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Old 07-03-2012, 10:49 PM   #1
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Default Deadlift Programming Help

Looking for some help with deadlift programming

Training for a contest which includes deadlifting (no bench/squat) on Sept. 22, 2012.

My goal is 400 deadlift
Lifetime PR is 369 on 2/26/11, which was a full power meet.
Recent highest deadlift is 350l on May 12, 2012; perceived difficulty on this was 8/10

Currently deadlifting 1x a week

Here are recent deadlift workouts (worksets only)

5/18/12 310 2x5
5/23/12 310 3x5
5/30/12 315 3x5
6/06/12 320 3x5
6/13/12 325 3x5
6/20/12 330 3x5
6/27/12 335 3x5
5 min. rests between sets
All of above are PRs

Obviously each week is getting a bit harder. I think I may have had lower back flexion on the 3rd work set on 6/27/12.

Assistance lifts: pullups, weighted pullups/chins, heavy KB swings, snatches, Kroc rows.

I plan to go for a PR tomorrow of 380 or 385

After that I'm not sure which direction to go in for deadlift training.

I could just continue with the 3x5 sets, but I'm not sure for how long and should I deload at some point (before hitting a wall)?

I have considered the Lamar Gant program http://muscleandbrawn.com/forums/pow...t-routine.html. Tons of volume there, but then in 6-8 weeks retracing the same place I'm on now; also considered doing heavy singles, doubles and triples.

Another option is changing to 2x5 or 3x3 for 340 and continue 5lb jumps, but until when…? Failure? I'd rather not…

I have 11/12 training weeks left before the contest and I'd like to get the highest deadlift I can. As I think about it, I bet I could do more than 400 with this much prep time.

I would appreciate any input on programming

5' 10" 175
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Old 07-04-2012, 05:26 AM   #2
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I found I had the best progress on my deadlift when I started focusing on low reps (mostly singles) and disregarding linear progression. Eventually you'll hit a wall that way, just because you can't add weight every time you pull.

As far as weight, I like to deadlift in the 85% range for the most part.

I add weight whenever I feel strong or whenever my working sets feel light; so it's fairly instinctive.
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Old 07-04-2012, 07:14 AM   #3
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My 2 cents...

First, make sure your form is locked down and that you're not "stiff-legging" the deadlift. This is a very common mistake. Post a video if you can of a set so others can help you with some form pointers, and/or take some time to make sure your form is locked down. Don't assume your form is spot on. A minor adjustment might not only lead to more weight on the bar today, but also might allow your body to handle more while training. Allow some more experienced lifters to take a look.

Second, food. Eat big. My biggest strength spurts on the deadlift (and squat) came during periods of aggressive eating. At minimum make sure you are at least eating above maintenance levels. Optimally though you want to be eating as much as possible, and this shouldn't require calorie counting.

Third, what you're doing is working. You've added 5 pounds every week. If you run it the next 12 weeks you're going to well over 400.

On the other hand, if you switch to Gant's workout, which is fairly brutal, you're not sure how your body will handle the combination of volume and intensity. Lamar took years to build his conditioning. Making a jump to his volume level may actually do more harm than good, and could lead to some lower back fatigue, etc.

I'm not trying to dissuade you from running that program, but you might be better served with something like:

Lamar Gant's 8/5/3 Modified to a 5/3/1
Week 1: 5 sets of 5 with 70% 1RM
Week 2: 5 sets of 5 with 73% 1RM
Week 3: 5 sets of 5 with 76% 1RM
Week 4: 5 sets of 5 with 78% 1RM
Week 5: 5 sets of 3 with 82% 1RM
Week 6: 5 sets of 3 with 84% 1RM
Week 7: 5 sets of 3 with 86% 1RM
Week 8: 5 sets of 3 with 87% 1RM
Week 9: 5 sets of 1 with 92% 1RM
Week 10: 5 sets of 1 with 94% 1RM
Week 11: 5 sets of 1 with 96% 1RM
Week 12: 5 sets of 1 with 98% 1RM

In addition, I am very confident your max is already 400. Anyone that can do 3 sets of 5 reps with 335 should be able to pull close to 400 for a single. If you continue using what you're using, up your food intake, make sure your form is locked down, there is no reason you shouldn't have at least a 430 deadlift by your target date.

If you switch to something like the modified Gant, just listen to your lower back. If all is well, stay the course. Listening to your body is critical, especially when trying something new.
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Old 07-04-2012, 10:32 PM   #4
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Just did it! 385 PR!
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Old 07-05-2012, 01:54 PM   #5
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Be careful falling Gants program. He was a deadlift freak, and althought a great program, not sure how well it would translate to normal people like you and I.

