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Thread: amping up arm work/chest work in starting strength program?

  1. #1
    Brendan
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    amping up arm work/chest work in starting strength program?

    Chest

    Flat Barbell Bench Press : 2 x 6-8 reps
    Low Incline Dumbbell Press : 2 x 6-8 reps
    Dips : 2 x 6-8 reps

    Shoulders, Triceps and Biceps

    Shoulders

    Military Press in Rack : 2 x 6-8 reps
    Seated Dumbbell Press : 2 x 6-8 reps
    Standing Lateral Raises : 2 x 10 reps

    Triceps :

    Narrow Grip bench Press : 2 x 6-8 reps
    French Press : 2 x 6-8 reps

    Biceps :

    Barbell Curls : 2 x 6-8 reps
    Hammer Curls : 1 x 6-8 reps


    Would I be ok to throw in some supersets for the arms, and a few more sets on the bench? How does doing only 2 sets benefit the muscles?

  2. #2
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    Why does everyone post their own routine as Starting Strength? If you want to follow SS do it as prescribed and don't **** around with it.
    Now, as for critiquing your own routine that you've posted above, I think there's way too much volume. Pick a couple main exercises and do them hard.

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    Too much volume? You won't grow if you spend 10 minutes in the gym.
    Anywhere between 15-20 sets per workout is fine for beginners (it didn't do me any harm) 20-30 for those who have been lifting for about a year and above 30 sets for advanced bodybuilders.
    Last edited by Gilles1975; 07-19-2008 at 12:08 PM.

  4. #4
    Banned MPB's Avatar
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    If you want to do additional work, I'd do a couple sets of dips and curls at the end. Don't mess around with the program. I don't understand why you're questioning the routine unless you can do a better job than Mark Rippetoe, which I doubt. It's not going to be Starting Strength anymore if you're going to customize it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gilles1975 View Post
    Too much volume? You won't grow if you spend 10 minutes in the gym.
    Anywhere between 15-20 sets per workout is fine for beginners (it didn't do me any harm) 20-30 for those who have been lifting for about a year and above 30 sets for advanced bodybuilders.
    Starting Strength routine is going to take more than 10 minutes to finish...

    Your comment about intermediates needing 20-30 sets, that's not true AT ALL. As I get stronger, I find my workout getting smaller and smaller in terms of volume.
    Last edited by MPB; 07-19-2008 at 12:55 PM.

  5. #5
    Ex-Manwhore KingWilder's Avatar
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    Starting Strength is a great routine the way it is.


    If you want to "up" the arm and chest work add weighted chins to one of the days and weighted dips to the other
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    Quote Originally Posted by MightyPitbull View Post
    If you want to do additional work, I'd do a couple sets of dips and curls at the end. Don't mess around with the program. I don't understand why you're questioning the routine unless you can do a better job than Mark Rippetoe, which I doubt. It's not going to be Starting Strength anymore if you're going to customize it.



    Starting Strength routine is going to take more than 10 minutes to finish...

    Your comment about intermediates needing 20-30 sets, that's not true AT ALL. As I get stronger, I find my workout getting smaller and smaller in terms of volume.
    I take a pretty straightforward approach to body building - lifting tears muscle, more lifting tears more muscle. The more muscle you tear the more you grow (assuming the diet is as it should be).
    It's actually a lot harder to overtrain than most people realize and as long as you leave at least four days between hitting each muscle then your aim should be to completely destroy the muscles every time and rest and diet build it all back up bigger and stronger.
    Like I said. it's simple really.
    Last edited by Gilles1975; 07-19-2008 at 02:09 PM.

  7. #7
    Banned MPB's Avatar
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    SS is a full body routine, each muscle group gets hit three times a week. That's enough, no need to add a bunch of different exercises. I think you're over simplifying how weight training should be done. If you're talking about single factor training when you say straightforward approach to bodybuilding, then it is really not an effective way to train.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MightyPitbull View Post
    I think you're over simplifying how weight training should be done. If you're talking about single factor training when you say straightforward approach to bodybuilding, then it is really not an effective way to train.
    That's funny, cause my body measurements say something different.
    Still what do they know.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by MightyPitbull View Post
    SS is a full body routine, each muscle group gets hit three times a week. That's enough, no need to add a bunch of different exercises. I think you're over simplifying how weight training should be done. If you're talking about single factor training when you say straightforward approach to bodybuilding, then it is really not an effective way to train.
    How does SS hit each group 3 times a week? I was under the impression it was once a week.

    I'm also doing the SS workout and had the same question as the OP. My legs and back always feel blasted the days after their respective workouts, but I never get the same feeling in my chest.

    I'm basically doing as much weight as I can for 2x6-8 for each of the exercises.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by mongoose06 View Post
    How does SS hit each group 3 times a week? I was under the impression it was once a week.

    I'm also doing the SS workout and had the same question as the OP. My legs and back always feel blasted the days after their respective workouts, but I never get the same feeling in my chest.

    I'm basically doing as much weight as I can for 2x6-8 for each of the exercises.
    I'm pretty sure you're not doing Starting Strength.

    If you want to get strong, don't **** with the program. If you just want to feel sore all the time while making minimum progress, go ahead and add your sets.

  11. #11
    Banned MPB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gilles1975 View Post
    That's funny, cause my body measurements say something different.
    Still what do they know.
    Just because something works for you, doesn't mean it will for everybody out there. And it certainly doesn't mean it is the best method available.

