December 30, 2012

December 28, 2012 Lower Body

  • Squats: 225*10 235*10 245*10 255*10....and I'm toast.
  • Pin Squats: 255*3 265*2
  • BB Split Squats: 95*5-quads done 95*10
  • Good Mornings: 95*4 -quads gave out, move these to DL Day
  • Paloffs: 90*10 100*10
  • Sauna: 212 degrees*17 minutes
45 minutes

Whelp let me take you through my thoughts on those 4 sets of squats.  225: Oh this isn't so bad.  235: Kinda getting tired. 245: ugh  255: I think I might vomit.  I did 40 reps of squats here, I think in the last 4 weeks I haven't done that many combined.  Definitely going to take some getting used to.  I notice that during the workout my quads are toasted, but the day after it's my ass & hamstrings that feel the brunt of the soreness.  Pin squats went well, actually added a rep on 255.  On the split squats I did 5 that first set and needed to take a break, came back about 3 minutes later and got the 10 reps there.  Tried good mornings but my quads just couldn't support me, even though they're not the mover on the weight at all, they were just done.  Moving those to deadlift day after the deadlifts & o-lifting.  Upped weight on paloffs, that went well.  Jumped in the sauna after to try and stay loose.  

December 27, 2012 Upper Body

  • Incline Bench: 185*10 195*9 200*9 - lactic acid
  • Pullups: 40*5 40*5 40*4...still decimated from higher reps on incline
  • Rope Pullups: 6
  • Standing Press: 95*10 105*10 115*7 - lactic acid again.
  • DB Rows: 120*10 120*10
  • DB Flat: 100*7 100*4
45 minutes

So as I noted previously, I was going to do a cycle of 8-10 rep sets on virtually all movements.  I figured it couldn't be that hard, even though I haven't gone over 4 or 5 reps on a set of a major exercise in 36 months.   I threw 185 on the bar for incline benching, got to 7 reps and started to feel the lactic acid building up, and on the 8th & 9th it intensified.  The burn by the 10th I thought was going to liquefy my pecs.  It's going to take a couple weeks to get used to this....fortunately I'm bulking so the higher reps should help build muscle mass, and the extra work should chew up some calories metabolically.  After the 3 sets of incline benching my delts/tris/chest were completely done pretty much.  I tried the pullups with a lighter weight intending to do sets of 10, since I can do 3-4 with 80 lbs hanging off me.  Yeah, wasn't happening.  You can see things like the DB rows that I actually have been doing higher rep sets on recently were unaffected, but the exercises I made the change-over on were tough sledding.   We'll see what happens next week.  Can't wait for leg day tomorrow!  

December 26, 2012

December 26, 2012 Thoughts 2

Was reading an old post here tonight.  I was talking to a friend who works as a trainer, who is great at it, and just loves every part of fitness and what it brings to life.  We have these long philosophical conversations that usually start of being about the gym, but then end up going all over the place.  "If I want to move something, I just pick it up and move it. I don't have to wait for help".  That's how it started tonight.

But I got to thinking about how much I love how I feel.  It feels awesome, literally awesome. My peers are going gray, are in terrible shape, and need several cups of coffee to get up in the morning. My energy is as high as when I was a teenager, I can do anything "physical" for hours, my body even when I'm bulked is still harder than 99% of the male population.  I never have to worry about being overpowered, or not being up to a physical task.    I look closer to 24 than 31.  I love this feeling, because nobody gave it to me.  I worked my ass off to get where I am.    I wrote the post I referenced in the first sentence of this post about a year and a half ago.  It's true.  So true to this day.  I don't need validation from anyone anymore; and the thing is I barely and I mean barely needed it before I started down this path, and now it is just vapor. I am entirely self-driven at this point.   I want to do something with my life that I enjoy for a career, and so I am. I want more free cash, so I restarted my IT & Web Design consulting business.   No second thoughts, no intimidation.

The gym, or maybe just physical fitness in general, teaches you that outside of the gym others can impact your progress, but that within the gym it's 100% you.  But here's the thing, if you progress far enough, and you'll know when you get there, it'll dawn on you.  Others can effect your goals outside of the gym, but they can't stop you.  They can be barriers or impediments.  You can be a deaf wrecking ball that decimates the obstacles and walls they throw up for you.  Be sure to listen to advice, but if you find someone discouraging you, there's a 99% chance they're doing it because they don't want you to exceed them.  Society functions by pulling everyone back to the median.  But not me. Not us.   You want to achieve something in life? You know how you get there?  You fucking do it.  You get up and take the first step, if you don't know what the first step is, you get up and FIND OUT what it is.

