The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness
Latest Article

The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness

Itís no secret that when people contradict themselves, it has the effect of making the flaws in their actions or statements seem glaringly obvious. But what about when WE ourselves get caught contradicting ourselves by someone else?

By: Nick Tumminello Added: January 6th, 2014
More Recent Articles
Contrast Training for Size
By: Lee Boyce
An Interview with Marianne Kane of Girls Gone Strong
By: Jordan Syatt
What Supplements Should I be Taking? By: Jay Wainwright
Bench Like a Girl By: Julia Ladewski
Some Thoughts on Building a Big Pull By: Christopher Mason

Facebook Join Facebook Group       Twitter Follow on Twitter       rss Subscribe via RSS
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 33
  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    490

    ME bench + accessory exercise selection???

    Hey everyone, im a non-competative RAW powerlifter, currently 5'11 210, and am buillding my way to 220. In addition I want to hit a 300lb bench. My goals are not purely strength numbers, but I have done pretty well all around just focusing on getting stronger.

    As for bench, i tend to be weakest off the chest, or about 3 inches off. Here is my current general setup....

    ME exercises:

    week 1 CG bench to a 1RM
    week 2 Floor press with pause to 1RM
    week 3 foam press to a 1RM

    DE/RE work 50-70% with or w/o bands 8x3

    Assistance/technique work:

    Bench practice low reps
    DB bench
    pullups
    1-arm row
    facepulls
    triceps
    incline db bench

    Ok so my questions....

    1) Should I be pausing on my ME, assistance, both or neither?
    2) When doing ME, should I aim for a total number of reps above 90% for the day?

    what i mean by this, for example some on my floor press workout my warmups to a max were:

    45x5
    135x3
    185x2
    205x1
    225x1
    235x1
    245x1 "max"

    And that was it.

    3) For ME work, do I want to pick exercises that im weaker at than bench or stronger, or both?


    Thats all I can think of for now, but any other advice? Im sure just gaining weight will help get me closer to 300.

  2.    Support Wannabebig and use AtLarge Nutrition Supplements!


  3. #2
    Westside Bencher Travis Bell's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Westside Barbell, OH
    Posts
    8,932
    I would pause occasionally but not all the time. If your technique is sound, you should be able to pause just about as much as you can touch and go.

    You're not getting nearly enough work in with your floor press example

    This would be better

    45 x warmup
    135 x warmup
    185 x 3
    205 x 2
    225 x 1
    235 x 1
    245 x 1
    245 x 1
    205 x 5
    215 x 5
    215 x 5

    Yes you want to pick exercises you are weaker at

    You can also use the bands on max effort day to help add some variety to your exercise selection.


    AtLarge Nutrition Supplements Get the best supplements and help support Wannabebig!

    Superior Athletics - Northeast Ohio's Center for Athlete Training
    *Westside Barbell Certified Gym

  4. #3
    Wannabebig Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Carmel, IN
    Posts
    70
    I was once asked, "Are you four weeks out from a meet?"
    "No," I responded.
    "Then why are you pausing?"

    If you're weak off the chest, I suggest trying a one board press. It may be right at your sticking point, and you may be able to do less weight than a full ROM bench since you're starting right at your sticking point.

  5. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    490
    Thanks for the advice guys, i'll give those things a try.

    So if I can pretty easily lift more than my bench max on an exercise (like 4" foam press) then should I not use that as an ME exercise?

    Also, should I use my full arch and leg drive on ALL pressing movements, including ME, DE, and RE for both barbell and dumbell exercises?

    Thx again.

  6. #5
    Senior Member NUCadet97's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    the city that glows
    Posts
    682
    My 2 cents...Travis is dead on you are not getting enough reps in after max.

    I also tend to have my sticking point just off the chest so I have been hammering two things my lats and 1-board. I also like to use reverse band benching at the very beginning of a training cycle.

