Stronger Than Ever!

I am 34 yo 5’5"-5’6" at 152lbs (down from 160lbs 7-weeks ago). I am in my last day of a week break off training (I did SL5x5 for 5 weeks with 1kg/2lb weight progression).

I think I had a systematic fatigue so I will resume my worktout mid of next week (after 2.5 weeks off), using 3x5 to increase my strength with 1kg/2lb weight progression for 4 weeks then deload to start weight or 50% on 5th week.

I will eat around my maintenance which is 1900 OR with +10% increase at 2190 calories per day. My main goal is to body recomp, increase in strength while losing fat. I have read many articles and have been lifting (light to moderate weights for a decade). I work best when I consume carbohydrate a night before my workout next morning. I also prefer to keep my carbohydrate (moderate) on rest of days and possibly (low) on weekend days (a little more carbohydrate than usual will make me feel lethargy).

I supplement on l-creatine 3g, 1-gultamine 5 g, l-lecuine 2.2 g, use a protein shake before bed and pre-work/out or when I crave protein. I use an isolated form of protein powder and I drink it with water only.

I listen to my body a lot so sometimes I do things you might not agree with but that is my body make the final decision (sometimes a delay in progress is better than months off training due to moving too fast) but it is also good to listen to other’s feedback.

My main issue is that my lifts are still too weak (I can only squat 15 kg).
My goal is a slow gain in strength (injury free) journey and will recomp my body depends on the outcome.
Most importantly I am one of those who have fun while they exercise.

Any comments from experienced lifters are welcome.

I know there are many workout programs but I am comfortable with Stronglifts since I know the correct form to preform the exercise. I cannot do any body weight yet and I prefer barbell to dummbell to get stronger evenly on both side of body. I also do some accessory & stretch work but I will talk about it only when I resume my workouts.

ya i dont have the knowledge for this but il tag @planetcybertron. she went from skinny and week to Strong and swole. il also tag @Spock81 and @jamie1888 .

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stronglifts for beginners are fine but eventually you stall

When someone stall on 5x5, it takes you back to 3x5. When you are no longer beginner, one can upgrade, since lower volume no longer work, higher volume is for intermediate.

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It takes a few years to become an intermediate (decent strength level, reasonable amount of nutrition and training knowledge and techniques, form etc, then lots of years to become advanced (super strong, Near perfect form, Nutrition and Training knowledge to a high level). Being a beginner doesn’t mean you cant handle volume. To handle volume you slowly build up your work capacity then see how much volume your body responds best to.

In my opinion 5×5 is okay for a little bit but i would never suggestvit to anyone. Once you do stall on 5×5 id recommend looking into 5/3/1 by jim wendler. It allows slow and steady gains.

I never said high volume is not good for a beginner but I have some systematic fatigue from high volume, I read it works better for intermediate (in certain cases, when stall on lower volume) since their CNS get more adapted and needs new ways to challenge the muscle.

I feel great with Stronglifts, I will study new programs but it will take some times (I do not want to lose time, I will resume with SL3x5). I also cannot do program that require bodyweight exercise yet.

What do you think about cycling my works 4 weeks on, week 5 off or deload?


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I think if you are needing a deload frequently then 1. stronglifts incorporates 5 of the big barbell lifts in a workout which is very taxing and personally would wear my cns down.
2. You’re recovery is off ( not enough sleep, carbs, protein etc)

You trained for five weeks, got too fatigued and had to take a week off. What does this tell you?

Actually it will 2.5 weeks off (I trained for 5 weeks on SL and 2 weeks on moderate weights before).

Anyway I will figure it out myself.

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Alright. Let us all know how it goes.

Thanks, I hope my rather slower progress is going make me gain strength. I have to listen to my body if it wants rest, I can tell it is real using other indicators, I will stalling in my 7th week, and my heart beat was up to 168 bpm while lifting, 135 bpm during my 5 minutes rest, and I became sick and had to be medically treated (mostly digestive and aches and discomfort).
Sometimes the body just wants time off. I feel great while at it so I will maintain it until I am back.

I appreciate the tag. Not sure I have the knowledge to advise properly on this one either.

Intuitively, I feel like there must be some physical issue going on here with being so weak and the fatigue. You mention a few times about progressing injury free and listening to your body, etc. Is there a medical condition involved here?

If there are zero medical issues, you seem on the extreme end of tentative (to the point of fearful) when it comes to lifting. And quite frankly, you wont get strong if you are afraid to push yourself beyond your comfort zone. Yes, you never want to push to the point of bad form. But, there needs to be a push to get stronger.

And I’m confused as to why you think you can’t do a body weight squat. If you can squat with a 15kg bar, you are squatting your body weight PLUS 15kg.

