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Full Workout Logs

Starting 12/15/06

Rotations IV and V

by Gary F. Zeolla

These workout logs are continued from Full Workout Logs: Starting 10/17/06: Rotations II and III.


Stats:
Age: 45
Weight class: 114s/ 123s.
Next contest: No idea.

For details on this routine, see Training Routine Format - 3 Week Rotation.

Warm-ups are in brackets. All weights are in pounds. Format: pounds/reps.
Workout time includes set-up, warm-up, lifting, stretching, and clean-up.


Rotation IV; Week One

Raw benches/ Bench assistance

Friday – 12/15/06

Raw Bench: [55/15, 95/10, 125/6, 145/3] 160/6, 165/4

DB Bench (alternating arms): [35s/8, 45s/4] 55s/6, 90s/4

DB Rows (elbows in): [30/8, 42/4] 52/6, 57/4

Reverse Curls: [50/8] 55/8, 55/8

Rotator Cuff (two exercises): [5/12] 7.7/12, 7.7/12

Bicycle Abs (reps to each side): 27, 25

Stretching: ~10 minutes

Workout Time: 1:30

I am thinking of wearing a shirt for this week’s main bench day, so I moved my raw bench to my bench assistance day. Usually I do incline and decline work on my assistance days. I’m not sure if this will work out or not as I am really sore today.

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Raw Squats

Monday – 12/18/06

Raw Squats: [55/15, 145/10, 210/6, 270/3] 295/6, 315/4

Sting Ray (Front) Squats: [105/6, 125/3] 145/6, 160/4

Standing DB Calves: [10/12] 20/12, 20/12

Step-ups: 3:30

Stretching: ~10 minutes

Workout Time: 1:27

Both sets of squats were 5-pound PRs for raw squats for the given reps, so I’m making slow but steady progress in all aspects of my lifting.

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Benches

Wednesday – 12/20/06

Benches (Gear: Crain: power belt; wrist wraps; Frantz bench shirt):

[55/15, 95/10, 125/6, gear: 150/3] 165/6, 175/5, 185/4

Lat. Pulldown (underhand grip): [45/8, 65/10] 80/10, 80/10

Hammer Curls: [20s/8] 27s/6, 27s/6

Crunch/ Reverse Crunch Combo: 20, 20

Heavy Bag: 3:15

Stretching: ~10 minutes

Workout Time: ~ 1:30

As mentioned previously, I moved my raw benches to my bench assistance day, and I’ll wear a shirt for this workout, but for higher reps than in Week Three. I used my Frantz shirt since I can touch with lighter weights with it than with my Crain “combo“ shirt. That way, I could do 4-6 reps. I do 1-3 reps on my heavy geared bench day.

It felt rather good doing reps with the shirt. The shirt helped just enough to get the bar off of my chest so I can concentrate on working the top part of the lift. And doing reps lets me work the top of the lift without using maximal weights all the time. But again, I will still do a max lift on my heavy bench day with a better shirt in a couple of weeks.

The feel of the Frantz shirt is considerably different from my Crain “combo” shirt, so I’m afraid it might not help much with form, and it will probably be even less so when I get my new Crain shirt. The ideal would be to use my forthcoming double-ply shirt on my heavy days then get an identical shirt but in single-ply to use on this day. But I don’t know if it would be worth the money.

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Raw Deadlifts

Friday – 12/22/06

Raw Deadlifts: [55/15, 145/10, 210/6, 275/3] 305/6, 325/4

Platform DLs (3” platform): 235/6, 255/5, 275/5, 295/3

Sitting Calves: [125/10] 145/12x2

Jump Rope: 3:00

Stretching: ~ 10 minutes

Workout Time: 1:32

This was the first time I did PDLs since adding a fourth plank to my platform, and with the extra distance, I felt like I was pulling forever! I was planning on doing 4-6 reps as with regular DLs, but I got so winded, I dropped back to 3-5 reps.

My main reason for doing PDLS again is I am hoping they will the help with the pull off of the floor that I feel I still need even with wearing a suit. But it felt like the top part of the lift, starting just past my knees, is when the lift got the toughest. And my upper back was really beat afterwards. Then again, my lower back and hamstrings were very sore as well. So I think they’re just a good exercise overall.

