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  1. #1
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    Default Nezzy's training journal

    Hello everyone, I'm Nezzy.

    About me: I'm 30 years old, 5'10" or so, and have been exercising in various forms all my life, mostly ineffectively. I first lifted weights when I was about 14 after buying a cheap set of clay filled plastic weights from Argos, and for about a month followed the training plan that was attached with them. My form was awful, I had no idea what I was eating, and I was playing lacrosse three times a week. Net result, not a lot.

    I went to university where I gained weight, smoked pot, and somehow came out with a damn good engineering degree. After quitting smoking and getting a job I decided to start doing something about my fitness .I got a bike and cycled to work every day, slowly building up my fitness to the stage where I could cycle 100miles in a day comfortably. My weight has gone from 13 stone to 14 stone and back again a few times, but I've never got rid of my belly and have never concentrated properly on training or diet. I've trained for loads of long bike rides and last year did a half marathon (1hr 50min, very happy with it), and intermitently have lifted weights throughout the last 5 years.

    Whilst training for the half marathon and also because I moved in with my girlfriend (she's an awesome cook and doesn't drink much) my weight dropped from 14st 7 (203 pounds) down to 13 stone (182 pounds), I was happy with this, but still had a belly and my arms were looking less impressive than ever. I decided to return to the gym but to take it seriously for a change, and found a suitable workout (Steve's power muscle burn). After a few weeks of pretty impressive results I decided to start taking the diet seriously, bought some whey protein, some multi vitamins and some fish oil. I'm constantly making tweaks to my diet and think I've just about found a balance. My weight is back up to 13stone 7 or so (189 pounds) but my waist seems to be shrinking rather than growing.

    Anyway I thought I should open a training log to keep me motivated, have an online record of my results, and be able to look back in years to come at where it all started.

    I have everything recorded in an excel spreadsheet, so I have a good track of my records, but to give you an idea of week one stats:

    Brench Press: 60kg x 5 reps (bro reps, probably 3 of my own and not touching my chest)
    Squat: 80kg x 5 reps (long way from parallel, knees pointing forwards)
    Deadlift: 90kg x 5 reps (form was probably horrible, I'm trying to address this now)
    Romanian Deadlift: 60kg x 6 reps (new exercise to me, so took it very seriously)
    Seated barbell press: 45kg x 5 reps (something I used to enjoy doing so was a lot easier to get right)
    Closegrip Bench Press: 45kg x 4 reps

    I've ignored most of the other exercises, but have records of everything if people are interested.

    Fast forward 11 weeks, and here are last weeks results:

    Bench Press: 75kg x 5 reps (touched chest on each rep, no assist or even spotter)
    Squat: 85kg x 5 reps (full deep squats, thighs way below parallel)
    Deadlift: 120kg x 5 reps (rest the bar between each rep, concentrating on keeping back arched, need to rerecord and get help still)
    Romanian Deadlift: 115kg x 5 reps (love this exercise now)
    Seated Barbell Press: 52.5kg x 4 reps (completed 4 sets of 5 on 50kg last week)
    Closegrip Bench Press: 57.5kg x 5 reps (love this exercise too)

    I've made a few slight tweaks to the 4 day power muscle burn system, but nothing too major, I went 8 weeks without doing front squats but after reading more about them have decided to man up and get them done.

    So, on with the journal:

  2. #2
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    08/05/13

    This week we've had a public holiday on the Monday so my gym was shut (my gym is at work) as a result I've tried to adjust my plan to the 3 day split rather than the 4 day one. Yesterday I did back/chest/abs, leaving today for Quads/Hams/Calves.

    Doing legs the day after deadlifting felt scary but I ploughed on:

    foam rolling
    5min jog with 30 second high knees and 30 second heel clicks

    Squats
    10 x 20kg 5 x 60kg 3 x 80kg Work sets: 5 x 85kg 5 x 85kg 5 x 85kg 5 x 85kg
    (4 sets of 5 reps, more weight next week, really happy as I was good and deep on every rep)

    Romanian Deadlifts
    10 x 20kg 5 x 60kg 5 x 100kg 5 x 110kg Work Sets: 5 x 115kg 5 x 115kg 5 x 115kg 5 x 115kg
    (4 sets of 5 reps here too, gone up every single week on Romanian deadlifts, will find the right level soon!)

    Front Squats
    10 x 40kg 9 x 40kg 9 x 40kg
    (extra rep on every set from last week, pain slightly less, bruises on my upper arms starting to fade)

    Barbell Calve raises
    10 x 20kg 10 x 60kg work sets: 12 x 90kg 12 x 90kg 12 x 90kg
    (rep range is 10-15 so same weight next week)

    Leg Curl
    12 x 42kg 12 x 42kg 12 x 42kg
    (more weight next week)

    45 degree calve press burn
    40 x 140kg 40 x 140kg

    That was it, I was exhausted, still had a muscle set of leg press and burn sets on quads and hamstrings to go, but I'd been there for 80min and was utterly spent. Happy to be going up next week on squats, romanians and leg curl though. Hopefully when I'm back up to the 4 day split I'll get the burn sets back.

