Tag Archive: push-ups


Thursday night I played some more with the TRX.

 

Chest/Tri:

press x 5, clock press x 10 (each side), flyes x 15, tricep press x 10, reverse grip tricep press x 10

rest about 60 sec, REPEAT two more times

notes:  I was getting a nice pump in the triceps near the end, especially if I lowered myself deep into it before pressing back up.  I realized I had interpreted clock press wrong, it is supposed to be press with one arm, fly with the other, so that’s how I did it here.  My big issue was that the straps kept SLIPPING.  It is nervous work to lean on something with your whole weight without knowing when it will give out on you.  Obviously something needs to be fixed with the “barrel lock adjusters”, they are not catching and the shortened strap keep slipping forward. (they are the things near the handle that you have to tilt to lengthen the strap back out)

 

core:  torso rotation x 10 (each side), rest 15 sec, REPEAT

TRX crunch x 10, extended side plank 30 sec (each side), REST 60 sec, REPEAT

TRX pike x 10, TRX mountain climber x 10 (per leg), REST 60 sec, REPEAT

prone straight leg raises x 20, 20

 

notes:  Core was TOUGH!  Torso rotations are easy to cheat on, you have to keep your arms straight or you start to pull with your back.  My elbows were starting to bend, so I found it tough.

I decided to do normal side planks, side planks on the TRX are super awkward, and I just wanted to work on my side planks, instead of wobbling around like a crazy man 🙂

I was no superathlete on the pikes either.  I kept my legs straight and just lifted my butt straight up, but it didn’t go so high as to make me look like a V, more like a heartbeat on a monitor, haha.  I didn’t do a full set of mountain climbers on the second round, my feet got tangled up and I just said screw it and stopped, haha.

Then I did leg raises, but I slipped my hands under the small of my back to make it easier so I could get more reps out.  I noticed that it was creating a space between my lower back and the ground, so whenever I lifted my legs up, my back fat made a “raspberry” sound against the rubber mat.  Very flattering, haha!  As a guy, I found this deeply amusing 🙂

 

I was super sweaty after all of this, took a shower, and am typing this out.  Off to bed then back to work before I know it!  See you later!

 

 

Monday, Tuesday

Monday I headed out for a Kettlebell workout with Leslie. Gotta admit, the diet is really dragging me down. January was rough, I fell off the wagon a lot. Let’s be brutally honest, I did not lose a single pound in January. I won’t go into too much gory detail, let’s just say that you can’t out train a lousy diet 🙂
Let’s hope February is kinder to me and my goals!

Kettlebells:

cardio warm up for 15 min

Kettlebell Swings:  40 lbs x 20, 20, 20, 20, 20 (30 sec rest)

singlehand clean & press:  30 x 12, 12, 12 (60 sec rest)

c&p

c&p

stepback lunge:  70 lbs x 10, 10, 10  (each leg, 60 sec rest)

35 each hand

35 each hand

Turkish “Sit Up”:  20 x 12, 12, 12 (eachhand)

comin atcha!

comin atcha!

Battle Ropes:  tabata style, 20 sec on, 10 sec off for 4 minutes

IMG_1877

notes:  30 sec rest between swing sets got tiring by the end 🙂  I was glad those ended.  I continue to suck at lunges, and reverse lunges doubly so.  I will never stop cursing them,my hatred gives me STRENGTH 🙂

The Turkish Sit Ups actually I found iffy on my sprained shoulder.  Not when holding the kettlebell up with my outstretched arm, but the elbow pushing into the floor, I could feel it in my shoulder/rotator cuff.  So I had to be very careful with my form.

As for battle ropes Tabata style… er, not a fan.  I don’t feel like I could go all out with my heart rate, 100%, without the ropes banging and clattering all over the place, I had to keep the rhythm going, so more control, so less strenuous effort, so I doubt my heart rate got high enough.  Oh well.

Tuesday was mostly a day off.  I went to a health food store to buy some protein.  An employee swooped in – can I help you?  I said I was buying protein and some fish oil, and kind of knew what I wanted.  She said she recommended this, and pointed to Dymatize Elite Fusion 7.  I said yeah, but I am trying to lose weight and I want low carb and this protein is like only 50% protein, and I pointed to the nutritional info on the back.  I said I was more interested in the Allmax isolate and pointed out the different percentages.  She said, “but this one has different kinds of protein,”  I said, “so?”

