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Training Log (Public) Surovetsky (Push/Pull)

Congratulations on the success on the program! It went by quickly. Looks like you got good results.
Congratulations on the success on the program! It went by quickly. Looks like you got good results.

Thanks! Still have the lighter workouts of the week and then a deload of some sort that I haven't yet scripted. Hoping a bit of supercompensation occurs during this time. Also, today I definitely felt the fatigue of yesterday's workout. It has been a hard program but I'm definitely happy I stuck with it through to the end. I am thinking I'll do the 5x5x5 mind over muscle program from BB next to see where my strength on the Bench/Deadlift are at and to realize the weight I've gained into the powerlifts I wish to excel at. Also, my knee is feeling a lot better so hopefully I'll be able to train squats again in the not to distant future!
Nice work.

It sounds like you were happy with the snatch grip DL for this program. If you do this or a similar program again, would you stick with the snatch grip over conventional?
Nice work.

It sounds like you were happy with the snatch grip DL for this program. If you do this or a similar program again, would you stick with the snatch grip over conventional?

Short answer, it depends. For a minimalist hypertrophy program utilizing only two lifts, a press and a pull, I want both lifts to offer the biggest bang for the buck. I believe the Snatch Grip Deadlift offers this over the conventional. There's a larger ROM, more musculature involved, and I'm not going to get "selfish" with the load. Also, it hits the back more then any other DL with the exception of rack pulls. However, you won't get the same leg work with rack pulls. If I am doing a press in a two lift program, I want to make sure my pull work will hit the upper back hard! The snatch grip does that and more. But for individual weaknesses for each person, there are many options. Pavel recommends the Sumo or Conventional as those two are the most well known, but specialized variety could work for certain individuals.

Quad specializing- BTB Deadlift/Trap Bar (if you have access)
Glutes/Quads - Jefferson Deadlift
Hamstrings/Back- Conventional or Rack Pull
All around hip- Sumo DL
Mostest Muscle- Snatch Grip DL
Grip/Lat/Obliques- Suitcase DL
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Day 3 Week 6

Light Day

Floor Press- 100 x 5 (5 sets)
Total Tonnage- 2,500 lbs.

Snatch Grip Dl - 115 x 5 (5 sets)
Total Tonnage- 2,875 lbs.

Almost forgot to post this light workout because it feels like I'm done and I'm planning my next phase of training. Same deal. Focus on technique and max tension. My lord, if anyone witnessed me performing these reps they'd think it was a max effort! Damn, that guy's really straining, how much is he pressing? 100 lbs. ROFLTime to dial in those tension techniques though.
Interesting breakdown on the lift variations. It does feel like 90% of my gains are in my hamstrings after hitting conventional DLs hard. Might have to give the snatch grip a try in a future cycle.
Interesting breakdown on the lift variations. It does feel like 90% of my gains are in my hamstrings after hitting conventional DLs hard. Might have to give the snatch grip a try in a future cycle.

I'd definitely recommend them! They will surely help your conventional deadlift strength. They do require a bit more hip, ankle mobility and the grip gets harder as weight climbs. I usually recommend someone new to them to start them off a couple blocks. Then, over time lower the blocks to a full range of motion.
Day 5 Week 6- (Final Day of DeLorme)

Floor Press-100 x5, 150 x 5 (5 series)
Total Tonnage- 6,250 lbs.

Snatch Grip DL- 115 x 5, 170 x 5 (5 series)
Total Tonnage- 7,125 lbs.

Last day of DeLorme and honestly I'm glad! Not in a bad way! The program was superb but draining and very demanding of discipline. Doin g the same two lifts everyday is exhausting especially with all the plate changes! Today was still hard, after all the fatigue buildup but I did it! And I am so glad I stuck with it. One of my issues in the past was trying to modify and change things in a program to early. For this one, it followed it to a T! And got great results!
DeLorme Breakdown

Starting weights:

Floor Press - 185 lbs (5 series)
Snatch Grip DL- 185 lbs (5 series)

Ending weights-

Floor Press - 200 lbs. (5 series)
Snatch grip DL - 235 lbs. (5 series)

Weekly Tonnage breakdown

Week 1
FP: 18, 500 lbs
SGDL: 18,500 lbs.

Week 2
FP: 15,300 lbs
SGDL: 19,250 lbs.

Week 3:
FP: 19,125 lbs
SGDL: 20,750 lbs.

Week 4:
FP: 15,900 lbs.
SGDL: 21, 875 lbs.

Week 5:
FP: 19,875 lbs.
SGDL: 22,625 lbs.

Week 6:
FP: 20,000 lbs.
SGDL: 23,000 lbs.

My starting weight:
170.4 lbs.

Ending Weight: Weighed Today but will be updated Monday
176.6 lbs.

