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Graham's Journal

Discussion in 'Fitness Journals' started by Spartan88, Apr 11, 2013.

  1. Spartan88

    Spartan88 Well-Known Member

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    Session 44:

    Working Sets:

    Squat
    110kg/242lbs x 5,5,5

    Press 50kg/110lbs x 5,5,5

    Deadlift 147.5kg/324.5lbs x 5 PR

    Chin Ups x 7,5,2

    Good session today. Squat felt nice and smooth, form really good. I've managed to bring my Press up to my previous PR level. It's taken some time but from now on I'll be pushing on to new PRs. Deadlift again felt good.

    Scale weight this morning was 191.2lbs @ 26.5% bf. I need to take care not to let the scale weight increase too quickly. It's generally been measured weight gain but there have been a couple of sharp increases. Both times have been after I've been out to eat as I did this weekend when I was out for a friend's birthday. Definitely looking a little softer around the middle but there is noticeable muscle gain in my chest, shoulders, lats and traps.
     
  2. Spartan88

    Spartan88 Well-Known Member

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    Session 45:

    Working sets:


    Squat 112.5kg/247.5lbs x 5,5,5

    Bench Press 75kg/165lbs x 5,5,5 PR

    Deadlift 150kg/330lbs x 5 PR

    BW Dips x 13,8

    Bench Dips x 20

    Tough session today. Squat felt good and I'm nicely set for a new PR attempt on Friday. Bench Press was tough though. Left wrist felt slightly uncomfortable with some pain/pressure on the inside below the thumb. Managed to get the grip comfortable enough but was off-putting. Final rep of the last set was really ugly, to the extent that I wasn't sure whether to count it. I will though and see how the Bench feels next week. Deadlift was tough too. The initial pull from the floor is really hard work, must remember to think of pushing my feet through the floor to drive the bar upwards.

    Scale weight this morning 191.2lbs @ 26.2% bf. Same weight the last three days so I've managed to moderate my diet to slow the gains a little. Will be eating out though tomorrow as going out straight from work to see a band. Shall attempt to make a good choice for my meal.
     
  3. Spartan88

    Spartan88 Well-Known Member

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    Session 46:

    Working Sets:

    Squat
    115kg/253lbs x 5,5,5 PR

    Press 51kg/112.2lbs x 5,5,4,1 PR

    Deadlift 152.5kg/335.5lbs x 5 PR

    Chin Ups x 8,5

    Record setting Friday! Record Setting Week!

    Very happy to finish the week with PRs across the board. It's taken until now for my Press to catch up to my past PR so this week has been the first week where I've managed a PR in all four main lifts.

    Squat was tough but form good. Was slightly distracted when a thread in the seam of my shorts broke at the bottom of a squat. I guess I'm squatting deep!

    First Press PR on this Starting Strength routine. Wouldn't have minded hitting the full 3x5 but that's the first time I've missed a rep for a while.

    By the time I reach my working set on the Deadlift the sweat is pouring off me, glad to have the chalk for my hands. Really concentrated on form and the pull from the floor. It didn't go up easy but it went up cleanly.

    Scale weight 192lbs @ 27.3% bf this morning. Working on keeping the scale moving gently upwards but it's not easy to moderate the gains.
     
  4. Spartan88

    Spartan88 Well-Known Member

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    Session 47:

    Working sets:


    Squat 112.5kg/247.5lbs x 5,5,5

    Bench Press 75kg/165lbs x 5,5,5

    Deadlift 155kg/341lbs x 5 PR

    BW Dips x 14,8

    Bench Dips x 21

    Not a bad session today. I really wasn't feeling up to it in advance. I played tennis on Saturday for the first time in ages. Definitely haven't played in a year, probably 18 months, possibly two years. Used to play up to 4 times per week so it's been odd not to play for so long. I do think playing has hampered recovery a little or perhaps just introduced a little tenderness in the muscle groups worked while playing.

    Partly because I wasn't feeling it and partly because last week's Bench Press was ugly, I repeated at 75kg/165lbs and it was a far better lift today. Squat felt very tough, my groin and hips felt tight after the tennis. Deadlift is really getting to be difficult now but my form is good and my grip is holding out well. Starting to get some calluses on the hands which I'm attributing to Deadlifting.

    Scale weight this morning 192lbs @ 26.7% bf. Still trying to gain slowly and avoid the scale weight shooting upwards.
     