    It's better to make every set count than to throw in some weak ones right?

  3. #3
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    Rest day tomorrow, then shoulders/biceps/triceps on Friday.

  4. #4
    FEAR NO BARBELL EliteDreams's Avatar
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    Great to hear you focused on form, keep on working hard!
    ANTI FAILURE

  5. #5
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    10/05/13 - Shoulder/Biceps/Triceps

    Seated Barbell Press 20kg x 10 40kg x 5 work sets: 52.5kg x 5 52.5kg x 5 52.5kg x 5 52.5kg x 5
    (Last week I managed 4/4/3/3, so happy to hit 5s across the board this week, 55kg next week, awesome)

    Closegrip Bench Press 20kg x 10 40kg x 10 work sets 60kg x 5 60kg x 5
    (57.5kg last week, and completed my sets at 5 reps this week, going up twice in a row = awesome)

    Seated Arnold Press 15kg x 11 15kg x 11 15kg x 10
    (an extra rep on each set from last week, I hate this exercise, progress has been awfully slow, wondering whether I should have spent more time with the 12.5kg dumbells)

    Pinwheel Curls 20kg x 4 20kg x 4
    (Think I might change the power sets for biceps, I never feel like I'm doing these right, there's always some swinging in there, yet with the 17.5kg dumbells I can easily do 7 reps)

    Triceps Dips bodyweight x 15 bodyweight x 13
    (Last week was 12/11, so really happy to get so many more, my weight is dropping a little at the moment so I think that helps. May add 10kg on a belt next week)

    Barbell front raise 20kg x 11 20kg x 10 20kg x 10
    (more weight than last week, happy to get over 10 reps in each set)

    EZ bar Skullcrushers 24.5kg x 8 24.5kg x 7
    (more weight than last week)

    Standing Barbell Curl 32kg x 11 32kg x 8 32kg x 7
    (I've really started to hate this exercise too, sfor the last 6 weeks I've been able to do 11 reps on the first set, yet only very slowly clawing the number up in the remaining ones, my biceps don't like more than 1 set of work)

    Burn sets:

    Dumbell Lateral Raises 8kg x 40 8kg x 40
    (heavier than last week and didn't feel too bad, managed 16 reps without pause in the first set, the second one took a while)

    Tricep rope pull down 18.75kg x 40
    (nothing special here, been at this weight for a few weeks now, not quite easy enough yet to move up)

    EZ bar Preacher Curl 22kg x 40 22kg x 40
    (second set of these felt like it took about 10 minutes, my biceps really don't like multiple sets)



    Overall really happy with the way today went, the progress on my shoulder press is fantastic, and my triceps seem to get stronger every week.

  6. #6
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    11/05/13 Rest Day (gym shut at weekends)
    12/05/13 Rest Day (as above)
    13/05/13 Back/Chest/Abs

    Unfortunately I'm on another three day week due to work commitments, so three long days in the gym coming up this week. I much prefer the 4 day split, but anyway here goes:

    Warmup
    foam rolling
    jogging on the spot, high knees and heel clicks (all cardio machines in use annoyingly)

    Deadlift
    30kg x 10 60kg x 5 100kg x 5 Belt on, Straps on 120kg x 5,5,5,5
    The last set felt like my hips were coming up before my back again, think I just about sorted it on the last couple of reps, but form still needs a lot of work, may keep the same weight for another week.

    Bench Press
    20kg x lots 40kg x 5 60kg x 5 70kg x 3 Work sets: 75kg x 5,4,4,3
    Two more reps than last week, so fairly happy. I get the feeling I'd do better if I hadn't done deadlifts first, hopefully back to the 4 day split next week.

    Barbell Rows
    20kg x lots 40kg x 10 Worksets 60kgx12,12,12
    Completed my reps, just, the form was a little slack on the last rep, but I couldn't leave it at 12,12,11, I can add a little weight next week and get it right.

    Incline Bench press
    20kg x 10 40kg x 10 Worksets 50kgx12,7,5
    Dunno what happened here, last week I managed 11,10,8, the first set felt so easy then my arms just failed me on the second, had to drop the weight to my waist and put it on the floor, pretty embarrassing. Had nothing left for the last set.

    Wide Arm Assisted Pull ups
    lvl 12 x 12,9,7
    Not sure what level 12 equates to in kg or lb, but I finished with lvl 13 last week, so fairly happy with these. The first set felt amazing, my back is really getting stronger.

    Dumbell Decline Bench press
    22.5kgx12,12,10
    Recovered from the incline disaster, to get 2 reps more than last week, happy here.

    BURN SETS
    Seated Cable Row
    43.75kg x 40,40
    one plate up from last week

    Dumbell flies
    12.5kg x 40,40
    I did these immediately after the dumbell press as the cable machine was busy, they weren't easy, but I got through them.

