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Introduction

Welcome to the Barbell Medicine Quick-Start Guide. Whether you’re here for the first time or a long time reader, thanks for joining us. We’re hopeful that this resource will be useful for you and we’re pumped that you’re here and ready to make some changes to your training and nutrition!

First, a brief aside about Barbell Medicine for the uninitiated. As of this writing, Barbell Medicine is comprised of Jordan Feigenbaum MD, MS, SSC, Austin Baraki MD,SSC, Leah Lutz SSC, Alan Thrall SSC, Vanessa Burman RD, and Jessica Griffith RN. The company was formed officially in 2011 with the goal to combine modern medicine with strength and conditioning, though many of us have been coaching and involved in our respective professions for much longer than that. The main idea is to get more people training, modifying their nutrition, and engaging in other healthy lifestyle habits correctly in order to prevent, treat, or decrease disease.

We’re focused on putting out high-quality information that is trustworthy, useful, and at actionable so that we can help others. While the Internet is certainly full of information on diet, training, and lifestyle modification, the accuracy of such information is often lacking and subsequently, we need to separate the wheat from the chaff. This page serves as our main resource for how to get started, frequently asked questions, and resources for you to leverage on your wellness journey.

If you’re new to the fitness world and/or have never trained with barbells before, but are looking to get started today, navigate to our Day 1 QuickStart Guide below by clicking on the link. For other topics, use the Directory below to navigate the page. If at any time you want to return to the top of the page, click the box in the lower right hand corner and you’ll be directed back up here.

Directory:

Day 1 QuickStart Guide
Training
Nutrition
FAQ
Additional Resources


Why Resistance Training?

This is the question you’re likely to ask or respond to from someone who is not currently exercising and we’d like to equip you with some information.

To begin, resistance training encompasses lifting weights of all types- even body weight exercises like squats, push-ups, pull-ups, etc. and there are many benefits with this type of exercise. However, there is significant overlap with other types of exercise, e.g. cardio, pilates, yoga, and we should be clear about the benefits that resistance training over these other forms.

Here are some of the things resistance training does better than any other form of exercise:

  • Improves strength
  • Builds lean body mass
  • Increases bone density
  • Improves balance when using ground based free-weight exercises

Strength is the display of the force production by muscles in a given scenario, e.g. if you’re lifting a weight from the floor like in a deadlift or lifting groceries you do so by creating muscular force against the external resistance- in this case the barbell or the grocery bag. When we train with weights in a progressively overloaded manner we improve our muscles’ ability to produce force in the specific exercises we are doing. This increased force production can be applied to other tasks.

For example say we have a 65 year old female who has trouble putting the dishes in the cupboard overhead and we teach her how to press overhead with a barbell and progressively improve her strength through training, she will be able to perform this task much easier. This process can be translated in nearly any scenario.

With respect to increase lean body mass, specifically skeletal muscle and bone mass, resistance training has no equal. When the muscle’s ability to repeatedly produce force it must respond through a series of adaptations ultimately making it better at producing force through a combination of neurological and architectural changes.

Similarly, when we apply stress to the bony skeleton it is forced to adapt by becoming more resilient over time.

Balance involves neurological and muscular processes that allow a person to be aware of their body’s positioning relative to their surrounding environment (neurological) and respond to any change in this relationship via muscular force to prevent a fall or loss of balance. When we train with weights we improve both qualities markedly

It is true that other forms of exercise can do these things to some degree in an untrained person, but resistance training does them much more efficiently.

Additionally, there are many other benefits to resistance training on cognitive, cardiorespiratory, metabolic, psychological, and performance that make it indispensable as far as one’s overall exercise plan. Currently, the Physical Activity Guidelines for Adults (PAGA) recommend at least twice weekly resistance training for all adults and we agree with this. We would prefer three weekly resistance training sessions if we had our druthers, but two times per week can be a good starting point as well.

