Saturday, December 31, 2005

Happy New Years to All

Spent today at the car dealer getting the radio and center console replaced (free, it's a recall item), so I'm on the computer a bit to pass my 2.5 hours. Am also watching a lot of Brent Mikesell videos, studying his technique to see where my squat problem lies. I'm going to do a few unhealthy things tonight but will be off the road, as should everyone else. Cheers!!!

Friday, December 30, 2005

The Adventures of Sledboy and Ding

I actually got off work today at 10:30AM . . . . whoopee!!! Time enough to get my son's meds - - - doctor called to say his throat culture tested positive for strep - - - and take the sled out for a spin. Watched the Parisi Warm-up DVD, ate, then we were on our way. My son called dibs on dragging the sled to the clubhouse.

I was lazy and did not not want to take two trips up the stairs so I loaded the sled with a 45, 25, and two 5s and carried it down the stairs. Oh, those sharp edges. Right thigh got slashed. I tell my son to just hold the straps over the shoulder and pull. After a couple of misteps, he pulls it to the clubhouse slowly but surely. All 110 lbs of it (sled's about 30 lbs). Huffing and puffing, he says that he'll go swim. I take everything (sled, weights, ankle straps, and basketball) and get ready to run drills and drag. In case you're wondering, it was not hardwood but a surface similar to what's in weightrooms.

I first do a lap much as my son did, with 110 lbs, and realize that it was not hitting the right spots. So I choked the straps and stepped in them, then cinched it to my waist and dragged it for six laps. That was more like it. I have never felt my hips being drilled that directly before, and my backside was getting worked. Much like Louie Simmons wrote, you take long, forceful strides. Then, I did the same thing but walking backwards. After 3 laps, my quads were singed. I took off 35 lbs and continued. Could my weaker VMO be holding my squat back a bit? Hmmmmmm. I even did some drags with the ankle straps, doing forward/backwards/sideways drags with the sled only; did pullthroughs, front/rear raises, and hand over hand pulling for my back. In between all this, I did laps and suicides, sideways runs, backwards runs, skipping, and some of the mobility work I saw on the video. I will use less weight in the future, and I really love this thing. A good workout. Squat workout was next in a few hours.

Took my son to Bangor gym so he could shoot hoop and I could squat. Due to all the sled experimenting, I just did the meat and potatoes of todays workout.

DE Parallel Box Squat: 95x3, 115x3, 135x3, 165x2x10. Had decent speed but little pop. Too much sled work? Sure. But I've come to realize that I sit too far back in the box squat and my form out of the hole needs work. Otherwise, I descend fine. I spread my groin as I go down and push my knees out (kind of like Brent Mikesell recommends), but it seems I'm not totally sure what to do from the bottom. Should I bring my knees in a bit then spread the floor as I come up or what? Advice, anyone? Oh, on one of my sets I realized what John McDonald meant when I was holding the bar with my hands out too far and I trapped my right pinky for a split second against the j-hook, cutting it and splitting the nail. That smarted.

Supersetted speed deadlifts (205x1x10) and trap bar shrugs (164x3x10). Will I pay for that? Already am, my traps are crispy. Had to keep wiping my pinky after each dead, too.

Finished up by joining my son for some baskets. Tuesday, I'll do the lighter leg stuff that should have finished this workout.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

All I Want for X-Mas

X-mas was pretty good to me. Among the things my wife got me was some essential gear: a sled pack, two and 3 board, and the Parisi Warm-up DVD from EliteFTS. The only thing I had to get myself was carabiners (4 of them), and 3 plates (45, 35, 25 lbs, my kid wants to give it a go). Any suggestions on dragging workouts that have worked for others would be very welcome. I will probably watch the DVD tonight and start getting conditioning tips from that, which I will also blog. One thing I do want to do, since I'm out to improve my 1.5 mile run, is to attempt to do a walking sled drag through the course they use on Bangor base to slowly condition myself for it. Stupid? Maybe. But depending on how it goes with a light weight, it might be a good thing. Nothing ventured, nothing gained, right?

Friday, December 23, 2005

ME Bench

All notation: lbs x reps x sets.

