November Q and A thread

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Replies

  • DopeItUp
    DopeItUp Posts: 18,771 Member
    SideSteel wrote: »
    dandur wrote: »
    I remember a while ago you mentioned in passing about how you were doing trap bar deads (due to injury? I forget). How'd that go? Favorable? Would it be something you recommend or nah? Would you classify it like a pseudo-squat like I've read on some websites? What about for someone with probably worse than average hip immobility/ hamstring tightness that has much difficulty in keep a flat back on a regular or even sumo DL? (*kitten*, I'm old. 46 going on 90 some days, I swear.)

    I actually haven't gotten into trap bar pulling myself, but based on what you're telling me it's possible that trap bar pulling would be a better fit for you. I don't know a ton about the movement but the main difference is that the load is closer to your center of mass in a trap bar deadlift and there isn't a barbell getting in the way of your body. This would likely reduce the moment arm on the lumbar, I would think.

    You'd also likely be slightly less bent over at the waist in a trap bar deadlift and probably have slightly more forward knee travel.

    So considering these things I'd say yes, it's probably a bit more squat-like, at least compared to a barbell deadlift. Less posterior chain dominant anyways.

    Pretty good analysis considering you don't actually use trap bars. A side note, yes you're a little more upright due to the weight being directly centered on your body, however the handles are further apart than a typical conventional deadlift (unless you're Brian Shaw) which makes you have to bend over a little more to reach them. Depending on your normal grip width I think it averages out pretty close. To me, it feels just like a conventional deadlift with maybe a bit more quad activation. Maybe a little less glutes at the top (since the weight is centered on you, lockout is easier because you're not fighting the weight trying to pull you forward). Not a squat at all in my opinion.

    It's also nice because you can use a neutral grip (if you prefer that) and you can't hit your shins/knees (good for non-painful volume work IMO). You can also change your foot stance quite a bit since the bar and your arms never get in the way of each other (due to the handles being further out than typical conventional grip width).

    Just my thoughts and experiences.
  • jo_marnes
    jo_marnes Posts: 1,601 Member
    Jakep2323 wrote: »
    Bit of trial and error process coming up - cheers for the advice. Have a great weekend sir :)

    Trial and error - the process of all things
  • dandur
    dandur Posts: 267 Member
    S.S. Must've got you mixed up with someone else.

    DIU "It's also nice because you can use a neutral grip (if you prefer that) and you can't hit your shins/knees (good for non-painful volume work IMO). " Both excellent benefits for me. Especially the neutral grip. Have calcific tendonitis in both shoulders and keeping them from rotating as much as possible is always a good thing.

    Thanks to both of you for your replies.
  • sardelsa
    sardelsa Posts: 9,812 Member
    I have a question.

    Right now I am bulking (in my second month), and I keep reading how important sleep/rest is when building muscle. I have a 9 month old baby (who doesn't like to sleep at night) and I am breastfeeding so it seems like the obstacles are a bit stacked against me at the moment, but it is what it is! I also have a toddler so napping during the day or sleeping in isn't really an option.

    I get about 5 hours average of very broken up sleep (so I don't go into a deep sleep often) overall I feel OK... but there are some weeks that are bad and I am very drained. My workouts haven't suffered too much.. I am still managing to progress fairly well in my program (I am doing a full body 3x per week). Just wondering what kind of research is out there, how much sleep do we really need when bulking...and is there a possibility my body will adapt and build muscle at a decent rate even with the bare minimum amount of required sleep? Thanks!
  • SideSteel
    SideSteel Posts: 11,068 Member
    sardelsa wrote: »
    I have a question.

    Right now I am bulking (in my second month), and I keep reading how important sleep/rest is when building muscle. I have a 9 month old baby (who doesn't like to sleep at night) and I am breastfeeding so it seems like the obstacles are a bit stacked against me at the moment, but it is what it is! I also have a toddler so napping during the day or sleeping in isn't really an option.

