T Nation

The Downward Spiral

Hello, I am Ambugaton, and I lost the path for too long. For months I have distracted myself with childish goals, tenuous workouts, and mild alcoholism. This will not stand any longer.

I will show focus in the pursuit of raw strength and athleticism using 5/3/1, The hills and trails near my barracks, and nine inch nails.

My operable numbers are as follows:

Deadlift: 400
Press: 160
Bench: 280
Squat: 275

Years of unintelligent training and lack of parental guidance has resulted in an abysmal squat. I will fix this.

I am 6’2’’, and 200-205 pounds, depending on how much I’ve been drinking.

I am currently in the first week of a 5/3/1 cycle and today was Bench day.

Bench: 280 max.
185 lb x5
210 lb x5
240 lb x8

DB circus press:
35x10, 40x10,45x10

35x15, 42.5x12, 50x12

BB shrugs:
(225lb x8)x3
Followed immediately by one set of DB shrugs. 40’s x80reps.

Rucked 2 hours with 80lbs this morning. I think I made it just about 7.5 miles.

In. Training looks solid, especially the rucking.

I like this guy


[quote]Jaice wrote:
In. Training looks solid, especially the rucking.[/quote]

Nice. Keep me accountable.

[quote]Ct. Rockula wrote:
I like this guy


Damn, the Count is in my forum. I think I’m in too, now.

Monday, and it happens to be a no-lift day, which is shit twice-over.

at four o’clock in the goddamn morning: PT. They do this cute little workout in my squad where we do ten pushups and ten situps per minute for 30 minutes. Then everybody pats themselves on the back when it’s over and they think they’ve done 300 repetitions of each. We do this INSTEAD of exercises with proper form.

After work: Every bad day has its silver lining I suppose. Walked into the back room of the gym where hangs the only punching bag I can find within 50 miles, and everything is exactly where I left it three days ago. The bag is hanging, the yoga mats are tossed haphazardly into the dirty towel bin, and the crossfit bullshit is all piled in a corner where I kicked it.

3 rounds shadowboxing
3 rounds jumping rope
4 rounds heavy bag

Tomorrow we squat.

Wednesday I have a goddamn Pashto test. I don’t need to know how to order a drink at the Los Isely Spaceport because it’s not a real goddamn place.


Power Clean:
(135 x 3) x 2
155 x 3
175 x 5

bar x 10
135 x 5
195 x 3
225 x 3
255 x 5

Straight-leg Deadlifts:
(155 x 10) x 3

DB Shrugs:
45s x 20
60s x 20
65s x 20

Calves and Neck Misc.

The first couple working sets on the squat felt strong, and then at 255 I got the wobbling knees, which is typical for me. I hammered it out, but any amount of grinding at such a light weight is inexcusable. For some reason, while squatting, it’s always too easy until it’s a brick fucking wall.
Returned to the barracks and tried to make a Surge Recovergy and broccoli smoothie, only to discover my blender had fritzed 4 days from its purchase. Waste of product, waste of money. Now I’m pissed off again.

I never thought about how hard it is to spell “broccoli”. I think this is the first time I’ve written or typed that word.

Why not just take the surge in a shaker? I like your attitude. Expecting big things from you.

[quote]jtownlax wrote:
Why not just take the surge in a shaker? I like your attitude. Expecting big things from you.[/quote]

I appreciate it man. I usually do use a shaker. Thought I could just drink down my vegetables instead of chewing on them. I’m not a fan of greens, unfortunately.

I won’t dissapoint.

What’s the equipment/access to it like when you’re deployed?

[quote]Jaice wrote:
What’s the equipment/access to it like when you’re deployed?[/quote]

Well, that depends on where you end up. I’ve been to places where we had fully equipped gyms that gave the local Gold’s a run for the money, and I’ve also been to little death-holes that make you feel like you’re beyond thunderdome, where you have some rusted free weights shoved in a tent.

