Leg Day’s My B*tch and I’m Her P*mp

barbell hack squat
Photo credit: workoutplan.com

Excuse the “language” in the title of today’s blog post, but I had a really great Leg Day. I’m actually beginning to look forward to Leg Day, strange as it may seem, because of the opportunity to do better than I have previously at what I consider some pretty challenging lifts.

Before going any further, here’s what I did. As usual, I rested ~60-90 seconds between sets:

Barbell Hack Squats

  1. 10x 130lbs/58.96kg (warm up)
  2. 8x 140lbs/63.5kg
  3. 8x 140lbs/63.5kg
  4. 6x 150lbs/68.03kg
  5. 6x 150lbs/68.03kg
  6. 5x 160lbs/72.57kg

Barbell Straight Leg Deadlifts

  1. 10x 130lbs/58.96kg
  2. 8x 150lbs/68.03kg
  3. 8x 160lbs/72.57kg
  4. 6x 180lbs/81.64kg
  5. 5x 190lbs/86.18kg

Standing Barbell Calf Raises

  1. 12x 150lbs/68.03kg
  2. 12x 170lbs/77.11kg
  3. 12x 180lbs/81.64kg
  4. 10x 180lbs/81.64kg

Plate Loaded Leg Press

  1. 12x 270lbs/122.47kg
  2. 9x 270lbs/122.47kg
  3. 8x 270lbs/122.47kg

Weighted Cable Crunch

  1. 20x 150lbs/68.03kg
  2. 15x 150lbs/68.03kg
  3. 15x 150lbs/68.03kg
standing calf raises
Photo credit: repscience.net

Captain’s Chair Leg Lifts (body weight)

  1. 12x
  2. 12x
  3. 10x

Seated Calf Raises

  1. 15x 135lbs/61.23kg
  2. 15x 135lbs/61.23kg
  3. 15x 135lbs/61.23kg
  4. 15x 135lbs/61.23kg

In comparing my performance yesterday with last week, as far as the Hack Squats are concerned, I started at a heavier warm up weight and generally lifted heavier weights for more reps, including establishing a new personal best at 150lbs for 5 reps. Further, yesterday, I did two more reps at Hack Squats than I did last week.

So far, so good.

I started out at the same weight for the Deadlifts but also did heavier weights and more reps (a total of 3 more reps than last week). I also established a new personal best, lifting 190lbs for 5 reps. Yes, I really felt that one, but I’m optimistic that it won’t be long before I can deadlift 200lbs for 5 reps, which is more than my current body weight.

I did one more set of Standing Calf Raises this week than last, and did heavier weights, but I still felt I could have done better. The problem is that I start to lose my balance when going up on my toes, so I don’t feel confident doing more reps, although in terms of strength, I’m certainly capable. Good thing I don’t balance the bar across my traps and hold it against my quads instead. I can’t even imagine how I’d do that plus balance on a couple of weight plates as in the accompanying photo above.

For the Leg Press, I went 20 pounds heavier than I did last week, but it really wiped me out, especially after Hack Squats and Deadlifts. As you can see, I only did 3 sets instead of the 4 I did last week, and I was really grunting and groaning trying to get that last set of 8 reps out (No, I’m no where near as impressive as the title image of Ronnie Cole featured at the start of this blog post).

For my ab workout, I started off with Weighted Cable Crunches, upping the weight by 5 pounds and doing the same amount of reps over three sets just like last week. That took a lot out of me and my performance on the Captain’s Chair Leg Lifts, was 3 reps shy of what I did last week.

On the other hand, I didn’t run out of gas at this point and took on 4 sets of Seated Calf Raises. I was encouraged this time because I didn’t suffer the calf cramps that traditionally accompany this exercise.

At this point, almost the entire hour had elapsed. My son David was with me again, and since he’d forgotten something at his place, we had to detour back to his home before heading to my house where we could shower, change for work, and have breakfast.

Photo credit: runningwildblog.com

I’ve heard that after a hard workout, men mobilize testosterone for somewhere between one to three hours, and I was feeling pretty “aggressive” behind the wheel as we drove into work. After dropping David off, I imagined myself hopping up the three flights of stairs to my office three steps at a time instead of my usual two.

Then, I parked my car, opened the door and stood up.

It didn’t really hurt, but I felt stiff and my legs were a bit tired. I took the stairs two at a time, and since I sit a lot at the computer, every time I got up, I got the usual Leg Day response. Going down the stairs showed me just how hard my quads and glutes had worked. Ouch.

I’m feeling well pleased with this week’s Leg Day and looking forward to instituting my 5×5 workout plan week after next. I’ll keep you posted.

Oh, one more thing. Tuesday evening after work, I went to my dentist to have my teeth cleaned. Both the dental hygienist and the receptionist, who I only see every so many months, said they noticed I’d lost weight. The next morning when I got up and weighed myself, I was another pound lighter, making me the lightest I’ve been in many years. I checked, and this time last year, I was 22 pounds heavier. Nothing succeeds like success.

Bonus: When you lose weight, do you ever wonder where the fat goes? Here’s the answer according to science.

When I hear somebody sigh, “Life is hard,” I am always tempted to ask, “Compared to what?”

Sydney Harris


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