    I get about 5 hours average of very broken up sleep (so I don't go into a deep sleep often) overall I feel OK... but there are some weeks that are bad and I am very drained. My workouts haven't suffered too much.. I am still managing to progress fairly well in my program (I am doing a full body 3x per week). Just wondering what kind of research is out there, how much sleep do we really need when bulking...and is there a possibility my body will adapt and build muscle at a decent rate even with the bare minimum amount of required sleep? Thanks!

    A quick note: In this video reply I use the term "sleep deprivation" rather loosely. I haven't looked to see if there's a differentiation between being "sleep deprived" and other conditions of inadequate sleep. When I say sleep deprivation I simply mean conditions where you're not getting enough sleep repeatedly.

    Here's the referenced article but please be aware that this is under conditions of caloric deficit and not surplus. http://strengtheory.com/sleep-pt-1/

    Finally, something I didn't mention in all my rambling in the video is that if you HAD to choose between being in an intentional deficit or intentional surplus during periods of sleep deprivation I'd choose a surplus and I only say that in case it's reassuring lol.

    https://youtu.be/l_d8Ff2bsnI
  • sardelsa
    sardelsa Posts: 9,812 Member
    Thank you so much @SideSteel for taking the time to video reply. I am not sleep deprived to the point where my training suffers (for the most part, there are some of those weeks where life is hard and those times my focus is just getting through the day and training takes a backseat). So despite not getting enough sleep, if I am feeling OK.. training is going well, nutrition is fine.. I am functioning (taking care of myself and kids etc) I am glad to know my bulking efforts will not be wasted, so that is a relief !

    Thank you so much :), it is a hard phase but I am trying to treasure every moment best I can!

    I think if things do reach a situation where it gets really unbearable in the sleep department, I will just have to prioritize and take a break from bulking and maintain if I need to.
  • cnbbnc
    cnbbnc Posts: 1,267 Member
    I'm going to be 45yo this month and have a question about being ummmm...,a tad bit older and gaining mass. I keep seeing over and over how difficult is for women to gain muscle and how it's even more so with age.

    I'm currently trying a bulk and have kept my gain to 2lbs/mo thus far. I was thinking about slowing the rate down so I can bulk (and eat!) a bit longer though. My question is...since the odds are already stacked against me for numerous reasons do you think it's smarter to just stick to a faster (2lb) gain so I have a better chance of coming out of this with something?
  • _benjammin
    _benjammin Posts: 1,224 Member
    Faster is rarely smarter or better.
  • _benjammin
    _benjammin Posts: 1,224 Member
    A slower gain is likely to result in more muscle.
  • DopeItUp
    DopeItUp Posts: 18,771 Member
    I generally recommend people gain as slowly as reasonably possible. It becomes very hard to actually measure any progress if you're gaining like 1lb/month but I think it's better to minimize fat gains and thus minimize the subsequent cut at the end of the bulk. So more bulking time, less cutting time == win/win.

    Now if only I could adhere to my own rule (currently gaining at least 1lb/week, fail)
  • cnbbnc
    cnbbnc Posts: 1,267 Member
    DopeItUp wrote: »
    I generally recommend people gain as slowly as reasonably possible. It becomes very hard to actually measure any progress if you're gaining like 1lb/month but I think it's better to minimize fat gains and thus minimize the subsequent cut at the end of the bulk. So more bulking time, less cutting time == win/win.

    Now if only I could adhere to my own rule (currently gaining at least 1lb/week, fail)

    Yeah...I get it. My thought when choosing a bulk vs recomp was that if I'm already at a sizeable disadvantage, then maybe the surplus is my best shot at attaining anything. Following that line of thought, if gaining a little mass meant sucking up a bit more fat gain then that was something I was willing to do. Cutting sucks but I've done it before and I can do it again. :neutral:

    I'll try to slow it down a bit though.

  • SideSteel
    SideSteel Posts: 11,068 Member
    cnbbnc wrote: »
    DopeItUp wrote: »
    I generally recommend people gain as slowly as reasonably possible. It becomes very hard to actually measure any progress if you're gaining like 1lb/month but I think it's better to minimize fat gains and thus minimize the subsequent cut at the end of the bulk. So more bulking time, less cutting time == win/win.

