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I think the majority of us, for whatever reason have that 'weaker' lift out of the three. For me it's my squat (after years of my bench being the weakest). It can further become exaggerated as many lifters tend to spend more time on the lift that they're stronger at, rather than focusing on their weaker lift; with this misaligned approach it's easy to see how the lifts can soon start to become noticeably disproportionate.

 

Your squats are really solid ~ are you doing them ATG? What's your bodyweight at right now just out of interest?

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Squats and Deadlifts are the two that I've had the least trouble with since I started strength lifting a year and a half ago. I've always had pretty big legs and glutes, so I'm sure that's helped me squat pretty well. I go ATG on all my warmups, but the final work weight is only done below parallel. I think my abs are a bit on the weaker side, so I tend to fold a bit at the waist when going down with a heavy bar. I've also always been good with overhead lifts. I haven't purposely focused on any one lift in particular. I've consistently followed the programs and done all the lifts equally, with the one exception being the emphasis on squats in the Stronglifts 5x5 program (squats are done every workout).

 

Current body weight is somewhere in the 192-195 lbs range.

 

Taking a rest day today, no lifts.

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5/3/1 Cycle 2 Set 1

 

today:

 

5x100 Jump rope alternated with 5x2 pullups

 

Military Press:

5x45 lbs

5x75

5x95

5x105

8x120

 

Pullups: 6x5 @BW alternating grips

Dips: 4x9, 1x8 @ BW

 

Dissapointed with my 8x120, wanted 9 reps. Felt good on pullups so threw in another set. I can easily hit 5 reps on neutral and supinated close grip, but 5 reps at wide pronated grip are still a bit tough. Also disappointed on the dips, thought I had it in but gassed at the end.

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5/3/1 Cycle 2, Set 1

 

today:

 

5x100 Jump rope alternated with 5x2 pullups

 

Deadlift:

5x145 lbs

5x195

5x245

5x285

9x315

 

Glute ham raise: 5x7

Leg Raise: 5x9

 

Should have gone for rep 10 on the deadlift set - I could have pulled it but decided to stop at 9. I was close to gassing out. GHR is going well, I can definitely up it to 8 reps each set next time. Leg raise got really hard towards the end, my legs weren't coming up as high for the last few reps of the last set. It might have just been that I was worn out at that point.

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Good DL's, I like to throw in some high rep sets every now and then. Most I managed with 315 was 15 reps, that was a challenge I set myself a while ago.

 

 

Nearly collapsed straight after that! Definately feel that higher rep sets with heavy weight help with your overall strength as well, seems to bring strength up faster than if you were to train solely with lower rep schemes. Just my 2c.

 

Good session though, nice work !! What's up next for you, recovery day?

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Yeah, I'm on the 3/week schedule, so M-W-F. I could probably pull a few more reps but my conditioning is shit so I gas out a lot sooner than I'd like. I'd like to start running 2x week or so, but so far I haven't been able to motivate myself to do it. Maybe I can tack it on to the end of my press and bench workouts. That would only be 3/2weeks, but at least it's a start.

 

Nice pulling in the video!

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5/3/1 Cycle 2, Set 1

 

Today:

 

5x100 Jump rope alternated with 5x2 Pullups

 

Bench Press:

5x45 lbs

5x95

5x135

5x155

9x175

 

Dumbbell rows: 2x10x45 lbs, 20x70

Pullups: 5x3 @ BW, alternating grips

 

Was feeling saucy around rep 8, knew I'd get 9. Was still feeling saucy so went for 10 but could only get it half way up. It was harder to finish the rows on the left side than on the right, probably due to straining on the bench fail. Pullups are always a chore at the end of bench days.

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Even with all that jump roping you still feel like you gas out quick? Jump rope is great cardio. I'd take it over running any day. But I hate running. Haha. Your log here is very impressive and professionally done, the graphs are great.

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Thanks Rob. The jump rope is really just a warmup. I take about a minute between jump rope sets including the x2 pullups and it keep my HR up a bit, but by the time I get to my second set of the main lift I don't feel like the HR is still elevated. It's only been a month of jump roping as warmups and I haven't noticed any change in my stamina yet. There's a couple decent staircases outside of my gym that I might try running after non-leg workouts, we'll see how that goes whenever I get around to it.

 

5/3/1 Cycle 2 Set 1

 

today:

 

5x100 Jump rope alternated with 5x2 pullups

 

Squat

5x95 lbs

5x145

5x195

5x225

10x255

 

Lunges: 5x12

Ab wheel: 4x7, 1x10

 

Great squat workout today. Final set was below parallel, but not ATG. All warmups were done ATG. I was feeling good so I went for the 10th rep and got it. Based on my other lifts this cycle I was only expecting 9 reps. Going by Wendler's 1RM formula that puts me at 340 max squat, which I'm happy with. 3 months ago I hit 5x325.

 

Stepped up the reps on the assistance from the last squat day, and I'm feeling it now. I was a bit worn after squats, but lunges sealed the deal. Add a bit of core work and I'm well and spent. Next squat day I'll go to x13 lunges and then x14 the following. On the last ab wheel set I wanted to judge myself so I could better plan for next week so I threw a few extra on the end. I will definitely do sets of x8 next time.

