A whole mini cycle (bench)over the month of December. Not too shabby.

A whole mini cycle (bench)over the month of December. Not too shabby.

Jan 1, 2014

Just bought a house in the beginning of the month and posting my routines are off by a month. SORRY. So this is what I am going to do. Condense the WHOLE next mini cycle in 1 article but focus on the bench and weights associated with it during the cycle. As stated MANY times over the past 2 months I have not been taking any supplements but ATP Extreme and glucosamine. I wanted to try to get my weight down 5-10lbs and keep my numbers on the bench as close to competition as possible. I am considering a successful offseason where I bench 420 or better. Also where I am benching within 1 ½ reps of my sets where multiple reps are done. Example, I can do 435 when I am all supplemented up and training a competition cycle so if I can do within 5% or do 385 for 2- 2 ½ reps then my offseason(no sups and 5 lbs lighter must be considered) was a success.

This cycle my average weight was 200-201. I could feel the difference with my leverages BUT my arch was better because had better flexibility. When I train I do not sweat my butt coming off the bench but when it is competition season I focus more on it.

This cycle on the bench was the “roller coaster bench routine”. I did a previous article on this . For more info read here.

http://ironauthority.com/bench-stuck-want-a-challenge-try-a-roller-coaster-bench-routine/

The cycle overall was good and at times was inconsistent. I blame that on the move and holidays where time was an issue every workout BUT I refused to miss a workout just grind through it. The second 2 workouts well could have been better. I missed my numbers in the final week but I dug deep and did better then I felt. YET I STILL FELL SHORT, period.

I will then touch on rest of the upper body parts for the month.

1st workout                         2nd workout                                        3rd workout                        4th workout

320 6 reps                            330 6 reps                                            335 6 reps                            340 5 reps

275 8 reps                            275 8 reps                                            275 8 reps                            280 8 reps

365 4 reps                            375 3 reps(missed 3rd)                    375 4 reps                            385 3 reps(missed 3rd)

275 8 reps                            275 8 reps                                            275 8 reps                            280 8 reps

320 8 reps                            330 8 reps                                            340 7 reps                            345 7 reps (missed 7th)

When I state I missed that means had assistance finishing the rep. Also refer to the link about the thinking of each set. I also change my grip 3 times per 5 sets. That is why I can hit the 5th  set  for a rep or two more then the first set. Even though I did not get 8 reps with 345 this was a pr from last time I did this which was this past summer which was 335.

Shoulders and back

Every week I did reverse pec deck to help strengthen my posterior delts and not over train my shoulders  or tie ins by pressing . I did do light front press up to 165 for easy sets of 8 twice. Pounded back with lat pulls and machine rows. 2 weeks I did machine pullovers.

 

Arms

I am a huge advocate of preacher curls. I work up to 155lbs for 3-4 reps at the end of each exercise. Also did heavy dumbbell and barbell curls to develop the cushion at the bottom of the bench.

Triceps I did dips for 3 weeks of the 4 with the 3rd ending with 135 for 2 sets of 6 reps. Sprinkle in t pushdowns and headbangers and my tricep were full and strong.

If you are wondering why I am not doing more presses either for shoulders or triceps(close grip) well in my bench routine remember there are 3 different grips. Also 3 weeks I did floor or rack presses on chest day. My offseason I believe in strengthening the muscles around the primary and rest or heal the primary muscles when possible. Cut back on presses and do more isolation BUT heavy with reps. I know it is not the norm. I know everyone does some % thing. I don’t. Why if this works for me? Also being older I credit some longevity to training smart . Listen to your body don’t miss but train around an injured or over trained area.

What’s next?

Well I have one more mini cycle left before I start training for Worlds and nationals in February. I will be taking off almost a week at the end of the month before my contest training. I have done bands, speed bench, and reps. I know I am looking at something different but no yet definitive but Tuesday I will let you know.

I can feel I am hungry to train for these upcoming meets and that is great. Hunger is good. So the next month I will be chomping at the bit to get to it. By the way did I mention I am going to start supplements on January 2nd? With the reintroduction of sups and last mini cycle I should be fully loaded in February.

 

Thanks to The GYM and Tan Line, Titan Support Systems, IronAuthority, ATP Extreme ,Oxygen Factor, and RockTape.

Till next time.

Focus First.

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