    Quote Originally Posted by mongoose06 View Post
    How does SS hit each group 3 times a week? I was under the impression it was once a week.
    If it was once a week, it'd destroy the entire purpose of the routine. Are you sure you are following the right program?
    Last edited by MPB; 07-19-2008 at 07:44 PM.

  12. #12
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    Oh, I guess it's called the Wannabebig 1 routine. It is the same routine that the OP posted...I'm not sure why he called it the Starting Strength routine if they're different..

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    Yes, do this. Track your progress and after 2 months post back here with the results. When you find that your upperbody progress is lagging significantly behind your squat and deadlift, you will know why.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kastro View Post
    Yes, do this. Track your progress and after 2 months post back here with the results. When you find that your upperbody progress is lagging significantly behind your squat and deadlift, you will know why.
    Which routine do you recommend? Thanks in advance.
    Last edited by mongoose06; 07-19-2008 at 09:18 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MightyPitbull View Post
    Just because something works for you, doesn't mean it will for everybody out there. And it certainly doesn't mean it is the best method available.
    No, that of course would be your method

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gilles1975 View Post
    Too much volume? You won't grow if you spend 10 minutes in the gym.
    Anywhere between 15-20 sets per workout is fine for beginners (it didn't do me any harm) 20-30 for those who have been lifting for about a year and above 30 sets for advanced bodybuilders.
    You do know that starting strength is about 15 working sets, right? And if you do it right, you get your ass handed to you. 5x5 squats don't take 10 minutes.

  17. #17
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    follow the routine or make your own

  18. #18
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    Okay, I think there may be some confusion here. The routine that the OP posted is not the Starting Strength routine. It is the Wannabebig 1 routine.

    So, the real question is: is the Wannabebig routine good on its own, or should we be adding more volume/workout days etc. to it? Thanks.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by mongoose06 View Post
    Okay, I think there may be some confusion here. The routine that the OP posted is not the Starting Strength routine. It is the Wannabebig 1 routine.

    So, the real question is: is the Wannabebig routine good on its own, or should we be adding more volume/workout days etc. to it? Thanks.
    Did I miss something? Because I only see listed what he wants to ADD to "starting strength program". You are correct about it NOT being Starting Strength, tho'.

    Why is there always this desire to add to already perfectly good routines?

    You cannot improve upon this routine. Any change to it will likely diminish the intended results of it. Once a routine has been changed it is no longer the said routine, but an entirely different animal altogether.

    And if anyone thinks they know better than Mark Rippetoe about the fundamentals of building strength, then they have missed their calling in life and could be making a lot of money by writing books filled with their extensive knowledge. Hell, I'd buy a copy.
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  20. #20
    Brendan
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    um, yeah. It's definetely not 3 times a week. You do chest/back, rest, legs, rest, arms/shoulders/rest. I suppose chest is kind of hit with the close grip bench, and triceps are hit with the chest workouts. Same with biceps on the back workouts... but you don't hit every mucle group 3 times a week.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by MightyPitbull View Post
    Your comment about intermediates needing 20-30 sets, that's not true AT ALL. As I get stronger, I find my workout getting smaller and smaller in terms of volume.
    x2 the longer i train, the shorter my workouts become. I hit the heavy compounds in a balls to the wall style which leaves me dead after a couple exercises.
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  22. #22
    SchModerator ZenMonkey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gilles1975 View Post
    Too much volume? You won't grow if you spend 10 minutes in the gym.
    Anywhere between 15-20 sets per workout is fine for beginners (it didn't do me any harm) 20-30 for those who have been lifting for about a year and above 30 sets for advanced bodybuilders.
    More volume does not entail more gains. Of course bbers who are on drugs and get paid to do it can benefit from more volume but for those who are not on drugs and great genetics can benefit from a basic trimmed down compound only routine just as much if not more than a "BB split". I think in most cases where the lifter is not on drugs the lifter could easily benefit more from as low as 45 sets a week rather than 90 sets. There is also too much volume in his suggested split for the said body parts, especially for the beginning lifter. Also , he never specified BBing so your approach may not even be what the OP wants.

    But as far as "muscle destruction" goes more volume does not necessarily induce more growth and gains. . Who do you think gains more... the guy who only squats, benches, and rows in one workout or the guy who benches, incline benches, dips, french presses, skull crushes, lateral raises, military presses, dumbell presses, bb curls, and db curls in one workout? Who can give all they got to every movement and not neglect others? If we grow more from compound lifts then it makes sense to focus on them. Low volume must then entail use of compound (maybe even exclusive compound) lifts and since volume is lower then full intensity on all of the movements of more attainable .

    If we want to focus on the compound lifts (like we all do) and want to be able to "empty the tank" on these major muscle building movements (which we do) the low volume is the answer.
    Last edited by ZenMonkey; 07-30-2008 at 01:53 PM.
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    WBB1 is a fine routine.

    It amazes me to no end why people feel the need to "change" or "improve" upon it by adding more arm work or more chest work at the expense of back and legs.

    If they find that deads don't blast the bejesus out of their arms or core, something's wrong and it isn't in the water.
    Last edited by Focused70; 07-30-2008 at 01:31 PM.
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  24. #24
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    it's not the water... its the kool-aid.

    follow the routine or make your own.

  25. #25
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    WBB1 is a very good routine. Trust me, I was one of those guys who had to make his own uber-long routine that gave me very little progression. While WBB1 doesn't seem like much, if you're lifting heavy enough, it WILL be more than enough for starters.

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