PR Friday – 13 SEP


Getting stronger is a process that demands that you get smarter by learning from mistakes. Sounds easy, doesn’t it? You just go to the gym, have a “workout”, get strong, occasionally mess up, but fix it and keep “working out”…right?

No, sir. The process of training is grueling. It can be fun when training with friends, pumping loud music, having a grand ol’ time. But for most of us, we don’t get that luxury. We’re in a gym, a garage, or a “fitness adventure”…alone with our thoughts. There isn’t anyone there to encourage crushing the first set of squats or to hit a sixth snatch in a row. Each set, each rep requires that you make a decision: “Do I give it my all here?” Doing it on every rep isn’t easy.

It would be pretty easy to not try. It would be easy to slack on some reps, to not bounce the hell out of a squat or not finish the pull on your cleans. Sure, it’d be easy. It’d be so easy to quit. It’s much easier to quit than do something hard, so why bother?

Fuck. That. Never avoid doing something that’s hard. Avoiding “hard” makes you a coward, and you can never experience or learn anything by being a coward. By convincing yourself to do something that’s hard when you don’t want to, you won’t just grow physically. You display a quality of strength that correlates and resonates far beyond the barbell. By overcoming the difficult, that process sets you up for success. Your thoughts formulate your feelings, your feelings compose your emotions, your emotions are exhibited through your actions, and your actions define who you are. By structuring your thoughts to tackle difficult challenges, to strive towards success regardless of the obstacle, you formulate into a better person. You manifest into 70’s Big.

Happy PR Friday (post PR’s to comments)

35 thoughts on “PR Friday – 13 SEP

  1. After 9 months of futility, I finally set a new squat PR. Hit 435 for a double.

    Nothing to brag about, but it hasn’t really been a goal of mine with school, work, and all kinds of other life things going on. Suffice it to say, my fire is back.

  2. Sometimes articles like this sound cliched, but then you meet Justin and realise that he lives this shit.
    He’s not some Gold’s PT telling people how gruelling his last set of 1 arm concentration curls were – he has ‘striven for sucess ‘ on a daily basis for years.
    Sometimes, like all of us, I don’t push myself as much as I should, and that’s when you need to assess yourself with brutal honesty. Is this all that I am capable of?

  3. Anyone know of any discussions/articles on running after lifting? Its effect on lifting, etc.

    I’ve been running immediately after lifting (~ 3 miles) to kind of prep me for upcoming Tough Mudder. However it feels like this is hurting my squat progression. All other lifts seem to be fine.

    I’ll probably stop running after the race (mid October).

    • This is imperfect at best but maybe try separating lifting days from cardio days. Also make sure you are getting enough calories to help offset the extra work. Prob doesn’t need to be a lot more, maybe 200-300 range.

      I personally like to get my run in before I lift but it’s normally only 2 miles. I don’t find this to effect my squats and tend to think of it as working fast and slow twitch fibers.

      I decided to do a triathlon over the summer and lost a good amount of my strength due to where my training focus was and the fact that I use a really crappy gym in the summer. Now that fall is here and I’m back to my normal gym and routine I feel like I’ve rapidly increased my strength to near where it was in the spring in only 2 weeks. Combined with the benefit of losing 10lbs on top of the 10lbs I lost from just strength last year and I feel like I’m going to have an really good training season.

    • Hey lefty, here’s my 2 cents –

      First, you should pick up Justin’s book, FIT, on amazon. That will give you some great idea’s for combining strength and endurance programming in a proper fashion.

      Second is how I trained for tough mudder. I pretty much jumped into it from doing SS. Zero running. Nada. I think I was just mentally able to check in and keep pushing. My team was the first to finish in our heat and we did it in boots and UDT’s.

      Ideally though I would suggest you keep the LSD shit to a minimum. Like once a week, no more than four miles. Probably on a Saturday when you dont do anything else. On your lifting days finish up by doing 400m repeats, don’t do any more than 8. If you can complete 8, all out, balls to the wall 400m sprints, then give yourself less rest and keep doing them.

      If you want to run again during the week, then do 1200m repeats after you lift, probably like 4-5. Same thing, balls to the wall, as fast as you can go.

      There you have it; lift and sprint. Rest day, lift and sprint, rest day. LSD on the weekend. Don’t fuck around on your rest day either -sleep and eat like a king.

      • Okay, I have Justin’s book and it is great overall. However, I have found this chapter very confusing for several reasons.

        So here is my question as a reformed xfitter.

