Monday, July 30, 2012

Special Post - Big Congrats to Mrs. Wife!

On Saturday, Mrs. Wife (of fame) ran two miles for the first time in her life.  Oh yeah, and she just started running a month ago and ran her first file mile only 3 weeks ago.  At this pace, she'll be running marathons in like a year and a half.  KEEP IT UP, LADY!  I love you!

July 30th, 2012 - Feeling awesome.

I think I'm finally completely through my transition from feeling awful to feeling great.

Mrs. Wife and I tried a new recipe last night: Filipino sisig!  ( Chopped pork belly, shank, and liver grilled till crispy, sautéed with onions, garlic, ginger, and chilis, then drenched in lemon juice.  Holy crap it was awesome.  Unfortunately, most of the meat cooked away in the preparation process so it wasn't very filling, but it was VERY tasty.  At the very least, it allowed the wife and me to eat some organ meats without getting totally grossed out.  I'll be doing the whole recipe again later this week with a bit more shank, a bit less belly, some soy sauce and maybe more lemon.  If anyone knows where to find calamansi, let me know.

This morning's workout felt REALLY good.  I was able to get 3x5 ring dips for the first time.   Ring pushups didn't feel (too) awkward.  And I've confirmed that doing pullups in between my leg sets is really helping me get my reps up; I'm coming for you, 3x10.  I was able to do a full set of 8 pistols without using any assistance from my rings.  I had to tap the ground with my off-foot occasionally to maintain balance or get out of the bottom, but progress is progress!  Getting stronger is awesome.

Gotta admit... even with all these good feelings, I'm a bit down.  No new motions today with no plans to add new motions.  I feel like I'm hitting a plateau with my basic moves.  I could start adding weight via weight vest, but those things are effing expensive.  I may start working on front/back/elbow levers, L-sits, handstands, and planches exclusively.  Still debating this.  All of those motions are on my goal list, but they seem so damn unattainable right now.  And I don't understand the programming as much when it comes to static holds.  I guess it's back to reading the Bodyweight Bible aka Overcoming Gravity.

I worked out today:
3x8 Hanging Frog Raise (Actually did toes-to-bar for the first few reps of each set.)
3x60s Plank (This is getting too easy.  It's time to start cranking up the time.)
3x8 Ring Row (Rings@42", Feet@34")
3x8 Ring Pushups (Rings@42", Feet@34")
3x8 BW Curls (Rings@42", Legs bent)
3x5 Ring Dips
3x8 Pistols (Sets 1&3: 4 freestanding. Set 2: 8 freestanding!)
3x8 Glute Ham Raises (Sets 1&2: Modified, Set 3: Eccentrics only)

Saturday, July 28, 2012

July 28th, 2012 - Actually Back in the Saddle

My last workout was craptastic so I decided to take my time and really focus on this one.

Since I had the time available (unlike my normal weekday workouts), I started with 20 minutes of dynamic stretching and mobility work based off Molding Mobility (  I also decided to stop worrying about strict 1 minute rests between sets.  Adding in the mobility work and slowing down allowed me to really focus on the movements I was doing.  And because of that, I was able to get my pull-ups and freestanding pistols back into respectable numbers.  And I got 6 half-HeSPUs for the first time ever!  Woot!  Unfortunately, all this warming up and waiting around stretched my workout to 1hr 40m.  Much too long for a normal weekday workout.

I worked out today:
20m Stretching/Mobility
3x8 Hanging Bent Leg Raises
3x60s RKC Plank
7,8,6 Pull-ups 
6,5,5 Half Headstand Pushups
3x8 Ring Rows (Feet @ 34", rings @ 42")
3x8 Ring Pushups (Feet @ 34", rings @ 42")
3x8 Pistols (1st Set: 4 freestanding, 2nd Set: 2 freestanding, 3rd set: performed on stool with very light bottom assist only)
3x8 Modified GHRs

Thursday, July 26, 2012

July 26th, 2012 - Back in the Saddle

Worked out this morning for the first time in 9 days.  It was awful.

