T Nation

From Urkel to Stefan - Phase 1


#1

So I've been working out since end of March, but I've been in constant cycle of not getting the results I want. I've made some progress, but not the type of progress I should have had 7 months later. I attribute this to a few factors but mainly:

  1. Consistency
  2. Diet
  3. Focus
  4. Sticking with the program
  5. Changing goals frequently

My ultimate goal is to be a national level competitive Olympic weightlifter. I'm 29, but I know with 3-5 years of hard work and consistency I'll be able to hit the goals barring any major injuries. But in order to do this, I need to first think small and achieve some smaller goals. I need to lay out a road map of what it'll take for me to get there.

For example I know I need to be able to BS 400lbs minimum for me to even have a chance of competing at a high level. But before I can squat 400, I need to get to 225, then 315, and then worry about 400. Squats have been my weakness for the longest time and it's the lifeblood of Olympic weightlifting.

So to help save me from myself and to accomplish my goals, I decided I need to work in 12 week blocks and hold myself accountable. This means for 12 weeks I DON'T change the program and I stay really consistent with both diet and lifting. I also need to make sure I have a PRIMARY goal. This will be the focus for each block of time.

So for Phase 1, my primary objective is to gain overall strength. I'm going to go back to the basics and master them with everything geared more towards Olympic weightlifting. I've learned enough from the last 8 months of being on this site about what a good program entails and that hard work and consistency are going to be the 2 major deciding factors for me. I'm not some special snowflake that needs a program that addresses all my weaknesses. I need to get stronger at the basic lifts first and then after I hit certain numbers, I can modify my approach.

I'll be starting with 2500 clean cals a day and once I "stall" I'll add 300 cals extra to my daily intake. I currently am 5'6 at 163lbs.

Current Levels of Strength (all in lbs):

Snatch 95 5x2
C&J 155 5x1
Back Squat 180 3x5
Front Squat 165 1x5
Overhead Press 120 3x5
Push Press 130 3x5
Pendlay Row 135 5x5
Deadlift 275 3x5

PHASE 1 -
Primary Goal - Get stronger overall!

Program posted in the picture below.


#2

This will be my “meal plan” during the 12 weeks. I’ll add more calories if necessary.

BREAKFAST
-4 Eggs
-1 Banana
-1 Cup Oatmeal

LUNCH
-8oz Chicken Breast (boneless skinless)
-2 Chicken Thighs (boneless skinless)
-1 Baked Potato
-Salad + Bell Pepper

SNACK
-Apple
-2 Tbsp PB

DINNER
-8oz Salmon/Seafood or Goat or Lamb or Bison
-1 Cup White Rice
-2 Veggies (Broccoli + Tomatoes, etc)

230 Carbs
75 Fat
225 Protein
2500 Cals


#3

This will be the strength phase 12 blocks. I’ll always start off with bar work for the 2 Olympic lifts and then will move onto the workout. I need to hammer technique with just the bar and light weight. For Snatches most I’ll ever do is 95lbs and for C&J most I’ll ever do is 135lbs for these 12 weeks.


#4

MONDAY @ Gold’s Gym
-Snatch/C&J Work 20 Min
-Back Squat 3x5
-Bench Press 3x5
-Chest Supported Rows 4x10
-Weighted Decline Situps 3x12
-Chin Ups 50 Reps

WEDNESDAY @ Home
-Snatch/C&J Work 20 Min
-Front Squat 3x5
-Overhead Press 3x5
-Snatch DL 3x5
-Ab Roller 3xF
-Inverted Row 4xF

FRIDAY @ Gold’s Gym or Home
-Snatch/C&J Work 20 Min
-Back Squat 3x5
-Dips or Push Press 3x5
-Pendlay Row 5x5
-Hanging Leg Raises 3x12
-Neutral Grip Thick Bar Chin Ups 50 Reps


#5

Uploaded the wrong image. The program I am running is in the thread.


#6

If you’re really trying to see how far you can push yourself, I would recommend having a good Oly coach look at your technique at least once a month to ensure you’re on the right track. Early on is the best time to learn what you need to do. Otherwise you might waste more time and have to keep rebuilding. Mobility will be just as important as strength and timing. You can probably get your technique critiqued in the Oly Lifting forum too.


