Press Bro Diaries

Mirek

Level 7 Valued Member
A new bi-monthly issue of Press Bro Diaries is on the shelves!

First and foremost, happy new year to everyone on here.

It's almost two months since my last log but I am happy to tell you that i never stopped training. Tomorrow is the last day of my self-brewed pressing program, soviet style. Last ten reps per arm, to be exact. I am quite looking forward to the results of the tests, which will come during next week.
 

Mirek

Level 7 Valued Member
OK, here we go half a year later. Looks like a I was not really that consistent with my logging in here.

But first things first (and StrongFirst, of course). I promised the results of my homebrew-soviet bastard press programme.
For more details see the previous page of this log. After those 12 weeks following happened:

Left hand press w/ 32kg bell went from 8 to 14 reps. Right hand from 8 to 15 reps.

Left hand press w/ 40kg bell went from 3 to 5, Right hand from 3 to 6 reps.

Overall not bad I'd say.

After that, I did not do much of anything for about three months, but since the beginning of spring
I go pretty regularly (at least 3 times/week) in woods with the small one and we lift stones and/or logs there.
Pretty funny. And keeps me relatively strong too; i can still bottom up-press 32 kg bell for reps.

Nevertheless I thought I can still progress with my bells that sit somewhat mournfully in corner of my living room.
I want to work up to 10(sets)x5(reps) with 32 kg bell and then switch to 40 kg bell. Progression will be along G. Neupert's lines.
 

Mirek

Level 7 Valued Member
If not stated otherwise, all what follows are one arm clean and presses with one hand-switch without putting bell down.
This means that all numbers are per arm.

1.6.2020
c&p 10x1

3.6.2020
c&p 5x2
 

Antti

Level 9 Valued Member
OK, here we go half a year later. Looks like a I was not really that consistent with my logging in here.

But first things first (and StrongFirst, of course). I promised the results of my homebrew-soviet bastard press programme.
For more details see the previous page of this log. After those 12 weeks following happened:

Left hand press w/ 32kg bell went from 8 to 14 reps. Right hand from 8 to 15 reps.

Left hand press w/ 40kg bell went from 3 to 5, Right hand from 3 to 6 reps.

Overall not bad I'd say.

After that, I did not do much of anything for about three months, but since the beginning of spring
I go pretty regularly (at least 3 times/week) in woods with the small one and we lift stones and/or logs there.
Pretty funny. And keeps me relatively strong too; i can still bottom up-press 32 kg bell for reps.

Nevertheless I thought I can still progress with my bells that sit somewhat mournfully in corner of my living room.
I want to work up to 10(sets)x5(reps) with 32 kg bell and then switch to 40 kg bell. Progression will be along G. Neupert's lines.
That is good progress.

Looking at your numbers before the program it seems you had more absolute strength than strength endurance. Like one would generally expect that 8 reps at 80%, 32/40, would net one a single rep with 100%. You had three. Now, after the program, it seems like this difference has equalled out a lot. And you made significant gains in both.
 

Mirek

Level 7 Valued Member
That is good progress.

Looking at your numbers before the program it seems you had more absolute strength than strength endurance. Like one would generally expect that 8 reps at 80%, 32/40, would net one a single rep with 100%. You had three. Now, after the program, it seems like this difference has equalled out a lot. And you made significant gains in both.
I have always been the one for whom 1RM estimates from reps with lower weights had not work.
My 1RM is generally always higher than the number predicted from 5RM or 8RM reps. But
that is likely dependent on how one trains. This is not an exact science anyway, this is just
fuuuuuuuuun!
 

Mirek

Level 7 Valued Member
4.6.2020
No scheduled presses today so Ithought I would squat. Yesterday, i accidentally did a couple of squats
with a log on my shoulder and it reminded me the utter lack of any squating in my training for already
quite a long time.

So just some easy GSQ w/ 32 kg, 6x5
 

Antti

Level 9 Valued Member
4.6.2020
No scheduled presses today so Ithought I would squat. Yesterday, i accidentally did a couple of squats
with a log on my shoulder and it reminded me the utter lack of any squating in my training for already
quite a long time.

So just some easy GSQ w/ 32 kg, 6x5
When I trained mostly with kettlebells I wasn't a fan of squats either. Or at least as much as these days.

Sure, I did some. Maybe mostly something like sets of ten with 2*24. My memory is hazy, it's been a while.

Doing enough reps it got hard. But it wasn't hard in a fun way. Presses were hard. Presses were fun.

With a barbell, the squats are fun. It doesn't really matter where the bar is, in the crooks of my arms or on my back, so I would dismiss notions such as core activation or such.

I would think it's a question of load. The kettlebells were hard and fun because the load was good for the pressing. For the squats, they never loaded the right spots enough.

Do you still have and use your sandbag or did you have to give it up and you haven't got another one? That could be a better tool for the squats than the kettlebells.
 

Sauli

Level 8 Valued Member
When I trained mostly with kettlebells I wasn't a fan of squats either. Or at least as much as these days.

Sure, I did some. Maybe mostly something like sets of ten with 2*24. My memory is hazy, it's been a while.