I love my life right now.  I love the city I live in. I love that I'm seeking out a new challenge in restarting my IT business.  I'll let you guess how many shits I give about people who comment on my sources of income.  I'm self-made, because I made myself, if that makes sense.  If it makes sense to you, then you 'get it' or you're well on your way to true independence.   I don't look at challenges as frustrations or obstacles anymore, I look at them as another step to conquer on my path to get where I want to be in life.    I don't care about the validation of others, or even their support.  If you do support me somehow, great, but if you don't support my goals, then stand on the sidelines of my life, where you belong.

Case in point: I have someone in my family/life that loves taking shots at everything I do. Whether it's trading stocks for money on the side, becoming a psychologist, running my own IT consulting business, moving to Boston (my favorite city on Earth). They need to constantly take shots, usually passive aggressively at me.  I used to take it to heart for a long time. Why wasn't what I was doing good enough? I was happy, I wasn't starving, why didn't they care? Then one day I realized it was making me angry that they kept taking passive-aggressive jabs, trying to tear down with words what I was trying to build up with actual effort. Then I realized, it's any time I try to make a positive step in my life, each stone along that path was stenciled with jabs from this person.

Now? Thy're more of an annoyance. I don't care. I don't need their validation. I'm living, I love my life. That's the point  OF life. If you're reading this and your sad, or unhappy, or miserable and say "well at least I have xyz" WHY do you want that thing if you're miserable.  Happiness has intrinsic value, your drive has intrinsic value. Some shitty corner-office job where you get a great paycheck, an ulcer, and a reduced quality of life? Nothing there, man.   So why in the bloody blue fuck would I make myself less happy to get a job or a career that someone else thinks I should have? To try and fit myself into the mold that someone else wants me to be, when they clearly don't care if it makes me happy or not, only how it reflects on them. Why would I care what someone who hasn't done anything in 15 years thinks about someone who is trying to do something with their life every day? I wouldn't. I don't.  Now stop wasting my time, I have work to do. 

December 26, 2012 Conditioning & Olympic Lifts

  • Hanging Power Snatch: 135*2 145*1 150*1
  • Hanging Power Cleans: 155*1 175*1 185*1 195*1
  • High Pull: 205*1
  • tiny-small-medium box over jumps - broad jump superset: 10
  • P.U.P.P.: 10
39 minutes

Amazing what not deadlifting 450 lbs. before olympic lifting does for the lifts. I felt great on these, my  form was great, and the weights moved so rapidly.   That last high pull was supposed to be a clean but I couldn't flip it over so it ended up being a high pull.  Added 5 lbs. to the snatch & cleans.   It was about 28 degrees out today, and I need leggings or something before I can run in those conditions, going to go tomorrow most likely and grab some.  Did a series of jumps over boxes into a broad jump, as a supserset.  Love doing that stuff.   Finished with some planks.  

December 24, 2012 Upper body

  • Bench Press: 230*5 260*5 275*3 290*2
  • BB Rows: 235*4 265*5 280*3 300*2
  • Push Press: 200*2 220*2 230*1 Dipping lower helps...duh
  • Neutral Grip Pullups: 70*3 70*2 70*2
  • DB Incline Bench: 95*7 100*4
45 minutes

I think I need to drop weights and do sets of 10 for a few weeks.  I'm plateauing with benching, squatting, etc.  Rows are going up still, so that's good.  I can't be afraid to switch things up.  85% of the time a high weight explosive routine is great for me, but I've been going 36 months now with this high weight stuff.  My body needs a few weeks of switch-up, plus I'm bulking, I could use the extra metabolic work.   O-Lifts & Push Pressing and the like I'll keep low rep high weight, but I think deadlifting, benching, and squatting I'm going to lower the weight and jack the reps way up.  

Rest of the session here wasn't too bad.  I realized I wasn't dipping down on push presses, like at all. Which is why I was having trouble moving the weight.  I dipped my knees forward about 4-6" on the reps today.  Felt great!   Incline bench is continuing to climb, as is the neutral grip pullups.  

