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Post-op novice routine help

Discussion in 'Strength & Conditioning Discussion' started by 89vision, Aug 8, 2010.

  1. 89vision White Belt

    May 6, 2010
    Likes Received:
    Just over two weeks ago I had an ACL replacement so anything standing is out. I was previously doing Starting Strength, numbers were:
    Deadlift 1x5x315
    Bench 3x5x175
    BOR 3x6x105
    Squat 3x5x190
    OHP 3x5x97
    I won't be able to do weighted dips or chins for a while just for safety reasons, I don't want to try and land on one foot with extra weight right away. I was thinking I could drop 15% on bench and ohp and continue linear progression with those, seated OHP of course. I will do 2lb and 3lb increments to stretch out my progress because I was close to stalling anyway.
    Row is going to be chest supported, what kind of sets/reps should I do since the jumps might be a little larger than 5lbs?
    Can i set up something like a 2 day split focusing on ohp and row with my lifts like this:

    Session 1:
    Ohp 3x5
    Row ?x??
    Some tricep lift ?x8-10
    Shoulder accessory or pullups ?

    Session 2:
    Bench 3x5
    Row ?x??
    Curlzz ?x8-10 can't do standing BB, anything wrong with seated preachers so I can do these progressively also?
    Facepulls or dumbell shrugs

    Depending on time I would like to get some plate pinches in, maybe replacing one of the accessories if it's too much stuff. Will be levering at home on the off days along with minimal resistance stationary biking everyday to work range of motion. No weights for my leg yet for at least a couple weeks according to the physical therapist. I do PT for my knee at home it's pretty easy right now and doesn't take long so it's not an issue time wise.
  2. flak Guest

    Congrats on getting back into the game right away.

    I'll take a stab at the chest-supported row (CSR) question.

    First, it's a good choice for you -- there's minimal leg involvement and probably little risk of injury for you. Plus, it's a good pull exercise.

    Have you done CSR enough to have some idea how much weight you can handle?

    I'll assume the answer's no.

    The bare apparatus on the CSR machines I've used was fairly heavy, which means you may be disappointed with the amount of plates you find yourself using.

    Seems to me that when I was doing a lot of CSR I was doing triples with 90 to 115 lbs. To put it in context, I was doing barbell BORs (Rippetoe style, with some hip drive) for triples with 205 to 225 lbs. back then.

    So if you were doing BORs for sets of 6 reps with 105 lbs., don't be surprised if you have to bump the weight back to 45 lbs. or so.

    Now, something else to consider -- because your knee situation limits the type of exercises you can do, I think you oughta consider making CSR your heavy pull lift for right now. So instead of doing sets of 6 reps, aim for top-weight working sets of 1, 2 or 3 reps.

    Since you're hesitant about doing pull ups and chins with added weight -- and hesitant for a good reason -- keep doing those with just body weight and consider that your pull accessory lift for now.

    A couple of other points --

    If the CSR machine offers multiple grip options, like palms down (pronated) and palms facing (neutral), take advantage of that. You can do one grip one workout, then another grip the next workout, or mix it up and do both during the same workout.

    I liked to end a CSR session with several sets of 10 reps with light weight, with about 30 seconds' rest between sets. Really gets the blood flowing, and (I believe) speeds recovery.

    Since you're trying to put together a new routine, you might want to consider doing rear-delt flyes (either with dumbbells or on a pec deck), neck work and grip work.
  3. flak Guest

    Oh, something else -- you should consider doing seated leg press with your good leg for right now. Particularly if your good leg is the non-dominant one.
  4. 89vision White Belt

    May 6, 2010
    Likes Received:
    Thanks flak for the advice.

    I have used the CSR at my gym a few times and it has multiple grips. So I will try to rotate that. I won't be disappointed by the amount of plates, I mean, I just posted that I squat under 200lbs haha. I don't care where I start just want to improve. And improving my upper back is one of my priorities while I'm rehabbing my knee.
    I don't feel I have enough muscular control to go all out 2-3 rep heavy on the rows yet. If I do set of 4 reps how many sets do I do? And for the accessory pullups 3 sets to failure is the way to go I assume?

    I was thinking about rear delt flys also, and lateral raises. Should I stick with the flys or alternate, or one each day. Will the flys hit my back enough to not need face pulls because my back is underdeveloped. Yet so are my shoulders. The only way I could pull off rear flys is on an incline bench facing the bench, and I'm not sure if my knee is flexible enough to do that yet. I'll try it out tomorrow.

    Any comments on the rest of my program? Rows should probably come first on the bench day since I'd rather focus on my back? And the ohp day maybe row with a little more volume?

    I plan on doing some pinch holds often and levering at home. I will look into working my good leg on the leg press, that's a good suggestion.
  5. flak Guest

    Lemme see if I can address your questions --

    If you're hinky about doing low reps with CSR, then yeah, go with sets of 4.

    As far as how many sets, I'd aim for about 6 working sets (plus whatever warm-up sets you need) -- that way, you do about 25 working reps.

