Iím new here and I thought Iíd start a training journal. To start off, Iíd like to introduce myself and give you a brief overview of my training history.
My name is Jeff and Iím 28 years old. I was born and raised in Canada and have been living in Europe for the better part of the last 5 years working as an English teacher. I moved to Hamburg Germany in June 2002 and have been living in Holland for about a year now.
I first got interested in weight training when I was 16. I was a weak 140 lbs and began in my basement with a bench and some sand filled weights. I soon joined a gym and made it to a still-weak and struggling 165 lbs when I was 18. At this point I ran into HIT and was blown away. My first six months took me to 195 lbs and my strength doubled in that period, which made me a convinced believer. Seven years later, with layoffs, different routines, and a grand finale with the Athleteís Routine, I was a fat, still relatively weak, and horribly deconditioned 205 lbs. It was tough to accept the fact that Iíd wasted my early twenties with a pseudo-scientific contradiction filled pile of HIT-baloney, but I understand my mistakes and am fully recovered now.
To get out of my rut I bought an online muscle course called MuscleNOW. The program gave me just what I needed at the time and it was well worth the 100 bucks. It is a great hypertrophy based program with a very good diet and the experience was well worth it. After 4 months I was a much stronger, more muscular, and better conditioned 225 lbs at 26 years old.
I was then forced to quit training yet again and lost everything I had gained. During my time off I read various things online that helped me get a handle on basic weight training theory. When I began training in January 2006 again, I started with a version of the MuscleNOW program and made it to my all time best shape. Here they were in June 2006:
Arm 17 Ĺ
Chest 44 ľ
Waist 35 Ĺ
Leg 26 Ĺ
Caliper 15 mm
At this point my relative strength was still lousy and Iíd never seriously used the classic lifts. To remedy this problem, I picked up some golden books by Rippetoe, Stiff, and Zatsiorsky, and moved on to more strength based training programs. The past 12 months began with Starrís Intermediate 5x5 and then Ripís Texas Method, both of which are great. Since beginning strength training I have either been trying to maintain or lose weight, so that has obviously hurt my strength gains. Non-the-less, Iíve still been able to make good headway. At the moment current stats are as follows:
Arm 16 Ĺ
Chest 43 ĺ
Leg 25 Ĺ
Caliper 14 mm
And here are my current best lifts, which were set a couple of weeks ago:
Squat 330x1, 290x5
Bench 260x1, 225x5
Row 285x3, 270x5
I should also note that the past year hasnít all been good for me. I suffered a relatively severe shoulder injury when I began strength training, which kept me from doing any pressing for about 4 months. I rehabilitated it over a couple of months and Iíve been able to work at the Bench and Press for about 6 months now. I also made a careless mistake while Deadlifting back in November 2006 which has plagued my lower back and hip ever since. Iíve seen Osteopaths and Massage Therapists since then, and still visit them on a semi-regular basis, but it still acts up enough to keep me from pulling from the floor.
At the moment Iím still trying to drop body fat and increase my maximal strength. I consider myself an intermediate, and my main goal is to eventually Squat 2x bodyweight and Bench 1.5x bodyweight sometime in the future. I would also like to increase my muscle mass beyond my previous best posted above, and eventually hit a relatively lean 18Ē arm, but that will come a bit further down the road.
I wonít post each and every workout in this journal, but more than likely Iíll update it periodically and note anything worth noting. Iíll normally outline what my current training regime is like, then update as things change, milestones are hit or problems arise.
So, thatís me in a nut shell. Thanks for reading and I look forward to joining the community here. If you have any comments, questions, concerns, etc., please feel free.
This is how things are going to look for the time being. Iíll be using a ďWestside inspiredĒ set up with a bit of Texas Method lingo thrown in the mix. I think the Westside Method has a lot to offer, but as an intermediate I donít think I need all that variation just yet. As things progress, however, it may evolve that way.
Iíll have a Bench Day and a Squat Day as follows:
Close Grip Bench
My weekly lifting schedule will look something like this:
MONDAY: ME BENCH
TUESDAY: ME SQUAT
WEDNESDAY: Light Exercise and Cardio
THURSDAY: RE BENCH
FRIDAY: RE SQUAT
SATURDAY: Light Exercise and Cardio
ME days will look pretty simple. The Bench and Squat will get a 1-3RM attempt, and the other lifts will get a couple sets in the 3-5RM range. Iíll start with the classical lifts and begin rotating other variants in the future as I see fit. Iíll rest as needed between sets.
RE days will include various higher volume work. The Bench and Squat will get 3x10, 4x8, 5x5 with controlled rest periods, or some other kind of higher rep work. The other lifts will also get higher rep work but slightly less overall volume. Lifts might change every now and then as well and rest between sets will be shorter. Moreover, I may begin to include some DE work here as things move forward.
