squats. week 1 cycle 8 | Hill sprints #46

Short post since I'm out of town without a computer. Doing this from iPod. Anyway, skipped deadlifts and bench and chose to do squats since I had no chalk for deadlifts or a spotter for bench. did 365 x 10 for the final set which is what I wanted. I messed up filming as usual and can't see if my depth was any good.

Assistance work: 7 sets of front squats @ 225lbs. 3 reps per set.

Week 1 progress for squats over 8 cycles has thus far been:

  • 310x6 - cycle 1 
  • 315x7- cycle 2 
  • 325x10 - cycle 3 
  • 335x8 - cycle 4
  • 340x10 - cycle 5 
  • 350x10 - cycle 6
  • 355x10 - cycle 7
  • 365x10 - cycle 8
Goals for today:



275x5 (gym didn't have 2.5lb plates...)

Video of final set below:


Clean and Jerk. Week 1 Cycle 8 | Hill Sprints # 44

My double chin is really starting to come in nicely.

Whoops forgot to post this workout before I left for vacation:

I'm starting cycle 8 early, since I'll be unable to lift for a bit due to the upcoming holidays and travel. Anyway, today was the c&j. The final weight for today was 205lbs, a weight I've seen a few times over the last eight cycles (getting 205 x 5, 205 x 6, and  205 x 8). Well, since I lifted 207.5 x 9 last cycle, I knew that I should at least get 10 today. WELL I GOT 11 OKAY!? GET OFF MY BACK. Gawl.

Goals for today:




Assistance work.

I was tired so I cut the volume for chins in half: 5 sets of 6 reps with +25lbs
Standing overhead press: 135lbs for 5 sets of 5
Abhweel: 5 sets of 6.

Progress on week-1 clean and jerks over the last 8 cycles has thus far been:

Cycle 1: 175x8
Cycle 2: 180x8
Cycle 3: 185x9
Cycle 4: 185x10
Cycle 5: 190x10
Cycle 6: 195x10
Cycle 7: 200x9
Cycle 8: 205x11 (+30lbs and +3 reps)

Another way to look at the progress is to compare my first c&j workout (175 x 8) to my last week-3 c&j workout (220x7). Damn near 50lbs added to c&j since beginning 5/3/1.

Video of final set below:


Squats. Week 3 Cycle 7.

Squats still ugly as sin, but progressing nonetheless.

Momentous day for me. Today marks the end of cycle 7 and I knew I had the chance to make it special (you'll see why below). Despite only a few hours of sleep, my warm-ups felt great, my first two working sets felt great, and I didn't have the usual feeling of dread when getting under the bar. I was excited. I nailed the final set and now my squat matches what my deadlift was when I started 5/3/1: 400 x 7. Holler. Another way to put this into perspective is that a year ago, almost to the day, I did my first powerlifting competition in which my final squat was 390lbs. This is progress.

Week 3 squat progress of 7 cycles thus far has been:

cycle 1: 345x4
cycle 2: 355x5
cycle 3: 365x6
cycle 4: 370x6
cycle 5: 380x7
cycle6: 390x6
cycle7: 400x7

Goals for today:




Assistance work:
  • 5 sets of front squats: 3 reps at 225lbs
  • 5 sets of muscle ups: 3,3,3,4,3 reps. No chalk, this felt dangerous w/o chalk, so I kept the reps to a minimum.

Video of final set below:


Hill Sprints #43 | Bench (prescribed reps only). Week 3 Cycle 7

Today is the last day that I'll be hitting only the prescribed reps for bench. Next cycle I'll be going back to attempting rep records.

Goals for today:



same as above

Assistance work:

  • 5 sets of 10 reps of 1-arm dumbbell rows @ 100lbs
  • 5 sets of 10 reps of barbell bench @135lbs
I'll be back Saturday with a real squat workout. 


Deadlifts. Week 3 Cycle 7.

I lift in a bar from the 80s.

Grip failed me today. It failed on my First set of 355 (pre-chalk) and on my last set of 455lbs. Anyway, Today's final set called for 450lbs, which marks the +50lbs on weight added to deadlifts since I started 5/3/1. Unfortunately, my gym has these comically large clown plates that take up too much room on the bar so I couldn't actually fit all the little plates it takes to get to 450lbs and I had to go up to 455. Also, I blew it with the recording again today since I got chalk all over the lens. Speaking of chalk, I was told (after 6 months of lifting at this gym) that I'm not allowed to use it anymore. Time to quit my membership there.

Assistance work:

  • 5 sets of weighted (+45lbs) wide grip pull-ups: 6, 6, 6, 6, 5 reps
  • 5 sets of ab-wheel. 

Goals for today:




Progress on week 3 deadlifts after 7 cycles thus far has been:

  • Cycle 1: 400x7
  • Cycle 2: 405x10
  • Cycle 3: 415x10
  • Cycle 4: 425x10
  • Cycle 5: 430x11
  • Cycle 6: 440x10 
  • Cycle 7: 455x10

Video of final set below:


Clean and Jerk. Week 3 Cycle 7

No hair  = more aerodynamic 
The clean and jerk begins the final week of cycle 7. The weight for my final set ended up calculating to the exact same weight (220lbs) as last month, but that's okay, just meant I had to beat the reps from last time (6). I did just that and left a few in the tank.

