/ Should I do weights on the same/alternate days to climbing?

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geebus - on 13 Jan 2013
Currently I'm doing 3 days a week of a 5x5 routine and generally do 3 days a week indoor bouldering.
(Don't do any pull ups in the 5x5 as that's covered by the climbing).

Is there any reason not to do them on the same day?
Ideally I'd do the weights straight after climbing so I'm freshest for the climbing; but often finish climbing at 10pm or so, so that's not really an option. (And none of the local climbing places have their own normal gym.) In a lot of cases there will be at least a few hours split between the two workouts.
Always felt everything should be done at once if possible, though not sure there was any reason behind me thinking that.

It not only generally makes sense to let my body have rest days, but looking to start a 'leangains' style 'intermittent fasting' program*, which really needs the rest days for lower calories and different macros. Or at least some 'cardio' days, if not rest!
*Basically, not eating breakfast and eating more on training days, but with some added science maybe.
lost1977 - on 13 Jan 2013
In reply to geebus:

alternate days would be better, what 5x5 routine you using ?
geebus - on 13 Jan 2013
From a spreadsheet I found - apparently 'Original Novice Program' from Mark Riptoe's Starting Strength. (Basically the first one in the google docs spreadsheet I used :) ).

Workout A: Squat, Bench Press, Deadlight
Workout B: Squat, Military Press, Powerclean

The problem with alternate days is I'm at 6 training days and 1 rest day, which isn't ideal for trying to lose some weight.
If I can do it with three training days and 4 rest days I've now got a net deficit, rather than a calorific surplus; while still having a chance to make improvements.
as646 on 13 Jan 2013
In reply to geebus: Isn't SS a 3x5 programme?

Why do you have to stick to a 7-day cycle? Instead of doing ABABABX, where A is weights and B is climbing, why not do something like ABAXBABX? Focus on your lifts the first two weight days, then focus on climbing?
lost1977 - on 13 Jan 2013
In reply to geebus:

could change from 3 times a week (7 days) to maybe 8 days to get another rest day
ice.solo - on 14 Jan 2013
In reply to lost1977:
> (In reply to geebus)
>
> could change from 3 times a week (7 days) to maybe 8 days to get another rest day

along the lines of this:

go with a longer cycle that allows for a more sophisticated rest, recovery and strength development pattern. or even better, 2 integrated cycles.

its important to polarize your training otherwise it just collapses into mediocrity; when you climb, climb hard and refreshed, with the odd recovery-climbing day. when you lift, lift hard. rest, rest deep. recover, recover smartly.

climb, lift, climb, lift etc minimizes progress in either and optimizes the potential for plateaus. volume is only relevant when smartly combined with recovery and rest.
geebus - on 14 Jan 2013
Cheers for the thoughts.

SS is 3x5 for the top weight, I just thought it was called a '5x5' anyway thanks to warm up sets (showing my ignorance there!)

Seven day cycle is useful because it fits in with work and (I'm self employed and actually have some flexibility) - my friend's that I go climbing with's work patterns etc.

Also; my priority is losing weight in the short term. If my main focus was gaining muscle and not worrying about weight, I'd go for excess calories 6/7ths or 6/8ths of the time happily. Hopefully, give me a month or two and I can do that sort of thing more reasonably.
But going for weight loss means I really need that calorie deficit 4/7ths of the time.
(And that extra stone from the last month is a bit noticeable when trying to hang off a nasty crimp etc!)

If I could move climbing earlier, to a point that I could do weights after, would that make more sense?
ice.solo - on 14 Jan 2013
In reply to geebus:

you will lose weight by training inthe optimum zone and adjusting your diet to it. it depends what those kcals are made up of. a properly optimized schedule will have you longer in the functional zone than a binary one because you will be better recovered to be there.

i cant se why it has to be 7 days/binary: consider 1 x 7 days binary (rest on 7th), then 1 x 3 days another focus, 1 day rest, 1 x 3 days a third focus.

the point is to get enough time in the zones you want (including weight cutting) to really make progress, but scheduled also so you minimize injury and optimize function.

i am skirting you real question tho: same day weights/climb.
not generally, but at times specifically - on hard climb days sometimes use weights to antagonize, and on easy climb days sometimes use weights to spike stressor levels.
in another way, weighted stretches are useful IF done safely (or russian roulette if not...).

really, for losing weight in a climbing context long sets of relevant lifts done at low weight will likely be optimal - but will need smart programming to recover from and prep before.

