Come So Far, Not Stopping

I know its probably not the same but my squat form is shocking if i haven’t warmed up/ stretched/ loosed my hamstrings and hips. It just feels like i’m a 90 year old man trying to bend over slightly. After some RDLs and some clam shells but squats feel smooth most of the time.

I did stop squatting for years due to my disc issues in my back. My old gym had a brilliant hack squat that actually felt really good and smooth. My current gym’s hack squat feels 100% on my lower back for some reason and i hate it. It also has an ironbound squat machine thing which i like (kinda like a safety bar squat) but i don’t think it gives the same back for buck at all.

Its also worth noting that on the squat machine i was repping 200kg but on a real squat i’m struggling at 100kg at the moment. I also feel faster and more powerful doing real squats.

Injuries are a pain though and if the best thing is to give them up then i’d listen to your body (although i ignore mine :rofl:).


Haha, I think we can all be the same at times!

I’ll try a bit more of an extensive warm-up on Thursday. I feel like I went a bit narrow last time out to avoid that little bit of adductor irritation, but it actually caused more as I just wasn’t stable! Next time if it doesn’t go well though i’ll plan to quit and then end up thinking something like my toes are wrong or I looked an inch higher than I should have. I just get into a silly cycle with it. It’s quite embarassing considering how long I’ve been gymming for and how I felt I was a half-decent squatter in the past. It used to feel natural and easy, now because of long-term injury I’m not sure it ever will again.

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Went in today for an upper in spite of the bicep strain. No pain during seated OHP, although I really had to grind for a +1 on my first set and thought it smarter to drop 10% off the bar for my second and third sets. I was training reverse pyramid before my layoff so I may just end up transitioning that way anyway. I’ve never been a fan of straight sets on pushes really. I love backing off twice as it feels like I have 3 opportunities to progress whereas straight sets always felt more collective

I kept the weight down on DB Bench as getting the dumbells in and out of position could be asking for trouble. Busted out 3 sets of 15 and was surprised with how light I had to go to get that tbh. May actually stay in this rep range for a month or two and then taper back up to hopefully hitting close to my previous best in the 8 rep range.

Cable rows I did 3x18. Slight irritation on a couple of reps and probably shouldn’t have taken the last set to failure as my body certainly said no on that one. Got away scot-free though from what I can tell. Was unsure how these would feel on the bicep but quite satisfied tbh.

Just finished off with some tricep pushdowns but the stretch at the bottom was telling me no. Literally just put 25lbs on there and did a couple of slow sets of 20. Great pump and was surprised how hard this was!

Was gonna do some cable curls to feel out but guy was taking ages so did a quick 3miles on the bike instead and got outta there.


Got a bit of cold/sore throat caught off my missus, she’s a few days into it and it’s stayed fairly minor and right now in optimism mine will stay the same.

Plan to do some RDLs tomorrow, will be interesting to see if my bicep is okay with them heavy. As it’s overhand grip, I am hoping it will be. Loading up the heavy weight so soon after a minor strain might not be an option though.


So I did cough squats again today. Actually went really well. I took the weight right down though and just did 3 sets of 12. It’s surprising what little weight I can lift when I am really focusing on technique. Even with 40lbs lighter than what I did last time, I still got to some much slower reps.

I went a bit wider today and pointed my toes out more, it felt more comfortable and depth was a piece of piss. I also went a bit closer to a “high-bar squat”. Thinking about it, that might be why the lower weight was enough for me. Back when I was squatting decent numbers (in my world), I was very posterior dominant… as shown by me always having decent deadlift variations. If I can stay humble and stop chasing weight so much with this current form hopefully I won’t get any irritation and there’s a lot of quick gains to be made.

The arguably bigger success today was RDLs. I was of course cautious with the bicep strain, unsurre if I would be able to get anything productive in. Did 225lbs for a set of 12, felt fine, did 240lbs for a set of 12, still felt fine, went up to 270lbs for a set 12, still fine! It’s lighter than the 315 x 10 I did last week, but I was actually really surprised how heavy each of these felt going up. 225lbs for 12 felt like a good set, so I can certainly see how people sometimes don’t train hard enough. 270lbs felt hard but I know I would have got the same reps with a heavier weight!

