Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Tue Apr 26, 2011 6:04 pm

2011-04-26

Warm Up
Vertical Jump x 3 alternated with Squat Jump w/ Bar x 3 for 3 sets.


Back Squat (high bar, Risto shoes, no belt)
155 x 3
222 x 2
243 x 1
309 x 1
331 x 1 (pulled up knee sleeves)
353 x 0
243 x 4, 275 x 2, 243 x 4, 298 x 2, 243 x 4
with pause (pulled down knee sleeves)
220 x 3 x 2

Good Morning 110 x 4 x 2

Not even close with that 353. Extra day of rest wasn't enough. Honestly 342 might have been impossible. I'm sure my deadlift still has a little room to go, but my squat just isn't moving this cycle. Next cycle I will only SQ/DL once per week like I mentioned in my last long post. After that I may squat twice per week with a light and heavy day and hold off on DLs.

Still draining knee. 20 cc last night. 9 cc this afternoon, 13 tonight. Only 6-8 from right knee every few days. This is getting old.

Update 4/27: Drained 12 from left, 6 from right. Knees feeling pretty good, but addies and hams are sore as a mofo.
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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Thu Apr 28, 2011 3:24 pm

2011-04-28

Bench Press

45 x 10 x 2
95 x 5
135 x 5
185 x 3
205 x 1
225 x 1
235 x 1
240 x 1
185 x 6, 205 x 3, 185 x 6

Awesome bench session today. PL54's prescription has been working. 15-lb improvement over last session with room to spare. I was so shocked at how relatively quickly 240 went that I weighed the bar to make sure it wasn't one of those "light" 15-kg chrome ones (it was 20 kilos). I am as strong as I've ever been on bench. Stronger than ever on deadlift. If only the squat would cooperate. Kept the volume way down and just got in a few waved sets after the single. Weighing 180 +/-1 these past few days.

Later: drained 10 cc from left knee. Right knee feels fine. Can squat all the way down on tiptoe with minimal discomfort in quad tendons. No box jumps today. Saving legs for big 450+ attempt on beltless DL on Friday.
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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Sat Apr 30, 2011 5:27 pm

2011-04-30

Warm Up
Vertical Jump ~23" x 3, Broad Jump 7.5-8'


Deadlift (no belt, in socks, hook grip)
155 x 5
220 x 3
309 x 2
375 x 1
396 x 1
430 x 1
452 x 0
452 x 1 (mixed grip)
330 x 3, 375 x 2, 330 x 3, 396 x 2

New personal record with conventional and without a belt, but I had to mix my grip. It was kind of ugly, but it would have easily passed in a meet. That's it for this cycle. Taking a week off as I travel. Drained 10 cc from left last night and 20 this morning. Weighing 178 lbs.

Edit: Drained 15 cc from left then 10 later.
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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Mon May 02, 2011 12:40 am

Drained 20 cc from the left knee and 10 cc from the right. Knees feel completely trouble-free for now. But they'll probably fill up again, even though I don't plan to do anything but walk around for the next week and a half.

T-Nation had my number this month. An article about training frequency and a great quote from Jim Wendler about jump training.

Mike Robertson on frequency: http://www.t-nation.com/free_online_art ... _frequency
Practical Examples of Training Frequency
Bubba loves HIT, and thinks it's the only way to go for size gains. Sergei says that Sheiko is what really took his squat through the roof.

While I respect everyone's opinion, I also understand that in most cases N=1. Everyone assumes that if it works for them, it should work for everyone. The old saying definitely rings true: "Everything works – but nothing works forever!"

Lower frequency training methods (such as HIT) can work, especially if someone has pushed their recovery envelope in the weeks/months leading up to its introduction.

Imagine this, you've just come off the hardest training cycle of your life. You pushed every rep of every set, and you're absolutely gassed. You trained four days per week and no session was half-assed.

This could be a time where your body needs that extra recovery. Some of the biggest proponents of HIT-style training were bodybuilders who were notorious for killing themselves in the gym six days per week.

Is it any wonder why HIT worked for them? They pushed and pushed, so when they finally took extra time to back off, their gains went through the roof!

On the other hand, high frequency programs can elicit serious progress as well. Look at guys that use the introductory Sheiko programs, the Smolov squat routine, or attempt some of the Bulgarian weightlifting programs.

These programs offer a unique blend of volume, intensity, and perhaps most importantly, work on the specific lifts (motor learning). After all if you squat two, three, or even four times per week, chances are you'll get pretty darn good at squatting!

IF they can survive, the results they get are astounding. But that's a big if. The Bulgarian system is known for its meat-grinding effects; throw in a couple thousand lifters, and the ones that survive the training programs comprise their Olympic team!

Again, the key is figuring out what will work best for you. What training frequency is best given your goals, your recovery abilities, etc.? Once we've determined your goals, we can determine how many times per week is probably best to maximize your performance.
Jim Wendler on jump training: http://www.t-nation.com/free_online_art ... _volume_10
Jim Wendler: There's been a lot of discussion about the value of dynamic work. I'm 100% in favor of it, and all you have to do is look at some of the most explosive athletes on the planet – throwers. Most of these guys possess very high levels of strength and speed. Along with football players, they're some of the biggest and fastest athletes around.

