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Think I managed to pull the psoas muscles on both sides of my body with all the moving bullshit, but the left side is especially bad; makes it surprisingly hard to...well, function at all.

I also managed to have my first real gym mishap of note, basically ever: whacked the landmine bar straight into my chin when I wasn't paying super-close attention and cut myself open.  It's pretty superficial, though, and it never bled enough to be running down my neck or noticeable in some other way.  Push day otherwise was solid; my triceps are definitely responding, and so are my shoulders.  My chest is stronger than I thought, so I'm basically just dialing in everything to hit upper pecs as much as possible.

Tomorrow is going to suck a blue IKEA bag of dicks, though.

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Ok, today was my first workout as a 44 year old. Bench day. Started with 3x132, 5x220, 5x253, 3x264, 1x281 then 2x292, 2x286, 2x275, 4x264, 10x253, 7x242, 11x220 and 20x132. Did some resistance band work, light curls and side delts between most of the sets. Then ab work the usual stretching at the end.

Ok, so I can say that I bench more now than I did at 24 and 34 years old. Also, I bench more now than I did at 40 (key word here is "did", not "could", as I wasn't attempting to go too heavy there for a good bit) and about the same as I did at "my physical peak" at 38.

As a side note, 24 and 34 are not exactly great times of my benching ability, so benching more than at 23 and 36, respectively, would be (and is) more impressive.

Oh, oh, oh, and after the workout, when I was changing into my work clothes, I mentioned to a young co-worker (who's relatively new to our place) that it was my first workout at 44 and he said he would have thought I was only in my mid 30's! (Of course, being so young, to him a person in their mid 30's might as well be halfway in the grave!) But hey, I took it as a HUGE compliment and it sure made my day!

Edited by Shartnado
Had to brag
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Today's Shitty Gym Bro is tangentially related to this video, as we had one douchecanoe tie up one of the two deadlift spots for over an hour doing his snatches or whatever the fuck those bullshit Olympic lifts are, all the while tweaking his camera to record each and every single bit of everything he did because he was so fucking important.  I finally had to be That Guy and say something to the management to get him to move the fuck on.  The other spot had his fellow bro tie it up for 30-35 minutes and then a woman jumped in, but at least she did multiple exercises and was eye-rolling the guy as much as I was. 

Pull day yesterday was good, but I think I've decided I really can't do Pendlay/bent-over rows and Meadows rows in the same workout, because I get too trashed neurologically.  I think I'm also moving my deadlifts to my Monday Upper day to avoid them on Pull day and also avoid doing them on any Lower/Leg, since I nearly always do squats.

Leg day was pretty good, too, as I've pretty much honed in on the stuff I actually like (mostly) and will keep doing.  I probably still need one more glute-heavy thing, as I think I'm done trying to do hip thrusts.  It's just too much work to set up and it's too unstable, since I'm a large person and I feel like I'm going to knock the bench over every time I lean back into it (even with plates "holding" it down, for all the good those do).  Barbell hack squats were murdering my knees, unfortunately, so I had to cut those.  But sumo deads are going to be a permanent fixture as my primary glute movement from now on, thus why I was waiting so long for the deadlift spot. 

I narrowed my stance a lot on my squats in an attempt to engage my quads more, but I'm not sure that's actually working.  I only pressed about 165 today, which is as high as I've gone since returning to the gym, but I felt it more in my lower back and glutes than quads.  Not sure if I was too far forward or not getting low enough, or some combination of the two.  Or I could simply be weaker there than in my quads.  Or maybe I should use the safety bar and see if it helps.

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2 hours ago, Contentious C said:

Today's Shitty Gym Bro is tangentially related to this video, as we had one douchecanoe tie up one of the two deadlift spots for over an hour doing his snatches or whatever the fuck those bullshit Olympic lifts are, all the while tweaking his camera to record each and every single bit of everything he did because he was so fucking important.  I finally had to be That Guy and say something to the management to get him to move the fuck on.  The other spot had his fellow bro tie it up for 30-35 minutes and then a woman jumped in, but at least she did multiple exercises and was eye-rolling the guy as much as I was. 