    Now if only I could adhere to my own rule (currently gaining at least 1lb/week, fail)

    Yeah...I get it. My thought when choosing a bulk vs recomp was that if I'm already at a sizeable disadvantage, then maybe the surplus is my best shot at attaining anything. Following that line of thought, if gaining a little mass meant sucking up a bit more fat gain then that was something I was willing to do. Cutting sucks but I've done it before and I can do it again. :neutral:

    I'll try to slow it down a bit though.

    I understand your logic here but I'm not sure it would end up working out in your favor.

    Unless you plan on not dieting off the additional fat, you have to consider that the fatter you get, the more dieting you have to do in the future. This has potential implications on both training status (what will happen to your lift poundages while in a deficit) and muscle mass (you may be gaining muscle now but are you losing any of it later when you diet back down?).

    Note that this is not me suggesting that everyone loses muscle on a diet, or everyone gets weaker on a diet -- neither of those are necessarily true for everyone. They are just considerations that need to be weighed out when you look at rates of weight gain.

    My general opinion with clients is that rate of weight gain depends on their leanness, their tolerance for accumulating body fat, how easy it is for them to diet, and their overall goals and preferences.

    I generally tend to favor slower rates of weight gain and I also have some (typically female although not always) clients who stay "somewhere between maintenance and a small surplus" which basically means if they are gaining anywhere between maintenance and about 1 to 1.5lbs/month and they feel good we leave it. So even if someone like this only gains .5lbs in an entire month, if they feel great I don't touch calories because that's likely a sweet spot where they are gaining SOME amount of muscle but they are also likely MINIMIZING fat gain which means they can just hang out in the fun zone for a long time.

    I'll add that my opinion on this is mostly just that, opinion and experience. People are happy as eff when they are anywhere around maintenance or north of that, and they feel good and perform good. I'd rather that people remain here for long periods of time whenever possible mainly for these reasons. Less dieting = less suck both from a lifestyle and performance standpoint.

    God I ramble.
  • cnbbnc
    cnbbnc Posts: 1,267 Member
    SideSteel wrote: »
    cnbbnc wrote: »
    DopeItUp wrote: »
    I generally recommend people gain as slowly as reasonably possible. It becomes very hard to actually measure any progress if you're gaining like 1lb/month but I think it's better to minimize fat gains and thus minimize the subsequent cut at the end of the bulk. So more bulking time, less cutting time == win/win.

    Now if only I could adhere to my own rule (currently gaining at least 1lb/week, fail)

    Yeah...I get it. My thought when choosing a bulk vs recomp was that if I'm already at a sizeable disadvantage, then maybe the surplus is my best shot at attaining anything. Following that line of thought, if gaining a little mass meant sucking up a bit more fat gain then that was something I was willing to do. Cutting sucks but I've done it before and I can do it again. :neutral:

    I'll try to slow it down a bit though.
    So even if someone like this only gains .5lbs in an entire month, if they feel great I don't touch calories because that's likely a sweet spot where they are gaining SOME amount of muscle but they are also likely MINIMIZING fat gain which means they can just hang out in the fun zone for a long time.

    Ok. Dialing back the calories and dragging this out as long as possible sounds good to me. Thank you. :smile:


  • nossmf
    nossmf Posts: 8,450 Member
    A few random notes from speed-reading through posts here...

    I LOVE trap-bar DL. I always had a blazingly difficult time keeping proper back alignment during standard DL, along with my hips always shooting up fast and turning the DL into basically a stiff-legged DL. Sumo helped some but I am most comfortable doing trap. I'm talking a serious improvement, too, as in fifty pounds or an extra 5-6 reps at the same weight.

    What's all this talk about T&A pics on the forums? Am I just reading the wrong threads? lol Or are you talking about some avatar pics?

