T Nation

No More F@%$ing Around


Probably a good time to give keeping a log on here a try.

At this point I've been training just about 2 years. Mostly TBT until about the beginning of this year. Part of this is due to the fact that I had knee surgery at the end of December and had to start training just my upperbody 3x a week. I've slowly progressed to bringing back two lower body workouts and now I'm doing a 4x/week upper/lower split. So please keep in mind I'm just about 4 months post-op before you tell me I'm a sally when you look at my lower body lifts! They will be much more solid in a matter of months.

I'm still technically rehabbing, so it's not so much strength holding me back right now, as much as "will this or will this not hurt my knee." This week I've started my second cycle of 5/3/1, but only for the two upper body lifts. There is no point to doing 5/3/1 for lower body yet, as I'm still able to progress 10-20 lbs/week on lower body lifts. Once I hit solid marks in my mind (a.k.a. numbers I was hitting before my knee injury) I'll add two lower days (probably rack pulls and tb deadlifts.)

During my recovery, I did some serious soul searching with regards to my training. I've decided to forget all things fancy for awhile...words like "bulk" and "cut" are in the back of my head. My focus is moving as much weight as I can, and moving more each week. I'm thinking like a beginner again...and I call this the "NO MORE FUCKING AROUND" phase of my training. It may last 6 months, it may last two years that I maintain this mindset. Time to get some serious experience under the bar.

I will probably post once or twice a week, but most likely just at the end of the week with my lifts for the week.

Here goes!


Sunday 4/24/11:

Overhead Press:
5x95, 5x110, 10x125

A1: Chin-ups 4x10xBW

A2: Single-Arm DB Shoulder Press 4x8x45lb

No rest between. About 90-120s rest after A2.

B1: Lat Pulldown 4x8x140lb

B2: Single-arm DB Front Raise 4x8x20lb

Same rest as A superset.
Note: I've recently dropped all my core back exercises about 40lbs. I just started using a thumbless grip as well as holding the contraction with the bar at my chest for about 1 sec between each rep. My lats have been destroyed by this!

C1: Face Pulls 4x10x140lb

C2: 1-arm DB Lat Raise 4x10x15lb

No rest between. Closer to a minute after.


Monday 4/25/11

Rack Pulls (about 4in below knee)
5x315, 4x345, 3x375, 3x405

Front squats to box (right at parallel, oly grip)
8x165, 8x165, 8x175, 8x175

A1: Hamstring Curls 4x8x105lb

A2: Bulgarian Split Squats 4x8x30lb (8 each leg, 30lbs each arm)


Wednesday 4/27/11

Bench Press
5x160, 5x185, 12x210

A1: Incline Bench Press 12x135, 12x135, 10x135, 7x135

A2: Barbell Bent Over Row 4x20x80lb
Same story as Pulldowns above

B1: Close-grip Bench Press (emphasis on tri-extention over pressing) 3x12x115

B2: Single-arm DB Curl-Row 3x12x55lb

C1: DB Hammer Curl 4x10x30lb

C2: Single-arm Rear Delt Fly w/ Cable 4x10x35lb


Man its really cool to see you getting a log going. It will definatly give me something to aspire too after a year or two of training :slightly_smiling:


I'll be following!

I like your phrase..I feel that way too. No more fucking around! back to basics, smashing weights and beating the log book. grr


I like your philosophy for this as well.

Your pressing is fairly strong, where were your lower body lifts at before your injury?

What kind of surgery did you get?


Thanks for the encouragement. Hopefully, they'll be impressive again in the upcoming months. And by impressive, I mean something I'm happy with...it's all relative right?


Thursday 4/28/11

Trap Bar Deadlift
Note to self: bring chalk for these next week. TB at my gym is old balls and most of the tread on the handles is worn off.

A1: Hamstring Curls 6x5x120lb

A2: Step-ups 6x5x95lb (barbell, 5 each leg)

A3: Reverse Lunges 6x5x95lb (same as step ups)

No rest between. 30-60sec rest after. This was brutal, but it's my way of making up for intensity lost due to lighter weight by really pinching my rest times down. I have found that my body responds very well to 2-4 exercises back to back with no rest in between...and by respond very well, I mean I feel like throwing up, but I see good things in the mirror after a few weeks =)


Thanks for the support. I anticipate I will go through phases like this throughout the rest of my lifting career.


Thanks. Structurally I have narrow shoulders and small arms, so I think I have an advantage when it comes to pressing. I found out about a week ago the Cali state bench record for 181 weight class is 347. Give me 1-2 years and I'm so there!! The most I've ever actually pushed is 265; however, 4 weeks in a row my projected max from 5/3/1 has been around 290. I will retest in a few months.

Lower body lifts before injury:
Squat: 4x8x275
Deadlift: 2x405
Bulgarian Split Squat: 4x8x115 (barbell)
Reverse Lunge: 4x10x150
Clean: 4x5x165

The whole ordeal with the knee injury was a hyooooooge cluster fuck. I went to SEVEN different doctors, including 4 orthosurgeons (3 of which specialized in sports!), before I found resolution. That really only came in the form of arthroscopic surgery, which was initially diagnostic, but eventually a "clean-up" due to the massive amounts of scar tissue under my patella.

What happened? Sometime around Halloween I pulled a bar into my right patellar tendon during a snatch. It really hurt, but was no debilitating by any means. I finished my workout (including heavy deads) and even worked out the following day. I was even asymptomatic through the weekend, other than the sharp bruising pain from pushing on it.

