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Old 04-02-2013, 07:08 PM   #1
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Default First time in a bench shirt

...and possibly my last for a little while.

My used Titan Super Katana, size 46, arrived today. My first reaction, and the feeling I still have, is that the material doesn't "stretch" at all! Honestly, it might as well be made of steel.

Here's what I did before I shirted up-

135x5
225x3
275x3
Add slingshot-
325x2
345x1

At this point I put on the shirt. I used shirt slippers and I WAS able to get the end of the sleeves past my elbows, but just inside the edge of the sleeve was slightly wrinkled, and no matter what I did I couldn't get the sleeves to move up any more. I knew that they weren't even close to seating properly in my armpits, but I continued with putting it on.

Eventually I got it all the way over myself, and got my new lever belt on as well.

I put 375 on the bar and attempted to get into position, but I couldn't get my hands out to grip the bar without shooting my shoulders forward. The bar was too low. I adjusted my rack up an inch and got into position again.

This time I was able to unrack the bar and hold it over myself. The 375 might as well have been 135 as I held it. I tried to lower the bar and exactly what I thought would happen, did. It moved about 1 inch downward. That's it. 1 inch, then it stopped and I pushed it back up, then racked it. I laid on the bench for a few seconds because I was seeing stars, and I realized that the shirt had been choking me when I "lifted".

I pulled the shirt down a little under my belt, then collected myself before getting back into position to try again. I just kept thinking "Tuck your elbows, tuck your elbows and let the weight come down." I unracked the bar, then tucked my elbows as hard as I could. My elbows actually went over my stomach I tucked so hard.

The result? The bar came down 2 inches, at the most, before shooting back up.

But no stars this time, and I did get the bar to move twice as far, after all.

I know that it takes a lot of work to get a touch in a shirt, and I know that I was never going to even come close to touching 375, but I didn't try to add weight because I know that main problem; the shirt is just too tight. The arms should be seated higher. I can tell just by watching videos on youtube that this shirt doesn't fit as it should.

But, there's good news. I was already planning to lose weight. I'm currently in the high 230's, and I want to get down to the low 220's. Hopefully this will make the shirt fit better. I'll continue to try on the shirt every few weeks as I lose weight and see if it makes a difference in the fit. If once I reach the low 220's I still can't get it to seat correctly then I'll sell it and get a 48.

I'm also going to hold off on getting a squat suit until I can either make this shirt work or get one that does.
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Old 04-02-2013, 07:12 PM   #2
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I didn't know it was possible to get into one of those unassisted.
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Old 04-02-2013, 07:18 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by 5kgLifter View Post
I didn't know it was possible to get into one of those unassisted.
My left arm started to cramp while I was doing it. Getting into the shirt was the hardest cardio I've done in weeks!
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Old 04-02-2013, 07:13 PM   #4
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try stretching the sleeves some. and wetting the chest plate, will help some. Going at it alone will be an uphill battle.
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Old 04-02-2013, 07:22 PM   #5
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try stretching the sleeves some. and wetting the chest plate, will help some. Going at it alone will be an uphill battle.
Thanks J. "Uphill battle" describes it perfectly, I'd say. Along with losing some weight I'll also do both of those things. I'm pretty stubborn when it comes to things like this. I'm GOING to make it work, come hell or high water.

I'm partly excited, as weird as that may sound. 375 was nothing in the shirt, which makes me think my original goal of 400+ will be no problem at all once I get it to fit correctly.
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Old 04-02-2013, 07:24 PM   #6
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yeah i wouldnt be shocked to see you bench over 400 with the shirt once you get the hang of it.
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Old 04-02-2013, 07:24 PM   #7
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Do you do slingshot or Ram work at all, aside from the shirt idea?
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Last edited by 5kgLifter; 04-02-2013 at 07:31 PM. Reason: LOL, shirt not short :)
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Old 04-02-2013, 07:30 PM   #8
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Do you do slingshot or Ram work at all, aside from the short idea?
I do. One of my favorite raw bench assistance exercises is mid-close grip bench with my slingshot. I've never had a movement so thoroughly nail my triceps.

I also like to use the slingshot for form work. I credit it with the rather large jumps in my raw paused bench lately. I'm not a fan of most overload work, but if you come at it with a focus on form than I think it can do wonders.

I'm going to continue to use the slingshot combined with accomodating resistance from chains to help prepare my joints and triceps for shirted pressing (I was able to do 345+30lb of chains with the slingshot a few days ago), but my main focus will continue to be raw lifting for now.
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Old 04-02-2013, 07:27 PM   #9
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Ha ha ha...you need help bro. That's why is done at the gym with assistance. I have a video by overkill in how to stretch he arms. Like JByrd also said...get the chest plate wet and also you can add baby powder to your arms. But shirts are not design to buy today and use it to or row. Is a project...take time and patience. By the way...watch your arms...they like to bite!!!
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Old 04-02-2013, 07:36 PM   #10
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Ha ha ha...you need help bro. That's why is done at the gym with assistance. I have a video by overkill in how to stretch he arms. Like JByrd also said...get the chest plate wet and also you can add baby powder to your arms. But shirts are not design to buy today and use it to or row. Is a project...take time and patience. By the way...watch your arms...they like to bite!!!
No worries. I came into this very aware of what I was getting into, and like I said I knew I wasn't going to be touching today, or next week, or the weeks after or...well, you get the idea.

Haha, my arms look like they were whipped with a switch. Again, I did my reading and knew this would be the case.

Baby powder, good call. That should help the sleaves keep moving after they get past the slippers.
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