PR Friday — Week In Review

It’s been a hectic month, and things still aren’t normal. I’d like to formally thank Tom, Pete, Shannon, Shaun, and Shari for a lovely time in Australia. There are plenty of other assholes — like Stu, Josh, Sean, Jobbo, Kurt, Jeff, Steady, Sharpie, Gary, and plenty more that I’m forgetting — that made the trip heaps of fun. To all of you: stay in touch, train hard, eat well, and mob your genitals off.
Edit: I also have some good footage of a koala flipping his shit (literally and figuratively).

PR Friday
It’s been a while since we’ve had a formal day to post training updates and PRs, so make sure and do so. I’ll remind you that one of the coolest parts of this site is the interaction between the readers, and if you don’t actually post, you miss out on that indefinitely. I’d like you guys to point out any specific aspects of your programming that you think have helped out in the past several months. This could be a programming template, a mob, or an accessory movement.

Pan American Championships
The Pan Ams begin today and will mark the last chance any American men have at earning the single spot to the Olympics. Chad Vaughn has pulled out of this competition due to a groin injury — Chad had an excellent career and competed in the last two Olympic games and was a top 20 world competitor. Kendrick Farris is currently sitting in the driver’s seat for the single spot while Donny Shankle will try to hit massive numbers to earn the spot. More information on this throughout the day (after I train) as well as any streaming links. There may also be a live chat with the stream as well as current coverage of the competition. Facebook and Twitter will provide the most updated coverage.

Week In Review
On Monday we talked about the “banded good morning” (with video) and how it has immense utility in working the posterior chain, rehab, and a finisher that can aid recovery. I highly recommend it’s inclusion in most programs. On Tuesday we talked about how Prilepin’s Chart can a trainee’s programming template to ensure appropriate doses of stress. There will be a follow up on using different intensities in the same training session. On Wednesday we took a look at the 94kg class in preparation for the 2012 Olympic Games in London. It seems that Ilya Ilin and Artem Ivanov are hitting great numbers in training, and it could lead to a toe-to-toe battle in London.

There won’t be a Q&A this week, but feel free to ask questions for next week’s Q&A in the comments. If it’s a simple question, some of the other readers may attempt at an answer, and I’ll take the best ones for next week’s column. I’ll also sift through some of the comments, e-mails, and messages I received while abroad and pick out the good ones.

Johnson of Warrior Performance (Shannon Green's gym) preps for a big bench

69 thoughts on “PR Friday — Week In Review

  1. I’ve started doing a half-hour of flexibility work on all my non-lifting days (of which there are four). It’s already making a big difference both in and out of the gym. Just less pain in general, which is always nice.

  2. My training is no really back on track yet. I maxed out at the Annandale Crossfit Total several weeks back and then had two weeks of offsite training for work which stopped me from lifting normally for two weeks. Last week was a light week to build back up and this week sucked. I did had in Tabata Sprints and Rows for conditioning the last two weeks, so that is a plus.

    Yesterday I read in the new issue of Rolling Stone that George Martin is only 200 pages into his 1,500 page plan for the next book. Fuck. I am about to finish the last book and need to figure out what to read next.

    Lots of stuff to read. Start with Joe Abercrombie — “The First Law Trilogy”, “Best Served Cold”, and “The Heroes”. Need to read them in order.


  3. last week:
    Squat 368lb, narrow miss at 380
    Bench 195lb
    Deadlift 405lb

    this week:
    high box squatted 353 singles across
    benched 180 singles across
    deadlifted 363 singles across
    10 sets for all

    next week:
    more 1rm PR’s

  4. @ smithb9 – congrats, some epic squatting going down there!

    As for me, today was intensity day and i only had a limited amount of time to train. Got serious and managed to hit all my lifts for that day –

    Squat – 155kg (341lb) x5 (PR)
    Press – 65kg (143lb) x 5
    Deadlift – 180kg (396lb) x 5 (PR match, was easy enough though)

    Been on the texas method template outlined in the ebook for about 2 months, so I guess this is an aspect of my programming that has changed for the better. I think the texas method has really taught me a lot about just getting in the gym and being intense.

    For the next few months im adding in some slingshot bench for tricep work on intensity days, not a major change, but I think it will help by lagging bench considerably.

