T Nation

Pwnisher Q n A

So I don’t know if this has already been done, but I wanted a place to be able to pick Pwnisher’s brain, as well as possibly discuss topic’s from ‘‘Mythical Strength’’ such as having good day PR’s and bad day PR’s.

I guess the first thing I need for this page to work is the nod from Pwnisher himself, and then input from any follower’s of Mythical Strength Log.

As long as your in Pwnisher, I’ll start by asking your thoughts, on cutting, and maintaining strength. As you know, I got back into PLing almost a year ago, and my goal was strength, my number’s are comming back, but my BW has shot up to almost 270lbs, summer’s here, I’d like to bring BW down, I’m thinking 230ish, but mainly just leaner. The problem is my main focus is strength, and I’d like to tighten up, but not if it’s going to cost me strength. ( I’m natty at the moment ) not a hang up of mine, just relavent.

Hopefully this page takes off. Later

I’d be more than happy to share my thoughts/opinions on some subjects here, thanks for asking.

On the subject of weight loss and strength gains, in my experience, it’s very managable, especially if you are already carrying around some fluff that can be cut. I never lost 40lbs, but I did manage to drop from 202 to walking around at 187 (and cut water to 180 for a meet) while still increasing my strength. Eating more means greater strength, but eating less doesn’t necessarily have to mean it as well.

I would say the biggest mistakes people make is trying to do a “cardio cut” while maintaining a terrible diet. As meatheads, it’s very tempting to try to just do more work to get the results we want, but I found the most success by totally eliminating my conditioning and just controlling my diet. I ate primarily ground beef and mixed veggies, and went very heavy on both (1lb of ground beef for lunch, and a similar serving for dinner, with no limit on veggies). It’s hard to get fat eating like that, as your stomach will get full before you can do any real damage calorically.

Most likely, your bench press will go down. Having a smaller torso circumference means a longer ROM, and leverages will get worse with size loss. However, your deadlift might actually go up, since you won’t have as big of a stomach squishing against your legs when you set-up, which means the bar is closer to your body and therefore you’re able to recruit more of your whole body into the lift. Squats can go either way depending on technique.

Great idea for a thread! I’ve always wanted to pick your about your programming for the deadlift. I know you’ve use a graduated ROM training method with your conventional-style pulls, but how does your loading and volume/intensity look?

Gonna grab my popcorn and wait for some great insight from this thread.

Awesome thread idea!

[quote]kgildner wrote:
Great idea for a thread! I’ve always wanted to pick your about your programming for the deadlift. I know you’ve use a graduated ROM training method with your conventional-style pulls, but how does your loading and volume/intensity look?

Gonna grab my popcorn and wait for some great insight from this thread.[/quote]

I don’t use percentages or anything to determine loading. I generally start a cycle weight a weight I can hit for 12 reps in a single set of 7 high mat pulls (7 pavers per side). I train the mat pull each week, using 1 less paver each time, until I am pulling off the floor (I skip the “1 mat high” week and go straight from 2 mats to the floor, just because 1 mat high seems a little too close to floor height, and my goal here is to spend as little time pulling from the floor as I can). Usually, on this very first cycle, I can manage to get all 12 rep off the floor with maybe 1 rest pause necessary.

I increase the weight 15lbs and restart the cycle at 7 mats high again. Generally, I will be able to pull 12 reps from 7 high again, but may lose 1-2 reps when I get to the floor. I keep adding weight each time the cycle repeats, and use rest pausing more frequently (these days, I will rest twice in a set).

Once I have increased the weight to the point that I can only pull 2 reps off the floor in the initial set before needing to rest pause, I cut about 10% off from how much I was lifting for that set, and start the whole process over again. By that point, the 90% of my working weight is light enough that I can get at least 12 reps on a 7 high mat pull without resting.

This makes sense to me as I write it, but I understand it can be confusing from the outside perspective. Let me know if there is anything I can clarify.

haha, ^^ Thanks pwnisher, I do eat a pound of ground beef every day, actually here’s a rough list I have, that I try and consume each day, since I’ve been back. So pound of beef, 1 bag of mixed veggies, 12 eggs, 3 litter’s of milk, 2 bowls of either bran or oat meal, and 4 cups of either cooked pasta, rice or potato’s. Then on top of this I usually have a normal dinner that I cook with my family, meat and potato type shit.

