Zach Homol – @ZachHomolPower
It’s no surprise that when lifting heavy there will come a day when the lifts plateau. Sometimes these plateaus will last a month, other times they will last a year. These are very frustrating times and it’s in these times that the weak-minded individuals are weeded out. Let’s keep it real; when you fail to make progress, it’s frustrating. If you aren’t 100% passionate about training it’s even easier to get discouraged and give up. Unfortunately, there’s no way around this dilemma. It’s just the price that needs to be paid in order to reach that next level. It’s like I always say, you need to outlast the iron! Day after day you need to be in the gym, pushing yourself to get better. While this problem is unavoidable, there are a few tricks that can help it go by much quicker.
From proper programming, nutrition plans and understanding your body, you can push past these sticking points on your big 3 lifts. Below there is a Q&A of the most common sticking points that I see for each lift. Note that these movements will help you break past these sticking points but you must continually change in order to continue progressing. While these are just a handful of helpful exercises, I personally continue to rotate my accessory movements weekly or biweekly.
Q: Trouble out of the hole?
A: Work on front squats, pause front squats and 12-inch box squats. Give max effort – 12-inch box squats should be 75% of your 1RM. This should be explosive training with accommodated resistance.
Q: Trouble off the rebound? (halfway up)
A: Max effort, accommodated resistance training with a 12 to 14-inch box. This should also be 75% of your 1RM. Explosive ¾ leg press and weighted box jumps help as well.
Q: Trouble at lock out?
A: Close grip 3-2-1 progression working to a sub max. Close grip floor press is good when done explosive and 75% of your 1RM with accommodated resistance.
Q: Trouble off your chest?
A: Ultra wide grip presses. Explosive training using 75% of 1RM using various grips and accommodated resistance.
Q: Trouble at lock out?
A: Pin pulls through accommodated resistance, both at max effort and explosive training at 75% of your 1RM.
Q: Trouble off the floor?
A: More hamstring work! Explosive training with accommodated resistance at 75% of your 1RM front squats.
Notice how in every situation 1 solution to help break past a sticking point is explosive training. This is not always the case on all sticking points but there will never be a time where the lift is “too fast.”