Growing up I always looked at how these guys trained , guys like Randy Matson, Ulf Timmerman, Randy Barnes, Brent Noon, etc. All of them reportedly trained with basic exercises like the squat, bench, and clean and did a ton of jumps, sprints, and throws; the latter being what I consider to be great for any athlete, even if you're just performing on the platform.

The trick is to set up a basic training template and incorporate the appropriate jump or throw. For example:

Warm-up (jump rope, dynamic/static stretching, foam rolling)
Dynamic training (box jumps, hurdle jumps, shot put/medicine ball throws)
Strength work (squat, clean, deadlift, press, bench press)
Assistance work
Conditioning

For the jumps and throws, make sure your level of preparedness matches the exercises – don't start out with five-foot depth jumps. Med ball throws (over the head, chest passes, backwards) and simple landing drills from a box are all good ways to make sure you're ready for the next step.

Along with starting with the right exercises, it's important not to turn this into a conditioning session. Take your time and do the reps CORRECTLY. Unlike a gangbang, training is always about quality over quantity.
I think it would be in my interest to pretend that I'm an athlete and not emphasize the same training all year. Right now I'm doing some jumps before squats and deadlifts, but my focus is still on strength. Next cycle will also focus on barbell strength, but after that it may be a good idea to focus on power production...to use the nicer weather to run and jump and play a sport that requires running and jumping. Maybe prep for a powerlifting meet for fall. Gain some weight with volume squat and bench training and GOMAD during the winter.

Edit: Walked around a lot. 20 cc from the right and 13 from the left. Later, 9 cc from left and 5 from right. Another 5 cc from left the next day.

Edit: The next day got 5 from left and 2 from right. May 4th, 9 cc from left, 4 from right. May 5, 4.5 cc from left, both knees appearing nearly bulge-free and I'm able to squat on toes with knees all the way out.
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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Fri May 06, 2011 11:17 pm

2011-05-06
Standing Long Jump x 3 x 5, started at 7'8" and worked up to 8'1" (measured from toe off line to heel landing line)
Vertical Jump x 3, x 2, 22-23"

I was jumping into a bit of a wind initially so I reversed direction. That was good for at least an inch. Here I am at 35 years old with beat up knees (drained 6 cc from left, 3.5 from right tonight) and trying to get stronger and more powerful. When I came back from Florida last year and rested up I found that my vertical had grown to a little over 25". I think it was because I was bigger and stronger and well rested at the time. This is a back off week from the weights, but I wanted to see if getting a few days rest helped my explosive ability. What I really need is some meat on my legs and pounds on my squat. In NYC for a few days then land in Orlando middle of next week. Will train for a month at Orlando Barbell when I get there.
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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Wed May 11, 2011 1:33 am

2011-05-10
Been traveling. Lots of walking and no draining for several days. Drained 17 cc from the left and 8 from the right. Seems like a lot, but knees had full range of motion and felt pretty good. They were feeling a bit on the full side for the past few days, but feel much better now.

Plan to use these sets and reps for squats:
2 x12 x 60%
3 x 8 x 70%
4 x 6 x 80%
6 x 4 x 85%
8 x 3 x 90%
12x 2 x 95%

High rep to lower rep but total volume remains 24 reps per sessions. I figure I'd do these on Fridays and jump and run around on Mondays.

Edit: alternatively I could stick with a given set-rep scheme for three or four weeks and keep adding weight before moving on to the next scheme. That would stretch this out to six months instead of six weeks.
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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Wed May 11, 2011 10:50 pm

2011-05-11

Bench Press
45 x 20
95 x 10
135 x 5
185 x 3
205 x 1
225 x 1
235 x 1
165 x 6, 185 x 3, 165 x 6, 205 x 3, 185 x 6

Back at Orlando Barbell today. Brian was there and told me about his raw (belt only) lifting in the 165 class (534.5--352.5--584) at the APF Raw Nationals (check it out here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d2QG3CUHgoc). He noted that raw lifting doesn't need nearly as much accessory work as geared lifting. I was happy to report to him that I finally took all their advice and started doing each main lift just once per week (and actually having only one squat/deadlift day). Bench was just about where I left it at the end of last cycle

Edit: Thinking of leaving squats out this cycle and just pushing up deadlift with the same pattern I'm using for BP (work up to the day's single, trying to add 5-10 lbs each week, and then doing waved volume). My knees seem to be still pulling themselves together from all that squat frequency I used to use. I don't want to halt or reverse that progress. Deadlifts stress the knees, but not nearly as much as squats. (Drained 6 cc from each, but didn't really have to. Just being really aggressive about getting the cavity used to lower levels.)
Last edited by Gary on Sun May 15, 2011 7:02 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Fri May 13, 2011 9:13 pm

