Begin...The Rest is Easy

So that’s my current condition, as of yesterday. Weighed in at 296.5 right after that picture.

I’ve lifted on and off (mostly off) over the last 10 years (gym totaled 1305 a few years back), I’m 6’5”, I only have minor knee soreness (been an irritant in the past), and I have a job that is close to my house and the gym. What I’m getting at is I should be able to improve if I can be consistent. I drink too much, which leads to terrible eating patterns and other bad decisions, so as part of this I’m going to try and severely limit my alcohol intake (including a dry January).

Would be happy to have any comments, encouragement or advice along the weigh.

Let’s do it


In still getting back into the swing of things, lifted a decent amount in October then took 3 weeks to travel/work remotely in November and just got back into it before I got sidetracked by a week of Christmas. In any case, I’m not following a program at the moment but will probably hop on one when the old gains start slowing.

upright bike, warmup: 5 min
Front squat: bar 3x5, 135 2x5, 185 2x5, 205x4, 225x4, 255 2x3
RDL: barx20, 95x10, 135x10, 155 3x8
Calf raises: 2x40, 1x20
Leg press: 4plates 3x12, 1x20
Seated Bike, cool down: 15min

I need to warm up more for squat variations I’m too stiff (31, at a seated job) for this lazy warmup shit. I also need to set the rack height better. My wrists and their lack of flexibility were actually the limiting factor for FS, so I stretched them a bit and bought some straps to avoid the problem.

Anyone use wrist wraps? If so, what should I buy?

For heavy pulling or for holding the front squat?

These are good for both, so best all-round.

I personally like these for pulling.

I was actually thinking for benching and ohp.

I bought the below for FS and will probably use them on occasion with deads.

Chalk that up to my inability to read “wraps” instead of “straps”. Sorry!

I don’t really use them, but I’m not strong. I believe @flipcollar swears by them, and he is strong.

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Ha, it definitely took me multiple minutes to remember the name for both and distinguish which was which.

Today’s weight: 292

Yesterday’s stuff

25 min walking ~3.5 incline and 3.7 mph
BB row: 165 3x8,1x16
Lat pulldown: 115 3x12
Standing cable row (wide): 72.5 3x12
Face pulls: 22.5 4x20
Supersetted curls
Rope curls: 22.5 4x12
Straight bar: 17.5 4x12
10 more minutes of walking

Impressed with my rowing capacity and 35 min of “conditioning.” Still in the “power building” phase and plan on staying that way for at least another month.

buy some wrist wraps that are NOT made for very strong people. The ‘best’ wraps out there will be far too stiff for you. Just won’t make sense. Some of the lighter efts wraps are fine. I used really stretchy ones as my first pair, and I’ve collected some stiffer ones since then. there are plenty of great options out there. the slingshot ones are fine, cerberus is fine, sbd, whatever. all good products.

as far as straps go, if you’re doing cleans or anything dynamic where you NEED to be able to bail on the lift, don’t use figure 8 straps. They will literally break your wrists. For front squats, what you’re doing is fine. For deadlifts, I love figure 8’s.


I can relate to your experiences with the booze. I’m onboard for a dry January too. Will follow your progress. Good luck!

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Appreciate the reply, have used figure 8s before and am absolutely not trying to clean with them.

Thanks for the input on wraps, I’ll do some research on those brands and get some ordered. Hopefully need those stiffer ones soon

So, abused my body on NYE and subsequently caught a cold, first day back.

Have decided I’m going to run a upper/lower split over the next 8 weeks, to see how I like it, never done one before.

293.5 this morning
Rode bike for 6 min until a bench spot opened
Upper Strength:
Bench 3x4, 1x6 225
Incline DB bench 3x10 75
BB row: 3x5 185
Lat Pulldown: 3x7 130
OHP: 3x6 135
Overhead rope extensions 3x10 42.5
EZ curl 3x6 75 (assuming bar is 25lbs)

First time barbell benching in a few months and probably only the 10th time in 12 months, felt solid when I got right.

OHP was harder than expected, everything else was fine.

Scared of Lower Strength tomorrow

Weighed 290.5, significantly less bloated from a decent eating day (one where I didn’t consume an entire jar or pickles)

Lower Strength
Squats: 2x3, 1x5 315
DL: 3x3 365
Leg Press: 3x12 410
Seated leg curl: 3x10 170
Calves: 5x10 50lb dumbbell

Squats felt good. Did tripled to get to 315, put the belt on at 245, helps more than I remember.

Was pretty gassed by deadlift time so took 3-4 min rests, put belt on at 325. Reps felt good

Weighed 291.5 this morning
Day off lifting went and walked at a 4.5-6.5% incline

Felt good to get a sweat and get the heart rate up a bit

It’s also the first time I’ve gone to the gym and haven’t lifted in years

no problem!

Everyone is different, but for me, the really flexible wraps I used to use were sufficient up to about a 350 bench press. I was in the 350-400 range when I got stiffer wraps. For OHP, I prefer wraps that aren’t crazy stiff because you need mobility for the clean. I’m not pressing crazy weights overhead though, nothing above 300.


