Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Getting Less Weak

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Getting Less Weak

    Well,

    As I stated in another thread, I have always been frustrated with my strength levels and it is time for that to change. I know that there are a lot of people who are around or below my strength level and I don't mean to put any of them down. I just feel that, given the amount of time and energy I have put in at the gym and how much of that was specifically doing programs like 5/3/1 and various 5x5 versions, I should have more to show at this point in my life.

    I am also considering the idea of a career-change someday back into the world of strength and conditioning and don't feel I can talk that talk unless I've walked the walk.

    Here is the routine I am currently following:

    Heavy Squat Day
    5x5 w/5 mins rest
    10 mins cardio
    10 mins steam sauna


    Heavy Bench Day
    5x5 w/5 mins rest
    15 mins cardio
    12 mins dry sauna

    Heavy Dead Day
    5x5 w/5 mins rest
    10 mins cardio
    12 mins dry sauna

    Light Squat/Bench Day
    5x4 @80% of heavy day w/5 mins rest
    15 mins cardio
    10 mins steam sauna

    Progress: weights stay the same until 5 reps are achieved for each set (while never going to failure), then 10lbs is added and I again stay at this weight until reaching a failure-free 5x5.

    My reasoning is this, I have always had TERRIBLE intra and inter-set recovery (my DC numbers would be something like 12, 3, 1, and my reps would fall dramatically during a 5x5 workout with 1.5-2 mins rest, think 5,5,3,1,1). I have spent a lot of time trying different variables (changing assistance work, percentages, nutrition, etc.) but I have always hit a wall very quickly where I just cannot grind another pound or rep out of my body. One thing that I have never tried though, is giving my body a ton of time to recover and avoiding failure. My current approach allows for a minimum of 5 mins rest between work sets, zero assistance work, and zero sets taken to failure. Ever.

    I made myself believe for a very long time that I just wasn't built for strength. The more I think about that though, the less I think that is what is actually limiting me right now. My numbers just don't reflect what I think ANY non-obese person who weights 215-220lbs should be capable of.

    I really hope this works, haha.
    Last edited by Macho Man; 02-03-2020, 03:27 PM.
    2010 NPC North Star

  • #2
    Last night:

    One thing that I am really excited about with this routine is the ability to spend a lot of time practicing the lifts while feeling fresh. I have squatted 365x3 in the past, but I never felt in control on the descent and definitely was not going deep enough. Starting lighter than that and working on my form has allowed me to make sure I don't push the weight up beyond what all my stabilizers muscles are capable of right away, thus plunging me back into poor form that will limit progress. For my squats last night I definitely had 1 or two left in the tank on my last set, which is right around where I want to be. I could also feel myself really having to focus on using my ass to control the weight and starting the drive out of the hole with my hips which is such a better feeling than simply trying to stand up, haha.

    Squats
    245- 5x5
    10 mins stairs
    10 mins steam sauna
    Last edited by Macho Man; 02-03-2020, 03:30 PM.
    2010 NPC North Star

    Comment


    • #3
      Diet

      Currently working on slowly adding calories back into my diet, primarily post workout. I recently cut 10-15lbs as a good starting point from which to slowly work up from. In the past I have gotten gung-ho about trying to add muscle, and regardless of where my calories were I would jump into the BWx15 formula and end up around 3000kcal. This is wayyyy too many for me to jump right into and I would always end up adding a ton of fat along with any muscle gained. I'm not trying to hit the sweet spot of no fat with maximal muscle gain, I just want to keep my BF levels from skyrocketing while I try to increase my strength.

      Breakfast (8am)
      Protein Shake, Bagel, PB
      Multivitamin, 5g fish oil, 5000iu D3

      Lunch (12pm)
      1/2lb chx, steamed veggie bag, 2 oz almonds

      Dinner (5pm)
      1/2lb chx, steamed veggie bag, 2 oz almonds

      Intra Workout (930p)
      2 scoops Powdered Muscle

      Post Workout (11pm)
      1/2lb 93/7 beef with rice or bagel (60g carbs)

      Totals (not including the intra-workout drink)= around 100g Fat, 120g Carbs, and 200g Protein ~ 2100kcal
      2010 NPC North Star

      Comment


      • #4
        How long have you been incorporating the sauna in your post-workouts. Just curious if you have noticed any changes in recovery, etc from it?
        My greatest opponent is myself. Every time I walk into the gym, I have to beat the person I was before!

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by johndylan15 View Post
          How long have you been incorporating the sauna in your post-workouts. Just curious if you have noticed any changes in recovery, etc from it?
          I have been using a sauna post workout for several years. Just switched to a new gym recently that has a steam sauna as well and have been using that more as I have had a chest cold for a while.

          I’m not sure what affect it has had on recovery, but I absolutely love the feeling of being deeply warmed from the inside out, sweating from every pore of my body, walking out feeling wiped, and then jumping into a shower and having the life rush back into me when I crank it to cold. I definitely feel a lot better when using a sauna, but I don’t have any more info for you than that, hahaha.