    As far as arching and leg drive goes I arch and drive on all barbell movements as for me I feel that practice makes perfect.

    Raw Elite classification in 3 weight classes

    raw squat: 380 lbs
    raw bench: 270 lbs
    raw deadlift: 430 lbs
    raw total: 1,080 lbs

  7. #6
    Wannabebig Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Carmel, IN
    Posts
    70
    Quote Originally Posted by danki View Post
    Also, should I use my full arch and leg drive on ALL pressing movements, including ME, DE, and RE for both barbell and dumbell exercises?
    I agree that practice makes perfect, but I would not suggest doing a full arch for each set. Leg drive, tightness? Yes.

    I used to do it that way, and I got caught up in arching as much as I possibly could. My back BLOWS now. It wasn't just arching on the bench, but my set up certainly was a factor in making my spine a completely unstable piece of garbage.

    If you've got good joints, I would arch on ME and DE, but never on RE.

    EDIT: However, if you don't have a super intense arch to begin with, it probably isn't a big deal to you.
    Last edited by LanceGoyke; 11-12-2010 at 12:09 PM.

  8. #7
    Bad Attitude Gym AdamBAG's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Dallas, Texas
    Posts
    986
    An easy way to add volume is to work up by 3s or 5s until they become too difficult and are close to a 3RM or 5RM. Then go to singles for a 1RM. I know some people don't like this method, but for me it's an easy way to get in plenty of volume. It can hurt you on your 1RM attempts, but it's not a true 3RM or 5RM, leave a couple in the tank so to speak.

    I think that was a rambling way of saying don't go to singles too early.
    750/500/690 APF Elite @ 242

    Bench Only - Multi Ply SPF - 600 @ 275 (251)

    Bench Only - Single Ply USAPL - 501 @ 275 (255)

    Bench Only - Single Ply SPF - 550 @ 259 (257)

  9. #8
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    490
    Ok, sorry some more questions.

    1) So I work out in a commercial gym without any boards. Could I rest a 10lb plate on my chest instead of a single board?

    2) For ME exercises, what do you think about the followiong weekly rotation:

    week 1 CG bench
    week 2 1-board press
    week 3 Incline bench

    repeat

  10. #9
    Senior Member NUCadet97's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    the city that glows
    Posts
    682
    Quote Originally Posted by danki View Post
    Ok, sorry some more questions.

    1) So I work out in a commercial gym without any boards. Could I rest a 10lb plate on my chest instead of a single board?

    2) For ME exercises, what do you think about the followiong weekly rotation:

    week 1 CG bench
    week 2 1-board press
    week 3 Incline bench

    repeat
    OK I work out at a commercial gym too, make your own boards out of 2x6's and bring them...no biggie

    Raw Elite classification in 3 weight classes

    raw squat: 380 lbs
    raw bench: 270 lbs
    raw deadlift: 430 lbs
    raw total: 1,080 lbs

  11. #10
    THE 800 QUEST NickAus's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Sydney
    Posts
    7,677
    Quote Originally Posted by NUCadet97 View Post
    OK I work out at a commercial gym too, make your own boards out of 2x6's and bring them...no biggie
    This!
    Squat briefs only 625 @ 210
    Bench geared 525 @ 210
    Deadlift geared 650 @ 220

    Captains of Crush #3

    Building Mighty Mitts...

  12. #11
    Senior Member elilliebridge's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    139
    You should try doing some board presses man..... and ever since my pec tare i've been pausing ALL of my singles even for my warm ups. The boards really help me out big time with my strength throughout the entire lift. 1-3 boards are the best, and occasionally i will do 4 boards to really focus on my lockout strength and speed.

  13. #12
    Wannabebig Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Carmel, IN
    Posts
    70
    Quote Originally Posted by NUCadet97 View Post
    OK I work out at a commercial gym too, make your own boards out of 2x6's and bring them...no biggie
    Quote Originally Posted by NickAus View Post
    This!
    Second thumbs up.

