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Really sore legs and back after Wednesday's workout. I definitely need to revisit my form on Deadlifts - I have to make sure I'm not pulling with my back. It was probably worse on Wednesday because I was so worn out from the previous week.

 

Strength Week 24, 3x5

 

Friday, 08/26/2011

Body: 188 lbs

 

Squats

2,2,2,4,4,3 @ 250

 

Bench

3x5 @ 160

 

Rows

3x5 @ 150

 

Legs and mid/lower back were super sore going into today - definitely felt it during squats. On the very first set I felt unsure so I cut it short and decided to do 7x2 instead of 3x5. Figured that would be easier on my back too. After third set I figured "what the hell" and decided to try for more reps, which I was able to get, although with shaking legs and very slowly. Also, my depth wasn't that great. Wanted to finish with 3x4 on the squats, but felt about to fail on the third rep of the last set. Oh well, I'll go for [email protected] 250 next time. Bench and rows went great, a bit of struggle on the last rep of bench but got it up.

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Ugh - I'm falling behind on this. Although I suppose it's not really necessary as I keep a meticulous lifting journal on my work computer.

 

My lifts lately have been sub-par, mostly due to low energy. Having an infant to care for really makes it hard to lift big, at least for me. I'm not getting full nights of sleep, and even when I get the rare 7 hours, it's not solid and I don't feel well rested. Granted the whole first month of baby was on 3-4 hours of sleep a night, so I guess I'm still catching up from sleep-deprivation. There have been plenty of days in the last 3 weeks that I've had to skip a workout due to lack of sleep or being too busy at work to take a decent lunch-break (I lift on my lunch-breaks).

 

My form was going to shit on the deadlifts, and I figured out why. My legs are too tired after squats so I would pull most of the weight with my back to compensate. I'm going to start dropping my squat weight on deadlift days and see if that helps. With my body shape, I need to get into a bottom-of-the-squat position to grab the bar and keep my back at a greater-than-horizontal angle.

 

I also need to revisit my diet, as I'm not really gaining any muscle. I'm not really gaining weight, and I'm not cutting fat. My body looks a bit more muscular, but still seems to carry the same fat percentage (maybe a little less, but too little to notice). I know that I should just shut-up and eat more protein and less carbs, but I have trouble doing that with my current dietary restrictions. I am avoiding as many high-oxalate foods as possible due to my kidney stones, and soy happens to be very high in oxalates. It's hard to pack in more protein per calorie without adding soy into my diet. I also don't want to be taking multiple protein drinks per day, as that starts to get expensive. I am currently taking calcium supplements with my meals to bind up oxalates in my intestines, which is what research has shown to be effective. I'm also getting citrates through lemon juice (1/2 cup per day, diluted with water) to alkalinize my urine (last test was at PH 7.5), although it might be that way for other reasons and the citrates aren't doing much.

 

OK,

 

I'm going to skip the back-log and list my current lifts:

Training week 27

Body (today): 186 lbs

 

Squats

4,3,2 @ 265

 

Bench

5,4,3 @ 170

 

Row

3x5 @ 160

 

Last OHP

4,3,2 @ 125

 

Last Deadlift

2 @ 315

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  • 3 weeks later...

Still lifting! Missed a day last week but this week was solid. Still doing 3x5 (1x5 on deadlifts) and making progress. This past week I lowered my squat weight on deadlift day and it made a difference. I was able to get better leg drive on the lift and my back wasn't as tight afterwards. Once I get to my limits on the 1x5 stage of stronglifts I'll either switch to endurance training or Madcow, haven't decided yet. Strength is addicting!

 

I also set some near-future goals that should be easily reachable with the rate I'm progressing now. By December 16th, the numbers I am looking to hit on my work sets are:

Squat: 300 lbs

OHP: 135 lbs

Deadlift: 400 lbs

Bench: 200 lbs

Row: 200 lbs

 

I don't care much about my 1RMs, which will probably be a bit higher. I'm also not using any assistance (belts, wraps, etc.) although I might start to use chalk for my grip on deadlifts if I have to.

