5 weeks out, bench press session

Good bench press session tonight.  Nothing fancy, just straight weight and a couple fatigue stops after my top work sets.  Elbows and my lower back didn't appreciate the light, high-bar squats done afterwards though.  As my bench press has come back, my shoulders have tightened up some and my elbows are the focus point of the strain when I back squat.

Belting up during my heavy bench press sets to provide some lower back support during hard leg drive seems to help but my lower back still fires up pretty good afterwards.  I think I'll have to do some leg presses after bench pressing in the coming weeks.  While I'd like to get in a second day of squatting each week, until I get my shoulders loosened up again, it's not worth irritating the elbows and forfeiting the bench press gains that I've recovered.  Feels good to be able to handle 315 for doubles, if I can progress that to triples in the next 4 weeks, I should be in good shape to attempt an all-time PR in the bench press.  Only obstacle will be over-coming the effects of the pre-competition weight cut.

I had hoped after the last meet's weight cutting fiasco to actually come into this next meet slightly under the weight class limit but two things derailed that plan.  One, my body likes to be 245 lbs and more significantly, two, I just didn't control my appetite.  So, instead of cutting from 245 to 231 in one week like I did last time, I have 5 weeks to do it so I should be able to mitigate the effects of the weight loss.  I would be unrealistic to think my bench press won't suffer some but with the progress I've made so far, I'm hopeful I'll be able to retain most of it.

Bench Press:  135x10, 185x10, 225x5, 255x3, add wrist wraps, 275x2, 295x2, add belt, 315x2, 315x2, no belt and wrist wraps for the remaining sets, 285x3, 285x3, 285x2, 260x4, 260x3, 260x3

High bar squats:  135x10, 225x10, 225x10

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