Health and fitness

Godmy

A Monkey
It is great when one's ability to lift the weight from the ground over the head coincides with their max squat, because then you don't need any rack or a substitute of it for the backsquat :) A quick tip: you can usually get even more over your head if you use the athletic/weightlifting techniques (including momentum, little jumps etc.) such as the split jerk, I sometimes train for reps with as high weight as possible the split jerk. That is probably technically the hardest exercise I do and metabolically most demanding! (after deadlift)

And even though it's a little bit of a "cheat overhead/military press", it helps with your overhead press maximum too! (since the front delt/front of the shoulders is heavily engaged anyway)
 
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Adrian

Civis Illustris
Today, for the first time in a very long time, I tried to do some push-ups. I thought it's gonna be a disaster.... and it was, but not in a scale I predicted.
It's still a long way ahead of me, but I'm starting to feel the difference...
 

Godmy

A Monkey
Well done, @Adrian! Pushups shouldn't be underestimated. Try to program them... if not every week, then every other week (3-4 sets, maximum reps in a set, with a good form!) I don't always necessarily do all the same exercises every week, but I can bring the intensity up ;) I rarely finish not short of my energy, haha.

Update: 112% of bodyweight deadlift, 72kg


It felt quite nice, much better than 67kg 3(!) weeks ago! The hypertrophy (non-strength) training in between worked well. Again, probably not my maximum... (since I do a number of reps.)
 

Godmy

A Monkey
My beginner's attempt at power clean & split jerk with near my maximum weight 52 kg (81% of my bodyweight) / getting overhead 52 kg.

Power clean means getting the barbell to your shoulders with this particular technique - olympic weightlifting technique (where the arm muscles aren't really engaged if you do it correctly) and then it rests in the "rack position", on your front delts (you're not actively holding it)
Split jerk means getting the the barbell overhead from the shoulder level by using momentum, jumping and splitting your legs. I can do it quite nicely without this much weight, this wasn't exactly well done, but... it worked somehow too. (Ideally you should split your legs as much and as fast in a jump that the barbell ends up while here I'm pushing it a bit...)

If you want to learn it, you can watch this video and this video.

Spoiler:
1) you DON'T curl the barbell up
2)
you don't pull the barbell up with your shoulders, you don't pull the barbell up at all
3) you don't actively hold it at the shoulders, it's resting on your front delts.
4) you don't resist the barbell while it goes it down / reverse curl (that would work your arms unnecessarily in the negative phase), you just let it go and catch it when it's down.
 
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Godmy

A Monkey
So how's it going guys? Anything new in fitness or diet connected to it worth sharing?

I suggest all of you bench pressers to try a dumbbell (flat*) chest press here and then. After about 4 months pressing only with the barbell, I tried today heavy dumbbells and got the results that were kind of expectable. I pressed 2x30kg (60kg). With a barbell, about three weeks ago I pressed 67kg (but for many reps) - I think today the equivalent of that would be above 70kg... As you can see it's quite a workout to even get into the position :D


The pros:
- you can get the hands into a neutral most comfortable grip, because there is no horizontal bar telling your wrist how to turn
- you can get a bigger squeeze from the chest because, no matter how you start, you always end up in a gravity-perfect** adduction of the arms - something you rarely do with a bar
- you know that no weaker arm is cheating because the arms can't help each other, you are making sure you're going to have equally sized chest muscles ; ) Avoiding the imbalances!
- you're not getting stuck below the barbell in case of a disaster (and a dangerous setup) and if you're not lying on a bench either but are only slightly elevated like I am (e.g. 10cms above the ground), it's inherently much much safer than a barbell press will ever be (=you're not going to get choked e.g.)
- the stabilization factor is very high in here because each hand needs to establish the correct trajectory since the hand can move in all directions anytime unlike with the bar => the stabilizers work hard and that adds to how strongly the muscles are worked
- it makes less noise (like when loading the plates etc.) :-D

The cons:
- one hand cannot help the other, so if you feel that one arm is fine, the other one is saying "bad luck, you gotta stop, I can't go anymore"
- getting the dumbbells into position is a chore and sometimes even slightly dangerous (but with not big risks), it goes slightly easier in gyms with better dumbbells and a bench, but there you can also fall down if you do it wrong :p
- the triceps gets almost the equal workload the chest does, because, unlike with the bar, you have to achieve a complete lock out of the arms, they need to end straight, a weak triceps can f* it up a little bit
- the math is harder, since there is always x2 :D
- loading is more tiresome, since everything is x2 xD
- the stabilization is much harder, the hand can move or fall literally in any direction: impossible with the bar!

*not-inclined
**you can't get the maximum squeeze against gravity this way, only with an expander or a cable machine - but with dumbbells it's as good as it can get!


