Dealing With Bad Days Training

Our culture is littered with cliches about how bad days happen. “You win some, you lose some,” or the very similar, “you can’t win them all,” or even, “Some days, you eat the bear. Other days, the bear eats you.”

We all know that bad days happen, and anyone who has spent much time on this planet knows that they can happen in bunches.

Well, I’ve been dealing with that this week and no, I don’t know how to deal with it all that well. Continue reading “Dealing With Bad Days Training”

The Zen Of Training

In my life, I’ve tried a lot of training modalities for various reasons. I’ve done Tae Bo, I’ve done fitness videos where you sit on a stupid ball and do various lifts with lightweight dumbbells, I’ve done types of yoga, kettlebells, bodybuilding lifts, odd objects, and plenty of others.

However, it’s only in lifting weights that I have found a certain zen-like quality that exists nowhere else in the world for me. Continue reading “The Zen Of Training”

Always Moving

I’ve had kind of an up-and-down week. I’ve had great days and great workouts, but I’ve also been feeling a little down…always on days I’m not lifting.

Now, this tells me something. It tells me that lifting improves my mood. This isn’t surprising in the least. It’s probably pretty normal. If I lift, I feel like I’ve accomplished something and perhaps triggered some endorphins to release. Who knows.

But here’s the problem with that fact.

Starting Strength calls for a three day per week lifting schedule if you do it by the book. While I’m generally a fan of the program, there are problems that I’ve recognized even beyond my previous review. At this point, I’ve been doing it for three months, and I’m seeing some lifts lag behind a bit while others do incredibly well.

Further, the lack of anything in between is problematic for me considering what I’m seeing regarding my mood.

So, with that in mind, I’ve decided I may need to reevaluate a few things. Continue reading “Always Moving”

Breakthroughs

Do you ever have that moment where something that kicked your butt the last time you encountered it gets shattered all to hell and back the next time you run into it?

Well, that happened to me earlier today, and it’s awesome.

Let me back up a bit. A little over a month ago, I hit a deadlift attempt for five reps but could only do four. I just didn’t have a fifth rep in me. I know, I tried.

It was right before I what Starting Strength calls a reset. Basically, you take some weight off the bar and work back up. In theory, this will let you shatter through the previous wall. It makes sense, at least for a novice lifter.

I hit the deadlift wall, then an overhead press wall, so it was time for a reset.

Today, I had to attempt the same weight I failed on a month ago. Guess what?

I kicked it in the balls. Continue reading “Breakthroughs”

The Challenges Of Training Outside

I love training outside. You get a little fresh air, some Vitamin D, and you’re doing something most people never really bother with when it comes to weight training.

Further, if weight training alone builds mental toughness, training in the heat and cold has got to build it even better, right?

The thing is, it also introduces challenges that have to be accounted for or else you could find it causing you serious problems. Continue reading “The Challenges Of Training Outside”

Timidity Under The Bar

I’ve got a confession to make. It’s going to become a theme as the week rolls on, I suspect. No, I haven’t been lying to you or anything. Nothing of the sort. But there are things I did a pretty good job of lying to myself about. Especially when it comes to strength training.

You see, despite weeks doing nothing but barbell training, I’m still a little timid under a bar.

To understand why, I need to take you way back. The year, I believe, was 1989. I was 16-years-old and had just gotten the go-ahead from my folks to start lifting weights at the school’s weight room. It was open to all students, but it was really a football thing. I wasn’t on the team, but we were a small school so I knew everyone.

I was the small, kind of geeky kid in school, so I’m sure there were some thoughts about what the hell I was doing there when I showed up. I kind of recognized that I had stepped into the lion’s mouth, so to speak. Most of the guys who I saw as tormentors were in that room, and they were going to see just how weak I was.

Well, it seems someone thought it would be hilarious to pressure me into trying to bench my bodyweight my first time in the weight room. Now, at the time that was just 135 lbs, but when you’re arms are about as strong as overcooked spaghetti, that’s plenty.

