Starting Strength, Week 4

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week4_Starting_StrengthJust a small update today. Week 4 of Starting Strength is complete. Squats, deadlifts and overhead press are continuing to increase, which is awesome. Having done OHP twice this week, I’m really excited about increasing my bench soon, since I’m yet to achieve that final rep on the last set of 75×5 legitimately without a spotter’s assistance. Hopefully this week will be the week!

Just 8 more weeks to go. I can see bodyweight exercises such as pull ups and chin ups becoming increasingly difficult as I had mass to my frame (especially legs from squats 3x a week).

That’s all for now,
Carl

 

Starting Strength, Week 3

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I have successfully completed week 3! Quite happy with that indeed. I’m writing this post part way into week 4, unfortunately the 75kg bench press was too heavy for me today and I couldn’t complete the last set (only got 3 reps, before getting spotter’s assistance). I rested well before the last set but just couldn’t power through it. Because of this, I’ve decided to cut the assistance exercises until I get back on that linear progression train (I was greedy putting them in, anyway).

On a positive note, all other lifts have been increasing. And I can now do 3 unassisted chin-ups, which isn’t bad for an overweight guy 96kg at 5’9. My battle plan is continue this strength training until I’ve reached my goals (60kg Overhead-Press, 100 kg Bench, 120kg Squat and 140kg Deadlift).

Starting Strength, Week 3

 

Starting Strength, Week 2

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After completing my running goal, I’ve been keen to get back into the strength training. After reading the Starting Strength (vol 2), I’ve decided to give this version a go:

Monday

  • Squat
  • Bench Press / Overhead Press (Alternating)
  • Chin-Ups

Wednesday

  • Squat
  • Bench Press / Overhead Press (Alternating)
  • Deadlift
  • Dips*

Friday

  • Squat
  • Bench Press / Overhead Press (Alternating)
  • Pull Ups
  • Leg press or Weighted Plank*

*  = Only if feeling extra strong that day, and have met all daily criteria *** These are not in the original program but I really enjoy doing them. Sorry, Rip

I have added a few extra exercises into the routine. Importantly, these are accessory lifts and have been delicately picked to help me improve my main lifts (Bench, squat, deadlift and overhead press). I have made a personal promise to only do these lifts if I complete all my daily goals.

Each SS workout only takes around 45 minutes if the gym is quiet, so it usually isn’t a problem adding extra training in, obviously the extra accessories will be dropped if the gym is packed out.

Carl Kenny | Starting Strength | (click to see in full size)

Carl Kenny | Starting Strength | (click to see in full size)

Here is a screenshot of the excel file I’m using to help track my progress (click to see in full size)

I’m using a spreadsheet freely available over on the Starting Strength wiki.

For a direct link to the Spreadsheet (Excel) file, click here.

Please note, I’ve adapted my version to be in kilograms, the original link provided is in pounds. The amount of increase is all that needs to be changed.

My current lifts are:

  • BP: 70kg
  • DL: 100kg
  • SQ: 65kg
  • PR: 45kg

You may have noticed that this program includes squatting 3 times a week. Personally I’m really excited about this, as I’ve only recently worked up flexibility to a point where I can legitimately squat below parallel. Whenever I remembered I basically held myself in a world third squat position for as long as possible (excuse the not so politically correct label), that looks like this:

T Nation | Third World Squats

T Nation | Third World Squats

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Be sure to check out the articles on third world squats (and where the above image came from), over at T-Nation: Here and here

I will be on this program for approximately 10 weeks. Hoping to achieve the following at the end of the journey:

  • Bench:100
  • Squat: 120
  • Deadlift: 140
  • Press: 60

I’ll be sure to update how the progress is going. If anyone is interesting in reading the book, then you can buy it here or read the detailed wiki. The books is especially handy for those interested in performing the big lifts safely and don’t mind somewhat lengthy anatomical descriptions. It is really worth the investment for learning the lifts.

If you have done a Starting Strength variant, then I’d love to hear from you! Leave a comment.

Cheers,
Carl