Tag Archive: battle ropes


April 17, 2015

Well, time to shake off the winter torpor.

I need to work on my speed and agility, so I will start incorporating that stuff in.

Met up with the trainer for some general conditioning and rehab

1. a series of short speed drills: forwards, backwards, laterals, skipping (lol)

2. some agility drills over the hurdles

3. Wall balls with the medicine ball

4. Medicine ball slams

5. battle ropes for 30 sec on and 30 sec off for a bunch of sets

6. power clean & press from the hang. did the bar for a few sets of 3-6, the 95 pounds for 3 sets of 6

7. Superset: 2 rounds of
a. IYT with the TRX for 10 reps each: I, Y, then T (IYT meaning like a rear delt fly with your arms in 3 different positions)
b. seated 1 arm external rotations with a light DB for 10-12 reps each arm
c. dolphin waves for 10 pulses

Then I did some LISS on the elliptical for 15 min

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Day 12 – good & bad heat

The plan for today was an upper body workout and then one of the more active hot yoga sessions.  Get all my resistance training going.

Showed up for an upper body session with Leslie, and noticed very quickly the burning sensation in my left thigh.  I have an inflamed IT band, it has happened before.  When I first got it, I didn’t know what it was and kept pushing until the burning became very intense, like pressing up against a hot cooking pot.  It is a sign for me when I feel it to ease up on the leg work, get a massage, take care of myself!  Luckily this wasn’t leg day, so I pressed on (get it?)

warm-up with the battle ropes for 2 min

flat bench press w dumbbells:  warmup, 150 x10, x10, x9

incline dumbbell flys:  70 x12, x12, x12

pushups:  12, 15, 15

BREAK:  foam roller massage

Australian pullups:  10, 10, 10

t-bar row:  125 x12, 135 x12, x12

try not to sack yourself!

widegrip pulldowns:  200 x12, x12, 220 x12

cooldown:  5 min on elliptical

 

notes:  the ropes reminded me that my biceps were sore 🙂  Somewhat the biceps, moreso the forearms –> the brachioradialis.  Curse you, zottman curls!  Right at the tendon where the brachioradialis connects to the elbow, that was sore.

The pushups were a mix of real ones and knee ones.  I started off with ones from my toes, and as Leslie saw my back sag, we kept going with ones from my knees.  That is a good point to note for my yoga, as Leslie noted I still sag a lot during chaturanga, and put too much pressure on my shoulders. (She came to yoga with me on Monday, and observed.)  This is common, lots of people have saggy backs in chaturanga, but if I want to rehab my shoulders, I need to tighten up on my form, or just do chaturanga (and pushups) from my knees.

After pushups, we took a break from resistance training to apply the foam roller to my IT band.  It was needed, even getting up and down was sore in my left leg.  The rolling hurt, but hurt in the way that makes you laugh.  Well, it makes ME laugh.  After about 5 min of that, I felt loosened up, so we continued.

My mind waqs still occupied with my IT band, and thinking ahead to yoga, so I sort of went through the motions with the Australian pullups.  In retrospect, my feet should have gone out further, and made it harder.  As fallout from that, I was nudging Leslie towards adding a little bit more weight here and there on the rows and pulldowns.

Then I showered up, hopped on the bus, grabbed my yoga gear and headed to hot yoga!  Friday night, typified with a full room of newer people.  That means being mindful of your neighbour, it means the room heats up an extra degree or two from all the people grunting and sweating (like I do, but even moreso).  New people tend to heat up the room more than crafty old vets.  But this kind of heat is the “good heat”, all those hot hairy water bottles surrounding you, steaming up the air, help open your pores and dilate your bronchials.  I resolved to take the class mindfully, to keep an eye out for my left IT band, aka the “bad heat”.

I found a spot next to the wall so I would only have to watch one side for flailing limbs and stumbling bums.  It was a 60 min class, leading us through the basic sequence.  Kelly was teaching!

sweaty shot after class

The class itself was quite forgiving, with lots of 5 second downward dog “rests” in between the juicy poses.  To my open side was a young woman and her 2 male friends.  I think she might have been new, because she was getting hammered by the class, to the point where she kept muttering, “jesus christ” to herself under her breath.  I smiled to myself, we have all been through the “trial by fire”, where the hot room just makes the awkward exercises and poses just THAT much harder.  Before you first went to yoga, did you EVER do dancers pose or half-moon balances?  exactly.