 

Current high sets, strength training week 29

body: 187.6 lbs (stayed the same all week)

Squat: 3x5 @ 270 lbs

OHP: 3x5 @ 120 lbs (still coming back from a deload)

Deadlift: 1x5 @ 295 lbs (also coming back from a deload)

Bench: 4,4,4 @ 175 lbs

Row: 5,4,4 @ 175 lbs

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Thanks, Kira. It's not as detailed day-to-day anymore as I don't feel the need to keep copy-pasting out of my personal journal.

 

Another solid week and I am back on track! I feel good about my weight goals, in fact I'll probably exceed at least a couple of them, as I'm pretty close already. I've never lifted this heavy before so I'm just not sure how my progress is going to pan out from here, so I set moderate goals. I think the toughest one will be the deadlift goal, as I'm farthest away on that.

 

Strength training week 30 of Stronglifts 5x5 program, 3x5 phase

Body: 191.4 lbs. According to my scale I've stayed the same all week.

Current High Sets:

Squat: 3x5 @ 275 lbs

OHP: 5,3,4 @ 130 lbs

Deadlift: 1x5 @ 315 lbs

Bench: 3x5 @ 175 lbs

Row: 3x5 @ 175 lbs

 

Didn't think I'd make the OHP on the first go at this weight, but still did pretty well. Push pressed the missed reps to complete the sets. Felt myself arching my back pretty badly the first set, paid attention to it and corrected my posture for the rest. Deadlift was rough, did 2 overhanded then 3 over-under. Form was great on all warmups, but still became a bit stiff-legged on the work weight. My back doesn't feel tight or sore from them, so I probably used a little more legs than the last time I lifted 315. Still happy though and looking forward to upping the weight next time.

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  • 2 weeks later...

End of strength training week 32

 

Body: 187 lbs.

 

Current lifts

Squat:

280 lbs - 4,2,3

Bench:

180 - 5,5,4

Row:

180 - 5,5,4

OHP:

130 - 3x5

Deadlift

335 - 5

 

Been struggling with the squats at 280 lbs. I'll try again on Monday and then deload if I don't make it. I should still be able to hit my target of 300 lbs by mid-December. Hopefully I don't hit another deload, although I might just switch to 1x5 at that point to keep on track with my target. I finally made the 3x5 on OHP today, been struggling with that one as well. I'm psyched to be putting two 45 lbs plates on the bar for OHP next week! Form started to fail on the 4th and 5th rep of deadlift at 335, could feel myself pulling with my back, probably rounded it a little as I felt soreness in my mid-lower back after the lift. Didn't last very long though. Felt good though, that I'm progressing well on deadlifts. Still could use a bit more leg drive though... If I hit my 400 lbs target and I'm still having leg drive issues, I might deload and go back to doing heavy squats 3 days a week since now I'm doing lighter squats on deadlift days.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Still lifting!

 

End of training week # 35

 

Body: not sure, but I'm willing to bet it's between 187 and 190, as it has been for the past 6 months.

 

Food hasn't changed outside of slightly more protein and slightly less carbs. From the look of me compared to various pictorial sources online, I'd say I'm between 15-20% body-fat, since I don't have the calipers to measure and in the end I don't really care about the exact number as long as I'm fit. What the body-fat says to me though is that I can spare to lose about 10 lbs of it and replace it with muscle, so if I don't gain weight but still get stronger then I should be dropping some fat (somewhere?).

 

Current lifts

Squats: 5,3,3 @ 290 lbs

Bench: 3x5 @ 185

BB Rows: 3x5 @ 185

OHP: 5,3,3 @ 135 (switching to 1x5 next week) !! Made my goal of 135 by end of this year !! going for more now!

Deadlift: 4 @ 355

 

The last rep on that deadlift set sucked ass. I had a hell of a time getting lockout, got mad and started jerking the weight. I'm not an idiot so I know that's a recipe for disaster, but in the heat of the moment I forgot all my common sense. Not sure I'm going to hit my 400 lbs deadlift goal by end of year, but it will be close.

