Come So Far, Not Stopping

I got much stronger bracing without a belt after I got stronger bracing WITH a belt.

This is my go to example to disprove the silliness here.

Let’s say you can squat 400lbs without a belt. You put on a belt and can now squat 425. From now on, you ALWAYS wear a belt. You then get your belted squat up to 800lbs.

If you take off the belt and squat, do you imagine you will squat 395lbs without a belt, or, at the very least, 405lbs?

If you imagine the latter: you get stronger WITHOUT a belt even when you train WITH a belt.


Totally. Alan Thrall says pretty much that in one of his videos. I think I fell mostly for the whole “athletes don’t wear a belt so you shouldn’t train with one incase you lose the ability to brace naturally in your sport”.

…as if i’m an athlete anyway lol.

I’m sorry to hear about your dog. I’m pretty close with my mutts and that sounds really tough.

For the belt, remember is that The Answers Are In The Gym. It’s OK to have a rough plan, but the best way to learn is just to do a few extra warm up sets using the belt and see how it feels.

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137.5kg x 3
117.5kg x 6
117.5kg x 6
117.5kg x 6

Bench 87.5kg

Narrow pulldowns 77.5kg
9, 9, 10-ish

Leg extensions 40kg
12, 14, 15

I don’t feel it was a great session, the day of the dog dying I had so much going on that day and the following, I didn’t get the chance to eat as much as i’d like. Yesterday I did a lot of force feeding to get to maintainance and had horrible reflux all night. It gets in my lungs and I find it hard to breathe on those mornings - I must put more effort in to not be chasing calories before bed. I still went into belted squats, I felt more secure but not stronger.

Coming off a deload and my first squat day being a light 2x5, I haven’t gone heavy since 22nd August so it’s not too surprising. On that day I got 142.5kg x 2, 117.5kg 3x8. I feel like I will ramp up past that fairly easily - especially with the belt. Bench is a similar story but got all my reps in.

Haven’t done leg extensions since I first joined the gym but I don’t think a 3x15 type of setup will hinder recovery, and may actually help due to getting the blood moving around.

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117.5kg x 8
117.5kg x 8
117.5kg x 8

53kg x 8
53kg x 7
53kg x 7

Single arm cable row 70kg
9, 10, 10

Hammer curls 20kg
12, 12, 12

Face pulls 20kg
20, 20, 20

Hard work after a late one last night. Took the girlfriend out for a birthday meal, ate a ton of things I shouldn’t have as well as a couple beers so my digestive system isn’t too happy. I’ll figure this all out one day. Still happy with the workout though, added weight to all my lifts despite coming back from a light week.

Got a wedding to go to tomorrow and going through my usual “how can I limit damage to get the most of the workout I just did and also have a good session on Monday?”. I know how weddings go though, i’ll be 6-8 pints deep before the evening people even arrive. Do’h.



Pints x 15
Cigarettes x 10
Hours of sleep x 3

Chinese takeaway x 1


Should be back in today but skipped this morning. Been eating a lot of crap post wedding, feeling low on energy, digestion in bits and only just caught up on sleep.

I may go in lunch time but wondering if I should just wait an extra day so I can hit it with more vigor. That or I’m making excuses for myself. It’s so rare I miss a workout - apart from deloads i’ve been pretty much at 100% consistancy this year.

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Incline DB 15%
32kg x 10
34kg x 8
34k x 8
34kg x 10

Weighted neutral chins BW+5kg

2x5 115kg

Tricep rope pulldowns
25kg x 10
20kg x 10
20kg x 10
20kg x 10

Didn’t go in yesterday. First session back. Started off with Incline DB cautiously but 32kg x 10 went up easy so went back to last times weight and actually got a PR on the last set. Maybe i could have pushed the second and third set a bit more but oh well, no strength loss there.

Weighted chins are always hard, managed 4x6 last week, added another set this week so i’m not so many reps away from previous best. I will try to keep this at 4 sets going forwards though as I do back every day and don’t want each session to affect the next.

Took weight off tricep pulldowns, increased range of motion, slowed movement down and added a set. Hopefully won’t interfere in other programming - I don’t feel it will.



Thanks for checking out my log after I had a quick read through yours. Just want to make you aware that that was an old discontinued one. I created it close to when I first signed up and didn’t know much about what I was doing. This is what I use now.

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Very nice progress, very strong, Have you tried L glutamine and bpc 157 ? Apparently it’s safe to take up to 30g L Glutamine per day and I find it’s good for gut health

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I actually have a bag of the stuff here. I read somewhere about not needing it if you’re drinking protein shakes but do hear of people feeling benefits drinking it independently. I’ll revisit it today as I am feeling so sore throughout my entire GI right now.

What benefits do you feel from it? I’ll get some time in researching it a bit more when I get a spare hour today - and hope the stuff I got is still in date.

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I definitely notice the difference in addition to protein shakes, aloe Vera juice is also very good for gut health.
I actually prefer not to take L Glutamine since I did 300 push and 100 sit ups everyday for 3 months because I wasn’t feeling sore and when I stopped the L Glutamine my chest felt more sore everyday so that led to to believe I was getting more hypertrophy. I just use L Glutamine for gut health sometimes

The intestines are muscles which is one of the reasons why I believe TRT and other anabolic steroids help people with intestinal damage according to Dr Lichtens protocol

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Soreness isn’t a sign of hypertrophy though. It actually sounds like the L Glutamine was aiding recovery for you which is what a lot of people use it for! I don’t think studies back this up but there’s lots of anecdotal evidence.

I will definitely start taking it every morning in hopes it will aid my gut… Cheers dude.