I will say this though: I’ve never been anywhere where I was not able to work out adequately. Some places have no racks, so you clean the barbell and do front squats. Some places you can’t deadlift properly because you’ll drop the weight through the wooden floor, so you do single leg RDL’s and then you do Kroc Rows. What’s really shitty is that everybody in the Army loves their biceps, so you’re going to have preacher curl stations everywhere you go, even if there isn’t a goddamn rack. You do what you have to do, man, and then you go to the chow hall and you eat surf n turf.


115 x 3
130 x 3
145 x 6

BW x 10
60lbs x 10
75lbs x 7
75lbs x 8

Pullups (Neutral Grip):
BW x 6
40lbs x 5
50lbs x 5
30lbs x 7
BW x 8

Incline DB Bench Press:
40’s x 10
75’s x 8
(100’s x 5) x 3

Facepulls: 3 sets of 20 reps with calf work between sets.

I was having trouble getting in gear today, so it became a rather high volume workout on account of frustration. I’ve travelled way too much this year, and my sleep patterns are taking longer and longer to adjust. The usual melatonin ZMA regimen isn’t as effective as it used to be. If my leave gets approved I might be travelling to Colorado to visit family very soon, which I’m looking forward to, but it amounts to another drastic change in time zones and perpetuates the sleep issue.

On a good note, the overhead press felt strong today. I didn’t think I would get 6 on the last set. Usually I shoot for 5 when it’s the 3-rep week.

The pullups were all over the place. I still haven’t decided upon a rep scheme/weight protocol for this exercise. I might settle with 5 x 5.


Woke up this morning feeling ready to loot and burn villages. Must be all that Rhine wine I drank yesterday. Or maybe it was the Guinness or the Scotch. Who knows.

AM Workout:

5 hill sprints (these were short, but I did them with little rest in between, and worked on knee-drive)
5 10-second sprints, 45 seconds of rest in between.
10 30-second sprints, 45 seconds of rest in between. It’s probably incorrect to call them sprints at this point in the workout. When I do 30-second intervals I shoot for a bit faster than my 2-mile pace. For the record my 2-mile is 12:30ish at the moment.

Good workout. I feel ready to spread democracy today. That or HPV.

Friday Continued


135 x 5
225 x 5
285 x 3
325 x 3
365 x 4


Bar x 10
135 x 10
185 x 10
205 x 10

Kroc Rows (each arm):
45lb. x 10
85lb. x 10
120lb. x 18

(BW x 8) x 3

Core Work:
Twist thing from Punch-Proof Core article earlier this week: 3 sets of 10 with a 25lb. plate.
Stir the Pot: 3 sets of 10 each way.

I let a buddy come with me today, which I usually don’t do. I’m glad I did though, because he pointed out something very wrong with my squat form. Apparently when I initiate the movement out of the hole I leave my back behind, effectively turning it into a squat-goodmorning sort of thing. This is probably one of the reasons my squat is such shit.

A way to fix your problem if it’s not fixed already is to focus on coming out of the hole chest first.

Nice looking training session BTW.

[quote]jtownlax wrote:
A way to fix your problem if it’s not fixed already is to focus on coming out of the hole chest first.

Nice looking training session BTW.[/quote]

Yeah I’m going to give something like that a shot. I may start throwing some squatting practice into every session, just to work out the movement a bit better. Thanks for the complement.


135 x 10
195 x 3
225 x 3
255 x 5

DB Circus Press:
(55lb. x 5) x 5

Meadows Posterior Deltoid Complex x 2

Shrug and Pull:
(135 x 10) x 3

DB Shrugs:
35s x 100 (Ugh.)

Did you have an avatar of yourself holding an orange drink, and with glasses looking like Rainn Wilson? Random question I know.

On a different note, nice training.

[quote]Oxen wrote:
Did you have an avatar of yourself holding an orange drink, and with glasses looking like Rainn Wilson? Random question I know.

On a different note, nice training.[/quote]

You’re going to have to explain that one, but I’ll see what I can find. Thanks.

Me with a drink. It’s not orange, and I don’t have my glasses on.