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Jon, Destroyer of Mice

John, Destroyer of Mice, Rebuilds

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3 hours ago, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

"High Volume" is also an acceptable phrase.

 

I like this. This is good. I will steal adopt this phrasing.

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Wave 1, Week 1, Day 2 - Heavy Pressing, Moderate Assistance, Light Conditioning

First giant set, if you remember, I made a promise:

11 hours ago, Jon, Destroyer of Mice said:

...so I'm going to end up using the same rep and weight progression on my cleans that I do on my press, calling that my conditioning for the giant set (i.e. do 8 pullups, clean 135, strict press 135 8 times, complete 8 cleans at 135, abs, rest/cry). Will report on how it goes later.

 

image.jpeg.253686ad5f616861e03d36e2bd4586f3.jpeg

 

I made it about 3 cleans in before I realized I was not going to be able to keep up with that as conditioning. With that, the main giant set ended up as:

  1. Pullups (8 - 6 - 4 all bodyweight)
  2. Strict Press (8 x 135, 6 x 155, 4 x 175)
  3. Medicine Ball Russian Twists
  4. 100 m Row
  5. Minimal Rest

I was super pleased with hitting all of my pullups. It's been a while since doing pullups for anything more than 5 reps, and I knocked these suckers out strict. I did not beat the rep goal of 4 @ 175, but I still hit it, which is my first PR of the week and program.

 

For assistance, I killed three rounds of

  1. Chinups (3-4-5 as my energy began to return)
  2. "Earthquake" strict press, 8 reps with 25# suspended from each side. I don't have an earthquake bar proper, but I suspended kettlebells off the standard olympic bars we had available.
  3. Kettlebell Z press 5 a side @ 35#
  4. 5 Burpees

So the earthquake press was trippy. The hardest bit was actually the walk out and the lock out on the final few presses. I probably could have added more to these, but still they lit up my shoulders. The kettlebell Z press immediately following that did not help. Also, Buck Furpees.

 

Conditioning consisted of a ladder, 1/2/3/4/5, of the following:

Right side only: Kettlebell clean, hold the last rep -> Kettlebell press, hold the last rep -> Waiters walk 30' and set the bell down

 Immediately followed by the same complex with the left side only. First 2 rungs of the ladder used 53#, final three using 40# to maintain form.

 

Following that, the session ended about 10 minutes earlier than promised in Brian's videos. As such, I did a 10 minute, as many rounds as possible superset of 10 tricep pushdowns and 10 face pulls, finishing 8 sets each.

 

All in all, today went much better. Did hit a PR, even though I didn't break the rep goal, finished assistance and conditioning, and damn if my shoulders aren't lit up. I really enjoyed the earthquake presses and highly recommend those to anyone else that's looking for something to spice up their pressing day.

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Weighed in under 245# for the first time in a long while this morning! I've been on a perma-bulk (read as, I did not track my diet) basically since I started training, and so it's very rare for me to see the weight move down while I'm hitting the gym hard. This is good. This is very good. Here's yesterday's work:

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Wave 1, Week 1, Day 3 - Moderate Deadlift, Light Assistance, Heavy Conditioning/Strongman

First giant set went

  1. Two hand KB swings @32kg x 10 reps
  2. Deadlift (10 x 325#, 8 x 385#, 6+ x 435#)
  3. Ab Wheel x 5 reps
  4. Row 100 meters

I probably could/should have gone heavier on the kettlebell presses. Deadlift was brutal, as the last time I did 8 rep sets was a year ago when I failed Mag/Ort. Conditioning on my brace was awful, but it turned out okay. I think my tricep is compressing my ulnar nerve, and my grip has been a little wonky because of this. Which means I should have strapped in on the last set. I ended up having to use straps on the last rep of deadlift, and I did end up hitting my previous PR of 6 x 435 on that set. I maybe should have pressed it further, but I also wasn't going to count that as a PR because I nailed it without straps the previous try.

 

Assistance got broken into two supersets just for logistics. My first one I stayed on the platform, supersetting sets of 8 BB Rows and Snatch Grip Deadlifts at the same weight (135, 185, 205). The second superset was upstairs, hitting 10 GHRs following by sets of 5 paused front squats. I've never paused any squat under load before, so I stayed light at 135, 155, and 185, each rep with a 2-3 second pause. I am definitely pushing the weight here later.

