T Nation

A Skinny Bastard's Quest for Strength


So Im making this because I want to be accountable to something, whether or not anyone reads it is cool with me, but I figure some input could help me out

To give some background on myself. I am 21, 6'2 in height, I weigh 190. Im naturally lanky, if I didnt lift weight at all I'd weigh around 170.

I am a personal trainer at a commercial gym, Im NESTA, ACE, NCSF certified. I am a faithful adherent to squats deadlifts and presses for all of my clients and myself. I vehemently hate bosu balls, swiss balls, and any other crap this used for functional training.

I am a dancer. I just completed a BA in Dance Choreography. No I am not gay. I started dancing in high school because I got to be around lots of pretty girls. Dancing is something I have put on hold for a career as strength trainer, but its something I do and it plays a part in my training. If you want to know more just ask

I started deadlifting for the very first time ever in September of 2009. I cut out a program from Muscle and Fitness. Prior to this I had trained like an idiot, training 5 to 6 days a week for 2 hours at a time and following no sort of program whatsoever other than doing what I felt like. I never worked legs, I didnt squat, I used cables with abandon

Eventually by following the deadlift program I worked up to a 405 deadlift by march of 2010. Im not gifted strength wise but I think I have a biomechanical advantage for deadlifting. Getting to a 405 deadlift in 6 months seems to be uncommon

In April of 2010 I started squatting for the 1ST TIME EVER. I started with the bar. Ive got shit genetics for squatting. Hips sockets are completely asymmetrical, fucked up lower back, etc etc. Im not saying this as an excuse, just being honest that I have no illusions of being a 700 lb squatter or anything like that. My max squat is 270 1RM, thats just an estimate

The 2nd half of 2010 I experimented with different programs and I read a TON of literature from this site, ELITEFTS, StrengthCoach.com, and every article by Ferruggia, Boyle, Contreras, Gentlicore, Polliquin, and many many other respected guys. I read Starting Strength and many other books.

For 2011 I finally feel I have a true understanding of strength training. Not that I know everything, but that I know that consistency, utilization of proven basics, integrated training of the body, and the goal of getting STRONGER are what matter.

My goals for 2011

Deadlift 455

Squat 315

Powerclean 225

My current numbers

420 deadlift

270 squat

185 Power clean

I will be posting my first workout later today. Today I will be deadlifting, Pull day as I call it. I found last year that I much stronger on pulling exercises than I am at pushing. My program will be total body, and I will break it down exercise by exercise. I know what my body responds to and what works and doesnt. My hope is that this will give myself and anyone who reads it a greater comprehension of intelligent training and how they can make their own programs more effective


yesterdays Pull/Back workout

15 minutes-mobility and active warmup

1 arm dumbell High Pulls 3x5, 70, 80, 90

Power Cleans 3x5x135,145,155

Deadlift 5x2, 225,245,275,295,315, 1x5-335

1-arm Hammer Rows 2x10 w/105

Romanian Deadlift 3x5x225

Zercher Squats 2x10 with 155

The exercises and order are directly taken from Marty Gallaghers progressive pulls program

I havent deadlift in about 6 weeks, hence I am being very conservative with the poundages

High Pulls are difficult with barbells, in that my shoulder mechanics are not even at all when pulling the weight. I consider this an accessory lift to get warmed up for the others, and using dumbells allows for a much more natural movement

Deadlift felt good. Lower back felt tight in a good way. Still having an issue with the left QL, I need to purchase some tennis balls and get a good foam roller to do soft tissue work

Zercher Squats I threw in at the end for a good adductor and hamstring stretch, as well as some more glute activation having done the Deads and RDLS. Zercher squats are excellent for biceps and forearms, you could consider it having a bonus as being arm work