Week 27 – Day 76B

Squats:

2 x 5 x Bar
5 x 135
3 x 165
2 x 195
1 x 225
5 x 255 PR

Hit another PR.  I recorded all my lifts and from the looks of it, it seems like I’m reaching parallel on each rep.  15 more pounds and I’m going to hit the magic number:  1.5 x BW.

Press:

5 x Bar
5 x 65
5 x 90

Getting heavy.  Noticed that the reps were a bit easier when the load rested on my wrists (ouch!) rather than at the base of my hands.

Deadlift:

5 x 155
3 x 185
2 x 215
5 x 240

Still fairly easy, form looked decent on the recorded video.  Used an underhand-overhand grip.  Made the lift much easier.  Made the extended lockout hold very painful.  The bar I was using already had pretty sharp knurling so the extra grip the chalk provided really made holding the bar pretty agonizing.

Accessories:

5/3/3 x BW x Pull-ups – A bit easier than the previous pull-up session.  Probably could have cranked another rep on the first or second set.

3 x 45 sec x Prone bridge – Didn’t burn as much.  Right shoulder was burning more than the left though.  Need to make sure I’m distributing my weight equally between each arm to avoid this.

4/7/4/8/4/7/4/8 1.5:1 HIIT – Pretty easy.  Using longer strides makes the work interval much easier.

Week 27 – Day 74B

Squat:

5 x Bar
5 x 165
3 x 185
2 x 205
1 x 225
5 x 245 PR

YEAH BUDDDDDDYYYYYYYYYYYYY!!!!!!!! NEW PR!!!  Belt definitely helps tremendously.  Had a bit wider grip, I tweaked my shoulder this past saturday while boxing.

Press:

5 x 45
3 x 65
2 x 75
5 x 87.5

Still not bad.  Narrowing grip helped a lot.

Deadlift:

5 x 175
3 x 195
2 x 215
5 x 235

Still pretty easy.  Used chalk.  Alternating, overhand-underhand.

Accessories:

5/3/2 x BW x Chin-ups – Pretty hard still, but a lot easier than pull-ups on the crappy pull-up bar with weird grip positions.

3 x 45 sec. x Prone bridge – Not as hard as before.  Used my iPod to keep strict track of time passed during work and rest.

4/7/4/8/4/7/4/8 x HIIT – Going to start doing HIIT cardio again to start cutting back and aiding in getting my caloric deficit.  I feel like my metabolism has definitely slowed down and my weight isn’t moving much so the extra cardio should help.

Week 25 – Day 69B

Relatively short workout.  I’ve decided yet again to do a force deload of volume down from 3×5 to 1×5.  I’m totally breaking out of the 3-stall-deload-2-deload-drop volume scheme, but I’ve been plateauing for a number of weeks now and I’d like to see more progress.  My weight hasn’t moved, but I’m fairly satisfied sitting at ~180-182.  Aesthetically, I think I’ve developed plenty of muscle size to let me start cutting back on the cals to lower body fat for better muscle definition.

For boxing, I think I have sufficient muscle to fight and so I will begin to incorporate more explosive and anaerobic exercises (maybe even lifts?  Power cleans?) in the coming weeks.  I still want my strength gains to continue going up for as long as I can manage it.  I’m definitely looking to build up my speed and endurance and most importantly core strength.

I think a good indicator of whether or not I’m recovering fast enough is if I’m capable of finishing a workout within an hour’s time which also includes accessory work.  Anything over indicates I’m resting more frequently and for longer periods of time thereby indicating I’m not recovery quickly enough anymore.

Squat:

5 x Bar
5 x 155
3 x 175
2 x 195
5 x 220

Not too bad.  Knocked down volume to 1×5.  I want to get through my 240 plateau so, I think lowering the volume will help significantly with recovery times.  Hopefully, I won’t lose too much strength in the meantime.

Press:

5 x Bar
3 x 65
5 x 80

Felt pretty heavy.  I want to get to 115 lbs.  Also forced deload and knocked volume down to 1×5 on this lift.

Deadlift:

5 x 185
3 x 205
2 x 225
5 x 240

Back was pretty stiff and sore after picking up weights after top work weight.  My Inzer 10mm Lever Belt came in today.  I think I’ll start using it next week, but some breaking into it is needed.  I’ve got the setting for it to be fairly tight.

Accessories:

4/3/2.5 x BW Pull-ups – Really difficult, my biceps were pretty sore still from boxing.

3 x 45 sec. Prone bridge – Second set was a doozy, abs were burning all over the place.

Week 21 – Day 60A

Squats:

5 x Bar
5 x 145
3 x 175
2 x 205
3 x 5 x 240

Squats were pretty difficult in the end.   I felt very comfortable with the warm-up sets and my form felt very tight on the work sets.  Even though I finished all three sets, I think I’m going to stay on the same weight.  I leaned forward quite a bit on the last rep of the last set and did a good morning, so I definitely want to make sure I don’t go heavier without making sure my form is up to par.

Bench:

5 x Bar
5 x 85
3 x 105
2 x 125
4/4/3 x 155

Bench felt heavy.  Keeping the weight stable definitely added another dimension to the lift.  PL arch definitely helped with stabilizing the press.  Squeezing the bar also helped a lot.  I was much more conservative because I was a bit wary of not being able to finish and having the bar end up on my chest.

Rows:

5 x 95
3 x 115
2 x 135
3 x 5 x 150

Rows were pretty easy, but I think I’m beginning to jerk again.  It’s much, much easier to cheat on this lift so I think I’m going to want to definitely get ample rest between work sets and make sure there is minimal hip movement.

Accessories:

16/7/6 x BW Dips – The conservative benching I had today definitely gave me a boost on the dips.  But with that in mind, I think I’m going to start performing weighted dips, starting with 5 lbs next workout and going up by 2.5 lb increments.

3 x 45 sec. Plank – These were so so.  I noticed that my core would droop as the fatigue set in.  I made sure to keep a rigid body and avoid doing this.  It helped engage my core much more and put less strain on the lower back.

4/7/4/8 + 4/7 – Added another half round of 4/7 because I still had plenty of gas left.  My stamina was surprisingly lengthier than usual.

Week 18 – Day 51B

Squats felt unusually heavy.  First day of first deload since my volume drop to 3×5.  I definitely engaged my back, glutes and hamstrings more when I shoved my knees outward and pointed my toes out.  Press was not too bad, proper form definitely made the lift more difficult and really felt it in my shoulders.  Deadlifts were heavy as hell.  My grip was failing on my last warm-up 1 rep set.  Alternating grip was used with my right hand facing up.  I think I definitely rounded my back on the last and maybe even the second to last rep so I’m considering this as my first deadlift stall.  I’m thinking of purchasing an Inzer Forever Lever Belt.  I’m just not sure what thickness is optimal for my goals.  Accessories were pretty easy except for the pull-up.  I decided to do wide grip pull-ups instead of close-grip to emphasize work for my lats and back.  Treadmill was pretty easy.  I’m going to start doing HIIT instead of steady-state endurance work to speed up the fat loss.  Combined with my lower caloric intake, I think my sessions will start becoming tougher and tougher.  I weighed in at 175.6 today.  Hopefully the weight loss is mostly fat and not muscle.

Squats:

2 x 5 x 45
5 x 145
3 x 165
2 x 185
3 x 5 x 205

Press:

5 x 45
3 x 55
2 x 65
3 x 5 x 75

Deadlift: 

5 x 155
3 x 185
2 x 225
1 x 265
4 x 290

Accessories:

4/3/2 x Wide-grip Pull-ups
3 x 45 sec. Planks
15 min. x 5.5/5.0 spd treadmill

Week 17 – Day 48A

Pretty good workout, long, but good.  Squats were pretty damn hard, stalled pretty hard on them today despite the fact I knocked 3×5 out last A session.  I was wearing my shoes throughout the sets so this may have attributed to me stalling.  There’s quite a bit of cushioning in the shoes so I may have lost a lot of power transfer on the positive.  This hard stall was offset with a surprisingly easy 5×5 bench.  I engaged my powerlifter arch before each workset.  I noticed that I could more easily distribute the weight across my upper back when I pushed through the ground with my feet.  The bar was lowered a bit higher on my chest than usual so I was most likely flaring my elbows more than usual.  There was no unusual balancing I encountered, I felt as though both my arms were working equally and my chest being engaged more.  Rows were difficult until I adjusted my technique.  I noticed that when I pulled up that I pulled the bar at an angle.  Instead of doing this, I moved my torso more over the bar so I can pull straight up into my chest.  This helped a lot with the heavy weight.  My dips are getting stronger.  I should have rested a bit more after the first set, I still felt the fatigue from the first set on the second set.  I think once I can reach 15-20 reps on the first set, I will go ahead and move on to weighted dips.  Planks were still relatively difficult.  I think progression on this workout will be a bit slower than the reverse crunches.

Squats:

2 x 5 x Bar
5 x 175
3 x 195
2 x 215
5/3/3 x  230

Bench:

2 x 5 x Bar
5 x 75
3 x 95
2 x 115
5 x 5 x 140

Rows:

5 x 95
3 x 115
2 x 135
5 x 5 x 160

Accessories: 

12/5/7 x BW Dips
3 x 45 sec. Plank