It is another grey and drizzly day in the Okanagan. It was also upper body day. Coincidence? I think not! 😉 I drove to the gym singing Unstoppable along with Sia. On repeat because why not. Some days I need the reminder.
Michael had me do a few warm-up exercises to stabilize my shoulders, because my shoulders do not always play nicely. Let me say now that trying to do push-ups on a band is incredibly tough and humbling.
Then Michael had me do my first two exercises against a 15 minute timer. The challenge was to see how many I could get done in that time, keeping to 8-10 reps per set. For the inverted rows, I used the widest grip on a Swiss bar and had my legs fully extended for 2-4 reps before bending my knees for the remaining reps. The push ups were done on an incline using a barbell. Michael lowered the bar at least twice and had me widen my grip at one point. With the push ups, I also had to make sure that I was rounding my back a bit at the top position.
1a. inverted rows
7 sets of 10, 1 set of 9
1b. incline push ups
8 sets of 10
That was a lot more volume than I usually do with either of those exercises, yet I never felt as if I was close to failure. The final reps of the last couple of sets were tougher though.
2a. seated dumbbell presses with back support
15 lbs x 6 + 20 lbs x 8, 20 lbs x 8, 20 x 8, 8kg kettlebells x 10
The left shoulder was feeling quite fatigued by this point and struggled a fair bit with these presses.
2b. bent over barbell rows, with a plate on my lower back to keep me bent over
75 lbs x 10, 80 lbs x 10, 80 x 10, 80 x 10
3a. triceps pulldowns
30 lbs x 15 x 2 sets
3b. side laterals
10 lbs x 12, 10 lbs x 15
I’m having a confused moment. In my training journal I have written 15 lbs for both of these sets, but I don’t think I actually used the 15 pound dumbbells. I think that was what Michael initially gave me. I’m pretty sure I picked them up, got into position, could barely lift my arms and changed to 10 pounders. Yeah, I am reasonably certain that is what actually happened. Laterals don’t like me and the feeling is mutual.
3c. kettlebell curls
8kg x 9, 8 kg x 2 + 6kg x 5
Michael didn’t see that last set of curls, so he doesn’t know that I dropped the weight or the reps. I don’t like dropping either number, but sometimes I figure that it is better to do so and get some reps than to struggle to get any reps. Honestly, if my arms were fresh, I am confident that I would be able to get more reps; however, by the time I got to this last set of curls, I had to struggle to get those measly 2 reps with 8kg. Even downgrading to 6kg wasn’t enough to allow me to get enough reps.
But I survived.
Yesterday I saw my chiropractor, and he decided that we are going to attack whatever the issue is with my right knee and make it better. While the knee is generally fine at the gym, it tends to be bothersome when I am doing simple things like walking, standing, or going about basic tasks at home or work. It isn’t exactly a painful problem, although it doesn’t feel comfortable. It feels more like things aren’t sitting or lining up properly in my knee. So, after putting me through some motions, my chiropractor believes that the real issue is my right hip. I guess that makes sense. I now have a handful of exercises to do at home every day to attack the problem, and I think that is why my hips feel a little stiff today.