T Nation

Deadlifting Frequency

Hi CT,

Whilst i am waiting for funds to get a dead squat bar i am continuing with a 5 days split of push, pull, legs, push, pull with 1 free day. Recently ive been performing alot of rack pulls from below the knee twice a week but i would like to move now on to more off the floor. My question is:

  1. I would like to go to mid stance sumo deadlift. From a recovery stand point, what would be the best approach to avoid cns burnout. Max out on squats once a week, sumo on both pulling days but not maxing and instead working with around 70% with more of a dynamic effort, possibly with chains or bands?

Many Thanks

From my experience, if there is one lift that you cannot go hard at with any kind of frequency, it’s the deadlift. You can do explosive pulls 3-4 times a week without any problem, but anything above 85-90% on deadlifts will kill the nervous system if done too often.

I personally think that one hard deadlift workout per week is all that you should do. If you want to throw in another deadlift session it would have to be light (70-75%) and non-stressful (2-3 reps per set) focusing on technique and speed.

Hey CT,

For your “6 Weeks to Superhero” it calls for deadlifting heavy twice a week. Would you make the other deadlifting session lighter then?


for now i will go with the one max day + one light/speed day and see how it goes. I had my first experiance of cns burnout today, feeling groggy and sluggish all day after a new PB last night. On the positve side, i now know what signs of burnout feel like and can react and alter accordingly in the future.

One last question:

My 3rd lift on pulling day is the snatch row (as you advocated a while back in live spills). However my mind muscle connection seems to be really hit and miss and i struggle to get a pump. I there anything you can recommend to improve this or is there a better exercise i could perform to really hit my lats and add width which is what i am lacking?