The road back to glory...

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  1. The road back to glory...

    Well, as mentioned in another thread, I'm back. I had been out of the gym and hadn't worked out for literally a year. Was eating terribly, and got out of shape in just about every way imagineable.

    I only recent got back to the gym for the first time in a year 2 weeks ago. I had trouble 155 pounds on bench. 275 on squat gave me problems. Everything was weak weak weak. Weak like I haven't been since ... well ... I can't remember when.

    However, things are looking up. This week in the gym, only 1 week later, I managed to put up 185 on the bench for around 8 reps, which is quite a jump from the previous week. Hopefully my strength will return to me, but I think it'll help my motivation to chronicle everything.

    My workout plan currently is as follows:

    Monday: Chest/Shoulders/Triceps
    Wednesday: Back/Biceps
    Friday: Legs

    When get a little more accustomed I'll go MTThF instead and give shoulders their own day.

    Ok so this is how Monday went:

    BB Flat Bench -

    DB Shoulder Press -
    50x4 (too much)

    Seated DB Lateral Raise -

    Tricep Rope Pressdown -
    (no weight listed on this machine)
    4 plates x 12
    4 plates x 12
    4 plates x 10

    Diet is fairly clean and getting cleaner. I have to work on improving breakfast; I usually have a bowl of cereal still. Lunch when I go into the office varies greatly but I always pick something healthy (we order out every day from a different place). Dinner is marinaded grilled chicken and oats or wild rice. Final meal of the day is fat free cottage cheese, protein powder, a little peanut butter, and splenda.

    Obviously the healthiest two meals of the day for me are dinner and final meal (MWF the 4th meal is PWO). I won't be able to improve lunch all that much, or rather I could but I'd be missing out on free lunch and I'd rather save money. Breakfast I'm thinking of making my oatmeal "bread pudding". Basically quaker weight control oatmeal, fat free cream cheese, a little peanut butter, a small amount of fat free yogurt, and casein. That one is fantastic. Tastes great, has a crapload of protein, decent amount of complex carbs (low gi), and very little fat. Plus lots of fiber.

    I figure on that meal plan I could likely drop fat at a good rate as long as I work hard in the gym. Who knows, maybe I'll get back in good enough shape to feel like preparing for the Lehigh Valley comp in 2008.

  2. This would figure. Yesterday and today I had to work so late that by the time I got home from work the gym was closed.

    I think maybe I'm going to have to start getting up a the buttcrack of dawn and going to the gym in the morning. At my job folks don't usually roll in earlier than 9:30, but they leave real late. Can't remember last time I left before 6:15.

    That means no late nights for me. Bugger. Well, when I prepped for my contest last year I woke up at 3:40 so this won't be anywhere near as bad. However this does mean next week I have to step it up a notch.

    Tomorrow I'm working back/biceps. I'll start fresh on Monday with legs.

  3. I wish ya the best on getting back in there Null and welcome back!!

  4. Hey bro.

    To give you some ideas of my experience with muscle memory...

    When I peaked a few years back my lifts were approx.:
    Could do 13 overhand pullups @225

    Fell off, and calling my training "sporadic" would be putting it nicely for 2 years or so...

    Got back in the gym Jan. 2nd this year.
    I don't do pullups because my wrist is f'd up, but basically every lift is way, way up from where it was when I (re)started.
    I've also gained like 50lbs!

    I did 3 months clean, 1 month of PEG-Mgf/IGF-1, and now I'm starting my second week of PEG-MGF/IGF-1/Epistane/RPM. I am actually heavier right now than I have ever been.

    It seemed as everything was lost, but in 4.5 months I am approaching the realm of what it took me 7 years (16-->22) to build. Largely without A A S, etc. too.

    You'll be back in no time! Good luck brotha!

  5. I don't know if you answered this, but why did you stop?

  6. Quote Originally Posted by Ubiquitous View Post
    I don't know if you answered this, but why did you stop?

    Not long after my contest last year, I lost my job and suffered from severe depression that didn't really go away until around October. I got a new job in November but by then I had been out of the gym for so long it was difficult to get back in the groove of things.