Nice even numbers in the tonnage to end on!
So now that I've finished the DeLorme, it's time to rest a few days and move on. However, for the 5 people who follow this blog ROFL, I will change the name soon. My next step is to start a cycle of the bear, as I'd planned, this time, using the competition lifts. This will allow me to clock in some serious volume on the actual lifts, while still bulking a bit. However, instead of doing the B.O. sets in the same manner as the heavy set, I will perform them with my weaker grip/stance. MY strongest grip for Bench/Deadlift are wide grip and sumo. Therefore I will do the back off sets with a close grip and conventional deadlift. I will utilize Pavel's suggested frequency of Bench 2x a week and DL 1x a week. I will commence this one on Monday. Since the Bear starts light, I don't rally feel I need a deload as the last two workouts of the DeLorme are always like a deload. Pavel never mentioned one in BB.
I'm excited to start the Bear protocol on Monday and My starting weights will be.

Bench press-175 lbs
Sumo Deadlift- 275 lbs

Starting light to build momentum. I will add 5 lbs per workout to the main bench set and 20 lbs to the Deadlift a week. My deadlift is a bit stronger (relatively speaking) then my bench, but also needs grooving. This is a pretty light weight to start with. Until! (y)
Do you have any goals for the number of back off sets or are you going to swing it day by day by feel? For how long are you planning on doing the Bear?
Do you have any goals for the number of back off sets or are you going to swing it day by day by feel? For how long are you planning on doing the Bear?

I plan on utilizing auto-regulation for the back off sets, terminating sets when technique falters and for two 4 week cycles for a total of 8 weeks.
Now that DeLorme is finished and I'm planning on doing The Bear, starting tomorrow, for the next couple of months, I've been plotting out my training approach for next year. The holidays are always a busy time for training, so I may carry on the bear throughout these next 3 months, as it only requires a 3 day a week commitment, however after that is what I've been planning. My goal of training since starting DeLorme and continuing on has been to lift a combined weight of 900 in the deadlift and bench press. This has not changed. But how will I go about it? I've pondered for at least a dozen moons and the answer I've come up with is.....Westside.
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Starting next year, I will embark on a long, lost journey into the training principality of Westside Conjugate Method. Not so long ago I had it pretty much embedded in my mind that Westside could not possibly work for a raw and drug free lifter. What changed my mind? I started doing research and found what I was looking for in Westside. I've structured myself a plan coming next year on how to succeed whilst performing Westside and the training principles offer a myriad of benefits such as:

-Regular max efforts
-Specific Weak Point Training
-A new and novel training stimulus

For a while now, my training has been very opposite of this. I've done very minimalist work, often with medium intensity, on a handful of lifts. I now feel a hunger for change! My competition lifts have long been practiced to a T and it's grown stale. Results have been good, but it's time for a change. I believe it is time for me to try Westside once and for all, and I believe I can make it work, however, a few modifications are in order...
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It is commonly known that Westside is a system built for geared lifters, gear meaning two things. Suits/benches and also drugs. Lift suits help lifters out of the bottom, so a lot of the work at westside is done to assist the lockout portions of lifts. How about for a raw program, we just inverse this and choose max effort lifts that train the bottom of a lift? The DE day is still speed day, but without bands or chains, and at a higher percentage of the max, around 70-80%. This equates to volume and sufficient load, still efficient enough to get strong with and train speed and build muscle.

As for recovery, why not make the max effort days more of a tension day then an absolute do or die all out grind? This is similar to how Burley Hawk uses it and he trains raw and boasts impressive numbers. He says he'd work up to 85% and do a 3 RM. Conservative, and leaving something in the tank. Alas, assistance volume can also be cut down. As for that, Westside doesn't train key muscle groups in both the Bench and Deadlift directly, as the shirt and suits tend to negate the need. The muscles I'm referring to are the chest and quads. I absolutely believe, for me at least, these muscles are key players in both lifts. Thus Dumbbell presses and squat or lunge assistance exercises will be included.

As for the max effort, it is hard to improve a lift by doing it only once a month, with only a few lifts. Thus I will incorporate 2-3 back off sets for volume and to "engrain" proper form and activation patterns. They will be rotated weekly, and will be key lifts for the raw lifter, i.e. Incline Press, Deficit Deadlifts as opposed to a 4 Board press.
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Variety is key in Westside. How does one improve the main lift by rotating lifts frequently? How will you even get stronger by rotating so often? Believe me I've pondered these questions and the answer is simple. Because that day is designated to teach you to strain! By doing so regularly, you learn to strain on a push and pull. A different push and pull each week, but that's the point. You can only strain with near max weights on the same lift for so long. Maybe a while for a beginner, but for an advanced lifter? 3 weeks tops....maybe even just 1. So main lifts are rotated, still a press and lower body strain, but a different one. Same, but different. As for what kind of lifts? Pavel, in PTTP Pro, has an entire section dedicated to "Specialized Variety". Training these lifts will work unused motor units, strengthen neglected muscles and force you to work at a leverage disadvantage. Maneuvers such as changing grip, elevated platform, changing angles, footwear, gear or bars are all common examples. These lifts must be close to the competition lift but are usually harder. It is off this premise, I will draw my ME lifts, to improve my bench press and Sumo DL while still training their technique with moderate volume/intensity on DE day.
Since my weaknesses are near the bottom, like most raw guys, my ME moves will be based off of that weak point.