          I also occasionally begin to imagine someone coming and locking the door while I’m in there, particularly in the steam sauna. This usually raises my respiration rate and brings me to the edge of panic and I have to very actively calm myself down, which is good practice for emotional regulation and fortitude, hahaha
          2010 NPC North Star

          Comment


          • #6
            Heavy Bench
            195- 5,4,4,3,3

            Stairmaster- 15 mins

            Steam Sauna (trying to get rid of a chest cold)- 10 mins

            Here’s a shitty photo from the gym (still feel like a dbag taking photos in the gym, maybe someday I will feel comfortable enough to walk right up to the mirror and snap one, haha)

            Attached Files
            2010 NPC North Star

            Comment


            • #7
              Today was a good day.

              Heavy Deads
              365- 5,5,5,5,5

              Stairmaster- 15 mins

              Steam Sauna- 5 mins (coughing fit caused me to dip out early, haha)
              2010 NPC North Star

              Comment


              • #8
                Felt good again today, tendons of the left forearm were definitely sore from deads yesterday though. I need to remember to switch my grip every other set.

                Light Bench
                155- 4,4,4,4,4

                Light Squat
                185- 4,4,4,4,4

                Stairmaster- 12 mins

                Dry Sauna- 15 mins
                2010 NPC North Star

                Comment


                • #9
                  Squats last night
                  255- 5x5

                  These felt like garbage, mainly because my outer quads felt really tight and had a dull ache in them throughout each set which really affected my ability to sit back and keep my hips engaged. I tried to foam roll them to loosen them up, but that didn't seem to help. This seems to be a common occurrence on Sun nights, so I'm thinking about swapping my days around and making that my light bench/squat day.

                  It's also funny to feel where my form has been off for years during squats. I have quite a hard time keeping it under control on the descent and keeping my ass back without too much forward lean. On reps where I manage to keep this all in check the weight feels quite heavy. On reps where my form goes to shit and my weight shifts forwards though, my quads kick in much more like they used to and the weight flies up like it is nothing, hahaha.

                  2010 NPC North Star

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Felt great last night....

                    Bench
                    195- 5,5,5,5,4

                    Stairmaster
                    10 mins at level 12

                    Dry Sauna
                    12 mins
                    ​​​​​​​
                    2010 NPC North Star

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Felt solid again today

                      Deads
                      375- 5,5,5,4,4

                      Stairmaster
                      Level 10- 10 mins

                      Steam Sauna
                      8 mins

                      Was feeling better for a couple days, then the coughing and congestion started to come back for my son and I. Not sure if this is something new or if we just never kicked what we had originally, but damn I’m tired of coughing!
                      2010 NPC North Star

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Haven’t been in the gym since 2/13. Turns out the congestion and cough I have been dealing with for weeks has in fact been pneumonia. One day into a Z-pack and I feel 1000% better. Gonna give it a few more days and get after it again Sunday night.
                        2010 NPC North Star

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Felt great to be back yesterday. Spent a lot of time over the weekend laying on a tennis ball (jammed under outer quads). Holy fucking hell did this hurt and cause my quads to spasm like a 12 year old boy wearing a tube sock!!! Was finally able to relax and feel the muscles relax into it, woke up sore as fuck the next day but squats felt much smoother and my day to day pain/irritation/crunching in the knees is almost gone. I think a lot of the issues I always associated with poor rehab from my knee surgeries can be tied back to these areas of my quads. I’m very excited to see how things play out over the coming weeks.

                          Squat
                          205- 4,4,4,4,4

                          Quick question for anyone reading this (preferably someone very comfortable with their squat form): can you take me through what you are feeling in your legs on the eccentric portion of a squat? (I’m thinking about making a thread in the general discussion asking this of some of the main lifts, as I’m curious to hear how people experience this differently.)

                          Bench
                          155-4,4,4,4,4

                          Steam Sauna
                          10 mins
                          2010 NPC North Star

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Felt great again last night.

                            Deads
                            375- 5,5,5,5,3

                            I am concerned with tearing my bicep again so I have decided to make a change over to hook grip. I forgot straps for my working sets though, so kept those at a mixed grip then did some standing barbell holds with a hook grip. I have tiny hands and have never been able to make hook grip work in the past, I could never get more than 1 finger on my thumb. I was recently watching a video though that noted you should hinge the thumb in the palm, not at the knuckle. Doing so worked fantastically and gave me enough ROM to be able to grab my thumb with my middle and ring fingers.

                            Hook Grip Barbell Holds
                            225- 3 sets of 3 with a 5 second hold
                            (these are gonna suck to acclimate to, haha)

                            Also, decided to set some end of the year goals...
                            Bench- 235 for full 5x5 set
                            Squat- 295 for full 5x5 set
                            Dead- 415 for full 5x5 set
                            2010 NPC North Star

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Felt pretty good today

                              Bench
                              185- 5,5,5,5,5

                              Stairmaster
                              15 mins

                              Steam Sauna
                              8 mins
                              2010 NPC North Star

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X