  7. Great news Null, glad to here things are back on track for you You'll get that strength back in no time.


  8. Getting back into it is the best. I'm glad to see ya in the gym and on the board.

    So what's you weight like now? From what I remember you competed light heavy and looked really f-ing good.

    And where'd you find a new job? I know you are froma round the area...

  9. Quote Originally Posted by Nullifidian View Post
    Not long after my contest last year, I lost my job and suffered from severe depression that didn't really go away until around October. I got a new job in November but by then I had been out of the gym for so long it was difficult to get back in the groove of things.
    I remember your log on your competition, I enjoyed your progression.

    I'm glad you are back.

  10. Hey Null, its great to see you around again. Best of luck with your comback!

  11. Quote Originally Posted by PumpingIron View Post
    Getting back into it is the best. I'm glad to see ya in the gym and on the board.

    So what's you weight like now? From what I remember you competed light heavy and looked really f-ing good.

    And where'd you find a new job? I know you are froma round the area...

    I competed Middleweight, just barely made the cut at 175 pounds (176 is the max for Middleweight) and managed to beat a few guys at the comp. Lately I've been hovering around 205 pounds.

    As for the job, I'm working in Bethlehem now 10 miles from my house at a small software company.

    As for workout details, I got out of work at 6, just got back from the gym:

    Lat Pulldown

    Low Cable Row
    10 platesx10
    10 platesx12
    11 platesx10
    12 platesx10

    DB Row

    DB Incline Curl

    Before my workout I ate 5 small pieces of chicken with a handful of Quaker Old Fashioned Oats. Post workout I had 2 GXR caps and a bowl of fat free cottage cheese (1 cup) with a scoop of Whey and a little peanut butter. Still eating that right now.
    Last edited by Nullifidian; 05-12-2007 at 12:18 AM.

  12. Allentown area. I knew you were around me. Going to the Keystone Pro by any chance?

  13. Quote Originally Posted by PumpingIron View Post
    Allentown area. I knew you were around me. Going to the Keystone Pro by any chance?
    I'd like to but ticketbastard won't let me pick my seats. They keep giving tickets in section 14 or 15. Those are on the side. They SUCK. I'd rather sit further away and get a more direct view, but there doesn't seem to be a way to look for available seats and pick them myself.

  14. I've been in contact with the promoter through e-mails...try him that way...

  15. Good to see you back, Null!

    (As you can see - not a whole lot's change round herrrrre: Jmh80 still has a hottie he has no chance in hell with as his avatar and Ubi is still, well, Ubi. No good way to explain that rainbow hunk of man.)

  16. OMFG I want to vomit

    Leg day!

    I started right away with squats....

    BB Squat
    225x15 (was pretty shocked)
    315x10 (was astounded)
    365x8 (was scared to try but pulled it off)

    Yep, you read that right, I managed to put up 365 for 8 reps. Last time I got in a leg workout I was only able to do 275 for like 5 or 6 reps. So I'm pretty happy about that. Mind you I nearly passed out after that last set.

    Then I decided to try some light leg press.

    45 deg Leg Press sled (feet touching and knees close together)
    and I stopped there to do some "Toilet Bowl Good Mornings". By some miracle I was able to actually prevent myself from vomitting but I spent a good 10 minutes kneeled over that bowl. My heart was beating like I'd just did a 4 minute mile. My vision repeatedly tunnelled and came back.

    So unfortunately I took those signs as a clue to end the workout there. With some more time my stamina will get better and I won't be destroyed as badly as that.

  17. Nice...squat til ya puke...

  18. Chest tricep day today

    BB Bench

    BB Incline

    DB Flat Bench

    Assisted Dips (weight denotes how much assistance)

    Tricep Rope Pressdown (in plates)

  19. Back day again

    Lat pulldown:

    Low Cable Row (in plates):

    DB Row:
    70x8 (I totally wimped out, I could have cranked out at least another rep on each side)

    Inclined Dumbell Curl:

    I've started to take a couple supplements again as well. I'm taking 2 caps of GXR post workout with my protein shake. I'm also taking 1g of ALCAR, 1.8g Cissus, and 2 caps of Basic Cuts preworkout.

