T Nation

40 Helpings of Weaksauce


#1

I have been powerlifting for a few years now, and I keep tripping up on the same weak points I keep neglecting. So I am taking my favorite workout template, Dan John's 40 day workout, and plugging in the lifts I suck at the worst. I never do these lifts, so I don't care about poundage, but I will test on the following goals at the end of it all:

Beltless deadlift 475
Wrapless bench press 225

Without further ado,

  • Squat warmup to a set of 10
  • Good Morning 2x5
  • Eric Cressey rotator cuff workout:
    A: DB Cuban press 3x8 (can't do the bar)
    B: DB L-raise 1x8
    C1: lying 45 deg side raise 2x10
    C2: band external rotation 2x10 (don't have a cable stack)
  • Barbell curl 2x5
  • DB clean and press one set of 20-50
  • Abs:
    Reverse crunch to hip raise one set of 5
    10 crunches each way, forward, left, right

#2

Day 1

Squat 135x10
GM 135x5, 155x5
RC workout, 5s
Curl 45x5, 55x5
DB clean/press 30x32.5s (15 reps each arm)
Abs


#3

Day 2

Squat 135x10
GM 135x5, 155x5
RC workout, 5s
Curl 45x5, 55x5
DB clean/press 36x32.5s
Abs

Tried a wider stance and wide grip on the squats. Usually I squat very narrow and go several inches below parallel. With the wider stance, toes pointing about 40 degrees out, I seem to be hitting just below parallel. “Wider” meaning a few inches more than shoulder width.


#4

Good luck, but remember that the squat, bench and deadlift are what get the squat, bench and deadlift to increase. Any other training is non-specific and of limited benefit; infact, it could be detrimental… Don’t lose sight of your goal.
When you say wrapless bench, do you mean elbow wraps? They aren’t commonly used for bench in powerlifting anyway.


#5

Some extra work tonight:

Squat, beltless doubles with 255, 275, 295, 315, 335, 355.
Used new wider stance. Looked OK at lighter weights, dodgy at heavier weights. I can tell upper back and glute strength will be limiting factors as well as just getting used to cutting the squats (relatively) high. Will be interesting to see where this is in a month with some practice via the daily warmups.

Reverse crunches in the captain’s chair, 3x10
Side bends 3x15x50
Barbell rotations 3x10x25 (5 each way) – didn’t mean to do so few, these were really hard.


#6

halcj, by wrapless I mean no wrist wraps.

I almost always center my training on the competition lifts, at the expense of assistance work… maybe that’s my problem. Well, I’ll find out in a couple months one way or the other.


#7

Day 3

Squat 135x10
GM 135x5, 175x5
RC workout, 5s
Curl 45x5, 55x5
DB clean/press 20x32.5s
Abs

On the squats, I seemed to hit the perfect depth and stay in a stable groove when sitting back while opening my knees on the descent.


#8

Fair enough, worth trying if you feel it will benefit. Again good luck!


#9

Thanks!

Day 4

Squat 135x10 – tucking the chin at the end like on deads seems to speed up lockout and engage hips more
GM 135x5, 175x5
RC workout, 5s
Curl 45x5, 65x5
DB clean/press 30x32.5s
Abs


#10

Day 5

Squat 135x10 - start each rep looking slightly down
GM 155x5, 175x5
RC workout, 7.5s
Curl 45x5, 55x5
DB clean/press 40x32.5s
Abs


#11

Day 6

Squat 185x5
GM 185x5, 185x5
RC workout, 7.5s
Curl 45x5, 65x5
DB clean/press 24x32.5s
Abs


#12

Extras:

Decline DB bench 3x10x40s
Batwings 3x10x20s
BB rotation: 3x10x25

SSB GM 5x5x135


#13

Day 7

Squat 185x5
GM 185x5, 205x5
RC workout, 7.5s
Curl 55x5, 55x5
DB clean/press 30x32.5s
BB rotations 10x25 (will do these instead of the crunches etc. going forward)


#14

Day 8

Squat 185x5
GM 185x5, 185x5
RC workout, 7.5s
Curl 55x5, 65x5
DB clean/press 20x32.5s
BB rotations 10x25

Dragging ass today


#15

Extras:

Deadlift 365, 385, 405, 425, 445
RDL 295x1, 275x3, 255x4, 235x5, 225x8 - grip felt unusually weak on these
Leg raises in capt chair 3x12
Standing cable abs 3x12x"50"


#16

Day 9

Squat 185x5
GM 185x5, 205x5
RC workout, 7.5s - felt unexpectedly easy, practically no pain
Curl 65x5, 65x5
DB clean/press 30x32.5s
BB rotations 10x25


#17

Day 10

Squat 225x5
GM 185x5, 225x5
RC workout, 10s
Curl 55x5, 65x5
DB clean/press 24x32.5s
BB rotations 10x25

On the squats, there is some “folding” in the mid-back halfway through the descent that becomes more accentuated with heavier weights. Part of dealing with it will be continuing to cue chest up at the top of the rep. Part of it will be increasing mid- and upper-back strength to stay rigid throughout the descent. And part will be sitting back and staying tight to not dip too far down and relax in the hole. At least hips seem to be tracking correctly.


#18

Extra:

SSB GM 5x5x155 – these just slay my abs


#19

Day 11

Squat 225x5
GM 225x5, 225x5
RC workout, 10s
Curl 55x5, 75x5
DB clean/press 30x32.5s
BB rotations 10x35

Squats felt off today, loose in the hole on the first rep and slow overall. At least the workout picked up from there.


#20

Extra

5x5x65 superset skullcrushers and heels-together military press
3x15x10 superset lateral raise and overhead tricep extension