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Jordan Feigenbaum, MD, MS  Doctor, Coach, Lifter. 640/430/725 @ 198 raw. Spotify 🎧 jfeigenb 📩info@barbellmedicine.com 📍Santa Cruz Australia Training Camps👇🏻


330 (150kg) x 9 (~435 E1RM). Thought it was gonna be a PR set of 10 but not today. 🤷🏻‍♂️

I’ve been benching 0-1x/week for the past 5 months or so, but interestingly it doesn’t seem like my bench’s strength development has fallen off. Rather, I think that my ability to display maximal performance, e.g. a 1RM, has gotten a little worse- but my strength base has persisted.

This is actually something we see all the time in post novice strength athletes, i.e. a limited ability to transfer over existing strength to a a true 1RM. There are certainly other proxies for strength development such as 3-5RM, but these are relatively non specific for a competitive lifter and the fatigue induced by the set tends not to be worth the data it provides compared to, say, a submaximal single.

The submaximal single also has the benefit of improving one’s ability to perform a single at relatively high intensities, but doesn’t tend to induce too much fatigue when used appropriately. This is one of the reasons you see “1@8” so often in our strength programs and why we track estimated 1RM’s.

So, #qotd- how many of you have set a 3 or 5 RM but then failed to PR your 1RM in the next few weeks? Similarly, how many of you regularly perform singles? Let us know below!

Chanukah, The Festival of Lights night 1: Latkes.

First time ever making potato pancakes (latkes) and I think they turned out awesome! Nice crunch, great flavor, and better than I remember as a kid.

I had a tri-tip going in the sous vide that I planned on finishing over an open flame, but it smelled kinda funky when I was applying the rub so I pitched it and smoked some chicken I started brining yesterday. Paired that with an arugula salad and homemade dressing to cap off night 1.

I've got 10lbs of brisket for night 2 so stay tuned. Happy Chanukah to all my tribe members and Happy Holidays to everyone!

Anyone else celebrate? What's your favorite holiday food? Comment below? Bonus points if it's of the Hebrew variety ✡️✡️✡️

🎥 capture by @danieljcrossfit

Last session of this developmental block in the books. Beltless 2ct paused deadlift at 620 X1, 565 x 3, 555 x3x2. Then 2ct paused presses 225 x 4x . The RDLs at 365 x 12 x3. Looking forward to the final meet prep block!

Who else trained today? What did you do? Comment below :)

Artsy video angles courtesy of @danieljcrossfit with my new gimbal lol. It's pretty fun!

A little pressing party today. 277 x 1, 225 x 7, 205 x 8 (no vid). Plan was for a single at RPE 8-9 and then two sets of 8 @ 10. This is one of the few times where intensity is very high during the week, but it's still only about 80% of 1RM so I can train productively again the next day to continue accumulating stress.

That's the fine line we ride when coaching and monitoring training for both ourselves and others. We want enough volume at the appropriate intensity to produce overall strength development. Typically for intermediates and advanced lifters, this requires multiple exposures (frequency) with enough reps and sets (volume) to produce an increase in muscle size (hypertrophy), improve technique (through frequent exposures), with moderate intensity such that neither frequency or volume have to be sacrificed just to put a bigger number on the bar. When volume is decreased, recovery capacity, hypertrophic response, and long term strength development is compromised for short term increases in absolute bar weight. This is called peaking and it's not always a bad thing, e.g. If you have a meet on the horizon.

However, when this method (reduction in volume and increase in intensity) is used as THE METHOD, long term development suffers. This is one reason why lower volume programs can produce a short term improvement in your numbers, but those become stale fairly quickly.

As a thought experiment, consider what would happen to a lifter who just started doing one max single every time they trained for each lift? How long would they be able to add weight to the bar?

My favorite lift by far is the deadlift. There's something pure about picking up a heavy ass weight off the floor. What's more, you can't really cheat either. Your grip and constitution are all tested without regard for the contortions of your face. What's your favorite lift? Comment below!

The interesting thing about the deadlift is that there's a lot of mysticism and tomfoolery floating around about how to best train the deadlift. Most of these options don't make sense to me unless they involve a healthy dose of deadlifting (volume) without too much additional trickery.

Sure, using overload tools like bands or chains can be useful. Changing the range of motion with a block/rack pull or deficits can be productive, and changing the tempo with pauses certainly work. However, one thing that absolutely does not work to bring the deadlift up optimally is to not deadlift.

Need to improve your deadlift technique? You need to deadlift with good form regularly.

Wanna improve your grip for the deadlift? You gotta deadlift.

Wanna get better st recovering from the deadlift? You gotta deadlift.

