T Nation

Trying to Be a Powerlifter


#1

I’m 22 years old, 5’10, 220lbs and have been training for quite a long time. I started doing bodyweight exercises daily when I was 5, started lifting weights in my garage when i was 10 or 11, and joined a gym when I was 16. I was always more of a bodybuilder, but as of late my main interest has shifted to trying to become as strong as possible. I want to put up insane numbers.

Here is my training from today.

Bench Press:
-45 x 20
-95 x 20
-135 x 20
-185 x 10
-225 x 5 paused
-275 x 5 paused
-325 x 5 paused
-325 x 5 paused

Close Grip Bench Press:
-135 x 10
-185 x 10
-225 x whatever didn’t count
-275 x 5 paused
-275 x 5 paused

Incline Dumbbell Press:
-45 x 10
-75 x 10
-110 x 10
-110 x 8
-100 x 12
-100 x 12? I think

Machine Flyes:
-90 x whatever
-4 or 5 sets with 120lbs. Focusing on a deep stretch, shoulders back, and bringing the ELBOWS together rather than the hands.

JM Press (Smith Machine):
-several sets of 10-12 with a 45 on each side. I started to do this movement recently but I’m still learning how to do it. I feel like I fuck it up still, will work on it though.

EZ Bar Tricep Extensions (Cable):
-worked up to the whole stack (205lbs) for 12 reps, and did a couple more lighter sets
-couple sets with an underhand grip also.

Was going to do rotater cuff movements but told myself I’ll do it next time. That’s what we always tell ourselves, right?


#2

04/12/16:

Deadlifts:
-135 x 10
-225 x 5
-315 x 5
-405 x 5
-475 x 1
-535 x 4

Block Pull (blocks were 4 inches at most, gonna try from 5-6 inches next time:
-565 x 2 surprisingly low

Deficit (standing on 100lb plate):
-455 x 5

^all of the above were done with a dead stop and no straps or belt

Pullups (med grip):
-5 sets of 12, nothing crazy

Chest Supported TBar Row:
-1
-2
-3
-4 plates x 8-12 x 3

Rear Delt Flye Machine
-worked up to 150lbs for 4 sets of 12-15, I do these one arm at a time.

Face pull
-few sets with 50lbs

Hammer strength Preacher curl (one arm, sitting side ways)
-25lbs x 12
-50lvs x 10-12 for 4 sets, last set I dropped back down to a plate immediately and burned out.

One Arm Wrist Curls:
-I do these palms up, laying my forearm on a bench with a STRAIGHT BAR. My theory is that balancing the bar targets the forearms more. Who knows how correct that is.
-35 x 15
-45 x 12
-45 x 10

was going to do a couple more sets but rushed out to catch the bus. Did some grip work with the 250lb heavy gripper when I got home. Just held it for as long as I could twice with each hand. I may do some military presses tomorrow, may not. I’m still trying to figure out a good training split. If not, I’ll be back with some leg training on thursday.


#3

04/13/16

Squats (High Bar, Narrow Stance, ATG)
-Bar
-135 x 5
-225 x 5
-315 x 5
-385 x 1
-455 x 3 Huge pr, fuck yes
-405 x 5
-405 x 5
-315 x 5 paused, felt easy
-335 x 5 paused, felt not so easy

Did 2 sets of ab rolls lol. Was going to do glute ham raises but I didn’t know how to change the settings on the machine so I scrapped it. Basically just squatted and left. Surprised I hit that pr the day after deadlifting, but my back felt pretty fresh. Going to be benching and doing chest and triceps on friday and I may throw some shoulder work in afterwards.


#4

04/15/16:

Bench Press
-45
-95
-135
-185
-225
-275
-330 x 4 paused
-330 x 4 paused, tried a 5th one and almost had it. Should have had 5 on both sets but something felt off.

Close Grip
-135
-185
-225 x 10
-285 x 6 paused
-225 x 15

Weighted Dips
-BW x 20
-45 x 10
-90 x 10
-135 x 3, overconfident
-90 x 6
-45 x 10
-45 x 10

Machine Flyes
-about 6 sets with 120, deep ass stretch

JM Press
-45, 65, 85, 105, 105, 85, 85, all 10-15, keeping it light until i master the form.

