T Nation

Comment on my Stats and Give Advice


#1

Hello fellow lifters,

im looking for some comments on my current stats and some wisdom from those of you who have been at it longer than i have.

im 24 been lifting for about 8 ish years, 5 foot 6 and weighing in at about 83kg.

im 43 weeks into wendlers 5/3/1 ive hopefully attached a picture of a graph i made showing my projected 1rms based on what im lifting during each 5/3/1 session as a way to track progress.

my current approximate max lifts are:

deadlift 170kg
squat 140kg
bench 127.5kg
overhead press 77.5kg

my goals at the start of the year were to deadlift 180kg and overhead press bodyweight, so 85kg currently.

i have managed to deadlift 180kg however it was absolutely diabolical and i let my ego get in the way, so i dont want to do that again. i still think my deadlift is a weak lift comparatively, as is my squat and im unsure why??

heres a link to my youtube, i sometimes upload videos of my lifts so i can see what they look like, so feel free to have a browse.

https://www.youtube.com/my_videos?o=U

so basically, do you think my lower body lifts are rather poor compared to my bench for example? i can safely say im not a bench every day kind of guy either...

the plan for next year is to continue to develop my strength id like to work on my hip mobility and improve my squat and deadlift technique.

any advice appreciated.


#2

If your deadlift is increasing and your squat is going nowhere you might as well put one of the two on the backburner (keep on doing it, but don’t bust your ass, fail reps and chase PR, just practice with good weights), hoping that one will carry over to the other.


#3

Saw you’re doing Wendler 531, nevermind my comment then, just stay in the 531 slow boat…


#4

Haven’t been at it longer than you but here are some comments, none the less.
How exactly are you training with 531?

You should’ve made way more progress than what’s shown considering your lifts aren’t all that high to begin with. 43 weeks, that’s at least 10 cycles. Assuming you stick with what Wendler prescribes, 5kgs for lower body lifts and 2.5kgs for upper body lifts, you should’ve added at least 25kgs/15kgs to your lower/upper body lifts respectively. You added 17.5kgs to your press and 20-ish kgs to your deadlift, that’s expected, I would say.

I would say your bench and press are both pretty decent. For 8 years-ish of lifting, something just doesn’t add up. Your deadlift/squat ratio seems fine to me.

I would say the biggest takeaway is, you might’ve set your initial training max too high for the squat, considering its essentially the same after 43 weeks… The press progressed really well. That’s the way its supposed to be. For someone who is 5’6" and 83kgs, I’m sure you can do better than this.


#5

Benanything

i started with my training maxes at a conservative value, id stalled several times with my squat for one reason or another i seem to be struggling there as the progress shows, but ive only recently had to reset the bench deadlift and overhead press. so i dont necessarily think i set my training max too high.

for example week 1 i was supposed to deadlift 115kg for 5 on my top set, however fast forward to week 36 and i had 150kg for 5, so i have obviously made some progress. 150kg was close to my 1rep max last year. this is the same for the other lifts as well.


#6

[quote]Benanything wrote:
Haven’t been at it longer than you but here are some comments, none the less.
How exactly are you training with 531?

You should’ve made way more progress than what’s shown considering your lifts aren’t all that high to begin with. 43 weeks, that’s at least 10 cycles. Assuming you stick with what Wendler prescribes, 5kgs for lower body lifts and 2.5kgs for upper body lifts, you should’ve added at least 25kgs/15kgs to your lower/upper body lifts respectively. You added 17.5kgs to your press and 20-ish kgs to your deadlift, that’s expected, I would say.

I would say your bench and press are both pretty decent. For 8 years-ish of lifting, something just doesn’t add up. Your deadlift/squat ratio seems fine to me.

I would say the biggest takeaway is, you might’ve set your initial training max too high for the squat, considering its essentially the same after 43 weeks… The press progressed really well. That’s the way its supposed to be. For someone who is 5’6" and 83kgs, I’m sure you can do better than this.[/quote]

I completely agree with this.

Something doesn’t add up. I can see eight years training giving poor results if it was badly planned and executed. But almost a year of 531 I would expect to deliver better results, unless it wasn’t done properly.