Pull day yesterday was good, but I think I've decided I really can't do Pendlay/bent-over rows and Meadows rows in the same workout, because I get too trashed neurologically.  I think I'm also moving my deadlifts to my Monday Upper day to avoid them on Pull day and also avoid doing them on any Lower/Leg, since I nearly always do squats.

Leg day was pretty good, too, as I've pretty much honed in on the stuff I actually like (mostly) and will keep doing.  I probably still need one more glute-heavy thing, as I think I'm done trying to do hip thrusts.  It's just too much work to set up and it's too unstable, since I'm a large person and I feel like I'm going to knock the bench over every time I lean back into it (even with plates "holding" it down, for all the good those do).  Barbell hack squats were murdering my knees, unfortunately, so I had to cut those.  But sumo deads are going to be a permanent fixture as my primary glute movement from now on, thus why I was waiting so long for the deadlift spot. 

I narrowed my stance a lot on my squats in an attempt to engage my quads more, but I'm not sure that's actually working.  I only pressed about 165 today, which is as high as I've gone since returning to the gym, but I felt it more in my lower back and glutes than quads.  Not sure if I was too far forward or not getting low enough, or some combination of the two.  Or I could simply be weaker there than in my quads.  Or maybe I should use the safety bar and see if it helps.

Shit, man! I feel for ya! If I wasn't the only one 85% of the time at our gym, I would probably feel your pain right now! But I'm fine!

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Since we're talking about gym pet peeves, my gym has about 5 too few barbells.  Last night, I get to the gym go to the incline bench and there is no bar at either of them.  No one is using the decline, but there is not bar their either.  I go to the overhead press rack, and despite it being empty some guy runs over to tell me he's using it.  So I go to an empty squat rack, and what do you know someone runs over to tell me he's between sets there too.  So, I go to the last squat rack and finally find an empty bar.  So, I carry it back to the incline, and do my first set and realize that the knurling on the bar is off, and my stubby little arms are going to have to adjust to the rings being wider for some strange reason.  So, I get through my first set, and while I'm resting I notice a couple standing near the next bench and mouthing "where the fuck are all the bars?"  I see them go to the empty overhead press rack, I see the guy run back from wherever the fuck he keeps going, and them do a lap trying to find an empty bar.  This wasn't even a particularly busy night, it was actually as quiet of a Friday as I've seen recently.  That's not to mention that there is an entire dumbbell rack that is missing the entire top shelf.  That is the 55-85 range, if you were wondering.  I just stopped doing dumbbell bench, because I went multiple weeks where I couldn't find the weight I needed.  Having too few weights is the single dumbest problem a gym could have.

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I'm finally back on my normal schedule after two weeks of hauling boxes and pulling every muscle I didn't know I had.  I tried my best to get to 100 reps of everything on Upper day today (except for deadlifts, no way I was trying that).  It went...OK.

  • Kneeling lat pulldowns: 40/30/30 with 100 lbs, this was pretty good, but my traps and rear delts were some kind of lit up after.
  • Bench press: didn't get close, didn't think I would due to my shoulders, but I did OK.  50 reps, 25/15/10 with 95 lbs is a lot of volume for me, TBQH.  I can definitely push more than this - I'm decline benching 125+ - but I don't actually like doing flat bench regularly.  But the pump was good.
  • Seated cable rows: 30/16/16/12 with 60 lbs.  Traps just lit up like they were on fire by the last 4-5 reps of the last 3 sets.  This is probably a good thing.  But 74 is still decent.
  • Incline bench press: thought I might rep out the other 50 here, and my body laughed at me.  15/8/6 of 95 lbs and I barely got the last rep up, pretty much at failure for that.  But this felt like sufficient chest work between the two exercises being as strenuous as they were.
  • Straight bar cable curls: 50/25/25 with 30 lbs.  Lots of burn, had to take a few quick breathers during each set, but I didn't put the weight down and just kept repping until I hit each number.
  • Overhead cable tricep extension: 40/30/20/10 with 30 lbs.  Kind of beat up my elbows, but a really solid pump from this, too.  My form is getting better and better on tricep stuff, especially when I remember the "bend your forearms out over your elbows" cue rather than just trying to jerk the weight up.