December 23, 2012 Conditioning

  • 24" unilateral plyo box jumps: 10
  • 31" plyo box jumps: 15
  • 32" plyo box jumps: 5
  • Viking Quest: 200*0:38 400*1:30 800*2:58 PR!!
Remeasured the boxes, tall box is 24", which is 3" shorter than I thought.  But small box & med box are 3" taller than I thought, so it balances out.  Since I'm still intimidated by having the small box on the tall box for some reason, I put the tiny box (7") on the tall box, and put plates under the legs of the tall box. Going to add a plate (about 1.5") per week til I'm back where I was.  Hence the 31" jumps, followed by the 32" jumps.   

Someone reading this doesn't understand what it's like to tear 5 seconds off your PR in something.  It sounds like..well...5 seconds to an ordinary person.   It's not.  My previous record was 3:03 and I was gassed after that, I was beat.  So what's 5 seconds quicker? I couldn't even stand up for about a minute. I was sucking big lungfuls of air as fast as I could.  I thought I was going to black out.  I fell off the Concept2 and laid on my side for another few minutes til I could actually move.  Then I dragged myself to the stretching area and started stretching to prevent cramps, then just laid back there for about 10 more minutes.  That's what 5 seconds does.  It took me about 5 hours until I felt like I was getting back to normal. The rest of the day though my metabolism was jacked up. My skin wasn't just warm, it was hot, which feels great when it's 35 degrees out.  

December 21, 2012 Lower Body

  • Squats: 260*5 310*3-back sore from deads 325*1 335*X
  • Pin Squats: 245*4 255*2
  • BB Bulgarian Split Squats: 135*3 155*3 175*2
  • Paloffs: 80*9 90*8
  • 28kg KB Swings: 30
  • Inverted TRX Rows: 10
44 minutes

OK, so maxing on deads and then thinking about doing it on squats in the same week was not the brightest idea.  Still I feel like I get out of the hole fine, which indicates my legs & ass are fine, but then I get folded over, which indicates I need to strengthen up my lower back, reverse hypers aren't gonna cut it. Time to put good-mornings in on my deadlift day.  Plus some planks too.  Session wasn't so bad. Upped the weight on bulgarian split squats, knees wobbled a bit though.  Going to up to 90 & 100 next week on paloffs.   Had some extra time so I did some inverted TRX rows after. I actually like them. 

December 22, 2012

December 20, 2012 Creatine: The Silent Killer

The loading portion of this is completely unnecessary, but I think this breaks down how/what creatine does in the most clear, easy to understand way I've seen.  

and just because:

>full bag of creatine about the size of 2 big clenched fists hidden under my car seat
>gotta get home
>hear sirens
>look in rear view mirror to see police
>the car follows me and flashes me to pull over
>die a little
>I pull to the side
>cop car pulls to the side
>see officer getting papers or whatever while inside his car
>getting mad and nervous
>bend forward and lightly punch my door in anger
>see the bag of creatine I hid under the seat
>panic a little, cops in this area are notorious for searches
>processing a solution
>too much creatine to eat
>cop gets out of car
>everything feels in slow motion
>squeeze the bag of creatine in my hand out of rage
>cop getting closer
>shove hand down pants and try to jam the bag up my butt
>cop near the car
>push it up as far as possibly, fighting through the pain and tightness
>try to relax and push but cop is nearing the window
>stop shoving and pull out hand just as cop looks into the window
>cop asks me to roll it down
>act natural and do what he says
>tells me to step out of car
>open door, feel intense butt pain upon first step
>take one more step
>tells me I was speeding and asks for my license, registration
>pull out license from wallet in pocket
>the registration is inside the car
>rage inside hard
>get it from the glove compartment
>take a step to hand it over and suddenly feel a tingling inside my ass
>cop takes registration
>hands start getting tense muscles growing, energy rising
>realize that the creatine bag must have burst open while inside my rectum
>just as cop is about to leave, he notices me getting tense and asks me if there is something wrong
>give him the creatine eyes
>he backs up slightly and reaches for utility belt
>creatine reflexes take over as I grab his arm and yank it
>cop falls to the ground, but gets up quickly
>grabs his radio and puts it to his mouth, but I kick him with the force of a rocket
>creatine is in control of my mind and body now
>lift cop and throw him into his car
>he lies motionless as I run to the car, lift it over my head and start doing squats
>finish my set and throw it into the traffic
>feel like a train and charge onto the highway, nothing but creatine running through my veins
>wake up in a hospital with a broken arm, leg, and ribs
>the worst part is the creatine withdrawal

