**** these ****ing squats.......****
- 07-02-2004, 11:41 PM
**** these ****ing squats.......****
That's it. I've had it. These goddamn squats are ****ing ridiculous. I've been up and down with the same weight for the past year. No matter what the hell I take, no matter how much weight I gain, I can't seem to gain any strength or size in my legs. A year ago, I got up to 425lbs for 6 reps, the next week I came back and got the same weight for 2 reps. So, I figured I'd go down a little to 385 on the next week, got 2 of those, and ended up going back down to 355. Worked my way back up to 415lbs and the same thing happened. This has been going on religiously for the past year. Up and down, up and down. I've tried low reps, high reps, high/low together, supersets, dropsets, all to no avail. I always get to the same weight and go back down only to work back up to the exact same weight, and BAM, start over.
I'm definately eating enough. I get around 5000 cals per day, with around 500 grams of protein a day. I've cut back on cardio to see if that helps, but of course that would be too simple, doesn't work either. Meanwhile, my bench is about to pass my squat and my deadlift is 455 x 3 reps. Here's my current leg routine:
Squats: 2 warmups, 3 working sets of 6 reps.
Leg Press: 4 sets of 12 reps
Leg extensions: 3 sets of 10 reps
Leg curls: 3 sets of 10 reps
Seated calves: 3 max sets
Hack squat calves : 3 max sets
Like I said, I've tried every variation that I know of. I've thrown in hack squats before but it justs hurts my knees more than anything. If any of you have any suggestions, please throw them my way. It's pretty damn embarassing when my bench is almost the same as my squat. And my arms are 3" bigger than my calves.
- 07-02-2004, 11:46 PM
front squats maybe? jump squats (take a trap bar with your feet inside, explode up and jump at the top of the movement)? could be partially mental...do you use a spotter? if you do, the second you get to 425lbs, jump up to 450lbs and use a spotter...that's all I can think of that might help
- 07-03-2004, 12:53 AM
Just an idea, but have you tried lowering the volume? What if you dropped the presses for 4-6 weeks to focus on your squat?
07-03-2004, 12:57 AM
Beezle, that seems like a hell of a lot of volume. Do you ever do 20-reppers? They might not be the answer for everybody, but they help me a lot as far as weight progression goes. I'm assuming you know how to perform them. I usually do them every other week, and add 5 lbs each session, so thats a 10 lb increase each month. Doesn't sound like much, but time goes by very quickly.
Aside from that, whenever there is a problem, you NEED to switch things up one way or another. Maybe take a week off to rest up and think about a solution.
07-03-2004, 01:15 AM
07-03-2004, 02:31 AM
dude i think it is mental..
you probably are scared of the weight, like a little girly man with girly muskels.
just trying to pump you up. you have to think that you own it, maybe speed up your descent using a good spotter, do you squat off a rack or in amonolift. if you have catches to catch you when you fail. what about bar position on your back instead of traps.
try a sky rocket routine:
w/u for 3 sets of 8
take your time.
225 for 5
275 for 1
315 for 1
365 for 1
405 for 1
then go 10 lbs increments until you pr.
that way all you have to concentrate on is one rep. at least 3-4 min rest between sets
but for leg size i suggest 20reppers. it will push your mental envelope.
07-03-2004, 02:48 AM
no, i haven't tried it. looks pretty damn confusing. never even heard of some **** like that. i've been going as heavy as possible for as long as i can remember. they don't have boxes for squating in the gyms around here but it looks like i could work around that.
yes, i did 20 rep squats for a few months and my strength stayed the same. my quads actually got smaller.
07-03-2004, 03:30 AM
This seems to happen to me with heavy curls. I go up in strength and then for whatever reason I lose strength and I have to build it back up again. It's like a yoyo effect.
Recently I also had this problem with my delts, so I actually upped the volume and did REALLY high ass reps; just one excercise with about say five sets of 25-30 reps. Still went to failure on the last set and growth seems to be occuring again. I think every so often it's good to Overtrain yourself in order to break through a plateau. It's just a part of the rule "change it up."
Anything that you can possibly think of to switch up the routine each week, even just the smallest things like adding a static on one set and then doin' negatives for something else. Just keep your body guessing and it will continue to shock itself into more growth.
Did you try that fascia stretching program I gave you?
07-03-2004, 08:14 AM
Tried it a few times. ****ing hurts but something must have worked for my biceps. I had been stuck at the same weight for a while with the same yo-yo effect you talked about. Now, I've passed my former weight by 20lbs on barbell curl and still climbing. Sizes are the same everywhere but strength is in a constant climb for all upper body. Never did thank you for that, so thanks.
07-03-2004, 08:17 AM
Originally Posted by kelsey
hmmm, this sounds doable. haven't maxed out in a while, thought it was a waste of time if you're not getting in a good set. 20 reppers don't do **** except force me to make some rocky balboa faces. didn't notice any change during that time period.
07-03-2004, 10:10 AM
If I were you, I would spend a good 4 weeks doing drop sets and circuits until you puke. Throw in walking lunges too. Then go back and work your way up on heavy squats. You will be sore as **** and shake that tree hard. IMO you have to mix it up just prior to plateauing to keep the gains going.
07-03-2004, 10:23 AM
Ok, that sounds good too. I've tried drop sets with squats but it didn't really do anything out of the ordinary. Haven't tried walking lunges though. I could try that with dumbbells, might put a good hurting on me. I just don't get why my upper body responds well with the same program I've been using since the start and lower body doesn't respond to anything. I'll give it a shot though. What's the worst that can happen? Stay the same weight? Been there, done that.
07-03-2004, 03:33 PM
Its very possible that you aren't a squat-guy. You say you've been leg pressing as well, how has that been going?
My flat BB bench sucks no matter what I do, so rather than feel ****ty about its lack of progress, I decided to see if I am a dip-guy, and what do ya know?! Dips are progressing!
07-03-2004, 06:09 PM
The squat workout that kelsey suggested works for building
great one rep power for sure. He and i did that routine for
about 3-4 weeks and made hella gains in 1 rep maxes setting
new PR's everytime in the gym.
We would usually find a weight that we felt confortable with
in the 6-8 rep range, nothing taxing, usually around 315-335
and do 3 sets to get the juices flowing. Then we would start
popping singles going in 10-20lbs jumps.
First workout i singled 415 for a PR. Previous was 405. After
we hit the squats we hit the leg presses. By this time you are
warmed up from the squats, so we started with around 400lbs
and we hit a set of 20 which made us want to puke. Then we
upped the weight to 600, and went to failure which was 10-12
reps. THen to completely destroy the legs with a max out
effort we loaded 800 and hit 4-6 reps balls to the walls. Mind
you we are not on gear.
4 days later we hit the same routine again this time upping our
weight from 335 to 365 for 6-8 reps, then starting the weight
progression up to 1 rep failure. I ended with 445 and missing
455 by a butt hair.
4 days later we cut the 6-8 reps sets and did progressions
starting with 345 singles,jumping to 385, 405, 425, 455 PR,
475PR,485,495,510, and missing 530 by inches.AND this is not
some HALF REP BULL****, ASS to the ground contest form.
I also do the same routine for deadlifts. Kelsey and i picked
this up from an old Olympic lifter in the gym who used this
system for years. He's 56 and still benches 410 without a shirt
and pulls and squats 600.
The idea on this was to try and set a new personal record
everytime you hit the gym, even if its 1 freaking lb.
OH and Kelsey change the name of your routine, Skyrocket
sounds too gay
07-03-2004, 06:28 PM
How about getting rid of leg curls and direct hamstring work. I think deadlifts and squats are hitting the hamstrings hard enough, and since they're performed on different days they're being worked twice a week.
07-03-2004, 06:43 PM
skyrocket schmyrocket, whatever ...
beez, check this out, i was thinking, you could have a stabilizer weakness. someting in the rear chain, abducter, adducter, one weaker leg.youd be suprised how much your weaker leg would hold you back in making gains. I had a bad bar position high on my traps, dropped it down by widening my grip, my old trap mounted max was 385, just by dropping the bar i doubled 405 ass to the grass.
i am not strong by ant stretch of the imagination,
i am alot stronger than i was then...due to assistance work.
try doing one leg hip sleds, i did and i found a major weak spot my whole left leg, punish it til it grows and balance is restored.
i am tellin you, not because i am running a special on sleds,
but because draggin a freakin sled works.
first time i dragged one for the first time in my life ,due to lifting , i lost my quiznos. my rear chain has been getting better ever since.
if you dont have access to one pm me.
07-03-2004, 07:17 PM
Damn that is depressing, kudos for hanging in there, but when you stop gaining strength you have got to change something up big time, don't wait a year to do it either I know how that feelsThis has been going on religiously for the past year. Up and down, up and down. I've tried low reps, high reps, high/low together, supersets, dropsets, all to no avail. I always get to the same weight and go back down only to work back up to the exact same weight, and BAM, start over.