For shoulders, I just went really heavy on cables - did partial ROM with 40 lbs (which is easily the most I've ever tried lifting with my side delts), then some static holds with 15 lbs as a finisher. 

Oh, and I also managed 3x5 of 245 lbs on deadlifts, all the while making the same face (and sounds) Clark Griswold made when he was trying to smash together the plugs for the 15,000 imported Italian twinkle lights in Christmas Vacation

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Two workouts so far again this week. Expecting to do bench tonight. Tuesday was the usual upperbody blast with 4 rounds of pull ups , dips and reverse shrugs with 66 lbs, then one round with 44, 22 and bodyweight. The usual chest flies, lat pull down combos and pushdowns with the new resistance bands followed. Then abs to finish.

Wednesday was trapbar. 10x140, 10x184, 10x297, 6x385 without Versas, then 4x5x451. Bunch of shrugs and then abs at the end. It wasn't too bad, but my neck did cramp on the second to the last heavy trapbar set. It's fine now, though. I put special effort in stretching my legs the past few days and it has made the bike rides home a fair bit easier. I really need to keep that up.

I'll edit the bench in later!

Ok, so last week I didn't make any bench records, but this week I actually did. After warm up with resistance bands and gymstick, the workout went as follows: 5×198, 5x242, 3x259, 1x275, 3×292 (2 of which were clean, one was still good enough and one more partial that doesn't count), 2x280, 3x275, 4x264, 7x253, 6x242, 11x220, 8x198 and 20x132 (plus two sets of 5 with a 10 second rest pause straight after).

I did mostly pull ups and curls between sets, some side delts, too. Abs for the finish, as usual.

So, having a spotter helped me to get the courage to actually do the two clean reps with 292, which is my personal record. It's cool to be able to say that I bench more than ever before in my mid 40's. The 300 lbs shall be reached later this year, so as long as I stay healthy.

Edited by Shartnado
The bench is in
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So over the last week and a half I have basically been just working out with my girlfriend.

The good news is that she can now do an actual below parallel goblet box squat with a 4kg kettlebell - 6 of them actually. Given the way her heels were flying up less than 2 weeks ago this is no mean achievement. I actually think I'm a pretty decent coach lol.

So yesterday, we were working on that for her whilst I was doing speed squats. I'm now moving to triples, but medium-term I'm going to start to use bands as accommodating resistance - the rack doesn't have pegs sadly but I'll get them set up somehow.

We then proceeded to do DB RDLs. I was doing 25kg dbs for sets of 20, we got her up to 10kg dbs for sets of 15. It was tough on her grip mostly.

After that we did some hamstring curls, good girl/bad girls, abs and finished with a set on the seated calf raise. We then did 10 minutes on the elliptical - I hate cardio lol.

Because we've been hanging out at the gym, this means a) our sex be lazy, b) I actually have more time at home on my own in the evenings. I've started to do a lot more bandwork. So I'm probably getting in a ton of volume, but it's almost all high rep. Nonetheless I don't mind, because the gf is actually learning to workout properly with some real weight - she fully acknowledged that left to her own devices she'd be doing some bullshit with 2kg dumbbells.

I'm actually feeling a bit rundown today, but my intention is to eat a lot of meat and actually try to a bench max tomorrow - I'm actually thinking dead bench but we'll see. I was planning on deadlifting afterwards but this feels ambitious right now tbh.

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Good girl/bad girls... Jesus.  Though I have actually been doing the abduction side of those myself.  Don't see the point of making your adductors stronger; that's not what they do.