At one point she lost her balance, and fell forward, instincetively grabbing my buttcheeks for balance!  She profusely apologized, I told her it was ok, and chuckled.  I wonder if this was the middle of the room… could she have created a domino effect?  Have a bunch of yogis in a packed room ever toppled like dominoes?  Could I stumble forward and grab a yoga girl’s butt without a write-up from the front desk??  hahaha

My leg didn’t hurt too bad, my shoulder held up ok (why is it always my left side?), and then headed home.  Day 12 ovah!

Tale of the Tape

Today I was supposed to get measured and weighed.  I was very nervous about this.  For 2 days all I could think about is all the things I could have, should have done differently.  How big was that cheat meal?  How big was that portion?  Is cotton candy gluten free??  All day I was cutting my meals extra small, not drinking as much water, hoping to not feel full, be less full, weigh less at the end of the day.  I know it’s immature, and Leslie wanted to smack me, but I just felt this strong urge to squeeze blood from a stone.

Showed up for my workout with Leslie, I got there early and hopped on the elliptical and tried to sweat some.  Kept the speed high for 10 min, sweat dripping off my face by the end.  Leslie wanted to weigh me before the workout?!?  wtf, I was hoping to sweat my guts out before the scales.  But we measured and weighed.  I am down half an inch to an inch almost everywhere, chest, arms, legs, and down 8 pounds.  It’s a start, but I don’t feel a lot of joy, all I can think of is I want more.  I know I should savour the little victories, but I am trying to get my mind and body right, so satisfaction is not coming for a while, while I nail down my motivation, which has been lagging this week overall.  I don’t FEEL it yet, believe it in my heart, so I need to work on that.

We spent some time going over the measurements and discussing my diet, my motivation, and ways to work on it in the future.  It ate into the workout, but I need the help with my focus just as much as the help with my form.

function, form, focus – it’s a full process.

Workout time!  Endorphins will wash away the doubt, lift the pain away, to paraphrase that Peaches song 🙂

3 min warmup on the battle ropes

no, I didn’t use another stock photo… that’s me! gettin it!

superset step up to shoulder press then step up to upright rows:  15×10/10, 25×10/10, 25×10/10

Triset – Bosu ball squat with hold at the bottom over to the straps to do a squat into an upperbody pull back up then over to the bench for some mountain climbers off the bench (30ish sec rest in between sets):  10/12/20, 10/12/20, 10/12/20

camera doesn’t really capture all the wobbly going on

Superset bench dips to rope pushdowns:  15(straight leg)/70×12(standing), 12(straight)/70×12(on knees), 15(bent leg)/70×12(knees)

Then goofed around:  overhead 2 hand tricep extension:  50 x 6 or so, hammer curls across body 65s x 5 or so, 35s x 5 or so (just asking Leslie to check my form on those exercises, she confirmed my pinwheels suck ass)

notes:  After the weird looks on my face from Wednesday, the ropes were a chance for me to display the most neutral face I could manage 🙂

The stepup weights were light, but I don’t know, you mix a bunch of moves together and they get harder 🙂  More calories burnt that way (I hope!)

With the triceps, it was supersetting triceps, so that tired me out fast 🙂  Started doing bench dips with straight legs, and extensions on my feet/  The machine wasn’t tall enough for me to get a good extension, so Leslie had me go on my knees, which made it a lot harder!  Weird that way, maybe I was drawing some stability and strength from my legs, and making me use my core more to keep stable made the weight harder a bit.  Then the second set of dips it felt bad on my left shoulder, so Leslie had me do them with 90 degree bends in my knees, which made them almost trivial, however the extensions stayed hard!  Just like my biceps, my tricep muscles lack endurance big time.  Something to work on.

The workout was short due to the convo at the start and I had some energy so I did a little extra with my arms and had Leslie give me pointers.  Have to profit from the expertise when I can!

Back home now, my shoulder actually still feels a little sore from those dips 😦  Oh well, will rest on it.

Rocktober Roundup

Haven’t posted in a bit!  Not for lack of activity, just so tired I pass out when I come home 🙂

Tuesday I showed up for another session with Leslie:

2 min warmup with the battle ropes.  I have always seen people use the big ropes, but never got to play myself, so a first for me!

not me, but I was THIS cool too

Then we got on the straps.  It’s kind of like TRX, but I think that is a brand name, so let’s just call it straps 🙂  I did some pushups off them, my feet against the wall, probably deeper than 45 degree angle pushups?  Still technically easier than a regular pushup, but again a first time for me!  Fun.

