Monday, November 26, 2007

Overhead Press & Squats Galore

A disclaimer to begin: this program is a work in progress. I'll probably be revising it as time goes on. I might even come back and edit this post to reflect any such revisions.

First, my goals:
  1. Press my bodyweight (~200 lbs)
  2. Squat double my bodyweight (~400 lbs)
After reviewing some numbers and estimates online, I've decided that the first goal might be a bit of a stretch, but I'm sticking with it. "Shoot for the moon; even if you miss, you'll land among the stars" and all that crap. The second should be attainable, especially since my Squat form is now officially BADASS.

So how am I going to get there? With the following unnecessarily complicated two week program:

Week 1
M: Squat (5x5), Press (5x5), Power Clean (5x3), Bent Over Row (5x5)
W: Squat, Bench (5x5), Deadlift (1x5), Chinups (3x failure, unweighted)
F: Squat, Press, Power Clean, Chinups (3x5, weighted)

Week 2
M: Squat, Press, Power Clean, Bent Over Row
W: Squat, Dips (5x5, weighted), Deadlift, Pullups (3x failure, unweighted)
F: Squat, Press, Power Clean, Pullups (3x5, weighted)

Note that if a set & rep scheme is listed once for an exercise, that scheme is used for all iterations of that exercise unless otherwise noted. Thus, all Squats are for 5x5, all Power Cleans are for 5x3, etc.

Now for some explanation of the reasoning behind the madness:

I'm Squatting 3 times a week because if you don't Squat 3 times a week, you're a pansy. And also because Squat has been the least trained of the core exercises for me over the past few years, so I need to get my reps in to get the weight up.

I'm Pressing heavy twice a week, with Bench and Dips alternating on Wednesdays. This is because My focus is obviously on improving Pressing strength, but I also want to at least maintain my Bench and Dip strength. Plus, I think that working in a variety of pushes will help keep my Press progress from stagnating.

Deadlifting heavy once a week is plenty to get stronger on that lift from what I've read (and experienced), so Wednesday morning is Deadlift time! Power Cleans on Monday and Friday to work the posterior chain and help overall power development. The first few weeks will be learning the exercise with the progression outlined in Starting Strength, since I'm brand new to Power Cleans.

Pullups/Chinups are great assistance exercises for the Press, and I originally had them programmed on every day, but I added in Bent Over Rows for the same reason I added in Bench and Dips -- variety and warding off stagnation.

I'll be doing metabolic conditioning workouts from Crossfit on Tuesday and Thursday, quite heaviliy scaled down at first. I won't be aiming to push myself as hard as those Crossfit guys generally do, at least at first. It's more to keep above a minimum level of GPP ("General Physical Preparedness") and keep the habit of getting into the gym as often as possible. Oh, and to freak people out by doing weird Crossfit things at the gym.

So that's the plan. Modifications will be made as the necessity for doing so becomes obvious, and will be noted on this blog. If you, o random denizen of the internet, have any thoughts or ideas about how I could improve this, please leave a comment!

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