 

Tried to go deep on my last squat workout, since I've been barely making parallel. I think I finally figured it out though - I am shifting the weight too far forward past the balls of my feet to keep myself in what I feel is a stable position. This pushes my chest down and keeps me from sinking deep with the work weight. When I start to gas and feel my chest dropping too low, I find myself subconsciously letting the bar roll down my back a little lower to change the leverage and allow me to still stand back up. After the last set at 290 lbs, I put 135 on the bar and just sat back on my heels with my ass on my calves for about 5 seconds and then pushed it up. I did 5 reps of this, controlling my decent and pausing at the bottom each time. It's amazing how light 135 feels after 3 sets of 290! I'm going to start doing this with heavier weights during my warmups to get used to it. Hopefully that will eventually fix my form.

 

I've addressed my form on the bench as well, planting my upper back tightly on the bench with shoulders back, arching my back and planting my feet firmly. I think it's definitely helped me on the lifts.

 

Progress towards goals:

Squats: 290/300

Bench: 185/200

Row: 185/200

OHP: 135/135

Deadlift: 355/400

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End of week 36

 

Body: still haven't weighed myself. Willing to bet it still hasn't changed much.

 

Current lifts

Squats:

2,5,5 @ 290 lbs

Bench:

4,4,4 @ 195 lbs

Row:

3,3,3 @ 195 lbs

OHP:

3 @ 140 lbs

Deadlift:

5 @ 355 lbs

 

Did all my warmup squats dropping all the way down, ATG. Last two warmups were tough to get up out of the hole. Screwed up my balance on the first set, dumped the bar. Was able to hit the other two sets, but my depth sucked - was above parallel for all save the first 2 reps. I mistakenly thought my bench and row targets were 195 (they were scheduled at 190 lbs each) - I'm amazed I did so well on the bench with the higher weight. Not a great workout regardless - didn't want to lift today. I'm going to drop the bench and row targets back to 190 for next time.

 

I'm not going to make my deadlift goal at my current rate, but I'll be close. I should still hit my other targets though. My form on bench is getting really good. Probably why I was able to lift 5 lbs higher than the target for this week.

 

Thinking about dropping all my lifts to 1 set of 5...

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  • 2 weeks later...

I noticed that my spreadsheet week count was off by a couple weeks, so I've adjusted it to be accurate from the start of my lifts. I've now been lifting on a Stronglifts-sort-of plan for 41 weeks, although I've missed enough workouts to equal 14 weeks (for multiple reasons). I say Stronglifts-sort-of, because I dropped to 3x5 before I was failing on the 5x5 because the workouts were too long, including warmup, foam rolling, and stretching. I only have a 1 hour lunch break during which I lift, so the workout has to fit in that window.

 

End of Week 41

 

Body: -

 

Current lifts

Squat:

3,3,4 @ 295 lbs

Bench:

4,4,4 @ 195

Rows:

5,4,3 @ 190

OHP:

4 @ 145

Deadlift:

5 @ 365

 

Getting close to my goals! Should be able to hit all of them save the Deadlift by December 21st (last day before Holiday break and my gym/work being closed). On the last deadlift day before the break I'll try for 405 anyway, just to see if I can lock it out. I'll probably be closing out 385 on that day, so maybe go for a couple at 385 and then see what I can do with 405.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Strength training week 44

 

Body:

around 188 lbs.

 

As of today I've hit all my goals (sort-of, will explain)

Goals by December 21st:

Squat - 300 lbs

Bench - 200 lbs

Row - 200 lbs

OHP - 135 lbs -> 150 lbs

Deadlift - 405 lbs

 

Current lifts:

Squat - 5 @ 300 lbs

Bench - 5 @ 200 lbs

Row - 5 @ 200 lbs

OHP - 3 @ 150 lbs

Deadlift - 1 @ 405 lbs

 

This afternoon I was scheduled to pull 375 for the third time to close out 5 reps, but since this was my last deadlift workout before the break (last day in gym for me before holidays is 12/21/2011) I wanted to go for it. I pulled 1 at 385 lbs, felt solid. Pulled 1 at 395 lbs, pretty tough but manageable. Pulled 1 at 405, super tough, extremely hard to lock-out, but hit it. Once the bar got below my knees on the way down I pretty much just dropped the bar, no strength left. Feeling great - what a rush!

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  • 5 weeks later...

