T Nation

Samul's Training and Nutrition Log


Great, thank you.

Have you checked out my lateral raises video?


that looks fine to me. If you get feedback from Paul on that, share it here, I’m curious if that’s what he’s looking for.

I use a little bit of body English / momentum on most of my lifts, even ones like these, whereas you really don’t. And different coaches may prefer different things, I don’t know enough about Paul Carter’s methods to know what he wants you to do.


Yeah I use a bit of English on some exercises too, but with laterals I like to keep the form tight because I need that to really concentrate on contracting my delts. I am leaning against a bench for that very reason: when it gets hard and painful, I don’t want to have to be thinking about anything, not even keeping myself up with decent posture, but contracting the delts.

I used to not feel much my delts with laterals but now it’s one of the exercises I like the most because I definitely feel them firing.

Speaking of looser form, here’s cable rows from today’s session

I tried to keep going until even doing a half rep was near impossible, and that is one of the exercises I mentioned before where I suspect my form could’ve suffered a bit. How’s this look to you?


Today’s session. Arms and legs

Bb 21’s 25 kg x 2 rounds (failed at 17th rep of second round)
Incline curl 10 kg x 9,3,3 (one set w/ double rest pause)
Rope pushdown 25 kg x 21, 13, 20 kg x 20
Db skulls 8 kg x 9, 9
Leg curl 27 kg x 3 sets to failure + bottom partials
Squat 77, 82, 92 kg x 12

Form on the last reps of heaviest set of squats wasn’t top notch. A bit of leaning forward and “good morninging” the last part of the rep, but at least I’m getting back to my previous level of strength.

Kinda pissed off at the biceps work because I would’ve wanted to get more reps in.


Solid training session today. Pipes and legs.

Db Hammer curl 10 kg x 20, 14, 13, 12
Cable Preacher curl 25 x 12, 11, 11, 10
Rope pushdown 25 x 22, 15, 13
Pjr pullover 18 x 16, 15
Leg Extension + partials 70 x 15, 13, 12
Leg press 150 x 20, 20

Every set to failure.

Took a video of my last leg press set because I felt like it (and to show that, despite my hate love relationship with leg training, I do in fact train them lol)

That concludes a very solid week’s training.


He just told me that set was really good.



A little update on the squat since we talked about it on week one of the program.

So the first week I did 62 kg x 3 x 12, last week (week four) I did 77 x 12, 87 x 12, 92 x 12, and finally yesterday (week five) I did 92 kg for 3 sets of 12. It was brutal, but that’s a 66 lbs increase in four weeks.

I filmed my last set of squats from yesterday’s session because I want to get feedback on two things (I’ll send the vid to Paul Carter too this weekend of course). First is form, I want to know that my is technique is still solid like it was this summer. Maybe @flipcollar remembers that video and can compare the two. (I can look for it if necessary.)

Second: do you guys think I end up resting too much between reps? Maybe the first ones are smooth, but after the first half of the set I start to need longer breaks in between. I don’t want to turn those into cluster sets.

Btw, I know my form on the last rep was shit. I basically good morning’d the bar at the end and my upper back aches slightly now. Guess I need to get stronger.



Your pauses are on the longer side, if you want to make them shorter try not to rush it. Just decrease the time between each rep very slightly every time you train legs. If you want to utilize constant tension you can also perform your reps without locking the knees and flexing your quads between reps.


Well I’m not too concerned about constant tension because I’d have to reduce my weight to accommodate for that style and I’m trying to increase my strength as much as possible onthe squat… With the other exercises I’m doing for my legs, namely the leg curl, extension, and press, I’m using more of a constantntension style.

Here’s the thing…I’m really not rushing it, it’s that after some reps I start to really fatigue and get out of breath. Believe me when I tell you that this was a 100% all out set.

I think that instead of increasing the weight next week I should probably stay there until I can rep it out smoothly without as many pauses. I think once I can do that weight for 3 sets of 12 with ease, I’ll be ready for quite a big jump in weight. What do you think?


or just using less weight to incorporate that technique. I think that would be the real answer if that was his goal.