3 sets of 12 pushups

Then we headed to the vertical leg press machine.  Again, a first time for me!  I have been on various leg press machines, sleds, hack squats, etc, but this version is a lot more compact.

I did a set of 12 with 270 pounds, but we realized that was too light, so I did 2 more sets with 360 pounds.  My legs were still sore from Monday, so I wasn’t entirely happy with my range of motion on these, I felt I went a little shallow and could have worked harder.  Food for thought.

Then we went for some lat pulldowns.  They had 2 cables but no seat, so I did them on the floor with my feet braced against the machine.  It felt quite comfortable, actually.  First set was like 160 x 12, but that was way light so we did 2 more sets 220 x 12

Then we went to go do some hamstring curls off a stability ball.  Sort of like a short bridge, but harder 🙂  3 sets of 12

such a flattering shot of my gut, haha

I debated using this shot since it highlights the belly so much, but I decided to keep it real for you guys!  See the sweat on my arms?  Working hard!

Keeping up the upper body/lower body pattern, then we went for some lateral raises.  I asked to go light on this one so Leslie could check out my form.  Lateral raises are one of those exercises where light and correct is much better than heavy and full of swing.  Leslie made some adjustments to my form, did some shoulder packing and kept the weights to the side of my thighs instead of in front of me.

So the weight was weak, but next time I will go heavier.  10 lb dumbbells, 3 sets of 15

Then some tricep pushdowns with the rope, which is nice because then I can pull it past my legs and hit the triceps a little more.  Felt super light, but I kept it controlled and slow.  Hopefully more next time, my triceps laugh at these weights.

60 x 12, 70 x 12, 80 x 12

Then we went for some Supermans for my back.  I did 12 with my hands under my shoulders (like a Locust in Yoga), 12 with my arms straight out in front (like Superman would do), then 12 with my fingers laced behind my head (like if Superman went to jail).

prisoner supermans

See the sweat on my back?  See the sweat on the floor where my arms have been?  What, you think this is a game?!  Shit is real, son!  I am here to workout.

Then we did some planks.  3 of them, about a minute each.  Leslie kept telling me to go on my knees and then off my knees, which on some level does make it easier, but I think she wanted to correct my form for how I was flexing my back.

And that was Tuesday!

Wednesday I was supposed to do cardio but I was so sore and tired from Monday and Tuesday that I slept in in the morning, came home after work, took a nap, woke up, ate food, then went to bed early, lol.  Wednesday was a day off I guess, I was wiped!

Thursday I had an appt with Leslie, but I had an appt conflict, caused by the upcoming Thanksgiving weekend.  Leslie couldn’t reschedule for Friday, as she was headed out of town for the long weekend.  So Thursday night, when I was free, I went to the gym for some late-night cardio.  One hour on the elliptical, resistance 75%, incline 9.  At around the 40 min mark, my hands and feet were going numb, lol.  It was weird.

Friday (today) I was still sore in my quads and abs to some extent, so right after work I went for a deep tissue massage.  She spent 40 min on my legs, 20 min on my upper body, and her feedback was that she could easily have spent the whole hour on my legs, lol.  Lots of deep knots in my calves, and my hamstrings were pretty tight.

After the massage, I went to the gym for another late night session.  With Leslie away, I could pick my own routine, hooray!  I didn’t feel like I had worked my arms much, and I felt bad about my form from Monday, so I decided tonight I would do both a volume arm workout, and keep form strict.  I figured I wouldn’t exhaust them like I would with heavy weights, but I would get a solid pump.

So light weights, slow with good form, full and deep range of motion (all the way down, squeeze at the top), lots of working sets.  4 exercises, 2 for tricep, 2 for bicep, 6 sets each, 24 working sets.  About 90 sec between each set and each exercise, it would take an hour if I stayed focused and didn’t screw around.

Volume Arm Workout

Dumbbell Skullcrushers:  25s x 10, x 10, x 10, x 10, x 10, x 10

2 hand dumbbell extension:  50 x 10, x 10, x 10, x 10, x 10, x 10

Preacher curls:  50 lbs x 10, x 10, x 10, x 10, x 10, x 10

Seated Alternating Twisting Curls:  30s x 10, x 10, x 10, x 10, x 10, x 10

I was feeling good, so I then did some assisted chinups but my biceps were tired and my grip was tired, so I only did a set of 6, a set of 4, then a set of 5

then I did another hour of cardio on the elliptical, cranked up the tunes on the ipod, the hour flew by!

So that was the last 4 days.  What a long entry!!