Thursday, January 30, 2014

Ha, forgotten title

Today's update brought to you by the letters: U R G and H - put those together and you hear the sounds I was making unfiltered because the music was off in the gym this morning for no known reason.

Stats will appear below:


Weigh in: N/A

Leg curl: 10 x 100 lbs x 3
Leg press: 10 x 340 lbs x 3
Leg extension: 10 x 90 lbs x 3

Treadmill: 15 mins @ 2.5 mph w/ 1.5% incline

Was woken up way early this morning, but that worked out to a solid workout, and getting in some treadmill time, which is good because it's been a bit colder the last few days. Not East coast cold, but cold for walking around outside for a while.

Legs don't feel as painful as they usually do on leg day, so I probably needed to go heavier, but I'm happy with how much I lifted today. I need to build my confidence to do squats. I fell off-balance when I'm doing them, and I don't have a spotter, so there's that. Maybe I should try with just the bar, or there's another machine that you can do multiple exercises with and it does show a squat as one of them.

Anyway, just a quick update.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Names have been changed...

This morning I ran into the unfortunate situation where for one moment, I was sure I wouldn't be able to remove my shirt after my workout.

It was awesome.

I did manage to lift my, what, 4 oz shirt?, over my head and change for work, which I'm sure my co-workers appreciate, and I take that as a good sign that I worked pretty hard. Much better than I did on hangover Sunday earlier this week. And my phone is dry and working again, so I was able to track everything as normal.

Deets go here:


No weigh-in until Sunday

Bench press - 10 x 100 lbs x 2; 8 x 100 lbs
Arm curl - 10 x 45 lbs x 3
Lat pulls  - 10 x 80 lbs x 3
Shoulder press - 10 x 40 lbs; 10 x 30 lbs; 10 x 20 lbs
Arm extension - 10 x 80 lbs; 10 x 70 lbs x 2

I also went back and looked at the sets of weights I did my first day which was about four weeks ago. Not a ton of improvement. Still been finding that range where I can complete all three sets at 10 reps each without dropping weight from one set to the next. Clearly my shoulders do not take well to staying at the same weight, and it was really (sadly) tough to push it up the last two reps at just 20 lbs. They're super weak. Never thought my shoulders were so sad.

However, the other weights are stabilizing to hitting all the marks, so in a few weeks here, I expect to be moving up.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Today was leg day...

...and that's probably all I need to say about that.

Since losing my phone the other night (water), I don't have it with me when I'm in the gym and keeping track of what I'm lifting as I go. Today I thought I was doing 10 lbs more on the leg curls than last time out, and it turned out that I was doing 20 lbs LESS. Sigh. Probably a good thing, because my quads have locked up into total pain signal pandemonium every time I have to stand up.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Motivation is fickle

This morning was rough. It's probably a miracle that I went to the gym at all, let alone lifted anything. It's been a small comedy of errors since last night, and I wanted nothing more than to skip the gym and do nothing else for the day other than just work and go home.

Last night my phone took a bath.

So I had a couple of drinks, which never helps with motivation, you just wake up sluggish and not wanting to move, much.

My weigh in this morning put me at 294.4, which means I'm UP 2.2 lbs since my last weigh in on Wednesday. I realize that weighing in every day is probably not the best, so I might look at doing a weekly weigh in on Sunday mornings. This could be good or bad, since Sunday is when I return from my two day weekend (I'm also off on Tuesdays), and depending on how I eat on the weekend could be a factor.

I ripped a nail really good when I removed the "lockjaw" from the curl bar. Almost tore it in half, so that hurt and yes, I need to keep my nails trimmed better. Had to wait until I was at my desk to fix it.

So, it's just a bunch of stupid, little, insignificant bits and pieces that affected my motivation today. I'm without a phone for who knows how long. I'll see if it's working when I get home from work today (trying the rice technique to dry it out internally), and if not, decide what to do from there.


Anyway, here's my workout tracker for today.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

I think we're alone now...

Odd start to the day, when I got to the gym, there was a cleaning lady in the men's showers scrubbing them down (I still smell cleaning detergent); so I had to duck into the handicap stall to change. When I was done, she was still cleaning the bathroom area, so I went into the last shower stall to change back to my work/street clothes. It was weird.

Today was the legs:

Weigh in: N/A (because the scale is out in the open within the locker room, and somehow a t-shirt and boxers didn't seem appropriate)

Leg curl: 10 x 100 lbs x 3
Leg press: 10 x 340 lbs x 3
Leg extension: 10 x 80 lbs x 3

Treadmill - 10 min, 3mph, 1.5% grade

So, the treadmill was new, mostly because I finished the weights early enough that I had some time for extra walking. I still plan to do my usual lunch break walk. I might start dropping the weights a bit on the curl and extension machines and working on the legs individually, too.

Tomorrow and Saturday I'm off from work, so I plan to take our golden retriever out for a 30 min walk. Just need to keep up the discipline and work on crunches and supermans, and maybe get in some Kinect time with the Your Shape game or something.

Right now, my legs are wiped and my triceps, shoulders, and chest are all enjoying that comfortable pain (instead of searing) one has the day after a good workout.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Vacation is over...

Woke up at 3:30 with a pounding headache, and was out the door at 3:40 with my gym bag and lunch. I was at work, changed and walking out on the gym floor at 4:01.

Weigh in: 292.2

Somehow down 0.2 since last weigh in, which has to be a miracle considering I wasn't that disciplined during my five days off from work, I wasn't BAD, just wasn't watching everything real carefully.

Today's damage:

Bench press - 10 x 115 lbs; 7 x 115 lbs; 10 x 95 lbs

Arm curl - 10 x 55 lbs x 2; 10 x 45 lbs

Lat pulls  - 10 x 80 lbs x 3

Shoulder press - 10 x 50 lbs; 5 x 40 lbs; 5 x 30 lbs

Arm extension - 10 x 70 lbs x 3

Headache: gone. (with a little help from ibuprofen)

In other words, arms are destroyed, and I can hardly lift my coffee cup to drink. In fact, it's surprising how much effort it takes to keep my arms where they are right now to type. :)

I'm eating a Chobani Flips right now as part of my breakfast. It's banana with dark chocolate pieces and "honey roasted salted almonds" (slices) - they should simply rename them "burnt almonds."

Anyway, that's the update for today.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

You go, Glenn Coco...

Walking. We all generally do it. Sometimes an average day will see you walk about 5,000 steps just meandering around. Sure, you might sit down and be off of your feet for a while, but for most of us, walking is pretty natural and has been since we were around one.

So, why is it when you buckle down and just walk for 30 minutes, at a decent pace that gets you to about 3 MPH, do your legs start acting like this?


Good grief. It's just 30 minutes. But man does it take a toll on you. So far.

I fully expect that by the end of the month (yeah, only a little over two weeks), that I should be able to take the 30 minute walk and it barely singe my calves. The burn yesterday was intense. And when I came back into the building, I swear I could hear the elevators whispering, "Psst. Come over here. I'll give you a ride."

I took the stairs instead.

Yeah, I was breathing heavy by the time I got back to my desk. Comes out to about 28 minutes of constant moving. I'm hoping that before long, I can actually push the walk to 3 times around the building and still be back inside of the 30 minute window. My other option is to ask for 45 min lunches starting in April, but where's the challenge in that?

Today's workout was on the legs, and there was a bit of improvement. The last set on the leg press and extension really tested my resolve.

