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WS4SB Question for Max Lower Days

Hey guys. I joined up after my cousin recommended I do it. He has let me come and use his laptop while we play COD and just hang out.

I am just starting to train for the military and after thinking about doing 5/3/1 and Greyskull LP I decided on ws4sb.

I am confused about what my max lower day exercise should be to work hop to my 3-5 rep max.

I am not trying to look like a powerlifter or get really strong in a specific thing like a below parallel squat that requires lots of skill and technique. I am looking for lifting to enhance my training not become the entirety of it.

From reading about a bit online I have seen lots of people recommend the snatch grip deadlift for athletes or people wanting to get the best bang for their buck.

I was thinking defect snatch grip deadlifts would be a good idea. I have tried squatting and I can only high bar squat or snatch grip deadlift. A powerlifting squat is too technical for me to learn and I have no real interest in doing so and I can’t really feel a conventional deadlift working anything.

I did some snatch grip deadlifts last night and today my upper back, traps, wrists, hamstrings and flutes are sore as hell.

I can do high bar squats if I borrow my cousins olympic shoes but I am not very good as I am a newb and again I am not a weightlifter. I don’t feel very safe squatting and I sometimes get bad knee pain.

My program will basically be this:

Day 1
Max upper

Day 2
Conditioning

Day 3
Max lower

Day 4
Conditioning

Day 5
Repetition upper

Day 6
Conditioning

Day 7
Dynamic lower

Max upper day :

A. (work up to max set of 3-5)

Bench press alternated with Overhead press (alternate by month)

B. ( perform 2 max sets first set hit 15-20 reps)

Flat neutral grip dumbbell press

C. (row and rear delt superset 3-4 sets 8-12 reps)

Dumbbell rows
Rear delt flyes

D. (3-4 sets 8-15 reps)

Dumbbell shrugs

E. (3-4 sets 8-15 reps)

Hammer curls

Max lower day:

A. ( work to max set of 3-5)

Olympic squats alternated with Snatch grip deadlifts (alternate by month)

B. (3 sets 6-12 reps)

Walking barbell lunges

C. ( 3 sets 8-12 reps)

Hyperextensions

D. ( 3 max sets)

Decline sit-ups

Dynamic lower day:

A. ( 5-8 sets 1-3 jumps)

Box jumps

B. ( 2-3 sets 8-12 reps)

Bulgarian split squats with dumbbells

C. ( 3 sets 8-12 reps)

45 degree hyperextensions

D. ( 4 sets 10-15 reps)

Hanging leg raises

Repetition upper day:

A. ( 3 max sets)

Pressups

B. ( pulling and rear delt superset 3-4 sets 8-12 reps)

Lat pull downs
Rear delt flyes

C. ( 4 sets 8-12 reps)

Dumbbell lateral raises

D. ( traps and arms superset 3 sets)

Dumbbell shrugs
Hammer curls

E. (grip and forearm strength 3 max sets)

Grippers

Conditioning I:
3 mile run

Conditioning II:
1 mile best effort

Conditioning III:
Hill sprints/Flat sprints
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[quote]WS4FB wrote:
I am just starting to train for the military and after thinking about doing 5/3/1 and Greyskull LP I decided on ws4sb.[/quote]
When you say “train for the military”, is that like you’re getting prepared to enter boot camp and need to meet the PT requirement? Or you’re in the military and you want to address something particular? Or what?

What’s your current height, weight, and general fat level? (Pudgy, kinda lean, average looking, etc.)

Some kind of squat or deadlift, swapping in a new exercise every few weeks. Confusion solved, no?

Your goals are your own thing, but a below parallel squat doesn’t require “lots” of skill. A little practice and building some strength and mobility, but that’s it.

This is a fine and reasonable approach to lifting. But remember that specific goals get achieved, vague goals don’t.

[quote]From reading about a bit online I have seen lots of people recommend the snatch grip deadlift for athletes or people wanting to get the best bang for their buck.

