Recreational Lifting with Misanthrope Recreational Lifting with Misanthrope

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Thread: Recreational Lifting with Misanthrope

  1. #1
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    Jul 2007
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    Default Recreational Lifting with Misanthrope

    • starting strength seminar october 2021
    • starting strength seminar december 2021
    • starting strength seminar february 2022
    Figured I might as well have a journal here and do my part in helping to keep the place active. I'm known to be fairly long-winded, so I'll try to keep this as brief as possible.

    Introduction
    Name: Matt
    Age: 25
    Height: 5'11
    Weight: 210-215
    Body fat: Yes

    I began lifting in January of '06. I spent a number of months improvising and trying a couple of different programs, unsure of what I should be doing. After devoting a lot of time reading and research, I began to get a better handle on what I was doing. In July of '06 I began the now infamous "Starting Strength" program. This lasted 20 weeks and finally ended in November. My lifts were absolutely horrible when I began this program. Although they were still far from respectable by the end of it, I had made some good improvements, nonetheless. I finsihed off the year with a Starr 5x5 program.

    In January of '07 I began an Iron Addict program that I made little progress with. I became increasingly interested in experimenting and trying new things in a better effort to design my own training plans rather than follow a cookie cutter designed by someone else. I've spent the rest of this year experimenting with upper/lower splits to mixed results. It has been a great learning process for me, as each adjustment worked better than the last.

    I've been using my current format since May/June. It has been by far the most productive for me, as I am getting a better idea of what makes me tick. My current BB.com journal has been active since January. It can be found at this link: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=1006795

    I will post all four sessions of my most recent microcycle to give new readers a good idea of how my training looks at the moment.

    Current Lifts
    My lifts are still weak by weight lifting standards, but I've been making tremendous headway over the last few months. I see no reason to list them here since they will be posted in my workout logs for everyone to see. Although I've been lifting consistently for a year, I consider myself a begginer. I'm inching closer and close to what I would consider intermediate status for me.

    Training Goals
    One point I want to make very clear is that I consider myself a recreational lifter. I have no interest or intention of competing in bodybuilding or powerlifting. My goal is simply to become bigger, stronger, and to feel good and lead a healthy lifestyle. Also, while I consider lifting to be an important part of my life, it is not my entire life. I have no target bodyweight or bodyfat percentage I am shooting for. I just want to look in the mirror and be satisfied with what I see. I also try to avoid getting caught up in chasing numbers. I prefer to measure progress from workout to workout, and then see how I have improved over time. Most importantly, I want to continue to learn as much as I can. I am never satisfied with how much I know, thus I am always striving to improve my knowledge.

    I'm sure there are other things I could discuss, but I'm tired of typing and most of you have probably stopped reading by now anyway.

    I'll copy and paste my last week of workouts from my BB.com journal.

  2. #2
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    First.

  3. #3
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    August 10

    Matt's Upper/Lower, Week Ten
    Micro cycle 10: Session 1 of 4
    Upper Body - Horizontal Emphasis

    Decline Bench Press
    5x185*
    5x185*
    5x175
    10x150

    Barbell Rows
    6x150
    6x150
    6x140
    10x120

    Hammer Strength Incline Press
    8x90 (per side)
    8x90
    8x80 (this would have been the better weight to use)

    Lat Pulldowns
    8x130
    8x130
    8x130

    Cable Laterals
    12x25
    12x25

    Tricep Pushdowns
    10x80
    10x80

    NOTES
    Very quality session today. I'm liking the changes I've made to the format; though my workout times are getting longer as the weight on the strength movements gets heavier.

    Decline bench was great. I really didn't have to struggle much for either set of 185. A plate and a quarter was my goal on flat bench, but I'm happy to have reached it on decline. Six reps are going to be a grind next week, but after today I'm liking my chances. I thought I could try for at least 6 reps on the 175 backoff set, but that wasn't happening, lol. This shows me how important this set is. Had it been another set of 185, I wouldn't have hit all my reps.

    Barbell rows were tough. I got all my reps but it was hard to keep form this time. I knew six reps weren't going to be easy, though. Next time I may bump the weight 5 lbs, but try for 2x4 and stay at 155 for an extra week.

    I tried another new exercise in the form of cable laterals. These felt very smooth and I liked how I was able to keep tension on the muscle throughout the movement. I'm keeping these around for a while.

    Ten weeks down. My training is still going very well. This is the longest sustained progress I have EVER experienced with my lifting. That's pretty damn satisfying.

  4. #4
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    Jul 2007
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    August 12

    Matt's Upper/Lower, Week Eleven
    Micro cycle 10: Session 2 of 4
    Lower Body Workout - Deadlift Emphasis


    Warm-ups not listed

    Deadlifts
    3x285
    3x285
    3x285

    Leg Press
    12x4 plates+10 lbs (per side)
    20x3 plates+10 lbs (per side) Got it this time

    Barbell Curls
    8x85
    8x85
    8x85

    Pull-throughs
    10x80
    10x80

    Donkey Calf Raises
    12x450
    12x450
    12x450

    NOTES
    Good workout, but nothing outstanding. I did everything I was supposed to. I'm getting a little tired of barbell curls, so I think I'm going to switch back to the EZ bar for a while. They both hit my bicep pretty well. I don't like the Sunday workouts much, as I'm not able to get in until the afternoon. They'll probably stop once football season starts, unless there's no early game on a particular day.

  5. #5
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    August 14

    Matt's Upper/Lower, Week Eleven
    Micro cycle 10: Session 3 of 4
    Upper Body - Vertical Emphasis


    Overhead Press
    4x120*
    4x120*
    5x110
    12x85 (buuuuurn)

    Hammer Grip Chin-ups (new grip)
    10xBW
    10xBW
    10xBW
    10xBW

    Incline Dumbbell Press
    7x60s*
    7x60s*
    10x50s
    10x50s

    Single Arm Cable Rows
    12/12x60
    12/12x60
    12/12x60

    Dips
    3xBW
    3xBW
    3xBW
    3xBW
    3xBW

    NOTES
    Awesome workout today. Outstanding. I was drenched in sweat by the end of it. I've been feeling drained from the excessive heat lately so I wasn't sure what to expect. It is safe to say I surpassed my expectations for this session

    Overheads - So I dd 2x6x115 last time, and I've been microloading my weight increases lately. This time, rather than microload the increase I decided to try a five lb jump with reduced reps, like I've been doing on my bigger lifts. The weight felt heavy, but I managed to get my target reps. The burn set was mind blowing. Not sure how the rep increases will go in the coming weeks, but I can always adjust if need be. I'm 15 lbs from 135 now.

    Hammer chins - After using medium-close grip supine chins for several months, I decided it was time to change grips. I wasn't feeling chins for the last couple of weeks, so I thought a grip change could help with that. It had been many months since I used a hammer grip so I stuck with bodyweight sets to gauge where I was at. Very smooth for 4x10. These felt great for my back. Weight will be added next time.

    Incline DB - Added a rep each for the heavy sets. The last burn set was insane.

    Single arm cable rows - These felt great again. Between these and hammer chins, I'm expecting some quality work for my back.

    Dips - Got 15 reps in this time. I'll try to add more reps next time. They felt a bit less awkward than last session but will still take some getting used to.

  6. #6
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    August 16

    Matt's Upper/Lower, Week Eleven
    Micro cycle 10: Session 4 of 4
    Lower Body Workout - Squat Emphasis


    Warm-ups not listed

    Squats
    6x235*
    6x235*
    6x225
    6x215

    Romanian Deadlifts
    7x215*
    7x215
    7x215

    Leg Extensions
    10x120
    10x120

    Seated Hamstring Curls
    10x120
    10x120

    Dumbbell Hammer Curls
    8x40s
    8x40s
    8x35s

    NOTES
    Today's workout was great. Very punishing on my legs. The last squat reps at 235 were tough. Since it was my last session with 235, I increased the overall workload by raising one of my back-off sets to 225. It's time to bump the weight again; and I'm going for 245x4x2 next week.
    Everything else felt good and went as planned. I'm a little suprised at the rate at which I seem to be improving with hammer curls. The next session, the last for the week, will be Saturday with the start of the new micro cycle.

  7. #7
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    Today's workout

    Matt's Upper/Lower, Week Eleven
    Micro cycle 11: Session 1 of 4
    Upper Body - Horizontal Emphasis


    Decline Bench Press
    6x185*
    6x185*
    6x175
    8x155

    Barbell Rows
    4x155*
    4x155*
    5x145
    12x125

    Hammer Strength Incline Press
    8x80 (per side)
    8x80
    8x80

    Lat Pulldowns
    12x130
    12x130
    10x130

    Cable Laterals
    8x30
    8x30

    Tricep Pushdowns
    12x80
    12x80

    NOTES
    This was everything a great workout should be. It was demanding. It pushed me to my limits. I had to fight for the last reps. My chest and back were pumped to hell.

    Decline bench was easily the highlight of the session. That first set of 185 was pretty tough, so I asked for a spotter on the second set. I cranked out five reps and knew I had the sixth in the bag. It was a matter of willpower at that point. I held the bar above me for a few moments and told my spotter I had one more. I sucked in some air and brought the bar down to my chest. It was a fight. My spotter was about to reach in to help (against my instructions) and I told him I had it. I got it. It felt damn good. I'm going for 190x4 next time.

    Dropping down to four reps on rows for the five lb increase was a wise move. Those were definitely a challenge. We'll see how 2x5 goes next time. The burn set felt great. My lats were throbbing.
    Another week in the books. This one ended on a very good note.

  8. #8
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    Jul 2007
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    'Bout time.

    I must say that Kik is damn quick. Rhymes too, doesn't it?

    Quote Originally Posted by Misanthrope View Post
    Body fat: Yes

    Best line in the whole intro. I resemble that remark. Matt, last I recall, you were pretty much keeping weight relatively constant. Is this still the case? Any thoughts about that vs. doing controlled bulking and dieting cycles?

    I've got to say that it helps seeing a bunch of workouts on one page. Following as many journals as I do it often takes too much research time for me to go back and look to see the trends in someone's workouts plus their overall routine.

  9. #9
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    Jul 2007
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    Upper lowers FTW. Keep it coming man. (hey, at least I didn't call you bro).

  10. #10
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    Jul 2007
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    starting strength coach development program
    All I can say is you've made some outstanding progress in the time you've been training.

    I'm impressed with your all around balance, by your numbers I don't see any noticeable imbalance's with your training and strength levels which in the long run is going to pay out a lot for you.

    Kyle

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