Q&A – 7

Hey dudes and dudettes, it’s fucking 1:23 AM after Thanksgiving and I’m writing this post. I’m here for you.
Oh, and you can submit weight gain videos throughout the weekend until Sunday at 2359 hrs EST. I’m not going to watch them on Friday, so you may as well have more time to upload.

ksik10 Says:

Wait. You’re a Slav. You root for the Browns. But you don’t eat pierogis?

I thought I loved you man.

This made me laugh.

artesuave asks:

1. That power clean & push press was insane!
2. In the vids you’ve posted of Chris’ pulls he always goes double over, does he ever mix his grip, or is it just to beastly?

Dear artesuave (and others who asked about Chris),

Chris uses a double overhand hook grip for all pulling unless he needs straps (I’ve never seen him fail a weight due to grip). I’ve talked about it before a while back. Chris started as an Olympic weightlifter and has large hands, so he’s always pulled his deadlifts like that. I’ve seen him rack pull 600×5 with the hook — pretty insane. Before you go off and try to hook grip everything, just build it up over time because it WILL stress your thumbs. Some hand dimensions may be able to do it with heavy weight either.

When I started weightlifting (and using the hook) I had to tape my thumbs because the skin would tear, but nowadays I don’t. It’s just something you have to adapt to over time. The DOHG with deadlifting will more so stress the thumb ligaments than the skin since there isn’t torsion in the hand to scuff the skin.

ngalfano13 Says:

Hey Justin,
What are some good mobs for cleans? I cant seem to get as far back as you in the clean..
I then asked him: “What does “far back” mean?”
he answered: you seem to get your ass farther back then i can, and if i try this i usually lose balance, if you know what i mean

Dear ngalfano13,

I had to go back and watch a video of myself to try and see what you were talking about. I’m merely just dropping slightly to catch the weight. If you rack a front squat, and then move into a quarter squat position, this is what I’m doing. If you don’t have as good a position, it could be due to your rack position. Here are a list of posts that Kelly has done on the “front rack” position.

chippy Says:

Justin, could you impart some advice? [spoiler show=”Show rest of question” hide=”Hide all this shit”]I’ve been working out for ~1 year on the GSLP doing Sat, Mon, Wed (all at my ‘home gym’, Mon & Wed after work). However I now attend football training on Wednesday nights. I’ve tried working out before work but find this really difficult (I feel weaker first thing in the morning, often my numbers actually go down from my previous evening workout! Maybe I just need time to adapt?). My schedule is as follows (Mon – Fri work until 6pm, get home at 7pm):

Mon – Workout (PM)
Tue – *Free*
Wed – Football (PM)
Thur – Client meetings after work (PM)
Fri – Social from work (PM)
Sat – Workout (AM) Football (PM)
Sun – Football (AM) *Free* (PM)

As you can see I have enough time to workout 4 days a week (Sat, Sun, Mon, Tue) but these are all consecutive and leave no days for rest. I’m open to working out 2 days a week but have been seeing good results on 3 days. I see you’ve previously mentioned an alternate ramping 3×3 and 3×5 programme. Why do you recommend this over 3×5 sets across each day?

I have very little programming experience but have put your advice (notably pressing technique) to good use before so was hoping you could help here. I’ll be sure to donate to your Movember campaign![/spoiler]

Dear chippy,

RE: weaker in morning training sessions
This isn’t abnormal, especially when you’re adapted to training in the evening. If I were coaching you I would have you eat differently to prep for a morning session and give you time to transition into consistently training in the morning. Also, I wouldn’t have you train on the morning that you have football stuff in the evening. I’d want you fresh for the football sessions regardless of how serious you are with it (don’t know if it’s high school, amateur, etc.).

RE: Greyskull
I probably wouldn’t have you running the GSLP. If you have three football training sessions (WED and SAT evenings and SUN morning) along with a standard work schedule, a regular linear progression is not going to function well. If you only have 100 recovery credits and the total cost of a linear progression + football training + work results in a payment of 125, your dick will be driven into the dirt eventually. If this football training includes contact or bruising, that will limit recovery even more (and increase the need for quality calories).

Also, the higher rep sets could take more out of you. If you were using a relatively medium weight, then the rep sets may not be a big deal. If you are using more challenging weights (where you get 5 to 8 reps on your final sets), then that will be particularly taxing in the context of football and work.

“But work isn’t physically stressful, Justin.” I realize, yet it’s still something you have to go do and requires at least some minimum level of stress that requires your attention and time. It could also constitute you sitting down for a large portion of your day (whether at your desk or while commuting) which will inhibit recovery due to mobility issues.

I’d modify the program and consider a twice a week split while you have three football sessions. You could also have regular training sessions on Saturday and Monday, but then do an assistance day (e.g. rows, RDLs, and chins) on Tuesday (your free day). If we were doing a consult, this would be the first thing I’d suggest (and get your feedback on it).

Lastly, I want to point out that I’m not a fan of deadlifting during a football season or during football training. I don’t know the extent of your football training, yet deadlifting is quite taxing from a localized (specific areas, in this case hamstrings, lumbar, and sacral areas) and systemic perspective. Put simply: doing deadlifts every week will not allow for optimal performance on the field. I’d suggest utilizing power cleans and RDLs until the football sessions decrease in frequency or you reach an “off-season”.

Happy PR Friday
Post your training PR’s or updates to the comments. There’s some good football on this weekend; who are you pulling for and why?

All right, it’s 2:03 AM now. Don’t ever say I don’t care.

29 thoughts on “Q&A – 7

  1. When first starting to run a TM program, do you suggest trying to increase the 5RM on intensity day by 5lbs for the bench press and overhead press? Or would you suggest starting at 2.5lb increases?

  2. I deadlifted 485 for a PR today also, beltless hook grip. Hook grip ftw!

    Other PRs this week were SQ 380x3x5reps & 410 for two singles on an off day (due to lack of eating – rare for me).

    Lifting Album of the Week – Th1rt3en by Megadeth (2011). Squat Track – Who’s Life (Is It Anyway?).

    Did ppl see KK’s latest vid? 2,115lb RAW total including 400kg beltless DL…Oooh, you better belive that’s a paddlin.

  3. Someone remind of the name of that crazy old dude who yells out stuff like “There it is take a good look at it” when he locks out lifts in competition. Justin has featured him before but I can’t find the post. Better yet hit us with a vid of some classics

  4. Front squat PR – 2 x 90 kg

    Press PRs – 1 x 114 lbs, 2 x 2 x 105 lbs

    I had a lighter week this week because I beat up my right knee, so I did more pressing than usual and I went back to doing chins.

    I did a 3 x 5 set of chins on Wednesday. I have decided to get back to 10 consecutive chins and perhaps to also get abz again – but at a bodyweight of 165 lbs – just for spite.

    Also, I had two lifters compete in a meet on Saturday. I now have more than 10 lifters in my USAW club. Since May, I have had 6 lifters compete in 5 different sanctioned meets (this doesn’t include me or any meets that I have done). I expect to have a few more lifters do their first meet in December or January.

    Is anyone going to the American Open next weekend? I will be there as a platform coach for someone.

  5. Justin,

    I think I remembered you saying you liked 3’s better than 5’s for Deadlifts? If I have remembered correctly, why is that? And if you have someone do 3’s, is it still only 1 work set or more?

  6. Justin, thanks for your quick and thoughtful response. Stupidly I forgot to add (soccer) after football (I’m a limey, you see). I play in goal so training is a lot like a burpee conditioning workout (getting to ground quickly and back to my feet, lots of jumping/diving etc.). I like the idea of an assistance day, I hadn’t even considered that. I’ll report back with results. Thanks again.

  7. Squat 1×3 184kg

    Bench press 1×3 115kg

    Just before attempting my dl of 210 (which I didnt get), I got text message from my mom. A year ago my dad was diagnosed with prostate cancer, unfortunately he has to undergo chemo therapy now. If you guys or girls haven’t donated yet for movember please do. With help we can get rid of this fucking disease!