  14. #13
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    490
    Hey guys I want to thank you again for the advice and give an update, and maybe get a thumb up or down from you.

    Here is what I did today on my ME upper workout......

    11/18 "upper"

    1) 1-board press (10lb plate)

    225x1
    235x1
    245x1
    255x1
    205x5
    215x5
    225x3

    2) Lat pulldown 3x10-15
    3a) DB bench press + mini band (50's) 3x15
    3b) Facepull 3x15


    So I haven't got actual boards yet, but tried just resting a 10lb plate on my chest. It seems to work, and I actually liked it because I could place it lower on my chest which forced me to bring the bar lower.


    And my last question, I'd just like to run my upper body setup for both days by you guys.


    DE days

    I actually changed these to RE days. I wasn't exactly sure how to do this so I kept the weights the same as DE days, but changed how I perform the reps. Instead of 8x3, I just do 24 reps in as few sets as possible going to failure or near failure [something like:12,8,4] . And the weights, are cycled something like 50%,60%,70%. And the volume drops a bit as the weight goes up, so something like 30,25,20 reps, respectively. This day looks like this:

    1a) RE bench
    1b) Weighted pullups RE (same method)
    2a) Tricep exercise 15+ reps, few sets
    2b) Upper back exercise 15+ reps
    3) More pulling if needed (higher reps)

    ME day

    Basically as listed above, i'll probably cycle 1-board, floor press, and incilne (or 2-board). Then a few more push and pulls with more focus on 10-15 rep range, and more shoulders/chest/lats, instead of triceps.

    I want to keep this as simple as possible, but without some guidelines I tend to do too much and dont make much progress. Im gonna focus on what others have told me before and now again, and get more reps in on my ME stuff, and then dont push too hard on all the accessory stuff.

    Any other advice is appreciated.


    ***Also, if it makes a difference, im currently bulking, eating everything in site, trying to get to 220 from 210.
    Last edited by danki; 11-18-2010 at 07:26 PM.

  15. #14
    Bad Attitude Gym AdamBAG's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Dallas, Texas
    Posts
    986
    I think you are on the right track.

    If you are going to replace dynamic work with rep work then I think what you did works fine. Just don't turn it into another max effort day. If you start to stagnate go back to a few three week waves of dynamic work.

    The one thing that I see lacking in your program is tricep work. I suggest doing "high intensity" tricep work on your max effort day (3-5 board press, rack lockouts etc.). On your dynamic effort day do "low intensity" tricep work (think extensions, pushdowns etc.).

    Going to Home Depot and getting a few 2 x 4s will help you a lot. Boards are a fantastic tool.
    750/500/690 APF Elite @ 242

    Bench Only - Multi Ply SPF - 600 @ 275 (251)

    Bench Only - Single Ply USAPL - 501 @ 275 (255)

    Bench Only - Single Ply SPF - 550 @ 259 (257)

  16. #15
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    490
    So even as a RAW lifter I need to focus on lockout/tricep strength that much?

  17. #16
    Bad Attitude Gym AdamBAG's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Dallas, Texas
    Posts
    986
    Quote Originally Posted by danki View Post
    So even as a RAW lifter I need to focus on lockout/tricep strength that much?
    Yes, in my opinion, but others may disagree.
    750/500/690 APF Elite @ 242

    Bench Only - Multi Ply SPF - 600 @ 275 (251)

    Bench Only - Single Ply USAPL - 501 @ 275 (255)

    Bench Only - Single Ply SPF - 550 @ 259 (257)

  18. #17
    LittleJake JSully's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Phoenix, AZ
    Posts
    2,179
    Quote Originally Posted by danki View Post
    So even as a RAW lifter I need to focus on lockout/tricep strength that much?
    this is my fallback..

    I'm extremely powerful off the chest, but I lose it about where a 3 board would be at.. so I've started really hitting floor presses and board presses and it's helped.

