Deadlifts & Dialogue

Forgive me if this post rambles or seems to get lost in translation. It’s been a long day. My training session was a little more than 11 hours ago. I might be a night owl by nature, but I’ve been a morning bird for so long now that too many late nights take a toll on me. Or more likely it’s just the less than stellar sleep the past two nights and the fact that I’ve been working so many closing shifts lately. It’s also a busy time of year, and the busyness combined with my closing shifts has resulted in less than ideal eating habits. I cannot even begin to describe how excited I will be to sign out after work tomorrow night, knowing that I will have four days off to celebrate Christmas. I plan on drinking plenty of coffee, eating lots of turkey, drinking some wine, and just enjoying the time away from work…once I finish shopping!

1a. deadlifts, snatch grip

95 lbs x 8, 135 x 6, 165 x 8, 195 x 6, 215 x 3

Experience has taught me that when it comes to multiple reps of deadlifts, there is an extremely thin line between pausing enough to take a breath to reset and pausing too long. That’s what happened with the set at 215 pounds. Michael wanted me to make sure I was breathing enough (because for some reason he thinks I usually don’t), so I was taking a moment to breathe at the bottom. There comes a point though where the pause has the potential to knock me off my groove and makes it difficult to maintain/regain tightness in my upper back. After the third rep at 215, I could sense that the brief pause was going to be the end, and I muttered to myself not to lose it. But I did. The upper back seems to be my weak spot. <sigh> So Michael had me try a set at the same weight but conventional, touch and go. He also left the number of reps up to me.

conventional: 215 x 8 PR

I have to say that this conventional set felt rather good. It isn’t very often that I do high rep sets of deadlifts, and I’m not sure that I’ve ever had a set of deadlifts that looked as good as this one felt. The bar was close to my legs, and I pulled my hips to the bar. Although I cut the set at 8 reps, I probably could have managed to grind out at least one or two more reps if pushed. And I’m pretty sure that was a personal record…because I don’t often do heavy, high rep sets!

1b. standing double kettlebell presses

8kg x 6, 10kg x 6, 12kg x 8, 12kg x 8, 12kg x 7, 12kg x 8

The set of 7 reps at 12kg was a bit tougher, because Michael changed my arm positioning midway through the set. He thought it would be a stronger position for me, and he was probably correct since I was able to get the full 8 reps on the final set; however, changing position partway through the set wasn’t so easy.

2a. Romanian deadlifts, with straps

135 lbs x 8, 155 x 10, 155 x 10

The final set was the best. The bar was nice and close to my legs, and I was pulling my hips towards the bar. With RDLs, I sometimes struggle to keep the bar close to my shins at the lowest position, but the final set was rather good. All the practice seems to be paying off.

2b. single arm cable pulldowns

40 lbs x 7 each, 30 lbs x 15 each

2c. laterals

8 lb dumbbells x 20, 10 lb dumbbells x 7 + 8 with the thumbs pointed upwards

I’m so not a fan of laterals, but the first set wasn’t too bad. The second set was a bit tougher with the slight weight increase, but the change in position made them even harder. So not fun.

3. TRX for the rear delts x 8 + rows x 12ish?

I have one more training session left in the year, since my coach is taking next week off. As much as I don’t like missing my training times, I’m kind of looking forward to the short break. We talked a bit today about recovery and food. I know that my eating habits are not ideal right now, especially with all the closing shifts that I’ve been doing; however, I think I’ve still been able to recover well between training sessions. Michael also mentioned that he’ll let me do some low bar squats very soon! And he is expecting me to break my PRs in February. I’m okay with that. The prospect of lifting more than I’ve lifted before is a bit daunting, but it’s also exciting and I am ready for the challenge.


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