T Nation

Maximum Strength by Cressey - complete.


#1

4-9-11
Years of back and forth weight gains and losses and very little has changed. Having mixed goals will do that to you, but it's time that changes.
I love the bodybuilding lifestyle but have no desire to compete. Ultimately, I train because I want to look good, but training like a bodybuilder now bores me to death. This has caused me to flip flop training styles for years and now I'm neither really big nor really strong - stuck right in the middle.
I just completed a 12 week diet where I dropped from 220 to 195. My strength plummeted but I'm ok with that. I will be completing Eric Cressey's Maximum Strength book. I know there might be better programs for strength but I've tried this one before and I loved the way I felt while working through it. Having pre-hab exercises built in really worked wonders. Sadly, a pre-existing knee injury caught up with me after about 6 weeks and resulted in surgery and I was unable to complete the book.

Enough of the boring stuff, as of today my numbers are as follows:
Height: ~5ft. 10in.
Weight: 195 lbs.
Broad Jump: 7ft. 8in.
Box Squat: 285x1
Bench: 295x1 (I've done 315 before but I got pinned by it today.)
Deadlift: 415x1
3-Rep Chin-Up: BW + 45lbs = 240 lbs.

My goal is to get as strong as possible while remaining below 200 lbs. I�?�¢??m not doing this for powerlifting, but simply to establish a set point for my bodyweight. If I continue to lift heavy and remain at this bodyweight, I believe I'll continue to get leaner.

I'll be following a diet that changes for training days and off days and I'll be trying a pulse fast one off day per week.

Off Days: 245g protein, 95g carbs, 90g fat = ~2170 calories
Training Days: 300g protein, 200g carbs, 70g fat = ~2630 calories

A friend of mine says "Maintenance is crap, progression is everything." It's time I start living that way.

-J

EDIT:
7-14-11

MOVING DAY

Weight: 190 lbs. (-5 lbs.)

Broad Jump: 7ft. 10in. ( 2in.) I got this on my first jump, but I was jumping outside and it started raining, slipped on my second landing and decided it wasn't worth an injury.
Box Squat: 345 lbs. ( 60 lbs.)
Bench Press: 305 lbs. ( 10 lbs.)
Deadlift: 455 lbs. ( 40 lbs.)
3-rep Chin-up: BW 65 lbs. = 255 lbs ( 15 lbs.) New gym doesn't have weight belts so I did this with a 65lb. DB clinched between my feet. I think I could get 75 with a belt.

Overall, I'm pleased because I met my goals. I wanted to keep my bodyweight under 200 and I actually got leaner during the process. I'd like to see my bench numbers increase but I guess I can't complain with a drop in bodyweight and an increase in every other lift.
The program would be really good for a beginner or somebody without any direction in the gym because each phase builds upon the previous and increases volume accordingly. I personally love working up to a top set too much to really enjoy the book, but I'm glad I went through the experience. I feel great (thanks to all the mobility work) and I'll definitely be utilizing some of that in my future program.


#2

January 24, 2011 to April 7, 2011

220 to 195


#3

Same as above.

Yes, I know, a tan works wonders :slight_smile: However, I wasn't really pleased with the final pictures. Most of them were taken with the flash off but my girlfriend had the flash on for these and it robbed me of some definition.

Please just play along...


#4

This will be a good log to follow.

Congrats on the diet!


#5

Thanks and glad to have you following - your consistent progress is quite the motivator.

Just thought I'd add these body composition comparisons for kicks.

Before After Change
Weight 220 lbs 195 lbs -25 lbs.
Triceps 5.5 4 -1.5
Subscapular 21 10.5 -10.5
Pectoral 4 4 0
Midaxillary 10.5 5.5 -5.0
Abdomen 29.5 14.5 -15.0
Suprailiac 14 6 -8.0
Quadriceps 9 8 -1.0
Body Fat% 13.2% 6.99% -6.21%

I know this testing isn't 100% accurate and actually, these numbers both seem low to me. Either I have to be REALLY lean to see abs or the calipers are off a bit. However, I had the same guy use the same calipers each time so I don't really care what the readings are. The results are in the change and I'm stoked about dropping that much in 12 weeks.


