Which lifting program is the best for you?

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  • quiksylver296
    quiksylver296 Posts: 28,439 Member
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    Scamd83 wrote: »
    eeejer wrote: »
    When to switch from Strong Lifts: http://stronglifts.com/when-to-switch-from-stronglifts-5x5-to-other-programs/

    The stronglifts app takes care of everything for you, it will tell you when to deload, when to switch to 3x5, etc... just do the program.

    What do you use if you don't have an iPhone to use the app on? Are you not able to do this if you don't have an iPhone?

    You could track it in a notebook pretty easily. Start with bare bar (45 lbs), add 5 pounds each time you successfully complete your five sets of five reps.
  • keithlovescandee
    keithlovescandee Posts: 1 Member
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    If you prefer not to spend hours and hours working out and get more for your time spent lifting, check out what Tim Farris has to say. He is the ultimate body hacker and wrote the book "The Four Hour Body". In this book he references another book, "Body by Science". Lots of research on the lack of the need for so many sets and reps that keep muscle and fitness mags and gym memberships being purchased adding to a multi-billion dollar industry. Don't add to it.

    Basically, lift less often but always with high intensity to TOTAL failure with great form everytime. Quality instead of quantity. No stupid isolation movements... focus on the big boys: squat, dead lift, bench and pull ups primarily. Bands will only take you so far. Enjoy yourself and don't over train. I wasted much time in my younger years!
  • SideSteel
    SideSteel Posts: 11,068 Member
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    If you prefer not to spend hours and hours working out and get more for your time spent lifting, check out what Tim Farris has to say. He is the ultimate body hacker and wrote the book "The Four Hour Body". In this book he references another book, "Body by Science". Lots of research on the lack of the need for so many sets and reps that keep muscle and fitness mags and gym memberships being purchased adding to a multi-billion dollar industry. Don't add to it.

    Basically, lift less often but always with high intensity to TOTAL failure with great form everytime. Quality instead of quantity. No stupid isolation movements... focus on the big boys: squat, dead lift, bench and pull ups primarily. Bands will only take you so far. Enjoy yourself and don't over train. I wasted much time in my younger years!

    Tim has quite a bit of bad information in that book.
  • psuLemon
    psuLemon Posts: 38,413 MFP Moderator
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    SideSteel wrote: »
    First of all this is a really great idea, thanks for making the post.

    Minor point and my apologies for not looking through the thread in case this has been brought up already.

    DUP quite literally means that the rep ranges undulate throughout the week. It's not even a program as much as it's a descriptor of what the rep ranges do intra-week.

    As such, it really can be used for all levels of development.


    I have plenty of beginner and novice clients on a DUP program.

    So knowing that many people won't have your expertise behind that, would you even suggest such a program/style like DUP to start (keeping in mind, many of the members here haven't followed a structure program before and might be on their first bulk)? I can definitely see the benefit of DUP (even looks like something I would like to try).
  • quiksylver296
    quiksylver296 Posts: 28,439 Member
    edited June 2016
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    This is a perfectly timed bump. Thanks, @psulemon. I'm looking to move on from Stronglifts. After reading all the Intermediate program links, I think I'm going to try 5/3/1. Time to go determine my current 1RM! :D

    Update: So, after a year on Stronglifts, I moved on to Wendler's 5/3/1. I'm in my first deload week (Week 4). I'm starting to get the rhythm of the program and find I am liking it. It still only takes about 45 minutes per session, although I'm doing 4 days per week, instead of three like on SLs. I feel like I'm seeing progress, although it's hard to tell much this early. Thanks again for all the info so I could make an informed decision, @psulemon!
  • JayRuby84
    JayRuby84 Posts: 557 Member
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    I jumped into the PHUL lifting program (quite similar to PHAT) with both feet and haven't looked back. It's been the best thing to happen in my workout routine in a long time. I have made so much progress!
  • JayRuby84
    JayRuby84 Posts: 557 Member
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    By the way..this is my favorite post in the history of MFP posts. Thank you for listing all these programs for us to view/ choose from. Thank you for putting it out there for people who don't know where to start.
  • JayRuby84
    JayRuby84 Posts: 557 Member
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    arditarose wrote: »
    ndj1979 wrote: »
    From experience how long do people stick with the same program?

    depends on the person and the goals...I have been running PHUL for about six months and am transitioning to a different upper/lower split this week ...

    I had 3 months on PHUL and really enjoyed the strength gains. But physically could only see my quads improving. Towards the end I was getting tired easier and no longer see any progression due to being on an intake deficit.
    Since running PHUL I smashed my mobile phone so lost all of data! Rather than starting again I thought I'd change routine, however it's tough finding one that seems as good as PHUL.

    PHAT? :)

    I finished PHUL and went straight into a DUP and am LOVING it.

    Stef, I just looked at the DUP workout and can see myself transitioning into that program once I finish a couple/ few more months of PHUL.
  • arditarose
    arditarose Posts: 15,573 Member
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    JayRuby84 wrote: »
    arditarose wrote: »
    ndj1979 wrote: »
    From experience how long do people stick with the same program?

    depends on the person and the goals...I have been running PHUL for about six months and am transitioning to a different upper/lower split this week ...

