Getting Ready to Lift

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Now that my recent conference is over and I’m back home, it’s time to implement the plan. It’s Thursday as I write this, and I resisted the urge to immediately pick up heavy weights at the gym and stuck with core (abs/lower back) work and cardio.

Here’s the summary:

Decline Bench Weighted Ab Crunch

  1. 20x 25lbs/11.33kg
  2. 12x 25lbs/11.33kg
  3. 10x 25lbs/11.33kg

Weighted Cable Crunches

  1. 20x 145lbs/65.77kg
  2. 20x 145lbs/65.77kg
  3. 15x 145lbs/65.77kg

Weighted Roman Chair Back Extension

  1. 20x 25lbs/11.33kg
  2. 15x 25lbs/11.33kg
  3. 15x 25lbs/11.33kg

After this, I did 35 minutes on the elliptical which included a five-minute “cool down” at the end.

I came back from Portland with a headache and I can’t seem to shake it. I think that accounts for me not hitting the ab work as hard as I have in the past, plus I usually do core work after some heavy lifting, so normally, I’m more warmed up than I was this morning.

I should mention that I’ve picked up a few pounds over the past week, both with the indulgences of the weekend and in eating out all the time in Portland while doing no exercise except walking. Time to get back on course.

Just as a refresher, this is the 5×5 plan for tomorrow (today as you’re reading this), Plan A:

Workout Plan A
Exercise Sets Reps Notes
Barbell Bench Press 5 5 Do not flare your elbows. They should be at roughly a 45 degree angle with your torso when you bring the bar down.
Barbell Hack Squat 5 5 It doesn’t count unless your thighs are parallel to the floor during the squat. Feet should be slightly wider than shoulder length apparent with the feet turned slightly outward and the knees following the feet during the squat.
Barbell Bent Over Row 5 5 This is primarily a back exercise and do NOT use the momentum from your legs to lift the weight.
Overhead Cable Triceps Extension 5 8 Use the rope attachment and focus on a full extension of the arm.
Chin-Ups 3 5-8 Perform 3 sets of 8 chin-ups with bodyweight (or work up to that). Once you can do so regularly, start adding weight with a dip belt.

In reviewing the weights I typically lift for each of these exercises, here’s what I pulled from last week’s workouts:

strength meets size
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Barbell Bench Press

  1. 5x 105lbs/47.62kg (warm up)
  2. 8x 115lbs/52.16kg
  3. 6x 125lbs/56.69kg
  4. 5x 135lbs/61.23kg
  5. 3x 145lbs/65.77kg

Barbell Hack Squat

  1. 10x 135lbs/61.23kg (warm up)
  2. 8x 145lbs/65.77kg
  3. 8x 145lbs/65.77kg
  4. 6x 155lbs/70.3kg
  5. 6x 155lbs/70.3kg
  6. 5x 165lbs/74.84kg

Barbell Bent Over Rows

  1. 10x 115lbs/52.16kg (warm up)
  2. 9x 125lbs/56.69kg
  3. 6x 135lbs/61.23kg
  4. 6x 135lbs/61.23kg
  5. 5x 145lbs/65.77kg
  6. 5x 145lbs/65.77kg

For the Overhead Cable Triceps Extensions, I’ll have to discover the correct weight since I’ve never performed this exercise before. From past experimentation, I know I can do one set of chin-ups between 5 to 9 reps, so I’ll have to see if I can get in a minimum of 3 sets of 5 reps just to start off.

This will be my Friday and the first resistance training of any kind (barring the previous day’s core work) I’ve done for a whole week. Except for warm ups, I need to adjust my weights to represent something closer to a 5 rep max for each of the 5 working sets. I may not adjust up too aggressively at first just to let my body get used to the change in routine.

I noticed that Lethally Fit is really killing it at the gym and I’m going to have to work to get up to her level.

I’m also going to have to revisit my decision to do Seated Dumbbell Shoulder Presses in place of the more traditional Overhead Press (in Plan B set to start next Monday) based on the following video:

Wish me luck.

All truths are easy to understand once they are discovered; the point is to discover them.

Galileo Galilei

Addendum: It’s early Friday morning now. Yesterday evening, my daughter told me she forgot she’d need me to drive her to the airport at five this morning. She’s traveling to Seattle for a friend’s graduation. Best laid plans and all that. Weight training put off one more day, alas.


3 thoughts on “Getting Ready to Lift

  1. Hehe. Killed myself today – deadlifts one set of five on 107.5 kgs (237 lbs), and they were fantastic, so I’ll be pushing them up to 110 kgs on Wednesday next week (243 lbs).

    Sounds like you’re doing pretty damn well to me 🙂


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