T Nation

Time for Smolov


I have started running the full smolov program as posted on stronglifts.
For upper body work I am currently doing the pushup/pullup routine that was recently posted in an article on this site. (http://www.tmuscle.com/free_online_article/sports_body_training_performance/big_back_big_chest_real_fast )

My best gym lifts are 525 squat, 355 bench, and 535 DL.
Raw PL comp- 510, 335, 515 -only a belt
I have been working out for 8 years, but 4 years of hard, smart training.
I am in college working toward a B.S. in Exercise Physiology, and I am a certified personal trainer.

I will answer any other questions, and I should update with every workout.
I also stretch post WO and do minor stuff at home like band pullaparts and rotator cuff stuff.
I can post that is anyone is interested, otherwise it will just be the gym WO.

So far, *trying to do most of this program beltless, I will note when it is added

Day 1- August 24, 09
3x8 @345
5 @365
2 @385, 2 @395
1 @425
For the pushups I do sets of 10, and pullups sets of 5(dead hang and chest to bar)
3 sets of each pre and post WO, 4 sets at home. I have a playground at my apartment.

Day 2- aug 25
3x8 @345
5 @370
2x2 @395
1 @425
Same as above for pushups/pullups

Day 3 aug 26
4x5 @370
5 @395
2x2 @425
1 @475
I had a spotter watch me on this one and half way down the dude puts his hand on my stomach, and then it gets crushed between against my legs. This broke my concentration and I ended up needing a small spot half way up. Now I know to tell spotters not to do that.
Upper: 4 sets pre, 4 post, 2 at home

Day 4 Aug 27
Lunges 3x8
Couldn't get to the gym, did these at home with a bar on my back and 5 sec hold/stretch at the bottom.
upper: 5 sets(of 10) of pushups, feet elevated on a ball
10 sets (of 5) pullups. These were done with a neutral grip, but still dead hang and chest to bar.
5 sets(of 10) of pushups, feet elevated on a ball

Day 5
Bulgarian lunge, or rear foot elevated, whatever you prefer.
3x8 20kg kb. Went for a deep stretch on these, rear foot on 24in box.
Upper: 5 sets of each pre and then post WO.
*My pushups from here on will all be feet elevated on a ball(laces down at first), about 24in. And pullups will be done neutral grip due to some pain going chest to bar with a pronated grip. The sets Will also be 5x10 pushups and 5x5 pullup pre and post WO.

Day 6
3x8 with 185.
upper as per usual.

Day 7

Day 8 Aug 31
2x2 @445
Threw in some DLs today.5 singles @455 with 1min or less rest.
Upper: 5 sets pre and post. pushups are done on toes, elevated on ball.

This is where I am now, if I forgot to mention anything just ask.


Day 9

NO squats- looking forward to the madness the next 3 weeks
Upper- 10x10 pushups, then 10x5 pullups
I’m going to start adding weight to the pullups.


Day 10

3 @ 445 Easy, but I rushed the warm up because I walked to the gym today(not on purpose, I was just amped to squat)
Upper: forgot to do any before squats.
5 sets of each. Did the pullups with added 10lbs
2 sets of 10 on GHR and some stretching.
5 sets of each. Pushups were hell today.


Day 11

No squats
5 sets push/pull
10 min stretching
5 more sets

Easy day, did some extra hip mobility work. Today my right shoulder was pain free. I think this is due to the reduction in pressing exercises and I have be rolling on it a lot lately.


Day 12

5 @445, Almost felt easier than the triple on Wednesday. I didn’t rush the warm up or over do it.
Upper:5 sets of each pre and post. I did 15 lbs on the pullups today. I will play with the reps on these tomorrow. Getting tired of the 10/5 set up.


Day 13

No squats
Upper: Did my workout at home, the gym closed early because of football, GO GATORS. Played with using bands on the pushups, all sets were 10 reps. Pullups:5,5,5,5,7,7,7,5,4. These are harder at home because I use a wider grip(neutral grip on monkey bars).

Tomorrow is a rest day, then we get into to real squatting.


Day 14
day off

Day 15
4x9 @370- Did the first set without a belt, and the last 3 with it.
Upper: 30 pullups/60 pushups pre, 20/40 post. played with the sets by doing 2 in a row for each, so 5 pullups, short rest, then 5 more. Same for pushups but 10s. I also did the pullups with 25lbs. Looking forward to the end of the upper body program.


Day 16

no squats
Upper: I doubled up the sets, like yesterday. Pushups were sets of 15 with a light band. Pullups were done with a wide regular grip on a fat bar, and I did a set of 10 followed by 5 more.


