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  1. #1
    Registered User andysafc97's Avatar
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    Been training for around 1.5 years. Bench and OHP still poor.

    Hi all

    I’ve been training for around 1 and a half years. I started with Phraks Greyskull LP and ran that for 14 months, and now I’ve been running Grouchyjarhead’s Beginner Powerbuilding Routine for 5 months. Which is here: https://forum.bodybuilding.com/attac...1&d=1526912815

    After 1 and half years, I still can’t get past 66kg for bench and 38.5kg for overhead press (both 3 sets of 6 and 1 final set of 7).

    I eat around 3500 calories a day, and I have gone from 147lbs to 191lbs.

    I get between 7-8 hours sleep every night, I use the sleep cycle app to track this and never go below 7 hours.

    Here is a video of me benching 63.5kg (video was from last month after one of my many deloads)

    https://imgur.com/a/ORRFwqp

    And here is a video of my pressing 40kg (I ended up failing the last set, also the reason I walked out on an angle was to get a side on view of the press)

    https://imgur.com/a/rTJUCH8

    My squat and my deadlift aren’t the best after this long of training either. Both lifts below are following the 5+, 4, 3, 2, 1 scheme as stated in the program.

    Squat - 125kg, 127.5kg, 130kg, 132.5kg, 135kg
    Deadlift - 130kg, 132.5kg, 135kg, 137.5kg, 140kg

    The lack of progress is making it really hard to get motivated to train. I used to enjoy it but now it’s starting to seem pointless as I’m not going anywhere, and if I do it’s baby steps.

    Has anyone got any advice?

    Thanks
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  2. #2
    Registered User EliKoehn's Avatar
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    I don't know man... It looks like you're doing everything right, at least which is immediately obvious. Presses are just hard sometimes.

    I've never followed that routine personally, but it looks solid and that poster is experienced and knows what he's talking about.

    The only question that jumps to mind is the nutritional breakdown of your 3,500 calories. If, in particular, you're not eating enough protein (which I kind of doubt, with a medium-high allocation of calories like that), then that can certainly stifle progress.

    Otherwise, a big part of it is keeping with it consistently in the long term. It took me literal years to get above benching two plates for a handful of reps. I think the bench (and certainly the OHP) are among the harder lifts to add poundage to.
    Bench: 320
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  3. #3
    Han shot first! TolerantLactose's Avatar
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  4. #4
    Registered User WolfRose7's Avatar
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    Both have very low press volume and lack harder variations and tbh significant hype work.

    I would never have progressed bench on those either tbh.

    Granted my current bench isn't anything special but I've been making steady progress with
    1x heavy comp work
    2x heavy assistance
    2x volume hype work

    25 odd sets a week depending how you count it.

    You might not need quite that much, you might even need more..
    You won't know unless you try, and it's probably time to step away from by the book novice stuff and find out what you need to keep progressing
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  5. #5
    Kiwi Battler BenMcLeodNZ's Avatar
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    That's not necessarily poor, I know guys who do less and who have trained longer. A lot of it is due to your leverages and body mass, plus just time. And the way you press, you might be really strict with good muscle awareness which counts for a lot. That sounds like a cope, and maybe it is.

    For what it's worth, what I used to get a half respectable bench is fractional weight plates and strictly timed rest breaks. Mine were 2 minutes but then reduced to 90 seconds. Keeping the rest breaks the same is extremely important because even an extra 15 seconds changes the difficulty a lot.
    But once a week, I'd add an extra about 1lb to the bar and do it no matter what. If I felt good, I still only added a litle bit, because too many times I added too much and couldn't hit the reps, and then got stubborn and would try for weeks to get the reps and just end up training poorly. Week by week I done this and eventually I got to over 400lb but then gave up chasing big weights because they're surprisingly unfulfilling.
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  6. #6
    CEO 10k/year Ironface's Avatar
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    Gain weight (srs)

    That’s literally the secret to getting stronger
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  7. #7
    Registered User BeginnerGainz's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by BenMcLeodNZ View Post
    That's not necessarily poor, I know guys who do less and who have trained longer. A lot of it is due to your leverages and body mass, plus just time. And the way you press, you might be really strict with good muscle awareness which counts for a lot. That sounds like a cope, and maybe it is.

    For what it's worth, what I used to get a half respectable bench is fractional weight plates and strictly timed rest breaks. Mine were 2 minutes but then reduced to 90 seconds. Keeping the rest breaks the same is extremely important because even an extra 15 seconds changes the difficulty a lot.
    But once a week, I'd add an extra about 1lb to the bar and do it no matter what. If I felt good, I still only added a litle bit, because too many times I added too much and couldn't hit the reps, and then got stubborn and would try for weeks to get the reps and just end up training poorly. Week by week I done this and eventually I got to over 400lb but then gave up chasing big weights because they're surprisingly unfulfilling.
    Well said.
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  8. #8
    Time is Muscle ECGordyn's Avatar
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    Increase pressing frequency, and use slightly lighter weights for more volume. Grinding at or near failure for too long is counterproductive.

    Try the Candito 6 week. Even running Week 1 over and over would spur growth from the increased volume. Then you could adjust later once you stall.
    2020 maxes
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    Workout Journal: https://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=175647011&p=1630928323&viewfull=1#post1630928323
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  9. #9
    Age 60 MajorTendonitis's Avatar
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    Watching you bench what looked to me like 135 pounds was the most painful set I’ve ever witnessed . Thought you were doing more like 315 lol.
    How often do you bench , as maybe your overtraining? I was 150 pounds when I started at age 25 . Only did upper body and weight went up to 180 . I wish I knew how much I started with , but I know it took me 1.5 years to bench 225 .
    I have heard of guys doing it quicker , but a lot may be genetic related
    Last edited by MajorTendonitis; 09-25-2021 at 08:28 PM.
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  10. #10
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    Are you taking supplements? Creatine? Try nitrotech elite, it's making stronger/bigger fast and I'm 44
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  11. #11
    Registered User TheShadowMan's Avatar
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    Something that has been helping me recently on press is pyramid sets. Sometimes i'll use 10lb jumps, other times 5lb ones. For awhile 75 was the max, but then i'd try it so it ended on 80, 70/75/80 for example - and that did get me past it. I kept using those and after a few months I got to a set of 115, but when I went on vacation I lost a lil strength so i'm back at 90 and have to get it back again. I also noticed when I use cleans in the routine somewhere(I currently use them for my trap section), good lord it starts getting easier strengthwise. So definitely have some accessories to help you out and push past, like cleans, push presses, etc.
    Back to basics full body routine: https://pastebin.com/5BgKgrMv

    Training journal: https://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=178059671&p=1598034261#post1598034261
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  12. #12
    Registered User air2fakie's Avatar
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    OP, 2 Qs for background and context:

    1. What were your weights for these lifts when you began lifting and how long ago did you get stuck where you currently are?

    2. You said you gained about 45 lbs in the past year and half. Do you see a lot of muscle growth when you look in the mirror or has it been more fat?
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