A Top 40 Weightlifting Blog

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Bench Wednesday

Just when I'm feeling comfortable with my raw bench I decide to start using a bench shirt and my technique has to change again. I'm moving my grip closer to center and working on my tricept strength. Here's today's efforts.

Flat Bench - 6 sets/205lbs/6 reps. (ring finger on ring)
Free Dips - 4 sets/6, 6, 5, 3 reps.
Scull Crushers - 4 sets/80, 100, 90, 80lbs/8, 6, 8, 10 reps.

What an awesome work out. On my final set of bench I pushed my set up and the 6 reps felt easy. The dips are starting to feel more natural, not light, natural. On my last set of scull crushers I was feeling the music in my headphones, Disturbed. The reps just seemed to fly up. Right now I'm relaxing in my living room watching the 1999 World's Strongest Man and I feel like I just got hit by a car. It's going to take a while for my CNS to recover from this work out.


Monday, February 26, 2007

Deadlift Monday

My lower back is taking a shit kicking. I'm working on building my posterior chain and of course I'm compensating by doing much more lower back work than I need do. I found myself doing almost straight leg deadlifts today during my deadlift session. On my third set I started to focus on pulling with my legs rather than my lower back. Here's what I did.

Deadlifts - 6 sets/5 reps/345lbs.
Lat Pull Downs - 3 sets/6 reps/175lbs, 190lbs, 220lbs.
Barbell Shrugs (with straps) - 3 sets/6 reps/315lbs, 365lbs, 365lbs.
Sit Ups - 4 sets/12, 12, 12, 8 reps.

I know things will get easier and I'm chopping at the bit to do singles. I'm not quite ready, maybe in a couple of weeks.


Friday, February 23, 2007

Squat Day

It's hard to get back into doing squats and deadlifts. Because of my surgery I haddn't trained my posterior chain in about 2 months. I have no sympathy for weak muscle groups so I'm training my squats and deadlifts as hard as ever. Today was squat day, here's what happened.

Free Squats - bar/12 reps, 135lbs/8 reps, 225lbs/6 reps.
Box Squats - 6 sets/265lbs/5 reps.
Heavy Walkouts - 455lbs, 495lbs, 545lbs.
Good Mornings - 225lbs/6 reps, 275lbs/6 reps, 275lbs/6 reps.

I was feeling saucey again after doing my main exercises so I decided to crank up the tunes and hammer out some hammer curls.

Hammer Curls - 50lbs/10 reps, 60lbs/10 reps, 70lbs/10 reps, 75lbs/8 reps.

I noticed a lot of people stop what they were doing and watch when I picked up the 75lbers.

I'm training with my new equipment, trying to get used to the way it feels. I wore my knee wraps on the 2nd and 5th sets. Now that I'm getting them figured out I love the way the wraps give me a bit more spring at the bottom of the movement. gear is fun :-)


Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Bench Training

This morning I was back to the bench. My pressing has been going great lately and I can't wait to try out my shirt again. Here's how things went today.

Bench Press - 135lbs/12 reps, 200lbs/6 reps/6 sets.
Free Dips - 4 sets/failure/6, 4, 4, 4 reps.
Scull Crushers - 4 sets/ 60, 80, 80, 100lbs/8, 8, 8, 6 reps.
Cable Extensions - 3 sets/8 reps/150lbs.
Machine Flys - 3 sets/8 reps/250lbs (stack).

After all the trap work on Monday my upper back is stiff and sore. Now after all this bench work my whole upper body is going to be feeling awesome. Friday I'll finish off the lower half.


Monday, February 19, 2007

Deadlift Training

Today was deadlift day. I was chomping at the bit all week end wanting to get back in the gym to continue my training. Here's what happened.

Sumo Deadlifts Warm Up - 135lbs/8 reps, 225lbs/6 reps.
Deadlifts - 335lbs/5 reps/6 sets.
Lat Pull Downs - 160lbs/6 reps, 185lbs/6 reps, 210lbs/6 reps.
Barbell Shrugs - 315lbs/6 reps, 335lbs/6 reps, 335lbs/6 reps.
Sit Ups - 3 sets/12 reps.

The week before I did dumbbell shrugs and I found it not heavy enough. Today barbell shrugs really hit the spot. The only weak point was my hands. Over under grip works really well for me but over hand grip really takes it's toll on my hands. Next time I'll be sure to bring my straps and really thrash my traps. Because my grips was failing I found that I work out only to about 80% potential. Next time I'll be sure to destroy myself.


Saturday, February 17, 2007

Squat Training

Friday was squat day. I've decided to do box squats instead of standard squats until I'm sure I'm 100% recovered from my surgery. It's been 2.5 months since then but I still want to be careful. Here's how it went.

Squats - 135lbs/12 reps, 225lbs/6 reps.
Box Squats - 6 sets/255lbs/5 reps.
Donkey Calf Raises - 4 sets/300lbs/6 reps.

I was drawing a blank when it came to support exercises. Since then I've done some reading and the following is what I want to do for my Squat days.

Box Squats
Heavy Walk Outs (500lbs+)
Power Good Mornings

I don't have much time for my work outs, so this should work out fine. See you Monday.


Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Bench Training

You'd think that after my traumatic bench experience I would be wary of the bench. O'contraire, I embrace the bench. Here's what happened.

Bench Press - 135lbs/8 reps, 195lbs/6 reps/6 sets.
Dips - 70lbs (assistance)/6 reps, 30lbs/6 reps, all me/6 reps, all me again/4 reps.
Super Set
Cable Extensions - 170lbs/8 reps/3 sets
Scull Crushers - 60lbs/6 reps, 80lbs/6 reps, 90lbs/6 reps.

