Smolov Training Program – Week 5

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This week started out ok, but I am glad it’s over. At this point I am feeling burnt-out and need a break from the barbell. It’s not that I don’t enjoy it anymore; it’s the feeling that I got what I needed and it’s time to move on. Plus, my upper-back is completely tore-up from the knurling on the bar leaving it bloody and scabbed-up. My forearms by the end of the week are so trashed that I really can’t do much for bench. Deadlifting has been completely put on the back burner and I miss it. So, we will be making some program changes moving forward.

Doing the Smolov Squat Routine has given me some of the answers that I have needed to improve my squat, from mental preparation to completing the lift every time with consistency. The reps/ sets help to ingrain the motor patterns needed, so the movement becomes second nature.

I will be using the feedback from the past 5-weeks of training and implementing what I have learned that works best for me to continue to progress with my squat. I am feeling motivated and look forward to starting a new Top Set Training Program focusing on raw powerlifting to build strength and muscle.

I did initially have intentions on continuing Smolov and starting the Intense Cycle after the 2-week switching phase, but:

  1. I don’t want to do the switching phase, I want to get back at it!
  2. I want to do a more complete well-rounded program, so I can make gains in more than one area at a time.

The plan is to do a 4-day a week full-body routine.

  • Squat 2-times a week
  • Bench all 4 days
  • Deadlift 2-times a week

I will be documenting my training the same way I have been to track my progress. This has helped me to see what works and what doesn’t, so I can make clear decisions for future planning.

On to this weeks training. It went fairly well up until the last day when I felt like I just didn’t have any spring in my squat. It actually felt like I was losing position because I was trying to find a position that would give me that elastic energy I was getting for most of the week, but I think the back-to-back squat days at the end of the week drained me. This caused me to try to re-position myself when I didn’t need to; I was just fatigued.

Bench press was so-so, but it felt weird. I will get back in the swing of things when I start my new program. Didn’t do much accessory work this week because I didn’t feel like it. Also, my recovery workouts were non-existent because again I didn’t feel like it.

Although a tough week, I got through it and look forward to what’s to come.


Week 5

Day 1 – 10/22/18

Smolov Full Squat Routine – Base Cycle

  • Squat: 290×9,9,9,9

Note: Felt strong and stable, a good day!

Top Set Training – Bench Press

  • Bench Press: 250×1
  • Bench Press: 220×5,5,5
  • Bench Press-3 Sec. Pause: 225×1, 230×1, 235×1
  • Seated Rows: 3×12

Note: Bench felt weird, I am playing around with my set-up, but nothing felt right. I need more consistent practice.

Day 2 – 10/24/18

Smolov Full Squat Routine – Base Cycle

  • Squat: 315×7,7,7,7,7

Note: Squat went well. It was a lot easier than I thought it would be because mentally I was tired.

Top Set Training – Bench Press

  • Bench Press: 250×1
  • Bench Press-2 Bd: 230×4, 240×4, 250×4

Note: Sucked! Still experimenting with set-up and didn’t connect the dots today.

Day 3 – 10/26/18

Smolov Full Squat Routine – Base Cycle

  • Squat: 330×5,5,5,5,5,5,5

Note: Very slow, but doable. Upper-back is pretty tore-up and forearms are starting to feel the pain.

Day 4 – 10/29/18

Smolov Full Squat Routine – Base Cycle

  • Squat: 350×3,3,3,3,3,3,3,3

Note: Tough day! Didn’t do all 10 sets. My form was all over the place and I decided to shut it down after the 8th set.

Moving Forward!

To be honest, I can’t say that I improved my squat in terms of numbers, but what I did improve is my squat technique and the ability to make better decisions for programming moving forward. I understand the importance of having a certain level of volume with my squat helps to keep my movement pattern consistent, rather than doing less volume, but more frequency.

I still have a lot to learn and I am enjoying the process. This is more than just training for me, it is a big part of my life and I love it! Strength training has really become my fitness focus and I’m addicted. I plan to continue training and maybe someday soon try to do a powerlifting meet if I can find one locally that fits into the schedule.

My plan for this next week will be to continue and take it easy and do some things that I haven’t done in a while or just rest up. If I do feel up to something it will be non-weight related like:

I will keep it very simple and basic, so when I get back to strength training next week I am mentally and physically prepared. I want to take advantage of what I have gained from Smolov and allow it to carryover to my new programming, so that I can continue squatting with more efficiency making it possible to improve my strength.

With the way my new program is set-up I will be able to focus specifically on each of the main three movements (squat, bench press, deadlift) that build the most strength and muscle. Also, doing assistance exercises to reinforce and build my main movements.

As far as my diet and nutrition goals, I plan to clean-up and lean-up by tracking my macros and refining my food selection to fit my needs. I will do carb-cycling as I know this has worked well for me in the past. I’m weighing around 200-205 lbs. right now and will easily get back to around 190-195 lbs. without seeing a decrease in strength or muscle, but of course I will monitor this to make sure that I don’t sacrifice strength for weight-loss. Before starting Smolov I was around 195 lbs., so that will not be hard to get back to.

Until next time, Keep Pushing!

If you have any questions or comments please leave it below.

Winning isn’t everything, but it beats anything that comes in second.-Paul Bryant





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Marcus is a man of God, married to a wonderful women and has 4 children. He is an ISSA Certified Personal Trainer and aspiring Powerlifter. He has a passion for helping others achieve personal growth through a healthy fitness and nutrition based lifestyle. With hard work and dedication anything is possible. God bless

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