becoming infinite

always learning. always growing. always lifting heavy things.


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9 weeks out – finding the drive.

today was the first day of a new, 4-week training block. i really enjoyed the last one, and i feel like my back and shoulders gained some strength and size. since it was a four day split i also enjoyed a little more flexibility with my three off days – i rock-climbed a few times, did some metcons, and once or twice just grabbed a platform after work and did some hang cleans to work on power and speed (my elbows, and really everything, are the opposite of speedy).

this past week didn’t go quite according to program. the girl i’m very much in love with and i called it quits; i’ve been sad as hell about it. it was the strangest, most loving break-up i’ve ever experienced, but i’m still so sad that it’s hard to move sometimes. and on monday i had to have a little surprise oral surgery, which led to more melting down because (a) i hate the dentist ANYWAY, (b) i wanted my mom, and (c) i now have a big-ass hole where my molar used to be.

so with all of that on my mind, i had a hard time hitting it in the gym with my normal energy. plus, my training partner and i haven’t been able to coordinate schedules all week so we both flew solo monday and wednesday.

but nothing is ever perfect. training schedules can’t be followed 100%, all the time. meal plans can’t be followed 100%, all of the time. i got in there and put in work, even on the day when i was still bleeding from aforementioned big-ass hole in my mouth or the day where i laid in pigeon bawling while i was doing my post-lift mobility.

but today i hit my projected squat opener for two triples. so there’s that.

 


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10 weeks out and sending a 9

up and down week, training-wise. if i could compete in accessory work i would own so many records. sadly, i compete in three lifts, and one of them (my squat, what else?) is currently a mess.

but today we hit projected second attempts on squat for three singles, and 240# came up like buttah. we widened my stance pretty considerably and it helped me feel like i could really sit down into the hole, rather than needing to hinge back. so that was exciting, and a pretty big relief too.

we hit second attempts on bench for 3×1 as well, but we were in a hurry because my coach had a 4pm client so there was maybe a minute rest between each. my first 135# came up slow but fine, second didn’t even budge off my chest, and third was a grind. right now it looks like i’ll open at 57.5kg/126# and take either 60kg/132# or 62.5kg/137# for my second. i think when i’m well-rested i should be able to bury 62.5, but we’ll see how the next few weeks pan out!

and then the girl and i went for a little friday night indoor climbing fun. i warmed up on a 6 and a 7, and then jumped to an easy 9. and while it was definitely a light 9, i sent it and was super stoked! i’ve (a) never sent a 9 before, and (b) not climbed since…november? then i went and climbed two other routes – an 8 and a 9 – and now my forearms are falling off. but we had so much fun. a good friend of ours works at the wall and caught us all night. after having spent the last four weeks with our relationship in so much flux and stress, it just felt incredible to hang out and be silly and have fun.

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this route was really fun to climb. i’m also really excited that my calf does this, because it’s kind of muscle-y and neat.

Week 4 of training continues tomorrow with tons of back, shoulder, and chest work. i have to get cranking on my El Paso presentation (the paper from which also just got accepted to a conference in LA…more on that later!) and some exam things for students.

here’s to a great weekend!


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meet prep: 11 weeks out.

we’re nearing the end of our first block of training. yesterday marked the beginning of Week 3; after Week 4 we’ll switch to a new block. since the reemergence of my appetite i’ve been feeling more comfortable with bigger weights (imagine that!) and not as frustrated.

monday we had 12×1 of our final bench warm-up. i hit 120# for all of my singles and they were smoke city. ideally i would like to open at 60kg (132#) on meet day, but i’m okay with opening at 57.5kg (126#) as well. we’re still far enough out that i can continue to plan and strategize!

but then we had 3×10 pause squats. my training partner is a former collegiate soccer player who then started CrossFit after graduation. she owns me in anything high-rep. i, on the other hand, am a tubby powerlifter who considers sets of five cardio conditioning.

we both did 135# for all of our working sets and i was straight f*cked up for three days. i literally got on my yoga mat at 5am on tuesday and thought to myself, “i can’t bend my knees so maybe i can just…freefall down to the floor…”

then yesterday we got to do something i’ve been waiting for for quite some time: we got to pull heavy! i worked up to my approximate opener weight (275# in the photo; will open at either 125kg/276# or 127.5kg/281#) for three speedy singles, then did 225# 3×3 with pauses at the knee. it was great to pull heavy again, and to be back pulling conventional too. i had good bar speed – especially for me, the world’s slowest lifter – and just need to focus on cranking my shoulders down.

