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tuna55
tuna55 MegaDork
11/18/22 12:36 p.m.

High watermark today, I am passing 2700 pushups, still working out 3x weekly.

 

A colleague walks by and playfully punches my arm. Then he goes "Whoa, what's going on there?" and squeezes my arm. "You working out more?"

 

Nobody sees me shirtless, and I wear a long sleeve button down every day, so it's not evident really. It's working though. Those pushups have really helped.

The_Jed
The_Jed PowerDork
11/19/22 11:30 p.m.

   My job has been extremely physically demanding lately and on top of being at about 70% performance capacity due to working third shift, I've managed to lose almost all motivation to lift and somehow re-aggravated my knee injury. It feels like I haven't lifted in at least a month and I am now soft and fluffy. 

dj06482 (Forum Supporter)
dj06482 (Forum Supporter) UltraDork
11/25/22 9:04 a.m.
The_Jed said:

   My job has been extremely physically demanding lately and on top of being at about 70% performance capacity due to working third shift, I've managed to lose almost all motivation to lift and somehow re-aggravated my knee injury. It feels like I haven't lifted in at least a month and I am now soft and fluffy. 

That's definitely frustrating.  I was floundering a few weeks ago, and I watched a video of Eddie Hall and Brian Shaw working out together.  Eddie had just landed, was jet-lagged, and they emphasized the importance of consistency, so that was a wake-up call for me.  I like to work out first thing in the morning, and if I miss that workout, I tend to make excuses and don't end up working out later in the day.  I now have two straight weeks of at least two workouts under my belt, so that's progress (for me).

The grip training I started seems to be paying off.  I bought a GD Hand Grip strengthener, and it wasn't cheap, but is well made and something I can use when I'm on meetings all day with work.  I'm going a mix of repetitions, repetitions with holds, and negatives (hold it closed for as long as possible).  The negatives feel a lot lot holding a bar, so I'm hoping that transfers well into my deadlifts.  My first deadlift workout after using these went much better, I didn't feel the bar slipping even though I went up in weight from the prior session.

 

ProDarwin
ProDarwin MegaDork
11/25/22 10:38 a.m.

I'm hoping to get back to real strength training Jan 2023.  This past month has been E36 M3 for a number of reasons :(

a couple of questions though:

 

1) what are some good exercises I can achieve with either BW, KB, or Barbell that will grow legs similar to squats?  My left knee just will not cooperate with squats and gets sore quite easily.  My physical therapist said it might be time to go to a doctor or just lay off the heavy weight.  It's fine for body weight, kb, running, biking, etc.  but put any more than 225-250 on the bar and it hates me.  I only have my home gym, but whenever I find myself in a real gym and I use the sled/leg press machine, it doesn't bother me at all.

 

2) does anyone have a great full body stretching routine they would recommend? In addition to the knee issue above, I've been chasing a really tight back on my right side,  scapula, traps, lats, etc.  I make progress in physical therapy but I need a good stretching routine to keep me from sliding backward.

Turbo_Rev
Turbo_Rev Reader
11/25/22 1:36 p.m.

In reply to ProDarwin :

Unweighted (meaning no weighted vest) pistol squats? I do those on a TRX and they are formidable enough to keep me feeling like I did something, and I say that as a person who does all the usual leg and back day stuff (deadlift, squats, squat machine, etc.) It's all your bodyweight, minus one leg (ish).

If you have a TRX or a rope tied to an anchor, you can vary the resistance by changing how close you're standing to whatever the rope/TRX is anchored to. Otherwise, you can stabilize yourself by standing next to a wall. 

You should probably still just go to the doc, though. I would.

dj06482 (Forum Supporter)
dj06482 (Forum Supporter) UltraDork
11/25/22 1:59 p.m.

I agree with the go to the doc and get an MRI thing, as the last thing you want to do is make it worse (speaking as someone who's done exactly that). 

ProDarwin
ProDarwin MegaDork
11/25/22 7:49 p.m.

Yeah pistols don't bother me at all.  That's a good idea to add those into things.  I need to experiment with a good way of adding weight to them 

dj06482 (Forum Supporter)
dj06482 (Forum Supporter) UltraDork
11/25/22 8:03 p.m.

If pistols don't bother you, how are lunges, reverse lunges, etc?

ProDarwin
ProDarwin MegaDork
11/25/22 9:08 p.m.

In reply to dj06482 (Forum Supporter) :

Just like squats.  Fine until I get to heavier weights.  If I stay at ~10RM or more I they are fine.

GIRTHQUAKE
GIRTHQUAKE SuperDork
11/26/22 8:19 a.m.

Yeah i'd see a doctor. It doesn't sound like a serious injury, more like long-term damage of some kind that you may need to take gingerly.

College gym times became super wierd during thanksgiving so I haven't gone since tuesday. Been using my home equipment in the meantime.

