[PROGRAM REVIEW] Ben Pollack’s Free Intermediate Program (2 Cycles)

**History**

Lifting began seriously throughout June 2018, but I played sports competitively throughout my life. She played for a year of lacrosse college as well, but she stopped and has done nothing but raise since then. NSuns ran until I got to the 1000 lb club and after extensive research (not really), I decided to skip the / u / utben (free broker) (https://phdeadlift.teachable.com/p/free-intermediate-program) that you ran Now twice. I was directly linked to the spreadsheet, but Ben wants you to subscribe to his website to download it, which is free / full of great resources, so check it out.

** Before Statistics **

| Sex / Age Male / 20 |
|: – |: – |
| Weight 192 |
| Sqaut | 355 |
| Seat 245
| Deadly leverage 415 |
| OHP | 155

**the program**

Without revealing too much, the program consists of two 4-week sessions and a two-week phase, with the volume gradually decreasing and the volume increasing gradually. Spends week 11 testing new 1RMs, and week 12 is deload. Linear period is relatively standard, but Ben builds it well. Weekly cleavage is a four-day full-body routine, with two thick days and two light days. Light days use shapes close to competing elevators. For example, Day 1 of Week 1 looks like this:

Squat: 3 x 12 @ 65%

Seat: 3 × 12 @ 65%

DB L-Fly: RPE @ 8, @ 9, @ 10×12

Sloppy slopes: RPE @ 8, @ 9, @ 10 x12

It looks like low volume, which is for sure, but he kicked my ass every time I ran it. This is likely because of my poor conditioning constantly.

** What has changed **

* Course 1: I did not change much in this course, other than sometimes staying away from the help work described because of any lame excuses I find, such as the unwillingness to wait for an open machine or the lack of adequate budget well in advance of the semester.
* I also closed High Bar Squat for Low Bar Pause Squat, which I think helped me squat, and it was fun! Weights for this type were all over the place, trying to reach about RPE of most 8 days. I did the same for the 2nd cycle
* Session 2: I found that my seat did not rise as much as I had hoped for after the first session, so I added a fifth day each week focusing on "Pause Preview" about 75% of all I set this week. In theory, this would help fix my shit bench. theoretically.
* I also developed a simple case of biceps tendonitis (undiagnosed, could have been just a strain) which led me to take about 3 weeks of fatal stopping in the middle of cycle 2. Surprisingly, this had no negative effect Big on my results, I am now (mostly) pain-free.
* For many minor variations of the main elevators, you have significantly increased weight per session. Many percents felt very light, especially for standing in the switch position and locking the handle piston, which usually increased dramatically. I still track any weight I did every week to make sure I was continuing to make progress in all the elevators.

**diet**

Nothing new or revolutionary here. I focused primarily on maintaining my weight in the 190-200 range. Calories were not calculated, but protein intake ( ~ 1g / lb) was tracked. I also took creatine inconsistently, because I am stupid and forgot to put it in my coffee.

No other supplements have been taken, as coffee and oatmeal are served before exercise most of the time.

** RECOVERY **

Stretched irregularly, mostly whenever I began to feel the pain was on the horizon. I also started to put a lot of pain in the elbows while I was squatting, probably due to not leaning forward enough and holding me in my arms. To avoid this, I extended the elbows between each group of squats, which seemed to help a lot. Hoping to avoid this problem in the future by fixing my squat model.

I took deload selected after session 1. My training was also inconsistent in general because of life – who had thought that 20 weeks of life could be a lot of interruptions?

With the addition of the 5th pause day in cycle 2, I changed the structure to an 8-day cycle instead of the usual week length. I felt that this helped me avoid injury, but the evidence here is completely incorrect and is mostly based on my belief that the week is an arbitrary length of program structure.

** STATISTICS AT THE END **

| Start Course 1 Course 2
|: – |: – |: – |: – |
| Sex / Age Male / 20 | Male / 20 | Male / 20 |
| Weight 192 | 192 | 195
| Sqaut | 355 | 385 | (405) (https://imgur.com/a/bsfWJne) |
| Seat 245 260 failed 260
| Deadly leverage 415 | 425 | 445 |
| OHP | 155 165 165

** Conclusion of thought / what follows **

I am very happy with how the squat and the thin have progressed in this program. The beating (405) (https://imgur.com/a/bsfWJne) is probably the hardest I've ever faced to lift it – I've reached a dead end halfway. I forgot all the cues I was using: I threw my elbow again instead of keeping it under me, didn't clash with meanings, etc., I forgot how to squat, but hey, I did, who cares? I'll do better next time

Deadlift was a big surprise given the time it took for the holiday I finished. Arbitrary target of 200kg hit a great feeling. I tried to attract 455 right after I was given a good feeling but I couldn't even move. Well, to 495.

The seat was incredibly frustrating, and I think I found out why it didn't rise as much as I had hoped:

1. I'm a bitch
2. I'm bad on the bench
3. I haven't bench enough
4. I haven't eaten enough
5. I'm a bitch

So looking at that, I decided to jump on Deathbench afterwards, and work harder than I was in the past. Pause Bench's groups certainly helped keep the tightness and improve shape, but they didn't translate well into strong gains unlike Squats. Maybe the crazy size of Deathbench is what I need.

In general, I would say that I recommend / u / utben, but really only for Squat and Deadlift. I have responded well to the amount of volume / progress schemes for each of these plans, and I will run the program for these (with my modifications) again in this next cycle. My complaints mainly stem from my failures in a seat and from the light variables in the main elevators – they felt a lot easily.

In the next 10 weeks (after this download) I will return to the large size (B U L K T O 2 4 2) and try to avoid injury. I'm going to do more straightforward too – I bought the ab wheel to make abs more enjoyable. Yay.

Oh, as OHP did.


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