December 21, 2012

December 20, 2012 Upper Body

  • Incline Bench Press: 225*3 240*3 250*2
  • Pullups: 80*3 80*2 80*2
  • 1.5 Pullups: 4, 3
  • Standing Press: 140*5 150*2 140*4
  • DB Rows: 120*9 120*9
  • DB Flat Bench: 105*6 110*2 - gassed
  • Band-suspended, iso-hold barbell shrugs w/ underhand grip: 85*6 135*6
39 minutes!

Getting a little antsy with all the 5 rep sets, may do a few weeks of 1-3 rep sets on things like incline, I enjoy them more.  Plus it gives me a little variety after 6 weeks of 5 rep type sets.  Still I'm frustrated with the progress I've made so far. Standing Press hasn't BUDGED, and while the db weights keep going up, I only just added them recently so that explains that part.  Incline bench hasn't gone up at all, I think I may be weaker on it.  I'm baffled. I do have a hard time getting in all the different foods every day, but I'm still at 3700 calories.  How I could go from 2500 to 3700 and actually lose strength is beyond me.  I weighed myself and I'm only 196. I started at 191, and was 194 2 weeks in.  Which means over the last month eating 3700 calories per day, I've gained 2 lbs. Not sure how that's humanly possible. I'm a bit 'softer' than when I started as well, so I know it's not like the added volume is helping burn fat and build muscle.   I'm definitely upping the protein the rest of this bulk, I think reducing it in favor of extra carbs & calories was a mistake. I'm going to keep everything else the same, just add in more chicken.  Also adding in creatine as well, not sure why I ever stopped taking it.    

The band-suspended shrugs were more of an experiment....They'  Not bad, kind of a novelty. Couldn't imagine doing them regularly.  

December 19, 2012 Sprinting

  • 100m: 8
  • Total: 800m

Holy crap was it windy out.  I thought I'd be fine since it was about 45, but there was a 20 mph wind the whole time I was running. Froze my ass off.  Least fun I've had since running right before that Nor'Easter.  Took an extra sprint or two before I felt warmed up.  Only hit top speed for maybe 2 or these, not good times.  Chilly now thinking about it

December 18, 2012 Lower Body

  • Deadlifts: 315*2 385*1 415*1 435*1 455*1-ugly
  • Hanging Power Snatch: 135*2 145*1 150*X
  • Hanging Power Cleans: 160*2 180*1 190*1 200*X 185*1
  • Ab-Wheel: 10, 10

Good times, wanted to bump up the weight for this session on the deadlifting, haven't done that recently. Got up to 455, was hunched over a lot even for me though.  Probably should've done 445 and left it there.  This coming week I'll probably do some RDLs, if my gym is actually open on Christmas.   Was a bit tired after that deadlifting for the o-lifts.  Did them anyway.  Hanging power cleans seem to be going up still, narrowly missed 200.  Unfortunately I slammed the bar into my chest instead of catching it, left a bruise. I'll live.    

December 17, 2012 Upper Body

  • Bench Press: 235*5 245*5 255*5 265*4
  • BB Rows: 235*5 250*5 265*5 275*5 - sketchy 5th
  • Push Press: 195*2 215*1 225*X
  • Neutral Grip Pullups: 65*4 65*3 65*2
  • DB Incline Bench: 95*7 100*4
44 minutes

Bench press is still slogging along, rows are going well, I need to watch my form on them, feel like the set at 275 starts to decompose after the first rep.  May do 235/245/255/265 next week.  Push Press is stagnant as well.  Neutral grip pullups & incline db bench continue to increase, as I've only recently added them in.  Still not sure how I feel about this bulk so far.  Going to up the chicken I'm eating by about 1/4 lbs. per day and see if the extra protein helps any. May add in creatine as well. 

