Tag Archive: side planks


March 30, 2015

I had to make a presentation across town in the afternoon (thank you Moore’s for having a suit sale!), so I ended up being late to the studio for my apt with the trainer. my own fault. had to cut most of the workout out.

Push Press (short rest)

65 x 8
95 x 8
115 x 8
135 x 7
135 x 8

notes: I suck at these, so I am still just doing weight I could strict press, lol.

Abs

hanging knee raises x 10 then Bicycle Crunches on the bosu x 20 … 2 sets of that
V-Ups x 12 then side planks for w/e the F number of seconds then a bunch of Supermans… 3 sets of that

post-workout LISS on the elliptical

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Cut Day 16

The lack of sleep was kicking my butt all day, I was drifting through work like Homer Simpson driving home on a field of pillows. Just felt soft and squishy like a piece of cake all through the workout session, intensity negative 12. But I still did the workout. F it. in the butt.

I don’t care if I’m dying and on fire with radioactive herpes… my excuses can blow me… with a mouthful of birthday cake and a santa claus hat on. I ain’t skipping my workout.

warmup: foam rolled my IT bands, adductors, piriformis, then had a nap on the floor, lol

Circuit 1

DB Walking Lunges to Widegrip Pulldowns to Pulsing Side Planks

35s x 20 / 13 plates x 12 / 12 Pulses each side

ROW 2 min

35s x 20 / 13 plates x 12 / 12 Pulses each side

ROW 2 min

35s x 20 / 13 plates x 12 / 12 Pulses each side

ROW 2 min

Circuit 2

SLDL to Bent Over Row to Ab Rollouts

135 x 12 / 135 x 10 / 12 rollouts

Row 1 min

135 x 12 / 135 x 12 / 12 rollouts

Row 1 min

135 x 12 / 135 x 12 / 12 rollouts

Row 1 min

notes: Changing it up a bit from last week.

Hamstring Curls on Exercise Ball (30-60 sec rest)

20, 20, 20

Weighted Reverse Crunches (lift hips in the air, hold MB between knees, rest 30-60 sec)

12 lbs x 12, 12, 12

post-workout 15 min LISS on elliptical

Cut Day 9

Back to it.

warmup: played with my blackberry, haha

Circuit 1

DB Walking Lunges to Widegrip Pulldowns to Walking Side Planks

25s x 20 / 12 plates x 12 / 20 Side Planks

REST 30-60s

25s x 20 / 12 plates x 12 / 20 Side Planks

REST 30-60s

30s x 20 / 12 plates x 12 / 20 Side Planks

Row Machine 2 Min

REST 2 MIN

Circuit 2

Exercise Ball Ham Curls to 1 Arm Cable Rows to Weighted Reverse Crunches

15 curls / 12 plates x 12 per side / 10 lbs x 15 (medicine ball between knees)

REST 30-60s

15 curls / 12 plates x 12 per side / 10 lbs x 15

REST 30-60s

15 curls / 12 plates x 12 per side / 10 lbs x 15

Row Machine 2 min

REST 2 MIN

notes: Cable rows getting heavy! Reverse crunches means keep the 10 lb medicine ball between your knees and lift your hips up in the air.

Circuit 3

Weighted Side Lunges to Seated Widegrip Cable Rows to Weighted Core Twists

plus barbell 12 per side / 14 plates x 12 / 5 plates x 12 per side

REST 30-60s

Plus 95 pounds 12 per side / 20 plates x 15 / 6 plates x 12 per side

REST 30-60s

Plus 95 pounds 12 per side / 28 plates x 12 / 6 plates x 12 per side

Row Machine 2 min

notes: Side Lunges done with a barbell. Core twists were done by hooking a nightstick looking thing up to the cable pulley. I say plates on the cable rows because I doubt they are 10 pounds each. 14 plates on the left, 14 on the right, hook up a bar to connect the 2 sides and pull away… doubt I am rowing 280 pounds that easy.

Post-Workout:
– 5 min of yoga stretches (low back releases, Cobra, Sphinx, cat/cow, Childs Pose)

Forgot to do cardio after, woops! I really needed the cardio too, the pwo kept me floating all the way home, and then I had energy left over so I cooked dinner and prepped lunches, did the dishes, took out the garbage, in the space of like 20 min, lol.

Happy Canada Day!

