T Nation

I'm Still a Scrub..Need a Program

6’ @ 165lbs and I’ve been doing this program for roughly 6 months but I still consider myself a newb/noob.

I packed on 25 pounds in those 6 months but the past month I had oral surgeries, been sick, and just haven’t been on my usual 3x/week routine. Now I’m back at it again. Although I just have a few questions…and sorry if this is the wrong spot for it. Genetically, I’m not built for upper body strength. My bench is horrendous, as well as my press. Doesn’t help that improper power clean technique has screwed up my shoulder so I had to stop doing the power clean. I’ve had to back track on those two a number of times and I always seem to plateau at the exact same spot. So I ask myself, do I need to keep repeating with these weights until I’m comfortable to move on to another 2-5 pounds? Do I need to change up the exercises I’m doing? Diet and rest I believe are not an issue. I get 5 meals a day with at least 600cals per meal, with 40-60 grams of protein and sometimes snacks inbetween. At least 8 hours of sleep per night as well.

I’m just stuck and frustrated! How can I overcome my upper body plateau!?

Problems with beginners can be solved by addressing one of the following:

  1. Consistency
  2. Intensity
  3. Calorie intake
  4. Rest (least likely)

Sounds like your consistency has been off lately and I am betting you’re not eating enough. As for rest and intensity you can be your own judge and jury.

If you have a smartphone, download Fitness Pal, it sounds gay but it’s free and counts your calories,carbs,protein,fat etc etc. I thought I was eating alot more than what I thought until I got it.

Go check my log for my workout. It is what I have done for just over a year and month. I have gone from 160 to 214, down to 194, and back up to 213 in that time period. Do that, and eat. You may gain a little bodyfat in the process, but if you’re lifting hard enough it will be minimal.

IF he gained 25 lbs, he’s probably eating enough calorie-wise.

This thread is too vague. What do your lifts look like?

Well I started the fall semester at 145 which was my body weight for well over 2 years. In that time I wasn’t working so I had a lot more time to sit around and eat but throw 25 hours on top of my college classes and a band this semester and I believe I don’t consume as much. But I weigh out and portion everything to the labels so I’d like to say I’m pretty accurate as to my caloric intake. I’m going to try and pig out even more. My weight has plateaued as of late but, again, I’m getting back onto a normal routine. Would it help if I gained another 10 pounds even if its just from fatty stuff like peanutbutter sadnwiches? I have some 1.25lb weights sitting around I’m going to start bringing and I’m going to look into Jim Wendler’s 531 program, seems to make a little more sense than what I’m doing. And Trivium do you mean what all I’m doing and how much?

[quote]xalanx309 wrote:
Well I started the fall semester at 145 which was my body weight for well over 2 years. In that time I wasn’t working so I had a lot more time to sit around and eat but throw 25 hours on top of my college classes and a band this semester and I believe I don’t consume as much. But I weigh out and portion everything to the labels so I’d like to say I’m pretty accurate as to my caloric intake. I’m going to try and pig out even more. My weight has plateaued as of late but, again, I’m getting back onto a normal routine. Would it help if I gained another 10 pounds even if its just from fatty stuff like peanutbutter sadnwiches? I have some 1.25lb weights sitting around I’m going to start bringing and I’m going to look into Jim Wendler’s 531 program, seems to make a little more sense than what I’m doing. And Trivium do you mean what all I’m doing and how much?[/quote]

How much do you squat, bench, deadlift, overhead press, and how many pull ups can you do with your bodyweight. Have you made progress on any of these lifts in the last 6 months?

Also man, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches arent fatty haha. You would die if you saw what my diet was like. I started lifting on January 8th 2012. I gained 60 lbs since then, and I had a period of time where I went back down to 195, and then gained it all back in the last 6 months. I always strive to get heavier on the scale, but more importantly I try to get stronger every workout to mimize the fat.

I am super busy, so here is how I eat and am still able to gain and go to school from 8 until 5 every day (I am 18 credits this semester and I’m working on simultaneously finishing my bachelors and over half of my masters degree before I have clinicals next semester). Weight gainer for breakfast. Lunch (whatever the food on campus is that day). Snack from a vending machine (peanuts, lots of peanuts haha). Dinner (I order food every night, so its mostly subway, pizza, Chinese or gyros). Occasional small protein shake at like 11 pm. All food that has good nutritiional value is fair game. Im talking pizza instead of chips, chocolate milk instead of Coke, etc… Just be creative and eat a ton. Work hard enough, and eat a lot of calories. You wont get fat unless you are either not training hard, or you are eating like total crap.

5/3/1 is awesome. It is the reason I gained all that weight. I want to get to 230 by the end of this semester. (I was 195 at christmas. I am currently around 210.) I do a modified version of BBB.

I don’t mean to talk about myself so much, its just that I cant tell you to do something I’ve never done, and I know what has worked so well for me. I put everything in my log, so if you need help, or you wanna know anything about how my program has been set up for the last year or so, you can comment in there or just observe. Were all after variations on the same thing, and I think the big concepts are always the same, its just how you want to tailor it to fit your goal.

EDIT: And, before someone comes in here and starts a shit storm…no I’m not saying everyone else is wrong, or that 5/3/1 is the greatest, or that I am the strongest (because I am not even remotely close to what I would even consider strong). I am just trying to offer some advice based on my experiences. If you have any questions feel free to ask me any time, and Ill try to get back to you as soon as I can with an answer, or Ill direct you to someone who can answer your question (probably some of the guys on here that I know really know their shit).