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Thread: Dead-lift, how often? page

  1. #1
    iniQuity's Avatar
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    Dead-lift, how often?

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    Hi all,

    I'm a bodyweight guy, weighted also though. However, I have a weight set now and have gone back to dead-lifts. My question is regarding frequency.

    The Stronglifts program has you doing squats at every workout, and deadlifts every other workout. However, since I don't have a rack and I work out at home, I'm not back-squatting, at least not any type of weight that matters. If I do back-squat I keep the weight relatively low and do higher reps.

    Since I was starting very easy, I've been dead-lifting 3x a week, two work sets of five with usually two warm up sets. My most recent is 185lb for 2x5, that was yesterday. I know that's nowhere near impressive and it still feels rather light, but I know that will change soon.

    Since I'm not squatting heavy, is it okay to dead-lift 3x a week? I know they work different muscles, and thus far I'm feeling it mostly in my back, no pain yet, but good soreness. I'm trying to go up by 5lb every workout.

    I'm thinking of continuing 3x a week but just doing one work set of 5 (as per Strong Lifts) with two warm up sets. I think as the weight gets mean, that would be ideal, correct? Maybe as it gets meaner I'll naturally need to do maybe two deadlift days instead of three, for adequate rest/growth/etc... I just want to have an idea going forward.

    FWIW for squats I'm doing sandbag squats, zercher squats (barbell or sandbag), front squats (same), but I'm not squatting all that heavy at all-yet. I find it safer to do heavy sandbags squats and psychologically more engaging as well (get this baby elephant off me!)

    Thanks.

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    Hey ini,

    Yeah, I think you're fine doing deads 3x a week -- as long as the weight is "light" (as you put it) and you're recovering well (which I'm sure you're experienced enough to guage for yourself).

    In the beginning, learning form is more important than how much you pull. You should be going into each deadlift session with the mindset that you're there to practice your technique. You're trying to "grease the groove" as it's commonly said. You seem to already know this, so kudos to you for that. Generally speaking, when you're trying to get better (more skilled) at something, the more practice the better -- so like I said, as long as you're recovering well, keep at it!

    As for me, I only deadlift once every 7-10 days. I deadlift very heavy (for me) on that one day and that's it. The rest of the week is spent working out in other ways.

    Btw, congrats on the 185 for 2x5! That's well over your BW correct? Not bad at all for 5 straight reps. Seems you're progressing quickly!

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    I think it's fine, and the anecdote I will use to support this is olympic lifting. They snatch and clean and do assistant pulling movements at least 3 times a week, and this doesn't kill them. I deadlift 3x5 every other workout and I feel good doing em, but may reduce reps/sets gradually as the poundages increase. Extreme soreness and a tight lower back may result from lots of deadlifting though. For that I can recommend the loosening deadlift The Tight Tan Slacks of Dezso Ban: The Loosening Deadlift - Tommy Kono (basically a rounded back deadlift with light weight) either when you're done with your regular deadlifts or on your offdays. I've only just started using them, but I can definately feel a difference in soreness the next day compared to when I just walked out the gym after finishing my deadlifts.

    Btw how do you like the zercher squats d: ?

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    iniQuity's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ciep View Post
    Hey ini,

    Yeah, I think you're fine doing deads 3x a week -- as long as the weight is "light" (as you put it) and you're recovering well (which I'm sure you're experienced enough to guage for yourself).

    In the beginning, learning form is more important than how much you pull. You should be going into each deadlift session with the mindset that you're there to practice your technique. You're trying to "grease the groove" as it's commonly said. You seem to already know this, so kudos to you for that. Generally speaking, when you're trying to get better (more skilled) at something, the more practice the better -- so like I said, as long as you're recovering well, keep at it!

    As for me, I only deadlift once every 7-10 days. I deadlift very heavy (for me) on that one day and that's it. The rest of the week is spent working out in other ways.

    Btw, congrats on the 185 for 2x5! That's well over your BW correct? Not bad at all for 5 straight reps. Seems you're progressing quickly!
    Yeah I weight 150lbs. I think practicing front-levers for time strengthen my back (along with tons of pull ups/dips/push ups) in a way and so the deads don't feel TOO heavy. I mean, my back is sore in ways it wasn't before, especially the "middle" of my back I suppose from the stretching pressure the weight puts on you. I really like the lift though but I'm sure as soon as I get a little over 200lbs it'll become very challenging. I would love to get to a 2x deadlift so that would be 300lbs which is going to be a world of difference.

    I've watched the Rippetoe "dead lift set up" video over and over and mentally remind myself of it when I do the lift to ensure proper technique when doing the warm up and the work set. I'm going to continue listening to my body and seeing how much rest I need.

