T Nation

Bench Every Day - Road to 300 (or 315?)

strength

#1

I have been frustrated with my bench for a little over a year now. I benched 300 in January 2016 and August 2015 around 160 pound bodyweight and coming off labrum surgery in December 2014. I had a minor pec tear last spring and haven’t been able to get past 280 since. I have done a few bench programs, and felt they were working but at the end of the 6-8 week programs I kept finding ways to injure myself (non-lifting related) right before the max days. I had seen people have success squatting everyday, so I decided why not give it a shot with bench. I planned on doing it for 60 days and am currently 23 days in and just repped 225 for 12 reps. I have never done more than 10, and no more than 8 in the past year. The program I have been following for the past 2ish months is kinda a hybrid between Westside and bodybuilding, to describe it simply. It has one day a week of volume chest, and one day has a 1-rep max variation. I’ve been filling in the other 5 days on my own, primarily consisting of isometric and speed variations, low volume and load but still high tension. After repping 225 for 12 today, and at a pretty good speed, I feel that I must be close to 300 if I’m not there already, so I’m wondering if I might not be able to reach 315.

Other Stats
Age: 22
Weight: 155
Height: 5’ 5.5"
Body Fat: ~10% (I had it measured on an Inbody machine a couple weeks ago and it said 9.7, but I know those aren’t always the most accurate)
Squat: 415
Deadlift: 475 (Sumo)
Vertical: 28.5" current max, 30.5" lifetime max

Bench Every Day Log:
Day 1 - Oscillating Isometric Bench Press 4x10 @ 95-115 lbs
Day 2 - 8x20 illegal wide grip; 2B (later in the evening) - 2x1 minute extreme slow bench x bar
Day 3 - Rebound bench 5x5 @ 95-115 lbs, superset w 10s ISO flys
Day 4 - EDI bench w football bar - 5s hold, press, 3x is one set, 3 sets. 115 pounds
Day 5 - Max Effort pause bench - 245 easy, failed @ 265
Day 6 - 4x10s ISO bench w fat grips (held just off chest) 155-175 pounds
Day 7 - Feet up, eyes closed bench 185 x5 x6 x8
Day 8 - Tango bench - pins set just off chest, create separation between hands and bar, then explode through the bar. 4x5-8 @ 135 lbs
Day 9 - illegal wide bench 6x20 @ 145. Was supposed to be 8 sets but my shoulder (bicep tendon) started bothering me.
Day 10 - EDI bench w football bar, same as before, 135 lbs
Day 11 - Oscillating Isometric bench - 4x10 @ 135
Day 12 - Max Effort Floor Press 280 pounds (5 pound PR)
Day 13 - Tango Bench - pins set 3" off chest, 5x5 @ 165
Day 14 - 5 stops on the eccentric, 5s hold at each stop, reverse grip. 3 sets
Day 15 - Quick Style w football bar, 5x5 @ 155
Day 16 - Illegal wide bench 8x12 (165-185 pounds)
Day 17 - OI bench w football bar. 8x5 @ 155
Day 18 - Rebound bench, 5x5 @ 135
Day 19 - 5s ISO bench, feet up eyes closed. 5 sets (185 for first 4, 195 on last)
Day 20 - Max effort incline press w football bar - 195 at 45 degree incline (missed 205 about half way up), then lowered to 30 degrees and hit 205.
Day 21 - Not sure what it’s called but I call it ladder ISOs. Basically bring the bar down a little bit, hold for 3s, then lock out, bring it down a bit further, repeat, so that by the fifth hold the bar is just off the chest. I did 5 sets, 2 @ 135 then 3 @ 165
Day 22 - 3x15s ISO, feet up w fat gripz, then 3x2 w 5s eccentrics. both @ 185
Day 23 (Today) - 225 max reps (12), then 6x10-12 illegal wide @ 185

I’ll try to update this at least a couple times a week and track accessory work better if anyone wants to try something similar. After 3 weeks I feel stronger and more powerful, plus I think my chest and shoulders look a little more full, but tough to say for certain. I have also gained ~3 pounds


#2

Day 24 OI Incline Bench, 4x10seconds @ 135 lbs
Max Squat 335 plus orange bands (“sport stance”)
Russian lunge into speed russian lunge 2x each leg --> DB Romanians/Band GM hybrid (55lbs DB) 4 sets
GH Raises, Ab work

Day 25 Dynamic bench 9x3, 135 pounds plus mini bands
Behind neck press 20 rep first 4 sets, 10 reps second 4 sets --> Face Pulls 12 reps --> Arrows
Chest Supported Winding Pres 12 reps --> Incline Lying Side Laterals --> DB Shrugs 6 sets
GHD, Abs

