Thursday, October 31, 2013

High Bar Experiment

Thanks to a tip from an E-Friend, I decided to do something I haven't done in like 2 years: High Bar Back Squat.  The intention right now is to see if alternating between Low Bar and High Bar will help my elbow recover enough to be able to still Squat every workout.  If it doesn't work, I'll go to alternating LBBS and Front Squat.  If that doesn't work, I'll switch to HBBS full time, and finally if that fails, I'll alternate HBBS and Front.  Hopefully it doesn't get that far, because I don't know what the next step would be and don't want to think about it.  But, so far so good.  Too early to tell, really, since I went pretty light on HBBS so that I could focus on form and not falling over considering how long it has been since I have done HB.  My traps hurt a little since they are no longer used to it.  Almost no elbow pain, even through the Bench.  I feel it a tiny bit as I am typing now, but nothing really noteworthy.

Bench was alright.  OWU was a grinder on rep 2.  I decided to opt for 3x6 rather than 3x7 since I was tired and OWU was so hard.  I barely got rep 6 up for both sets 1 and 2, but I got 7 on set 3.  Go figure?!

Deadlift was a bit disappointing.  I had to rest 30 seconds between reps 3 and 4, and 4 and 5.  I ended up going for the big double anyway, but also rested 30 seconds between.  Got 'em all, but with all the rest, I am not sure I should go up next workout.  I was pretty tired, but I don't know how much of a role that played.


FBBS 5x225, 235, 245
Bench 2x252.5; 217.5x6,6,7
DL 405x3, 30 sec, 1, 30 sec, 1; 425x1, 30 sec, 1

Saturday, October 26, 2013

More Pain

While my elbow didn't pop out, Hungarian style, it sure hurt a lot.  Maybe putting Squats back in for ALL workouts was a bit premature.  Maybe I'll try Front Squats on DL days from now on?  Who knows?  I did a quick flossing on both my elbow and knee before my workout, and my knee still feels great, but 3x5@315 on the squat really did my elbow in, and it really affected me on Press.  I only got 2 on the OWU and only did one set for 4 before calling it a day.  No Chins or Rows.

Now that I am flossing, my elbow is continuing to not feel the persistent throbbing pain for hours after my workout like it used to--and considering just how much it hurt today, I am EXTREMELY relieved that this is the case.  I do feel some discomfort, but normally, pre-VooDoo Floss, the amount of pain I felt during my session meant hours if not days of pain.  Not so anymore!

...Did I mention I got 3x5@315 on Squat??  I am not sure if I have ever done that before.  I can't remember, and am sure not going to look right now.  I know I have done 3x3, but I don't know about 3x5.  It felt really heavy, and set two felt ugly, too.  But, all in all, I am pleased.  


Squat 3x5@315
Press 2x187.5; 4x167.5

Today was another quick workout with major time constraints.  Also, I didn't sleep well last night.  Hopefully I can blame my lame Press on pain, fatigue and weariness.  I don't want to deload AGAIN on Press.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

"Eyes" On the Prize

Didn't even feel like 6 days away.  :-)

VooDoo Flossed my Elbow and Knee last night, and then again (plus my shoulder) before my workout today.  Felt AMAZING!  I don't know how much was placebo or mind over matter (I suppose that is a bit redundant--or at least some over-lap) but I definitely felt a difference.  Strangely, when I got to my work-sets on Squat and Bench, I had MORE acute pain in my elbow than I usually do, but it dissipated more quickly and didn't persist like it normally does.  I'll take it!

Worked out with my bride today.  Good to have her back in the gym with me.  She remarked on how red my face gets when I squat heavy, and we also noticed some real red spots (popped vessels?) in my eyes afterwards.  She was nervous--and I admit I have been a touch uneasy about it too--but until my research points me to a real problem, hitting my goal is where I'll be keeping my gaze--red as it may be.

I did better (not great, but there was improvement) with pushing my knees out on the squat, today.  Hopefully that translates (with flossing) to less knee pain.

I forgot my micro-plates on the bench, which upset me, but I noticed before my third set and still got 7, so there is that.  I'll still repeat this weight, though.  

