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Old 05-23-2016, 04:09 PM   #76
Renton555
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

Monday, May 23, 2016 Training


DB Overhead Press 25# (8, 8, 9), 20# (11)

Back on track here.

Squat 160# (8, 5, 6), Paused 135# (5)

First set was very tough. Second set I lost my bar position after the fifth rep, was planning to re-rack it and finish the set, and a samaritan decided I needed to hear some advice. Prob had 2 more. I wasn't happy with my depth or volume in the work sets so I did some paused reps after.

Superset 1:
Face Pulls 37.5# (12, 12, 14)
Deadlift 125# (4), 155# (3), 185# (5)

This is the first time deadlifts have been "hard." Up until now it's just been a matter of technique. I'm pretty happy with this set.

Superset 2:
Chest Fly Machine 85# (12, 11, 8)
Bent-over Rows 90# (8, 8, 8)
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Old 05-23-2016, 04:39 PM   #77
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

I kind of giggle at the "Training? Training" in the spreadsheet.
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Old 05-23-2016, 05:56 PM   #78
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

u need moar carb and proton imo. eat some moar!
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Old 05-23-2016, 06:51 PM   #79
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

Agree re: depth, but the progress over the last few weeks is pretty evident
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Old 05-23-2016, 10:49 PM   #80
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

Quote:
Originally Posted by Number1Hater View Post
u need moar carb and proton imo. eat some moar!
I finally got a scale today. My last measurement was about 3 weeks ago at 72kg/159lb. Today after my workout, lunch, and shower, I weighed myself in boxers at 164lb. So given the full stomach I'd guess my morning weigh in will be 161 or so. I've gained weight despite averaging 1700 calories/day for the last month, lol.

I'm gonna take some new nudes when I get back to Cambodia in two weeks, and we can decide what dietary changes are necessary from there. I'm making strength gains at this intake, at least for now.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Montecore View Post
Agree re: depth, but the progress over the last few weeks is pretty evident
The paused set proves that I can hit depth. I don't know if the weight just makes me afraid that I'll get stuck or if it's some kind of weird reflex. If you notice during the worksets, I'm cutting off the depth just where my chest begins to cave. I'm thinking that I feel myself caving and it just triggers me to drive up.



In related news, I think I went a little HAM on squats today. After my work sets I felt some tenderness in my left quad and left adductor. I don't think it's an injury. I hope it isn't an injury.
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Old 05-25-2016, 05:08 PM   #81
Renton555
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

Wednesday, May 25, 2016 Training


Bench Press 100# (8, 7, 7), 90# (7)

Hell yeah. I intended to load 97# since i only got (8, 7, 7) at 95# last time I benched, but I forgot my micro plates. I'm making bona fide progress here and am approaching the bench numbers of the last log (116x5).

Paused Squat 140# (5, 5)
Squat 160# (5)

My legs/hips felt a little stiff and jacked up so I assumed that I hadn't fully recovered from Monday's volume. Thus my goal was to make some progress on the paused squats I've been doing and to demonstrate some quality reps at workset weight. I'm pretty disappointed in the result. The paused sets were fine, but the 160# set was still too shallow and caved.

[edit: Looking back at the vids, that first set doesn't even look like I paused. It felt like I was pausing! Maybe that is what a normal work set should look like, I dunno.]

Supine-grip Lat Pulldowns 105# (8, 8, 9)

Deadlift 135# (4), 155# (2), 190# (5)

Pretty hard, and the last rep I think was poor form. It felt poor.

Last edited by Renton555; 05-25-2016 at 05:22 PM.
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Old 05-25-2016, 05:29 PM   #82
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

Yah there isn't even a legit pause in those squats. I can see why you thought so since you didn't immediately bounce out.

A pause should be a legit count of "one thousand one, one thousand two, one thousand three" etc. Yours were more like "one thous" ... even the second set only had a couple that I'd call a full pause.
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Old 05-27-2016, 03:02 PM   #83
Renton555
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

Friday, May 27, 2016 Training


Squat 160# (3)
Paused Squat 145# (4, 4, 4, 3)

I spent a ton of time squatting today. The 160 felt entirely too heavy and the third rep was such bad form that I decided to just rack it and work on paused squats again. This time I actually paused. The last reps of these sets were pretty tough but not grinds. I wanted to focus more on quality than quantity. I'm not that happy with where my squat has been heading, but it's somewhat reassuring that I can hit depth without caving, if only for a few reps. I just need to figure out how to translate this into stretch-reflex reps. Or maybe I should just progress on paused squats for a while? I'm open to opinions on this one.

DB Overhead Press 25# (8, 7, 5), 20# (10)

I can't seem to make progress on these. I'm going to blame the effort I put in on squats for my lack of performance today. Originally I intended to press first, but I really wanted to nail squats today.