While most people had a long weekend of relaxation and festivities, which is totally cool, I had set my own agenda.  On Holiday Monday, I went down to the gym to workout. Legs, Shoulders, Abs, cardio

Legs:

Leg Press (10 sec rest) 260 x 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10

Glute Machine (30 sec rest) (think of it like kicking back with a single leg like a donkey) 80 x 6/6, 6/6, 6/6, 6/6, 6/6, 6/6

Superset Leg Extensions and Bodyweight Bootstrappers:  (60 sec rest) 160×20,BWx15, Four Sets

Superset Prone Leg Curls and Stability Ball Leg Curls (45 sec rest) 90×20,BWx15, Four Sets

Shoulders:

Seated Smith shoulder presses (30 sec rest) warmup, 100 x 10, 10, 10, 10

bb front raises (30 sec rest) 60 x 7; 50 x 10, 10, 10

Arnold presses (30 sec rest) 60 x 15, 15, 15

Superset Seated DB Rear Delt Flys and Face Pulls (45 sec rest) 40×12, 70×12, Three Sets

Abs:

Giant Set (45 sec rest) Stability Ball Foot to Hand Passes and one arm sit ups and static extended side plank:  15,15 each side, 15 sec each side, Three Sets

Cardio:  20 min on the elliptical, kept my heart rate in the “Fat Burning Zone” the whole time (65% of MHR).

notes: first time trying that glute machine, was kinda cool!  Beats the hell out of lunges, hahaha.  I know it will never replace lunges, but it was a fun diversion.

I had grand designs of also doing an arm session, but I was so destroyed after shoulders (which went really well, by the way, improvement across the board over last week) that I decided to get abs done asap and then bust out some cardio.

How was your day?  Did you workout and party?  Or just one?

End of the Week!

Ugh, 4 days in a row of working out.  I am thrashed.

Got up at 5 am, had a grapefruit.  stared at the computer screen for a minute then realized I was almost late for spin.  F*ck!  I hadn’t had any protein or yogourt or anything for breakfast, just the fruit.  I poured a shot of pre-workout (Assault, in honour of Danabolic’s blog!), ran to Spin. I only realized when I got home about 13 hours later that the full glass of Assault was still sitting there – I had poured my pre-workout drink, then just turned around and walked out of my house.  How fried was my brain???

When I got to Spin, I quickly realized I had ZERO energy, that Spin was murderrrrrr….. no surprise I guess, I hadn’t had any protein that morning, hadn’t eaten my usual foods, no quick fats, not even a glass of pre-workout pep… I was running on empty and I felt it hard.  So I grunted and sweated my way through that ride, showered, felt the hunger kick in like a BEAST, then went out for my Friday cheat day breakfast.

IMG_2329

Pretty much right, crepe wrapped around eggs and cheese and ham, fruit, coffee, water, side of bacon.  They brought me an orange juice as well, but I couldn’t wait to get a pic of it all at once.  I soon realized they used a banana crepe for my ham omelette… WTF!??! A banana crepe?  That ruins it!

First-world problems, right??

So whatever, they were busy and I didn’t have forever, I just poured syrup on it and ate it anyways, my banana ham sandwich.

 

Work was real busy, I saved my energy for my workout after work!  My chest is still sore from my Wednesday workout!  Crazy!  I like DOMS in my chest, that means I am doing something right.

After work I headed to the studio, Leslie the trainer is back from her vacation!  Yay!  I realized I hadn’t trained arms in 10 days… where did the time go??  So we did arms.

Arms:  Supersets!  back and forth, minimal rest

5 min warmup on elliptical

dumbbell curls & dumbbell skullcrushers:  50 x 12&12; 60 x 12&12, 12&12

rope hammer curls & V pushdowns:  90&120 x 15&15, 15&15, 15&15

IMG_2330

hammer curls

no V-bar so we used the rope :)

no V-bar so we used the rope 🙂

 

incline dumbbell curl & dumbbell kickbacks:  40&30 x 12&12; 50&30 x 12&12, 12&12

IMG_2333

kickbacks

kickbacks

double concentration curls & overhead two-hand dumbbell extensions:  50&45 X 12&15; 60&55 X 12&15; 60&65 x 12&15

IMG_2339

IMG_2340

cable curls with the straight bar & closegrip incline pushups:  100 x 12; 120 x 10, 12 & 12, 15, 15

IMG_2345

back soaked!

back soaked!

