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Phil's Training Log

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  • Phil's Training Log

    Hey everyone. I'm transitioning my log over here from SS. A little bit about me, I'm a 36 year old male from Phoenix, AZ. I'm currently employed as a software architect. I'm a Michigan native, USAF veteran, and an ASU graduate. My goals are to get stronger and build muscle. I train out of my garage currently, For training equipment I currently have a Rogue R-4, Ohio Power Bar, Ohio Bar, an assortment of bumper plates, as well as some loadable DB's. My current gear wishlist includes: slingshot, aerodyne, and maybe someday a reverse hyper or GHR.

    I'm not the strongest or most genetically gifted lifter in the world; genetically I'm much better at running and endurance type work. I used to do a lot of endurance stuff, especially back in my military years, but the last year and a half I've been focused exclusively on strength training. I'm an engineer at heart so I love to learn and I especially like to experiment and see how my body reacts to different strength training styles. I've definitely made a lot of mistakes in my first couple of years, but I have learned from them and am better off for them. My history started with the SS NLP. During the LP I got a bit carried away with the weight gain, I tried to eat more weight onto the bar and wound up ~22% body fat. For someone like me, who's body likes to rest naturally in the 12-15% range that was quite a shock. I felt like crap and did a big cut where I lost 20lb on my way down to 10% body fat. I also fudged everything up and lost a ton of strength in the process, big learning lesson there. Since then I spent the last 6 months regaining 10lb slowly while doing training with a bit more of a hypertrophy bias. I built decent ratio of muscle mass surprisingly (for the first time in my life I don't feel like the "skinny guy"). Now I'm getting anxious to change my programming up to be more strength focused and teach this new muscle to be useful. I just purchased the 12 week strength templates and I will be starting this next week. I've been following Jordan, Austin and co for awhile now, from the SS boards, to this site, to the more recent YouTube content. This style of training is very attractive for me, and I look forward to trying it out. As you'll see in my log I love collecting and analyzing data and bringing RPE into the mix gives me one more piece of qualitative data that can help me paint the story of how my body is reacting to the training stress, what I respond well too, not so well, etc. In light of everything that has happened recently (and me finally taking the time to get caught up on all the discussions on the forums) I felt like it was best for me to move my log over here. I also do coach 3 of my friends currently, 2 of which are in the NLP (1 male and 1 female in early-mid 40s) and one late 20's female of which I have currently going through an HLM intermediate program. So here I am. I hope to make gainzzz, learn, and hopefully become a part of the community over here. My old SS log is here:

  • #2
    4/7/18 GPP

    7 min pull-ups: 63
    7 min standing ab roller: 44
    Banded face-pull (green band): 20/28/28
    25 minute light run (4 on/1 off): 2.55 miles

    Thoughts: Well I must say it feels good being able to log my conditioning/running here and not having to worry about someone talking shit to me about it, lol. Don't know why I took so long to move my log over here, but I'm glad I did. Got a good GPP session in this morning. Next week I start week 0 of the 12 week strength template. I'm pretty beaten up from my last program, so definitely starting with week 0 to recover. I'm excited to get started.


    e1RM's (leaning towards the conservative end):
    Squat: 300
    Deadlift: 341
    Bench: 195
    Press: 130

    Weight: 161.71 lbs
    Waist: 31.75"
    Navy Method Calc: 12.2%
    Height: 5'9"

    Calories: 2800 (aiming to gain ~.5lb per week)
    Protein: 165g
    Fat: 60g
    Carb: 400g


    • #3

      Comp Squat: 210x5 @6, [email protected], [email protected], [email protected]
      Comp Bench: 121 [email protected], [email protected], [email protected], [email protected]
      Pendlay Row: [email protected], [email protected], [email protected]

      Thoughts: My planned weights on squat were really close. I was a hair over on my 7&8 sets, I should have adjusted down a hair for the 8 sets when my 7 logged as a 7.5. You live, you learn. For bench this was my first time really trying a pause on bench, my RPE 6 definitely came lighter than I anticipated, that was supposed to just be a warmup set. I think the biggest limiting factor there is skill, as it's new to me. I think that also reflects in my performance, as it got easier each set as it went along. I mean 131.5 was supposed to be 8 based off my previous sets, and it was a 7.5. Then I added a couple extra pounds hoping to hit 8, and actually dropped RPE down to a 7. So good news is I can increase this pretty quickly. For rows, I definitely focus on my RPE 10 as being form break not max weight I can get up, as I've had a history in the past of using a little too much back in a row to force the rep up, and straining by back in the process. Coming off of a back tweak a few weeks back, I definitely am playing rows a little more safe than sorry.