I went heavy rather than high-volume (or as high as I had been) on both Push & Pull days, which went fairly well.  Was still in the 10/12-rep range for a practically everything with more weight than I have been lifting.  Leg day today was OK.   I found out the knob who bogarted the deadlift spot last week is named Donny, so if he ever says anything cross to me, I can just tell him, "Shut the fuck up, Donny".  But I got my RDLs and sumo deads in (probably need to do more reps on RDLs), then cobbled together enough other stuff to feel good about skipping squats.  I didn't get to hit the sled, which was annoying, but I did go back to the squat machine to do something akin to hack squats, and those are hammering the everloving fuck out of my quads & glutes to the point that I didn't really need the leg press or barbell squats anyway.  My Nordic curls are starting to get ever closer to being something like actual Nordic curls, too, which is nice.

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I'm not a massive fan of regularly doing abudctor/adductor isolation exercises, but strong adductors are pretty important for squatting and, as I say, I took someone who could not squat for shit and got them squatting so I don't think they're useless for the complete gym newb.

The DB RDL also hits the adductors, so we did use them quite a lot in compounds before finishing them off with isolation.

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Yeah so I woke up with a blocked nose and sore throat (I am double vaccinated fwiw, with my second jab only a couple of months ago). So deadlifts were out, but I loaded myself with water and carbs so I could do the deadbench max. Tbh it wasn't that great, the bar was right up against my chest, probably an inch lower than ideal. The rack doesn't really have pins, and the distance between hooks for the safetys is quite big. It's a lot better than having no power rack, which was the previous situation, so I don't mean to complain; it is what it is. Additionally, the only bench that really works in the rack is narrower than I would like.

So upshot is I got 110kg for a training max, probably could have got 120kg, but I didn't fancy it. On quickly reading the literature, repeated singles at 80-85% might be the better way to go and I think I might start to use that approach more generally in my training e.g. Week 1, 8 singles at 80% EMOM; Week 2, 5 singles at 85% every 90-120 seconds; Week 3, 3 singles at 90% every 3-5 minutes - obviously you have to have something to calculate your percentages from so at least today we have that.

I might also put the bench on weight plates and try to use the next set of hooks up, maybe with a closer grip.

I did superset floor press and pendlay rows as my main assistance work, followed by some deadpin JM Presses and semi-neutral (a deep EZ bar) bicep curls. I am probably going to mostly eschew supine curling - I am pretty much all about the longevity at this point, doubt I'm going to be doing any strict curl competitions, and am seriously considering learning hook grip for deadlift. I might occasionally do incline db curls, maybe.

My gf isn't coming with me to the gym until Wednesday, so if I'm feeling up for it I may pull some kind of squat training max tomorrow - maybe a Zercher off safetys but we will see. (Update: I felt like proper dogshit today and definitely had no business going near the gym. Hopefully Wednesday).

Edited by RunningFromAmerica
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I was informed this morning by my son that I am not as strong as He Man.

Why the hell have I wasted all these years lifting weights?  It was all for nothing.

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2 hours ago, Log said:

I was informed this morning by my son that I am not as strong as He Man.

Why the hell have I wasted all these years lifting weights?  It was all for nothing.

Hey, NOBODY's that strong, so don't worry about it! Nothing to do with strength, but when my friend's youngest son saw the photo I use as my profile pic, he apparently told his dad "that's a Masters of the Universe character!" Most likely referring to Skeletor, so I wasn't confused with He-Man, either!

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Not quite sure if I go tomorrow, but I'm 3 workouts in this week and they have all been good.

Monday started with total of 8 rounds of pull-up, dip, reverse shrug combo. Starting with 77 lbs on all. 3 rounds of that, then 55, 44 etc, until 11 lbs remained.

After that, chest flies, 3 different grip lat pull downs and pushdowns with the resistance band 3 drop sets of each. Abs, and that's it.

We finally got 2 more 55 lb (25kg) plates, so on Tuesday I could finally go heavier than 451 on trapbar. First time since late 2018, I think? So, it went 10×140, 10x242, 8x286, 6×352, 2x396 (without Versas, went for a third, but it would have slipped, so I didn't complete), then 5x451 and 3x5x473. Then a bunch of shrugs, abs and done.