Day 1 QuickStart

The QuickStart guide is for folks who have never formally trained with a barbell before, e.g. they’ve never been on a strength training program with an explicitly planned progression at regular intervals. For most, if you’re not sure that you’ve formally trained with a barbell before, you probably are exactly who we’re talking to. Additionally, if you “used to workout a long time ago”, but there’s been many months or years since that time, you’re also who we’re talking to. On the other hand, if you’re a person who has engaged in regular barbell training for a significant period of time then you might not be in our QuickStart demographic. If that’s the case, click here and read a little more to see where you stand. Everyone else, read on.

First, what do you need resource-wise to start training today? All you really need is a membership to a gym where there are barbells, squat racks, weights that slide on the barbell, and ideally a bench. Unfortunately, this program won’t work without access to barbell, rack, or weights so we’d advise forgoing the cash outlay to join a gym that doesn’t have these staples. Not sure what a barbell, squat rack, weights, or a bench look like? Click the hyperlinks in the previous sentence for some examples. Most commercial gyms- even the $20.00/month ones- have these equipment. Not all equipment looks the same, particularly in commercial gyms, so we should allow for some variation.

Second, should you be screened by a medical professional prior to initiating training? As a medical professional, I am obliged to say that this article is meant for general informational purposes and should not be taken as medical advice. However, The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM)- one of the large associations who provides clinical guidelines on these sorts of topics, tells us the folks who need to be screened are those who either exercise currently, but who have symptomatic cardiac, metabolic, or renal disease OR  those who do not exercise currently and also have cardiac, metabolic, or renal disease regardless of if it’s symptomatic or not. See here for their published guidelines. Additionally, the ACSM actually recommends that all adults engage in resistance training at least twice per week.

Tl;dr: If you are over the age of 18 without known cardiac, metabolic, or renal disease- you are likely okay to begin exercise without clearance from your doctor. If you do not know if you have cardiac, metabolic, or renal disease OR upon starting exercise you have symptoms like chest pain, dizziness, blurred vision, profound shortness of breath, or other issues- you should stop exercising and see your doctor.

Now that you’ve made it this far, we’re going to start training TODAY. The program we’re going to start you on revolves around five exercises that together, work all the muscles in your body very effectively. We chose these five exercises because they are very efficient time-wise at getting physical results such as improvements in strength, muscle size, and work capacity while also improving medically relevant parameters like fasting blood sugar, body fat, waist circumference, blood pressure, bone density, cognitive capacity, etc. There is no other collection of exercises that can yield the same physical and clinical results within the same amount of training time. Suffice it to say, nearly everyone should be doing these exercises regularly. For more on this, see here. 

We’re going to be using the squat, press, bench press, and deadlift as our staple exercises on the Novice Linear Progression (NLP or LP). The beauty of the novice progression is that it’s both brutally effective and very simple. It is designed specifically for people who have not been regularly engaging in strength training, e.g. Novices. It is NOT a powerlifting program.

A brief aside, Powerlifting is a barbell sport where a competitor receives three attempts at maximal weight on three lifts: the squat, bench press, and deadlift to produce his/her best total. There are weight classes and the person with the highest total is the winner of that weight class. While Novice Linear Progression does use powerlifting movements, it is designed to increase strength in a more general manner rather than always maximizing the weight on the bar. For this reason, the techniques we (Barbell Medicine) advocate for in a novice population may differ than what is seen on the platform from an elite level powerlifter. The latter may use a much wider stance in the squat or deadlift to decrease range of motion, for instance, but we don’t necessarily want that. It should also be said that competitive powerlifters are not novices, by definition, as there is enough participation within the sport that only people with a significant history of formal barbell training (e.g. not novices) are actually competitive.

