customized hybrid cycle/training/diet/lifestyle

Discussion in 'Training Logs' started by Paul Brewer-Jensen, Nov 3, 2012.

  1. Paul Brewer-Jensen

    Paul Brewer-Jensen New Member

    Hey All,

    I have not posted here in a while. Recent changes in priorities, however, have motivated me to revisit HST. I have renewed my interest in gaining strength while at the same time preserving the integrity of my 46 year old joints. The principle of progressive loading is going to be my main independent variable. The dependent variables will be number of reps per set and how strong I get at the end of each cycle. My constants will be rep cadence (blow up and 2 to 3 pants down with no rest at lockout and a pause in the loaded stretch, AKA continuous tension reps) workout frequency (three full body workouts per week), and a full time ketogenic diet with intermittent fasting (about 6AM to 2PM). I sleep better on a stomach that is mostly empty.

    The exercise selection is also constant. The routine is the following:
    full close grip deadlifts (standing on a platform so that the bar is at ankle height with feet wider than hands)
    overhead box squats below parallel
    hack lunges knee to floor
    three chair pushups
    full close grip pullups

    I will do one work set per exercise as the HST protocol requires, but I will do all work sets to momentary muscular failure. Because I am doing continuous tension rep sets, I think that the drain on the CNS will be minimized. It is a limited failure and I like the way it feels.

    I will increase the weights every workout. Since this is my first cycle, it will serve as a RM finding mission for RM's from 10 all the way down to 1. Ten RM is the high end because that is how many high quality full close grip pullups I can do with just my body weight. I am shooting to get all of the other exercises in rep line with the pullups.

    without further ado, here is the first workout.

    full close grip deadlifts- 205# x 11 reps
    overhead box squats- 140# x 9 reps
    hack lunges- 65# x 10 reps
    three chair pushups- 30# x 7 reps
    full close grip pullups- 5# x 7 reps (the deads took a little wind out of my pullup sails)

    All in all a short and sweet workout. I am already looking forward to Tuesday morning"s workout.

  2. Totentanz

    Totentanz Super Moderator Staff Member

    Those are some weird exercise selections compared to the typical routine. Looks like you are training legs a lot heavier than upper body too. Any specific reason for these choices?
  3. Paul Brewer-Jensen

    Paul Brewer-Jensen New Member


    Full close grip deadlifts work the whole posterior chain including low and mid traps and rear delts and forearms. The overhead squats work upper traps and lateral delts in addition to the squatting muscles of the legs. Weighted 3 chair pushups work the pecs, front delts, short heads of the triceps, and abs well. Pullups are great for the lats, brachialis, and brachioradialis and the long ticep heads somewhat. My routine has a "little" bit of upper body work.

    Since I train alone, all of the exercises I do are ones that I can bail out of by myself. If I get stuck in an overhead squat, I can drop it in front of me. I have bumper plates and I train mostly at home outside in my front yard. Dropping weights on the ground only upset the chickens. I live on 10 acres and the nearest neighbor's house is not visible from my "gym". I could train naked and nobody would know. I love me some solitude.

    Anyway, down to training log business.

    full close grip deads 225 x 10
    overhead bucket squats 145 x 9
    hack lunges 75 x 9
    three chair pushups 32.5 x 7
    full close grip pullups 7.5 x 7

    The following day 11-6-12
    FCGDL's 235 x 9
    OHS 150 x 8
    hack lunges 80 x 7
    3CPU 35 x 7
    FCGPU 10 x 7

    I'll take tomorrow off and expose the body to the progressing load Thursday morn.

    Today's diet consisted of

    Breakfast- 6AM
    large mug of coffee and heavy cream (no sugar because that **** is poison)
    a few thick slices of cheddar cheese
    6 soft boiled home grown eggs
    almost 1/2 gallon of raw whole goats milk plus a sip of goats milk yogurt to inoculate the gut
    500mg vit C and a B50 complex
    Breakfast was eaten pre workout over the course of a couple of hours.

    Lunch 2PM
    6 more soft boiled home grown eggs
    more slices of cheese from a large store bought block
    quart of goat milk yogurt
    a few hands full of unsalted dry roasted peanuts
    water to wash it all down
    500 mg vit C and B50 complex

    I will do no more eating for the rest of the day. I will pop out of bed tomorrow morning without the aid of an alarm and not hungry but I'll eat breakfast anyway and then get out to do chores.

  4. Jester

    Jester Well-Known Member

    Have to comment on those soft-boiled eggs ...

    ... scrambled is totally the way to go ;)
  5. Paul Brewer-Jensen

    Paul Brewer-Jensen New Member

    11-7-12 was a one meal day and a day off from lifting.

    The feeding window was 6AM to 9AM. I drank a large mug of coffee with heavy cream, ate a few slices of cheddar cheese, drank 9 raw eggs, and drank a quart and a half of raw goat's milk. Supps were C 500 and B50 complex.

