Tag Archives: personal best

14 Weeks Out | Bench Press & Paused Squats

Another morning with a bleurgh stomach, but also a really good training session, struggled getting any breakfast in and what I did get in really didn’t want to settle.

Bulking ain’t easy!!

Was thinking that I’d be pretty happy with 4 sets of 4 on the bench, but it felt so good I did 5 (and could have done more).  Elbow felt a little tight and the end though which was uncomfortable with squats.

Paused squats felt like I was going to blow a seal as usual.  Would have liked 5 reps at least on the first set but holding my breath in that bottom position makes everything quite light headed by rep 3 so figured it wasn’t worth pushing it.

I had considered calling it quits after 3 sets of 4, but I still had a bit more in me so finished with a set of 3.

Went home and had a well earned sleep :D

Bench Press (paused)
4 x 95kg 209lbs
4 x 95kg 209lbs
4 x 95kg 209lbs
4 x 95kg 209lbs
4 x 95kg 209lbs

Paused Squat
4 x 150kg 331lbs
4 x 150kg 331lbs
4 x 150kg 331lbs
3 x 150kg 331lbs

Video: 215kg Deadlift PB, 227kg 500lb fail :(

I know I should be pretty happy with today, I pulled a PB after all.  But all the little things I did wrong are niggling in the back of my head and I (probably) should have pulled a bit more.

Johnny Candito did a video on having the right athlete/coach mentality and this is a good example, whilst it may seem like I am focusing on the negative, I am really just figuring out what I need to do to improve on my performance.

Clearly my lockout needs a load of work, a lot of this I think comes from my less than perfect posture (tilted hips) which stop the glutes from firing through properly.  One of the reasons for the tilted hips is weak glutes ironically.  I’ve learnt that if my toes are pointed too straight I again struggle to fire my glutes effectively, but seemed to forget this before the bigger pulls.

I thought today would be a good day to experiment with a tighter belt, not sure why as I know it messes me up.  Next time, loosen belt.  Or even better, I’ve confirmation that an alternative style of belt is meet legal so I’m going to try something different.

Next cycle, block pulls galore!

Did I mention I pulled a deadlift PB today?

Romanian Deadlift
12 x 20kg
8 x 60kg

Deadlift
8 x 65kg
5 x 75kg
3 x 110kg
1 x 150kg 331lbs
1 x 160kg 353lbs
1 x 180kg 397lbs
1 x 215kg 474lbs

1 x 227kg 500lbs fail
1 x 220kg 485lbs fail

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Video: Heavy Bench, Close Grip PB + Crappy Spoto Press

I need to start putting like words and stuff in here again…

Bicep is generally feeling better, still hurting a bit after Squat day though.  I’ve made some diet adjustments that I’ll record a video about soon and a small change the workout order (to be implemented next cycle.

I’ve been playing about with grip width a bit more but I’m still not sure where I want to be, today was heavy bench day and I can’t say I’m feeling particularly strong.

First and last sets of 2 x 93kg went up ok but the second looked awful.  Shows how much difference it makes if you start to press from the wrong position…

The plan had Close grip down as 98.5kg but I decided to shoot for 100kg instead as it sounds that much nicer, got one rep, should have hit 2 really but it felt good to go off plan for a change!

Two sets of Spoto Press today, first was 5 x 87.5kg but it felt horrible so the second was dropped to 70kg.  As I didn’t feel like my head was in it today all of the slingshot work was dropped.

Finished off with:

Landmine Press 2 sets, AMRAP

DB Row, 3 sets, 8 x 44kg

Side lateral raise, Tricep extension, DB Preacher curl

Left feeling pumped :)

VLOG#015 | The Cube Method Week 10 Mock Meet

Finally!  The light workouts in the week preceding the mock meet drove me crazy.  As well as giving a good chance to rest however, it did leave me chomping at the bit to lift some heavy stuff!

I’d managed however to work myself up into a bag of nerves come the morning.  Nerves have always been an issue in the past when it comes to competing, usually from fear of the unknown.  With Triathlon it was always the swim that got me.  With Powerlifting it’s “I hope I’ve not gone backwards and what happens if I fail a squat”.