Yesterday was off, due to life. Today was bench. We took turns with a co-worker, so we had a spotter. I did a few sets of lat pulldowns to the front with 88, 132, 176, 132, 154, 132 before the bench and some between the sets. My bench was as follows: 3x154, 5x198, 5x220, 5x242, 3x264, 1x297 (and two ugly-ass partials, too) 10x253, 16x220 (went for 17, but needed a spotter to complete) and 21x154. Some curls with a pair 55 lb plates (w/ grip handles) and some more with a pair of 22's. Abs and I'm done.

So yeah, good week. A new bench record, a clean rep with 297, and the sets with 253 and 220 also had more reps than (or as many as) I've ever done. Also, the trapbar went wonderfully, as I need to start going up to 473 each time out from now on.

Even if I skip tomorrow, this still rocked!

...didn't skip today, but did just light squats on the machine as well as calves and a bunch of preacher curls with the EZ bar doing 12 reps per set with 40, 62, 3 sets with 84, then back down to 62 and 40. Then some side delts and abs to finish off the week.

Edited by Shartnado
No skipping!
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Didn't feel remotely well enough to go to the gym until yesterday, where I did some somewhat perfunctory leg stuff with the girlfriend. So we did (almost) flat cable leg press (so kind of like a hack squat machine I guess) - I hadn't done this in ages, and didn't try any heroics. My gf got a noticeable quad pump and she was thrilled! We mixed in some DB RDLs and then did the standing calf, plate loaded leg extension and plate loaded prone leg curl. I was probably only 90% but I felt like the workout helped rather than hindered. We're starting to throw in some before and after cardio, not too much but I'm going to look to build it up a bit when we get to Xmas and there's lots of snacky treats around.

Today I was in on my own, and I tried doing dead bench at 100kg for reps every 45-60 seconds. Basically after 3 reps my wrists were screaming, and after resting and doing a 4th rep I decided against pushing my luck. I think I wasn't quite getting tight enough - like I could get tight enough for a couple of singles on Sunday minutes apart but it wasn't quite happening today. I did a few more reps (always at least 10s apart, bc it's not deadbench otherwise) at 80kg, which still felt heavy, and then 60kg which felt really light and enabled me to try a few 'explosive' reps which also felt good. I'm going to have to see if I can learn to get tight enough on this bench though. Generally though the dead bench is a good way to practice grinding out slow reps at a lower weight, because the speed out of the bottom just isn't there.

I went on my normal bench afterwards, which felt super wide in comparison, but used my personal super thick pussy pad as a pseudo bench block (about 2 inches) for close grip bench press with pause. The idea is that the dead bench trains power out of the bottom with the dead bench, and then the block press develops strength at the sticking point. I did 60kg, 65kg, 67.5kg for 12 with good 1-2 second pauses and this was really quite challenging - ROM was still high so lots of tricep and again you're not getting the same speed out of the hole. Finals reps of the last two sets were challenging and it did light my chest up pretty good. Still recovering, so finished with some pretty basic lat pulldowns, overhead cable tricep extensions and facepulls - no direct bicep work sadly but we'll get back on that next week as work capacity comes back.

My intention is to try to deadlift Sunday, probably a wide stance wide grip deadlift (something like what Brian Shaw does) - hopefully I can get lots of nice beauty sleep and protein between now and then.

I have an actual holiday in 2 weeks, and although I may take some bands I am not intending to go to the gym so a proper deload with lots of nice dinners is coming. Woop.

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This week was not as balls-to-the-wall crazy as I've done in the past: I don't know if that's because I'm watching too many YouTube videos telling me to just take my 2-3 minutes between compound lift sets, or because I'm hitting a wall.  I think more the former, and I'm lazy.  But everything is still mostly going up and feels better, especially the things I really wanted to work on: sumo deads, incline bench, shoulders, biceps, triceps.  Other than my OHPs, which honestly I have not done a lot of until lately, I'm hitting and blowing past my paltry PRs. 