I don’t do supps at all, so I figured the first thing I would do is to cut all the milk, and replace with 3-4 whey shakes a day, to keep the protien input around the same, but drop the calories ( I get a belly from milk bloat anyway) as well as dropping some of the 4 cups of statch I eat a day. I eat basicaly eat the same thing every day, so it should make it easy to manipulate. I think I’m on the right track here, I guess I was just looking for confirmation, that I won’t loose to much strength going this route.

Other than that I love your blog, I’ve been pushing it here on my log, and FB as well, so once we get caught up with the questions at hand. There’s lots of great info from your blog, I think to warrent a full time disscusion thread here. I almost called this the Mythical strength discussion thread, but wasn’t sure T nation would approve, depending if you try and sell anything there or not. What ever on with the show, thanks for your time.

[quote]AnytimeJake wrote:
haha, ^^ Thanks pwnisher, I do eat a pound of ground beef every day, actually here’s a rough list I have, that I try and consume each day, since I’ve been back. So pound of beef, 1 bag of mixed veggies, 12 eggs, 3 litter’s of milk, 2 bowls of either bran or oat meal, and 4 cups of either cooked pasta, rice or potato’s. Then on top of this I usually have a normal dinner that I cook with my family, meat and potato type shit.

I don’t do supps at all, so I figured the first thing I would do is to cut all the milk, and replace with 3-4 whey shakes a day, to keep the protien input around the same, but drop the calories ( I get a belly from milk bloat anyway) as well as dropping some of the 4 cups of statch I eat a day. I eat basicaly eat the same thing every day, so it should make it easy to manipulate. I think I’m on the right track here, I guess I was just looking for confirmation, that I won’t loose to much strength going this route.

Other than that I love your blog, I’ve been pushing it here on my log, and FB as well, so once we get caught up with the questions at hand. There’s lots of great info from your blog, I think to warrent a full time disscusion thread here. I almost called this the Mythical strength discussion thread, but wasn’t sure T nation would approve, depending if you try and sell anything there or not. What ever on with the show, thanks for your time.[/quote]

It sounds like you and I are on the same wavelength nutritionally. I cut all the grains, starches and sugars out of my diet when I wanted to lose fat, and re-introduce them when I want to put on size. The best thing is to gradually phase things out and monitor the impact of it. If you just eliminate everything all at once, you don’t have much else you can do when you hit a fat loss stall. However, if you just phase out the milk, once you hit a stall, you can then phase out the bran as a nutritional “trump card”, and re-start the fat loss process.

Thank you for your readership. I don’t sell anything on my blog/make money off of it, just use it as a chance to get my ideas out there. Honestly, it’s a somewhat selfish blog, as I more wanted to hold myself to the standard of writing a new thought every week to keep my mind engaged and improve my ability to formulate arguments/opinions on the subject matter, but it makes me happy to know that others are reading it and enjoying my work.

Pwnisher, I know you aren’t supposed to worry about weight when it comes to assistance exercises on 5/3/1 but if you aren’t getting better you’re getting worse right? I currently deadlift on tuesdays and squat either friday or saturday. I REALLY like deficit deads and paused squats, but front squats and SSB squats are also growing on me. How would you program these together if your very life depended on it?

[quote]T3hPwnisher wrote:

[quote]AnytimeJake wrote:
haha, ^^ Thanks pwnisher, I do eat a pound of ground beef every day, actually here’s a rough list I have, that I try and consume each day, since I’ve been back. So pound of beef, 1 bag of mixed veggies, 12 eggs, 3 litter’s of milk, 2 bowls of either bran or oat meal, and 4 cups of either cooked pasta, rice or potato’s. Then on top of this I usually have a normal dinner that I cook with my family, meat and potato type shit.

