Chained Down

Chained Down
Breaking through the Chains

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Some Thoughts About Progress, Consistency, and Training Partners

Alot of people get discouraged about progress in the gym and consistency.  I know that I certainly do.  It seems as though no matter how hard you try and work, you never seem to get your lifts any higher.  When they do go up, the max lift may only go up 5 or 10 pounds.  This does not seem like a very substantial improvement.

At this time in my senior year my max in bench press was only about 275 pounds and my max in squats was only about 405 pounds.  I am not so sure about my deadlift max because I never did many deadlifts until this school year, but I believe it was right around 405 pounds... maybe less.  These lifts never seemed to increase.

My roommate, Shane Anderson, is also very big into lifting weights.  His max in bench was around 300, in squat it was around 350, and in deadlift it was around 465.

Currently, two years later, my bench press max is around 375.  My squat is in the mid 500's and my deadlift is around 515 pounds.  Shane's max in bench press is around 365 pounds.  His squat is around 445 pounds and he has deadlifted about 545 pounds.  In exactly two years, maybe less, my bench has gone up 100 pounds, my squat has gone up almost 150 pounds, and my deadlift has gone up about 100 pounds.  In this same amount of time Shane's bench has gone up around 65 pounds, his squat has gone up around 100 pounds, and his deadlift around 80 pounds.

If you look at these improvements in the prospective of the course of two years, our max lifts have gone up drastically.  Even though it seems as though it takes a long time the improvement is really quite drastic.

Shane has always kept the same routine and no matter what he stays very consistent in his workouts.  He always workouts, never missing many of his workouts, and always trains very hard.  I was always switching up my routines, until I finally found what I feel is best for me this past year.  Me and Shane have very different training styles.  But, no matter how we train, we always consistently train hard and train on a consistent basis.  I believe that is the key.  No matter how you train, train hard and train consistently... never give up on yourself.  Everyone trains different because everyone is very different.

But, no matter how you train always remember to train hard and train consistently.  It may seem as though progress comes slow, but if you train hard and train on a consistent basis the progress will come.  Even if your goal is not to be stronger, these keys will allow you to progress in any goal that you may have.  And it seems as though progress comes very slow, but look at it over long periods of time.  Even if you increase your max 5 pounds a months, that 5 pounds turns into 120 pounds in two years!  That rate of improvement is awesome!  Something that has helped me and is very useful in progression is a book by Jim Wendler called 5/3/1.  I recommend this book for anyone trying to get stronger.  No matter what you do, do what you enjoy and do what you feel you can do consistently week in and week out.

Also, training partners can be very key to progress.  I have new training partners now ranging from my friends Shane, Harrison Daly, and Troy Maninino to my younger brother, Joe.  But, all of these partners are very helpful in motivation and staying consistent.  I have also had great partners in years past including the Power B gym, the Salters brothers, and my boy Jared Blue.  Training partners are not essential (many times I lift alone), but they can certainly be helpful.  This is especially true when starting out.  I hope everyone meets their goals and remembers these tips.  I also want to apologize if any of my previous posts offended anyone.  My goal in this blog is not to offend others, but to just provide good tips and make the reading enjoyable.  Best of wishes.


  1. Keep up the good work Cody.I get a kick out of young views and how niaeve an intelligent person can be. I think you will enjoy going back and watching your changes and growth, both in mind and body. SOme views remain the same forever and some change drasticaly due to life and wisdom.

  2. You think I was being naive? haha

  3. I am a terrible speller. I geuss I mean innocent,naive and young. But I mean it in a good way. I am really refering to the whole blog. Not this particular post. Funny thing about people that are uneducated, We are suprised at how different the world looks to those that are educated, yet many things are viewed the same. We just somehow expect the educated to be all together and have more wisdom in every thing. Yet as I gat older I realize there are many areas the education is life experience and what part of society you are in while you are viewing it. I like your Blog Cody and I meant the naive statement in a good way.

  4. Haha I was just teasing... But, about "the educated"... I would definitely value life experience over education. Or at least see them on a level playing field. There are so many things you cannot learn through education. And yes I am young and often say or do dumb things, but that's what makes us better in the end I guess!