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Thread: Larry's Novice SS Log

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2017
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    Hamburg, Germany
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    Default Larry's Novice SS Log

    • wichita falls texas june seminar date
    • las vegas nevada august seminar
    Greetings from Hamburg, Germany.

    I'm Larry, I practice Wun Hop Kuen Do Kung Fu, and one day I decided that the strength conditioning we do there (mainly bodyweight routines) was not enough to make me stronger. So I started with Stronglifts 5x5, gave it a run last year, stopped due varied reasons and restarted again in early february. I stuck with SL, I think, for fear of the Power Clean :-). A couple of weeks ago I decided I want to learn the power clean and someday also the power snatch and the olympic lifts, so I thought it was a good point to switch completely to Starting Strength.

    Current Numbers:
    • Age: 39
    • Body Weight: 79,2kg
    • Body Fat: 18,2%


    Starting Numbers (Feb 21st 2017)
    • Squat: 75kg
    • Bench Press: 40kg
    • Bent-Over Row: 40kg (remember, I was doing Stronglifts 5x5)
    • Press: 30kg
    • Deadlift: 85kg


    Current Numbers (as of Friday Sept. 15, 2017)
    • Squat: 120kg
    • Bench Press: 67,5kg
    • Press: 43,5kg
    • Deadlift: 130kg
    • Power Clean: 47,5kg
    • Bent-Over Row: 65kg (since I switched to SS, I don't plan to keep increasing this, but I might from time to time give it a try)


    I found difficult to progress on the Press with 2,5kg increases per workout, so I bought some 1/2kg plates in order to increase in 1kg steps. I suspect part of my difficulty was due to poor form, which I'm trying to correct now in order to bring it to the Press 2.0 format, and also due to the 5x5 volume in SL. Now that I switched to 3x5 I hope to better progress on the Presses. But in General I have the feeling my upper body is way weaker in comparison to my lower body. Anyway, have to keep toiling at it.

    Today's Workout (Mon. Sep 18th 2017)
    • BW: 79,2kg
    • BF%: 18,2
    • Squat: 122,5kg 5/5/3
    • Press: 44,5kg 3x5
    • Deadlift: 135kg 1x5


    Notes:

    • Bought a pair of weightlifting shoes: adidas powerlifting 3.1. First time used them, they feel great
    • I don't think the belt is helping me with the DL, it mostly just annoys me. So I think I'll have to avoid using the 4in Belt for deadlifting, or buy a narrower one just for DL)
    • The Squat @ 122,5kg is a PR for me, but after the second set I really felt my right quadriceps was going to give up, like I was going to have cramp. So I rested longer (6 instead of 2 minutes) and gave it a shot at the 3rd set, but I felt again the right quad really tight after the 3rd Rep, so I decided to stop there just in case. Will attempt again the 122,5kg on Wednesday anyway.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2017
    Location
    Hamburg, Germany
    Posts
    91

    Default

    About the belt and the deadlift: Yes I've read and listened to Mark's advice (The Belt and the Deadlift | Mark Rippetoe). Just wanted to avoid having to buy a second belt.
    Calories, calories. As of this writing (almost 10pm here in GErmany), I have already 3000kcal on my belly and my Forerunner 235 says I should eat at least 800 more kcal to be at least at maintenance. So Back to the Kitchen to see what I find....

  3. #3
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    Sep 2017
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    91

    Default My Bench was all over the place

    Wed 20-09-2017

    Yesterday I did 2 full hours of Kung Fu Training. First Hour is Forms, 30 minutes warmup and the you perform your forms one after the other with as much rest as you judge yourself to need. So at the end is kind of interval training. Second hour is 20 minutes warmup + medium/high intensity aerobics conditioning with some pushups. It varies from session to session. So I wanted to see how my recovery fares with that thrown in between my lifting workouts.

    Something I forgot to write above is that I'm 39yo and 176cm tall (so that's 5′9 9/32″ according to Convert 176 cm to feet and inches).