Rep 5 on DL was the hardest it has been in some time.  I am hoping it won't be a problem to get 405 next week--I am not ready to start micro-loading yet.  I got 2 reps on the heavy follow-up set of 420, though.  I have a chance (albeit slim) of hitting 470x2 by the end of the year.  This has a theoretical 1RM of 500, which is the goal.  I am really surprised by this.  I'll need to increase my food intake substantially if I am going to achieve it, which I can't really afford to do right now, but with 10 weeks left in the year, adding 5 pounds each week is doable since I average 1.5 DL sessions per week for those 10 weeks.  If I added 5 pounds to every one, I'd add 75 pounds.  Since that is HIGHLY unlikely, I guessed just 50 pounds--which will still be a stretch--and I think I am okay saying it is still a viable goal.  My theoretical 1RM after today is 445, which is--if I remember correctly--only 10lbs. under my all time PR.  Very exciting!


Squat 3x5@310
Bench 2x250; 2x5@215; 5x217.5
DL 5x400; 2x420

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Speedy Workout

Well, I was sick of having too little time to workout, and needing to cut things out to accommodate, so I thought I would try to just bust through it with less rest and by doing warm-ups in between work-sets.  I have done these things before to one extent or another, but I usually am also cutting certain things out.  This time, I did not miss a single planned set, and did what usually is a 90-120 min workout in 70 minutes.  I am still exhausted from it all.

I did end up cutting my Press work-sets down to sets of 5, but that was all the real cutting I ended up doing.
Squat felt great, but since I use the same cage for Press, I warmed up with dumbbells for the Press in between squat sets.

Press I finally got 185x3.  It is a good thing I lowered my work-sets to 5s because sets 2 and 3 barely got 5 I was so wiped from going at the pace I was.

I pushed Chins, Curls and Rows all together, and by the last set of Rows, my arms were Jell-O®.

It was satisfying to get it all done, but I will probably regret making it public that I can do this long workout in under 90 minutes--my wife subscribes to my blog.  HAHA!


Squat 3x5x305
Press 3x185; 3x5@165
Chins BWx10; +15x5,4
Rows 3x6@200

Chins are not advancing very quickly.  It is kind of disheartening.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Quick Push/Pull Day

With elbow pain and a really short amount of time, I decided to skip squats, and warm up my DL and Bench together, then do DL work-sets, then Bench work-sets, and call it a day.  By the time I finished my (awesome feeling) DL sets, I had precious little time.  So, I switched from a 3x7 with 5 min rest between sets to 3x5 with 2.5 min between them.  I barely made it home in time for my first-born-in-the-wilderness to make his pre-school bus, and had to sprint half the way, pushing a double stroller to boot.  Good times.

I got the Level 1 Captains of Crush from my brother, and can already close it.  HAHA!  The left hand is still covered in leprosy (read "warts") so I have been unable to work as hard on that hand, but I still closed it on that one too.


DL 5x395; 1x415
Bench 2x247.5; 3x5@217.5

I will repeat 217.5 so I can try for the 3x7, but I will go up on the OWU to keep pushing high end strength.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Birthday Pain

Elbow pain is back.  Happy Bloody Birthday to me!  Skipped third set of Squats and had an okay Press workout, but didn't do anything else so I wouldn't be in pain all day for my birthday.  Will be getting myself some VooDoo Floss--Review forthcoming.

Squats felt okay except for the elbow pain.  Press was a little painful, and I think it was a bit weak because it was so early (I didn't sleep more than 5½ hours).  I did a heavy-ish 4th workset just for good measure.  OWU was only for 2, so I am repeating it--I really want 200 for a triple, so OWU will not move up unless I hit three each time.


Squats 305x5,5,0
Press 185x2; 162.5x6,5,5; 175x2

Now, to Valley Fair with my wonderful wife!!

Thursday, October 10, 2013


I have been eating about $10 worth of McDonald's food five days a week for months now.  I think it has a lot to do with the steady progress I have been enjoying.  Today's being no exception.

Squat was a little tough, but besides a little looseness in my upper and lower back, I felt strong through all three sets.

Bench went pretty well, but I failed my last rep without a spotter so I had to call for help.  Oops!

