CCS's body recompositioning journal

hair today gone tomorrow

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it might be hard to believe...but the decline bench can be TOO effective some times...what i mean by that is...your lower pecs will outgain your upper pecs giving you a man boob look.
 

CCS

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today I put another 5 pounds on the bench bar. I did 140 pounds, 6 reps, 3 times. Next time I'll do 145. I dumbbell curl 32.5 pounds, and did 6, 6, 6, but was in slightly bad form on the last rep. Since I've been adding weight to just one set at a time for curls, I'll do the 32.5 6,6,6 again and see if I get perfect form this time.

I'm very close to breaking all my old records.

At my peak, I did 135 pound flat bench 13 reps to failure, and 155 pounds declined 8 reps to failure. Hard to compare that to 140 6,6,6 since I don't reach near failure until the last set.

Going to failure in one set, I peaked at 32.5 pound dumbbell curl 8 or 10 reps. I'm not going to failure when I do my 6 reps now, so I think I might be stronger than I was. We'll see.

Since my bench max was definitely under 175, and my curl max was under 42.5 pounds per arm, I'll know pretty sure if I'm stronger now than I was before.
 

CCS

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Bench press today: I did 145 3 sets of 6. it felt just a little heavy, so I'll do 150, 150, 145 next time, instead of 3 sets of 145. My curls got a big set back: I only did 2 sets of 32.5 today because I was straining a little on previous days. So I'll drop back to 30, 30, 30 next time, and then try to attach a 1 pound weight to the dumbbells next time and do 31, 31, 30, and then 32.5, 31, 31, and not promote by 2.5 again until I reach 45 pounds.

When doing any exercise that works my lats hard, I get tendonitis in my left elbow. So I'm going to have to just do less weight and 12 reps, and just make that an intermediate twitch exercise until my elbow recovers. I'll give it 3 weeks. And I'll stop and find a different exercise if I feel any tendon pain at all.
 

CCS

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I previously thought that not eating enough was the reason I was not getting gains. That seemed the logical conclusion since I was not getting gains, and was eating only 2400 calories per day, and people said 3000 is needed. I did not get any strength gains on 4000 calories and steriods when I was doing lots of sets, though. Then when I started doing only 3 sets, and eating 3000 calories, I reported that the food difference did it. But recently I've slacked off and just been eating 2200 calories per day, and still am adding 5 pounds to my bench each workout, with just one rest day. Last night I feel asleep without eating a post workout meal; I just had whey right after my workout and that was it. So now I think that 3 sets and not straining at all on reps is what makes gains. Calorie intake does not matter much unless you are doing lots of cardio or eating less than 2100 calories per day. I do think some of my strength gains over my father are from my eating more than him, but I only need 2400 calories, if that.
 

CCS

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hair today gone tomorrow said:
it might be hard to believe...but the decline bench can be TOO effective some times...what i mean by that is...your lower pecs will outgain your upper pecs giving you a man boob look.

Well I'm still getting good results on the flat bench for now, so I guess I'll just go with the flow. I am tempted to do decline later though just to build my sides and lower chest. I first want to see for sure that i shatter my old record by at least 20 pounds, just so i know this routine is working.
 

CCS

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Well, my bench press is still going up 5 pounds per workout. I rep'ed 150 today.

But my other lifts are all hitting problems. My shoulder dumbbell lifts seem to be stopping at 15 pounds, my dumbbell back wings at 17.5, and my curls at 30.

I did discover myself moving my elbows during the curl movement, so I'll drop back to 27.5 and try to tie a 1.25 pound weight on to the dumbbells and increase the weight more slowly this time. I discovered if I try to force any reps at all, I stop improving.

Now that I know I can burn fat even when I have lots of carbs, and burning protein just does not happen, I'm going to start my cardio program, and I'm not going to do it in the morning either. Well, I might do 20 minutes of 400 calorie per hour cardio in the morning. But those calorie figures are based on just one person when the calibrated the bikes.
 

CCS

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Today was my 155 day. I did 5 reps and realized it was too much weight. I dropped to 145, did 6, and still thought it was too heavy. I then did 140, did 6 reps, but had to do the last one too slowly. Has my 5 pounds per workout streak ended?

Possible culprits:
1. Last night and the night before I did one 6 rep set of 145 pounds declined bench press, even though it was my rest day and I had workout out Tuesday Morning.
2. Maybe I don't have enough glycogen at 6:30 in the morning. I noticed problems with my other lifts about 4 days ago when I was doing mornings or evens, so maybe 10 am is better.
3. 2 days ago I cut oats out of my diet. I doubt that is the problem though.
4. I've been using a lot less HMB this past week.
5. I reduced my calorie intake from 3000 down to 2400 about a week ago.
6. Maybe 5 pounds per workout really is just too much for me. Maybe I should do smaller increments.

I'm just going to reduce most of my weights to what they were 3 workouts ago, only workout when I have more glycogen, and I'll increase the weight more slowly for a while to see if I can break past 155. And no more sets on off days.
 

CCS

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I hurt my neck squating again. I leaned too far forward as I was pushing up, and the weight shifted onto my neck. ouch. The squat requires skill, and is not forgiving like the bench press or other lifts. The squat absolutely must be done in perfect form or you can seriously hurt yourself. I'm thinking about doing body weight squats for a while, and maybe holding a 45 across my chest later when my elbow recovers.
 

