Instead of catching up on one missed workout the week of Thanksgiving, I got even further behind. The last two weeks have seen only one week’s worth of lifting: 1 session the week of Thanksgiving, 2 sessions this past week.

Next week I’m going to go back to 3 sessions per week. I have been too aggressive in my weight increases and have lost a lot of volume per session as a result, in part due to elbow strain imparted by poor low-bar back squat technique. I really shouldn’t have tried to learn a new lift.

Below I will show my last microcycle results and how I’m going to adjust loading for the coming week:

Day 1

  1. Belted Squat:
    1. 221×2 (last performance)
    2. 205×4,4 (next performance)
  2. Bench Press:
    1. 95×10, 90×7
    2. 93×10,10
  3. Deadlift:
    1. 170×4
    2. 175×8,8

I’m still on the fence about whether I want to make Day 1, which is ostensibly The Squat Day as it is prioritized, a low bar day. My elbow is starting to feel better finally but I’m thinking that being worried about re-injuring it is going to throw me off.

Bench press felt good last session, but my hip and elbow soreness forced me to perform a back-off set. I’m thinking two straight sets at 93 should represent a minor increase in average intensity and hopefully allow me to achieve full volume.

Deadlifts at reps above 3 per set is still a struggle for me, but I’m confident that with reduced squatting intensity I can make progress along all measures over last week. Particularly if I do high-bar squats, my lower back and hips will not be nearly as exhausted.

Day 2

  1. Press:
    1. 95×4,1
    2. 96×4,4
  2. Squat:
    1. 185×7,7
    2. 190×7,7
  3. Seated Cable Row
    1. 130×10,120×10
    2. 125×10,10

The Press last time was again mostly held back by my elbow. The weight went up unevenly and slowly, and I probably did too much grinding getting it up there. But I still think I would have achieved full volume were it not for that, so I’m making a small increase in intensity and will go for full volume.

Squats were high bar and will be again, this was done to preserve elbow. I still felt it though, and the end of the volume left that arm rather “dead,” making unloading the bar very arduous.

I’m averaging intensities and maintaining volume on the Rows simply for lack of micro-loading options, so I’m simply not increasing. Hopefully it will be easier: RPE for each set were 9 and 8 respectively. I’m hoping for RPE 7 and 8 respectively this time around.

Day 3

  1. Deadlift:
    1. 285×1
    2. 250×4,4
  2. Bench:
    1. 106×5
    2. 96×8,8
  3. Leg Press
    1. 135×10
    2. 130×10,10

I’m hoping the massive reduction in deadlift intensity to achieve volume will also make unloading the bar less of a fucking task. Almost every workout I’ve had to deadlift in so far makes me wish I had a home gym and could just leave the shit on the floor and go nap, lol.

I didn’t even manage reps on the single set of bench I did last week, so I’m going to regress the intensity for that reason. I don’t feel like I would have gotten all 10 even with a cooperative elbow. Maybe 7 or 8.

I’m not sure if I’m going to keep Leg Press in this slot but honestly I just like having less plate-loading to do after the other two lifts. If I feel up to trying a barbell squat again in this slot I’ll test it out, but having no spinal demand on my quad volume after deadlifting is just nice. I was pretty sweaty and unhappy in my last leg press session so I’m going to track the weight back slightly, as seems to be the theme for this day in particular.

tl;dr- Dropping weight on lifts so I can get the volume I want out of them. Frequency is also coming back up, so something’s gotta give if I’m going to recover. If it’s not enough stress I’ll make up for it the following week, no harm done.