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Thread: Help! Gains stopped with bench...

  1. #1
    Wannabebig Member scotusch's Avatar
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    Sep 2006
    Minneapolis, MN

    Help! Gains stopped with bench...


    I've been making gains with all of my lifts over the past several months, but have more or less hit a wall with my bench. I don't know how much of my routine is necessary to post, but I do a three day split, and work chest and biceps on day one.

    In terms of chest exercises, I do (as of last week):

    Flat bench; 5 reps @ 205lbs. x 3 sets
    Incine bench; 6 reps @ 155lbs. x 3 sets
    Decline bench; 5 reps @ 187 x 3 sets

    I have been doing the flat @ the same weight for more than 6 or 7 weeks, and can't seem to get over the hill with it. I think part of the problem, which I just noticed the other day, was that my right wrist is falling back, causing my right elbow to bow out. I have no explanation for why it was doing this, and I didn't even notice until my partner said something to me.

    I think I am going to switch up my routine and do db work next week. Beyond that, does anyone have any suggestions? I would rather not do flys, although maybe I should work in some weighted dips.

    Thanks for any tips that you may have.

    Bench: 245 x 1
    Squat: 360 x1
    Dead: 340 x 1
    Last edited by scotusch; 09-27-2006 at 09:39 PM.

  2. #2
    Grammar Nazi BG5150's Avatar
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    Jun 2005
    Switch to DB's for a while if your gym has big enough DB's.

    Dips would be great.

    Work your back more, especially the lats.

    Eat more?
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  3. #3
    Senior Member 1mmort4l's Avatar
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    Sep 2006
    How much do you weigh? How long has it taken you to get to 5 reps of 205?
    Have you tried changing your routine, so that on an occasional week, just do flat bench without other chest excercises..

    I find a good way to increase my bench is to concentrate on bench for a while, maybe twice a week without going as hard as normal.. Or another slow way is add just 5 or less ponds per session. try super setting for a couple of weeks. Or another good way i find, is to drop the weight back a little, and do a couple more reps, with more sets. (the first 2 sets should be relatively easy, but then they will get harder.) after a couple of weeks of this, try the jump..

    Although, it does depend on your weight. I weigh about 160 lbs and bench 6 reps of about 240. I have been out for a while but used to do 4 - 5 of 280 at a similar weight. I found that after about 200 lbs, i find it sooo much harder to increase my bench.. Although, 6 - 7 weeks is a bit rough mate..
    Like BG said, eat more, or eat better.. GL
    Last edited by 1mmort4l; 09-27-2006 at 10:41 PM.

  4. #4
    Wannabebig Member scotusch's Avatar
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    Sep 2006
    Minneapolis, MN
    Thanks for the reponses so far. I'll answer some of your questions.

    I am 6'1" weighed in at 190 today after my workout (which is a new high for me). I am trying to bulk right now,eating between 3500 & 4000 calories/day.

    I would say it's taken me between 6 and 8 months to get to where I am on flat bench.

    My routine has been pretty static for the last few months, but was very differnent in previous months. I was doing more of a total body workout several months ago, and have switched to a three day routine (chest/biceps, back/triceps, legs/shoulders) a few months ago.

    I'll try some of your suggestions (adding small amounts of weight, just doing flat bench one week) after I do some db work.

    Please feel free to ask me to clarify anything else that could be important in responding. Thanks again for your help.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
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    Feb 2005
    squat more.. deadlift more... and eat more.. the bench will come up

  6. #6
    rampage don't squat bloodninja's Avatar
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    Dec 2005
    the kitchen table
    Being stuck at the same weight and doing the same thing over and over for 6 weeks is just crazy talk.

    Do you ever increase the weight and do less than 5 reps? Do you always use the same grip? I would not recommend benching dumbbells if you're trying to get your barbell bench to go up. How many powerlifters can you think of that bench with dumbbells?

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    I like a lot of the ideas ginin so is what I do when I hit a slump in my awsome for me and everyone else I known who has tried them...they are strip sets a form of HIT...Keep in mind these are not to be done all the time I work them in a 3-4 times a year for a 3 week period

    Take the bar and put a "big" plate (25, 35, or 45 whatever is good for you) on each side for a weight you can easily press. Then put on smaller weights until the total is about your 6-8 rep max. Once all the weight is loaded then press it till failure and have your spot take some weight off each side, then w/no rest press that weight...keep doing that till you get to the "big" plates press that as well till failure. I do 2 sets of these instead of my normal 3-4 sets I do for straight sets. Here is what I would guess what would be good for you:

    Load the bar with the weights in this order on each side 35/25/10/10 that should total 205 lbs. Then push that till failure, rack it and let your spotter take a ten off each side and push that till failure, then rack it have your spotter take a ten off each side, push that till failure, rack it have your spotter take off the 25's, then push the 35's till failure. The key is to take the weights off as fast as you can so you get as LITTLE rest as possible.

    For incline I would do either normal straight sets BB or DB or if I was feeling good I would throw in some drop sets with BB or DB. Example for DB take 50's for you (6-8 reps) and push that and w/o rest have 35's sitting there and push that till failure. Same concept for BB.

    I do these for 3 weeks at a time and everytime I make awsome gains....just keep in mind this taxes you CNS pretty hard so it may good to follow up with some lifting that isnt too intense

  8. #8
    Former Fatass Unreal's Avatar
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    May 2005
    How much weight have you gained in the 6-7 weeks? Try mixing up your reps and sets. I got through a recent platuea by going from 3 sets of 6-8 to 6 sets of 3 with more weight. When I went back to 3 sets after a few weeks they were much easier then before.
    Nick V

  9. #9
    Crrrrrrrrrrest!!!!! mikey4402's Avatar
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    Mar 2003
    If you always do what you've always done, then you'll always get what you always got."

    switch it up a little try dumbells. or even take a week off
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  10. #10
    Wannabebig Member
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    May 2006
    I wouldn't do decline flat and incline all together on a chest workout day.

    Just concentrate more on everything else and wait for your bench to get stronger. Your back muscles help a bunch.


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