Doing enough reps it got hard. But it wasn't hard in a fun way. Presses were hard. Presses were fun.

With a barbell, the squats are fun. It doesn't really matter where the bar is, in the crooks of my arms or on my back, so I would dismiss notions such as core activation or such.

I would think it's a question of load. The kettlebells were hard and fun because the load was good for the pressing. For the squats, they never loaded the right spots enough.

Do you still have and use your sandbag or did you have to give it up and you haven't got another one? That could be a better tool for the squats than the kettlebells.
I think goblet squat is great for mobility and naturally for conditioning. Double fsq is basically good strength exercise, but upperbody limits weights that can be used. For leg strength there is no better squat than back squat... Front squat and zercher squats has similar limitations than dbl kb fsq... They all develop strength, but for real leg strength back squat is king.
 

Mirek

Level 7 Valued Member
That program looks pretty much plan strong plan.. perhaps I try it with a+a swings after my current program.
It should be based around the same principles as plan strong, as far as i recall, just with a big touch of amateurism.
 

Mirek

Level 7 Valued Member
When I trained mostly with kettlebells I wasn't a fan of squats either. Or at least as much as these days.

Sure, I did some. Maybe mostly something like sets of ten with 2*24. My memory is hazy, it's been a while.

Doing enough reps it got hard. But it wasn't hard in a fun way. Presses were hard. Presses were fun.

With a barbell, the squats are fun. It doesn't really matter where the bar is, in the crooks of my arms or on my back, so I would dismiss notions such as core activation or such.

I would think it's a question of load. The kettlebells were hard and fun because the load was good for the pressing. For the squats, they never loaded the right spots enough.

Do you still have and use your sandbag or did you have to give it up and you haven't got another one? That could be a better tool for the squats than the kettlebells.
Presses were/are fun - a big imprimatur from Press Bro!

As for the loading, I do not know. Isn't the loading of double KB front squats pretty similar to the barbell Zercher squat?
I did Zercher probably less than five times in my life with barbell so I am not sure. What would you say?

Sandbag is gone, sadly, but when I did the sandbag squats with the bag on one of my shoulders, well, even dsfq felt easier afterwards.

And with kettlebells, something like that is also possible. Russian (read painfull) way:

 

Antti

Level 9 Valued Member
I think goblet squat is great for mobility and naturally for conditioning. Double fsq is basically good strength exercise, but upperbody limits weights that can be used. For leg strength there is no better squat than back squat... Front squat and zercher squats has similar limitations than dbl kb fsq... They all develop strength, but for real leg strength back squat is king.
Presses were/are fun - a big imprimatur from Press Bro!

As for the loading, I do not know. Isn't the loading of double KB front squats pretty similar to the barbell Zercher squat?
I did Zercher probably less than five times in my life with barbell so I am not sure. What would you say?

Sandbag is gone, sadly, but when I did the sandbag squats with the bag on one of my shoulders, well, even dsfq felt easier afterwards.

And with kettlebells, something like that is also possible. Russian (read painfull) way:

I agree, the goblet squat is good for mobility. Though I think the barbell trumps it because the load is great for passive mobility.

I think the double front squat is very much worse than the zercher. If I compare my 1rms my back squat was 250 when my zercher was 210, or something along those lines. The zercher also typically has a slightly larger range of motion than the back squat. So in a sense it doesn't have to be loaded as heavy to get the same training effect. The double front squat is limited by all the wrong places in my experience. I don't know what actually limits my zercher squat, what gives up first. I've never failed a rep with it and I can't remember what felt the worst when I've gone near my limits. I've never done the KB squat with any kind of heavy weights. I would imagine that I would be able to lift considerably less with kettelebells than with the zecher.

Also, the zercher feels awesome. It is maybe the most primal feel strong exercise there is, and it's always a pleasure to do. On the other hand, it's bloody awful, the way it demands the greatest tension and the bar makes it impossible to breath and such. Some even complain about arm pain, but I don't get it. None of that happens with the double KB front squat. I don't mean to be overly negative but the double front squat is, well, annoying. The zercher is pure awesome.

To be clear to me it's very important how much I enjoy the exercise. Any kind of squat, at least with a moderate load, is likely enough for the well-being of the layman. For sports and specific prowess the needs are more specific, some need more, some less. I demand the exercise to be enjoyable for myself. I just like the feel of different exercises more. I suppose I like load in general.

Having the kettlebells on the back should be better, yes.
 

Sauli

Level 8 Valued Member
Having the kettlebells on the back should be better, yes.
Well. It's easier, but proper dbl front squats develop very well that so called "anaconda strength".. basically "core" when you keep those bells close and in-front of you... If I want to cheat and make them easier I keep them basically on my shoulders then those are basically backsquats with light weights.. but strict form and short pause in the bottom works very well. Think about wall sit.. :D
 

Mirek

Level 7 Valued Member
8.6.2020
c&p/arm w/32 6x2
gsq w/32 3x5

On a weekend I was out for some stones again. I found one that
I was hardly able to lift to hip level. Next stop: cleaning it, eventhough
it will be rather continental.
 
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