Sounds to me like you may have been borderline overtraining, squats as you know really take a toll on your recovery. Have you tried lower frequency and higher intensity? Have you taken a week or two completely off, eaten your ass off and restarted refreshed?
Taking time off from the gym can be agonizing but sometimes it is the only thing that will get you moving forward again.
You mention your other lifts have not been suffering however, squats involve the lower back to a high degree especially if you go deep The lower back takes longer to recover from training stress than any other muscle, this can lead your lower back to become weaker and weaker, like a weak link in a chain your squat will suffer as a result.
I am not trying to sound like a know it all, I only want to help you out, I have been where you are and I feel you on this issue. Don't blame the squat my friend, the squat although not magic (that was for you bobo ) is still a very good core exercise and your legs will get bigger as you grow stronger in the hypertrophy rep ranges it is as simple as that.
BTW you are a marine right, I was an MP in the 10th mountain division and we did a 6 mile run EOD, this alone made squatting damn near impossible for me as it was about friggen impossible to hang in there after a session I know you jarheads run your asses off.
My legs were fried basically all week long just from that damn running at 265 lbs. This could be a factor as well. Hang in there and good luck.
07-03-2004, 07:33 PM
i'd drop the leg extension, leg curl, and one of the calf exercises. just shift that volume to the other exercises youre already doing.
you should also be squatting more than one day a week, if you aren't already. one day heavy the other light/speed.
why not try 5x5 for squat? once you can get all 5 sets w/ 5 GOOD reps increase weight. don't try to rush it.
keep us posted
07-03-2004, 07:42 PM
you say you only do two warm up sets.. try googling misc.fitness.weights for warmups. there were a few really good threads on warming up.
heres one i thought was pretty good:
esp read the posts by "keith hobman", "wayne hill" and of "lyle mcdonald"
07-03-2004, 08:35 PM
Alrighty, I think I might have to try some of these ideas. aic and kelsey, I like the way that sounds. I'll start that on the next leg day.
I generally do legs every 5 days, you think that is enough?
Yeah, I've been reading the "magical" squats thread also, pretty entertaining to watch em go at it. Yeah, I'm a marine but since I'm so close to getting out, I'm basically on my own program, meaning I don't run for those ungodly distances. I can definately understand where you're coming from though with running on 265lbs. Not the easiest task in the world.
It doesn't feel like my hamstrings are the problem in the movement, feels like quads. About a month ago, for a change, I started putting 5lb plates under my heels and I can now go parallel without any pain to my knees.
I hope I'm a squat guy. As bad as they hurt, I still want to have a big squat. As for leg presses, when I was doing 425lbs squats, I was getting 960lbs on leg press. Very recently, I changed my leg press to 4 sets of 12 reps, and the weight has dropped down a bit but I feel like it works better.
These are some good suggestions fellas. Keep em coming. There just may be hope for me.
07-03-2004, 10:53 PM
many times when strenhth levels stagnate you NEED to drop the volume for a while to get the weight to go up. Drop the extranious **** and just do the squats or good morning or stiff legs and maybe a bit of leg pressing. Remember as much as we all think of squats as a quad movement, it is promarily your backside that moves the weight when squatting.
07-03-2004, 11:08 PM
beez, i would try upping the frequency (note i said frequency, not volume)
this helps with neurosynaptic facilitation, among other things
try, for example, squatting EVERY workout
i raised my squats significantly doing this, training Olympic lifter style
you need not do more weekly volume. same # of sets per week, but more frequency (squats every workout day), less volume per squat session
two other things: 1 - try walkouts with a heavier weight 10-20% more. this helps both psychologically and physiologically.
also, try to work within prilepin's table.