Ezbar curls with 70lbs on for a few sets of 10-12. Bicep feels good just 6 days from time of the strain. Barely affected training at all, just a couple sessions of higher reps. Will see how I feel next week, whether I go back to as I was or spend sometime in the higher rep ranges I tend to avoid.


Went in for Upper today, gym was like a sauna! Bicep didn’t feel great on bench warm-ups but made the gamble anyway and stuck to my progression. Actually hit some +2s which is wild. I forgot about the bicep as I didn’t feel it. Went on to do some DB OHP and remembered about my bicep half way through getting the weight up for my working set. Oops. Bust out a set that was way too intense for being “careful”, failed my last rep and as bringing the dumbells down was realerted again to the minor injury. It feels okay right now, just a little fatigued so I’m optimistic I haven’t made a backwards step.

Ended up switching to a machine shoulder press for my remaining sets and with how weak on them I was, I may actually stick with that for a few months. I don’t think I’ll miss out on much by using it instead of dumbells - especially as I already do seated OHP later in the week.


Good to see you hitting it regular again.

On the squats point as I’m just catching up I’ve had a very love hate relationship over the past couple of years. Up until a couple of months back I’d gone SSB only since mid 2021 after doing my back in and months of back pain. Doing a bit of mobility work every day and the back pain is hugely diminished with just some minor aches first thing in the morning, loving barbell squats and doing them 3x per week pain free. Crazy what a bit of daily mobility does. Having said that some people are intrinsically unsuited to putting a barbell on their back and squatting.


Appreciate it, cheers.

Never had a problem with them until that old football injury showed itself to be much worse than I originally thought it was. Knowing I have a muscle that’s compeltely ruptured just psyched me out of squats and had me taking 5 steps backwards, 4 steps forward for a long ass time.

I actually just got done with squatting again this morning. The past two sessions have been really great. My form has felt good and I’m just not worried about the weight at all. Just 72.5kg for 3 sets of 12 leaving a good few in the tank. I’m just gonna hang around here squatting every 5 days or so and see how far I can push it before I need to start grinding reps for progress again, or recovery becomes an issue between sessions. When that happens I’m gonna be looking for a 2x/week squat program that keeps everything above 10 reps. Good volume rather than trying to get any PRs. I am not bothered on the weight at all anymore - just want to continue to get something out of them. I know they aren’t essential but I really do believe that they are the hardest exercise to replace and there are so many benefits outside of muscle growth.


Seated OHP to within 5-10lbs of where it was before all my time off now. Progress definitely slowing! I’m second guessing my choice to drop DB OHP but will see how I am in my next Upper session. DB OHP is grindy, machine press will be easy gains for 6-8 weeks. I’ve never been a big machine guy and fear it’s likely less carryover and just doing a little overthinking about it.

Dude today monstrous on a whole bunch of juice but has no idea how to train. Asking me for advice on certain movements despite being twice my size and telling me how great tren is. :woozy_face:


I love machine OH press, i do enough other exercise where my shoulder has to stabilise to not worry about it.

Do you do any standing OH press work?

Not right now. Standing OHP used to be my bread and butter. 2x a week in different rep ranges, but after I reached a goal with it I then started to move towards seated as I feel the stabilisation makes it better for pure muscle gain. Standing OHP would sometimes cause a bit of lower back stress aswell which leaked into other workouts.

I have actually considered making one of the shoulder exercises a standing press again but I’ve also been considering a million other things too. :smiling_face:

Yeah, I’m sure bench, DB bench and seated OHP is enough for the stabilisation over the course of the week. Moving a compound to a machine always feels like a downgrade in my mind though, even though that is simply not true and goal dependant.

