T Nation

How Many Weaknesses Can Be Addressed at Once?


#1

I posted on here a little while ago about some lower back problems I was having. I stayed out of the gym for a week and then did a week of only NC sessions and now have been doing regular upper body sessions but maybe 60-70% volume and 80-90% intensity lower body sessions for two weeks. I still feel a bit of tightness in lower back but have adopted a daily stretching routine that has been working wonders the past week. I actually am at an all time high for pressing strength right now.

However, I don’t feel confident about my squatting/deadlifting to push myself and add more volume due to the injury and lower back tightness yet. To the best of my ability it seems to me my spinal erectors were taking work away from my abs, glutes, hamstrings, and upper back, so I implemented a plan to address all of that. I switched my main lower body lifts for ones that I feel use less lower back and chose assistance exercises accordingly–especially pullups. I suck at them and always have. I feel really strong with them for the reps I can hit (feel it nicely in back and abs, good range of motion, controlled), but if I hit 7 I feel like I’ve won the olympics.

FWIW: 220lbs, 5’11", Press: 205, Bench: 320, Squat: 400, Deadlift: 480 are my “current” standings, with the lower body ones being pre-injury about a month ago. I’m sure the muscle is still their to hit those numbers, probably easier than it was before, but I would choose a training max 40-60 pounds lower. Anyway, this is what I have outlined:

Each day starts with main movement a 2 or 3RM ramp superset with abdominal work (deadbugs or planks) for the first 4ish sets. Depending on how energetic I feel I do EMOM (which kills me in squat/deadlift, haven’t made 8 minutes yet with ~75% 1RM), or a few sets of 5 after.

The second assistance lifts I do 3 sets of 6-8 or 8-12 depending on its CNS demand

Monday:
Press
BTN press superset with…
pullups for 20-30 reps

Tuesday:
Front squat (chosen to emphasize upper back, go easier on spinal erectors)
Hip thrust (glutes/hamstrings)
pullups for 20-30 reps

Thursday:
Bench
Incline Bench superset with…
Pullups for 20-30 reps

Saturday:
Sumo DL (again, I feel it much easier to use hips/abs and avoid spinal erectors)
Sumo or SGDL from blocks (upper back)
pullups for 20-30 reps

I’m basically wondering if trying to address every muscle group neighboring the spinal erectors is too much and if using alternative movements to correct it will carry over? Like if I want to use my abs more in back squat/conventional deadlift, should I focus on doing those instead of swapping them for alternatives but pay attention to form? Or do this for a few weeks before going back to the usuals?