The Agony and the Ecstasy
I've decided to make a training log to build up some credibility and pad my post count. Here's the relative statistics:
I spent the first part of this year focusing on weight gain and went from 170 to about 185. Now I'm getting a little leaner with the goal of being a lean and mean 180.
Goals: Get stronger on the basic movements. I'll be doing my first powerlifting meet in September, so my focus is on the squat, bench, and deadlift, with some assistance lifts and conditioning thrown in. I'm not brutally strong yet, but I've made some solid progress since making strength training my priority last year, and I'm pleased with the way things are going.
Please feel free to post any questions or comments you have.
I usually start with 5 minutes of easy cardio, just to get the blood flowing, but I didn't today because I was afraid the guys from the high school football team were going to show up and take my squat rack.
- head forward and back
- head side-to-side
- looking left and right
- head circles, both directions
- shoulder shrugs, forwards and backwards
- single arm circles, forwards and backwards
- double arm circles, forwards and backwards
- arm hugs
- spinal twists, left and right
- marching in place
- hip circles, both directions
- knee circles, both directions
- wrists, fingers, and ankles
- 10 of each movement for each direction and side
- If you know any good moves I should be doing here, let me know
- I do some warm-up sets too, but I don't usually record them
One-arm DB press: 55x8x2 x each arm
- This went up easy, try 60 next week
Tabata thrusters: 45x8x8
- I used the Dan John variation, 8x8 with 10 seconds rest
Barbell side bends: 45x5 95x5 115x5
- had more in me, but I couldn't balance the bar
- use a different barbell with knurling in the center next time
Straight-leg situps: 50
My goal is to total 1000. That's a little on the optimistic side, but it's a nice round number.
I haven't done a true max in a long time -- like over a year -- but based on my recent workouts, I'd estimate somewhere around 315-225-400. That's a 940 total, with the real value probably +/- 15 pounds from that. I still have 12 weeks to get prepared, and I've been seeing some good gains recently, so I think getting in the upper 900s is very realistic, with 1000 being a more ambitious goal to keep me focused.
I don't have any meet experience, so I'll have to adapt to the challenge of doing my lifts on someone else's schedule, picking openers, etc., but that's part of the fun.
Just for the record, I do all my lifting totally raw (not even a belt, since I don't own one), and that's how I'll lift in the competition.
Walk 1.25 miles carrying two 25 pound plates.
The plates are the kind with wedges cut out of the center, so you can easily hold them by the rims. I had to stop once for a shoelace and once to get rid of a fly, but didn't need any breaks for my grip or shoulders, which was a little bit surprising. I've done this walk with one plate before, and that's pretty easy, but this was the first time I've tried two.
I'm a big fan of the paleo/evolutionary fitness concept, and I find it consistently interesting that every paleo "guru" has his own ideas about how you should exercise.
Art De Vany is all about short high-intensity workouts, and he uses a lot of machines in his routines.
Frank Forencich (Go Animal) talks a lot about playing, and how exercise should be natural and fun.
I have my own ideas -- different from both De Vany and Forencich -- that are mostly theoretical at this point, since I haven't really had time to test them on myself. I'll be happy to share my thoughts if anyone is interested.
The one thing all paleo guys agree on is that cavemen walked a lot, and they usually did it carrying some non-trivial weight. This is a very roundabout way of saying that I decided to mix in the occasional weighted walk because of my paleo interests. I'm not sure how often I want to do this, since this kind of load bearing can be hard on the joints. Probably no more than once a week, increasing the distance or load very gradually.
We are each an experiment, and every workout is another data point.
- 5 minutes on the elliptical machine
- Joint mobility
- Last few reps went up fine, but were a little slow
- Probably cycle back down next week and start buiding back up
- I battled tendonitis for 6 months, so I don't want to push it too hard
Bent-Over Row: 185x4x4
- For some reason, I don't do 8x2 on these
- C&J, 100x8
- 1 pullup
- C&J, 100x7
- 2 pullups
- repeat this pattern until you do one C&J and eight pullups
- Based on a recent WOD
- I did the pullups strict and used a short barbell for the lifts
- Less weight would have made for better metcon
- Just went for completion and hard effort, so no time
Sit-up with bar behind head: 45x2x3
- These are hard as hell, like a total torso destroyer
- I anchor the feet, so there's a lot of hip flexor and stabilizer involvement
Regular sit-up: 50
Walk 1.25 miles. No weight this time. Just a stroll with my wife before dinner.
I'm pretty sore from the last few days, especially in my tree-swinging traps and middle back. Probably do some easy stretching and rolling later tonight.
Felt a little stiff this AM, but it worked itself out once I got up and got moving.
Warm-Up: 5 minute treadmill walk, then joint mobility
- I pause, step away from the bar, and reset for each rep
Weighted Pullup: 45x8x2
- Stay at this weight for at least one more week
Heavyhands walk on treadmill
- 10# DBs, 5% incline, 4 mph, 10 minutes
- alternate curls, curl and press, and quick snatches
Standing ab pullovers: 100x10 110x10
- This is a WSB exercise done on a cable machine
- Stand, hold the bar behind your head, and bend at the waist
- I was in a hurry to leave, so I cut this exercise short
This was my second week with 355 on the deadlift, and everything went up just fine. That said, I think I'll try 360x10x1 for next week. Now that the weights are getting a little heavy, 8x2 is almost too much volume for deadlifts. Ten total reps should still be enough to give a good stimulus.
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