T Nation

T-ransformation 2017: Buttwink's log



Lifting seriously since April of 2012. Weighed 130 when I started, (pudgy) 215 at my heaviest. Trained with a strength focus, did a couple powerlifting meets, got my bench up to 285, my squat to 400, and my deadlift to 445. In June I was a soft 200 pounds. I cut carbs and got down to 190. About a month ago I made a dedicated switch to physique training due to a number of factors (stalling strength and motivation from this forum in particular) and now I’m training on a traditional BB split, including more isolation movements, and hitting higher reps on the compounds (5-8 rather than 3-6). I’m training on a 4 day split, focusing on delts and arms. I’ve been working 70-hour weeks with a nonprofit, but I’m switching jobs after Thanksgiving so I’ll go to a 5 day split then. Right now I’m sitting at 172-178, 5’7 (not going to waste anyone’s time making an uneducated guess at my body fat). Took some pictures before breakfast this morning, forgive my shitty posing:

Here’s my split now:

Delts and triceps

Back and biceps

Chest and triceps

Legs and biceps

On training days I’m eating 2600-2800 calories, 240-280 grams of carbs, 210 grams of protein, the rest from fat

On non-training days I’m eating 2000 calories, 210 grams of protein, 40-80 grams of carbs, and the rest of the calories from fat

My goal right now is to get super lean for the first time in my life, assess weak points and reset my bodyfat set point, then slowly bulk for another year or two. Basically I’ll be using this thread as a training and nutrition log as well as a measuring stick for my own progress. Also to collect any advice from those feeling generous.


keep meaning to tranfer log over from my phone, finally doing it:

Bench 3 clusters 3x4x220, RP 8+2.5+1x200
CGBP 170 7, 6, 6, 5+125x6+95x6
Low Incline DB 7x70s, 8x65s, 7x65s+8x45s
Machine press 3x8-10x105
Dips 7xbw, 2x8xbw-50
Cable flies 3x7.5s
pull aparts between sets

bw 171.5
HB squat up to 335, scheduled 5x5+AMRAPx265, instead 7x265, 3x6x265, 265x17
RDL to shins 9x265, 2x8x265, 265x16
Split squats 3x50sx8
Hamstring curls 75x2x9, 8x75+6x55+8x35
Leg ext 8+8+8x55+35+25
EZ curls 11x70, 7x75, RP 6+3+2x75
Incline curls 2x8x20s, RP 8+4x20s

BTNMP 125x 8, 7, 6, 6+8x95+12x65
DBMP 2x8x60s, 8+8x45s+8x35s
Latls 20s+12sx6+6, 2x15s+10sx6-8+6, 16x12s
Face pulls+band pull aparts 3x10-15+10
RD swings 35sx40+20sx20+8sx10
Dips bw+27.5x10, bw+30x9, 7
Ext 3x10x25s

snatch grip rack pulls (pinkie at outer ring) 375x7x2, 6
Meadows rows 4x10-11x120
DB rows 12x75s, 2x10x80s
Chins 4x8xbw+25
NG pull ups 3x8xbw
straight arm pulldown multi iso hold
DB curls 6x35s, 6x30s, 6x25s+8x15s
Hammers 2x8x20s,

OHP 5x7x110 (7/5/3)
DBMP 2x7x65s, 8x60s+8x45s+12x30s
Latl swings 3x30s+20s+12s
Latls 19x8s
RDF 3x15-20x12s
Dips 10xbw+25, 2x9xbw+27.5
Ext 3x8-10x25s

bw 174
Bench 5 clusters 5x5
CGBP 3x8x165, 8x165+8x125+10x95
Incline DB 11x65s, 3x8x70s
Dips bwx9
Machine press 3x105x9-11
cable Flies 3x7.5sx

HB squat up to 335, 315 2x5, 4, 3, 295x12
RDL to shins 2x6x295, 295x12
DB split squats 3x50sx9
Hamstring curls 75x10, 9, 65x8+45x8
EZ curls
Incline curls