 

In his videos, Brian suggests that one could replace the conditioning with strongman workouts. So I kinda did both. I ended up doing farmer's carries for speed, 60' with a turn at 30'. I started at 95# a hand and worked my way up to two sets at 205# a hand. All in all, this was really good work, I kept my legs moving hard and fast, my grip never faltered, but damn those turns were hard. I am definitely going to take one of the lighter conditioning days to practice turns specifically, because I am not sure why some went smoothly and others left me walking the karaoke under load.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

All in all, I'm happy with yesterday. Deadlifts could have gone smoother, but the light assistance was a nice reprieve and a good chance to try things I don't normally do. My grip is slowly improving as I stretch and massage my triceps (possibly the weirdest sentence I've written in a while), but I need to get more comfortable being honest with myself and knowing when I need to strap in from the get go. I was extremely please with farmer's carries, as this was the competition weight. While it didn't feel light by any means, there is something incredibly fun about running around with 400#, and damn if it doesn't light up your back for the next day.

 

Also, I was looking through a lot of the programming on Neversate, and while they always have the antagonist movers with press and bench, I noticed they don't always include it for squat or deadlift. And that's with the current program looking much like the one I'm running now. I'll run through this cycle as written, but if I repeat powerbuilder, I might try dropping the antagonist lower body movers for some of the workouts.

 

In other news, my D&D game is finally starting up again tonight, and I'm pumped for it. I haven't prepared nearly enough, but then, I left the party where I have no idea what they're going to do next. So this will likely end up an RP session following the loss of one of their comrades. We shall see how this goes. I'm also hoping to slide the bench/row workout in right before this, but we'll see if that's feasible.

 

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1 hour ago, Jon, Destroyer of Mice said:

My grip is slowly improving as I stretch and massage my triceps (possibly the weirdest sentence I've written in a while)

 

This wasn't actually weird until you said it was weird. Now I'm imagining a shiny bodybuilder in a leopard-fur sarong (don't ask me why) lovingly massaging his favourite muscles.

 

Weird. 

Also, I don't know what ab wheels are, but I'm thinking of something like this:

 catherine_wheel_window_large.jpg

 

So, did your programming gradually get more complex as you read more and got more advanced, or did a trainer design it for you?

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1 hour ago, JustCallMeAmber said:

Ok, we're almost through week one and nobody else has asked, so.. why the H? (i.e do you go by Jon or John?)

 

(Yes, I am extremely.. ah, detail-oriented? about things.. :D)

 

Fair, but how are you more curious about an inconsistent letter H, than about the title of Mice Destroyer? Why mice? Mice are tiny. It makes me think of a certain Monty Python skit with mice in a xylophone that should not have been funny at all but was. 

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2 minutes ago, Harriet said:

 

Fair, but how are you more curious about an inconsistent letter H, than about the title of Mice Destroyer? Why mice? Mice are tiny. It makes me think of a certain Monty Python skit with mice in a xylophone that should not have been funny at all but was. 

I think he has to kill lab mice for medical research?

 

Or it's a nod to early levels of RPG games where you kill mice to level up so you don't die when you fight a goblin?

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I just assumed it means Jon is actually an owl or a cat, or possibly a snake, rather than the human we all seem to assume he is.

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21 minutes ago, scalyfreak said:

I just assumed it means Jon is actually an owl or a cat, or possibly a snake, rather than the human we all seem to assume he is.


I want to see an owl with a 435lb deadlift. I mean, do they used mixed grip? 

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3 hours ago, Harriet said:

 

This wasn't actually weird until you said it was weird. Now I'm imagining a shiny bodybuilder in a leopard-fur sarong (don't ask me why) lovingly massaging his favourite muscles.

 

Weird. 

 

You're joking, but it's not terribly far off...

 

3 hours ago, Harriet said:

Also, I don't know what ab wheels are, but I'm thinking of something like this:

 catherine_wheel_window_large.jpg

 

Might as well be. Those things hurt like the Dickens for a while once you start. Ab wheels are the infomercial product that isn't useless. Basically, you put a wheel in your hands and roll out from your knees to almost laying down, and pull yourself back up. Brutal.

 

3 hours ago, Harriet said:

So, did your programming gradually get more complex as you read more and got more advanced, or did a trainer design it for you?

 

Kinda as I go, I've added things. This is actually a program available from Brian Alsruhe in YouTube. I can link it here after work.

 

1 hour ago, JustCallMeAmber said:

Ok, we're almost through week one and nobody else has asked, so.. why the H? (i.e do you go by Jon or John?)

 

(Yes, I am extremely.. ah, detail-oriented? about things.. :D)

 

Absolute typo on my part. It's Jon, and I was just completely out of it.

 

24 minutes ago, Harriet said:

Fair, but how are you more curious about an inconsistent letter H, than about the title of Mice Destroyer? Why mice? Mice are tiny. It makes me think of a certain Monty Python skit with mice in a xylophone that should not have been funny at all but was. 

 

21 minutes ago, Mike Wazowski said:

I think he has to kill lab mice for medical research?

 

Bingo, it's this. I do cancer research, but I've been lucky enough to not destroy any mice lately. It is my least favorite bit.

