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I use to but I found that it put too much strain on my lower back and hips. I did touch-n-goes for a while but once I found my depth I dropped them also. My biggest problem is flexibility. Here is a funny one for you; I bet I could benefit from some yoga. My squat depth is adequate but it could be better. Where it really shows in in the James lift, Zercher and front squats
Hmm maybe it was your form that provided for the strain bc box squats are used as a learning tool for those that are newer and also used as an explosive technique for squatters as well. They also provide a safe way to squat bc they are suppose to help alleviate the stress on the lower body joints. If you arent already become friends with mark bell (the powerlifter not the athlete) and ask him why this happens on box squatting. Also he has a lot of vids on youtube (supertraining06) in which he provides great training info and advice. Yesterday i had just seen an article on getting lower in the squat and it was all on flexibility and different things you can do to help with it. When i find it ill send it your way.
Sunday, April 15, 2012 5/3/1 Cycle 10, Week 2 - Shoulders Strict press 1x5@75 1x5@95 1x5@115 Push press 1x5@125 1x5@140 1x15@160 (235) PR Back off set 2x8@135 Swiss Bar Strict press (from floor) 1x5@90 1x5@100 1x5@130 1x5@150 1x5@170 Log 80lbs 2x5@80 Notes: At the time I felt kind of lazy but looking back I’m actually pleased with the volume, effort and results of this session. I’m especially impressed with the push press given that my quads were shot from all the squats I did last week. I took Monday (today) off and I’ll pick up with deadlifts tomorrow.
Tuesday, April 17, 2012 5/3/1 cycle 10, week 2 – Deadlift Deadlift 1x5@205 1x5@255 1x5@310 1x5@335 1x5@385 1x4@435 Good mornings 3x10@135 BB Shrugs 2x10@250 Notes: Not a great day today. The gym got new bars and there a bit thicker and stiffer than the old ones, not great for deadlifting. Also, I think my CNS is just burned out. I could get my body to do anything I wanted it to do. After training I just stood in the shower while my body twitched. I’m thinking about backing off the heavy training for a while. We’ll see how the rest of the week goes.
My suggestion is instead of backing off the heavy lifting which lets face it none of us wants to do, try doing a week of speed work. Sets of 2 or 3 for 8-10 sets 60 sec rest periods. Anytime im feeling tired like that I utilize the speed work and I feel a lot better the next week.
That’s worth trying. I got to factor in the old factor. I’ve been pushing it pretty hard the last few months and recovery get slower as you get older. LoL at 48 I’m nowhere near done yet but I do need to listen to my body a lot closes. It gets less forgiving every year. Thursday, April 19, 2012 5/3/1 cycle 10 week 2 – Bench RC Warm up Bench 2x5@135 1x5@190 1x5@220 1x6@250 (295) 5x10@50 Close grip 3x10@95 (Should have gone higher) Standing EZ curls. Notes: I’m still struggling with fatigue I just feel dumped on and tired all the time now but I have to meets coming up here in June and July so I just need to work through it. That being said it wasn’t a horrible session, not my best but not bad. I do have an appointment with my Doctor to review my plod pressure meds. We’ll see if that has anything to do with my problems lately.
Another suggestion: it looks like you've been doing 531 for a very long time. I know Wendler boasts that this program can be done forever with out plateau but I dont think that applies to every one. I hit a wall after a 6 cycle. My bench just stopped. I switched programs and it started moving again. I would suggest trying a different program for a while. Maybe your body is just tired of the same thing all the time.
Friday, April 20, 2012 5/3/1 Cycle 10, week 2 Squat Squat 1x5@165 1x5@205 1x5@250 1x5@270 1x5@310 1x6@350 (410) 1x10@150 Notes: Well, I Just think it’s time to reset everything With the exception of the push press. I have 2 more meets this year, one in June and July, After that I think I’m going to back off for the heavy weight for a while. At first I thought I was going to make it through the entire 12 months without resetting but It doesn’t look like that is going to be the case. I’m going to reset at least the deadlift and I might go ahead and reset everything with the exception of the push press, which I’m still going strong in. I plan on sticking with 5/3/1 as I’m doing it now through cycle 12 just as I planned. After that I’m think about doing a modified 5/3/1 which includes a little more bench. But that is still 3 more months away so we’ll see what happens. Sunday, April 22, 2012 5/3/1 Cycle 10, Week 3 – Shoulders Strict press 1x5@75 1x5@95 1x5@115 Push Press 1x5@140 1x3@160 1x8@180 Strict press 4x5@135 Single arm DB Push Press 3x5@70 L/R 3x3@80 L/R 2x1@100 L 1x1@100R Farmers 2x100” w/ turn @ 150# + 3 reps with 400# Car deadlift 2x100” w/Turn @ 190# + 3 reps with 400# Car deadlift Notes: Not a bad day today, I was feeling a bit rung out when I started but I progressed very well. I got through my pressing early and the sun came out so I decided to do some strongman training. We used a different set of handles today, very short and stocky; they required you to take much shorter and choppy steps. Bryan built a car deadlift device we figures the device itself at about 200- lifting pounds and we added a tire which Kicked it up to 400. No one wanted to use their car on it, which is OK with me. I’m not ready for that, yet.
Tuesday, April 24, 2012 5/3/1 cycle 10, week 3 Deadlift Deadlift 1x5@205 1x5@255 1x5@315 1x5@385 1x3@435 1x0@485 Bent rows 3x10@155 DB shrugs 1x10@85s 2x10@90s Notes: I’m not sure if the problem is mental, physical or both but I just feel burned out. The 485 (which is normally my opener) felt like it might as well have been 1000 pounds. I barely got it of the floor. I’m going to complete this cycle and then take some time off from the heavy lifting for a few weeks. I’m not sure what I’m going to do but I’m not doing myself and good this way. I’ve been training fairly aggressively for a while now and to be completely honest with myself, I’m not 25 anymore, At 48 I can’t pound the body like I use to and expect it to recover as quickly as it did in the past. LoL – OK, I guess that is enough wining for now.
Thats a tough road getting older. Im sure you'll figure out what your body needs to continue lifting the way you want. Dead lift happens to be my worst lift out of the 3. I can hold over 6 at the top but pulling it from the floor is impossible. So Ive looked for everything to help me with it. I looked over some of your DL workouts and the one thing I will suggest is that some of your supplementals need to get heavier. I was pulling mid 5's and my good mornings were around 315 for reps and my shrugs were in the 600 range. Your strong man training will definitely give you the edge over me on pulling and I think if you bump some of these supplementals you may see an improvement. The other thing that helped me pull more was speed work. Every couple weeks instead of doing a max effort movement i'd do speed work and it really helped my speed off the floor. Ive heard some of the best dead lifters say that speed is the key in the dead lift. You have to build that speed up. Front Squats really helped as well. Add them in as a supplemental on your DL days. Louie Simmons always say that if your front squat is big, your DL will be too. The 531 is very simple to follow and its has a lot of variation, however the down fall is that it doesnt make you have to think and you get lost in the "routine". Its good to step away and say what do i need to make this lift better. Its usually just focusing on a certain part of the lift rather then the whole lift itself or turning your attention to a movement similar like front squats, deficit deads, or rack pulls. Go back and look at all you logs and see what you've been doing for too long or maybe things you could be doing a bit heavier and things you can through out. This could be very helpful! Its the whole point in having a log. When i pull heavy shrugs, my dl goes down. when i pull calf raises, my dl and squat go down. when i pull good mornings or weighted hypers, they both go down too. I wouldnt have figured that out if i wouldnt have gone back and looked at trends