BTNP 125 8, 7, 6, 6+8x95+12x65
DBMP 9x65s, 6x65s, 60sx8+45sx8+30sx12
Latls 3x 15s+10s, 1x10s
Face pulls 3x15-20x25
RD swings 40s+20s+8s
Dips bw+25x10, 8, 9
Ext 3x25s

Rack pulls from 5th rung up 4x8x395
Meadows rows 4x9-10x120
DB rows 12x70s, 2x10-12x75s
Chins 4x8xbw+25
NG chins 3x9xbw
Straight arm pulldown multi iso hold
DB curls 8x30s, 7x30s, 8x30s+7x20s+9x12s
Hammers 2x8x20s, 8x20s+10x12s

Incline 3x8x190
DBMP 9x65s, 2x8x65s, 7x65s+8x45s+10x30s
Latl swings 35s+25s+15s
latls 8s+6s+3s
RDF 2x15s, 15s+8s
Dips bw+25s 10, 9, 9
Ext 3x10-12x25s
-switch incline for mp juggernaut next week

bench 4 clusters 215x6,6,5,5, 185x9
CGBP 165x2x8, 7, 8+125x7+95x10
Incline db 4x8-10x65s
Machine press 3 sets
cable flies 3 sets
Tricep pushdowns 3 sets

HB squat up to 335, 6x315 (ez), 5x320, 4x320, 3x7x270, 270x14
RDL to shins 3x7x270, 270x14
DB split squat 3x6-8x50s
Hamstring curl
EZ curl
Incline curl

btnmp 8x120, 7x120, 8x120, 7x120+8x90+11x65
DBMP 7x65s, 9x60s, 8x60s+9x45s+11x30s
Latls 3 sets
Face pulls 3x15x25
RD swings 40x40s+20x20s+10x8s
Dips bw+25 9, 8,

Rack pulls 4x6x395
meadows rows
cable rows
ng pulldowns
db curls
cable curls close grip

Incline 3x7x190, rest pause 5-2-2
DBMP 11x60s, 8x65s, 7x65s+8x45s+10x30s
Latl swings 3x35s+25s+15s
Latls 12x8s
RDF 3 sets w 15s
Dips bw+15x10, bw+17.5x9, 8
DB ext 25sx12, 11, 12

7x40meter hill sprints

Bench up to 230, clusters with 215: 3x6, 11x185
CGBP 3x8x165, 8x165+8x125+10x85
Incline DB 4x10x60s
HS chest press 200x9, 8, 8+8x150
Flies 3x10x115

Squat up to 315, 4x8x245, 245x18
DB Split squat 3x8x50s
Leg ext 3x8-10
Lying leg curl 4x10 (double drop last set)
RDL to shins 3x10x235, 12x235+12x185+12x135
EZ curl with armblaster
Conc curls
Rope cable curls iso hold

BTNP 8x120, 6x125, 7x122, 6x122+8x90+10x65
DBMP 2x8x60s, 8x60s+8x45s+10x30s
Latls 20s+10s, 15s+8s, 12s+8s, 12s+8s+5s
Lying face pulls 20x30, 2x20x35
Rear delt swings 40x40s+20x20s+10x10s+10x5s full rom
Dips 3x8-10xbw+12s
Ext 3 sets

6x40 meter hill sprints (90-120")

Rack pulls 4x6x395
Meadows rows 4x8-10x120
Cable rows 3x8-10x145
Chins 4x8xbw+25
NG pulldowns 9x145, 2x10x130
Straight arm pulldown multi iso hold
seated db curl w arms on chairback

Incline 190x6, 3x7
DBMP 60sx11, 9, 8, 8+40sx8+30sx10
Lateral swings 35s+25s+15s (and 5s on last set)
RDF 3x15s
Dips bw+10x11, bw+20x9, 8
Extensions 3x8-10x25s