 

21 minutes ago, Mike Wazowski said:

Or it's a nod to early levels of RPG games where you kill mice to level up so you don't die when you fight a goblin?

 

But God how I wish it was this.

 

18 minutes ago, scalyfreak said:

I just assumed it means Jon is actually an owl or a cat, or possibly a snake, rather than the human we all seem to assume he is.

 

Interesting theory. Haven't puzzled over this before. I'll get back to you

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28 minutes ago, Harriet said:


Snek

 

IMG_5581.JPG.3c387528d77b2f2b06137a52ec623600.JPG

 

Beautiful. I love that the snake is wearing a left shoe, and it makes me wonder if there's one deadlifting in a right-handed Chuck.

 

Wave 1, Week (Weak) 1, Day 4 - Moderate Bench, Light Assistance, Heavy Conditioning

First giant set went BB Rows (a little more upright than usual), Bench, Russian Twists, and a lap around the Gym Track (1/8th a mile maybe? Will double check later). Bench and Row went 10 x 175#, 8 x 205#, and 6 x 235# for both of them. Both of those movers are PRs and hit the rep goals. Almost locked out a 7th rep on bench, but no dice today.

 

Assistance giant set went DB incline bench for 8 reps, DB 1 arm rows for 8 reps a side, BW dips, and a single pullups (gah that was a poor showing). I ended up starting with the 65 dumbbells and finished with the 60s, went 4-5-5 on dips and a single pullups each time. I was feeling the burn a little, no lie.

 

Which gets me to conditioning. Holy damn, that was a poor choice: 100 reps of bench at 135# in as few sets as possible. I managed it in 17 sets, but ended up failing 3 reps and at one point "pinned" under 135#. Being pinned under that was embarrassing as hell given I can overhead that weight for 8, but I'll take the small victory that I basically did a sit-up with it to rerack. This took just over 30 minutes, but it never burned, and it still hasn't. It just felt like there was nothing in my arms. It was a really weird feeling, not going to lie. Calling it a successful day though, having hit 2 rep PRs (and an actual PR, never rowed 235 before) and gone through brutal volume. Total daily tonnage was 34,390#.

 

Week 1 recap incoming

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11 hours ago, Jon, Destroyer of Mice said:

Total daily tonnage was 34,390#.

 

That is so much weight I don't even know what to wow most about. I think I'm going to go with 135lb bench x 100 rep. Wow.
 

Yes, it's annoying getting pinned under one's "light" weights after successfully doing the "heavy" ones. Lads who bench as much as I deadlift come over to assist (lifting the bar with one finger) and I'm thinking "don't judge me, I'm just sleepy". 

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On 1/12/2019 at 12:02 PM, Harriet said:

That is so much weight I don't even know what to wow most about. I think I'm going to go with 135lb bench x 100 rep. Wow.

 

Thanks! It was a lot of weight, and honestly, I think I did too much with it. My triceps have recovered, but I don't think my anterior delts have yet and it's press day. So I kind of expect all of that to come back and bite me in the ass.

On 1/12/2019 at 12:02 PM, Harriet said:

Yes, it's annoying getting pinned under one's "light" weights after successfully doing the "heavy" ones.

 

Everyone has a different heavy, and that heavy, and there's nothing wrong with asking for help. The bigger thing that's been bothering me with getting pinned by that weight was that I let my pride get in the way of my safety. I knew I was tired, and I knew my arms didn't have a ton left in them, and I should have asked for a spot instead of doing that sit up.

On 1/12/2019 at 12:02 PM, Harriet said:

Lads who bench as much as I deadlift come over to assist (lifting the bar with one finger) and I'm thinking "don't judge me, I'm just sleepy". 

 

If they're lifting it with one finger, they're being assholes and not really offering a helpful spot.

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Wave 1/Week 2/Day 1 - Heavy Squats, Medium Assistance, Light Conditioning (oh boy oh boy oh boy oh boy....)

First Giant Set:

  1. Kettlebell Swing x 5 (antagonist)
  2. Squat (8 x 305, 6 x 355, 4+ x 405) Hit all rep goals
  3. Ab Wheel Roll Out x 5
  4. Kettlebell Swings x 5 (conditioning-ish)

OMG I've missed squatting heavy like this. I did not get enough reps at or over 400 running Sheiko, in my opinion. I know a bit of that is my ego running wild, but I also had been squatting triples at 405 before, so it was a massive reduction in intensity. That said, a couple weeks ago, I did hit a rep PR of 5 on squat. I could have done that again today, but I didn't. I'm not really sure why, but I didn't. I still hit my rep goals though, so I'm not terribly upset with this.