I don’t do supps at all, so I figured the first thing I would do is to cut all the milk, and replace with 3-4 whey shakes a day, to keep the protien input around the same, but drop the calories ( I get a belly from milk bloat anyway) as well as dropping some of the 4 cups of statch I eat a day. I eat basicaly eat the same thing every day, so it should make it easy to manipulate. I think I’m on the right track here, I guess I was just looking for confirmation, that I won’t loose to much strength going this route.

Other than that I love your blog, I’ve been pushing it here on my log, and FB as well, so once we get caught up with the questions at hand. There’s lots of great info from your blog, I think to warrent a full time disscusion thread here. I almost called this the Mythical strength discussion thread, but wasn’t sure T nation would approve, depending if you try and sell anything there or not. What ever on with the show, thanks for your time.[/quote]

It sounds like you and I are on the same wavelength nutritionally. I cut all the grains, starches and sugars out of my diet when I wanted to lose fat, and re-introduce them when I want to put on size. The best thing is to gradually phase things out and monitor the impact of it. If you just eliminate everything all at once, you don’t have much else you can do when you hit a fat loss stall. However, if you just phase out the milk, once you hit a stall, you can then phase out the bran as a nutritional “trump card”, and re-start the fat loss process.

[/quote]

I wasn’t aware of your blog. I’ve got it bookmarked now. Always enjoy reading your posts here.

Thanks, I’ll tiptoe into this diet, instead head first dive like I do with everything else :slight_smile: I’m not in a hurry anyway, and I don’t look all that bad other than the milk belly. There’s some recent front pic’s in my hub, and I might be getting carried away thinking 40lb loss, 15-20 might do it. I’m married, so strength is first, my wife has to sleep with me no matter how fat I get.

On the topic of your log, you told me the name a few weeks ago, and I’ve been devouring info, it’s awesome. I have a habit of vistiting my favorite couple blogs every morning, before I start my day, and you got inserted right inbetween lift-run-bang, and Upstrong, so your amoung strong company in my mind, with great info. Enough nut hugging, more questions

I wanted to here more on this theory you have on good day PRs, and Bad day PR’s, so if you go to the gym feeling like shit, then you have a bad day PR to shoot for, and if your feeling great, you then have a fucking big PR day. The main reason I’m asking is I’m running smolov right now, and I love it with my squat, but it’s hell on my bench and incline number’s, as well as I try against the rules, to squeeze in one min taxing dead session, so I like this alternate PR idea.

Also, you don’t have to answer my quetion imediatly, I figure you have a life, and I’m hoping this thread lasts for awhile, so really no rush. Thanks later

[quote]chobbs wrote:
Pwnisher, I know you aren’t supposed to worry about weight when it comes to assistance exercises on 5/3/1 but if you aren’t getting better you’re getting worse right? I currently deadlift on tuesdays and squat either friday or saturday. I REALLY like deficit deads and paused squats, but front squats and SSB squats are also growing on me. How would you program these together if your very life depended on it?[/quote]

Before I speak to the lifts, I want to actually speak out against the false dichotomy of “if you aren’t getting better, you’re getting worse”. I would say that, in between getting better and getting worse, there exists “not getting better”, and that the absence of progress is not the evidence of failure. I feel it becomes important to understand to interpret data at it’s most literal value with zero assumptions in order to make decisions related to training. Many trainees will abandon certain assistance exercises due to the fact that they are not progressing on them, failing to realize that their PRIMARY lift is increasing, hence the assistance is working. They simply interpret any sign of failure as a sign of total failure.

With that having been said, you have 4 lifts and 2 days to train them on. I feel the best way to use them all is to simply switch one in once a lift stalled. So, you could have deficit deads on squat day and SSB squats on deadlift day, and once one of those stalls out, swap it with pause or front squats. This is how I deal with all my assistance work: I essentially have a “greatest hits” mix of assistance exercises that I keep swapping in and out.

[quote]flipcollar wrote:

I wasn’t aware of your blog. I’ve got it bookmarked now. Always enjoy reading your posts here.[/quote]

Much appreciated man. Good to have you as a reader.