        I am currently doing SS and running a short distance about 20 min after my lifts. I am 31 and tried doing burpees as I understood the book to do 4 sets of 15 with 1 min rest. This killed me. I couldn’t concentrate all day or sleep that night. Obviously too much for me. Do I scale the numbers down or the sets or either? Or maybe pick another exorcise such as KB swings for some time ’til I can build up to burpees?

        I’ll be working with Chris next month on programing some of this stuff better for me. I wanted to hit some strength goals first and those, for the most part, are going pretty smoothly.

  4. The owner of the gym I use almost always asks me “back for some more fun?” when I show up. I’m going to have to inform him that I’m not there to funout. I thought being of the 10% of people that use the squat rack for something other than curls would have made that clear. Go figure.

    I’m still on the LP so everything is a PR, a fact which makes them too light to be worth mentioning in public.

    I’d prefer to not have someone here take my lunch money.

  5. I have been at school until 10pm or later every night this week until last night. I have had to compromise my nutrition as best I can with my schedule, and fight for the moderate sleep I have gotten.

    Wednesday night I came home at 1030pm and realized I had missed my upper body lifting session. Rather than do nothing I went into my garage and did a single with the weight already on the rack 155. After I did that single I realized that it didn’t feel terrible. So I bumped up to 185 and knocked out 14 reps for a solid PR. Sometimes you just have to do everything you can and good things will happen. Then I got up yesterday and went 79/80 on the largest exam so far this semester. Neither of those accomplishments is is outstanding, but I’m better than I was last week. Show up and work your freaking brains out.

    That kind of rambled, but it’s been that sort of week.

  6. Had some trouble getting 5 reps with the deadlift and press this week, but still set PR’s. I’m not going to complain! Just gonna get RECKLESS!!! My squat is showing no signs of slowing down!

    Deadlift: 355×2
    Press: 165×4
    Squat: 370×5

  7. Deadlift 370×5
    I’m not going to pull 5rm anymore. My body just doesn’t like this rep range as much as it does pulling a triple.
    Next week going for 395×2-3 (I’ve done 390×3). On the road to 405 for reps

  8. snatch double PR: 66kg

    Also coach/programmer/inspiration PR: one of my female lifters came back from Italy this summer 10lbs heavier and squat amnesia. Wrote her a basic 4-week squat-focused Oly program. 2 weeks in she asked for dietary advice. Wrote her another 4 week nutritional re-set plan … she’s almost 2 weeks into the new way of eating and 5lbs down. She’s also continued to make linear progressions on her squat and other lifts the entire program. She just maxed her push press and back squat with major PRs. Less body weight and increased strength? HELL YES.

  9. Finally hit 135 on my bench after weeks of being stuck at 125. Surprised the hell out of myself when 130 felt light, and decided to hit 135 while all the planets were lined up right.

    Also, dropped another size of jeans. Scale weight’s the same, but I’m trying hard to not care about that.

  10. my first time posting on here. getting ready for my first meet next weekend in connecticut and pulled a 485 deadlift today at 165 bw. pretty fuckin pumped about it. want 500 at the comp

  11. Hit 385×4 on squat earlier in the week. I’ve finally been able to lift consistently so I did a linear progression from 3x315x5 up to that in about 2 weeks to get back to my old strength. I’m also about 15lbs lighter than I was when I hit 405×4 in Februray, so I’ll take it. Sitting in the high 170s right now.

  12. Justin I just wanted to thank you for the great website and awesome info. I finally grew a pair of balls and competed in my first powerlifting competition last weekend and crushed some lifetime PR’s! I had followed Starting Strength a few years ago and transitioned into Texas Method using your e-book. I competed in the 93kg category, went 9 for 9 and broke provincial records in the squat, deadlift and total. So new PR’s are 202.5 kg Squat, 132.5kg Paused Bench, 235kg Deadlift. Looking forward to my next meet and love the info on here it helped more than anything! Thanks again 70’s Big you guys fucking rock!

  13. PR’s this week
    Squat 3×5@335#
    Bench 3×5@275#
    DL 1×5@410#
    FS 3×5@230#
    Power Clean 5×3@250#
    Shoulder Press 3×5@150#

    Great week but I am not recovering quickly enough to run SS 3 days a week anymore. Even with mixing a FS in I am just to fatigued at these weights. My body weight is 191#. Anyone have any experience with the upper end of SS. Just time for reset? I am hesitant to reset because I have not failed yet. Just feel like I will on every workout but do not.

  14. long time reader, first time posting! :) great few weeks of lifting, been doing a self-modified wendler 5/3/1 with a o-lift warmup each day (snatches on squat/deadlift days and cj on press days) and one extra day of heavy single only o-lifts each week (usually on saturdays). i hit a huge milestone this week in total – 132kg (+7kg). this is the clean and jerk portion of that total.

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