#7

[quote]lift206 wrote:
If you’re really trying to see how far you can push yourself, I would recommend having a good Oly coach look at your technique at least once a month to ensure you’re on the right track. Early on is the best time to learn what you need to do. Otherwise you might waste more time and have to keep rebuilding. Mobility will be just as important as strength and timing. You can probably get your technique critiqued in the Oly Lifting forum too. [/quote]

Thanks man, that’s actually what I had already planned. Meeting with a coach once a month to make sure I’m on track. So far my technique isn’t too bad for a self learner. I just need more and more reps and to keep the bar a bit closer. Mobility will help with that though! I’m doing conditioning + yoga in my off days.


#8

Here is the actual program I am running. No changes for 12 weeks! Did my first day yesterday!

**Typo - The NG Thick Bar Pull ups are actually to aim for 50 total reps.


#9

MONDAY 11/9/15

Back Squat
45x10
95x5
115x5
135x5
160x3
180x5
180x5
180x5 (all the 180s felt HEAVY. tried to stay vertical. I think me being sick effected the movement. I don’t think I was GM them, but I was struggling a bit)

Bench Press (haven’t benched in MONTHS, so ramped first day. Didn’t lose much strength lol)
45x10
95x5
115x5
135x5
145x5
155x5
135x10

Chest Supported Rows (all the pull up bars were being used)
45x10
70x10
70x10
70x8 (Couldn’t get last 2 reps)

Decline Weighted Situps (aiming to get 12 each set next time)
+10x10
+10x10
+10x10

Chin Ups
5
5
3
3
2 (I was so gassed at this point. I’m going to shoot for 5x5 first, and then try to work my way up to 50 total reps)


#10

Walked 2 Miles today


#11

You’ll probably have to eat more than 2,500 cals - watch the scale closely. What do you do for conditioning?

One more thing: you’ve failed in the past. Realise why. That does not mean “diet”, “consistency” etc. - those are symptoms. If you want to put 220 lbs on your squat, you’ll have to make this your life.


#12

[quote]nighthawkz wrote:
You’ll probably have to eat more than 2,500 cals - watch the scale closely. What do you do for conditioning?

One more thing: you’ve failed in the past. Realise why. That does not mean “diet”, “consistency” etc. - those are symptoms. If you want to put 220 lbs on your squat, you’ll have to make this your life.[/quote]

Hey man, yeah you’re right. I figured I’d start with 2500 until lifts felt heavier and then would increase my cals slowly. I didn’t wanna pack on too much fat too quick lol.

For conditioning in my off days I’m thinking of prowler pushes, farmers walks, and swimming. The thing I like about swimming is that my joints get to take a break. I figure I would condition 3x a week and I’d run one of those days and the other 2 do something that is a bit less taxing on my overall body.

I agree though man. This is a priority for me now. A big squat will solve a lot of my issues lol.


#13

WEDNESDAY 11/11/15

Front Squat
45x10
95x5
115x5
135x5
155x5
155x5
155x5

Overhead Press
45x5
95x5
110x3
120x5
115x5
115x5

Snatch Grip DL + Pull
115x6
135x5
185x5
185x5
205x5

Ab Roller
x10
x10
x10

Inverted Row
x10
x10
x10
x10

Today was a lethargic day. I’m still sick, so it felt off today. My strongs felt HEAVY, but I think that’s cause my back was still so fatigued from Monday. But over the course of the weeks my body will adapt. OHP felt surprisingly strong. I think I need to get fractional plates to help move it. Snatch DL/Pulls felt good. I workout with a buddy on Wednesdays who does BS, Push Ups, Conventional DL, Planks, so we have a similar setup on Wednesdays. I didn’t even realize 205 was on the bar and did it. My back definitely feels it today lol. Inverted Rows felt SO easy to me. My back is way stronger than it’s been, so I might have to start adding some light weight or just pushing the reps on these. My abs were still sore from Monday so ab roller felt a bit off, but I pushed through it. Not bad for a day where I felt like shit!


#14

[quote]isdatnutty wrote:
Inverted Rows felt SO easy to me. My back is way stronger than it’s been, so I might have to start adding some light weight or just pushing the reps on these.[/quote]

I would start making them harder by holding the contraction at the top for two seconds. If you do it right your mid back will hate you but hey.