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180kg x 6
155kg x 10
155kg x 10

61kg x 2
60kg x 3
60kg x 3
60kg x 3
60kg x 3

Regular grip row 82.5kg
10, 10, 10

Cable curls 25kg
13, 13, 13

Band pull aparts

Ah man, 10 rep deadlifts are so exhausting! The top set was simple enough - I tried putting the belt tighter though so it’s hard for me to know how difficult it really was because the discomfort of the belt was the more distracting thing.

Tried slightly different form on the OHP as talked about yesterday in another thread here (leaning back more). First set was a disaster, failed to get 61kg up and then cheated 2 reps up. I really should have practiced with a lighter weight first. Then did 60kg 4x4. It’s not a step forward in progressive overload but the form was slightly different and I am still coming off that really heavy weekend where I had some extra days off, meh.


I’m going to have to change my routine a little, or maybe use this as an opportunity to hop on something completely different. I help coach under-11 girls’ football (soccer) and the seasons starting back up. This means Tuesdays and Sundays I won’t be able to get to the gym most weeks, leaving an every other day system leaving me often having to skip days. This weekend I’m going to end up having yet ANOTHER 3 days off because of Sunday football and then the gym is closed Monday for the Queens Funeral bank holiday.

Gonna have a think on whether to stay on a Hatfield type split but do it MWFSat (no full range hinge) or maybe move on over to a more typical ULUL or Full Body x 3 + possible weekend GAP workout.

I’ve spent some time looking at a lot of different programs. I also asked @TrainForPain for some of his favorite premade programs that he’s put himself through. It’s taught me a lot about how much ignorance of different training styles I still have, and also how terrible I feel about my health-related work capacity and conditioning. Some of the quotes in the corresponding articles to these programs I’m going to have noted down somewhere because there are some real belters - especially in the “Train like a bodybuilder, perform like an athlete” one.

I feel like in my current health situation and the training mindset/philosophies that fit me most closely right now, I misjudged myself. My current small gym attached to a school also doesn’t have access to some of the equipment for a couple of them. I don’t think it would be wise to embark on one of these programs yet, but I am keeping a couple in my back pocket for a complete switch-up sometime. Instead, I am going to do some wholesale changes in my current programming whilst taking onboard some stuff I learned about my mind and body over the past 6 months or so.

I will put some plan together later for everyone to tell me is shit. :slight_smile:


Fixed that typo for you


Haha, love it. I didn’t get time to write anything out last night but I’ve been doing a bit of thinking and got most of it in my head to write out today or tomorrow.

I’m going in shortly to do a squat pattern, bench pattern, vertical pulling pattern, and maybe some hanging leg raises or something. Queens death bank holiday has messed with what I want my planned days to be so I feel okay just feeling out some movements this week (but that’s not to say i’m not still gonna train hard). Strongly considering dropping the BB Flat bench even though I don’t have shoulder issues and I actually feel decent at it. I will probably go for a DB Press variation one day and Close-Grip BB bench on another.

My reasons are:

  1. I never felt I got good chest growth from it
  2. Dumbbell presses are more enjoyable to me
  3. Won’t ever need a spot
  4. I can change the incline a little every 6 weeks or so to allow for novelty stimulus
  5. I don’t ever have to wait to use them
  6. I’m fed up with people asking what my max is even though my arch is almost nonexistent and I rarely train less than 5 reps these days
  7. Even though I don’t have shoulder problems, it may be a better choice long-term
  8. I’m not a powerlifter
  9. Close-grip bench has a longer range of motion
  10. Humbles my ego, less likely to grind a rep to failure
  11. I can do CGBP on the hooks that nobody uses connected to the suspension training area (max 120kg so lots of room to progress right now)
  12. Lots of people’s conventional bench goes up after increasing their CG even without specificity, even if it turns out I need a couple of months of specificity to benefit, it still gives me a way back in if I decide I want it back.
  13. Too much triceps isolation flares my elbows up, with CG i’m able to get a bit more work in

BUT there’s 2 big things i’m concerned about

  1. Less chest activation
  2. Less overall stimulation due to lighter weights used

Just doing some of my thinking out loud.


I hope you guys don’t mind me doing my thinking out loud.

After just doing the close grip bench and actually being stronger than I thought I’d be on my first set of it, I still don’t think I’ve convinced myself it’s actually what I want anymore. It was a bit of a disaster setting up the hooks, carrying the plates over felt incredibly unnecessary and there were a lot of people walking by. I also had some stupid inner ego going “I hope people know this is close grip and that I can actually bench more than this”. Silly man that I am. I actually feel like I wasted my chest work today through messing around.

But then I read my points again and think “no, you should still do it”.

Then I realized I’m falling into needless overthinking. Lingering from my old programming I’ve done for ages (Every lift 2x a week heavy/light), OHP has been the only one that has managed to keep its 2 days. I’m starting to see the flexibility from a variation standpoint in the One Main Lift A Day style of programming that for some reason I thought was regimented and locking me into something I didn’t want. Now I’m thinking it could be a solution. I’ll post my log for todays little unplanned workout to see where i’m at and then later will show what i’ve come up with so far that’s not too dissimilar to what i’ve been doing the past few months, but more organized and adjusted for the days I can actually make it to the gym consistently.


3 x 135kg
5 x 120kg
5 x 120kg
5 x 120kg

10 x 70kg
9 x 80kg
7 x 80kg

Bench Press (no warm-up, just fiddling around with stuff)
7 x 80kg

Lat Pulldowns 82.5kg (a little cheatier than I’d liked but I haven’t done them for 6 weeks and went straight into the last weight I was at)
8, 8, 8

Leg extensions 40kg
15, 15, 15


Can you do dips?

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