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  1. #1
    Registered User SdrJyden's Avatar
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    Unhappy Squat NOT progressing

    Hey all

    Male, 38 yo, 6’4” 230

    I started working out mid October 2018. I finally wanted to do something about all the nagging issues and just want to be in shape.

    I started out with a back centric routine to address all the back, neck and shoulder related issues and imbalances I have occumulated over the past 20 years of being a desk jockey.

    Exercises in order:
    Face pulls 4 x 10
    BB rows 3 x 6
    DB rows 3 x 6
    Squats 3 x 6
    Cable pull downs 3 x 6
    Face pulls 1 x 10
    Plank

    Yes you are correct. No pressing movements so far.

    I do this every tue and thu.

    All the exercises have been progressing fairly quick. Except squat.

    I started with 110 pounds, went up to 135 within 2-3 weeks and now I’m stuck there. I’ve been doing 135 for almost 2 months now and they don’t seem to get any easier. This is the time where I should be getting a lot of noob gains.

    Any of you been here or have witnessed someone with this particular issue. Any pointers or suggestions for me to get good progress on this exercise?
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  2. #2
    Registered User leokurtos's Avatar
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    Well as someone who squats and dl's a decent amount I can give some tips though bear in mind I am 20 years old and you're almost twice my age.

    Exercises that seemed to help my max squat and my squat in general are as follows:

    Front Squats oly style
    Romanian Deadlifts
    Deadlifts(conventional/sumo I would swap them every other time I did DL's)
    Weighted Lunges
    Core exercises

    And last Powercleans even though it doesn't make sense how this would increase your squat it will definitely help your explosiveness.

    You said you were still in the noob gainz phase so I would advise against doing front squats and power cleans before mastering the squat itself and getting general lifting experience for cleans.

    Don't do cardio.

    From my experience squats and deadlifts go hand in hand.
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  3. #3
    Registered lUser ECGordyn's Avatar
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    Squat first in your routine when you're fresh. Follow a good program, it will plan everything for you.
    Workout journal: https://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=175647011&p=1549185671#post1549185671

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  4. #4
    Registered User FaIIen's Avatar
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    Also post a vid so we can do a form check.
    Log: https://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=175660541
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  5. #5
    Registered User Spoken36's Avatar
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    It's good that you recognize that back work is important. Added to that you recognize the value of squats. So far, so good.

    But I don't think their importance gives them stand-alone status. It seems like you are headed for developmental imbalance in order to make sure you don't have the imbalance that most people default to.

    If I were you, I would reduce the volume of your back work, allowing for increased intensity there, and giving you an opportunity to work the rest of your muscular systems. You can look at compound exercises as muscular system work. Lot's of simple, effective workouts you can avail yourself. Unless you have a very specific physical therapy issue you need to address before you start training your whole body, you should train your whole body.

    Squats: to be strong at squats, you need to be good at squats. Once you are good at squats, then these 6 rep sets can be real productive, but my experience is that way higher reps trains the coordination better, faster. They also toughen the psyche, and that's necessary for a very demanding exercise like squats. You could do a simple progression of 3x30, starting with bar weight alone, and add 5 lbs per workout. In 2 months you will have obliterated the ceiling you used to have. That will turn you into a squater the easy way.

    I'm 52 and I did that several years ago due to an injury incurred while squatting. It turned squats into a very friendly exercise for me. The gradual progression is so easily doable, from 45 to 135 and beyond.
    Last edited by Spoken36; 01-07-2019 at 02:46 PM. Reason: clarity
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  6. #6
    Registered User daveminnich's Avatar
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    1. Get on an actual well-rounded program and follow it.
    2. Make sure you're eating enough
    3. Record and post a video so folks can take a look at your form
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  7. #7
    Registered User S4lm9vvMn's Avatar
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    I suspect there's something off w/ your form. In addition to placing the squat at the beginning of the session, it's time for a deload to 120 since you haven't progressed beyond 135 in 2 months. At this very early stage the only thing that will help your squats is doing more squats with good form. Make sure you know what constitutes good form. If you're only working out twice a week, try to space your workouts 3 days apart as opposed to 2.
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  8. #8
    Harsh Truth Distributor xsquid99's Avatar
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    I'm 44 and almost your same height and weight and I saw great NOOB gains with Stronglifts 5x5; so I would recommend buckling into a proper program. After about a year I moved to a PPL that I liked a lot. But as someone else mentioned maybe you have an issue with form? Maybe you could post a video or have a trainer help you out to make sure that's all squared away before going any further.

    For comparison sake my squat started at 135 about 2 years ago, and I'm squatting 315 now.
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  9. #9
    Registered User SdrJyden's Avatar
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    Hey all

    Thanks for all the support in here. This is so fantastic!

    I need to address some of things stated in here:

    I know my routine right now, is not tried and true. But i do have a lot of imbalances that i wanted to address first. 20 years of being a software developer really wrecked havoc on my body. Forward head posture, rounded shoulders, upper cross syndrome (this has been diagnosed by a physical therapist), tight pecs, weak back. The result of this is a constant tension headache. We're talking every single day. So i wanted to really focus on correcting those inherent imbalances first, which is why my workout at the moment is really focused on strengthening the back, improving posture and thoracic extension. With time though, i will gradually convert to a more traditional routine. It will probably be Strong lifts 5 x 5.

    I have good news though. I tried doing 5x5 instead, with the same weight as 3x6, and it was much easier for me. Actually i felt that i could do more, when i was done with the last set. So yesterday i bumped it up to 65kg x 5 x 5, and that was also relatively easy.

    My theory is that my cardio is so bad, that i was just gassed out on the last rep of the 6x3 routine. It wasnt the weight per se, but it was my own cardio keeping me down. When im done with a set of 5s, my heartrate is at > 140, so go figure.

    So i finally progressed on my squats now. Next week im gonna start 70 kg (155 lbs) x 5 x 5 and take it from there. Thanks for all the help guys!
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