2011-05-13

Deadlift (no belt, hook grip, barefoot) @180
135 x 10 + Vert Jump w/ 25 lbs x 3
225 x 5 + Vert Jump w/ 25 lbs x 3
315 x 3 + Vert Jump w/ 25 lbs x 3
365 x 1 + Vert Jump x 2
385 x 1 + Vert Jump x 1
405 x 1
435 x 1
445 x 0
315 x 3, 365 x 2, 315 x 3, 385 x 2, 405 x 2

Bulgarian Split Squat: right x 10, left x 10, right w/25 x 10
Leg Extension, Leg Curl, Standing Calf Raise

Did vertical jumps while holding a weight plate in between deadlift warm up sets in Russian complex fashion. Dropped jump weight and volume when deadlift got to singles. Did warm ups with lots of power too. 405 felt light so went straight to 435 which moved so fast that I thought I could get 445. 445 felt like a strain early on so I gave it up; not trying to burn out on first day of cycle. Starting very strong with nearly my best hook grip beltless deadlift weight. Left hamstring wiggled just a tiny bit on the last double with 405.

I fell in love with Bulgarian split squats. After my sets I was able to do a "kung fu" style one-legged squat (non-working leg behind working leg) with each leg. Felt like I recovered a movement pattern that had been eluding me.

Lower body power/speed day will be on Mondays and will look like this: Standing Vertical Jump, Standing Horizontal Jump, Sprint, Pull Up.

Edit: Just drained 6 cc from left, 3 from right. Just maintenance, knees not feeling funny or anything.
Last edited by Gary on Fri May 20, 2011 4:08 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Sun May 15, 2011 4:01 am

Tested out some vertical jumping today. I'm visiting my mother and the ceilings in her house are 8' high. I've been jumping straight up to see how close I can get my head to the ceiling. Today I stuck tape up there so it hung down a few inches. Then I would get under it and jump and see if I could make my head hit the tape. I kept rolling the tape up on itself after each try so it got shorter and harder to reach. I got to where the tape was hanging just 2 1/2" or 7'9 1/2" off the floor. I stand 5'9 1/2" so that gives me a vertical of about 24" (without being able to swing my arms all the way up). This has been the case as long as I can remember.

When I was a teen I used to be able to take a one-step jump and grab the rim at the basketball court down the street from my mom's house. I was about an inch or two shorter back then. I went back to that basketball court today and measured the rim heights. They were both 9'8" (this is a smaller court on the campus of an elementary school). I weigh nearly twice as much as I did as a 14-year-old. Might have weighed maybe a little over 100 lbs back then (I was only 130 lbs when I graduated college at age 20). I weigh over 180 now. I was able to touch the rim without too much effort today and I'm sure I could still one-step grab it (will try later).

My squat strength has more than doubled since back then. I couldn't squat 185 in high school and have since squatted 340+ high bar, full depth and without a belt and 418 in USAPL raw in low bar style with a belt. I had to add 60 lbs of muscle to get there. So my vertical has stayed much the same even as my mass has increased more than 50%. So my ability to generate power has increased greatly. People often point to the speed aspect of power, but forget the force part of the equation. Squatting 340 max in two seconds is twice as powerful as squatting 170 max in two seconds.

This cycle I'm letting my knees heal up from heavy loading through full articulation (squatting) and focusing on the deadlift. Since I'm not squatting I figure I can run and jump a bit more. I'm going to be doing standing long jumps and sprints on Monday and then weighted vertical jumps with deadlifts again on Thursday. But I really need to get back to putting on weight in my legs and upping my squat. I can't even (beltless, full, high bar) squat double bodyweight and that's just sad. It's also holding me back from jumping farther and running faster. I was going to try that 12x2-8x3-6x4 scheme when I returned to squat, but this simple thing I'm doing now (work up to the day's max then wave volume and intensity in some volume sets afterward) is working so well for bench and pulls that I want to try it for squats too.

I like the idea of having just one barbell (max effort) lower body day per week and doing either squats OR deadlifts on that day (and using jumps and sprints as "dynamic effort" day like Joe Defranco does, though I believe Joe is also fine with mixing in jumps with the barbell sets)...and on just focusing on squat OR deadlift for a cycle or two. I'm eager to get back to squatting right now and will likely squat next cycle. I started this deadlift cycle strong with 435. My last cycle saw me gaining momentum on the second week and setting local PRs in bench and deadlift in the third week. It would be nice to wrap up this cycle with my first 255 bench and a 465 beltless conventional deadlift (maybe 475 if I mix my grip). Those are both big jumps from my very recent PRs, but if you shoot for the moon, you just might hit the mountains.

