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. Slowly, slowly trying to come back from this wrist injury. Every day is a surprise. The resulting elbow and shoulder pain from the wrist injury is fucking me up just as much as the wrist. One day, all is good. The next day, I cannot lock out a single fucking lift. Jerks have not been going well.

    Today was good with snatches. I snatched a solid 56 and a pretty decent 59 and had my first run at a PR attempt at 62. That’s the first time I’ve attempted a PR since the day of the injury in February.

    I am doing a meet next Saturday, May 19. I am scared shitless. I haven’t done a meet in so long, but Moser and I agreed that it would be good to try to peak/taper as much as possible with this fucked up situation and see what I can do. Goals are to have fun and go 6 for 6. I kind of want to throw up.

    56 from today, yes I am ridiculous:

    And 59:

  2. @karibot
    For my first powerlifting meet, I was unsure with what I was doing too. If you have 24 hour weigh ins, go weigh in, give your first attempts, and have a nice dinner/good night’s rest. Then wake up all relaxed for lifting well and eat a good breakfast and go to the rules meeting. There they will tell you about the commands and what is good and not good. You might also see what height for the squat rack is good for you around that time. Then see what the flights are and if you are the first flight then warm up and lift. Then the bench press comes and then the deadlift finishes it. Watch to see when other people in your flight warms up to do it at the same time. Usually it is about a flight ahead or so…when the last flight is on 2nd attempts then the first flight starts warming up.

    For picking first attempts, I’ve heard various things. I’ve heard to use what you can lift for 5RM, something you lift for your last warm up just on the platform, as well as percentage of your 1RM like 92% or so. Since girls can lift more reps at closer to their max than guys, I would go with a 5RM that you know you can do or do the last warm up on the platform thing. Also take into account fatigue in the deadlift after some max attempts at squat and bench.

  3. Also, started getting sports massage once a week to improve shoulder flexibility and external rotation. DefinItely helping my Pressing and bench. But I notice the most improvement in my low bar squat position. Upper back feels much better under load.

  4. Woo! Tonight I weighed in at 201 lbs, with my shoes on, so I decided to try for a 205 snatch… Well, after bombing out 7 or 8 times, I decided to drop the bar down to 200, and deduct my shoes… Made that on my second try. Hehe. After that, my second pull was fried – I missed the rack on a clean for the first time this month – so I went to BTN jerks. They went MUCH better. The last time I did these, I made 235. This time, I made 285, for two singles.

    I love being a beginner.

  5. @Yosh
    This is really helpful, thanks! I’ve been reading up on the rules and thinking a lot about attempts. I think I’m going to go with the last warm-up model, which is pretty close to my 5RM anyway.

    It’s a push/pull meet, and I’m a little relieved to not have to worry about squat-related things my first time out (rack height, squat-related fatigue, etc.). Plus, my squat is pretty weak at the moment. It’s mostly the structure of the day of the meet that’s making me nervous. Watching what everyone else is doing seems like good advice. Thanks!

    I’m just excited to get the first one under my belt, y’all.

  6. Been a reader for a long time but just joined up today. Love the site. Great info. Got some kick ass PRs this week. DL 405×10 and 500×2. Doing a mod of 5/3/1.

    Thanks for commenting, and well done.


  7. Been creepin this site for a hot minute now. I squatted 405# this morning which I was super stoked about. Been training under a year (since Oct ’11), and just started incorporating a lot of over eating, over sleeping, and over training into my workouts. Heavy assistance work, heavy lifting 6x a week, etc … been working wonders for me. And with a steady diet of everything and over 8 hours of sleep a day, I feel great. Keep up the good articles! – tyler

  8. The single biggest thing that has kept my lifting consistently improving has been mobility work. As long as I’m working on what ails me 3+ days a week my lifts keep going up.

    Hit 215×5 bench and 425×5 deads a few weeks back. Took a bit of a deload and spent all of yesterday loading a 24 foot truck up with heavy furniture. Fortunately though I will have a home lifting setup in the near future with 600 lbs of weights and space to build my own power rack. Looking forward to that a lot. Also should find out about medical school this next week.

    Related note, anybody know where to find a decent bench? most of the stand alones I’ve seen run close to 100 dollars, and that’s almost as much as I’m going to spend building the freaking power rack.

  9. All of my lifts have really improved in the last couple of months. Specific aspects of programming/recovery:

    1. Lifting shoes.

    2. My deadlift was stuck at 205 for a long time. Incorporating (i) weighted rounded back extensions and (ii) weighted pull-ups for heavy singles/doubles/triples has added 55 pounds to my deadlift in the last four or five months. Weighted pull-up PR this week of +25×3.

    3. Mobbing has changed everything. I’ve complained a lot about hip problems here, but that’s been entirely resolved with mobbing and (subsequent) improved positioning. My squat feels better than ever and I can probably thank Kstar for saving me from a hip replacement. Opening up the anterior hip was crucial (couch stretch, soft tissue work on hip flexors and quads). But these two have been game changers:
    That second one touches on the “hip torque” issue that Justin posted about a few months back.

    @enlightenedsnipe — Medical school would be sweet. Good luck!

  10. @enlightenedsnipe – My advice would be not to skimp on a bench. Get a solid, commercial bench. I say this after having a bench collapse on the person I was spotting. He was on a cheap Apex flat bench, and he only had 185 on the bar. I ended up getting a flat bench from Little’s Fitness for my gym, and it’s bomb proof.

  11. my lifts :
    squat 190kg x 3 (YAY record)
    bench press 110kg x1 (PR)
    power clean 100kg x 3 (PR)
    – texas method/basic/
    great day… :) thanks Justin for Texas method book! I will PR on deadlifts this week,i hope to do 210kg x 3 :)

  12. Just did BS 295×5,5,5 over lunch, but GOOD GOD, that last #5 was a screamin’ grinder! I have realized recently that I am learning [again] the meaning of the term “hard.” Several times now, I think I know how to push but then one day I stand back up from something that would have crushed me before. Like one more layer of mental barrier just got kicked aside…

  13. Been a couple weeks, but good ones
    Two weeks ago, I hit some big PR’s as a peaked for the East Coast Classic in Moorestown:
    84kg clean
    105 kg front squat

    I PR’d my total at 126 in Mooretown by going 5-for-6, with a competition PR in the C&J. I’m seeing steady improvement thanks to some hard work and lots of squats.

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