375 lb Bench Press PR, 225 OHP, Leg Drive, Injury Update, Phase 8 and Stuff You Should Read

March 17, 2013 — Leave a comment

Well this has been a somewhat productive week:

Bench Press PRs: 375x1 and 320x5

I missed this weight last week, probably because I did not recover from the volume day workout.

I got it this week however, I think in part because I "deloaded" on Monday (normally I would have done 302.5 lb x 5x5, but only did 230 lb x 3x5). This made me feel nice and fresh for Friday.

My back cramped half way up, and this nearly made me lose control of the bar. Managed to lock it out though.

Also, I hit a 320 lb 5 rep max (previously it was 315 lb)

Originally I was planning on doing a deload as well (something like 280 lb for 3x3), but I felt good that day so I went for it. Also, Craig Hirota hit a bench press PR as well, and that got me fired up to get one or two of my own!

Even though I had planned for a deload, sometimes you gotta do what you feel is right vs doing what you planned.

I'm going to cut down on the number of sets on Monday (volume day) from 5 sets to 3 sets. I'm finding 5x5 with progressively heavier weights (I'm up to 300x5x5 now) is more difficult to recover from. I'm hoping that dropping the number of sets will still allow me to continually progress in the bench press, and not be too sore/un-recovered for overhead presses and intensity day bench presses.

Injury Update

The pain is almost gone.

It only hurts when I sneeze, and I can barely feel any sensation when I squat. In fact, I can now explode a little bit harder out of the hole.

I'll continue squatting and adding weight every workout for this upcoming week (low bar squat: 3x5, high bar squat 3x5, adding 5 lb per session).

Overhead Presses

I am chasing 225 lb x 5 reps. My best is 4 reps and my 5RM is 220 lb.

My plan is to get 5 sets of 3 first (15 total reps), and then try for a 5 rep max at 225.

This week I got 12 total reps within 5 sets:

Not a bad week despite recovering from an injury!

Anyway, check out these blog posts I wrote this past week:

  1. How I Use Leg Drive During The Bench Press
  2. MuscleTech Phase 8 Protein Powder Review

Stuff You Should Read

You should check out these blog posts from around the web too:

  1. Does B.S. Hold True for Exercise Science? By Ryan Williams
  2. Arching vs Bracing by Mike Robertson

John Phung

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Ever since I started taking strength training seriously, I was bitten by the Iron Bug. Then it burrowed under my skin and laid eggs in my heart. Now those eggs are hatching and I... the feeling is indescribable.

Quick Stats
Height: 5'4" on non-squat days
Weight: 200 lb 210 lb ~220 lb (FOREVER BULK BRAH)


  • Texas Method: March 4, 2011 - April 28, 2013
  • Smolov Jr for Bench Press: June 4 - 22, 2012
  • Starting Strength: Nov 29, 2010 - March 4, 2011