5/3/1 – C1W2 – Bench

Bench:  5×55 + 5×70 + 5×80 + 3×95 + 3×110 + 3×125
BBB Press:  5x10x45
DB Rows:  5x10x35
BB Curls:  3x10x40
Face Pulls:  3x10x25
Tricep Pushdowns:  3x10x25

I might go until failure on the top set for a while on the bench and press until things get heavy.  Face pulls and tricep pushdowns are still pretty light.

Week7 – Day18A – Ego Part Deux

Weight:  181.2
Duration:  11:25pm – 12:25pm ~ 1 hour

Squats:  3x5xBar + 5×85 + 3×95 + 3×115 + 5x5x135

Not bad, felt some strain on the lower back.  Stance was probably a bit too wide, was going a bit lower than parallel causing a greater degree of arch in the low back since I was keeping my torso up right.

Bench:  3x5xBar + 2x5x65 + 5x5x85

Shakey, but not as heavy as last time.  I think I performed the best rep on the last rep of the last set.  I’m noticing that I’m shrugging considerably more on my right shoulder vs my left shoulder under load.

Rows:  5×65 + 5×85 + 5x5x100

Made sure to maintain extremely strict form on these.  In other words, no jerking of the bar up and cheating using momentum.  This involved pretty much a whole body contraction, core, glutes, upper back and bracing before every rep.  I always feel my legs working during these, not sure if this is expected or not.  Banged the bar on the bottom of my left knee cap on one rep.  Definitely not a pleasant feeling.


Preacher BB Curls:  10×40
Preacher EZ Bar Curls:  10×40
Incline DB Press:  10×30
Standing BB Curl:  10×40
DB Bench Press:  10×35
Tricep Extensions:  10×40
Tricep Pushdown:  20×25

Dumbbell bench pressing is bothersome to my right shoulder the less I tuck my elbows.  Pretty much did tucked pressing on these.  I think I might go with pushups over these next time.  The incline dumbbell press isn’t too bad, there’s less strain on the shoulder doing them so I’ll keep doing them.

Week5 – Day12A

Squats:  3x5xBar + 5×65 + 3×75 + 3×85 + 5x5x100
Bench:  3x5xBar + 5x5x70
Rows:  5x5x85

Preacher EZ Bar Curls:  10×40
Tricep Pushdown:  20×30
Standing BB Curl:  10×30
Tricep Extensions:  10×30
Seated DB Curls:  10×20
Tricep Rope Pulldown:  10×25

Duration:  1 hour

Pretty good workout.  The lifts all felt light!  I was expecting the Squats to feel a bit heavier, but it was pretty easy peasy!  Bench wasn’t bad, got a case of the shakes in the arms under load.  Although, I’m not sure if my form is all there with the bench.  Rows were great, explosive and tight form.  The accessories were pretty good.  Thinking of subbing out some tricep isolation for some chest isolation on A day.  Did the overhead tricep extensions again today.  I think I’m feeling pretty confident with my shoulder so I’m going to hold on to these and keep doing them, making sure when I up the weight that I be careful.  Lowering the dumbbell back down did feel like my shoulder was a bit vulnerable.

Week4 – Day9B

Squats:  3x5xBar + 3×65 + 5x5x85
Seated Plate Raises:  3x10x25
Seated Lateral Raise:  8×15 + 2x10x10
Seated DB Shrug + Clean + Half Press:  8×15 + 2x10x10
Deadlift:  5×95 + 3×115 + 5×135

Standing BB Curls:  10×30
Preacher EZ Bar Curls:  
Standing DB Curls:  10×20
Tricep Pushdown:  2x15x30
Tricep Rope Pulldown:  10×30

Day 9?  Thought it was day 10?  A nope.  Unfortunately, last Friday my company had its annual luncheon event spanning an unnecessary 5 hours from 12:30pm to 5:00pm.  I probably could have opted to go super early in the morning, but I most likely wouldn’t have been able to get any work done since the day ended early at 12:30pm.  Stronglifts guidelines by Mehdi are pretty strict and I honestly do respect that.  Missing 1 workout right now, I think, will be ok and won’t be affecting me much with the lighter weights.  Down the line, however, with my lifting history in mind, I know I have the tendency to start becoming inconsistent as I start failing on lifts a lot.  The combination of fatigue and disappointment are big players on discouraging me from wanting to lift at these later stages.  It’s also at these limits that the chances of injuring myself is all the more possible.  Having the right state of mind and preparation for PR lifts is crucial to remaining injury free and getting through these walls.  In conclusion:  1) don’t make missed workout sessions a habit, 2) easy days do not equal I-can-skip-it-day.