    Cardio vs weights order... those days I do both I tend to do cardio first. Yes, my form may suffer a bit during my lifting, forcing me to cut back on weight/reps. But I also am fully cognizant that if I do not do cardio first, it won't get done at all, because I'll have zero energy after lifting to go run, but even after the most exhausting run I can always find the energy to lift.
  • taco_inspector
    taco_inspector Posts: 7,223 Member
    Just for the sake of discussion, let's say that I know a guy diagnosed with patellofemoral pain syndrome (ouchie knee) who is working through PT programs for stretching and stability, but has just been instructed that squats (even bodyweight) are gonna be off-the list for the foreseeable future (Dr's written orders this time)... PT plan does include some recumbent stationary-bike time, so all knee motions are not fully out of scope (full range of motion is NOT encouraged; descriptors are to avoid full extension/flexion and stay mobile in the mid-range)

    Given this premise, can anyone offer some thoughts on lower chain / quadriceps exercises that kinda go easy on the knee?

    Y'know, asking for a friend and all'a that (thanks folks)
  • jkquinn13
    jkquinn13 Posts: 203 Member

    Given this premise, can anyone offer some thoughts on lower chain / quadriceps exercises that kinda go easy on the knee?

    Y'know, asking for a friend and all'a that (thanks folks)

    I don't know if my knee issues are the same but I have a few rehab exercises I've been doing that are helping.
    I 'tweaked' my meniscus in a 5K sept 29 and it's taking forever to feel right.
    My physio has included sitting on ground and straightening my leg with very mild resistance using a band around my foot.
    Also I lie on back and do bridges with butt up and off the floor
    Now I've also started using a ball held against wall squats. Google single leg mcconnell squats to see demo.
    Hope this helps. I am generally impatient but doing these over a month has returned a lot of strength and helped recovery
  • nossmf
    nossmf Posts: 8,450 Member
    During my rehab for a knee injury in the military I did a lot of leg extensions at super light weight, taking care to not bend my knee past 90 degrees.

    For the backs of the legs try good mornings which work the hamstring without ever bending the knee (beyond a minimal amount to prevent lockout) and weighted hip thrusts for your glutes (the knees are bent but not trying to actively straighten them, they remain at 90 degrees while the hips move).
  • SideSteel
    SideSteel Posts: 11,068 Member
    Regarding the knee issue the only two statements I'd be comfortable making as a very broad generalization are:

    1) If it hurts, you very likely need to stop doing it.
    2) See your physical therapist or other professional who specializes in injury rehab or knee specific issues and do what they tell you.

  • taco_inspector
    taco_inspector Posts: 7,223 Member
    Hey thank you all @jkquinn13 , @nossmf , & @SideSteel ...

    @jkquinn13 , These sound like exactly what I've been instructed to do; great to hear that they work! @nossmf , Thanks for the "Good Morning" idea, I always shy away from them, but this seems to be a really good application for light-weight Good Mornings (don't wanna turn-out like Bruce Lee did, right?) . and @SideSteel -- Yessir! Good sound advice, I'm er 'my friend' is usually a good patient following Dr's orders and all of that - Just wanted to bring a few thoughts to the good Doctor and PT for the follow-up visit.

    Thanks!
  • AigreDoux
    AigreDoux Posts: 594 Member
    Hello! I have sort of a long question...

    I'm a 37 year old, 5'5" female, currently around 133-134 ish pounds, but not very muscular at that weight. Or actually not at all muscular. My scale gives me body fat ranging from 28-29%, I know that's not considered accurate, but just a general idea. I started weight training in January 2016, and from 1/16-10/16 lost about 30 pounds. I've been maintaining at this weight since then, following Eat to Perform for my macros, which is sort of based on recomp. I currently lift 3x/week following Strong Curves, and run 3x/week (12 miles total).

    My goals are mostly aesthetic. I do like being stronger, but if I could only pick one, I'd pick the aesthetics. I am sort of thinking of running a half marathon in fall 2017, but haven't committed to that yet.

    I'll probably maintain through the holidays. The questions are:

    1) In January, should I cut again? Or keep going with a recomp?
    2) Should I change up my training program to incorporate another day of strength training? I could move to a split and do 4x/week strength, would that make a significant difference? I would then need to either cut a day of running or do a short run on an upper body day.

    I'm willing to be patient but obviously want the thing that will give me the fastest results :)
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