T Nation

First Log

first log - hoping to gain alot of knowledge that can help my lifting career here!

First alittle background
Started lifting after highschool because I wanted to stop being the fat kid. Went from somewhere around 260 to as low as 220. Dabbled with that for my freshman year and really started to lift after I met me lifting partner sophmore year. Since then, I’ve become obsessed with increasing my weights. With this, I’ve put on too much weight, currently sitting around 290.

Current stats:
Bench: 340
Squat: 550
Deadlift: 585

Only vids I have uploaded at the moment at my youtube channel

One is a squat at 500, and 525 (? i think)
Don’t think my depth is quite right, so that needs to improve. My bench is terrible. I don’t have a video of it, but have one of a deadlift from a few months ago I’ll try and get up soon.

I’m currently following 5/3/1 for my upperbody lifts (bench and military)
For my squat and deadlift, I’m following three week mini cycles of 1RM, 3RM, 2RM staggering the weeks for sq and dl so that 1RM on sq wk = 3RM on dl wk and vice versa.

600 squat and deadlift
370 bench
225 military
lose some bodyweight so that I feel better about myself and improve conditioning. Any and all help is appreciated on the weightloss and conditioning, I know how to starve myself from my first weight lose, haha.


Last day of spring break, so the last day before heading back to the college gym

Bench Day
Following Matt Rhodes 5/3/1 with singles template

Bench Warmup
135 x 5
225 x 5

Work sets
235 x 3
265 x 3
300 x 3

330 x 1
335 x 1
345 x 1

Bench felt good today, I’m currently trying to switch up my form to have my foot flat on the floor. I’ve benched with my legs tucked and on my toes and can’t seem to get tight flat footed, if anyone has any tips, I’d love to hear them.

I attempted some floor presses, but my shoulder wasn’t cooperating, so I shut the pressing down. Did 15 x 70, 85 and 2 x 8 x 100 on the machine butterfly.

For my back (trying to really hit my back, feel that it is by far the weak link in my upperbody)

One Arm Dead Stop Rows
8 x 105, 120, 150

Face Pulls
3 x 15 x 70

Chins (Suck at these, pretty much use whatever I have to to get up)
3 x 3
1 x 2
1 x 1 (Was trying for a 5x3, but failed on the forth set, and the fifth wasn’t happening)

Weighed in at a fat 295 today, so that’s my starting point. Want to lose down to around 260 in a few months, but don’t want to loose much off of my big 3. Plan is for some steady state cardio a few times a week mixed in with a conditioning session a week for now.

All advice appreciated!

Squat Day (2 vids)

Worked up to a 2rm today. Went pretty well, weights didn’t feel too bad. My usual partner didn’t show up, so I had to go solo and have fellow gym goers type my two top sets. Onto the work!

Bar x Alot
135 x 8
225 x 6

Belt On
315 x 3
405 x 3

Belt + Knee Wraps (El Cheapo’s from Wal Mart, Golds Gym I think, good wraps are on the list)
495 x 2
525 x 2
Surprised these went as well as they did, feel like I should probably work on my depth, still not happy with it, don’t think its quite parallel, judge for yourself (Feedback please, what angle is best to film squats?) The set of 525 appears lower, but I’m not sure, I felt like I was at the same spot on each.

Straight Leg Deadlift
4 x 5 x 315
These really killed my hamstrings, was going to shoot for a 5x5, but just didn’t have it in me. Don’t know if it would be more useful to do higher reps with these or not, I just have a mental block with deadlifts above 5 reps

Leg Press
3 x 10 with enough weight to be tired by the 3rd set.

Pretty much it for the day.
Started watching what I eat today, cutting out potatoes, pastas, breads, etc and cutting down to see if I can drop it back to around 260, 270lb, not ready to be carrying around 300lb just yet


10 minutes bike
15 minutes treadmill
Figured the treadmill would be the one to hurt, but it was just the opposite, treadmill felt pretty good while the bike hurt like heck.