275 pull january 2015

and then for fun we did a widowmaker on bench – video here! 75% of final competition warm-up, which had me right at 95#. the final rep was so long i wasn’t sure i would come out of it. and inb4 CHEATER ARCH. don’t hate on lumbar flexibility. brandon lilly even complimented it. so there.

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today we did accessory work, and i teach yoga for 2.5 hours tomorrow for some good ole active recovery. things feel good; a little beat up, but strong. excited to smoke the end of this training block and get going on the next one!


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revival.

i had been meaning to make a “how i like 5/3/1 so far” post…and then my first cycle ended (how time flies!) so now that seems silly.

BUT i’m running a second cycle, and it started today! i pulled 225# for 8 reps and it was awesome. and i may have peed a little on the last rep.

i also bought these awesome and obnoxious leggings and wore them to train today.

Photo 104they’re a combination of paint splatter and camo haha. also, i had just finished eating a pizza prior to taking this photo. (yes, a pizza. an entire one. it was delicious.)

all in all i liked my first cycle of 5/3/1 well enough. pulling for reps sucks though, my hands have never been so destroyed between that and all of the pull-ups and rows. i finally bought some harbinger straps just to save me on high-volume pulls. the accessory option i chose is also really high volume, which sucks in practice (5×15…really?!) but i’ve put noticeable size on my shoulders and back, so it’s doing what it’s supposed to be doing!

i also hit an awesome milestone last friday! i told my coach i wanted a 300# pull for christmas, so “for fun” after we did a shit-ton of box squats we decided to do some rack pulls.

and i pulled 3 plates (315#) for three triples. but even more awesome…the bar bent!! i have always secretly wanted to be badass enough to have the bar bend on one of my deadlifts. now for that 300# pull from the floor!

besides straps, i also decided it was time to purchase some chalk, since my gym decided to finally allow it. however…

Photo 105the description said “one pound of chalk.” i figured, one pound, not a lot at all! i was wrong. i am now the proud owner of enough chalk to last well into my 40s. thank goodness it came packaged in 2-oz blocks.

in other news…we have two more weeks of classes, then finals, then DONE. i submitted five conference proposals today (12/1 is a common deadline) – yale, cinci conservatory, texas, MTSE in tampa (i think?), and MTMA (which this year is in virginia…which i don’t really consider to be the mid-atlantic…). oh and indiana, too. there’s another round of deadlines around the 15th, and i’ll have a couple more papers done by then and might consider prepping abstracts for those instead.

my holiday travel is booked. i’m already having a hard time thinking about christmas. last year was my first one without mom; this year my grandma’s gone as well. and they both (my mom especially) really loved the holidays, so it makes it extra hard.

i hope you all had a wonderful thanksgiving!!


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apologies and odds & ends.

i’ve been a total turd and haven’t replied to posts, have hardly read posts, and generally have been playing ostrich the past few days.

my grandmother isn’t well and it breaks my heart. my flight to FL leaves tonight at eight, and i’m praying that everything goes okay so that i can just get down there and spend the next five days with her. next to my mom, she’s the most important woman in my life; after my mom died, she became that much more important to me. more on all of this later…

i DLed with my coach (that sounds weird – i have a coach?!) on monday. a lot of form diagnostics. we narrowed my stance, and talked about how my upper back is my weak link (which i kind of suspected since i have trouble locking out my heavy singles). pulled up to 215# – ten pounds shy of my max, but it came up well and locked out cleanly, if a little slow – and then did some deficit triples and a widowmaker (20-rep set) at 95#, touch-and-go style. added in some face pulls for upper back work, and glute-ham raises because my hamstrings are lamesauce.