CCS

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this sucks:
My elbow has tendonitis, so I can't rock climb or do chin ups. My knee hurts, so I can't squat or hike. At least I can still cycle. I was squating before, so maybe today was just a bad day.

My wrists hurt a little when I do bench, but not much. That is my only compound movement, so I'll try to keep it. I know a few guys who packed on mass with flyes though.
 

CCS

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My left elbow is really messed up. Lighter and lighter weights have been causing it pain. It all started at the beginning of this tread, when I did wide grip chin ups to failure and then did half reps. It was not the steroids, but rather the intensity of my workouts that ruined me. Everyone, whether they are on steroids or not, should build up progressively. Roid users can progress faster. Because I did 18 sets per muscle group, and especially did those really wide grip chin up half reps, my elbow tendons got damaged.

And just because something does not cause you pain does not mean it is not hurting you. I backed off and avoided anything that hurt, but got as close to the limit as I could. I continued to get worse. I should have backed way off. Now it hurts even when I bend it. Any tension at all in my elbow makes me feel like my arm will rip off.

I just want to stop while I'm ahead. As long as I can use my left arm to attach my hair piece, that is better than nothing.

Now my goals are:
1. Wear a sling when I'm not typing or using the shoulder machine. The shoulder machine will be my only upper body exercise for the next few months.
2. Apply for free state health insurance, and after I'm on it a month, see a Doctor and say I hurt it a week ago and it got worse fast. Get an MRI, and get surgery on the elbow.
3. Work on lower body. I'll get me a good pair of abs.
 

s.a.f

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I've had plenty of training injuries the worst including right bicep and left wrist never had to go for surgery although thought about it. Just dont work them directly for a while. I swear that the body can adapt to compensate (ie start using other fibres) because I occasionaly feel that they're still there sometimes.
 

Harie

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CCS - how do you know your elbow needs surgery? It's probably just tendonitis from improper benching and/or too many sets. Take a week or two off from lifting and you should be just fine.
 

CCS

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I've been avoiding using my left arm as much as possible, but not using a sling. It stopped getting worse, but still hurts sometimes. Yeah, maybe taking time off is all I need. At least I can still work low back, obliques, abs, and lower body. Maybe even shoulders, if the pads stay above my elbows. Butterflies might be pushing it, since I'm sure some torsion will go into my forearm.

I could do right handed curls, but there is no point in making my right side bigger than my left side.
 

joseph49853

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I tried to warn you about injury. Go back and read some of my older posts. My advice comes from years of real-life experience with nary an injury. Either listen to gung-ho people telling you what you want to hear, or people telling you the truth. The answer equals adequate rest, and a routine balanced with high reps/low weight, low reps/high weight and somewhere in-between. Higher repetitions with lower weights means a more solid foundation and mechanics, greater extensibility, reduced inflammation, greater vascular flow, and quicker recovery. Low reps for neural growth, and high reps for metabolic growth -- and increases in capillaries and slow twitch fiber. The real deal is as simple as that. Neglecting your ligaments and tendons is a recipe for injury. Strong connective tissue and bones means even stronger muscles... period.
 

CCS

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when they say 6 reps, do they mean 6 reps to failure, or 3 sets of 6 reps each, reaching failure only on the last set? I could probably do 9 reps of the second weight.

And I do not consider 15 reps to be slow twitch. Slow twitch is something you can maintain a while, like 2 minutes or more. I'm sure 15 reps does keep the intermediate twitch muscles vascular, but I think it mostly just does not stimulate the fast twitch much. If you want to work slow twitch, get on a rowing machine for 5 minutes.

Interesting about the 1-6 working power and 6-12 building mass. I think I straddle the line by doing 3 sets of 6 reps. Maybe I'd get stronger faster if I did 4 reps sets. I don't know if I'd recover as fast though.
 

joseph49853

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One ear, I'd like to introduce you quickly to the other ear. :) Your problem is you're working out with an overwrought elite bodybuilder's program as an beginner. The kind of program to which only one-in-a-million amateurs can respond. That's like asking for a lifetime of chronic injury. I know plenty of people like that.

You've got to lift small, and medium, for the days you lift big. You'll actually make faster improvements that way, as hard as it is to believe. And in a few years, that foundation will allow you to work exclusively heavy, at your max, for weeks/months at a time.
 

Harie

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collegechemistrystudent said:
I've been avoiding using my left arm as much as possible, but not using a sling. It stopped getting worse, but still hurts sometimes. Yeah, maybe taking time off is all I need. At least I can still work low back, obliques, abs, and lower body. Maybe even shoulders, if the pads stay above my elbows. Butterflies might be pushing it, since I'm sure some torsion will go into my forearm.

I could do right handed curls, but there is no point in making my right side bigger than my left side.

Stop lifting completely for a week or two...don't just train around the injury. Training around a nagging injury is a sure way to end up in surgery.

And stop reading so much into fast/slow/intermediate twitch fibers. You aren't even close to that level yet.
 

CCS

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I stopped working out almost all together, except I still do calf raises (no weight) and some cycling and a few things that definitely do not involve my arms. It has been a month now. My elbow is still bad, but not in pain as long as I don't use it. Very frustrating. At least I can get some abs, but my arms are at 12 inches, I think down from 12.5, though maybe I measured wrong last time, or just in a different place or angle.
 
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