Weigh in: 292.4

Leg curl: 10 x 80 lbs x 2, 10 x 100 lbs (up 30 lbs max from last workout)
Leg press: 10 x 340 lbs x 3 (up 40 lbs)
Leg extension: 10 x 80 lbs x 3 (up 10 lbs)

Overall, it was a good workout and looking forward to giving my calves some time to burn later today. :)

Wednesday, January 15, 2014


Whew! Back on the arms today. Pushed harder on the bench press, but couldn't finish that last set. It's good to see I'm finding a rhythm and not dropping weight from one set to the next as much as I did on Sunday when I was in last for arms. Just need to hit three solid sets of the same weight, and then start increasing. I might look into getting some lifting gloves, I really hate how the weight and machine grips make my hands feel. Maybe a reward for consistency at the end of January.

My right arm is definitely weaker than my left. When doing the arm curls and shoulder press, I feel the strength go out of the right side a rep or two before the left. Might need to work on some dumbbells to even those out a bit.

Today's stats:

Weigh in: 292.4 -- up 1.2 lbs; figure it's more due to natural fluctuation, but something to keep an eye on.

Bench press - 10 x 105 lbs x 2; 8 x 105 lbs
Arm curl - 10 x 55 lbs x 2: 10 x 45
Lat pulls  - 10 x 80 lbs x 3
Shoulder press - 10 x 50 lbs; 6 x 50 lbs; 8 x 40 lbs

My four day work week is going to require more discipline at home on the three off days. Yesterday, I really didn't do anything. That's bad. Need to develop a routine for those days as well. I'm going to have several days off close together with the holiday on Monday, so I need to find a way to keep busy.

Monday, January 13, 2014

No Mercy...

Feeling a bit better today. Guess it was either just a quick cold, or I managed to sweat it out yesterday. After my workout yesterday, when my lunch break hit, I went outside and walked for just under 30 minutes hitting about 3,250 steps. My calves were not happy about it.


Today my workout consisted of the following:

Weigh in: 291.2 (t-shirt, boxers)

Leg curl: 10 x 50 lbs; 10 x 70 lbs x 2
Leg press: 10 x 260 lbs; 10 x 300 lbs x 2
Leg extension: 10 x 50 lbs; 10 x 70 lbs x 2

Just to note about the weigh in - yesterday I had on my shoes and my workout shorts so that accounts for a main difference in the weight. Just need to remember to weigh myself the same way each time.

My quads are burning today... no mercy is right.

It's not being overdone, I know that much. They feel good in a hurting kind of way.

Tomorrow I'll need to find a way to work on my core at home. Since I'm not here at work, I won't be in the gym.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Strike Hard...

I seem to have woken up with a bit of a cold this morning. Runny nose, sneezing, the whole bit.

Still went to the gym this morning. I committed to myself that today would begin a new regiment of lifting combined with cardio. Now unless I get to work at 3:45 AM, the cardio and lifting don't happen in the same trip. I got to the gym at work this morning at 4:10 and did the following:

Weigh in: 295.4

Bench press - 10 x 95 lbs x 3 sets

Arm curl - 10 x 65 lbs; 10 x 55 lbs; 10 x 45 lbs

Lat pulls  - 10 x 80 lbs x 3 sets

Shoulder press - 10 x 50 lbs; 8 x 40 lbs, 10 x 30 lbs

I left the gym at 4:43, and was at my desk at 4:50. Yes, it takes about seven minutes to get from the gym to my desk, partly because I walked back out to my car and put my gym clothes in it, and also because the gym is on one end of the small building, and I work at the opposite end of the large building here.

I'm not proud of the weigh in number. Cardio, as light as it was, was not getting anything done. I have to build some muscle to start burning fat while I'm up working. I plan to walk around a bit today. I can eat at my desk, so I can spend the 30 minutes I'm required to clock out for lunch walking. That'll get me through the cardio part of my day.

I work 4 days a week, so my plans are to repeat above workout on Sundays, legs on Mondays, core on Wednesdays, and treadmill and/or elliptical time on Thursdays. I may also do a little bit of work with the free weights on Wednesdays. Depends on what exercises I can do for core with the equipment available in our little gym.

I think I can still hit my target of signing up to participate (I almost said "compete" - LOL) in a 5k by the end of May. Note that means "sign up" - or commit (pay fees and fill out registration) by May 31.