Joe DeFranco: http://www.defrancostraining.com/ask_jo ... -02-09.htm
One of the biggest changes that I made to my program this summer was that I started incorporating more jump training to compliment the max-effort lower body day. In the past, if athletes were performing 2 lower body sessions at my facility, one day would be a max-effort day and the other day would be a dynamic day; But the difference in the past was that the main exercise on the dynamic day would be a box squat performed with sub-maximal weights for speed. Although we still perform dynamic box squats with sub-maximal weights, we have recently changed our main exercise on dynamic lower body day to jump variations. The results that I have seen have been nothing short of astounding! (Our main jump exercises have been box jumps, broad jumps, vertical jumps, depth jumps onto a box and box squats into a box jump. We also incorporate a light weighted vest with our more advanced athletes.) As you can see, the jump exercises that we've chosen are not that fancy, but they have worked BIGTIME! The combination of max-effort work in conjunction with jump training has made our athletes stronger, more explosive and more mobile. And I've seen an increase in coordination and balance as well. Basically, the added jump training has been a great recipe for improving overall athleticism in our athletes.
So my "powerlifter who wants to be explosive" split would look something like:

Monday: Jumps (broad and vertical using band resistance of portable power jumper)
Tuesday: Bench Press, DB rows
Thursday: Squat OR deadlift, with weighted jumps as a complex (unilateral leg work too)
Friday: Pull Ups, Abs
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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Mon May 16, 2011 7:24 pm

2011-05-16

Standing Vertical w/ Portable Power Jumper
2 x 3 x 40-40
1 x 3 x 40-60-40
1 x 3 x 40-40
1 x 3 x 40
1 x 3 (immediate gain of ~2" from 23" to 25")

Standing Broad w/ Portable Power Jumper
2 x 3 x 40-40
1 x 3 x 40-60-40
1 x 3 x 40-40
1 x 3 x 40
3 x 3 (immediate gain or ~2", from 7'10" -8'1" to between 8' and 8'3")

Sprint Intervals 40 yds x 5, all 5sec+
V-Grip Pull Ups from Tree Limb x 6 x 4

Sets x reps x which bands were used in the set. The 40s are maroon and supposed to be 40 lbs or resistance when stretched; the 60 is orange-red and 60 lbs when stretched.

Saw immediate gains today from my past performances. In this review of the portable power jumper, "FitJerk" says he wouldn't be surprised if someone who hadn't been doing plyo training got a 10" increase in vertical after using the PPJ for a while. http://flawlessfitnessbook.com/blog/pro ... eline-usa/
I have some reservations about the [purported by Lifeline USA] insane 13 inch improvement Jamillian Mormon got from the PPJ, specially considering he’s a pro athlete. But I have no doubts that folks who have a weak vertical due to lack of training plyometrics should see an average increase of somewhere around 10 inches hands down… like no problem what-so-ever.
Sounds hypey, but that's much the same thing that the guy at the verticaljumping.com said about the PPJ (and why I bought it). I have nothing to lose by incorporating the PPJ into my speed days. And now I've seen an immediate 1" increase in my most recent verticals and a 3" increase in my horizontals after just one session. So maybe I'll actually get a few inches out of this training.

The sprinting was a joke. I'm forced to use the surrounding packed dirt driveways and time myself. Neither is very conducive to running efficiency. Strained left calf a bit by the third push off so switched which leg was in the lead on the last two dashes.

Still, I just added 2 inches to my vertical today from a little bit of band training. That's really cool. I've jumped this high before, but that was about nine months ago.
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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by keyboardpress » Tue May 17, 2011 4:55 am

how badly do deadlifts and other pulls affect your knees?

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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Tue May 17, 2011 1:27 pm

ash wrote:how badly do deadlifts and other pulls affect your knees?
Sometimes during the session the collateral ligaments of one or the other knee will feel a bit wobbly, but that's rare and only happens with the heaviest deadlifts.

If you mean are pulls causing them to fill up with extra fluid, then not at all. I'm able to pull heavy, sprint, and jump with bands and weight with no ill effect. Jogging hurts a bit. Sprints are like rolling while jogging is like bouncing. It looks like squatting was the culprit in the effusion, specifically the incredibly high frequency of squatting I was using. Three times per week to as much as three times per day almost every day. Too much.

Since I've stopped squatting I've lost almost all the knee pain and can run and jump again. My knees have also stopped filling up with fluid. I can squat down with heels raised and with knees forward way ahead of toes with very minimal discomfort. I'm so happy with the results that I've decided to leave squats out again for one more cycle to make sure I'm healed. So I'll have two cycles of heavy deadlifts and jumps with bands and weights. When I reintroduce squats it will be in place of deadlifts, just once per week, and I'll have to see about doing any jump/plyometric work then.
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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by keyboardpress » Tue May 17, 2011 1:50 pm

good to hear dude.

i know when i busted my ankle, keeping away from squats and cleans, and just walking,swimming and pulling worked really well.

agressive rehab is good, but not if its going to fuck your injury, or fuck your movement pattern for when you're healed up.