Beer Baron
Beer Baron MegaDork
11/26/22 8:52 a.m.

I'm starting to build my pistol squats. Found this great video on progressions: https://youtu.be/vq5-vdgJc0I

Standing box jumps are also a great option for bodyweight leg exercise.

ProDarwin
ProDarwin MegaDork
11/26/22 10:17 a.m.
GIRTHQUAKE said:

Yeah i'd see a doctor. It doesn't sound like a serious injury, more like long-term damage of some kind that you may need to take gingerly.

yeah I'm going to do an initial visit.  Phys therapist warned me that it's likely a problem with my meniscus and in my situation surgery has a good chance of not improving anything :(. She didn't discourage seeing the doctor but said make sure I think long and hard about surgery.

the other fun part is I have a HDHP so it's 100% out of pocket.   Yay!

Kreb (Forum Supporter)
Kreb (Forum Supporter) PowerDork
11/26/22 2:02 p.m.

I'm about to turn 60 YO. In my life I've never much liked weights or machines but have done a wide variety of sports: football, wrestling, running, bicycle racing, kayaking, climbing, et cetera. But ever since a couple of surfing injuries I've been on a long slide into fat and soft: 5'-10" 234 lbs. I really want to arrest this process so that I can remain active for another 20 years. Just joined a climbing gym that sports a lot of workout gear as well. Am currently doing elliptical stair climber for 28 minutes at whatever level necessary to get my heart rate to high 130s followed by some stretching and machines with an eye towards overall strength and resilience, not big numbers.

I'm planing a surfing trip as well as a snowboarding trip this winter 2-3 months out. Don't want to run out of gas my first day.  Would like to hear feedback from the GM crew on recommendations on how to build to these events.

ProDarwin
ProDarwin MegaDork
11/26/22 8:06 p.m.

Oh, something I meant to ask with the knee talk above:  anyone have a good recommendation for a knee brace?  To wear while lifting I mean.  I'm not sure if I want a sleeve, a wrap, etc.

I do have a set of wraps for voodoo flossing I have used before when squatting and they are helpful.  Is there a sleeve that can accomplish something similar?  Ideally something that isn't an ordeal to put on/take off.  Also something that doesn't limit movement up/down.  Some of them look extremely restrictive.

Beer Baron
Beer Baron MegaDork
11/27/22 8:24 a.m.

In reply to ProDarwin :

I think you're looking for 7mm neoprene knee sleeves. It's pretty much a standard for powerlifting. Definitely supportive and helps lift heavier and feel more solid when doing so. My impression is that most of the good brands are really just variations on a theme.

I've got some Stoic knee sleeves and like them. They don't just slide on, but it's not an ordeal or major process. I have to fold them down, slide them up just below my knee, and then fold them back over top. Sliding them off is easy.

I put them on in between warmup sets and wear them for all my working sets comfortably.

I've also got some inexpensive lightweight stuff when I just want a bit more warmth and some extra proprioception. They also double as shin sleeves for when I'm deadlifting in shorts.

ProDarwin
ProDarwin MegaDork
12/8/22 9:49 a.m.

I snagged some 7mm sleeves as recommended above.  Whatever brand was on still mega sale for black friday/amazon.  

I like them, but I'm still trying to feel out if I should get a tighter set.  They are snug, but not tight.  Nothing like when I use voodoo floss.

 

On a related note I think I found what is contributing to the problem, but I need to figure out a way to stop it:  I often sit with one leg under me - think like forming a 4 with my legs.  It puts me knee in a tweaked position all day.  My left knee has way more mobility than my right so this is easy to do subconsciously.  

ProDarwin
ProDarwin MegaDork
12/8/22 9:52 a.m.

Unrelated to the above, we should do a monthly check in or something in 2023 for those of us with goals we are trying to hit.

Beer Baron
Beer Baron MegaDork
12/8/22 9:59 a.m.
ProDarwin said:

I like them, but I'm still trying to feel out if I should get a tighter set.  They are snug, but not tight.  Nothing like when I use voodoo floss.

They're not going to be as tight as straps. They're not meant to be. They should be quite snug though.

On a related note I think I found what is contributing to the problem, but I need to figure out a way to stop it:  I often sit with one leg under me - think like forming a 4 with my legs.  It puts me knee in a tweaked position all day.  My left knee has way more mobility than my right so this is easy to do subconsciously.  

Pigeon pose stretches:

Pigeon Pose Modifications | How To Modify Pigeon Pose When You Are An  Inflexible Beginner - Body By Yoga

I do these regularly. I have issues with my hips. Do them pretty much every night before bed, as well as warm up to rock climbing or skating. Frequently do a variation on these before bench presses (which my hips tend to "bind").

fatallightning
fatallightning HalfDork
12/22/22 9:06 a.m.
ProDarwin said:

Unrelated to the above, we should do a monthly check in or something in 2023 for those of us with goals we are trying to hit.