Nautilus Nitro Vertical Bench: 95x6, 110x5, 125x4, 140x3, 155x3, 170x6, 200x1, 180x6, 210x0, 120x15. The 200 pounder went up twice as quick as last time, about a 5 second rep. The 210er moved an inch then would not move any further. The 15 rep set took 3 pauses after the 7th and 11th rep. To push from the bottom with no leg drive means I better push it hard and fast, or it won't happen. The Nautilus is very draining.

Tri-set for 3 sets of 20 reps:
Dumbbell Front Raises: 8 lbs
Dumbbell Side Raises: 8 lbs
Hoist Rear Delt Machine: 15 lbs.

Inverted Rows: 10 sets of 3. Better with a good pause and a deeper pull.
Standing Reverse Curls: 10 sets of 3 with 50 lbs
Seated External Rotations: 20 reps with 2, 3, and 4 lbs; 18 reps with 5 and 6 lbs; 15 reps with 8 and 10 lbs; 2 sets of 12 reps with 12 lbs; and 10 reps with 15 lbs.

Thursday, December 22, 2005


Yesterday's aerobics was for me to run basketball drills while my son swam in the pool. Basketball for me is a great way to get lean and in shape because of all the short sprints, body movements, and jumping. That, and I suck wind early in games, and this is more fun than running on a treadmill.

1.) Jogged four laps around the court, dribbling with my right hand.
2.) Played one-handed Around The World, including the three point range.
3.) Jogged four laps around the court in the opposite direction, dribbling with my left hand.
4.) Played one-handed Around The World on the opposite end of the court, including the three point range. Got this done faster, shot was now tuned up.
5.) Ran Suicides from both ends of the court. I want to say that the prior day's squat workout bled me dry, but would rather admit that my endurance needs lots of work. I tried my best to be fast, but felt the burns early.
6.) 25 pushups with feet elevated.
7.) 30 situps
8.) Ran Cariocas back and forth.
9.) 10 band pushups, feet elevated.
10.) 10 leg thrusts.
11.) Backwards shuffles, feet spread arms out (defensive position), back and forth.
12.) Planks
13.) Alternating Supermans. My abs were so tired. Hell, I was spent!!!
14.) Toe taps until my tibia burned.
15.) Rapid jumps using only the calves.
16.) Side shuffles in a criss-cross pattern.

Gave myself a fast shower, then jumped in the pool to play. Hot tub and sauna felt great.

Added today: Lifefitness Elliptical Trainer: 25 minutes, level 5, 2.71 miles, steady state. Can't always train hard circuits, and I do some steady low intensity stuff at times. Left feeling loose and limber.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

ME Squat/DL

Squats: 135x5, 155x4, 175x3, 195x1, 225x3x5. I notice that I have a little more oomph and balance from the bottom, so I'm gonna give credit to the split squats for that one. Not too demanding until the end.

Arched Back Good Mornings: 135x3, 155x3, 185x3, 205x3x5. Rather than rest a bit from the squats, I just rested a minute or so like any other set. The result? The weights felt really light because my body still thought I had 225 on the bar.

Band Assisted GHR on a Resist-A-Roll Ball: 40 reps in 10 sets. Towards the end, I had to push myself up a bit just for more assistance, but my hams were toast so it barely mattered.

Trap Bar Shrugs/Hoist Calf Press superset: 10 sets of 3 with 164 lbs (shrugs) and 70 lbs (calves).

Hadn't worked out in a while except for HIIT aerobics and running basketball drills with my sun. My metabolism is creeping up. That last bench session aggravated my hand so I took a break. The cut had been healing but I still had a knot underneath it about the size of a quarter that would flare up and throb if I grabbed anything. It's gone now, but I squatted with the Manta Ray, just in case.

In case the holidays keep me out of the gym the rest of the week. I wanted to wish you all a Merry X-mas/Kwanzaa/Hanukkah/"fill in the blank" and a safe and happy New Year. And if you must drink, push the car home for GPP!!!

Thursday, December 15, 2005

DE Bench

This workout happened yesterday. As I would learn yesterday and this past weekend, my hand may take a bit to heal. The wound is closing up but underneath it it's still a little tender and bruised. Right now, it's a little sore from yesterday's bench session.