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5/3/1 Cycle 2 Set 2

 

today:

 

(for the record, this is my warmup structure before each workout)

x100 jump rope normal

x2 pullups wide pronated grip

x50 jump rope left leg x50 jump rope right leg (one set)

x2 pullups wide pronated grip

x100 jump rope alternating legs

x2 pullups wide pronated grip

x10 jump rope high jump x10 jump rope normal, repeated 5 times for 100 total reps

x2 pullups wide pronated grip

x100 jump rope normal

x2 pullups wide pronated grip

~ 1 minute rest in between jump rope sets

 

Military:

5x45 lbs

5x75

3x100

3x115

7x130 ** That's an estimated 1RM of 160 lbs, 10 more lbs than I lifted to test my 1RM at the start of this program 1.5 months ago!

 

Pullups: x6 hammer grip, x6 pronated, x6 supinated, x6 pronated, x6 hammer (5x6)

Dips: 5x9

 

Conditioning: 4 sets of 5x28 steps - 28-step staircase sprinted 5 times consecutively, rest for 2-3 minutes, repeat

Heart Rate:

right after 160 BPM

5 minutes after 118

15 minutes after 108

30 minutes after 96

 

Today was a great workout day. Felt good going in, felt the strength on press and went for that 7th rep, grinding it out with a bit of back arch. I noticed that my left side was lagging behind a little on that last press rep, probably a little weaker on that side. I had originally planned on 7x5 for the pullups, but after knocking out the press I decided on 5x6 instead and banged that out. The last rep on the last two sets was tough and slow, but I got it with good form. Dips were a grinder. I knew they would be as my shoulders were pretty worn from the press and pullups, but went for them anyway. I had to rest at the top towards the end of the last two sets so that I could complete them at 9 reps. I did 5 reps, then rested a the top for a few breaths, did 2 more, rested again, then did the last two.

 

After stretching I went outside to look for some decent stairs to run for some conditioning and found a set of 28 steps out in front of my gym. Since this is the first time I've run steps, I just went for it, not knowing how I'd handle it. Coming down after the fifth time up I realized that I'd need to rest if I wanted to do any more at a decent intensity, so I decided to rest for 2 minutes and then try another set of 5. After that set of 5 my quads felt weak and I was breathing really heavy, so I rested a little longer. Each time my rest increased by about 15-20 seconds. I called it done at 20 reps, since I'm not sure how I'm going to recover from this. If my recovery is decent I will probably add another set next time (on the next bench press workout).

 

I'm pretty damn beat now, but I like the feeling. I've felt worn from tough lifting sessions over the past 1.5 years, but I've missed the worn-out feeling one gets from intense cardio sessions (I used to to a lot more cardio years back). I like the feeling of having put my whole body through the ringer.

 

On a food note, for the last two weeks I've been cutting out some of the beans that I normally eat as a large portion of my 3 lunch meals. I've been replacing the beans with half a block of high-protein tofu or 3/4 of a block of 4-grain tempeh each day. I've done this to increase my daily protein intake as well as to reduce the amount of indigestible carbs I eat (beans have a lot of those!). I tend to be really gassy at night and my wife puts up with it but isn't really thrilled. So far my favorite is tempeh soaked overnight in teriyaki marinade.

Edited by asparagus
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5/3/1 Cycle 2 Set 2

 

today:

 

5x100 jump rope alternated with 5x2 pullups

 

Deadlift:

5x145 lbs

5x205

3x260

3x300

7x335

 

Glute ham raise: 2x8, 1x9, 2x10

Leg raise: 5x9

(alternated between the two to minimize time)

 

Good lifts today. After rep 5 on the deadlift the bar bounced around so I had to reset for the last 2 reps. Octagonal plates piss me off. Otherwise I'm happy with the 7 reps. I had a little left in the tank, but didn't think it was enough for another full rep. GHR felt really easy on the first two sets so I increased the reps for the remainder. I may have been doing them a little too fast so the momentum from the back raise portion probably carried over into the hamstring curl. I slowed them down a bit on the last two sets and they were a little harder, but was still no trouble to get 10 reps.

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5/3/1 Cycle 2 Set 2

 

today:

 

5x100 jump rope alternated w/ 5x2 pullups

 

Bench press:

5x45 lbs

5x95

5x145

5x165

7x185

 

DB Rows: 2x10x45 lbs, 25x70 lbs

Pullups: 5x3 alternating grips

 

Steps: 5x5 (28 steps), 2 mins rest between sets

HR right after: 162 BPM

5 mins after: 122 BMP

 

Forgot that today was a 3x3 day, did sets of 5 on the bench. It didn't effect my performance on the final set however, as I was still able to get out 7 reps. Had a little left in the tank but didn't want to push it and get stuck under the bar, since I was happy with 7 anyway. Used the same weights for rows as last time to see if I improved. I was able to get out 25 reps compared to 20 last time, but needed to pause on the last two reps to do so. Ran steps again outside, got my vitamin D boost, and did an extra set. On the fourth set I lost count so it may have only been 4 reps. My legs were done at the top of the stairs though, and that has so far only happened at the end of the 5th rep. I am worn out now, love it!

