Tag Archive: TRX


May 11, 2015

Runnin outta gas, need a day off. I think my back is tired as fukk, and its zapping my energy in general.

One more kick at the can, then I take tomorrow off.

Push Press (elbow sleeves, wrist wraps, oly shoes, short rests)

bar x 5 strict
135 x 3
175 x 6
175 x 6
175 x FAIL
155 x 8

notes: those 175 sets were hard-fought. On the 3rd set I ran outta gas, so I did a backoff set right away. Found a good working weight for a while I think.

Superset Cable Face Pulls and YT Flys with the TRX

60 x 15 / 10Y10T
60 x 15 / 10Y10T
60 x 15 / 10Y10T

Superset Hybrid Rear Delt Upright Cable Row & “Agony Press”

I call it an Agony Press because that’s what CT Fletcher called it, lol. Its a front OHP followed by a BTN OHP. Works my weak points quite well.

60 x 15 / 30 x 20
60 x 15 / 40 x 20
60 x 15 / 40 x 36

notes: 36 was the max # of agony presses I could do, lol

Short and sweet, F it, go eat some scrambled eggs and salsa and a brown tortilla and call it a day.

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

 

I heart you supps, never stop being you ūüôā

 

had to cut the workout short tonight.

 

Giant Set:  DB Press & Cable Fly & TRX pushups

80s x 6 / 50 x 12 / 25

80s x 6 / 50 x 12 / 25

80s x 6 / 50 x 12 / 25

 

Giant Set:  OHP & Side Raise & Arnold presses

95 x 6 / 12s x 12 / 12s x 25

95 x 6 / 12s x 12 / 12s x 25

95 x 6 / 12s x 12 / 12s x 25

 

30 min of elliptical!

Hi!¬† Sorry for the delay in putting my workout up.¬† these things can’t be avoided sometimes.

 

My routine has been changed up, in an effort to refocus on weight loss.  Too late to shred for summer, but goddamn it, I can be shredded for Halloween, ROFL!  5/3/1 goes back in the closet for now, just a little while!

 

May 26:  Chest & Shoulders

(about 60 sec rest b/w sets)

Giant Set:  Flat DB Press & Cable Fly & Incline TRX Pushups

80s x 6 / 50 x 12 / 25

80s x 6 / 50 x 12 / 25

80s x 6 / 50 x 12 / 25

80s x 6 / 50 x 12 / 20

notes:  I was sucking wind, this workout was already tough!

Giant Set:  Standing OHP & Strict DB Side Raise & seated Arnold presses

95 x 6 / 12s x 12 / 12s x 25

95 x 6 / 12s x 12 / 12s x 25

95 x 6 / 12s x 12 / 12s x 25

notes:  coolness went out the window, I was just trying to get through this

Giant Set:¬† unilateral flat DB press & unilateral RD cable fly & Upright Row (we tried a Cuban Press, but my rotators weren’t havin it)

40s x 12/12   20 x 12/12   60 x 15

40s x 12/12   20 x 12/12   60 x 15

40s x 12/12   20 x 12/12   60 x 15

 

was going to do cardio, but I went for a massage instead!  massage focused on calves, forearms, some shoulder and back.  my Right side is tight across the board, and I am being warned my back needs some extra TLC sometime soon.

 

Quite the opposite of TLC, May 27 was Back Day!

Right after work, headed to a backup office gym.  I thought it would be empty, sadly it was not, and juggling circuits got a little awkward.

(rest time between sets varied 20-60 sec, depending on waiting for someone)

Giant set:  Bent Over DB Row & Closegrip Pulldown & Straight Arm Pushdown

100s x 6/6     120 x 12     20 x 25

100s x 6/6     130 x 12     30 x 25

100s x 6/6     130 x 12     30 x 25

100s x 6/6     130 x 12     30 x 25

100s x 6/6     130 x 12     30 x 25

notes:  cable work got tough, but I grinded it out!

Giant Set:  Assisted Hammergrip Pullups & Widegrip Cable Row (hammergrip, elbows high) & Reverse Pec Deck (free handles)

6     100 x 12     50 x 25

6     110 x 12     40 x 25

6     120 x 12     40 x 25

6     130 x 12     40 x 25

6     140 x 12     40 x 25

notes:  pec deck was a little stiff at the start, but I got the hang of it.  hittin them rhomboids!  I could feel the work the RMT did the day before, left rhomboid was poppin and snappin!

 

post workout:¬† 30 min elliptical, incline, resistance, music ūüôā

 

 

Just keep working and grinding!  Keep at it dude.

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 ūüė¶

 

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?

TRX Legs & Core

So tonight I wondered:  what if I took my 2 least favorite workouts out of my home TRX kit and did them back to back?  Legs & Core

 

So… definitely challenging.¬† I might not have been in top form heading in either.¬† I had been struggling with headaches all day, and on the walk home from work I had prickly pains in my forehead, and lost my headphones while I was on the bus.¬† So I wasn’t feeling awesome.¬† Oh, and I also had about a pound of steak about 30 min before the workout, HAHAHA.¬† It sat heavy in my tummy.¬† But it was too late to turn back now!¬† Sweat it out betch.

