I just finished Week 4 of my program, and I'm feeling really strong. Like really.
I've been having some trouble sticking to whole foods (meats and fresh fruits and veggies) in my diet as freaking always, but it's actually working in my favor, because it helps me eat enough each day to keep my strength up. One major flaw in my previous program was that I completed the entire thing on about a 300 calorie deficit, and my strength definitely suffered as a result. I upped my intake to ~maintenance (small 50-100 calorie deficit), and the benefits are really showing.
As mentioned in my last post, when I look at what's programmed for a day part of me thinks, "man, I don't know if I can do that..." but then I nail the workout, and it feels pretty damn good. I haven't failed any programmed lift yet, and I hope it stays that way. Additionally, for many of the heavier weights I'm given a range of reps to shoot for, and so far, I've been able to hit the maximum number of reps within those ranges every time. That also feels pretty freakin' awesome.
I really think this program has done wonders to bring my confidence back up. I was feeling really good before going on vacation in November, and for the first part of that vacation my progress continued linearly, but then I lost access to a gym, I got really sick, and my progress dropped off dramatically for ~3 weeks. It wasn't until mid-December that I was able to start following my old program again, and even that program was bringing down my strength and confidence, because there were so many things wrong with it. It wasn't at all conducive to my progress, but I was too stubborn to come off of it early.
Then, as you all know, I tested my maxes again before starting this current program (Candito 6 Week Strength Program), and that was extremely disappointing, because my numbers either DROPPED or stayed the same after 3 months of work. That was one of the worst experiences I've ever had with weight lifting...
But, luckily, this program brought me back up. Four weeks into it and I FINALLY feel like I've gotten back to (and maybe even gone beyond) the strength level I was at before going on vacation last November. Unfortunately I wasted a lot of time and energy on a crappy program, but it happens. It was poor timing with my meet coming up, but you know what? I've got the rest of my life to keep getting stronger. This was just one little 3 month set back, and I'm finally back on top of the hurdle.
It feels great to feel stronk again. ;)