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Moving up the big three

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JF
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2003/10/11 18:06:48 (permalink)

Moving up the big three

That is Squat, Bench and Deadlift. As of recently, my interest in powerlifting as grown tremendously (I even started looking for some meets to watch), but it won't be for next week since I'm still weak and feeble. But then, I also realized that:
A) I haven't benched seriously EVER and my technique is ropey at best
B) I haven't back squatted for a couple of months now because of a rackless gym
C) I need a change

So, I have joined a brand new gym with a squat rack and Olympic Benches and decided to finally go for a routine that I found out a few months back but never got the chance to try. Here it is:

Squat 3x5
Bench 3x5
Deadlift 3x5

Twice a week for 8 weeks.

Since it is only for two months, I don't fear overtraining and I'm starting to know my body and how it reacts to sleep, food and training. I will still be doing grip work after the deadlifts (pinch, supporting) but won't add any session or exercises.

So stay tuned for tommorrow's workout where I shall show my pitiful bench (and probably squat) numbers. Also keep in mind that I will back down the poundages a bit to give momentum (as Frankie aptly puts it) and time to work my technique.
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    Dano
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    RE: Moving up the big three 2003/10/11 20:32:56 (permalink)
    Good to hear JF this should be a good read. Should be interesting to see how you handle the big 3 two times a week.

    Just an idea i had i was thinking you should probably do
    Squat,Bench,Dead on the first day and the second do Dead,Bench,Squat so you can be fresh on squat one day and fresh on dead the other.

    Make sure you eat enough calories and get enough rest because im sure this will be quite demanding.

    Ill follow this journal so no slackin off...Good Luck :)
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    veganlifter
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    RE: Moving up the big three 2003/10/12 10:18:30 (permalink)
    Good luck JF! Will be an interesting read mate. Dont worry about your poundages, it's the progress we want to see!
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    JF
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    RE: Moving up the big three 2003/10/12 17:21:54 (permalink)
    Thanks for the kind words guys, I will update after each training session (first one scheduled at 3:00pm this afternoon). Good idea Dano, I'll surely give your idea a serious tought if my deadlift poundages suffer a great deal from squatting and benching beforehand (but I think the basic idea is to emulate meet day).

    I weighted myself yesterday to see if I make any mass gains and I came in at 147. Not a lot, but I don't really want to gain any mass, I just want to tone [^]. Seriously, I'm really interested in pound for pound performances, so gaining weight is not really beneficial (especially if I plan on competing in the low-weight classes).

    Thanks again for the interest!
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    Voivod
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    RE: Moving up the big three 2003/10/12 17:47:35 (permalink)
    Hey JF.
    Looking forward to seeing how you get on with this routine.
    I dont know much at all about powerlifting, but i'm wondering if its a good idea to be training the big three all on the same day?
    Whatever it is, I wish you all the best mate.
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    JF
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    RE: Moving up the big three 2003/10/12 21:29:13 (permalink)
    Okay, here are the results:

    Squats 3x5 175..... +20 next session
    Bench 3x5 120...... +10 next session
    Deadlift 3x5 225... +10 next session

    Squats were akward at first, since it's been ages, but I got in a pretty good groove in my two last sets. I went wide and deep and they were nice, altough I just lost the feel of having iron accross my back, hence the low weight.

    Bench was frustrating since I was pretty weak and hungry from the squatting. I easily could've gone for 130 lbs, but I made sure to start lower so I could have the option of adding weight or not next session and not plateau right up front. Plus, I hate my long arms.

    Deadlifts felt nice, altough 5 reps are a lot more taxing on the heart/lungs/grip than 3 reps or singles, wich have been the staple of my routine for awhile.

    The routine is hard, very hard in fact. Even if I was using low weights, it's difficult to push yourself hard enough to get the last few reps on the deads. I hadn't ate a lot and my energy went down very quickly, so I guess I'll just eat a whole chiken before training.

    PS: New gym is great for the lifting facilities and staff (wich are very nice and know their stuff), but boy oh boy, it's a real labyrinth, took me 10 minutes to find a water foutain!!!!
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    Dano
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    RE: Moving up the big three 2003/10/14 00:16:13 (permalink)
    Just make sure you dont jump poundages too high too fast because remember you are doing them twice a week is moving the weight up twice as fast as normal per week. Dont be afraid to move up only 5-10lbs because it would be better to move up consistantly than to consistantly be hitting plateaus.