Got back to the gym yesterday for the first time since my last post a month ago. Went on vacation to see family for a couple weeks and had no gym access. The last couple weeks were really busy at work and I've been super tired most of the time. The first week back from vacation my son was jet-lagged and not sleeping well, and he's teething on top of it. That means I get woken up every 30-60 minutes all night long. This past week has been no better.

 

Current BW: ~186 lbs (lost a little)

 

Took it easy on my first day back in the gym, felt good to move some weight around.

Squats: 10x45 lbs, 5x125, 5x175, 5x225

Bench: 10x45, 5x85, 5x125, 5x175

BB Row: 10x40, 5x80, 5x 125, 5x175

Wide-grip pullups: 7.5 (20 second hold at half pullup)

Dips: 10

 

Going to take it easy on Friday again with OHP and deadlift. I plan on working back up to my heavy lifts quickly, adding 10 lbs per lift on squats and deadlift, 5 lbs per lift on the rest. I'll probably do multiple sets at each weight, although yesterday's workout was nice and quick, which I could get used to! I might start on a madcow schedule, either immediately while I am getting back up to weight, or after I'm close enough to my max lifts from December. I'll decide next week.

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Workout on Friday, 1/20/11

 

Still working back up to my pre-holiday break lifts.

 

Squats: 5x75, 5x125, 5x175, 5x235

OHP: 10x45, 5x75, 5x115, 3x135 (+2 push press)

Deadlift: 5x165, 5x215, 5x265, 5x315

 

Tried to power through these as quick as I could. Didn't really take much of a break between sets except before the last one of each exercise. Just enough time to add more weight to the bar.

Edited by asparagus
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Strength training, Monday 1/23/11

 

Decided I'm going to do at least another week of working back up before starting on Madcow.

 

Squats: 10x45, 5x95, 5x145, 5x195, 5x245

Bench: 10x45, 5x85, 5x125, 5x155, 5x180

BB Row: 10x40, 5x80, 5x125, 5x155, 5x180

 

Squats and row were much harder than I thought they should be. I guess I lost more strength during the month off than I thought. I was eating like crap though, so probably lost some muscle, even though by looking at myself I can't tell. Still tried to get through the workout as fast as possible, but took a bit more rest time towards the tops of my exercises.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Still going! Strength training, Monday 2/13/12

 

Have only been lifting sporadically due to various reasons, but still going at it trying to get up to my mid-December lifts.

 

Friday's lifts:

Squat: 5x65 lbs, 5x105, 5x145, 5x185, 5x225

OHP: 5x45, 5x75, 5x105, 3x140 +2 push [email protected]

Deadlift: 5x185, 5x225, 5x265, 5x305, 5x345

Pullups @ BW: [email protected] grip, [email protected] grip, [email protected] grip

 

I'm a bit disappointed with the OHP - I thought I'd be able to build back up to 150 easier than the way it's going. Oh well, nothing to do about it but shut up and lift.

 

Today's lifts:

Squat: 5x115 lbs, 5x155, 5x195, 5x235, 5x270

Bench: 5x45, 5x75, 5x115, 5x155, 5x195

BBRow: 5x45, 5x75, 5x115, 5x155, 5x195

Dips @ BW+5lbs:10,10,7

 

I've been doing pullups after each Deadlift day and dips after each Bench day. The goal is to get to 3x10 on each and then start adding weight. Go for 3x10 again and then add more weight. Repeat. 3x10 might be a bit much to go for when adding weight, but I like the increased reps on these exercises.

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Strength training, end of week 52

 

Wednesday's high lifts:

Squat: 5x225 lbs

OHP: 3x140 +2 push press

Deadlift: 4x355

Pullups @ BW: 6,4,6

 

Workout sucked. Didn't have the strength I was hoping for but I ate like shit on Tuesday and got crap sleep as well. Double whammy. Last time I was climbing up through the weight on Deadlifts the first time I missed 5 reps on a workout was pulling 345 lbs, so I guess I'm slightly better off this time around. I haven't been eating as well on my off days, which I'm sure has hurt muscular development.