    Abs
    Ok so by this point in the workout I'd been in the gym for an hour and a half, and just couldn't be bothered. However I used that excuse last week as well, so had to do something, so squeezed out 2 sets of cable crunches: 28.75kgx15,15

    I've still got a belly, squats and deadlifts are making my core strong, I really can't be arsed doing abs. Maybe when I get back to the 4 day split, I'll have a bit more motivation.

    Overall very happy with today, deadlift form is improving, hope to get someone to video me next week. Bench press keeps going up, more weight on rows next week and managed the back burn set with increased weight. Rest day tomorrow then legs on Wednesday. Can't wait!

  7. #7
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    Default Leg Day

    I spent yesterday in Glasgow, 07:00 start, 23:30 finish. A day of meetings, planes, airports, long drives and primarily a hell of a lot of junk food. I've been eating fairly clean and cutting for the last few weeks so decided to just write it off as a refeed and hit the gym hard today. Went into work slightly later today, and was ready for the gym by 14:00.

    15/05/13

    Warm Up
    Foam Rolling (took my time as back felt slightly tight)
    5min jog with high knees and heel clicks

    Squats
    20kg x 10 40kg x 10 60kg x 5 80kg x 3 Belt on worksets: 90kg x 4,4,4,3
    Happy with these, I jumped 5kg from last week and managed all sets over 3 reps. I've taken some videos which I'll upload later, was fairly happy with my form, though think I can probably get even deeper.

    Romanian Deadlifts
    20kg x some 60kg x 5 100kg x 3 worksets 120kg x 5,5,5,5
    Continue to go up in weight on Romanian deadlifts, I think I need to film these at some point for comment, as I never see anyone else doing them so can't be completely sure I'm doing it right.

    Front Squats
    20kg x some 40kg x 12,10,10
    More reps than last week, and getting really deep. I'm really starting to enjoy this exercise even with the bruises on my upper arms. After the third set of 10 I felt exhausted, decided to do calves next for a "break".

    Barbell Calve Raises
    40kg x some 90kg x 15,15,15
    Completed my reps on these this week, just, really felt a deep burn in the calves afterwards. My balance is improving on this exercise, may see if I can find a slightly higher step to do it on next week (current one is about 1.5")

    Leg Curl
    49kg x 10,8,6
    Weight up this week and happy to hit a decent number of reps.

    Leg Extension
    77kg x 12,11,8
    The leg press machine was in use just in time for me to want it, and I could see ht eguy had a lot of sets left so decided to do some leg extensions instead. This was heavier than I'd done them before and managed to do three good sets.

    BURN TIME!!

    LEG CURL BURN
    35kg x 40
    Found this easier than last time, managed 20 reps without stopping and nailed the rest in mini sets of 3, nice.

    LEG PRESS QUAD BURN
    130kg x 40, 40
    The machine came free just in time and I managed two sets of quad burns without crying, sufficient.

    LEG PRESS CALVE BURN
    140kg x 40
    This felt difficult and I couldn't bring myself to do the second set. I'd been in the gym for about 1hr 40 by this stage so decided to call it a day.

    Foam rolling (mainly concentrated on calves and lower back, quads felt surprisingly ok)


    Really happy with this workout, after not getting through all my sets last week, it felt good to complete everything and progress on everything. I'll upload some videos when I get home of my days squatting. Unfortunately my gym buddy is a useless cameraman, so you'll have to tilt your head on the side to view the last one. Watch this space.

  8. #8
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    Squat videos.

    First off 40kg, first warm up set:


    Third warm up set 80kg


    Work set with belt... dunno what happened to my cameraman, but hopefully you get the picture:


    Form based comments welcome... comments on the music in my gym maybe less so.

  9. #9
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    16/05/13 Shoulders/Triceps/Biceps

    Seated Barbell Press
    20kg x lots 40kg x 5 50kg x 3 worksets: 55kg x 5,3,3,3
    Went up in weight this week, always happy as long as I hit at least 3 reps on each set when going up.

    Closegrip Bench Press
    20kg x lots 40kg x 5 worksets: 62.5kg x 4,3
    Again, more weight this week so happy with hitting at least 3 reps

    Barbell Front Raises
    20kg x 12,12,12
    I normally do this later in the workout, but as the triceps bar and 15kg dumbells were in use I opted to do it earlier and hit 3 sets of 12, more weight next week.

    Seated Arnold Press
    15kg x 12,10,9
    I'm making no progress at all on this exercise, I looked back 8 weeks and had managed 12,10,9 then too. My Barbell press has gone up by almost 10kg in the same time. Really don't know how to fix this. May swap it for an alternate exercise for a while, I'd appreciate any suggestions.

    Triceps bar Hammer Curls
    37kg x 5,5
    Was not able to keep form on pinwheel curls so decided to try this as my power exercise for biceps. I'm much happier with it, I managed to isolate my biceps really well, kept form through all the reps, and felt a great pump afterwards. I also like that I can increase this by much smaller increments than the pinwheel curls.

