Advice needed: Early lifting plateau?

2»

Replies

  • SonyaCele
    SonyaCele Posts: 2,842 Member
    your squat was the best form of the lifts you posted. Bench: you need to lock in your lats in WAY more. You locked them in for your set up, but as soon as you unracked, you let them go. Keep them locked , even if you have to reset after you unrack. DL, well you need to lock everything in , drop your butt lower when you start the lift, you are almost doing stiff leg. You also need to lock in your lats for your DL. Your feet seem kinda wide for conventional. You are loose in all your lifts. Once you tighten up , your numbers will jump. Its hard to see everything going on in the videos. But thats what i got out of them at first glance.
  • lev_k
    lev_k Posts: 20 Member
    edited April 2018
    SonyaCele wrote: »
    your squat was the best form of the lifts you posted. Bench: you need to lock in your lats in WAY more. You locked them in for your set up, but as soon as you unracked, you let them go. Keep them locked , even if you have to reset after you unrack. DL, well you need to lock everything in , drop your butt lower when you start the lift, you are almost doing stiff leg. You also need to lock in your lats for your DL. Your feet seem kinda wide for conventional. You are loose in all your lifts. Once you tighten up , your numbers will jump. Its hard to see everything going on in the videos. But thats what i got out of them at first glance.

    Yeah, I've been trying to focus on keeping a tighter core and back for all my lifts.

    For Deadlifts, I'm actually following the Starting Strength guidelines, where if I understand correctly, you shouldn't start with a squat.

    ... What I'm thinking to do now is to de-load again, and put a lot more emphasis on core stability, and maybe I'll start doing 5x5 instead of 3x5, just to get more time under that bar with a lower weight...

    P.S. Is there any way to change the thread title? I think "Advice needed: Early lifting plateau + Form Check" might be more appropriate
  • PennyP312
    PennyP312 Posts: 161 Member
    Please google ‘Alan Thrall deadlift’. He has an awesome 5 step video that you have to watch. I think it’ll help your deadlift form tremendously
  • Chieflrg
    Chieflrg Posts: 9,081 Member
    lev_k wrote: »
    OK, here are some videos. Sorry about some of the angles, I know they aren't that great, I'm going to see if I can take some better videos.

    Squats:



    OHP1:



    OHP2:



    Bench:



    Deadlifts:



    At this point, it seems like all my lifts are stalling, and I'm not quite sure why.
    lev_k wrote: »

    Some good ideas here.

    Wow, I've seen lotsa Untamed Strength vids, can't believe I missed this one, thanks.
    How consistent are you with your workouts?
    How long is your rest time between sets?

    3 times per week, and resting between 2 to 3 minutes between work sets.
    Chieflrg wrote: »
    Agreed the squat isn't s plateau'd, and does not need accessory lifts at this stage. There is absolutely no way accessories will be beneficial over practicing the actual lifts to a novice.

    OP I'd be highly surprised if your flexibilty has anything to do with your form. I can get 99% of people squatting with proper form in less than 10 minutes.

    If you like send me a vid or post one here of your squats we can get you moving.

    Yeah, I've been meaning to create a video to post on these boards for form checking, I think I'll do it during my next session. Guess this would make it easier to give advice :smile:

    Thanks.

    When you’re doing hard “sets across” (3 sets x 5 reps) complete rest between sets will eventually be necessary. Complete rest can take anywhere from 5-8 minutes (or more in some cases). So try resting longer on your bench and overhead press.

    Hmm, I wouldn't expect resting time to be that much of an issue at this stage and weight, I'll try to take longer rests.

    Like you mentioned, better vid will tell a lot more.

    From what I can see...

    Squats: Not bad at all. Drop the bar down a inch or so. This will help for better stability/balance & hip drive. Looks like your slightly pausing in the hole, I would concentrate on taking advantage of the stretch reflex of your hamstrings. Please shoot a vid directly from the side closer to knee level and one from directly behind. This is the lift you need the least amount of adjustments and could I would hazard the weight on the bar is too light.

    OHP: Tighten every muscle up from ground up. Quads, glutes, abs, etc. First movement shift hips forward with vending knees to clear head from bar. At top you would benefit from full ROM and really extend the bar over head high holding with traps squeezed together.

    Bench: The vid doesn't show exactly everything. A wider vid would. I hazard you are very loose with no leg drive. Need more attention to the set up and getting tight. When you are benching your body should be so rigid, that if someone bumped you...you wouldn't move. Nothing would, legs, knees, arms.

    Deadlift: Please shoot vid directly from side. Loose back/lats. Take time with setup. Make sure bar is over midfoot. You might benefit from pulling your hips down with the bar a few inches until your hamstrings are fully engaged and stretched. A better vid will show a lot more.