(look it up)
do NOT lift maximally every workout
workout submaximal weights, with maximal acceleration, and i am also a fan of amny westside techniques as well
07-04-2004, 01:49 AM
07-04-2004, 02:05 AM
well, yes. btw, classic "freebase" is not the same as crack. both are "base" forms of cocaine (vs. powder cocaine, which is cocaine hydrochloride) which allow them to be smoked. however, FREEbase (i have never heard anybody refer to crack as FREEbase, i have heard it referred to as "base") is prepared via ether, which is highly flammable. crack is prepared using plain baking soda, and does not have the ignition risk. yes, they are both "base" forms of cocaine, and i never claimed otherwise.
this is why crack became the popular street option of cocaine. all the quick rush of freebase without the prep time, fire risk, and much more marketable in discrete crack rocks for $5 a rock or so.
not that I'm bringing THAT up again
also, i am not saying that ANY drug is evil (although crystal meth comes close). i am saying that trying to make an EQUIVALENCE between drugs like steroids, marijuana, etc. that have a low potential for abuse, very little psychopathology associated with same, and NO LD50 value (look it up) and drugs like crack or meth is problematic.
they are not EQUIVALENT. in the same way that a mild AAS like primo is less problematic than 3 50 mg anadrols a day...
or something.. :l
wait, were we talking about squats?
i hope i don't get in trouble for bringing that up again.
07-04-2004, 04:17 AM
07-04-2004, 04:20 AM
Do you think jjjd's idea sounds like a winner? I'll try just squats for a while and see what happens, but at what frequency do you recommend?
If I do squats every workout, will I need to include a separate leg day or will squats each workout suffice?
07-04-2004, 08:51 AM
fwiw, i disagree frequently with IA. no offense to IA, but I don't appreciate you asking him if my advice sounds like a winner. we have radically different training concepts and frequently disagree. he has his theories/advice. i have mine
07-04-2004, 09:13 AM
I'm asking for his opinion of your suggestion. IA has been around the block more than a few times and I'd like to see what he has to say about it. It wasn't meant as an insult to you or your theories, just wanted a second opinion on it. Jeez, for a testosterone filled forum, there's a lot of picky guys here.
07-04-2004, 10:34 AM
i just don't think his "guru" status is justified base on the advice he gives, which i often take serious issue with... but that's my OPINION. back to our regulary scheduled squat issue now...
as for your question about a "seperate leg day" if you are squatting every workout day...
by squatting every day, as an alternate methodology, you are getting away from the classic bodybuilder paradigm (not as frequently seen among strength athletes) of a "leg day", a "back day" etc.
generally speaking, strength athletes work LIFTS, not bodyparts, and i am suggesting you incorporate this paradigm and subsequent training methodology at least as a trial alternate since what you are doing is apparently NOT working right now.
now, I realize that hypertrophy response is at least part of your desire (you appear to want both strength and size increases) but if you are going to do this program, you need to first accept a somewhat different paradig than having a "leg day"
EVERY day will be leg day, and NO day will be "leg day" if you see what I am saying.
you will be getting away from the concept of "blasting' a bodypart and then waiting the Weider (tm) mandated waiting period of 1 week before you "hit it" again
you will realize that a bodypart does not have to be fresh or recovered for you to work it.
you WILL be "hitting" your legs when your legs are still sore from your previous day's squats.
this is NOT necessarily a bad thing. often, it's a good thing, although not within many BBers understanding
you will NOT (and i need to emphasize this) be lifting maximally every workout.
one of the myths you will need to dispel is that you need to work progressively heavier weights on each workout, to gain strength. iow, that if you did 405 for 4 on one day, on your next workout, you need to do either 405 for 5 or 415 for 4 to gain strength
over time, you will of course have to increase loading to increase strength. it does not therefore follow that you need to do this each workout.
you will be incorporating a more "wavy" approach to increased loading
you will be working different aspects of the lift (louie simmons likes this - and he takes it from the russians) for example, doing 5 sets of 3 at 80% of max one day, and maybe 8 sets of 2 at 65% of max the next (using short rest intervals and compensatory acceleration)
you will be (to quote pavel, and i think pavel is a somewhat of a putz, but he is right on this) "greasing the synaptic" groove.
07-04-2004, 10:40 AM
ok, we disagree on recreational drugs.. and i think there was some misconstruing of what was being said.. but i'm not going to go into that again because it went nowhere.
beelz.. what do you mean a seperate leg day? i don't really understand what you're asking. if you want to increase squat poundages, squat. if you squat every workout.. it's very important that you don't squat heavy everytime. you could do something similar to the korte squat program..
monday 5-8x5 60% squat, wednesday 80% squat singles, friday 5-8x5 60% squat..
increase wednesdays weight by 5% each week.. decrease sets as needed. rinse, repeat.
the percentages are based on your goal. so if you can't 1rm 415 right now make that your goal.
IIRC, theres also a phase where you lift very light for a month... i think this is to avoid getting burnt out from this program... I used this w/ success w/o doing the "light" cycle, maybe i would have done better if I had done it
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