overhead press plateau

2

Replies

  • TheBigFb
    TheBigFb Posts: 648 Member
    Shoudler muscles are smaller that leg, chest and back muscles. Hence takes longer
  • hill8570
    hill8570 Posts: 1,466 Member
    viren19890 wrote: »
    Also I'd like to point out- that 5x5 cannot be run forever - they eventually fail. They are well suited for beginners but after that, they just don't work.

    5/3/1 or something similar can last a lifetime because the program in itself has built in parameters to ensure that.
    You might've not run into a barrier yet but 5x5 just don't cut it.

    OP has been running SL for a bloody month. It's way, way, way too early to be talking about moving to an intermediate program.
  • Soundwave79
    Soundwave79 Posts: 469 Member
    Of all the compound lifting I do OHP has been the hardest to progress. I've been stuck in plateaus for months at a time where 5 lbs can be the difference between my 1RM and failure. I just keep trying and failing until I finally get it up. But it's a slow going process.
  • sunnybeaches105
    sunnybeaches105 Posts: 2,831 Member
    OHP is a great excuse to buy a women's bar and training plates. To progress it's helpful to have weights light enough to do some higher rep work and build some muscle upon which to build strength gains. If nothing else, use some lighter dumbbells and do sets of 10-20+ reps as an accessory exercise. If all you're ever doing are sets of 5 and fewer then you're likely not progressing as fast as you otherwise could.
  • DopeItUp
    DopeItUp Posts: 18,772 Member
    I haven't failed, I just don't feel strong enough with it to increase the weight.

    I also have no money and can't afford to buy extra bits and pieces to attach to the bar.

    it's comforting to at least hear that it's common for it to lag behind. thanks for the tips!

    I would consider following the program and just going for it. Going by "feel" as a newbie lifter is a great way to spin your wheels.
  • dave_in_ni
    dave_in_ni Posts: 533 Member
    Have the same issue, I've been stuck on 30kg/66lbs for about 3 months where as I am more than double than on bench press and squats. I generally do 6 reps x 3 sets and its a damn struggle. I hate OHP with a passion.
  • rileyes
    rileyes Posts: 1,403 Member
    edited May 2016
    See if your gym can add a women's 35# bar. The grip is smaller and the 10# weight difference may make it easier for you to start with the bar. I use a 35# bar for my lifts and reserve my 45# bar for landmine work (Landmines, presses, rows...). The Landmine training is another option that may help your training.

    ETA: usually a tight glute-squeeze can help me with OHP.
  • singletrackmtbr
    singletrackmtbr Posts: 644 Member
    Have you considered dumbells? For OHP they allow a much more natural motion, and force your stabilizer muscles to work harder, which will increase your strength overall. It will also alert you if one side is doing more work than the other when using the BB.

    I would also suggest working on slow negatives (helps with strength for any exercise) and perhaps some bodyweight work. Pike pushups are great, and can be easily modified for any strength level.

    Good luck!
  • ObsidianMist
    ObsidianMist Posts: 519 Member
    wow, so many replies I don't even know where to start. some interesting ideas, some lingo I honestly don't have a clue what it means, haha, I think I shall do some reading and video watching to ensure my stance is correct and just try to start to incorporate some sets with the 35lb bar and attempt to be patient. maybe I'll google some of the extra exercises you've all suggested and see if anything seems like something I would want to add in for a bit.
  • RachNRoll
    RachNRoll Posts: 192 Member
    I feel your pain :D and we kind of had a similar start, except I'm not a petite frame and I was overweight when I started (I still am, but there was progress). OHP is always a struggle, nobody likes it. For me, training triceps has been helping, but I'm not doing 5x5 anymore (I'm doing 3x12 so I had to deload from my PR)
  • SezxyStef
    SezxyStef Posts: 15,270 Member
    wow, so many replies I don't even know where to start. some interesting ideas, some lingo I honestly don't have a clue what it means, haha, I think I shall do some reading and video watching to ensure my stance is correct and just try to start to incorporate some sets with the 35lb bar and attempt to be patient. maybe I'll google some of the extra exercises you've all suggested and see if anything seems like something I would want to add in for a bit.

    go for it...try the 35...SL 5x5 (as mentioned) has a deloading protocol built into the app for failure.

    OHP can be harder than most lifts.


    Here is a vid recommended to me...I believe it's Mark Riptoe giving a demo with women and OHP...

    But as far as the other things. Washers are cheap...or magnets can be bought cheap as well.

    I personal have weighted collars which weight 3lbs together and I use those for myself when I stalled on my upper body lifts.

    My current PR for OHP is 100lbs...so you can get there if I did.
  • Meganthedogmom
    Meganthedogmom Posts: 1,641 Member
    Oh boy, OP - I feel you, but I would take the suggestions of following the SL 5x5 program, including what to do when you hit a plateau/failure.

    I just started this program a few weeks ago. Today I did 60lb OHP and man it was not easy! Us women typically struggle in the upper body strength department. You may need to figure out smaller increments, but right now I would follow the program and see what you can do. Don't be scared!
  • AlphaCajun
    AlphaCajun Posts: 290 Member
    Yep, if you're finishing 5x5, add weight. If you fail, it'll hold you there next session. You say you aren't progressing or getting stronger and by refusing to add weight... you're right! You have to fail to succeed in progressive lifting. OHP was my first failure, I've since failed on it twice and bench once (11 weeks in).
  • BZAH10
    BZAH10 Posts: 5,591 Member
    Have you considered dumbells? For OHP they allow a much more natural motion, and force your stabilizer muscles to work harder, which will increase your strength overall. It will also alert you if one side is doing more work than the other when using the BB.

    I would also suggest working on slow negatives (helps with strength for any exercise) and perhaps some bodyweight work. Pike pushups are great, and can be easily modified for any strength level.

