadlift can't be contingent on doing barbell presses along with it, can it? I've got 2 32s, 1 40 and 1 48 kg kettlebells sitting on the floor, can't imagine ignoring them for the next few months.

For deeper explanation, I'm convinced the deadlift is not only the best lift covering 90% of the body, but it's amazing for judo strength. Once I got to the 300lbs range with deadlifts I could do a lot more things to opponents in judo. So, following this logic if I get to 500lbs in deadlift the world will transform.
 

Kozushi

More than 2500 posts
Here's a better question:

Let's say I get to my 500lbs deadlift and I'm satisfied and just want to keep in shape with it (i.e. not just maintain the ability to do it, so I'm thinking still the 5X5 reps), what do I do? Still cycle back up to it repeatedly or something else?
 

Steve Freides

Forum Administrator
Staff member
Senior Certified Instructor
@Kozushi, just deadlifting is OK. Will you get stronger if you train two lifts and therefore have twice the strength training volume every week? Does that work for you? I don’t know. You can continue some swings and getups if you want more training outside of the dojo.

-S-
 

Anna C

More than 5000 posts
Elite Certified Instructor
Alright... I re-read Reload, and it appears you're right, it doesn't specify how many lifts it is intended to run at one time. So I suppose you could run it with deadlift only. Personally I believe (from my 5/3/1 and Starting Strength experience) that it's far better to do a comprehensive barbell program with 3 or 4 lifts. It feels like more is going on systemically, hormonally... the body really focuses on and prioritizes building strength, and the lifts help each other along. But kettlebell presses along with deadlifts may give you some of the same.

And if you could not lift 380 lb (despite lifting 370 week after week....?), then I suppose you're correctly basing your cycle off your current 1RM.
 

Kozushi

More than 2500 posts
Alright... I re-read Reload, and it appears you're right, it doesn't specify how many lifts it is intended to run at one time. So I suppose you could run it with deadlift only. Personally I believe (from my 5/3/1 and Starting Strength experience) that it's far better to do a comprehensive barbell program with 3 or 4 lifts. It feels like more is going on systemically, hormonally... the body really focuses on and prioritizes building strength, and the lifts help each other along. But kettlebell presses along with deadlifts may give you some of the same.

And if you could not lift 380 lb (despite lifting 370 week after week....?), then I suppose you're correctly basing your cycle off your current 1RM.
Keep in mind I have 4 hours of judo training a week too, and it isn't 4 hours of standing around discussing Zen but 4 hours of intense "gymnastics" if you will, spread over 3 days a week. We drill hard and fight hard. My coach is a 15 time world Master's champion and a biker bar bouncer. If I didn't do judo I'd go for a lot more weight training, of course.

After drilling the deadlift movement so much over the past week I felt like my judo moved up to a new level today. If I can deadlift 220lbs 25 times in a row, I'm not afraid of any 220lbs opponent, one bit. My theory at the moment is that the deadlift will turn out to be more applicable to judo than swings. Why? Because your opponent weighs a lot more than a kettlebell. You have to be able to lift him with ease, good technique or bad.

I don't see how doing some kettlebell presses is going to interfere with anything, but the big question for me is how often I still run S&S. According to the book if I don't do it twice a week I'm out of the program, so I'll make sure I get it in at least twice a week.

In any case, what makes my situation sort of unique is that my judo training is a major, actually the major part of my weekly exercise regimen.
 

Kozushi

More than 2500 posts
@Kozushi, just deadlifting is OK. Will you get stronger if you train two lifts and therefore have twice the strength training volume every week? Does that work for you? I don’t know. You can continue some swings and getups if you want more training outside of the dojo.

-S-
This is important information. Knowing that just deadlifting is okay is very important. Thank you. If I focus on mastering just one lift, the deadlift, I can be proud of doing one thing well. Nothing wrong with some kettlebell presses to fill in some blanks, and I do hope I can keep up with S&S somehow or other.
 

Bauer

More than 500 posts
Don't foget to re-read the rest. Like the recommendation for second session of 5x5 with 65% 1RM (and 3x3 in week 8). And more than 2,5 minute rest between sets.

Anyway, I am curious how it goes :)
 
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