    I was good and hungry just before bedtime but the pang went away before I retired. I woke up this morning feeling no hunger at all. I was curious to see how I would feel doing a lifting workout fasted, so I only drank a large mug of plain black coffee and then went to it after doing some chores.

    The workout went down like this.

    full close grip deadlifts 245 x 9
    overhead squats 155 x 8
    hack lunges 82.5 x 8
    3 chair pushups 37.5 x 7
    full close grip pullups 12.5 x 7

    I did a couple of warm up sets for each exercise... just enough to grease the groove. I felt good even though I was fasted for almost 24 hours.

    The post workout meal (8 to 9AM)consisted of 4 soft boiled eggs, a few slices of cheese, a spoonful of plain yogurt with live active cultures, and my usual dose of morning goat's milk.

    Lunch at 2 to 3PM consisted of 8 soft boiled eggs, more plain yogurt, more cheese slices, and some unsalted dry roasted peanuts. That will do me for the day.

    I think I will do another one meal day tomorrow at lunch time and then have another fasted workout Saturday morning.


    I dig scrambled eggs too. A stick of salted butter and around 10 eggs scrambled together and maybe some chopped kale thrown in really hits the spot.
  6. Paul Brewer-Jensen

    Paul Brewer-Jensen New Member


    1 meal day at lunch time (1 - 2PM)
    8 soft boiled eggs
    1 cup of plain yogurt
    1 quart of raw whole goat's milk
    some cheddar cheese slices

    11-10-12 AM fasted workout, 1 large mug of plain black coffee

    full close grip deadlifts 255 x 8
    overhead squats 160 x 8
    hack lunges 85 x 8
    3 chair pushups 40 x 7
    full close grip pullups 15 x 7

    breakfast 10 to 11AM

    10 eggs scrambled with one stick of butter
    1 quart of goat's milk
    spoonful of plain yogurt
    2 small apples

    lunch 2 to 3PM

    half a pound of unsalted dry roasted peanuts and half a stick of salted butter (a pat of butter + handful of peanuts together)
    spoonful of plain yogurt


    breakfast 7 to 7:30AM

    bowl of crock pot goat meat and broth chopped onions and salt
    quart of goat's milk
    spoonful of plain yogurt

    lunch 1 to 2PM

    2 bowls of goat meat broth (nice layer of fat on top)
    8 soft boiled eggs
    half a pint of heavy cream
    1 oz. of 70% dark chocolate (dessert splurge)


    AM workout fasted + plain black coffee

    FCGDL 265 x 8
    OHS 165 x 7
    hack lunges 90 x 8 (R and L)
    3CPU 42.5 x 6
    FCGPU 17.5 x 6

    breakfast 8 to 8:30AM

    2 bowls of goat meat + broth
    1 quart of goat's milk
    1 spoonful of plain yogurt

    lunch 11AM to noon

    a few large slices of cheddar cheese
    half a pound of peanuts washed down with a pint of heavy cream
  7. Paul Brewer-Jensen

    Paul Brewer-Jensen New Member

    I thought I should post some photos of myself in order to illustrate the exercises that I do and to show what a high fat full time ketogenic diet does for my body, lest any of you think I am a wobbly blob of adiposity.

    The starting position at the beginning of a set of full close grip deadlifts


    and the near bottom position between reps


    and near the top


    My eldest daughter graciously humored me by taking all of the photos this past Saturday. It was a beautiful November day here in North Carolina, USA.
  8. Paul Brewer-Jensen

    Paul Brewer-Jensen New Member

    Here are some more photos

    over head squats at the bottom ... My heels are on a 2x4 that is obscured by the grass.


    and at the top


    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Nov 12, 2012
  9. Paul Brewer-Jensen

    Paul Brewer-Jensen New Member

    hack lunges





    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Nov 12, 2012
  10. Paul Brewer-Jensen

    Paul Brewer-Jensen New Member

    three chair weighted pushups



  11. Paul Brewer-Jensen

    Paul Brewer-Jensen New Member

    and finally full close grip pullups






  12. Paul Brewer-Jensen

    Paul Brewer-Jensen New Member

    Sorry about the duplications. I don't know how I made the thumbnails and I can't figure out how to delete them. Oh well.

    Keep on lifting
  13. Jester

    Jester Well-Known Member

    I'm a fan of that style push ups too, great for range of motion.

    How in hell do you position that weight yourself, or is that assisted?

    Just looking at your diet, it seems your primary protein source is eggs (great btw), but I'm wondering if your total protein intake is high enough if you're training for size?