    Good luck!

    This is what I do. I prefer dumbbells for the reason mentioned: it helps me keep both arms even. And I do them sitting on the floor with my legs straight out in front of me. This seems to work my core much better. When I get to failure on my last set I also do a couple slow negatives.
  • ObsidianMist
    ObsidianMist Posts: 519 Member
    SezxyStef wrote: »
    go for it...try the 35...SL 5x5 (as mentioned) has a deloading protocol built into the app for failure.

    OHP can be harder than most lifts.


    Here is a vid recommended to me...I believe it's Mark Riptoe giving a demo with women and OHP...

    But as far as the other things. Washers are cheap...or magnets can be bought cheap as well.

    I personal have weighted collars which weight 3lbs together and I use those for myself when I stalled on my upper body lifts.

    My current PR for OHP is 100lbs...so you can get there if I did.

    I'll definitely check out that video, thanks. I unfortunately can't even afford to buy cheap things right now. I'd explain why but it's not necessary. just believe me when I say I have NO extra money for even cheap little things.
  • ObsidianMist
    ObsidianMist Posts: 519 Member
    Oh boy, OP - I feel you, but I would take the suggestions of following the SL 5x5 program, including what to do when you hit a plateau/failure.

    I just started this program a few weeks ago. Today I did 60lb OHP and man it was not easy! Us women typically struggle in the upper body strength department. You may need to figure out smaller increments, but right now I would follow the program and see what you can do. Don't be scared!

    I am following the program. and I'm not scared. I just want to make sure I'm not going to injure myself and set myself way back by pushing myself too hard.
  • ObsidianMist
    ObsidianMist Posts: 519 Member
    AlphaCajun wrote: »
    Yep, if you're finishing 5x5, add weight. If you fail, it'll hold you there next session. You say you aren't progressing or getting stronger and by refusing to add weight... you're right! You have to fail to succeed in progressive lifting. OHP was my first failure, I've since failed on it twice and bench once (11 weeks in).

    I'm not finishing 5x5, I've only been doing it for a month. my overhead press, benchpress, and bentover row aren't even up to olympic barbell weight yet. I started out only lifting 15lbs to get stronger and focus on form. you have a point though. I need to at least try to add some weight.
  • jimmmer
    jimmmer Posts: 3,535 Member
    AlphaCajun wrote: »
    Yep, if you're finishing 5x5, add weight. If you fail, it'll hold you there next session. You say you aren't progressing or getting stronger and by refusing to add weight... you're right! You have to fail to succeed in progressive lifting. OHP was my first failure, I've since failed on it twice and bench once (11 weeks in).

    I'm not finishing 5x5, I've only been doing it for a month. my overhead press, benchpress, and bentover row aren't even up to olympic barbell weight yet. I started out only lifting 15lbs to get stronger and focus on form. you have a point though. I need to at least try to add some weight.

    It's confusingly written, but I think he means: "If you are completing all reps in your 5x5, increase weight next session". Finish, as in completing all 25 reps successfully....
  • BZAH10
    BZAH10 Posts: 5,591 Member
    SezxyStef wrote: »
    go for it...try the 35...SL 5x5 (as mentioned) has a deloading protocol built into the app for failure.

    OHP can be harder than most lifts.


    Here is a vid recommended to me...I believe it's Mark Riptoe giving a demo with women and OHP...

    But as far as the other things. Washers are cheap...or magnets can be bought cheap as well.

    I personal have weighted collars which weight 3lbs together and I use those for myself when I stalled on my upper body lifts.

    My current PR for OHP is 100lbs...so you can get there if I did.

    I'll definitely check out that video, thanks. I unfortunately can't even afford to buy cheap things right now. I'd explain why but it's not necessary. just believe me when I say I have NO extra money for even cheap little things.


    But, you're working out at a gym, right? If so, I don't think you need to purchase anything extra. There's got to be something around the gym to add a few pounds to the bar even ankle weights or something. If you are working out at home and I misunderstood then I apologize.

    Also, don't let it discourage you! I've been lifting for quite a while and I'm not even close to using the olympic barbell weight. But, I'm okay with my slow progress on OHP. One thing I had to teach myself was that it's okay to NOT do a set of 12 or 10 or whatever if you are adding weight. A couple sets of 3 or 4 reps is good until you can start building off of that. For some reason the lower number of reps equated in my head to a wimpy workout when in fact adding weight is the opposite. JMHO.
  • ObsidianMist
    ObsidianMist Posts: 519 Member
    jimmmer wrote: »
    It's confusingly written, but I think he means: "If you are completing all reps in your 5x5, increase weight next session". Finish, as in completing all 25 reps successfully....

    ah yeah okay that makes more sense. thanks
    BZAH10 wrote: »
    But, you're working out at a gym, right? If so, I don't think you need to purchase anything extra. There's got to be something around the gym to add a few pounds to the bar even ankle weights or something. If you are working out at home and I misunderstood then I apologize.

    Also, don't let it discourage you! I've been lifting for quite a while and I'm not even close to using the olympic barbell weight. But, I'm okay with my slow progress on OHP. One thing I had to teach myself was that it's okay to NOT do a set of 12 or 10 or whatever if you are adding weight. A couple sets of 3 or 4 reps is good until you can start building off of that. For some reason the lower number of reps equated in my head to a wimpy workout when in fact adding weight is the opposite. JMHO.

    I am working out at a gym, yes. I've never noticed anything sitting around that looks like it could be added to a bar but then I haven't been looking for it so who knows.

    yeah I think I need to get out of the mindset that if I add weight then I NEED to do the full 5 sets of 5 reps with that weight. I have a brain that really likes structure and routine and sometimes has trouble thinking outside of the box. thanks for the support!