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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Wed May 18, 2011 2:24 am

2011-05-17

Bench Press
45 x 20
95 x 10
135 x 5
185 x 3
205 x 1
225 x 1
235 x 1
240 x 1
245 x 1*
185 x 3, 185 x 6, 205 x 3, 185 x 5

Incline DB Press 55 x 10, 9 1/2
DB Row 85 x 6 x 3


That 245 is a local PR, but Brian spotted me and kept his finger on the bar the whole time. That's how they do it on max attempts at OB and I trust that he didn't assist me because he knows the deal. But I have to note the touching of the bar. 240 stalled at the sticking point, but I got it moving quickly enough. 245 was slow the whole way through. I think I should take a day off between lower body speed/jumping day and bench day because I was still sore and feeling a little tired. Calves still hurt from the high-rep bodyweight raises yesterday, too. Got back under 215 for a triple, but I just didn't have it in me. Weighed 179 nekkid on the electronic scale at the gym.

Edit: http://www.florida-powerlifting.com/201 ... esults.pdf Apparently I paused bench my best ever 253 lbs at my last meet late last year. I must have gotten at least 260 touch and go in training. Fuck.

Update: Yup, here it is: http://startingstrength.com/resources/f ... 582&page=6. I got a sloooow 260 after doing a Smolov Jr for BP and after I failed to get the last day of 85%+15. Got 253 paused in the meet a month later.
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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Fri May 20, 2011 3:29 am

2011-05-19

Deadlift (conventional, no belt, barefoot, hook grip)
135 x 20 (Stiff Legged)
225 x 6
315 x 3
365 x 1
415 x 1
445 x 1
315 x 3, 365 x 2, 395 x 2, 415 x 2, 425 x 1

Paused Weighted Standing Vertical Jump + 35 x 3 x 3 complex with deadlift warm ups
Bulgarian Split Squat r/l/r 90 x 5/5/5, r +0 x 10
Standing Vertical Jump x 1 x 5 touching past 9'11" point (7'10" standing reach
)

Using a bent beater bar. 445 with a hook grip and no belt is a PR; best in that fashion was 441 last cycle (needed mixed grip to get 450+ last cycle). 445 moved very well and I set up for 455, but realized I didn't have the energy for it. Spent ten minutes trying to get ready and then realized I was still tired and just likely to burn myself out. Took the weight down and managed to work back up to a double with 93% and another single with 96%.

Had some fun with vertical jumps afterward. Been meaning to see if I could touch the air conditioning duct. Turned into a little contest. I was the only one to touch the duct and then touch the side of the duct, but the other two guys came close. One was about my weight, but had a reach several inches shorter; the other outweighed me by 40 lbs or so. So both their jumps were more impressive and displayed more power. Ordered a weighted vest last night and will be using that next cycle.
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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Fri May 20, 2011 10:32 pm

2011-05-20
Pull Up x 6 x 4
Incline Lying Lateral Raise 15 x 5, 10 x 10, 15 x 10, 10 x 10
Decline Olympic Style Sit Up 45 x 10 x 3

Actually did upper back work and abs today. So proud of myself. Drained 8 cc from left knee just to make sure it's not full. No trouble with knees lately. Able to squat down with knees ahead of toes and without pain. Next cycle, still avoiding regular squats. A good time to box squat which helps my sumo, so a good time to try to get triple bodyweight with sumo+belt. Also good time to use a modified Smolov to get BP to 1.5x bodyweight. Edit: or keep working the conventional deadlift and alternating with close stance, high bar box squats; I really want to pull 500 conventional without a belt before switching to contest mode.

Tuesday) Smolov Jr. Bench
Thursday) Sumo Deadlift OR Wide Stance Box Squat...OR...Conventional Deadlift OR Close Stance Box Squat
Saturday) Smolov Jr. Bench
Sunday) Jump training with bands

Going for 455 and then 465 next week on beltless conventional. Glutes are tired and sore right now.

Edit: Front squats to a box may be the best possible prescription for improving conventional dealift. Front squat is a great upper back strengthener (maybe the best) and its emphasis on quads is good for the break from the floor in conventional (and the vertical jump as well). Front squat also loads the abs a lot like a DL. Doing it to a box would spare my knees plenty. I think a lot of the stress that causes effusion comes from stopping and reversing in the bottom position of non-box squats.
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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Sun May 22, 2011 5:35 pm

2011-05-22
Standing Vertical Jump w/ PPJ Bands
light-med-light x 3 x 3
light-light x 3 x 2
med x 4
light x 3 (24")
none x 3 x 2 (26"...almost)

Standing Long Jump w/ PPJ Bands
none x 3 x 2 (~8'3" then 8')
light-med-light x 3 x 2
light-light x 3
none x 3, x 3, x 1, x 1, x 1 (up to 8'5"!!!!)

More new records today. My head skimmed the tape at 7'11"+. That means an increase of about 3 inches from a couple weeks ago and what I believe is an all time high for me. I really need a more accurate way to measure my vertical, but I think I'm right around 26" now.

