Tag Archive: joker sets

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 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.


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

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.


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 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.


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.

22/27 Back

Long time no see!¬† Week 21 was a Deload, that wouldn’t have been fun to read ūüôā


warm-up: foam rolled IT Bands, Piriformis, Adductors; back roll to V-sit

Deadlifts (no straps, barefoot)

warm-up (change weights and go again, double overhand)

175 x 5

225 x 5

265 x 5

main (belt goes on, crossgrip, 30-60 sec rest)

285 x 5

330 x 5

375 x 5

notes: Bar was moving quickly enough, so decided to make a run at a PR.

Joker Set (2 min rest)

420 x 1

440 x FAIL

440 x FAIL

notes: 420 felt slow but was told it moved quick, so I went up a bit more. First time it didn’t get off the ground, so I walked away, immediately walked back and tried again. Again, did not get to my knees. so I said F it and moved on to squats.

Looking at the tape, I didn’t get my butt low enough, and was too far forward, putting it all on my back. Quite honestly, I think it was a mental block as well. 435 went up fine a few weeks ago, so I might have psyched myself out.

Squats (Romaleos, knee sleeves)

warm-up (change weight and go again)

135 x 5 (narrow, ATG)

160 x 3 (narrow, ATG)

190 x 3 (narrow, ATG)

245 x 1 (medium stance)

285 x 1 (m)

main assist (60-90 sec rest, medium stance, belt)

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

notes: I was borderline not depth on the second set. I was told I was losing tension in my lats and was rounding forward. So when I kept my core tight, depth seemed to clear up.

Even with tight time, was able to knock this¬†shit out in an hour. I think if I had more time for rests (3-5 min on the working sets)I could have had those deadlifts. This kind of workout isn’t a smooth fit into an hour session with the trainer. At some point you sacrifice strength for time. But whatever. Live and learn.

post-workout: self-release myo-fascial work on: gastroc, scalenes, biceps long head and distal insertion, lats, vastus lateralis

Not in the mood for cardio after, so I just packed up my poop and went home.

20/27 Shoulders, Back, Chest

Overhead Press

warm-up РSuperset with Rotator Cuff Work  (change weights and go again)

60 x 5 / 10 lb DB taken through ROM 15 times per arm

80 x 5 / ROTO

95 x 5 / ROTO

main РSuperset with Widegrip Pulldowns  ( 1-2 min rest)

115 x 5 / 150 x 5

130 x 3 / 150 x 5

140 x 6 ( elbow sleeves came on)

 Joker Sets (90 sec rest)

165:  push press x 1; strict press x 1

180:  push press x 1


notes:  When I unracked 165, I think I stayed idle a second too long and I lost tension.  so I did a push press and built up some torque, then went into a strict press.  My thought was if I can at least do a smooth push press I will try a strict rep.  For 180, the push press was a grinder, so I stopped it there.




Deadlifts (no shoes, no straps)

warm-up (change weight and go again, double overhand)

170 x 5

215 x 5

260 x 3

325 x 1 Beltless double overhand PR??  maybe.


Main Assist (belt comes on, crossgrip, 60-90 sec rest)

385 x 3

385 x 3

385 x 3

385 x 3

385 x 3


Bench Press 

warm-up   (paused all bench reps an inch above chest, Spoto Press style, change weights and go again)

80 x 5

100 x 5

115 x 3

145 x 1

main assist   (60-90 sec rest)

175 x 3

175 x 3

175 x 3

175 x 3

175 x 3



20/27 Chest

Another half-workout, it was all the time I could spare at work.


Bench Press

warm-up ‚Äď Superset Bench and Rotator Cuff Work¬†(all bench reps paused Spoto Press style, no rest between supersets)

75 x 5 / over & backs w/ resistance band x 8

100 x 5 / o&b

115 x 5 / o&b


main ‚Äď Superset Bench and¬†Free Cable Widegrip¬† Pulldowns¬†(1-2 min rest b/w sets)

145 x 5 / 105 x 5

165 x 3 / 5

185 x 10  (elbow sleeves worn)  Rep PR!!


Joker Sets (2-3 min rest, elbow sleeves on)

205 x 1

225 x 1

245 FAIL

245 FAIL

notes:¬† 240 moved quickly last week so I had a real shot at 245 today.¬† The first one, I think I let the bar come down too fast and¬†I lost lat tension at the bottom, and I couldn’t get out of the bottom of the range of motion.¬† So I rested a few minutes and tried again.¬† This time I lowered it extra slow and tried to coil like a spring and use lots of leg drive.¬† It got about halfway up and I got stuck.¬† So I figured I was done for the day.


I was going to do some OHP, but instead I showed a coworker how to barbell squat.¬† I feel it was a worthwhile sacrifice, stop fishing for 20 minutes to teach another man how to fish ūüôā¬† Maybe I can do my OHP work tomorrow.


20/27 Back

Ugh, hamstrings are SO sore from the Saturday workout.  Curse you, Good Mornings!!

warm-up foam rolled IT Bands, Piriformis, Adductors; back roll to V sit

Deadlifts (no straps, barefoot)

warm-up (change weights and go again, double overhand)

170 x 5

215 x 5

260 x 5


main (belt goes on, crossgrip, 2-3 min rest)

325 x 5

365 x 3

410 x 2


notes:¬† Back wasn’t feeling solid so I stopped at 2 reps on the AMRAP set.


Joker Set

450 x FAIL

notes:¬† Shit!!¬† I haven’t failed a DL in months.¬† I have been playing it real conservative for the past 20 weeks on Deadlifts, but decided to push myself deep into new territory, and came up short.¬† I got it a few inches off the ground and I couldn’t get it any higher.


Dust myself off, and move on to Squats.


Squats (Romaleos)

warm-up (change weight and go again)

130 x 5 (narrow, ATG)

160 x 5 (narrow, ATG)

190 x 3 (narrow, ATG)

240 x 1 (medium stance)


main assist (60 sec rest, medium stance, belt)

290 x 3

290 x 3

290 x 3

290 x 3 (tried narrowing my stance a bit for sets 4 and 5)

290 x 3

notes:  Rest was short, but I busted through these with confidence.  I tried bringing my feet together a bit (halfway between my warmup stance and my working stance) and found I hit depth much easier so I might try that moving forward.


post-workout:  13 min elliptical LISS

19/27 Legs

warm-up:  foam rolled IT bands, adductors, piriformis


Squats (Romaleos worn, knee sleeves worn)


warmup  (change weights and go again)

130 x 5 (narrow, ATG, paused)

160 x 5 (narrow, ATG, paused)

190 x 5 (medium stance)


main (2-3 min rest, belt worn, medium stance)

225 x 3

255 x 3

290 x 8  Rep PR!!


notes:  Bar was moving well, so I kept going.



Joker Sets (2-3 min rest, belt worn, medium stance)

320 x 3

350 x 1

370 x 1  Weight PR!!


notes:  Weight was moving well at 320, but when I did 350, it slowed down a bit.  I probably should have stopped there, but I did 370.  It was a grinder, I got stuck for a second at the top, but I pushed through.


I decided to call it a day there, and will do some deadlifting tomorrow.