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Friday, May 26, 2017

Do Your Fives

21 May 2017

Bench press 300x5, 310x4, 315x3, 330x2, 340x1, 350x1, 350x1

Pulldowns 10-8-6-5

Barbell extensions 3s x 5-6

Standing BTN press 135x5, 145x5, 155x4, 165x3, 135x4

Barbell curl 5s x 5-6

Preacher curl 4s x 5-6

Overhead cable extensions 4s x 10-15

I need to cut back on the tricep work a bit, as I feel it's starting to hinder my recovery. Also I have a very painful case of tennis elbow in my left arm which isn't going away. What I'm thinking about is three tricep workouts in two weeks (instead of four) and lighter weights. Maybe one heavy and two light sessions.

Also it looks like I'll have some time to train consistently now, so I'll try to cycle the weights a bit. Still doing 5-4-3-2-1, but varying the percentages instead of going 100% on every set. Might be worth it.

22 May 2017

Deadlift 395x5, 415x4, 430x3, 440x2, 460x1, 475x1

I think I figured out what I'll do on the deadlift. Keep the rep set weights the same and try to increase the last single by 5 pounds per workout. E.g. next time I'll do the exact same weights but 480x1 at the end. Once that stalls, go back to the five-rep set and add 5 pounds and work my way up the sets. When I've increased all rep sets by 5 pounds, hopefully the single will go up too.

Or not.

Stiff-legged deadlift 2s x 5

Bent-over row 3s x 5

Squat 3s x 5

24 May 2017

SlingShot bench press 315x5, 325x5, 340x4, 350x3, 365x2, 375x1, 375x1, 365x1

Went a little lighter on the five-rep sets and the singles. Since I don't really care about my SlingShot one-rep max (the point of using it is to get some reps done with a heavier weight than usual, not to impress other gymgoers), I'll focus more on reps and just do a few easy singles at the end.

Smith machine bentover row 2s x 10, 2s x 6

Barbell extensions 3s x 8

Trap combo on Smith machine (5 reps upright row + 5 reps behind-the-back row) x 3 sets

Incline bench press 5-5-4-3-2

Hammer curls 3s x 6

Preacher curl machine 3 x drop sets

26 May 2017

Squat 345x5, 375x5, 395x5, 405x5, 415x5, 405x5, 425x5, 405x5, 315x5

Had a late night and got up at 5 AM to squat. Did not expect to set any personal records, Did not set any personal records. So in a way I met my own expectations.

Friday, May 19, 2017


15 May 2017

Pull 395x5, 415x4, 425x3, 440x2, 460x1, 470x1

Stiff-legged deadlift 2s x 5-6

Bent-over row 3s x 5 - upped the weight on these a bit

High bar squat 3s x 5, light

17 May 2017

SlingShot bench press 335x5, 345x4, 355x3, 365x2, 385x1, 315x4

Rep sets are pretty much back to where they used to be, but the single at the end felt really heavy.

Smith machine bent-over rows 1s x 10, 4s x 6-8

Barbell extensions 3s x 6-8

Incline bench press 5-4-3-2-1

Seated cable rows 3s x 10

Reverse barbell curl 4s x 6-8

Preacher DB curl 4s x 5-6

Overhead cable extensions 4s x 10-12

18 May 2017

Squat 345x5, 365x5, 385x5, 405x5, 415x5, 425x4, 405x4, 315 x 2s x 5

Squats were a pleasant surprise. I had hoped to work up to maybe 410x5 and back down, but the weight felt light. One big change was to bring my stance in much closer than usual. Typically I squat with my feet pretty wide out, it has worked well in the past but since my hip/back injury I've had a lot of trouble finding the right groove.

Close stance leg press with feet low on plate 3s x 20

Hack squat 3s x 10, very light

Monday, May 15, 2017

Suck Week

Intro training week after 3 weeks off:

8 May 2017

Bench press 295x5, 305x4, 310x3, 320x2, 330x1, 350x2

I haven't lost much strength, but the lifts felt off, as is usually the case. E.g. 310x3 felt like a max effort, but with 320 I felt like I could do 5-6 reps instead of 2.

Pulldowns 10-8-6-5-5 - no strength lost on these at all. Cable pulls definitely take care of the back muscles.

