T Nation

Rickey Dale Crain Bench Workout


In talking to some PLers I know I've come to realize I keep stalling and a good program would help. I like the look of Rickey Dale Crain's bench routine because it emphasizes the bench, doesn't have a lot of speed work which I don't care for much, seems to be catering towards good rep counts which is nice since I'm all raw, and it seems very practical to me unlike another Bench routine I tried and failed miserably at.

The issue is I'm not working for a 300 so I'm trying to figure out the best way to implement it for where I am at.

This is my thoughts but I'm looking for feedback, currently my best has been 225x2 although yesterday I struggled to get 220x2. I'm already benching Tuesday and Friday so that works nicely.

In looking at where I'm at and where I want to get and using the program as a guideline this is the scheme I'm looking at:

Exercises for those unfamiliar:

Week 1
180 x 5-5
180 x 5-5
180 x 5-5
135 x 5-5

Week 2
190 x 5-5
190 x 5-5
190 x 5-5
140 x 5-5

Week 3
200 x 3-3
200 x 3-3
200 x 3-3
150 x 3-3

Week 4
210 x 3-3
210 x 3-3
210 x 3-3
150 x 3-3

Week 5
220 x 2-2
220 x 2-2
220 x 2-2
165 x 2-2

Week 6
230 x 2-2
230 x 2-2
230 x 2-2
170 x 2-2

Week 7 [End of Cycle]
155 x 1
190 x 1
215 x 1
240 x 1
180 x 1

Then I would reset and plan out the next cycle using a similar method. Does this look about right to you all? I'm also wondering if after the bench work but before ab work I do Bent Over Rows it would be detrimental, otherwise I'm not sure where in my workout to do them. Just 3x6-8 on either Bent Over Rows or T-Bar Rows.

Thanks for any feedback!


Hey Bud,
I have used his books/program for all 3 lifts and have done very well with all of them. I use 5/3/1 for the most part, but whenever I feel the need to re-build a solid foundation, I come back to these. FYI, he does say implementing speed work on your second day is cool.
Here's the way I have always used it with great success:

  1. My max last cycle was 285. An attainable and reasonable pr/ increase I always figure is 10lbs. So my last week was 295x1.
    2.The basic program is a 15 week program; I like doing 10 lb jumps each week. So I subtract 150lbs from the weight I want to end with and include the 1st week as my first jump.
  2. So i start with 155
  3. Then:
    5 weeks at 5x5, increasing 10 each week; 155, 165, 175, 185, 195 all @ 5x5
    4 weeks at 4x4 increasing 10; 205, 215, 225, 235
    3 weeks at 3x3 " " ; 245, 255, 265
    2 weeks at 2x2 " " ; 275, 285
    1 week at 1x1 " " ; 295


Well lost my print out of this so dug up the thread to reprint it and figured might as well post some results:

I'm on Week 5, Primary Day today.

So far the first week I had gone bouldering before and my elbow was really sore. As a result it hurt but I completed everything except two reps on the decline. Second week I went up as normal including the decline and have completed all reps since. I have no doubt that I'll be able to get today's 2x2 plan.

On the secondary day I have had to slow down and lighten up so for the last 3 weeks I did 20 lbs on front raises but only 15 lbs on side raises. I'm hoping to increase to 25/20 respectively.

Overall I'm very pleased with the results I've seen. My form has gotten a lot tighter as a result of doing it this style and after a little hesitation I really like the stretch I get when using the cambered bar. Hopefully I'll get up to 315 using this in no time.