 


Rotation IV; Week Two

Christmas Eve Bench Assistance

Sunday – 12/24/06

Incline Bench: [45/15, 75/10, 100/6, 120/3] 135/6, 140/4

Dips: [--/10, 35/6, 55/3] 70/6, 80/4

Underhand DB Rows: [25s/8, 35s/4] 45s/6, 50s/4

Curl Bar Reverse Curls: [45/8] 60/8, 60/8

Twisting, Dip Bar Leg Raises (reps to each side): 10, 9

Stretching: ~10 minutes

Workout Time: 1:31

I usually workout out on Mondays, but I knew I’d be busy on Christmas Day, so I was glad I was able to get this workout in before my family’s traditional lasagna Christmas Eve dinner (we’re Italian).

I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas!

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Chain/ Reverse Band Squats, etc./ Xtreme Squatting CD

Wednesday – 12/27/06

Chain/ Reverse Band Squats:

Light bands choked twice around the top of my power rack, plus 2 pairs of heavy chains; set-up weighs about 90 pounds.

[55/15, 145/10, add chains & bands: 195/6, 270/3] 305/5, 325/4, 345/2

Speed Chain/ RB Squat: [145/5] 170/5x3

Box Squats: [165/6, 200/3] 225/5

Stretching: ~10 minutes

Workout Time: 1:29

I had my brother get me Ricky’s Crain’s “Xtreme Squatting” book for Christmas. Ricky recognized the last name when my brother called *Crain’s Muscle World to order the book, so I ended up with an autographed copy (thanks Ricky!).

The book comes with a music CD, so I played that during this workout. The music reminded me of music I often hear at IPA contests. Different from my usual White Metal or Classic Rock, but still, very good workout music. As for the book, I just started reading it, but it looks to be very informative.

That said, this was a killer workout. The chains plus RBs is very demanding and left me wiped out. Hence why I only did one work set on box squats. Next time, I think I’ll only do two work sets on the chain/ RBs squats, and then two sets on the box.

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Chain/ Reverse Band Benches, etc.

Friday – 12/29/06

Chain/ Reverse Band Bench:

Light bands choked once around the top of my power rack, plus 2 pairs of heavy chains; set-up weighs about 90 pounds.

[55/15, 95/10, add chains and bands: 55/6, 90/6, 120/3] 135/5, 145/4, 155/2

Speed Chain/ RB Bench: [65/5] 80/5 x 3

Lat. Pulldowns (wide grip): [45/8, 65/4] 85/6, 80/8

DB Curls: [20s/8] 27s/8, 27s/8

Reverse Crunches: 12, 12

Stretching: ~10 minutes

Workout Time: 1:37

I was taking some pics. Also, after I finished my chains/ RB benches, I started taking the set-up down before I remembered I needed the same set-up for my speed work. So I had to set it up all over again. Plus, when I lowered my FID bench for the reverse crunches, I somehow managed to cut my finger. It really started bleeding, so I had to stop and wash it out and get a band aid on it. And all these distractions really slowed me down.

Nevertheless, this was a good workout. The chains plus reverse bands are really demanding, but I think they will strengthen the top half of the lift. See the following page of my site for the set-up: Chains Plus Reverse Bands.

I also added a second pulley to my homemade lat. pulldown. It’s working very well now.

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New Year’s Day Reverse Band Deadlifts

Monday – 1/1/07

Reverse Band Deadlifts:

Light bands choked once around the top of my power rack.

[55/15, add bands: 195/10, 270/6, 340/3] 365/5, 385/3, 405/1

Speed RB Deadlifts: [165/5, 195/5] 220/5x3

Sitting DB Calves: [10/12] 20/12] 30/12, 40/12

Stretching: ~10 minutes

Workout Time: 1:25

Since a DL suit doesn’t help as much as a squat suit or bench shirt, I’m going to use chains OR reverse bands on DLs, but both on squats and benches. This way, the difference in tension between the top and bottom of the lifts won’t be as great on DL as on squats and benches.

 


Rotation IV; Week Three

Bench Assistance

Wednesday – 1/3/07

Decline Bench: [55/15, 95/10, 120/6, 140/3] 155/6, 165/6, 175/4

Standing Press: [45/10, 65/6, 80/3] 90/6, 95/5

BB Rows (medium grip): [55/8, 80/4], 90/6, 9556

Reverse DB Curls: [20s/8] 27s/8, 27s/8

Rotator Cuff: [2.5/12] 5/12x2

Twisting sit-ups (reps to each side): 13, 8

Stretching: ~10 minutes

Workout Time: 1:31

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Squats – Lifetime PR after 24 years!

Friday – 1/5/07

Squats

(Gear: Crain: power belt, squat shoes, wrist wraps; 2.5 meter knee wraps, double-ply squat suit):

[55/15, 145/10, 215/6, suit & shoes: 285/3, belt & wraps: 355/1] 390/3, 410/2, 430/ --, 430/1

Jump Squats [75/5] 100/5x3:

Stretching: ~10 minutes

Workout Time: 2:05

As I’ve posted before, my best squat in my college lifting days was 425 at PA State Collegiates, way back in 1982. That was my second attempt. I actually came up with 440 on my third, but received 2 red lights.

At National Collegiates a month later, I squatted 413 on my first attempt. I know I missed my next two attempts, but I’m not sure what they were.

Then my last full power meet was in June of that year. I cannot remember what I squatted, but I do know I almost bombed out, missing my first two attempts but getting it on my third. But I am sure it was less than 425 I was trying. Then shortly after that contest is when my health problems began, and I did not compete again until 2003. And I’m pretty sure that after State Collegiates I never squatted as much as 425 in training.

The point of all of this is that the 430 I squatted today is the most I have squatted successfully in my life, and the most weight I’ve had on my back in almost 24 years. Of course, this is just training. I will need to hit this in a contest for it to be a true lift.

But I had problems in this workout. I got buried with the 430 on my first try with it. I think part of the problem was I had psyched myself out thinking about all of the above. I was going to quit, but I really wanted the 430. So I took all of the weights off of the bar (now sitting on the safeties in my power rack), put it back in the racks and reloaded the weights. On my second try, I again almost got buried, but I was just able to come out of the hole. Then I stalled about a 1/3 of the way up. I was ready to dump it, but somehow kept going. It was a very slow crawl from there, but grinding it out inch by inch, I finally got it!

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Benches with full gear

Monday – 1/8/07

Bench

(Gear: Crain: power belt; “combo” shirt, wrist wraps):

[55/15, 95/10, 125/6, gear: 155/3, 185/1] 205/3, 215/2, 225/1

Lat. Pulldowns (“V” grip): [45/8, 65/8] 80/8, 80/8

Curl Bar Curls: [45/8] 60/7, 60/7

Sit-ups: [--/12] 5/12, 5/12

Explosive (“clap”) Push-ups: 4x8

Stretching: ~10 minutes

Workout Time: 1:33

I benched 215 at my last contest, so it felt food doubling it here. And the 225 was with strength to spare. So my bench training is going well.

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Deadlifts with full gear

Wednesday – 1/10/07

Deadlifts

(Gear: Crain: power belt; double-ply squat suit; drug store knee and wrist wraps, Nike wrestling shoes):

[55/15, 145/10, 215/6, suit & shoes: 280/3, belt & wraps: 340/1] 375/3, 395/2, 415/ --

Jump DLs: [75/6] 95/5x3

Stretching: ~ 10 minutes

Workout Time: 1:33

I got the 415 to my knees, but that was it. The first two sets were very difficult, and I really struggled at the top end as well. So I was probably tired from struggling with those sets, so I’m not too concerned about missing the 415. And overall it was a good workout.

However, I’m feeling a little burned-out. So I will take today (Friday) off, and wait until Monday to lift again.

 



Rotation V; Week One

Bench assistance

Monday – 1/15/07

Incline Bench: [45/15, 75/10, 100/6, 120/3] 137/6, 142/4

Dips: [--/10, 35/6, 60/3] 75/5, 80/4

DB Rows (elbows in): [35/8, 45/4] 55/6, 60/4

Reverse Curls: [50/8] 55/8, 55/8

Rotator Cuff (two exercises): [5/12] 10/12, 10/12

Bicycle Abs (reps to each side): 30, 25

Stretching: ~10 minutes

Workout Time: 1:37

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Squat assistance

Wednesday – 1/17/07

Low Squats: [55/15, 105/10] 145/6, 175/5, 195/5, 205/5, 215/5

Bench (Partial) Squats: [195/10, 250/6, 305/6] 335/5, 355/3

Standing DB Calves: [15/12] 22/12, 22/12

Step-ups: 3:45

Stretching: ~10 minutes

Workout Time: 1:26

This had been my raw squat day. But instead, I decided to try a combination of exercises that I often used in college on a day opposite regular squats. I haven’t done this combination since I started lifting again, so I figured it was time to try them again. I had no idea how much weight to use, so I started light and worked up. I ended up doing too many sets, and my legs are really sore today!

The “low squats” are described at Squat Assistance Exercises.

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Benches

Friday – 1/19/07

Benches (Gear: Crain: power belt; wrist wraps; Frantz bench shirt):

[55/15, 95/10, 125/6, gear: 150/3] 170/6, 180/5, 190/4

Lat. Pulldowns (underhand grip): [45/8, 70/4] 85/8, 85/9

Hammer Curls: [20s/8] 27s/7, 27s/7

Crunch/ Reverse Crunch Combo: --/30, 10/20

Heavy Bag: 3:30

Stretching: ~10 minutes

Workout Time: 1:24

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Deadlift assistance

Monday – 1/22/07

Platform DLs (3” platform): [55/15, 145/10, 235/6, 255/3] 285/5, 300/4, 315/3

Rack Pulls: [195/6, 255/3] 285/5, 305/4, 325/3

Sitting Calves: [125/10] skipped

Jump Rope: 3:15

Stretching: ~ 10 minutes

Workout Time: 1:29

This had been my raw deadlift day. But like my squat work last week, I decided to try a combination of exercises I often did back in my college lifting days. I’ve done both of these since I stared powerlifting again, but never in the same workout, but it made for a good workout. I also used the same rep scheme I used in college for major assistance of 3x5,4,3, and that went well.

I started doing the sitting calves. But they were too awkward and not worth the effort. So I think I’ll skip them and just do standing calves on my squat days.


Rotation V; Week Two

Raw benches/ Bench assistance

Wednesday – 1/24/07

Raw Bench: [55/15, 95/10, 120/6, 145/3] 162/5, 167/4

DB Bench (alternating arms): [35s/8, 47s/4] 57s/6, 62s/4

Underhand DB Rows: [27s/8, 37s/4] 47s/6, 52s/4

Curl Bar Reverse Curls: [47/8] 65/6, 65/6

Rotator Cuff: [5/12] 7.5/12, 7.5/12

Twisting, Dip Bar Leg Raises (reps to each side): 12, 10

Stretching: ~10 minutes

Workout Time: 1:30

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Reverse Band Squats, etc.

Friday – 1/26/07

Reverse Band Squats:

(Average (#4) bands choked once around the top of my power rack)

[55/15, add bands: 195/10, 255/6] 325/4, 345/4, 365/3, 385/2, 405/1

Speed RB Squat: [145/5] 175/5x3

Standing Calves [105/10] 125/10, 125/10

Stretching: ~10 minutes

Workout Time: 1:31

This is the first time I used average bands. With the light bands I was using, I had to choke them twice around my power rack to get the amount of tension at the bottom I wanted. But this gave them too much tension at the top. With the average bands choked only once, there’s no tension at the top but still plenty at the bottom.

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Chain Benches, etc.

Monday – 1/29/07

Chain Benches:

(2 pairs of heavy chains; set-up weighs about 90 pounds)

[55/15, 95/10, add chains: 55/6, 75/3] 90/4, 100/3, 110/2, 120/1

Speed Chain Bench: 45/5 x 4

Lat. Pulldowns (wide grip): [45/8, 65/4] 80/10, 85/9, 90/8

DB Curls: [20s/10] 27s/8, 27s/8

Reverse Crunches: 15, 12

Stretching: ~10 minutes

Workout Time: 1:27

____________________________________

Reverse Band Deadlifts, etc.

Wednesday – 1/31/07

Reverse Band Deadlifts:

Light bands choked once around the top of my power rack.

[55/15, add bands: 195/10, 270/6, 340/3] 355/4, 375/3, 395/2, 415/1

Speed RB Deadlifts: [195/5] 225/5x3

Good Mornings [95/6, 115/3] 135/6, 155/4

Stretching: ~10 minutes

Workout Time: 1:25

It was too much doing the GMs after all the RB DL work. So next time I’ll skip the GMs and maybe just do some ab work instead. But otherwise, a good workout. The RB DLs felt really good.


Rotation V; Week Three

Bench Assistance

Friday – 2/2/07

Decline Bench: [55/15, 95/10, 125/6, 150/3] 170/6, 175/5, 180/4

BB Rows (medium grip): [65/8, 85/4], 95/6, 97/5, 100/4

Reverse DB Curls: [20s/8] 27s/8, 27s/8

Rotator Cuff: [5/12] 7.5/12x2

Twisting sit-ups (reps to each side): 12, 8

Stretching: ~10 minutes

Workout Time: 1:26

____________________________________

Squats with new gear - PR

Monday – 2/5/07

Squats

(Gear: Crain: squat shoes, power belt, wrist wraps; CX2-D Squat suit; Titan: Briefs; APT: Black Mamba 2.5 meter knee wraps):

[55/15, 145/10, briefs: 220/6, remove briefs, add suit: 290/3, belt & wraps: 360/1] 395/3, 415/2, 435/1

Jump Squats [85/5] 105/5x3:

Stretching: ~10 minutes

Workout Time: 2:20

For this workout I had a lot of new gear to try out. First, I got a pair of Titan briefs. I got these since Titan advertises that they make it easier to get a tight suit on. This is because they are supposed to be slippery. But they didn’t fit quite right. They were very tight in the legs, but rather loose up top. But the warm-up set with them went okay. In fact, I couldn’t get down all the way on the first few reps.