I'm down for that. Although I'm going to be trying to lean out a bit in the new year, so I'd expect my strength numbers to go down. Currently at a 525 deadlift and 405 squat for 1RM. I'd like to be able to do over 1000 in those 2 lifts sooner rather than later. Honestly, dropping 25 lbs (currently 250) and improving my Oly lifts, especially the clean, are my biggest goals. I can't overhead for jack E36 M3, so I'd like to improve in that area. 

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
12/22/22 10:28 a.m.

I worked out in my 20s a good bit and got reasonably strong (360 deadlift, 315 squat, 250 bench at a bodyweight of 150) but then hurt my lower back in the Army. 15 years later I'm finally getting doctors to look into it—my doc thinks I tore a muscle and it never really healed right.  No deadlifts for me, sad face.

 

Anyways, here's a before and after photo of me this year. I suck at photos, in case you can't tell, and I chopped all my hair off because my toddler went through a hair-pulling stage. But after years of not working out and not eating much (I've never had a big appetite) I was just a skinny guy. I went from 139 pounds to 168 at 5'7" this year. Gains like that took a very strict regimen, reading up on some scientific literature, and ignoring all bro science.

Also decided to get on finasteride after the picture on the right, because I'm 41 and tired of losing my hair.  Goals are to maintain my current body fat of 9-10% percentage and get up to about 180, or even lose a pound of fat around my midsection, even better. I'm also kinda trying to do a fitness instagram but I keep forgetting to take pictures and videos haha. It can be tough since I can't do barbell squats or deadlifts due to my back (not only an injured muscle, but massive arthritis in my lower back and other places due to my Army years) but I make do. Lots of bodyweight squats and lunges. I miss deadlifting, though. That was always my favorite lift.

I did a push/pull/legs split for a while and really liked it. Recently I've switched to this split:

Day 1: Chest/back. Flat barbell bench press, narrow grip pulldowns, incline dumbbell bench press, bent over dumbbell rows. Maybe some weighted wide grip pullups or dips at the end, or dumbbell flyes. 

Day 2: Shoulders/Arms. Standing overhead press (harder on my lower back but I love the exercise) or seated dumbbell press, lateral dumbbell raises. I try to superset my biceps and triceps. I have some elbow issues so I can't do french press or skull crushers, so I do different variations of triceps pushdowns and alternate with EZ bar curls and dumbbell hammer curls. Sometimes I'll do a set of curls to exhaustion and then immediately do some chinups.

Day 3: Legs. If I were coaching someone else, i would tell them to start this day with heavy barbell squats. I can't do those any longer, so I've had to be inventive to keep my legs strong and healthy. Sometimes I'll do squats anyway, but I do it with only the bar (45lbs) or just with 25s on each side (95lbs). Even with that, my lower back will ache for the rest of the day. I hate the leg press and find it to be somewhat worthless, but sometimes I'll do a couple 20-rep sets on it. Usually I do high-rep sets of bodyweight squats, or lunges with my front leg up on a pedestal/block/platform. After that, lying hamstring curls. 

I tend to work my calves every day/every other day. I do both standing and seated calf raises and focus on a full range of motion—I go down until I'm in a deep stretch, then flex all the way on top and hold it for a second. I don't have large calves, but I started with toothpicks and crap genetics and I've built up decently muscular calves. They're tough muscles and require hard workouts to grow. Most people use too much weight and don't use a full range of motion or enough intensity and volume. That's why their calves don't grow.

Abs I do here and there. To be honest I'm a bit lazy with my abs. I'm trying to be better about that, but my back hurts with most ab workouts so it can be tough. L-pullups and hanging leg raises are some of my gotos, or just a bunch of boring crunches. I might try using rings to do leg lifts, just to make it more difficult.

A few times a week I toss in 10-15 minutes of high intensity cardio after a workout. Trying to keep my heart healthy, as that's the only muscle that really counts. I'd do more, but I'm very limited on time.

Diet: Here is the reason I've made such great progress. I'm a vegetarian and eat only a little cheese and some eggs/egg whites here and there, everything else is plant based. Every morning I make a shake with peanut butter and bananas and other goodness, and it comes out to 750 calories and 50 grams of protein. At 11am, I have my first lunch: usually a peanut butter and banana sandwich on ezekiel bread, or mayo/mustard/tomato/spinach/cheese/vegan deli slices. Either way, I try to get about 6-700 calories and 30 grams of protein. at 2PM I usually have leftovers from the night before, and I shoot for similar numbers, about 700 calories and 30-40 grams of protein. I workout after work, then go home and eat dinner. Same thing, 700 calories and a decent amount of protein. If I've been low on calories that day, I'll make another shake with a banana and blueberries and peanut butter around 8PM. I'm slowly ramping up my calories, and once I surpass 170 pounds my focus will be on eating 3,000 healthy calories per day. I can't really add any more protein or I won't be hungry enough to eat all that food. 