Super setted rope extensions and underhand cape extensions, went back and forth 4-5 times

rotater cuff.

I’ve been doing 2 heavy days of bench per week and it may be starting to catch up to me. I think i’ll start doing 1 heavy day and 1 lighter day and see how that goes.


#5

Last couple sessions:

04/16/16:

Deadlifts:
-135 x 5
-225 x 5
-315 x 5
-405 x 5
-495 x 1
-545 x 3
-495 x 5
-495 x 5
^no belt no straps full resets

Weighted Pullups:
-BW x 10
-45 x 9
-45 x 9

Dumbbell Rows:
-100 x 10
-150 x 10
-150 x 10

Rear delt flyes, some isolations for back such as shrugs and pullovers, bicep work; curls, preacher curls, concentraation curls.

04/17/16:

Military Press Standing:
-45 x 10
-95 x 10
-135 x 10
-165 x 5
-185 x 5
-155 x 9
-155 x 8
-155 x 8
^these were done on a SHIT bar that was spinning and shaking in my hands.

Bench Press:
-6 sets of triples with low rest. 205lbs of weight and 70-80lbs of band tension. I do speed work a little differently. I lower the weight with about a 6 second eccentric, pause, then blast it up as fast as I can. I personally find it to be more effective.

Close Grip Bench
-225 x 20
-185 x at least 30, who knows
-135 x 60 lol

Weighted Dips:
-did 6 sets with my bodyweight, focusing on the stretch each rep.

Bunch of bs like dumbbell flyes, lateral raises, rope extensions and single arm db overhead extensions.


Also did some more back work today but nothing crazy. Pullups, lighter pulldowns rear and front consecutively, pendlay rows with 135, pullovers, rear delt flyes.

Body is beat up, will rest tomorrow and try to squat big on wednesday.


#6

Nice work so far. I see some similarities in our training


#7

Hey thanks man. Training is sort of spastic at this point but it’s working slowly.

04/19/16:

High Bar Narrow Squats:
-45 x 10
-135 x 5
-225 x 5
-315 x 3
-365 x 1
-405 x 1
-455 x 1
-500 x 1 big PR here. Been chasing this for a while and I knew I fuckin had it. Felt awesome, definitely one of my best moments training over the years.
-315 x 5 paused
-315 x 5 paused
-315 x 5 paused

SLDL (standing on 100lb plate)
-225 for 4 sets of like 10-12.

not much else. Dead after that single.


#8

Haven’t posted in a while obviously but I’ll resume entering my training here. 3 days after I hit that 500 high bar squat I hit a 600lb dead lift with no straps, no belt, NO CHALK, and … yeah. First time I had done that since october 2015. Anyway nothing has really been missed since the only PR I’ve hit (until today) since I last posted was a 315 x 6 front squat. Again, completely raw with no equipment.

06/20/16: Bench Press

Bench Press
-45 x 20 x 2
-95 x 20 x 2
-135 x 20 x 2
-185 x 10
-225 x whatever
-275 x 3 paused
-315 x 1 paused
-335 x 5 paused PR
-335 x 5 paused PR again

Close Grip Bench Press
-135
-185
-225
-295 x 5 paused PR
-295 x 5 paused PR again

Incline Bench Press
-225 for 4 sets between 9 and 12 reps.

Dumbbell Flyes
-5 or 6 sets with 25lb dumbbells, who cares

Rear Delt Flyes

JM Press
worked up to 135 x 10 a couple times

couple sets of chins

done.


#9

06/21/16: Squats/Back?

High Bar Narrow Squat (ATG):
-Bar x 5
-135 x 5
-225 x 5
-315 x 5
-365 x 3
-405 x 1
-425 x 5 (decent number but awful set. Kept pitching forward and knees were caving in for some fuckin reason)
-405 x 2 no endurance
-315 pause squat x 0. Walked out the weight, stepped back and one foot ended up behind the other, wtf. Racked it.
-315 pause squat x 5.

Wasn’t sure what to do, decided to deadlift. Worked up to 545 for a hard single.