Standing BTN press 135x5, 145x5, 155x5. 165x4

Barbell curl 5s x 5

Barbell extension 3s x 5

DB preacher curl 4s x 6

Overhead cable extensions 15-10-8-8-8

9 May 2017

Pull 385x5, 405x4, 415x3. 435x2, 455x1

Stiff-legged pull 2s x 5

Bent-over row 3s x 5

Light squats 3s x 5

Leg press w. feet high on plate 1s x 20, 1s x 15

Back extension x12, x10

11 May 2017

SlingShot bench press 325x5, 335x4, 345x3, 355x2, 375x1, 315x3

Seated cable row 4s x 10

Incline bench press 5-4-3-2

Barbell extension 3s x 5

DB fly 2s x 12

DB curl 5s x 6-8

Overhead cable extension 4s x 8-10

Preacher curl machine 4s x AMAP

12 May 2017

Squat 365x5, 385x5, 395x5, 405x5, 385x5, 315 x 2s x 5, 275x5

Not great, but not as terrible as expected.

Smith machine front squat 3s x 5

Leg press x 20, x 15, x 12

14 May 2017

Bench press 295x5, 305x4, 315x3, 325x2, 335x1, 335x1, 335x1

Pulldowns 10-8-6-5-5

Barbell extensions 5x5

Barbell curl 5x5

Standing BTN press 135x5, 145x5, 155x4, 165x3, 175x2

DB preacher curl 4s x 5

Overhead cable extensions 4s x 10-12

Friday, April 14, 2017

Puff and Pant

10 April 2017

Pulls 405x5, 415x4, 435x3, 455x2, 475x1, 495x1

Stiff-legged pulls 2s x 5

Bent-over row 3s x 5

One-arm DB row x 40 reps, done in 20-10-10 format, did not use straps.

Seated leg curl 3s x 8

12 April 2017

SlingShot bench press 345x5, 355x4, 365x3, 375x2, 390x1, 365x1

Chest-supported row 10-8-6-6-6

Barbell triceps extension 4s x 5-6

One-arm DB preacher curl supersetted with EZ bar preacher curl x 4 sets

Machine incline press 5x5

14 April 2017

Squat 365x5, 385x5, 405x5, 410x5, 415x5, 405x5

Puffed and panted enough to make John McCallum proud.

Close-stance squat 315 lbs. 3 x 5

Front squat x 5, x 3

Next installment of this shitshow - second week of May.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Rowing Toward Pointlessness

3 April 2017

Pull 405x5, 415x4, 435x3, 455x2, 465x1, 485x1, 505x1

Belt from 455 up. I helped a friend move over the weekend and didn't expect much from today's session, but the weights somehow felt lighter.

Stiff-legged pull 2s x 5

Bent-over row 3s x 5

Smith machine front squat 3s x 5 - these are becoming my new favorite exercise. More like a sissy squat with weight than a barbell front squat.

One-arm row x 40 reps per arm

I need to figure out a good weight for these. The weight I used was too light so I just kept switching arms until I was done. The progression I've envisioned is:

  • Do one all-out max rep set in the range of around 20 per arm
  • Rest 30 seconds
  • Do a second all-out set, trying to hit at least half the reps from first set
  • Rest 30 seconds, put on lifting straps
  • Do a third set with straps, aiming to match Set 2.
Once I can total 50 reps with no strain, increase weight by 5 lbs. I think 75 pounds would be a good starting point.

This gives me something to shoot for, but doesn't necessarily make sense. E.g. the third set with straps is supposed to allow for more back work in case of a failing grip, because this is what everyone does. But my upper back always fails before my grip does, so the straps are kind of pointless. Decisions.

5 April 2017

SlingShot bench press 335x5, 355x4, 365x3, 375x2, 390x1

Upper back was very sore and I struggled to control the bar on the way down. So I worked up to a heavy single and left it at that.

Barbell tricep extensions 3s x 5-6

Seated cable row 4s x 6 - barely made it through these. I guess those DB rows did have some effect, although I couldn't feel much on Monday.

