PR Friday – 31 OCT 2014

PR Friday — Post your training updates, PR’s, and questions to the comments for the 70′s Big crew

Weekly Q&A gives you a chance to ask anyone from the 70′s Big Crew a question in the comments below, on Facebook, or Twitter. Follow 70’s Big on Instagram

Today I also posted Chalk Talk #10 – Clean Your Press; if you want to spice up or fix your press training, check that article out.

My friends, today is Halloween. We’re gonna have an impromptu picture contest, so post your costume pictures to the Facebook, TwitterInstagram, or the comments here. If the costume is 70’s Big-ish, it’ll help. The winner will get a 70’s Big t-shirt of their choice. If you’re not dressing up, then at the very least you can slap together something like Chris did a few years ago:

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21 thoughts on “PR Friday – 31 OCT 2014

  1. TM Intensity day – SQ 175kg x 5. Deadlift wasn’t a PR.

    I’m entering my first powerlifting comp in January and i want to squat 200 and pull 240 in the 83kg class. I reckon I’m on track for that.

    • It depends on how ugly it is and what the fault is. If you’re like most people, you are probably rounding your back and not using your hamstrings. I don’t like people to do this, especially in training. Maybe it’s acceptable for experienced people, but it isn’t good for the spine long-term.

      So, if it gets ugly, I wouldn’t have you complete an entire set. Maybe fewer reps per set, or even dropping a bit and getting reps with a weight you can maintain proper mechanics. You’re never wrong for doing that.

  2. My first PR Friday post. Last workout of week 17 of my SS linear progression. So far this week:

    Squat
    315 x 3 x 5
    320 x 1 x 3
    320 x 1 x 2

    Resets on bench, press, and power clean right now and no deadlifting this week so nothing too exciting. Actually strongly considering a change to Greyskull – anyone have opinions?

  3. Squattings 345 x 3, 2 (rep PR); 365 x 1, easier than last week, should be gud for 370.

    Tweaked my neck on bench. Realized my setup was shit so I’ve been getting more up on my traps and “tucking my shoulders into my back pockets”. Felt much more solid until the neck thing happened. Probably gonna lay off benching above 80% for a few weeks and focus on shoulders and tris, as I’ve neglected those for quite some time, and I’m pretty sure much chest is fatigued/10.

  4. Justin,
    I only discovered your website a few months ago and since have literally read through the entire archive. It’s great and thank you for everything you have taught me through it.
    On to my question, I am a Marine infantry officer and will soon be getting on ship to deploy for several months, and I would like to keep going with my linear progression. Unfortunately, the ceilings in the ship’s gym are too short for the press, and there is only a smith machine for squatting. Thankfully, there are still plenty of weights and the floor is rubber so I can go heavy (for me) on deadlifts, cleans, and front squats. How would you recommend getting around these obstacles? For the press I have been mainly augmenting bench with incline press and a seated dumbbell press. For squats I have been relegated to using the smith machine, leg press, and cleaning the bar up to do front squats (augmenting that with RDLs to continue hamstring development). Am I totally off base with my approach?

    More background info (if it helps): I was mainly just getting my physical development from sports practice (high school football and basketball, college boxing and jiu-jitsu) and ROTC PT (during college). After joining the Marine Corps, I messed around with Crossfit (even doing “Crossfit with a Strength Bias” for a while), but was getting frustrated with the fact that I still weighed 185 pounds. I had heard about starting strength but bought the Crossfit dogma that metcons were all I needed to get strong. Finally, I broke down, bought a copy of Starting Strengh and started doing it about 5 months ago. I’ve gone from doing a 165lb back squat for 3×5 and brought it up to 285 x 3 x 5.Also have increased bench from 140ish to 210, press from 95 to 135, deadlift from 275 to 365. I also picked up FIT and through it and reading your site understand a lot more about how training works. I have switched to a sort of flexible training program/your S&C program hybrid to bring down the volume a little due to a lack of recovery time with operational commitments in the pre-deployment cycle and bringing a new baby into the world (that technically wasn’t me, but I was there!). Since restarting my journey to strength I have gone from 185 pounds to a respectable (for now) 215 pounds and everything I do in the field is easier, from hiking to patrolling to lifting bodies to fighting. Thank you so much for all of you work to communicate fitness principles (and specifics) and I greatly appreciate any more help you can give me.
    Semper Fidelis,
    Bernardo Garcia

  5. Last week I got cortisone injections for some persistent inner elbow pain. The orthopedist told me not to grip anything heavy for at least six weeks. I thought that sounded like overkill but apparently it’s important. I’m going to do a lot of tissue massage during this time to make sure everything heals properly.