      • #4

        Deadlift: 243 [email protected], [email protected], [email protected], [email protected]
        Comp Press: 90 [email protected], 90 [email protected], 93 [email protected], 93 [email protected]
        Tempo Squat 303: 135 [email protected], 139 [email protected], 134.5 [email protected]

        Thoughts: I'm being very cautious with deadlifts just like barbell rows, and basing RPE off of form break down, as I have a history of overloading and rounding my lower back. On press I swapped from resting at the top and TnG at the bottom, to doing competition pause with a rest at the bottom instead. As expected I can't lift as much weight this way, but like bench I have a feeling I'll improve my skill and make quick progress. Tempo squats are amazing. Maybe it's just because I'm naturally really good at endurance work and high rep squats, but I actually quite enjoyed them (even though the last couple reps felt like death, they felt like death in a good way). What I liked best about them though was that it's a great way to focus on form, bar path, and beltless bracing. That last set was probably the best beltless brace I've ever done. My form in general felt really solid. I've been having an issue in squatting recently of bringing the bar slightly forward of mid foot and feeling my balance shift forward, this helped me really hone in on the proper back angle and lock it in. Also, I can really tell a difference fatigue wise on this program, my recovery debt is clearing up. This sub-maximal training doesn't beat me up nearly as bad, I mean squatting today for the second day in a row was no big deal.
        Last edited by PWard; 04-10-2018, 02:42 PM.


        • #5

          Squat no belt: 205 x4 @7, 215 x4 @8, 221.5 x4 @9
          Bench w red bands: 121.5 x4 @7, 126 x4 @8, 130 x4 @8.5
          Close grip incline: 95 x10 @6.5, 102.5 x10 @ 7.5, 110 x10 @9.5

          Thoughts: Kind of fun doing new variations I've never done before like bench w/ bands and close grip incline. I definitely had a hard time finding the right RPE on both. I was eventually able to get into a pretty good range on both, I just had to do more warmup feeler sets than I expected. I did the bands with one peg at each end of my rack and used one single end of the band. I think next time I'm going to try to keep the pegs closer together and use both sides of the band, just to see the difference. That will give a little more band tension. So far I'm really enjoying the first week of this template. I seem to have somehow strained the left side of my neck in the squat today though. I will have to pay more attention to my neck angle next time. Of note is that I have had some chronic neck pain in the past, so it's not a new injury. I'm glad I chose to do the week 0 low-stress week, not only because I had some fatigue built up I needed to recover from, but because it allowed me to be able to feel out my RPE's and get a bit more comfortable with the new variations before the first high volume week starts.
          Last edited by PWard; 04-12-2018, 02:21 PM.


          • #6

            Rack pull mid-shin: 275 x4 @7.5, 280 x4 @ 8, 289 x4 @9
            Close-grip: 150 x4 @7, 157.5 x4 @7.5, 165 x4 @9
            RDL: 155 x10 @7, 163 x10 @8, 171 x10 @8.5

            Thoughts: All in all that was a pretty good day out there. I was right about where I guessed my mid shin rack pull would be, I was able to do a bit more on close grip and RDL's than I expected. I am still being very cautious with my back on rack pulls and RDL's and basing my RPE's not on how much total reps I can lift at all costs, but how many more reps I can hit without my back rounding. I especially took my time on RDL's making sure I kept the bar over mid foot, as I suspect that part of my back injury a few weeks ago was from the bar swinging forward on RDL's. This is the first time I've ever done heavy pulling 2x per week, this is much more pulling volume than I've ever done. I'm hopeful that this extra volume and frequency will finally get my deadlift moving again, as it's been pretty stagnant for about a year now. I mean, my DL really hasn't gotten any stronger since I finished my LP about a year ago now (DL ended LP at 300 1x5, I failed at 305). So far so good for week 0.

            EDIT: want to add that after squatting yesterday I mentioned my neck hurting. Well it killed me all day, and even kept waking me up during the night. It felt like the spine was misaligned right at the base of my neck, one of the joints was sticking out. However, rack pulls today seem to have popped it back into place. The pain has mostly disappeared since doing pulls and it no longer feels like it's misaligned. So score one for rack pulls
            Last edited by PWard; 04-13-2018, 06:24 PM.


            • #7

              GPP 7 minute AMRAPS;
              Weighted chin-up 25: 40 total
              Ab roller from feet: 36 total
              Hammer curl 22.5: 50 total
              Neck extension 25: 85 total

              LISS: The weather is amazing, so I'm about to go for a nice long hike.

