T Nation

Engineering New Muscle

I figured I would start a training log here since I don’t have one anywhere else.

Some background on me:
I am an engineer by profession (cubicle desk jockey), a father to 3 great kids and married to an awesome woman.

I started working out years ago in high school and put on some good size and strength while playing rugby. Continued that through college while training MMA (when I achieved my leanest/strongest at 248 with a 500+ lb deadlift). Took a few years off when I got married, had kids and pursued a master’s degree (2013 to 2019). Body took a hit and I was up above 300 with a serious dad bod for awhile.

Decided to regain my health and musculature starting this year. I have been consistent since January with few breaks working out and my physique is finally starting to show it (pics to come later in thread).

Current Stats:
30 years old
6 foot 3 inches at around 280 (dense and most of my engineering teammates think pretty lean, but no abs currently showing or anything).
Arms currently just shy of 19" without pump (need to get other measurements).

Current Program I am running a push/pull/legs split 4 or 5 days a week. I train mostly for hypertrophy and size (due to the fact I workout at a commercial gym that discourages things like squats/deadlifting).

For recording purposes format is SetsxWeight-Reps

Previous workouts this week not logged: Monday - Legs, Tuesday - Push day with shoulder focus.

Sept. 25 2019 Workout - Pull Day
Lat Pulldowns 1x145-12, 2 x 160-9, 1x145-10
Seated Rows: V-handle 4x160-10
Face Pulls: 1x90-13, 3x110-9
Dumbbell Shrugs: 4x80-9 (3 seconds up, 3 second hold at top, 3 seconds down)
Incline Dumbbell Curls: 1x25-12, 2x30-8
Cable preacher Curls: 3x75-9
Drag Curls (a personal favorite): 3x70-10,9,9

Felt pretty strong this morning, size is definitely coming back quickly (I have always been able to add muscle fast).

Some of my favorite bodybuilders for inspiration/reference:
Troy Alves:


Lou Ferrigno:

Joel Stubbs:
Stubbs
Sergio Olivia:

Sept 26th 2019
Short push day

I only had 30 minutes this morning so very quick workout

Dumbbell Bench Press: 1x80s-12, 3x90s-9
Pec dec Flyes: 4x115-11
Neutral grip incline dumbbell presses 4x50s-11
Triceps Rope Pushdowns: 2x90-12, 1x90 to 20 drop set

Anecdote:
It seems I can build muscle size faster now that I am 30 as opposed to when I was 21. I would think it would be the opposite. Maybe I am eating cleaner (likely since at 21 I was surviving on college campus food, beer, and whiskey), but I am also on Metformin due to being Type 2 diabetic. I know metformin helps with insulin sensitivity, but how does that relate to the ability to build muscle?

Sept 27th 2019 - Pull Day

Trying out some new rep schemes from this article:

Lat Pulldowns: 1x160-9, 1x175-6, 2x175-[6/4 Rest-Pause]
Bent Over Rows 3x6-185, 3x6-155 [6x6 rep scheme, 30 sec between sets]
Face Pulls: 4x110-9,9,8,8 [basic 4x8 rep scheme 30 sec between sets]
Dumbbell Pullovers: 4x90-8,8,8,7 [basic 4x8 scheme - 30 sec between sets]
Rope Hammer Curls: 1x120-10, 1x140-8, 1x160-6, 1x100-18 [10/8/6/15-20 rep scheme 40 sec rest]
Incline Dumbbell spider curls: 2x30-6, 2x30-[6/4 Rest pause - 45 sec between sets]

Current Nutrition and Supplementation.

Nutrition:
Not tracking macros seriously at the moment except for protein. I am ensuring that I get 250-300 grams of protein in per day. Due to being diabetic, I keep the carbs lower - targeting 150-180 grams per day. This range appears to keep my blood sugar in correct range throughout most of the day.

Supplementation:
Ronnie Coleman Signature Series VitaXs (multivitamin)
Ronnie Coleman Signature Series BCAAs (pill form, 2:1:1 ratio)
Ronnie Coleman Signature Series Stacked (truly the best non-stim preworkout I have ever tried)
MusclePharm Combat Whey protein (after workout and throughout day if needed for protein intake)
Creatine Monohydrate 5-7.5 grams/day
Tribulus (90% saponins, 750 mg 2x/day - 5 days on 2 off)

September 28th and 29th - Rest days.

Sept 30th. Push day.

Incline DBell press: 1x90x-11, 1x90-9, 1x95-6, 1x60-15
Pec Dec Flye: 4x115-10,10,9,9
Close Grip Bench: 1x185-10, 2x205-6, 1x205-6/3 [Rest Pause Set]
Arnold Press (with dumbbells): 1x45-11, 3x50-9
Reverse Grip Tricep Pulldowns: 3x120-9
Tricep Rope: 2x90-11, 1x90-drop set from 90 to 30 lbs.