    I wouldn't advice a deload right now. The bar speed seems fine it's just your form needs adjustments. The adjustments alone will move the weight up in a progressive fashion.
  • ijsantos2005
    ijsantos2005 Posts: 306 Member
    lev_k wrote: »
    lev_k wrote: »
    OK, here are some videos. Sorry about some of the angles, I know they aren't that great, I'm going to see if I can take some better videos.

    Squats:



    OHP1:



    OHP2:



    Bench:



    Deadlifts:



    At this point, it seems like all my lifts are stalling, and I'm not quite sure why.
    lev_k wrote: »

    Some good ideas here.

    Wow, I've seen lotsa Untamed Strength vids, can't believe I missed this one, thanks.
    How consistent are you with your workouts?
    How long is your rest time between sets?

    3 times per week, and resting between 2 to 3 minutes between work sets.
    Chieflrg wrote: »
    Agreed the squat isn't s plateau'd, and does not need accessory lifts at this stage. There is absolutely no way accessories will be beneficial over practicing the actual lifts to a novice.

    OP I'd be highly surprised if your flexibilty has anything to do with your form. I can get 99% of people squatting with proper form in less than 10 minutes.

    If you like send me a vid or post one here of your squats we can get you moving.

    Yeah, I've been meaning to create a video to post on these boards for form checking, I think I'll do it during my next session. Guess this would make it easier to give advice :smile:

    Thanks.

    When you’re doing hard “sets across” (3 sets x 5 reps) complete rest between sets will eventually be necessary. Complete rest can take anywhere from 5-8 minutes (or more in some cases). So try resting longer on your bench and overhead press.

    Hmm, I wouldn't expect resting time to be that much of an issue at this stage and weight, I'll try to take longer rests.

    From what I saw your form looks pretty solid in my opinion, it’s at least 90% good. Ya, you could clean up and tweak your form a little here and there but it’s nothing that would limit you in your progress at this stage. Maybe someone else has a different opinion?

    Again, try increasing your rest time and see if that helps (I believe it will).

    Also: give us a break down of the current program you’re following. Make it as detailed as possible.

    Okay, to be completely honest, it's not exactly 1 specific program that I'm following 100%. But basically it's a Starting Strength/Stronglifts program with very minor tweaks. Instead of doing Pendlay rows (due to some discomfort in the shoulders), I've opted for T-bar rows, the closest alternative I could find. I also don't specifically try to do Low bar squats like as per Starting Strength instruction, but I do heavily emphasise and actively try to do the hip drive movement.

    Here's what I actually do:

    Workout A (In the following order):
    (1) OHP - 1x5 warm-up (45lbs), followed by 3x5 working sets (95lbs)
    (2) Deadlifts - 1x5 warm-up (135lbs), followed by 1x5 working sets (210lbs)
    (3) Squats - warm-up (no weight, just squat and hold for 30 sec at the bottom 3-5 times), followed by 3x5 working sets (95lbs for now, but can do much more)

    Workout B (In the following order):
    (1) Bench - 1x5 warm-up (65lbs), followed by 2x5 working sets (130lbs)
    (2) T-bar Rows - no warm-up (for now), only 3x5 working sets of bar+55lbs
    (3) Squats - warm-up (no weight, just squat and hold for 30 sec at the bottom 3-5 times), followed by 3x5 working sets (95lbs for now, but can do much more)

    I alternate the workouts, and do them every other day, 3 times/week. Resting time between working sets is usually 2-3 minutes, and I don't really rest between exercises.

    I also like to sometimes add some glute exercises (resistance band) before the main workout just to help with squats. I also do a bit of light stretching during rests.

    And... that's about it.

    Why only 2 sets on the bench press? Or is that a typo?

  • Erik8484
    Erik8484 Posts: 460 Member
    edited April 2018
    lev_k wrote: »
    SonyaCele wrote: »
    your squat was the best form of the lifts you posted. Bench: you need to lock in your lats in WAY more. You locked them in for your set up, but as soon as you unracked, you let them go. Keep them locked , even if you have to reset after you unrack. DL, well you need to lock everything in , drop your butt lower when you start the lift, you are almost doing stiff leg. You also need to lock in your lats for your DL. Your feet seem kinda wide for conventional. You are loose in all your lifts. Once you tighten up , your numbers will jump. Its hard to see everything going on in the videos. But thats what i got out of them at first glance.

    Yeah, I've been trying to focus on keeping a tighter core and back for all my lifts.

    For Deadlifts, I'm actually following the Starting Strength guidelines, where if I understand correctly, you shouldn't start with a squat.