Okay, back to Day 1. Here is your nine step guideline with additional commentary:
  1. Gear: Stretchy gym shorts or pants*, weightlifting shoes**, socks, cotton t-shirt.
    • *Gym shorts that go below the knee or pants that are not stretchy can interfere with squatting mechanics due to the material of the short becoming taught somewhere around parallel (but not always below). Stretchy fabric eliminates this risk.
    • **Weightlifting shoes are great to have and we’d recommend buying them. See my review below and this article on their utility. However, if you don’t have weightlifting shoes right away that’s fine- just go to the gym and train in what you have. A flat, minimally cushioned shoe would work better than a running shoe, but really it’s fine. Don’t train barefoot, as there is no improvement in muscular force being produced in the foot (or elsewhere), your arches collapse, your feet are subject to injury, and there are other people at the gym who may not care to deal with your bare feet.
  2. Go: Go to gym. Pay membership if you have to. Do not use one of their trainers. Repeat. Do NOT use one of their trainers. I have been to hundreds of gyms all over the world and there is currently only a handful of trainers who work at commercial gyms who are worth their fee. If you’re not in St. Louis, Missouri seeing Cody Miller SSC then our advice stands. Seek out squat rack. It is just fine from a gym etiquette perspective to ask someone who is using the rack (if there isn’t a free one) how many more sets they have. You may even be able to “work-in” with them.
  3. Set: Set the bar across the “pins” (the things that hold the bar in the rack) such that the barbell is mid-sternum. If it is too high, you’ll have to tip toe the bar out of the rack. This is bad. If it is too low, you’ll have to finagle yourself under the bar in an uncomfortable manner, which is also bad. If you’re working out with a friend who is shorter than you- they get to choose where the bar is in the rack.
  4. Warm Up: We’re going to do sets of 5 repetitions with the empty barbell with the technique shown below. We’ve included some trouble shooting points as needed:
    1. Technique:
    2. It is okay if you’re above parallel the first few sets. This will likely improve as you warm up. You do not need to foam roll, stretch, or do other non-squat things to warm up for the squat. The best way to warm up for the squat is to…squat. It increases temperature of the muscles making them work better and helps you practice your form for the work you’re about to do. Do 3-5 sets of 5 with the empty bar.
    3. If you’re having problems with your grip, try this squat-specific stretch. If that doesn’t work, you can high bar squat for the time being and things will be just fine.
    4. If you cannot get below parallel by the 3rd to 5th set of 5 repetitions with the empty barbell, you may have to modify the squat. If there is a lighter bar available, e.g. a 15-25lb “training bar”- try that. If you don’t have one of those, but do have access to a leg press- use that as described in the video.
  5. Squat: After the empty bar warm ups described above, add a little weight to the bar (10-20lbs) and do a set of 5 repetitions. Rest 2-3 minutes then add a little more weight to the bar. Repeat this process until one of the following happens– the bar speed slows down or your technique breaks down from that which is described in the video.
    1. If the bar speed slows down during your set of 5 reps noticeably (compared to the empty bar sets or your early warm ups), we’ll call that your first “work set”. Rest 5 minutes and repeat that weight for a second set of 5 repetitions. Rest 5 minutes and repeat that weight for a 3rd and final set of 5 repetitions. Annotate the weight used (including the barbell, which weighs 45lbs) in your an app on your smartphone that lets you write stuff down and save it or write it down in a journal. Out of convention, if you squatted 115lbs for your 3 sets of 5 reps, you’d write it as “115 x 5 x 3”, meaning 115 for 5 reps by 3 sets. This is where you will start your progression.
    2. If your technique broke down significantly, take 5-10% of weight off the bar and do a set of 5 repetitions. If your technique held up there, count this as your first “work set” and repeat the steps listed above.
  6. Press: Since we’re already in the squat rack, it economical from a time perspective to go right into the press with the technique showcased in the video below (excuse the music from Mr. Thrall. He’s a nice guy…promise!)
    1. Start with the empty barbell and do 2-3 sets of 5 reps to warm up the new movement pattern.