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5/3/1 Cycle 2 Set 2

 

today:

 

5x100 jump rope alternated w/ 5x2 pullups

 

Squat:

5x135 lbs

5x175

3x210

3x240

8x270

 

Lunges: 4x13, 1x15

Ab wheel: 4x9, 1x14

 

Killed it on the squats today. Still only going to parallel on the final set, though. I think I might start doing the final set ATG next cycle. I know that will drop my reps, but I will be more satisfied with it. Planned 5x13 on lunges, but went for 15 on the last set. I should be able to hit 5x15 no problem next time, then I'll start adding weight. I planned 5x9 on the ab wheel, but went all out on the last set just for the hell of it. Next time I'll do 5x10, no problem.

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In any case, it will be an interesting switch. I figure with all the other major lifts there is an emphasis on full range of motion, why not also on squats? I'll play it by ear on the first set of the next cycle and see how I feel going into it.

 

5/3/1 Cycle 2 Set 3

 

Today:

 

5x100 jump rope alternated w/ 5x2 pullups

 

Military:

5x45 lbs

5x75

5x105

3x120

6x135

 

Pullups: 5x6,1x5 alternating grips

Dips: 4x9, 1x8

 

Running steps: 4 sets of 5x28 steps, 2 minutes rest inbetween

HR right after: 164 BPM

HR 6 minutes after: 114 BPM

 

Damn it was hot outside today - 90°F/32°C. I'm soaked and worn after doing the steps, but right now I'm having some dates and watermelon, followed up with a 12g of protein tofu block, so I'll soon feel better. I wish my office had air conditioning though...

 

Killed it on the Military press today. Damn I'm having a good week! Last month I hit 5x130 lbs and today 6x135. I would say that's a strength increase That last rep was ugly as sin though. I arched my back something fierce, was growling the whole way up, and my left side was totally lagging. My form went to shit and I just muscled it up on adrenaline. That is probably why I couldn't finish my programmed sets of pullups and dips.

 

I thought of skipping the steps today, as I'm going out clubbing tonight for the first time in over a year and will be up late and most likely do a little dancing/moshing/stomping/whatever. I'm going to be tired tomorrow!

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5/3/1 Cycle 2 Set 3

 

today:

 

5x100 jump rope alternated w/ 5x2 pullups

 

Deadlift:

5x135 lbs

5x225

5x280

3x315

6x355

 

Glute ham raise: 5x10

Leg raise: 5x10

 

Another good workout. I went into it not feeling particularly energetic or strong. All the warmup lifts after 135 felt heavy and I thought I'd have a harder time of the final set than I did. I wanted to hit 6, but as the workout progressed I felt that I might only get 5. After I put the 5th rep down though, I knew I had another in me. GHR and leg raise were tough at the end of the sets.

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I figure with all the other major lifts there is an emphasis on full range of motion, why not also on squats? I'll play it by ear on the first set of the next cycle and see how I feel going into it.

I agree, I've always gone ATG on squats (unless I'm box squatting or some other varaition), I actually believe not going below parallel is harder on your knees.

 

Have fun clubbing

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5/3/1 Cycle 2 Set 3

 

today:

 

5x100 jump rope alternated w/ 5x2 pullups

 

Bench:

5x75 lbs

5x115

5x155

3x175

6x195

 

DB row: 2x10x50 lbs, 18x75 lbs

Pullups: 4x3, 1x5 all @ BW

 

steps: 4 sets of 5x28 steps, 2 minutes rest in between

HR right after: 152 BPM

HR 8 minutes later: 110 BPM

 

Again, turned out to be a great workout. Again, I didn't feel great through the warmup sets on bench, figured I'd only hit 5, then felt good to go on the the 6th. DB rows were good, although I can definitely tell that my left side is weaker. I need to start doing my sets on the left side first, then doing the same amount of reps on the right, until my left catches up. I had to pause a few times to get the same rep count on my left side. I also might be able to up my pullup reps on bench days, as I went for 5 on the last set and hit them without much trouble.

Edited by asparagus
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Thanks man. I used to do a bit of running/cycling/cardio stuff years ago but not much recently. I'm going to start increasing the amount of steps I run, maybe even throw in some conditioning on the weekends.

 

Usually on bench days I've worked my back and biceps pretty well from doing the Kroc rows so I keep the pullups light. My pullup count has been steadily increasing on military press days, so it's not surprising that I can do more on bench days as well.

 

It's only been two cycles, but I think I'm responding well to the 5/3/1 template with the currently programmed assistance. My strength is already back up to what it was in May before I took my 6-week lifting break.

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Good to hear that your strength has came back up so quickly, 5/3/1 is great for that.

 

The other thing I find works well for me to help increase your strength a little quicker is throwing in some 5x5's on your main lifts, might be an idea if you've never done them before.

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