I've been eating about 3000 calories a day for close to 2 months now, but my weight gain is tapering off, too - I'm beginning to think my body has adjusted to the increased calories, and my already high metabolism (maintenance for me, out of shape, is probably 2200 or more) is telling me to go fuck myself.  The problem here is three-fold.  First, as a diabetic, I have a pretty firm idea of what my carb cap is, and if I go much above 300 grams a day, it's bad news time.  I already take somewhere in the ballpark of 35 units a day, about 9 of which are post-prandial readjustments, so eating more carbs than this just pushes that extra number even higher, and I don't think it should go any higher.  If I make up another 200-400 calories in fats, then...I will get fatter, and I don't want to do that, either.  And besides, even if I did eat closer to 3500 calories (or more), I get the worst heartburn of my life doing that, and then I don't sleep because of the heartburn.  I think I just have to accept that I will have to try to maintain this as something in between a classic and a lean bulk for the foreseeable future.  I'm so sick of chicken.  So, so sick of it.

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Today I decided to build up to top singles on the pause SSB squat and the 'Shaw Deadlift'. I generally find when I am coming off being sick my work capacity and recovery between sets is garbage, but my body has had time to rest and is usually able to hit decent numbers reasonably well. Still didn't want to tax the CNS too much.

100% Raw Pause SSB Squat (2 seconds) - I got up to 125kg. Tbh I felt like I had more in the tank, but wasn't looking for a max per se. I could probably get a bit less deep and even push the legs wider. I feel like if I can adjust the straight bar, work on my walk out etc then I should be able to hit 180kg on a normal squat in wraps - though I may need to get used to the extra bar weight. That's probably going to be the focus in the run up to Xmas.

'Shaw' Deadlift (middle fingers on the rings, legs just inside) with Fo8 straps - Went up to 160kg. Though it was pretty clean and on some days I may have gone for another jump, I felt like this wasn't an arm position I wanted to truly grind in. Actually on reviewing Shaw (and YouTuber Johnny Candito) footage I think my legs were maybe too wide, and maybe the grip could come in too - ultimately I don't bench that wide.

The original plan was to do Pendlay Rows but I put away the weights without thinking and I decided against it as I'm training Upper Body tomorrow anyway, plus I didn't want to put the weights on obv. I decided to try to RDL the biggest dumbells we have - which are 42kg and 50kg, using straps. The 42kg were easer than I thought, and I did an easy 12. The 50kg...less easy, I got to 8 and decided to leave it there. The realisation was clear though - I need to use the straps for DB RDLs and work on my grip separately.

Did 12 sets of accessories -  seated leg curl (cable), seated calf (plate), incline hammer curls (db obv), and hyperextensions (bw) to finish.

A few sessions before my holiday, most if not all of which will be with the gf so it will mostly be a hypertrophy focus at this point. I worked out that a floor pin press should be doable in the rack though so if I do find myself on my own I may try it.

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I'll go and post this now and edit the bench in later. Only two workouts so far, but Monday had some extra cardio, as I walked to work since my bike was in the shop. It took longer than I expected to make it in to the gym, so I had to squeeze in everything inside an hour. The pull-up, dip, reverse-shrug medley started with 88 lbs this week (which seems to be too much for everything but the shrugs). 10 rounds in total with 3 rounds of 88, then dropping until 11 lbs again. To conserve time, I did chest flies, lat pull downs and pushdowns with the resistance bands as a giant set as well, going 3 rounds in total. Then some abs.

Tuesday was trapbar. Arrived a bit late, again, as my co-worker was already at 385 when I arrived. So, warm-up was rather brief. I did 5x140, 5x275, 5x385 ( without Versas), then 5×430, 5×451, 5 and 4x473, 5x451 and 5x385. After that it was shrugs all the way to hell. And abs. My legs were F'n killing me during the evening shift, but I stretched the shit out of them during and by the time I headed home, they felt good. Yesterday, riding the bike to work was also relatively painless (despite the wind and rain) so it really did help.

I just had a huge meal of pasta with ground beef, chicken, vegetables and oven baked sweet potato and once that has had some time to settle, I'll head for the bench day. Due to maintenance, I'll have an extra day off from work tomorrow, so this is it for working out, as well.