#6

4-11-11

Foundation: Week 1: Lower Body 1
Great first day on the program.

Box Squats
185, 225, 235, 245, 255x4

Felt like I could have done 265 but this lift is new to me so trying to make sure I'm pulling with the posterior chain before I crank up the weight.

Speed Deadlifts (50%)
205 (8x2)

My weakness on deadlifts is my upper back strength. I'll be focusing on keeping my scapula locked in place. Rested about 60-90 sec between sets.

Walking Lunges - DBs
70 lbs. 4x8 each leg

These felt great. Got a little sloppy on a couple steps, which I correct as long as I'm engaged 110% in the rep.

Reverse Crunches 3x12
SS w/30 sec. Prone Bridge

I found out today (by REALLY feeling them in my lower abs) that I've been doing reverse crunches wrong. I always did them with limited ROM but apparently I was still engaging my hip flexors too much. Fixed that today.

Finished with stretching and 10 minutes of incline walking.


#7

4-13-11

Foundation: Week 1: Upper 1

A1) Bench Press: 245, 250, 255, 255, 260x4 been struggling to find my comfortable form with these lately (balance between feeling chest but saving my shoulders) and I feel like I found it today

B1) Incline Neutral-Grip DB Press: 90x8, 80(2x10) MUCH different than regular incline press, had to drop weight
B2) Pronated Grip Cable Rows: 120x10, 130 (3x10) great squeeze in upper back and lats
C1) Prone Trap Raise 3x12
C2) External Rotations 3x12/side
D) Side Bridges 3x30sec/side

10 min of inclined walking to finish


#8

4-15-11

Foundation: Week 1: Lower Body 2

quick warm-up, wish I would have taken more time as hips were really tight

A) Front Squats - keep the weight low enough where I shoot straight up without falling forward
185x6
185x6
195x6
205x5

B) Rack Pulls from knees
315(4x6)

C) Bulgarian Split Squat
25x6
35x6
35x6

D1)Pull Throughs
30x10
40x10
50x10

D2) Reverse Crunch
3x12


#9

4-16-11

Foundation: Week 1: Upper Body 2

This workout flew by and had me panting like a little girl...

A1) 1-Arm DB Push Press
60x6
70x6
80x6
90x6
A2) Close Grip (CG) Chin Ups
BWx6
10x6
15x6
20x6

B1) Push-Ups
3x10
B2) 1-Arm DB Rows
100x8
100x8
110x8

C1) Kneeling Cable External Rotation
10 (3x12)
C2) Side Bridges
3x30 sec.


#10

4-18-11

Foundation: Week 2: Lower Body 1

A) Box Squat
245x4
255x4
265x4 PR
275x4 PR

B) Speed Deadlifts
225 (8x2)

C) DB Walking Lunges - about lost my lunch...
75 (3x8/each leg)

D1) Reverse Crunches
3x12
D2) Prone Bridge
3x30 sec.


#11

4-20-11

Foundation: Week 2: Upper Body 1

A) Bench Press
245x4
255x4
265x4
275x3 missed 4th and spotter left me hanging way too long - fried my triceps
B1) Incline Neutral-Grip DB Press
90x6 - triceps shot
80x9
B2) Pronated Grip Cable Rows
130x9
140x9
150x9
C1) Prone Trap Raise
3x12
C2) Side Lying External Rotation
3x12
D) Side Bridges
3x30sec/side


#12

4-22-11

Foundation: Week 2: Lower Body 2

Had off work and school today so I hit the gym earlier than normal. It took a minute to get warmed up but it ended up being a good session.

