Hey guys, Coach Thib here. Welcome to my space in the “PLUS.” This is where I’ll update you about what’s going on with me: my training, nutrition, and supplementation, but also my life in general… if that doesn’t bore you to death.
I’m currently continuing on with my focus on getting my strength back. I am pretty hopeful about reaching close to my all-time performance numbers on the squat and deadlift (I’d like to get back to above 500 and 600lbs, respectively).
I’m a bit more cautious about my expectations on the bench: while my shoulder and elbow are feeling better, I feel like they will never be 100% again. And since I’m getting older (47 soon) I am putting a bit more focus on health and I just don’t want to bring my body weight up too much. My bench press strength has always been correlated with my body weight, whereas my squat and deadlift not so much.
But I still want to bring my bench press up. To do that I decided to work on my bench press technique.
See, I’ve always been a strong presser, but mostly because of good leverage (short arms, barrel rib cage) and having very strong shoulders. The problem? Because I was able to bench press heavy (best of 445lbs) I assumed that I had good technique and never worked on it.
I guess it’s never too late to improve!
Here is a quick video showing how I changed my form.
- Widened my grip to the maximum width allowed in competition
- Focused on pulling the bar down with my back on the eccentric
- Keeping the back “pulled back” when pressing
This effectively reduced the range of motion by at least 6" and mostly took the deltoids out of the movement.
I’m not lifting heavy yet. The good thing is that I decided to use a program by Boris Sheiko (not one of the outdated free programs that you can find on the net, an actual program that I bought) which, at the moment, uses mostly loads of 70-80%, with occasional sets at 85%, which allow me to focus on technique not on lifting more weight.
The plan also uses a very high frequency on the bench press: up to 5 days a week, sometimes twice in a workout (doublé technique) typically for 5-8 work sets. So that’s lots of practice!
More to come…