Alright guys, just a little over a week since I last posted. Trying hard to not let things slip and keep on top of a weekly posting schedule. The challenge, as always, is not finding time to write, but committing to writing something of value. Still, I personally get a little something form journaling my own progress and experiences, so maybe that’s reason enough.
As far as my journey to 180lbs goes, progress was a little flat this week, depending on how you look at things. Weight and body fat are holding steady, although there’s a slight 0.5% uptick in body fat over the last week or so.
Still struggling to break through the current plateau and see some consistent numbers above 175lb. That said, it took me weeks to break out of the 160s and get a consistent measurement in the 170s, so I know it takes time. I’m also trying to hold body fat at approximately 10%, so it’s not that I can’t get there — I just can’t get there quickly while staying lean.
Getting stronger, in spite of injuries
If we shift away from body weight and look at progress in the gym, it’s been good; real good. And that’s in spite of having to work around an endless number of injuries, aches and pains.
To give a couple of examples, I pulled 365lb for 4 reps this week on the sumo deadlift, and pushed 70lb for 13 reps on the last set of dumbbell floor press; the latter being at the end of a second upper body workout that same week. The 365lb is a double PR (1RM and 4RM), so strength and endurance are definitely improving.
But progress continues to come at a cost
Workouts leave me feeling more than just tired, and the cumulative effect over the week has me pretty beat-up. I certainly can’t say that I feel good as a result of working out, and recognize that I need to find a better balance between progress and taking care of myself. Respect to Adam, he’s always striving for balance, pushing me to moderate and take care of my body — but I can’t see it. I’ve never experienced pain free workouts, and don’t have the faith model to believe it’s even possible.
That said, I did commit to start seeing a local guy here in town that practices therapeutic massage and has worked with a lot of different athletes. I had my first session on Saturday, which left me feeling more sore than when I went in! Still, I suspect I need to move a little backwards before I can go forward at any pace. Will keep you posted with progress.
The mind body connection?
As an aside, this guy is a big believer in the mind-body connection, and in particular the notion that how we talk about and express our physical state can be self-fulfilling. i.e. you are what you say you are. For example, he asked if I talked about my aches and pains to anyone, and the way they impact my lifestyle and workouts. I am like,
“Fuck yes; I piss and moan to anyone that’ll listen and even those that don’t”.
He strongly suggests I take a break from that, starting with not verbalizing my discomforts to others, and eventually not even thinking about them. Frankly, I’ll try anything at this point — so we’ll see how it goes!
Get out of your own way
As a heavily goal oriented person, I found Bryan Krahn’s latest post insightful, as always. Bryan talks to the process of goal-setting, and why many individuals fail to follow through on their goals. Sure, there are many reasons why goals fail, including lack of commitment, discipline, vision, deadlines, measurement etc., but Bryan’s post touches on a less obvious dimension – you are simply in your own way!
With finite time and finite resources, there is only so much we can achieve in our waking hours. If you are going to add to your schedule in some way, you must often also subtract something in order to make space for success. I know I am regularly in my own way, with endless cycles of addition; committing to more and more, not less and less. I know James Clear is big on this general approach too, with this great post on subtraction; make big progress by avoiding small losses.
Life is short, live it to the fullest extent possible
On a slightly more sombre note, I’ve been steeped in death this last few days, working through endless paperwork to establish a Living Trust to account for and manage our assets in the event of our passing. With three marriages between us, and kids on two continents, it’s been grueling and more than just a little depressing, especially when digging into the details.
That was followed with a visit to the movies yesterday to see American Sniper. Any and all dramatization aside, it’s eye-opening to witness what these guys had to go through during their tours in Iraq. And that someone like Chris Kyle could endure and achieve so much, only to be shot on home soil, is beyond words. We filed out of the theatre in total silence; it was all we could do to show our respects.
And then, Greg Plitt passed, reminding us all just how short life can be. Alas, I didn’t know Greg personally, although I’d seen him in many a motivational video and on magazine covers. To say he was energetic, charismatic and motivational is like describing a hurricane as strong wind; thoroughly understated. So here’s a couple of pieces from people that actually had the good fortune to know him, and call him friend: