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Old 01-23-2007, 11:03 AM   #1
Ron Nelson
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Default The Afterburn Experience

After almost a year of putting it off, I finally decided to give the Afterburn program by Alwyn Cosgrove a go. When I first purchased the program, I felt the usual "buyer's remorse." You know, the "how could I spend almost $50 for an e-book that tells me much of what I already knew." So, it sat on my computer for 10 months waiting to be read. . .again, and used.

I finally read it again after finding out Dan John was using it to further his weight loss goal after his Velocity Diet experiment. Since I wasn't going to be going 28 days on shakes for a while (the wife just wouldn't understand and I may not be ready for that type of commitment), I decided to take another look at Afterburn. Other factors that prompted me to do this were the way my pants were fitting (or not fitting), newly gained strength, a growing gut, and my recent car accident that limited the amount of overhead work I could do.

So, I started last Thursday (1-18-07) with day one. The workout calls for 2-3 sets of 20 reps of various exercises (I'm a little wary of going into great detail as AC does charge $50 for the book and copyright infringement seems to be such a hot button issue around these parts). Day one is squat-push up day. Sets are performed in super sets with little or no rest between. Dan once said that you'll scoff at the workouts until your lungs jump put of your chest and attach themselves to an oxygen tank. He wasn't exaggerating. Doing high rep squats followed by a push up variation is daunting, especially if your ego tells you to put some decent weight on the bar. By set 2, I had lowered the squat weight to 95# and felt like crying. . .like Nancy Kerrigan. The rest of the workout is supersets of step ups (I think AC channeled that Waterbury guy with the high frequency training stuff) and rows, then crunches and something called SHELC. Both of the last moves are done on a Swiss ball. Don't laugh, I had a hell of a time keeping the frickin' ball in one place.

Day one left me sore, sweaty, and exhausted, and that was before the "cardio" which is really HIIT done for a few rounds. Couldn't wait for day two.

More on that later.
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Old 01-23-2007, 02:00 PM   #2
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One thing to be mentioned at the start: I did not follow all of the directions laid out by AC to begin Afterburn. First, I took no pictures. I might do that before the second week kicks in. Next, I didn't weigh in before I started. I weighed in last night on a horribly uncalibrated gym scale. According to the scale and after adjusting for its crappiness, I weigh 225. That's about 10 pounds over my normal "fighting" weight. The goal is 205 or lower. Finally, no body fat measurements. This would entail talking to someone at the gym and listening politely to his/her advice. I have no time for that, so BF guesstimate is 19%. It might be higher.

I'm looking to shed the fat in eight weeks; reevaluate then go from there. If the progress is good, but could do better, I'll ramp up the next eight weeks. If progress is great, I might switch back to the New Rules and start Strength II.

Day 2: Deadlifts and presses. Again, 2 sets of 20. I went with 135# for the DL and felt reasonably good. I'll up the weight by 10# tomorrow. Seated DB shoulder press 25#. Felt right, especially since the accident screwed up my screwed up shoulders. The rest of the workout consisted of sets of split-squats and pullovers, then more goddamn Swiss ball work. I hate split-squats, but love what single leg work does for my stength and GPP. As for the Swiss ball work, who knew it could be humbling?

Diet has to shift as well. I've been eyeballing my diet for too long. I need to go back to what works. A fanatical devotion to the Pope, er, Atkins (sorry, the Spanish Inquisition reference was irresistible). If I go all protein, all the time with very clean carbs (oatmeal, veggies, no corn, rice, tortillas) I can lose weight (fat) very fast. I'm doing it.
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Old 01-23-2007, 02:30 PM   #3
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Yeah, I was crying after the first two days. Alwyn had a good chuckle at my expense and told me "You should know that you can't judge a workout just by looking at it, and not doing it."

Those SHELCs: Made my hamstrings cramp up for the first set.

The other swiss ball shit, those one legged glute bridges, I managed only a few reps after I was cooked from the rest of the workout.
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Old 01-23-2007, 03:38 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Shafley View Post
Yeah, I was crying after the first two days. Alwyn had a good chuckle at my expense and told me "You should know that you can't judge a workout just by looking at it, and not doing it."

Those SHELCs: Made my hamstrings cramp up for the first set.

The other swiss ball shit, those one legged glute bridges, I managed only a few reps after I was cooked from the rest of the workout.
I was so pissed off after the DL workout because I could not manage more than 10 of those jackknife moves. Glad I'm not alone on this.
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Old 01-23-2007, 09:40 PM   #5
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Was going to do my cardio, GPP, metcon, HIIT, whatever you want to call it today, but ran around getting my soccer, basketball, and tennis teams off to tournament games today. That and my son may have given me a cold, which I'm in denial about, and I decided to take the day off.

Double duty in the gym tomorrow after my ART appointment.
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Old 01-25-2007, 01:12 PM   #6
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Looks like the cold has taken a hike.

Last night, went for the DL/DB press; Bulgarian split-squat/DB pull over; Prone hip extention/jackknife workout.

Upped the DL's to 145 for 20/ 2 sets with DB press at 25#. Sets of 20 are definitely harder than they seem. Grip became a factor during the second DL set. Shoulders felt good through set one; set two, my left seemed to weaken first.

As for the split-squats and pull overs, I can safely say my left side is the stronger for split-squats, but sucked at pull overs. I actually worked to failure on the pull overs using 20# DB's. That was a first.

The hip extentions gave me fits last time. I was only able to do 10 per side before crying like a schoolgirl whose Justin Timberlake CD got scratched. I worked up to 15 per side last night. Improvement! (and I got a new JT CD) The jackknives suck.

The plan is to do one more of each workout using 2 sets, maybe upping the weight, then going for the 3 sets of 20 for the next three rounds. I'm not looking forward to it.
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Old 01-29-2007, 09:26 AM   #7
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Friday was squat/T-push ups, step ups/seated row, crunches/SHEL-C.

Workout was cut short due to car issues stemming from our accident (had to go turn in our loaner and get a new rental until the car is repaired). Left the gym right after the rows were finished.

Warm up was hang power snatches. Worked up to 5x95. Felt and looked good. I've been practicing these in warm ups and it has paid off. Going to try and up the weight soon.

I was determined to wait until the half way point before going for the third round of each workout. Turns out I have no patience. I went for the third round of squats and push ups this time. That hurt. My back is still aching from the third set of 20 squats using only 95lbs. Yikes.

Step ups and rows were only 2 rounds as I was cut short by the calling of my wife beckoning me to return. No cardio.

After 2 weeks, down 5 pounds. Probably gained it back after a birthday celebration with the in-laws. Went to a Basque restaurant where they serve you food until you explode. The soup was irresistible.
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Old 01-30-2007, 11:48 AM   #8
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Last night was deadlift night. Decided to take it up to three rounds of 20 on the DL and shoulder press. I kept the weights the same on the press and lowered the DL to 135#. I kept the rest period to one minute between sets.
Results: my shirt looked like I went swimming. My heart rate stayed up around 140-150 while lifting and 120 at rest. I also went 3 rounds with the Bulgarian split squats and pull-overs. I reduced the pull over weight to 17.5 in each hand, while the split squats were weighted (10#) for the first two rounds. I felt frisky and did the third round unweighted, but barefoot.

That's how you make friends in a commercial gym.

Skipped the hip extentions and jackknives to get home and watch Heroes.

I'll do them today with the cardio. Ugh, cardio.
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Old 02-01-2007, 06:02 PM   #9
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Last night was round 4 of the squat workout. As planned, I added the third round to keep the progression moving. This time, I added round three to everything: squats, T-push ups, step ups, rows to the neck, and the Swiss ball crap.

Results: I felt like this is the workout that kicked my arse. I was close to worthless after three rounds of 20 squats with 95# on the bar. It really has me wondering if I'm losing strength as I struggled through the second and third sets. The push ups were OK; the step ups seemed fine; the rows sucked. It's the squats that killed me. That and the freaking Swiss ball moves. I finished with some rack pulls. Worked up to 305# for 3. I'm going to add in some partials like this at the end of each workout just to get some strength training in.

Tomorrow is deadlift day and weigh in day.
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Old 02-02-2007, 11:41 AM   #10
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Solid work Ron. Sounds like it's working well for you.

Are you tracking kcal.s or just focusing on clean protein?

My reason for asking is this. I love couplets and complexes like this but I find they make me ravenously hungry. If I don't eat, I start to fade after a week or so and requisite intensity drops. If I do eat I tend to grow, weedlike. If the overall gaol is smaller, (it is in my case) this could be challenging. Interested to hear what your experience has been vis a vis hunger response.

Last edited by Dave Van Skike; 02-02-2007 at 11:42 AM. Reason: english is apparently my second or third language.
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