So much prep

I’m one week out from the comp as of today (for realzies this time) so lots of heavy singles– not the time to try to build a base strength, but the time to test how heavy I can go and how it feels. Since squats are still a weak point for me, I’ve been spending a lot of time in the squat rack.

This morning there were 2 other women in the free weights area with me, lifting heavy. Usually I’m all alone! It was nice. One of them was working with a trainer learning the 3 powerlifting lifts, so it felt a little bit gratifying to demo that, given time and work, she could have lots of weight on that bar.

Squat – 5x135lb, 5x185lb, 2×205, 2×205, 1×215, 1×215
DL – 5x135lb, 5x205lb

215lb is a new squat max for me. It went up pretty easy, and that surprised me a lot, I don’t know why I felt so good and strong this morning. I was going to set my opener at 185, but maybe I should go heavier to start? Definitely I’m going to stick with a warmup at 185, regardless.

I was tentatively planning to do a bit of heavy DL but I forgot to use the restroom again with predictable results and ended the workout early. Maybe tonight at home I can hit bench and DL (gonna rep out on lighter squats too).

Since the title of this post is about prep, there’s another bit of prep I’ve been doing: I have an SCA event this weekend to attend, it’s going to be too cold to wear just my linen shift and kirtle and veil, so I’ve been working on a 14th C sideless surcote. It’s made of silk lined with linen, and it’s all hand sewn. It’s taken me around 2 weeks to do and I’m immensely proud of it. It’s almost done– I need to hem it and finish the inside. There’s a problem, though: the weather is calling for heavy downpours on Saturday and the event is outside. My beautiful silk gown with its beautiful silk train is not being worn in the rain. I also need to do a bit more work on other garments, adding sleeves to my kirtle and throwing together an open hood, and if I have time a pouch. Those are getting sewn by machine…

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at the core

I’m still not recovering well, I might be coming down with a cold (fingers crossed that my immune system chases it off) and just to make things really interesting my period arrived a whole 2 weeks earlier than expected. I’m still sore from Tuesday, especially since I did a second, heavy lifting session in the evening. Whiiiiiiiine.

Squat – 5x135lb, 5x155lb, 5x185lb, 1x205lb, 1x205lb (with awful form, and nearly fell over with the second 1×205)
Bench – 5x135lb, 5x145lb, 1x150lb, 1x155lb (miss)

I took Wednesday off entirely, but this morning I went to the gym looking to do something useful but light and that hit some different areas. Core work, then!

Warmup: 1 mile on the treadmill
Kettlebell side bends, 3×10 each side
KB swings, 3×10
Plank holds – 3×1 minute
Cable wood chops, 3×10 each side
Glute thrusters – 3×10
RDL – 1×10
Donkey kicks, fire hydrants, aux hip stabilizer work
Plus bonus stretching and foam rolling

Dunno if $husband is going to want to lift tonight. I might try to get some squat volume in if my back and hips can tolerate it.

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Time: small; Lifts: big

Until about an hour ago I was under the impression that I was about 1 week out from my comp and today was my last big day to lift before deloading. I have since been informed that I fail at calendars and it’s actually 2 weeks away. So yay, one more week to train I guess?

Still, this morning I was deadlifting like I was wrapping up a training cycle because I didn’t know any better. I had an early meeting and was up at 5:30 to have enough time to hit the gym beforehand (remembered my lifting belt this time!) I really could’ve used the extra sleep; I’m starting to feel a little bit sniffly. Must not get sick!

I warmed up thoroughly with a short run and RDLs and glute thrusters. Usually I deadlift last and don’t need to warm up, but it was nice to have a targeted couple of sets to get the back of my body woken up. Then it was time to get to work.

DL – 5x135lb, 5x185lb, 3x205lb, 1x235lb, 1x255lb
Squat – 5x45lb

255lb didn’t feel all that bad. It was hard but not tweaky anywhere, and definitely sub-maximal for 1 rep. Maybe I’ll open at 235lb and do 255 for the second try. I’m still having leaky problems though; I swear my (hard, 4") belt sits right on my frigging kidneys/bladder and squeezes anything out. I can pee right before a set, doesn’t matter. No puddles, though!

I did a tiny squat set afterward and my hips felt so good and open, depth was not a problem. I should definitely go bench – DL – squat.

Speaking of bench and squat, the plan is to go heavy on those tonight with $husband. I’m always happy to do bench singles, but the prospect of heavy squats is less fun. Guess we’ll see how it goes.

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Do not be heroic

Bit of catching up: I’ve signed up for my little powerlifting comp, and I have about 2-3 weeks left. I’ve also been recovering poorly, and I’m chronically sore in a lot of small muscles (hands/wrists/forearms, adductors, lower back, ankles) which is never a good place to be. I’m probably not adding a lot of weight to my lifts from here on out, and I want to minimize the chances of catastrophic injury (looking at you, Angry QL) so now’s not the time to get heroic.

But I still need to get some volume in. Tuesday I did some squats and deadlifts at home followed by a 5k run, and today I hit bench, along with some front squats and accessories because why not. (Woulda done back squats and DL instead of all the accessories, but my belt is at home.)

Bench – 5x5x135lb (easy peasy, right)
Front squat – 3x5x95lb (actually I can’t remember if it was 95 or 115 but we’ll just say 95)
2×10 each: Biceps, triceps, delt raises, shrugs, lat pulldowns, cable wood chops, 2×1 minute plank

I’m not sure if I’ll have a twofer today, $husband has been sick but he’s starting to feel better, he might want to lift.

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Oh my legs

It’s been a while since I got a good lifting workout in, and the comp is coming up way too soon so it’s time to stop messing around and put some weight on the bar. $husband is sick so I was by myself in the basement gym blasting Gary Numan.

Squat – 5×135, 5×155, 5×185, 1×205 (with decent form! yay!)

Deadlift – 5×135, 5×185, 5×205 (felt pretty good, decided not to go heavier. that was enough for today)

After that, I went out and ran a 5k around the neighborhood. My legs were not excited about this but it went okay.

It’s the thick of Faire season here so I’ve been spending a lot of time getting costumes and stuff together. I went yesterday with my friends (minus sickly $husband) and had a great time. We have one more weekend I think, and it’ll probs be both Sat and Sun. There’s also an SCA event at the end of the month that I need to prep garb for. And I’m making my husband the denim kimono of his dreams (this could be its own blog srsly). And I still have actual real clothes that I want to sew for fall. I’m spending a lot of time in the basement in my sewing cave.

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Order of operations

I was having Deep Thoughts in the locker room today: If I’m training for a powerlifting competition in one month, a 5k race in 2 months, and trying to shift my body composition just a leeetle bit leaner in the meanwhile, and my time to train is mostly adequate but my recovery time is not, how should I do it?

The answer is straightforward, really: running is lower priority and I already have a good handle on it, the comp is sooner, and cutting isn’t going to help. Therefore: lift heavy, eat enough but as clean as my brain can handle, and gosh darn it take time to recover. Running can live on the back burner for a while.

Of course, I decided this after another fast treadmill run, 3mi at average 9’30" pace. It felt hard but my heart rate monitor says it wasn’t all that hard, my HR only peaked at 162 at the end and hovered in the 140s through most of it.

$husband wants to lift tonight (I think it’s a SL5x5 A workout this time) so recovery, what recovery? I might just do some heavy singles again. My back has been squirrely for a couple days.

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Baselines

I mentioned the other day that I have a casual PL comp and a race coming up so I’ll probably train half-assedly for both. Yesterday I spent some time trying to figure out a training baseline.

Running first: in the morning I set out to see just how fast I could run a 5k on the treadmill. I can see I’m getting faster, but how hard can I push myself?

UNADJUSTEDNONRAW_thumb_7acTurns out I can push pretty hard. I ran for 30 minutes, covered 3.34 mi, and according to my tracker ran 5k in 27:59 which blew my 30 minute 5k goal out of the water.

It was kind of exciting turning the treadmill up to speeds that I had only dreamed of. Now I have 2 months to translate that into a fast race.

And on to powerlifting: I’ve been farting around doing 5×5 with my husband intermittently. Luckily he’s lifting quite heavy now (except for deadlifts, still working on that one) so that’s good encouragement for me to go heavy too. Earlier this week I did 5×2 bench at 145lb, squats yesterday was ugly 5×5 at 185lb, and DL is still a little lower at 5x175lb but I have time to work on that.

I’m not planning on being soooper srs at the comp, but if I can beat my Wilks from last time I’ll be happy (hard to directly compare when I’m 60lb lighter).

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