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    iniQuity's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pandadude View Post
    I think it's fine, and the anecdote I will use to support this is olympic lifting. They snatch and clean and do assistant pulling movements at least 3 times a week, and this doesn't kill them. I deadlift 3x5 every other workout and I feel good doing em, but may reduce reps/sets gradually as the poundages increase. Extreme soreness and a tight lower back may result from lots of deadlifting though. For that I can recommend the loosening deadlift The Tight Tan Slacks of Dezso Ban: The Loosening Deadlift - Tommy Kono (basically a rounded back deadlift with light weight) either when you're done with your regular deadlifts or on your offdays. I've only just started using them, but I can definately feel a difference in soreness the next day compared to when I just walked out the gym after finishing my deadlifts.

    Btw how do you like the zercher squats d: ?
    I haven't experienced any lower back soreness yet, hopefully that doesn't mean I'm doing it wrong. I video tape myself and watch it back after almost every set to make sure I'm doing it right, so far it looks like I am (when compared to Rippetoe and similar videos) and from reading about how it should "feel" it feels that way. It's helping me with some hamstring tight-ness because I try to lower the weight with straight legs and in a somewhat fast but controlled motion. I think that loosening deadlift might be too much for me because my hams are tight, but it's probably a good idea to try them, so I will soon. Thanks for the input fellas.

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    Owly's Avatar
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    Oh, I soooo want to hit a 300-pound deadlift. I'm at 213, which is cool for a woman who's been lifting for under a year, but yeah, that's my longterm goal. You'll probably get there before me, though!

    As you get over 200, good form is going to be critical, but you know that. I'm finding remembering to really engage the hips through the extension helps a lot. But really, that first couple of inches off the ground feels the hardest. If I can get it past that, I know I can get it all the way up.
    “If I didn't define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people's fantasies for me and eaten alive.” --Audre Lorde

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    At that weight i feel that doing the dead-lift three times a week is fine! Make sure you are using this time to really focus on your form. Like people above me have stated good form is really important when the weight starts to feel really heavy.

    When the weight you are lifting starts to go up, I would continue doing it three times a week! But have one day be max effort. So perhaps one day you have a day with lower weight where form is what you are developing, and medium weight day, and a max effort day.

    But if you get sore for doing it three times a week, drop down two. there is nothing wrong with just going it once a week as well!

    also if you are just starting using weights for some exercises make sure you look about info about deloading!

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    Had my troubles with the deadlift, i came through it. I learned the key is to push with your legs. If i just simply push with my legs i never have any back trouble, and i have a history of back trouble. Have good form too, obviously.

    But really if your deadlifting too much the only thing i'd worry about is plateauing. I don't even know if you could plateau doing that, but i have plateaud in the past on the bench press, and i benched a lot. Also i might be worried that your not engaging your knees in a full range of motion, which is where squats fill in (i don't have a squat rack either so i'm in a similar position). Iv'e been doing crossfit football for about a month now (loving it) and iv'e done crossfit in the past for many months, you know how random they are (CFFB does deadlift a lot more), but my deadlift has definately improved with just CF. My 1 RM is about 325 lbs (and rising), which i'm proud of seeing how i have a riddled history of back trouble, or i should say a riddled history of bad CW advice (doctors are idiots). I think, as long as you are engaging yourself in many varied exercises, you can deadlift only once a week and see good results. You just got to find what works for you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by iniQuity View Post
    Yeah I weight 150lbs. I think practicing front-levers for time strengthen my back (along with tons of pull ups/dips/push ups) in a way and so the deads don't feel TOO heavy. I mean, my back is sore in ways it wasn't before, especially the "middle" of my back I suppose from the stretching pressure the weight puts on you. I really like the lift though but I'm sure as soon as I get a little over 200lbs it'll become very challenging. I would love to get to a 2x deadlift so that would be 300lbs which is going to be a world of difference.

    I've watched the Rippetoe "dead lift set up" video over and over and mentally remind myself of it when I do the lift to ensure proper technique when doing the warm up and the work set. I'm going to continue listening to my body and seeing how much rest I need.
    I've noticed this in earlier threads but you and I seem very similar in body type and goals. As it happens, I actually had the exact same goal for my deadlift and just hit it last week! I weigh 153 and pulled 310. All in all I don't really care too much about my lifts though, I just do them to stay strong and balanced in a well rounded way -- I'm far more interested in being a good climber and athlete (as you seem to be with your martial arts and gymnastics).

    I agree, the lever training and pullups make a massive difference with deads. Are you capable of a full front-lever yet? They've been a huge goal of mine for a long time. I can finally do one, but I can only hold it for a measly 1-2 seconds so far. I always do them as the first exercise on my back days (when I'm as fresh as possible).

    And yeah, it's good that you're feeling deadlifts in the lower/middle of your back, they're predominantly an erector spinae exercise. "Back abs"!

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    iniQuity's Avatar
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    @ciep,

    I can hold a straddle front lever for about 5-10 seconds, I'm going to keep building on that one. I can only hold the full front lever for around the same time as you do but with bad form (not straight arms) also I'm working on dragon flags (brutal for me!) in order to have the core strength for the full front lever.

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