No load like deload and Mock Meet

Two things before I start this:

  1. This post is going to be edited and added to over time since this past week has been a bit crazy and I need to upload the videos. Made my first update with the squats and bench uploaded on 10.12.15
  2. My deepest thanks to: The employees at the rec for putting up with me and letting me go a little stupid. My wife for pretty much the same thing. My family, especially LA, mom, dad, Ryan, Pat, Joyce, Brian, and Matt. The EKU strength and conditioning coaches Jon Mike, Brandon, and Ryan. All of the faculty and staff that I get to work with. All of my students, research subjects, and the EKU cheerleading squad. Thanks to one of the most fun families I get to hang out with the Sabins. My various training partners: Chris S., Chris K., Ty, Lucas, Lauren, Chad, Travis, Tyler, Justin, Kody, Andy, Zack, Jake, Brad and many more. Thanks to the Miller brothers for letting me train in their gym. And of course Scott.

Deload week

This week was a deload for me. So the basic goal here is to remove a significant amount of load and to decrease the volume (both a volume and intensity deload). I wanted to do a real meet this weekend but after tweaking my groin two weeks ago I settled to not do it, and today I felt good so I just went for it. My deload is as follows for most meets:

Three weeks out:

Last heavy deadlift workout was on wednesday. All other training as usual. That friday was when I tweaked my leg. Thank you to the EKU athletic training staff for giving me some solid myofascial release

Two weeks out:

Last heavy bench and squat workouts due to the groin the weights were even lighter on the squats. Saturday super light deload, don’t push anything.

Week of:

Everything is super light. Squats, bench, and deadlift I won’t handle anything heavier than 135. At most do a total of 10 sets including warm up. I psychologically get antsy if I don’t train at all so I just go in and spend a lot of time loosening up and just hitting good technique with the light loads. Friday was no training.

Saturday mock meet:

squat three attempts were at: 500, 535, and 555. Hit all of them and videoed the last two. Will put online and then link. In general did the warm ups without knee sleeves or a belt until I hit my last warm up at 455. I start with the empty bar and from there 135, 185, 225 and so on. Took some time to hit some stretching between each attempt. The squat in general felt good.  Also on the 555 attempt I smashed the crap out of my thumb racking the bar being a little too jubilant about getting the weight. Guess I’ll never be a hand model.

Bench three attempts were at: 325, 345, and 360. Hit all of them and videoed the last one. Will put online also. Had a miscommunication with my spotter for the 325 so it was probably a 5-10 second pause which was hilarious since he forgot to say press and then I had to try and say it without losing my air. Needless to say I survived so it is funny as hell now. 345 felt good and not too difficult. I’ve hit 355 with a pause in the gym before so I wanted to build on that and went to 360 which was a good max weight to hit for me. I belt up for the bench press when I compete only since I have found it to save my low back for the deadlift. I also will occasionally throw on wrist wraps for max benching since it helps with the psychological effect of making the bar feel lighter in my hands. I had a great hand off even though the bench was a bit slippery which really helps for grooving the weight where you want it and feeling strong lifting it.

picture of my thumb after the 555 squat due to racking it poorly. Man I look goofy in this picture.
picture of my thumb after the 555 squat due to racking it poorly. Man I look goofy in this picture.

Deadlift: Well this was weird since the rec center was closing so I had to take big jumps and literally went from 585 to 730 and then was done. Got a video of the 730 and it was mean. Bar didn’t want to come off the ground due to both poor set up and not enough leg drive (stuff I will work on for the next cycle). That was a very hard lift and probably a very good estimate of my max. I’m really happy with this since the previous best was 716.

Overall I feel really good about this. I have no idea how much I weigh right now, but typically it is between 214-218. So after hitting these numbers I am going to go to a lighter (as far as percent of 1RM training) cycle with much more volume (think body building sets of 10). I’m currently planning on switching back to high bar narrow stance squatting to help me focus on using my damn legs on squats and deads. I’ll throw the safety squat bar in a bit, for deadlifts working more deficits and snatch grip pulls. Furthermore for the deads doing full pauses between each rep for the exercise. I like the split squat work on fridays so I will keep that in and incorporate some light loaded carries. For bench press that lift is moving well with my cycled heavy fives so I’m going to keep that train running for now. Thanks again to everyone and I will elaborate on all of this soon.


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