Squat up to 340, 4+1x320, 4x4x315, 5+4+3+2+1x245
Leg ext 65x9, 11, 12
Leg curls 75x11, 9, 8, 8+55x5+35x11
RDL to shins 2x8x245, 8x245+8x195+12x145
EZ curl 10x65, 8x70, 7x70+8x50+14x30
KB hammer 3x8x50

Bench 5 clusters w 210: 6, 3x5, 4, 8x185
CGBP 7x160, 8x160, 7x160+6x120+10x80
DB incline 2x10x60s, 9x60s,
Dips 8xbw+10, 2x9xbw+5
Machine press
Tricep pushdowns
Extensions multi iso hold

Rack pulls (from 6th pin) 6x405, 6x415,
Meadows rows 4x8x115
DB rows 3x10x70
Chin ups 7xbw+30, 2x8xbw+25, 6xbw+25, rest, 5xbw, rest, 3xbw
Face pulls 3x20
Straight arm pulldowns isohold pump set
DB curls
Spider curls

BTNP 7x120, 2x6x120, 6+8+10x120/95/65
DBMP 6x60s, 8x55s, 8+5+10x55s+40s+30s
Laterals 3 dropsets 15s/10s, 15s/10s/5s
Smith seated mp 3x8-9x145
Dips 3x10-11xbw
Tricep ext multi hold pump set
BB shoulder complex 3 sets

squat up to 330, 4+1x315, 2x3+1x315, 5x305, 12x275
Leg extensions 11, 10, 10+5+12
Hamstring curls 4x
RDL to shins 2x8x265, 8+8+12x265+215+165
BB curls

Bench 4 clusters 4x5x1x210, 10x185
CGBP 8x160, 2x7x160, 9x145
Incline DB 9, 10, 8, 9x60s
Dips 10, 9, 9
Machine flies
Machine press
Mutli iso hold extensions

HS low row 4 sets
ng chins
pulldiwn machhine
row machine
spider curls

BTNP 3x6-7x120, 6+8+10x120+85+65
DBMP 3x8x55s
Laterals 3 dropsets 15s and 10s, then 15s 10s 5s
Seated smith military press 3x8-10x140
Rdf+rear delt straight arm row+face pulls 3 sets
BW dips 3x9-10
tricep ext multi isohold pump set
BB shlulder complex 3 rounds

HB squat up to 340, 3 clusters 6x315, 5+rack+1, 3+rack+1+rack+1x325
2x10x255, 15x255
Hamstring curls 4 sets
RDL to shins 2x8x235, 8x235+8x185+8x135
BB curl
cable curl w rope

Bench 3 clusters 5x1x215+1x210, 6x1x210, 4x1x210; 10x185
CGBP 3x8x160, 7x160+8x120+10x85
DB Incline (5th pin in bench) 9, 8, 11,
BW dips 9, 8, 9
Machine press 7x115+5x95, 2x11x95
Cable flies 3 sets
Pushdowns 3 sets (third drop)

Meadows rows 3x8-10x115, 8+8+12x120/95/70
Chins 7xbw+32.5, 6, 6xbw+27.5, 6xbw+27.5+5xbw
NG pull ups 4x8xbw
Chest supported rows w ez bar 4x10x150

BTNP 2x6x120, 5+1x125, 6x120+8x95+10x65
MP 3x8x115
Laterals 2x15s+10s, 15s+10s+5s
DBMP 3x8x50s
RDF+pull apart+face pullDips
Tricep ext
BB shoulder complex 3 rounds

HB squat wave ladder 1-2-3x320, 1-2-3x335, 1-2x345, 1x345+2x335
–next week work up and do 3 clusters w 85-90%
HB squat 4x10x225, 15x225
Hamstring curls 4x10-12x65
1.5 RDLs (box deficit) 3 sets
BB curls 10, 7+2, 6+3+1 x65
Preachers 3x8-10x45
cable hammer curls (rope) Multi iso-hold pump set 20" 8 15" 8 10" 10 (10)

