Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Training Log - Session #5


190kg - 18 reps, within 30 minutes

Good Morning5x12

Db Curl - 5x20

Tough session today. Ended up with the same amount of deadlift reps as last time. Gonna have to fight for every rep on these, as deadlift gains do not come easily for me. 

Monday, April 29, 2013

Training Log - Session #4


BTN Strict Press
70kg – 2x5
80kg – 2x3
85kg – x1
87.5kg – x1
85kg – x1

BTN Push Press
90kg – x2
95kg – x2
100kg – x1

Ring Dips
Bodyweight x10
Bodyweight +20kg – 5x7
Bodyweight x10

Bodyweight – 85kg

BTN Presses were done with a 3 sec pause with the weight overhead on each rep. Triceps felt pretty fatigued from yesterday’s workout, although this session ended up being decent. Just putting in the work, really. Still suck at push presses.
Bodyweight has been fluctuating around 82-85kg, with noticeable reductions in bodyfat each week, while strength is increasing in most all of my lifts. Gonna try like hell to keep this progress rolling.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Training Log - Session #3

Flat Bench
60kg - x10
85kg - x8
100kg - x6
115kg - 4x6  Volume PR

3sec Pause Back Squat
110kg - x1
130kg - x1
140kg - x1
150kg - 6x1

Morning Body-weight - 83kg

Bench Press is moving up nicely. Very happy with the volume PR. Still working with 150kg on the pause squats, which can be a total bitch, depending how sore the legs are from sessions 1 & 2. 

Oh and another plug for the BioRhythm Diet, this was my dinner last night;

2,250 calories total, Of course I ate the whole thing.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Training Log - Session #2

Ring Pull-up / Chin-up
Bodyweight x20, 20, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10 (100 total reps)

Romanian Deadlift

110kg - x3
120kg - x3
130kg - x3
137.5kg - 5x3

Barbell Shrug

145kg - x20
190kg - 5x20 +straps

Bodyweight - 84.5kg

Solid day of training. Making good progress on on the RDLs & Shrugs. Put together a training highlight video... first time doing this, so bear with me. 

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Training Log - Session #1

Back Squat
140kg – 5x5

Strict Press
80kg – x5,4
85kg – x3,2,2
93.5kg – x1,1,X,X

Glute-Ham Raise
Bodyweight - 3x12

Bodyweight - 84.25kg

Back Squats have been reset to 5x5 due to stagnation on the previous protocol. Also, decided to be very strict on my Press technique from now on. Each rep started from a dead-stop in the rack position and 3 second hold overhead, at the top of every rep. This was markedly more difficult and drained me quickly, as you can tell by the reduced reps and the misses. Building my strength/reps back up using this sort of technique will no-doubt be beneficial. 
“Know this – everything is possible so long as you continually believe nothing is impossible. Breaking barriers daily in your training will eventually cause yourself to believe you are a goddamn superman”  – Donny Shankle

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Training Log - Session #6

Flat Bench Press
135kg - 3x2
136kg - 3x2  PR
115kg - x6,6,5

Ring Pull-Ups
Bodyweight +20kg - x6,6,6,6,5
Bodyweight x10

Bicep Tricep superset

Morning Bodyweight - 84.7kg

Had a lot of fun during this session. Feels good to be up around 300lb for reps on the bench. Energy & Strength were good considering the deadlift session yesterday.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Training Log - Session #5


190kg - 18 reps, within 30 minutes

Solid session. 3 rep improvement over last workout.

Training Log - Session #4


BTN Strict Press
70kg – 2x5
80kg – 2x3
85kg – 2x1
87.5kg – x1

BTN Push Press
90kg – x2
95kg – x2
100kg – x2

Ring Dips
Bodyweight x10, 10
Bodyweight +20kg – 4x7
Bodyweight x10, 10

Bodyweight – 85.5kg

Some decent lifting today. Push-presses are improving little by little, but I’m still pretty horrible at them.