    I had 3 months on PHUL and really enjoyed the strength gains. But physically could only see my quads improving. Towards the end I was getting tired easier and no longer see any progression due to being on an intake deficit.
    Since running PHUL I smashed my mobile phone so lost all of data! Rather than starting again I thought I'd change routine, however it's tough finding one that seems as good as PHUL.

    PHAT? :)

    I finished PHUL and went straight into a DUP and am LOVING it.

    Stef, I just looked at the DUP workout and can see myself transitioning into that program once I finish a couple/ few more months of PHUL.

    Yeah, I mean it's not a workout per-se. Just a style of training/periodization.
  • ninenines
    ninenines Posts: 197 Member
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    This is a perfectly timed bump. Thanks, @psulemon. I'm looking to move on from Stronglifts. After reading all the Intermediate program links, I think I'm going to try 5/3/1. Time to go determine my current 1RM! :D

    Update: So, after a year on Stronglifts, I moved on to Wendler's 5/3/1. I'm in my first deload week (Week 4). I'm starting to get the rhythm of the program and find I am liking it. It still only takes about 45 minutes per session, although I'm doing 4 days per week, instead of three like on SLs. I feel like I'm seeing progress, although it's hard to tell much this early. Thanks again for all the info so I could make an informed decision, @psulemon!

    Ditto that! Just finished week 3 of my first Wendler cycle.
  • psuLemon
    psuLemon Posts: 38,413 MFP Moderator
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    Updated to reflect DUP as a training style.
  • sgt1372
    sgt1372 Posts: 3,994 Member
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    I've done Stronglifts before but am doing Starting Strength now, which I find a more flexible program than can be better targeted to my specific needs/limitations. Just started training again 6 weeks ago after a 3 year hiatus due to injuries and surgeries but have been good gains in that time period.





  • moxiept
    moxiept Posts: 200 Member
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    Thank you for this. In the next few months I want to incorporate real strength training into my program and have just now started to do my homework on the subject. This will hopefully get me started in the right direction. :)
  • middlehaitch
    middlehaitch Posts: 8,487 Member
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    Hate to be pushy but I don't see the Nerdfitness Beginner Bodyweight programme listed.
    Could you add it please?
    I find it a really good intro for people who have absolutely no experience and need to build some basic muscle strength.

    It is great having a comprehensive list to link back to. Thanks @psulemon.

    Cheers, h.

    https://www.nerdfitness.com/blog/2009/12/09/beginner-body-weight-workout-burn-fat-build-muscle/
  • psuLemon
    psuLemon Posts: 38,413 MFP Moderator
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    Hate to be pushy but I don't see the Nerdfitness Beginner Bodyweight programme listed.
    Could you add it please?
    I find it a really good intro for people who have absolutely no experience and need to build some basic muscle strength.

    It is great having a comprehensive list to link back to. Thanks @psulemon.

    Cheers, h.

    https://www.nerdfitness.com/blog/2009/12/09/beginner-body-weight-workout-burn-fat-build-muscle/

    Added. Thank you for the suggestion and link.
  • cglouie
    cglouie Posts: 33 Member
    edited July 2016
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    This is a great list! Just wondering, though, is there a general consensus of when someone is a beginner vs. intermediate? Myself, I've been working with a trainer for a year doing full body strength training using compound movements/lifts. Because of this, I feel I have a good understanding of proper form and technique...at least for the most common lifts. I will be moving to maintenance soon and want to focus on re-comping. I'll be ending the training sessions soon (due to finances) so I'm looking for an established program to follow but not sure if I should be looking at the beginner or intermediate programs in this thread.

    Apologies if this is the wrong place to post. If it is, please let me know and I'll post my question elsewhere.
  • 35dollars
    35dollars Posts: 832 Member
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    cglouie wrote: »
    not sure if I should be looking at the beginner or intermediate programs in this thread.

    The last point in the FAQ from the Allpro routine listed on the first page quantifies a "beginner" like this:

    A beginner is, generally speaking, anyone who cannot squat twice his body weight, and bench press 1.5 times his body weight, for one repetition. So if you weigh 200 lbs for example, you should be able to squat once for close to 400 lbs. and bench press once for close to 300 lbs, in order to be considered to have moved beyond the "beginner" stage. It has nothing to do with how long you have been lifting weights - there are many people who have been going to the gym for a few years and who are still considered beginners. As long as your lifts are noticeably below the threshold described above, you are still a beginner and you'll benefit greatly from this routine.

  • richardgavel
    richardgavel Posts: 1,001 Member
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    psulemon wrote: »
    cglouie wrote: »
    This is a great list! Just wondering, though, is there a general consensus of when someone is a beginner vs. intermediate? Myself, I've been working with a trainer for a year doing full body strength training using compound movements/lifts. Because of this, I feel I have a good understanding of proper form and technique...at least for the most common lifts. I will be moving to maintenance soon and want to focus on re-comping. I'll be ending the training sessions soon (due to finances) so I'm looking for an established program to follow but not sure if I should be looking at the beginner or intermediate programs in this thread.

    Apologies if this is the wrong place to post. If it is, please let me know and I'll post my question elsewhere.

    I moved to intermediate when i was no longer able to make progress. I would never be able to squat 2x my bw or 1.5x for bench. So for me, the volume or programming must change when progress isnt occuring.

    Progress may not always be a good indicator since progress could be hampered by poor nutrition habits.