Old & In The Way

Post your training journals here if you like. I'll make back-ups to avoid losing your data.

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Re: Old & In The Way

Post by clutch » Wed Mar 14, 2012 10:13 pm

Ah, fuck, I did some grip work. I actually dragged my ass out of my recliner, went into my garage, and did grip work.

Left hip/leg are moderately annoying today. Annoying enough that I probably won't hike, again.

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Moire observations

Post by clutch » Thu Mar 15, 2012 9:35 pm

Plenty of hip discomfort, ranging up to moderate pain today. Meh. Outta work, popped 4 Advil, rested a bit, then got down to it. Again, just testing stuff. Decided to shoot for high rep stuff, not a lot of sets. Warmed up with some dynamic stretching; man, the left leg doesn't want to move. Then hit some band stretching, and finally some incline barbell pressing.


Incline Log Pressing: worked up to [email protected], then stripped off 50lbs, and banged out about 17reps for another 10RPE.


Single Leg Leg Press: trying to find my place here, finally settled in on weight that was [email protected] for the left leg, and this was 7RPE or less for the right leg. But: left leg seems to have slightly more ROM than the right today. Going to have to monitor that in the future.


Seated Rows: worked up to a set of 17reps at 10RPE


Machine hack squat: 10 reps, then somewhere around 20 [email protected] Ages since I did these.


Flyes: did a set of 20-some reps at 10RPE


Preacher curls: worked on my best bro-scowl face, but lacking a mirror, I'm shooting in the dark. Worked up to a set of 14reps at 10RPE.


Everything went OK. I'm wondering if the hip discomfort and pain is from the single leg stuff the other day, or something else.


I'm also wondering about introducing fully body pulling into the plan. My big concern is that with such a clear strength imbalance, I risk patterning compensatory movement patterns and setting myself up for injury. On the other hand, I love to pull.


Speed work, maybe?

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More Lessons & Observations, but some headway

Post by clutch » Sat Mar 17, 2012 5:39 pm

Well, finally figured some stuff out and had a "Click" moment this morning. Realized that why I have problems walking is that I have problems supporting my weight on the left leg with a bent knee, and that what I am doing to compensate is locking the knee. That's why downhill is so difficult. Sure enough, doing a simple standing test with a slightly bent knee points that out.


This also fits in with a comment Matt Ladewski made to me on my pulling. He said that it looked almost like I was using too much hip and not enough hamstring. He was right; that's my compensation when I pull.


I had originally planned on training some yoke walk today, but this insight scrubbed that idea. Instead, I did some lying band leg single leg curls. Bingo. I found the problem. After doing some of these, I could barely move my left leg - it was the strangest feeling. A lot of cramping in the hammie, and down into the calf as well.


So, this has to get addressed.


Moved away from lower body work, practiced my best bodybuilder sneer, and hopped in:


Military Press

Pulldowns

Side Laterals

Rear Laterals

DB Preacher Curls

Tri pushdowns


I didn't keep track of weight or reps, except I did nearly everything as pyramid sets, working up in weight, then peeling off some weight, doing more reps, etc. So, did a lot of reps for each exercise. I hate to admit it, but it felt good to get all pumped up.

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Week 1, Day 1: Testing

Post by clutch » Tue Mar 20, 2012 10:04 pm

This new approach is going to take some getting used to; I feel like I didn't really work out, to be honest. Warmed up with some shoulder dislocates, band pull aparts, and hopped in


Seated Military: 1x15x45,45,65,96,115/9,110/9


Seated Rows: 1x19x135,185,225,225,225/9,215/9

Long story short: did these on the low cable, and had to play around finding the right wood block to give me some additional ROM, without being so high that the cable rubbed. Hence the larger number of sets at 225.


Pushdowns: 1x12x90,115/9,105,105/9


Total time was about an hour.

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Re: Old & In The Way

Post by Abandoned by Wolves » Wed Mar 21, 2012 1:56 am

That looks good as a change of pace. Nothing wrong with a "recharge" for a couple weeks or a month. Maybe you could play around with the 40 day Pavel/Dan John program> What you're doing now would be reasonably close to that.
"I also think training like a Navy S.E.A.L. is stupid for the average person. I would say PT like an infantry unit, run, body weight stuff, hump a little, a little weights and enjoy life if you are not training for specifics." -tough old man

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Re: Old & In The Way

Post by clutch » Wed Mar 21, 2012 10:39 am

^^^Thanks. Mike & I are basically approaching this in 3 week "discovery" blocks, to find out what I can and can't do, given that my left hamstring (and who knows what else) is so weak. I've probably got at least the rest of the calendar year training like this, and possibly the rest of my life. All depends on how the left side weaknesses come around, and whether the nerve damage is permanent.