  5. I don’t know how any of you find time to train in the morning if you’re working a 9-5’er… I was only up before 7 AM today because I woke up to my roommate blackout drunk and pissing down the staircase at 6:30 am.

  6. No PR’s this week. Started Sean Waxmans Olympic weightlifting wod this week. I have no time to put my programming together so this makes it easy for me. I so need/want to go to a Olympic weightlifting seminar ie; Waxman’s gym or Catalyst Athletics but of course money is the biggest factor right now plus the travel involved. I will get it done it will just be later than sooner…

  7. We had a University bench contest yesterday, complete with somewhat absent-minded judges and a 10 KG bar. I ending up winning, but I was far too conservative with my picks. Aw well. My spoils included a gold medal and a rad tracksuit.

    I’ve switched to the conjugate method with my programming. I’ve also been able to incorporate more speed work with bands and it’s helped my regular lifts immensely, because I wasn’t moving the bar fast enough normally. I’d prefer to work in some chains, as I did a lot of work with them last year, but my current country, chains are used for swinging at police.

    Pretty excited to read your thoughts on Reverse Band Deads.

    In what country do you reside?


  8. Deadlift PR: 510 (on the road to 6 bills)
    Squat PRs: 385x5x3; also 390x3x3… the 3×3 was a failed day on my linear progression. My first set I new 5 was not going to work so I decided I could at least do 3s across which was still a PR for me. I’m getting to the point where I think I’ll need to switch to the TM soon.
    Been doing RDLs consistently. Nothing heavy but high reps with 135 and it has helped a lot for both my squat and deadlift.

  9. Squatted 390x1x5 last week and pressed 187.5x1x5 this week.

    I’m a little bit older (35) and used 5-3-1 for over a year with good results. However, I thought I could stand squatting 2x week and have moved to a volume and intensity day structure with my squat and press and have been making solid progress for about 2 months. I wanted to get my press up and have been using 5×5 and 1×5 with success so far. I don’t like the 5×5 with squats and have been playing around with the most efficient way to approach the volume day. I’ve used Prelipin’s Chart to see what feels right and have been playing around with dynamic squats on volume day.

    Definitely going to buy the next Texas Method book to help guide with the volume days and just in general. I originally viewed the program as more rigid and shied away because of the 5×5 stuff but after reading a bunch of the stuff posted here and the other guys’ logs I realize it is much more versatile.

  10. tried out band good mornings with a fat black band. did multiple sets trying out variations. just plugged them in on a random day. destroyed myself for next days lifts… took some serious pre mobbing to get things going. I’ll be using these regularly now.

    If you did the banded GM’s like in the video, the large black band is too much tension. Unless you’re a behemoth, the green band is a little higher tension for most people. For comparison, the green band is enough for me right now.


  11. I have a question for the Olympic lifters. How important is the press in O-lifting programming? I’m not really concerned about the press itself, only positive carry over to the classic lifts.

    Also, what O-lifting programs are you guys using? I’ve ran through the MSU hormonal fluctuation method but don’t like all the downtime.

    Your program will be related to your skill, strength, and adaptation. The press is not necessarily a requisite, but it can help account for shitty technique. Regardless, a BW press would be cool unless you’re a higher level weightlifter. Judging by your questions, you aren’t one, so take that into consideration.


  12. Tried kroc rows on Wed for the first time…felt great. I’m definitely focusing more on mobility and posterior chain work with RDLs, GHRs, T-bar rows, back extensions, etc. I made voodoo floss bands at home from bike tire tubes that cost me $8. I have 4 bands in total.

    Subbed leg presses for squats because of a hip impingement/labrum issue. I’m going to see a surgeon in a couple weeks.

    Are you shoving your knees out correctly when you squat to prevent impingement?


  13. No significant PRs.
    A month ago, I bought the TM e-book and I’m in the 3rd week of TM.
    What has made big difference this year, is remembering to do mob work.

    Also experimenting with a bit lower starting hip position in deads.

  14. No real PRs except I’m squatting below parallel, fucking finally. I’m also going to start a 5/3/1 cycle to try that out and waiting to receive a big boy PL belt in the mail.

  15. @alpmiller

    I’ve read varying thoughts re: press strength for O-lifting, although nothing really concrete one way or the other.