    Keep up the hard work. This routine will definately take hard work and determination to push yourself on these big movements TWICE a week.

    Dont deprive yourself of calories during this routine make sure to eat enough. Especially protein, eat LOTS and LOTS. And dont forget to rest. Stretching after lifting would be a good idea as it speeds up recovery which you need every minute extra of. Eat lots, Rest alot, and Stretch these are musts with doing this routine because these are the best ways to recover from these workouts which you desperately need.
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    JF
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    RE: Moving up the big three 2003/10/16 04:58:24 (permalink)
    Sorry for not responding faster Dano, I was really taken up with something else and had not time to read this thread. Anyway, here are the results of today's training session:

    Squat 3x5......180
    Bench 3x5......130
    Deadlift 3x5...230 + 245x1 + 265x1 (felt strong and wanted to do some more work)

    By the way, after thinking about the structure of the routine, I've come to the same realization as you Dano, and will only increase poundages by 5lbs. I mean, if I don't seriously plateau anywhere I'm expecting to add something like 70lbs to my squat, 20-30 lbs to my bench and a good 30-40 lbs on the deadlift too (for 5 reps). I ate more before workout and was completly rested hitting the gym and it showed, my squats were almost ass to ankles (hit the catch bar on the first rep), my bench was not that sucky (for me anyway) and deadlifting was a charm. I seriously tried sumo today and will soncentrate on the technique for the next 8 weeks - I have long arms so it really shortens the range of motion and the knurling is new on this part of the bar. I even used an overhand grip on the first set (and then proceeded to do so for the others, only switching to under/over after failure)!

    In conclusion I shall:
    A) Sleep my eight hours
    B) Continues to work on my form and increase poundages by small increments (great minds really do think alike huh?)
    C) Eat like a madman
    D) Continue my grip work on rest days (taken up paper tearing and boy, it's addictive), along with some stretching.
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    JF
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    RE: Moving up the big three 2003/10/19 03:23:03 (permalink)
    Okay, today was the third session, here are the results:

    Squat 3x5..... 185 lbs
    Bench 3x5..... 130 lbs
    Deadlift 3x5.. 235 lbs + some singles up to 275

    Squat was nice and my technique was pretty good. Only problem was balance, I had a hard time keeping my footing while unracking the weight (light I know, but still), the bar was swaying abit from sides to side. I went deep and wide and pretty much found the bar/hands position I'm comfortable with.

    Bench was another beast completly, I had a hard time pressing the weight off my chest and only managed about 3 reps with good form on the last set (spotter had to help me). Anybody has any ideas on how to improve my sucky bench? Maybe I should drop the weight in order not to fail on the last set.

    Deadlift was very, very, very nice. I couldn't use a double overhand like I did last session, but my form on the sumo improved considerably. I went very wide (feet almost touching the plates) and really liked what I saw. I could lock out easily (almost as if my hips were in a position that provided more strenght) and getting the bar off the floor proved to be as easy as with 225.
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    Dano
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    RE: Moving up the big three 2003/10/19 03:36:52 (permalink)
    You could try doing bottom position benches. With the pins set at your chest level so when the bar is resting it is just brushing your chest. This way you will be pressing from a complete stand still. This will help your explosivness especially from the bottom. You will not be able to use as much weight but it will help after time. You could try 2 different types of benching for each workout of the week.
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    JF
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    RE: Moving up the big three 2003/10/19 03:42:36 (permalink)
    First, let me thank you for reading this, it really provides motivation to know that people are watching your every move. At the moment, I'm pausing the bar on my chest for a second before coming back up (to replicate meet condition), so wouldn't this be the same thing (the spotter gives me the call to rack and press)? If not, I might try some bottom position benching if it doesn't get better over time.
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    Dano
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    RE: Moving up the big three 2003/10/19 03:57:49 (permalink)
    What your doing is good, definately better than bouncing off your chest like most people do. It is still different since you are not balancing all the weight before pressing this way. You could try it just to see how you like it but its your choice really.

    You could also do DB Bench, Dips, Close Grip Bench, or even Military Presses for 1 of the days since you are only doing bench for pressing. Any of these movements would be fine to do.