    Today's Workout
    • BW: 79,6kg (+0,4kg)
    • BF%: 19,6 (+0,4)
    • Squat: 122,5kg 3x5 (Last set was a real grind but I made it. Will review the video because I think form was awful, at least the last rep of last set. Quads are feeling already sore, which probably means I'm not involving enough hip/back chain?)
    • Bench: 70kg 1x3; 67,5kg 1x2; 67,5kg 1x1. This was a mess. I think form broke down pretty quickly and I had absolutely no chance to complete the first set. So I decided to repeat 67,5 which I did last friday 3x5 and to my surprise I was again hopeless
    • Power Clean: 50kg 4x5. Yes, 4 sets. I did an extra set because I think I need the practice and didn't feel the previous 3 were too taxing. I did use double mats two start the movement higher (as suggested on the form check thread) and it effectively felt much much better. Will post a follow up video later today to the form check thread
    • RDL: 62,5kg 3x5. Trying to strengthen more the hamstrings, since I'm still rounding the back when I last deadlifted 135kg last friday. I don't do RDLs regularly, only from time to time.

    All in all it was disapointing to have missed the benches so badly. I'll put this down to not enough sleep (only 6 hourse last night), not enough recovery (with the 2-h kung fu yesterday). So, for next week I think I will stick to my usual Tue-Thu-Sat schedule, which only puts 1-hour of low intensity Kung Fu the day before the lifting workouts.

  4. #4
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    Sep 2017
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    Fri 22-09-2017
    Yesterday I only did 1 hour Kung Fu forms. I ate over 3500kcal, which felt like a lot. But still my garmin forerunner says I was in deficit by about 300kcal. Anyway this morning I was at 81.1kg BW.

    I visited Crossfit Hammerbrook. They have round bumper plates. What a relief. If I decide to become member of the Open Gym that would cost me 55€ per month. Up from 29,99€ where I currently train with the braindead dodecagonal plates. They have reasonable opening hours and the owner seems to be a nice enough guy.

    Today's Workout
    BW: 81.1kg (+1.5)
    BF%: 19.6 (=)
    Squat: 125kg 5,5,3. The rack here has no security pins, so I didn't feel confident going into the 4th rep and I decided to abort the mission. It was really taxing.
    Press: 45kg 3x5. The press saved the day. It was actually kind of easy. I still don't get the hip debound. I shift the hips forward and then push up the bar, but I don't rebound, so i guess I'm missing some power there.
    Deadlift: 140kg 1x3. Could not finish the fourth rep

  5. #5
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    Default

    Mon 2017-09-25

    BW: 79.2 kg (-1.9kg)
    BF%: 18.2 (-1.4)
    Squat: 125kg 3x5. Felt actually easy. After Friday I was not so sure, but today I saw no problems
    Bench Press: 70kg 4, 3, 2. Again no chance to complete any set. Felt some pain on the left shoulder. My form is most likely crap. Have to re-read the BP chapter of SSBBT.
    Power Cleans: 55kg 5x3. Still trying to get the setup right with a flat/extended back. Still not happy.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
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    Quote Originally Posted by KreuzhebenFTW View Post
    Fri 22-09-2017
    Press: 45kg 3x5. The press saved the day. It was actually kind of easy. I still don't get the hip debound. I shift the hips forward and then push up the bar, but I don't rebound, so i guess I'm missing some power there.
    See if you can tighten up, squeeze your buttocks together (think "shitting diamonds"), before you start the lift. Compress those abs against a tight belt. Squoze. Lift your chest (i.e. show us your boobs). Tighten your legs - keeping them straight. Now try to bounce your hips. If you are loose, you don't get a rebound. Practice with an empty bar, then increase. Hope this will work for you!

  7. #7
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    Default

    Wed 2017-09-27

    Thanks peez, I tried to tighten everything.


    First 100lb Press ever! :-)

    I decided to up the press by 2.5kg instead of the usual 1kg and to my surprise I got it rather easily, although I'm still not rebounding from the hips. I squeezed everything there is to squeeze, but I think I'm bendind the knees. Need to review the workout videos to make sure.

