What to do about my bench? What to do about my bench?

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Thread: What to do about my bench?

  1. #1
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    Default What to do about my bench?

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    I've been doing a 4DAW split with 2 upper body days:
    Mon: Bench 1x5, Presses 4x5, Pull ups, Dips
    Thurs: Press 1x5, Bench 4x5, Chin ups, Dips


    My bench went from:
    90kg-100kg 1x5
    102.5kg-105kg 1x3
    107.5kg 2x2
    110kg 1, 1 (spotter assisted 2nd reps but I don't think I had it)

    I originally intended to cycle through the rep ranges (1x5, 1x3, 2x2, 5x1) but it seems I've gone through them in a matter of weeks. 2 sessions with triples and fail? 1 session with doubles and then fail?

    My volume weight has stayed at ~83% of intensity weight

    My weight's not gone up much and I'm sitting at 98kg.

    What should I do with this? Drop to singles? Microload (been making 2.5kg jumps so far)? Shut up and eat some food?

    Thanks & sorry for the messy post

  2. #2
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    Try upping the weight on your volume day. I would bet that 90% of your 5RM still would not feel terribly heavy on a 5x5, or a 4x5 in your case. I suspect you aren't getting in enough work to drive progress.

  3. #3
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    Also, don't be afraid to make smaller jumps than 2.5 kg.

  4. #4
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    Hi Kregna,

    Our bench numbers are pretty close. Here's what I've been doing lately: alternating 5x1,3x2 and 2x3 weekly. Started with a split where I've been also doing 5x5s, but now I do only the 1s, 2s and 3s on my heavy day, while I'm doing presses on the light day, and inclines on the medium. I've been hitting some bench PRs with this. Check my log, if you'd like.

  5. #5
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    Thanks Tom. I will definitely give the higher volume weights a try and maybe make it 5x5 rather than 4x5.

    What would you recommend I do for my next intenstiy bench? Re-attempt 2x2 at the same weight? De-load to a 1x5 / 1x3 weight?

    Quote Originally Posted by seti View Post
    Hi Kregna,

    Our bench numbers are pretty close. Here's what I've been doing lately: alternating 5x1,3x2 and 2x3 weekly. Started with a split where I've been also doing 5x5s, but now I do only the 1s, 2s and 3s on my heavy day, while I'm doing presses on the light day, and inclines on the medium. I've been hitting some bench PRs with this. Check my log, if you'd like.
    Hi Seti

    Thanks for the info, looking at your log now. Do you feel like cycling those rep ranges is slow progress or does it still feel reasonable? That was my only worry

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kregna View Post
    Thanks Tom. I will definitely give the higher volume weights a try and maybe make it 5x5 rather than 4x5.

    What would you recommend I do for my next intenstiy bench? Re-attempt 2x2 at the same weight? De-load to a 1x5 / 1x3 weight?
    Pick something you can get for five. Not a bone-on-bone 5 RM, but something heavy-ish. Then take 90% of that and do your volume day with that weight. Work up from there in 1.25 kg increments. I bet you will be able to ride that for a while.

  7. #7
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    Thanks Tom

    Can I ask how the volume weight changes when intensity changes from 5 reps to a 3/2/1? Would it stop being 90% of the intensity weight at that point?

  8. #8
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    What will likely happen is that you will gradually increase the spread between your volume day and intensity day. You would add 2.5 pounds to your intensity day and perhaps alternate between adding 2 pounds and 2.5 pounds to your volume day. However, in the beginning, you'll probably just add 2.5 pounds to both and everything will be fine. I would ride fives on intensity until I couldn't, then threes, then twos, then five singles with the bar weight climbing every week. Don't be surprised if you don't get a ton of mileage out of triples and doubles. I wouldn't worry too much about the percentage difference between volume and intensity so long as it stays at around 10% or greater. I wouldn't change my volume day weights just because my intensity day repetition scheme began to change. If I could find some extra time, I have something brewing on this very topic.

  9. #9
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    starting strength coach development program
    Thanks again!

    I'll keep an eye out for it

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