ME Upper- I use a wide grip with a good arch and leg drive. This makes the lift toughest at the bottom. Since, I have strong leg drive, I tend to stall at about halfway or when the elbows are parallel to the floor. Training at and/or below this point will be my bread and butter. Assistance work will also aim to assist this area, namely Chest/shoulders/back with some arm work as the cherry on top. Here are some ME lifts I plan on using.

Incline Press
Paused Close Grip Bench (3 second pause)
Decline Bench or Bridge Press (in PTTP Pro)
Floor Press
Dead Bench (1 inch above chest)
Feet up Pause Bench (Like a full ROM floor press on Bench)

As you'll see, all full ROM (mostly aside floor press, which puts me right at sticking point and Dead Bench, which does not use a thrust off torso to start lift)
I will work up to a 3RM on each Phase 1, 2RM on Phase 2 and 1RM on Phase 3. Each phase is a 4 week cycle, rotating 3 of the above each week for 3 weeks. Week 4 is deload. Then the next phase starts. This will allow me to track progress throughout the weeks on each lift. Thus I can calculate, using RM calculator, how much each lift has progressed. The same scheme will be used for Lower Body.
ME Lower

I use a close/sumo stance. I've never missed a rep that I broke from the floor. My back tends to round (upper back) and hips shoot up when it's real heavy. My upper back and legs need to be strengthened to help me maintain position, and squeeze that weight up. Thus, to give a nod to variety and back health, 2 of 3 ME days will be a DL variation and the middle one, to separate the 2, will be a squat variation.

ME Lower lifts
Jefferson Deadlift
Block Pull (Sumo or Conventional)
Elevated DL (Sumo or Conventional)
Box Squat
Zercher Squat

A few rules.
1) Do 1 squat and one deadlift per workout. So if your ME move is a DL, the supplemental lift (a lift heavy but not maximal to aid the main lift) must be a squat.
2)On DE Day, Squats will not be done for speed, but for volume and moderate intensity. This is how Konstantin Konstantinanovs trains. A 5 x 5 of squats, then dynamic deadlifts. This method allows a "transfer of skill" by training the muscles of the lift first, then the lift. Plus, who wants to squat heavy after deadlifts.
3)No two stances in a week for deadlift ME must be repeated in a phase. So if week 1 is rack pulls in conventional stance and you want to use block pulls in week 3, use a sumo stance for the block pulls.

Squatting can be done strong twice a week, if the squats are different and intensity is checked. The supplemental lift on ME day will almost always be quad dominant and not maximal. The key is not to become a front squat champion, but to front squat to raise your DL and squat. Vary stances on this and implements too. Front squat off box, from rack, wide stance, narrow stance, etc.
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DE Days

These days, I will use no bands or chains and the % of max is higher because of this. For benches, pauses will be used...something westside doesn't do. Speed is important because it may help increase force via acceleration. I also believe lifting as fast as possible recruits more high threshold motor units, something Chad Waterbury has preached for years. Alas, one day is dedicated to grinding. Speed work lowers the intensity and allows you to get volume in. For a raw lifter, bottom end strength is key and becoming faster can help. Just drop the bands and chains if the bottom is weak. Jim Wendler advocates doing DE in the 70-80 % range. I will take from westside the discipline of using 3 different close grips in the DE, close grip increases the ROM and is harder. Here's the progression I'll use for bench

Week 1: 8 x 3 @ 65 % (30-60 seconds rest between sets)
Week 2: 7 x 3 @ 70 %
Week 3: 6 x 3 @ 75 %

One set is dropped per week, as intensity climbs, then we add 5 lbs to each set the next phase. This allows some solid volume at a decent percentage. Since you add weight each week and phase. The cycle starts at a moderate to low percentage and add only 5 lbs per phase. After a 3 phase cycle, the DE weights get cycled as well according to your new max.

For Deadlift DE, singles are used at the same percentages.

Week 1: 10 x 1 @ 65%
Week 2: 9 x 1 @ 70 %
Week 3: 8 x 1 @ 75 %

This volume and intensity are not overwhelming The Surovetsky cycle demands 5 x 5 @ 75 %!!!! But that's a volume day, and if we treaded too high in intensity, it would no longer classify as a speed day. However, the intensity is still high enough to elicit a training response, and low enough to allow speed. Power is not as important as force in powerlifting, so speed work has to have carryover to a heavy weight and since we don't have the benefit of gear, it should be a tad heavier with no accommodating resistance.
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