              Weekly Composition:
              Average weight: 161.71 (same weight as last week)
              Waist: 31.5in (-.25in from last week)
              Calories: 2700

              Thoughts: Since it was a low stress week I only ate 2700 calories last week. Did some nice recomping though very surprisingly, I weigh the same but lost 1/4 inch from my waist. Not going to complain there one bit! Definitely going to increase calories going into this next week since volume is going up, likely 2800. For my training today I also threw in some neck extensions, as when I have done them regularly in the past it seems to prevent the neck issues that I was experiencing earlier this week. So I'll likely throw them in once a week on GPP day as pre-hab work. I'm not worried about adding that in effecting my recovery or anything, after all work capacity is the one thing that I have in spades. It's a perfect 80 degrees with a cool breeze today, so my LISS is about to go and happen out on the hiking trails! Gotta take advantage of the weather while I can, it won't be long at all before it will be too hot to hike.
              Last edited by PWard; 04-14-2018, 06:43 PM.


              • #8

                Comp Squat: 260 x1 @8, 208 5x5
                Comp Bench: 180 x1 @8, 144 5x5
                Row: 127.5 x10 @7, 135 x10 @8, 141.5 x10 @9, 135 x5 @8.5, 135 x5 @9

                Thoughts: I really like training like this, with a heavy single followed by volume work based off the single. I've never really trained singles before, that's actually the most weight I've ever had on my back for a squat. It wasn't too bad either, form looked really solid on the video. I have a feeling my squat is going to break out this training cycle. Last week on my comp bench I mentioned that the weight was lower than I expected and i suspected that it was because I was not used to using a pause. Well boom, this week I added +25lb to my e1rm, so I think that proves the theory. I'm still being very cautious with rows because of my recent back injury. I pulled these with my legs a bit wider apart (probably about halfway between a conventional and a sumo stance), and it actually felt quite good on my lower back. Bonus was that with my knees angled out I didn't accidentally slam the bar into my knee caps at all, haha. I might try this going forward.
                Last edited by PWard; 04-16-2018, 02:22 PM.


                • #9

                  Comp Deadlift: 325 x1 @8.5, 252 5x5
                  Comp Press: 110 x1 @8, 88 5x5
                  Temp Squat 303: 140 x10 @7, 144 x10 @8, 148.5 x10 @9, 141 x10 @8.5, 141 x10 @9

                  Thoughts: The press is my arch nemesis I swear. 2 weeks ago I hit an easy triple at 115, so I think 117.5 sounds like a reasonable weight to try for an @8. All warmups leading up to it feel good. Load 117.5, unrack, and press.... bar doesn't even fucking budge. I was not happy. That first rep of the press has always been tough for me. It's one of those, if I can get it up once I can get it up 3-5 times kind of deals. I'm doing comp press now with rest at the bottom though, so hopefully eliminating the touch and go will help strengthen my press out of the bottom. I think I may have gotten a little too dependent on that stretch reflex. My LP ended a year ago with my last successful 3x5 being 112lb, so basically I'm no stronger a year later. Hopefully this program will get it moving because up until now everything I've done has been an exercise in futility. Other than that, this day 2 is a brutal day, much harder than it looks on paper. I'm definitely tired and ate a royal shit load of food post workout, haha. I definitely need to improve my conditioning a hair, as I was getting really winded on the last couple 303 reps each set. Should be easy to improve my conditioning though since I haven't really done much conditioning the last 6 months or so. On the good news front, that deadlift is a +20lb e1rm from last week, 325 was actually my e1rm from last week and I hit it @8 today, haha.
                  Last edited by PWard; 04-18-2018, 02:40 AM.


                  • #10

                    Squat no belt: 200 x4 @7, 206 x4 @8, 212.5 x4 @9, 202 x4 @8.5, 202 x4 @ 8.5, 204 x4 @9
                    Bench w/ red bands: 130 x4 @7, 135 x4 @7.5, 142.5 x4 @ 8.5, 138.5 x3 @8, 138.5 x4 @7.5, 142.5 x4 @8
                    Close grip incline: 102 x10 @6.5, 107.5 x10 @8.5, 111 x10 @9.5, 103.5 x9 @9.5, 95 x10 @9

                    Thoughts: Strange day out there today. Squat was the only exercise I got RPE's right on. My warmups on squat were feeling heavy, so I didn't hit the numbers I hoped today, I had to auto-regulate down. If I would have went for the numbers I wrote down I would have gotten buried today. But that's what RPE is for, I still got a quality workout in and hit my RPE's dead on. Bench w/ bands was another story. I had a real hard time feeling out my RPE's there. I typically judge my RPE's based on my bar speed, but since using bands slows the bar speed down I had a hard time quantifying my RPE and I definitely undershot it, as is obvious by my RPE's going down as the sets went on and I started to better calibrate my RPE readings. I think I have a better feel for this exercise though, so next week I should be able to get a better reading. Close grip incline was the opposite. I was too aggressive there. I way overshot my RPE's, having one set I had to cut off at 9 reps. Once I hit that 111 x10 @9.5 everything was pretty much downhill from there. I got more and more fatigued each set, even though I kept dropping weight and increasing rest periods I still couldn't quite get my head back above water. So it was a strange day all around. Undershooting RPE's wasn't a big deal. Overshooting RPE's on the other hand definitely hit me pretty hard. Lots of lessons learned today.
                    Last edited by PWard; 04-19-2018, 03:13 PM.