[quote]AnytimeJake wrote:
Thanks, I’ll tiptoe into this diet, instead head first dive like I do with everything else :slight_smile: I’m not in a hurry anyway, and I don’t look all that bad other than the milk belly. There’s some recent front pic’s in my hub, and I might be getting carried away thinking 40lb loss, 15-20 might do it. I’m married, so strength is first, my wife has to sleep with me no matter how fat I get.

On the topic of your log, you told me the name a few weeks ago, and I’ve been devouring info, it’s awesome. I have a habit of vistiting my favorite couple blogs every morning, before I start my day, and you got inserted right inbetween lift-run-bang, and Upstrong, so your amoung strong company in my mind, with great info. Enough nut hugging, more questions

I wanted to here more on this theory you have on good day PRs, and Bad day PR’s, so if you go to the gym feeling like shit, then you have a bad day PR to shoot for, and if your feeling great, you then have a fucking big PR day. The main reason I’m asking is I’m running smolov right now, and I love it with my squat, but it’s hell on my bench and incline number’s, as well as I try against the rules, to squeeze in one min taxing dead session, so I like this alternate PR idea.

Also, you don’t have to answer my quetion imediatly, I figure you have a life, and I’m hoping this thread lasts for awhile, so really no rush. Thanks later[/quote]

No worries on the question speed. You caught me on a great day. I have a strongman comp on Saturday and will be driving to it tomorrow, so I took today off work to get ready and sort out my odds and ends. I’m just hanging around being low stressed and bored, so this was a nice distraction, haha.

You’ve got the right idea with bad day PRs. It’s a great psychological trick if nothing else, allowing you to walk away from a bad day and say to yourself “if this is what I am capable of on a bad day, it means I can be even stronger on a good day”. Additionally, many trainees attempt to view PRs in a vacuum, not understanding how context can play a big roll. Talking about assistance exercises again, someone may be benching to help their overhead pressing. One day, they might hit a massive overhead press PR, but fail to take into consideration that doing so sapped more strength than it had in the past, and when they go to hit the bench and find themselves weaker, they freak out and question everything.

Sometimes, the sheer ability to remain stagnant on a movement or simply get minorly weaker after a more significant display of strength can still be a PR.

I’ve got some legit questions, but short on time atm. One quick curiosity though. Were you in any way inspired by Paul Anderson’s range of motion training?

[quote]csulli wrote:
I’ve got some legit questions, but short on time atm. One quick curiosity though. Were you in any way inspired by Paul Anderson’s range of motion training?[/quote]

Him and Bob Peoples’, yes, which I first learn about in Pavel Tsastouline’s “Beyond Bodybuilding”

Awesome, thanks Pwnisher, thats all the quetions I have off the top of my head. My main goal was to open a line of comunication for my self and other T nation memeber’s with you, and to also have a place to discuss ( and promote :slight_smile: ‘‘Mystical strength’’ topics.

I think your on the cusp of some big things, becoming one of the next big internet lifter / guru / author, type guys, and I figured we better set-up a line comunication, before you get all important and forget about us little guys, LOL Anyway thanks for the great info, I’ll hit you up when quetions arise, as other’s will too I’m sure. Later

Good luck with the strong man Competition !

bump

[quote]AnytimeJake wrote:
Awesome, thanks Pwnisher, thats all the quetions I have off the top of my head. My main goal was to open a line of comunication for my self and other T nation memeber’s with you, and to also have a place to discuss ( and promote :slight_smile: ‘‘Mystical strength’’ topics.

I think your on the cusp of some big things, becoming one of the next big internet lifter / guru / author, type guys, and I figured we better set-up a line comunication, before you get all important and forget about us little guys, LOL Anyway thanks for the great info, I’ll hit you up when quetions arise, as other’s will too I’m sure. Later

Good luck with the strong man Competition !
[/quote]

Much appreciated man. Your opinion is valuable to me, as you seem to have your head on straight when it comes to lifting.

Hey P, good luck on your comp man. Let us know how you do! Safe drive and Godspeed.

t3hpwnisher whats your take on 5 set 5 rep routines? are you a fan? whats your favorite set rep range for building sheer strength and some size along the way