note: a 10 day (or longer cycle) can still have rest days on the 7th, it just doesnt restart again after it.
nw - on 14 Jan 2013
In reply to geebus:
I'd recommend you look into SS a bit more before deciding if it's right for you - done properly it's very demanding. The SS novice programme seems to be conceived around off season training for people who are willing to eat as much as possible. Nothing wrong with that if strength/size is your main aim but I suspect you will struggle to maintain linear progression on your lifts, make climbing progress and lose weight all at the same time.
Rollo - on 14 Jan 2013
In reply to nw:
> (In reply to geebus)
> I'd recommend you look into SS a bit more before deciding if it's right for you - done properly it's very demanding. The SS novice programme seems to be conceived around off season training for people who are willing to eat as much as possible. Nothing wrong with that if strength/size is your main aim but I suspect you will struggle to maintain linear progression on your lifts, make climbing progress and lose weight all at the same time.

What he said. The clue is in the name - Starting STRENGTH. It's a programme for gaining strength which requires muscle growth and therefore plenty of eating!

lost1977 - on 14 Jan 2013
In reply to Rollo:

but gaining strength doesnt have to require muscle growth
lost1977 - on 14 Jan 2013
problem is that strength gains do tend to come faster with surplus calories and many will lose strength when bodyweight goes down
geebus - on 15 Jan 2013
Part of the idea of the 'leangains' approach is that you provide your body with nutrition on training days when you need it most and reduce it on other days (though, still keeping protein high, of course.)

Not expecting to get the same muscle-size results as 'gomad' using the leangains on a 'cut' rather than 'body recomposition'/bulk program.
There's plenty of people this has worked for; though I appreciate that doesn't mean it will work for me, nor that it won't cause problems for me as I'm trying to do more 'stuff' than the average person doing this.

I have to admit I haven't looked in to SS as much as I should have - or perhaps, more - as I spent ages looking at the options and with so much conflicting advice out there, probably ended up more confused!
However, have started at lower than I could and working my way up, so I'm eased in to general 'lifting'.

I'm fairly happy to be a bit flexible with timings in reality and aren't entirely stuck on a specific weekly routine - but I do want to be on a calorie deficit for at least 4 out of 7 day. When I drop a stone or so, I'll be happier to go back to being at around maitenance and spending more time with a calorie surplus.

On that, I suppose the question to ask is how important a calorie surplus is for climbing? Naturally I'm presuming it's needed to make full use of improvements - but it's only on long overhanging routes that I start to have problems with the bigger muscles. Grip strength is what I need to improve the most.
geebus - on 15 Jan 2013
Actually; a better question:
If I have the choice of climbing on either day, which should I choose as far as long term improvement goes:
1 - Doing weights, 10% calorie surplus
2 - No weights, 25% or so calorie deficit
mark s - on 15 Jan 2013
In reply to geebus: you are over complicating it,do weights when you feel like it,and climb when you feel like it and eat when you are hungry
geebus - on 15 Jan 2013
Yea, I did that.
I hit 16 stone.

(Got it down to 11stone 6lb last December, but then life got in the way and I started 'eating when I was hungry' again :).)

That's why I'm trying to do it differently now!

Unfortunately what works for some people doesn't work for others.
nw - on 15 Jan 2013
In reply to geebus:
Being in a calorie surplus isn't necessary for climbing, but being in a deficit may leave you feeling low on energy and struggling to recover. Having a surplus does help you when you are trying to add weight to the bar every single workout. I just know if it was me, I would find it difficult to recover fully from two strenous activities on negative calories. It is possible to get stronger whilst cutting, but not easy - most people settle for maintenance or accept that they will lose soem strength and hope to gain it back later.
lost1977 - on 15 Jan 2013
In reply to nw:

when i did my last cut i managed to hold onto most of my strength, when i finished i went straight on to a pure strength routine at maintenance calories. result has been my weight has stayed the same and my strength is going up nicely (chose not to take advantage of the rebound from the cut)
nw - on 15 Jan 2013
In reply to lost1977: Yeah I asked about your lifts on another thread and then was away for a bit, thread was archived by the time I got back so I couldn;t respond. Those are some really good numbers - nice one. I'm not arguing it cant be done, just that it is more difficult, especially if the OP is training two sports and is just getting into strength training and figuring diet and stuff out for himself. Looking at your profile you have obviously been figuring out what works for you for a while - first attempts at bulks/cuts often don't go smoothly (but that is where we learn).
geebus - on 17 Jan 2013
The alternative is I go back on negative calories 7 days a week (keeping protein up, of course). Which could well
However, if having the surplus isn't so important to climbing - and I suppose that seeing the physique of most of the climbers much better than me I should have worked that out - then I should be fine sticking to alternate days.
I can actually generally perform pretty well on a deficit I'd say - I find the issue tends to be more psychological if I'm hungry, than physical (and drinking lots of Coke Zero for the caffeine :)).