Day 17

5x7 @395. Belt and wrist wraps because of some pain in my wrist.
*edit: Deadlift-Worked up to a single @455
Upper: pushups 4x15 pre, 15,15,10 post (feet elevated on a ball).
Pullups-7,7,7,5+4 (rest pause) pre, 10,10 post. Still with 25 lbs.
I am looking forward to the end of this pushup/pullup program.


Day 18

No squat
Missed my one class today because I was sleeping. My workout today was broken up.
2 sets of 10 ring pullups, and light band pushups…later
2 set 10 pushups, 1 set 10 pullups (fat bar)…later
3 sets of 15 pushups…later
4 sets of 5 pullups (fat bar), slower negative…then
4 sets of 5 pushups with green band(avg/med)
*my bands are Iron Woody


Day 19

7x5 @420 Belt, but no wrists wraps(no pain either).
Upper: Pre WO 5x10 pushups with light band, then 5x5 pullups on thick bar.
Post WO same as Pre. One more day of this. Lats have grown, measurement around chest has increased about 1.5in. We’ll see if the growth continues during the supercompensation phase.


Day 20

Squats- first time doing two squat session in a row
10x3 @445, belt. First couple of sets I was getting in the grove, finished solid with speed and depth. My belt really dug in on my left hip, bruising/cuts.
*edit: Timed my rest intervals today. 3 min between sets. Usually I don’t rest long.

Upper: Did it all after my squat session. Same reps/sets/equipment as yesterday. This was the last day of the pushup/pullup routine. Contemplated running it again in the switching phase, but I don’t think I will. I might do something high frequency, but with variety. No upper body work for 5 days.


Day 21

Day 22
4x9 @ 390, belt and 3:30-4:00 min rest between sets.
10 min stretching
super fast workout


Day 23
Off, I feel like my recovery time has improved a lot, especially now that I’m not doing pushups and pullups every day.

Day 24
5x7 @415, belt and 4 min rest.
4 singles @455, clustered w/ 20 sec rest. Back felt tight after squats and I didn’t plan on going heavy. After doing 405 I got in the zone. reps at 455 felt like 365.
10 min stretching, 10 min SMR.


Day 25

7x5 @440, belt and 4-4:30 rest, got caught up talking today.
Upper: 2x8 neutral grip pullups, 2x6 neutral grip DB bench 85s(?), 3x6 push downs on lat PD 115, 1x8 wide pullups on fat bar side to side. Just some random stuff.

The next comp I planed on entering is the rawunited nationals in December, I’m still doing that but my buddies want me to do the USAPL collegiate nationals with them. I need to qualify for this so I’m going to compete in the south FL open on October 3rd. Happens to be my max week for smolov, and I only need a total of 1250 to qualify.


Great work so far. Looks like you are settling in nicely. My personal favorites were the Friday/Saturday sessions. Walking in for 10x3 with my head down and by the time I hit the 3rd set, everything loosened up and I had to tear myself from the squat rack after the last set… I need to find some time to get another cycle in.

If I may make a suggestion: you should consider adding some bench work around 75-80%, since you are doing a meet soon. Just to keep the “wheels greased”. Just my $.02. Again, great work!


I plan on benching tomorrow(Saturday), twice next week(Monday and Thursday), then Sunday, Tuesday, Comp on Saturday. All low volume, high intensity, under 12 working reps per day. Plans could change though. I can easily squat and DL 500, so I only have to bench 250. But I still plan on going all out. I will also do some low rack pulls to get ready.

Do you think the extra work should be done on squat days, more volume per day but full days off?
Do it on days I don’t Squat, spread the work out?

*I would think Rack pulls would be on better on squat days, to let the back recover.


I agree with you on the rack pulls on squat days, but be very careful. Since you will be loose and feeling good, it will be easy to over do it on the pulls. Just go with moderate weights, like you already mentioned and you should be good.

As for the extra work, it just depends on your schedule. If you can spread it out, that would be the optimal way to go.


Day 27

10x3 @465, belt, wrist wraps on last 5 (20 or 24 inch convicts). I was at a different gym, squat stands and no mirror, more like a meet set up.
Upper: Did some bench. 225x4, 265x3, 305x1. Nothing big, just getting back into it. All reps paused.

Looking forward to the switching phase. Knees, elbows and shoulders are getting beat up, not bad but sore.


Day 28

Day 29
4x9 @405, bumped it up from 400. 5 min rest, talking to my buddy about USAPL rules.
495, 4@ 545. Getting use to heavy weight on my back again.
Planned on doing rack pulls, but just did static holds on my gripper (heavy grip 200), 4 per hand.

20 min stretching and rolling(SMR).

Weighed 209.7 this morning, gotta make 198 on October 3rd. It sucks that weigh ins are 2 hours before lifting and not the day before. Not really planning on cutting calories, just change what I eat. No sweets, more veggies.