I was thinking defect snatch grip deadlifts would be a good idea.[/quote]
Did you mean deficit deads, like standing on a small box or something to increase the ROM? Those are absolultey killer. Snatch-grip deads are also very good, for sure. But if you think a below-parallel squat is highly technical, I’m not sure how you plan on getting into a good starting position for snatch-grip deads, let alone doing them from a deficit.

“Usually, people just feel intimidated by anything that resembles a technical exercise and just would rather not do them. This is just being a pussy, and sets a bad precedent for the management of both training and life.” - Mark Rippetoe.

I’m just saying, avoiding something because it seems too technical isn’t a legit reason. If it’s sincerely not relevant to your goals, that’s one thing. But avoiding a potentially beneficial lift because you’re just not interested may not be the most efficient approach to things. Also, I’m not even clear on what you consider a “powerlifting squat”. A low bar squat? Just squatting to parallel?

Then you’re deadlifting wrong. The deadlift is one of the most fundamental human movements, right along with the squat. And training to safely, properly, and powerfully lift a heavy “thing” off the ground is one of the most literally-functional exercises available. Jumping right to snatch-grip deads and skipping over conventional deads is certainly running before you crawl.

This is expected.

First, you can certainly squat without olympic shoes. They’re nice and useful, but they’re not essential. Secondly and more important, the knee pain is something that needs to be properly diagnosed and addressed ASAP, especially if you’re headed into the military.

Do you have any pre-existing issues or have you ever been to a doctor about it? Can you do a full squat without added weight with good form?

[quote] My program will basically be this:
Day 1
Max upper

Day 3
Max lower

Day 5
Repetition upper

Day 7
Dynamic lower [/quote]
So, not WS4SB. WS4SB 3. Just clarifying. Can I ask what about the program won you over, compared to something like 5/3/1?

[quote]Chris Colucci wrote:

[quote]WS4FB wrote:
I am just starting to train for the military and after thinking about doing 5/3/1 and Greyskull LP I decided on ws4sb.[/quote]
When you say “train for the military”, is that like you’re getting prepared to enter boot camp and need to meet the PT requirement? Or you’re in the military and you want to address something particular? Or what?

What’s your current height, weight, and general fat level? (Pudgy, kinda lean, average looking, etc.)

Some kind of squat or deadlift, swapping in a new exercise every few weeks. Confusion solved, no?

Your goals are your own thing, but a below parallel squat doesn’t require “lots” of skill. A little practice and building some strength and mobility, but that’s it.

This is a fine and reasonable approach to lifting. But remember that specific goals get achieved, vague goals don’t.

[quote]From reading about a bit online I have seen lots of people recommend the snatch grip deadlift for athletes or people wanting to get the best bang for their buck.

I was thinking defect snatch grip deadlifts would be a good idea.[/quote]
Did you mean deficit deads, like standing on a small box or something to increase the ROM? Those are absolultey killer. Snatch-grip deads are also very good, for sure. But if you think a below-parallel squat is highly technical, I’m not sure how you plan on getting into a good starting position for snatch-grip deads, let alone doing them from a deficit.

“Usually, people just feel intimidated by anything that resembles a technical exercise and just would rather not do them. This is just being a pussy, and sets a bad precedent for the management of both training and life.” - Mark Rippetoe.

I’m just saying, avoiding something because it seems too technical isn’t a legit reason. If it’s sincerely not relevant to your goals, that’s one thing. But avoiding a potentially beneficial lift because you’re just not interested may not be the most efficient approach to things. Also, I’m not even clear on what you consider a “powerlifting squat”. A low bar squat? Just squatting to parallel?

Then you’re deadlifting wrong. The deadlift is one of the most fundamental human movements, right along with the squat. And training to safely, properly, and powerfully lift a heavy “thing” off the ground is one of the most literally-functional exercises available. Jumping right to snatch-grip deads and skipping over conventional deads is certainly running before you crawl.

