Man, that 50-rep challenge is painful. 🙂
As I near the end of this cycle and approach what I hope is my last round of cutting to get me down to my desired weight, I’m going for a few things.
First with my current plan, I just want to crank because this is about the extent of it for many months.
Second, I’m trying to figure out my forthcoming plan. More on that in a bit.
So today I just wanted to push…. and 12 reps with 225 felt good. Left 1-2 in the tank, and really just feeling alright here. In a way, I think about wanting to do stuff with less reps and more sets (e.g. instead of 3×8 doing 8×3) to dial in form better. But that will come — eventually.
All in all, just felt good. More reps than last time. I can’t complain.
And yes, that 50-rep challenge is a bitch. 🙂
But I can’t help but think about what my next cycle of programming will be like. What hit me on my walk to the gym? I think I want to go back to 3x/week. Past experience has shown me I do better with 3x/week. I think it’s a combination of factors, such as my age, how much I recover (age, food, sleep, life stress, etc.), and that when I’m in the gym I kinda like doing more volume. Thus 4x/week is just too much for me and over time wears me down. The thing is, I can see from this last cycle that I actually do alright with 4x week because I do see myself progressing week-over-week, which is a good sign! But I also see that I’m feeling burned — I haven’t done my Friday sessions, because I do not feel like going to the gym.
I realize that a lot of what has driven my gym work has been the diet — the whole reason I went 4x/week was at Nick’s recommendation because it’d be a way to get more carbs and have a little more diet sanity than the deprevation I was under at the time. Well, my diet is pretty nice right now, and at the start of this cut it’s still going to be pretty nice. So while I thought this weekend I had finally nailed down my plan, this morning I took a step back and am going to revisit it. The thing that I need to determine is: do I want 3x/week because truly that’s better for me? or because I’m just fried right now? Hard to say, but I’ll mull it over. I mean, is the fact I’ve been skipping a session due to listening to my body a tell-tale sign that my body wants me to go back to 3x/week? Thing is, I could see going 3x/week for now, then when the diet gets to a particular point, go 4x/week again. That’s resonating with me pretty strongly right now, so who knows… if I can’t figure it out, I may just go 3x and see what happens.
That all said, another thing is Nick has urged me to always keep working somehow… take a deload when needed. Thing is, sometimes I do well with a “no-deload deload” — to do “jack shit”, truly. Just take a vacation from the gym, don’t think about it, don’t go, sleep in, rest up. Yeah, maybe stay active and walk or do yard work or whatever — don’t become a couch slug. But I think the fact that basically in a year I haven’t taken ANY break from the gym is probably catching up to me. I’m thinking next week will be a “no-deload deload”, doing some active things, but basically avoiding the gym and enjoying the refresh.
Based on Paul Carter’s “Guaranteed Muscle Mass” article.
- bar x 5
- bar x 5
- 135 x 5
- 165 x 4
- 195 x 3
- 245 x 2
- 275 x 1
- 225 x 12 (AMRAP)
- 225 x 6 (50%)
- Stiff Legged Deadlift
- 145 x 5
- 185 x 4
- 255 x 3 (whoops… should have been 225, but I did 255)
- 275 x 2
- 315 x 1
- 255 x 12 (AMRAP)
- Split Squats
- BW x 50-rep challenge