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Striving for Strength and Consistency

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      Congrats on reaching your goal!


        Congratulations on reaching your goal!




            Manuela TopNotch Whirly JCU Fremen Aww, thanks everyone! It's one of those small goals that leads up to greater ones, but succeeding feels great! Thanks for your encouragement!

            Heavy lifting today! I went in and pounded my body with a whole bunch of exercises.

            Back Day

            Deadlifts: Each for five reps - 140, 145, 150, 155, and 160
            Barbell Rows
            T-Bar Rows
            Meadows Rows
            Machine Lat Pulldown
            ...for five sets each.

            It got rather cold today! In fact, today may be the coldest day of the year - not that it'll last for very long. It's fun to walk the streets and see people bundled up as if they live in Siberia.

            As for New Years... I'm working on New Years' day. So I'm going to count down, and then go to bed immediately afterwards. Mmm... bed.

            Happy Boxing Day, Bees!

            I'd forgotten about this profane, Christmas-flavoured gem from Run The Jewels:


              Hey Bees!

              I kind of "took it easy" today; I still went to the gym, but I worked my arms instead of any big bodyparts. My lower body is still slightly sore from yesterday, so I'm going to work it again at the end of the week.

              Arm Day

              Preacher Curls
              Concentration Curls
              Incline Curls
              Hammer Curls: for 10 (!) sets
              Wrist Curls
              ...for five sets each.

              It's back to work tomorrow. I'm glad to have had a small break with which to catch my breath.

              Brian Eno's gentle, ambient compositions have been my study/work accompaniments for a long time.


                No gains today; kind of jumped the gun.

                I wanted to work up to my 2rm in the bench press. Progressed to 150, then I got greedy and wanted to bang out 3 reps. Didn't work out...

                Bench Press: 140, 142.5, 145, 147.5, 150 (failed after the 2nd rep), 152.5 all for two reps.
                Larsen Press: Five sets
                Smith Machine Incline Press: Six sets

                So I have a choice now, starting next week. I can continue with the linearly increasing weights, and hope for a another boost in my max, or I can implement a new, fresh program that someone else has designed (I'm leaning toward Greg Nuckols' 3x a week one). Not much of a choice, I think; it's time I tried something new. Most days it feels like I'm beating my head against the wall, pushing myself as hard as I can.

                Interesting to note, I've made a new discovery throughout these weeks: long warmups are necessary for peak performance. I know loads of people do light cardio - for me, I have to put in actual, specific sets of the exercise I'm going to work with. They start out hard (always), but they get easier as I enter a groove. So from now on, I'm going to be incorporating lengthier warmups.

                See you tomorrow, Bees!

                Been playing a card/deck-building (and other genres?!) game called Inscryption. I'm not even a card game kind of guy, and I've got to say, it comes highly recommended by me. Here is the piece that I find most evocative:


                  It's that time of the year!

                  My workout performance was abysmal. I've never been one for squats, but anyway...

                  Squats: Maxed at 100 x 5. Ended up being 11 sets in total!
                  Front Squats: 6 sets
                  Paused Squats: 6 sets

                  And had a wonderful hot pot dinner in which I probably ate all my gains away. Oh well, that's okay. I'm working tomorrow, so I'm going to stay up for the countdown, and then bedtime afterwards.

                  Have yourselves a Happy New Year! Here's hoping the best for you, Bees!

                  Here's a hopefully apropos selection for the occasion: Kool and the Gang!


                    Happy New Year!


                      Happy New Year!


                        Happy New Year


                          Happy new year


                            Happy New Year, Gentle Ox!

                            I enjoy your music selections. Have you ever listened to any minimalist classical music? If you like Eno you would probably enjoy some of it. I like Steve Reich chamber pieces most I think.

                            Doing great!


                              Happy New Year!


                                TopNotch Fremen PETERMORRIS966 lofivelcro Manuela Thank you all! Hopefully your New Year was great, too!
                                Colin I'm a big fan of ambient music in general, so minimalism is a great recommendation! Steve Reich's stuff, particularly Music for 18 Musicians, is simply genius. Props to you.

                                I come from afar with gains to spare!

                                I felt rather strong today, so I managed to hit my old PR (150 x 3) with relative ease. It's not a lifetime PR (I did it before almost a year ago), but I'm glad I'm maintaining strength.

                                Bench Press: Worked up to 150 x 3, then 152.5 x 2
                                Larsen Press: 6 sets
                                Incline Press: 6 sets

                                So much for switching to a new program. Maybe I'll try for another PR this week, and run this block to its conclusion. I'm still feeling good about these gains, after all.

                                Notes and takeaways:

                                - I can lift as well without music as when I have my earphones blaring in my head.
                                - Leg drive (eg pressing your legs into the ground) is crucial for my bench press.
                                - Grip is still pretty narrow. I learned the hard way that too wide hits my shoulders too hard.

                                Hope you're enjoying your New Year weekend, Bees!

                                Would that we all had imaginary friends as flamboyant and reveling as these!