 

Today's lifts:

Squat: 5x115, 5x155 lbs, 5x195, 5x235, 5x275

Bench: 5x45, 5x85, 5x125, 5x165, 4x200

BBRow: 5x45, 5x85, 5x125, 5x165, 4x200

Dips @ BW+5: 3x10

 

Squats were great again, no trouble really. I should have started at slightly higher weight on squats when I came back form the break. Bench and rows went as well as I expected. Didn't think I'd hit 5 reps on my first go at 200 lbs again. Last rep on rows was pretty weak, I could probably even drop it from my completion count. Try again next time. Finished the dips at +5 lbs, going to +10 next time.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Week 54, Strength!

 

Last Friday's final lifts:

Squat: 5x280 lbs

Bench: 4x200

BBRow: 4x200

Dips: 3x10x(BW+10)

 

Wasn't feeling the lifts, but did it anyway. Squats were harder than I wanted them to be. Disappointed with bench and rows, but low energy, so meh. Surprised that I was able to pull off the dips on the first go at +10lbs. I've not been performing as well on some of my lifts lately, and I wonder if it is just my generally low energy levels or if the assistance exercises is overworking those muscle groups. I like doing the pullups and dips though, would be a shame to drop them.

 

Today's lifts:

Squat: 5x65 lbs, 5x105, 5x145, 5x185, 5x225

OHP: 5x45, 5x75, 5x105, 5x120

Deadlift: 5x185, 5x235, 5x275, 5x315, 5x360

Pullups: 7 wide grip, 6 angled grip, 6 hammer grip

 

De-loaded on the OHP. Stalled out at 140 lbs so I'm going to work back up and hopefully get past it. Still using a lot of lower back on most of the Deadlift final set. I need to concentrate on pulling back with the shoulders at the start of the lift so that my back is a little more vertical on the upwards pull. I only increased 5 lbs over last time instead of the usual 10 lbs - I think it is probably a good idea from here on out so that I'm not repeating the same weight as often. My progress should still be about the same as it was previously.

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Strength week 54

 

I just realized that I passed the one year mark (since I started lifting again) a couple weeks back.

 

Today's lifts:

Squat: 5x125 lbs, 5x165, 5x205, 5x245, 5x285

Bench: 5x45, 5x85, 5x125, 5x165, 5x200

BBRow: 5x45, 5x85, 5x125, 5x165, 5x200

Dips: 3x10x(BW+15)

 

Feeling great about hitting all my marks on this workout. The last rep on bench was extremely hard to get up - felt like it took me 5 seconds to get the bar all the way up. I'm pretty beat now. I'm again surprised that I was able to finish the dips on the first go at the increased weight. Perhaps becase I deloaded on OHP and my shoulders aren't as worked? Looking forward to the time when I can dip for sets of 10 with a 45 lbs plate.

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Strength Week 55

 

Haven't weighed myself in a while, don't really care much. My bodyweight doesn't really appear to be changing much, at least that's what the mirror tells me.

 

Friday's final lifts:

Squat: 5x225 lbs

OHP: 5x125

Deadlift: 5x365

Pullups: 7,7,6

 

Today's work:

Squat: 5x135, 5x175, 5x215, 5x255, 5x290

Bench: 5x45, 5x75, 5x115, 5x165, 4x205

BBRow: 5x45, 5x85, 5x115, 5x165, 5(?)x205

Dips: 3x10x (BW+20)

 

Squats were fine, only went to parallel on the final set. Have been going ATG on all warmup sets for a while now. I was hoping for the last rep on bench but just couldn't get it up all the way. Had great energy but just wasn't meant to be. Got the 5th rep up to the lower pegs on the bench, so close! Not happy with the rows. I end up using a lot of momentum and pulling with my core/legs to get the bar up, so I don't feel I'm really doing enough with my upper back to warrant continuing at this weight. I don't feel that I'm doing them right at the final weight. I'm going to drop the weight back down to 170 lbs and go back to 3x5 to get some volume into the lift and try to be strict about my form. Still rocking the dips!

 

If any other strength lifters are reading this thread, how are your rows weight-wise compared to some of your other lifts? I'm wondering if it is unrealistic to think that the rows would keep pace with bench press.

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Thanks, James!

