Blastin' the CNS Blastin' the CNS

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Thread: Blastin' the CNS

  1. #1
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    Default Blastin' the CNS

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    I stalled for the second time, at the same weights, after about 5 months on SS, so I thought it might be time for a change. I had been intrigued by Pavel's "Russian Bear" routine for several months, and I was inspired to give it a try after reading Campbell's "Wrestling with the bear" thread in the "Programming" forum. The huge volume of deadlifting seems a little CNS-intensive, but it seems like nervous-system capacity should be a trainable quality, so I'll give it a shot. I'm back on the GOMAD and eating like it's my job. Summary of the first week:

    8/9/10
    Deadlift
    345 x 5
    310 x 5
    275 x 5 x 15 sets
    Press
    160 x 5
    140 x 5
    130 x 5 x 10 sets

    8/10/10
    Deadlift
    350 x 5
    315 x 5
    280 x 5 x 15 sets
    Press
    160 x 5
    145 x 5
    130 x 5 x 20 sets

    8/12/10
    Deadlift
    355 x 5
    315 x 5
    280 x 5 x 15 sets
    Press
    165 x 5
    145 x 5
    135 x 5 x 20 sets

    8/13/10
    Deadlift
    360 x 5
    320 x 5
    285 x 5 x 15 sets
    Press
    165 x 5
    150 x 5
    135 x 5 x 15 sets

  2. #2
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    Will be interested to see how you get on with this volume. What % of your 5 rep max did you start on?

    Edit: ok just read the link you start on weight you can do for 7 reps. What weight did your deadlift get up to on SS?
    Last edited by JC400; 08-14-2010 at 04:13 AM.

  3. #3
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    I might be showing my inexperience, but my instinct would be to keep at least some token squatting in there, just to keep flexibility and the form right. Particularly considering the problems you've had with them in the past.

    Even 1 set at 135 at the beginning to warm up.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by JC400 View Post
    Will be interested to see how you get on with this volume. What % of your 5 rep max did you start on?

    Edit: ok just read the link you start on weight you can do for 7 reps. What weight did your deadlift get up to on SS?
    I recorded my SS log here: "Recovering from 6 years behind a desk..."

    My best set of deadlifts on SS was 390x5. I selected the starting weight of 345lb because it would lead to a 400lb workset weight after three weeks of 5lb per workout progression. It also happened to be about right for a 7RM.

    The volume is only going to be this large for about three weeks, with the idea of increasing muscle mass to help me get through a strength plateau. Then I'll switch to a lower-volume program to once again focus primarily on increasing strength.

    Quote Originally Posted by slowjoe View Post
    I might be showing my inexperience, but my instinct would be to keep at least some token squatting in there, just to keep flexibility and the form right. Particularly considering the problems you've had with them in the past.

    Even 1 set at 135 at the beginning to warm up.
    This seems like a good idea. I had done a really big squat reset and was working up in weight slowly, focusing on fixing my form. I'll try including some light squats in my warmup for this workout, in line with the progression I was already doing, but for only one or two worksets.
    Last edited by NKT; 08-19-2010 at 04:18 PM. Reason: corrected deadlift number

  5. #5
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    8/16/10
    squat (warmup and form work)
    135 x 5,5
    155 x 5
    185 x 5

    deadlift (pain and masochism work)
    365 x 5
    325 x 5
    290 x 5 x 15 sets - 60 seconds rest between sets

    Rested about 15 minutes after the deadlifts, waiting for the room to stop spinning.

    press
    170 x 5
    150 x 5
    140 x 5 x 18 sets- 60 seconds rest between sets

  6. #6
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    8/17/10
    deadlift
    370 x 3
    330 x 5
    295 x 5 x 5 sets

    press
    170 x 5
    155 x 5
    140 x 5 x 5 sets

    I'll repeat these weights on Thursday.

  7. #7
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    good lord you've got quite the press.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by misspelledgeoff View Post
    good lord you've got quite the press.
    Thanks!

  9. #9
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    8/18/10
    Deadlift
    370 x 3 (probably could have ground out 2 more, but wanted to save something for the 80% volume sets)
    330 x 5
    295 x 5 x 10 sets

    Press
    170 x 5
    155 x 5
    140 x 5 x 22 sets

    I got a good night of sleep and it did a lot of good. Feeling much better than yesterday so I decided to lift rather than take a rest day.

    All of the hip muscles responsible for the deadlift lockout are feeling pretty trashed; the last 6 inches of the movement were really interesting in the final few sets.

  10. #10
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    starting strength coach development program
    8/20/10
    deadlift
    375 x 5
    335 x 5
    300 x 5 x 10 sets

    press
    175 x 5,3,2
    140 x 5 x 15 sets

    I've been doing a bit more research into Pavel's "Russian Bear" program and came away with some interesting (to me) observations...

    1. The English-language Power to the People was (poorly) translated to Russian. It just seems a little funny to me that a book written in English by a native Russian speaking author would be poorly translated to... Russian. I couldn't find any indication whether or not the excessive use of "comrade" and "the party is always right" made it into the Russian version. (By the way, the book is fantastic despite a mildly irritating presentation style.)

    2. The Russian language version suggests 5/3/2 reps with a 7RM weight rather than 5 at 7RM followed by 5 at 90% of that weight. I tried the 5/3/2 alternative for today's presses and it felt pretty good; stayed a couple of reps short of failure on each set.

    3. The tendency to take a really good training program and fuck it up by trying to do a little bit of everything at once is a very common human flaw. In this case, people wanted to turn a fantastic muscle-building and work-capacity-increasing program into:
    • a fat loss program
    • a program to increase bench press and bicep curl strength, or
    • a hybrid "recomposition" program to gain a bit of muscle, lose a little fat, and increase aerobic conditioning.


    4. No matter how many times I see people swinging the things around, kettlebells still seem a little ridiculous to me.

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