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Week 1, Day 2

Post by clutch » Thu Mar 22, 2012 10:25 pm

First off: just did some stretching, shoulder prehab, and grip work yesterday. Started to try to stretch out by hanging from a chin bar. Might have pushed it a bit too far - last night was pretty miserable in terms of pain on the left side, radiating down into the hip and leg.


Anyhow, today. 85+ degrees in teh gheyrage, on March 22 - this is so not right. Got the big fan turned on, and read the program for today. Kept hoping that I was missing a decimal point on rep range.


SSB Squat: 1x19x65,115,165,215/9

Plenty to hate here: SSB. High rep. Need to get the hang of this - think I went a little too hard, but...left leg numbed out, and couldn't really do a fatigue set, or walk very well. Weird feeling. Gave it a little time to calm down.


Trap Bar DL: 1x15x135,225/9

Left hip / SI region was complaining a bit, left leg was not happy, so, continued with the pussy move of no fatigue work. At least it was only 15 reps.


Single Leg Leg press: 1x15x315,405/9L,8R

RPE of 9 for the left leg, 8 for the right leg. This took it to the point where the left leg was just starting to numb out.


Band Leg Curl: 3 sets.

Still really figuring these out. Again, took it to the point where the left hammie was really feeling the strain. Need to get a better setup for these.


So, anyhow: part of the reason for backing off on the fatigue work is that last Saturday night I woke up with severe cramping in the left leg. I'd rather not go through that again, to be honest. So, yeah, basically a total pussy move.

Feel like I got some solid work in today, at the least.

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Week 1 Wrapup

Post by clutch » Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:29 am

On the road, working on the first seminar with the Practical Strength group. Good group of students.


Friday - out for a 2 mile hike first thing in the AM, the rest of the day devoted to travel.


Saturday (Day 3): had to make do.


Pulldowns: worked up to a top set of 12 reps @RPE9 (weight on teh machine said 310, don't believe that shit), then one fatigue set at 290.


Bench: supposed to be db bench, no db's, so...worked up to 135x19/@9, then knocked off 5lbs, and was only able to get 6 reps.


This high rep stuff will take some getting used to, I reckon.


That was it, a quick session during the lunch break.

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Re: Old & In The Way

Post by clutch » Tue Mar 27, 2012 10:52 pm

Whew. Pretty wiped out from the weekend seminar and travel days. Made it out for about a 1-1/2 mile hike this morning, pretty slow. Left leg kind of dragging, feeling pretty dead.


Struggled through the day, then got in some training.


Warmed up with some light hack squats, and dynamic stretching, then hopped right in:


Hack Squats: 1x15x225,275/9,255/9


Good mornings: 1x12x95,135,185/9,175/9


Step ups: 1x12xSSB, 1x16xbodyweight

Left leg was done by this point.

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Week 2, Day 2: Testing

Post by clutch » Thu Mar 29, 2012 9:33 pm

Catching up: yesterday, lots of percussive massage and stretching.


That was then, this is now. Uber-high level of stress from personal and job shit. I'm trying to deal with it rationally and politely, but the urge to take a sledgehammer to a particular asshole manager's BMW M3 grows stronger by the day. Or maybe I can just accidentally park my truck on top of it tomorrow morning...


Incline Log Press: 1x19x120,140,170/9,160/9


Chest Supported Row: 1x12x135,225,275/9,260/9


Overhead Tricep Extension: 1x15x45,77/9,72/9


Hammer Curls: 1x8x55,60/9,55/9


Quick session. Pressing and rowing felt pretty solid.

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Week 2, CNS Recovery

Post by clutch » Sat Mar 31, 2012 12:56 am

Cranked Tool "Aenima" on the big stereo.

Drank Woodford Reserve Bourbon - she's a great fucking distiller.

Ate ground bison / bacon / baked beans.

Played with the fucking dogs.

Learn to fucking swim, wannabe bitches.

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Re: Week 2, CNS Recovery

Post by Blaidd Drwg » Sat Mar 31, 2012 3:15 am

BobW wrote:Cranked Tool "Aenima" on the big stereo.

Drank Woodford Reserve Bourbon - she's a great fucking distiller.

Ate ground bison / bacon / baked beans.

Played with the fucking dogs.

Learn to fucking swim, wannabe bitches.

That Woodford has bumped my old fave Blantosn though the are not much alike.
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Re: Old & In The Way

Post by clutch » Sat Mar 31, 2012 1:58 pm

I still have a fond spot in my soul for Blanton's. But, it's tough to find except by the bottle, and Woodford is enough less scratch that I've settled in on it as the new standby.

