Wednesday, December 12, 2012

For the past 36 Days.. I Deadlifted everyday.

Over the past 36 days I have Deadlifted everyday. It was my main lift, everyday, no exceptions. I also followed the Deadlift with Overhead Presses, Rows and Curls, KB Swings, and some abdominal work.

Following a plan mixed between Dan John, Pavel, Chad Waterbury, and Anthony Mychal I decided to do deadlifts everyday to Grease the Groove as they call it.


Why not?

I was sitting one day in the dark with a headlamp flashlight on reading Dan John's Never Let Go a day or so after Hurricane Sandy.  I was so amused by the book that I couldn't put it down.  The things I learned from reading the book have helped me in such a short amount of time that I will refer back to it frequently. 

One chapter in the book was his article on the 40 Day Program. In this program you pick 1 posterior movement (Aka DeadLift), Upper Body Push, Upper Body Pull, simple full body explosive movement, and an abdominal exercise. 2 sets of 5 for the first 3 exercises, 1 set of 25-50 for the full body and 1 set of 5 for abdominal exercise. 

Following the plan I would have done 5 days in a row, rest for 2, 5 days in a row, rest for 2 until I completed workout 40. But I decided after reading a blog post from Anthony Mychal the day after I started that I'd go straight through and show overtraining who's the boss.

I started the program doing this:

Deadlifts 2x5x 245
OHP 2x5x115
Bent Rows 2x5x115
KB Swings 1x25x50
Ab Wheel 1x5

Apparently you're supposed to only do 40% of your 1RM for the main lift but I didn't know that.. or I didn't care.  I guess 40% keeps you away from overtraining? The numbers were just thrown out there with no rhyme or reason. 

40% would've had me lifting about 180 for the deads and like 65 for the OHP.  No way.  If I was going to do this I am pushing it to the fullest.  If I get hurt I get hurt, if my poor little self overtrains I overtrain big deal. 

I also decided to add the PLP work Chad Waterbury talks about here: PLP Challenge into my warmup. Instead of starting at 10 push ups, 10 reverse lunges per leg, and 10 Pull Ups, I started at 1 each and added one each day.  This is the single most important thing I have ever done in an exercise program.  This greased my groove as far as Pull Ups go. When I started I could only do 5 max at once.  Shitty yes but now I can do 12. Amazing. 36 Days later.

So while doing the 40 Day program as Pavel or Dan John would have it, you'd do something like Deadlifts 1st set 150x5 then the second set would be 90% of the 1st set for 5 reps.  Anthony Mychal did 225 straight across the board 40 days in a row before taking two days off and doing it for an additional 20 (with rest days every 5). I decided to add weight whenever I felt like it.

After 36 Days this is where I ended:

Deadlifts 2x5x270
OHP 2x5x130
Rows I scratched after 14 days because of Snapping Scapula Syndrome.  This is something I have had for awhile and it hurts all the time. Pain for 24 hours a day. Surgery or Cortisone.  No thanks I'll deal with it. It's not that bad.
I replaced them with Curls in the Squat Rack 2x5x95 just because.
KB Swings 1x30x65
Ab Wheel 1x10 because what is 1x5 anyway?

At Day 17 I added 2 sets of Chins for 5 reps at the end of the workout.  By Day 30 I was doing 3 sets of 8 and Day 36 I did 3 sets of 10,10,9. It was my dessert. 

This program I did was amazing.  There were days I felt awesome and days I felt shitty.  I ate to get stronger not worrying about losing fat or whatever.  I upped my protein and carbs and ate so I could avoid overtraining.  I also went to sleep early almost everyday and made sure I had AT LEAST 7 hours of sleep every night.  

I'm not done yet.  I decided to make today a rest day after 36 straight days of deadlifting because 1. I feel sick and very crappy and 2. because I accomplished what I wanted to. Which was..?

I chose to do this program for 2 reasons.

1. My Deadlift Sucks.

2. Deadlifts are awesome. No... Actually number 2 is because I suck at Pull Ups.

In the book Never Let Go, Dan John mentions a quote from Dan Gable "If it's important do it everyday."

After 36 days of lifting things up and putting them down I feel I have a very good connection with my mind and my form and my Deadlift is much better.  Like I mentioned above my Pull Ups have gone from hardly being able to bring my chin to the bar on the 5th rep to crushing 12 straight.

I think this B.S. we hear about overtraining is just.. B.S. and it's funny to, because during the past 36 days my newsfeed has been filled with people talking about overtraining, high frequency programs such as above, and everyday workouts.  Shit, even Jim Wendler made a month long High Frequency Program that he just released.


Maybe we're on to something..

Again, I'm not done.  Tomorrow, tentative due to feeling sick, I will max out on Deadlifts and most likely take another day or two off and start all over. I'll be giving the Frequency Project a run for my money and I'll run it 6 days a week only resting Sunday. 

I can tell you I feel stronger everywhere in my body, more than any other program I ever did, and I feel I have gained muscle.  I should have taken before pics and measurements but that wasn't the point.  I can tackle 36 straight days of heavy lifting and I now have a great respect for High Frequency Training. It wasn't easy as the mind really does play tricks on you.  At Day 10 I felt like my bicep tendon was hanging by a thread and I thought I was going to rupture it while doing the Deads.  Just mental hogwash. There were days when the workouts were tough, I was drained, and my mind was elsewhere but I dug deep and did the workout anyway.

Greasing The Groove has proven to be very effective in my opinion.  I highly admire the results it has given me, the way I felt, and what it has done for my mental toughness.  I will always keep this program in my arsenal and go back to it when I feel stuck.  Anybody can do this.  The key is recovery.  I always went to sleep on time EVERY NIGHT and ALWAYS ate what I felt my body needed.  Could I have tanked? Hell yes.  I could have lacked in diet and missed a rep or felt like shit but I made sure I was perfect. Dedicated. Demanding. Determined. 

1 comment:

  1. Hell yes! I'm starting this tomorrow. Deads are my absolute favorite lift (even though I suck at them) - challenged only by my love for cleans. I'll be doing both of those in this program, I think. Cleans instead of KB swings - don't own a kettle bell. I've always thought overtraining was just an excuse. I used to do legs everyday. Why not again?! Thanks for this post!