Archive for November, 2014


Cut Day 1

May as well get an early jump on my New Years Resolution!  Welcome to the cut.  I am also trying out some new protocol:  RPE (Rate of Perceived Exertion) as a way to measure my level of fatigue against bar speed when I am powerlifting.  If you want to know more about RPE, I suggest reading Mike Tuchscherer’s Reactive Training Manual!

 

For now, just know:

RPE7 its really fast, like an easy opener

RPE8 I DEFINITELY have 2 more reps left in me

RPE8.5 MAYBE 2 more reps

RPE9 DEFINITELY 1 more rep

RPE9.5 MAYBE 1 more rep

RPE10 no way I can do another rep

 

went down to the fancy office gym on Sunday, because I knew:

a. it would be empty
b. it has microplates

High Bar Squats (Romaleos, SBDs)

70 x 5 (narrow stance, ATG, minimal rest – change weight and go again)
120 x 5
165 x 3
190 x 2 (switched to medium stance and to just below parallel)
215 x 1
237 x 8 @RPE<8 (belt on, increased rest to 3 min)
225 x 6 @RPE8
225 x 6 @RPE8
225 x 6 @RPE8.5

notes: This is a weight reset, so no PRs for me for a while. I consider it a chance to burn some calories and work on my form. Hopefully by the time my cut is winding down, I will be back up to the more challenging weights.

First day ever trying to apply this RPE stuff. I felt tired but the bar was moving quickly, so I marked the RPE as I did. I should have been doing an RPE of 9, but my mind wanted me to stop before my body did. Kinda wussed out. I am just so used to NOT going to failure on light weights that even going close to failure feels like a mental barrier. I might also have gotten way too used to doing sets of less than 5 on my 5/3/1 program.

I will get the hang of this RPE stuff sooner or later.

Bench Press

45 x 5 (minimal rest, change weight and go again, Spoto)
80 x 5
110 x 3
125 x 2
140 x 1
157 x 9 @RPE<8 (changed to paused reps, increased rest to 2 min)
145 x 6 @RPE<8
145 x 6 @RPE<8
145 x 6 @RPE8
145 x 6 @RPE<8
145 x 6 @RPE8

notes: After 5 backoff sets, I gave up out of boredom. I could be there all day repping out 145 with 2 min rests. I didn’t get the math wrong, it is just that my bench sucks, and once you reset, it becomes too easy. Oh well… calories.

Deadlift (barefoot)

90 x 5 (minimal rest, conventional grip)
150 x 5
210 x 3
240 x 2
270 x 1
(changed to crossgrip, put on belt)
302 x 8 @RPE8 (rest went up to 3 min)
295 x 6 @RPE<8
295 x 6 @RPE8
295 x 6 @RPE8

notes: At this point I realized we had crossed the 2 hour mark and I had Xmas errands to run, so I packed it in and took off.

Eh… I am so used to the heavy stuff that this felt RATHER like a deload.  But once I am deep in the cut, I am sure this workout will flatten me, lol.

24/27 Everything

I was feeling salty today, so I did 2 workouts: one in the AM, one in the PM

Was in the office gym by 7:30, ready to go.

Week 24/27 OHP – AM Workout

OHP (no rest b/w sets, cleaned cambered bar from floor to start each set)

60 x 5 Superset with Over & Backs w light band
75 x 5 / Over&Backs
85 x 5 / Over&Backs

110 x 5 / Superset with Free Cable Pulldowns 115 x 5
125 x 3 / 115 x 5

140 x 10 (stopped supersets, increased rest to 2 min, elbow sleeves came on)

150 x 1
165 x 1
180 x 1 Weight PR!!

notes: Another small breakthrough on the strict press, yay!!!

Bench Press (no rest b/w sets)

bar x 10
95 x 5
115 x 3
135 x 1
160 x 1
185 x 1 (increased rest to 30 seconds, elbow sleeves came on)

200 x 1
200 x 1
200 x 1
200 x 1
200 x 1

notes: After that, headed back to my desk to do some work.