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Got quite a bit of pain in my right elbow today so need to re-evaluate my pressing and tricep work anyway.

Even when I was doing almost twice as much volume I wouldn’t get much elbow pain. The only time I would is when I would OHP twice a week AND do an overhead tricep variation. Even though it’s hurting after doing some grindy Seated OHP reps yesterday, I’m believing it may actually be Close-Grip bench press causing it. Those elbow being so tucked and then trying to extend just never seems to agree with me. I’ve been adding +2 reps pretty much every workout for 6-7 weeks so it’s a shame to sub them out.

But maybe it’s an excuse to change
Bench - DB OHP - CGBP
Bench - Incline DB Bench - Machine Shoulder Press

Yes it’s not as direct to the triceps as a close-grip bench but I can’t imagine the stimulation over the course of the workout would be much different.

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Close Grip bench always niggles my elbow. Dips/ skull crushers etc. seem fine but closes grip bench just makes it ache.

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Squats just casually adding 2.5kg 2x a week. Nice and easy 75kg 3x12 today.

RDL strength coming right back. Despite being 13 days out from a minor bicep strain, managed 137.5kg x 8 today. I did the first set at 135kg but the 8 felt a tiny bit lighter than I’d expected. In the past I only did 2 sets of RDLs as it’s always been enough to progress for me. I added a back-off of 100kg x 12 today whilst unracking though as I felt like I wasn’t done. It felt hard enough and I went until the rep was extremely slow. Hopefully wasn’t junk volume because it was so much lighter than the previous sets weight, and maybe I was actually more fatigued than I realized.


Still not tracking my lifts but increasing reps and weight. I know it’s sacriledge not to keep a log, but I’m genuinely remembering everything each session. Main compounds are easy to remember when you get as invested as some of us do, and all the other stuff is basically “If i get 13 reps on the first set, I add weight for the next 2”. Typical 8-12 stuff. When I get to old strength levels where I need to fight for every rep a bit more, I’ll get back to properly logging.

Almost didn’t go in this morning. Stayed up late to watch the boxing so didn’t get much sleep, also had 4 beers which of course doesn’t help. Glad I went though as it was super quiet and everything continued to go up.

Don’t need to go in tomorrow but thinking about adding a day for some proper conditioning instead of the occassional 10mins on the bike I sporadically do. Thing is I’m finding consistancy, recovery, and enjoyment is really high right now. Not sure if I should be fiddling with anything.

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Getting some conditioning in is always a wise investment. Treadmill hill sprints? KB based conditioning is a good shout as it’s resistance based.

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Sprints are a no with the adductor injury. Hopefully one day I will get there again. I was doing sprints on a stationary bike last year though which I could reintroduce.

KB stuff always appealed to me but I get so in my head about how any extra stuff could affect my more focused 3-4x week gym programming. Completely irrational thinking because it’ll actually do the opposite and probably help a whole bunch.

I need to get something at home really to quickly do 10-20mins on my off days when I wake up. I have a 6kg kettlebell here somewhere. maybe I’ll look into seeing what kind of things I can do with that won’t put the irrational fear of less gym performance in my mind. Wish I could afford a decent bit of equipment I could just fold up in the shed and get on each morning.

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You’re right, it will help. It’s actually fairly useful for recovery if anything. I’ve never had an issue where KB conditioning has affected lifting performance in a negative way.

You’re not gonna get much of a challenge from a 6kg bell. Does your gym have any?

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Yeah, there are some there. Was just hoping I could get some stuff in that wouldn’t require an extra trip to the gym.

I was considering a fold up bike or something to fit in the shed, but maybe a collection of kettlebells would be wiser for me.

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Did 3 sets of standing rear delt flies on the “chest fly” machine yesterday as I was standing around waiting for other equipment. Got some heavy DOMs in them tonight. Guess this means I should do them again, the muscle connection felt insane and completely avoided any other muscle engagement.

Got Seated OHP tomorrow and some rows. Hopefully the DOMs will have cleared up a bit.