Bench 6, 5, 5, 4 x205, 7x185
CG bench 8, 8, 8 155, 6-6-8 155-125-95
DB incline 3x12x50s, 8x55s
Dips bwx 10, 9, 10
Machine press 3 x8-10
Pushdowns 3 sets
Machine flies 3 sets
Lying Tricep extensions multi iso hold pump set 20" 8 15" 8 10" 12

high pulls 4x3-2-1x240
Rack pulls (6th pin) 4x6x390
Chest supported supinated row 4x10-12x155
Chins 3x8xbw+30, 8+3+3+2 (bw+30, +30, bw, bw)
DB curls 8 , 7, 7
Straight arm cable pulldowns multi iso-hold drop set 20" 8 15" 8 10" 3
spider curls multi iso-hold drop set
20" 8 15" 8 10" 15 (20s)

BTNP 3x6x125, 6x125+8x95+10x65
MP 3x6-8x120
Laterals 3 dropsers
DBMP 3 sets
RDF+face pulls 3 sets

hb squat up to 330, 6x 285, 295, 305, 315
Leg press (quads) 12, 15, 15,

Bench 2x6, 2x4+1+1 205
CGBP (feet on bench) 8, 9, 7x155, 6+6+10 155+125+95
Incline DB 10, 9, 9, 8
BW Dips 9, 8, 8
Machine press 9, 10, 10, 10
machine flies 3 sets
Pushdowns 3 sets

SGHP 4x3+2+1x235
Rack pulls 8x375, 2x8x385
Chest supported supinated rows 12x145, 7x165, 8x155, 8x155
Chins 3x8xbw+30, 7+2bw+30+5xbw
DB curls 3x8x30s, 6+8+12x 30s 20s 15s
pronated pull down machine 3x12-15

BTNMP 8x120, 5+1x125, 6x125, 6x120+8x90
MP 125x8, 6, 120x7
Laterals 20s+12s, 15s+12s, 15s+12s+8s

Squat up to 345, HB 6x290, 300, 5x310, 305x6+225x8+155x10
Leg press
Hamstring curls

Bench 4x5-7x205
CGBP 3x6-8, 6+3+1
Dips 3x8-10xbw
Incline DB 4x8-10x45s
Hammer press 3 sets
Cable flies 3 sets
OH DB extension 3x12-15x40


been tightening up the past week weeks, now going back to maintenance for 2 as per robsteins suggestion! Feels great to have more carbs in my system. Couple pics post shoulders and triceps:

Uploading… Uploading… Uploading…



Calorie cycling is making a big difference–eating maintenance on training days after being in a deficit for so long gives me a lot more room for volume–I feel orders of magnitude better in the gym. Weighing 174 today, but definitely tighter than I was last time I was at this weight

Snatxh grip Rack pulls 6x375, 3x10x345
Meadows rows 12x120, 3x12x125
chins bw+25 8, 10, 9, 9+bwx5
cable rows 145x10, 130x10, 130x10+100x8+70x10
NG pulldowns 2x10x145,145x8+115x8+80x8
Straight arm pulldown multi iso hold
strict DB curls (back of arm against leg rests on pulldown machine) 2x6-8x25s, 8x25s+6x20s+12x15s
Hammer curls (same way) 3x8x20s, triple drop with 15s and 10s on 3rd set
forearm circuit: farmers holds w 60s, reverse forearm curls, behind the back forearm curls