Second, I finally got my new CX2-D Crain squat suit. I tried for about 20 minutes to get it on over the briefs, but to no avail. Maybe if I had some help, but by myself, all I did was tire myself out. So the Titan briefs did not work as advertised. In fact, the material really is not that slippery. I finally gave up and took the briefs off and then put the suit on.

Without the briefs, it was not too difficult to put the suit on. But it is a little too long in the torso, so it was bunching up some. But if I could have gotten it on over the briefs, then it might have fit just right.

I called Ricky today, and basically, my options would be to get a size smaller and not use briefs or stick with the current suit and try it again with the briefs. I’m leery about getting a size smaller as even without briefs that might be too small. So I’ll stick with this suit. What I wanted to do was to get a pair of briefs with the CX2 material as it seems to be slipperier than the Titan material. That’s probably why the suit was rather easy to put on. But Ricky says they are so backed up on gear orders that it will be months until they get to making briefs with the new material. So I think I will keep the current suit and try again next time to get it on over the Titan briefs. Maybe if I use some baby powder.

Third, I had a discount coupon for APT, So I figured I’d try their “Black Mamba” wraps, and I really liked them. They seemed to give a lot of rebound in the hole.

In any case, after all the hassles, I doubled what I had squatted at my last contest, and the 435 was a PR. Not bad with the suit not fitting quite right and me being very tired out after struggling with the suit and briefs. If I can figure out how get the suit on over the briefs without tiring myself out so much, I think I could really see some big numbers.

____________________________________

Benches with full gear

Wednesday – 2/7/07

Bench

(Gear: Crain: power belt; “combo” shirt, wrist wraps):

[55/15, 95/10, 130/6, gear: 160/3, 190/1] 210/3, 220/1, 230/--

Explosive (“clap”) Push-ups: 4x10

Lat. Pulldowns (“V” grip): [45/8, 65/8] 80/10, 85/9, 90/9

Curl Bar Curls: [45/8] 60/7, 60/7

Sit-ups: [--/12] 7.5/12, 10/12

Stretching: ~10 minutes

Workout Time: 1:37

A terrible workout. I was hoping to have my new bench shirt for this workout. But I still haven’t gotten it, and I was even able to find out when it might be coming. So I went ahead and put in a heavy workout, but I wish I hadn’t. I had a hard time concentrating and finding my groove. So I got buried on two reps (the second rep with 220 and the rep with 230). And let me tell you, that is not fun!

The safety bars in my power rack catch the weight okay. But then I am pinned underneath. With my belt on, I cannot just slip out from under the bar. I have to somehow reach down with my bench shirt on and unhook my belt and pull it out of the way; then I can slip out. A bit scary.

____________________________________

Deadlifts with full gear

Friday – 2/9/07

Deadlifts

(Gear: Crain: power belt; CX2-D Squat suit; drug store knee and wrist wraps, Nike wrestling shoes):

[55/15, 145/10, 215/6, suit: 280/3, belt & wraps: 340/1] 375/1+1, 395/1, 415/ --

Jump DLs: [85/6] 100/5x3

Stretching: ~ 10 minutes

Workout Time: 1:49

Another terrible workout. I tried once again to get my new CX2-D suit on over a pair of briefs, but to no avail. All I managed to do was tire myself out. But without the briefs, the suit doesn’t fit right. It’s tight in the hips but too long in the torso. So it keeps bunching up on me, throwing off my form. Also, this is a squat suit, not a DL suit. I wanted to try it for DLs, but it obviously won’t work.

I also made some changes in my routine this past month that I don’t think worked too well. So I’ll change back to what I was doing and cycle back on the weights some.

In any case, the first set was supposed to be a triple, but I only got one rep on my first try. So I waited a couple of minutes and tried again, but again, only got one rep. Then the 395 was supposed to be a double, but again, I only got one rep. I tried twice with 415, but barely budged it both times. All the struggling with the suit and the extra attempts made for yet another too long workout. So I’m really beat.


These workout logs are continued at: Full Workout Logs: Starting 2/12/07: Rotations VI and VII.


Full Workout Logs: Starting 12/15/06: Rotations IV and V. Copyright 2006, 2007 by Gary F. Zeolla.

Powerlifting and Strength Training
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