She changed tactics.  “You wanted fish oil?”  She brought me to the pills.  I told her that I had been using pills, and wanted to go back to the Carlson’s oil.  She said that with these pills they have a special coating that means I won’t get the fish burps or the fishy taste when I take it as oil.  I pointed out I have never tasted fish in the Carlson’s oil, just lemon or orange or whaetever, it’s a strong flavour masking it.

She finally crumbled.  “I am new here, I have never tried this stuff, I am just saying what they told me.”  I told her its ok, I kind of had my mind made up already, and sent her on her way.

What’s the lesson here?  Just because you are in a health food chain, a GNC or Nutrition House or whatever, do NOT assume you can rely on the staff.  They have sales quotas, they are talking out their ass most of the time.  PLEASE just do your own research, educate yourself on what you want or need, and you will be amazed at the stuff falling out of the rep’s mouth.  I go often to different stores, and the same rep at the same store will give totally contrary advice on brands from one month to the next – January he loves this brand, Feb he hates this brand its crap dont use it use this its better!  It’s all pap, just research it yourself.

I came home, shoulder a little sore, I did some cooking, some laundry.  In between I did some pushups – about 90 pushups over the course of the night.  They felt not too bad.

And that was my Mon/Tues!  How was your day?

I woke up Tuesday still slightly out of sorts about missing my Spin work, and thinking about my diet, which I have been struggling with.  Cutting out all bread, rice and pasta has been difficult.  The jury is still out on whether this is even a strategy that is right FOR ME, or if it is just a gamble based on what works for other people.  At any rate, my malnutrition is making me depressed.  It’s a sad day in Hell when I would step over the steak just to get to the breadstick, haha.

So I did a leg routine on the TRX in the morning.

TRX Leg: (workout routine came with the kit)

A.  Hip Press (aka butt lift) x 10, rest 15 sec

B.  Hamstring Curl x 10, rest 15 sec

REPEAT A-B, 2 more times

C.  Lunge x 15 (each leg), rest 15 sec

REPEAT C, 2 more times

D.  single leg squat x 10 (each leg), rest 15 sec

REPEAT D once more

E.  bodyweight atg squats (brief pause-rest at each comma) 25, 15, 10, 10

notes:  this one was the hardest yet!  Leg workouts are the most tiring of all workouts, this is why most gym noobs have bird legs.    Butt lifts and ham curls with the TRX were kicking my butt right out of the gate, either I have weak glutes and hams, or just weak for my relative size.

But the punishment wasn’t over.  If you do the math, I did about 90 lunges.  And if you spend time with me, you know I hate lunges, haha.  By the end I was half naked and sweating like crazy.  For the first time this winter, I wanted to sit under the floor fan and suck wind.  Lunges don’t bother my quads, they bother my hams again.  I did a basic type, a stepback lunge while holding onto the TRX so I could make the balancing easier and keep the speed up.

For the one leg squats I did the same basic version, hold my off leg behind me as I squatted halfway or lower.  I would like to hold my off leg out in front of me (pistol squat style), but I just can’t get the balancing down on that one yet.  Maybe next time I will try hanging my off foot in a TRX sling and holding the other sling and work on the pistol that way.

The TRX flashcard suggested I do split jumps next, but I told TRX to go fuck itself, lol.  I went straight to regular squats.  But to try and keep it difficult, I stopped using the TRX and just did it myself, my own bodyweight, butt all the way down to the ground.  I took a 5-10 sec pause when I had to, as I worked my way up to 60 reps.  I used to be able to do 30 without a pause, so I would like to work back up to that again (although to be fair my legs were not exactly fresh).

Then I went to work.  All through work I tried to keep my diet tight, also avoided coffee!  So by the end of the day I felt drained, no carbs, no coffee; all work and no quick energy makes Jack a dull boy.  I kept dozing off in the last 40 minutes of my day, so when it was time to go home, I gave up on any afternoon gym plans and went straight home to have a snack and a nap.

When I woke up from the nap I had a little more energy, so I decided to see how my shoulder was feeling with some light “sort of” pushups.  Not full ones, but sort of pushups… I did about 20 in the TRX sling, and about 50 pushups from my knees (not in a row, small pauses when needed).  My chest felt fine, but my shoulder was grumbling, so I called it a day.

And that was my day!

Breaking in the TRX home Kit

It was cold today, but luckily, I wanted to test out the home TRX kit anyways! Well, it was kind of a test of how strong my doors and doorframes are, and where will give me the most free space to flail around with my arms, haha.

