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Thread: Deadlift question - when you miss your deadlift page

  1. #1
    sbhikes's Avatar
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    Deadlift question - when you miss your deadlift

    I'm a little older than some of you so please keep this in mind. My schedule is this:

    Monday: squat, bench, dumbbell rows, RDLs, lat pulls
    Thursday: squat, press, deadlift

    Firstly, I microload squats by 2.5lbs each time and microload upper body by 1.25lbs. So far I have kept up 5lb increments on deadlift but may switch to 2.5lbs.

    Secondly, I'm pretty beat up by the time I get to deadlift after squatting and pressing. Struggling to put the plates on the bar, which is on the floor, also wears me out. With all the warmups, I end up changing plates 4 times.

    If I attempt to lift my work weight and I fail to lift it, what is the best thing to do?

    1. Take off some plates and lift 5x a lighter weight
    2. Come back on Friday and try the same weight
    2. a) I should do deadlift all by itself on Friday all the time
    3. Don't do anything, just try the same weight next week
    Female, 5'3", 49, Starting weight: 163lbs. Current weight: 135 (more or less).
    I can squat 180lbs, press 72.5lbs and deadlift 185lbs

  2. #2
    ecole66's Avatar
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    This is just an opinion from a 46 year old guy but there is no way I would try to squat and deadlift on the same day. I squat and press on Monday and deadlift and bench on Thursday(with other movements in there as well). I also always do the big lift first and I do VERY limited warmups.

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    PGC
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    I do Strong Lifts which has Squats, Press and Deadlifts on the same workout.
    The squats and presses are 5 reps x 5 sets, but the deadlift is only 1 set of 5 reps.
    Also I don't warm up for deadlifts because the body is sufficiently warm from squats and presses.

    As for what to recommend, it depends on lots of factors like what rep range are you doing?
    I think its probably best to do Deadlifts on Friday on their own, so that you can be fresh and can concentrate.
    You don't want to injure yourself.

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    Kharnath's Avatar
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    For me, the exercise is over when I hit positive failure. I usually reduce the weight by approximately 10% the following workout and spend the next three or four weeks building up to a new personal record attempt. That's by far the most convenient way for me to make sure I leave a few repetitions in the tank when I work out.

    This should make an interesting discussion though. I'm sure Forever Young will point out how detrimental it is to my training that I deliberately try not to go to positive failure when I work out.

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    Gorbag's Avatar
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    I would never go to true failure on deadlift or squat it's too taxing on the CNS and it is also a risk of injury. I would take a time off from those lift if so happens, and be very careful next time lifting...

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    1. Take off some plates and lift 5x a lighter weight
    IMO this is the best option, but I agree with others that I wouldn't squat and deadlift on the same day. YMMV, of course. But squat and deadlift are "the big two", in my mind, and require the most work, so putting them on the same day means one of them is always going to get short shrift.

    This is just a personal preference, but I think my favorite lifting split is that recommended by Nerd Fitness, which is to have a "push" day and a "pull" day. On push days, you're doing squat, push press (or strict if you prefer), and bench press. On pull days, you're doing deadlifts and pullups. This split worked great for me when I was first getting into barbell strength training. I went to the gym 3x/wk and did my push day and my pull day, and then on the third day I worked on my oly lifts and did a HIIT with kettlebells. I saw quick gains doing this.

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    quikky's Avatar
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    Are your squat workouts the same on both days? You might want to consider doing a more intermediate split if that's the case. For example, the first workout is the volume day, more sets and reduced intensity, and the second workout is the intensity day when you so a single near max set. This would reduce the number of sets on dead lift day and also let you progress at an appropriate pace. You might want to check out routines like the Texas Method, and Wendler's 5/3/1.

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    Quote Originally Posted by quikky View Post
    Are your squat workouts the same on both days? You might want to consider doing a more intermediate split if that's the case. For example, the first workout is the volume day, more sets and reduced intensity, and the second workout is the intensity day when you so a single near max set. This would reduce the number of sets on dead lift day and also let you progress at an appropriate pace. You might want to check out routines like the Texas Method, and Wendler's 5/3/1.
    I agree with this, but with a caveat. You're still new to lifting, sbhikes. And there are many reasons you might fail a particular deadlift workout, like it's just not your best day, or you hiked a billion miles the day before. In the protocol laid out in Starting Strength (I know you're NDTP, but you certainly have been using it as a guideline), you don't deload until you fail at a particular weight 3 times. If you're sure the weight is more than you can lift, see the above. But give it a couple shots before writing it off. It's supposed to be hard. It's supposed to be heavy. You're supposed to push yourself through some grindy lifts.

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    2. a) is closest to the correct answer. Although squats the day before can be a problem too. Deadlifts are such a powerful movement incorporating so many muscles, you really would prefer to be at your best when performing them, so as to maximize the benefits they provide (this goes for squats too). You are FAR from your best after busting out some squats and presses.

    If this is unappealing or not an option,
    Say for example I'm going for 6-8 reps for my first set and I only reach 4 or 5, I'll rack or drop the weight and rest as long as I need to continue the lift til I get at least 6 and as many as 8 reps. The next week, I would lower the weight if I felt appropriate. So, I sort of split the first set into two sets with unequal rep totals and act like it didn't happen for the rest of the workout.

    *This has only happened for me once on bench press. Could be dangerous with squats and ill advised with deadlifts.
    Last edited by mrhtower; 02-01-2013 at 12:09 AM. Reason: *

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    sbhikes's Avatar
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    More clarifications:

    Yes, I use SS as a guideline, not quite as gospel.

    I attempt to increase all lifts every time. The only time I don't is when I didn't get in all my reps the attempt before.

    Yesterday for the deadlift I attempted 150lbs, which is about 15lbs over my body weight. I had squatted 112.5lbs, a personal best but certainly not a shocking amount. I could only lift the deadlift one inch and that was after two tries. Last week I was able to lift 145 slow and grindy all 5 reps. That was after a miss on 145 the week before that where I didn't even get it one inch. So I'm not convinced that just going home after a miss is bad.

    It's not like I'm on a stall on these just yet. I simply was not able to lift 150lbs with two tries. I did scale back to 135 and did my 5 reps but I kinda wondered if that was the best thing to do.
    Female, 5'3", 49, Starting weight: 163lbs. Current weight: 135 (more or less).
    I can squat 180lbs, press 72.5lbs and deadlift 185lbs

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