    GXR because it's one of the greatest supplements ever invented and I never should have stopped taking it. Cissus because I'm starting to get my strength back pretty quick and I don't want my joints to take too much of a beating. ALCAR and Basic Cuts to help with focus. Also Basic Cuts because I'm a fatass right now and the thermogenic effects can't hurt in that department.

    My strength was much greater this time at the beginning but it still fell off sharply after lat pulldown. Grip however isn't being overly taxed yet.

    You might be wondering why I don't do BB Row. I really like BB Row. However I workout with my wife and my wife can't do BB Row. Her first instinct was of course to hunch over like crazy. However whenever I try to get her to keep her back arched, she just does a rackpull/deadlift instead of a row. I've tried in the past to take my time and attempt to guide her through it but she gets super self-concious and gives up very quickly, and gets upset if I try to continue to try to coach her.

    Eventually I'll add them in anyway, and I supposed she'll just sit and wait while I do them, but in the meantime, it's easier and less stressful for everyone if we just leave them out of the routine.

    She also don't do squats because pretty much the same thing happened. She keeps trying to bend her ankles, pushing her knees forward. Without weight obviously, I'd never risk even 10 pounds with someone who doesn't know how to squat properly yet because you can cause damage to your knees very easily. However, when it comes to leg day, I do squats and she does legpress because the leg press sled is right next to the squat rack so that's not too bad.

  20. GXR? please enlighten me...

  21. GXR = Glucophase XR by Designer Supplements.

    So leg day today. Again. Started much the same as last time...

    BB Squat

    Yes, same weights and reps. However this time that 365 wasn't to failure. I felt like a had a decent amount of energy left after 8 reps so I decided to save that energy for a final set:


    WOW was that tough. Had a spot just to be safe and almost needed it too. Only barely got that second rep up. Holy crap.

    Once I had done the heavy stuff I figured I'd finish off with a good pump so I did 3 sets on a plate loaded leg extension

    Unilateral Platedloaded Leg Extension
    45 (for each leg) x15

    Short rest periods on those last exercises to try to burn myself out. Worked really well; I had trouble walking to the car.

    Once I can manage to get 405 for about 6, I'll drop the 275 set. I always ramp up from really low weights because I need extra warmup for squats or I wind up not being able to reach my full strength potential in a workout. Plus my hips get messed up when I don't ramp up like that.

    One problem with today was I had a terrible weekend. I visited my brother in NYC, and of course we drank. We stayed up till around 4AM on Saturday night and then I went out to eat for brunch with my mom and my borther on Sunday. With all the travel, bad food, beer, lack of sleep, I was completely wiped out. To top it off, I forgot to marinade the chicken so I had crap food for dinner before going to the gym tonight. Next Monday will be very different.

    Schedule-wise I'm not yet ready for 4 times a week. For one thing I can't start the week with legs when I do 4 workouts a week, it would make Tuesday's workout suck. Here's what my 4 workout days a week schedule would be:

    Monday: Chest/tricep
    Tuesday: Legs
    Wednesday: Off
    Thursday: Back/Bicep
    Friday: Shoulders/Tricep
    Saturday and Sunday: Off

    That would leave 3 days between chest and shoulders, and the day after legs would be a rest day. 2 days of rest between shoulders and chest again, but those 2 days would be rest days so there'd be more recovery.

    I'm thinking workouts would be as follows:

    Chest/Tricep -
    4xBB Bench
    4xBB Incline
    4xDB Bench

    Legs -
    whatever else I have energy for

    Back/Biceps -
    4xBB Row (my wife will just have to wait)
    4xLat Pulldown
    4xLow Cable Row
    3xDB Row
    3x Incline DB Curl

    Shoulders/Tricep -
    4xSeated Smith Military Press
    4xHammerstrength Shoulder Press
    4xSeated DB Shoulder Press
    3xDB Lateral Raise

    Not ready for Deadlift yet.