 

I tried out the chest and back routine that is included with the basic home kit

Chest & Back:

A.  chest press x 5, rest 15 sec

B.  one arm chest press x 5 (each side), rest 15 sec

clock press, AKA one arm pushup

C.  flyes x 15, rest 15 sec

D.  low rows x 5, rest 15

E.  mid row x 10, rest 15

F.  high rows x 15, rest 15

Repeat A-F, 2 more times

 

I got the whole thing done while dinner was cooking on the stove, yay!  I figured the rests were optional, so I didn’t rest in between the chest sets or the back sets first time through the circuit, I just went A-C and D-F no rest.  But by the 3rd set I took a brief rest in between each exercise, so I figured that was fatigue, good!

Did I like it??  Well, TRX has its place.  It is SUPER convenient, I can bust out all kinds of exercises while in the middle of my chores, I can see myself dragging it around when I travel… it takes up no space at all!  I am not slagging how hard it is, I can easily make it as hard as I can handle, or as easy as I need.  and yet… I feel really good when I am pumping iron.  It is a different vibe.  Something is very satisfying about iron in a way that bodyweight exercises are not; and even fancy suspension bodyweight exercises like these don’t give that same thrill.

 

So, yes.  I like TRX.  I think it will be JUST what I need first thing in the morning when I need a pick-me-up, or in the afternoon on a weekend when I am being lazy and this way I can get some resistance training in without locking down my whole afternoon.  But it won’t replace the gym, not by a longshot 🙂

I asked Leslie to spend a session with me just leading me through all the basic TRX exercises – showing me the ropes, as it were.  This way I can feel confident using it at home for whatever I need at the time. (We weren’t using a TRX at the studio, that is a brand name, but same thing basically.)

This workout is a little different, we just tried out all the movements we could, some of them were easier than others.  I figured we could take pictures, I have visual aids on hand when I want to see how it should look when I am at home; Les could check my form, give me pointers.  Win win.

We did:

Chest Press (a pushup)

Clock Press (a one arm pushup, free arm sticks straight out to the side)

clock press

clock press

Flyes

IMG_1805

Low Rows (arms by waist)

High Rows (arms by shoulders, 90 degrees)

Biceps Curl (lean back, curl yourself forward)

Triceps Press  (lean forward, elbows by temples, press back up)

Y Fly (reverse fly with arms in Y shape)

Y Fly

Y Fly

Clutch Curl (pull with your biceps like you are hugging something)

Triceps Press with a reverse grip (palms facing in, much harder)

W Fly (reverse fly, arms bent)

W Fly

W Fly

Hip press (lie on back, push butt straight up, this is hard!)

Hamstring Curl (lie down, bring knees to chest)

Lunge

Squat

Single Leg Squat

Torso Rotation (hold with one hand, lean back, curl other side of body up, wasn’t a big hit with me)

Core Work

Core Work

Crunch (plank position, bring in knees)

Side Plank (hard!)

Pike (uh… gettin rather hard for me, Leslie you do it!)

Pike

Pike

Mountain Climber (alternate bringing knees in, optional hip thrust up if you wish)

Supermans (lean forward, arms straight over head, like how Superman flies)

Chest Stretch

Hip Openers

Quad stretches (I liked these)

 

One thing to remember when using the TRX, keep your core hard and your arms flexed, or else you fall forward and strangle yourself with your own bodyweight…

IMG_1866

 

OK! Now, as I promised to discuss the other day, how long should you workout? Super fit people often do HIIT (high intensity intervals), AKA XX seconds going all out, then xx seconds resting. You can get your total workout done in 15 min! Everyone should do it right?

NO. HIIT is not for everyone. People just starting out, morbidly obese people, older people, people with bad joints, out of shape people… HIIT is unnecessarily tough on you. Maybe you get through the 15 min of craziness not injuring yourself, but you wipe yourself out so hard you go home and sleep for the rest of the day! How many calories do you burn lying in a broken heap? Don’t slaughter yourself in the gym then lay comatose in your house, surrounded by junk food and burning little to no calories.

Super fit people can do HIIT, then go lead an active or at least normal day. But the unfit or the newbies can reap much greater benefit out of LISS (low intensity steady state), AKA go for a walk for a couple of hours or a bike ride for an hour or something similar. You won’t blow out your knees, and you will still be able to act normal and do normal things for the rest of your day.