OHP 120 2x6, 7, 110x12 (supersetted w 15 band pullaparts)
Latl swings 3x30s+20s+10s
Latls 20x8s
DBMP 60sx8, 8, 8+8x45s+11x30s
RD pec deck 3 supersets
upright rows 3x12x70
Dips bw+30x2x8, 8+bwx6
Ext 3x8-10x25s
Shoulder complex 1 round

bench up to 220, 200x7, 2x6, 5/3/1 5s: 185x11 (12th spotted)
cgbp 170x3x7, 167x8+125x8+87x8
Incl db 70sx7, 65sx9, 8, 9
Incl Machine press 115x11, 9, 9
Pushdowns 2x10-12x80, 80x8+60x8+40x8
Cable flies 3 sets

HB squat up to 315, 4x4x290, 13x290, 3x10x185
RDL to shins 2x8x290, 12x290
Lying leg curl 80x10, 9, 6+6x60+8x40
EZ curl 70x 12, 10, 7
Leg ext 100x20
Incl curl 25sx10, 8, 20sx6+15sx8+10sx9
Farmers holds 3 sets w 65s

Snatch grip rack pulls 3x7x365, 13x315
Meadows rows 4x11-12x120
Scap retractions
NG pulldowns

BTNP 7x5x117
Latl swings 30s+20s+full 10s
Latls 10sx16
Cheated upright rows 3x12x135
RDF 15s 2x15-20, 10+5sx10
DBMP 3x8-10x60s
Dips bw+27.5x3x8 (felt more in chest–this attachment seemed a little wider)
Ext 25sx3x8-12
mutli iso hold rope pushdown



BTNP 7x125, 6x125, 8x120, 8x120+9x90+12x65
Latls 3x10x15s+10x10s+10x5s
Cable latls 3x10
RDF 3x15s+10s, 15s+10s+5s
Dips bw+30x 10, 9, 8+5xbw
Ext 12x20s
5-5-10 DB press (bottom half, top half, full range) 3 rounds w 25s


HB squat up to 335, 10x315
RDL to knees 2x6x315, 10x315
Leg ext 3x15x70 w hard squeeze
Leg press 20x360+sled, 15x450, 16x540+10x450+15x360
leg curl 2x10x70, 8x70+8x50+8x30
DB curl 2x8x30s, 6x30s+5x20s+6x15s
Hammers 2x8x20s, 8x20s+8x15s+8x10s
Farmers holds+pronated forearm curls off bench 3x55s+30+20

Gnarly one today, went to the Golds back home with my GF. 315x10 is technically a rep PR for squats, definitely weighing 173.


And official “before” shots for 2017 transformation:


Bent bar at the gym is starting to fuck with ky shoulder-might need to ditch barbell benchijg until they replace it
Bench 2x6x200, 5x200, 7+2x195
CGBP 7x175, 10x155, 9x155, 8+2+2x155
Incline DB 65sx4x8-10
Incline bb (bottom half) 115x12x3
Low cable fly 15x5s
Cable fly 3x7.5sx12-15
Pushdown 10x30, 10x25, 8x25+6x17.5+12x12.5


took official fasted measurements this morning for the transformation. I have a pretty small frame so I’m hoping to get my waist down to 28ish and maybe even put a little size on my arms, considering I’m training them directly now on a hypertrophy-focused split

Neck 15
Chest 41.5
Shoulders 48.5
Arms R 14 L 14 3/8
Waist 31.5
Thighs R 24.5 L 24
Calves R 14 L 14


OHP 5/3/1 5x85, 3x105, 10x120 supersetted w band pullaparts
DBMP 65sx9, 8, 7+45sx8+30sx12
Latl swings 3x30s+20s+10s
Latls sideways on incline bench 12s+10s, 10s+5s, 8s+5s
RDF 32x12-15x15s, 15s+8s
Dips bw+30x 10, 8, 7+bwx6
Ext 20sx 13, 10, 9


DL 5/3/1 2x5x245, 280, 12x315
Felt light, cardio was what got me
Meadows rows 3x8-10x130, 8x130+8x105
Chins bw+30x8, 6+1+1, bw+25x7+1, bw+25x8+bwx6
NG chins bwx4x9
EZ curls 75x8, 65x6+1 cheated w slow ecc, 5+2 cheated w slow ecc
Hammers 3x8x20s
Incline curl multi iso hold w 12s
Snatch grip rack pulls 295x10, 12, 12
Forearm curls 1 set to failure