December 16, 2012 Conditioning

  • Unilateral Tall Box Jumps: 10, 10
  • Plyo Bench Clap Pushups: 5, 6
  • 10 lbs. Plate Transfer Planks: 4*1 4*1
  • Viking Quest: 200*0:38 400*1:36 800*3:03 NEW PR!!
28 minutes

Getting used to the jumps, I like the tall box better, I land softer.  The plate transfers were a stack of four 10 lbs. plates, hence the 4*1.  I did one transfer per side per set.   Set new record in the 800 on the rowing.  Next up is sub 3:00

December 20, 2012

December 14, 2012 Lower Body

  • Squats: 250*5 300*5 315*3+X  325*2
  • Pin Squats: 245*4 255*3
  • BB Bulgarian Split Squats: 135*4 135*5
  • Reverse Hypers: 80*2-piroformis 80*5
  • Paloffs: 80*7 90*6
  • 28kg KB swings: 30

Squatting went well, 3rd set I narrowly missed a 4th at 315. I think next week I'll do 3 regular sets and then just see how high I can get on singles.  Pin squats went well, added more weight.  Tried bb bulgarian splits, figured it'd be easy, almost tipped over 3 times on that first set. Second set went better on both legs, but I wanted to leave the weight low so I can get used to it.  Didn't warm up at all, will next week with the bar, and then 135, and then toss some more weight on, see if I can get 185 at all.  Found another exercise that my piriformis still aches on; weighted reverse hypers. If I do a hold at the top it's not so bad, but a regular version of the movement kills me.  Going to up the weight next week on paloffs.

December 13, 2012 Upper BOdy

  • Incline Bench: 235*4 240*3 225*4
  • Pullups: 80*2 80*2 80*2
  • Rope Pullups: 7, 7
  • Standing Press: 135*5 150*2 160*1
  • DB Rows: 120*8 120*8
  • DB Flat: 100*6 110*2-gassed
  • Battling Rope-Rope Slam S.S: 40-10 40-10
40 minutes!

Wow...blazed through this one.  I will say though I'm getting a little weary of using the light weights on things. I think I may go back to the 3 rep sets on several movements, including standing press and incline bench.  I feel a bit listless for this bulk, I had some goals about increasing volume, and  using DB work as well as some unilateral leg stuff.  That's going fine, but I wonder if the extra work is burning the extra calories I'm taking in. 

I'm having trouble in the evenings getting all the calories in; usually in previous bulks I'd eat more rice, more chicken, more steak. This time I've tried adding in extra kinds of foods, sometimes I miss the 2nd shake, but I try to have more earlier in the day in the form of bread or something carby to make up for it.  Still though without that shake I'm probably a shade below 200g of protein per day.  I thought going in that by eating more carbs my body would be more efficient in delivering protein to where it's needed....looking like total broscience.  I think I need to be at 225 consistently to be  gaining how I want. Because right now things are just going way too slow gain wise.  I don't feel like on the main movements I'm gaining that much.  The extra DB stuff I added in I am, but that's because I haven't done them in a while.  Otherwise I feel stagnant, if not weaker than when this bulk started...going to give it another week and see how it goes. 

Workout itself was decent, db rows added a rep, db flat upped the weight. 

December 13, 2012

December 12, 2012 Sprinting

  • 100m: 7
  • total: 700m

I hate running in the freezing cold. I need to get tights for my legs; I've got 5 layers on my upper body and only my shorts on with my legs hanging out.  As such by about 700m I felt like my lungs were going to seize up and my legs were going to cramp.  Will try to pickup leggings or something  this weekend. 

December 11, 2012 Lower Body

  • BB DL: 315*3 385*3 415*3
  • Hanging Power Snatches: 135*3 140*2 145*1
  • Hanging Power Cleans: 155*3 175*3 185*3
  • Ab-Wheel: 10, 10
45 minutes

OK, so going with what I mentioned yesterday I'm going to up the weight on the 3rd set of deadlifting, not all the way up to my 1RM, but still bumping it up. I'm only going to do 1 rep at that weight, and then maybe a fourth set where I bump up the weight a bit more and do 1 rep. Maybe I'll do that 4th set every other week or something.   Same with snatches & cleans.  The first set I'll keep the reps at 3.  Then the 2nd & 3rd I'm thinking heavier one rep sets, or a series of heavier one rep sets.  As it is now my hips are fried by the time I get to about the 2nd set of snatches. The cleans are going well, adding weight. 