...No record weights on the bench this week, but due to a calculation error, it actually went better than I originally thought. At 220, I thought I only had 198 on and added 55 lbs, when I was supposed to add 33. Math is hard. So, it went like this: 3x154, 5x220 5x275 (at this point I thought I was doing 5x253, so I was like, this is not easy), then 3x291 (thinking it was 270 and was like, I'm fucked), then two partials with 297, thinking it was 275 and thinking that's it, no point trying anything heavier.

At this point my co-worker started his sets so we took a bunch of weight out. During this time, I did 3 sets of 5 with 198 on the lat pull down machine, but couldn't get it all the way to the chest. Went back to bench and did 2x3x264, at this point I realized my mistake and was no longer so forlorn about the previous sets. I went and did 7x264 before we scaled back. 10x242 plus two ugly partials, then 14x220 and 22x154. I did some curls again this with the pair of 33's and 55's. Ab work for the finish and better luck next week.

Edited by Shartnado
Bench and miscalculations edited in
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FINALLY!

I found a flavor of Dymatize Iso100 that isn't fucking disgusting.  The vanilla tastes like chemical-ass vanilla cake icing bullshit.  The chocolate is somehow worse; chocolate is typically like pizza, in that even when it's bad it's good.  But this chocolate is so unbearably sweet that it's like it's trying to nuke your taste buds from orbit.

The Cookies & Cream flavor, however...damn.  If you've had Ben & Jerry's cookies & cream flavor, that's pretty much exactly what it tastes like (I make it with 16 oz of milk, which is obviously sweeter to some degree but also diluted relative to their recommendation).  So glad I finally found something that doesn't make me dread drinking it, after losing the Optimum Nutrition Performance Whey.

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On 9/16/2021 at 11:58 PM, RunningFromAmerica said:

Seated (with back rest)Overhead Press - ramp up to training max (first time ever on this variation), 80kg final single. Will get more next time.

Okay, tried this again today and got 90kg - it was definitely a bit grindy not ridiculous (I didn't feel it afterwards) but I don't feel like I'm quite ready for 100kg. That said, I've not been sleeping that well and I actually hit incline bench press and DB flat press pretty hard 48 hours before - so maybe I could get the two plates up I don't know. Grip may have been a hair wider than last time (© Greg Doucette), but that's a pretty decent PR for a lift I haven't been doing.

Lex Luger "Super Brawl Saturday ... I Don't Know" - YouTube

Mostly I have been training with the girlfriend. That's probably not optimal, but it's been fun mostly and it hasn't stopped me making gains as far as I can see. I am going on holiday Saturday and will likely be on a 10 day gym break (I might change my mind if it pours down a lot). I'll take my bands and my gripper, but looking forward to the break.

When I come back, there's going to be quite a lot of back focus - I think my legs, chest and triceps are pretty on point, my upper back is ok but middle and lower need a lot of attention. And the core. 2 pulls every upper body day now, and facepulls aren't going to count.

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I have been on a diet for about six weeks. It's the first time I have been serious about losing weight in over a decade. 

Spoiler

7qa0LO8.jpg

(Picture spoilered because not everyone wants to see that)

(If you don't wanna click it, I've still got a long way to go, but I've got a flat belly and some muscle definition now)

It's really easy to eat healthy in Japan, but it's just as easy to eat a ton of crap every day. There are two 24-hour convenience stores and a 24-hour drug store with a massive selection of food within a 5-minute walk of my apartment. 

One of major coping mechanisms for Covid-era boredom was to eat various snacks and cup noodles and convenience store sandos and so on, not out of hunger but just for something fun to do. 

I love going to the gym, which helps keep things under control somewhat, but i was around 110-112 kilos for over a year and started developing knee and foot pain and my doctor told me I was pre-diabetic 

A big part of the "difficulty" living in Japan is that all of the snack manufacturers, convenience stores, fast food restaurants etc etc are constantly (like, literally every month) coming up with new flavors and new variations, and things are rotated in and out seasonally... so there is ALWAYS some new delicious-looking (or at least interesting) temptation every time you go shopping here.