    As for BB Military Press, every time I do those I screw up my back. Every time. I just simply can't do them sitting perfect straight; I have to have a very slight recline.

  22. sounds like you are arching your back on the militaries.. .very dangerous. Are you saying you can get away with the backrest reclining a little? If so, that is better than nothing, but I'm sure you know you have to concentrate on keeping your body tight. Squeeze the bar hard, this may sound stupid but it actually seems to make the body tighter when doing so.

  23. Quote Originally Posted by Ubiquitous View Post
    sounds like you are arching your back on the militaries.. .very dangerous. Are you saying you can get away with the backrest reclining a little? If so, that is better than nothing, but I'm sure you know you have to concentrate on keeping your body tight. Squeeze the bar hard, this may sound stupid but it actually seems to make the body tighter when doing so.

    The problem with militaries is if I'm sitting straight up, the bar won't go straight up. In order to lift my arms over my head my back arches. Total lack of flexibility. It might have to do with a 3rd degree collarbone seperation I had a number of years back that the lazyass doctor at Morristown Hospital said I didn't need surgery for (but I did).

  24. Honestly, the only way you can do military presses without arching your back at all is behind the head. And I personally don't recomend them because of the stress it puts on your rotator cuff. That isn't to say I don't do them, but when I do it's a much lower weight and a lot more concentration on flexing the muscle throughout the movement.

  25. Quote Originally Posted by PumpingIron View Post
    Honestly, the only way you can do military presses without arching your back at all is behind the head. And I personally don't recomend them because of the stress it puts on your rotator cuff. That isn't to say I don't do them, but when I do it's a much lower weight and a lot more concentration on flexing the muscle throughout the movement.

    Actually I've been thinking about incorporating them. Yes at a very very light weight. But my shoulders have ALWAYS lagged behind everything else and I'm kind of sick of that.

  26. Jeez, almost forgot to post my chest workout.

    BB Flat Bench

    BB Incline

    DB Flat Bench

    Tricep Rope Pulldown
    6 platesx20
    8 platesx12
    8 platesx12
    10 platesx8

    Rest on the rope pulldowns is only as long as it took my wife to do her set. So probably about 15-20 seconds.

    I'm always amazed at DB Bench. How smooth and easy the first reps are and then how suddenly my strength just disappears at a certain point.

  27. Back day log:

    Lat Pulldown:

    Low Cable Row (in # of plates):

    DB Row:

    DB Incline Curl

    For DB Incline Curl I like to try switching up the angle of the incline. For the second set, I felt like I wasn't isolating my bicep enough; i.e. I didn't have enough total control ove rthe weight so for the last set I went back to 20 so I could get a better squeeze out of it.

    I think the biggest reason for the huge boost in strength is that I did this today in the morning. I don't have any work today so stress is minimal, especially since it is the start or a 3 day weekend. I got tons of sleep last night as well. I'm always fresher around midmorning. Yes I should have worked out Friday but I was beat and felt I would have gotten a really crappy workout.

  28. BB Flat Bench

    BB Incline
    185x4 (I think I didn't wait long enough between sets here)

    DB Flat Bench

    Tricep Rope Pulldown
    6 platesx30
    7 platesx25
    7 platesx25

    You might be curious as to why I did another chest workout. The reason is because I'm changing up my workout schedule to 4/week next week. I would have done it this week but my gym was closed really early on Monday so I didn't make it. I'm going to the shore on Friday, so I only have Tues, Wed, and Thur this week to work out. I figured I'd at least switch around the muscle groups in preperation for next week.

    This week is Chest, then legs, then back.

    Next week on is Chest, Legs, off, Back, Shoulders, off, off

    EDIT: I just realised, I most definitely did 12 reps at 155 for Incline Bench. I distinctly remember squeezing out the 12th and then feebly racking it.
    Last edited by Nullifidian; 05-30-2007 at 09:08 AM.

  29. Atleast your gym was open on Monday. Mine was closed. It screwed up my entire week. Now I'm going to have to be there 4 days in a row.