Abs!

single leg raise and crossover touch x 12, 12, 12

IMG_2352

double crunches x 12, 12, 12

abdominal pendulum:  bent knee x 15, we tried straight legs and that didn’t happen at all LOL, so the third set we did side planks

IMG_2356

 

notes:  been too long without arms! I don’t think I was able to get 100% back into the intensity, I was too distracted with being social and witty and clever with my friends, but I will try and fix that for next time 🙂  After the abs, we also did some chest stretches.  Taking what my massage dude said seriously!  Gotta fix that front imbalance.

We also took some time before the workout to talk about my goals.  I want to lose more weight, obviously.  I am still in the 300s, I want to break into the 200s so bad!!!  Very close!  I want to get my body fat below 20%, I want to put on another 10 pounds of muscle, I want to build a lot more strength in the basic compound exercises, I want to take on another hot yoga challenge, etc!

I also need to hit my back harder, if I have to choose I will lighten up on chest and do more back.  I don’t want my front to grow too fast and overpower my back, I need to balance to what is lagging.

I am happy with my diet, I am happy with the 3 on 1 off body parts twice a week split, I am happy with the morning cardio.  I just need to tweak the exercises a bit, and put yoga back in the mix.

 

I am excited for the summer, aren’t you?  I can’t wait to do more hard work and have it show!  Already everyone I know can see I have put on muscle, it is plain to see.  I want more of that, more muscle.  Maybe it’s a guy thing, but it feels good 🙂

But when I left the studio and came home, the back workout from Thursday hit me, and my arms are ALREADY sore from tonight, so I am about to crash hard.  4 days in a row is brutal!  I need a rest day like crazy.

Good night all!

Legs & Core w/ sore back

My lower back has felt sore all Sunday night and all Monday at work.  Just worn down, tired, needing rest.  I had a dilemma, because Leslie and I had legs planned Monday night.  My take on it is that I can still work out, just that my core is extra weak and recovering today.  My core is lagging behind my legs.  Les agreed with me, and we decided to isolate the legs first, then do some core-specific work.  Much as I love squats, I would have to decline this time.

 

Legs & Core:

 

Leg Press:  450 x 15, 15, 15

IMG_1920

Sissy Squats:  12, 12, 12

IMG_1921

Quad Extensions:  100×15, 120×15, 130×15, 150×15

IMG_1924

Lying Hamstring Curls: 50 x 12, 12, 60 x 12

IMG_1925

TRX Hamstring Curls:  10, 10, 10

IMG_1927

Core circuit:  Sit-ups/Side Plank/TRX Mountain Climbers

12 sit-ups, 30 sec side plank (each side), 20 Climbers; x 3

creepy!

creepy!

mountain climbers with feet in the TRX cradles

mountain climbers with feet in the TRX cradles

 

notes:  you can see by some of those pics that Leslie was trying to get my whole body in the shot, but my butt is just too big!  haha

Only 8 plates on the leg press?  Pfft, pitiful.  I feel in my heart I am ready for 10 wheels.

Sissy squats look dumb in pictures.  but they work!

With the quad extensions, we were experimenting with the weight.  Again, I think I have not hit my current ceiling yet on that machine.  Every quad xt machine is different, this one is harder than my normal gym, but still, more room for work.  It is kind of dumb it has no handlebars by my sides to grip onto… I end up balling my hands into fists.

The lying ham curls felt good until I felt my left ham about to cramp on me.  I think bringing my ham right up to the calf causes weird twinges, not sure if I want to explore that.  (I should mention that twinge does not happen during full squats)

You know what’s weird?  I think I find side planks easier than normal planks!  Is that weird?  I think most of my belly fat is up front, my side fat seems to go away very quickly when I hit the gym.  My obliques respond better to regular training than my abs.  how sad 😦

 

It was not a perfect day.  I felt battered and worn out most of the day.  But you have to do what you can with what you have.  It was easy for me to get discouraged when my lower back is groaning at me.  Some days I just feel like my time is so limited, I can’t waste even my weak days on quitting.

 

How about you?  Any good workouts today?

It Never Gets Easier

When you start out, it is wise to take your fitness slowly. You don’t jump in too deep too early, and overwhelm yourself – which would make you crash and give up and get extra UNfit. You EASE your way in.

But the flip side of that is that you are always ramping up. It never gets easier. I guess I had hoped it would be like boiling a lobster – I wouldn’t notice the heat rising until I am a fully cooked model of fitness. Sadly, it is the opposite, every new degree burns and scalds you.