    FWIW, Caleb Ward’s best strict press is supposedly only 70k, and he’s jerked 203k in competition, so…

  16. My first post. I was going to write something clever about virgins but it all came off cheesy (there’s probably a joke there about virgins and cheese, too), regardless, I just finished 6 cycles of 5/3/1/ set/rep scheme and maxed my 4 strength lifts last Saturday.

    Box squat: 365 x 1 (325 x 1)
    DB Low Incline Press: 85s x 1 (unknown)
    Chin: BW (210) + 65 X 1 (198 + 45 x 1)
    Deadlift: 385 x 1 (365 x 1)

    In parenthesis are the heavy singles I did before committing to the 5/3/1/ design. The box squat is a 25 lb lifetime pr. The chin and deadlift are getting back towards lifetime pr levels. I changed my pressing movement every 2 cycles in an attempt to find something that didn’t aggrevate my shoulders. DB Incline Presses feel great, going to stick with it. My bodyweight went from 198 to 210 pounds. My height held steady at 6′ 2″.

  17. Got a nutrition question. The wife’s due date is coming up (procreation PR), which means I won’t be able to regularly get to the gym in the first few months while the little bugger learns to sleep through the night.

    When taking a 1-2 month hiatus, how should a lifter eat? I don’t want to start over from square one when I go back, but obviously if I still eat like I’m training, it’ll just get packed away as fat. Should I just try to eat clean?

    Benched 3×5 with 270 this week, which is turning into a plateau for me

    Gonna try DLing 405 tonight. One of my goals was to pull 4 wheels before hitting fatherhood…

  18. This week:

    Bench- 105kg x 2,2 (done 3,3,2 with this the prev week (PR) BUT this was prob cause I benched first the prev week, this week I benched after squatting)

    Squat low bar- 110kgx3x3 just working on shoving knees out hard- kept them out well, had sore hamstrings and adductors after this. Doing the three stretches for lifters mobs every day nw and occasion anterior/posterior band distraction for anklea

    Press – 70kg x 2,0,0 (disappointing did 3×3 with 67.5kg the prev week)

    Dead- 150kg x 3 (fat bar, hook grip)

    Today – grip work- 190.69lbs (4-10 setting) IVANKO Supergripper for 3 reps on each hand (PR) RESET after every rep.

  19. It’s been a while since I last posted, but I have a couple PRs:

    Front Squat: 320 lb x 2
    C&J: 130 kg

    Snatch is still lagging, I need to push it this next week.

  20. Started back up with strength training in January after over a month and a galf off and things are looking good.

    My body weight goal is to be 210 with bodyfat under 12% (currently weigh 222, was 240 in January) 1 rep max goals by deember are:
    Deadlift 500lbs
    Back Squat 400
    front squat 350
    clean 300
    press 200

    Checked my press and clean maxes the other day and pressed 160×1 nd hit a 260 clean. Been able to clean 265 on a regular basis, and hit 275 off 1 inch rubber mats a few weeks ago before getting a cyst removed from my back.

    My program is a 3 day a week A/B day linear progression:
    -A Day
    Front squat: 3×3 (sets x reps)
    Press: 3×5
    Clean: doubles-heavy single of the day

    -B Day
    Back Squat: 3×5
    Clean and push press: triples-doubles- heavy single of the day
    Glute ham raises: 3×7-10,
    Randomly check deadlift max throughout the month. 425 last time I checked.

    Eating clean and looking good= Getting lots of xxxxxx in college.

  21. Still working my way back up after a slew of minor injuries. Back to about 80% of my old PR’s, so I should be back to them in a month or two and hopefully beyond over summer.

    I have a question though. I was fell awkwardly on my hand playing soccer 2 weeks ago, and as a result my wrist is a bit stiff. Turning my hand palms up all the way has limited ROM, and slightly hurts. I took a week off at first, and nothing changed. Then I decided to try lifting with it, and the first set or two of squats it’s stiff, and after that it feels 100%, and feels fine in press/bench/dead as well. However, the next morning I wake up with it feeling the same stiffness as before. So what’s my best option prior to just sucking it up and asking my doctor?

    I don’t know what the injury is or how severe. You should have iced it after the initial injury. You should still ice it every day.


  22. Oh, and forgot my most 70s Big accomplishment–I literally had the entire side seam on a pair of board shorts rip open while I was squatting yesterday… ahahah 1, Everlast 0.