Oct 1
Morning off due to lack of sleep (extra visitors at my house). Hopefully will be able to get a workout in this evening.
Evening Pull Workout

Landmine Deadlifts 1x225–11, 2x270-6, 1x180-10
Lat Pulldowns 2x175-6, 2x175-[6/3] Rest Pause
Smith Machine Barbell Rows 2x185-7, 2x205-5
Dumbbell Pullovers 4x90-9,9,8,8
Face Pulls 4x120-12
Drag Curls, 1x60-12, 2x80-9
Tricep Rope Hammer Curls, 2x120-12,11; 1x110 [drop set down to 30]
Standing alternating Dbell Curls, 3x30s-9 [fully supinated entire set, no wrist turn]

Oct 2
Leg Day

Once again, gym’s single squat rack taken up for way to long by folks who thought it the day to train jaws.
So:
Leg Press, 4x540-10
Seated Leg Curl, 4x140-11,10,10,9
Leg Extensions, 4x150-9,8,8,8
Seated Calf Machine 4x135(+weight of machine)-8 (slow eccentric, explosive concentric)
Hack Squat 2x240-11, 2x300-8

Oct 3rd
Push Day shoulder focus

Dumbbell Shoulder press 4x80s-9,9,8,6
Pec dec Flyes 4x130-10
Cable single arm lateral raises 4x30-8
Upright rows 1x135-10, 3x155-7
Dips Bodyweight 3xBW-13,13,11
Reverse grip pull downs: 3x120-8
Tricep Rope 3x90-11, 1x90drop set

Oct 4-6 off days (weekends are for family in my book)
Oct 7th - was supposed to hit the gym, but got sick the night before.

October 8th: Pull Day
Lat Pulldowns, 2x175-7, 2x175-[6/3] rest pause
Dumbbell Pullovers, 4x90lb-10,10,9,8
V-Handle Seated Rows, 4x175-10,10,9,9,
Face Pulls, 3x120-10,10,8
Tricep Rope Hammer Curls, 2x110-12, 1x110 to 30 drop set
Incline Dumbbell Curls - Strict: 3x25s-9

Rest of this week and then next to hit the iron hard in this periodization. Have a forced deload week coming up Oct 21-25 as I will be on business travel and only have access to a hotel gym.

Any recommendations on how to achieve peak hypertrophy in these last two weeks?

Oct. 9 Push Day:
Yeah, I know it’s suppposed to be Push-Pull-Legs, but i don’t really think it matters.

Incline Bench Press: 1x205-11, 2x225-8, 6, 1x135-15[slow tempo]
Pec Dec Flyes 4x130-10,9,9,8
Arnold (dumbbell) Press: 1x45s-11, 1x50s-9, 2x55s-7
Dips: 3xBodyweight- 13, 10, 13
Reverse Grip Tricep Pressdowns: 3x120-8
Tricep Rope Pressdowns: 2x110-10, 1x90 [drop set to 30 lbs]

Update:
A bunch of off weeks here due to business travel/illness and lack of motivation for some reason lately.
Good new is I have cut a little weight being off and my waist measurement has gone down.

Getting back at it starting Monday. Would like to put on another 5 lbs of muscle before Christmas.

Finally hit the gym again yesterday.
No excuses - got busy and lazy in the off period

Nov 12, Push Day
Incline Bench Press 2x135 (warm ups), 2x185-9, 8-4 (rest pause), 2x135-6 reps - 5 sec eccentric reps, explosive concentric
Neutral Grip Dumbbell presses (dumbbells pressed together in center of chest): 3x50-12,11,11
Low to High Cable Flyes (on “Freemotion” machine): 4x25lbs(each side) - 12, 10, 10, 9
Barbell Front Raises: 3x50-8, 8, 8
Dumbell Side lateral Raises: 2x25s - 6, 6
Tricep Rope Pulldowns: 2x100-12,10, 1x90 -10, 1x90 to 30 drop set
Arnold Press: 2x45s-8, 6

Nov 19 Pull Day,
Lat Pull Downs: 1x160-12, 2x175-8, 1x130-15
Bent Over Rows (on smith machine, strict): 2x135-11, 2x155-9,8
Dumbbell Pullovers: 2x90-8, 1x90-[7,3 Rest Pause]
Low Pulley Upright Rows: 4x130-12, 12, 11, 11
Rope Hammer Curls: 2x100-12, 1x90- Drop Set down to 30lbs
Incline Dumbbell Curls: 1x20lbs-9, 2x20-[7,3 and 6,4 Rest Pause Sets]

Total volume & time lifting: 21 sets in 42 minutes

Nov 21 Push (yeah, I know supposed be legs -but that’s tomorrow so I have a full two days of recovery)
Incline Dumbbell Bench Press: 1x75s-13, 3x85-9,8,8
Pec Dec Flys: 1x115-13, 2x130-9,8, 1x100-16 (pump set for hypertrophy)
Decline Close Grip Bench: 1x135-11, 1x155-8, 1x155-[6,4 Rest Pause]
Bodyweight (280lbs) dips: 3xBW-9,7,9
Machine Lateral Raises: 1x90-12, 1x110-8, 1x110-[7-4 Rest pause]
Tricep Rope Pressdowns: 1x100-14, 2x130-8,7; 1x90 to 20 drop set

Total volume and time lifting: 21 sets in 43 minutes