    Weighted Triceps Dips
    10kg x 9,8
    First time I've put the weight belt on EVER. Really happy to get a decent number of dips with an extra 10kg.

    Barbell Biceps Curl
    32kg x 11,8
    Another exercise I don't seem to ever progress on, I cut it a set short this week as I felt myself really struggling to compete reps 6,7, and 8 on the second set. I think I'm going to lower the weight on this until I get 3 sets of 12 reps, may have started too high here.

    BURN SETS

    Lat Raise Burn
    8kg x 40,40
    Not too hard, though the last 5 of the last set took a while.

    Tricep rope pull downs
    18.75kg x 40
    I got to 22 reps without a break, definitely improving on this exercise.

    EZ bar preacher curl
    22kg x 40
    Biceps were done, 1 set was enough.

    I enjoyed todays session, made good progress on all the heavier lifts, and loved doing weighted triceps dips. The swap to the triceps bar for biceps power sets was a great success. Just really need to work out my problems with arnold press and barbell curl.

  10. #10
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    Default Biceps and Chest (Glamour Muscles woo)

    Had a bowling competition on Friday, and managed to score a new pb of 205. Really happy with that, then had a nice peaceful weekend of gardening, good food and relaxation. Needless to say I was ready for the gym today!

    Thankfully I'm here all week this week, so can get back to the 4 day split. I'm on holiday all next week, so gonna make it count.

    Monday: Chest and Biceps.

    Bench Press

    20kg x lots 40kg x 10 60kg x 5 70kg x 3 worksets: 75kg x 5,5,5,5
    Really happy to be moving up again next week, when planning my goals for the year I estimated 2.5kg increase every 4 weeks for bench, so far it seems to be every 2-3 weeks, which is awesome.

    Hammer curl with triceps bar
    39.5kg x 5,5
    Think I'm going to enjoy this exercise, much easier to keep form than pinwheel curls, and the weight increments are more manageable.

    Incline Bench Press

    20kg x lots, 45kg x 12,12,12
    I decided to lower the weights on this exercise as I'd been stalling for a few weeks her, looking back through the logs, it looks like I took an initial guess at 50kg, and have just stuck with it ever since. Now I've completed the reps at 45kg, I'll try 47.5kg next time then move up to 50 once I've completed the reps there.

    Standing Barbell Curl

    27kg x 12,12,12
    As with the incline bench this exercise had been stalling and there was no clear reason why I was picking up 32kg every week. Dropped to 27kg and made my reps, will try 29.5kg next time.

    Decline DB bench press

    22.5kg x 12,12,11
    One rep short, so close. Ah well it was still progression and that's all that matters. No excuses next time!

    BURN SETS

    EZ bar preacher curls

    22kg x 40,40
    My arms and wrists still hurt from this, will be feeling the pump all week. Got to 20 reps in the first set before struggling, but only 8 in the second, took me about 10min to complete the set. OUCH. On the plus side the pump made my arms look freaking huge.

    DB flies

    12.5kg x 40,40
    These on the other hand were easy, made it to 35 reps in the first set and 25 in the second, definitely picking up heavier weights next time. First time I picked up these weights for this exercise I couldn't complete the reps it was so hard, really liking the progress here.


    Overall an awesome session. The only downside was the treadmills being in use for the warm up, ended up having to use some ridiculous skiing/stairclimbing machine, which is the cardio equivalent of walking lunges. 5min on level 1 was enough to let me know I'll never step on that machine again. Foam rolling my pecs was a new experience, but was game to give it a go.

    In more positive news I now have a committed gym buddy. I lost my previous one when he took a posting in London, this one has a similar level of experience and strength to me, and is keen on the Power Muscle Burn system. Could be good news going forwards.

    Would still appreciate any comments on the squats above, I'm back in for legs tomorrow so will try to get some better videos.

  11. #11
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    Default Hams and Quads

    21/05/13

    I went to the doctors this morning about a few non life threatening cosmetic issues including a varucca on my heel. He dutifully attacked it with some liquid nitrogen and sent me on my way. For the rest of the day this has been quite sore, and has proven a great excuse for anything that went wrong in leg day.

    I made it to the gym around 1400 after a protein shake with added BCAAs, a nature valley bar and a cup of coffee.

    Warm up

    Foam rolling
    5min jog with high knees and heel clicks

    Warming up and down on leg day has been such a revelation over the last few weeks, I swear the foam rolling cuts my recovery time in half.

    Squats
    20kg x 10 40kg x 5 60kg x 5 80kg x 3 Worksets 90kg x 5,4,4,4

    2 more reps than last week, my heel was definitely hurting as I drove up through it, but I don't think it affected my performance much at all. I think all bar the last rep of the last set were nice and deep and I was happy with my form.