      1. For some, the 45lb barbell may be too heavy to start. A training bar that weighs 10-25lbs may be useful here, but is not standard gym equipment either.
    2. After the empty bar warm ups described above, add a little weight to the bar (5-20lbs) and do a set of 5 repetitions. Rest 2-3 minutes then add a little more weight to the bar. Repeat this process until one of the following happens– the bar speed slows down or your technique breaks down from that which is described in the video.
      1. If the bar speed slows down during your set of 5 reps noticeably (compared to the empty bar sets or your early warm ups), we’ll call that your first “work set”. Rest 5 minutes and repeat that weight for a second set of 5 repetitions. Rest 5 minutes and repeat that weight for a 3rd and final set of 5 repetitions. Annotate the weight used (including the barbell, which weighs 45lbs) in your an app on your smartphone that lets you write stuff down and save it or write it down in a journal. Out of convention, if you pressed 95lbs for your 3 sets of 5 reps, you’d write it as “95 x 5 x 3”, meaning 95 for 5 reps by 3 sets. This is where you will start your progression.
      2. If your technique broke down significantly, take 5-10% of weight off the bar and do a set of 5 repetitions. If your technique held up there, count this as your first “work set” and repeat the steps listed above.
  7. Deadlift: We are now going to lift a weight from the floor and do it correctly. Learning to do this effectively is paramount to building a strong, resilient back. It is not dangerous to deadlift from a low back pain or injury perspective, as the overwhelming evidence on the topic suggests that regular training of the musculature results in decreased pain and increased function. We are going to use the technique in the video below:
    1. Of note, the standard diameter of a weight plate is 450mm or 17.72″. This places it 225mm or 8.86″ off the ground with a standard weight plate. In commercial gyms, it is common for only the 45lb or 20kg plates to be this size whereas the other plates are smaller. If you did not squat > 135lbs or 60kg for your work sets, then it is likely you’ll need to start with a lighter weight than 135lbs on the deadlift to warm up. In this scenario, we will need to space the bar correctly off the floor using mats, plates, or other gym materials such that the center of the barbell is 225mm/8.86″ off the ground (or close to it). In other words, don’t use very small plates and deadlift from the ground. It will be very difficult if not impossible to do this correctly.
    2. Start with 95-135lbs and perform 5 deadlifts from a dead stop, e.g. without any bounce off the floor, for your first set. Rest 2-3 minutes. The add a little weight to the bar (10-40lbs) and do a set of 5 repetitions. Rest 2-3 minutes then add a little more weight to the bar. Repeat this process until one of the following happens– the bar speed slows down or your technique breaks down from that which is described in the video.
    3. If the bar speed slows down during your set of 5 reps noticeably (compared to the empty bar sets or your early warm ups), we’ll call that your “work set”. Annotate the weight used (including the barbell, which weighs 45lbs) in your an app on your smartphone that lets you write stuff down and save it or write it down in a journal. Out of convention, if you deadlifted 185lbs for your 1 sets of 5 reps, you’d write it as “185 x 5 x 1”, meaning 185 for 5 reps by 1 set. This is where you will start your progression.
    4. If your technique broke down significantly, take 5-10% of weight off the bar and do a set of 5 repetitions. If your technique held up there, count this as your “work set” and annotate it as described above.
  8. Celebrate: You just did your first workout of your novice progression. Success! The next time you should train should be 48 hours later, e.g. if you lifted on Monday you’ll go back in on Wednesday and be on a M/W/F setup. If you lifted Tuesday, you’ll go back in on Thursday and be on a T/R/Sat setup.
  9. In the interim you have some homework:
    1. Purchase Starting Strength: Basic Barbell TrainingThis is the text that fully describes the lifts, programming, and progression that we’re aiming for here. The Kindle version is 9.99 at the time of this writing.
    2. Plan your next workout! Workout 2 is described below and we should have an idea of what that’s going to be like prior to heading to the gym next time.
    3. Read the rest of this article to fill in some holes!