I liked the set though. I hate having the bar on my back that long, and I don’t think I’ve ever taken that long to finish a set of 12, but plenty of people do. I thought that you didn’t come out of the hole fast enough on a few of the early reps though. It seemed like you were trying to control the tempo while ascending. I mentioned before that I want my contractions on every movement to be as fast as possible, trying to be explosive from the start. Your tempo for the descent was really good though, and consistent.

do you feel like this is more of an aerobic conditioning issue, or that you’re truly reaching muscular failure? If it’s a conditioning issue, I would bet that you can push yourself harder than you think. Muscular failure doesn’t work that way though. Here it looked like a little of both, so again, I’m good with this. I have terrible conditioning, and a set like this would have me breathing hard for 10 minutes, lol. Even sets that look easy, for me, tend to gas me.

either approach can work. Jumps are going to start being harder to make, even with good program, because you really are pushing yourself harder now. Are you varying your set/rep scheme, or are you always doing 3x12? To me, it’s easier to make jumps if you’re not doing the same thing all the time. So for instance, I would be more likely to do something like 3x12 one session, 5x5 the next week, 3x8 the next week, and then back to 3x12, with the expectation that I should be able to handle more weight by then. This is essentially how 5/3/1 is designed, which is why I prefer it. It’s worked for me. But again, I defer to Carter’s suggestions, as he has the total picture of how everything fits into your programming.


Like you said, both. I was breathing hard and was light headed, so I clearly had an oxygen debt, and after the set I felt incredibly dizzy for a few seconds.

But I was most likely close to muscle failure too. As you can see, my form broke down a bit towards the end of the set, despite me trying my hardest to just push, which is a clear sign that my legs didn’t have much left in the tank. Had I attempted another rep I’m pretty positive I would’ve injured my upper back.

I agree that my reps weren’t particularly explosive, but that was my third set and I can tell you that despite having rested for three minutes between sets I was already fatigued.

I don’t know if I pushed “too hard,” but I can tell you I got to the gym thinking, “I’m going to hit 92 kgs x 3 sets of 12 no matter what” and I was determined to do it at all costs.

That makes two! But if you recall, this summer I did a program based around heavy high rep squats so I learned to like it. No, not really, I still hate it but I’ve gotten accustomed.

I like this approach, I will take note of it. Currently Paul has me doing only 3x12 on the squats. He really likes higher rep training, especially for legs.

He has also me doing 2x20 on the leg press on a separate day, and he instructed me not to go to failure on either of these two exercises. Together with the rows and rack pulls, those are the only exercises that I’m not currently training to failure.

Also since 5/3/1 has been mentioned, I’ll tell you what my goals for the next year are. I have three more weeks to work with Paul. I’d love to continue but it’s getting expensive at the moment, but I’m sure I’ll get back to him when I can afford it again.

However I’ve taken a decision: I’m weak as fuck and I want to do 5/3/1 for a year. I tended to jump from program to program before working with Paul, and I never focused on increasing my strength significantly on the big lifts, and I’m not a patient person by nature.

So I think doing 5/3/1 for a year is the fix to all the aforementioned issues. What’s your take? I plan on buying the book on Christmas day and start with BBB. I’ll have to be patient and think long term. A year sounds like forever but I wanna do this. I want to be big and muscular but I also want to have numbers that resemble those of a man, and I believe that although not strictly “hypertrophy training,” adhering to 5/3/1 for a long time can take care of both.

(And reading Paul’s blog I found out that he used 5/3/1 for a while too.)


5/3/1 BBB is the shit. You can either do opposite lift assistance or the same. You’ll hear it again and again and again and again, but start light. One year will add 60 lbs onto your training max (adding 5 lbs a lift per month for 12 months), and you always want to be able to do 5+ reps on your 1+ rep set, so if you play your cards right you’ll be repping your current maxes a year from now with ease. You can get 5/3/1 second edition on kindle for like 10 bucks, which has all the information and plenty of templates including BBB if you can’t afford Forever. And do your conditioning!