Hammer MTS Front Pullsown: 70x3x8, 80x2, 90x1

Flat Bench Press: 95x5, 115x4, 135x3, 145x3x8, 165x2, 205x1, 250x0. All sets done with the wider grip (long finger on rings). I tried the 250 just to get a feel for it. I racked it and brought it down under control in solid form, but that was it.

Dumbbell Shoulder Presses: 50x3x3. Shoulders were beat from Mondays squat session, and I didn't have much speed. I had tried the behind the neck press but it just didn't feel right.

Supersetted YTWLs (10 sets of 5-8 reps with 3 lbs) and Preacher Curls (50x3x10)

Monday, December 12, 2005

DE Squat - Sort Of

Intervals on a Lifefitness Elliptical machine: 4 intervals (1 min fast, 1 min slow). My warmup was to walk to the gym and back up a lot of stairs to get back to work. 4 intervals was all I could handle. But would I go back to steady state? No. This is the best way for me to get lean, so I will be patient.

Hammer MTS ISO Incline Bench (all weights per movement arm): 25x10, 35x8, 45x6, 55x4, 65x2, 75x1, 85x1, 95x1. What else was going to do for that extra time left?


Parallel Box Squat: 95x3, 115x3, 135x3, 150x2x10.

Speed Deadlifts: 185x1x10. Speed was good on everything. All speed work done beltless.

Bulgarian Split Squats: BWTx10, 20x10, 20x9. These torched my quads and backside. I want to take this as a sign of quad weakness, but what I will settle for is the question of why I waited this long to do them.

One Armed Dumbbell Overhead Squats: Lifted right out of the No Curls program by Alwyn Cosgrove, I decided to do these instead of side bends to get more bang for my training buck. 10 lbs was used as the overhead weight, and 20 was used for the squat weight. 3 sets of 10 and these really hammered me. Not just because of all the leg work before, but my abs were really engaged, and I had to work hard to balance the overhead weight (I think some more shoulder flexibility would be nice here, too). I just had an epiphany: it was also hard because, accounting for the arm switch each set, that's 60 reps!!!

Supersetted Seated Calf Raises (65x3x10) and Pullthroughs (20x10, 30x10, 40x10, 50x8, 60x8, 70x6, 80x4, 90x2, 100x1, 110x1). It was only gonna do pullthroughs for 3 sets of 10, but I felt frisky;-)

Sunday, December 11, 2005

ME Bench - Friday

All notation: lbs x reps x sets.

Nautilus Nitro Vertical Bench: 90x6, 105x5, 120x4, 135x3, 150x3, 160x6, 190x1, 170x6, 200x1, 115x15. The 200 lbs took me 10 seconds to complete but I was going to get it, damnit!!! After that, 115 lbs felt just like 180 lbs - - - it took me two rest pauses to get the 15 reps.

Tri-set for 3 sets of 20 reps:
Dumbbell Front Raises: 5 lbs
Dumbbell Side Raises: 5 lbs
Hoist Rear Delt Mchine: 10 lbs. What a burn. I never could get the hang of doing rear delts with a dumbbell, so I substituted the Hoist.

Inverted Rows: BWTx3x10. Set the bar on the Smith, lay on your back beneath it, then pull yourself up. This was more about quality: while I did get myself up pretty high, I felt as if I could do better if I was stronger. So I worked on my pull steadiness and my one second pause at the top.

Seated External Rotations: 8x15, 10x12x2, 12x10. 4 weeks of high rep work to get my cuffs prepared, followed by 4 weeks of 6-8 rep work, then repeat. That's the plan.

Standing Reverse Curls: Worked up to a 60lbs 1RM, then did 7 sets of 3 with 50 lbs.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Deload to Reload

Read this on the Elite FTS site, written by Jim Wendler. A must read, especially if preparing for a meet, it has different methods of deloading from a cycle.