Assistance work is also coming back to normal levels:

  • 5 sets of 10 reps of weighted chins (+25 lbs)
  • My shoulder still hurts, and I keep agitating it doing hill sprints, so I avoided the dips and did 5 sets of 5 military presses (135lbs). These were easy. My shoulder only hurts in dip position, not on bench of ohp, which is nice. 

Goals for today:




Progress on week 3 clean and jerks over 7 cycles has thus far been:

Cycle 1: 195 x 5
Cycle 2: 200 x 6
Cycle 3: 205 x 5
Cycle 4: 210 x 4
Cycle 5: 215 x 5
Cycle 6: 220 x 6
Cycle 7: 220 x 7 (this set done more quickly than last cycle's, too)

Video of final set below:


Squats. Week 2 Cycle 7 | Hill Sprints # 42

Wanted to get at least something worthwhile on camera.
Also, my hair is gone
Today was good. Squats called for a final weight of 375lbs. Last month was 370 x 8, so again I wanted 8 reps today. Unfortunately, I forgot to wear my converse (flat soled shoes) and my first two sets felt terrible, so I went barefoot for my final set. It felt a little awkward at first, especially with sweaty feet, but after the second rep it felt awesome. I got the 8 reps with at least one or two left in the tank. I will be going barefoot again in the future, for sure.

Unfortunately I continue to suck at recording my lifts and only managed to get the weights in frame. Because of this recording failure I decided to go 'heavy' on my front squats to at least get something on camera. Last time I went heavy on front squats I put up 300lbs, so I figured I'd try for 3 plates today. It went up ugly, but felt easy.

Goals for today:




Week 2 progress on squats for 7 cycles has thus far been:

  • Cycle 1: 330x4
  • Cycle 2: 335x5
  • Cycle 3: 345x7
  • Cycle 4: 350x8
  • Cycle 5: 360x8
  • Cycle 6: 370x8
  • Cycle 7: 375x8

Big week for squats next week when I leave behind the 300's and go for my first 400lb squat set. 

Assistance work was short today as I had to leave the gym early. I just did a few sets of front squats: 135x2, 225x2, 275x1, 315x1, 225x3, 225x3, 225x3.

Video of 315 front squat:

Video of final set (pointless to watch, really) below:


Bench. Week 2 Cycle 7 | Hill Sprints # 41

Today was easy since I only went in and did the prescribed reps. My bench has somewhat stalled, so I'm seeing if just hitting the required reps for the next two bench workouts will jump start things a bit.

Goals for today:



Same as above.

Assistance work: I cut the weight and volume quite a bit.

  • DB rows with 75lbs for 5 sets of 10. 
  • Flat bench 135 for 5 sets of 5.  

This took all of 5 minutes.

I'll be back Wednesday with a real squat workout.


Deadlifts. Week 2 Cycle 7 | Hill Sprints # 40

Not much to say other than that today was good: I hit the reps I wanted (13) and my assistance work is on the rebound. On an unrelated note, I remember when today's final weight (425lbs) was my max three years ago. Woo.

  • Assistance work: 5 sets of weighted (+45lbs) wide grip pull-ups for: 7, 7, 5, 5, 5 reps (better than last time!). 
  • Ab wheel 5 sets of 8. 

Goals for today:




Week 2 deadlifts over 7 cycles has thus far been:

Cycle 1 Week 2: 375x11
Cycle 2 Week 2: 385x11
Cycle 3 Week 2: 395x12
Cycle 4 Week 2: 400x13
Cycle 5 Week 2: 410x13
Cycle 6 Week 2: 415x13
Cycle 7 Week 2: 425x13 (+50lbs and +2 reps)

Video of final set below:


Clean and Jerk. Week 2 Cycle 7

Loaded the bar like I loaded my socks. 
Today's numbers called for a final set of 210lbs. The last time I did this weight was in week 3 cycle 4, in which I did 4 reps. Now last week I did 200 x 9 and the week before that 220 x 6, so I knew I wanted to be somewhere between 7-8 reps for today.  Unfortunately for me, I am not too smart, and I loaded the bar incorrectly. I  forgot to place a 2.5lb'er on on side, putting the weight at 207.5lbs. Still I did 9 reps, which matches last week's reps at 200 lbs. Can't complain about that.

Goals for today:




Assistance work is still off, but better than last time. I'm also still avoiding weighted dips since my shoulder still hurts (where my clavicle ends).
  • Standing OHP: 5 sets at 135lbs for: 6, 6, 6, 5, 5 reps. (none of these are to failure)
  • Weighted (+25lbs) chin-ups for 4 sets at: 10, 10, 10, 7. One un-weighted set for 5 reps. 
I'll keep taking it somewhat easy on assistance work and hopefully it will continue to improve back to where it was before I got sick.

Week 2 clean and jerks for seven cycles thus far have been:

cycle 1: 185x7
cycle 2: 190x7
cycle 3: 195x6
cycle 4: 200x7
cycle 5: 205x6
cycle 6: 205x8 
cycle 7: 207.5x9

Video of final set below: