Fantastic work on the mock meet dude! You have killed your comeback. That last deadlift attempt was all heart.
Thank you very much @T3hPwnisher, your advice and example has helped me immeasurably. I’m not yet proud of my strength, but I have become proud of my heart.
T-Ransformation: Week 1 - Upper Body/Conditioning
Kettlebell Swing/One Arm Push-Up
40kg: (5,10,15,20) x3
BW: (1,1,1) x3
This is beginning to come together as a routine now. I feel out of my depth with the conditioning stuff, but that’s a good thing. I’m going to change the lower body session a bit because I got a lot of knee pain after Saturday’s workout - I think rushing the pistol squats is a bad idea. Instead I’m going to do goblet squats with the swings, and pistol squats after that. I’ve had a tonne of DOMS in my traps from the kettlebell swings, but luckily none of that neck pain I used to suffer from.
- Kettlebell Lower Body/Conditioning
- Kettlebell Upper Body/Conditioning
- 5/3/1 Squat/Bench Press
The above is my basic weekly plan - I hope to get to a proper gym once a week and I’ve decided it makes more sense to prioritise my squat over my deadlift because it is lagging so far behind (and improvements should carry over). In addition to these 3 days I’ll do conditioning where time allows - that’s more important than extra lifting right now.
T-Ransformation: Week 1 - Gym (Monster Session)
90kg: 5 - belt on
Hack Squat (Plate-Loaded)
140kg: 3 - belt on, mixed grip
200kg: 1 - !!!
Row Machine (Pulley)
Preacher Curl (EZ)
Hanging Leg Raises (Back Supported)
Just an incredible session today. I had been feeling very tired all day and my appetite was low, so it really caught me by surprise. I was training with an old friend which always helps.
The squatting wasn’t fantastic, but it never is. The hack squat was good though - I’ve only ever used this machine once before (in November) and I beat my last top set by 30kg! And then the deadlifts were just unreal - 200kg went up pretty solidly, which is awesome for doing it as a third exercise after some pretty hard leg stuff. After that it was mostly volume work, which all felt good.
1) Kettlebell Lower Body/Conditioning
2) Kettlebell Upper Body/Conditioning
3) Gym (i.e. Deadlifts)
I’ve (slightly) changed my plan for going forward - I’m not great at sticking to routines, and I know I won’t stick to 5/3/1 if I’ve already butchered it, so I’ll keep my gym day heavy but flexible. I’ll pretty much just do what feels good for that day - probably mostly deadlifts and bench press.
Goals - August
This next training block will naturally end in August as that’s when my placement out of town will end. I’ve been thinking of goals to work towards and I’ve settled on 3 that I’m very happy with (in no particular order):
1) 220kg deadlift (5 plates)
2) Under 92kg bodyweight
3) Kettlebell sessions under 10min
These goals will require some significant but achievable improvements in my strength, conditioning and physique and I’m really excited to knock them all down.
T-Ransformation: Week 1 - Conditioning
40kg: (5,10,15,20) x3
This was a great extra conditioning session. I did the swings without a strength movement - I’m already getting more comfortable with them. The run is a PR, although I’m reluctant to announce that haha. I kept up a decent pace, but called it at 1.2 miles because I always get pretty nasty calf DOMS after running.
T-Ransformation: Week 1 - Summary
Bodyweight: 97.8kg - down 0.7kg
Training: Good - 4 sessions (inc a 200kg deadlift)
This was a solid start to my “T-ransformation”. I’ve only minimally improved my diet as I’m going on holiday from the 20th-29th and I wouldn’t keep it up, so I’m starting that properly when I get back. I’m gaining confidence in swinging again and running felt better than I anticipated, but I’m disappointed with the knee pain/quad tightness I got earlier in the week. Hopefully that’s just due to where I placed pistol squats in my session, and will be straightforward to rectify.
Thighs: 25"/26" - interesting
My thighs/calves/waist were cold and relaxed, while my arms and forearms were cold and flexed. Interestingly my right thigh is a full inch smaller than my left (I checked 3 times) - I may be as strong overall as I was before, but I think my right leg in isolation is still weaker.
T-Ransformation: Week 1 - Extra Gym Day
180kg: 1 - double overhand PR
190kg: 1 - beltless PR - mixed grip
200kg: 1, F - belt on
40kg: 5 - belt on
60kg: 10 - wrist wraps
I was planning to rest today, but got the itch to do some deadlifts. Predictably my calves are wrecked lol. I’ve gained around 40kg (88lbs) on my deadlift over the past year, but I’ve been worried that a lot of that was just due to learning to use a belt and switching to mixed grip, so I decided to test my “unequipped” maxes today in my warm-up. 180kg beltless and double overhand flew up but I lost confidence with 190kg half way up and lost positioning (rather than grip itself). 190kg beltless and mixed grip was solid. I experimented with some form cues - sitting back into the deadlift didn’t really feel that good, but “pushing the world away” really clicked and helped me finish my reps powerfully.
As usual I wasn’t as productive as I could have been with my work sets - I was tempted to push the weight again, where I would have been better off sticking with 180kg and doing more work. I think I’ll run that Tim Henriques strength routine again - I enjoyed it more than 5/3/1 for deadlifting, and it fits with my situation. I’ll use 200kg as my training max.
@MaazerSmiit @jblues85 @ActivitiesGuy
Would you guys be keen for a deadlift and overhead press challenge? Either done in the format of a powerlifting meet - highest total wins - or max reps at percentages of bodyweight? Just thought it would be fun and suit all 4 of our training styles and goals.
I’m down - would be good to have a bit of motivation on the press.
Got some fairly big deadlift rep outs planned over the next month so if we’re talking end of February a max out would be a great shout.
Nice - I’d rather do it a bit later on if that suits you? If we do it in March it gives us time to actually train towards it.
You and @jblues85 both deadlift around 550lbs, and @ActivitiesGuy smoked 500lbs, so I won’t stand much of a chance just now. I don’t know if you’ve seen but I’ve undeservedly and narrowly racked up a 3-0 lead over our American comrades in challenges and I’ll definitely need your help with this one to keep our national pride haha.
Max reps at 2x bodyweight deadlift and 0.75x bodyweight press?
I’m down for this as well and around March suits me just fine. I have to do this before March 20 since that’s when my wife is scheduled to have her c-section. Plus I’m slowly dropping some weight so at least I won’t have to do this challenge at 240!!
Come on @jblues85, sort your priorities out! Haha.
What about the week of the 25th of Feb to the 5th of March? That gives us 6 full weeks to train for it, @MaazerSmiit can do it in Feb lol and we can allow for an early Blues Jnr arrival?
That week should work for me!
Seems reasonable to me. I can do a little mini-block of my newfound deadlifting-with-chains and see how that works for about 6 weeks, then test in that first week of March. Works for me.
I’m currently weighing 220-225 pounds, so I will probably do the deadlifting at 455 pounds, and the pressing at 165 pounds.
Awesome, this all seems to work out pretty well
If my cut stays/gets on track I should be comfortably under 95kg (209lbs), and so will use 190kg (418lbs).
T-Ransformation: Week 2 - Pistol Squats
I’m on holiday - eating loads and having a great time. These pistol squats felt really off, but I’m glad I got some work done.
T-Ransformation: Week 2 - Gym
160kg: 2 - mixed grip
I’m still on holiday and squeezed in this brief session this morning. I was in a rush, hungover and my hips felt super tight so nothing went smoothly, but I’m happy with what I got done. The top set of deadlifts felt extremely heavy, but it’s really cool that 4 plates is now a weight I can lift on my worst days and without a belt.
T-Ransformation: Week 2 - Summary
Bodyweight: 97.5kg (likely not representative)
Training: Minimal, but satisfactory
Nutrition: Horrible - holiday mode
Not much to say about this week! I’ve been eating far too much, but I’ve been having a great time. I’ve done enough training to keep things ticking over.
I was reading back through my log today and realised I made a mistake - in my comeback “mock meet” I recorded my 122.5kg and 125kg bench presses as log PRs, but I hit 125kg after running Smolov Jr way back in April. In the interest of transparency I thought it was important to note this. Lol.
I’m heading home from holiday today and all of the walking this week has left me with a very sore right knee. I think my biomechanics aren’t great - I don’t have much of an arch in my right foot since the injury. It’s probably something worth seeing a physio about.
My neck has been very stiff this week. I think I need to approach kettlebells with caution, as there is a clear link. The main things will be to restrict their frequency to twice per week and to follow each session with stretching. I’d also doubtless benefit from some form tweaks.
I’ve now got my rota for my new job (which I start this week) and it’s pretty good. I’m working 1 in 5 weekends - so will definitely get to a gym the other 4. If I can locate a gym with a barbell within 90min drive I’ll be set for weekly heavy sessions, but it’s not looking likely lol.
T-Ransformation: Week 3 - Lower Body/Conditioning
Kettlebell Swing/Bodyweight Squat
40kg: (5,10,15,20) x3
BW: (5,5,5) x3
BW: 3x1 - paused at parallel
Bodyweight: 99.9kg - !!!
First session back and my bodyweight is showing the excesses of my holiday! This is the heaviest I’ve been in a very long time, but it’s also by far the best I’ve looked at this weight, so I’m not massively concerned.
Despite my obesity, training today went very well. My swing times are continuing to progress linearly (?word) and the pistols felt strong. I don’t think I’ve ever done weighted pistols - at least definitely not with 20kg - so that was pretty cool. The paused pistols felt like they’d be very effective - I think my right leg relies a lot on the bounce and so they were extremely challenging. I was going to do more, but my right hip really cramped up and I wanted to save myself for deadlifts tomorrow. I did bodyweight squats with my swings to prioritise conditioning and thoroughly warming up my knees for the pistols.