Friday, April 19, 2013

“If you train more than the next man, and you’ve got the god-given talent, and you like to eat, you’re gonna win” –Donny Shankle

Thursday, April 18, 2013

The BioRhythm Diet

This post will outline my favorite dietary protocol and eating pattern, called the BioRhythm Diet. I will not get too far into the sciency stuff, as Borge Fagerli (creator of the diet) has already done that. As a matter of fact, all of his work is quite stellar, so if you are interested in more of his diet & training theory check out his blog and all of his works posted in the articles section of MyRevolution.no (You will have to run these through Google translate, as they are in Norwegian, but trust me it’s worth the hassle).
So here are the main principles of the diet, and my experiences while using it.

The take home points of this protocol

-During the first part of the day (all meals prior to weight training), focus on consuming Proteins & Fats, while keeping Carbohydrate intake low (<30g). Think meat & whole eggs with some additional Fats such as butter (grass-fed), or healthy oils (coconut / macadamia / olive). Also, be sure to consume some veggies and/or light fruit (berries or melon) with each meal.

-Pre-Training, consume 10g of BCAA (or 30g Whey) and a small amount of Carbs from fruit (5-20g).

-Post-Training, consume 30-50g Protein from a mixture of whey & casein, along with 30-50g Carbs from fruit. Including some saturated Fats (~5-15g) from dairy in this meal can be beneficial, as studies have shown this to increase Protein synthesis (link).    

-Eat the absolute majority of your Carbohydrate intake at dinner time, about 2-3 hours before bed. Fat intake should be kept somewhat low during this meal, so focus on lean meats such as chicken breast or beef top-round. My go-to Carb sources in this meal are potatoes, white rice & gluten-free pancakes, but feel free to experiment to find what works best for you.

The benefits I have noticed

-Steady energy all morning and throughout the day. No peaks and valleys like most people suffer due to a High-Carb breakfast.

-Reduced need for morning caffeine. I still have a morning coffee, but just one cup typically fuels me all day, rather than having 2-3 cups throughout the entire day.

-Simplicity. I can eat 3 square meals a day (plus pre/post-workout nutrition) that are delicious & satisfying. No hunger pangs every 2-3 hours. Long-gone are the days of packing Tupperware to eat 5-6 small meals per day.

-Deep, Restful Sleep. In this aspect the BioRhythm diet is pretty much un-matched by anything else that I’ve ever tried. There is nothing better than hitting the sack after crushing a huge Carb-laden meal. It’s truly the best sleep I’ve had in my lifetime. Anecdotally, I believe that I’m actually getting deeper into REM sleep using this diet, because on a regular basis I am having very vivid, almost lucid dreams which don’t usually happen for me.

-Wake up feeling well rested. Obviously a byproduct of a great night of sleep.

-Loss of body-fat. This is surprising considering that my Carb intake is HIGHER than that of my standard diet.

-Increased performance in the gym. Likely because of increased Carb intake, although regardless of the low Carb intake prior to the actual training session.

This is what a typical day of eating looks like for me

Breakfast: Omelet, 4 egg + ½ cup egg-whites w/ mushrooms & salsa, cooked in coconut oil
Lunch: 1 cup F-F Greek Yogurt + 15g Whey Iso + 15g Coconut Oil & Fiber supplement
Pre-Training: 10g BCAA + 2 mandarins
Post-Training: 15g Whey Iso + ½ cup F-F Greek Yogurt & 10g Coconut Oil
Dinner: Chicken Breast w/ 2lb+ (yes, pounds…) Basmati rice or Yukon potato
(Occasionally I will eat a carton of ice cream along-side the rice/potatoes)

So there you have it. A simple eating pattern that allows me to feel great, while losing body-fat and increasing performance in the gym. Do yourself a favor and TRY IT!
If you have questions or would like help setting up your own training & diet, leave a comment or contact me.

Training Log - Session #3

Flat Bench
60kg - x10
85kg - x6
102.5kg - x6
113.5kg - 4x6

3sec Pause Back Squat
110kg - x1
130kg - x1
140kg - x1
150kg - 6x1

Morning Body-weight - 85.5kg

Really good session today. Energy was up and weights were moving quickly. Improved on my #'s from last week. 

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Training Log - Session #2

Ring Pull-up / Chin-up
Bodyweight x15, 12, 12, 12, 10, 10, 10, 10, 9 (100 total reps)

Romanian Deadlift
135kg - 5x3

Barbell Shrug
185kg - 5x20 +straps

Good Session today. Energy levels were up and improved performance compared to this session last week. 