With that being said, I do like the conversion to 5/3/1 set up. What kind of accessory work do you get in during the week?
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Old 07-05-2012, 03:08 PM   #6
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Just did it! 385 PR!
Nice, you'll have 435 in 12 weeks. I have no doubt.
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Old 07-05-2012, 09:14 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IronManlet View Post
I found I had the best progress on my deadlift when I started focusing on low reps (mostly singles) and disregarding linear progression. Eventually you'll hit a wall that way, just because you can't add weight every time you pull.

As far as weight, I like to deadlift in the 85% range for the most part.

I add weight whenever I feel strong or whenever my working sets feel light; so it's fairly instinctive.
Thanks for the input IronMan

I love this idea

I have been wondering aboutl what to do when I hit the wall and this seems like a good option
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Old 07-05-2012, 09:31 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BendtheBar View Post
My 2 cents...

First, make sure your form is locked down and that you're not "stiff-legging" the deadlift. This is a very common mistake. Post a video if you can of a set so others can help you with some form pointers, and/or take some time to make sure your form is locked down. Don't assume your form is spot on. A minor adjustment might not only lead to more weight on the bar today, but also might allow your body to handle more while training. Allow some more experienced lifters to take a look.
You're right; I'll post a video in near future.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BendtheBar View Post
Second, food. Eat big. My biggest strength spurts on the deadlift (and squat) came during periods of aggressive eating. At minimum make sure you are at least eating above maintenance levels. Optimally though you want to be eating as much as possible, and this shouldn't require calorie counting.
Thanks for the reminder; I need to do better on this; I can get caught up in eating 'just enough' (to be full/satisfied) when I need to eat more than that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BendtheBar View Post
Third, what you're doing is working. You've added 5 pounds every week. If you run it the next 12 weeks you're going to well over 400.
I'm absolutely going for it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BendtheBar View Post
On the other hand, if you switch to Gant's workout, which is fairly brutal, you're not sure how your body will handle the combination of volume and intensity. Lamar took years to build his conditioning. Making a jump to his volume level may actually do more harm than good, and could lead to some lower back fatigue, etc.

I'm not trying to dissuade you from running that program, but you might be better served with something like:

Lamar Gant's 8/5/3 Modified to a 5/3/1
Week 1: 5 sets of 5 with 70% 1RM
Week 2: 5 sets of 5 with 73% 1RM
Week 3: 5 sets of 5 with 76% 1RM
Week 4: 5 sets of 5 with 78% 1RM
Week 5: 5 sets of 3 with 82% 1RM
Week 6: 5 sets of 3 with 84% 1RM
Week 7: 5 sets of 3 with 86% 1RM
Week 8: 5 sets of 3 with 87% 1RM
Week 9: 5 sets of 1 with 92% 1RM
Week 10: 5 sets of 1 with 94% 1RM
Week 11: 5 sets of 1 with 96% 1RM
Week 12: 5 sets of 1 with 98% 1RM
Yeah, absolutely, Gant's volume was looking high; thanks for the rundown on the 5/3/1 variant.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BendtheBar View Post
In addition, I am very confident your max is already 400. Anyone that can do 3 sets of 5 reps with 335 should be able to pull close to 400 for a single. If you continue using what you're using, up your food intake, make sure your form is locked down, there is no reason you shouldn't have at least a 430 deadlift by your target date.
You're absolutley right. This comment gave me a ton of encouragement and I went out and pulled 385. It was tough, but I think there were a few additional pounds there. So much of it is mental and it is a huge confidence boost to get a 16 lb PR like that (actually 2 PRs in the workout) and acknowledge that what I'm doing is working.

This forum seems to be very positive and focuses on everyone boosting each other up and that is really great. It is helping--lots.

I plan to be over 400 in 12 weeks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by BendtheBar View Post
If you switch to something like the modified Gant, just listen to your lower back. If all is well, stay the course. Listening to your body is critical, especially when trying something new.
I'll keep an eye on it.

Thanks BTB.

Your support is great
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Old 07-05-2012, 09:35 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J_Byrd View Post
Be careful falling Gants program. He was a deadlift freak, and althought a great program, not sure how well it would translate to normal people like you and I.

With that being said, I do like the conversion to 5/3/1 set up. What kind of accessory work do you get in during the week?
Thanks for the input JB on Gant's program; seems like higher volume than I need (or want)

The accessory work:

pullups (regular) 2x per week, 5 sets, 30-40 total reps
weighted pullups +20-30lbs 1x per week, 5 sets, 15-20 total reps
70lb KB swings 200 reps 1x per week
53lb KB snatches 140-160 reps 1-2 x per week
Kroc rows 1-2x week
sandbag carries and cleans

Last edited by Success; 07-05-2012 at 11:22 PM.
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