  5. Spartan88

    Spartan88 Well-Known Member

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    Session 48:

    Working Sets:

    Squat
    115kg/253lbs x 5,5,5

    Press 51kg/112.2lbs x 5,5,5 PR

    Deadlift 157.5kg/346.5lbs x 5 PR

    Chin Ups x 8,5,3,3

    Pretty good session today. I took everything a little slower. My girlfriend forgot to take her gym kit to work this morning so had to go home at the end of the day before going back to the gym. That meant I wasn't under any time pressure. That meant plenty of rest between sets which may have helped the lifts.

    I was so pleased to have PR'd the Press last Friday that I didn't notice that my Squat is now in excess of 250lbs which I'm very happy to have acheived.

    Press felt good, perhaps a result of plenty of rest between sets. Deadlift again felt tough but a good clean lift.

    I've been thinking about how much of the improvement in my lifts, if any, is actual strength gains. I certainly haven't hit any real stalls/limits in the lifts yet and I wonder if the improvement so-far has been a combination of CNS? adaptation and real attention to form/the mechanics of the lifts.

    Edited to add Scale weight 192.2lbs @ 27.4% bf.
     
    #125 Spartan88, May 22, 2019
    Last edited: May 24, 2019
  6. Spartan88

    Spartan88 Well-Known Member

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    Session 49:

    Working sets:


    Squat 117.5kg/258.5lbs x 5,5,5 PR

    Bench Press 77.5kg/170.5lbs x 5,5,5 PR

    Deadlift - No Lift

    BW Dips x 15,9

    Injury derails progress!

    A mixture of good and bad this evening. Good to get another PR in the Squat but it was tough and I think I lost form in the middle working set and rounded the back slightly. Just a little twinge and the third set felt better than the second but by the time the it came to Deadlift the lower back was tightening up. I decided to see if the Deadlifting was possible. I warmed up and worked up to my warm-up weight of 100kg/220lbs x 3 but when I got set for 130kg/286lbs, the back was just felt too tight and I abandoned the lift there. A shame because I was looking forward to that 350lb Deadlift.

    Pride can often come before a fall: The 350lb deadlift club :doh:

    Perhaps it's time to invest in a lifting belt?

    Bench Press wasn't affected though and managed to chalk-up another PR.

    Scale weight this morning 192.2lbs @ 30.2% bf (think I can happily ignore that figure). Done a fair job on moderating the gain this week, just 0.2 lbs up from this time last week.
     
  7. macdiver

    macdiver Well-Known Member
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    Nice PR's. Better to stop if the back isn't right than to proceed and really get hurt.
     
  8. Spartan88

    Spartan88 Well-Known Member

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    Did quite a bit of walking and stretching over the weekend. Had tickets to a gig Saturday night and had tickets in rear but one row. The row behind was empty so was able to alternately sit and stand through the evening which was a positive for the back. Yesterday a Sunday dinner in the pub and a long walk through a country park. Even did a few chin-up and dips on the outside gym in the park.

    Went to the gym today for a bit of stretching and a light workout.

    Did some stretching for the back, a light full body dumbbell workout and the following:

    Squats - 20,25,30,40,45,50,55,60,65kg each x 5.

    Bench - 20,25,30,35,40,45kg each x 5.

    Had no real plan other than to see how my back felt under the bar. Felt pretty good. Still a little tight but I expect will be basically healed by Wednesday. I think I might treat the injury during the Squat as a stall, deload, and work back up ensuring I fully recover, get form locked down and use a belt on the heavy working sets. I'll spend the rest of this week testing out the Squat and Deadlift and try to get the other work completed around it.

    Scale weight this morning 192.8lbs @ 27.3%bf.
     
  9. Spartan88

    Spartan88 Well-Known Member

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    Another recovery workout today. Back has been feeling progressively better. Not quite ready to go heavy yet so just got under the bar for a few exercises adding weight while things felt comfortable.

    Squats 20,25,30,35,40,45,50,55,60,65,70,75,80,85,90kg each x 5

    Press 20,22.5,25,27.5,30,32.5,35,37.5,40,42.5,45,47.5kg each x 5

    Deadlift 40,60,70,80,90,100,110kg each x 5

    Chin-ups 8,4

    I've bought a weightlifting belt and wore it from 70kg on the Squat and through the Press and Deadlift. It does seem to help having something to consciously press against when bracing the core. At the bottom of the Squat, the belt does press on the top of the hips and I have some bright red marks that look as though they'll bruise. Not sure if the belt is moving a little more than it should, although I don't think I can get it any tighter or whether it's just due to the belt being so new and rigid.

    Scale weight 192.4lbs @ 29.9% bf.
     