That sounds grim. But after coming out the other end of the 30 day hot yoga challenge, after taking a vacation for a week, I have come back to find my workouts are waiting for me, ready to kick my butt. And there are always ways to tweak my progress, to turn up the heat a little more.

The shoulder workout on Sunday was tough! I felt roughed up the next day (today, aka Monday). My tank felt dry and I dragged my feet a lot at work. But it wasn’t a rest day, I had leg day with Leslie! And I forgot my preworkout at home! Blast it!

I dragged myself in, and warned Leslie I felt “bombed and depleted”, 2 shades short of half in the bag. She patted me on the shoulder, and proceeded to take me through a rogue’s gallery of the most draining leg exercises (most draining for me).

Legs:

warmup on elliptical
squats: 135 x 12, 155 x 12, 155 x 12
step-ups with knee raise and 35 lb dumbbells: 12, 12, 12 (each leg)
vertical leg press: 360 x 12, 12, 12, 12
lunges with 25 lb dumbbells: 10, 10, 10 (each leg)
bent leg raises followed by double crunches: 10/10, 10/10, 10/10
side planks: 30 sec each side x 3

notes: maybe step-ups and lunges aren’t draining for you, but I am big and heavy, more grizzly bear than jungle panther, so they were draining for me… and that’s why Leslie picked them, haha. Anything involving throwing my bodyweight around is tougher than laying down and pushing iron – I would rather leg press 360 pounds over and over than do step ups with 35 lb dumbbells, lol!

Leslie said she was “taking it easy on me” by only doing 3 sets of squats. It was a trap!! It meant more step ups and lunges. (Actually, we did 4 sets of leg press, so it wasn’t all punishment.)

After the legs, some ab/core work. Although sadly, I still felt my thighs burning during the double crunches, I think it was because my legs were suspended in the air.

instead of working out, how about a pic of me catching my breath?

instead of working out, how about a pic of me catching my breath?

yes, yes, more leg press!

yes, yes, more leg press!

I struggled to maintain my good mood. When I tried to stay upbeat, Leslie would remind me that I need to tighten up my diet. I eat too much bread 😦 But it’s so delicious! I gave up pasta and rarely have rice, but bread remains a pleasure.

After dragging myself out of the gym, did I mention it had been freezing rain all night? Walking on sheer ice with wobbly tired legs is no treat, I promise! When I made it home, I wanted some bread so bad! I could swear I NEEDED it to reward myself for my hard work, to buoy my mood, to cheer me up, to relax. But I decided, “I was already in pain, why not reap the rewards and eat clean?” So no bread, instead some chicken, some veggies.

Looks like it’s gonna be a cold night tonight, gonna huddle under the blanket and hope for a sunny day tomorrow. But I won’t be surprised if it doesn’t get any easier.

Spin, back, biceps, hot yoga.  That was the plan for Saturday, and it felt ambitious, by my best guess somewhere between 3 and 4 hours of exercise.

I showed up for some morning Spin.  I saw a guy who has been the instructor in the past sitting on the bench in the changeroom.  I can’t remember his name.  So I pick a name – I walk up to him (headphones in my ears, music playing), and say, “Hey Mike! You teaching this one?”  He looks at me, mutters “yeah” as he looks down.  I heard him, but keep staring at him, widen my eyes, cock my head, smile, as if waiting for something.  He looks back at me, raises his voice, “Yes.” and drops his chin as he says it, to see if I am paying attention.  I smile and wander away.  (Reminder, his actual name is not Mike)

It was awkward, but I was curious to see what fitness class instructors are like out of class, before they turn the dial to “HAPPY” so they can motivate a group of strangers to do something difficult.  That I was kind of trolling him was just a bonus for me 🙂  (evil smile)

My neighbour showed up, and it looked like the class was filling up really early!  We were 10 minutes out and I couldn’t see two empty bikes side by side any more.  My neighbour ran to the signup sheet, and I went to scout out some bikes.  When he showed up, I asked nonverbally if he signed me up, he said no.  I shrugged and decided possession was 9/10 of the law, and stayed on my bike 😛

When the teacher showed up, he announced that the signup sheet was full, so if someone had not signed up, they should get off their bike.  I kept my mouth shut and kept rolling.  A few minutes later the teacher was chatting to the gym front desk staff, and my neighbour and I looked at each other and we smiled and I went back to rolling on the bike.  I was interested to see where this was going…

Teacher came back, and said if they have to, they will do roll call off the list and single the squatter(s) out and make them apologize to the class for the delay.  Spider-sense tingling!!