And I set an incredible (for me) PR on the standing broad jump. I keep the tape measure extended along the path of my jump, but today I put a piece of scotch tape to mark my best and that helped me focus and beat it. I put the tape at 8'3" and got 8'5 1/2". I was consistently landing over 8' on all jumps too. A good day.
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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Takafumi » Mon May 23, 2011 2:13 pm

Gary wrote:... I really need a more accurate way to measure my vertical...
A standard and simple way is to stand next to a high wall flat-footed, and do a standing reach with chalk on your fingers. When you do a few jumps, mark the wall (again with chalk) at the highest point you can jump. Your vertical is the measurement between the standing reach mark and your highest jump mark.

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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Tue May 24, 2011 1:14 am

Takafumi wrote:
Gary wrote:... I really need a more accurate way to measure my vertical...
A standard and simple way is to stand next to a high wall flat-footed, and do a standing reach with chalk on your fingers. When you do a few jumps, mark the wall (again with chalk) at the highest point you can jump. Your vertical is the measurement between the standing reach mark and your highest jump mark.
I know and that's how I normally record it, but I feel I'm not hitting the wall at the apex of my jump. Plus the nearness of the wall forces me to be careful and a tiny bit constrained in my jumping efforts. Ideally I would jump to a goal above me without any nearby hindrance. The Vertec device is best for this, but it's prohibitively expensive. The next best thing is a basketball hoop or hanging something down from a ceiling with no walls nearby. That's why I like jumping for the exposed air conditioning duct at Orlando Barbell. It's about 9'10" and I try to slap the vents at the side which starts at about 10'. In fact I managed to touch the vent today, but I was wearing track shoes which gave me an inch over my barefoot reach. I stopped by the basketball court on the way home and just did a few jumps to the 9'8" rim. I was able to curl the tips of my fingers around it.

Bench Press
45 x 20
95 x 10
135 x 5
175 x 3
205 x 1
225 x 1
235 x 1
250 x 0

Box Front Squat
45 x 5 to 13" box
135 x 3 to 13" box
185 x 1 to 13" box
205 x 1 to 13" box
225 x 1 to 12" box
235 x 1 to 12" box
245 x 1 to 12" box
255 x 1 to 12" box with lean
265 x 1 to 12" box with belt
225 x 2 to 12" box

Standing Vertical Jumps, 7'11" standing reach in shoes, touched 10' mark twice.

Bench was a bust. I knew by how 235 felt that I would not be getting anything higher. Lost 250 right away and Brian had to peel it off me.

Decided to try out box front squats, which I've been thinking about a lot. Just wanted to find my max, not do any volume. Started with 13" Elite box and decided to try the 12" simple wooden one; should have stayed with the 13"; was flopping a bit onto the 12". 245 was the last rep I got with perfect form. With 255 I shot hips up a bit and tilted forward so elbows pointed down. I put on the belt after that and confirmed a suspicion I had about belts and front squats: belt doesn't help that much. The more upright the torso, the less help I get from the belt. It is absolutely pointless for me to use a belt on front squats.

I'll pull in a couple of days and probably call it quits for this cycle. I am accepting that I will never be a very good bencher, but I would love to be a good squatter and great puller who can run and jump. I will probably be squatting off boxes most of the time to spare my knees, but will squat without a box when preparing for a competition. Still looking for that 500 lb beltless conventional pull first. Still want to back squat 400 without a belt, but I will be focusing on the box front squat for at least a cycle. Maybe a few. I don't think 315 is too much to expect here. The box will help spare my knees and the front squat I hope will help build drive and upper back strength for the conventional DL.
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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Wed May 25, 2011 9:50 pm

2011-05-25
Warm up with Clean Grip Overhead Squat barefoot standing on high block 37 x 5, 88 x 3, 108 x 2, 128 x 1

Deadlift (in socks, hook grip, no belt)
135 x 9
135 x 9 (stiff legged)
225 x 6
315 x 3
385 x 1 + Paused SVJump +35 x 3
435 x 1 + Paused SVJUmp +35 x 3
460 x 0
460 x 0 (mixed grip)

SVJump x 3
Bulgarian Split Squat right leg only x 10, x 10, +40 x 10, +80 x 5
SVJump x 3, x 1, x 1, x 1

Another bust today. Failed to get PR on deadlift. Maybe should have gone for 455 instead. Maybe should not have box squatted a couple days ago. Maybe it's just time to try some volume.

I had Hans take a look at my vertical jump touch point because I couldn't tell where I was hitting (the duct is as white as the chalk I normally use to mark my touch point). The screws at the bottom of the vent are almost exactly 10' high. Hans claims that my middle finger went past that point at least twice. That's half inch over 10'. My standing reach is almost a half inch under 7'10". That's about 27" difference. Having a hard time believing that--because it would represent a 4" increase from where I've been stuck for months--but I hope it's true and accurate.