Weighted Pullups
-additional 25lbs for 4 sets of 10

Pendlay Rows
-few sets with 185

Rear Delt FLyes.

Shit ass session


#10

06/22/16: Delts/Arms

Seated Behind The Neck Press (All the way down, bar touching traps)
-worked up to 225 for an easy single
-185 x 10, 8
-155 x 15 or so

Seated Laterals
-4 sets of 8-10 with 60s strict

Don’t remember what else I did but it went well for all I care.

06/23/16: Front Squats

Front Squats
-Bar x 5
-95 x 5
-135 x 5
-185 x 5
-225 x 5
-275 x 5
-335 x 3 PR
-275 x 8> VOL
-275 x 6> UME
-275 x 6> PR

Put the bar on the floor to do some stiff legged deads but some one took the bar. Got angry and left the gym lol.


#11

06/25/16: Deads

Had 50 mins to train

-135 x 5
-225 x 5
-315 x 5
-405 x 5
-505 x 3 (5 plates but 2 of them were 50lb)
-piss poor, shit bar had no knurling. Only did 1 set cause I knew I’d run out of time.

Stiff Legged deads (standing on 3.5 inch deficit)
-225 x 5
-315 x 6
-315 x 5

Weighted Pullups
-BW x 11
-25 x 6 wtf
-25 x 8 better i guess
-BW x 12
-not strong on these today

Bent Over Rows (trying a new form on these)
-135 x 10
-225 x 10
-275 x 10 x 3

Ab roller
-1 set of 10

Ran out of time


#12

06/27/16: Bench

Flat Bench
-45 x 20 x 2
-95 x 20 x 2
-135 x 20 x 2
-185 x 10
-225 x 10
-275 x 5 paused, piss easy lol
-315 x 3 paused
-365 x 3 paused
-365 x 3 paused
-365 x 3 paused

Close Grip Bench:
-185 x 10
-225 x 10
-275 x 5
-315 x 3 paused
-315 x 3 paused
-315 x 3 paused

Incline Barbell
225 for a few sets of 10-12

Flat Dumbbell Flyes
-25s x 10-15 x 4

JM Press
-worked up to 135 for a couple sets. My dumb as didn’t count the reps.

The 3 working sets of flat and close grip were all prs


#13

06/28/16: Squats

I’m going to preface this post by saying that I’m currently training at a rec centre due to transportation issues. Only gym I can train at currently without traveling over an hour.

Anyway,

High Bar Narrow Squat
-45 x 5
-135 x 5
-225 x 5
-315 x 5
-365 x 5
-405 x 5. On the 2nd rep the weight room attendant lady came and told me to put my shoes on, while I had 400lbs on my back. On the 4th rep a kid came UNDERNEATH THE BAR on the side where the weight is to put a 35 back on the squat rack. So I went down and the weight hit him. He got up and looked at me as if i did something wrong, so I yelled at him. Then I did my 5th rep.
-425 x 3. Focus was fucked up after that other set

Pause Squats:
-315 x 5
-365 x 3 (might be a PR)
-2 sets lol was in the wrong frame of mind

Stiff Legged Deadlifts (standing on a 3.5 inch deficit)
-135 x 10
-225 x 10
-315 x 6
-315 x 6
-315 x 6
-315 x 5

AB Roller:
-4 sets of 12.

Stupid squat session, training at this rec centre is really holding me back. By the way the bars are junk and spin a lot, anyone can expect to do 20lbs or so less on their working sets while using those bars.

I got a decent amount of hamstring and ab work in today but I’m not happy with the volume I’ve been doing on squatting. I’ve been thinking about doing more volume but obviously sub maximal sets. Sheiko might be an option? We’ll see.


#14

06/29/16: Shoulders

Seated Behind The Neck Press:
-45 x 20
-95 x 10
-135 x 10
-185 x 5
-205 x 5 PR
-185 x 10
-155 x ? high reps

Seated Lateral Raises:
-20 x 20
-20 x 20
-40 x 10
-60 x 10
-60 x 10
-60 x 10
-60 x 10, 40 x 10, 20 x 10 drop set

Rear Delt Flyes, Face Pulls

Dumbbell Curls with 45s, Concentration Curls with 25, Overhead DB Extensions with 35, Rope Extensions with 90lbs. Arms and shoulders looked jacked and swole after, mission accomplished.