ME Squat/DL

Wife has been sick the last couple of days and I had to set up the game systems Wednesday. So this workout was split over two days. I decided to do the Prilepin cycle for the squat for three weeks so that I could squat more, using squats as my heavy movement and arched back good mornings for the light movement - - - on the same day. Throw in the shrug work and the deadlift is practically covered, too. I don't expect a major weight jump from this but I expect a better squat and more SPP.

Wednesday Lunchtime:

Squats: 135x5, 155x4, 175x3, 195x0 (got down to the bottom and the bar started to roll off, I lost my concentration and could not come up. Worse yet, I set the pins too low. So after falling on my ass carefully, I had to get the bar off me and I rolled it on my left hand. Ouch!!! Cut my palm, blood starts to drip. I sprayed some disinfectant on a towel, wiped my hand up. Now, I'm pissed), 195x3, 225x3, 245x2x3. As of today, the hand is just a little sore but at least I didn't break anything. The skin stayed on so it should heal up quick. My upper back and neck muscles were sore from trying to roll the bar off - - - because of my position at the time, I could not dump the bar.

Weighted Situps: 5 sets of 10 with a 25 lbs plate. My abs are so sore right now!!!


Arched Back Good Mornings: 95x6, 115x5, 135x4, 155x3, 175x3, 195x3x5. Pretty good, just a lot of work.

Band Assisted GHR on a Resist-A-Roll Ball: 30 reps in 8 sets. In case I didn't describe it before, here's the setup. The ball is almost oval, with a rougher texture so that it stays put. Went to the room that had the metal bars on the wall. Attached the bands to upper bars (level with my shoulders), put my feet inside lower bars to hold them to the wall, put an arm in each band, and got on the ball. These feel a lot more natural than my old setup. Harder, too: you get help at the bottom, less as you come back up, none a few inches short of the top.

Trap Bar Shrugs/Hoist Calf Press superset: 10 sets of 3 with 154 lbs (shrugs) and 65 lbs (calves).

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

DE Bench

I had to drive myself to work yesterday, so I worked out at the gym here in Bremerton rather than waste time driving to the other base. Felt good to be back, getting back into the habit of things.

Flat Bench Press: 115x3, 135x3, 145x3x8, 185x2, 205x1, 225x0. I stuck with one grip today, which was a little wider than normal (longest finger on the rings). Still had really good speed but it did take a little more work to stabilize the bar. It also made heavier weights harder, thus the 225 failure. I also noticed that on the last inch ot two, my speed slows a bit - - - time to either use 3-4 boards, rack lockouts, or heavy band benches. Or I could blame the wider grip and feel really good about myself!

Hammer MTS ISO Front Pulldown: Worked up to 85x2 per arm, then did 65x3x10. Very similar to a chinup done with a slight arch toward the top. Very effective.

Hammer ISO Behind The Neck Presss: 70x3x3 per arm.

YTWLs: 4 sets with 5 lbs. Just did as many as I could, these are so fucking hard. I know that the point is not to hurl up a ton of weight but, man, this is ridiculous. Evil exercise!!!

Preacher Curls: 50x3x10.

Monday, December 05, 2005

The Price of Being Cheap

After a year in Puerto Rico, I arrived back in the United States in 1977. From 1977 to 1986, I moved about 9 times as my mom not only had some problems with greedy landlords and small apartments but also wanted bigger and better places for our family of 6 kids. We never had the luxury of movers, we were it. As you could imagine, it was always quick with that much help.

We tried to move cheap from our home to the apartment, so we opted to move all the smaller things and let the movers take the bigger things. Simple, right?

Where are your weightlifting bloggers when you need them:) If you have never lived in a home, it's easy to move. If you are moving from a home into an apartment, it's murder. Our house was not overly decorated or furnished and yet after the movers were done, we spent another week cleaning up and moving all of our shit. Some of our stuff went into storage. We still have to get the outdoor basketball hoop. And our apartment, though it's getting organized, still looks "just moved into." Painful lesson. Surprisingly, my wife and I didn't kill each other but we were getting really grouchy.

I've eaten like shit for a week, and have moved so many things up and down stairs and walked so much my knees ached. This weekend was for rest and I feel good enough to start working out again tonight. And I got my computer hooked up this Saturday. Next time, the movers are gonna move EVERYTHING!!!