    Don't neglect the lockout!!
    Jake Sullivan
    6' - 280lbs - 29yrs old - Professional Highland Games Athlete
    curently off-season
    HG training log = road to pro
    youtube channel = www.youtube.com/xtra0t

  19. #18
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Morrisville,PA
    Posts
    3,072
    Just figured I would bring this up to fuel the discussion...

    But is there any reason why you are making it complicated like this? Seems like at your weight, just hitting the bench consistently and focusing on perfecting your form should get you to 300 pounds pretty easily.

    Another thing...once my military press got to a certain weight, my bench started seeing very good carry over. I was basically stagnant on bench in the 260-270 pound range...but as soon as I was able to press heavier weights for reps (155-165 lbs) my bench started to increase at a significant rate all the way to 300+ over the course of only a couple of months.

    Also if you are weak off the chest, why bench with boards at all? If you are sticking 3 inches above your chest, it means you are not accelerating out of the bottom portion of the lift hard enough which indicates to me that your setup is off and you aren't getting enough leg drive.

    But then again, I am definitely the novice out of the people who have already responded so take this with a grain of salt. Just trying to let you know what worked for me, because I recently hit 300 and I wasn't able to make great gains until I switched benching to once a week with the other upper body day as heavy military pressing.
    Last edited by mchicia1; 11-19-2010 at 09:44 AM.

  20. #19
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    490
    So is there a rule of thumb for board pressing similar to rack pulling as far as carryover?

    Doesn't Louie suggest something like if you can pull more than 10% better than your best lift from the floor, then you wont get much carryover?


    Also, I dont see it mentioned much, but I was thinking of doing some supramaximal supports and eccentrics used sparingly just to get used to holding heavier weights. Maybe something like 275-300lbs. Anyone ever do these?

  21. #20
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    490
    Quote Originally Posted by mchicia1 View Post
    Just figured I would bring this up to fuel the discussion...

    But is there any reason why you are making it complicated like this? Seems like at your weight, just hitting the bench consistently and focusing on perfecting your form should get you to 300 pounds pretty easily.

    Another thing...once my military press got to a certain weight, my bench started seeing very good carry over. I was basically stagnant on bench in the 260-270 pound range...but as soon as I was able to press heavier weights for reps (155-165 lbs) my bench started to increase at a significant rate all the way to 300+ over the course of only a couple of months.

    Also if you are weak off the chest, why bench with boards at all? If you are sticking 3 inches above your chest, it means you are not accelerating out of the bottom portion of the lift hard enough which indicates to me that your setup is off and you aren't getting enough leg drive.

    But then again, I am definitely the novice out of the people who have already responded so take this with a grain of salt. Just trying to let you know what worked for me, because I recently hit 300 and I wasn't able to make great gains until I switched benching to once a week with the other upper body day as heavy military pressing.
    Hey man, thanks for chiming in. Ya, I dont really know what my deal is with bench. It is definately my weak point, even though ive always liked it. When I was in high school I was very into benching. I was pretty proud of benching 225 at a BW of about 150. It doesn't seem right to me that I haven't progessed much since then, even though ive gained weight.

    I generally dont do much overhead work. Ive tried it in the past, but my shoulders get jacked up.. I dont know if its somethign structural with my shoulders or just lack of flexibility , but I cant train overhead consistantly. Also, I was a pitcher all the way up to high school so my shoulders have been a bit dodgy. I think some of my coaches may have messed us up also with forced static stretching before playing. In the past year, when I went back to barbell pressing, I decided to take Jim Wendler's advice and go with a closer grip. I started out weak initially but now it just feels really natural.

    Thanks for your advice though, it is appreciated.

  22. #21
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Morrisville,PA
    Posts
    3,072
    Quote Originally Posted by danki View Post
    Hey man, thanks for chiming in. Ya, I dont really know what my deal is with bench. It is definately my weak point, even though ive always liked it. When I was in high school I was very into benching. I was pretty proud of benching 225 at a BW of about 150. It doesn't seem right to me that I haven't progessed much since then, even though ive gained weight.