But, that is also true for healthy foods like chicken breast sticks or salads or the "steamed chicken with Chinese pickles and sesame oil" that I ate for breakfast this morning. 

So, going on a diet here is mostly just a matter of getting my cravings under control.

And, just after my doctor dropped the "pre-diabetic" bomb on me, I had a meeting with a friend with whom I sometimes did English projects and sometimes went to wrestling shows, before Corona. She had lost a significant amount of weight since our last meeting. She looked fantastic. Among other things, she'd been fasting every three months, up to a week at a time.

Inspired, I decided to do a week-long MSPF (just drinking protein shakes -with fiber and greens powder - three or four times a day). Once I got through that, which was surprisingly easy once I'd made my mind up to do it, my cravings for unhealthy food just completely disappeared. And, as I said, it's surprisingly easy and convenient and inexpensive to eat healthy things all day every day, here.

I got down to 103.5 after just five weeks of dieting, and then I went on a true 3-day fast (just water and green tea and barley tea) and weighed in today at 101.

I feel much better. I am lifting maybe 6 or 7 percent less, in terms of weight/reps, but have been hitting the gym more regularly and I have a lot more energy, am sleeping better, have a lot fewer aches and pains, and so on and so on.

I'm still doing mostly kettlebells and suspension training, plus going for long walks 5 days a week.

If anybody's interested I'd be happy to share the details of what and how much I've been eating. Mostly chicken, fish, eggs, yoghurt, fruits, veggies, Japanese fermented foods, and oatmeal. 

I'm pretty happy with losing 11 kilos in 6 weeks. I'm planning to keep it up until December, for 12 weeks total.  

Edited by Gordberg
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You keep losing them, I'll keep gaining them.

I went from 170-ish in July to 192 the last time I properly weighed myself several days ago (I should probably do it every day and average, but I usually put some time between them, so it's close enough to a "weekly").  I'm not the type to take too many shirtless selfies and even less the type to post them, but if I've gained any fat, my muscle fullness is so much greater that it shows right through.  My A1c was getting pretty out of control before going back to the gym - 9.2% is, uh, bad - but it was 7.4% the other day.  I still have some distance to go on that front (sub-6.5 is sustainably healthy), but I know what I'm missing with respect to testing and balancing out my numbers, so it should be something I can fix.  It just sucks jabbing yourself with things 6-8 times a day.  I've thought about the Dexpro/pump combos and things like it, but I really, really, really loathe the idea of having that hooked up to me all day long, and I'm also not comfortable with wearing that kind of gear in the gym for any number of reasons.

I think I've been hitting at or close to the 3000 calorie mark for that entire stretch (more days at the number or over than under), with about 40% of my calories from protein.  It's a shitload - 340g a day, probably total overkill, but it's working thus far, and my kidneys aren't paying the price for it, according to my labs (that being the other half of the bloodwork I get done).  Now that it's 3 months in, I figure my metabolism has probably adjusted itself upwards by now, and it's going to be significantly harder to gain another 10 lbs., let alone 20, not to mention I can't gain any more water weight at this point.  TDEE says my maintenance number is between 2900 & 3300, depending on whether my 5x a week workouts are classed as "moderate" or "heavy", so...I think I'm giving it to the end of the year and then deciding if I'm bumping up calories again or just lean bulking forever.

Edited by Contentious C
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Triceps are looking jacked @Gordberg, good job! Keep at it! I missed the entire last week, due to not feeling well enough to work out, but I went back at it today. Usual Monday routine, but started with 66 lbs with the pull-up, dip, reverse-shrug combo and ended with 22 lbs, so a lot less rounds and reps this week. Still felt harder than usual, so I guess I'm still not totally ok. Did the chest flies, lat-pull down and push down combos with the old, less rigid resistance bands, so those were lighter too. Some light lateral side raises and curls between some of the sets. You could tell I took a week off, since the pump came relatively fast and was intense for a little bit there. Yeah, not expecting any new records set this week, but I'll do what I can, and hope I keep feeling good enough to resume the normal routine again this week.

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