Front staff came back and said some of the waiters had left but one person was determined to get a bike (they HAD earned it after all).  Teacher had the list in front of him, was JUST about to read it off, when someone pointed out there was an unused bike stuck in the middle of the pack (I bet a squatter had run away).  So everyone who stuck around now had a bike and we could begin.

Yeah, I cut it close on that one!  I think I will sign up from now on 🙂

Class was good, I didn’t want to go all out on the tension, I knew I had a long day ahead of me.  Even still, I was sweating like CRAZY.  My body just wanted to sweat it all out.  I was working hard, maybe 80% the whole 60 min class, but that was enough.  I actually felt bad that the stranger to my right had inherited my puddle of sweat by about 6 songs in, it was now under my bike and under his bike too.  Crazy!  I was wondering if he would try and do stretches after and wipe out on my sweat.  Spoiler:  he did not wipe out in the end.

I also am not happy with the new bikes, there is an awkward transition from the downpedal to the uppedal, it is jerky.  I only notice it when I stand, but it makes standing climbs kinda suck.  I hope there are lots of races and power climbs in my future, so I can avoid that.

On to the weightlifting! I left Spin, bid farewell to the neighbour, and hit the weight room right away.

Back & Biceps:

100 reps close grip rows (machine):  100 lbs X 35 /65s rest/ x30 / 35s rest/ x20 / 15s rest/ x15

superset underhand grip cable rows & neutral grip pulldowns (90s rest):  120/105 X20/20, 20/20, 20/20

superset reverse cable flys & straight arm pulldowns w/rope (90s rest):  55/40 x 14/10, 12/9, 14/11

curl machine (90s rest):  80 x10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10

seated alternating DB curls (90s rest):  40 x8, 8, 8, 7, 6, 8

notes:  I was nervous about my energy levels after spin, but the machine rows held up pretty well.  I felt a nice pump already in my back after those.  Then when I went to the supersets of the rows and pulldowns (easily the hardest part), I had a hard time corralling the 2 machines at once.  I set up the bars I wanted, then when I was over with the cable rows, I noticed a girl staring at the pulldowns.  I went over to apologize, saying we could switch in and out, and she said, “no, I just don’t know how to use it”.  I explained that with the neutral-grip bar, you hold the ends with a neutral grip (ie. palms neither down nor up, but to the inside, like holding a hammer) and pull it down to the front of your chest.  She nodded, and we agreed to switch in and out.

With my 90s rest and her apparent 20s rest, she went about 5 times with her weight for 2 of my supersets, then was gone by the 3rd.  Not to judge, but it seemed like she was experimenting rather than picking a challenging weight 🙂  It kind of looked like she was trying stuff out while her boyfriend did stuff about 40 feet away.  BOO, ladies! Hit the weights with intensity!

Anyways, that superset is intense, I was shaking after every superset, my face twisted up in major discomfort.  But I did it!

I saw my friend the trainer working on a Saturday, which is rare (hi Terry!), so I went up and asked him if I could get to the pec deck in the roped off area with the free moving bars, so I could do reverse flys.  He said not needed, and took me to a machine in the corner which I mostly ignore, where I could easily do it with cables.  Since he was there, he also showed me some ways to work the exercises a little better:  for the reverse flys, alternate back and forth from standing up straight to leaning forward about 45 degrees.  Go back and forth, one standing up, one leaning forward, keeping the same angle of the pull.  And for the straight pulldowns, use a rope and bring it just to your hips.

Both of those were hard!  It made the exercises harder, I tried 60 pounds with the rope, and immediately NOPE, so I dropped the weight to 40 and kept going.  As you can see, I could not hit 20 reps with either of those exercises, so it was just difficult enough.  I think I found my new favorite variation, thanks Terry!

Then I came home, and fell into a deep sleep.  For like 90 minutes.  No foolin.  I must have been tired!