First: woke up with a mild headache and nearly said "eff it" to the whole thing.  But then I heard Ronnie Coleman in my head saying "everybody wanna be a bodybuilder, but don't nobody wanna lift this heavy ass weight."  For some reason that stupid-ass quote motivates me every single time I hear it.

After my first plank, my headache bloomed into a full-blown brain splitter.  After the second plank, I had to bend over with my eyes shut to handle the pain.  But from there on out, everything was fine.

Except it wasn't fine because I've somehow become about half as strong as I used to be.  I blame it on the remnants of the keto flu.  Only 4 pull-ups per set?  A max of 4 ring dips?  Zero freestanding pistols?  WEAK.

Get it together, Hildreth.

I worked out today:
2x8 Hanging Bent Leg Raises from Rings
2x60s RKC Planks
3x8 Bodyweight Curls
1x3,2x4,1x3 Ring Dips
2x6 Regular Dips
7x4 Pull-ups
3x8 Pistols (ring supported)
3x8 Modified GHRs

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

July 25th, 2012 - Back from Vacation

I've been back from vacation for a few days now and have not yet worked out.  You see, for the last 4 days, I have felt completely and utterly awful.  I was going through what I believe to be the keto/induction flu.  I've dealt with chills, hot flashes, nausea, throbbing headaches, blinding headaches, muscle weakness, stiff joints, and the worst brain fog ever.  Pie, bread, donuts, and cheese are not worth the discomfort I have endured. 

But today, I feel great!  No soreness.  No headache.  I was able to press up my chickens' run without a problem.  I was able to sumo deadlift the chickens' coop without a problem either, despite all of the chickens still being inside.  (Usually this is a test of my strength.)

I'm going to get back at it tomorrow.   No sleeping in for this moi.  I've got about 6 weeks before my self imposed goal of gaining ten pounds and I'm still about eight pounds away from my goal.  I really need to start busting ass.  No more slackin', mister!

Oh, and I worked out once more in VT (July 17th) but forgot to record it:

3x8 Hanging Bent Leg Raise (from ring support, not hanging)
3x60s Plank
3x8 Body Weight Ring Row (rings@27", feet@16")
3x8 Ring Pushups (rings@27", feet@16"  REALLY digging these.)
3x8 Bodyweight Curls
2x4,1x3.5 Ring Dips (These are SO hard, but so rewarding.)
3x8 Single Leg Squats (About half freestanding.)

I can't wait to start doing GHRs again.  I can't wait to do pull-ups on an actual bar, rather than a bastardized ring version.  I can't wait to listen to metal very loudly while working out.

It's going to be wonderful and painful.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

July 15th, 2012 - Vacation Day 5

It doesn't feel like we've been here in Vermont for 5 days, but I guess we have.  And we're at the halfway point now.  Fatty foods continue to enter my body.  I continue to not care.

I've been doing some YA dystopian fiction reading.  It's my favorite type of light reading.  It's one of the few literary styles my wife and me agree upon.

I woke up sort of late today and thought about skipping my workout.  But as soon as the L-Leucine hit my tongue, I knew what needed to be done.

I worked out today:
3x8 Hanging Bent Leg Raise (from ring support, not hanging)
3x60s Plank
1x7.5,1x7,1x6.5 Wide Grip Ring Pullups
1x5.5,1x4.5,1x4 Half Handstand Pushups
3x8 Body Weight Ring Row (rings@27", feet@16")
3x8 Ring Pushups (rings@27", feet@16".  This was AWESOME.) 
2x8 Single Leg Squats (first 3 of each set freestanding.)

Friday, July 13, 2012

July 13th, 2012 - Vacation Day 3

Mrs. Wife and I arrived in Vermont Wednesday evening and were greeted with smiles, hugs, and a fabulous paleo dinner.  Mrs. Wife's aunt and cousins were ending their vacation as we began ours.  They decided to be awesome and cook us dinner.  And awesome it was.