I feel it could be beneficial to unlock your mindset that you have to lift in this low rep weight scheme. If you can do 5 sets of 5, it’s likely you can do, 3 sets of 8. I really don’t think a program designed for heavy weights is going to be as beneficial if you aren’t pushing the heavy weight.

I’m going to call in for reinforcements here. They have been very helpful to me and know infinitely more than I do about lifting… @BOTSLAYER @MarkKO @littlesleeper


Hi there and welcome to the training logs. I will echo @jamie1888 in that it seems like something else may be going on to become easily fatigued particularly at your age. Maybe I’m reading it wrong.

As for stronglifts, I think it’s a fine place to start. That’s where I began and I don’t think it needs to be any more complicated than that when you begin.

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You may or may not be able to get away with this. Especially us females. Not saying it cant be done, but just from observation, and also what ive been doing for myself, theres a fine line when it comes to trying to do all three of those things. It has happened to me before, but it comes in waves of some sort. And half the time, all aspects increase exponentially, except the fat loss part. it wont go up, but it will just stall somewhere. Not a bad thing, but you might have to prioritize. Do you want to lean out? Or do you wish to focus on strength? Most often times youre gonna have to choose between the two.

Going off of your height and weight, just off the bat, you might wanna increase calories by say, 200-300 for about a month. See whats going on with your lifts, and reassess as you go. Something as clean cut as SL 5x5, and with the increase in increments as you’ve put, you should be seeing a steady increase in your lifts. Also I see you’ve only ran that program for 5 weeks. I’m gonna go out on a limb and say you might wanna run that for well over 6 months. You haven’t had enough time to see how you fair on such program.

Technically you can learn correct form on just about anything concerning lifting, even body weight stuff. I say that because it wouldn’t hurt to explore a few things. Not sure if your goal is BBing type stuff, or PLing, or even Strongman stuff. Can you specify for me?

This is just what I’m able to say, based off of the info you’ve given. To be honest I have a shit load of questions, and I cant really give a concrete answer just because I’m still in the dark on some things.

What does your training schedule look like for the week?
How much volume are you using?
Are your workouts too intense?
what does your frequency look like?
What are your macros looking like? Are you eating enough to make progress? This is usually a giant aspect of peoples training, and it usually will fuck a bunch of stuff up, if you aren’t managing it correctly.
How much sleep do you get?
Medical issues? (As Jaime asked)
Do you work a stressful job?
Physique goals?
How much cardio do you implement?

So as you can see, I can ask you a plethora of questions, its up to you if you want to answer, but it would help if you could provide more info please.


I think this might be when any issues originate from. A 15 kg squat is very low if you’re not injured - which I gather you aren’t. When you say you cannot do any bodyweight that’s very vague. If you mean unassisted dips and pull-ups, that’s hardly uncommon for females. If you mean bodyweight squats, lunges, push-ups on your knees etc then there’s something that doesn’t up if you’re not injured.

I’m probably going to cop some shit for what I’m going to say but I’m just being honest and trying to help.

These all stood out

Bottom line, it sounds to me like you’re lazy. You aren’t doing anywhere near enough to get anywhere. So you get nowhere.

With your caloric intake, a healthy individual of your situation will not get systemic fatigue from doing Stronglifts (which, for the record, it a heap of shit written by an idiot who hasn’t achieved jack). There simply isn’t even close to enough volume and intensity for that to happen. You got a bit tired and a bit sore and took way too long off.

If you just want to have fun, keep doing what you’re doing. That’s fine, because you want to have fun. If you actually want results, harden up and do the work.


Agree with you here big time about the weight loss/strength gain thing!!

I have NEVER been able to do both at the same time. I am not naturally strong, I have to work very, VERY hard at it, and I always have.

Perfecting my form and increasing my carbs were the only two things that allowed me to gain strength.

The second I started cutting, all my lifts went down, and quite quickly I might add.

It’s all individual though, there are some very lean, hella strong chicks out there, but they are an enigma to me :stuck_out_tongue:

Anyway, I am a horrible advice giver, so that’s all I’ve got to say.


I will resume my workout next week, after 3 weeks break off training, from my first cycle of 7 weeks (5 weeks only on SL 5x5). I will start next Sunday or Monday.

The outcome of my 2.5 break (I walked more than usual) was losing 2 lbs of fat (my pants are loose around hip) and I became a little stronger than start date (I was unable to 1 time half push up, now I can half push up 5 times).

I have no medical issues now but I have RECOVERED from severe depression / anxiety (that lasted many years) few months ago. I have the green line to go back to workouts two years ago but only two months I was able to resume it, I need more time to adapt to it (nutrition, workouts, form, movements, stretches, etc).

I have a solid program with a weight progression plan, I definitely will only do 3x5 using SL until I can bodyweight pull ups and chins up and dips to switch to other programs.

My goal is body re-composition / lean out then strength gain, the reason I take it a bit slower than usual.

My goal IS NOT bodybuilding nor powerlifting nor Strongman. I am physically weaker than average and would like to become stronger, physically.

My program is 3 times per week weight lifting only. No cardio at all since I cannot even eat at maintenance (I use to be a skinny fat).

My caloric intake is 1900-2100 calories per week (sometimes up to 2200-2400 every other week). My macro nutrition are 50-60% carbs, 35-20% protein, 15-20% fat.

My approach to nutrition is based on my body’s need from observation over the year.

  1. I prefer to eat more carbs the night before my lifting, I usually have better results next morning session.
  2. I keep my carbs moderate in lifting days or I will be sluggish in my workout.
  3. I prefer a pre-workout protein powder with creatine or my workout will not be as good.
    That’s just what works for me.

I sleep 9-10 hours and sometimes even nap, lifting makes me feel exhausted mentally, my workouts used to last at least 1 hour/day at 5x5. I only trained with machines and little dumbbells in past decade, it’s not as nearly as challenging as the barbell itself.

I would definitely say I have A LOT of stress, that might somehow slow my progress, that probably will slow my recovery but I also have no professional / competition goals to go about it in faster way.

(PS: I have taken 2.5 weeks off and I lost 2 lbs while at it by longer walks, my heart rate is back to normal after flying at 130-170 bpm while lifting weights - it was the right decision for my body).

Lifting methodology was 5x5 with 3-5 minutes rest/reps, 4-7 minutes rest/exercise of 5 compound exercises and 1kg/2lbs weight progression plan per week. I will keep the same but switch to 3x5, this is how my workout goes:

Week 1:

Day 1: Workout A
Barbell Squat
Barbell Chest Press
Barbell Back Rows

Day 2: Workout B
Barbell Squat
Barbell Military Press
Barbell Deadlifts

Day 3: Workout A (+1kg/2lbs)

End of Week 1

Day 1: Workout B (+1kg/2lbs)

and so on for Week 2

I have no issue with any respond that suggest I am lazy, I am not gong to join the line of many out there with sport injuries and ruptures disc, from adding ego plates to their barbell while keep shitty form to progress. No point in that to me!

Everyone body work differently, I would rather keep the consistency, than give up on training all together (having fun is more important but if I get both (fun+results), it is possible).

As long as my pants are as loose as possible
My scale reads less overtime (or stay the same)
I proven to be stronger than the weeks before
I must be going about it right for my own body, at least.

I changed my mind, and kept my break, to 2.5 weeks only. I will start my 2nd cycle for another 4 weeks.

Starting Weight: 68kg (around 24%bf)

Week 1/Day 1: Wed 1/11/2017

Breakfast: 2 full eggs with table salt, half brown roll bread, tea with milk and stavia
Pre-WO: 1 scoop of protein with 3g of l-creatine and 5 g of l-glutamine with a glass of water

Workout A: SL3x5: 47 minutes
2x5 body weight
3x5 9kg barbell
Chest Press:
2x5 use resistance cable
3x5 9kg barbell
Back Rows:
2x5 use resistance cable
3x5 9kg barbell

Rest/Rep: 3 minutes
Rest/Exercise: 4 minutes

Comments: The weight felt somehow easy although it was my 10% from starting weight in my first cycle but my heart was going up while I move the weights in strict form (up to 150 bpm).
I think I might add 2kg/4lbs or simply keep 1kg/2lbs for next workout for my weight progression plan depends if I can keep a strict form while at the higher weight and if my body can recovery at my desire rate.

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You do realize there’s quite a few people out there who get injured dispite never really ego lifting. I myself have a herniated disc, and I wasn’t really even near my 1rm. Not to mention, there’s also a way to keep your form spot on regardless of how heavy the weight is. It’s called practicing technique. Even then, that’s still a bit off you saying that in general. What about the people who injure themselves despite never even touching a barbell? What about people who rupture discs from picking up a simple box, or their child, or even get accidentally hurt? Hell now that I mention it, people get hernias (abdominal ones) from holding in a sneeze sometimes.

I say this because most of us get hurt from accidents, old age, overuse, or work, one way or another whether we lift or not. I would think heavy lifting in a rational and well thought out way would probably preserve you well into old age. Sure you may have some bumps and bruises, but at what cost? Still being able to walk upright and without assistance, while the same folks your age can barely get anywhere without a walker? That’s if they aren’t semi or completely bed-ridden.


I know that heavy lifting is a good way to preserve the body (even protect from injuries, make tendons and joints stronger) but I am not going to lift something too heavy with a bad form just because someone think I am lazy, I will work my way up there, I know it will happen in time.

BTW, I answered all your questions but you changed the subject.