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Week 2, Day 3: Testing

Post by clutch » Sat Mar 31, 2012 6:28 pm

Warmed up with a short walk with the grrlz. Pretty exhausted today, probably just all the stress through the past 10 days wearing me down. Nothing but a thing.


18" DL: 1x10x135,225,315,335/8,315/8

Kept things well within capacity, and once bar speed started to slow a bit on the final 2-3 reps, called it an 8.


Leg Press: 1x15x425,515,605/9

Skipped fatigue work: the left leg was just starting to get the numb, uncontrolled feeling. Probably erred on the side of caution.


Monster Strap DL: 1x10x155,155

Wow. Was not expecting this...these are tough. Not sure what to make of them in terms of learnging the movement properly. Had to adopt a slightly wider stance (between conventional and sumo) if I wanted to get the plates within an inch of the ground. Definitely a lot of load on the back; by the end of the second set, I was starting to really feel the loading around the thoracic lumbar junction.

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Week 3, Day 1 + Rx Notes

Post by clutch » Tue Apr 03, 2012 10:44 pm

Pretty good day today. Got home, quick 20 minute nap, hopped in - felt pretty loose, so just started seated military pressing with the bar. Felt like I was moving very, very well - and the bar speed was pretty high, so I didn't do anything else to warm up.


Seated Military: 1x15x65,85,95,135/10+,120/9

10+ - I made 14 reps, and then had to rack the bar for a bit for the 15th rep - so a slight overshot on RPE. I figured that 130 wouldn't have been much better, so I took my max for a 9RPE as 125, and I think I was pretty much spot on. Pretty massive pump after the drop set, which was strange.


Seated Cable Row: 1x15x125,185,235/9,220/9

Again - mammoth pump. Again, weird.


Pushdowns: 1x10x90,100,125/9,120/9


RX notes: neuro appointment yesterday - not great news, not terrible news. I have an EMG and MRI scheduled over the next week, along with some physical therapy. We started to have the talk about recalibrating expectations and not picking up heavy things; I reminded the doc that given I only have around 5 years of decent mobility left, I figure I'll have to stop then, and I don't really want to stop prior to that.


He agreed to support me, but warned me that my left leg may never improve; that it might take another 3 years for it to improve; that it might get worse. But, he said he understood completely if I wasn't ready to call it quits, and was willing to help me out however I needed.


I also weighed in, at 278 - which made no sense, and was weird, because I know I haven't been eating that much. I've also been feeling off on my water balance; low level headaches like dehydration, and one traveling day a week or so ago, I was quite dehydrated.


All the weirdness - the pumps, the weight, the water balance: I've been picking up whatever protein is cheapest at WalMart. For the past couple batches, I picked up Body Fortress - and picked some up today. Happened to glance at the label as I making a PWO shake, and guess what?


Creatine is an ingredient.


It all makes sense now.

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RX Notes

Post by clutch » Wed Apr 04, 2012 8:15 pm

Met with another neurologist for EMG testing on the left leg today. About 3 hours of testing - way more thorough than I've had in the past.

The best part: the doctor was a hot Asian lady. And she turned me over onto my tummy, pulled my underwear down, and stuck needles in my ass, and told me that I was very muscular.

All downhill from there, as she asked me if I worked out, and I told her I picked up heavy things, that I trained for Strongman. She'd never heard of strongman, and asked me what kind of things we picked up. I told her cars.

She said that she hoped my primary neurologist had told me to stop doing that. I explained that it wouldn't really matter, since we all agree I have very limited time left with any mobility, and that it was my life, and I was easily amused.

I think after that she shoved the needles in a little harder and turned the juice up to 11.

She kept telling me that she was sorry it was so painful. I kept telling her (honestly) that I didn't even feel it. At the conclusion, she said that I had the highest pain tolerance of anybody she's ever worked on.

One thing that bummed me out a bit: she didn't test the adductor group, although I told her that might be problematic.

Anyhow, I think that there's semi good news: there's a loss of nerve function below the knee, but the hamstring looks fine. She thinks it's caused by something going on in the back, around L5-S1. But she doesn't think anything severe is going on. Hopefully the MRI will show me something and combined with this give us a clear picture of what's happening, and we can put together a game plan for treatment.

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Re: Old & In The Way

Post by Blaidd Drwg » Wed Apr 04, 2012 9:31 pm

Doctors are the most myopic, narrow minded and shallow of all the necessary evils professions...ahead of lawyers even. That said, good news is good news.
"He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that." JS Mill

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Re: Old & In The Way

Post by clutch » Wed Apr 04, 2012 9:34 pm

^^Thanks BD.

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Re: Old & In The Way

Post by Holland Oates » Thu Apr 05, 2012 12:25 am

Good luck big man.
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Re: Old & In The Way

Post by clutch » Thu Apr 05, 2012 12:27 am

^^^Dude, I didn't even get her phone number. I'm going to have to stake out the clinic and just follow her home.