also did DL doubles at 185# after my 215#, and since i was wearing shorts i had to chalk up my thighs because the bar was sticking to my sweat. TMI?

did rack pulls up to singles at 205# today and they felt really good. also got to do DB snatches – i love DB snatches!

i haven’t even pulled my suitcase out of the closet yet. my ride is coming in 3.5 hours.

i have also come to the conclusion that gatorade G2 tastes way better than powerade zero. in case you were curious.

three posts in draft-form right now. i swear i’ll get there, guys.

 

 


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happy friday! i’ll leave you with this:

i PRed my deadlift today.

by 20 pounds.

i pulled a 225# deadlift. it was ugly and it was my third, laborious attempt (i get the bar off the floor and to the hang fine – my lockout is crap. need to work on upper back strength). but holy shit guys – 225 freaking pounds.

i also leg pressed (300+ for 3 sets of 10!) and did leg extensions and hamstring curls, and went for a run.

i have proceeded to eat everything since! a footlong chicken sub, a box of annie’s mac and cheese, a fruttare strawberry and milk bar, and a beer.

i love this day.


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i came. i napped. i conquered.

this is going to be a mixed-bag post, as all of my more lucid and thought-out ones are incomplete and in my drafts.

it’s thursday, which is close enough to friday to begin to rejoice in the weekend. my week in a nutshell consisted of teaching seven group fitness classes – four of them mine, three as subs for other instructors. two of the classes i subbed were 630am spin classes…which means that i taught a 630am spin class four days in a row – my regular MW classes, and the TTh classes i subbed. 0/10 do not recommend (although i appreciate the extra money).

i had two awesome lifts – tuesday and yesterday. tuesday i did legs, which was atrociously hard but awesome. my surgical quad is still sore. and yesterday i did shoulders and back, which is my favorite day of my split. besides maybe legs. hmm. but anyhoo, 30# dumbbell snatches. YES.

couple those last 2 paragraphs together and you get an exhausted, beat up jenn by the time i was done teaching this morning. i changed, benched, started my accessory work…and just gave up. i considered still going for my run, but in the end i shot the shit with the guys at front desk for a while, then packed my stuff and came home. i ate a tuna sandwich and some ice cream, started reading a book…and napped like a champ for three hours.

like, the kind of nap where you put your head down, twitch once or twice, and are fast asleep within 90 seconds.

i have since woken up (obviously), showered, and am contentedly browsing the interwebs and getting ready to go back to my book. in other words: i kind of took a rest day! and it was awesome.

this week also brought a very strange and kind of awkward milestone for me. you see, it’s hot as balls in kentucky, and humid as hell. so on tuesday by the time i was done teaching and lifting – around 1030am – and i had a 4-miler to knock out, it was gross outside. which led me to do something i never thought i would have the balls to do: i said to hell with my shirt and ran in a sports bra and shorts. (i told you this was slightly awkward.) but really – i have NEVER been”okay” enough with myself to do that. but at this point – my body works hard, it’s strong, it’s pretty awesome…and it’s balls hot outside and wearing a shirt while running makes me want to cry.

so i ran in a neon orange sports bra and blue shorts and a tow truck driver honked at me while i was stopped at a light. (approval accepted, dude.) and it was a hell of a lot cooler without a shirt.

i may run a 5k on saturday. it’s local and free. i also think that my boric acid has killed a large percentage of my bugs, and thus far has not killed me – double plus. i have legs tomorrow, including deadlifts, which of course makes me the most excited. (this may not bode well if i decide to run that 5k on saturday, but whatever!)

the take-away of this post: i took a quasi-rest day and it was awesome. naps are the best. and so is ice cream. boom.