Deficits & Inclines

Most of yesterday was grey and rainy, and I was perfectly content with the weather as it was a perfect match for how I was feeling. I had thought that I might go for a walk after work yesterday, but I couldn’t do it. While my work day was fine, as I sat in the office doing paperwork for the last hour of my shift, a heaviness settled on my shoulders and tears stung my eyes. A walk probably would have done me good, but my emotions were quite volatile for most of the afternoon. Staying in the house, writing in my paper journal and crying in the bathroom and my bedroom just seemed like a better idea. I woke up to sunshine this morning. As much as I truly do love the rain, I was glad to see sunshine and blue skies. When I opened the living room curtains, I saw a hot-air balloon high in the sky. I might prefer my feet on the ground, but there is something peaceful and amazing about hot-air balloons. Today is a better day.

1a. sumo block pulls, standing on a 1/2″ mat

95 x 6

with a 3 finger grip: 135 x 6, 165 x 2 + 4 with a full grip

with straps: 185 x 7, 205 x 8, 215 x 7

with straps & belt: 235 x 5, 225 x 8

I made a comment to Michael at one point about block pulls being fun. Maybe fun isn’t the best word. I like them. Yes, they can be tough, but I’d rather do block pulls than rear laterals or deficit deadlifts or Bulgarians. The 3 finger grip was not so fun or enjoyable though. Standing on the mat didn’t even really register in my brain, but we’ll gradually add to it.

1b. incline bench press, with my old competition grip

43 x 8, 63 x 8, 73 x 6, 73 x 6, 73 x 6, 68 x 7

For either the second or third last sets, we moved my grip just slightly wider and also adjusted the seat on the bench. I know we dropped the weight for the final set, so it should have felt somewhat easier, however, the final set felt stronger than the previous sets.

2a. single arm, bottoms up kettlebell presses

8kg x 8 each, 10kg x 2 each

forget the bottoms up! regular kb presses

12kg x 3 left, 4 right

forget the kettlebells! dumbbell presses

25 lbs x 7 each  although the left arm definitely struggled to get 7 reps

2b. deficit deadlifts, with straps

185 x 6, 195 x 5

I was a little reluctant to begin the first set of these, because I remembered how tough they felt last week. Feet on the plate, setting up for the first rep, I felt like a giant squatting down to lift something so incredibly far away. The first set last week was the worst. My legs were quivering stumps. I was pleasantly surprised by how much better this first set felt today! They were still tough, but my legs didn’t protest nearly as much.


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