Tuesday, May 29, 2012

12 Week Experiment: Week 11

Day 1: A
Squat: 235lbs.
Bench: 175lbs.
Upright Row: 130lbs.

 Day 2: B
Squat: 240lbs.
Press: 115lbs.
Deadlift: 245lbs.

 Day 3: A
Squat: 245lbs.
Bench: 180lbs.
Upright Row: 135lbs.

"Accumulating injuries are the price we pay for the thrill of not having sat around on our asses."
- Mark Rippetoe

Every now and again a quote, a quip, a bit of wisdom comes by at just the right time. Last week I ran across the quote above as I was rehabbing an injured hip, and feeling grumpy over a missed workout. For those who don't know, Mark Rippetoe is a national level strength training coach, and one of the pioneers of peer-reviewed strength training. His quote not only made me smile, it got me out of a slump, and back into the gym.

I've also been thinking a lot, as this experiment winds to a close, about the future. What comes after? Stronglifts isn't meant to be a 12 week program, then on to the next. Stronglifts is meant to be a long term investment, with a 12 week "intro" as I near the end of my 12 weeks, I feel strongly that I should continue, and that continuing would be beneficial. However, I spent some time asking myself why. I ran, a fair amount, to train for the Corporate Challenge, I've done Judo, and BJJ, on and off for years. Yet nothing has ever come as easily, or with the same enjoyment as weight lifting. In the end, after much consideration I've come to the following conclusions:

1) I'm not a runner, I never have been, Biologically I'm simply not built to be a runner. I loathe the activity, and only enjoy running when it's the final 100m kick to the end.
2) I'm a recreational martial artist. Simply put, the dedication required to be good escapes me. I don't want to train four, or five, days a week, for hours at a time. I don't want to be away from my wife for that long. On top of that, I'm too competitive to know that I'll never be good at my current involvement while at the same time knowing I'm not willing to give more.

What does this have to do with lifting heavy things? I guess, when you find something you're good at, and makes you happy, do it. Even if that thing is lifting heavy things, then putting them back down.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

12 Week Experiment: Week 10

Day 1: B
Squat: 225lbs.
Press: 110lbs.
Deadlift: 225lbs.

Day 2: A
Squat: 230lbs.
Bench: 170lbs.
Upright Row: 125lbs.

Day 3: B
Squat: 230lbs.
Press: 115lbs.
Deadlift: 235lbs.

The second day this week went poorly, to say the least. I've hurt my hip, and I'm finding it hard to lift significant weight. I aggravated the injury on Monday, when I attempted to squat 230lbs. I dropped the weight, and considered scrapping the entire session. In the end I finished, but my form on the forth, and fifth sets was so poor as to be almost not worth considering.

I took several days off, to let my hip recover, and I'm going back tonight to pick up where I left off. Unfortunately, with being out of town this weekend that means that I won't finish this week until Tuesday of next week.

This pushes Week 11 out through when I should have been finishing the program. It's not terrible, just a little frustrating.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

12 Week Experiment: Week 9

Day 1: A
Squat: 210lbs.
Bench: 160lbs.
Upright Row: 115lbs.

Day 2: B
Squat: 215lbs.
Press: 105lbs.
Deadlift: 215lbs.

Day 3: A
Squat: 220lbs.
Bench: 165lbs.
Upright Row: 120lbs.

Had my first hiccup at the tail end of week 8. As a result both my squat, and overhead press won't go up for the first lift of this week. I'm confident the squat was just a hiccup, but the press worries me. It's not a lot of weight, but my shoulders have always been a problem for me.

Part of me is shocked that I've kept this up for 8 weeks already and have only slipped one workout behind. I keep telling myself that I'll catch up, but I guess it doesn't really matter. I'm lifting, I feel fantastic, and I've started to include cardio in my off days. This should help me lose some weight.

All in all, I feel good. I'm lifting, and I'm curious to see how this all turns out.

Friday, May 4, 2012

12 Week Experiment: Week 8

 Day 1: B
Squat: 200lbs.
Press: 100lbs.
Deadlift: 195lbs.

 Day 2: A
Squat: 205lbs.
Bench: 155lbs.
Upright Row: 110lbs.

 Day 3: B
Squat: 210lbs.
Press: 105lbs.
Deadlift: 205lbs.

Not much to say, keep adding weight, keep lifting. Form is improving, and I'm feeling fantastic. Not much of a visible change, but I'm ok with that. I hit 200 last night (Day 1) and am looking forward to the start of week 10, where I should hit 225.