April 2019 Training Log: Transition to Meet Prep
Each month, I will do an overview and highlights of my training log. This is an experiment based on a few questions I received on Instagram. If you have specific questions about April’s training, comment below, email me, or DM me on Instagram.
Become as strong as I can for my meet 5/25/19.
Gain lean muscle mass (eating in a caloric surplus)
Started nutrition with Sheb Ince (Shebnation) to bulk smart and sustainable. In the past I’ve done RP Templates and I felt really bloated and just not great. Sheb has me steadily gaining weight while my body composition is changing in a way I want to see. I have been tracking macros since 2/1/19. This is HUGE contribution to the changes in my physique, more so than lifting. Lifting will make you strong and has huge benefits on the inside, but nutrition is 70% of the work.
I don’t really drink alcohol. This isn’t a conscious decision. It just doesn’t fit into my life anymore. It is a lot easier to make food choices that will fuel my performance, as I am not using calories for nutrient-less foods/drinks.
I see a bodyworker/therapist twice a month to help me with pelvic stability and left hip/glute troubles. These stem from instability in the left pelvis and are addressed in training as well as in warmups.
This covers training from 3/27/19 - 4/30/19
Switched from offseason to meet-prep program (competition 5/25/19)
Volume is still high. In March we applied Juggernaut/Chad Wesley Smith’s MRV/MEV method to my training volume.
Being an AFAB (assigned female at birth) human not taking hormones or PED’s, I have less muscle mass, produce less testosterone, and therefore need/can handle more volume in order to maintain fitness. AFAB folks not on hormones recover faster and can handle more work week to week, but also lose fitness at a faster rate (meaning strength gained and ability to move the weight. Not the aesthetics/fitness industry meaning)
With higher bench volume comes a need to take better care of the elbows. Regular rolling as well as wearing elbow sleeves in the squat has accomplished this.
I squat and bench twice a week and deadlift and OHP once a week. Earlier in this block I was benching 3x/week, but I became too fatigued.
OHP/Alt bench (do overhead first to be more fatigued on bench)
Deadlift and alt squat (do squat first to be more fatigued for deadlift)
I typically add a mobility and recovery day. I walk my dogs frequently and ride my bike in warm weather as well. I also work 50+ hours at the gym, so I am not a super sedentary person at this point in my life.
Variation in off season transferred well and prevented injury, especially in lower body lifts.
OHP 70# 3 x 4 (rep PR)
Neutral Bar Bench 90# 5 x 3 (weight and rep PR)
Floor Press 100# 2 x 4 (weight and rep PR)
Low bar squat 170# 5 x 3 (rep PR)
High bar box squat to high box w/ sit back 150# 2 x 3 (weight and rep PR)
Sumo Deadlift 230# 4 x 3 (rep PR)
The Training Week by Week
Week 15 (offseason)
Spoto Press 85# 4 x 6
Spoto Press to practice maintaining tightness and exploiting my weak point an inch or two above the chest.
Decline Bench 75# 3 x 8; 80# 1 x 8
More upper back and chest connection. Easier to keep shoulders tucked in this position.
BW 3 x 3 and anded drop set for 8 (medium band)
Seated single arm row
35-35# 3 x 12
Straight arm tricep extension
Mini band 3 x 10
Strengthens long head of the triceps and connects to rear delt to keep everything in place on the bench
Face Pulls (mini band) 3 x 12
More rear delt work needed
Tricep Pressdown with Rope handle
30# 3 x 12
Hanging leg raises
Roll tricep and bicep for elbows
Low bar Squat 155# 4 x 4
High bar Squat 135# 3 x 8
Overhead Lunges 45# 4 x 6
Lat pulldown w/ MAT handle 65# 3 x 12
Stability ball hamstring curls 3 x 15
TRX plank 3 x 1:00
Overhead Press and Alt Bench
Overhead Press 70# 3 x 4; 55# 3 x 8
Neutral Bar Bench 90# 5 x 3
Reverse Grip Pulldowns 75# 3 x 12
Long head tricep extension w/ band
Rear delt raises in cable machine 25# 3 x 12
Slingshot pushups 3 x 10
Deadlift and Alt Squat
145# bar weight with medium chains 6 x 2 (6th set an amrap for 4) with 1:15 rest between sets
Sumo block pulls from 1” mat and 30# chains
Bar weight 108# 5 x 4
45-degree back extensions
Neutral bar seal rows
Single leg glute bridge
Side plank with adduction
Week 16 - Deload
Main bench - swapped spoto press for 3-second paused comp bench to increase time under tension while weight was lower.
Main Squat- high bar with light chains
Dumbbell OHP for volume and light chains bench press with axle bar (for more grip and forearm engagement)
Hex bar deadlifts to rest sumo stance with light Zercher squats b/c why not?
Meet Prep Weeks 1-3
Main Bench Press
Competition Bench press with commands first, then floor press following
W1: 80# 5 x 5 (73%); Floor Press 95# 2 x 2
W2: 85# 5 x 4; Floor press 100# 2 x 3
W3: 90# 5 x 3; Floor Press 100# 2 x 4
Incline Bench 65-80 lbs 3 x 5
Slow Dumbbell Kickbacks with shoulder rotation
Wide lat pulldowns
Barbell Shrugs w/ Lat engagement
Single Arm Tricep Pressdowns
Low bar then a variation to follow
W1: Low bar 150# 5 x 5 (81%); high bar box squat to high box w/ sit back 140# 2 x 5
W2: Low bar 160# 5 x 4; reverse bands w/ micro minis 185# 2 x 4
W3: Low bar 170# 5 x 3; high bar box squat to high box w/ sit back 150# 2 x 3
Single leg RDL
Close Grip Pulldown
Single Leg Leg Extension
Fire hydrant hip extensions
Overhead Press and Alt Bench
Overhead press first then competition bench follows
W1: OHP 55 6 x 5; Comp Bench 65# 4 x 8 w/ comp pause
W2: OHP 60# 5 x 5; comp bench 75# 5 x 6 w/ comp pause
W3: 65# 4 x 4; comp bench 85# 6 x 4 w/ comp pause
Pullapart with cable pulley (underhand)
Isometric DB front raises
Isometric DB lateral raises
DB Incline rear delt raises
Barbell shrugs w/ lat engagement
Incline chin-ups with barbell
Single leg plank
Deadlift and Alt Squat
Squat variation first then sumo deadlift to follow
W1: High bar back squat 135# 3 x 5; Sumo deadlift 200# 5 x 5
W2: High bar 145# 3 x 4; Sumo 215# 5 x 4
W3: High bar 155# 3 x 3; Sumo 230# 4 x 3
Underhand lat pulldown
Leg press (w1) then kettlebell swings (w2-3)
Chest supported row
Facepull in cable machine