I slept fairly well last night (for a change), so I definitely was ready for the gym this morning. However, I slept so well, I really didn’t want to get out of bed. I only had time for a banana as my pre-workout meal, but I think it contained enough carbs to get me going.
My car is in the shop, so I had to borrow my wife’s van to get to the gym. Since she has to leave for work at 6:30, I wanted to make sure I got it back home in plenty of time, so I tried to power through my workout as quickly as reasonably possible. Turns out, that wasn’t a problem, even throwing in three extra sets of hack squats.
Fortunately, Workout A contains some lifts that let me “rest” more than Workout B, including the bench press and triceps extension. While still trying, I’m able to rest only about 60 seconds between sets and have that be sufficient.
I went heavier on my back squats today, with my working sets only 10 pounds lighter than this week’s target, which is still the heaviest I’ve ever done a back squat. My biggest problem besides balance while lifting the bar off the rack was balance and coordination at the bottom of the squat and coming back up.
This impaired my ability to get my thighs quite at parallel to the floor much of the time, but I tried to get as close as I could and still feel safe.
Barbell Back Squat in Squat Rack
Barbell Bench Press
Barbell Bent Over Rows
Cable Triceps Extension w/Rope
Barbell Hack Squats
Pull ups (bodyweight)
When squatting, I can see and feel the bar “tetter-totter” across my traps. No wonder my traps feel so sore right now. Compared to that, my bench press at 135 pounds seemed almost a breeze.
Bent over rows were a little more challenging at my working weight.
My target working weight of 70 pounds for triceps extensions seemed too light, so I upped it 5 pounds to 75, which was a better choice. I could actually see my triceps long head expand in the mirror as I was performing each cable extension.
I was going to do my pull ups next, but there was a couple performing cable crossover pulls right under the pull up bar. The only other pull up assembly is in the squat rack, but the way the grips are placed, the top bar of the rack would block my head, keeping me from pulling myself all the way up.
So I did hack squats instead and was the victim of my own bad timing, since by the time I set the barbell at my warm up weight, they were done with the crossovers.
So I did my one warm up set and then my two working sets at 175 pounds, just to make sure my legs were being properly worked.
Finally, I made it to my pull ups and did reasonably well, particularly on the first two sets.
Later, at home, I could see that my lats were still pumped and I seem to be growing a baby set of “wings”. Also, a long muscle on the insides of my calves continues to expand, at least as I look down on my legs while showering.
After pull ups, fatigue, plus knowing I needed to get my wife’s van back home drove me out of the gym rather than having me perform my usual “hanging” exercises. I felt successful enough in today’s efforts not to fret too much about neglecting my final traditional move in my new routine.
In lifts like back squats and hack squats, as I was mentally counting each rep, and at reps 5 and 6, there was this momentary desire to stop. Then I thought of the next few weeks and how the weight will be heavier, and then I’ll stop at 5 reps, and then 4 the following week, and finally 3 reps per set at week 5.
I don’t know if I have the nerve to balance (or try to balance) 215 pounds across my traps for 2 working sets of 3 reps each of back squats during that final week of this round. Even the starting warm up weight is 170 pounds, which is 5 pounds heavier than I’ve lifted in a squat so far. Heck, the working weight for deadlifts in week 5 is 235 pounds. I’ve had a tough enough time muscling 225 pounds off the floor let alone doing 5 reps in the past.
Well, it’s not like someone is putting a gun to my head and saying “lift or die.” If something feels too dangerous, I’ll take it down a notch and then work up to heavier lifts the following round.
I did say that I felt someday I’d hit a functional barrier I couldn’t cross.
I just have to find out where it is and then, male (Hulk smash) ego engaged, see if I can beat it into submission.
Oh, official bodyweight when I first got up this morning was 190.3 pounds, which is about 86.31 kg or 13.59 stone. Just sayin’.
Desire is the key to motivation, but it’s determination and commitment to an unrelenting pursuit of your goal — a commitment to excellence — that will enable you to attain the success you seek.