    ... What I'm thinking to do now is to de-load again, and put a lot more emphasis on core stability, and maybe I'll start doing 5x5 instead of 3x5, just to get more time under that bar with a lower weight...

    P.S. Is there any way to change the thread title? I think "Advice needed: Early lifting plateau + Form Check" might be more appropriate

    The Starting Strength guidelines have you set up with the bar over mid foot, approximately 1 inch in front of your shins, and then require that you push your knees forward until your shins are touching the bar, which will result in your knees being slightly over/past the bar.

    You can see for example at 0:19 in your deadlift video that you're not doing that, as your right thumb is between the bar and your shins. While this might be the camera angle, your shins look approximately vertical. The effect of this is that your hips are too high and your back too horizontal.*

    Solution: Reread the deadlift chapter of Starting Strength: Basic Barbell Training.

    *too high / horizontal relative to where they would be if the Starting Strength guidelines were followed.

    EDIT: you're still well on your way to deadlifting well, just got to tweak tweak tweak!
  • shor0814
    shor0814 Posts: 559 Member
    lev_k wrote: »
    SonyaCele wrote: »
    your squat was the best form of the lifts you posted. Bench: you need to lock in your lats in WAY more. You locked them in for your set up, but as soon as you unracked, you let them go. Keep them locked , even if you have to reset after you unrack. DL, well you need to lock everything in , drop your butt lower when you start the lift, you are almost doing stiff leg. You also need to lock in your lats for your DL. Your feet seem kinda wide for conventional. You are loose in all your lifts. Once you tighten up , your numbers will jump. Its hard to see everything going on in the videos. But thats what i got out of them at first glance.

    Yeah, I've been trying to focus on keeping a tighter core and back for all my lifts.

    For Deadlifts, I'm actually following the Starting Strength guidelines, where if I understand correctly, you shouldn't start with a squat.

    ... What I'm thinking to do now is to de-load again, and put a lot more emphasis on core stability, and maybe I'll start doing 5x5 instead of 3x5, just to get more time under that bar with a lower weight...

    P.S. Is there any way to change the thread title? I think "Advice needed: Early lifting plateau + Form Check" might be more appropriate

    Deadlift isn't following the guidelines, you are starting too close to the bar and not bending the knees far enough. You place the bar at mid-foot and bend yiur knees until the shin touches the bar. That will pull your butt down to the correct point. Also you have
    Yiur right hand right in front of your leg and the other hand on the outside of your leg, you want both outside and equidistant. I think you might want to narrow your stance a bit too.

    From Rippetoe himself:

    You just step up to the bar with a vertical-jump stance width, with toes out and your shins about an inch from the bar, grab it just outside your stance with your knees still straight, then bend your knees forward and out a little bit until your shins touch the bar, squeeze your chest up until your back is flat, take a big breath, and drag the bar up your legs until you're standing up straight.
  • lev_k
    lev_k Posts: 20 Member
    lev_k wrote: »
    lev_k wrote: »
    OK, here are some videos. Sorry about some of the angles, I know they aren't that great, I'm going to see if I can take some better videos.

    Squats:



    OHP1:



    OHP2:



    Bench:



    Deadlifts:



    At this point, it seems like all my lifts are stalling, and I'm not quite sure why.
    lev_k wrote: »

    Some good ideas here.

    Wow, I've seen lotsa Untamed Strength vids, can't believe I missed this one, thanks.
    How consistent are you with your workouts?
    How long is your rest time between sets?

    3 times per week, and resting between 2 to 3 minutes between work sets.
    Chieflrg wrote: »
    Agreed the squat isn't s plateau'd, and does not need accessory lifts at this stage. There is absolutely no way accessories will be beneficial over practicing the actual lifts to a novice.

    OP I'd be highly surprised if your flexibilty has anything to do with your form. I can get 99% of people squatting with proper form in less than 10 minutes.

    If you like send me a vid or post one here of your squats we can get you moving.

    Yeah, I've been meaning to create a video to post on these boards for form checking, I think I'll do it during my next session. Guess this would make it easier to give advice :smile:

    Thanks.

    When you’re doing hard “sets across” (3 sets x 5 reps) complete rest between sets will eventually be necessary. Complete rest can take anywhere from 5-8 minutes (or more in some cases). So try resting longer on your bench and overhead press.

    Hmm, I wouldn't expect resting time to be that much of an issue at this stage and weight, I'll try to take longer rests.

    From what I saw your form looks pretty solid in my opinion, it’s at least 90% good. Ya, you could clean up and tweak your form a little here and there but it’s nothing that would limit you in your progress at this stage. Maybe someone else has a different opinion?

    Again, try increasing your rest time and see if that helps (I believe it will).

    Also: give us a break down of the current program you’re following. Make it as detailed as possible.

