Thursday, September 6 – Monday, September 10

One good, one bad

Three gym trips in this span, on Friday, Saturday and Monday to be specific. Thursday was a rest day and Sunday I worked a full shift at the Major Home Improvement Retailer.

Friday wasn’t really much. No weights, I just used the elliptical for a while and did yoga-type stretching work on the mat. Saturday was a different story, I went in the evening and did some pretty hard back work. First came one-arm dumbbell rows, 5 x 8 x 90/90. This wasn’t an increase in weight from last time, but that’s okay because 90 still represents a lot of effort. Then came dumbbell pullovers, 5 x 8 x 70. Five pounds up since last time.  Onto the standing calf machine for shrugs, 4 x 10 x 350, and I ended the session, sore but exhilarated, with seated cable rows at 4 x 8 x 165.

As for Monday, I did leg work, but not much of it. I couldn’t deal with the pain that would result from using the poorly padded safety squat bar and am still concerned enough about my shoulders to avoid ordinary squats. Instead I used the squat press machine I’ve been using, 4 x 8 x 550. What with the gym being so crowded on Monday, even though I went at 4pm, there was a wait to use this machine and when I was on it there were people waiting. I hate it when the gym’s mobbed. Anyway, that represents an increase of 50 pounds from last time out. I then did SLDL’s, 3 x 8 x 175, fewer total reps than last time and 10 pounds less on the top set. My lower back was so sore I couldn’t do any better. Ugh. In an attempt to salvage something from the session I did some work on a seated back extension machine and on a leg extension machine, not even keeping track of sets and resistance levels.

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Published in: on September 12, 2018 at 3:07 am  Leave a Comment  

Wednesday, September 5

Only 35 pounds away

No gym on Tuesday, but Wednesday’s session went very well. Arriving a little before 4pm I had a bench-only session. Having reached 255 last time out I decided to go for 265 this time, and did fewer reps on the way up so I wouldn’t lose too much strength along the way: 2 x 135, 2 x 165, 2 x 185, 2 x 205, 2 x 225, 1 x 235, 1 x 245, 1 x 255, 1 x 265, 6 x 225, 4 x 4 x 225.

265 felt really good, I was almost tempted to go for 275 but decided that slow and steady wins the race, just like they taught you in elementary school. Now the Holy Grail (aka 300 pounds) is just 35 pounds away, which is a pleasant thought. Another thing I liked about this session is that I had a total of 28 reps at 225 or better, even considering that I did fewer reps on the way up to 265. Finally, except for the sixth rep on my drop set at 225, none of the reps were really difficult, and even that one was only a minor struggle. Hopefully that bodes well for my quest to get to 300.

Published in: on September 5, 2018 at 9:19 pm  Leave a Comment  

Monday, September 3

A new start for Labor Day

After neglecting this blog for so long I’ve decided to be more diligent about keeping it updated with my gym training results.  Since the last update in late June I’ve made reasonable progress with some exercises.  My bench press is now at the point where reps at 225 are unremarkable. To give you an idea, at my most recent session on Saturday, after some warmup sets I did 4 x 225, 3 x 235, 2 x 245, 1 x 255, 2 x 4 x 225, 2 x 3 x 225. Looking at it another way, my top set of 255 is just 45 pounds away from the Holy Grail of 300. Next session I’ll go for 265.

Back work is also going well, in addition to neutral grip pull-ups I’m up to doing one-arm dumbbell rows with a 90 pound dumbbell. I came across a tip for making this exercise more strict, namely keeping my feet parallel. Another exercise that I’ve taken to doing are dumbbell pullovers, I’m up to sets of ten with a 65-pounder.  About the only major exercise where I’m not making much of an effort are deadlifts. Just can’t get into them.

As for today’s session, it was leg work. I did some light squats using the safety squat bar, 6 x 155, 6 x 175, 3 x 4 x 225. Next I used a squat press machine I’ve gotten to like, 10 x 450, 4 x 10 x 500 … if only I had those numbers on real squats! I ended with straight-legged deadlifts (SLDL’s), 8 x 145, 8 x 165, 3 x 8 x 185.

Published in: on September 4, 2018 at 2:08 am  Leave a Comment