I’ve hit a 365 bench in the past but don’t imagine I’ll be back there for a few months and haven’t OHP’ed anything over 225, so I imagine I don’t need something very stiff.

Ordered these, excited to give them a run.

Didn’t weigh myself this morning, probably 291-294 range, not too worried about it yet. I’m eating well and working out, the weight will come off this way or if not I’ll start tracking food.

Got to the gym at 4:30 to beat the 5pm rush, apparently so did everyone else, no space anywhere. Need to change up the routine until January ends. I’m going to go check out a gym that seems to be more lifting oriented, that is also literally two blocks from my office tomorrow.

15 min on some machine that’s like an elliptical but way harder, which means I don’t do it often…
Upper Hypertrophy:
Incline Machine Press (no spot to do anything else, this machine fucking blows): 4x10 150
Pec Dec Flys: 3x12 100
DB Rows: 3x8 80 (leaning on a shoulder press seat, tried to do a pause at the top of every rep and slow them down)
Lateral Raises: 2x8 12.5, 1x8 15, 1x8 20
Pullups: 1x6 1x3 then I hung for ~30 seconds
Lat pulldown: 2x15 85
Tri pushdown: 3x12 42.5 (I think)
Straight bar cable curl: 3x12 32.5 (I think)

My forearms were gassed after the pullups/hang. Worked out with a friend today, stuck pretty close to the routine I was going for, could’ve gone harder but i’m trying to remind myself this isn’t a sprint. In any case, he’s trying to get 12 consecutive pullups with good form by the end of May, so I figure I’ll jump in on that. Of the 6 that I did consecutively only the first 3 were good. Fresh I might be able to get 4 or 5. Lot of strength to gain, weight to lose, and form to perfect before I get 12 in a row.

Woke up at 292 this morning, feeling a bit bloated.

I’m pretty fatigued and sore after 4 straight days of gym and averaging ~11k steps a day.

Parts of me that are sore/fatigued, in good ways: upper and mid back, hamstrings, groin, delts, forearms, abs(from the pullups, maybe??).
Parts of me that are sore, in bady ways: lower back (need to get my form back for squats/deads, turning my torso to the left increases pain but its definitely just muscular, should be completely fine with rest)
Parts of me that aren’t sore: bi/tri, quads, traps, calves.

Not planning on lifting today but may get a super easy at-home yoga session in.

Walked by the gym I’m thinking about switching to and it looks way better (their website confirms they have about 2x the equipment my gym does). It will be super close to work, which is great 5 days a week, it’s about a 10 minute further walk on non-work days which is less great but if that’s the reason I’m not going to the gym, I have other problems, anyway. Think i’ll make the switch when my current contract ends, at the end of the month.

Morning weight: 290, should be in the 280s by next week

Got my second cold of the new year, fucking annoying, finally made it back to the gym feeling about 80%. Hacked half the way to the gym but went in anyway but decided against cardio.

Lower Hypertrophy:
FS: 4x8 @ 185
Pullups: 1x6
RDL: 3x8 @ 185
Leg extensions: 4x15 @ 100
Leg Curls: 4x10 @ 120
Pullups: 1x8
Standing calf raise: 3x20

First time doing this workout, even feeling somewhat lethargic it wasn’t too bad.
Straps helped a ton on front squats, took a minute to get going and took 3+ minute rests for these. Everything else was much shorter rest periods from there, used the straps as straps for RDL not because I really needed them but because I want to get used to them and save my grip for pullups. Speaking of, none of these were dead hang but decent depth and felt good.

Overall pretty solid workout for feeling like shit.

Woke up at 288, losing weight maybe a bit more quickly than anticipated. It might hamper strength gains but it’s coming off without much work so I’m going to keep doing what I’m doing.

Upper back was sore from the FS and pull-ups, has an upper strength day today that I was going to skip to do cardio but played basketball instead. Played the majority of the game, my lungs hurt, my calves hurt, my quads are fried but it was a great workout. Will hit upper strength tomorrow

Woke at 289.5, woke up at 5am and blew my nose for 45 minutes then went back to sleep for a few hours

Knee a little sore, lower left back sore and stiff, ugh.

Got to the gym during the middle of chaos, no barbell bench available
Power Upper:
DB bench: 1x5 100, 2x5 110, 1x8 110
Incline DB bench: 3x10 70
BB row: 4x5 185
Pull-ups: 1x5
Lat pulldown: 3x8 130
OHP: 2x8 110
EZ curl: 3x10 65
Overhead extensions: 3x8 47.5

Time in gym 63 min

DB bench felt strong, almost failed at incline, largely due to pace. Hit more reps or more weight for almost every exercise despite the quick work. Only thing that was weak was OHP but that’s because, again, there were no barbells available so I just took the heaviest straight bar.

Taking tomorrow off or a quick yoga session, body is hurting.