8 thoughts on “Your First Two Weeks Of Strength Training”

  1. Been doing it off and on for the last 3 years. I always feel much better during the “on” times. Just make sure to take it easy the first few weeks. Just like running a marathon or getting a master’s degree, you don’t want to try to get it all at once. Ease into it and go from there.

  2. I’m in the middle of my most recent “2 weeks” of restarting, after an 11 week viral bout, and being restricted by my podiatrst between December through late May and a virus between May and 2 weeks ago. I’m finding that lots of fluids and lots of sleep helps reduce muscle soreness a great deal, though NSAIDs have also been useful in getting to sleep.

    As others note, starting at light weights, with small increments, and emphasizing good form that does not hurt you by forcing unnatural movement is far superior in progress to trying to “gut it through”.

    1. The best excuse I ever heard was, “I’m allergic to exercise. It makes me break out in a sweat and breathe hard.”

  3. Rand,

    Coach Rippetoe is well-regarded in the fitness community, but his approach is geared to showing dramatic gains in men under 25, who are in an entirely different place, anabolically speaking, than men in their 50s. Much of the initial strength gain is neuroadaptation anyway, as your body learns how to bench, squat, pull, press, or whatever.

    A site that I think is probably worth a look for you is strengthstandards.co, which based on body weight will give you a good estimate of your status (untrained, novice, intermediate, advanced, etc) based on your performance in various exercises, and then design a program directly for you – whether that’s Rippetoe’s “Starting Strength” protocol, Wendler’s 5/3/1, one of the 5×5 programs, or whatever you’re looking for.

    I’ve been doing 5/3/1 for about three years, with no ‘off” time, and am now midway between intermediate and advanced for my weight. I’m changing things up with a little bit of revision over the next six months, but the site referenced above is a great reference for this.

    The best workout is the one you’ll go and do – so take a close look at the various programs and find the one that you’ll stick with. And best of luck!

  4. Only exercise like 2-3 times a week when you start. Muscle soreness can be alleviated with ibuprofen. Don’t overdo it though. When it hurts you stop and don’t exercise for at least two days.

    1. Thing is you need TIME for the muscles to grow in the beginning. So pushing it past the threshold of pain and exercising every day is a bad idea. You aren’t going to get more muscled for that and you will risk a ruptured muscle. Which will take months to heal if you’re lucky.

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