    I generally dont do much overhead work. Ive tried it in the past, but my shoulders get jacked up.. I dont know if its somethign structural with my shoulders or just lack of flexibility , but I cant train overhead consistantly. Also, I was a pitcher all the way up to high school so my shoulders have been a bit dodgy. I think some of my coaches may have messed us up also with forced static stretching before playing. In the past year, when I went back to barbell pressing, I decided to take Jim Wendler's advice and go with a closer grip. I started out weak initially but now it just feels really natural.

    Thanks for your advice though, it is appreciated.
    I pitched 5 years in college for a division 1 school. No excuses!

    No but seriously, I bet its because you take too wide of a grip on your pressing. For bench I am index fingers on the rings but on millies I use pinky or even less than that. Feels perfectly natural and comfortable. Your lack of overhead movements may be your issue. The bench still uses a lot of shoulders. Not all chest and tris.

  23. #22
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Morrisville,PA
    Posts
    3,072
    Quote Originally Posted by danki View Post
    Also, I dont see it mentioned much, but I was thinking of doing some supramaximal supports and eccentrics used sparingly just to get used to holding heavier weights. Maybe something like 275-300lbs. Anyone ever do these?
    I mix these in from time to time if I am not feeling good that day. Like if my target weight is 275 and even 250 felt heavy warming up, I may pull out 300+ and just hold it (not a negative, just hold the weight for 5 seconds). This helps me focus on locking my shoulders back and gives me confidence that the weight only feels heavy because its all in my head.
    Last edited by mchicia1; 11-19-2010 at 10:37 AM.

  24. #23
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    490
    Quote Originally Posted by mchicia1 View Post
    I pitched 5 years in college for a division 1 school. No excuses!

    No but seriously, I bet its because you take too wide of a grip on your pressing. For bench I am index fingers on the rings but on millies I use pinky or even less than that. Feels perfectly natural and comfortable. Your lack of overhead movements may be your issue. The bench still uses a lot of shoulders. Not all chest and tris.
    Ya, the widest I ever go now is pinkies right next to the rings, and sometimes I do CG with my index finger close to the smooth part in the middle.

    I'll take this advice to heart and see if working militaries in somewhere can be done. You do seated military press, or standing press?

  25. #24
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Morrisville,PA
    Posts
    3,072
    Quote Originally Posted by danki View Post
    Ya, the widest I ever go now is pinkies right next to the rings, and sometimes I do CG with my index finger close to the smooth part in the middle.

    I'll take this advice to heart and see if working militaries in somewhere can be done. You do seated military press, or standing press?
    Standing, although I don't see why seated wouldn't be just as good if not better if you were purely focused on bench.

  26. #25
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Morrisville,PA
    Posts
    3,072
    Agree with Tommy...just do 5/3/1 LOL. Its so simple and it works really well. 2 to 3 movements per day with a lot of volume. All you need at the stage you're at. I don't think guys like us really need bands, chains, or boards until we are really towards the top of our genetic limit.

Similar Threads

  1. Newbie exercise selection - too much?
    By iwealth in forum Bodybuilding & Weight Training
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 06-23-2010, 03:42 AM
  2. Deadlift accessory exercise
    By BigTallOx in forum Powerlifting and Strength Training
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 04-16-2009, 09:19 PM
  3. Switch to Bench Accessory
    By Stumprrp in forum Powerlifting and Strength Training
    Replies: 13
    Last Post: 04-27-2007, 06:59 AM
  4. Routine and Exercise selection
    By John III in forum Bodybuilding & Weight Training
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 11-04-2006, 06:38 PM
  5. Why is a BB bench a compound exercise but DB bench aint?
    By Behemoth in forum Bodybuilding & Weight Training
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 05-04-2003, 09:35 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •