So, on Saturday I did my first every hour-long personal training session (they’re normally half an hour). I also learned an important lesson. While coffee is the perfect fuel/stomach liner for a half hour session, I need more than that for an hour. Perhaps some food. At the 40 minute mark I was feeling good, and if we’d called it a day at 45 minutes or even 50 I might have walked away feeling like I had a top session. Those last 10 minutes though? They got hard. At one point I wasn’t quite sure if I was going to vomit or faint, and the frustrating thing was that I knew that it was likely just a result of not eating anything before I came to the gym. Grr!!! Anyway, it was a good one:
- 10 x safety squats (45 kg, 55 kg x 3) – NB: still not sure what the weight of this bar is. I know I had 20 kg added for the first set, and 30 kg added for the rest.
- 10 x clean and press (20 kg, 25 kg x 3) – super happy with these. I managed to do 7 reps in each set without bouncing to get the press up – I did strict presses
- 20 x walking lunges, with wall ball carried above head (no weight, 2 kg x 3)
- 10 x raised push-ups
- 20 x raised heel (hack) squats, 2 second lower and 2 second raise (final set was normal lower and raise)
- 10 x lat pulldowns (30 kg, 35 kg x 2)
I think this was possibly the latest in the evening I’ve worked out before (6:30 pm) and that combined with having moved house across the weekend made for interesting energy levels. Still, a good workout!
- 10 x Kettlebell clean and press each arm (8 kg, 10 kg, 10 kg)
- 20 x wall ball slams (20 pound ball, so that’s… 9.07 kg)
- 8 x barbell cleans (20 kg)
- 8 x barbell presses (20 kg)
- 8 x barbell bicep curl (20 kg)
- 8 x dumbbell hammer curl (6 kg per hand)
Oh no! I forgot to write up Monday’s workout! Out of order. Bugger. Oh well! Arm/back/upper body workout, and my PT told me he thought I was having a strong day. When he says that I’m normally thinking to myself ‘hey, these weights are actually manageable and I’m keeping good form’ so that’s good.
Barbell complex x 3
15 kg x 8 reps, 15 kg x 10 reps, 20 kg x 8 reps
- Bicep curl
- Overhead press
- Normal grip clean
- Wide grip clean
- Upright row (note: final set was with 15 kg for 8 reps, not 20 kg)
- Bent over row
- Clean and press
- Lat pulldown x 10, 8 (25 kg) – 3 seconds down, 3 seconds up
Arm day! A five car pile up on the freeway meant I arrived 10 minutes late for my half hour training session today. I started my workout with my PT, then he gave me instructions for the rest of the session and left me to it. Normally in these situations I have a tendency to reduce either sets or reps, telling myself that I have to get to work and don’t have time to finish. Today I finished the full sets prescribed, with the right number of reps, without blowing out my rest time. It’s tiny, but I feel proud of myself for doing it.
- 20 x raised push-ups (on a bench)
- 20 x angled pull-ups
- 5 x jump pull-ups (jump, aim to pause at the top then have a controlled lower)
- 10 x barbell clean and press (20 kg x 1, 25 kg x 4)
I’ve had a realisation in the gym. I’m sure my PT’s been trying to tell me this for ages, and I heard him, but I didnt’ get it. So here it is: when I engage my glutes, everything gets easier. It doesn’t matter what exercise I’m doing, or what area of the body I’m focusing on – when my bum’s clenched, everything’s better. I’m sure there’s exceptions to the rule, and I’m sure I’m not supposed to be doing it all the time, but for now it seems that engaged my glutes in helping to engage other back and core muscles that I struggle with otherwise. It’s bringing some kind of balance to my body that I’ve been missing otherwise.
Last night I was doing some mid-weight clean and presses, and some bicep curls and presses. Often when doing these movements I do well for the first 6-7 reps (out of 10) but struggle for the final couple. Engaging my glutes meant that suddenly my stability increased, and although the final reps were difficult they were as hard as they’d been before.
So I’m sure this is something that the whole world knows. I’m sure I’m behind on the times, and what I’m saying is going to be pretty ‘duh’ for anyone reading this. But it’s somewhat of a revelation for me, it’s making life easier, and I’m excited to see what I can achieve now that I’m adding some of this stuff into my workouts.