24/27 Squats – PM Workout

High Bar Squats(SBDs and Romaleos on, 30s rest b/w sets at the start)

135 x 5 (narrowstance, aim for ATG)
165 x 5 (narrow, ATG)
205 x 5 (switched to medium stance and aimed for parallel, increased rest to 60-90 s)
250 x 5 (belt came on)
280 x 3
315 x 5

notes: We had gotten started late and I was pretty squeezed for time, so no Joker sets.

Deadlifts (barefoot, 30s rest at start)

160 x 5 (conventional grip)
200 x 3
235 x 3
275 x 1
315 x 1 (belt on, switched to crossgrip)
355 x 1 (rest increased to 60s)
395 x 1
395 x 1
395 x 1
395 x 1
395 x 1

notes: And that was that! Headed home. 2 solid workouts today, and an OHP PR! Not a bad day

24/27 Extra

OK, escape from the office mid-day GPP

Wanted to do what I did last week, but the cables were busy, so I did DB Rows instead.

1 Arm DB Rows (30s rest between sets, left side for 7 sets, then repeat same reps on right side)

100 x 8
100 x 9
100 x 8
100 x 6
100 x 6
100 x 6
100 x 4

notes: I started with my left, which is my weaker side. My right side could have done more reps, but F it, I kept it symmetrical. Most gyms I go to don’t go higher than 100 lb DBs anyways, so no rush

Abs: Straight Leg Raises (30s rests)

12, 12, 12, 12, 12, 12, 12

notes: nice and slow and controlled, but my low back was tired after rows, so I kept my hands under the small of my back.

DB Hammer Curls (30s rests)

40s x 10
40s x 12
40s x 8
40s x 7
40s x 6
40s x 8
40s x 8

notes: upped the rest from last week. On sets 6 and 7, I allowed myself to put some English into it so I could burn out whatever fibers I had left.

cardio 15 min LISS elliptical, heavy resistance

And then back to work.

24/27 Chest

Today was rough. I had to write a French test this morning (if I want to keep my cushy govt job), so I was cramming ALL weekend. Tons of crap, all those verb tenses. Couldn’t sleep all night last night, got maybe 2 hours tops. Just anxious to get it over with. Did the exam today, now I wait for the results…

But even sleep-deprived, I did not want to miss my workout. So I put on my big boy pants and showed up for an evening workout w the trainer.

warm-up: nada

Bench Press (superset w other exercises until AMRAP set)

80 x 5 / 8 Over & Backs w the heavy band (Spoto Presses, no rest between sets)
100 x 5 / over&backs
120 x 5 / over&backs
150 x 5 / widegrip pulldowns 12 plates x 5
170 x 3 / 14 plates x 5
190 x 7 (put on elbow sleeves, touch n go reps, increased rest to 2 min)
210 x 1 (paused rep)
230 x 1 (paused)
250 x FAIL

notes: I went for the 3rd Joker Set and controlled the descent but couldn’t fully clear the bottom of the ROM. I knew it was coming; I usually crap out around the 3rd Joker Set of Bench, the AMRAP 190 set felt stiff, and the 230 rep slowed down at the top. I wish bench would blow up already, I feel like a breakthrough is on the horizon, I just can’t quite get it.

I will say that taking the Spoto Presses past the warmup sets and into the main sets has paid off. Spoto’ing 85% of my Training Max feels really good.

OHP

60 x 5 (no rest b/w sets)
75 x 3
85 x 3
100 x 1
115 x 1
135 x 1
145 x 1 (increased rest to 60 sec)
145 x 1 (put on elbow sleeves)
145 x 1
145 x 1
145 x 1

notes: The first 145 set moved slow, so I put on the sleeves and it seemed to do the trick, if nothing else as a cue to remind me to stay tense as I unrack the bar. If I try to do 145 from a dead stop and do it strict, it ain’t happening. I need to unrack it and get fired up as I unrack it and keep the shoulders engaged from the start.