I've been keeping an eye on nutrition and reading about it etc for some time - but unfortunately there's a lot of not just conflicting advice, but conflicting scientific studies.
Have done some lifting (mostly dumbbells, but fairly regularly with semi-decent weights in some cases) in the past, but not much recently and in the past has still usually been combined with losing weight to some degree.
Hoping I should be in an ideal situation for 'newbie gains' - having had bigger muscles in the past, but fairly low at the moment.

Reading up, a proponent of the leangains approach does suggest that SS isn't suitable for 'a cut' on it. (here - http://rippedbody.jp/2011/09/22/training-the-guide/ ), so I might drop back to "the big three" for the moment which he seems to think will be ok - presumably as you're focusing on the same movements more.
geebus - on 17 Jan 2013
Also - next question.

If I am to try and do some pulls ups for 'training', should I try and do them with the rest of the weights rather than on a climbing day if they are separate?

It seems logical to do them with climbing, but this is one area that I presume does really require that calorific surplus.

Recently discovered that I SHOULDN'T be doing them to failure.

Plenty of cases where I'd like a bit more strength in my arms, though generally it's my pinch strength that is most limiting.
At home I will often practice with one hand higher, or one hand on a lesser hold (have a board with a variety of holds in my bedroom.)
xinkai on 17 Jan 2013
In reply to geebus: you can't wish to achieve: weight loss, strength gain and climbing improvement all at the same time. At least not at your current weight level. If I were you, I'd run a lot to cut the weight down. The climbing level should go up as the weight goes down to a reasonablle level. If you know a bit of weight lifting, it is easy to pick up later.
nw - on 17 Jan 2013
In reply to xinkai:
Speaking as someone who used to do a LOT of running I don't think I would go back to it as a primary conditioning or weight loss tool. I may be wrisking the wrath of the large running fraternity on here, but it's basically destructive to your body.I know a lot of people will disagree and don't fancy a debate about it but read around if you are interested. StartingStrength site might be a place to start, although slightly more than the usual pinch of salt is required there. I only run twice a week now, one sprint session and one three miler, partly for conditioning and partly for work fitness tests.
geebus - on 17 Jan 2013
There are a lot of reports of people using the leangains system achieving both weight loss and strength gains. It is anecdotal evidence, but there's enough of it to justify me giving it a go and see if it works for me.
I appreciate I won't get as good strength gains as on maintenance calories or higher.

Also, I'm confident enough that if I sort out my calories in vs calories out (whether that be through eating less or exercising more), I can lose weight.

My climbing certainly improved as last year progressed - from starting on V1s or so to generally sending V3/V4s and managing a claimed V6 (ok, suspect more like V5 and it did take a good number of sessions to get it done.) And pretty sure not all of that is due to the weight loss. I've got a stone or so to get off now and while that'll certainly help in a a good few situations, there's plenty of physical aspects I'd like to improve too.
Shani - on 17 Jan 2013
In reply to nw:
> (In reply to xinkai)
> Speaking as someone who used to do a LOT of running I don't think I would go back to it as a primary conditioning or weight loss tool. I may be wrisking the wrath of the large running fraternity on here, but it's basically destructive to your body.

Interesting comment given the comments on this thread about training after heart attacks http://www.ukclimbing.com/forums/t.php?n=534869 :

"Last Wed I ran 2 sessions of about 10k and whilst I was a bit stiff I put that down to being stuck in a car for about 6hrs on Tue.
At 1:10 Thu morning I woke up with chest pains which abated after a while so went back to bed which was when the big one hit"

"Another interesting observation was that of the approx 30 people on the various Cardiology wards the majority were amateur footballers (they either already knew each other or their visitors did), one who was training to run a marathon, a couple of squash players and some ex military. In short there wasn’t anyone who was obviously unfit or seriously overweight"

"I had an angioplasty in October, three stents. Still can't understand why a lifetime of endurance sports didn't protect me."

I've long stated that benefits of cardio form a U-shaped curve. Easy to do too much as it is to do too little. You should do as much as required, not as much as you can.
geebus - on 17 Jan 2013
I've seen various things that suggest that to hearts can 'wear out' to some degree, with athletes like professional cyclists and runners particularly suffering as they regularly go for extended periods at high heart rates.

Thankfully, while I do do various such things, it's purely for the sake of being fitter rather than enjoyment, so it's unlikely I'll have such problems I reckon :).
Shani - on 17 Jan 2013
In reply to geebus:
> I've seen various things that suggest that to hearts can 'wear out' to some degree, with athletes like professional cyclists and runners particularly suffering as they regularly go for extended periods at high heart rates.
>
> Thankfully, while I do do various such things, it's purely for the sake of being fitter rather than enjoyment, so it's unlikely I'll have such problems I reckon :).

The way I see it, when traing you have a choice between one of three; health, performace or longevity. There is a trade off the more you pursue any individual one.
pork pie girl - on 17 Jan 2013
In reply to geebus:

i can't contribute as much of a scientific response but i would say experiemnt to see how it feels. i sometimes weight train in teh morningor lucnh time which usually inckudes lots of pull ups and then climb at night. now and again it feels too much doing ti on teh same day.

i have sometimes weight trained after climbing and have found it too much for my elbows.. especially pulling exoercies (back and biceps)

i always do cardio and core work before climbing and have found this usually gets me in the mode to work hard, my muscles are warm, i'm nicely stretched out and if iu've eaten enough before hand (or in between cardio and climbing..half a flap jack or something) i ahve enough energy to have a good climbing session. my cardio sessions usually last btween 45-60 mins and 9/10 times i've pushed myself very hard.

during the spring and summer when i climb o rock 3-4 times a week i will mostly clinb first and the cycling/running and weights usually come after that...means harder sessions on the bike and in the gym but i wnat to feel full of beans for my climbiung on rock.. for after work climbing sessions on rock i will do cardio in the morning or lunch time (and core work)


just see how you feel

why you fasting? food is good for you
geebus - on 17 Jan 2013
Food is a bit TOO good for me :P.

Am now just below 13 stone and really want to be just below 12.
Ideally my aim is to have a 'six pack' - purely for being a tart reasons!
Starting to get some ok abs I'd reckon, but they're nicely smoothed out with the excess fat.

Of course, as mentioned - taking this 6kg weight belt off can't hurt climbing - especially when we're talking holds that need decent finger strength, where I tend to be lacking.

(Generally better at juggy climbs with lots of overhanging stuff than my shorter slimmer friend who tends to do better pulling himself up little holds where my fingers just can't hack it.)
nw - on 17 Jan 2013
In reply to Shani: Yeah, friend of a friend died on boxing day, had a heart attack out for a jog, 50 years old. Generally regarded as a fit bloke. Anecdotal I know.

Personally I also found the wear and tear on joints from high mileage running a bummer. And I did always take care to stretch, rest, wear good footwear etc. Being strong(er) and having an adequate level of conditioning seems to be far more useful (at work, on the hill, sparring,in life) than having an ability to run and run and run. I feel like I could get to reasonable running fitness fairly quickly if the urge took me to do another long race. All depends on priorities I suppose.
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xinkai on 17 Jan 2013
In reply to nw:

Well, I was just using running as an example of the general cardio exercise.

OP includes few cardio workout in his weekly routine and he claims that weight loss is one of his main goals. So I thought maybe running will help. It is up to him to decide what "a lot" means. Personally I think sprint (or 3-mile fitness test) at the all-out speed is quite some damage to the body, if done weekly. But one can choose to run slower.

OP seems to really LIKE climbing and lifting, which is great. As long as he watches his eating, he can lose weight and improve over the time by whichever workout routine. It is more important for him not to get fat in the first place.










> (In reply to xinkai)
> Speaking as someone who used to do a LOT of running I don't think I would go back to it as a primary conditioning or weight loss tool. I may be wrisking the wrath of the large running fraternity on here, but it's basically destructive to your body.I know a lot of people will disagree and don't fancy a debate about it but read around if you are interested. StartingStrength site might be a place to start, although slightly more than the usual pinch of salt is required there. I only run twice a week now, one sprint session and one three miler, partly for conditioning and partly for work fitness tests.

nw - on 18 Jan 2013
In reply to xinkai:
Well the three miler is 7 minute miles or under, which is far from an all out effort, and all done in 30 minutes including a short jog either side. Hill sprints take about the same time. As I am walking the downhills the actual sprinting time is probably about 9 minutes. This is definitely enough to raise the heart rate but not enough to wear down muscle or produce cortisol. I have read, and it feels like its true, that sprinting on the uphill is better for impact as the hill is reducing the distance travelled as your foot goes to the ground and your leg remains flexed (someone who knows more about running can probably explain this better).

These two work outs seem to keep running fitness ticking over OK but without the stresses I was getting maintaining a higher mileage. They are not enough to make much difference to my weight. I'm currently losing weight and attribute most of that to barbell training and circuits, boxing etc.

You are right of course, OP can do whatever they want. Just sharing my experience.

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