    Romanian Deadlifts
    20kg x 10 60kg x 5 100kg x 5 120kg x 5 worksets 125kg x 5,4,4,4

    These felt more difficult than in recent weeks, think it's the first time I haven't completed 4 sets of 5 reps straight off. This is just above my current deadlift weight, so think I've finally found the right level for Romanian Deadlifts. I will get these recorded soon to check form.

    Front Squats
    20kg x 10 worksets 40kg x 12,12,10

    This is just plain cardio, absolutely exhausted after this, breathing heavy, dripping with sweat. Really wanted to push out two more on the last set but my legs (and heart) wouldn't take it. I experimented with laying a towel over my arms to reduce bruising, I'll let you know how that goes.

    Leg Curl
    49kg x 10,9,8
    3 more reps than last week, nothing special

    Leg Press
    170kg x 12,12,12
    I've really worked on my form on this and now am driving properly through my heels. Completed my reps with ease, so think I'll try 180kg next time.

    BURN SETS
    Nope, no chance, heart was still racing from the front squats, my body was ruined and my foot was aching. Decided it was a good enough work out today to skip the burns. I'm starting to make a habit of this, I'll correct it when I'm back from holiday.

    Cool Down

    More foam rolling


    Happy with today, the squats are feeling more natural and I can definitely see now how they're a full body workout, my core is really feeling it, as are my glutes, hams, quads... and arms. The music was somewhat less cheesy in the gym today, they've taken Bryan Adams off the play list thank god (everything I do... Really, in a gym? whilst I'm working out?).

    Watched my favourite two "bros" take it in turns to lift 100kg off each others chest, it makes me laugh that they come in every week and I've not seen them complete a single rep between them. My goal by Christmas is to do 100kg bench unassisted, I'd love to do it the same day they're in, I'm guessing they'll still be broing it by then.
    Last edited by Nezzy; 05-21-2013 at 11:35 AM.

  12. #12
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    Default Shoulders and Triceps

    Seated Barbell Press
    20kg x 10 40kg x 5 50kg x 3 worksets 55kg x 5,5,4,3
    These felt good again today, think it may be my favourite exercise, managed 3 more reps than last week.

    Closegrip Bench Press
    20kg x 10 40kg x 5 60kg x 3 worksets 62.5kg x 5,4
    Continued progress here, 2 more reps than last week.

    Seated Arnold Press
    15kg x 12,12,12
    FINALLY achieved three sets of 12, after months of very slow progress, can take the weight up next time.

    Weighted Triceps Dips
    10kg x 11,10
    Really love this exercise now, this time last year I struggled to do a dip with a 10kg assist, now I can comfortably do them with weight srapped around my waist, love it!

    Barbell Front Raises
    22kg x 10,8,8
    Weight went up this week, so fairly happy with the number of reps.

    Skullcrushers
    24.5kg x 12,12
    Completed my reps here, so more next week.

    BURN SETS

    Lateral Raises
    8kg x 40,40
    These felt good again, managed 25 reps without pause in the first set, so may be ready to move up a little.

    Triceps rope pull down
    18.5kg x 40
    Up to 24 reps without pause, will give it one more week before moving the weight up.

    Really happy with todays session, especially the Arnold Press, been trying to finish that weight for ages, really glad to finally make it.

    On the downside my roasted vegetable and haloumi lunch is smelling a bit dodgy, probably should have had it yesterday. May need to go and get a sandwich instead.
    Last edited by Nezzy; 05-23-2013 at 08:06 AM.

  13. #13
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    Default Back and Calves

    24/05/13

    Missed this report after the workout, thought I'd update now. On the 23rd I felt a sudden pain at the bottom of my rib cageon my 3rd set of leg press, I didn't want to mention anything as I thought it was probably nothing, but I started to think it may be more serious like a broken rib. I decided to not push the deadlifts too hard as a result and really tried to concentrate on form. I added some videos to my thread in the Exercises subforum.

    Deadlift
    warm ups (lots at differing weights)... 120kg x 3, 110kg x 5,3,4
    The 120kg reps were not too bad, but I was really struggling to keep form on the 3rd so dropped the weight for the remaining worksets.

    Barbell rows
    62.5kg x 12, 11, 8

    Lat Pull Down
    lvl 12 x 12, 11, 9

    Barbell Calf Raise
    95kg x 12, 12, 12

    BURN SETS
    Seated Cable Row
    43.75kg x 40, 40

    45 Degree Calf Raise
    140kg x 40, 40

    Not much to report, other than I was off on holiday the next day.

  14. #14
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    Default Good News Bad News

    So I've just had a week in beautiful sunny Devon, playing with dogs and walking on Dartmoor. Somehow by eating constantly and drinking alcohol every day, I've managed to lose 5 pounds (mostly water weight I'm sure). My ribs have been hurting though, for one day there was a lot of pain after I slept on my side.

    I went to the doctors to have it looked at and she reckoned I've pulled an intercostals muscle. The advice was to lay off the leg press and anything else which will have me bending over for a few weeks. This puts leg day in doubt which sucks, and also I'll have to cut abs out of my Friday workout (I rarely bother anyway).