 

yesterday's (Wednesday, 03/07/12) work:

Squat: 5x125 lbs, 5x175, 2x5x225

OHP: 5x45, 5x75, 5x105, 5x130

Deadlift: 5x205, 5x245, 5x285, 5x325, 5x370

Pullups: 3x7

 

Changed up my squats to get 2 sets in at 225 as opposed to another lighter warmup set. I'm not really seeing a point to doing a squat at 75 lbs. My warmups sets are always well controlled, as I use them to set my muscle memory for the heavier lifts. I figure the two sets at 225 ATG are still light warmup sets for my deadlift anyway. The deadlifts were hard, as expected. I rested for a second between the later reps in the set to catch my breath and reset my body position (I'm not letting the bar drop too forcefully but there is still a little bounce from the octagonal plates).

 

I started drinking coconut water and taking zinc and magnesium pills last week right after my workouts in addition to eating a banana and some dates to help with recovery. I've definitely noticed an improvement in my energy levels in the few hours after working out but by the time I get home from work at night (usually ~5 hours after my workout) I'm still damn worn out and ready to go right to bed, which I can't do

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Food update

 

My eating schedule and amounts have slightly changed over the past year, so an update as a benchmark is in order. I haven't calculated the macros on these meals, so I'm not going to include the them. I think they are still relatively close to what I calculated in my first meal schedule post.

 

At the beginning of this week, I got curious and looked up the vitamin and mineral contents of the foods I eat, and discovered that I get more than 100% of my RDA of almost all vitamins and minerals just from the foods that I'm eating. I have been taking a daily multivitamin, but now I realize that it's unnecessary to take every day! I'm still taking calcium pills with every main meal to keep my kidney stones at bay, the pills also include magnesium and vitamin D. I'm going to switch to a non-magnesium pill on the next purchase, since i get plenty of it in my food.

 

Workout day:

Breakfast:

alternates day to day between

Muesli x4 servings (http://www.vitacost.com/Bobs-Red-Mill-Cereal-Muesli-Old-Country-Style)

organic original Trader Joe's soymilk, x1 serving

flaxseed oil, 1 tbsp

or

10-grain hot cereal x3 servings (http://www.vitacost.com/Bobs-Red-Mill-10-Grain-Hot-Cereal)

raisins, a couple handfuls

organic original TJ's soymilk, x1 serving

flaxseed oil, 1 tbsp

 

Lunch 1 (usually ~1.5 hours before workout):

Quinoa, cooked, ~1/2 cup

Mixed beans (pinto, lentils, chickpeas, white, black, mung), cooked, ~3/4 cup

Fortified yeast flakes, 2/3 tbsp (http://www.vitacost.com/Kal-Nutritional-Yeast-Flakes)

Veggie mix (broccoli or green beans, carrots, zucchini or yellow squash, peas, corn), raw (except for the green beans, peas and corn, they are from frozen packs so they've been blanched prior to freezing), ~1.7 cups

 

Pre-workout:

2 pieces fruit (apples, oranges, pears, whatever)

 

Post-workout:

2 pieces fruit (always 1 banana, currently also 3 dates)

Coconut water, unflavored, 11 floz.

 

Lunch 2 (~30-45 minutes after workout):

Quinoa, cooked, ~1/2 cup

Mixed beans, cooked, ~3/4 cup

Fortified yeast flakes, 2/3 tbsp

Veggie mix, ~1.7 cups

DHA supplement pills, 240 mg (2 pills) (http://www.vitacost.com/Spectrum-Essentials-Vegetarian-DHA)

Zinc supplement pill, 30 mg

Magnesium supplement pill, 250 mg

 

Lunch 3:

Quinoa, cooked, ~1/2 cup

Mixed beans, cooked, ~3/4 cup

Fortified yeast flakes, 2/3 tbsp

Veggie mix, ~1.6 cups

 

Over the course of the workday, I'll also have approximately 3-4 servings of mixed nuts at random times, and perhaps another piece or two of fruit, depending how much I bring to work that day.

 

Dinner:

I'm usually not very hungry when I get home from work, so it ends up depending on how hungry I am and how late it is. Sometimes it's just some chips and hummus, or a veggie burger on sprouted bread, or a couple of baked potatoes with earth balance spread, or 1/2 a block of tempeh, or some combination of any of those or random leftovers from the weekends when my meals go to shit, or some of whatever my wife has cooked up. I also have some Trader Joe's chocolate cat cookies or organic animal crackers - I'm addicted to these damn things.