                    • #11

                      Mid shin rack pull: 276 x4 @7, 285 x4 @8, 293 x4 @9, 279 x4 @8, 279 x4 @8.5, 279 x4 @9
                      Close Grip: 157 x4 @7, 162 x4 @8, 167 x4 @8.5, 163 x4 @8, 163 x4 @8.5, 163 x4 @8.5
                      RDL: 161 x10 @7, 167 x10 @8, 174 x10 @8.5, 165 x10 @8, 165 x10 @8.5

                      Thoughts: I'm learning the real cue for my deadlift and rack pulls are to keep my upper back tight. When I keep my upper back tight it removes the strain from my lower back, and also makes the weight feel lighter. Hopefully this is the cue I've been needing to get my deadlift moving again. My squat was stuck for ages until I realized I was keeping my shins too vertical and started cueing to push my knees forward, ever since then my squat has been progressing consistently. Hopefully, this unlocks that for my deadlift, finally. Other than that good day. RDL's for 10's suck.


                      • #12

                        GPP 7 minute amrap's:
                        Chinup weighted 25: 39 total
                        Ab roller from feet: 38 total
                        Hammer curl 25: 44 total
                        Rear delt lateral raise 20: 42 total

                        LISS: ~4 mile hike

                        Weekly Composition:
                        Average weight: 161.11 (-0.6lb)
                        Waist: 31.5in (same as last week)
                        Average Calories: 2790

                        Thoughts: I'm really shocked that I lost weight this week. In the past 2800 calories put weight on at about the .5lb per week rate on me. The 4 day per week high volume full body lifting schedule really increases my calorie requirements. Going to go up a bit this week in calories. Probably going to shoot for 2850-2900 per day and see how that goes. Today is a high of 82 so I'm going to go do a nice long hike in the mountains outside my neighborhood for my LISS as soon as I'm done here. The 10 day forecast after today is all mid-upper 90's, and since it is this time of year, there's a high probability that this is the last 80 degree afternoon I'm going to see here in Phoenix until the end of October/early November, so I guess I gotta make the most of it!


                        • #13

                          Comp Squat: 265 x1 @9, 205 5x5
                          Comp Bench: 185 x1 @7.5 151 5x5
                          Row: 130 x10 @7, 136.5 x10 @8, 143.5 x10 @9, 136.5 x10 @8, 136.5 x10 @8.5

                          Thoughts: That top single on squat was easily the ugliest squat rep I've taken in well over a year. I'm not so sure that weight was really a 9, I think everything just went wrong form wise and that turned it into a 9. I leaned too far forward and balance went forward of mid foot so I had to contend with trying to get back centered on the way up, I went a hair too low, and I also didn't push my knees out as much as I usually do and my knees caved, that's the first rep since my LP 14-15 months ago that my knees caved in on. So it was not a normal rep at all. My last warmup rep was a single at 245 and that shot up like lightening. Oh well, I guess it happens at times. Other than that everything went well. My bench with a +5lb from last week came in at a 7.5, I watched the video a few times to verify and it was definitely, and surprisingly, under an 8. So the good news is that my bench is getting stronger on a weekly basis again

                          EDIT: I just realized that I am dumb and I've been doing 1 extra set on all of my supplemental work. When the template said like x10 @9x2 I for some reason was thinking 1 at 9 and 2 backoffs... So that's 8 extra sets each week. Pretty significant. I'll pare that back to where it is supposed to be from now on.
                          Last edited by PWard; 04-24-2018, 12:12 AM.


                          • #14

                            Deadlift: 330 x1 @8.5, 260 5x5
                            Press: 112 x1 @8, 89.5 5x5
                            Tempo Squat 303: 140 x10 @7, 146 x10 @8, 152 x10 @9, 144.5 x10 @9.5

                            Thoughts: This is definitely the longest day time wise, took me ~100 minutes to finish the workout today. Deadlift alone took me like 45, gotta trim that down a bit. I think the main reason that took so long was mainly my extreme loathing of deadlifts and dragging ass on warmups in procrastination.


                            • #15

                              GPP 7 minute AMRAP's
                              Pullup: 54 total
                              Hanging Leg Raise: 50 total
                              Barbell Curl 60: 36 total
                              Face Pull Green Band: 75 total

                              LISS: 4 mile hike

                              Thoughts: I really like GPP days. Feels great to have a change of pace from the regular daily barbell work, and my body feel really good after getting the blood flowing.