Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Meet Training / Week 2 - Bench

Paused Close Grip Bench - all reps paused
bar x 40

Incline Press -

Db Curls/Db Upright Rows - 4 sets of 20 each

Notes - REALLY nice session.  The close grips are still moving like speed bench.  355x3 all paused was a complete joke.  So much so that I wondered after the set if I programmed too low.  Then I realized that me asking myself that means I programmed perfectly.


  1. How much more do you think you could bench if you went regular or wide grip? I understand why you only train close grip, but have you thought about maybe just busting out the wider grip for competition only?

  2. Nope. Not worth it to me at all.

    I could probably get close to 500 but I hit 400+ at a young age, then struggled with shoulder and pec problems for years trying to continue benching that way. It wasn't until I gave it up and moved to a close grip all the time, that the problems went away. When that happened my bench climbed again.

    I still have some pec issues that limit my volume on it, so my guess is I'd never reach 500 benching wider because I would blow something out before that actually happened.

  3. Paul, in a few months I'll be coming up on my 1 year anniversary of lifting. I've been thinking about this a lot: Up to this point I've used a really wide grip (middle fingers on the rings) simply because that's where I gripped it when I started, and so I've just stayed with it. I am concerned as an older novice (I think we're around the same age) that I could run into the shoulder problems guys like you talk about sooner rather than later. The deal I made with myself was that when I finally hit a 225 bench (actual lift, not projected), I would drop back down and start working back up with close-grip. This week is the end of a strength phase (ultimate beastdom), and then I have a week off before I go into conditioning. In all honesty, do you think I would be better served starting to work close-grip after this week even though it probably means pushing 225 a lot farther down the road, or am I likely working with such light weights that I can safely make my push to 225 before switching?

  4. I don't think it would mean pushing 225 THAT much further down the road really, and you'd be eliminating as many shoulder and pec problems as possible NOW.

    Again, big picture man.

  5. How should I adjust my numbers, do you think? Knock 10% off my wide-grip max, and base my %'s off that new number?

    Or go in during my rest week next week and max on close-grip before starting my conditioning cycle?

  6. A 10% knock off seems about right. Start there with your next bench session and see how that feels.

  7. Great first bench session looks like you are off to a kick ass start with all of your training for this meet. Stay healthy and good luck at your meet.

  8. Paul, how close is your grip on the bench? I moved mine in to little fingers on the rings after my shoulder started to ache. Wondering if I should move them in closer?