Mission Impossible – Progress Report

Wasn’t sure if I was even going to be able to bench this evening as I injured my wrist in a fall on the weekend…the fact that I was talking about agility when when I tripped over my own feet wasn’t lost on any of the attendees…any way it went well this evening. Warmed up, did some shoulder mobility and stability work then worked my way up to a clean single at 170kg with my training grip so I was pretty happy with that. The first session I did this time 2 weeks ago I only got 140kg…and an ugly 140kg at that…I then missed at 160kg when Rob offered me €200 if I could get it. Then missed at 150kg as well. So any way it felt pretty good tonight as I had done a session earlier and it was the end of a very long day so I was far from fresh.

I weighed in at 117.3kg up from 109.5kg (I think…can’t be bothered going back to check) this time 2 weeks ago so happy about that as well. I am targeting 120kg+ on the day of testing so I’m pretty sure I will get that as well which will make my attempt much easier.

I thought I would layout the template that I’ve followed so we can go back and look at where it all went wrong two Saturdays from now.

I’m going to leave out all the warm up and mobility and stability stuff…you can take that as a given.

It is basically a 2 week cycle of training which I’m repeating.

Week 1
Monday
Bench Press (Training Grip) – Work up to a single.
Neutral Grip Pull Ups – 5 sets of 5 reps
Chest Supported Rows – 4 sets of 12 reps
Lying Tricep Extensions – 4 sets of 12 reps
1A Hanging Leg Raises – 3 sets of 12 reps
1B Natural Reverse Hypers – 3 sets of 12 reps
1C Back Extensions – 3 sets of 12 reps

Tuesday
Reverse Grip Barbell Row – Work up to 3 heavy sets of 5 reps
1A Pull Ups – 10 sets of 3 reps
1B Elevated Neutral Grip Push Ups – 10 sets of 10 reps
Bent Over Dumbbell Raises – 3 sets of 12 reps
Bicep Curls – 4 sets of 12 reps

Thursday
Dumbbell Rows – 5 sets of 8 reps
Lat Pulldowns – 3 sets of 12 reps
Close Grip Bench Press – 3 sets of 20 reps
Ab Pull Downs – 3 sets of 20 reps
Lower Ab Curls – 3 sets of 20 reps

Then I’ve found one other day other than these to do some technical work on my bench which is basically a speed bench day and I also doing some heavy tricep extensions on this day.

The only difference is that the second week on the Monday I’ve been doing partial presses instead of full bench presses. During the week I’ve been doing other bits and pieces if and when I could which isn’t that often but that is basically it.

Now…this is not a template for all…it is my template for my particular circumstance…which basically to go from having not trained for a few months to benching 180kgs in 28 days. So far so good as I’m where I had hoped to be at this stage…we’ll see if it gets me across the line on the day.

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7 thoughts on “Mission Impossible – Progress Report

  1. Ive heard alot of powerlifter state that alot of people can get up to a 180 kg bench but that doing 200 kg raw is rare. Also that doing a 200 deadlift and a 200 squat is something alot of people can acheive but the 200 benchpress is much harder. Would you agree on that?

  2. Joel Hallström said…
    Ive heard alot of powerlifter state that alot of people can get up to a 180 kg bench but that doing 200 kg raw is rare.
    Like all generalisations there is an element of truth in it. Obviously it is a bit more complex than that. After 1.5 times body weight I think the curve relating to gains is very much ‘levelling off’. While we are talking in generalisations I think I could pretty much get most…I repeat most dedicated athletes who do what they’re told to a 1.5 times bodyweight bench from a standing start in 6 months…to get them to 2 times bodyweight would take years and years. The other thing is that I think as you go past body weight to 1.5 times bodyweight you are on a pretty much exponential curve with regards to risk/likelihood of injury. It is really a risk vs reward choice and for athletes I don’t think the rewards are anywhere near significant enough to be worth the risks. I think some athletes actually suffer from reduced on field performance as a result of being too strong in fact. I’m getting off the point though. So much of this is dependent upon the individual and their physiological make up. As you know for my male athletes they all work pretty much towards the same ‘general’ targets of a 1.5 times body weight bench and I say a 2 times bodyweight squat OR deadlift the reason for this is that some people are better suited to squatting OR deadlifting. With benching there isn’t really a suitable ‘OR’.

    Also that doing a 200 deadlift and a 200 squat is something alot of people can acheive but the 200 bench press is much harder. Would you agree on that?
    Absolutely. There is no comparison at all between a 200kg bench and a 200kg squat or deadlift.

  3. lylemcd said…
    DOES YOUR ROUTINE INCLUDE THE REVERSE BAND BENCH PRESS, I HEARD ON TEH INTERNETS THAT IT WAS GOOD!!!!

    LYLE
    No. It really depends who on the interweb you listen to. Apparently reverse band bench pressing is only good for power lifting…or so the experts say.

    My program is a short term emergency program…going to get the cash and go straight back to doing absolutely nothing…that nothing will include a huge amount of not reverse band benching though if that helps.

  4. Good answer.
    The other thing is that I think as you go past body weight to 1.5 times bodyweight you are on a pretty much exponential curve with regards to risk/likelihood of injury. Are you talking about injuries from strength training or injuries from field performance? Seems a bit weird that you would be much more unlikely to get injuried on the rugby field if you only could bench your body weight.

    Could you explain a bit further what you mean by suffering from feild performance for beeing to strong? Would you say that beeing to strong is making you more often get injuries or that its slowing you down on the field? We are talking about relative strength now right?

  5. Joel Hallström said…
    Good answer.
    The other thing is that I think as you go past body weight to 1.5 times bodyweight you are on a pretty much exponential curve with regards to risk/likelihood of injury.
    Are you talking about injuries from strength training or injuries from field performance?
    In this particular instance I was talking about the bench press in particular.

    Seems a bit weird that you would be much more unlikely to get injuried on the rugby field if you only could bench your body weight.
    Yes, that would be weird.

    Could you explain a bit further what you mean by suffering from feild performance for beeing to strong?
    Strength….pure strength isn’t the main performance determining factor in many sports outside of powerlifting. Take the Top 100 sprinters in the world and strength test them…I’d be willing to bet that Asafa Powell isn’t No 1 in any of those strength tests. The same applies to rugby…it isn’t simply a matter of being the ‘strongest’. A lot of athletes get carried away with chasing numbers in the gym unnecessarily.

    Would you say that beeing to strong is making you more often get injuries or that its slowing you down on the field?
    It can do both. Bad weight training, poor program design or inappropriate training methodologies can quite easily get you ‘strong’ and slow you down simultaneously.

    We are talking about relative strength now right?
    OK…now I don’t know what the hell you are referring to..

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