This is expected.

First, you can certainly squat without olympic shoes. They’re nice and useful, but they’re not essential. Secondly and more important, the knee pain is something that needs to be properly diagnosed and addressed ASAP, especially if you’re headed into the military.

Do you have any pre-existing issues or have you ever been to a doctor about it? Can you do a full squat without added weight with good form?

[quote] My program will basically be this:
Day 1
Max upper

Day 3
Max lower

Day 5
Repetition upper

Day 7
Dynamic lower [/quote]
So, not WS4SB. WS4SB 3. Just clarifying. Can I ask what about the program won you over, compared to something like 5/3/1?[/quote]

Hey dude thats a really detailed reply. Thanks!

I am training to get into the British Marines. I was in the process of joining the parachute regiment when I left school but suffered a bad car accident which basically put an end to that for a few years.

I can squat with olympic shoes on ass to grass. but if I do it in flat shoes I have bad mobility and find it hard. I have been doing something called the agile 8 for a few days now though and will make it a daily thing.

Yeah sorry I just looked at the PDF and it was indeed number 3. It was my friend who convinced me, he plays rugby at a decent level and he said something with minimal heavy squaring and deadlifting would be ideal for me, a new lifter and someone who isn’t lifting for powerlifting or for bodybuilding but just for general athletic purposes.

I have watched some of Defrancos videos and he says he thinks new lifters should limit heavy bars not heir back and pulling from the floor. I also like how he has so much information, from his warmup videos to his general advice on sites and youtube. I also like how I can do his program without lots of knowledge about lifting.

I had tried to do grey skull LP but I simply can not get my low bar squat down and having had a few family members join the military who never squatted I don’t want to place lots of time and effort trying to low bar squat and risk injury when it really isn’t vital to my training.

I have noticed when I limit my knee travel about half way into a squat and anchor my knees there the knee pain does not happen. But that is when I am in ply shoes and am not having to deal with the problems from ankle inflexibility.

[quote]Chris Colucci wrote:
What’s your current height, weight, and general fat level? (Pudgy, kinda lean, average looking, etc.)[/quote]

[quote]WS4FB wrote:
I can squat with olympic shoes on ass to grass. but if I do it in flat shoes I have bad mobility and find it hard. I have been doing something called the agile 8 for a few days now though and will make it a daily thing.[/quote]
Sorry to hear about the accident. The mobility issue is something you definitely want to address until it’s no longer an issue, and even after. The Agile 8 is great stuff and doing it daily is definitely a good call.

I understand what you’re saying, about what your family said about being in the same situation. But in general, some kind of squatting is one of the most important aspects of athletic, “functional” training. For sure, not all athletes squat all the time because there can be some physical drawbacks (low back demand, overall recovery issues, etc.), but the physical ability to squat and the general strength and muscular benefits of them make it an important exercise.

Gotcha. Do what you need to in order to train, but an underlying goal should be to become 100% healthy. That’s obviously going to be necessary to perform at your fullest on the fitness test runs, other drills, and day-to-day requirements. I’m kinda thinking paratroopers end up having bad enough knees after a few years. So you’ve definitely got some pro-active work to do.

531 and GSLP are both solid, adaptable programs that should fit your needs… it was unclear if you actually did these or just thought about it. That being said, if you have tried them and they just weren’t working, you should move on. However, if you are changing just to avoid heavy squats and deads, that would not be a good reason, as, if you were determined not to do them, you could find more “athlete friendly” variations such as split squats, holds, or other single leg work.

You say you want something to help with general athleticism. What athletics are you actually doing? Yes ARrrrrrrrrmmmmyyyyyy training, but, from what I’ve gathered from the guys in the conditioning forum, mastering rucking, running, pullups, sit ups, and pushup movements are all you really need. Or do you mean to say you never intend to compete in PLing or get on stage covered in salad dressing? This is the majority of us. Given that you’re unclear on your goals, you probably have more novice level strength, in which case, something like GSLP may currently be more beneficial to you.