Superset 1:
Bent-over Rows 90# (8, 8, 10)
Chest Fly Machine 85# (12, 10, 8)

I'm getting a bit more comfortable with rows, so I'll start adding weight to the bar again.

Superset 2:
Back Extensions BW+25# (12, 12, 12)
Face Pulls 37.5# (15, 15, 15)

Last edited by Renton555; 05-27-2016 at 03:09 PM.
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Old 05-29-2016, 03:50 PM   #84
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

Sunday, May 29, 2016 Training


Bench Press 102# (8, 8, 7), 90# (8)

Great success. I gained 2 pounds and 1 rep from last time. I chose a smaller weight jump in hopes of nailing 3x8 instead of only being able to hit 8 on the first set again like the previous few bench sessions. The first set probably had a rep left in the tank so I felt confident that I would hit all 8's, but I think I leaked some gas during the third set with bad form.

Squat 150# (8, 5, 5)

I think I've decided to transition to 3x5 programming for the squat. It just seems like it will be easier to hit consistent depth if the sets are shorter. As things are, technical failure comes well before actual failure, so I think I need to just spend some time strengthening weak points. Specifically, I need to not cave as much in the bottom. My plan is to do 155 3x5 next time and make sure I can get deep on all 15 reps before I move the weight up. I'm in no rush to put weight on the bar.

Supine-grip Lat Pulldowns 110# (8, 8, 8)

Deadlift 135# (5), 165# (2), 195# (5)

I narrowed my stance a bit more. I'd like to see my lower back a little more arched but I don't think it's in flexion. My glutes/hams felt loaded throughout these reps, so I don't think I'm hurting myself. Everything felt strong and tight.
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Old 05-29-2016, 06:33 PM   #85
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

If depth consistency is dictated by rep x set then it stands to reason it's weight related as well. If you want to do 3x8 at good depth then the weight should be what you can do it at. The same is gonna hold true at 3x5 your starting weight will just be higher.
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Old 05-30-2016, 12:21 AM   #86
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

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If depth consistency is dictated by rep x set then it stands to reason it's weight related as well. If you want to do 3x8 at good depth then the weight should be what you can do it at. The same is gonna hold true at 3x5 your starting weight will just be higher.
That's true, but from what I've read, neuromuscular control begins to break down after the 5th or 6th rep. I suspect that the weight that I could do 3x8 with proper form is farther from the weight that I could do 3x8 with crappy form than the equivalent comparison of 3x5.

Also, I think I was having some trouble recovering from 3x8 squats 3x per week. Basically my intention was to transition to 3x5 programming on all my core lifts eventually anyway, I'm just beginning with the squat now. I'll do the same with the bench and ohp once/if I run into problems on them.
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Old 05-30-2016, 12:45 AM   #87
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

Week 7 Diet:



Not a great week. I had two nights of alcohol drinking which goes with the vacation territory, but I really could have done better on carbs. That said, given my original goals of 1800 on training days and 1400 on rest days, since I trained four times this week I get 11,400 allowed calories, so I only went over by 900. Not so bad.

Once I get back to Asia I'll get back to my normal non-alcohol-drinking self. That's in 10 days.
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Old 05-31-2016, 03:11 PM   #88
Renton555
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

Tuesday, May 31, 2016 Training

DB Overhead Press 25# (8, 8, 9), 20# (10)

These just feel like total crap. I gained reps from last time but not from the previous time. I just don't seem to be gaining strength on these. In the video you can see how weird my shoulders are, one dumbbell goes higher than the other. I'm probably going to give them one more chance before switching to barbell.

Squat 155# (5, 5, 5) **9/15 Quality Reps**

First set was reasonable. The second and third sets were terrible, especially the last few reps in the third that were nowhere near parallel. I'm going to take more weight off the bar and just squat as close to perfect as I can for whatever weight that I can. My hope is that if I do 15 quality reps every day then I'll ingrain a decent motor pattern.

Superset 1:
Bent-over Rows 90# (8, 8, 10)
Chest Fly Machine 90# (12, 12, 11)

Mis-loaded the weight on rows, it was supposed to be 95. Oh well.

Superset 2:
Back Extensions BW+25# (12, 12, 12)
Face Pulls 37.5# (15, 15, 15)
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Old 06-01-2016, 11:46 PM   #89
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

I had a thought about rest between sets today and I didn't want to make a whole thread about it so I'll bring it up here:

First of all, I've been resting around 4 minutes between sets of squat, bench, and ohp, and around 3 minutes between sets of accessory exercises. That has generally been sufficient for my purposes, but the other day on squats I performed much more poorly in the second and third sets, so maybe it isn't anymore. Be that as it may.