    This seemed like the perfect opportunity to run the Smolov Squat program. I started this week with the introductory cycle, which involves squatting 65-80% three days in a row. I had never squatted three days in a row before and holy shit am I sore today. My lifetime squat PR is 415 but that was two years ago. My 1RM right now is about 330, so I’m basing the program off of a 300 1RM because a few friends have told me to be conservative with this program. I bought a lot of milk earlier this week and am doing 1/2 gallon on squatting days and 1/4 on others. I’ve worked out the calendar so that I can do the squats and then go hiking/hunting on the rest days to stay loose.

    Next week I’m going to start using some of the machines in the gym that will allow me to get in a little upper body work without gripping anything. Not too much since Smolov takes a lot.

    I’m thinking about skipping the second intro week for Smolov. It just seems like a waste to only squat a few reps like that. I’ve been squatting 3×5 or 5×5 twice a week or more for three months, so I think I’ll be OK. What do you guys think?

  6. Wrapping up my first week of ‘Base’ on Smolov. I can see it already that the biggest challenge in ‘Base’ isn’t so much the actual squatting — just recovering as best as possible before the next session. You just need start with as much as possible in the tank.

  7. The last few weeks I’ve been microwaving eggs on occasion. I’m not going to pretend that this is the most delicious thing in the world, but it is very efficient and has been a good way for me to sneak in some extra protein during the day. Complete cooking and cleanup time is about 5 minutes as it only uses a bowl and a fork. I like to eat it with a bit of Kimchi, Brent would be proud.

    Sleep is still an issue for me and that manifested itself with slow squats. I did 315# x 2 and it was a grind, so I backed off the weight and did a ton of speed doubles at 245#.

  8. So coming off of a bad back injury in February (and not lifting heavy for years), It was painful for me to do a 5 rep set of 95 lbs on deadlift. I wasn’t sure I would be able to ever go heavy on DL again. That was early July.
    I pulled 405 today and have no pain whatsoever from it (I also pulled 335×5). It’s amazing what lifting like a man has done for me.
    My squat still sucks but I should have some PRs to report on that in about a month. Bench will be getting PR’ed in a couple of weeks also.
    This site has been an awesome resource and huge encouragement to me these last few months. Thanks for being so kick-ass!

  9. I have this weird knee injury thing that pops up every 8 months or so. I’m pretty sure it’s leftover from being obese, as I used to get it then as well (so I know it’s not related to squatting or lifting). I basically can’t squat my body weight without pain, have my knee bent for too long, etc. I will usually alternate heat, ice, and compression until it goes away.

    Due to this I’ve been box squatting for two weeks just to try and put some kind of stress on my legs.

    I tried cleaning my presses today. I wasn’t totally comfortable with it since my tendency is to try and rack the weight but it changed things up a bit. My press is garbage anyway so not like it matters :P

  10. PR: Press 125 for 3 sets of 5. Matched my previous PR before I hurt my AC joint. Moving up steadily and feeling good. Microloading and cleaning my press have made the difference. Gonna hit one plate for my working sets by Thanksgiving.

    PR’ed my clothing too, as 34 waist jeans don’t fit my thighs and butt now, and most medium shirts are too tight across the chest, back, and shoulders. Kind of a double edged PR since I have to start spending money on new clothes now. What’s the most helpful spot to donate old clothes? Goodwill?

    Q: What size of clothes does everyone else find themselves having to buy? I’m 6’3 and 210, so similarly-sized dudes are welcome to chime in with tips for lifter-friendly brands.

  11. PR for today: deadlift 280 for a set of five

    no squat PR, I took a bit of a break because of some weird knee pain and I could only do a set of 4 at 220 lbs today. (I’ve uprgraded my volume day from 5×5 to 3×5… 5×5 was just too much.)

  12. It was the rest week for my 531 so no big PRs this week other than DL. I was bored and fighting off a hangover after Halloween and decided to work up to a PR of 505×1.

  13. No recent PRs since I had to skip a whole week of training due to beeing sick, but I have a training question. I consider my deadlift to be the weakest lift so I included SDL in the volume day. My calculated 1RM for deadlift is 205kg, so I was doing 135kg SDL for a couple of weeks and every time I do it, it feels almost effortless. When I am doing volume squats and press it actualy gives me some challange, but not SDL. How taxing should it realy be? Should I increase the weight, or keep it light/medium?

    • I had a lot of success doing heavy singles when my deadlift stalled out at about the same weight you’re at. I used the Doug Hepburn method. I did 4 singles and then added one each week up to ten. Once up to ten I’d add ten pounds and go back to 4 singles. After the singles, I’d wait like 10 min and then do two sets of triples with like 70%. I’d add a set of triples each week up to five. Once I got to five triples I’d add 10 lbs and go back to two sets. I focused on doing the triples fast. That might work for you.