Where Strength and Size are the only goals

Archive for March, 2014

Monday 31st March 2014 – Back Focus Week 2

DB Pullover 45kg x9, 40kg x10 (2 minutes rest)

Weighted Chins 24kg x6, 20kg x7, BW x11 (60s rest)

DB Row To Hip 35kg x12x9 (60s)

Power Cleans up to 100kg

Rack Pull (Above Knee) 200kg x10

G Row 42.5kg x5x5 (90s)

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Saturday 29th March 2014

Cable Row 80kg x8x8x8x8 (90s rest)

Shrugs (Explosive) 120kg x40 (12 done, then the remainder in a rest pause style, no letting go of the bar), 100kg x40 (2 mins)

DB Shrugs (with 3s hold) 30kg x10x10 (90s rest)

Standing Calf Raise 100kg x12x10x9 (60s rest)

Leg Press Toe Press 180kg x10x9 (60s)

Seated Calf Raise 160kg x10, 120kg x20 (60s rest)


Friday 28th March 2014

DB Pullover 42kg x12x12 (2 mins rest)

V Grip Pulldown 90kg x8, 75kg x8 (30s rest)

Bent Over Row 90kg x8, 60kg x12x12x8 (30s)

Power Cleans up to 100kg

Deadlift 160kg x3


Wednesday 26th March 2014

Decline Bench 120kg x6, 100kg x10 (60 secs rest)

EZ Bar Curls 30kg x12x12x10x8 (30s)

Viking Press 70kg x9, 40kg x11, then Lat Raise 7.5kg DB’s x19 (60s rest)

Squat 150kg x6

Standing 1-Arm DB External Rotation 5kg x15x15 (rest each side as long as it took to perform the set on opposite side)

Cuban Rotation 10kg EZ Bar x12x12 (90s)


Monday 24th March 2014 – Back Focus Week 1

After my recent article, injuring my shoulder (again DAMMIT!), and watching the ‘Dark Knight Rises’ (also again :-)) I have decided to re-visit a very effective workout phase I went through a couple of years ago whilst following Johnny Pains Greyskull LP. I am going to focus heavily on back training for the next 8 weeks to bring my back up to a decent standard again alongside some specific rotator cuff exercises which I have been neglecting for waaaay too long!  I will be using the same basic template as he lays out with a few ‘Hench’ additions (including rotator cuff work). On top of this as the Deadlift is my weakest lift, the next 8 weeks should hopefully help bring that up too!

I never used to suffer from shoulder pains at all until recently, which I put down to no longer teaching BodyPump. Although I am glad I don’t have to go through it twice a week, it seems logical that it has been responsible for keeping my shoulder health as very little else has changed in my workouts, and it has been a slow decline into the old battered shoulder territory ever since I stopped.

Started the week off with:

DB Pullover 40kg x12x11 (2 mins rest)

Weighted Chins 24kg x6, 20kg x6 (2 mins rest), then after 60 seconds Chin-ups x10 – felt much harder after pullovers!

DB Row To Hip 30kg x12x12 (60s)

Power Cleans – heavy singles up to 100kg

Deadlift 140kg x7 – expected this to be lower than usual after that amount of back work and focusing hard on technique

G Row 40kg x5x5 (2 mins)


Getting Hench – The Importance of Back Training Part 1

To be truly Hench, you need an impressive back. Nothing states strength more or makes for a better looking physique than a big strong back. Whilst having a well developed chest and arms are important, without a good back alongside you will  look weak and/or incomplete often with poor posture. This is why these are often called ‘mirror muscles’ – You look great to yourself when you look in the mirror, but you are never seen in everyday life like that! How often do we face someone directly face on? Your physique needs to be Hench from any angle and a well developed back is key and, dare I say, more important than chest or arms in the way you look. Not to mention the fact it is the most crucial muscle group for functional strength in tasks ranging from everyday life to athletics/sports or competitions.

Bodybuilders have a saying in competitions that ‘the contest is won from the back’, and the majority of winners have had the best back development. This alone should spur you on – A competition based solely on aesthetics considers the back as almost the most important bodypart, yet still the newbies and ego-lifters focus on those mirror muscles with all their effort and only half-ass their back and/or leg workouts despite claiming they are ‘bodybuilding’ or just want to ‘get big’.

A good back is measured on two main things .. Thickness – Which will pull your shoulders back, maintaining good posture and emphasizing your chest and ‘V’ Shape – Causing your waist to appear smaller and shoulders wider. What I would also add for a ‘Hench’ look is a third measure which is a good set of traps. Take Bane from ‘The Dark Knight Rises’, or even the same actor Tom Hardy in ‘Warrior’ do you look at him and question if he’s powerful looking? Nope .. Definitely Hench!

Tom Hardy's Back

 

 
Part 2 to follow …

Saturday 22nd March 2014

DB Bench 38kg x10x8x6x5 (60s rest)

Bent Over Row 60kg x12x12x12x12x12x12 (60s)

Cable Flyes 12.5kg x12x10x9x9 (60s)

Wide Grip Pulldown 60kg x12x10x7x7 (60s)

EZ Cable Curl 25kg x10x10, 20kg x10x10 – superset with Pushdowns 35kg x10x10x9, 30kg x7 (30s between supersets)


Wednesday 19th March 2014

Seated Press 62.5kg x5x5x9, followed by DB Lat Raise 7.5kg x21x12 (60 secs rest)

Weighted Chins (after each press set) 24kg x7, 20kg x7x6, followed by V Grip Pulldown (12) x9+5+3 RP

Weighted Dips 20kg x18+5+4 RP

T Bar Row 50kg x10x10x8x8x7 (60s)

Rack Pull (below knee) 180kg x4

Lever Deadlift 200kg x5, 240kg x2

Shrugs 35kg x20+8+6 RP


Monday 17th March 2014

Bench 122.5kg x4x3x4, then 100kg x8 (60 secs rest)

Chins x17x13x10 (after bench sets), then Machine Preacher Curl 20kg x8+2+1 RP (60s after last chin set)

T Row 60kg x10x10x8x7 (30s)

Squat 145kg x5

Tough slog today, a bit under the weather but determined to get strength levels back so did as much as possible. Will repeat weights next session and push for more reps (hopefully ;-))


Saturday 15th March 2014

Bench 110kg x8x6x5, 100kgx6+2+2 RP (90 secs rest) – Dropped to 100kg on last set, wanted to keep reps up

Cable Row 70kg x12x10x9x7 (90s)

DB Incline Flye 12.5kg x12x11x8x6 (60s)

Straight Arm Lat Pulldown (4) x12x12x11x10 (60s)

45 Degree Leg Press 120kg x10, 160kg x8, 200kg x4, 240kg x4, 280kg x4, 320kg x2, 360kg x8