I’m not trying to be a dick and nor is Benyanything. We’re just being honest.

Your bench and press are ok, but could be better. Your squat and deadlift are just not up to par with your bench and press, relatively speaking. I have to add that there isn’t a ‘proper’ or ‘necessary’ ratio of lift to lift but your numbers suggest somehow your lower body strength is lagging very far behind your pressing.

Can you post a typical training week? That might help.


#7

yes i totally agree thats why im asking, i didnt mean to sound defensive at all, i genuinely am open to thoughts.

i think my lower lifts are severely lagging.

so typically i deadlift on mondays
bench on tuesdays
bent over row (i have implemented this into 5/3/1)
squats on thursdays
and overhead press on fridays.

  • i do the required 3x5, 3x3 or 5/3/1 and then reverse it like a pyramid so i typically do 6 working sets. i was doing FSL but preferred doing the reverse pyramid.

typical assistance for deadlift day would be 3 sets of RDL, abdominal work and some biceps

bench day i was doing incline db presses, some tricep work and flys

BOR i was hitting chins and rows

squats i was doing ab work and not much else, squat day generally takes me longer as i find i have to strecth my hip flexors out a lot between lifts.

overhead pressing i supplement with behind the neck presses and lateral raises


#8

Get the off that program now. Stop messing around, stick with basic, heavy work on around 3 lifts per day for sets of 1-5 reps most of the time, at least 4 days a week. For example, you could try:-

Mon:

Squat: ramp up to a top set of 5
OHP: ramp to a max
Snatch-grip DL or High Pull: to a moderate set of 3

Tue:

Bench: build to a top double
Front Squat: ramp triples till you find a decent weight, then 4 x 3
Bench: 5 x 4 @ 80% of top double

Wed:

Optional Rest Day

Thu:

Deadlift: build to a heavy double
Squat: easy 5s ramped over 4-5 sets to a moderate weight
Deadlift: 5 x 4 with ~80% of top double

Fri:

Squat: to a heavy triple
Bench: sets of 5 to a top set, then max reps at 85% of that weight
SGHP: 8 x 3

Sat:

Optional Rest Day

Sun:

Front Squat: to a top single
OHP: to a decent set of 5, then max reps at 85% of that weight

Choose weights based on daily performance, and always look for your best on that day without forcing it too much (keep to full depth squats etc., don’t miss more than one rep on a lift per day, and so on…). Add biceps work, rows (cable or machine are best when your back gets fatigued from main lifts), and any other bodybuilding work you feel would benefit you. Conditioning or strongman training are also options, just adjust workload accordingly and include easy days if you need them.

I would say weight progression is important, but given your chart above I can only imagine you approach training like a financial analyst, and could probably do with relaxing a bit in that department and letting the weights climb as they do, with full effort every day. Good luck!


#9

The video doesn’t work for me but what is your squat form like? Does it feel solid with each rep feeling almost exactly the same or is it a bit all over the shop?

And how stable are you in the bottom position? If you get into the hole with no bar on your back and someone gives you a bit of a knock, do you have enough movement to be able to absorb it or will you fall over?


#10

[quote]halcj wrote:
Get the off that program now. Stop messing around, stick with basic, heavy work on around 3 lifts per day for sets of 1-5 reps most of the time, at least 4 days a week. For example, you could try:-

Mon:

Squat: ramp up to a top set of 5
OHP: ramp to a max
Snatch-grip DL or High Pull: to a moderate set of 3

Tue:

Bench: build to a top double
Front Squat: ramp triples till you find a decent weight, then 4 x 3
Bench: 5 x 4 @ 80% of top double

Wed:

Optional Rest Day

Thu:

Deadlift: build to a heavy double
Squat: easy 5s ramped over 4-5 sets to a moderate weight
Deadlift: 5 x 4 with ~80% of top double

Fri:

Squat: to a heavy triple
Bench: sets of 5 to a top set, then max reps at 85% of that weight
SGHP: 8 x 3

Sat:

Optional Rest Day

Sun:

Front Squat: to a top single
OHP: to a decent set of 5, then max reps at 85% of that weight

Choose weights based on daily performance, and always look for your best on that day without forcing it too much (keep to full depth squats etc., don’t miss more than one rep on a lift per day, and so on…). Add biceps work, rows (cable or machine are best when your back gets fatigued from main lifts), and any other bodybuilding work you feel would benefit you. Conditioning or strongman training are also options, just adjust workload accordingly and include easy days if you need them.