#15

[quote]nighthawkz wrote:

[quote]isdatnutty wrote:
Inverted Rows felt SO easy to me. My back is way stronger than it’s been, so I might have to start adding some light weight or just pushing the reps on these.[/quote]

I would start making them harder by holding the contraction at the top for two seconds. If you do it right your mid back will hate you but hey.[/quote]

I would definitely do this. I feel like there’s diminishing returns by really pushing the reps on a regular basis and there’s plenty of ways to make these more difficult. holding the top position, raising your feet, moving to a wider grip or doing them archer pull-up style, using a supinated grip, wearing a weight vest or even moving towards one handed variants are all ways to increase the difficulty.


#16

[quote]nighthawkz wrote:

[quote]isdatnutty wrote:
Inverted Rows felt SO easy to me. My back is way stronger than it’s been, so I might have to start adding some light weight or just pushing the reps on these.[/quote]

I would start making them harder by holding the contraction at the top for two seconds. If you do it right your mid back will hate you but hey.[/quote]

Thanks for the advice man. I’ll give this a try. I can already tell this is going to be way harder cause I was moving so fast when doing the inverted rows lol.


#17

[quote]dagill2 wrote:

[quote]nighthawkz wrote:

[quote]isdatnutty wrote:
Inverted Rows felt SO easy to me. My back is way stronger than it’s been, so I might have to start adding some light weight or just pushing the reps on these.[/quote]

I would start making them harder by holding the contraction at the top for two seconds. If you do it right your mid back will hate you but hey.[/quote]

I would definitely do this. I feel like there’s diminishing returns by really pushing the reps on a regular basis and there’s plenty of ways to make these more difficult. holding the top position, raising your feet, moving to a wider grip or doing them archer pull-up style, using a supinated grip, wearing a weight vest or even moving towards one handed variants are all ways to increase the difficulty.[/quote]

Thanks man. Your right, sometimes when adding more reps I feel like was that really necessary lol. So I do mine with feet raised already so I’m going to try the hold at the top and maybe using a wider grip. I use my barbell and squat stand to do the rows so I’ll have to get fancy to make it harder. Maybe eventually I’ll use towels so it’ll be like a neutral grip but work my grip more as well.


#18

[quote]isdatnutty wrote:

[quote]dagill2 wrote:

[quote]nighthawkz wrote:

[quote]isdatnutty wrote:
Inverted Rows felt SO easy to me. My back is way stronger than it’s been, so I might have to start adding some light weight or just pushing the reps on these.[/quote]

I would start making them harder by holding the contraction at the top for two seconds. If you do it right your mid back will hate you but hey.[/quote]

I would definitely do this. I feel like there’s diminishing returns by really pushing the reps on a regular basis and there’s plenty of ways to make these more difficult. holding the top position, raising your feet, moving to a wider grip or doing them archer pull-up style, using a supinated grip, wearing a weight vest or even moving towards one handed variants are all ways to increase the difficulty.[/quote]

Thanks man. Your right, sometimes when adding more reps I feel like was that really necessary lol. So I do mine with feet raised already so I’m going to try the hold at the top and maybe using a wider grip. I use my barbell and squat stand to do the rows so I’ll have to get fancy to make it harder. Maybe eventually I’ll use towels so it’ll be like a neutral grip but work my grip more as well.
[/quote]

Do you have anything overhead to attach anything to? Olympic rings are dirt cheap and a great addition to your home gym.


#19

[quote]dagill2 wrote:
Do you have anything overhead to attach anything to? Olympic rings are dirt cheap and a great addition to your home gym.[/quote]

I don’t have anything that high right now, plus I’ll be moving to Denver in a few months so I’m not going to buy anymore equipment haha. I think once I’ll move I’ll be at a commercial or cross fit type gym for a while before I can bring my equipment over again.


#20

SATURDAY 11/14/15

Snatch Work
-Floor to Knee
-Knee to Hip
-Full snatch

Back Squat
45x10
95x5
115x5
135x5
160x3
185x5
165x5
165x5
135x5

Dips
BWx10
BWx10
+25x5
+25x5
+25x5

Pendlay Row
135x5
135x5
135x5
135x5
135x5

Hanging Leg Raises
12
12
12

NG Thick Bar Pull Ups
5
5
4
3
3

WORKOUT COMMENTS: 180 felt crazy heavy to me. I can tell my form is tightening up though so I dropped the weight a bit to make sure form wasn’t horrible. Since I squat HB I’m still adjusting to staying more vertical. Everything else felt pretty solid. I haven’t done dips in a while and they felt HARD today. But as I get stronger and do them every 3rd workout I’ll get better. Overall happy with the workout and the tempo during it.