Daily caloric burn is also a function of your life, not just your gym time. Look at it this way. Let’s say you are 40 years old, super heavy, let’s say 350 pounds, out of shape, bad joints. Not horrible joints, but not strong joints. Underdeveloped muscles, not able to handle a ton of exercise. You burn about 2,500 calories a day just living your life, doing your job, maintaining your house, breathing, whatever. You have 2 options:

Option A – HIIT, do some tabata interval training for 15 min

Option B – LISS – go for a walk for an hour

Option A – you do some crazy tabata, 85% max heart rate, using the formula from calories-calculator.net, in 15 min you burn … 318 calories! 15 min work, 318 calories! score! You don’t hurt yourself, but you are badly winded, your lungs burn. You go home, take a nap. You end up lazing around for the rest of the day because you have a crackle in your lungs when you inhale, your daily burn of living your life is only let’s say 2000 calories instead, you are pretty close to immobile most of the day, laying on the couch for 7 or 8 hours. Total burn for the day: 2,318 calories!

Option B – you go walk the dog, then go for a brisk walk yourself, total walk time is an hour. Not strenuous but you huff and puff a little bit, maybe break a light sweat, 50% of your max heart rate. Using the calculator from above, you burned… 927 calories! You got a much better burn rate from Option A in a much shorter time, but after the walk you feel mildly energized, you do your chores, get your work done, you hit your “living your life” burn of 2,500 calories for the day. Total burn for the day: 3,427 calories!

You get my point? HIIT only works if it doesn’t burn you out. If you are quite out of shape, HIIT often does not make sense. Everyone is different and you have to find the routine that fits for YOU.

Next time I will discuss how much anaerobic work to do (aka how much to work your muscles).  See ya!

Cleansing Korean Kettlebells

All week I have been reeling from the cleanse kit.  It makes it hard to key up 2 hours of sitting in a forest of stationary bikes when you might need to sprint for the bathroom at any moment.  All week long.  The cramps have gone away, but I am a powderkeg.  Well, maybe a poo-derkeg!  See what I did there?

I wanted to cheer myself up, but didn’t know how to treat myself.  Then I noticed all the Korean restaurants close to my office building!  If you have never had Korean (it gets lost in the shuffle of exotic foods sometimes, living in the shadow of Chinese and Indian and sushi), you should try it!  I spent a few weeks in Seoul way back when I was travelling and needed somewhere to crash while I applied for a working visa to Japan, and was pleasantly surprised how much I enjoyed the cuisine.

Korean food tends to very colorful, spicy, with a variety of foods in moderate amounts.  A traditional, formal dinner might consist of dozens of small dishes with multiple kinds of foods.  This tends to help with the portion control.  Meat isn’t the dominating feature of the meal, just another supporting piece.  Veggies tend to take center stage, even over the rice.  Cooking methods don’t involve a lot of frying in general.  Not a lot of heavy high-calorie sauces either.  Not that you can’t stuff yourself with fried foods, rice and beef if you really want to, but it doesn’t dominate the menu the way it does when you go for Chinese.  Although, to be fair, those Chinese menus got that way because they know that’s what us Westerners want.  Authentic Chinese food can be much more light.  Yet still, you don’t get as much pandering on a Korean menu – they stick to the rustic and traditional.

Nowhere is this better exemplified than by Korea’s national dish:  kimchi.  Fermented spicy cabbage, basically.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kimchi

Low-fat, high-fibre, chock full of vitamins, probiotic, what’s not to admire about it?  People get scared by the description, but it really is a superfood.  Koreans love it to death, they don’t even mind eating it for breakfast (I told my hosts in Seoul I love kimchi, and I got a big bowl of it at 7 am the next day, haha)!  They even had a museum in the city devoted to its history and all of the seasonal varieties, free samples at the end of the tour.  To my limited understanding, they pack the veggies and spices in pots and bury them in the ground for a while.  tada, kimchi.  Whenever I go to a Koerean resto, I always order some extra on the side, it cleanses the palate nicely.

So I ordered some bibimbap on Friday, its like a stone bowl full of seasonal veggies and a scoop of rice, some pork, topped with an egg, laced with chili sauce, served sizzling hot like a plate of fajitas.  Some cold veggies on the side (and kimchi!), and a pair of solid steel chopsticks and a long handle spoon (some of the rice bakes to the side of the bowl).

my bibimbap

my bibimbap

I might have been tempting fate by eating spicy fermented cabbage while on a cleanse, but I figured my depleted tummy needed probiotic food more than ever.  We shall speak no more if it!