Day 26 Manual eccentric (have partner press down on the bar during the eccentric then release for the concentric) 4x2 @ 155 lbs
3 minutes walking lunges
High bar back squat w 5s pause, 335
Conventional DL 365 plus 25 pound chain

Day 27 Max Effort: close grip w small boar, feet up - 250 pounds
Incline DB roll backs 12 reps --> Incline tricep press elbows out 12 reps --> flat DB rollbacks 12 reps. 5 sets
Preacher Curls 20 reps --> Incline DB curls 20 reps. 5 sets
Tricep Pressdowns x15-20 --> cable curls 15-20 3 sets
Front squat 10s pause 205

Day 28 3x1 minute extreme slow (1 minute eccentric rep) 135 pounds


#3

Cool bench press life log

I’ll be checking it every once in a while


#4

Do facepulls/band pull aparts or YTMLs every workout or your shoulders are going to get seriously pissed off, if not injured.
Plus every few days add some reasonably heavy back assistance work like lat pulldowns, dumbell rows for 4x6 etc


#5

I wish I could bench everyday. I tried benching 3x a week and I had to stop the 2nd week because my shoulders started to hurt.
You can probably bench 315 now, 225x12x.0333+225=314.19.


#6

I warm-up with band pull aparts and scap pull-ups every workout, and I hit the back/rear delts hard twice a week.


#7

ok, good stuff


#8

Love logs like this, experiments are awesome!

225 for 12 puts your hypothetical 1RM north of 300.


#9

I’ve had success with very high frequency bench pressing. I’ve gone as high as 6 days a week and even maxing most sessions. The biggest advice I can give you is to narrow up your grip a bit for the bulk of the sessions if your standard grip is fairly wide. You can still hit wider grip (competition) style sessions, but only do that maybe once a week or once every other week. The narrower grip will help keep your shoulders happy.

Good luck.


#10

I agree. I’ve found my 225 rep max to be strongly correlated to my 1RM. When I benched 300 I was able to get 10 reps at 225, that went down to 8 or 9 and my max went down too.


#11

Thanks for the suggestion. In my standard grip I have my ring fingers on the ring, but I do bring my hands inside the rings for most training days. One thing I’ve noticed though is that bringing them too close, like a close grip bench with index finger flush with the smooth part, also seems to put some stress on my shoulder in the bottom inch or two. Easy enough to work around with a small board, but if anyone knows why this may be or has another suggestion I’m welcome to it


#12

Monday (Day 29)
Max Effort Good Morning - 245 plus band (about 80 at top, 40 at bottom)
V-Bar pull-downs, 12 reps --> Chest supported DB Rows 12 reps. 6 sets
Wide grip Pull-Ups, 8-10 reps --> Arrows, 12 reps --> Lying Frontal raises, 12 reps --> 1 arm DB rows.
DB Pullovers 3x12

Rebound BENCH 4x15seconds, 115 pounds
3x 45s ISO push-ups, feet slightly elevated
3 minutes walking lunges
Abs - Cable crunches x10 superset w horizontal med ball throws, 5 each side. 3 sets

Tuesday (Day 30)
1 minute ISO push-up on knees
5 Minutes AMRAP illegal wide grip bench, 185 pounds (62 reps)

Incline DB Press, 12 reps (50lbs) --> Deep DB flyes, 12 reps (20lbs), 5 sets
100 Push-ups

Walking lunges
Altitude Drops (about 10 reps, 24-30")
Vertical Jump - got up to 28"
Zercher Squat - 10s ISO, 10s quick style reps, 10s ISO. 3 sets
GH raise - 15s ISO at 10degrees, into 15s ISO at parallel. 3 sets.


#13

Bpp is here too, awesome

The two heroes of this forum meet


#14

Day 31, Wednesday
10 Altitude Jumps, then 3x3 vertical jumps, got up to 28.5"
Max Effort box Squat w bands - hit 315, then at 335 I sat far back and slid off the box. Stripped it down to 315 (no bands) and dead box squatted it up

DB Romanian/Bang GM hybrid - 65lbs DBs, 3x10
Single leg bearcat squat machine - 5 each leg on the incline, then 5 each leg flat 4 sets
ISO split squats 5x10s each leg, body weight only
AMT jumps, 5x3 w orange bands off 24" box. retested vertical, only dropped off to 28"
Russian lunges 1m each leg, jump every 10s
GH raises - 10s eccentric, push up off floor, repeat 2x = 1 set. 3 sets total