    No problem at all JF. Theres nothing like when you know people are watching over your journal. It gives you an extra motivation to raise the weights and push yourself for all the reps. I know how good it feels to raise a lift each time you go to the gym and if i can help you achieve that then its more than my pleasure to help you.

    KEEP WORKING HARD
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    JF
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    RE: Moving up the big three 2003/10/19 19:37:05 (permalink)
    I shall try it next session to see what it feels like, I'm always open to new ideas, especially if said ideas lead to increasing my lifts.

    As for tampering with the routine, I'll try to stick with the big three two times a week since it's been ages that I haven't kept a serious log (at home and on here) and a set routine for a definite period of time and I'm interested to see how I much I progress compared to a more intuitive approach of training (what I was using before). But I'm taking notes for the design of my next routine so your advice is precious for me, plus I just love to dip.
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    JF
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    RE: Moving up the big three 2003/10/24 23:18:34 (permalink)
    Due to a bad cold, I have been putting off my sessions, 'till today. I needed the rest anyway, so it's no big thing.

    Squat 190.......3x5
    Bench 130.......3x5
    Deadlift 240....3x5

    All felt pretty easy today, even bench. Couldn't try out bottom position bench as I've just come to the realization that I don't have access to a power cage, only a squat rack [:0] I'll just have to rely on board presses, floor preses, so no big thing. Squats were harder than I imagined, but I still managed to complete them all with good form and depth. I finally succeeded to get my 5 clean reps on bench, wich means that I'll try on 135 next session. Deadlift were a blast, as always, I just tore a callouse on the last rep, so this is a bummer.

    All in all, good session, but should've eaten more beforehand (got up late).
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    JF
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    RE: Moving up the big three 2003/10/29 03:05:28 (permalink)
    Squats 3x5.... 195lbs +5 nest session
    Bench 3x5..... 135lbs
    Deadlift 3x5.. 245lbs +5 next session

    Good little session, altough I leaned too far in front on the last set of squat (so I'm told by a guy who was doing behind the nexk presses and who chatted with a girl for 1 whole hour!) so I'll have to keep that in check next time. Bench I got 4 clean reps on each set. The first three are always easy, I just hit a wall after the fourth. Well, at least I'm now using a 45 on each side. Deadlifts saw me bleeding all over the bar from my right shin; had to swipe the darn thing with my towel and had many strange looks strutting around with a hand in bandages (from the callouses) and a towel full of blood :)

    Can't wait for next session, 200 lbs here I come!

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    Slyblackdragon
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    RE: Moving up the big three 2003/10/29 03:27:48 (permalink)
    WAY TO GO BRO!!! YOU HAVE NOW BECOME HARDCORE!!! Once you splatter your blood all over your barbell, you have become an official badass. Welcome to the club. Your progress is comming along nicely. You squat more than me lol...

    Well, you may think no one cares since not many people are posting on it, but we are all watching...

    Keep it up!!!
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    JF
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    RE: Moving up the big three 2003/10/29 17:26:40 (permalink)
    Thanks for the compliment bro! I know people are watching , they're just too scared of my new hardcore attitude to post
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    Slyblackdragon
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    RE: Moving up the big three 2003/10/29 22:16:30 (permalink)
    EXACTLY!!!
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    Dano
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    RE: Moving up the big three 2003/10/30 00:13:10 (permalink)
    Good Work JF

    Keep Training HARD and moving up those poundages.

    Make sure your eating and getting enough sleep
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    JF
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    RE: Moving up the big three 2003/10/30 02:53:46 (permalink)
    Sleeping enough in the night is my main problem right now. I have no problem sleeping, but I've always been a lite riser/sleeper and that doesn't fit too well into my new schedule (up at 6 AM part of the week). I just try to fit a nap in there somewhere when I'm sleepy and adjust my training accordingly; so far, so good.

    I eat with a passion as I see my poundages go up with every mouthful... And training hard, well, the new gym's atmosphere isn't exactly hardcore, but it's still a good place to work seriously since there's plenty of space/barbells for everyone and you don't get people gathering around you everytime you lift more than 100lbs. Plus, some guy seems to be there every time I train and he is very friendly, might even ask him if he wants to train with me sometime (not just spot) so I can convert him to the deadlift club [^]
    #20
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