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  1. #1
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    Default J2K - Training Log

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    J2K - Training Log

    All sessions won't get posted. I've enjoyed the insights on other logs in the forums, and mine will be mainly for discussions about training. My own progress/status/milestones will be noted intermittently.

    No personal background in barbell training, with prior athletic/fitness experience limited to running, little league, shotokan and body weight exercises.

    Starting Strength was something I came across probably from the Blogfather. First purchased "Starting Strength: Basic Barbell Training" in 2011 as a gift for someone who was lifting. Attended a Starting Strength seminar with Coach Nick Delgadillo in 2014.

    Over four years after buying the book and nineteen months after going to the seminar, I finally got in the gym on December 31, 2015 ("as a Masters lifter"). First workout was SQ: 85x5x3; OP: 65x5x3; DL: 135x5.

    Many stops and starts since then.

    Stats

    Age: a bit younger than the Baby Boomers
    Height: a bit below average for U.S. adult males
    Weight: a bit below what a "grown man weighs"

    (N.B., "a bit" means less than 2%)

    2021 PRs

    DL: 410x5
    OP: 152x5x3
    BP: 214x5x3
    SQ: 285x5x3

  2. #2
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    You forgot to add - "passed so much wisdom to so many in these forums during the past couple of years."

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Anders View Post
    You forgot to add - "passed so much wisdom to so many in these forums during the past couple of years."
    Thanks, Bill--I couldn't ask for a start to this log better than getting a post from you!

  4. #4
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    Sunday, January 9, 2022

    SQ
    45x5x2
    95x5
    (warmup only)

    BP
    45x5x2
    80x5
    115x3
    150x1
    185x1
    218x1 PRino

    DL
    135x4
    225x2
    275x1
    325x1
    375x1
    415x5 PR
    (rest: 10 min.)

    On the bench, I was doing 3x5 at 218, but got only one rep (hence, PR "in name only"). Focus was not great (probably subconsciously distracted by the deadlifts I had coming up). I've been setting 3x5 bench PRs for the last six months (two pound jumps, 33 pounds overall), but only benching once a week at most (emphasizing overhead press). I'd like to keep the linear progression on bench going for a little longer. I think I will go after 218x5x3 again, hopefully with better focus, and I may think about benching twice a week.

    400 pounds or more on the platform is a new one for me--only nine times so far (including halting deadlifts), all in the last two months. I had done a 415 triple just before Christmas, so I was very glad to go back and get it for a set of five. Form on rep 4 was not great, but I went for the last one. It was a little dramatic, as I got to experience shaking, hitching and dimming vision for the first time. Highly recommend immediately taking a knee right next to the bar after that kind of excitement.

  5. #5
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    Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2022

    Squat (pause)

    45x5x2
    95x5
    135x3
    185x1
    225x1
    255x1
    280x5x3
    (rest: 7 min.)

    Overhead press

    45x5x2
    70x5
    95x3
    120x1
    140x1
    157x2x3
    (rest: 6 min.)

    For deadlift, I got up to 290 in my first year of training and not only was unable to break out of that range, but also dinged my back several times in that neighborhood. Three and one-half years of futility later, in September 2019, Coach Robert Santana threw down the gauntlet with his important deadlift articles:

    Artificially Weak Deadlifts, Part 1: Perception vs Reality | Robert Santana

    Artificially Weak Deadlifts, Part 2: The Arms | Robert Santana & Mark Rippetoe

    That got the fires burning, and I re-read the book and a lot of deadlift threads in the forums and other content, including Coach Andy Baker's video on deadlift errors:

    How to Fix Common Deadlift Technique Errors | Andy Baker

    The key takeaway on form was cranking up the tightness. On programming the key point was managing the overall stress of the squat and the deadlift together.

    My attempt at managing the stress was (1) increasing training days to four days per week, but not squatting and deadlifting on the same day, and (2) deloading the squat and babying it.

    The result was that I put 40 pounds on my deadlift in six months and was still going when the gyms closed (3/16/2020). We were out ten weeks. I restarted at 135 and eventually put another 80 pounds on my deadlift PR over the next 18 months.

    At this point, I'm ready to see what can happen on the squat. I've barely crept out of the 270 range I hit in my first year, but that is where I'm at, so we will see.

    We have a plate in the gym that is sharpied "49", but which someone mostly has rubbed off. Every time the bar feels uneven on my back, I've accidentally used that plate (including yesterday).

    The press was slow, but the third double was the best. That accords with the idea that practice helps the press, and is the reason I'd like to press three times a week (but my bench probably needs the extra day).

  6. #6
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    May 2020
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    Just a note on starting this training log.

    I have very much enjoyed and benefitted from many of the training logs posted in these forums. The Starting Strength books, website, forums, recipes, videos and most of all, the Starting Strength community, especially the coaches, are an incredible resource and have made my lifting experience possible. Putting up a log seems to me to be a modest, but community-minded response to this generosity.

    Additionally, having my own log provides a place to post reflections on training, and discuss them, without worrying too much about length or being off-topic.

    Finally, when I comment elsewhere in the forums, the log provides some context on my limited background in the weight room.

  7. #7
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    Jun 2019
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    That's pretty much the reason that I started mine. I was commenting in the main forums, but was loathe to comment on anyone's training—even positive reinforcement—since I wasn't open with what I was doing and where I was.

    In addition to having the space to add details that I don't have room for in my analog and spreadsheet logs, the discussion really has helped work through sticking points (as you know) and think about things differently. These logs are very worthwhile endeavors!

  8. #8
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    Saturday, Jan. 15, 2022

    Squat

    45x5x2
    95x5
    (warmup only)

    Bench press

    45x5x2
    80x5
    115x3
    150x1
    185x1
    [218x5x3] (couldn't unrack it)
    195x5x3
    (rest: 6 min.)

    Halting deadlift

    135x4
    225x2
    [275x1] (skipped accidentally)
    315x1
    350x1
    380x5
    (rest: 10 min.)

    Bench had been going up at the same time as, for the overhead press, I've been doing a compressed Texas method (based on the article and video from Coach Delgadillo). Now I seem to have reached the point where I need intermediate programming for the bench as well. I'd hoped to get to two plates before making the switch, but it seems not.

    I added halting deadlifts in the summer, so that I could pull twice a week. For a while, I tried to keep them ahead of my deadlift. That stalled out (and apparently was wrong), so I dropped them back and they are now progressing behind the deadlift.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by J. Killmond View Post
    I added halting deadlifts in the summer, so that I could pull twice a week. For a while, I tried to keep them ahead of my deadlift. That stalled out (and apparently was wrong), so I dropped them back and they are now progressing behind the deadlift.
    That was interesting to read, as I hadn't run across any discussion of using haltings as a second pull for a training week. They just seem too stressful, instead to be used in lieu of deadlifts, alternating with rack pulls. But I don't know, as I'm just a few sessions into using haltings.

    I found RDLs to fit that role nicely using HLM programming for the pulls. Heavy enough, with plenty of volume, but not completely draining like my haltings feel.

    re: the presses - I find that I quite like Nick's compressed TM. It helped unstick those lifts.

  10. #10
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    starting strength coach development program
    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Anders View Post
    That was interesting to read, as I hadn't run across any discussion of using haltings as a second pull for a training week. They just seem too stressful, instead to be used in lieu of deadlifts, alternating with rack pulls. But I don't know, as I'm just a few sessions into using haltings.

    I found RDLs to fit that role nicely using HLM programming for the pulls. Heavy enough, with plenty of volume, but not completely draining like my haltings feel.
    I'd thought Coach Rippetoe had said haltings were good for a second pull, if you were not power cleaning. I'm checking back through a bunch of podcasts and I'm not finding it. Two years ago he said he was doing barbell rows himself, but at other times, if I'm understanding correctly, he has said that barbell rows are not a good substitute for cleans, since they are themselves a technical movement. Halting deadlifts are no joke, but so far they are a tiny bit more manageable than a full deadlift. I get the concept of totally swapping out deadlifts for the halting/rack pull combo, but I'm hoping to keep deadlifting for now (inspired by Barry Charles).

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