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  1. #1
    Registered User aztechistory's Avatar
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    Bench Press Stalling, In Need of Advice!

    Been doing stronglifts I'm a noob.....

    Bench Press Stalling, In Need of Advice!
    Hi guys, my bench press is struggling. I'm stuck at 180 lb 3x3. I eat, rest and I am pretty confident in my form. I was wondering if anyone felt accessories helped them to break their plateau? If so what accessories did you add that you feel helped it? Would adding a volume day be beneficial? Or maybe benching 3 times a week heavy instead of two or one times a week? I was thinking about adding pull ups, chin ups and push ups as I feel like I struggle with these due to the weight gain I have gotten since starting this program. I went from 160 to 193 at 5'10-11.
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    SFW! Drew23's Avatar
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    Rows, shrugs, pulldowns for upper back. As heavy as you can while remaining in control. Close grip board press or shoulder-saver benching for 4 sets of 6-8 reps, start with a weight you can get for 4 sets of 8 reps, then add weight the following bench day until you can get 4 sets of 8 reps, and so on. Do these after your main bench movement. Then do heavy tricep pushdowns for high reps.

    Also learn the proper way to bench. If you can find a powerlifting gym, go there and find the best benchers, then learn how. Or post video of your bench, preferably a side angle with your heaviest set.
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    Where is your weakness on your BP,off your chest,half way,at lockout?
    You need to find and address your weakness and hit them hard.
    Answer the above question and then you can find the right answer.
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    Registered User KathleenRyan's Avatar
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    Bench Press Variations that can help get past sticking points:
    Use band tension on the bar
    Use chains
    Do "Paused" presses
    Floor presses
    Isometric bench press (pushing the bar up against safety racks to help reinforce bottom end pushing power)

    If you only ever use a barbell, you can mix it up by using dumbbells as well. Dumbbells also allow you to "alternate" between hands to work on stability if desired. Recently I started doing floor dumbbell presses, alternating between each hand, and doing a pause about 1/4 up the movement before locking out. This has really helped balance my left and right arm strength and coordination.

    I would also advise against lifting ANY muscle group heavy 3x a week. If your workouts are properly intense, your body will not have time to properly recover. More is not always better.
    Last edited by KathleenRyan; 05-31-2020 at 07:35 AM. Reason: Added a thing
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    Abandon stronglifts.

    Stronglifts is for beginners who can literally get stronger after each and every lifting session. It is for super novice only.

    You need a slightly more advanced program. If your currently benching once a week, you will probably have to up it to 2 times per week.

    Texas Method was my go to during intermediate stages of lifting. What is important to know though, it is not a program, but rather a method. Read the book and understand the method, then you can apply it to yourself and phase it in based on what you have already been doing.

    Here are some basics to understanding programming.

    To get stronger you need to
    1. Do enough volume to cause your body to adapt, and
    2. recover from that volume..

    There is a window here and not an exact number. MEV (minimum effective volume) to MRV (maximum recoverable volume)

    The goal of a good program is to put you as close to MRV as possible.
    MEV and MRV change with a million things. Some big ones are, age, strength, lifting history, job, lifestyle. All of these can affect how much volume you need to do to get stronger and also how much recovery you have.

    So, if you have hit a plateau, you are not doing one of the two things listed above. Basically, you're either not doing enough volume, or your doing too much and can't recover from it. A simple 3x3 is not enough info to know which of these two you fall into. Progression over time, deloads, etc... all need to be understood to tell if your within MEV and MRV.

    As you get more advanced, it gets a bit more complicated because MEV and MRV tend to get closer, so you're volume window starts to shrink. You have to be more accurate with how much volume to do to progress. Also, Squat, Bench and deadlift are cause high amounts of fatigue, and eventually (you aren't here yet) strictly using those lifts will not allow you to reach MEV before you are unable to recover. The answer there is to get required volume through lower fatigue inducing accessories. Thats why super advanced programs have a million accessories.

    The bottom line for yourself is you probably aren't doing enough volume. Read up some basic programming, apply the methods and you will have a good base of knowledge for the next few years.
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    Best lifts 628/391/727 - Best Total: 1747
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    Registered User 360365LAWS's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by aztechistory View Post
    Been doing stronglifts I'm a noob.....

    Bench Press Stalling, In Need of Advice!
    Hi guys, my bench press is struggling. I'm stuck at 180 lb 3x3. I eat, rest and I am pretty confident in my form. I was wondering if anyone felt accessories helped them to break their plateau? If so what accessories did you add that you feel helped it? Would adding a volume day be beneficial? Or maybe benching 3 times a week heavy instead of two or one times a week? I was thinking about adding pull ups, chin ups and push ups as I feel like I struggle with these due to the weight gain I have gotten since starting this program. I went from 160 to 193 at 5'10-11.
    With 180# for 3 x 3, accessory work shouldn't be the problem. If your goal is benching a lot of weight then rows are a fantastic exercise, but I'm thinking that you need to bench-press more to bench-press more.

    Since accessory work was the question, my favorite exercises have been cable-fly's, dumb-bell rows, close-grip bench, and lying french-presses. I really doubt that a lack of accessory work is your problem though.
    Last edited by 360365LAWS; 06-27-2020 at 01:39 AM.
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  7. #7
    Registered User Matthewthao30's Avatar
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    I wouldn't reccomend quitting stronglifts, I've seen the 5x5 work wonders for many people I know, myself included. You're probably not doing enough volume. Bench 3x a week and do every accsessory lift you know. I did that for 2 years straight and the only thing that stalled my progress were injuries
    Height 5'8
    Weight 180
    Bench Press 385
    Squat 455
    Deadlift 545
    Age 21
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