  8. No PRs this week. First miss on the TM since I started. Should have listened to Justin, bad gym, bad squat rack, forgetting my music, and odd sleep schedule didn’t help. No worries, slight reset and back to work next week!

  9. 600×5 DOHGY style IS insane!

    Squatted 220kgx3 tonight. Up from 200×2 in March, despite injury and only really lifting (actively, because of injury, or maintenance) for 5 of those 9 months. Bodyweight is 93kg and height 6’1.

    I think a TM set-up is great for intermediate lifters who fight. You can work around injury and get creative with programming to accommodate competition training/fight camps and work around injury if necessary. It’s quite simple to go into maintenance mode and is easy to get back on the pony ready to saddle up and hit PB’s when the fight/competition is over.

    Glad to have made the switch from 531. Not a dig at Wender’s 531, it was useful and easy for me, but I need flexibility and a TM set-up has plenty of option. Thanks for the advice Justin, I switched my training after seeking DL advice from you, but unfortunately I wasn’t able to do the DL program because of injury. I’ve only just started to pull again in the last 3 weeks.. so as soon as my body is ready for it I’m sure I’ll pull the 600 I wanted.

  10. Squat: 310 x5
    Press: 165 x5
    Deadlift: 350 x5

    One of the best feelings is setting PR’s on the intensity day. It really made my day.

    Does anybody know of some lower back exercises to reduce low back pain? I would really appreciate it. Thanks.

  11. Can’t get video of thanksgiving feast weight gain uploaded. Maybe tomorrow I’ll get it to work. Anyway PRs snatch 140 5×3, c and j 190 5×3, deadlift 325 3×5, squat 310 3×5, none in press.
    Played in the local turkey bowl on thankgiving, got a couple sacks, a recovered fumble and two rushing td’s. Reminded me of how much I love to play

  12. Thanks for the response Justin,

    While re-reading my question I did word it totally stupid. I meant I can’t get my hips as far back in the start position, and if I try I usually end up falling back. But no worries, I found some mobs on the deadlift and those seem to be helping. Thanks for the help j-star….you the man

  13. Hey check out this gordon-fuck


    LMAO. The funniest thing is this asshat talks like he’s some athlete and then you see what he looks like IRL: skinny little twat who probably couldn’t ruck more than a mile with a 70lb pack. I’ve been watching some of his videos and the rage I’ve been experiencing is oddly therapeutic.

    Guarantee it’ll make anybody’s blood pressure rise a few points

  14. Pressed 160 lbs 1rep for a PR. Turned around and yelled to the rest of the Rec Center “Call me butter, ’cause I’m on a roll!”. (I wish the second part really happened). Finished up by eating some pumpkin pie with blackberry jam for vitamins.

  15. Did a year end total today, a bit early since I’m heading to Australia for a month+ tomorrow.
    Squat: 185lb – PR and first time I squatted over BW
    Bench: 95lb – PR
    Dead: tied my PR at 215lb despite thinking I’d be lucky to pull 200

    Super fun day, celebrated by eating caribou and cheesecake!

  16. Justin,

    Long story short I’ve lost whatever mojo I had for deadlifts once a week at a set of 5. I still want to deadlift I need a break from the mental game. Any suggestions? I’ve heard 3×3?

  17. Hey Justin,
    You may have answered this before…What do you suggest doing when taking a deload week in TM? Is it better to just do no heavy lifting for a week or reduce the volume? How about conditioning – avoid it or include it during deload?

  18. I haven’t posted in ages but I’m super psyched about my Friday morning PR. I’m taking about six weeks to get serious and work towards a 405# squat before my wife delivers our first baby (it’s a girl) around Christmas. I imagine all hell will break loose after that, so training will be spotty for a bit.

    Hit 355# for a solid triple and felt like I had a little more in the tank. I will make sure I post each week until I hit my goal.

    Video Evidence – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KwpQbtnkjqU

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