December 10, 2012 Upper Body

  • Bench Press: 230*5 260*5 275*3 290*2
  • BB Rows: 235*5 250*5 265*5 275*4
  • Push Press: 195*3 215*2 225*X
  • Neutral Grip Pullups: 65*4 65*3 65*2
  • DB Incline: 90*7 95*5

Forgot to start my stopwatch at the beginning here. Whoops.  Otherwise session went ok, felt a little flat on the benching & push presses.  The rows, incline benching, and pullups all felt fine though.  Added an extra rep on the first set of neutral grips. Going to up weight on incline to 95 & 100 next week.   Also I think what I'm going to do on all the 'power' movements (push press, snatches, cleans) is for the first set or two do my 3 reps, but instead of going for a few on the final set, just go for one.  I'll up the weight some from what I'm attempting now, but not go so high that I'm right at my 1RM every week.  That'll let me get in some higher weights, hopefully stress my joints & CNS less, but also build strength in the movements as well.  

December 9, 2012 Conditioning

  • Unilateral 27.5" plyo box jumps: 10, 10
  • Bench Plyo Clap Pushups: 5, 5
  • Viking Quest: 200*0:36 400*1:24 800*3:22
  • 28kg kb swings: 30
  • wide-stance anti-rotational chop: 50*10
29 minutes

Good stuff, getting the unilateral jumping down.  The first few weeks I realized I was basically doing an explosive leg raise.  This time I tried making sure I was moving my hips back and exploding, with good results.  Definitely felt the difference.  Tied a record on the 400m portion of the rowing.  It's funny I always think I'm way off pace on the 800 since I'm usually toasted, but I'm never more than a few seconds off my PR pace.  Finished with swings & chops. 

December 7, 2012

  • Squats: 290*5 310*4 325*2
  • Pin Squats: 245*4 265*2
  • DB Bulgarian Split Squats: 55*5 65*5
  • Reverse Hypers (3 second top hold): 65*6
  • 28kg kb swings: 30
  • Paloffs: 80*6 90*4
42 minutes

Ripped through this workout pretty swiftly.  Slowly accumulating strength in the squat.  I'd like to see what my 1RM is pretty soon, maybe this coming week.  Pin Squats are going well too.  The top hold on the reverse hypers seems to be helping with posture on squatting, at least I think it is.  Also moved up weight on paloffs with good results. 

December 6, 2012 Upper Body

  • Incline Bench: 230*5 240*4 250*3
  • Pullups: 80*2 80*2 80*2
  • Rope Pullups: 7, 7
  • Standing Press: 135*5 140*4 145*3
  • DB Rows: 120*7 120*7
  • DB Flat: 95*7 105*4
  • Medicine Ball Wall Throws: 16*10 16*10
44 minutes

Good session.  Going to start with 105 on DB Flat this coming week.  Strength has gone up significantly each week on the added in exercises I'm doing this bulk.  On Standing Press I may try pushing my 1RM for a few weeks, I usually respond well to that on other movements, hopefully will there too.  

December 9, 2012

December 5, 2012 Sprinting

  • 200m: 1
  • 100m: 2
  • 200m: 1
  • 100m: 2
  • 200m: 1
  • Total: 1000m
Decided to mix it up here.  I actually like that, the 100s seem so much easier after doing a 200 right before them.   Good session, was pretty cold out though, and I still hate running in the chilly weather. 

December 6, 2012

December 4, 2012 Lower Body

  • Deadlift: 315*3 275*3 415*2
  • Hanging Power Snatch: 135*3 140*3
  • Hanging Power Cleans: 155*3 175*3 185*2
  • Ab-Wheel: 10, 10
  • Viking Quest: 200*0:42 400*1:32
45 minutes

Meh...was pretty lethargic here.  Went earlier in the day; I tend to do best working out between 4-6PM, earlier than that and I just don't have the same energy.  Felt like I was moving in slow motion here.  Hanging Power cleans are still improving fortunately, that's one area I feel I've been lagging on.   Didn't do a 3rd set on snatches as I was feeling sleepy, same with the rowing. 