    I'm going to push on with the other sessions this week and see how I go.

  15. #15
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    Default Biceps and Chest

    So after a week of deload, I was back into the gym for glamour muscles day. I wasn't feeling at all strong, I'd had a bad night's sleep and had been eating anything for the last week (not unhealthy, just no idea on calories or macros).

    Bench Press
    20kg x lots 40kg x 10 60kg x 5 70kg x 3 75kg x 3 work sets 77.5kg x 3,3,3,3
    I added 2.5kg this week which was possibly a little risky after a week off, but I managed to push 3 solid reps for each set. I bench press without a spotter, so didn't try to go any further, though there were some very shaky arms on the last rep!

    Hammer Curls with Triceps bar
    42kg x 5,3
    More weight this week, so I was happy with the number of reps.

    Incline Bench Press
    20kg x lots, 40kg x 10, 47.5kg x 12, 8, 6
    After deloading on this last time I'd started to build up again, should be able to hit 3 sets of 12 on this I think, I'll put it down to the week off. Hopefully I'll complete next week.

    Standing Barbell Curl
    29.5kg x 12, 8, 5
    As above I'd deloaded the previous week and added 2.5kg this week. I don't think I'll complete my reps next week on this, but hopefully I can return to a progression on this.

    Decline Dumbell Bench Press
    22.5kgs x 12, 7, 6
    I wasn't happy with this, but my body just said no. I was hoping to push 3 sets of 12 today, but I think I need some time to get back to strength.

    I managed three dumbell flies for my burn set and just couldn't bring myself to do the rest. I think the week off took more out of me than I was expecting. Hopefully I'll get back into the swing of things next week, as my return to diet sets in.

  16. #16
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    Default Back and Calves

    I was planning on doing Shoulders and Triceps today, but as my last session was upper body I thought I'd push that back to tomorrow and return to the normal routine next week. On the plus side I'm barely feeling any pain from my intercostals muscle now, so may as well crack on with leg day next Tuesday and just take it easy.

    Warm up
    5min Treadmill with high knees for 30sec

    Deadlift
    20kg x lots 60kg x 10 80kg x 5 100kg x 5 worksets 110kg x 5,5,5,5
    Felt more confident with my form today and managed to get 4 solid sets of 5 reps. It's nice and hot in the UK today, so I was absolutely dripping by the end of it. Great start to a workout!

    Barbell Rows
    20kg x lots 40kg x lots worksets 62.5kg x 12,9,7
    I was a few reps down on my previous session here, but I'm putting that down to the week off. Hopefully I'll be back to progression next week.

    Barbell Calves Raise
    60kg x 12 worksets 95kg x 15,15,15
    Hit my targets on this, the last few reps really felt like a good stretch. Happy with this.

    Assisted Wide grip Pull ups
    Lvl 12 x 12,12,9
    Managed an extra rep despite the deload week... probably because I lost a few pounds.

    BURN SETS
    Seated Cable Row
    43.75kg x 40,40
    Struggled to 20 in the first set before my first breather, and barely made 15 in the second. Happy I managed to complete the full sets though.

    45 Degree Calf Raise
    140kg x 40,40
    Managed 25 without pause in both sets so I'll add more weight next week.

    Cool Down
    5 min foam rolling

    Really happy with today's session, sure I was a few reps down on a few exercises, but I made it through all the sets and made some good progress on a few of the exercises. Looking forward to tomorrows shoulder and triceps session. BRING IT ON!

  17. #17
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    Default Shoulders and Triceps

    Friday's here, WOO

    Seated Barbell Press
    20kg x lots 40kg x 10 50kg x 3 Worksets: 55kg x 5,2 (just ran out of all strength) 45kg x 4,4
    I really struggled to make a single rep in my 3rd set here, decided to put it down to being first week back, took 10kg off and struggled out two more sets. I'm not going to beat myself up over this unless the same thing happens next week.

    Closegrip Bench Press
    20kg x lots 40kg x 10 worksets 62.5kg x 3,4
    Think I didn't leave enough time between warmup and workset here, the first set was a lot harder than the second.

    Seated Arnold Press
    15kg x 12,8,8
    Although I hit 12,12,12 last time I decided to stay on 15kg for one more week whilst I recovered from my rest week. Was happy to get this many reps, but hoping to hit 12,12,12 again next week.

    Triceps Dips
    16,11
    The weight belt was broken so we had to do these without added weight. Not a problem this week, but I'm gonna try to fix it by next weeks session.

    Barbell Front Raise
    22kg x 12,8,8
    Slightly improved from last time, so happy here.

    Skullcrushers
    27kg x 10,6
    More weight than last time, so happy with these sets.

    BURN SETS
    Dumbell Lateral Raises
    8kgs x 40,40
    No problem here, may be worth going up to 9s next time.