Edit: Yeah, I just hit my head on the 8' ceiling. Pretty hard. 27" it is.
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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Fri May 27, 2011 6:13 pm

2011-05-27
Warm Up w/ bunny hops and deep squat jumps

Standing Vertical w/ Power Jumper
3 x 3 w/ light+medium+light
2 x 3 w/ light+light
1 x 3 w/ medium
1 x 3, x 1, x 1, x 1
(long rest due to emergency)
3 x w/ light+medium+light
3 x w/ light+light
3 x w/ light
1 x 3, x 1, x 1, x 1 to 27.5" PR

Standing Horizontal w/ Power Jumper
3 x w/ light+medium+light
3 x w/ light+light
3 x w/ light
1 x 3, x 1, x 1, x 1, x 1 to 9' PR

Another new PR on vertical today. I had to do these outside on the front porch where I had a few more inches of headroom. Hung a small plastic disc so that the bottom edge was exactly 8'1 1/4" from the floor. On the second go around I managed to hit it firmly with my head a couple times and then very lightly a few more times. That's somewhere between 27 and 28 inches.

But the really exciting news is that I hit 9' on the standing broad jump! I got 8'9" a couple of times and was thrilled. Then I think I got the courage to extend my leg forward more. I hit 8'10" without trying any harder and then out of nowhere I cleared 9'. I couldn't believe it. I tried again after a rest and got 1/4" short of 9'. Thanked the speed/power gods and called it a day.
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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Mon May 30, 2011 2:29 am

Drained 20 cc from the left knee last night. Only got 1 cc from the right. Looks like that left knee is still filling up but doing so very slowly. I have full range of motion, but it gets a little tight every few days as the fluid comes back in. I shouldn't be too surprised. Squats may make it fill rapidly, but jumping and deadlifting are bound to have some effect too. Having to drain it once every few weeks is manageable, however, and I still think it will stop eventually. This makes me even more hesitant to enter a full raw meet ever again though.

Spending time with the family again this month. Yesterday I was hanging with the old man who took it upon himself to build me a vertical displacement measurement out of PVC. He'd seen me jumping and getting my head within a couple inches of the 8'4" porch celing. Later that day we happened to be standing under a balcony at my aunt's house that measured 10' 1/2". I tried a few times to jump up and touch it, but couldn't quite do it. Kept coming a hair's breadth away. My old man noted that I seemed not to be extending as forcefully as possible, almost like I was scared to touch the balcony. I tried again, this time thinking about shoving my hand through the balcony. Hit it easily with the end of the middle finger. I was barefoot so my standing reach was 7'9 1/2", yielding a vertical of at least 27". If I give all the jumping a rest for a couple of days, I may get to 28" this week.

I ordered three heavy cables for the power jumper and they should be here by next week. I think adding more band resistance is required to keep the gains coming as quickly as they have. This is a back off week from the barbell, but I'm continuing with the band training. A few days to rest from all the jumping I did a couple of days ago. When the new cables arrive I'll resume training using my new PVC vertical tester and starting off with light+medium+heavy cables instead of light+medium+light. (Then light+heavy, then nothing). Also I'm going to start doing doubles instead of triples.
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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Mon May 30, 2011 6:52 pm

2011-05-30

Warm up with box jumps onto the back of my dad's cargo truck. 40", 41.5", 43" (Shoes really made a difference. Soft bottom loafers do NOT work as well as firm track&field shoes!!!)

Standing Vertical Jump w/ Power Jumper
4 x 2 w/ light+medium+light
2 x 3 w/ medium
1 x 3 w/ light
1 x 3, x 1, x 1, x 1 24-25" performance decrease

Standing Broad Jump
warm up triples up to 8'11"
3 w/ light+medium+light
3 w/ medium
1 x 3, x 1, x 1, x 1, x 1 up to 8'6" performance decrease

Yeah, that was pretty awful. Usual band routine more or less, but I couldn't get over 25" on the vertical nor could I get beyond 9' on the horizontal. In fact, my best broad jump was 8'11" on the warm up. Couldn't get past 8'6" after the jumper.

Apparently speed/power training needs to be cycled just like strength training. This is my fourth week and my progress has reversed. Taking the rest of the week off, then benching, box squatting and deadlifting next week.

Edit: Or I simply went back way too soon. I figured since I wasn't working maximal force I could get away with doing an extra session this week. Maybe I just need to let supercompensation do its job.
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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Thu Jun 02, 2011 11:54 pm

2011-06-02

Clean Grip Overhead Squat 45, 95, 135

Back Squat (high bar, WL shoes)
135 x 3
225 x 2
275 x 1
315 x 1
(add wraps)
315 x 1
(add belt)
355 x 0

Proved empirically that wraps add nothing to my squat, though they do make knees feel a lot better. Tried 315 with and without wraps. It was no easier with the wraps; though knees felt much more secure. Let's see if there is any refill. Also, the belt didn't help me one lick. I think it's because I tried to stay more upright. The belt helps when I get bent over. Turns the bent over position into my strongest position and I can power through. Either way I'm an awful lot weaker on the squat than I was.