My first attempt went about as well as you would expect. It was lifted off of me and I felt stupid. However, I didn’t want to be beaten, either. That’s probably how I was talked into trying it again.

Now, you need to understand something about that time. I knew nothing of how to bench. This was the years before YouTube or Amazon, so it was difficult finding information. Knowledge was often passed by other people in the weight room and contained about as much BS as your average load of natural fertilizer.

One thing I didn’t know anything about was form, and I had my arms running right next to my body. No arms at anything approaching an angle, and I had my grip about right for a close-grip bench press, but not an actual bench.

All of this contributed to what happened next.

The weight was lifted off the rack and moved over my chest…only to see my arms lose the ability to hold the weight right at the elbow joint. The weight crashed down on my face.

Yes, really. Continue reading “Timidity Under The Bar”

Back In The (Kettlebell) Swing Of Things

Last week, I didn’t get much working out down for a number of reasons. One of which was feeling like crap. Another was having workmen in our home to do a number of things. I hate working out with an audience, after all, and when I feel like crap…well.

No excuse, though.

There can’t be any excuses. Not anymore. I’m trying to stay alive in a world where there are a large number of people who want me dead. Yes, some include people who want me dead personally, most likely. Others just want me dead because I didn’t vote for the right candidate or I support the wrong policy. Still others want me dead because I live in the U.S. and am happy to live here.

They won’t delay because I didn’t feel good one week.

That meant it was back into training. No, I didn’t do any DDP Yoga. Not yet, anyway. I’ll probably do some tomorrow for stretching purposes, but I didn’t do it today because I love lifting stuff. Period.

So that put a kettlebell back into my hands. Continue reading “Back In The (Kettlebell) Swing Of Things”

Another Day, Another Workout

Yes, I’m going to spend a good bit of time logging my workouts when I’m not pontificating on various things. This does two things. First, it keeps me accountable. Second, it allows people to actually track how I did things, see my mistakes, and put the whole process of following the Warrior Pyramid out in the open.

So, without further ado…

Today I did the DDP Yoga thing for the second time, and it’s funny. I’d told myself that it was pretty easy (and it was) so I decided to go through the introductory Diamond Dozen workout with a bit more intensity. You see, since it’s an introductory workout, Dallas tends to explain the movement with a demonstration before you actually do it. Since I’d told myself that Monday was so easy, I decided to do twice as much work.

DAYUM! Continue reading “Another Day, Another Workout”

DDP Yoga – The Aftermath: Part 1

So it’s been about 24-hours since I completed the first day of DDP Yoga, which gives me a bit of an opportunity to talk a bit about how that went.

First, I’m not feeling particularly sore, which I would have thought I would have despite the relatively easy effort required doing what’s called the Diamond Dozen.

Of course, that’s not particularly surprising because the Diamond Dozen is really more of a lesson on what the moves are and how to do them. Yoga is all about postures, and you have to do them properly to get the most out of them. Diamond Dozen is about covering those bases so you can start the first real workout with at least some knowledge of just what the hell you’re doing.

Even so, I still expected some soreness.

Of course, I do have a bit…in my wonky shoulder. Continue reading “DDP Yoga – The Aftermath: Part 1”

Dealing With Injuries

Yes, I’m just starting a relaunch of this site’s focus, and I’m going to complain about injuries. Go me.

But, then again, I’m injured. I have been for a while, and I’m not completely sure what the problem is. My right shoulder gives me a little twinge when I do certain things like pulling. Not massive, but enough to let me know something isn’t right.

So, since it started during a workout a couple months ago, I did the sensible thing. I stopped lifting.

However, the injury hasn’t really gotten any better. Again, I’m not sure why, but it is what it is and I have to deal with it.

So, for a little while now, I’ve been thinking about something that I was a little hesitant to try: Yoga. Continue reading “Dealing With Injuries”