Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Start Of Week 12

Yesterday was Memorial Day, and we had plans for the holiday. So I got up and ate breakfast and headed to the gym. I needed to get my workout in before the plans for the day got started.

I did my 195 lb squats. These continue to be challenging, and I give myself a good 3-4 minutes of rest between sets now. But I never was in danger of not completing them. I am anxious to move to the mentally rewarding 200 lb level! My warm-up sets now consist of 135 lbs, and 155 lbs. Going back and looking at my blog posting about my first workout on Strong Lifts 5x5, I wrote:
So week 1, day 1. I enter Powerhouse Gym and it is slightly before the after work rush. I go to the squat rack where a huge man is squatting 135lbs. Turns out that is his warm-up. After he does a set I remove the weights and do my first set of 5 with the just the bar. I then help him load the bar back up to 165 lbs, and watch him do another set.
I remember telling that guy that I would be at his level one day. Well, here it is 11 weeks later and I am past that level! It feels great.

I was also able to complete all 5 sets of 5 on the 105 lb overhead presses. It was tough, but it felt good knowing that just two weeks ago I failed twice to complete 5x5 at 100 lbs, and deloaded down to 90 lbs. We'll see how 110 lbs goes on Friday. I still may take another Strong Lifts 5x5 user's advice and get 1.25 lb plates to take with me to the gym. Going to smaller increments on overhead and bench presses helped him get through plateaus on those lifts.

Speaking of plateaus, its official. I have plateau'd on deadlifts. After last week failing to complete even one rep at 240 lbs, I was able to pull that weight twice yesterday. But that is still a stall, and two in a row. I will stick to the program and deload down to 205 lbs on the deadlifts. Hopefully that will help me bust through this current plateau. If I have to eventually deload again on deadlifts then I will deload and switch to adding only 5 lbs each time I do them. Currently the program calls for 10 lbs increments. But you can't cut reps anymore at 1x5.

Nutritionally I have busted through another plateau. I had settled in at 179 lbs and couldn't seem to make any more progress. However, I bought a 12 lb bag of Optimum Nutrition's Serious Mass, and that has enabled me to add a quick 700 calories and 30 grams of protein daily to my diet. I am now at 182 lbs and my 34 inch waist pants still fit with room to spare! Also, this is only at a half serving of this stuff, so I have room to expand that consumption if need be.

Tomorrow, 200 lb squats, 125 lb bench presses, and 130 lb barbell rows!

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