    Okay, to be completely honest, it's not exactly 1 specific program that I'm following 100%. But basically it's a Starting Strength/Stronglifts program with very minor tweaks. Instead of doing Pendlay rows (due to some discomfort in the shoulders), I've opted for T-bar rows, the closest alternative I could find. I also don't specifically try to do Low bar squats like as per Starting Strength instruction, but I do heavily emphasise and actively try to do the hip drive movement.

    Here's what I actually do:

    Workout A (In the following order):
    (1) OHP - 1x5 warm-up (45lbs), followed by 3x5 working sets (95lbs)
    (2) Deadlifts - 1x5 warm-up (135lbs), followed by 1x5 working sets (210lbs)
    (3) Squats - warm-up (no weight, just squat and hold for 30 sec at the bottom 3-5 times), followed by 3x5 working sets (95lbs for now, but can do much more)

    Workout B (In the following order):
    (1) Bench - 1x5 warm-up (65lbs), followed by 2x5 working sets (130lbs)
    (2) T-bar Rows - no warm-up (for now), only 3x5 working sets of bar+55lbs
    (3) Squats - warm-up (no weight, just squat and hold for 30 sec at the bottom 3-5 times), followed by 3x5 working sets (95lbs for now, but can do much more)

    I alternate the workouts, and do them every other day, 3 times/week. Resting time between working sets is usually 2-3 minutes, and I don't really rest between exercises.

    I also like to sometimes add some glute exercises (resistance band) before the main workout just to help with squats. I also do a bit of light stretching during rests.

    And... that's about it.

    Why only 2 sets on the bench press? Or is that a typo?

    Yes, that should be 3x5.
  • lev_k
    lev_k Posts: 20 Member
    Chieflrg wrote: »
    lev_k wrote: »
    OK, here are some videos. Sorry about some of the angles, I know they aren't that great, I'm going to see if I can take some better videos.

    Squats:



    OHP1:



    OHP2:



    Bench:



    Deadlifts:



    At this point, it seems like all my lifts are stalling, and I'm not quite sure why.
    lev_k wrote: »

    Some good ideas here.

    Wow, I've seen lotsa Untamed Strength vids, can't believe I missed this one, thanks.
    How consistent are you with your workouts?
    How long is your rest time between sets?

    3 times per week, and resting between 2 to 3 minutes between work sets.
    Chieflrg wrote: »
    Agreed the squat isn't s plateau'd, and does not need accessory lifts at this stage. There is absolutely no way accessories will be beneficial over practicing the actual lifts to a novice.

    OP I'd be highly surprised if your flexibilty has anything to do with your form. I can get 99% of people squatting with proper form in less than 10 minutes.

    If you like send me a vid or post one here of your squats we can get you moving.

    Yeah, I've been meaning to create a video to post on these boards for form checking, I think I'll do it during my next session. Guess this would make it easier to give advice :smile:

    Thanks.

    When you’re doing hard “sets across” (3 sets x 5 reps) complete rest between sets will eventually be necessary. Complete rest can take anywhere from 5-8 minutes (or more in some cases). So try resting longer on your bench and overhead press.

    Hmm, I wouldn't expect resting time to be that much of an issue at this stage and weight, I'll try to take longer rests.

    Like you mentioned, better vid will tell a lot more.

    From what I can see...

    Squats: Not bad at all. Drop the bar down a inch or so. This will help for better stability/balance & hip drive. Looks like your slightly pausing in the hole, I would concentrate on taking advantage of the stretch reflex of your hamstrings. Please shoot a vid directly from the side closer to knee level and one from directly behind. This is the lift you need the least amount of adjustments and could I would hazard the weight on the bar is too light.

    OHP: Tighten every muscle up from ground up. Quads, glutes, abs, etc. First movement shift hips forward with vending knees to clear head from bar. At top you would benefit from full ROM and really extend the bar over head high holding with traps squeezed together.

    Bench: The vid doesn't show exactly everything. A wider vid would. I hazard you are very loose with no leg drive. Need more attention to the set up and getting tight. When you are benching your body should be so rigid, that if someone bumped you...you wouldn't move. Nothing would, legs, knees, arms.

    Deadlift: Please shoot vid directly from side. Loose back/lats. Take time with setup. Make sure bar is over midfoot. You might benefit from pulling your hips down with the bar a few inches until your hamstrings are fully engaged and stretched. A better vid will show a lot more.

    I wouldn't advice a deload right now. The bar speed seems fine it's just your form needs adjustments. The adjustments alone will move the weight up in a progressive fashion.

    Wow, thanks. I'll try to implement these changes over the next couple of weeks, then take a few more (hopefully better) videos.
    Erik8484 wrote: »
    lev_k wrote: »
    SonyaCele wrote: »
    your squat was the best form of the lifts you posted. Bench: you need to lock in your lats in WAY more. You locked them in for your set up, but as soon as you unracked, you let them go. Keep them locked , even if you have to reset after you unrack. DL, well you need to lock everything in , drop your butt lower when you start the lift, you are almost doing stiff leg. You also need to lock in your lats for your DL. Your feet seem kinda wide for conventional. You are loose in all your lifts. Once you tighten up , your numbers will jump. Its hard to see everything going on in the videos. But thats what i got out of them at first glance.

    Yeah, I've been trying to focus on keeping a tighter core and back for all my lifts.

    For Deadlifts, I'm actually following the Starting Strength guidelines, where if I understand correctly, you shouldn't start with a squat.

    ... What I'm thinking to do now is to de-load again, and put a lot more emphasis on core stability, and maybe I'll start doing 5x5 instead of 3x5, just to get more time under that bar with a lower weight...

    P.S. Is there any way to change the thread title? I think "Advice needed: Early lifting plateau + Form Check" might be more appropriate

    The Starting Strength guidelines have you set up with the bar over mid foot, approximately 1 inch in front of your shins, and then require that you push your knees forward until your shins are touching the bar, which will result in your knees being slightly over/past the bar.

    You can see for example at 0:19 in your deadlift video that you're not doing that, as your right thumb is between the bar and your shins. While this might be the camera angle, your shins look approximately vertical. The effect of this is that your hips are too high and your back too horizontal.*

    Solution: Reread the deadlift chapter of Starting Strength: Basic Barbell Training.

    *too high / horizontal relative to where they would be if the Starting Strength guidelines were followed.

    EDIT: you're still well on your way to deadlifting well, just got to tweak tweak tweak!
    shor0814 wrote: »
    lev_k wrote: »
    SonyaCele wrote: »
    your squat was the best form of the lifts you posted. Bench: you need to lock in your lats in WAY more. You locked them in for your set up, but as soon as you unracked, you let them go. Keep them locked , even if you have to reset after you unrack. DL, well you need to lock everything in , drop your butt lower when you start the lift, you are almost doing stiff leg. You also need to lock in your lats for your DL. Your feet seem kinda wide for conventional. You are loose in all your lifts. Once you tighten up , your numbers will jump. Its hard to see everything going on in the videos. But thats what i got out of them at first glance.

    Yeah, I've been trying to focus on keeping a tighter core and back for all my lifts.

    For Deadlifts, I'm actually following the Starting Strength guidelines, where if I understand correctly, you shouldn't start with a squat.

    ... What I'm thinking to do now is to de-load again, and put a lot more emphasis on core stability, and maybe I'll start doing 5x5 instead of 3x5, just to get more time under that bar with a lower weight...

    P.S. Is there any way to change the thread title? I think "Advice needed: Early lifting plateau + Form Check" might be more appropriate

    Deadlift isn't following the guidelines, you are starting too close to the bar and not bending the knees far enough. You place the bar at mid-foot and bend yiur knees until the shin touches the bar. That will pull your butt down to the correct point. Also you have
    Yiur right hand right in front of your leg and the other hand on the outside of your leg, you want both outside and equidistant. I think you might want to narrow your stance a bit too.

    From Rippetoe himself:

    You just step up to the bar with a vertical-jump stance width, with toes out and your shins about an inch from the bar, grab it just outside your stance with your knees still straight, then bend your knees forward and out a little bit until your shins touch the bar, squeeze your chest up until your back is flat, take a big breath, and drag the bar up your legs until you're standing up straight.

    Okay, I'll take a second look at my deadlifts ;). Thanks all!
  • SonyaCele
    SonyaCele Posts: 2,842 Member
    lev_k wrote: »
    Chieflrg wrote: »
    lev_k wrote: »
    OK, here are some videos. Sorry about some of the angles, I know they aren't that great, I'm going to see if I can take some better videos.

    Squats:



    OHP1:



    OHP2:



    Bench:



    Deadlifts:



    At this point, it seems like all my lifts are stalling, and I'm not quite sure why.
    lev_k wrote: »

    Some good ideas here.

    Wow, I've seen lotsa Untamed Strength vids, can't believe I missed this one, thanks.
    How consistent are you with your workouts?
    How long is your rest time between sets?

    3 times per week, and resting between 2 to 3 minutes between work sets.
    Chieflrg wrote: »
    Agreed the squat isn't s plateau'd, and does not need accessory lifts at this stage. There is absolutely no way accessories will be beneficial over practicing the actual lifts to a novice.

    OP I'd be highly surprised if your flexibilty has anything to do with your form. I can get 99% of people squatting with proper form in less than 10 minutes.

    If you like send me a vid or post one here of your squats we can get you moving.

    Yeah, I've been meaning to create a video to post on these boards for form checking, I think I'll do it during my next session. Guess this would make it easier to give advice :smile:

    Thanks.

    When you’re doing hard “sets across” (3 sets x 5 reps) complete rest between sets will eventually be necessary. Complete rest can take anywhere from 5-8 minutes (or more in some cases). So try resting longer on your bench and overhead press.

    Hmm, I wouldn't expect resting time to be that much of an issue at this stage and weight, I'll try to take longer rests.

    Like you mentioned, better vid will tell a lot more.

    From what I can see...

    Squats: Not bad at all. Drop the bar down a inch or so. This will help for better stability/balance & hip drive. Looks like your slightly pausing in the hole, I would concentrate on taking advantage of the stretch reflex of your hamstrings. Please shoot a vid directly from the side closer to knee level and one from directly behind. This is the lift you need the least amount of adjustments and could I would hazard the weight on the bar is too light.

    OHP: Tighten every muscle up from ground up. Quads, glutes, abs, etc. First movement shift hips forward with vending knees to clear head from bar. At top you would benefit from full ROM and really extend the bar over head high holding with traps squeezed together.

    Bench: The vid doesn't show exactly everything. A wider vid would. I hazard you are very loose with no leg drive. Need more attention to the set up and getting tight. When you are benching your body should be so rigid, that if someone bumped you...you wouldn't move. Nothing would, legs, knees, arms.

    Deadlift: Please shoot vid directly from side. Loose back/lats. Take time with setup. Make sure bar is over midfoot. You might benefit from pulling your hips down with the bar a few inches until your hamstrings are fully engaged and stretched. A better vid will show a lot more.

    I wouldn't advice a deload right now. The bar speed seems fine it's just your form needs adjustments. The adjustments alone will move the weight up in a progressive fashion.

    Wow, thanks. I'll try to implement these changes over the next couple of weeks, then take a few more (hopefully better) videos.
    Erik8484 wrote: »
    lev_k wrote: »
    SonyaCele wrote: »
    your squat was the best form of the lifts you posted. Bench: you need to lock in your lats in WAY more. You locked them in for your set up, but as soon as you unracked, you let them go. Keep them locked , even if you have to reset after you unrack. DL, well you need to lock everything in , drop your butt lower when you start the lift, you are almost doing stiff leg. You also need to lock in your lats for your DL. Your feet seem kinda wide for conventional. You are loose in all your lifts. Once you tighten up , your numbers will jump. Its hard to see everything going on in the videos. But thats what i got out of them at first glance.

    Yeah, I've been trying to focus on keeping a tighter core and back for all my lifts.

    For Deadlifts, I'm actually following the Starting Strength guidelines, where if I understand correctly, you shouldn't start with a squat.

    ... What I'm thinking to do now is to de-load again, and put a lot more emphasis on core stability, and maybe I'll start doing 5x5 instead of 3x5, just to get more time under that bar with a lower weight...

    P.S. Is there any way to change the thread title? I think "Advice needed: Early lifting plateau + Form Check" might be more appropriate

    The Starting Strength guidelines have you set up with the bar over mid foot, approximately 1 inch in front of your shins, and then require that you push your knees forward until your shins are touching the bar, which will result in your knees being slightly over/past the bar.

    You can see for example at 0:19 in your deadlift video that you're not doing that, as your right thumb is between the bar and your shins. While this might be the camera angle, your shins look approximately vertical. The effect of this is that your hips are too high and your back too horizontal.*

    Solution: Reread the deadlift chapter of Starting Strength: Basic Barbell Training.

    *too high / horizontal relative to where they would be if the Starting Strength guidelines were followed.

    EDIT: you're still well on your way to deadlifting well, just got to tweak tweak tweak!
    shor0814 wrote: »
    lev_k wrote: »
    SonyaCele wrote: »
    your squat was the best form of the lifts you posted. Bench: you need to lock in your lats in WAY more. You locked them in for your set up, but as soon as you unracked, you let them go. Keep them locked , even if you have to reset after you unrack. DL, well you need to lock everything in , drop your butt lower when you start the lift, you are almost doing stiff leg. You also need to lock in your lats for your DL. Your feet seem kinda wide for conventional. You are loose in all your lifts. Once you tighten up , your numbers will jump. Its hard to see everything going on in the videos. But thats what i got out of them at first glance.

    Yeah, I've been trying to focus on keeping a tighter core and back for all my lifts.

    For Deadlifts, I'm actually following the Starting Strength guidelines, where if I understand correctly, you shouldn't start with a squat.