 

After work I headed to the studio for a kettlebell workout with Leslie.  I soon realized that putting your new gym shirt in the dryer is a bad idea!  So yeah, out of respect for everyone else in the gym, out of respect for you my dear readers, and in recognition of the shreds of my own self-respect, I threw another shirt on.

shameless plug!

shameless plug!

Looking at that pic, it is clear which shoulder was the one that had been sprained.

We cycled back and forth between 4 exercises, and finished it off with a suitcase carry.

IMG_1765

First circuit:

Kettlebell Swings 45×20 then 1 arm row 35×15 then Clean & Press 60×12, run through this circuit three times

rows done while in a lunge

rows done while in a lunge

the clean tends to bang up the back of your wrists

the clean tends to bang up the back of your wrists

Second circuit:  Goblet Squat to Press 40×15 then Pushups x10, run this circuit 3 times

pushups off the kettlebells

pushups off the kettlebells

notes:  by the second circuit I was feeling a little pooped, but hey.  Good times.

Finisher:  carry a 100 lb dumbbell in one hand while you walk for approx 30 seconds, 2 sets

Les trying to snap a pic without having to lift it off the rack, haha

Les trying to snap a pic without having to lift it off the rack, haha

IMG_1775

notes:  Les was going to get me to use a kettlebell, but they only went up to 50 lbs, so I rolled my eyes and said let’s use the 100 DBs instead.  This is to work your core – you try to walk normally, compensating for the weight without overcompensating and bending in the other direction.  I held it for about 30-35 seconds, at that point my grip was starting to go, so it obviously is a workout for your forearms too, as long as you keep trying to squeeze the handle instead of just using your hands as hooks.

 

And that was Friday!  Then I went home and crapped my pants.  Every story needs a good BUTTON to it.

Y'all come back now, y'hear?

Y’all come back now, y’hear?

 

I have had problems sleeping for days.  I toss and turn all night, and the tossing and turning aggravates the sore muscle in my side.  It has made me a little irritable, and I wake up so ragged in the morning that I am often forced to go straight back to bed and move morning cardio to the evening.  Oh well, so much for the morning cardio.  At least for now.

I had to work late today, now that everyone is back, and everyone is eager to give me stuff to do.  So I couldn’t make the workout with Leslie, and went to the gym on my own in the late evening,  In honour of Leslie’s focus on circuit training, I tried some circuit training of my own:  keep going until I couldn’t.  3 circuits of upperbody resistance training.

warmup: 30 min of cardio

Circuit 1:  machine bench press 5 reps and widegrip lat pulldown 8 reps; back and forth 4 times nonstop

bench/lats:  150 x 5/150 x 8/150 x 5/150 x 8/150 x 5/150 x 8/150 x 5/150 x 8

notes:  this felt good as a warmup, could go heavier next time.  I took a couple of minutes before the next circuit

Circuit 2:  dumbbells – incline press 8 reps, then one arm row 8 reps then overhead press 8 reps; 3 times through

incline/row/overhead:  50s x 8/70s x 8/50s x 8/50s x 8/70s x 8/50s x 4/REST/50s x 6/70s x 8/50s x 5

notes:  Out of respect for my shoulder, I used a hammer grip on the incline press.  This helps me because it encourages me to keep my shoulderblades rolled back, and keeps my shoulders more stable.  Towards the end of the second runthrough I just ran out of gas! I looked in the mirror, I was sweating a lot.  I failed out of the overhead, so I rested for 1 minute, then went to do the 3rd set.  I couldn’t do all the reps on that one either.  By this point, I could feel my energy diving.  I hadn’t taken a preworkout either, so that might also be me getting used to not having that as backup.   I waited 2 min before the last circuit.

Circuit 3:  arms and shoulders – 2 hand overhead tricep extension 20 reps, then hammer curls 20 reps, then lat raises 20 reps; 2 times through

tri/bi/shoulders:  50 x 20/40s x 11/25s x 12/REST/50 x 15/30s x 20/17.5s x 6

notes:  I was going to add in bicycle crunches after the lat raises, but the gym was SO crowded, I didn’t want to lose my spot at the dumbbell rack, so I cut it out.  The first time through, the weights were too heavy for me to do high reps with the wornout state I was in, so I took a minute rest then dropped the weights on the second run through.  Even then the lat raises were just BLAH, so I put them down and walked away and said screw it, haha.