So, workout summary for today:  solid.  Left work earlier today, around 10:50, compared to the usual 11:45 departure.  I managed to swing back to work around 12:20 which was nice.  Did the usual leg swings, static squat stretches and right shoulder band work.  I’m thinking of upping the band resistance for one of the strengthening exercises (green to blue)- it’s getting too easy.  The legs felt very loose today which was nice.  Still using high bar position.  Shoulder is getting better, will start narrowing grip and inching the bar position down lower from the traps down to the shoulder blades.  I’m starting to breath a little harder much sooner with the weights going up.  I’m going to full 30 second rests between sets now.  Shoulder shocker sets weren’t too bad.  I think it felt ever so slightly easier today.  Someone was using the 10lb dumbbells so I was doing the lateral raises and shrug-clean-half-presses with a 10lb plate.  Deadlifts were pretty good, heaviness is getting there.

Week3 – Day8B

Squats:  3x5xBar + 3×65 + 5x5x75
Seated Plate Raises:  3x10x25
Seated Lateral Raise:  3x10x10
Seated DB Shrug + Clean + Half Press:  3x10x10
Deadlift:  5×95 + 5×125

Standing BB Curls:  10×30
Preacher EZ Bar Curls:  
Tricep Pushdown:  20×25 + 20×30

Tired.  I’m not sure if it’s the lack of sleep or the workout, but I am pretty drowsy typing this right meow.  Didn’t get home until 11:00pm last night and was up until 1:00am for a 6:00am wake-up.  Procrastinating to wash dirty dishes and cooking something up real quick for a very late dinner kept me up.  But, gotta keep chuggin’ along.

Squats were interesting today.  I was trying to pay particular attention to my left knee.  Even when doing the static squat stretches, I felt like my left knee wasn’t where it was supposed to be when I was in the hole.  Typical of people new to squatting is, once the weight gets heavy, their knees will buckle inwards because the body is trying to compensate by falling back on the quads.  I don’t think I have this issue, although I do think that my knee is not in line with my foot when I’m in the hole.  I’ve noticed this subtlety before when I was focused on form, but never really took any action on it.  A previous consultation from an orthopedic doctor evaluated my left knee as potentially having a partial meniscus tear.  My left knee has felt, for lack of a better word…strange for some time now and the tear may or may not be attributing to that feeling.  It’s not a painful sensation, but rather a feeling of instability.  I don’t consciously think about it, but I do feel that even something simple like walking sometimes doesn’t feel normal.  Anyhow, picture taking is in order!  Must find out what’s going on.  End rant on squats.

Shoulder shocker sets were preeeeetty brutal.  I don’t know why they were so difficult today.  The first time I did the shoulder shocker routine, it was a breeze!  Deadlifts were pretty easy.  Weight is going up fast.  I forgot how aggressive SL is on the deadlift weight progression, but 10 lbs increase every workout is definitely adding up fast.  I’ll be pulling with 45 plates next B day session, woot!

Finished off the session with some curling and tricep push downs.  I’ve heard both arguments of straight bar vs. EZ bar curling for optimal bicep isolation.  And so to cover all grounds, I did 1 set straight bar and 1 set EZ bar, no brainer there!  The 40lb preacher curls were grinders, but still finished them off.  By way of triceps isolation, I did two high (20) rep tricep pushdown sets, the first with 25lbs the second with 30lbs.   The second set was killer.  I need to find something else I could do in addition to the triceps pushdown.   Dips are the first thing that come to mind, but I’m not doing them until I’m confident with my shoulder so that’s off the table.  In the past, I’ve also done overhead triceps extensions which did wonders for targeting the triceps, but anything overhead is a no no, so that’s also off the table.  So, a little research is in store for shoulder friendly exercises to isolate the triceps.

Week1 – Day2B

Squats:  5×5×50
Incline DB Press:  3x20x20
Tricep Pushdown:  3x15x40
Preacher Curls:  2x10x25 + 8×35
Deadlift:  5×95

Not a bad day.  I took a bit longer today because…I didn’t prepare and had no clue at all what to do in place of overhead presses.  Warmed up with some leg swings and static squat stretches.  I also did some band work for the right shoulder:  band pull-downs (blue), external lateral rotation (blue), internal lateral rotation (blue), rear deltoid raise (green).  I’ll have to do some research and figure out a circuit of band shoulder exercises I can do, probably before I head for the gym.  In addition, I will should probably look for some specific weighted shoulder exercises to strengthen the shoulder a bit more.

Week 41 – 5/3/1 – Day 131

Cycle #4
Week 2 Day 3

Warm-up Bench:  5×70, 3×85, 3×105
5/3/1 Bench:  
5×120, 5×135, 6×155
Dips:  5/5/4
DB Fly: 4x12x15lb
Tricep Extensions:  
DB Bench:  
3x12x30lb + 12x25lb
Conditioning:  3.0 spd walk 1mile

Bench was pretty good.  Warm-up sets and first two core sets were fairly easy.  Grinded out the 6th rep, but my form was definitely not on par.  Felt like my right arm/lats were working harder than my left.  Managed to get some conditioning in and did about 20 minutes of 3.0 spd walking for 1 mile.