    ... What I'm thinking to do now is to de-load again, and put a lot more emphasis on core stability, and maybe I'll start doing 5x5 instead of 3x5, just to get more time under that bar with a lower weight...

    P.S. Is there any way to change the thread title? I think "Advice needed: Early lifting plateau + Form Check" might be more appropriate

    Deadlift isn't following the guidelines, you are starting too close to the bar and not bending the knees far enough. You place the bar at mid-foot and bend yiur knees until the shin touches the bar. That will pull your butt down to the correct point. Also you have
    Yiur right hand right in front of your leg and the other hand on the outside of your leg, you want both outside and equidistant. I think you might want to narrow your stance a bit too.

    From Rippetoe himself:

    You just step up to the bar with a vertical-jump stance width, with toes out and your shins about an inch from the bar, grab it just outside your stance with your knees still straight, then bend your knees forward and out a little bit until your shins touch the bar, squeeze your chest up until your back is flat, take a big breath, and drag the bar up your legs until you're standing up straight.

    Okay, I'll take a second look at my deadlifts ;). Thanks all!

    lock your shoulders back too, work on your lat engagement. Take a second when you pull the slack out of the bar to roll them down and back and squeeze hard, that will also stop your back from rounding
  • DopeItUp
    DopeItUp Posts: 18,772 Member
    edited April 2018
    You numbers are actually really good for someone only training for 2 months (other than your squat, which you are obviously mailing in as you mentioned). It takes a long time to get strong, diminishing returns makes it slower and slower as you go. It's especially worse when you're eating in a deficit, and let's be honest you're not a very big guy to begin with.

    I don't think anything is glaringly wrong with your numbers or your progress (other than the squat). You're just gonna have to work harder on your technique and your programming. If your bench numbers are bothering you that much then increase your volume and frequency. Right now it looks like you're only doing 2-4 working sets of bench a week with 1-2 warmup sets. That's basically nothing. Bench 2-3 a week, say 3-5 working sets per session. Start on the low end of that and work your way up. Your bench WILL improve.

    If doing nothing but bench is annoying then swap in some close-grip bench and/or incline bench. If you're not eating enough you may have to eat at maintenance or a surplus for a while to get some mass to get stronger. You will get there. It took me a lonnnnng time (years) to get even a moderately respectable bench and I weigh ~250lbs.
  • lev_k
    lev_k Posts: 20 Member
    Hi All,

    As promised, I did my best to incorporate all the advice I got... and have more videos, would appreciate any further feedback.

    Squats:

    I'm actually feeling really good about squatsright now. Put a lot more emphasis on a tighter core (especially at the bottom).





    OHP:

    Tried to focus on keeping everything tight from bottom up, and a lot more emphasis on locking my arms at the top and doing a sort of "shrug" to utilize traps. But it's difficult to keep everything tight at a heavy weight.





    Bench:

    This one I'm still struggling with. Tried to put an emphasis on keeping everything tight (even using legs to push and create more power inwards, but it's very difficult to focus on everything at a heavy weight. Not sure if it's visible in the video, but I try to re-position my traps as necessary between reps. Some of the pressure did come off my arms though, which I think is a step in the right direction.



    DL:

    Tried to incorporate the advice here as much as I could. Just like everything else, more emphasis on tightness, and dipped a little bit lower with glutes.



    Appreciate all the help.
  • lev_k
    lev_k Posts: 20 Member
    bump.
  • Davidsdottir
    Davidsdottir Posts: 1,295 Member
    I agree with the above that your form looks decent. I had a mental block on squats for months and months at 135#. For some reason, I couldn't get myself to physically put any more weight on the bar. I've been doing Wendler's 531 for my main lifts during this bulk, and last week did 195# for 5 reps. I'm not recommending Wendler's specifically. I'm just saying I understand not being able to get out of your own head.
  • lev_k
    lev_k Posts: 20 Member
    I agree with the above that your form looks decent. I had a mental block on squats for months and months at 135#. For some reason, I couldn't get myself to physically put any more weight on the bar. I've been doing Wendler's 531 for my main lifts during this bulk, and last week did 195# for 5 reps. I'm not recommending Wendler's specifically. I'm just saying I understand not being able to get out of your own head.

    Yeah, sometimes it feels like the biggest problem is just the anxiety and fear of lifting heavy weights. And yet, I'm not quite sure how one is suppose to get over a mental block yet. Guess it doesn't help the fact that I'm almost always lifting with no spotter.
  • Davidsdottir
    Davidsdottir Posts: 1,295 Member
    lev_k wrote: »
    I agree with the above that your form looks decent. I had a mental block on squats for months and months at 135#. For some reason, I couldn't get myself to physically put any more weight on the bar. I've been doing Wendler's 531 for my main lifts during this bulk, and last week did 195# for 5 reps. I'm not recommending Wendler's specifically. I'm just saying I understand not being able to get out of your own head.

