T Nation

When To Do Complexes

Hi all, first time posting in the forum but I’ve been using the site for a decent amount of time. I’m a junior in high school, and this is my 2nd year seriously training. I’ve been using Rippletoe’s starting strength for about 7 weeks and the simplicity of the program has resulted in great gains.

My main goal is to put on weight - I’m only about 156 lbs. But I’d still like to stay conditioned. So after research I found interest in barbell complexes. My question is: with starting strength, Im squatting 3x a week, as well as power cleaning and deadlifting on alternating days. Should I be completing complexes on my off days (Tuesday Thursday) or as a type of finisher on my lifting days (MWF).

Im afraid doing complexes on my off days that involve a majority of lower body exercises will take away from my lifts on the following days. What are your opinions?

Just do one at the end of your weight workouts. Use the off days to recover and eat.

Is this ONLY thing you are doing Starting Strength? Meaning, no other sports or heavily physical activity?

If its just SS, I would say the best way is to separate them out if you can. Meaning, do the weights in the AM and the Complexes at night, or the other way around depending on when you feel stronger.

Alternatively, if the goal is simply to stave of fat gains, do not underestimate the power of a quick paced walk 2-3 times a week. These wont have you gassed or increase the conditioning to a significant degree, but they wont cut into your recovery, can be done ANY day of the week at ANY time, and might even help you recover better.

Just for fun, what are your numbers at right now. It will be fun to look back on these one day and see how far you have come.

Your best option is to keep them on the same day split in an Am and Pm session like Lonnie suggested.

Cosgrove has a good article with complexe’s training 4 days a week. Do them everyday after your workout or in the PM. Follow his sets, reps, and rest format. This will give you great conditioning allowing you to lean out while getting stronger.

Follow this and you will get bigger also. For both workouts
Pre Workout = 1tablespoon of great lakes gelatin, 10 grams BCAA, 5 grams creatine, 5 grams of lucien
Post Workout = 32oz Raw Milk with 2 free rage eggs, 20 grams glutamin, 2 tablespoons of raw honey, 1 large apple. 30 mins later 1tablespoon of great lakes gelatin, 10 grams BCAA, 40 min 8oz grass feed beef and 1 large sweet potatoe.

gelatin? what is the purpose of that? Never heard of it.

I am at work I will post later to explain. A Chek Level 3 turned me on to it. I use with every client especially my athelets. The amino acid profile is awesome!

From what I’ve read it contains glycine which has some good benefits. Couldn’t just supplement with glycine?

Yes you can. But remember just taking Glycine by itself is just like taking vitamin A it may work but eating an apple would be a better source of Vitamin A.

The main bulk of an animal’s body consists of water, protein, fat and bones. Fat tissue and bone are metabolically more quiescent than the protein-water systems. During stress or starvation, or even hibernation, animals lose lean mass faster than fat.

The amino acids that constitute protein have many hormone-like functions in their free state. When our glucose (glycogen) stores have been depleted, we convert our own tissue into free amino acids, some of which are used to produce new glucose. The amino acids cysteine and tryptophan, released in large quantities during stress, have antimetabolic (thyroid-suppressing) and, eventually, toxic effects. Hypothyroidism itself increases the catabolic turnover of protein, even though general metabolism is slowed.

Other amino acids act as nerve-modifiers (?transmitters?), causing, for example, excitation or inhibition.

Some of these amino acids, such as glycine, have a very broad range of cell-protective actions.

Their physical properties, rather than their use for production of energy or other metabolic function, are responsible for their important cytoprotective actions.

Gelatin (the cooked form of collagen) makes up about 50% of the protein in an animal, but a much smaller percentage in the more active tissues, such as brain, muscle, and liver. 35% of the amino acids in gelatin are glycine, 11% alanine, and 21% proline and hydroxyproline.

In the industrialized societies, the consumption of gelatin has decreased, relative to the foods that contain an inappropriately high proportion of the antimetabolic amino acids, especially tryptophan and cysteine.

The degenerative and inflammatory diseases can often be corrected by the use of gelatin-rich foods.

That is just the tip of the iceberg.

Supplementing 10 grams of glycine with 30 grams of Glutamine is a great way to restore glycogen levels without eating sugar in a post work in order to drop body fat.

Also that protocol will help keep carb intake low when trying to cut weight without losing energy production during high intensity workouts. This will load the liver with glucose during low carb days (50g ? 100g)

[quote]Lonnie123 wrote:
Is this ONLY thing you are doing Starting Strength? Meaning, no other sports or heavily physical activity?

If its just SS, I would say the best way is to separate them out if you can. Meaning, do the weights in the AM and the Complexes at night, or the other way around depending on when you feel stronger.

Alternatively, if the goal is simply to stave of fat gains, do not underestimate the power of a quick paced walk 2-3 times a week. These wont have you gassed or increase the conditioning to a significant degree, but they wont cut into your recovery, can be done ANY day of the week at ANY time, and might even help you recover better.

Just for fun, what are your numbers at right now. It will be fun to look back on these one day and see how far you have come.[/quote]

In addition to SS I’m using the Recon Ron Pull Up program, some core work, and some other type of upper back lifts. I would love to follow your advice and seperate the complexes into AM/PM sessions, but the only weights I have access to are in my school weightroom. I did complete my first complex, Cosgroves Evil 8, on Wednesday after squatting benching and deadlifting. It definitely kicked my ass, and for now I think I’ll be using them as a post workout finisher until I can come up with a better plan.

Right now my numbers are:
Squat 3x5 230 lbs
Bench 3x5 150 lbs
Deadlift 1x5 275 lbs
Powerclean 5x3 165 lbs
Overhead Press 3x5 105 lbs

Make sure that the hardest (weakest) exercise determines the load. Example: Complexe- A the Military Press would determine the load.
Week 1 = 3 rounds x 12 reps, rest 1:30 min
Week 2 = 4 rounds x 6 reps, rest 1:30 min
Week 3 = 6 rounds x 8 reps, rest 1:30 min
Week 4 = 3 rounds x 15 reps, rest 2 min
Weeks 5-8 = same just decrease the rest by 30 sec

Good luck brother hope my post’s have helped you.
Complex A

Row
Clean
Front squat
Military press
Back squat
Good mornings

Complex B

Deadlift
Clean-grip high pull
Clean-grip snatch
Back squat
Good mornings
Row

Complex C

Hang snatch
Overhead squat
Back squat
Good mornings
Row
Deadlift

Complex D

Upright row
Clean-grip snatch
Back squat
Behind the neck press
Good mornings
Row

Complex E

Power clean
Military press
Back squat
Good mornings
Behind the neck press
Front squat

Complex F

Overhead squat
Back squat
Good morning
Front squat
Rows
Deadlift

Remember you can do complexes with anything just use a barbell that is something you have already.

Thank you for the responses, everyone has been a great help!