  10. George

    George Senior Member

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    I like to wear my belt pretty low on squats and get the same thing. The marks/bruising tend to go away pretty quickly and usually only happen for a few weeks after I start wearing a belt again.
     
  11. Seltzer

    Seltzer Elite Member

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    Glad your back is feeling better.
     
  12. Spartan88

    Spartan88 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks but, see below...
     
  13. Spartan88

    Spartan88 Well-Known Member

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    Session 50:

    Frustration!

    Working Sets:

    Squat
    112.5kg/247.5lbs x 5,5,5

    Press 52kg/114.4lbs x 5,5,4,1 PR

    Deadlift 160kg/352lbs x 2 PR

    Squat felt good. Adjusted my belt a little higher and it allowed for good bracing without digging into the hips.

    Press felt good, wore the belt for the working set. Missed one rep on the third set but another PR.

    Deadlift is where it all went wrong. Felt good up to the last warm-up set when I put on the belt. When I get set for the Deadlift the back of the belt pivots upwards and goes slack. It's quite of-putting and may have distracted me during the working set. The first two reps went up smoothly but as it went to pull the third I think I jerked at the bar and felt the lower back go in the same place as before. At this exact moment I became aware that my girlfriend had approached me. I can't be sure whether it was sensing her approach or the distraction of the belt waving around on my back but I think it was distraction rather than the load on the bar that led to injury.

    It's disappointing and I'm not sure what to do from here. Don't know whether I need a longer break from heavy lifting or whether a change in program is the answer? I'm going away in a couple of weeks and was hoping to get a couple of weeks of good lifting in before the break. I'm not sure if that is a good idea now.

    Scale weight this morning 192.6lbs @ 29.2% bf.

    Edit: Read this article on the belt and Deadlifting: The Belt and the Deadlift | T Nation

    For now a slightly higher belt position might be something I try to see how I get on.
     
    #133 Spartan88, Jun 1, 2019
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2019
  14. Seltzer

    Seltzer Elite Member

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    Congrats on your PRs, but sorry to read about your back.
     
  15. Spartan88

    Spartan88 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks re the back and the PRs.

    I think I'm going to give the back a bit of a break. I enjoyed some of the lower weight, higher rep stuff I did last week while the back wasn't feeling great. I think I might drop the Deadlift for a while and drop the weight and increase the volume for the other lifts and add some accessory work alongside it for a period. Might look to shed some bodyfat at the same time. I might then complete another cycle of Starting Strength or transition to something else.
     
  16. Spartan88

    Spartan88 Well-Known Member

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    I think I've nailed the belt position for the Squat. Belt a little higher. Still presses on the top of the hips and still leaves a mark but doesn't pinch uncomfortably.
     
  17. George

    George Senior Member

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    Glad you found a good spot for it. I like to wear it in different places depending on lift. This reminded me of this super thorough article on belts:

    The Belt Bible • Stronger by Science

    I forgot how useful they were.
     
  18. Spartan88

    Spartan88 Well-Known Member

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    Session 51:

    Lower Weight Higher Reps

    Working Sets:

    Squat
    60kg/132lbs x 8,8,8,30

    Bench Press 45kg/99lbs x 8,8,8,20

    Dips 8,5,4,5

    Bench Dips 17,22,21

    Between sets of Dips I loaded the Prowler/Sled and did some runs/circuits between dip sets. Started light, will be adding weight.

    Decided to aim for 4 sets of 8 reps. I thought 70% of my previous working weight would be a good place to start (Squat 75kg, Bench 55kg) but the back was still a little tight so dropped the weight back a little. As I thought I might be a little light I've decided to complete As Many Reps As Possible on the last set. As I overshot 8 reps so easily I'll be adding weight next workout.

    I've dropped the Deadlift for a time to let the back recover and will check how it responds to the Squating.

    I'm going to run with this basic template (there will be another with Press in place of Bench with chins and another accessory) for six or seven weeks and see how I respond to/enjoy it.

    Scale weight this morning 193.6lbs @ 27.3% bf. A little high as went out yesterday for Partner's Dad's and Daughter's birthday. Big Steak, Wine and desert. Was also out for a few drinks, watching bands on Friday and Saturday so plenty of 'empty calories' consumed.
     
  19. macdiver

    macdiver Well-Known Member
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    Hopefully your back gets better quickly.
     
  20. Spartan88

    Spartan88 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks. It's been achy but not painful and not too tight so I'm continuing with sessions in the gym. I've got around 5 sessions before I'll be on holiday and have a week off so I think I'll make it through to then and get some good recovery.
     

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