I had also considered throwing in some pushups at the end as a “finisher” but I felt so finished already I said to hell with that too and hit the showers, haha!

Considering I couldn’t make the appt with the PT, bad sleep, no PWO caffeine boost, I think I salvaged it ok, what do you think?

see you later!

Burn Victim

Today was a special day, one of my least favorite times of the year.  The Xmas/New Years feasts are over, you are settling into your diet, the weather is bad, etc.  For me, this means that I start to keenly feel the lack of starchy carbs a few days in, the weakness hits, the grumpiness sets in, the lethargy and moroseness.  All the cold nights and the slippery, snowy sidewalks also aggravate the arthritis in my feet.  So right when the diet is hitting me with tasty treat withdrawals is ALSO when my body is saying “please rest, this is a lot of stress on us poor toe joints”.  It’s a time to gain weight, traditionally.

I knew it was coming though, the need to keep moving and keep grinding that diet is why this monthly challenge is a special one for me.  January is a cold bleak Canadian month to be fixing everything that’s wrong with your life, but that is part of the charm I guess.

But I have been keeping up the cardio, and Leslie the trainer is back on track and ready to kick my butt!  Yeah!  I slipped out of work, made it to the studio in record time… only to find it locked up because noone else in their right mind would be working out today, hahaha.  All the sane people are still on vacation!

I'm here! Where's my trainer?

I’m here! Where’s my trainer?

The owner of the studio was there and he let me in, but he warned me that I can’t workout without a trainer there.  I understand that, I know how insurance works, no biggie.  I was going to do cardio, but I chilled out and waited for Les.

I was hungry, low on energy, my feet ached, hadn’t had a high octane workout in quite some time, my motivation levels were about a 3.  Tough shit!

circuit training:

circuit 1 (all the way through, catch your breath, go through it again)

squat thrust pushup on a BOSU ball w/ overhead press x 10

renegade rows x 16

floor press w/ leg raise x 10

side to side on a BOSU ball x 20

forward lunge w/ bicep curl x 12

extended plank for 45 sec

IMG_1721

circuit 2 (all the way through, catch breath, do it again)

step-ups with lateral raises (alternating side and front raises) x 12

sumo squat to upright row x 12

side to side high steps x 20

bicycle crunches x 30

side lunge w high knee x 12/leg

bench dips x 15

IMG_1742

tabata:  20 sec work, 10 sec rest, repeat for 4 min

battle ropes & kettlebell swings (back and forth)

cooldown cardio:  30 min elliptical, gradually increasing incline to 30 degrees

squat thrust push up w overhead press

squat thrust push up w overhead press

Notes:  I kind of sucked tonight.  My motivation had tanked, and I was just wasting time left and right.  We spent a lot of time talking and catching up, going over how many reps feel right and what weight is appropriate.  I think next time we do this, I will feel comfortable to up the weight and/or reps as necessary.  We still tweaked the reps and the weight a few times though tonight.  I didn’t bother listing the weights we used, since exploring the movements and the number of reps was what mattered.

renegade!

renegade!

I like that name:  renegade rows.  Why can’t all exercises have such cool names?  Would you rather do a “renegade row” or a “sissy squat”?  Think about it.

floor press w/ leg raise

floor press w/ leg raise

We tried to do Russian Twists including tossing the medicine ball around (a Russian Toss?), but my tailbone was not enjoying the boat pose, so we switched those to bicycle crunches.

lunges & curls

lunges & curls

battle ropes

battle ropes

It was kind of a rough workout, but I knew the first day back would be rugged and raw.  Settle in for a long, hard January!!

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!

Upper Body Friday

Friday and I was feeling good, ready for some upper body!  Well, not my arms, they were happy to take a nap.  But the rest of me!

5 min warmup on the elliptical

dumbbell flat press:  warmed up with 35s, 70 lb DBs x12, x10, x9, x9

incline flys:  30s x12, 35s x12, 12

a compromising shot…

pushups!  6 normal ones, 9 from knees, rest, 5 normals, 10 from knees

pullups with rubber band:  8, 8, 8

this rubber band could launch me across the room

one armed row:  50 x12, 55 x12, x12

widegrip pulldowns:  200 x10, x12, x12

t-bar rows:  95 x12, 120 x12, x12

return of the mean muggin

 

And it was over like that!  No time for shoulders, I agreed to do that on my own time.  Just time for chest and back today, did arms yesterday.  See you soon!