  30. Ok, today was a crazy day. At the gym that is. I don't know what happened to me, but here's how my workout went.


    Yes. That is correct. You read that correctly. 405 for 12 reps. Do not ask me how I still don't know. Some kind of adrenaline high hit me or something. It didn't feel like 405, but I double checked. It was 405. Last week I barely squeezed out 2 and this week I got 12. I expected to get 4 at most. When I hit 8 I figured 2 more. When I hit 10 I realised I could do more. I stopped at 12 thinking I STILL could have done more. But I racked it anyway. Then .... it caught up to me. My vision tunnelled, I gasped for air, and my knees buckled.

    I didn't black out. However I felt the common wave of intense nausea. I'm pretty good at holding down my cookies so I managed there. After the nausea though, I started to feel numb. My fingers tingled and so did my face. My hands and face went pretty numb and I felt the most intense exhaustion I've felt in a very long while. I lay down on the floor looking up at the ceiling to continue to try to catch my breath. Eventually I had to step outside for air. I'd say it took at least 15-20 minutes for me to recover.

    Then I went back in and did

    Leg Extension:

    Then I was done.

    The sick part about all of this? I still feel like I could crank out more weight. My MUSCLES don't feel tired. My lungs and my brain do.

    I only did 1 thing different that I can think of. When I came home from work I immediately took my supplements (1g ALCAR, 6 Now Foods BCAA caps, 2 caps Basic Cuts, 3 caps Cissus RX) and had a basic granola bar. Then I waited. I surfed the internet and hung around for like 20 or 30 minutes or so before we headed for the gym.

    So the major changes were:

    1) Timing; longer wait time between supplements/food and going to the gym
    2) Instead of eating a full meal I just had a granola bar.

    Anyway, I'm incredibly stoked about doing this. Honestly I'm not sure I've ever done 405 for 12. I'll have to go check my old logs, but I think the most I got was 405 for 10. And that was when I was able to do 495 for 2 reps. So suffice to say this is positively incredible.

    EDIT: I looked back in my logs. I during my contest prep I managed to get 405 for 12. At that time I was also able to get 495 for 4. I was also on Tren and Test at the time. So not only is it amazing that I've regained such strength in such a short time. It's even more astounding that I've done it without being on all the AAS.

    I really don't think I'll be able to duplicate this feat next week. However I would like to try for a heavier weight next week. So if I can put up 405 for a good 8-10, I'll go for 455. Just thinking about it though makes me nervous. At that point we're talking weights well more than double my body weight. My ultimate goal though has always been to eventually get 6 plates. 585 pounds. I have never, not even once, seen someone at any gym I've ever worked out at put up 6 plates. Never. So for me to eventually be able to do that would be .... mindblowing.

    One step at a time though. Next week let's see if I can put up 4 and a half for a few reps.
    Last edited by Nullifidian; 05-30-2007 at 10:35 PM.

  31. Lat Pulldown:

    Low Cable Row (in # of plates):

    DB Row:

    DB Incline Curl

    Grip strength craps out on me. Actually I'm not even sure it's entirely grip strength and simply just finger and hand pain. On DB Row especially the heavier weights make my hands sting like a mofo. Yeah I know, stop being such a baby. The pain is distracting though and I feel like I can't get a good grip as a result.

    In the past I used to use straps, but I really want my forearms to get huge, so I'm trying to avoid using them. I suppose it's like squatting without a pad; you get used to it after a while.

  32. Yay! Chest day!

    BB Flat Bench

    BB Incline

    DB Flat Bench

    Assisted Dips

    For the dips I rested only about 20 seconds between sets, hence the burnout.

    This week so far is going poorly. On Monday my wife had a migraine so when I came home from work I had to take care of her instead of going to the gym. Yeah I could have gone to the gym alone but that wouldn't have been very nice, and I'd do just about anything for her. Today I had jury duty which put me in a really foul mood since my employer doesn't reimburse me for time spent in jury duty. It's not necessarily money lost though because I'll hopefully have the opportunity to make up the day .... on the weekend

    I'm a little worried about tomorrow; leg day. For some bizarre reason, my right foot has started to hurt. It feels like the bottom of that foot, right by two of my toes feels really bruised except it isn't. That is to say it doesn't look bruised but it feels bruised. I notice it most when I'm not wearing shoes. I noticed it when I was wearing shoes at jury duty today, but not when I wore sneakers. That may change drastically though with 400+ pounds on my shoulders. Hopefully I won't feel any pain when squatting and if I do, I hope it doesn't distract me or sap any strength.