Then I wake up monday morning, and all hell breaks lose. Both the tendon and my VMO are unusually swollen. I foam rolled, and thought nothing of it. I worked out. Went to my hip hop class, and things just felt pretty stiff. Things got progressively worse after that night. My knee blew up like a water balloon and stayed that way for about two months leading up to the surgery!! The surgery was optional, but you can probably understand why I said, "go for it!" as a last resort. MRI's and X-rays showed nothing. Hence, arthroscopic surgery.

What did they find? A shitload of scar tissue! And by shitload, I mean so much, that even I, who has no idea what I'm looking at from the scans of the inside of my knee, could see it and point it out. And here's the catch. According to my surgeon, he said it was OLD scar tissue, as in more than 5 years old!! WTF? So I ask myself, what the hell did I do to my knee?

Then I remember 7 years ago during my cross country years. I was running outside in the winter, and slipped on a patch of ice that was covered by snow. Consequently, my knee cracked directly through about 6 in of solid ice. My knee blew up, and the bursal sac under my knee cap actually ruptured. And being an idiotic high school athlete, as soon as I could wrap it up and run 5 mi again without debilitating pain that's what I did. Needless to say, my knee accumulated such a massive amount of scar tissue there, at the first sign of trauma, my knee really had no chance of healing efficiently. Well that trauma didn't happen for 7 years, on an ill-performed snatch.

In a way, it was kind of a blessing in disguise. But there was a whole lot of heart break and demoralization that lead up to that realization. At least I'm on the right track now!


And as you can probably predict, every doctor, my family, and my friends (who don't lift btw) tried to tell me it was the heavy squatting =/

It's funny how they can't explain how reintroducing weighted squats has actually HASTENED my healing process =)


Sunday 5/01/11:

Overhead Press
3x105, 3x120, 8x135

Clusters: 3x(4x2)x45lbs, 1x(4x3)xBW
10s rest-pause (let go of bar), 60-90s rest between

Single-Arm DB Shoulder Press
90s rest

Lat Pulldown
8x160lb, 15x130lb
60s rest

Single-arm DB Front Raise
30s rest

Face Pulls
30s rest

1-arm DB Lat Raise
30s rest


I dropped super-sets today. For some reason something felt off today, so I dropped them. Lo and behold I jumped in weight on my accessory work (while really crunching down on rest time) and I PRed on my OHP! Like I said...NO MORE FUCKING AROUND.

I've also kind of hit a wall on back work, so I decided to "trick" my body into handling more volume on my pulls by clustering it up. It worked!


Monday 5/02/11

Rack Pulls (4in below knee)
(5x135, 5x225, 4x275), 5x315, 4x355, 3x385, 3x415
2-4 min rest

Box Squats
2x8x185, 2x8x205
1 min rest

A1: Hamstring Curl
15x90, 15x90, 12x90
A2: DB Bulgarian Split Squats
3x10x35 (each leg/each arm)

No rest between. 1-2min after.


Just a lil' 'bout my diet:

First off, I've never counted calories. Even last summer when I first cut to sub 10 body fat, I was pretty self-regulating and didn't use any kind of counter.

For the most part, I eat a paleo diet with a small amount of dairy. Almost every meal outside of peri-workout is P+F with only trace carbs coming from veggies. Sample P+F meal:

Salmon cooked in olive oil, topped with onions, spinach, oregano, black pepper, olives, and Mediterranean spiced feta crumbles.

I emphasize almost since I do like to treat myself to some fruit with breakfast 2-5 times a week and every couple of weeks or so I'll bring a container of Greek yogurt through my kitchen, which has a bit of carbs and sugar. Around my workout I try to switch to P+C. Boring example:

Free-range chicken, pan-fried in mustard with some spiced pan-fried red potatoes.

In addition, I'll have 1 or 2 shakes per day, typically with almond milk, some kind of nut butter, flax seed, Superfood, and Metabolic Drive. I'll also have 5g of creatine PWO mixed with water and some fruit juice. I also take fish oil at night.

I buy the bulk of my meat from a private farm out here on the West Coast with $4/lb grass-fed ground beef!! They also have the BEST bacon on the planet. Whenever I cook it, the gods come knocking on my door, because they assume it's for them. In other words, my apartment reeks of GLORY!

Tonight I discovered a gem:

Hollandaise sauce + mustard with black and cayenne pepper is excellent on hard-boiled eggs =)


Wednesday 5/4/11

Bench Press

BB Bent Over Row
30s rest only!

Incline Bench Press
30s rest

A1: Single-Arm DB Curl-Rows
A2: Close-Grip Bench Press

No rest between. 1 min after.

Alternating Hammer Curls
30s rest

DB Delt Flys
2x8x25, 2x10x20
30s rest

Weird day. Didn't feel my strongest. Was hoping for at least 9 reps on my last bench set; however, I was able to really pinch in on my rest time and get an intense workout.


Thursday 5/5/11

Trap Bar Deadlift

Step-Ups (with barbell)
2x8x95, 2x8x105
1 min rest

Reverse Lunge (BB)
1 min rest

Hamstring Curls
12x90, 8x105, 5x120, 20x70


Sunday 5/8/11

Overhead Press
5x110, 3x125, 7x140
Fuck yea!

30-90s rest

A1: Single-Arm DB Shoulder Press

A2: Lat Pulldown
2x5x170, 3x5x180

No rest between. 2 min after.

B1: Behind the Back Cable Lat Raise

B2: Face-Pull

B3: Single-Arm DB Front Raise



Monday 5/9/11

Rack Pulls

Box Squats
2x8x205, 2x8x225

Bulgarian Split Squats (with BB)



Wednesday 5/11/11


A1: Single-Arm DB Row
A2: Neutral-Grip DB Incline Press

B1: Close Grip Bench Press
B2: BB Curls

C1: Pec Fly
C2: Single-Arm DB Rear Delt Fly