Incline bench press 5-4-3-2

Preacher curl superset DBs + barbell x 4 sets

Cable tricep extensions 4s x 10-12

7 April 2017

Squat 365x5, 405x5, 410x5, 415x5, 405x5

Front squat 3s x 5

Leg press 5s x 10 - 3 sets with feet low on the plate, 2 sets with feet high

Hack squat 3s x 10

9 April 2017

Bench press 305x5, 315x4, 325x3, 335x2, 350x1, 365x1, 380x1

Pulldowns 10-8-6-5

Standing BTN press 115x5, 135x5, 155x5, 165x3, 165x3

Barbell curl 5x5

Reverse curl 3s x 5

Barbell tricep extensions 4s x 5-6

Overhead cable extensions 4s x 10

Monday, April 3, 2017

The Night Ocean

Recommended reading for Lovecraft fans - "The Night Ocean" by Paul La Farge. Coach and maybe Sunny D would really enjoy it IMO. I read the Goodreads blurb and it didn't seem particularly compelling, the story itself turned out to be quite different from what I expected, but in spite of all this it was a tremendously enjoyable read.

26 March 2017

Bench press 300x5, 310x4, 315x3, 325x2, 335x1, 350x1, 370x1

Pulldowns 10-8-6-5

Standing BTN press 115x8, 135x5, 145x4, 155x3, 165x2

Barbell curl 5x5

Barbell extensions 4s x 5 - not sure these were a good idea

Seated DB curl 4s x 6

Band pushdowns 3 sets x AMAP

27 March 2017

Pull 395x5, 415x4, 425x3, 445x2, 465x1, 485x1, 495x1

Belt from 465 lbs. and up.

Stiff-legged pull 2s x 5

Bent-over row 3s x 5

Wide stance leg press 3s x 8

Smith machine front squat 3s x 5

29 March 2017

SlingShot bench press 345x5, 355x4, 365x3, 375x2, 385x1, 395x1

Barbell tricep extensions 4s x 5-8

Smith machine bent-over row 10-8-6-5

Preacher curl DB + barbell superset x 4 sets

Overhead cable extensions 4s x 10-12

31 March 2017

Squat 405x5, 415x5, 425x4, 435x2, 405x2

I tweaked my right knee doing wide-stance leg presses on Monday, and it started to hurt a bit on the heavier sets, so I stopped squatting. The lack of volume is hurting my squat gainz (from previous experience, I know I need to squat twice a week to make progress, and I'm not interested in that right now), so, I'll probably switch to something more generic like 5x5 for squats going forward.

Front squat 3s x 5

Leg extension 2s x 12

2 April 2017

Bench press 300x5, 310x4, 315x4, 330x2, 340x1, 355x1, 375x1

Nice and smooth.

Pulldowns 10-8-6-5-5

Barbell curl 4s x 5

Barbell tricep extensions 4s x 6-8

Seated BTN press 135x5, 155x5, 165x5, 175x4, 185x2

Friday, March 17, 2017

How Fatman (Kind of) Got His Groove Back

15 March 2017

SlingShot bench press 340x5, 350x4, 360x3, 370x2, 390x1, 370x1, 370x1

Upped the weight on all repetition sets and kept the singles lighter.

Seated cable row 10-8-6-5

Incline bench press 5-4-3-2-1

Two-DB preacher curl 4s x 8-10

Rope pushdowns 3s x AMAP

Seated DB curl 10-8-6-5-5

17 March 2017

Squat 390x5, 410x4, 420x4, 440x2, 450x1 (wraps on this set), then 400x5, 370x5

Squat is finally moving up. 420x4 felt like a joke. 440x2 was easier than 445x1 a week ago.

I've realized that part of the reason for my squat sucking is my lack of confidence walking out heavier weights. This messes up my setup and I end up getting mauled by seemingly moderate weights. All my doubles and singles these past few weeks were done with an extremely narrow stance (for me, I squat with the feet fairly wide out) and they felt awful and heavy.

Some of it I can trace back to the squat near-disaster I had a few months ago (collar and plates slipping off one side of the bar). Now whenever I unrack the bar I have a fear in the back of my mind that the plates are slipping, so I take small, mincing steps and never quite get into the right position and feel like I'll tip over with the weight on my back.

Using double collars seems to help. So do heavy walkouts, although I'm always skeptical about these and they kill my arms and shoulders. And now that I feel like I'm getting my squat groove back, I'm taking another week off lifting. Such is life.

Front squat 3s x 5

Hack squat 3s x 15