Usually an hour or two before I go to bed I'll have a protein shake:

1 scoop of green plant protein powder (http://www.vitacost.com/Lifetime-Lifes-Basics-Plant-Protein-Powder-with-Greens

1 scoop of raw sprout protein powder (http://www.vitacost.com/Garden-of-Life-RAW-Protein)

-----------------------------------

 

Off Day:

Breakfast:

alternates day to day between

Muesli x4 servings

organic original Trader Joe's soymilk, x1 serving

flaxseed oil, 1 tbsp

or

10-grain hot cereal x3 servings

raisins, a couple handfuls

organic original TJ's soymilk, x1 serving

flaxseed oil, 1 tbsp

 

Lunch 1:

Quinoa, cooked, ~1/2 cup

Mixed beans, cooked, ~3/4 cup

Fortified yeast flakes, 2/3 tbsp

Veggie mix, raw, ~1.7 cups

 

Lunch 2:

Quinoa, cooked, ~1/2 cup

Mixed beans, cooked, ~3/4 cup

Fortified yeast flakes, 2/3 tbsp

Veggie mix, ~1.7 cups

DHA supplement pills, 240 mg (2 pills)

 

Lunch 3:

Quinoa, cooked, ~1/2 cup

Mixed beans, cooked, ~3/4 cup

Fortified yeast flakes, 2/3 tbsp

Veggie mix, ~1.6 cups

 

Over the course of the non-workout workday, I'll also have approximately 3-4 servings of mixed nuts at random times, and 4 or 5 pieces of fruit, depending how much I bring to work that day.

 

Dinner:

Again on these days I'm not very hungry when I get home, so I'll usually snack on something small and then have a protein meal replacement shake:

2 scoops raw meal replacement powder (http://www.vitacost.com/Garden-of-Life-RAW-Meal)

If for some reason I'm incredibly hungry I'll eat something else, but usually not.

-----------------------------------

 

Weekends:

My schedule goes to shit, and so does my eating. If I'm lucky I get 2/3 the caloric intake of a weekday, usually far less, and my protein intake drops.

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Every day I also have 1-2 oz of lemon juice diluted in water (adds citrates to my urine to ward against calcium oxalate kidney stone formation), and ~1 oz of apple cider vinegar diluted in water (anti-inflammatory and body PH balancing). The apple cider thing I picked up from my grandparents who drank/drink it regularly. My grandfather lived until 94 when he had a stroke stemming from blood clots from an injury to his leg. My grandmother is 95 and still going strong. I think I'll keep drinking the vinegar Granted, they were also omnivores who ate meat (in small portions) at 2 meals each day, so they needed the anti-inflammatory and PH balancing effects more than I do.

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Strength, End of Week 55

 

Today's lifts:

Squat: 5x135 lbs, 5x175, 5x215, 5x255, 5x295

Bench: 5x45, 5x85, 5x125, 5x165, 4x205

BBRow: 5x45, 5x85, 5x125, 3x5x170

Dips: 10,9,9x(BW+25)

 

Squats were fine, only to parallel on the final set, as usual. I don't think I tried hard enough on the bench. I probably could have made the last rep with more leg drive and better effort, not sure why I didn't go for it. I paid close attention to my form on the rows this time, 3x5 was difficult at this weight with strict adherence to proper form, but doable. From this point forward I'm going to keep my form in check and only jump up the weight when I am satisfied I've done them properly, no matter how many times I end up lifting the same weight. As soon as I put on the weight belt, the added weight for dips felt heavy so I might have psyched myself out a little. Decent numbers anyway. Should hit it next time, if barely.

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Strength, week 56

 

Skipped Monday's workout, got to work a bit late, had a lot to do (skipped lunch), and didn't feel like staying late in order to get a workout in.

 

Today:

Squat: 10x135(?) lbs, 5x185(?), 5x235(?), 5x285(?), 5x285(?)