BENCH - OI football bar 4x10 reps @ 155 pounds


#15

Day 32:
ISO Push-ups 3x1minute
Tango into Altitude drop Bench 4x5@135, 2x8@115
Behind neck press - 2x20, 4x10 -->Face Pulls x12 --> Arrows x12
Winding press x10 -->Lying Side lateral raise x12 --> Rebound lying frontal raise x10–> Rebound lying lateral raises x10
5 minutes lung walks

Day 33: 3 minute lunge walks
5x2 dynamic squat 225 +bands, then 5x2 @ 275 no bands (deadstop on pins below parallel)
a lot X 2 dynamic sumo deadlift - 225 plus bands and chains
Extreme slow bench w football bar, 115. 2 sets (1:27 and 1:13)

Day 34:
6x30s ISO push-up
Max Effort Close Grip Incline Bench - hit 225 solid, needed a slight nudge at 240
3x12 All, super set: Incline DB rollbakcs, elbows out tricep press, flat DB rollbacks
Did a couple sets of a preacher curl/Incline DB curl superset then got bored and did some other bicep work
Kneeling cable crunches superset w tricep extensions 4 sets.


#16

Day 35 (Sunday): Sprints - Fly 30s AREG, work until a 6% drop off from peak time (3.54, 3.6, 3.62, 3.64, 3.51, 3.54, 3.57, 3.75)
“Ladder ISOs BENCH” - 135 lbs, 3 sets

Day 36 (Monday): Max Effort Sumo block pulls - pulled an easy 505, couldn’t lock out 535.
Accessory back work
Rebound BENCH 4x8 @135 w 30s ISO push-up in between each set

Day 37 (Tuesday) ISO push-ups on boxes 3x45s
illegal wide grip bench 8x12 @185 (60-90s rest)
Incline DB press (50s) --> DB flys (20) 4x12 both
Extreme slow DB lateral raise 1.5 minutes (5lbs)
Bearcat squat machine - heavy

Day 38 (Wednesday) Max Effort Squat - 365 w a 25 pound chain on each side, stripped to 315 for 5 more singles
AMT Jumps 5x3
1 leg straight leg deadlift, DB in opposite hand
GH raises (floor model)
Extreme slow calf raises 2min
ISO BENCH w football bar 5x10sx30s rest @155 lbs


#17

Day 39 (Thursday): ISO Push-ups 20s hands elevated into 20s feet elevated. 3 Sets.
Reverse Band BENCH - 305x3, 315 3x3
Triset: Behind neck press 95x10 -->Face Pulls 12-15 reps --> Arrows 12-15 reps. 4 sets
Lying frontal raise 10 reps --> lying side lateral raise 10 reps. 3 Sets
Biceps+triceps
ISO Bench 2x30s w 35 lbs DB on back


#18

Day 40: High bar back squat w 1s pause -315
ME Sumo DL -455
Bench- Feet up eyes closed 4x5s ISO @ 185

Day 41: ME Floor Press - hit an easy 270, 285 needed a slight nudge a couple inches in. Also my wrists were really wobbly, wrist wraps definitely would’ve helped
Football bar floor Press 155x8, 175 3x6

Curl/overhead Tris complex w football bar: 8 curls, 8 Tris, 8 curls other grip, 8 tris other grip. 4 sets
Preacher curls 3x12 SS with Tricep rollbacks 3x8@35
Abs


#19

Day 42 (Sunday): Track - Fly 30s, work to 6% drop-off - 3.58, 3.59, 3.57, 3.54, 3.49, 3.51, 3.67.
Bench 2x50 @ 95 pounds

Day 43 (Monday): Front Squat/Conventional DL cluster, work up to 1RM - 285 FS/395DL
Wide grip pull-ups (8-10reps)–>1 Arm DB rows (5reps, 65lbs), 8 sets (rest is enough to complete another full set of pull-ups, about 60-90s)
V-Bar pull-downs (12-15 reps, 87.5lbs) --> Straight arm pull-downs, 10close grips, 10 medium, 10 wide (42.5/37.5 pounds) 4 sets
Arrows-Ts-press 10/10/10 --> GH Raise 10 reps. 3 sets
BENCH - football bar, ISO pressing into J-hooks (flipped upside down), 115 lbs.
3seconds on, 10 seconds off. 5 sets.
Abs (GH sit-ups, toes to bars, 3 sets each)


#20

jesus christ. benching every day sounds awful. glad it works for you.