A) Front Squats
175x6
185x6
195x6
205x8 PR

B) Rack Pull from knee
315x6
335x6
365x6

C) Bulgarian Split Squat - DB
35x5
40x5
45x5

D1) Pull Through
40x10
50x10
60x10
D2) Reverse Crunch
3x12


#13

4-23-11

Foundation: Week 2: Upper Body 2

I enjoyed my day off work a little too much yesterday. 18 holes of golf, a mexican restaurant and a night on the town. Lets just say that over 3 months with not a sip of alcohol coupled with losing 25-30 pounds is a great recipe for a long night. I really didn't indulge nearly as much as I would've in the past but it was a late night and a long workout Saturday morning.

A1) 1-Arm DB Push Press
70x6
80x6
90x6
70x6 elbows were aching so I dropped weight
A2) CG Chin-Up
BWx6
10x6
25x6

B1) Push Ups
3x12
B2) 1-Arm DB Row
100x7
110x7
110x7 this set was where I could really tell it was a late night

C1) Kneeling Cable External Rotation
3x12
C2) Side Bridge
3x30 sec.


#14

4-25-11

Foundation: Week 3: Lower Body 1

What a long workout...good thing I ate everything in sight yesterday.

A) Box Squat
245x3
255x3
265x3
275x3
285x3 PR
295x3 PR
305x3 PR Clearly my body is getting used to this movement and my stength is coming back after my diet.
275x3

B) Speed Deadlifts
250 (10x2)

C) Walking DB Lunges
80x8/side
85x8
70x8 forgot my wrist wraps so I lowered the weight and exploded out of the hole for last 2 sets
70x8

D1) Reverse Crunch
3x12
D2) Prone Bridge
3x30 sec.


#15

4-27-11

Foundation: Week 3: Upper Body 1

Wow what a day. Storms ripped through the area and my boss sent us home at 1:30. I sprinted to the gym and rushed through my workout before the power went out. Needless to say it wasn't my best.

A) Bench Press
245x3
255x3
265x3
275x3
255x3
255x3
255x3
255x3
B1) Neutral Grip Incline DB Press
80 (3x10)
B2) Pronated Cable Row
120x10
130x10
140x10
150x10

Bailed after the primary lifts and did prehab/abs later on in the day.


#16

4-29-11

Foundation: Week 3: Lower Body 2

A) Front Squat
175x6
185x6
195x6
205x6
215x6 PR
205x6
B) Rack Pulls from Kneecaps
315x6
315x6
365x6
385x6
C) DB Bulgarian Split Squats
25x6
35x6
45x6
55x6
D1) Pull-Throughs
45x10
55x10
65x10
D2) Reverse Crunch
3x12


#17

4-30-11

Foundation: Week 3: Upper Body 2

A1) 1-Arm DB Push Press
70x6
80x6
90x6
90x6
80x6
80x6
A2) CG Chin-Ups
BWx6
15x6
25x6
35x6
B1) Push Ups
4x12
B2) 1-Arm DB Row
100 (4x8)
C1) Kneeling Cable External Rotation
3x12
C2) Side Bridge
3x30 sec.


#18

Foundation: Week 4: Lower Body 1

Deload week. I felt great so I pushed it on the box squats. I've been drilling the lunges lately so I took it easy on these - my adductors have been really tight.

A) Box Squats
255x3
285x3
315x3 PR
B) Speed Deadlifts
275(3x2)
C) DB Walking Lunges
45 (2x8/side)
D1) Reverse Crunch
3x12
D2) Prone Bridge
3x30sec.


#19

Ah, nothing worse than deloads lol. Those are some impressive one-arm presses.


#20

Yeah I agree. However with this program, its not really a "train easy" deload. Volume is rotated on a high, medium, very high, low cycle. I figure as long as the volume is low I can continue to push for a heavy top set.

Thanks, but I use a good amount of legs to get it started. 6 Sets of 1-Arm Push Presses can suck it. Right arm, rest 30 sec, left arm, rest 30 sec, chin ups, rest and repeat. I thought I was gonna die. If I feel good Saturday I'll be going for the 100s. Knock out that PR then head straight to graduation!