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Re: Old & In The Way

Post by Holland Oates » Thu Apr 05, 2012 12:32 am

BobW wrote:^^^Dude, I didn't even get her phone number. I'm going to have to stake out the clinic and just follow her home.
The sweet sounds of love.

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Re: Old & In The Way

Post by clutch » Thu Apr 05, 2012 9:13 am

Thanks EZ.

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Week 3, Day 2: testing

Post by clutch » Thu Apr 05, 2012 10:15 pm

Well, whatever my kabuki girl did during the emg test yesterday was bad news today; woke up, and the left calf is locked into one big knot - think charlie horse - that won't release. The pain continues up through the hammie a bit, hits the adductor group pretty well, and gives the hip a run for the money.


Pre-warmup nutrition: 1 Monster, 2 Vicodin, and 800mg Ibuprofen.


Warmed up with some dynamic stretching. Walking lunges actually felt pretty darned good; walking hammie stretch was OK.


SSB Squat: 1x12x75,125,165,275/9; 1x4x255/10

Cut the fatigue set when my hips started to drift a lot - trying to compensate for the left leg weakness. Just putting too much strain on the right hip.


Trap Bar DL: 1x10x135,225,225

Again, felt the hips drifting and twisting, and the left leg was not doing its share.


Single Leg Leg Press: 1x19x135,225,315/9(L),8(R)

A cornucopia of pain when I finished the top set - yet it was a 9 on the left leg, 8 on the right. Pretty hard to walk afterwards, so I skipped the fatigue work.


Band Leg Curls: 4 or 5 sets of 15 reps

Not quite sure how to track these; basically used a mini band, increased tension on each set until the top set, when I could barely finish. Then did another set with the same tension for fatigue work.


All told, not a terrible session. At least I feel like I got something done.

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Week 3, Day 3: Testing and some PT notes

Post by clutch » Sat Apr 07, 2012 9:03 pm

Easy session today - which was timely, given that Thursday was pretty tough.


Got out for a nice 2 mile hike with the family first thing this morning. Took an easy pace, just trying to focus on proper leg motion. Probably never broke 115 heart rate.


Gym time - warmed up with light pulldowns, and then hopped in:


Pulldowns:1x30x90,1x20x115,1x10x160,185,215/9,205/9

No rest between sets on the way up, until 185. Then, did a few band assisted pull ups. Had to use the green band for my fat ass.


db Bench: 1x19x40,55,70/9,68/9

Yowza. Fatigue creeps up on these; reps through 15 are nice and quick, then I hit the wall.


db Preacher Curls: 1x10x25,30,35/9,33/9

At this stage, forearms are so pumped that I can't hold onto anything.


Quick, easy session, but I suspect I'll be sore enough.


Notes from PT: PT is convinced that hamstring strength is OK, and that the problem is with calf, adductor, quads, and hip flexor. Feels that we need to emphasize core work, and stay on the high rep path with everything else.


Suggestions:


-watch depth on leg press, don't worry about getting huge ROM

-step ups: lean into the step up, don't let any back extension occur

-high rep rack pulls, side pulls: focus on squeezing glutes, watch back extension

-hyperextensions: don't come above parallel

-reverse hyper: don't arch, avoid any spinal extension

-band leg extensions

-band step ups: tie band across rack, and step into the band


Suggested we develop a core routine over the next couple weeks, and plan on doing that 2-3 times per week. I meet with him again next Friday to review. None of the equipment they have is suitable for me, so he's going to come over to the house and train with me one evening so that he can watch me.


Insurance company is refusing the MRI, on the grounds that I haven't done physical therapy. So the plan is to do 4 weeks of PT, he's going to fail me and indicate the problem has worsened, which will guarantee insurance coverage on the MRI. It's good that the PT is a sometime lifting partner and friend.


He also suggests that I get cortisone injections after we see the MRI, and try to get this nerve tamed down. He said I'm the first person in history to display no pain during an EMG; he said it's one of the most painful procedures there is.


Huh.

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Re: Old & In The Way

Post by powerlifter54 » Sat Apr 07, 2012 10:27 pm

Try some barefoot Bulgarian squats on the left side. Be careful of falling. Have you done goblet squats? Again wamrup barefoot. They seem to be a great reliever of discomfort on bad days. Really more goblet crouches. Find a comfortable stance and work your way around the bottom of the squat until happier. Then do 5-10 squats with no lockout. i never go above 53lbs.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hL3CVpu8zN8

This guy, despite being a @fitter, is the real deal. His distraction approach with bands is pure voodoo magic.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_713h6iug30

about 2:45
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