I would say weight progression is important, but given your chart above I can only imagine you approach training like a financial analyst, and could probably do with relaxing a bit in that department and letting the weights climb as they do, with full effort every day. Good luck!
[/quote]

This doesn’t look like a bad approach.

I get the feeling that OP might be underestimating what a really heavy squat and DL really feels like though, and that could hinder how effective this would be.

OP, I’m still not knocking you, but it took me a while to get a feel for a challenging set or weight and something actually strainingly heavy. I suspect you may be confusing challenging with heavy. This could mean you simply haven’t pushed your lower body lifts as hard as you are able.

For example, it isn’t uncommon for me to stop seeing anything during a a max squat. I don’t black out, I just stop seeing until my knees lock. That’s a really different feeling to a hard triple because a lot of the time if I’m honest I could probably knock out one or two more reps. It just would suck very hard to do so.

Just a thought.


#11

[quote]halcj wrote:
Get the off that program now. Stop messing around, stick with basic, heavy work on around 3 lifts per day for sets of 1-5 reps most of the time, at least 4 days a week. For example, you could try:-

Mon:

Squat: ramp up to a top set of 5
OHP: ramp to a max
Snatch-grip DL or High Pull: to a moderate set of 3

Tue:

Bench: build to a top double
Front Squat: ramp triples till you find a decent weight, then 4 x 3
Bench: 5 x 4 @ 80% of top double

Wed:

Optional Rest Day

Thu:

Deadlift: build to a heavy double
Squat: easy 5s ramped over 4-5 sets to a moderate weight
Deadlift: 5 x 4 with ~80% of top double

Fri:

Squat: to a heavy triple
Bench: sets of 5 to a top set, then max reps at 85% of that weight
SGHP: 8 x 3

Sat:

Optional Rest Day

Sun:

Front Squat: to a top single
OHP: to a decent set of 5, then max reps at 85% of that weight

Choose weights based on daily performance, and always look for your best on that day without forcing it too much (keep to full depth squats etc., don’t miss more than one rep on a lift per day, and so on…). Add biceps work, rows (cable or machine are best when your back gets fatigued from main lifts), and any other bodybuilding work you feel would benefit you. Conditioning or strongman training are also options, just adjust workload accordingly and include easy days if you need them.

I would say weight progression is important, but given your chart above I can only imagine you approach training like a financial analyst, and could probably do with relaxing a bit in that department and letting the weights climb as they do, with full effort every day. Good luck!
[/quote]

Inb4 OP posts “hey guise help i broke my back” thread in 2 weeks.


#12

[quote]halcj wrote:
Get the off that program now. Stop messing around, stick with basic, heavy work on around 3 lifts per day for sets of 1-5 reps most of the time, at least 4 days a week.
[/quote]

531 works. It ain’t messing around. I would like to think its more of poor utilization by OP that’s leading to the lack of progress.


#13

[quote]Benanything wrote:

[quote]halcj wrote:
Get the off that program now. Stop messing around, stick with basic, heavy work on around 3 lifts per day for sets of 1-5 reps most of the time, at least 4 days a week.
[/quote]

531 works. It ain’t messing around. I would like to think its more of poor utilization by OP that’s leading to the lack of progress.[/quote]

5/3/1 isn’t messing around, but OP’s lifts / progress chart show that in his case there’s something wrong. I think a simpler approach with hard work and moderate frequency, as most weightlifters use to develop a good reserve of squatting and pulling strength, would allow OP to learn how to make progress and work consistently with or without a set program. It’s a case of learning how training should feel and when / how to push, not a special progression plan.