Training Log - Session #1

Strict Press
80kg – 2x5
85kg – 3x3
93kg – 2x1

Back Squat
150kg – 5x3

Klokov Press
40kg – 5x8

Close-Grip Push-ups

Solid day of training. Nothing to write home about, but not too bad either. Added a little bit of extra overhead volume with some light Klokov presses and decided to go old-school with tricep accessory work.   

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Current Training Schedule

I've decided to start logging my training on the blog, so with that, I want to provide the actual protocols I am using.

-Rest days are taken on an as-needed basis. Typically I just take Sundays off
-Training poundage is increased whenever the sets become too easy

Session One

Back Squat- 5 x 3 x 325, 1xMAXx225, 1xMAXx135
Strict Press- 2 x 5 x 175, 3 x 3 x 185, 3 x 1 x 200+

Session Two

Shrugs- 1xMAXx135, 1xMAXx225, 1xMAXx315, 2xMAXx405, 2xMAXx455, 4xMax495
Stiff Leg Deads- 5x3
Pullups- 100 reps, Any sets/reps

Session Three

Bench Press- 4x6 with 8RM
3-sec’ Pause Back Squat- 6x1, using Mondays 5x3 weight

Session Four

BTN Strict Press- 2 x 5 x 155, 2 x 3 x 170, 3 x 1 x 190+
BTN Push Press- 3 x 2 w/ Top Single or More
Dips- 6 x 5

Session Five

Deadlift- 85-90% 1RM x 1, as many as possible in 30 minutes

Session Six

Bench Press- 6 x 2 x 285, 3 x max x 255
Chins- 5x5 with however much weight you can do for 5 reps
Arms- 3-5 x10

Accessory Moves*
Ab wheel
Glute Ham raise
Face-Pull / Rear Delt Work

*Accessory movements are typically done at the end of a workout, when and if I feel like it. Occasionally I will do a morning workout comprised solely of accessory moves. All heavy work is done in the evenings.

Training Log - Session #6

Flat Bench Press
132.5kg – 3x2
133.5kg – 3x2
115kg – 3x6

Pull-Ups on Rings
Bodyweight +20kg – 5x5
Bodyweight – 1x10

Biceps / Triceps super-set
5x10 each

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Thinking differently about the Deadlift

Throughout my training career the deadlift has been the hardest lift for me to increase, bar none. It seems to be a real stubborn old bastard with quite the ‘voodoo’ to it. By that I mean, one workout I’d walk into the gym and kick serious ass, while the next workout the same weights (sometimes even lighter weights) feel as though they are welded to the floor. That’s what I call Deadlift Voodoo, and let me tell you, that shit is frustrating.

To give a brief history, the absolute majority of my deadlift training over the years has been thus;
-3to5x5, sets across
-3sets 3-6, RPT style
-Top set of 3-5 reps, followed by lots of RDL work

These are not listed in any particular order; the methods were rotated / changed however I saw fit at the time, in order to keep progressing.

For the last month I have been consulting with my coach Jamie Lewis (chaosandpain.blogspot.com). On top of a complete overhaul to my training, he led me to try an interesting method for training the deadlift which I will outline below.

First, a quick tangent. When most consider manipulations to be made during training they focus on increasing one or more of a few variables; Sets, Reps and Poundage. Now there is nothing wrong with this approach. In fact, increasing these variables (in some fashion, over time) is the key to success. There is one variable that is commonly overlooked though. That variable is TIME. Increasing your work output with a given poundage, within a given time period CAN and WILL make you stronger.

This is the workout recommended to me by my coach;

Singles with 85-90% of 1RM, as many as possible within 30 minutes

Your rest periods between singles are completely up to you, basically on the fly. When you feel ready to do so, pull another rep. When you can achieve 23 or more repetitions within 30minutes, you are to increase the weight 10-20lbs and work your way back up. Since implementing this approach I have been making steady gains week to week, to the point where I am now at my strongest deadlift to date. I have also been able to avoid any and all instances of Deadlift Voodoo, entering my workouts feeling strong and pulling fast.

So that’s it. When you want to try something new for deadlift training, I highly suggest this method.  

Keep it simple, brutal and effective.