This work out was not only fun and energetic but a great learning experience. Today I did a couple of new things.
  1. I narrowed my bench grip. With my pointer fingers on the rings I find it easier to keep my elbows in. I know this is a lighter weight and I shouldn't judge what works by this weight so I went up to 275lbs for a single and it seemed to work. The path the bar travels is in a much straighter line. Down to my upper abs then straight up over my eyes. It felt very smooth and easy. Next week I'll bring the video camera and film it to see if I'm right or full of it.
  2. For dips I used my wrist wraps. WOW!!! Usually I have problems with control when dipping. The wraps made everything more solid now I can concentrate on the movement to get a stronger bench. I bench in competition with wrist wraps any way.
  3. I haven't done scull crushers in quite some time. The new movement I'm sure will help strengthen my triceps and increase my bench.

Like I said today was an awesome work out and I'm even more motivated to get stronger.


Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Deadlift Training

Now that the "UGLY BENCH" is out of the way it's time to get down to business and train for the next competition. On Monday I eagerly did my first deadlift work out since November 2006. YIKES! Heres how things went.

Deadlifts - 135lbs/12 reps, 225lbs/6 reps, 315lbs/5 reps/6 sets.
Supported Rows - 135lbs/6 reps, 160lbs/6 reps, 180lbs/6 reps.
Super Set
Lat Pull Downs - 160lbs/6 reps, 185lbs/6 reps, 210lbs/6 reps.
Dumbbell Shrugs - 100lbsx2/8 reps/3 sets.
Sit Ups- 3 sets/12 reps.

Yes thats right, I said sit ups. I actually did some ab work. That shows just how serious I am about doing well at this next meet. I'm even going to start swimming again in order to drop some unwanted lbs. Lighter body weight means better wilks. Stay tuned for some killer work outs.


165kg Bench BOMB!!!

Everyone kept telling me, "shirt benching is very difficult", "you can't just put on a shirt and bench 400lbs". Man, did I ever learn my lesson. In practice I managed a 182.5kg two board press. The Monday before the meet I did 160kg one board press like it was nothing. So, naturally I'm thinking, "a 165kg opener is going to go up no problem". NOT!!!
Bench Shirts are very complex. I certainly need more practice to figure out all the little points when benching with a shirt. This may sound like I'm discouraged, I'm not. I have a goal of pressing 185kg (+) in a bench shirt and with time I'll figure things out and it will be no problem. In fact I'd like to bench 200kg+. This meet goes up as a learning experience. I'll take the next couple of months to train my ass off and be ready for the next meet, all three lifts.
For those who wondered how my bench actually went. Check it out at http://www.ironscene.com/ I warn you, it's not for the weak hearted. It's the ugliest bench I've ever seen. Heres the actual link.


Saturday, February 10, 2007

Competition Tomorrow

Well it's the night before the competition and I'm getting ready to bench. I've spent all week resting and right now I'm very eager to lift. A bunch of the guys from the Manitoba Powerlifting Association got together tonight and did the set up. That way we won't have any work to do before we lift. Wish me luck.


Monday, February 05, 2007

Last training Day

Tonight was my last training day before the competition. Tonight I went very low volume and only did my opener in my shirt. I'm also trying to get over a cold/flu so I need to take it easy. Here is what happened.

Bench Press - 60kg/10 reps, 100kg/6 reps, 120kg/3 reps, 140kg/1 rep(no pause)
Put the shirt on
Bench Press (1 Board) 160kg/1 rep.
Close Grip Bench - 80kg/8 reps 2 sets.

All in all a great work out. I think my technique is there for my opener 165kg. Now lets take the week off and get ready for the competition. Here is my attempts. 165kg/175kg (+2.5kg if the opener feels strong and easy, -2.5kg if the opener doesn't pop)/182.5kg (+2.5kg if the 2nd lift goes well, -2.5kg if the second is rough). I'm ready.


Saturday, February 03, 2007

Last Week

This last week has been insane. I've been busier than ever with home and work and I'm also trying to get ready for the competition on the 11th Feb. My last two training days went something like this.

Wendesday 31 Jan 2007

Squats - 135lbs/12 reps, 225lbs/6 reps, 3x(275lbs/6 reps)

Short and sweet. I only had 25 minutes so I decided to hit just the essentials.

Thursday 1 Feb 2007

Bench Press - 135lbs/12 reps, 225lbs/6 reps, 275lbs/3 reps, 295lbs/2 reps.
3 Board Bench Press - 315lbs/3 reps, 335lbs/1 rep, 355lbs/1 rep.
Close Grip Bench - 245lbs/6 reps, 245lbs/4 reps+1 then I got stuck.
Supported T Bar Rows - (all 6 reps) 90lbs, 135lbs, 180lbs, 205lbs, 180lbs, 135lbs, 90lbs.
Inclined Dumbbell Flys - 60lbs/8 reps, 80lbs/8 reps, 100lbs/5 reps.

Everything started breaking down after 315lbs 3 board press. I wanted to do three reps at 335lbs but barely managed 1 rep. 355lbs was UGLY. My elbow were out and I twisted on the bench just to get it up. YUCK! Then of course I'm almost completely spent going into close grip bench. The first set was good and solid the last was a nightmare. I stopped at 4 reps and I figured after a short break I'd finish the last two. On the second of two reps I got stuck. With no spotter I had to ask the guy benching beside me for help. A good lesson in humility.

The rest of the work out went well. I finding that my triceps are indeed my weak part of my bench and are suffering while I'm training for shirted bench press. It's going to take some time but they'll come up.