    BW: 80.1kg (+0.9kg)
    BF%: 19 (+0.8)
    Squat: 127.5kg 3x5
    Press: 47.5kg 3x5
    Deadlift: 130kg 1x5

    I decided to scale back the DL in order to work my form. Back is not extended. I think maybe I need to drop a little bit more my hips. Will post the DL video to Technique forum for follow up.

  8. #8
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    Mar 2013
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    Walled Lake, Michigan
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    Why would you want to "lower your hips"? Do you want a coach to yell at you?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by KreuzhebenFTW View Post
    Wed 2017-09-27
    Thanks peez, I tried to tighten everything.
    First 100lb Press ever! :-)
    See? Herzlichen Glueckwunsch! Do lock your legs. Squeeze them quads. The press is a tricky lift to keep moving. Do (weighted) dips and chin ups for extra help, and advance in smaller increments (even 250g - you can even use 50mm internal diameter washers) if you have to. Don't get stuck.

    Add trust carson on the deadlift. He knows a thing or three about it. Check the DL videos on this site. No need to drop your hips, lift with your locked, straight back.

  10. #10
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    Default Good Close for September

    starting strength coach development program
    @carson,

    Just thinking out loud. I don't get how to keep my back straight when deadlifting or power cleaning. Maybe I do need to find an in person coach. Don't know.

    Anyway, I decided to move my workout to saturday since I have been having neck pain since thursday. I must have slept in a akward position or something. The hope was that by Saturday the pain would have gone by itself. That was not the case, but since I was not supposed to deadlift today, I decided to man up and workout anyway. I applied some Voltaren (diclofenac) on the neck/left trap area, which didn't have any effect as far as I could tell. But what the hell, I wanted to close september with a Squat and Bench Press PR, which I did! :-)

    Sat 2017-09-30

    BW: 81.3 kg (+1.2)
    BF%: 19.4 (+0.4)
    Squat: 130kg x 3 x 5
    Bench Press: 70kg x 3 x 5 (that was my third attempt @ 70kg)
    Power Clean: 57.5kg 3, 2, 1, 2, 3

    The power clean was a complete mess. For some reason I was bending my left arm before jumping. I don't know what got into me, because that's a pretty stupid thing to do, specially when you know you have to keep the arms straight all the way up to right after you jump. Also, my rack is pretty poor. I'm still gripping the bar completely with all the fingers and not catching it with my front delts. Thing is, I know what I have to do, but I need to practice, practice, practice, until the motions are burned into head, I guess.

    Anyway, All in All I think September was not too shady.

    September Recap
    Workouts: 12
    ΔBW: +3.1kg (78.2 -> 81.3)
    ΔBF%: +1.6 (17.7 -> 19.3)
    ΔWaist: +2cm (84.5 -> 86.5)
    ΔSQ: +25kg (105 -> 130)
    ΔDL: +15kg (115 -> 130)
    ΔBP: +7.5kg (62.5 -> 70)
    ΔP: +6.5kg (41 -> 47.5)
    ΔPC: +10kg (45 -> 55)
    ΔRow: +10kg (57.5 -> 67.5)

    The squat is progressing nicely. I'm thinking maybe trying to do 5kg jumps instead of 2.5kg. The deadlift needs to get the proper form. So I'm hesitating to go up in weight before I learn to extend my back. I'm happy I think I got the BP form nailed today, after re-reading the SSBBT chapter again, watching the Art of Manliness video again and realising I was doing really extremely close grip benches, what was probably causing me some pain on my left shoulder (which today I didn't experiment).

    Having been slightly overweight in the past, and having dieted down with much effort recently (from 85.6 to 76kg in 9 weeks between may and august) I'm a litlle reluctant to gain more weight. Not that I want to loose my abz. Have never been able to see them :-) But I think maybe going up to 83 would not be all that bad, specially if I can get my Bench to 80kg and my Squat to 150kg. After all I want to be the strongest motherfucker in my Kung Fu class :-)

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