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Looking for Some Answers

I have been lifting for about a year and a half now as seriously as one can get. That being said, i have seen some noticeable progresses in every aspect of my work outs but nothing that would make me happy enough to say that i’ve achieved a certain goal i had in mind. I have one question to a problem i’de like to ask this forum as a beginner that has been nagging me for quite awhile and i can’t seem to find the answer to.

I have certain days where i will go in and start with my lift i.e. lets say it is Monday, Monday is chest and back day. I’ll start with bench pressing and make my attempt to do 185 5x5’s( i just recently got up to this weight). I manage to get 3 clean 5x5’s, 1 4x5 with assistance on the last, and 3x5 on the last with assistance on the last 2. i head towards the pull up bar and put on 25Lbs of extra weight and do 3x5’s on this then take the extra weight and do additional pull ups. I attempt to get in 50 pull-ups and only manage out a total of 30(15 being weighted and 15 being unweighted).

This is where the trouble starts, I head to the free weights area and put the seat up in an incline state so that i can do incline bench presses with free weights. Most days i am able to do 60’s 3x8 times, but today i couldnt even do 50’s 3x8, i just dropped them and my chest felt sore as hell by the time i was done doing my pull ups. I could not even do flies so i cut the workout short and just left, whats the point if i cant do my normal lifts?

I need to know what’s going, am i not eating enough before going into the gym? did i put on too much weight on the bench?
my breakfast consisted of:
3 turkey bacon
3 fried eggs
glass of milk
lunch:
.25 lbs ground beef
cup tomato sauce
1/2 cup onion
2 cup’s pasta
glass of milk
2 hours after lunch
1cup oatmeal and raisin
1 orange
3:30 started lifting
any help or suggestion is appreciated.

What are your stats? What were your stats when you started lifting?

Do you know how many calories you eat everyday?

Without knowing anything about your physical disposition, you current lifting numbers would say that you don’t eat nearly enough.

That is an extremely low amount of volume to get fatigued from. At this stage you should be getting significantly stronger week to week. That doesn’t mean you will add 5 pounds to the bar every week. But you should be able to get an extra rep or two on your first big lift. If you aren’t getting stronger week to week as a flat out beginner you need to start eating a lot more. 4oz of ground beef and 2 cups of pasta is not a meal for someone who wants to gain weight. Much more protein is needed.

Explain this please. What is 3 clean 5x5’s? 5x5 refers to the number of sets and reps. 5 sets of 5 reps. If you are only doing 3 sets of 5 reps then you are doing 3x5 not 3 5x5’s.

whats your workout frequency like? how much do you sleep… do you like to party (drink alot, stay out late. And as bones asked; whats with the 3 clean 5x5’s, that doesnt make any sense.

i think he meant: 1x5, 1x5, 1x5, 1x4, 1x3. is that correct pakman?

From your description are you doing flat bench, then your back exercise, then back to chest?
If thats the case you should either be supersetting (1 set flat bench and then 1 set of pullups with no rest in between till you hit 5 sets for each exercise) if you are doing one full exercise for chest and then one full exercise for back there is too much time elapsing in between. Either superset or do all your chest work and then all your back work.

and eat more

Eat more. Splain the workout. I’m with phish, brad, and bonez, your workout confuses me. Eat more. From what I can tell, you’ve had 60-70 grams of protein by the time you work out. That’s okay. If you weigh about 110 pounds.

[quote]BONEZ217 wrote:
What are your stats? What were your stats when you started lifting?

Do you know how many calories you eat everyday?

Without knowing anything about your physical disposition, you current lifting numbers would say that you don’t eat nearly enough.

That is an extremely low amount of volume to get fatigued from. At this stage you should be getting significantly stronger week to week. That doesn’t mean you will add 5 pounds to the bar every week. But you should be able to get an extra rep or two on your first big lift. If you aren’t getting stronger week to week as a flat out beginner you need to start eating a lot more. 4oz of ground beef and 2 cups of pasta is not a meal for someone who wants to gain weight. Much more protein is needed.

Explain this please. What is 3 clean 5x5’s? 5x5 refers to the number of sets and reps. 5 sets of 5 reps. If you are only doing 3 sets of 5 reps then you are doing 3x5 not 3 5x5’s. [/quote]

When i started out August 2008, my stats were as followed:

5’10 (dont think this matters)
150lbs
16%-17% body fat

here is an example of what my workout looked like around July 2008:
Monday:chest and back (2 minute rest’s in between all sets)
-flat bench 115 3x8 (chest)
-pull ups - assisted 3x8 (back)
-incline bench (incline benches were done with dumb bells) but i started out with 35lbs 3x8 (chest)
-seated rows 3x8 75lbs (back)
-flies 20lbs in each hand 3x8 (chest)
-dead lifts 125 lbs 3x8 (lower back)

This was as of Monday sept 7,2009.
160lbs
im unsure of what my body fat is and dont really care much for it at the moment. but if i had to guess it would be 13-15%

-Flat bench 175 5x5 (chest)
-Pull ups - 3x8 body weight
-Incline Bench - 50 lbs in each hand 3x8
-seated rows - 110lbs 3x8
-flies - on the cable machine 80lbs total - lying down 25lbs in each hand 3x8
-dead lifts 175 3x8