December 3, 2012 Upper Body

  • Bench Press: 230*5 255*5 270*5 290*3
  • BB Rows: 225*5 245*5 260*5 270*4
  • Push Press: 190*3 210*3 220*2
  • Neutral Grip Pullups: 65*4 65*3 65*3
  • DB Incline: 85*8 90*4
46 minutes

Gradually building strength here as I gain weight.  I always find it interesting how it's one rep here, 5 lbs. there.  It's never an explosion where one week you suddenly bench or row 20 lbs. more than you could the week before.  I think that in and of itself is why so many people stop short of their goals or give up so quickly.  When you first start working out, you're sore, you're tired, you're probably not eating properly yet, or sleeping enough.  Then to top it off, even with your faster noob-gains, you're still not exploding by any means.    There should be an informational packet given to you when you first start.   Session went well, I want 275 on push press this time, going to really push for it...hurrrr.  Added a rep on the pullups. Next week I'll go 90-95 on incline, and probably stay there for the week after as well.  Kind of surprised at how strong my rows have been, I've been mixing them up week to week, but I always use regular overhand BB rows as my benchmark.   I'm starting out pretty close to where my PR was just two years ago.   Perhaps all the unilateral work helped, doing the unilateral t-bar rows, and adding in db rows as well. 

December 2, 2012 Conditioning

  • Unilateral Tall Box Jumps: 5 per leg
  • Place Jumps: 10
  • Plyo-Bench clap-pushup: 5, 5
  • Side-Planks: 40 seconds
  • P.U.P.P.: 1:00
18 minutes

Quick session here, did tall box jumps unilaterally this time.  Didn't get them quite as cleanly as the medium box jumps.  We'll see how it goes next week.    Brought back side-planks.  

December 5, 2012

November 30, 2012 Lower Body

  • Squats: 235*5 285*5 310*4 320*2
  • Pin Squats: 235*4 255*3
  • DB Bulgarian Split Squats: 40*10 55*5
  • 28kg kb swings: 30
  • Reverse Hypers, 10 second hold: 4,4
  • Paloffs: 60*10 80*6
45 minutes

Good session, building up strength on squats again. Pin squats felt great, the first couple weeks I had to fight from getting folded over on them, this time I was able to stay upright much easier.  I gotta up weight on Bulgarians a bit, the 10 rep stuff is ok, but I like heavier weights.   Also upping weight on Paloffs, the light weight stuff makes no sense, I'm trying to build core strength, not endurance.  

December 4, 2012

November 29, 2012 Upper Body

  • Incline Bench Press: 230*4 240*3 250*3
  • Pullups: 80*3 80*2 80*2
  • Rope Pullups: 7, 7
  • Standing Press: 115*5 135*5 145*3
  • DB Rows: 115*9 115*9
  • DB Flat Bench: 90*9 100*5
46 Minutes

People reading this probably don't know much about me, but I can get quite nostalgic.  So as I entered this workout into the little green notebook I bought at I think it was CVS, I felt a bit of that wistfulness.  The final page in the notebook has been filled.  The first workout in it was from November 19, 2007.  I had only been in Boston a little over two months at that point.  My life was so different; no masters degree, I hadn't even done my first bulk or cut yet.  I was probably about 173 lbs at that point, at about 11% bf.  So here it is with the first page folded out, and the last page on the left.  The little perforated parts ripped a bit on both of them so they're loose leaf now, but they'll go into my folder with all my other old workout logs/sheets/plans.  It's great to see the progress; if you look at the workout on 11/19, my incline bench peak was 145 lbs. for 7 reps, and I peaked at 210 on bench pressing.  I was wondering at the time I started that notebook, if I would ever get to push the big big weights.  I had improved my diet, and gained some strength but didn't see it explode. It wasn't until about a year after this that I did my first bulk and started to grasp truly how to gain strength, power, and speed.  What a great 5 years it's been in the gym.  I always wondered as I carried this little notebook around with me, would I ever lose it before I completed it, and should I just pull out the completed pages.  Now that it's done, I'm glad I didn't.  I have plenty of loose-leaf pages from the years in the gym, documenting probably about 90% of my workouts going back through the nearly 14 years I've been doing this, but this is the first complete bound volume.  I think for my next log I'm going to do one workout per side of a sheet, maybe 2, and take more notes about how I'm feeling, what I'm doing, why I failed a rep, etc.  

The workout was good, I like mixing up the pullup types.   Progressing on standing press as well, and my body is rapidly adapting to the increased volume with the DB work on the end.  Energy levels feel good, as does my strength.