3 x 10 landmines
3 x However many I could get (8 - 10) leg raises
3 sets of planks for ~30 seconds a piece

That was it, just getting some blood flowing and help to drop a few pounds

Military Press tomorrow!

Military Press
Bar x Enough
2 x 5 x 95
1 x 3 x 135
1 x 3 x 145
1 x 3 x 165
1 x 3 x 185
1 x 1 x 205
3 x 1 x 215

These felt pretty good, really surprised myself with 215 for three sets.

I’ve decided that since I’m weighing in at quite a bit, I might as well take advantage of that and do some body weight exercises. Want to improve my dip again, as at one point my dip was a great indicator of my overall upperbody strengh.

Dips: 5 x 5 - This is about all I had here, really killed my dips with the weight gains. Tried one more set and got exactly 3 reps before dieing. My goal is to get back to being able to do 10 - 12 per set

Barbell T-Bar Rows 8 x 3, 4, 4, 5, 5 Plates

Barbell Curls 5x5x95

20 minutes on the treadmill

Been able to resist my old eating habits for a few days, so hopefully, I’m on my way to training myself to eat the right things.

Cardio - Sort Of

Didn’t make it to the gym today - half because of homework and half because I’m a lazy f$^k. Did walk with the gf for about 1.5 hours around town and then proceeded to stuff my face at Olive Garden to celebrate 2 years.

Deadlifts tomorrow. Goals at least 550 x 2, if not higher. Will report later

Two updates today

3/18/2011 Deadlift
Worked upto a 2RM (stupidly never stretched out this day, so my pulls turned into straight leg something or the others, real bad decision)
135 x some
225 x 5
315 x 3
405 x 3
495 x 1
550 x 2 - videoed this set and noticed just how bad I was straight legging.

Good Mornings from Pins (Inspired by Dixie’s Finest, going to incorporate alot more good mornings and not regulate them to low weight)
135 x 5
225 x 3
315 x 3
315 x 5
365 x 5
405 x 2
405 x 2 - videoed these but they are not impressive to me in the least, think I need to set the pins up significantly lower and work on not half squatting here.

3/20/2011 Bench

First things first, weighed in today around 287, so down a few pounds, just have to keep it up. Did good on the diet till the weekend and completely blew it, but its a step in the right direction.

Bar x alot
135 x alot
185 x 5
215 x 5
250 x 5
285 x 5

Dumbbell Bench

Seated Rows with pull down bar (High rows)
10 x 85, 115, 130, 145

T-Bar Row Machine
3 x 10 x 2 plates
8 x 3 plates
5 x 4 plates

25 total reps

Good squatting and DLing my man. If you’re looking for a powerlifting parallel squat, I’d say you’re a little high. That would be the crease of your hip getting even with/below the top of your knee. In order to see that, though, you need to shoot the video lower and directly to the side. Check out my squatting videos if you want, I have a log here. Keep in mind that I would call my depth borderline in terms of powerlifting.

That said, it bears repeating that you’re very strong. Straighten out your form a little and you should hit your goals. I won’t comment on DL because mine blows ass and my form is the opposite of ideal. Try and get a bench video up as well.

Squat Day

Worked on a low box today (2 Bumper 45’s, bumper 35, 2 normal 45’s)
135 x alot
225 x some
275 x 3
315 x 3 belt on
405 x 2
455 x 1 wraps on
500 x 1

Bumper plates where repo’d by track coach at this time, so I took one free squat at 525 and called it good

Dead Stop Leg Press 5 x 6 x 8 plates
45* Back Raises 3 x 15 x 35lb

All I had in me today. Feel like I know my weakest link in squat is my core (abs, obliques, low back) so I’m going to throw them in as an accessory day.