    I wonder if anyone is reading this log anymore.

    Anyway, if I remember, I'll see if I can convince my wife to bring the camera and take a video of me doing squats. I need to see if my form is good anyway, plus I'm sure folks here will appreciate it. One thing is for sure, I KNOW I don't have the endurance to do 12 at 405 and continue my workout. So past 315, I'm keeping the upper rep limit at 10. That way my lungs won't give out before I have a chance to push my strength limits.

    I'll try out 455 tomorrow. I'm not hoping for much, but if by some twist of fate I can get like 6, I might, MIGHT just see about trying 495. MAYBE. Seems like a pipedream at the moment though...

  33. video...i like video...

    don't worry, I'm following along.

  34. Keep it up Null, I'm still following along


  35. Well, if I remember the camera and its batteries aren't dead, soon you all will see me in all my bearded glory performing squats probably to hams-parallel. I'll have my wife take a video of 405 and if I have strength, anything above that as well.I'm hoping to get 2 videos (405 and 455). I may only wind up with one though.

    One thing I've noticed with squat depth is that in order to qualify as "parallel" the larger your quads get the deeper you must go. Seems rather silly. Shouldn't the standard be "femur parallel" since what really matters is joint angle? Meh.

  36. Ok, leg day done.


    ROM was ok on the 405. It was crappy IMO on the 455. Uploading videos now.

    Leg Press:

    Felt I had a good pump so I ended it there. Still don't have the endurance I want though. Getting there, but not there yet.

    EDIT: Wow it's been hours since I uploaded them now and the videos STILL aren't available yet on Youtube. Anyone know how long it takes usually before they show up?
    Last edited by Nullifidian; 06-06-2007 at 10:57 PM.

  37. Finally the videos appear on youtube!

    First video my wife didn't get such a great angle on.
    405 for 10:
    YouTube - Broadcast Yourself.

    Second video had a really good angle. My ROM was crap though.
    455 for 4:
    YouTube - Broadcast Yourself.

    EDIT: After watching the second video I noticed to my horror that my knees are drifting bigtime on the 455 set. That's probably a big contributing factor to 1) my lack of full range of motion 2) my feeling of instability and 3) my feeling like it was tougher than expected.
    Last edited by Nullifidian; 06-07-2007 at 11:04 AM.

  38. Good lifts bro.

  39. Felt really crappy today. Really stressful week so far. The tendonitis in my elbows started acting up today which really put a damper on my back workout. Started to lose strength due to it during the second exercise which is why I didn't increase the weight as much as I think I'm really capable of. Next week I'm going to start back off with deadlift. Ironically it would probably be easier on me to do so.

    Lat Pulldown:

    Hammerstrength Row:

    I was getting a feel for the hammerstrength row, I like it better than low cable row. It feels better on my hands and I like having the chest pad there.

    Anyway, at that point my elbows were starting to really ache. I stretched them out for a few minutes and that alleviated the pain but I've been there many times before and know that's only temporary. So I cut things short and finished up with incline bicep curl.

    Incline DB Curl:

    I'm going to start wearing some neoprene elbow sleeves on chest day. I'm still debating whether or not I should do shoulder day tomorrow, knowing how my elbows were today. I figure I'll probably go in and do a few sets to get a feel for things and if my elbows act up I'll end it the workout right there.

    I frackin hate tendonitis.

    Anyway, like I said, next week I'll start with deadlifts. I'll use straps on the deads so I can keep my grip for the rest of the workout. Then I'll move on to lat pulldown and then hammerstrength row. Finishing up with incline db curl as usual.

  40. You use the Hammer Strength High Row, or the Low Row?


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