Okay, we’re heading to the gym for Day 2. Here is your six step guideline with additional commentary:

  1. Gear: Same as day 1, i.e. stretchy gym shorts or pants*, weightlifting shoes**, socks, cotton t-shirt.
  2. Go: Go to gym. Seek out squat rack. .
  3. Set: Set the bar across the “pins” such that the barbell is mid-sternum.
  4. Squat : We’re going to do sets of 5 repetitions with the empty barbell with the same technique as before, but this time we’re going to add 5 to 10 pounds to the previous session’s weight. In short, if you squatted 115 x 5 x 3 last time, let’s squat 120 x 5 x 3 this time- again with 5 minute rest periods. Since we know your target weight this time, we can plan your warm ups a little bit better to take 3 even weight jumps between the empty barbell and your first work set. That might look like this:
    1. Warm up sets 1-3: Empty barbell
    2.  Warm up set 4: 65lbs x 5 reps. Rest 2-3 min
    3. Warm up set 5: 85lbs x 5 reps. Rest 2-3 min
    4. Warm up set 6: 105lbs x 5 reps. Rest 2-3 min
    5. Work sets: 120 x 5 x 3 with 5 minute rests in between.
  5. Bench Press: Instead of pressing today, we’re going to bench press as described in the video below:
    1. Start with the empty barbell and do 2-3 sets of 5 reps to warm up the new movement pattern.
    2. After the empty bar warm ups described above, add a little weight to the bar (5-20lbs) and do a set of 5 repetitions. Rest 2-3 minutes then add a little more weight to the bar. Repeat this process until one of the following happens– the bar speed slows down or your technique breaks down from that which is described in the video.
      1. If the bar speed slows down during your set of 5 reps noticeably (compared to the empty bar sets or your early warm ups), we’ll call that your first “work set”. Rest 5 minutes and repeat that weight for a second set of 5 repetitions. Rest 5 minutes and repeat that weight for a 3rd and final set of 5 repetitions. Annotate the weight used (including the barbell, which weighs 45lbs) in your an app on your smartphone that lets you write stuff down and save it or write it down in a journal. Out of convention, if you benched 105lbs for your 3 sets of 5 reps, you’d write it as “105 x 5 x 3”, meaning 105 for 5 reps by 3 sets. This is where you will start your progression.
      2. If your technique broke down significantly, take 5-10% of weight off the bar and do a set of 5 repetitions. If your technique held up there, count this as your first “work set” and repeat the steps listed above.
  6. Deadlift: We are going to deadlift again and, similar to the squat, we’re going to add 5-10lbs from what we did the previous session. So if we deadlifted 185 x 5 reps x 1 set last time, now we’re going to do 195 x 5 reps x 1 set and our warm ups might look like this:
    1. Warm up 1: 135lbs x 5 reps x 1 set
    2. Warm up 2: 165lbs x 5 reps x 1 set
    3. Work set : 195lbs x 5 reps 1 set
    4. Annotate the weight used (including the barbell, which weighs 45lbs) accordingly
    5. If your technique broke down significantly, take 5-10% of weight off the bar and do a set of 5 repetitions. If your technique held up there, count this as your “work set” and annotate it as described above.

So, the overall workout looks like this for the first two weeks or so of the program:

  • A Workout
    • Squat x 5 reps x 3 sets
    • Press x 5 reps x 3 sets
    • Deadlift x 5 reps x 1 set
  • B Workout
    • Squat x 5 reps x 3 sets
    • Bench Press x 5 reps x 3 sets
    • Deadlift x 5 reps x 1 set

Workouts A and B are alternated among the three training days per week. After week two, some things may start to change like the addition of the power clean (for appropriate demographics) and chin-ups/pull-ups. This is all described in Starting Strength: Basic Barbell Training

However, the overall idea is to add weight to the barbell each time you train. The squat typically tolerates 5lb increases in weight just fine, whereas the deadlift tends to tolerate 10lb+ jumps for a while. Upper body lifts, e.g. the press and bench press do best with 5lb or less increases, particularly in the case of someone who is not very strong already. Consider a person who benches 65lbs x 5 reps x 3 sets. Adding 5lbs to the bench press each time they train is nearly a 10% increase, which is quite significant. In this case, micro-loading with small increment weights becomes useful.

QuickStart FAQ

  • Are there any books you recommend to help understand this better?
  • Do I need to do cardio or other activity?
    • Maybe, but it depends. If you have cardiometabolic disease, e.g. heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, a waist >40″ (male) or 37″ (female), or are obese- you’d probably benefit from some cardiovascular activity and dietary modification during the novice progression. We recommend starting with 1 session per week where you engage in 30 minutes of steady state activity with a heart rate between 60-70% of your maximum. We also discussed this more extensively on our podcast here.
    • Other activity that places a significant demand on your physical recovery, e.g. martial arts, hiking, hard labor or other strenuous activity likely competes for resources that you need in order to recover from exercise. Depending on the context, this may need to be modified to suit your needs.
  • I’m old. Should I do this program?
    • Yes! However, if you are previously sedentary and in your 6th decade of life, you may only want to do one work set per exercise for the first two weeks. You may add a second work set on weeks 3 -5. On week 6, you should be running a fairly standard novice progression.
  • What should I eat?
  • What kind of grip should I take on the deadlift?
  • What should I do if I have pain in ____?
  • More coming soon!

Training

  • Coming soon!

Nutrition

  • BMI Calculator

  • Is BMI Important?

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FAQ

  • Is there anyone who shouldn’t start training right away?
  • What kind of equipment do I need to purchase and how do I use them?
  • What do shoes do?
  • Have you ever done a review on weightlifting shoes?

    • Sure have!
    • Nike Romaleos III: These shoes are, for me, probably the best compromise of all the features I look for in a shoe that I’ve highlighted below. They have a millimeter over the standard 3/4″ effective heel height, a metatarsal strap that is the appropriate length and correct location to be functional, a deep heel cup, and a toe box that doesn’t feel like a piece of concrete. I think that if you liked the Adipowers, you’ll love the Romaleos III’s as the heel cup, upper, and tongue are slight upgrades. If you have a wide foot, e.g. greater than a D width, the toe box may be a bit narrow, but for everyone else these would be my recommendation unless you like a taller heel (Leistung 2) or a stiffer shoe carcass (Reebok Legacy). The price point at 200.00 is in line with other top-end shoes and they are widely available. I also like that they ship with high quality laces and competition insoles so you can see which fit and feel is best suited for you.
    • Adidas Power Perfect 2: This may be my favorite shoe of all time and if Adidas had updated the colorway it probably would’ve won top honors. Again, for wide feet this probably isn’t the shoe to get because of the narrow toe box, but for everyone else the sizing is dead on. The shoe is made of high quality leather, the heel cup is deep and there is no heel slip, and the metatarsal strap- while a bit long if you like the crank the shoes down- is in the perfect spot. The crepe sole also allows for easy modification and shimming if you need to do so for a leg length discrepancy. Best thing about these shoes, however, is the price point at about 120.00. There’s not a better shoe on the market for this price in my opinion. C’mon Adidas, update the colorway!
    • Tie (Adidas Leistung 2) and the Reebok Legacy. A tie? What?!? I know, how could this happen and especially with two very different shoes? Well, I really liked the Leistung 2’s for it’s innovation and fit, but the heel height of about an inch was a deal breaker for me. Conversely, the Reebok Legacy had the right heel height, great fit, breatheable heel cup, and the metatarsal straps were well position and innovative too with no velcro where the laces would lie, but the shoe is very stiff and heavy. It is similar to the Nike Romaleos I and II’s, but with a modern toe box that isn’t quite as “numb”. I honestly think the BOA system for the metatarsal strap on the Adidas shoe is the best innovation I’ve seen on a lifter in quite some time and, additionally, the material that the shoe carcass is made out of is top notch. I just wish it didn’t have a 1″ heel. The Reeboks ended up being a bit too stiff for my liking, but that is my preference and if you loved the Romaleos I and II’s, you’ll love the Legacys more because the metatarsal straps and toe box are improvements in my opinion. The Reebok probably gets the nod for wider foot lifters too.
    • Adidas Adipowers: I have actually had 3 colorways of these shoes- the original (and controversial) London edition shoes in 2012, the black and red shoes in early 2013, and the all-white storm trooper colored lifters in mid 2013. These shoes are great for the folks with a wider foot. The heel and heel cup is solid, the shoes are light, and the toe box is flexibleallowing the lifter to feel significantly more than the Nike Romaleos I and II’s. Ultimately, I didn’t like the metatarsal strap’s positioning and length (and velcro) as much on these shoes compared to the Reebok, Romaleos III, or Leistung II, but since these are the older editions they are available for a pretty steep discount at multiple locations. I would recommend them for folks on the fence about getting a pair of quality shoes who don’t want to spend the 200 dollars for the latest and greatest.
    • Nike Romaleos I and II: Back prior to the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Nike released their first iteration of the Romaleos. At the time, their biggest competition were the Adidas Adistars and the shoes couldn’t have been more different. The main defining features of these Nikes were that they were very stiff, the metatarsal straps were a little too long, and they were hot. Not alot changed between the first and second edition besides them losing a little bit of weight and getting some different color ways. They are a great shoe nonetheless and given that they are discounted because they are the “old” models now, I think these are a great entry level shoe for folks who’d rather wear a swoosh than 3 stripes.
    • Rogue by Do Win: These were my first pair of shoes back in 2008 and they were definitely old school being made from suede. They were very wide, heavy, and low on the technology front- but this just goes to show you how far shoes have come for lifting since CrossFit and the subsequent barbell training explosion. I don’t think these guys are even being made anymore, but I don’t like shoes like this as a rule because they smell, they stretch, and there are better options at the same price point.
    • No Bull Lifter: The most expensive shoe on our list at 300 dollars retail is the No Bull lifter. Vaunted as being made via a meticulous, craftsman-like process, these shoes are actually made in China- likely with a master craftsman nonetheless. Unfortunately, the shoes have some shortcomings that I think can be fixed going forward with some design modifications. To begin, the heel cup is nearly non existent and the heels do move around quite a bit. The laces are more suited for dress shoes than athletic endeavours and will not get the shoe tight enough so that the foot doesn’t slide around in it. The metatarsal strap is about 1/2″ too far back from where it needs to be to support the lifter’s arch and, additionally, the material of the shoe carcass is quite flexible so that the shoe tends to be quite flexible. The stacked leather heel and crepe sole is a nice feature, paying homage to the old Safe squat shoes, but the boot of the shoe itself is not suited for lifting just yet. I think they can improve on the product, however, and am interested to see what they come up with for round 2
  • Who should I follow on social media for more quality content?

Additional Resources

Join the discussion 3 Comments

  • Graham says:

    Really loved this quick start! Can’t wait to see it expanded/completed!

  • Aziz says:

    Loved it .. looking for more

  • love this so much <3 🙂 I changed my job and it is quite physical 🙁 I hope I'll be able to still do some training 🙁 it depresses me highly but I can't just leave jobs :/ will switch to better soon. but today I achieved 112kg squat 3×5 (still in linear progression) .. I eat 3300cal daily am really strict with it for 5-6 months now … I started as 59kg and i am now at 74kg which is a huge progress for me 🙂 I'm 1,75m high. but as I said … I will be maybe forced to drop squatting to my max since work is physical and it is killing me. but reality is reality need to get over it :/ any advice on it? latest stuff: squat 112kg; deadlift 115kg; bench 62kg ; press 52kg. but be aware these numbers are still going up and up slowly… I stalled in squat at 95kg and bench at 50kg ( i know it's shameful hehe) and stalled now press at 55kg … but when squat and bench stalled .. what I did is I lowered the kg by 10kg and climbed back up doing 3×8 and 5×5 🙂 let's ssay I failed bench at 50kg .. I did then 40kg 3×8 and then 42kg 5×5 and then 3×8 and then 45kg 5×5 and then 3×8 and then 47kg 5×5 and then 3×8 and then if I was able to lift 47kg 25 times .. this would mean that I would surely be able to lift 50kg 15 times .. and suddenly strength of bench increased so much i can now bench 62kg and still going steadily up … same for squat .. note i stalled at 95kg but now today I did 112kg and still i can add more 🙂 all this tnx to my own way of 5×5 and then 3×8 and afterwards increasing 2,5kg up on the weight and doing it 3×5 again 😀 love this technique. blessings to all of you 🙂

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