#15

06/31/16: Latissimus Dorsi

Weighted Pullups
-BW x 10
-45 x 7 not good
-25 x 10 not bad i guess
-BW x 12 not good

Lat Pullovers
-80lb dumbbell 4 sets of 10-12

A set of 30 crunches.

Before this session I found out something really bad that really upset me. Couldn’t bring my self to train. Also I haven’t eaten in 32 hours. When I get nervous, anxious or upset about something I can’t keep any food down. I’m kind of being a pussy about it to be honest but it’s pissing me off because it’s making me lose weight and strength.

No training today.


#16

07/04/16: Chest

Flat Bench Press:
-45 x 20
-95 x 20
-135 x 20
-185 x 10
-225 x 10
-275 x 5 paused
-315 x 3 paused
-350 x 1 paused
-385 x 1 paused
-405 x 0 paused
-315 x 10 touch & go

Close Grip Bench:
-225 x 10
-275 x 6 started to feel like shit here
-275 x 7

Incline Bench Press:
-135 x 10
-185 x 10
-225 x 8
-275 x 6
-245 x 9

Dumbbell Flyes:
-20lbs x 10-15, forget how many sets.

Shouldn’t have tried 405, all my warmups felt heavier than they usually do. My plan was to do 385x2x2 this week and go for 405 next week but I honestly don’t think I would have been able to hit those 385 reps either. It’s obviously due to not eating for 48 hours on friday/saturday despite eating a ton on sunday. I’ll smash 405 next week for sure.

SESSION #2: Back/Biceps

Weighed Pullups
-BW x 10
-25 x 10
-45 x 10
-45 x 7 or 8
-25 x 10
-BW x 12 holds at the top
-felt really easy this time

Seated Cable Row:
-130 x 10
-190 x 10
-220 x 10
-220 x 10
-220 x 10

One Arm Cable Row (held the single handle in an underhand grip):
-60 x 12
-85 x 12
-85 x 12
-60 x 12

Dumbbell Pullovers
-80lbs for 4 sets, huge stretch every rep

Rear Delt Row (Cable):
-who cares

Barbell Shrugs
-135 x 10
-225 x 10
-315 x 10 (some one came up to me and said “wow, that’s a lot of weight”… lol)
-410 x 10
-510 x 10
-510 x 10 ^guess they must have been mind blown with this. Funny how easily impressed some people are

Neck Extensions
-35lbs for 4 sets

Hammer Curls (very strict, full reps, no pinwheel curls)
-20 x 10
-30 x 10
-45 x 8
-60 x 7
-60 x 6
-50 x 7 Was trying to get 10 but this was all I could muster

Cable Curls
-worked up to a drop set from 120 to 80 to 40, felt good.

I need to start hitting arms more than I do currently. When I was hitting them more often they were over 18 inches and they’re 17.5 currently. I haven’t done weighted dips in a while so I’m sure that will blow them up if I start doing those again. I want gigantic forearms too so I’ll start doing some training for those as well.

I don’t think it’s a coincidence that all the best benchers have enormous arms…


#17

07/05/16: Squats & Deadszz

High Bar Narrow Squat:
-45 x 5
-135 x 5
-225 x 5
-315 x 5
-365 x 3
-405 x 3
-435 x 3
-365 x 3 pause
-315 x 4 pause
-315 x 5 pause

Deadlifts:
-225 x 5 not bothering with 135 i dont feel the difference anyway
-315 x 5
-405 x 5
-495 x 5
^strapped dead stop

Standing Calf Raises
-BW x 200 that’s right. Every rep full stretch and contraction

Trained at a friend’s house and squatting never feels right there lol. I think the floor might be uneven tbh. I dunno, I know I’m capable of 435 for 5. But yeah, not much else today. Just a couple basic lifts and scrapped it.