Not a horrible workout for less than optimal conditions, bombed out and depleted as I was. Told cardio to F off and came home to go stream the Walking Dead ep I missed last night

24/27 Back

Starting to the see the light at the end of the tunnel! The end is still far off though.

Went to the gym at 9 AM with a lady friend for some liftin. Full credit to her for really enjoying deadlifts and squats, especially together – its a very draining workout. We traded sets, so when I was done my weight, we loaded her weight, she went, loaded my weight, I went, etc. Essentially, it was too much rest at the start, but rests were almost too short when it got busy. Oh well.

warm-up: none, lol lazy

Deadlift (barefoot, traded sets with my friend)

160 x 5 (double overhand)
205 x 5
235 x 5
295 x 5 (switched to crossgrip, added belt)
335 x 3
375 x 5

notes: I would have gladly done more sets, but we were squeezed for time (she only had an hour, then had to meet her husband for brunch). Her top set was 245 for 4, she weighs about 180. Pretty strong chick.

Squats (Romaleos, SBDs, traded sets until top sets)

135 x 5
165 x 3
205 x 3
245 x 1 (put on belt)
280 x 1

notes: At this point, she left to go do cardio. I kept squatting. She didn’t want to go heavy on squats after heavy deadlifts, so her top set was 170 for 4, then did a backoff set of 135 for 10.

(alone now, rests kept at 90 sec)

330 x 1
330 x 1
330 x 1
330 x 1
330 x 1

notes: I had to get back to studying for my French test, so I packed up my stuff and came back home. Short and sweet.

23/27 Shoulders

Have been studying French all day, but had to take a break from studying to get some physical activity in, just to stay sane.

OHP

65 x 5 /SS w over&backs (minimum rest between supersets)

80 x 5 / over&backs

95 x 5 / over&backs

110 x 3 / SS w Widegrip Pulldowns 150 x 5 (upped rest between supersets to 30-45 sec)

130 x 3 / 150 x 5

144 x 8 (elbow sleeves on, upped rest to 2 min)

159 x 3

179 x Push Press for 1

notes: Bar was moving quickly in the AMRAP set so went for Joker sets. I was working with a mix of kilo plates and pound plates, hence the weird numbers. 179 would have been a PR, but I couldn’t do a strict one, so I settled for a push press, and then called it there.

I needed to get back to studying so I did away with the supersets starting with the AMRAP set, and just did straight sets from then on.

Bench Press (Spoto Press style until indicated)

bar x 10 (minimal rest)

95 x 3

115 x 1 REST x 3 (did one rep, reracked it to fix grip, then did 3 more)

135 x 1

185 x 1 (switched from Spoto to paused rep, elbow sleeves came on, rest went up to 60-90 seconds)

200 x 1

200 x 1

200 x 1

200 x 1

200 x 1

And that was it! No need to go too crazy, I have another workout tomorrow morning, and lots of chitty French to cram into my brain.

23/27 Legs

Week 23/27 Squats

warm-up: none – running late, got right to it

Squats (Romaleos, SBDs)

135 x 5 (narrow stance, go ATG, no rest)
165 x 3 (narrow stance, ATG, took a brief bio break)
200 x 5 (changed to med stance, upped rest to 60 sec)
230 x 3 (added belt)
265 x 3
295 x 5

notes: The 295 AMRAP set, the bar was moving fine, but I was starting to lose core tightness and lean forward a bit, so stopped at rep 5.

330 x 1 (rest increased to 90 sec)
365 x 1 (trainer touched bar)

notes: Bar Speed slowed down a lot on the 365 set. I could have grinded it out, but my trainer touched the bar to help me, so I called it there and moved on to Deadlifts. She didn’t take it away from me or anything, but it was slowing down anyways, so F it.

Deadlift (barefoot)

160 x 5 (double overhand, no rest)
200 x 3
235 x 3
275 x 1 (rest kept low, under 30 sec)
315 x 1 (changed to crossgrip)
355 x 1 (beltless PR)
395 x 1 (belt went on, increased rest to 60 sec)
395 x 1
395 x 1
395 x 1
395 x 1

notes: since I had reset the weight, knew there would be no weight PRs or anything, so I decided to go for a beltless PR just to make myself feel better

post-workout: 20 min LISS on the elliptical

23/27 Extra

Well I had nothing planned, but got bored, so went to do some GPP while at work

Kind of an FST-7 style workout. Been doing so many presses this week, decided I needed to pull for a bit.

