Tuesday, May 27

Max Effort Squat

So, I screwed up when I was looking at my program. I started out doing my dynamic day. That was a bunch of squatting with a safety squat bar with no hands. After I finished I went to see what was next, and I realized my mistake. There was nothing to do but do the right training.

I did deficit deadlifts against light bands. After I got hurt in February my deadlift dropped by almost 150 pounds. I seriously couldn’t believe how much strength I had lost. Deadlift has been the slowest lift to come up for me, and I spent a good bit of time angry when I realized how much I had slid back. I went from pulling close to 600 to struggling with 450, so it was a big deal when I pulled 495 from a deficit against a band today. A really big deal. I kicked the platform away afterward, slapped a couple of 10s on the bar, and pulled 515. I won’t lie and say it was easy, but it came up. That’s huge for me right now. I feel pretty sure I could pull 535 if I weren’t dead from a full squat session already, and that gives me hope that I’ll actually get up over 550 at the meet. I really want that number. It also gives me hope that I’ll be up to 600 by the end of the year. The strength is a little slow coming back, but it is coming back.

I followed up with stiff-legged sumo deadlifts, but that was it. I was just out of time, and I had to get home to shower before I met my next client.

Even though I screwed up, it was a good day for me. 515 is hardly some great number, but a month ago I could barely pull 60 pounds less, and that makes me think I have another 20 or 30 pounds I can get back in the month I have left, and when your numbers are this low, you need every extra pound possible.

Wednesday, May 21

Max Effort Squat Day

I was supposed to train yesterday, but I was too tired. I guess it’s the end of this bad cold I’ve had. Regardless, I could barely keep my eyes open, and I knew that any training I did would be more than half-assed, so I took the day off. I’m still pretty tired today, but it’s better than yesterday.

My main movement was safety squat bar good mornings for a max 3. I worked up to 285. My problem with heavy good mornings is that I feel like I start to cheat by dropping my hips so I turn it into a half squat. It’s hard to fight that urge. I see other people struggle and hitch and curve their back a lot. That’s not my problem. It feels weird. Anyway, my form felt like it was breaking really bad at 285, so I stopped there.

Then I had to do 80% for as many reps as possible. I don’t know how many reps I did. I just lost count. 12? 15? Something like that. I stopped more because I felt my form breaking bad again. This was followed by one good morning and one squat for as many reps as possible at 50%. I think I did something like 25 for 145. Honestly, it wasn’t my form or legs or back that was giving out. I just couldn’t breathe. Congestion, exhaustion, and simply shitty conditioning all came together to wipe me out.

The rest of my accessory work was mostly fine. Stiff-legged sumo deadlifts got hard after 10 reps. Again, I was just running out of steam and had a hard time catching my breath. 275 never seemed that bad for the weight itself. Everything else was ok, though I was mostly going through the motions at that point.

Overall, I don’t think it was a bad day. I’m just tired. I think the heavy good mornings were decent.  I should be back to 100% after the weekend.

Tuesday, May 13

Max Effort Squat

My main movement for today was Anderson squats. I was supposed to use chains up to a one rep max, but I only have about 50 pounds of chains. Instead I used short Average bands from EliteFTS and kept adding weight. This was only the second time I had ever done Anderson squats. The first time was worse than embarrassing. I maxed out at 335. I just couldn’t figure out how to get set up at the bottom of the squat. I could easily set up at the top and come down, rest the bar on the pins, then squat back up, but starting off at the bottom was just killing me. I guess I got better because I worked up to 425 + bands for this session. Better, though not great. Even so, I was exhausted by the time I finished.

The accessory work was sumo stiff-legged deads, low back extensions, and abs. I’ll admit that I half-assed the abs. I was just beat by the time I was finished. By the end of the day my entire body was sore. Seriously, I’ve never been so sore from any kind of squat. I take that to mean I’m doing something right.