DL was amazing, as it has consistently been lately.  Due to time constraints I made bigger jumps with less rest during warm-up and still killed the work-set.  And, with even LESS rest, I jumped up and did 410x1.  Felt super great!


Squat 3x5@300
Bench 2x245; 215x7,7,6
DL 5x390; 1x410

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Uplifting Presses

Well, actually, the third set was de"pressing," not up"lifting."  I got one less rep at this weight than the last time I did 160# on press.  But, I got 182.5x3, which was pretty awesome.  It was a grinder, and probably wasted me for set three, but I am still on pace for 200 for a double or even triple by the end of the first week of November!

Squat felt pretty great, with still some form issues with lower back tightness.  I should really stop adding weight until I get it straightened out, but I am having too much fun.  Oh well.  I'll regret it later, but I never learn my lessons--why start now?

Chins/Curls/Rows easy as usual.  I find it difficult to care about these after heavy squats and presses.  They are progressing, so I am okay with them not being a big deal and not pushing them harder.

Elbow pain was rearing its ugly head, again.  Oh goodie!


Squat 3x5@295
Press 182.5x3; 160x7,7,5
Chins BWx6,6,6
Rows 3x6@197.5

Next workout I will be back to 300# on squats.  I am pleased with the results of this last deload.  Everything is moving swimmingly.  It appears that my DLing every 4th workout was too much time off, and my crazy sets for 12 weren't doing me any favors.  The old SS stand-by is helping me along with all three (four) core lifts again.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

DL Singles--For Fun

Great day.  Even with a less than stellar bench performance, the Squat and Deadlift felt so great, it has left me on a high all day long.  I felt really strong until my last rep of Squat, where form just feel apart.  And with DL, I finished my work-set and followed it up with a 405# single--FOR FUN!  Good day, indeed.

I don't know how much my darling wife's early birthday present (a 60 minute deep tissue massage the day before) had anything to do with it, but I felt great the whole workout.  Thanks baby!!


Squat 3x5@290
Bench 2x242.5; 212.5x8,7,6
DL 5x385; 1x405

Depending on how I feel, I may throw them out from time to time, but I am going to start programming in heavy singles after my DL work-set from now on.  I am excited about it.

I will squat (assuming I hit 3 every week) 36 more times this year.  I am increasing by 5s right now, but even if I only average 2.5# for the rest of the year, I could be doing 3x5@380 by the end of the year!!  (This is my all time 1RM PR, for perspective.)  Crazy!  That COULD put my Squat 1RM at over 450 lbs!  I think I am getting WAY ahead of myself, but it is nice to think about.  I doubt my remaining linear progress will take me that far, but it is nice to dream.  I will need those extra 50 pounds because I don't think my DL will be even close to making it to 500, so if I am going to make my 1200 PL Total goal, Squat will have to make up the difference.  Bench will be a close call on 300, I am sure.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

...and more pain

... since coming home from my workout and posting about it, those aches and pains have gotten worse--especially my left arm and shoulder.  Boo.  Unexpected.  If I had to guess the source, though it didn't hurt much at the time, so I am not sure, but I think it happened when I used a bit of momentum coming up out of the hole of a squat to readjust the 285 lbs worth of iron's position on my back/shoulder.


Through the Pain

Some moderate pain in my neck, both elbows, knees, etc... just lots of nagging little aches and pains.  I don't think it affected me too much, though.

I killed squats.  I was tempted to try for a 6th rep on set three, but I really don't need to push it right now.

I did a triple instead of a double on OWU for Press, and as usual it cost me in the work sets--but I am okay with it.  Adding work on the high end is beneficial.  I did the same work sets today as the last time I tried the same weight.  A little disappointing not making progress, but I don't know how much my elbow pain or heavy OWU played a role.

Chins, Curls and Rows were pretty run-of-the-mill.


Squats 3x5@285
Press 180x3; 157.5x7,6,6
Chins BWx10; +10x5,5
Rows 3x6@195

AHHHH! I can't believe it is October!!  Crazy!  I will have been at my new job for a year in a few days, and I will be 31 years old in 11 days!  C to the Razy!