    Triceps rope pulldown
    18.5kg x 40
    Last few reps were very sketchy, think I was done for the day.


    Really enjoyed my week back in the gym, my whole body hurts today, and probably will all weekend, but I should be back to normal next week.

  18. #18
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    Default Chest and Biceps

    Just had a thoroughly enjoyable weekend in the sun, back in the office on Monday morning to grey cloud and a promise of a week of rain. Only one thing for it, an awesome session of glamour muscles.

    Warm up
    5min jog with high knees and heel clicks

    Bench Press
    20kg x lots 40kg x 12 60kg x 5 70kg x 5 worksets 77.5kg x 4,3,3,3
    One more rep than last week, but fairly sure I could have done more. On the first set I had a spotter so decided to push for a 5th rep, stalled half way and he gave me a good few seconds before helping out, should be able to get 4 sets of 4 next week I hope.

    Hammer curls with Triceps bar
    42kg x 5,5
    Completed my reps this week, really like this exercise.

    Incline Bench Press
    20kg x 10 40kg x 10 worksets 47.5kg x 12,12,10
    Since deloading this one a couple of weeks ago I've made good progress on this exercise. Hopefully I can get 3 sets of 12 next week and then get back to 50kg.

    Barbell Curls
    29.5kg x 12,10,7
    Deloaded this one a couple of weeks ago as well, and making slow progress back up to 32kg. Definitely needed the deload here as I'm not going to complete this weight for a few weeks yet.

    Decline Dumbell Bench Press
    22.5kgs x12,11,7
    I've done 12,12,11 before on these, so not quite back to my pre holiday form. Hopefully I can recover more next week.

    BURN SETS
    Dumbell Flies
    12.5kgs x 34
    Just could not make the full burn set here, started struggling after only 10 reps and went downhill fast. I've managed 35 without rest on these before, hoping they'll pick up again soon.

    EZ bar preacher bench curls
    22kg x 40
    Managed the set fairly easily but decided not to push on with a second. Workout was finished.


    My intercostals muscle is feeling better again, so going to give leg day a go tomorrow.

  19. #19
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    Default All change

    So I've read the advice on this forum a hundred times, I've even written it a few myself.

    As a beginner you should do a full body workout like stronglifts or starting strength. If you aren't lifting heavy weights, you're a beginner.

    I am a beginner, yet decided an intermediate program would be what I needed. No idea why.

    Yesterday it hit me that this was ludicrous, I'm spending over an hour in the gym 4 days a week and only doing the big lifts once a week. Time to change. I downloaded the stronglifts program and started today.

    Stronglifts Day 1:

    Squats
    20kg x 10 45kg x 5,5,5,5,5
    Form, form, form, these felt amazing, deeper than I'd been before. My training partner also stepped it up, and put me to shame with his ass to the floor squats, I swear his ass was touching his heels on a few of those reps, with a wonderfully straight back and all the weight through his heels. Never seen him squat properly before, so we're both fairly motivated by good form right now.

    Bench Press
    20kg x 10 40kg x 5,5,5,5,5
    Nothing to comment on here, looks like 12 weeks to get back to my current strength on bench press, but I'm going to follow the program to the letter.

    Pendlay rows
    30kg x 5,5,5,5,5
    First time I've ever done a bent over row properly, and boy can I feel the difference. I swear there's a few muscles in my back that had never been worked before, these felt fantastic. Really looking forward to watching the numbers rise here.

    And that was it for day one, 25min in the gym. I decided to spend 20min on the Cross Trainer on hill mode in order to work up a sweat and avoid the office for a little longer. Overall very excited by this program and the promise of lifting some very heavy objects over the coming months. Squatting 3 times a week just seems like a more effective strategy for me right now.

    I've also ordered some body fat calipers to try and get a good sense of where my body currently is.

  20. #20
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    Default Workout B (1)

    Squats
    20kg x 5,5 47.5kg x 5,5,5,5,5

    Overhead Press
    20kg x 5 27.5kg x 5,5,5,5,5
    As I've been doing seated overhead press, or push presses for the last few years, these felt quite unusual and very effective. It'll be interesting to see how heavy I can get before stalling on these.

    Deadlift
    50kg x 5
    1x5 on deadlifts seems so insignificant at this stage, but once the weight goes up and the warm up sets become feasible I'll start to be very greatful for 1 set of deads.

    Again done in about 25min, it's definitely a compact workout, but the weights are still light and I'm enjoying getting the form right. It's also great fun squatting deep in a room full of people doing biceps curls feels quite entertaining. There was one very lean guy deadlifting 140kg with perfect form next to me today, which made me happier.
    2013 Gym PRs
    Squat = 140kg ...... Deadlift = 180kg ...... Bench = 95kg
    2014 Gym PRs
    Squat = 162.5kg ...... Deadlift = 192.5kg ...... Bench = 105kg
    2015 Gym PRs
    Squat = 170kg ... Deadlift = No improvement ... Bench = No Improvement

  21. #21
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    Default Workout A (2)

    I know I'm not supposed to go two days in a row on this routine, but as I'm still on the light weights figured it would be ok. I've also decided to up my Bench by 5kg a session for a couple of weeks so it doesn't take 15 weeks to get back to my current strength.

