After weeks of toying with weights and tip toeing around any real 1RM’s, today I finally went for it.
The road has been a long one…..7 and a half months to be precise, I now and only after some careful weight selection and steady strength work have my mid-section felt up to some heavy weights.
So what was it????
It was a Back Squat.
Not my best move pre-pregnancy with a Pb (personal best) of only 70Kg.
I tend to have a high bar position across my shoulders which mean my squat is heavily depending on my quads. A lower position on the other hand lends more help from the glutes and hams. I think it comes down to a personal choice as I have never been fond of a low bar, it’s up to you.
I always start with a first set of 5 with just a naked bar (thats 20Kg) With 70Kg in mind I quickly whack on 40Kg for 5 reps and then 60Kg for 3 and then 65Kg for 1.
65 felt good so I bumped it up to 70. Again no problem. I was happy I had reached an old target and started to feel maybe I should leave it there.
A little voice from the other rack (namely Chris) said no way just pop the little 1.25’s on.
I came this far I may as well!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I wouldn’t say it was an easy 1RM but I think maybe I could have squeezed, even if it was just a .5Kg more on top. Hey next time at least I will have somewhere to go with the bar.
I felt pretty cuffed with myself after that and steamed through 3 sets of 15 deadlifts with 47.5Kg on the bar.
We then finished with some clean high pull practise. It’s been a while since I have done some of these. It took a while for my co-ordination to come back but I got there, for 4 sets of 3.
As a side note a friend of mine Andreea has expressed her boredom at her usual weight routine and has found some inspiration in the training Chris and I are doing.
For Andreea and anyone else using my posts as a training guide I want to mention (hopefully this is obvious??) that the amount of weight I personally lift is no indication of what you should look to lift. For anyone beginning a weight lifting routine I suggest you ask for some guidance from either myself or a trainer in your gym as weights need to be skill and ability specific.
You can email me for advice at email@example.com
Lazy pah not me. I been super busy getting ready for my impending holiday in a few days that this week you have both my training sessions blogged into one. You lucky devils.
I seem to have the memory of a goldfish these days and seem to survive on a day to day basis by writing copious To Do Lists. I find it most satisfying to add boxes to tick as the task is complete.
I just wish I had made a note of Tuesday’s training session ??????????????
From the picture I asked Chris to take I know we did weighted box jumps.
Ouch 3 sets of 8.
My abs are still hurting so I remember the toes 2 bar very clearly!!! (I did a scale I will find a photo for)
I am getting flash backs of good mornings and power cleans the rest is a bit of a blur.
I really need to get a new training diary for next week!!!
I couldn’t find a shot of the scale I did so I will try to explain. Above is the full movement and if you can imagine instead of hanging from the bar I was on the floor gripping the up right bars and from straight legs curled my legs to the bar, tapping the bar with my toes.
This doesn’t give you the same hang time on your shoulders but for the purpose of the session we wanted to hit abs so this fitted perfectly. I wouldn’t always use this though.
Other scales you may want to look up are hanging baskets and knees to elbows.
Ok so think that covers Tuesday now time for Thursday.
Last session with dynamic deadlifts and having started at 25Kg I am now loading the bar at 45Kg. Awesome progress in 4/5 weeks.
Again 12 sets of 1.
Another first (there have been a few of these lol) Zercher Squats.
I found this pretty uncomfortable as the bar rests in the crease of your elbow.
It does however allow for a bigger chest while keeping the load on the front.
3 sets of 10 was all we needed to get a good burn with these. I couldn’t see myself going to much heavier without swearing like a trooper at the pain in the elbows. I don’t mind muscle pain from hard work but this was not nice!!
Next up an exercise that sounds like a dance move from Saturday Night Fever!
We found these hilarious, especially as I had to do my own funky version because with the bar across the hips it was coming pretty close to my c-section scar which can still get painful when something rubs against it, even waist bands on trousers can make it pretty uncomfortable still.
Anyhow I am jus going to let the photos do the talking here.
Planting the foot through the heels meant that the glutes did more of the work. I find if my feet ae flat my hams take over and quickly cramp.
3 sets of 12.
The final finishing move was jumping barbell squats.
This is a move for a more advanced trainer and preferable with someone there to check form.
Using a barbell across the back you simply jump in and out of the squat landing mid foot to heel to maintain balance.
I used a 15kg bar which was more then enough for 3 sets of 15.
Phew that just about wraps up this week!!.
I think I can squeeze a few more sessions in before Australia. I am really looking forward to visiting a few of the Crossfit gym over there. These Ozzies are hardcore trainers, I can’t wait!!
We are all sold out of Wonderbar spaces so if your booked on then I will see you then. Our beloved Crossfit London gym has had a re-vamp so it looks dead good and looks tones bigger. Come on down and take a look.
Training with Chris is showing me all these different strength techniques. I have never previously had a very strict strength routine but since I was in a bit of a mess strength wise after the C-section I am now reaping the benefits of not jumping straight into full on Crossfit. Not only am I happy that my tummy is on track again but as I said on an earlier post my everyday duties are becoming easier and easier.
Today (Thursday 3th May) was no exception.
On the board were Anderson Squats.
Chris explained that they have the same principal as a box squat but instead of the weight on your back it is in a front squat.
You need a rack for this as you need to use the pins.
The squat starts at the bottom of the squat. This allows the pins to take the weight of the barbell. As in a box squat keep tight but without the weight bearing on your shoulders.
As you drive out of the squat (with some speed) you then take the weight in a usual front squat stylee.
The aim is to produce power and speed as you relax the stretch reflex at the bottom of the squat.
I was unsure of how different it would feel starting the squat at the bottom but I was surprised it was quiet tough.
Imagine doing an air squat but as you stand your loaded with a bunch of weights trying to slow you down. As an experiment I did a few regular air squats easy, I reckon the 150 air squats I did on Tuesday wouldn’t feel so bad after this!!
Another Westside move we did was a good-morning box squat.
If you are not familiar with Westside, they are a pretty strong lot. They put a lot of glute/hamstring accessory movements into there work. The Good-morning box squat is a classic ham/glute hammering.
This is a pretty good move to include if you find you’re not firing through the glutes and hams effectively but if you are a beginner to strength training I would suggest getting a hang on the basics first before introducing this one.
Just a short session today! Probably more gossiping went on then needed but hey least I didn’t just stay in my PJ’s all day.
12 days to go till Wonderbar! 3 Places left at the last check.
This may not be the most flattering photo but as Chris said it shows you’re working hard!
Sumo-deadlifts are one of my favorite moves. Training today I remembered the first time I did a sumo with my good friend Sham. I was lifting close to if not 90Kg for my first time which I was cuffed to bits over and only fueled the fire for more.
Today was a lot more conservative reaching 75Kg for 3 reps.
Still I am airing in the side of caution and recovery so at 75Kg I stayed.
As a side note I am starting to feel so much stronger not just in my tummy but all over.
I notice it the most when I am doing every day activities. Lifting the pram down the stairs or carrying shopping.
This is the whole point of Crossfit, isn’t it? To make you fit for what life throws at you.
At the beginning of my c-section recovery I was a bit defeatist . I moaned that I would never get back to where I was, but this week I think I can put a big fat middle finger up to my old self and give a few whoops as it wont be long now before I am back to full tilt! Watch Out Crossfit.
Anyways back to today………..
After the Sumo’s I pushed out 3 sets of overhead squats with 10 reps each set. (25Kg)
And finished with some kneeling squats and air squats.
150 to be precise.
I am gonna feel this tomorrow, me thinks!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!