As an intermediate, the idea here is to see some form of weekly progress. Thinking in terms of the Texas Model, the RE days provide the stress at the end of the week, while the weekend should provide enough rest to show improved performance at the beginning of the next week. I should see some kind of PR on both the ME and RE days; perhaps a new 3x10 or 5x5 max at the end of the week, and some kind of PR on at least one lift at the beginning of the week.
Iíll be starting out somewhere below my maxes but hope to work my way up closer to them over the next few weeks. When setting PRís becomes tough, more variety will be introduced through different reps and lift variants, as well as back cycles. Iíll also be dieting over the next few months, so hopefully that wonít hurt strength gains too much. Iíd like to lose about 8-10 lbs by Christmas.
hope we both see success! :)
welcome to the board Jeff! nice to see a familiar "face" here :)
i'll say to the other members here that after extensive debating and/or discussions with Jeff in another forum I can honestly say he knows his shit and has had a huge impact on the positive direction my training has taken over the last year.
i'm not familiar at all with Westside programs so I can't make any comparisons but I dont see any reason your set-up wont help you reach your goals. It IS a pretty heavy weekly workload though, how long do you think you'll be able to run it before needing a deload????
and yeah dont injuries suck ass!!
btw, that's a hell of a good rowing poundage!!!
Good to see you too Riddick, Thanks for the kind words as well. There's always plenty to learn, and there seems to be quite a few well versed experienced guys and gals around here to help me out. I'm looking forward to it for sure.
I'm not sure how this set up will turn out. Starting where I am now, I can probably ramp the weight straight up for about 4 weeks before needing a formal deload. I won't be doing that this time though, so who knows. There'll be some variation and cycles running around, so I have no idea how long it'll take before I need a formal deload again. It'll definately be a learning experience for me and I'm looking forward to seeing how I can mannage things.
Just a couple of ideas of how I might fool around with things on RE Day:
1) Do 3x10 and add 5 lbs to the bar each week for three weeks. Do the next three weeks with 4x8...
2) Do 3x10, then 4x8, then 5x5 for a three week cycle, then add weight and do the same three week cycle again...
3) Do 3x10, then add a set each week until I can't complete 10 reps. Move on to another cycle.
4) Do 5x5, then add a rep to each set until I can't complete all sets. Move on to another cycle.
On ME Day, I'll probably alternate between a heavy single, triple, and maybe a heavy 5 on the main lift. The main lifts may alternate down the road as well. With the other lifts, an idea might be to start with a heavy triple and add a set each week until I can't hit three reps anymore, then start over with a heavy five.
I guess you could say I'll be deloading when I stall on one of these progression schemes. Each lift will be treated seperately though, so if the other lifts are still moving then I'll just continue with those. I'll probably take a formal deload when a few lifts stall at the same time and/or I feel I need it. I've had enough experience with fatigue now that I pretty much understand when I need some down time. This style is like nothing I've ever done before so it's hard for me to make a prediction now. We'll see how things go.
Gday Jeff awesome to have you here!!!
Ill second Riddick on this one, Jeff knows his shit!! he is also the reason I was able to break free of the HIT rut, so if I've never said it to ya before mate THANKS alot!
I am not familiar with any Westside stuff myself, so all Ill say is good luck and Im sure youll make the changes as needed.
I might have to get my log going here aswell, and maybe we can then get on G err Riddick to put one up too ; )
Good to see you again too! I see you've started a journal here as well. Good stuff. It'll be great to know what you guys are up to again.
To be honest, I'm only familiar with what I've read about Westside stuff. I should say I'm definately not doing "Westside proper," as I don't have the equipment or experience myself to do it correctly. The theory it's based on seems pretty solid, and there is a wealth of very positive experience out there with it, so I thought I'd try to get some of that experience myself. It'll definately be about learning over the next little while, but I'm looking forward to it.
And thanks a lot for the "thanks" mate. I'm always glad to help in any way I can.
Hello Jeff, B & G (riddick) and Hithopper
Im glad you guys have met up again after your banning from HI.net I hope your all well.
I was banned too, it turns out that Deadtrap bought the forum banned all the ex Hitters, and is now forcing his one sided views to the few remaining Hitters.:asshole:
Nevermind I doubt ill be posting my own journal on here but I will probably pop in quite regulary, and ill no doubt be picking your brains at some point if thats ok.
PS well done on your PR's Jeff nice one!
wow, HH, Johnson, Jeff, all here, awesome!!!
lets see if we can keep from getting banned from this forum guys, lol!
btw, "B&G" is dead!, long live Riddick2112!
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