Training is feeling great! Adjusting to my new training just fine. Of course, I have to keep myself in check from time-to-time, so that I don’t make stupid decisions and get off track of the game plan. I still am having a hard time with being patient understanding how my strength took such a fall in my bench. I mean, my bench was nothing to brag about, but damn to lose 15-20 lbs of strength is crazy, but I’m trying to look at some of the factors that may have caused this like: 1.) I completely stopped benching for two weeks due to forearm discomfort from doing Smolov and 2.) I did bring my grip width in a bunch; from middle finger on rings to pinky on rings.
Other than my horrible bench, I am feeling confident with the direction my training is going. I am doing a lot more volume than I have ever done with accessory exercises(bodybuilding). Which will help me put on plenty of muscle that should give me returns on my main lifts. I have come to realize that I need to stay focused, persistent, and make an effort to improve with each training session. Not getting caught up mentally with long-term goals, but finding victories in each workout is key.
The conjugate method way of training is great because it is ever revolving and evolving making each training session more exciting and less repetitive and boring. Some say training is boring and I guess that’s cool for them, but why not make it fun while working towards a goal. Of course, you have to have a plan to get to your destination efficiently and faster, but you don’t have to take the same route every time when there are several ways that can get you there just as fast, but with different scenery.
Most important is avoiding adaptation, because doing only the same thing over-and-over causes the mind and body to get used to what you are doing and it can stop producing positive results and even cause your strength to regress. I feel like this has happened to me several times in the past for trying to push the line too hard to long; being impatient, and wanting results faster than I deserved.
I have adjusted my mindset to make the most of every training session. Positive results will happen as long as I put in the work and stay on top of my recovery through proper nutrition, sleep, and mental preparation. Right now, I am eating very well and looking to put on quality weight. My sleep is ok, but not great. Mentally I am feeling good; low stress, reading and writing are great stimulation that can keep the mind from darkness.
Lately, I have noticed that my shoulders and knees have been feeling much better throughout the week, so this made me think that maybe box squats and using a variety of bars for squats have helped, also bringing my grip in some on the bench could have helped as well. I am squatting much less than before, but still feel that doing squats alone is not going to build a better squat. I needed to do more bodybuilding work to increase muscle that will help strengthen weaker areas holding me back.
I am enjoying this way of training because it makes sense and feels right. By having a max effort day that builds strength-speed and a dynamic effort day that builds speed-strength plus tons of volume on extra exercises to reinforce, restore, and build gives me confidence that I will make great progress to come.
Day 1 – 12/17/18
- 2″ Deficit Conventional Deadlift: 405×1, 455×1
- Romanian Deadlift: 365 5×6
- Belt Squat: 135×8, 180×8,8,7,8
- Kettlebell Swings: 50 5×20
- Reverse Hyper: 270 4×15
- Standing Ab Pulldowns: 85 5×20
Note: PR on DL for this lift, in fact I’m not sure if I have even pulled that off the floor conventional. RDLs are killer and you can feel them on every rep of every set. Did some homemade belt squats and I’m liking them.
Day 2 – 12/19/18
- Close Grip Bench Press: 205×5, 215×4,4
- Barbell Rows: 250 5×5
- Skullcrushers: 100 4×10
- VBar Lat Pulldowns: 140 3×12
- Tate Presses: 40s 3×12
- Meadows Rows: 100 4×10
- Hammer Curls: 50s 4×10
Note: Bench sucks! Don’t know what else to say about that, but I definitely have room for improvement is the positive I guess. Lots of triceps and back here to thicken up.
Day 3 – 12/21/18
Modified ME Lower
- Cambered Squats: 320×2, 340×2, 360×2
- Paused Front Squats: 250 5×3
- Sumo Romanian Deadlifts: 315 4×8
- SSB Goodmornings: 200+Light bands 4×5
- Reverse Hyper: 270 4×15
- GHD Sit-ups: 25 2×20
- Ab Pulldown: 80 3×20
Note: This would typically be a DE Lower day, but instead a ME for squats. First time using the cambered bar for squats and they felt good, but I really need to focus on pushing my knees out to the side better and keeping my chest up; pushing my back into the bar harder coming out of the bottom. This bar really exposes weakness and the front squats help to target those by keeping the chest up and pushing your knees out instead of forward. Lots of other exercises, but the reverse hyper is awesome; I just did a review on the Titan Fitness H-PND(reverse hyper), so check it out if you’re interested.
Day 4 – 12/22/18
- BP vs Mini Bands: 145 10×3
- Max Wide Slingshot Bench Press: 225 6×6
- Incline DB Press: 60s 4×12
- Pendlay Rows: 155 5×5
- Rolling DB Triceps Extensions: 60’sx7,9,8,9
- Shrugs: 315 4×10-12
- DB Curls w/ Fat Gripz: 30s 3×12
- DB Lateral Raises: 30s 3×12
- Hammer Curls w/ Fat Gripz: 40s 3×10-12
Note: Speed work on the bench is going well. I change grip every set; all with-in the power rings. I am using a doubled mini band for a 3-week wave and then will maybe add some chain as well for accommodating resistance. Did some max wide bench with the slingshot for some added volume. I plan to go 8×8 next week then rotate the exercise to something else. Using Fat Gripz for some dumbbell work is great for grip, forearm, and all around better muscle contraction.
On To The Next!
Great week of training and on to the next. For this week I had plenty of energy and moved through each session with momentum. I am trying to not get in my head too much about bench, but that too shall pass. I will get back plus some for sure.
My plan is to really hammer my triceps and shoulders with added volume, because I know these are two very weak areas holding my bench back. This will be an experiment of sorts to see if adding in more volume to these areas will help my bench improve. At this point I have nothing to lose.
I have been doing recovery workouts next day after my main workouts to add in more total volume and help actively recover from training. I typically do these workouts 2-4 days a week after my main training days. The exercises I do; I use light weighs or bands with high reps. This helps to build and restore muscle while strengthening tendons, ligaments and other tissues.
To become stronger is what I want, and doing whatever it takes is what I’ll do. I know it takes time, but having a plan can and will get me to my wants faster than just action alone.
Until next time, Keep Pushing!
A vision without a plan is a hallucination.-Earl Stevens