Thursday, April 30, 2009

Entry #746

DE upper

My nape is much better and more mobile, but I'm forgoing any heavy pulls for a few weeks just to be sure. Safety sucks.

"There is no point in living if you cannot do deadlift." -Jon Pall Sigmarsson

Speed bench:
10x3 185 lbs.
> I always start slow before I'm really blazing. Warm-up better.

Incline flyes:
3x12 50 lb. dumbbells

Cable pressdowns:
3x12 Entire stack
> I treat these as DE, practically, done extremely fast and hard.

Weighted chin-ups:
2x8 50 lbs.
> I felt a tad bit of pressure in my shoulder girdle, so I moved on to unweighted.

Wide-grip pull-ups:

Alternating curls:
3x14 55 lb. dumbbells

Monday, April 27, 2009

Entry #745

Computer woes seem to be over after a simple cleaning of the air ducts. That's not to say that it took me the entirety of two weeks to figure this out, but when something arises, I seem to get in a momentum of neglect.

I went to Home Depot last week and got a board sawed off into five 2x11s to make a two-board and a three-board for board presses, held together with duct tape. I probably should have had the foresight to make the bottom layer elongated to act as a handle for potential spotters, but I always train alone anyways.

So today, I walk in the gym and Andrew is at the counter talking to the front desk kid, and he approaches me with, "You're late, dude. What're you doing today?"
"Board presses."
"Really? You've got the stuff with you?"
"Yup. In my bag, here."
"Can I see?"
So I show him what I'm sporting, and then we end up trying to explain to the guy working there what it's used for. Ah, how a simple piece of wood can bring like-minded people together. Gross, sentimentality. To be serious, though, I'm really keen on Andrew, whom I've known since 7th grade band, is training here now so I can have someone to nerd out with on powerlifting. He does Westside and pretty much knows all the tricks in the book, although he actually isn't particularly big, himself. The first time I saw him here after so many years and we were matching each other in conversation, though, I was impressed. He's actually invited me to compete in some upcoming competition, but details are too murky to get excited about for now.

Another thing I should mention is that I apparently herniated a disc the last time I overhead pressed. My nape has had fluctuating pain for weeks now. I remember the exact instant on the last set when I felt sudden pain, but it was minor enough for me to finish that and all ensuing workouts thereafter. More fortunately, according to one source "the majority of herniated discs will heal themselves in about six weeks and do not require surgery," but in any case, I can't spar until it subsides, lest I want to seriously escalate the problem to a potentially permanent state.

It was healing up nicely until last week's ME day from straining my neck on the floor. I went into this session erring on the side of caution, but came out with a superb performance to show for it.

ME upper

3-board press:
135, 185, 225, 275, 295, 315, 340 lbs.
> If I were my coach, I would punch myself for those first few sets. 275 was harder than 340 (literally, it was more of a struggle) for the fact that I was lax and almost sleepy under the bar. When I put my mind to keeping tense and made some Bill Kazmaier faces (wide, possessed-looking eyeballs and puckered lips) to psyche up, the bar felt like air.

Tate press:
75 lb. dumbbells

Bent-over flyes:
45 lb. dumbbells
Super-setted with-
Lying dumbbell rows (bilateral):
95 lb. dumbbells

Since I'd run out of time, I went to the track afterwards and did some extra lat work through wide-grip pull-ups, and then an ab circuit.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Entry #744

To make a short story shorter, something was wrong with my left arm starting on last Wednesday night. The upper joints were in such pain that I couldn't hold my arm out parallel. I had to skip the rest of the week because of this, but surprisingly, I've lost no apparent strength despite missing speed day.

ME upper

Floor press:
6x3 135, 185, 225, 275, 295, 325 lbs.

Arnold press:
3x8 75 lb. dumbbells

Bent-over rows:
3x8 213 lbs.

Afterward, I went to the track and did two sets of 8 wide-grip pull-ups and some ab work.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Entry #743

If I was capable of being afraid, I'd most likely frighten myself, sometimes. I was minding my own business and walking innocently to the gym (kicking rocks at squirrels and car tires along the way - also innocently) before a packed car of very loud people swerved onto the street I was walking down. As they approached and passed me, they screamed out the window in my direction, "WOOOOOOOH! YEAH HA EAHH! WOO HOO!" Now, my intent was to stay stone-faced and passive, but out of nowhere my head snapped suddenly to them and I roared, "QUIET!!!" It got my blood boiling for the weightroom, at least.

Speaking of which, I was greeted there by one very enthusiastic Andrew Rose, who I've known since middle school band. Yeah, he's a lifter now, and a Westside proponent at that. He's not very big, but he's the closest to my knowledge level out of anyone I've ever encountered in person. It feels weird casually speaking about glute ham raises and band techniques in a non-online venue, but very gratifying. He suggested that I enter a powerlifting competition with him when he finds a good event. I'd have to cut down to 210 or so, but that would be prime.

On business matters, I've officially regained back what I'd lost from my sick leave.

ME upper

Floor press:
6x5 135, 185, 225, 275, 295, 310 lbs.
> One month ago: 295 for 2 reps. Today: 310 for 5. An easy 5 with no struggle. I would have done an even 315 if I knew how much I'd regained. I am the seeker of power and my fist is the divine breath.

Arnold press:
1x10 65 lb. dumbbells
1x8 75 lb. dumbbells
1x5 65 lb. dumbbells
> Hell. I'd never expect these to do what they did to my shoulders. I was in pain from the blood flooding in, although the rest times were shorter than they'd normally be in the interest of time.

Bent-over rows:
2x8 210 lbs.

I ran out of time, so afterward, I went to the track and did two sets of 8 wide-grip pull-ups and some ab work.