You still seem like you’re trying to figure things out, so here are some things to assist you in addition to the goal setting link chris gave:
-search for army training on the top right. This is a common thread on here with many of the things you need to hear having already been said… the guys on the conditioning forum can be helpful too
-A variant of 531 with lighter weights: http://www.T-Nation.com/training/8-6-3-for-size-and-strength
-WS4FB http://www.T-Nation.com/free_online_article/most_recent/westside_for_fat_bastards
-531 for Athletes http://www.T-Nation.com/free_online_article/most.../531_and_athletes
-Simple program without back squats of DLs http://www.T-Nation.com/article/performance_training/lessons_from_southwood&cr=

Just a quick update I did my max lower day yesterday and instead of squatting I did defect deadlifts, the box was quite high, around 3-5 inches.

I hit 100kg for 5 if I remember correctly, 102.5kg for 3 and 105kg for 1.

Today I have severe doms in my flutes and slight dome in my hamstrings and considering I have never felt my hamstrings worked in the deadlift in the days after that seems promising.

I did the walking lunges next which were really hard and smashed my glutes. I finished off with the three sets of hyperextensions which gave me a crippling lower back pump that scared the shit out of me then the abdominal movement was decline sit-ups.

I am so sore I am unsure whether to go do cardio or not today. I am training again after years of obese inactivity and don’t want to sabotage myself but also don’t want to unnecessarily pussy out.

Also should I use straps for deadlifts? I felt my grip go i probably had a bit more in me but the hands went first. Would using straps for pulling movements be ok if I use my grippers on repetition upper day like the exercise i selected calls for?

[quote]WS4FB wrote:
Also should I use straps for deadlifts? I felt my grip go i probably had a bit more in me but the hands went first. Would using straps for pulling movements be ok if I use my grippers on repetition upper day like the exercise i selected calls for?[/quote]

Unless you want to compete in powerlifting, straps should be more than fine. Even if you want to compete in powerlifting, as long as you train the grip like you mentioned, you should be fine.

[quote]WS4FB wrote:
Just a quick update I did my max lower day yesterday

I hit 100kg for 5 if I remember correctly, 102.5kg for 3 and 105kg for 1.[/quote]
Wasn’t that supposed to just be working up to a 3-5RM? Unless the 102.5 felt pretty smooth and easy, and you thought you could hit 105 for 3, you probably should’ve shut it down after the 102.5. Make sure you listen to your body from set to set, and see if you can tell what it’s trying to say based on how you perform.

You’re going to tell us to did do some kind of cardio though, right?

Nothing inherently wrong with straps. Over-relying on them can be an issue, but using them for the last/heaviest sets is no problem at all, especially since you do have some dedicated grip work anyhow.

[quote]Chris Colucci wrote:

[quote]WS4FB wrote:
Just a quick update I did my max lower day yesterday

I hit 100kg for 5 if I remember correctly, 102.5kg for 3 and 105kg for 1.[/quote]
Wasn’t that supposed to just be working up to a 3-5RM? Unless the 102.5 felt pretty smooth and easy, and you thought you could hit 105 for 3, you probably should’ve shut it down after the 102.5. Make sure you listen to your body from set to set, and see if you can tell what it’s trying to say based on how you perform.

You’re going to tell us to did do some kind of cardio though, right?

Nothing inherently wrong with straps. Over-relying on them can be an issue, but using them for the last/heaviest sets is no problem at all, especially since you do have some dedicated grip work anyhow.[/quote]

I did. I did the slowest 5km (3 miles) in the world.

I just did my upper max day. It would be cool if you guys could check in on my training log every now and then and just make sure I am not doing anything drastically retarded. You have been a lot of help!

Log:
http://tnation.T-Nation.com/hub/WS4FB#myLogs