  23. @alpmiller: I have a pretty decent overhead press (197 @ 210bw) and I find that the jerk is by far the easiest part of doing the clean and jerk. Basically if I can clean it, I can jerk it (as long as I catch it in the right position). Maybe it’s just mental confidence, but to be honest my split jerk isn’t particularly fast or anything, so I really do think the press strength helps me a lot. On the other hand you can definitely overcome weakness with technique, so I would just get both really dialed in.

    Hit a PR clean and jerk of 260# the other day (clean PR by 5#, jerk PR by 10#, c&j PR of 15#). Haven’t trained the Oly lifts at all the past 3 months or so, but have been teaching the lifts once a week so I think going through the motions and drilling the movements, even with just PVC, has improved my technique and efficiency. That, and increasing my squat from 355 – 385.

  24. Week two of my first wave of 531.
    First heavier lifts since being back from back injury. (My back injury was from jerking in a too-heavy deadlift.)

    When I was calculating this wave I took about 40 lbs off my 1RM deadlift to work form with a lighter weight.

    The third set was 3+, so I just kept lifting and hit:

    Deadlift: 295×10

    I saw a coworker at the gym and asked him to give me cues.

  25. Been following the 70’s Big S&C Program for 7 weeks now, but modified slightly to do a GSLP-like 3rd set AMRAP. Took a big de-load from the start, and it’s clear I need to start making bigger weight jumps from week to week for a bit.

    Still a weak mofo, but a few “PRs” – squatted 200×15 on set 3 and benched 165×16. Upping both by 10# next week.

  26. Hey 70s big peeps, I’ve been sick the past few days and I’ve been sitting too much; but we all have our vices. For PRs, still in weak ottermode territory but HB squat 295×8, Bench 240×4 and Fat Bar deadlifts 385×4; I didn’t have a choice on whether the bar was fat or not so I just had to make do. I’m home from shcool for the semester and I actually have to get off my ass to cook again. no bueno.

  27. Dealing with a few injuries, latest being a sprained ankle.

    Bench 290x3x3, not a PR but overcoming my elbow tendonitis.

    Deadlift – 375 x8 singles, 400 today.

    Squat – using the safety bar for now while I rehab my ankle.

    Was hoping to do the RPS europa meet on June 30 but I think I will focus my efforts towards a strongman comp at the end of Aug. Last year was all strongman this year I was hoping to get some decent PL numbers.

  28. Squat PR=310×5
    Deadlift PR=335×5

    Switched to TM a month ago and it’s going very well. I’m recovering much better and feel fresher.

    If that’s your dog in your avatar, he’s a handsome fellow.


  29. @reidj

    You go to bed early and get up at 4am or 5am to train because it is something you want to do – be stronger. It would be nice to sleep in but sometimes you have to make sacrifices for what you want.

  30. Hey guys. I just signed up for my first PL meet, and I have no idea what I’m doing. Anyone else doing the Hoosier Fit Expo?

    Bench: 145×1. (I WOULD have a 150 to report, but my spotter TOUCHED THE BAR.)
    Squat: 170x3x1 (Post-injury PR, also high-bar PR.)
    DL: 260×1 strapped, 245×1 raw.

  31. 270/hand farmer’s for 40ft, 80ft would have been cooler.

    Also, squatted 445 for a single a couple weeks back – finally getting out of my rut, mang.

    I could definitely be doing more curls to get Boo-Yaa Tribe Big.

  32. pb hang snatch: 3×2@90. the russian coach at the gym, who was world champion in 82 and 83 was getting me to land harder on the heels. feels much better.
    i’ve been working the weighted hypers twice a week, and find i’m stronger recieving the bar in the clean. will give the banded good morning a go today

  33. Started training the Olympic lifts for the first time on April 9th, after years of studying technique, and wishing for a place I could perform them (consistently) at. Last Friday, I PR’ed a 190lb (87kg) Snatch, and a 260 lb Clean and Jerk, and 275 Clean. Tonight I hope to make a body weight Snatch (200lbs). We’ll see!
    I’ve been using Pendlay’s beginner’s program, and I’ve been enjoying it. Sometimes I wish there were more full lift days, but the variants are good for technique work, so…

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