#14

[quote]halcj wrote:

[quote]Benanything wrote:

[quote]halcj wrote:
Get the off that program now. Stop messing around, stick with basic, heavy work on around 3 lifts per day for sets of 1-5 reps most of the time, at least 4 days a week.
[/quote]

531 works. It ain’t messing around. I would like to think its more of poor utilization by OP that’s leading to the lack of progress.[/quote]

5/3/1 isn’t messing around, but OP’s lifts / progress chart show that in his case there’s something wrong. I think a simpler approach with hard work and moderate frequency, as most weightlifters use to develop a good reserve of squatting and pulling strength, would allow OP to learn how to make progress and work consistently with or without a set program. It’s a case of learning how training should feel and when / how to push, not a special progression plan.[/quote]

Fair point and agreed.


#15

interesting points

apologies the youtube link didnt work, try this…

https://
www.youtube.com
/channel/
UCYSLciNmE1St9_BpT1UrTMw

just make all of that one line and hopefully it will work. if not just try and search harvey morcom.

so what are you guys saying? that its likely that im not working hard enough? not doing enough assistance?


#16

[quote]hmorcom wrote:
interesting points

apologies the youtube link didnt work, try this…

https://
www.youtube.com
/channel/
UCYSLciNmE1St9_BpT1UrTMw

just make all of that one line and hopefully it will work. if not just try and search harvey morcom.

so what are you guys saying? that its likely that im not working hard enough? not doing enough assistance? [/quote]

OP, what I’m saying is you aren’t lazy but you may simply have been too cautious and too careful. You put down estimated maxes I think, so have you ever truly maxed out? Pushed your big lifts to the limit?

That’s part of it. I think it is halcj who mentioned you might be over thinking things a bit. That’s part of it too.

What I’d suggest is resting for a few days and then going in and crushing some maxes. Don’t obsess over beautiful technique, just stay tight and safe. Hit depth for your squat, touch you chest on bench and lock out your deadlift. Keep hitting increasingly heavy singles until you simply can’t move the weight. Get someone to spot you for squat and bench.

Yes, you’ll be a bit edgy for the lifts. That’s fine. Acknowledge that, accept it, and then forget it and lift.

To start, hit a single at 85%, then go to 95%, then a 5-10 lb PR and from there play it by ear.

Once you have done all that, take 10% of those maxes and go back into 531.

I’m suggesting this because you don’t come across as cocky or ignorant, but just too cautious. Sometimes you need to stop being cautious and just have a go.

Try it. Then come back and let us know where you’re at and how it felt. It’ll be a good reset point.


#17

thanks Markko you make good points and your right, no i rarely ever try to go balls out, i train on my own at 5am and im not making excuses, there are others around if i did get pinned under a heavy bench or something.

i will take your advice and push the envelope a little more, i tried to max my deadlift and managed a grueling 180kg but it was ugly as hell!

i’ll be back in a little while with some news.

cheers all.


#18

It looks like you may have a slight technical issue with the squat too. In the vids, it looks like the bar tracks too far forward, and the load is over the middle of the foot rather than on the heels. You notice how on a lot of your squats when you’re coming out of the hole there’s a little forward rock followed by a rock backwards?

This could be for a bunch of reasons. A slightly lower bar position and/or wider stance could help. Upper back tightness could be an issue. Experiment a little and tape your attempts to see if they look better. Fixing this should put you in a more mechanically advantageous position, increase stability, and reduce forward lean.

NOTE: I can’t be 100% sure because of the angle of the video, but the rocking and slight forward lean provide some clues. Take a video that’s exactly from the side, and that will remove all doubt.


#19

Apoklyps good comments, i shall try and get a better view, next week is the 5/3/1 week so ill try and film each one.

i know exactly what you mean though, ive wondered why that was the case, i have recently been trying a lower bar position.

would a view from the back help in showing where my bar position is?

cheers


#20

Apoklyps just wondering if these recent squat videos are any better, you mentioned that you thought i had some issues.

would really appreciate it if you could comment on this

https:

//www.youtube.com/

channel/UCYSLciNmE1St9_BpT1UrTMw/videos

hopefully the youtube link works, if not just search for harvey morcom

cheers