Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Week 2

So, beginning of week 2 at the gym (more on that later) and I finally ran into one of the more uncommon gym stereotypes: buff grandpa.

I'm doing my own thing, dumbbell lunges, in front of the rack and he comes up to replace his dumbbells.

Now mind you, this gentleman looks to be north of 250 years old, with an epic snow white handlebar mustache. In each hand he's carrying dumbbells easily twice the size of mine. He replaced them on the bottom shelf, so those are the 50#+ range. 

Despite the leathery skin and superb face weasel, this dude is ripped. He gets my attention, so I pop my headphones. I shit you not, I was so startled that he DIDN'T sound like this when asking me to move so he could put his weights back:

brethren, dost thou even lift?

Anyway, face weasels and shredded senior citizens aside, here's my current status on my Handbasket to Hell-th(tm):

Weight: 187.2 (-0.8 from last week)

Dumbbell Lunge: 10@20#, 2x 10@25# (2x 10@20# last week)

Dumbbell Press: 3x 10@25# (3x 10@20# last week)

Standing Dumbbell Deadlift: 3x 10@30# (2x 10@30# last week)

Weighted Decline Situp: 10@6#, 10@10#, 8@10#(exhaustion) (new exercise)

Changing up a little since I posted about exercise last Wednesday.

Using feedback from friends, coworkers and /r/fitness, I ditched my silly homebrew program and split day setup, in favor of and , modified slightly to incorporate my restrictions and needs.

Why dumbells and not barbell like SS is built around? Mainly because the apt gym has some odd Smith machine variant instead of a proper powercage, and I don't have an exercise partner to check my form and spot me.

Anywho, I'll be graphing my progress and uploading graph images to my blogs, so check them out soon!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Resolution 2013: Lose belly flab and overhang

Dear Body:
Fuck you. Sincerely, Link.

So, my 2013 resolution is to drop the beer gut by the end of the year. That's right, no belly overhang in 364 days. I'm keeping it real, no silly resolutions like "shredded 6pack by summer" or any nonsense like that. I'm nearing 30, and have never done a proper exercise program in my life. I never really set a goal until I saw this picture on Reddit where a guy with a starting body very similar to mine takes monthly progress pictures and by October, has gotten rid of all his flab, and is starting on real definition. (I wish I could find that picture again...)

To that end, workouts are now a thing in my life. MWF I'm lifting weights and running the elliptical. Monday is core, wednesday is arms and friday is legs. If i'm really feeling masochistic, I'll do core again on Saturday.
My goal each session is 1 set of 16 reps at 80% of my 1 rep max for each exercise, then increase 1 set each week to a max of three sets of 16, then determine new 1 rep max in week 4 and week five return to 1 set of 16 at 80% of new 1 rep max.

That being said, remember the part where I've gone 28 years without ever really exercising. Today was the start of my resolution, and also arms day, and also also determining initial 1 rep max week. I did 5 min on the elliptical at 80 RPM (which is a whole other set of challenges due to my destroyed knee joints), then moved to lifts. 16 reps of bicep curls at 50 pounds, 90 second break, 16 reps of tricep extensions at 50 pounds, 90 second break, 16 reps of lat pulldowns at 100 pounds, 180 second break + water. All reps were done at 1/4Hz, and I was starting to shake all over a little during the water break. Shakes aside, I didn't really feel tired, so I went for another round of sets.

Bad idea.

Bicep curls dropped to a painful-to-complete 14 reps before muscle exhaustion, tricep extensions I lost count of as I was trying to keep my breathing regular but I think I did 20 before realizing I was just hurting myself, and lat pulldowns were an embarassing 10 reps before my grip gave out and I dropped the bar. Nausea, massive muscle shakes, etc. I got back to the apartment and showered, and now only my hands are still shaking as I'm typing this. I'm pretty sure I'm going to regret set 2 tomorrow morning, but thems the breaks.

So, new datas:
Bicep Curl 1 rep max: 105 lb
Tricep Extension 1 rep max: 105 lb
Lat Pulldown 1 rep max: 180 lb

Will test these values next Wednesday. According to the math, I should be able to do 16 reps at 85, 85 and 145 pounds, respectively. We'll see how that works out.

I'm also contemplating doing a fast paced set in the 2 week of each rotation, 2 sets of 16 rep at 50% 1 rep max at 1/2Hz or 1Hz, both to prevent muscle memory and to work the quick firing muscle fibers. Thoughts?

Will update again on Friday with the values for my legs workout. Oddly, my calves and thighs have always been very well defined, with little to no fat present, even though I actually avoid leg exercise like running and biking due to my knees. I'm expecting my leg values to be disproportionately high, but we'll see what the math says.

All in all, I feel exceptionally out of shape right now. This is the point where I gave up previously. No "runner's high" of endorphins or anything, I just feel weak and sick. But I'm not giving up this time. Flat stomach incoming.

Maybe I'll get a "thug life" tattoo across it to celebrate when I reach my goal...