    Yeah, sometimes it feels like the biggest problem is just the anxiety and fear of lifting heavy weights. And yet, I'm not quite sure how one is suppose to get over a mental block yet. Guess it doesn't help the fact that I'm almost always lifting with no spotter.

    Honestly, I use the 531 app and load the bar with whatever it tells me. Seven months and I'm still going strong.
  • Erik8484
    Erik8484 Posts: 460 Member
    lev_k wrote: »
    Hi All,

    Bench:

    This one I'm still struggling with. Tried to put an emphasis on keeping everything tight (even using legs to push and create more power inwards, but it's very difficult to focus on everything at a heavy weight. Not sure if it's visible in the video, but I try to re-position my traps as necessary between reps. Some of the pressure did come off my arms though, which I think is a step in the right direction.

    What's your weekly bench press volume at the moment? How many sets had you done before this video? How many more reps do you think you could have done in the set that you filmed?
  • lev_k
    lev_k Posts: 20 Member
    Erik8484 wrote: »
    lev_k wrote: »
    Hi All,

    Bench:

    This one I'm still struggling with. Tried to put an emphasis on keeping everything tight (even using legs to push and create more power inwards, but it's very difficult to focus on everything at a heavy weight. Not sure if it's visible in the video, but I try to re-position my traps as necessary between reps. Some of the pressure did come off my arms though, which I think is a step in the right direction.

    What's your weekly bench press volume at the moment? How many sets had you done before this video? How many more reps do you think you could have done in the set that you filmed?

    1. What's your weekly bench press volume at the moment?
    If you mean how much do I bench in a week - I alternate between Workout A and Workout B, and do bench during Workout B (3 workouts per week), so that means it's either 1s or 2s a week (alternating). It's 3 sets of 5 reps working sets for each Workout B.

    2. How many sets had you done before this video?
    This was my first set.

    3. How many more reps do you think you could have done in the set that you filmed?
    This was definitely my last rep, if I had a spotter I could've maybe barely squeezed out one more, but that's really pushing it.
  • lev_k
    lev_k Posts: 20 Member
    Oops... just realized I put 2 of the same squat videos. Here's a back view, as I think this was a request earlier in the thread.

  • Erik8484
    Erik8484 Posts: 460 Member
    edited May 2018
    lev_k wrote: »
    Erik8484 wrote: »
    lev_k wrote: »
    Hi All,

    Bench:

    This one I'm still struggling with. Tried to put an emphasis on keeping everything tight (even using legs to push and create more power inwards, but it's very difficult to focus on everything at a heavy weight. Not sure if it's visible in the video, but I try to re-position my traps as necessary between reps. Some of the pressure did come off my arms though, which I think is a step in the right direction.

    What's your weekly bench press volume at the moment? How many sets had you done before this video? How many more reps do you think you could have done in the set that you filmed?

    1. What's your weekly bench press volume at the moment?
    If you mean how much do I bench in a week - I alternate between Workout A and Workout B, and do bench during Workout B (3 workouts per week), so that means it's either 1s or 2s a week (alternating). It's 3 sets of 5 reps working sets for each Workout B.

    2. How many sets had you done before this video?
    This was my first set.

    3. How many more reps do you think you could have done in the set that you filmed?
    This was definitely my last rep, if I had a spotter I could've maybe barely squeezed out one more, but that's really pushing it.

    To me, there's nothing glaringly wrong with your bench form that would explain why you can't continue to progress. I don't mean to say that it's perfect, just that as a novice it won't be perfect, and that you should still be able to progress. I would suggest that the problem may be with your weight selection.

    I don't think it's optimal, from a strength development over time perspective, to go to failure on set 1 of 3, every other workout.

    I have been in a situation similar to you, where my squat wasn't progressing and I was going to failure every time I squatted. I overcame that problem when I:
    1. Dropped my squat weight so that I had 2 reps left in the tank after set 1
    2. Used fraction plates to increase the weight each week at a rate that kept set 1 at 2 reps left in the tank. For my squat that ended up being 2 lbs per week. For my bench it was 1-2 lbs per week. I had been benching / squatting for longer than you, and was benching and squatting more weight than you, so you would have to play around with those numbers.
    3. Upped my squatting frequency to 3 days per week.

    Given that you're running SS (I think), just 1 and 2, with the weight bumps occurring every bench day, may be appropriate. The key may be in selecting the right weight to bump by each week, so that you don't end up lifting to failure in week 2 or 3 (or 4, etc).