Widegrip Cable Rows (30s rest between sets)

115 x 12
115 x 12
115 x 10
115 x 10
115 x 8
115 x 9
115 x 7
115 x 6

notes: its a heavy-ass cable machine, I always have to dial down the weights on this one.

Abs: Straight Leg Raises (30s rests)

12, 12, 12, 12, 12, 10, 10

DB Hammer Curls (20-25s rests)

40s x 10
40s x 10
40s x 8
40s x 7
40s x 7
40s x 5.5 (so close!)
40s x 6

cardio 15 min LISS elliptical, heavy resistance

I decided to do LISS so I could fukk around on my blackberry and do work at the same time.

23/27 Chest

WTH is wrong with me? sleep was all messed up AND I pooped a demonchild right before this session too. ruined my trainer’s studio Good thing she has a sense of humour… she just stood there stuffing her face with a Quest bar, mumbling “it smells like lavender and fukkinchit” (I sprayed, it did nothing)

Bench Press (superset w other exercises until AMRAP set)

60 x 5 / 8 Over & Backs w the heavy band (no rest between sets)
80 x 5 / over&backs
100 x 5 / over&backs
120 x 5 / over&backs
140 x 3 / Widegrip Cable Rows – 14 plates x 5
160 x 3 / Rows (increased to 30 sec rest)
180 x 8 (put on elbow sleeves)
200 x 3
220 x 1

notes: shoulder felt ok, form looked good, wasn’t doing weird crap w my shoulder or letting the bar drift right. Did 2 Joker sets then decided I was running out of time to do OHP. So I cut the supersets and tried to get it all done ASAP.

OHP

65 x 5 (no rest b/w sets)
80 x 3
95 x 3
110 x 1
130 x 1
145 x 1
160 x 1 (put on elbow sleeves, increased to 45 sec rest)
160 x FAIL
160 x FAIL
155 x 2 (push press)
135 x 5 (back to strict press)

notes: FUARKKKKK I know the short rest cost me again, but I also knew an OHP reset was in the cards sooner or later. Going to keep my Training Max for this week, then reset it for next week. After failing out of my top sets, did some backoff sets. Got it all done in an hour. Was a grumpy chithead and skipped cardio and came home.

23/27 Back

First workout since resetting the weight.

warm-up: rumble rolled IT Bands, adductors, piriformis; back roll to V sit; static hip flexor stretch; prone spinal twists

Went to the Deadlift platform… and then had to run to the bathroom and take a dump. I think the warmup knocked something loose. Thanks hi carb weekend mixed with pwo. Chemical warfare. That burnt through a good 20 min It was evil.

Deadlift (barefoot)

160 x 5 (double overhand, no rest)
200 x 5
235 x 5
275 x 3 (increased rest to 2 min, added belt)
315 x 3 (switched to crossgrip)
355 x 10 Rep PR!!

notes:
For Set 6, the AMRAP set, I just wanted to rep it out. my low back was sore and I had been using my rests to do low back releases (lying on back, legs against wall). So… must admit, I was letting it bounce. I was controlling the descent, but it was still bouncing at the bottom a bit. So, not the strictest reps I have ever done. But F it in the B, I will take it.

10 speed reps like that had me gassed, I lay on my back on the platform and sucked wind for a bit.

Squats (Romaleos, SBDs)

135 x 5 (narrow stance, go ATG, no rest)
165 x 3
200 x 3 (switch to medium stance, go to parallel)
245 x 1 (add belt)
280 x 1
330 x 1 (increase rest to 2 min)
330 x 1
330 x 1
330 x 1
330 x 1

I was going to do some cardio, but I hadn’t eaten in 4 hours and was starving, so I broke the F out and got some food.