    For pull ups, I would not go to failure. Instead, aim for as many good reps as you can do, and when the going gets tough, stop. Leave some gas in the tank.

    If you want to do rear delt flyes one session and lateral raises the next, that's fine. Though I think lateral raises are pretty useless.

    Face pulls are done for a different purpose than rear delt flyes -- face pulls help improve scaular retraction and improve your shoulder joint stability. So definitely do them regardless.

    As far as your overall routine, I think I'd do bench first on bench day, and CSR first on the OHP day. Reason -- bench uses more back strength than OHP (or at least it seems that way to me) so doing CSR before bench would potentially impact your bench performance. Also, I'd say for right now to try to do the same volume on everything from one workout to the next, until you get better sense of what's gonna work for you. The overall routine looks fine -- right now you're just trying to figure out what you can do, don't worry about modifying the routine until you've done at least a couple of sessions.

    Plate pinches and levering are good.

    A couple other things -- you might want to consider doing pullovers, either with a barbell or dumbbell on a flat bench, or on a pullover machine, if you have one available.

    Also, shoulder rotator cuff exercises are worth considering -- do 'em lying on a bench with a light dumbbell and go for 3 sets of 20 for each arm, each direction (inward and outward).
  6. 89vision White Belt

    May 6, 2010
    Likes Received:
    Again thanks flak, this has been challenging to figure out the best way to use my time while rehabbing than when I was just doing the main lifts and a little assistance. I appreciate the help and I've even converted a friend of mine to proper strength training away from old high school bullshit.

    So I didn't exactly follow everything for the first workout but I'm working out the kinks, I benched after rowing because of the crutches and needing my friend to help load plates in between his squat sets.

    This is what I've come up with, we'll see how it works.
    (CSR=Chest supported row)
    Sets x Reps

    Session 1:
    CSR 6x4
    Ohp 3x5
    Tricep lift 3x8
    Pullups 3x almost fail
    Facepulls 3x20
    plate pinches for time

    Session 2:
    Bench 3x5
    Row 6x4
    Curlzz 3x8
    Rear delt flye 3x15
    Facepulls 3x20

    Other than rear delt flyes what other shoulder assistance is good? I think people usually do push press but that is not an option. I care about my shoulders more than bench, although I do know bench works the front delts pretty well, so is everything set up ok to improve my OHP as much as I can?
    When doing the rear delt flyes one a pec dec machine I felt it more in my upper traps than my delts. How do I place my arms? Should they be bent at the elbow, straight out, horizontal, angled upwards/downwards?

    Why pullovers? Aren't they a chest exercise or are they more complicated than that. Only time I've looked into them is some thread a week or two back where it was brought up. Maybe I do recall that they are a chest AND shoulder lift, is that the reasoning?
    The rotator cuff stuff, you mean like external rotations? The only way I know how to do those is supported on something like the inside of a leg, how do you mean inward and outward?

    I will throw in the leg press for my good leg on the off days and if I have time on the workout days. It felt good today to actually lift something with my lower body, other than the assisted pistols I've been doing since surgery, like off the ground, toilet... lol things like that.

    I ended up having to change gyms because my school gym isn't open till late August, but the new one has good equipment and better Olympic bars.
    The CSR machine isn't really a machine but loads regular plates and pivots directly down from the handle.

    It's like this one but you are seated and perpendicular to the ground. So the weight gets slightly easier as it comes nearer, so I was able to do 70lbs comfortably off the bat.

    I am going to start a new log since my old ones name is no longer relevant. I will probably post most of this there as well as my notes from the last 2 days, but I figured this would get more views and maybe more comments in this section while I still had some questions.
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2010
  7. flak Guest

    Criminy, am I the only one who can see this thread? Or am I doing such a stellar job of answering your questions that no one else bothers to respond?


    I think you've got shoulder assistance covered, but throw in some lateral raises if you want.

    Feeling rear delt flyes in your upper traps isn't unusual. When I do 'em I use the grips that have my palms facing each other, I keep my elbows pretty straight and my arms horizontal, ie. at shoulder level. But that's personal preference. I doubt it matters much.

    Pullovers work your upper back, shoulders and chest. The reason I suggested them is just because it's something different, and the exercise involves a plane of motion that few exercises do.

    Yeah, the shoulder rotator cuff exercises I was talking about are internal and external rotations. "Inward" = internal, "outward" = external.

    I've used the kind of CSR apparatus you're using. It's fine.
  8. 89vision White Belt

    May 6, 2010
    Likes Received:
    That's what I was thinking... I guess you are the only one who thinks my questions are worth answering. Oh well, thanks for helping me set this up, I started a new log here:

    I'm not married to lateral raises they are just the only other shoulder assistance that I am familiar with. I will stick to the flyes. Pullovers sound like an ok addition that I will see how they fit in once I get some more sessions under my belt with this new routine.

    The only other thing I've thought might be lacking is ab work, I was previously just using squats, OHP, etc.. for ab work. Very little if any direct work, but since I'm not doing those things for a while I might try to add some in on my off days when I bike and leg press.

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