    Squats
    20kg x 5,5 40kg x 5 50kg x 5,5,5,5,5

    Bench
    20kg x 5,5 45kg x 5,5,5,5,5

    Pendlay rows
    32.5kg x 5,5,5,5,5

    Nice and easy, bring on the weekend.
    2013 Gym PRs
    Squat = 140kg ...... Deadlift = 180kg ...... Bench = 95kg
    2014 Gym PRs
    Squat = 162.5kg ...... Deadlift = 192.5kg ...... Bench = 105kg
    2015 Gym PRs
    Squat = 170kg ... Deadlift = No improvement ... Bench = No Improvement

  22. #22
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    Default Workout B (2)

    Had a mixed weekend, didn't eat very healthily but also didn't drink, won 220 in a poker tournament at the casino and managed to get out for a good bike ride. My girlfriend wasn't around so I got quite lonely, she got home on Sunday but was too tired to do anything so spent the day sat in front of the telly. Anyway back to work today.

    Squats
    20kg x 5,5 40kg x 5 52.5kg x 5,5,5,5,5

    Overhead Press
    20kg x 5,5 30kg x 5,5,5,5,5

    Deadlift
    50kg x 5 55kg x 5

    Cardio
    15min treadmill @ 6.5mph incline 0.5

    Cool down
    3min walk on treadmill
    5min foam rolling

    Threw a warm up set into the deadlifts just to feel like I'd done a bit more work. I'm also going to see if I can start to progress my cardio in a similar fashion to weights. so will add 0.5 to incline until I get to 2.5, then drop back down and up the speed or time. I have a bad feeling my brother's going to make me do the Bristol Half Marathon again this year, so need ot have some level of preparedness.

    The squats are still light compared to my max, but doing 5 sets of 5 is starting to feel very effective even at this weight. Looking forward to smashing through my previous best in 5 weeks.
    2013 Gym PRs
    Squat = 140kg ...... Deadlift = 180kg ...... Bench = 95kg
    2014 Gym PRs
    Squat = 162.5kg ...... Deadlift = 192.5kg ...... Bench = 105kg
    2015 Gym PRs
    Squat = 170kg ... Deadlift = No improvement ... Bench = No Improvement

  23. #23
    I'm a Grower;) castille's Avatar
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    Default

    Love the workouts, simple but effective is the way to go!
    NO EXCUSES JUST RESULTS!!

  24. #24
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    Default Workout A (3)

    Thanks Castille, switching to Stronglifts was like a light bulb turning on above my head, it made so much sense.

    Squats
    20kg x 5,5 40kg x 5 55kg x 5,5,5,5,5

    Bench Press
    20kg x 10 40kg x 5 50kg x 5,5,5,5,5

    Rows
    35kg x 5,5,5,5,5

    The squat weight is beginning to feel challenging, which is great, the bench press is still far too easy, I've started to up it by 5kg a session for a couple of weeks. I'll level off when it's still below my current 5RM to ensure I push through it. The rows are also very light, but doing them Pendlay style (or properly) is new to me so I'm happy building up slowly.

    Discovered today I could do and L-sit for about 5 seconds. This made me happy as my gym buddy who weighs 10kg less than me and benches 10kg more can't do them at all. Also I always skipped ab sessions, just goes to show that squats build strength, crunches do nothing.
    2013 Gym PRs
    Squat = 140kg ...... Deadlift = 180kg ...... Bench = 95kg
    2014 Gym PRs
    Squat = 162.5kg ...... Deadlift = 192.5kg ...... Bench = 105kg
    2015 Gym PRs
    Squat = 170kg ... Deadlift = No improvement ... Bench = No Improvement

  25. #25
    M&S Power User Nezzy's Avatar
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    Default Workout B (3)

    I had the day off work today as I'm off to Wales for a long weekend. But as my signature says, no excuses, so I got on my bike and headed in for the gym:

    Squats
    20kg x 5, 5 40kg x 5 57.5kg x5, 5, 5, 5, 5

    Overhead press
    20kg x 5, 5 32.5kg x 5, 5, 5, 5, 5

    Deadlift
    50kg x 5 55kg x 5 60kg x 5

    Cardio
    Treadmill 15min @ 6.5mph Incline 1

    Cooldown
    5 min foam rolling

    Nothing too exciting to report here. Up to 1pps on squats starting Monday.
    2013 Gym PRs
    Squat = 140kg ...... Deadlift = 180kg ...... Bench = 95kg
    2014 Gym PRs
    Squat = 162.5kg ...... Deadlift = 192.5kg ...... Bench = 105kg
    2015 Gym PRs
    Squat = 170kg ... Deadlift = No improvement ... Bench = No Improvement

 

 

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