This was as of Monday oct 19,2009
164lbs
unsure on body fat still

-Flat bench 185(I recently just got up to 185, my goal was 190 by late october but it doesnt seem like that will happen), what i meant by “clean” was that the first set of my reps that im supposed to do i will get all 5, the second set i’ll get all 5, third i’ll get all 5, fourth i will get four out of the 5 in where my brother assists me in finishing the last one, fifth ill get 3 and fail 2 but my brother helps me finish them.
-Pull ups - 3x10 body weight (i try to get 50 pulls up total on Mondays now, ill disperse them through out the workout session)
-Incline Bench - 60 lbs in each hand 3x8
-seated rows - 120lbs 3x8
-flies - on the cable machine 100lbs total 3x8- lying down 30lbs in each hand 3x8
-dead lifts 185 3x8
these are the core lifts i do on mondays

ill add in other machines to compensate of failures that occur on the core workouts for mondays

I used to only lift 3 times a week and it would look something like this:

monday:
chest/back
tuesday:
2 mile run
wednesday:
shoulders/abs
thursday:
2 mile run
Fridays:
biceps/triceps/2mile run

as of early september i’ve started lifting 5 times a week and completely cut out cardio:
Monday: 3:30-5:00
Chest/back/deadlifts
Tuesday: 8:00-9:30
Triceps/biceps
Wednesdays: 3:30-5:00
shoulders/abs/letgs/squats
Thursdays: 8:00-9:30
Chest/back/deadlifts
Fridays: 3:30-5:00
Biceps/Triceps
Saturday: rest
Sunday: rest

My meals will look something like this during the weekdays, weekends are sporadic ill eat out with friends:

breakfast 9:30: my breakfast never looks different from this
3 eggs
3 turkey bacon
glass of skim milk

Lunch:12:30-1:00 (this varies in terms of protein intake)
-either: 1 piece of chicken breast/.25lbs to .5lbs of ground beef/ 2 cuts of steak(about the size of a human palm)/1 slice of tuna steak/ 1 slice of salmon fillet
-1-2 cups of steamed broccoli
-1 baked sweet potato or 2 cups of pasta with tomato sauce.

1 hour before working out 2:00-2:30:

greek yogurt
2 x oatmeal and raisin cookies

after working out 3:30 -5:00:
-protein shake

dinner 8:00:

-either: 1 piece of chicken breast/.25lbs to .5lbs of ground beef/ 2 cuts of steak(about the size of a human palm)/1 slice of tuna steak/ 1 slice of salmon fillet
-1-2 cups of steamed broccoli.

9:30ish
potato chips while watching t.v. i’ve no idea how much…probably 2-3 servings.

edit:
phish is correct with what i was trying to explain

phish, wouldn’t going back to back on those fatigue you fast to the point where your other lifts would fail on your other chest and back lifts?

i usually sleep at 12 a.m. and get up at 8:50a.m.

I very rarely stay out late on the weekends or party. maybe once a month. i very rarely drink.

thanks for any help you guys are giving me.

You eat like a bird.

You gained 10 pounds in 18 months when you should have gained at least 30.

You need to add about 1000 calories to your diet. I did a very rough estimation, you are massively undereating. This is the sole reason why you aren’t progressing.

I’d also suggest to pick one of the popular programs used by beginners. Yours is not set up particularly well.

If youre serious about this you will plug in your daily food intake into Fitday and see your calorie intake for yourself. I’d guess you need about 2600-3000 calories to gain enough weight to make it look like you lift weights.

Edit and of course your height matters. If you went from 150 to 160 in 18 months at 5’5 this wouldn’t be as big of a deal.

Should i just add more content to what my current meals look like?

That’s a start.

i will do that and make a fitday account, thanks for the replies.

not to be nit picky, but can you explain to me why the current workout program i was given not set up particularly well?

Monday: 3:30-5:00
Chest/back/deadlifts
Tuesday: 8:00-9:30
Triceps/biceps
Wednesdays: 3:30-5:00
shoulders/abs/letgs/squats
Thursdays: 8:00-9:30
Chest/back/deadlifts
Fridays: 3:30-5:00
Biceps/Triceps
Saturday: rest
Sunday: rest

i do realize that general consensus is that you would workout monday -tuesday / rest wednesday/workout thurs-sat, but the gym at my current location is not open on saturdays or sundays. Or is the way the workouts are scheduled just all over the place?

I think a more traditional 4 day split would be better

Back/biceps
Chest triceps
Legs
Shoulders/traps

Training chest and back on the same day is a lot of work. And you are doing it twice a week. You are also working your whole upper body twice a week but your legs only once, presumably after your body is depleted from training shoulders.

I gave you a four day split. If you want to add an extra day for supplemental work or to double up on a lagging part you can do that; but I don’t think thats necessary for some time.

I’d still suggest you look at program like WS4SB or something similar that really focuses on strength and hypertrophy without going overkill on volume.

i will do that and look around these forums for more info. a friend recently guided me here and i was trolling for a bit to see if it was a serious website or just a bunch of rubbish.

and thanks again for the replies… ill be back in a year or two to show some progress pics.

Sounds good

Bonez what do you think about pakman alternating body parts? Seems to me that a lot of time is elapsing in between the body parts (e.g. chest and back) which may explain the fatigue (besides the diet aspects). I never lifted this way so i dont know if its a good or bad thing but with the 2 minute rest you could potentially not go back to chest fo 10-15 minutes.

I don’t think it makes much sense at all. I agree with the post you made earlier. But supersetting back and chest doesn’t sound like something a beginner should be messing with.

one last thing… i typed up ws4sb in the search function and i cannot find anything regarding the actual training just a bunch of forum discussions, any idea where i can find an article on what the training is supposed to look like?

[quote]BONEZ217 wrote:
I don’t think it makes much sense at all. I agree with the post you made earlier. But supersetting back and chest doesn’t sound like something a beginner should be messing with. [/quote]

yeah he definately shouldnt. I never heard of anyone working out his way before.

pakman. google ws4sb. Click on the 4th link which is a pdf file. For more information look around tnation.