OHP: 5x45, 5x75, 5x105, 5x135

Deadlift: 5x215, 5x255, 5x295, 5x335, 4x375, 2x375

Pullups: ?, 7, 7

 

Reason for the ? on squat weight is due to not using the squat rack and doing BB back squats. Some jerks were using the rack for some barbell lever-action push pressing, one end of the bar on the floor against the inside corner of the rack, pushing the other end forward and up. I've seen plenty of kids doing this in the gym, but they usually use a corner of the room for the hinge point. They had just started and I didn't feel like waiting so my choices were smith machine, hack squat machine, or this other hinged squat machine. I always feel off balance in the smith machine, someone else was using the hack squat, so I used the third machine. I'm assuming the shoulder harness weighs about 45lbs, but you are not pushing the weight straight up, so you are not really pressing the full weight. Needless to say, with what I assumed was 285, I had no trouble going ATG and shooting up super fast popping the harness off my shoulders for a moment. Due to the angle and circular motion, I can probably assume only lifting 60% of those weights. But I digress...

 

My grip was shit today. I had decent energy and thought I'd be able to nail the deadlift, but on rep 3 started to feel my grip (mixed grip) giving out. 4th rep I didn't even get complete lockout before my grip started to fail. I let the bar back down and completely let go once it was past my knees. I should have been able to complete the set, so I waited a coupe minutes and did a couple more reps. My hands were pretty shot so pullups were a chore. Got distracted and lost count on the first set, either 7 or 8 reps. I was going for 3x8. I was barely able to make the 7 reps on the other two sets - needed some leg pumping to get all the way up, and even then just barely made it.

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Strength, week 57

 

last Friday:

Squat: 5x300 lbs

Bench: 5x205

BBRow: 3x5x175

Dips: 10,10,9x(BW+25)

 

Depth sucked on squats. Had trouble finishing the set. Was feeling off due to eating too much at my previous meal. Last rep on bench was a struggle, took me a while to lock it out. Grunting "get up there!" while pushing helps . Started off a little loose on rows, then squared up my form on the last two sets. Dips were a little hard towards the end - just couldn't lock out the last one. Overall happy I hit all my major marks today and feeling good going into the weekend. Lately my back has felt a bit sore - I think it's from sleeping weird positions.

 

Today:

Squat: 5x135, 5x175, 5x225, 5x225

OHP: 5x45, 5x75, 5x105, 4+x140

Deadlift: 5x195, 5x245, 5x295, 5x335, 5x375

Pullups: 8,7,7xBW

 

OHP felt pretty good, last one needed a little bump to get it up so not a done set. Deadlift went up well. I'm definitely stronger than I was when pulling this weight back in December. Hit the first set of 8 pullups pretty well, had to really fight to get even close to finishing the 7th rep on the other two sets. Upper body feels pretty worked-over right now

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Strength, end of week 57

 

Today's work:

Squats: 5x125 lbs, 5x175, 5x225, 5x265, 5x305

Bench: 10x45, 5x95, 5x135, 5x175, 3x210

BBRows: 10x45, 5x65, 5x105, 5x145, 4,4,4x180

Dips: [email protected]+25

 

Felt great on the squats. Took a good effort but I was able to complete them without too much difficulty. Was feeling a little weak on the bench, I think it will be slow going from here on up. Rows were heavy. First set was a little sloppy again, but tightened up for the last two sets. Happy about completing the weigh for dips. Thinking about the dips, I'm sure doing them is contributing to my lack-luster OHP performance, as I'm doing them with very little lean so they are working my shoulders pretty hard. This means that I'm getting shoulder work in 3x week. I don't want to stop, but wonder if stopping will really up my OHP performance.

 

I'm starting to think about goals for year's end:

squat: 400 lbs

bench: 275

rows: 225

OHP: 185

Deadlift: 475

 

I wonder if this is feasible on my current lifting schedule. I'm still thinking about switching to Madcow, or maybe even a 3-day/week version of 5/3/1. I'm still getting stronger on my current plan (modified Stronglifts), so maybe I'll wait until I plateau on squats/deads before switching. I'd also probably progress a little faster if I ate more, so I'm starting to throw a little tempeh and tofu into my lunches. I don't really want to eat more than I currently do, and I have no desire to start taking multiple protein shakes per day, so I'll just have to live with the smaller/slower gains. I don't live to lift, I just lift to improve my life a bit.

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