#18

07/07/16: DELTS

Standing Military Press (full reset on chest every rep):
-45 x 10
-95 x 10
-135 x 10
-160 x 5
-185 x 8 let out a nice scream on the last one
-155 x 2 sets, didn’t count but they couldn’t have been over 10 reps, the 185 set had me spent.

Seated Lateral Raises
-40s x 20 x 4 sets, felt light as a feather

4 sets of rear delt flyes with 20lbs.

07/08/16:

Front Squats:
-Bar x 5
-135 x 5
-185 x 5
-225 x 5
-275 x 1
-295 x 6
-295 x 5
went 2 weeks without doing these, that always fucks me up cause I feel like I lose upper back strength and can’t keep the bar where it needs to be.

Olympic High Pulls
-135 x ?
-185 x ?
gave up, no idea how to do these

Bent Over Barbell Rows:
-wide grip, pulling bar to chest
135 for 15-20 for 5 sets

Ab Roller
-4 sets of 10-12

May go in tomorrow for a bit of lat work, may not. Gonna bench 405 on monday.


#19

03/11/16: Chest/Triceps

Flat Bench Press
-45 x 10
-95 x 10
-135 x 10
-185 x 5 paused
-225 x 5 paused, these were fast as fuck lol
-275 x 3 paused
-315 x 1 paused
-365 x 1 paused
-405 x 1 paused, YESSSSS was smooth too
-315 x 10
-225 x 25

Incline Bench Press
-135 x 10
-225 x 10
-315 x 2
-275 x 6
-225 x 10 lol was gassed

Incline Dumbbell Flys Superset/Weighted Dips
-25lb dumbbells for flyes and 45lb additional pounds for Dips for 5 sets I think

Decline pullovers
5 sets with a 40lb Dumbbell.

Underhand one arm Triceps extensions, one arm overhead extensions and rope extensions 5-6 sets each of 10-15 reps.

Chest is extremely fatigued. It locked up a couple hours ago lol had to let out a scream at work


#20

I trained a bunch last week but didn’t post any of it for some fuckin reason lmao. I did a couple bodybuilding style back/bicep sessions (still heavy though), and I think I did 185x5 on standing behind the neck press at some point. I don’t think I’ve done any back squats in like 12 days? haha. Did some fronts today though. Anyway…

07/17/16: Full Body!

Front Squats:
-95 x 5
-135 x 5
-185 x 5. Something felt off, unracked all the weights.
-Decided to put the weights back on.
-225 x 5
-275 x 5
-325 x 5 PR. On the last rep the bar fell off from where it was against my throat and rolled down into a zercher position lmao. My knees were locked out and torso upright though so I’m fuckin counting it.
-300 x 2 wtf I have no work capacity on any type of squatting. Gotta do something about that.

Incline Bench Press
-Bar x ?
-95 x ?
-135 x ?
^bunch of half reps
-185 x 10
-225 x 10
-275 x 7 PR
-275 x 7 PR again
-275 x 6
-when I began the first set I felt like I could do 10. Maybe next time.

Weighted Dips
-BW x 12
-45 x 12
-90 x 10
-135 x 8
-135 x 6, found it hard to control on this set.
-90 x 12, this set felt nice.

Pendaly Rows:
-135 x 10
-185 for 4 sets of 10-12.
-messed around and did a few olympic high pulls with 185 too.

Lat Pulldowns:
-100 x 10
-160 x 10
-220 x 8
-190 x 9
-I never do these… clearly cause I’m weak as fuck at them. Oh well, chins are better anyway XD

Lat Pullovers
-80lb dumbbell for 4 sets of 12-20

Rear Delt Flyes
-30lb dumbbells for high reps, don’t remember how many sets.

Cable Face Pulls
-high ass reps

SLDL off a 3.5 inch deficit.
-few working sets ranging from 135-185.

AB Rolls

Done! Not sure why I decided to do a full body session today but I enjoyed it. May do something like this over the course of a week:

Train
Off
Train
Off
Train
Off
Off

Squat all 3 sessions and hit up deads on the final one of the week. A couple pressing variations, tons of back shit, isolations for chest, shoulders and arms, hamstring, neck, ab and grip work thrown in whenever. Could work.