Originally Posted by TeeKay
They always say shit like, "you need to build a base." WTF is a base? A fat ass and stick arms?
Originally Posted by KingJulien
I've said this before but I don't think most people actually read the book. The real program has you doing squats, deads, bench, OHP, and power cleans, and on top of that it has a whole accessory section that includes all the upper body shit that people think is lacking in SS, including things like curls and pullups. It also doesn't mandate GOMAD, it says if you're finding yourself staying at the same weight start drinking whole milk, up to a gallon a day if necessary.
SS is just an easy target because so many people pull the cliff notes program from the wiki and then complain that it's not complete (which /r/fittit holds a lot of blame for). I still refer to it if i'm having trouble with a lift.
Originally Posted by GraphicNovelty
Accessory work is highly discouraged in the book. He's like "I know you're gonna want
to do curls lol"
the whole mentality of the book is to make you strong, not look good.
You gotta view Starting Strength from what it aims to do.
From my understanding, it has never claimed to build a super nice physique for someone beyond their noob gains. It's targeted for rank beginners and makes those people actually squat, dead and ohp often. Its also a great program if you lift weights as complementary training for a sport. If you play football or whatever, SS is gonna be a lot more productive for your goals and to get higher performance on the sports field than doing a BB-esque split with tricep pushdowns and leg raises.
About building a base:
I def think there's some merit to focus on building strength with lower reps before you start doing more hypertrophy based training in the higher rep ranges. For a weak guy, 3x5 squats with 135 is gonna make him grow more muscle than 3x12 with 80 pounds. If he can get his strength up by focusing on lower reps with a strength program such as SS, he'll eventually be able to do those 3 sets of 12 with a decently heavy weight. I think its easier to progressive overload with SS and lower rep ranges than on a very high volume split protocol.
With that said, I think everyone can do some accessory work for their arms, shoulders or whatever and some of SS followers praise it too much.
The progression of a powerlifters training tends to go something like this over the years, from what I've read:
Rank beginner: learning the basics with minimal work if it distracts your progress on the main lifts. Just enough volume so he can recover until next session and progressive overload. SS is good here.
Beginner-intermediate: Muscle mass is often the limitation. Introduce more accessory work to build up a higher workload tolerance, induce more hypertrophy and to not get muscle imbalances (my coach said this)
Intermediate: More tailored training to personal weaknesses. Usually has to wave intensity and volume in blocks to get stronger. More focus on the main lifts and technique refinement.
Advanced: Physique is often balanced so with no major weakpoints so accessory work isn't as needed any longer. The weights can also be so heavy at this point that the frequency has to go down, but overall volume is at its highest (Malanichev does pretty much no accessory work for instance).