I was debating what yoga class to go to, and dreading having to go again really soon, because Saturday night does not have many choices, it was either Sat afternoon or bust.  But then I saw a last minute ad for a Saturday night class being run by my friend Megan!  90 minutes, warm room (not hot), live dj… hmmm…

I admit, I shy away from the live dj yoga classes.  I like tranquility, I don’t crave a party atmosphere.  BUT, it was my friend running it for one.  All the proceeds were going to charity for another.  It was also in the evening!  AND, maybe switching it up for its own sake will be a good shock for my body.  Now, this class had been sold out for a while (it’s very popular).  But 2 tickets had suddenly opened up!  I decided it wasn’t a coincidence.  I messaged Megan and asked if I could buy a ticket.  She said yes, and I was in!

Showed up for the 7 pm class.  It was going to be 90 min long, 40 people, dj with a turntable, 2 teachers taking turns teaching.  Megan was one of the teachers, and Nigel was the other teacher, never had a class with Nigel before.

me, Megan, Nigel!

When I showed up, I was given a glowy tube thing, told to put it around my wrist or ankle or something, sounds like a “club” thing, haha.  I tried, it was too small for my big wrists, which meant no point even looking at my ankle.  Too big for your reindeer games, Megan! (For the record, as the pic clearly shows, I looped the glowy through my belt loops on the yoga shorts.  So I had a glow in the dark groin.)

Based on the glowy tube thing, I was guessing that the dj wouldn’t be spinning AC/DC, haha.

The class would be a “prana flow” class, and Nigel would teach for 45, Megan for the other 45.  A demo mat was set up at the front of the room, and in the middle of the room, to make it easier for people to see.  A warm room meant it was only about 25 degrees, but with all the people, bound to hit at least 30 degrees.  I had no idea what they meant by prana flow, although I had gotten tastes of it from Megan’s classes before.

It was very different!  We moved with our breath quite a bit (which I guessed from the name, prana being breath), and were always moving around on our mat, rotating evenly through facing all 4 sides of our mat.  Lots of moving around, changing directions, lots of side planks.  Did I say lots of side planks?  LOTS of side planks.  Variations on the side plank, including normal side p’s, one where your bottom leg swings out in front of you, and the one where your top leg extends out behind you, in all cases either on the floor or held up in the air, depending on your ability.  This can be very tiring, and most of our energy was devoted towards that.

We did chaturanga here and there for the first 45 min, but for the back half, we were told to merely “wink” at chaturanga, meaning don’t do it, just recognize that is the place where it would go, AKA stay in extended plank for a second before heading back to downward dog.  I think they recognized 90 min of chaturanga and side planks was pretty rigorous, so they trimmed the chaturanga out, to show us mercy 🙂

We also “pulsed” a lot, in various poses, experimenting with using our breath to make our torso and spine move through “waves”, playing with our trunk positioning in extended plank, and in garland pose, and in down dog, and in up dog and cobra.  The pulses were interesting!  I might want to add that on the regular to my deep squats, it felt quite good there.

NOW, in all fairness, on the down side!  The music was quite loud, and I couldn’t hear Nigel when he spoke.  Megan cut through the buzz a little bit with her commands, but you shouldn’t have to fight the music to be heard.  I don’t know if a noisy hot room is my thing.  Also, with all the spinning around, my yoga towel that covered the mat was getting all twisted up into piles all the time, so I yanked it off.  But now with just my trusty rubber yoga mat getting sweaty, I kept losing my grip and slipping.  I am just too heavy and sweaty for all that spinning around while keeping your balance.  I would need some way to keep my towel pinned down to my mat for me to keep traction.

Don’t take it the wrong way, I was really glad I went to that class!  I always appreciate new challenges.  That it all was for charity was just gravy.  I came home, exhausted and happy.  That’s why this blog is so late, I had to go sleep, haha.

What a great Saturday!  Hard work all day long!  Day 20 down!

Megan’s main business web page:  http://www.journeyoftheyogini.com/

Nigel’s web page:  http://www.yogawithnigel.com/

learn more about Shiva Rea’s Prana Flow:  http://shivarea.com/about-prana-flow

A Sense of Renewal

Thursday was my offday.  At work though, the grind of the 9 to 5 got to me and I ate some junk food to give me a boost for the afternoon 7th inning stretch.  It wasn’t much, it gave me a pick me up for 5 min then I felt worn out again.  I felt guilty about it, so I decided to head to the gym Thursday night to do some work.  I asked Leslie what would be best for the focus so I wouldn’t step on the toes of whatever she had planned for Friday, and she suggested I do arms.  Hooray!  I luv arm day.  (Side note, Leslie hates her own arm day!  She says it agitates her to work her biceps.  Crazy right??  Arm day rules.)  After work, I napped, ate, psyched myself up, then to the gym for some late night training.