My Rippetoe-centric reading on this matter suggests basically that one rests "as long as necessary" between sets, and that this method generally leads to rest intervals getting longer and longer as the weight goes up. I know kidcolin mentioned resting for 10+ minutes between heavy sets of squat in his log.

The problem I have with this is that this doesn't seem to be linear progress. If you're increasing the squat 5 pounds per workout, and you start at 135 3x5 with 3 minutes rest and end at 225 3x5 with 6 minutes rest, you're sort of changing the rep range gradually along the way. A 3x5 with 3 minutes rest intervals will necessarily be a lower max weight than a 3x5 with 6 minutes rest intervals.

I guess my question is what is the novice's rest interval that maximizes strength gain per time spent in the gym, and does this change as he makes progress? When I work out on Friday, supposing I could do either of the following options, which would i choose?

a) Squat 3x5 140lb with 3 minutes rest with good form (9 minutes gym time)
b) Squat 3x5 145lb with 5 minutes rest with good form (13 minutes gym time)
c) Squat 3x5 150lb with 7 minutes rest with good form (17 minutes gym time)
d) etc

I'm sure that there would be diminishing returns at some point, i.e. I probably couldn't do 175 even if I rested half an hour between sets. I just wonder what everyone's general rationale is about resting between sets.

Last edited by Renton555; 06-01-2016 at 11:52 PM.
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Old 06-02-2016, 01:16 AM   #90
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

You have nowhere near enough experience or any need to be trying to optimize these things. So my advice is to follow the program and stop over thinking everything.

And eat more protein.
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Old 06-03-2016, 05:19 PM   #91
Renton555
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

Friday, June 3, 2016 Training


Bench Press 105# (5, 5, 4), 85# (11)

I spent a lot of time working on the advice that cha gave me in the form check thread. I'm pretty bummed to have missed so many reps (got 8, 8, 7 at 102 last time), but bad days happen I guess. I think I'm getting better at staying tight. I'll do 105 again next time and hope to gain some reps and confidence.

Squat 135# (6, 5, 5) **16/16 Quality Reps**

I got some squat shoes (adidas powerlift 2.0), so I de-loaded to 135 to get accustomed to them. The effect of them seems to be quite subtle (only a 0.6" heel). I felt pretty comfortable during these sets.

Supine-grip Lat Pulldowns 115# (8, 7, 7)

Deadlift 135# (5), 175# (2), 200# (5)

I don't hate my form on these, but the range of motion feels long, like my back is doing too much work.
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Old 06-03-2016, 07:46 PM   #92
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

Quote:
Originally Posted by abrahamovic View Post
You have nowhere near enough experience or any need to be trying to optimize these things. So my advice is to follow the program and stop over thinking everything.

And eat more protein.
* ~

Last edited by BPA234; 06-03-2016 at 07:46 PM. Reason: Also, not recognizing differences in energy systems FTL
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Old 06-05-2016, 05:09 PM   #93
Renton555
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

Sunday, June 5, 2016 Training

DB Overhead Press 25# (8, 8, 8)

I think my form was a lot better than last time, but still no real gain in strength. I chose DB instead of BB OHP in the first place because last time around barbell gave me shoulder pain and I thought dumbbells would be more friendly to my shoulder imbalances. I think now that I've done a solid 3 months of dumbbell with not a lot of appreciable progress, I'm going to switch to back to barbell. This will be one of a few changes I'll be making to the programming once I arrive back in Asia in a few days.

Squat 140# (5, 5, 5) **15/15 Quality Reps**

Warming up felt a little awkward with the shoes. I'm still getting the hang of them. Third set felt pretty bad under the bar, but looks okay on the video.

Superset 1:
Bent-over Rows 95# (9, 8, 9)
Chest Fly Machine 90# (12, 12, 10)

I feel like my row form sucks, but it seems like everyone and his mother does them differently.

Superset 2:
Back Extensions BW+35# (10, 10, 10)
Bench Press (light) 65# (8, 8, 8)

I'm so bad at bench setup that I decided I'm going to get some practice with low weight on off-benching days to grease the groove. I'm still not sure how good these are but my back felt the same at the end of the third set as it did at the start. The first two sets were more awkward and I lost some tightness.
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Old 06-05-2016, 09:10 PM   #94
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

Week 8 Diet:



More mild partying leads to another week of ~1700 cal/day. Good news is my protein was upped significantly from previous weeks.
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Old 06-05-2016, 09:44 PM   #95
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

Excellent progress on your squat form.

It's just a guess, but when I see you and others cut their squat high and then fall forward, I think it happens because you are forcing your torso to absorb the kinetic force. It would take a strong back indeed to remain upright. Whereas when you break parallel, your glutes and hamstrings absorb the force of the descending weight, and your back simply holds the weight up while your lower body does the heavy liting.