 

I try to get 8 hours of sleep, but with a toddler that's nearly impossible. Try to stay positive and happy, and my wife and I have a very active sex life, which helps maintain good hormone levels.  Stay hydrated, too.  Only supplements are a few grams of creatine per day when I remember, vitamin D, finasteride for hair loss, multivitamin, and biotin (really trying to get my hair to grow haha). Thinking of adding a ZMA supplement to help with sleep.

 

In my earlier years I was always focused on being as strong as possible, and I got pretty strong ( could row 130lb dumbbells all day) but now that I'm 41 and everything hurts I'm trying to lift smarter, not harder. I pay attention to things like time under tension, which is extremely important in muscle growth. Each rep has a forceful contraction, hold at the end for one second, then let it down slowly. Less weight, higher reps, better workouts. My muscles grow more and my joints are happier.

infinitenexus
infinitenexus Dork
12/22/22 10:31 a.m.

Also, yoga. I really want to get back into doing yoga. It's so good at stretching out the hips and torso, which is something I need.

ProDarwin
ProDarwin MegaDork
12/22/22 5:11 p.m.

Re: 2023.  My goals are by September (40th birthday) to:

1)  to get to a muscular 200lbs.  I'm going to define "muscular" as sub 15% body fat for now.  I usually hover around 12% but I'm sure that will be harder with that much extra mass.  I weigh ~182 right now, so thats approx 0.5lb/week.  250cal surplus needed accord to an app I plugged it into (see below).

2)  to get back to 1000lb combined between Bench, DL, Squat at a minimum.  I'd love to add a stretch goal to this.  This goal may be interrupted by a move which will mean limited access to barbell lifting stuff for a while, so we'll see how it goes.  I've spent the last month just at a baseline on this, I'll start increasing weights after the holidays.

 

Unrelated to the above:  I've been messing around with different apps for tracking stuff.  What do you guys use?

I'm using JEFit for workouts.  Its free and surprisingly good.  Not great for crossfit style stuff, but awesome for tracking what weights you need to lift, providing a rest time, tracking your PRs, etc.

I'm trying Cronometer for calorie tracking and it is SO SO SO much better than MyFitnessPal which I used previously.  The barcode works in the free version.  The results aren't wildly inaccurate.  Its easier to navigate.  Just an all around win.

Beer Baron
Beer Baron MegaDork
12/23/22 7:56 a.m.

My 2023 goals:

Overhead press 167 lbs. (The weight of a full keg.) My current 1rm is 155, and I could do 160 now if it was warmer.

Build back to climbing V5+

Deadlift 4 plates (I've hit 400, so... this should be relatively easy).

If I actually get the bonus at work I've been promised, I'm buying a second rack for the garage so the wife and I can lift at the same time easily. Will build platforms for the racks.

Brett_Murphy (Agent of Chaos)
Brett_Murphy (Agent of Chaos) MegaDork
12/23/22 2:32 p.m.

My 2023 goal is to join the 1k club. It will mark full recovery from my injury, plus improvements from where I was prior to my arm breaks.

I'm currently sitting here in my lifts:

Barbell Back Squat 250lbs (form broke down after that, so I'm not pushing it yet)

Barbell Bench Press225lbs (went up easy, but 245 was a no-go, then 235 almost went up but I tried too hard on 245)

Barbell Deadlift 285lbs (using a 15 kilo bar helped with grip, it's not as prone to rolling out until I get my grip strength back up. I may need straps to go past this, though)

Barbell Row 145lbs (workout weight, I've not tried to max this out yet)

Overhead Barbell Press 100lbs (workout weight, I've not tried to max this out yet)

I'm also trying to mix in cardio and perfect my diet, as well as researching a bit more. I have Starting Strength, and I'm going to use that instead of the 5x5 method moving forward. I also need to get a holder so I can record my lifts on my phone to check my form, due to the absence of a workout partner or trainer.
 

dj06482 (Forum Supporter)
dj06482 (Forum Supporter) UltraDork
12/23/22 3:23 p.m.

Glad to see many of you are continuing to make good progress!

I'm currently fighting what felt like a minor shoulder injury, but what a local ortho doc diagnosed as bicep tendonitis. Been trying to take it easy for a few weeks (no lifting), and it seems to be improving a little bit. Hoping to start some rehab exercises in the next week or so. 

I think it started from torquing bolts down with my elbows far out from my body, so I'm making a concentrated effort to have my body in a good position (I.e. elbows tucked to my sides) before I'm tightening anything.

Needless to say, my goals for my 45th birthday in February are shot, so I'll have to re-evaluate once I'm back to 100%.

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