I like doing the rack pulls later, I feel it more in my mid back, I can use way less weight, and it lets me push the chins and rows harder if I do them first


Woke up flat as fuck. I was feeling super small this morning after yesterdays low day, but Im stoked to see more abdominals I have since I was probably 17. Psyched to see what they look like twenty pounds lighter at the end of the summer


Dude there wont be anything left!!! Just my 2 cents but judging from your morning photo 20 pounds is going to be a lot of muscle lost.

Also pretty good looking midsection there.


Snowed in today, all the gyms were closed and my truck wasnt going anywhere anyway. I workedout at home with a rusty barbell and some plates, did more of a growth-factor style session–a nice change to the routine. Pretty incredible how much I got out of doing lateral raises with 2.5 lbs at the end of the giant sets just by focusing on contracting my delts optimally with each rep and keeping all the tension on that muscle group

Band pull aparts 3 sets to failure
BTNP 6x125, 7x115, 7x115+8x95+10x65
Latls 2x10x10s+10x7.5s+10x5s, 10x10s+10x7.5s+10x5s+10x2.5s
RDF 2x10s+5s, 10s+5s+2.5s
Hybrid raises 2x10s+5s (too tired to count the reps, just went to failure), 10s+5s+2.5s
Strict OHP 9x105, 8x105, 7x105,
decline CGBP 2x8-9x165, 8x165+8x115
decline barbell skullcrushers 8x65, 9x55, 8x55+10x10lb plates in each hand

annnd the postworkout pic:

So far I’m hitting 2450-2500 calories on training days, 250 carbs, 180-190 protein, the rest from fat, and 1800 calories on my two non-lifting days–70 carbs, 180-190 protein, the rest from fat. Only cardio is walking on the non-lifting days; I’m trying to take the Zen master approach here. I’d rather lose half a pound per week and preserve what (little) muscle I have than crank up the cardio and risk losing muscle


Haha thanks. 20 lbs is just a guesstimate–that would put me at 5’7,153, and hopefully pretty shredded. Here’s a pic of Matt Ogus from 2011 at that same height and weight:

I have no expectations of looking like that, but I imagine I’m AT LEAST twenty pounds away from that level of leanness


You’re looking good man, will be following along here. 20lbs would look get you looking pretty dangerous man! Provided you continue a slow and steady approach, make sure you hit your protein requirements, and recovery accordingly, you shouldn’t be risking any LBM loss. Keep it up!


Thanks Rob! (Though “good” is a generous adjective for my current state, I think). Looking forward to more insight/motivation/impressiveness from your 2017 prep log!


starting to question my use of Juggernaut as ghe foundation of my leg template during this cut. This is supposed to be the 3s mesocycle, and 280 is theoretically 75% of my 1rm, though after hitting 315 for 10 last week Im pretty sure 400 was a serious lowball of my true max. I’ll probabky switch to 5/3/1 as my squat template after I finish this mesocycle, or at least bump my max up…

HB squat up to 335, 3x6x280, 280x17
RDL to shins 2x9x280, 13x280
Leg ext w hard squeeze 10x75, 10x65, 10x60+6x40+3x20
Leg press (tows in, narrow) 20x420, 17x420, 3 sec ecc 10x420+8x330+8x240
Lying leg curl 20x60, 15x60, 10x60+8x40+6x20 w hard squeeze
BB curl 3x6-7x65 w slow eccentric
Hammers 2x8x20s, 8x20s+8x15s+8x10s
Forearm complex: farmers holds w 55s, reverse wrist curls, btb wrist curls 3 rounds
Preachers multi iso hold set w 25
Felt dizzy as fuck, eating was normal but woke up late today so I worked out later in the afternoon