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Old 12-19-2012, 06:58 AM   #1
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Default Squat recovery

On another thread we got on the topic of squatting multiple times a week. I have never been able to do this, my recovery flat out sucks. Even for upper body, my recovery stinks. I am pretty much sore 24/7. Most of you know I am going through recovery from a surgery right now, and can only really squat. So the question I have, while I am hurt I would like to try and hit some more frequency of lifts. I would like to go one light raw squat day(under 405), and some leg work. Then a few days later on in the week throw on some old briefs and hit a few sets of singles (500-600 range). Even at this point neither one alone is difficult, but together might be a different story. So my question to you guys who squat multiple times a week (or who have done it) what type of recovery stuff do you use? Foam rolling, contrast showers, active stretching, some light cardio, whatever? I am up for suggestions.
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Old 12-19-2012, 07:19 AM   #2
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I love contrast showers for recovery. I do them alot when I do heavy strongman event training and they seem to help. I usually do 4-5mins of superhot, 1min of icecold. I continue untill I feel a sort of "pump" in my whole body from the increased bloodflow. Feels great when youre sore.

I also did things like sprints, box jumps etc on offdays for a while and stretched afterwards, seemd to help aswell. I kept those sessions to 15-25 mins.

Good luck buddy.
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Old 12-19-2012, 07:45 AM   #3
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Good thread J, I will say that I feel you *should* be able to squat three times a week not that you absolutely *must* squat three times a week. I wouldn't want this thread to become a once vs thrice weekly squat debate! That's not the idea.

The idea is that being able to squat three times a week shows that you're not killing your joints with unnatural movement patterns, so it's a good learning tool.

I'll write a bit more later on when I'm at home.

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Old 12-19-2012, 08:10 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fazc View Post
Good thread J, I will say that I feel you *should* be able to squat three times a week not that you absolutely *must* squat three times a week. I wouldn't want this thread to become a once vs thrice weekly squat debate! That's not the idea.

The idea is that being able to squat three times a week shows that you're not killing your joints with unnatural movement patterns, so it's a good learning tool.

I'll write a bit more later on when I'm at home.
Exactly! I also hope people understand that each person is different. I am just trying to talk through a way to help me prepare my body to a larger workload.
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Old 12-19-2012, 09:19 AM   #5
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One of the mistakes I made when trying to squat, or lift more frequently in general, was trying to do too much each day. It took me nearly a year to grasp frequency training. I was trying to take the "once a week" mentality and apply it to ever workout.

The main thing I learned was that it required some time to build into frequency. When I dialed the volume down each day my recovery improved dramatically.

We are each different, obviously. Regarding gear training and supra-human loads, I'm not sure frequency would work well. I can see the need to form practice, ala Westside's DE day. Form practice has really helped me on the big lifts.

Raw I think it's a manner of keeping the volume in check and allowing time for conditioning, mental and physical. After nearly 2 years of frequently squatting I could move to 6x a week if I wanted too. It feels that natural, with limited recovery issues.

So I guess my main advice if you squat more frequently is just to go in and base your workout on how you feel that day, but never allowing yourself to do "too much". If you feel great, build up to a slightly heavier single. On off days, do what you can.

When I went in with predetermined levels to hit it never worked as well. I always had a minimum single I would shoot for, and then higher when I felt good. Over time, as my conditioning grew, I almost always was training with heavier singles.
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Old 12-19-2012, 09:43 AM   #6
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I liked squatting multiple times a week, but only one was heavy. I think it actually helps recovery as you kind of get blood in there and work out the kinks, etc.

I also make it a priority to do mobility stuff prior and dedicated stretching and foam rolling afterwards. I would do dydnamic hip stretches and mtn climber jumps (mobilitywod stuff) also active hamstring and quad stretches like walking knee to chest grabs and ankle grabs stuff like that before I lifted. Stretching after was just normal stretching. I now do foam rolling beforehand too.

Also it did teach me a lot about the lift itself and things I was doing wrong. I also did variations. Goblet squats obviously light, Band around knees squats (BW), Explosive squats and squat jumps (light), front squats (medium), etc. Granted I was and still am in the learning mode about the lift itself, but it was extremely beneficial in a lot of ways.

One other thing about frequency with very little intensity was that it was mentally refreshing too. When I squatted once a week it was always max heavy and it crushed me mentally and physically. I dreaded the damage I knew was coming when I hit those last few sets. I couldn't possibly think of squatting again for a week. And I always worried about my form when things got heavy which in hindsight was distracting to the effort.

But adding in the light days sort of grooved my motion and took that form worry away, while at the same time I was dominating lighter weights sort of taking away a lot of that dread for those heavy sets later on. Once I didn't "dread" squatting so much, I found out I wasn't as sore nor was recovery as bad either.

Just my experience. Hope that helps.
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Old 12-19-2012, 01:14 PM   #7
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As BtB and Mike said,the right volume along with different variations. I'm on the second week of my program,I went from squatting 1-2 times per week to 2-3. So far it feels fine. Max effort work Monday,a few triples on front squats today and dynamic squats Friday. I'm new at this,but if there's one thing I know,eat! Not that eating big is a problem here
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Old 12-19-2012, 01:24 PM   #8
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For those that do squat multiple times a week, it may help to state what sort of 1RM % is being used, reps and sets etc, for the various sessions.

I did squat 4 times a week, max squats in any one day was around 88 total reps but only with a barbell at a beginner level, so it really won't be of much help; though, I also think the amount of squats makes a huge difference if the load is very low, since the body above the knee is still taken as extra load, in an unweighted version of a squat, which has to be moved through the expected ROM.
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Old 12-19-2012, 01:45 PM   #9
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JB, I try to squat atleast twice a week (back squat and a variation) generally my recovery is pretty good and that really just consists of BCAAs, green alcohol/epsom salt baths and some light cardio. I also find that the nutritionist in me likes to have Vitamin C pretty regularly, so that can really help out with recovery as well ;-)
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Old 12-19-2012, 02:31 PM   #10
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I agree with BTB it is important to take note of the amount of volume you do for legs on each day. If you know you are lifting legs frequently throughout the week there is really no need to make each time a PR setting day or all out warfare.

For me, I train legs quite frequently. I'll either do some light squats, walking lunges, leg curls, GHRs, leg extensions, and others during my warm-ups even on upper body days.

It's just another way to approach increasing your recovery I came across from Louie Simmons. The main focus is just to get some sort of work on the legs and blood flow to them. Sled work is also great because it's eccentric less and can actually increase your capacity of recovery.
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