The good thing about the deadlift is that by getting it stronger it tends to transfer over to other pulls and squats. A power lifter obviously needs to train the pull consistently, as it makes up 1/3 of their total. However, general strength trainees (e.g. CrossFit and Strongman athletes) also need to train the pull rather than specialize in Olympic WL or event specific training (unless there is a competition on the horizon and the deadlift has previously been well developed).

For example, a CF athlete whose deadlift/clean ratio is the same as a competitive weightlifter tells me their deadlift is probably undertrained. Given the fact that training the deadlift transfers over to many other activities and produces strength adaptations that cannot be trained any other way, this is a programming mistake.

Don't be scared of deadlift volume. If it is properly programmed and incrementally increased as needed, you won't "blow up" or "over train". You'll just get stronger and it cannot be developed optimally over he long term without....more deadlifting.

“How should I warm up?”- Internet.

Ideally, the warm up prepares you to complete the training task with the highest level performance possible without incurring significant extra training stress or using too many resources. In other words, it shouldn’t be too hard (stress) or too long (time is a resource).

This pretty much eliminates foam rolling, general stretching of any kind, “activation” drills, and similar modalities.

We’d rather you just grab the bar and start squatting (if squatting first). I typically do 4-10 sets of 5 with the empty bar depending how I’m feeling. Then I am for ~4-5 evenly spaced warm ups to get to my working sets. That’s it.

If you’ll think about it- nothing prepares you better for squatting that squatting and you get some additional practice with the empty bar sets.

Doing all that extra mobility/prehab/activation fluff is a good way to waste your time and get you to focus on non specific pain you otherwise would forget about. Seems like a big L to me.

Tag someone who needs to see this and ask your warm up questions below!

📸 by @jjrosasphoto

#tbt to finally smoking that 275lb press in competition. It’d been a long time coming for sure! I’m still chasing that 300lb dragon- one pound at a time, but I feel like I’ve learned a lot about driving up the press over the last 6 months including what type of volume, intensity, assistance exercises, and training frequency really work.

I detail this info in my Classic Press article and I have definitely changed the way I approach coaching and programming others on the press (or bench).

Gotta burning question about the press? Comment below and I’ll hit you back...unless it’s lacking nuance.

📸 by @tomcampitelli

TFW someone asked me about 5/3/1 during a Q/A in Sydney. Side note, this is also my best impression of the muppet, Beaker.

This was taking during my programming lecture from one of our previous Australian camps. If you've read my article,
"Into the Great Wide Open", then you already know that there are no simple answers to complex programming considerations. Turns out, it's not very simple after the novice progression.

The good news is that @tomcampitelli and I are heading back to Australia in February to hang out with some kangaroos and coach as many people as possible. We're gonna cover the squat, press, deadlift, and do a lengthy Q/A for each camp, which allows for 1 on 1 coaching and nuanced answers.
If you're down under, click the link in bio to sign up before we sell out!

📸 by Tom
📍 PTC Sydney

Sound on!

That feel when you forgot you said you were Jesus on camera...whoops 😂😂😂

New podcasts dropping all over the place. Part 2 of @austin_barbellmedicine and I's Pain Podcast is available (check out the Barbell Medicine YouTube). Additionally, my @startingstrength podcast with @juggernauttraining @chadwesleysmith and @max_aita is up too (linked in my story). Both podcasts available on iTunes, Stitcher, etc. Check them out!

Caption contest time!

Austin and I are giving away a template of your choice if you've got the best caption. We kept them up for #cybermonday as well. Last time I picked 6 winners because I couldn't decide whose was best. Let's see what you've got!

Like this picture and drop your best caption below!

Beltless Paused Deadlifts 550x1 followed by 3 sets of 4 at 520. Not a bad way to end the week of training.

Putting these in early for this training cycle in hopes I fix an error in my pull, e.g. nudging the bar forward prior to it breaking the floor.

It's extremely important to be in the right position off the floor, lest you want to be in the wrong position for the duration of the pull, end up behind the bar once it crosses the knees and miss your lockout. Then you'd have your buddy who "used to be way stronger than you in high school" tell you you need to do rack pulls to fix your "weak lock out." So you spend weeks doing rack pulls at heights far too high to be useful (anything above ~2" below the patella) yet still miss the same weight off the floor.

Wonder why that might be 🤔🤔🤔

Add some nuance to your analysis, y'all. Tag someone below who needs to see this and comment what you trained today!

235 x 6, 2nd set for a PR. The Classic Press is a viable way to make press GainzZz. Read about it- link in bio.

I’ve been playing around with this since April/May and prefer it for a Competition Press, though I do see merit in other variations when specializing in the press.

So stoked to see my press keep moving. BW 197 this afternoon after a long seminar weekend.

Anybody else PR their press recently? Let us know below!

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