Yeah, I have read about starting light. What bugs me is that even my heavy is light so I’ll have to gut the fact that I’ll be going VERY light initially.

Another problem I have is that I hardly ever do the barbell military press so initially I’ll have to get good at it. I’m also a tad scared of maxing out to find my 1rm but I’ve heard there are ways around it.

Furthermore, I recall someone saying that the deload week is optional, so maybe, just maybe for the first one of two cycles I may skip it and speed up the progress? Bad idea?

Lastly, conditioning is going to be an issue because I don’t have a prowler which is what Jim recommends. But I am planning on buying a weighted vest which I’ve heard is a close second best option?


You can use an equation. Weight x reps x .0333 + weight. You did 92 x 12. 92 x 12 x .0333 + 92 = 128, and I always round down to the nearest 5, so say 125 kg is your squat max. Then take 85-90% of that and your TRAINING max is either 105 or 110 kg, depending on what percentage you used - I’d advise the 85%. From there, you use that training max to calculate all your percentages, and add to your training max, not your actual max, every cycle.


I’d say the first deload you should skip. The second one is optional.

Use that equation I gave you based on rep’s you’ve hit. If the weight is just way too outrageously light for some reason, you can just add 10 lbs the next cycle instead of 5. But patience is key - the lower you start, the longer you’ll progress.

Conditioning is not an issue. Do uphill sprints, especially in a weighted vest. Do burpees, do plyo squats, do pretty much whatever puts you in an anaerobic state and makes you feel like you’re going to die.

Finally, military press is by far the hardest to progress and the first lift you’ll stall with. Don’t worry, it’s like that for everyone.


Consiglio da chi usa il 5/3/1 da parecchio: non iniziare subito con il BBB ma con qualcosa di meno pesante come il FSL 5’s PRO, oppure il sample program “Triumvirate” presente nell’articolo di Wendler. Hai bisogno di un paio di cicli per “prendere confidenza” col programma e capire come funziona. Non avere paura di testare il tuo massimale, fai un ramping a 3 o 5 reps e usa la formula. La Military Press ti darà un grande aiuto a migliorare la panca!
Ah, dimenticavo, ovviamente prendi il libro “Forever” e leggilo, è una miniera d’oro!


If he doesn’t get Forever, and gets the 2nd edition ebook, he won’t understand FSL or 5’s pro. BBB is a retardedly simple program. Don’t overcomplicate 5/3/1 just because Jim’s been milking it for all it’s worth for a decade. There’s no reason somebody can’t do 5/3/1 bench and then 5x10 overhead press. My wife did BBB with me when she was brand new to lifting and progressed in all her lifts with no hitches.


Yeah BBB doesn’t really look too difficult to follow to me.

It’ll probably be challenging, and I’m saying this as someone who has done 5x10 on the squats for a month or so last summer (although those sets were pretty much the heart of the program, and probably done with a higher level of effort than what prescribed in BBB, at least for the first weeks of the program).

Another thing that kind of bothers me is the diet part. I haven’t yet read the book but I did come across the recommendations he makes in the first edition regarding diet, and what he talks about sounds a tad crazy to me. Was it 12 eggs a day and 50 g whey before every meal or something? It’s not that theoretically I couldn’t down that, because I could totally eat double what he advises. It’s that I know myself well enough to know that such a diet would get me fat.

Now, I surely don’t have to follow exactly the diet he laid out but still, I’ve heard him saying that eating that way is part of the program…


You look great man. My take-away from brushing up on your log is I need to go harder when I do diets X)


Thank you man! Yeah, it was a realization for me too.

My coach didn’t sugar coat stuff for me, and made me realize that pushing harder DOES reward you. I learned that you don’t need a refeed every week, that you don’t need flexible dieting, and most importantly, pushing harder in the gym while dieting does NOT lead to muscle loss.

If anything, we worked with more volume than I had been used to.