 

Assistance Superset #1:

  1. Bulgarian Split Squats 3 x 5 reps each leg - (95, 125, 125)
  2. Goodmorning 6x (95, 125, 125)

Assistance Superset #2:

  1. Paused Front Squat x 5 (155, 185, 205)
  2. GHRs x 10 (BW, +10#, +10#)

I think I'm going to have to keep breaking up my leg days' assistance like this just due to gym organization. Bulgarian Split Squats are feeling a little better stability wise. It also helps that I found a better height for the box. Did almost fall once, got a comment from one of the trainers at the gym about it, and dialed it in. Again, this is an exercise in humility as I learn these movements.

Front squat was not so fun, but I think that was the bar I was using. It kept sliding off my chest and into my hands, despite pushing my elbows as high as I could. Maybe this comes with mobility improvement, but also, just maybe, that bar was terrible. The knurling was nearly nonexistance, and having used it before, it feels smaller than a standard bar (despite weighing as much).

 

Conditioning I kept real simple here and just banged out 60 1 Arm Swings with a 32 kg kettlbell. It took about 10 minutes, using sets of 10, but it's been a minute since doing these with one arm, and I felt better easing into it. Between these and the split squats, I'm noticing a bit of an imbalance in my legs, particularly in my right glute not wanting to fire (probably also explains all the balance issues on that side with the unilateral work). I'm going to keep addressing this on squat day, but also on deadlift days too now. I'm going to try and remember to include single leg deadlifts and single leg bridges for my assistance then, and we'll see how quickly we can fix this problem.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

All in all, yesterday was a good training day, and I'm excited to press again today. My wrist is still bothering me, but I had stopped spending so much time trying to fix it, so that is going to appear in my cool down sessions from here on out.

 

 

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Wave 1, Week 2, Day 2 - Strict Press Moderate, Assistance Light, Conditioning Hell Heavy

 First giant set was a little disappointing, but I'm finding the silver linings. I missed my last rep on overhead press, just shy of the rep goal. I could have recovered that missed rep, rebraced, and shot for it again, but my mind just wasn't in it. This program is a mind challenge, I'm learning more and more. Silver linings though, I did not end up missing my pullup goals. I didn't add weight, but it's been several months since going above 5's on pullups.

  1. Pullups (10, 8, 6+)
  2. Clean and Strict Press (10 x 125, 8 x 145, 6+ x 165)
  3. Pallof Press (40-ish pounds x 8 each side)
  4. KB waiter's walk 32 kg, 30' each side

Assistance, actually, went very well. I ended up hitting weights and reps I was not expecting to.

  1. Alternating Arnold Press x 8 each (30#, 35#, 30#)
  2. Pullups (1, 2, 3)
  3. 3D lat raises 10 reps each direction @20#

Conditioning was another mental struggle, but I'm getting sharper at these. My first 5 minutes were 20 seconds of work followed by 20 seconds of rest doing Z presses with just the 45# bar. I took about 2 minutes of rest, then I ended up doing more waiters walks: 60' with a turn at 30', 24 kg, 5 laps each arm.

 

Really, with the exception of missing that rep of strict press, I was pretty happy with this. I ended up really enjoying the assistance and the conditioning, and I feel like the next wave is going to be much more enjoyable from the standpoint of being used to the work load. My wrist is bothering me a little this morning, but I hope a day of rest helps it recover enough to crush deadlift on Wednesday.

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On 1/15/2019 at 7:31 AM, Jon, Destroyer of Mice said:

Conditioning was another mental struggle, but I'm getting sharper at these.


Do you get better at attacking exercises you hate? I mean, does mental fortitude increase with practice so that one day you gaze stoically into the distance for a few seconds then agree to do 300 squats? 

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2 hours ago, Harriet said:

Do you get better at attacking exercises you hate? I mean, does mental fortitude increase with practice so that one day you gaze stoically into the distance for a few seconds then agree to do 300 squats? 

 

Never in my life will I do 300 squats, unless they're unloaded. I've done that, and it was awful.

 

I feel like you do get better at it, but only if you want to get better at it. There are definitely times when starting a set will be the biggest uphill battle you face that day, and if you want to get better at pushing past things sucking, you absolutely can. For instance, I used to hate diving under the squat bar near the middle or end of my workouts. It just drained me doing another set with the same weight, but I forced myself through it, and now I don't really have that problem (with squats) anymore (I still hate benching).

The other thing is that some exercises go from being your absolute least favorite, most hated movements to your favorite. 2 months ago, I hated ab wheel rollouts, and they hurt so bad for days after. Now I look forward to these things because they're awesome and they feel awesome (and if I'm being honest, my brain still thinks "train your belly to lose the belly", which is false, but eh).

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4 minutes ago, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

300 squats just sounds wrong.

 

I think there's a bodyweight WOD that hits 300 squats.

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