Starting Strength #19A

Weight: 218.5

Squats:  2x5xBar / 5×105 / 3×160 / 2×215 / 5×270 / 2x5x245

Need to make sure weight is on the midfoot. I was leaning forward a little on the earlier reps. Mental cue is to “sit back” and get “knees out” set early. Also need to make sure I don’t do such a slow and controlled eccentric descent, but also not bomb out to the bottom. Things to remember: “knees out”, “sit back”, “chin down”, “chest up”, “bounce”

Bench:   2x5xBar / 3×75 / 2×105 / 2×135 / 5×150 – 4×150 / 5×135

Arms fatigued out pretty hard on the second set. Switched to back-off set for the 3rd set. Again my right arm felt like it was pressing harder than my left. Need to self-correct this and make sure I focus on it during the warmups. Following bench sessions will now incorporate back-off sets.

Deadlift:  2×5×135 / 3×200 / 2×260 / 5×310

Switched back to hook grip. I did alternating grip the previous session, but it didn’t work out too well. The deadlift felt stronger today. Three plates next session!

Starting Strenth #18B

Weight: 218.5

Squats:  2x5xBar / 5×105 / 3×155 / 2×210 / 5×265 / 2x5x235

Press:   2x5xBar / 3×50 / 2×60 / 1×75 / 3x5x92.5

Deadlift:  2×5×135 / 3×195 / 2×255 / 5×305


Starting Strength #15A

It’s been…12 days since my last session. The laziness and hesitance to hit the gym was definitely wearing on me. Finally got my butt into the gym. It turned out to be a pretty great session!

Weight: 215.2

Squats:  2x5xBar / 5×100 / 3×150 / 2×200 / 2x5x250 / 5×225

First set was already tough on this. Rested for about 7 minutes after. Second set was a grinder. And per the coach’s suggestion, I did a back off set of 10% off the top weight so 250 – 25 = 225 lbs. For all the following squat in each session I’m going to be doing 1 set of the top weight then 2 back off sets of 10% subtracted off the top weight.

Bench:   2x5xBar / 3×70 / 2×95 / 3x5x140

These felt pretty good. It felt like I had good control of the bar. Coach indicated that I shouldn’t be bouncing the bar off the chest and instead just lightly touching it. He also noticed that I’m getting into the habit of pushing the bar away from chest (towards my feet) when I’m pressing the bar up. Cue to remember is to press the bar up towards the top of my head.

Deadlift:  2×5×135 / 3×185 / 2×245 / 5×290

Surprisingly pretty easy today. Coach indicated to make sure I don’t bounce the bar off the shins on the way up and keep the bar against them as I go up. Hook grip didn’t hurt much. I feel like it’s 50/50 with the hook grip.

Starting Strength #13A

So it’s been a whole week since I injured my back. Strangely, it recovered fairly quickly. By the next day, I was mobile and able to get up and walk around. Setup an appointment with a doctor. I told my coach I was seeing a doctor and seemed a bit disappointed. I get where he’s coming from. I tweaked my back a couple years ago doing silly plyometric exercises and the doctor I saw back then told me to stop squatting. Suffice it to say, I’m probably going to get the same answer this time around. I’m more interested in seeing if I’ve actually herniated a disc which is a more serious injury. Given that I’ve recovered so quickly and don’t have any pain anymore, I’m thinking I probably don’t have a herniated disc. But…we’ll see.

Weight: 213.13

Squats:  3x5xBar / 5×95 / 3×140 / 2×190 / 3x5x240

First 2 sets weren’t too bad. I rested 6 minutes after the 1st set then 7 minutes after the second. Last set, last two reps were grinders. Bar still moved pretty quickly once I got past the sticking point.

Bench:   3x5xBar / 3×65 / 2×95 / 3x5x135

These felt strong today. It’s strange the second set always seems harder than the top set. Bar moved pretty fast for all three sets. Can’t complain.

Deadlift:  2×5×125 / 3×185 / 2×235 / 5×280

Top set felt pretty damn heavy today. I need to pay more attention to detail on properly setting the hook grip. Felt like I messed up the grip today and I definitely paid the price in pain. Coach said they looked good though so *shrug*.

Starting Strength #12B

Today was interesting.

Somehow I tweaked something in my lower back (right side) the night before unpacking my luggage from the weekend trip. I didn’t think much of it. Come the workout and my lower back feels like it’s very inflamed. Squatting just the bar without the belt felt very uncomfortable. It felt like there was a ton of pressure where I had tweaked my back. I couldn’t lift my right leg at all.

I consulted the coach and recommended I squat with the belt. To be honest, I was pretty skeptical it would help, but miraculously it made about 80% of the pain go away. I was able to work through the pain for all the lifts.

BUT, once I came home, I pretty much couldn’t walk or sit without feeling very uncomfortable. I lay down for the rest of the night after dinner. I’m hoping that it’s not a herniated disc and I don’t need surgery to remedy it.

Weight: 215.89

Squats:  3x5xBar / 3×90 / 3×140 / 2×185 / 3x5x235

It’s been a week since my last workout. These felt relatively quick, especially the earlier sets. These felt easier compared to the last workout. I was feeling pretty burnt out at the end of the previous workout. The week long rest was definitely much needed.

Press:   3x5xBar / 3×60 / 2×75 / 3-4-3×90

Stalled hard on these. Left arm felt like it was lagging behind the right. Coach indicated that I need to press the bar over my head and not away from the face. The moment arm is probably what was causing me to gas out since I didn’t get my head underneath the bar fast enough. Coach recommended I back off to 87.5 lbs and to go up in 2.5 lb increments.

Deadlift:  5×135 / 3×150 / 2×190 / 5×275

Deadlifts felt relatively easy. Used hook grip for all the sets. It is getting easier to use the hook grip; less pain overall. Coach indicated that my last rep of the top set, I was leaning forward a little. Cue to keep in mind is to stay off the toes and push legs through the floor.