This must have been near my maximum - maybe 31.25*2 (62.5kg) would be one rep max, since, at first, I accidentally loaded there 65kg (32.5*2) and I could barely get the elbows from the ground, it was completely hopeless! :D According to the strengthlevel.com my barbell and dumbbell chest strength both approaches the "intermediate" level, the dumbbell being slightly stronger. I way around 64kg nows, but I'm in a tiny tiny caloric deficit at the moment (which for me still means 2600kcal*) so the max strength is not there.

*my caloric maintenance (or a tiny tiny surplus) would be around 2900kcal atm.
 
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SpeedPocok5

Member
So how's it going guys? Anything new in fitness or diet connected to it worth sharing?

I suggest all of you bench pressers to try a dumbbell (flat*) chest press here and then. After about 4 months pressing only with the barbell, I tried today heavy dumbbells and got the results that were kind of expectable. I pressed 2x30kg (60kg). With a barbell, about three weeks ago I pressed 67kg (but for many reps) - I think today the equivalent of that would be above 70kg... As you can see it's quite a workout to even get into the position :D


The pros:
- you can get the hands into a neutral most comfortable grip, because there is no horizontal bar telling your wrist how to turn
- you can get a bigger squeeze from the chest because, no matter how you start, you always end up in a gravity-perfect** adduction of the arms - something you rarely do with a bar
- you know that no weaker arm is cheating because the arms can't help each other, you are making sure you're going to have equally sized chest muscles ; ) Avoiding the imbalances!
- you're not getting stuck below the barbell in case of a disaster (and a dangerous setup) and if you're not lying on a bench either but are only slightly elevated like I am (e.g. 10cms above the ground), it's inherently much much safer than a barbell press will ever be (=you're not going to get choked e.g.)
- the stabilization factor is very high in here because each hand needs to establish the correct trajectory since the hand can move in all directions anytime unlike with the bar => the stabilizers work hard and that adds to how strongly the muscles are worked
- it makes less noise (like when loading the plates etc.) :-D

The cons:
- one hand cannot help the other, so if you feel that one arm is fine, the other one is saying "bad luck, you gotta stop, I can't go anymore"
- getting the dumbbells into position is a chore and sometimes even slightly dangerous (but with not big risks), it goes slightly easier in gyms with better dumbbells and a bench, but there you can also fall down if you do it wrong :p
- the triceps gets almost the equal workload the chest does, because, unlike with the bar, you have to achieve a complete lock out of the arms, they need to end straight, a weak triceps can f* it up a little bit
- the math is harder, since there is always x2 :D
- loading is more tiresome, since everything is x2 xD
- the stabilization is much harder, the hand can move or fall literally in any direction: impossible with the bar!

*not-inclined
**you can't get the maximum squeeze against gravity this way, only with an expander or a cable machine - but with dumbbells it's as good as it can get!


This must have been near my maximum - maybe 31.25*2 (62.5kg) would be one rep max, since, at first, I accidentally loaded there 65kg (32.5*2) and I could barely get the elbows from the ground, it was completely hopeless! :D According to the strengthlevel.com my barbell and dumbbell chest strength both approaches the "intermediate" level, the dumbbell being slightly stronger. I way around 64kg nows, but I'm in a tiny tiny caloric deficit at the moment (which for me still means 2600kcal*) so the max strength is not there.

*my caloric maintenance (or a tiny tiny surplus) would be around 2900kcal atm.
This summer I used to do strenght trainings, I don't lift every month but keep improving!

You are stronger than me!

Pull ups +40 (Here I count only one rep because the third was done at horrible form)


Dips +50 (1 rep)


When you adquire some strenght, you arrive at a point where improvement it's horribly hard!

I really admire your press bench!
 

Godmy

A Monkey
Me update: deadlift 75kg - 117% of my bodyweight (but for 6-8 reps ;p ... there was still a lot in the tank)

____________________

This is awesome, @SpeedPocok5, congratulations for this strength (+50kg... or +40kg.. that's really awesome). Thanks for the videos too (I subscribed to your channel :) ). I used to do pull ups (or chinups) with added weight, currently, I do them without any additional weight (trying to get max reps, see where I get there before I add weight again).

The same with dips....

There's a tip for you how to progress: try to train more for muscle hypertrophy between the +40/+50kg tries (before you try them again). That means going with lower weight but all the way up to failure (as many reps as necessary). E.g. do the dips or pull ups for max reps at 3-4 sets without any weight... Do that maybe 1-2 twice a week, then e.g. every 14/21 days try the +40/+50kg lifts. In the meantime your muscles will grow a bit to make it possible for you to progress. How about the diet? Quality carbohydrates, calories, protein? ;)
 
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