The plan was to get up earlier than usual, the gym opens at 8am on a Saturday but I dragged myself out of bed as I would for a 630am start.  I’d been wide awake since 4am so laying in bed wasn’t going to do me any good.

I tried to keep to my normal morning routine, only adding a half drunk cup of coffee to what I’d normally have for breakfast with the added bonus of having loads more time than usual to digest.

I haven’t used my absorbine gel for a while, but went for almost full body coverage. Maybe not the best idea when the house is freezing cold though.  Next hour was spent shivering.  This week I’d also bought some cheap knock off Rock Tape (kinesiology tape) and taped up my Patella Tendon (thanks YouTube for the instructions) and was very happy with the result (no patella knee pain, even with knees wrapped).

By the time I’d got into the gym and had a good foam roll I was feeling calm and back to normal.  Warming up I felt pretty good and moving the weight pretty well.  I had already decided to give myself plenty of time with my warm up sets and between attempts so once I had got going it was a pretty relaxed session (but long, very long, 4 hours long!).

Very happy with how my squat attempts went.  The plan was 175, 190 for a 5kg PR and if the 190 was a real grinder – skip the 3rd attempt.  As it was the 190 felt ok, although after watching back the video between attempts it looked a tiny bit high.  195 however was bang on for depth.  I was definitely helped by getting my knee wraps on properly, took a few attempts but I can now get my feet to go numb so I’d say thats probably tight enough.

Bench press could have gone better.  95 flew up as expected and 105 even felt pretty comfortable.  That 5kg jump to 110kg was too much though.  Hindsight says 107/108 would have been a better idea.  My 110 attempt is a bit crap though, as always when I’m at the limit, tightness at the pause goes completely and I forget to use my lats.  5kg PR though so I shouldn’t be disappointed, but more would obviously be better!  If I compare this PR to when I did 100 for the first time it looks so much cleaner as well, so there are improvements over and above the weight I pushed – hopefully this will translate to my bench press going up, up, up…

I wasn’t sure what to expect from deadlifts.  I have deadlifted after squatting before, but only for reps so wasn’t sure what the knock on effect would be and a few weeks ago I had completely failed to break 195kg off the ground.   My new (larger)  belt arrived during the week to accommodate my ever growing waistline and what a difference it made.  I was able to get the belt higher, which stopped it from digging in, which in turn allowed me to get into a good position to pull from.  I followed my plan for a 180 opener which felt ok.  Ok isn’t all that inspiring a feeling when you have a previous fail on your mind (which proves Brandon Lillies point about NEVER missing a lift in training) and plummeting levels of energy.  I had already made a decision though that as it isn’t a proper competition, I can have extra attempts if I wanted – and can go backwards with weight if needed.  With that in mind I went for 195 which (as you will see) I got for a 5kg PR. Obviously it would be rude to not attempt 200 after that, the lock out was a little crude and I’m not sure if I would get a red light for it – but I’m counting it as a good lift.

I’ve not done any commentary on the video as it was a bit of a rush to get it online.  Will try and get future ones sorted though.  Full details of warm up weights etc below.

Squat

8 x 60kg
5 x 80kg
3 x 110kg
1 x 140kg
1 x 155kg
Attempt 1 – 175kg / 388lbs
Attempt 2 – 190kg / 419lbs
Attempt 3 – 195kg / 430lbs (10kg / 22lb PR)

Bench Press

8 x 30kg
5 x 40kg
3 x 60kg
1 x 75kg
1 x 85kg

Attempt 1 – 95kg / 209lbs
Attempt 2 – 105kg /231lbs (5kg / 11lb PR)
Attempt 3 –  110kg / 242lbs (fail)

Deadlift

8 x 60kg
5 x 80kg
3 x 110kg
1 x 140kg
1 x 160kg

Attempt 1 – 180kg / 397lbs
Attempt 2 – 195kg / 430lbs
Attempt 3 – 200kg /441lbs (10kg / 22lb PR)

Total: 500kg / 1102lbs (25kg /55lb PR)