I think that's it for now.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Strike First...

Taking on Elaine’s challenge to create goals, update and share. Here we go.

The last two are not exercise related, really, but are part of overall goals for personal balance. These are outside of general things like spending time with my family, etc.

  1. Lose 50 lbs
    1. I want to lose more, but let’s put a number to reach first and go from there
  2. Enter my first 5 k race by May 31st.
    1. Utah is abundant with 5k, half marathon races. There are a few marquee ones I would like to check out (the Color Run, Dirty Dash, and more), but the first point is actually getting into one (and finishing it).
  3. Determine max lift weights and increase by 25%
    1. I’ll have to update this one when I get into the gym and test these, but examples I’m going for are:
      1. Bench press
      2. Squat
      3. Arm curls 10 x 20 lbs + bar (25?) - 1/5/14
      4. Lat pulls 10 x 100 lbs - 1/5/14
      5. Deadlift
      6. Leg extension 10 x 100 lbs - 1/5/14
      7. Military Press 8 x 40 lbs + bar (45?) - 1/5/14
      8. Shoulder Press 8 x 60 lbs - 1/5/14
        1. Almost forgot - find these maximums by Sunday, Jan 12, 2014 (actually forgot today was Thursday, Elaine told me to take a week to find maximums).
  4. Finish 82 games this year
    1. This will put me at 250 complete games (xbox 360 w/ all achievements attained)
    2. At least 40 are from backlog and at least a year old (ties in with my gamer website)
  5. Raise $500 for Extra Life in 2014
    1. Registration starts Jan. 3, 2014. Plenty of time to start raising money.

You can see that #3 is the primary wait to achieve the first two, by building muscle, I can (hopefully) burn more fat, and get to where I'm slimming down while getting stronger. There's a lot of work to do here.

At the gym at work, I stepped on the scale with shoes, jeans and a t-shirt on and was sitting right at 296 pounds.

While I'll try to update progress on these goals as they happen, another way to view them is go check them out on my public Google Drive page.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

January, 2. Because...

I've noticed over the years that people have become increasingly negative over the concept of New Year's Resolutions. It's (mostly) for good reason, too. It's a ridiculous concept to think that you can put a new calendar on the wall and become a new person over night. People come up with all kinds of different lists, but typical common ones you see everywhere are:

Get fit / lose weight.

Quit smoking.

Volunteer more.

Keep a journal.

and so on, and on, and on.

These are all well and good resolutions, and who knows, this might be the year you actually keep at least one of them. New Year's Resolutions have become either a list of jokes, or a gym full of people on January 1 that looks abandoned by Valentine's Day.

My friend Elaine recently put up her 2014 "goals" - and I like that. She's got a different mindset about how to approach her lifestyle change. One, she started months ago hitting the gym and doing a whole lot more than just cardio. She's deadlifting, working out the shoulders, legs, etc. She has the whole routine mapped out, and for 2014 has set goals. Not resolutions, but goals. In her words,

"Goals are measurable. If you don’t reach them you can say you got 80% there and you will do better next time."
Based on that mindset, I think there can be real progress. I'm not going to get anywhere just walking around for 30 minutes a day. You have to build muscle. I have no idea what I can do in the gym. It's not a lot, except my legs... I think I can leg press over 500 lbs maybe 600, but that doesn't get me anywhere. It's time to build arms, shoulders, chest, calves, etc. I'm never going to get past the first obstacle in the Spartan Race unless I'm actually strong enough to propel my body through them.

This is one of Elaine's actual goals - "At least one pull up with a wide grip from a dead hang." Oh yeah a pull up, something I could never do. I weigh almost 300 pounds. But check this out, "December 2013 status: I can lat pull down 100 lbs for 6 reps. That needs to go to 130 lbs before attempting a pull up." - See... there's a total structure here. She knows what she can lift, and what she needs to get to before her arms will be capable of lifting her body weight.

It's time to reassess some structure here, I think.