For bench, since you have so much trouble utilizing leg drive, I hope this is not FPS, but I would highly recommend incorporating a low weight Larsen press every now and then. A Larsen press is a bench press where you hold your feet off the ground. I do this by dangling my legs and feet off the end of the bench.

Keeping your feet off the floor completely removes the possibility for leg drive. Imo it is a superb tool to teach a lifter to FEEL the difference when leg drive is incorporated and when it is absent. When my coach had me incorporate Larsen into my programming, I quickly discovered how terrible my leg drive was, because my Larsen press numbers were almost exactly the same as my competition bench numbers.
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Old 06-05-2016, 10:43 PM   #96
Renton555
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

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Excellent progress on your squat form.

It's just a guess, but when I see you and others cut their squat high and then fall forward, I think it happens because you are forcing your torso to absorb the kinetic force. It would take a strong back indeed to remain upright. Whereas when you break parallel, your glutes and hamstrings absorb the force of the descending weight, and your back simply holds the weight up while your lower body does the heavy liting.
I'm not really sure why technical failure for me is so far from actual failure. Maybe you're onto something. I think there's a good chance that there's some fight/flight thing that is happening when the weight is higher than a certain amount, causing me to cut the reps short. I dunno. From my reading on the subject, hamstrings are barely involved in the squat, and just provide some stability out of the bottom. Maybe I have weak glutes or something.

Quote:
For bench, since you have so much trouble utilizing leg drive, I hope this is not FPS, but I would highly recommend incorporating a low weight Larsen press every now and then. A Larsen press is a bench press where you hold your feet off the ground. I do this by dangling my legs and feet off the end of the bench.

Keeping your feet off the floor completely removes the possibility for leg drive. Imo it is a superb tool to teach a lifter to FEEL the difference when leg drive is incorporated and when it is absent. When my coach had me incorporate Larsen into my programming, I quickly discovered how terrible my leg drive was, because my Larsen press numbers were almost exactly the same as my competition bench numbers.
My primary trouble with the bench is keeping my shoulders pinned. I fail to leg drive too, but that's probably largely because I'm having to devote so much attention to shoulders. I'll try that though to see the difference, thanks.
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Old 06-06-2016, 12:23 AM   #97
Renton555
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

Looking at doing something like this starting June 11. Obviously I'm open to criticism.


Workout A:


Bench 2x5, 1xAMRAP

Squat 3x5

Chinups 3xAMRAP

SS:
Deadlift warmup to 1x5
Facepulls 3x(12-15)

Workout B:

Press 2x5, 1xAMRAP

Squat 3x5

SS:
Rows 3x8
Flys 3x(8-12)

Back Ext 3x(10-12)


For diet, I'm planning to eat a lot cleaner and higher protein at an average of 1600 cal/day. I bought a food scale so I'll be able to much more accurately estimate calories. I also got some vitamins in the U.S. including the following:

Fish oil (3 caps/day)
Potassium (200-300mg a day)
ZMA (2 caps/day)
Fiber as necessary
A multi.

I also got some creatine but I haven't decided if I want to start taking it yet. Probably I'll wait a few more months.

I'll take new nudes once I return. Assuming I've gotten leaner over the last 2 months, I'll continue eating at a small deficit until strength gains stop. If I'm not happy with the photo comparison, I'll consider decreasing the calories a bit.
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Old 06-07-2016, 02:34 PM   #98
Renton555
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

Tuesday, June 7, 2016 Training


Bench Press 105# (5, 5, 7)

Not too bad. Gym was too crowded to make any videos.

Squat 145# (5, 5, 5) **15/15 Quality Reps**

Fine.

Supine-grip Lat Pulldowns 115# (8, 8, 8)

Superset:
Deadlift 135# (5), 175# (2), 205# (5)
Facepulls 42.5# (12, 12, 12)

Fine. Tried hips a little lower this time.

This is my last USA#1 workout. Three days of travel ahead.
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Old 06-07-2016, 05:51 PM   #99
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

Quote:
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I also got some creatine but I haven't decided if I want to start taking it yet. Probably I'll wait a few more months.
There is zero reason to wait, it doesn't have to be started or stopped on any kind of cycle - just start taking 5g a day 4 the life of your lifting and that's it. It's either going to help on the heavy sets or its not and until you do take it you'll never know.
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Old 06-07-2016, 08:06 PM   #100
Renton555
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Re: Renton's Rise from Weakness

Quote:
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There is zero reason to wait, it doesn't have to be started or stopped on any kind of cycle - just start taking 5g a day 4 the life of your lifting and that's it. It's either going to help on the heavy sets or its not and until you do take it you'll never know.
I think I was thinking more along the lines of saving the placebo effect for a time when I'm stalling on lifts.

I'll take your advice though.
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