 

TRX Legs & Core

A. Hip Press x 10, rest 15 sec

B. Hamstring Curl x 10, rest 15 sec

REPEAT A and B 2 more times

C.  Lunge x 15, switch legs, rest 15 sec, REPEAT 2 more times

REST 15 sec

D.  Single Leg Squat:  right leg x 10, left leg x 4*, rest 30 sec*, left leg x 10, right leg x 5*

E.  NO TRX Рbodyweight full squat x 18, rest 15 sec, x 20

REST 30 sec

F.  Resisted Torso Rotation x 10 (each side), rest 15 sec, x 8* (each side)

G.  TRX Crunch x 10, rest 15 sec

H.  NO TRX Extended Side Plank x 30 sec (each side)

REST 15 sec*, REPEAT Crunch x 10, Side Plank x 15 sec/30 sec*

I.  TRX Pike x 10, rest 15 sec

J.  TRX Mountain Climber x 10 (each side), rest 15 sec

REPEAT Pike x 8*, Mountain Climber x 8 (each side)*

K. NO TRX Prone Straight Leg Raises x 20, rest 15 sec, x 20

 

notes:¬† I didn’t use TRX when I didn’t feel it necessary, ie. regular squats, side planks, leg raises

For the hips and ham curls, I kept my butt off the ground the whole time (it’s a bit harder)

For the lunges, I opted to keep my backwards lunge extended and just lowered up and down.¬† I wanted to work the muscles not the full coordination, and I was worried it would use up my energy before I got to core.¬† And… the less I moved around the less I felt like puking up a giant steak hahaha!

Wherever there is an asterisk, I deviated from the plan, haha.  Most of the time I was getting super tired so those were the number of reps I did before my form got bad and I had to stop counting.

With the one leg squats for example, I could muscle through the first leg but when I went to the second leg, I kept popping up on the balls of my foot, so I stopped.¬† To test out if it was mechanics or fatigue, I reversed leg order the second time through, and same thing, first leg can do it, second leg can’t.¬† So, it was fatigue.

A few rests were also slightly longer than I wanted but I needed to catch my breath.

With the side planks, I was supposed to rest a minute, but I could feel myself fading, so I kept the rest down to 15 seconds.¬† After I couldn’t hit 30 seconds on one side, I got mad and made it happen on the other side, haha.¬† So maybe that was a lack of focus.

I also started getting more headaches during the squats.  Prickly forehead too.  It hurt!

I was hurting by the end, sweating like crazy, my yoga mat was slick with sweat, I needed a shower.  But it felt good!

Sometimes you just gotta take your most hated exercises, roll them up in a tight little ball, and force them down your own throat.  Has to be done.

 

See you soon!

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 ūüôā

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 ūüôā

 

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!

 

 

Nice Try

Cold, snowy day in Ottawa.  Wet flakes of snow kept falling all day, blotting out the sun and blocking the traffic.  Buses run slower, people walk slower.

I woke up, and felt like a morning pick-me-up.  TRX at 5 am, yesssss

TRX Basic Arms & Shoulders routine

A.  Biceps Curl x 10, rest 15 sec

B.  Triceps Press x 10, rest 15 sec

C.  Y Fly x 15, rest 15 sec

REPEAT A-C, 2 more times

D.  Clutch Curl x 10, rest 15 sec

E.  Reverse Grip Triceps Press x 10, rest 15 sec

F.  W Fly x 15, rest 15 sec

REPEAT D-F, 2 more times

notes:  I sipped on protein powder and water while I did this, since I normally wake up as hungry as a bear (waking up starving is my best trick to getting me up at 5 am, or else I just roll over and go back to sleep, haha).  By the time I was done this routine (roughly 20 min), my oatmeal was done cooking!

Doing biceps with the TRX is ok, but I don’t know if it was quite hard enough to really push me.¬† My problem is that I don’t think I have the setup quite right, if I lean on it with all my weight, the straps slip out a little (I have them on the shortest length and they lengthen on me)¬†and my barefeet kinda slip on the carpet haha.¬† I need to tinker with it a bit and see how I can keep the straps snug and tight.¬† It was hard though, I was grunting the whole time, for what it’s worth.

Nothing beats a good old-fashioned dumbbell curl though¬†ūüėõ

Reverse grip triceps press felt good once I got the form down.

OK! The plan after work was I rush to my backup gym and try to make the Spin class.  Tonight they were running 3 classes in a row!  Score! This would be great for my spinathon prep, 3 hours of Spin.

I told Leslie on sunday that I needed to cancel the Monday session so I could do a triple Spin.¬† She looked at me dubiously.¬† I think she was worried it was a ruse for me to skip out on exercise altogether.¬† I can’t get too mad at her, that does actually sound like me… skip my gym session so I can do spin, then not do spin.¬† Oh well, that’s ok, I don’t need the support.¬† Sometimes you have to stand on your own.

So I slip and slide my way from work to the bus stop, squeeze into a crowded and shitty bus, get to the gym with half an hour to spare… then they tell me that the classes¬†were ALL booked since Noon.¬† I guess at this gym they let you book cardio classes by phone starting the day before.¬† I had never done a class at this backup gym of mine before, only weights.¬† Yeah me.

So even when I try to do the right thing, it looks like I am still trying to weasel my way out of it.  Pissed and a little downcast, I went home to the apt building to do some rowing in my apt building basement, where I could be alone and grumpy.  When I got home I noticed I had left the stove burner on all day!  From the oatmeal.  What a lovely day!

So I cancelled my PT appointment and screwed up the spin classes.  I got in a TRX workout and 45 min of rowing.  Nice try, but no cigar.

And how was your 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 ūüôā

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!