    Diet looks pretty unreal though, I'm guessing intermittent fasting is something you just adapted to over time?
  14. Paul Brewer-Jensen

    Paul Brewer-Jensen New Member


    I sit on the edge of the platform that my feet are on in the photos (my third "chair") and lean the plates against my lower back. Then I stand ups while holding the plates against my back with my hands as far under the bottom edges of the plates as I can get them at the beginning of the launch off the platform. I stand up into a bent row position and make a table with my lower back for the weight. That way I can get my hands on the chairs and then put one foot back at a time onto the platform. In the photos I am doing a demo with just a 35lbs plate. It gets more challenging as the number of plates increases. I'll let you know how challenging it gets as the load increases.

    I'm training primarily for strength, and I want to stay lean throughout the process. If hypertrophy happens that will be a good side effect. I suspect that will happen, but I am going to stay focused on the load progression and see how far I can go with the progression and where it will take me physique wise.

    According to what I have read, being in a keto adapted state is very protein sparing. "The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Performance" by Volek and Phinney is where I've read it on pages 32 - 34. Basically, ketones are similar in structure to BCAA's and are used for energy instead of BCAA's. So, blood leucine tends to be higher in keto adapted people, and higher levels of leucine in the blood cause more mTOR activity.

    Intermittent fasting is much easier on a high fat low carb diet. Hunger is different on a HFLC diet as compared with a high carb low fat diet. It is mellower and if I drink a big glass of water it usually goes away.

    I view carbs as an addictive drug. The more you eat, the more you crave. Fat is not like that. Fat makes me feel satisfied for a long time I think because it slows down stomach motility. It stays in the gut longer than a high carb low fat meal does. I think the blood sugar crash that happens after a low fat high carb meal causes hormonal hunger as well which can happen even as energy is getting stashed away in fat cells. A sugar burner prefers to get energy from a constant inflow of carbs whereas a fat burner can easily tap into the large supply of energy stored in adipose tissue when food is not being ingested.

    Anyway, enough pontificating. Thanks for your reply.
  15. Jester

    Jester Well-Known Member

    I pretty much agree w/your preference for a protein-fat diet w/minimal carbs (it seems like you're only getting it via dairy products, and there's not really that many in those).

    Re: 3-chair push ups - I can imagine extra plates becomes really problematic.

    Cheers for sharing :)
  16. Paul Brewer-Jensen

    Paul Brewer-Jensen New Member


    AM fasted

    FCGDL 275 x 7
    OHS 170 x 7
    hack lunges 95 x 7
    3CPU 45 x 6
    FCGPU 20 x 6
  17. Paul Brewer-Jensen

    Paul Brewer-Jensen New Member

    This is some of the cool-aid (or should I say heavy whipping cream?) I have consumed, digested , and assimilated to make me decide to intermittent fast on a ketogenic diet and have the feeding window be from the morning into the early afternoon. I know that most IFers skip breakfast and the leangains guy has evidence to support eating during a later feeding window, but I just don't sleep well with a full belly.
    I usually wake up without the aid of an alarm not hungry and feeling refreshed and ready to take on the day.
  18. Paul Brewer-Jensen

    Paul Brewer-Jensen New Member

    One last thing for the day,

    My body weight hovers around 215 to 220lbs and my height is 6'3".

  19. Paul Brewer-Jensen

    Paul Brewer-Jensen New Member

    11-17-12 AM fed

    full close grip DL's 285 x 8
    overhead squats 175 x 7
    hack lunges R + L 100 x 7
    3 chair pushups 47.5 x 6
    full close grip pullups 22.5 x 6

    I changed the way I deadlift. The previous workout with 275 lbs I did continuous tension (as much as possible) blowing up and panting down and felt a little twinge in my lower back as a result. My lower back was rounding too much. This workout with 285 I took two breaths per rep. At the start of each rep, I took a deep inhale and held it through most of the ascent. At the top, I exhaled and then sucked in another inhale prior to the descent. I held the air through the descent until I placed the weight as gently as possible on the ground (in order to exploit the benefits of the eccentric portion as much as possible). I then paused at the bottom of each rep in order to exhale and suck in another belly full of air before pulling the next rep. I kept my hands on the bar throughout the entire set. My lower back is much happier this morning. Three cheers for maximizing intra abdominal pressure! The change in breathing also accounts for the increased number of reps with the heavier load.

    I also used breath holding with the overhead squats. I inhaled at the top and held it through the descent, bottom, and sticking point and then blew it up for each rep. That did not confer as big of an advantage as the breath holding did for DL's, but I felt more stable with the squats with the breath holding vs. panting down. So, I paused at the top of each rep in order to get a good inhale prior to each rep.

    I did the breath hold through the descent and bottom of the 3 chair pushups as well. That makes it tougher on the core.

    I feel like this way of breathing will make me able to sustain the load progression for longer with out killing my lower back. Good stuff!
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2012
  20. Paul Brewer-Jensen

    Paul Brewer-Jensen New Member

    11-20-12 AM fed
    All weights are pounds.
    FCGDL 295 x 8
    OHS 180 x 6
    hack lunges 105 x 7
    3CPU 50 x 6
    full CG pullups 25 x 6

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