Cardio and Abs

20 minutes on treadmill

20 ab wheel rollouts
20 leg raises
10 landmines (2 plates)
3 x 10 DB sidebends (same motion as the landmines, just like DB’s better) 70, 80, 105

Tis it, onto Military Press tomorrow

Military Press
Bar x alot
135 x alot

5 x 135, 155, 175

Side Delts /ss/ front raise
10 x 20, 30, 20

DB Rows (Dead Stop)
8 x 70, 90, 100

Lat Pulldowns (Behind the head)
8 x 85, 115, 130, 130

Heavy Closegrips
bar x some
135 x some
185 x 3
225 x 3
275 x 3
295 x 3


30 minutes treadmill

Deadlifts tomorrow

Ok, so alittle update. Deadlifted Friday, but I decided that a change was needed, so I just pulled, nothing spectacular.

So, onto my change, I decided that I’m going to follow the Conjugate Method “I Need Some Mass” outlined in the Elitefts guide. I’ve done the conjugate method before, and for a few reasons, feel it is better for me at the current time.


  1. I need some more mass, I weigh alot, but not alot of muscle, especially in my upper body
  2. My speed has suffered, especially on the bench, so dynamic work sounds great
  3. I wanted some more volume in my routine, felt that I was getting to lenient with my modified 5/3/1

DE Bench

Dynamic Bench
8 x 3 x 160

Rack Lockouts (~5in ROM)
worked upto 335 x 3

DB Press
Started at a sitting military press and worked my way down to flat bench, lowering every set
5 x 10 x 55, 60, 70, 80, 90

Lat Pulldowns (Varying grips)
5 x 10 x 190

Alot more volume than I have been doing, hopefully will see some benefits, cause I’m beat now.


Box Squat (lowish box: 2 45’s, 1 35 (Both Rubber Coated) and 2 45’s on top, maybe inch below parallel)
Bar x alot
135 x alot
Was having trouble opening my hips up, so had to do alot of stretching and squating to get to the box comfortably
225 x 3
Belt On
315 x 3
Knee Wraps + Belt
405 x 1
495 x 1
Had more in me here, 495 flew up, but I goofed up and made to big a jump (545) and couldn’t get up. Technique plus fatigue plus being a puss set it.

Straight Leg DL
225 x 8
315 x 8
405 x 3
455 x 3
Next time I do this, I’m going to push the 405 out too the 6 - 8 rep range and forget about the 455.

Glute Ham Raise
5 x 10 x BW
This killed, not use to this much work on my backside

Situps on Stability Ball
3 x 20

Cardio and Abs

20 minutes on treadmill

Stability Ball Sit ups 20 reps
Weight Crunch 2 x 10 x 45
DB Sit Bends 10 x 70, 90, 115

Weights around the 285-290 range still, maybe lost a lb or 2, need to be consistent with food.

That’s all folks!

ME Bench

Floor Press - worked up to 295 x 3

Tricep Pushdowns
115 x 20
145 x 15
175 x 15
205 x 10
250 x 5, 205 x 5 <-- Ego got me here, had to see how many i could get the stack

Pendalay Rows
10 x 135, 155, 185, 205, 235

Facepulls (With Towel - hell on the hands)
5 x 15 x 85

DE Squat

Started off the day on a sour, sour note, was working up on squats and completely stapled myself with 385, no idea what went wrong, but after some conferring decided the best course of action for the day was to split up speed squats and deadlifts between me and my partner, so when ones squating the others deadlifting and vice versa.

Speed Pulls (~60ish%)
10 x 1 x 315

Speed Squats (73% of 550)
10 x 2 x 405

These felt great, don’t know what the flip happened on the first warmups. Going to blame the really attractive female walking by, i was distracted.

Anyways, finished out the day with

GHR (Ghetto version with bench and smith machine)
5 x 10 - raped my hammys, cramped up around the 4th set, really like this version of the “No GHR in gym, lets try this” GHR

Side Bends w/ DB
2 x 15 x 70

Was running out of time so I ended up dipsetting to get to the cafeteria before it closed for lunch.

4/3/2011 DE Bench

60% of 330 = ~200lb
8 x 3 x 200

Rack Lockouts
135 x alot
225 x 1
315 x 1
335 x 2
315 x 5

DB Press (Slight Incline)
1 x 10 x 75
2 x 8 x 100
1 x 5 x 100
2 x 12 x 75

T Bar Row (Machine)
5 x 10 x 3P + quarter