Our vacation spot is a cabin on one of the Champlain Islands.  Quiet and solitude and relaxation are the words that best describe it here.  There's not a lot to do if you don't want to do much.  If you'd like to visit things and see places and do stuff, there's plenty of that too, but we tend to just sit and read and eat delicious food.

This year's food situation has been a little different because Mrs. Wife is losing weight.  In years past we would eat... well... everything.  Lots of beers.  Sausage gravy + biscuits.  McDonald's for breakfast  when starting the trip to Vermont.  McDonald's for breakfast when starting the trip home.  Lots of chips and dips and ice creams and pies and donuts.

This year, we brought most of our own food.  Not only has this saved us a ton of money, but it's also saved the calories we've eaten.  Sure, we've broken down and purchased a 6 pack of beer, but it's Magic Hat's Summer seasonal!  And we bought some donuts, but only half as many as normal.  And every dinner has been paleo-friendly.  Except for those sandwiches we bought today.  Damn.

Anyway, since I'm trying to gain weight, I've completely given up on tracking anything while I'm here.   I assume I'll be hitting my calorie goals pretty easily since my wife has been going over her golas pretty consistently, and I need 5-700 more daily calories than she does.  I'm still inputting my workouts into Fitocracy, but MyFitnessPal has not seen me in days.

I worked out today:
3x8 Hanging Knee Raises (done from rings support position instead of hanging from bar)
3x60s Plank (Not RKC like normal because I didn't have good padding for my elbows)
3x8 Bodyweight Curls (Rings@48")
3x5 Ring Dips (Holy crap these are hard!)
3x6 Ring Pullups (Haven't worked pullups in a while... Harder than I remember!)
3x5 Half Handstand Pushups (Last rep of sets 2&3 were negatives)
3x8 (each side) Single Leg Squats (first 4 of each set were freestanding!)
10 minutes casual kayaking

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

July 10th, 2012

I don't know what has caused this, but I am completely worn out from this morning's workout.  It wasn't much different from the normal C routine other than the addition of bodyweight curls (see July 8th for info) and VERY slow negative close-grip chin-ups.  I seriously feel like the walking dead.

I'm not sure how I'll be able to stay awake tonight to finish packing for our drive to Vermont tomorrow.  And I'm extra unsure about how I'll be able to wake up at 4am in order to be on the road by 5am.  Working out today was probably a dumb idea.  It's okay, though, coffee will get me through the day.

I worked out today:
3x8 Hanging Bent Leg Raises (Semi-frog Raises, but I still don't have the flexibility/strength required to full extend my legs.)
3x60s RKC Plank (These are getting easier!)
3x8 Bodyweight Curls (rings@48", legs bent, going to try legs extended on Thursday.)
3x8 Dips w/8lb Weight
3x4 Close-Grip Chinups (my arms were WASTED after the BW curls and I just couldn't get myself above the bar.)
1x5.5,2x4 Half Wall Handstand Pushups (Still lacking a lot of strength here.)
3x8 Single Leg Squats (1 finger/1 ring assist. Should have done these freestanding, but I'm saving that insanity for Vermont.)
3x8 Modified Glute Ham Raise (Really worked on getting my lean tight.  My ass is sore.)
3x30s Negative Close-Grip Chinups

On a related note: I am working on building a bodyweight-based strength routine that anyone can do at home with a pull-up bar and rings.  If you're interested in being one of my beta testers, contact me:   jakehildreth at gmail dot com.  (Remove the spaces and replace the "at" with "@" and the "dot" with ".")

Sunday, July 8, 2012

July 8th, 2012

I intended to workout on the morning of July 5th, but due to an incredibly fun July 4th, I ended up staying in bed until noon.  All motivation was shot at that point, so I bummed around and generally felt crappy.  That crappy feeling continued through Friday.

But on Saturday morning, I woke up bright and early with the intention of doing STUFF around the house in preparation for our upcoming vacation.  Lawn needed mowed, chicken coop needed some repairs, recycling needed to be transported to the recycling center.  Ya know, standard homeowner crap.

Since I was up early (read: before the sun turned our land into an unbearably humid swamp), I decided to try running again.  Ya see, Mrs. Wife has taken up running recently and it's making me feel kind of lazy despite working out on my rings and bar for 60 minutes 3x/week!

I decided to give the "barefoot" running thing a chance.  I did a Couch to 5K-style walk/run the trail on our woods in just my sandals.  I cut down the running to only 4 one-minute intervals, rather than the 8 intervals that C25K calls for in its first week because I've heard barefooting will kill your calves the first  few times.

I got in a mile over 20 minutes.  And it felt awesome.  No pain in the calves at all.  A little bit the next day, but all in all, a good experience.  I'm going to get myself some better shoes to run in since the sandals felt a bit unstable.  Probably some water shoes.

I worked out yesterday:
20 minute "barefoot" walk/run.

I woke up today at 6:45 raring to go.  I knew I had to head into work for a while, but I wanted to get a quick workout in.  While not rushing, I certainly didn't dawdle like I tend to do during weekend workouts.  I was able to actually get in my entire workout!

I was also able to try out a new exercise: the bodyweight curl.  It replaced the inverted pull-up as my "arms at the sides" pulling exercise.  See an example here: HOLY CRAP it's hard, but my biceps felt huge all day.  Twelve inches of power, baby.

I worked out today:
3x8 Hanging Bent Leg Raises
3x60s RKC Planks
3x8 Ring Rows (rings@29", feet@18")
3x8 Ring Push-ups (rings@29")
3x8 Bodyweight Curls (rings@48", knees bent)
1x8 Weighted Dips (8lb)
1x7,1x8 Unweighted Dips (forgot about the weight... whoops)
3x8 Single Leg Squats (1 ring/1 finger assist)
3x8 Modified Glute Ham Raise
3x4 Close-Grip Chin-ups
2x3 Wide-Grip Pull-ups

Some notes: I was able to do a freestanding Pistol Squat later in the day on my right leg.  My right leg has been the weaker leg all this time, so I think it's time for me to stop using rings for assistance.  Also, my ass hurts.  GHRs need to be modified to be harder somehow.  I'm getting too used to the motion.  Any ideas?

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

July 3rd, 2012

My wife recently started working out and calorie counting in order to lose some weight so we can start pushing out little bearded babies. I, on the other hand, am trying to gain weight. This creates an interesting home/mealtime dynamic, so I decided it's time to begin documenting it.

I ate some food today:
5 pieces of bacon
3 eggs
sausage/egg scramble (about 1/4 sausage, 1.5 eggs)
1.5 cups of grapes
16 almonds
1 scoop protein powder
1 pork chop w/roasted grapes and onions
1 salad w/red wine vinaigrette
1 apple
2 small carrots
6 cherry tomatoes
1/2 lb of thai coconut lime shrimp
1/2 lb of sweet potato & zucchini hash

I worked out today:
3x8 Hanging Bent Leg Raises
3x60s RKC Planks
2x6,1x5.5,2x4 Close Grip Chinups
2x5,1x4 Half Wall Headstand Pushups
3x8 Ring Rows (rings@32",feet@18")
3x8 Ring Pushups (rings@32")
3x8 (each side) Single Leg Squats (using 1 finger on 1 ring for balance/bottom assist)
3x8 Modified Glute Ham Raise

This is my A routine. I'm focusing on "arms above the head" push/pull, horizontal push/pull, and legs.

B routine focuses on "arms at sides" push/pull, horizontal push/pull, and legs.

C routine focuses on "arms as sides" push/pull and "arms above the head" push/pull.  And legs.  Never forget the legs.

If I'm feeling saucy (read: not sore), I do a skills-based routine on the weekend that includes front lever, back lever, elbow lever, and L-sit work.  I'd like to start working on freestanding handstands too, but I'm scared!