Standing Vertical Jump w/ Power Jumper
1 x 3 x medium
2 x 3 x light
3 x 1, x 1, x 1 w/ no bands up to (almost) 28"
1 x 3 x light+medium+light
Several attempts up to 28"

Standing Broad Jump w/ Power Jumper
1 x 3 x medium (warm up)
1 x 3 x light+medium+light
1 x 3 x light+light
1 x 3 x medium
3 x 1, x 1, x 1, x 1 up to 9'

No records today. Just matched my previous bests. But that should come as no surprise. I can't improve linearly forever AND my squat strength is down about 10%. 315 was about all I could muster with good form today. "Olympic" squatting 315 at 180 is not a formula for a 30" vertical. In fact, according to this calculator http://www.higher-faster-sports.com/ver ... lator.html 29" is about the best I could possibly do at this weight with this squat strength.

Backing off on speed training and working back up over the next few weeks. Going to be working on getting my squat up too. I was going to use the box squat, but I'd really rather use the full squat. That's why I'm hoping the wraps will help keep my knee happy. I've already proven that wraps don't do shit for my numbers (315 no belt and wraps and unable to handle 355 while wearing both belts and wraps) because I don't wrap them nearly tight enough. I'm using them on the volume part of my squat days and whoever doesn't like it because it's not RAWR enough can eat a bag of dicks.
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Re: Some People Have Nothing Better To Do

Post by Gary » Tue Jun 07, 2011 10:48 pm

2011-06-07
Got my new green bands for the power jumper. Three in all. Used two plus light today to start work sets for vertical jump. 7'11" reach in track shoes and when I worked down to unresisted jumps I managed to slap the ball when its bottom was 10'2": yields a 27" vertical. Hit a 9'2"-9'3" standing broad jump, but one foot would always slide on the landing. Switched to jumping off concrete to landing in dirt where I managed to hit 9' consistently after using a couple of green bands.

I think I'm as fast as I'm gonna get and hitting the best possible distances at my current strength level (http://www.higher-faster-sports.com/ver ... lator.html). According to the calculator at that site full Olympic squatting 315 at 180 lbs will yield a vertical a little over 28" if speed and jumping technique are at their best. It's time to work on gaining strength and a little weight again.

I was torn about which squat to use: Olympic, front or low bar. I'm of the conviction that low bar turns too easily into a good morning and shifts the development to the hamstrings (because it's a good morning) and away from the quads. Front squats leave the haams out. A strict high bar (Olympic) is probably where it's at for me right now.

Drained 16 clear cc from left knee tonight and 15 a few days ago. The right knee is amazingly stable and because of what I went through with that knee I have hope that the left knee will be stable one day too.

Edit:
2011-06-08
Next day I did some assessment testing.

Standing vertical jump: 28"
Depth Jump from 18": 26"
Paused 5-sec jump: 24"
3-step one-leg jump: 23" left, 22" right
3-step two-leg jump: 30.5"

Went to the outdoor basketball court later. First time I've done that in years. Turns out it's a perfect place to do jumping drills. Great place to do broad jump without worrying about slippage. Did a few one-legged drills including hops all the way down the court, cone hops and a few three-step one-legged hops toward rim. Started off with some rim grabs from standing and from run and two-legged takeoffs. Then practiced dunking a small rubber ball from standing and running. The rim was 9'9". Managed a few broad jumps over 9', a couple at 9'2" and one at 9'3". I am amazingly bad at one-leg and reactive stuff and I expect to see improvements immediately as a little practice does wonders for this neglected area of my training.

Standing broad jump: 9'3"

Edit: Later...

Looking over this May's records. I was at a 22-23" vertical and 8'1" horizontal a month ago. 5 inches to vertical and 13 inches to broad jump in exactly one month. I might have made those improvements without the bands, but I think the weight of the evidence suggests that the bands vastly accelerated the rate of improvement.

Thinking about how I will squat. Just dismissed the idea of Smolov because I honestly don't believe my knees can ever take that kind of volume again. I like the idea of using the following rep schemes, each for three weeks with a one-week back off, adding 20 lbs the second week and another 10 lbs the third week:

2s x 12r
3s x 8r
4s x 6r
5s x 5r
6s x 4r
8s x 3r
12s x 2r

Attentive readers will notice that the sets and reps flip and total volume is always exactly 24 reps. Start with 70% and just add from there as described above. First week of each cycle use the last weight from the old cycle (or close to it). That plays out to 30 lbs added each cycle as the reps per set decrease (and total sets increases). If I start at 225 x 12 x 2, in 6 months I'd end up at 405 x 2 x 12. That's good for 425-445 and over a 100-lb increase from my current detrained 315. Six months seems reasonable to do this.

During the cycle, I'd keep jump training to maintenance levels and then add the bands during the back off from the barbell. I don't think an inch per month on the vertical and three or four on the broad would be unreasonable, at least for a while. And with a naked high bar and naked conventional pull at ~435/525, I could get my belt-only competition versions to 500/600 in a month. I could do this as a sub-200 lifter. A 34" vertical and 10'6" broad jump would be nice to go along with this. Then I could spend a year working on my bench.
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