Group photo! Leslie’s arms, and my pecs. the excellence of execution right here.

Thursday night solo:

5 min warmup

(90 sec rest between sets)

dumbbell skullcrushers:  30 lb DBs x10, x10, x10, x10, x10, x8

2hand dumbbell extension:  55lb DB x10, x10, x10, x10, x10, x10

bicep curl machine:  60 x10, x10, x10, x10, x10, x10

seated curls:  35 lb DBs x10, x10, x10, x10, x10, x9

30 min on the elliptical

notes:  Good old arm volume training.  You don’t NEED 24 working sets a week on your arms to see progress, but it is nice every once in a while, and my arms need to work on their endurance.  My shoulder felt sore, so I was glad for arms vice chest or back.  Still, my shoulder got in the way of the skullcrushers, so my form was shaky by set 4.  I couldn’t keep it going in set 6, so had to clip it short.  Extensions felt good by the end, good strain on my triceps, so I knew tricep DOMS were in my future.

I wanted to do preacher curls, but the dudes in the gym had set up camp on the preacher rest, and they didn’t seem friendly, so w/e.  I went to the bicep curl machine.  I put on 60 lbs, which felt light on the machine, so I tried to make up for it by focussing mentally on SQUEEZING at the top of the movement, really tiring out my bicep and working on “the peak”.  It worked wonders.  By sets 5 and 6, my 90 second rest was devoted to stretching out my biceps, which felt really good.  Finished up with DB curls, and my biceps were tired enough that I couldn’t keep good form by the last few sets, so I will stick at that weight for a while.

Friday I woke up TIRED.  Late night sessions at the gym mean you are so buzzed when you get home, it is hard to transition to sleep.  Plus my shoulder stayed sore through the night.  So I slept in a bit, then took some strong anti-inflammatories for my shoulder and headed to work.  I was conscious not to eat junk, but I had to pop another anti-inflammatory, which leaves me feeling sluggish and bloated.  So lack of sleep and pilled to the gills, that meant I was not in prime form for my Friday session with Leslie.  It is unavoidable though, the shoulders need to rehab, can’t let them gather dust.

We talked for a bit, did a weigh-in (I lost 0 weight, which I will take as a concession considering the imperfect week).  We also talked about my future.  I definitely still need the help, with my form, with my focus, with my diet.  So I signed up for more sessions, renewed the commitment!  I am looking forward to working more with Les, I think she can help me a lot 🙂

short session, but weigh-in, renewal and pep talk was needed

10 minutes on the elliptical

triset:  squats with the ropes THEN stationary lunges THEN Australian pullups

20/12/12,     15/12(touch ball to floor)/10,     13(jump squats)/12(ball twist)/10

last set

last set

first set!

triset:  barbell curls THEN incline closegrip pushups THEN walking side planks

45×10/10/10,     55×12/12/10,     55×12/12/10

the transition

finished product

yoga stretch after:  cobblers pose for 3 min, pigeon for 90 sec or so each side

notes:  did all that make sense?  to some extent the exercises progressed to tougher versions as they went on.  As I got used to the version, we did a little more.  So the first stationary lunges were just that, then the second set I had a medicine ball I touched to the ground, then the last set, I twisted with the ball to the side.

The straps for the squats were just to keep my chest up, I didn’t pull or use my back.  That pic of me doing plyo is a rare pic!  Savour it, my feet don’t leave the ground very often any more 😀

Yeah… lunges… I am not very coordinated with lunges, haha.

Those wussy pullups… I can definitely go harder next time, they were easy (move my feet farther out).

The barbell curls were light, so I focused on the squeeze, and my biceps were tired anyways from the night before.

The incline closegrip was basically me racking the barbell after the curls then doing pushups against them.  On a sidenote:  there are no pictures of the curls or the pushups, because doing curls in the squat rack is a n00b move, and Leslie would lose her PT license if someone saw it 😀

Walking side planks are basically you transition back and forth from side to side.  They felt good, even slightly easy, so Leslie had me hold the side plank for a few seconds before the transition on later sets.

Then the yoga after felt GREAT.  It made me realize how much I miss yoga, it boosts my mood so much.  Thanks for that Leslie!  Good call.

October ends with a sense of renewed purpose.  I have a long ways to go, but I am working on it.  See you later!