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I already kind sorta introduced myself and my workout plan here .  Here's some info on the condition I'm dealing with: HNPP. It's been hard to find info about how to work around neuropathic issues that doesn't amount to 'don't lift weights', so I thought keeping a log on here about my experiences might be useful for other people too.


Tonight I'm doing my 3rd A workout (Yay!  Deadlifts!).  Stats for A1 & 2 were:  

Deadlift (lbs) - 95, 105.  Planning 115 tonight.  I'm impatient and want to put the big plates on, but I will get there soon enough!


Pushups - standard, form degenerated last set of A1, all good throughout A2.  Gonna do them with one foot stacked on the other tonight, and keep working on using my fingertips rather than the flat of my hand.  Avoiding extended pressure on my palms is a good thing.


Box Jumps - 2x8 2nd stair, 2x8 2nd stair (attempted 3rd but mental block).  I'm too afraid of missing on the stairs, so I guess I need to switch to box steps or a bench, and maybe add a bit of weight before trying to move too far in height.  I think I will switch these to 5x2-3 also.


Pullup variations - tried bands during A1 and did not like them, so sticking to negatives for now (overhand, from the Smith machine bar).  At my best I could do about 1.5 chinups, but at my current strength, I can just barely get a few inches up from the dead hang.  I'm pretty confident that I can get back, though!  Anyway, 2x5 for both workouts, aiming for a 5 second drop each time.  A2 was more consistent than A1, and I actually cranked out a couple more as an extra set at the very end of the workout.  Will go for 2x6 tonight.


Pistol Squat variations - tried unassisted (2x5) during A1 just to see how bad it was.  I used to be almost able to do one -- just needed a doorway assist, or something equivalent.  Well, I could go partway down, but I had both physical and mental weakness holding me back, so I decided to do them to a box next time (to help with the mental part).  I did them to stacked steps for A2, and was chagrined to find it took me 3 tries to get the height right (because I kept overestimating my ability).  I finally got a decent setup (3 regular height steps + 1 half height).  I did that for 2x5, and will do 2x6 tonight.


Here's how B1 and B2 went:

Squat (lbs) - 45, 55.  I was only planning on moving up 5 each time, but I couldn't find the 2.5 lb plates.  The low back position is new to me, and so far it feels good.  I had a bit of thumb soreness the first time, and I could definitely feel that it required more stretch in my pecs, but these didn't feel like they are going to be persistent problems.  I may start switching between low back/ high back/ front in the future, if I feel like repetitive stress is going to cause nerve issues for me.  It's hard to tell while everything is still so (relatively) light!


Inverted Rows - off the 4th hook of the Smith machine for both workouts.  As with the pushups, my form was better and more consistent the second time.  


Power Cleans - 20 lbs, 2x5 for B1, 2x6 for B2.  I will be switching to 5 sets of 2-3 for these from now on.  I think I want to try 30 lbs for 5x2 next time.  The 20 lb barbell is ridiculously easy, but I wanted to start as low as possible for this one.  I will be excited to get to the point where I can clean the bar, because that will be a super useful skill.  I, uh ... I may have hit myself in the face during one of my first few reps.  Gonna try not to do that anymore.


Pike Pushup variations - 2x8 during B1, with my feet on the floor.  2x5 during B2, with my feet on the wall about 3 ft high.  I will stick there for a little bit and work on form.  One of my biggest contraindications was against any form of overhead lifting, but I do occasionally have to lift heavyish things over my head in life, so I figure better to go with cautious, moderate, low progression exercise than to be weak and have lousy technique when I do need to lift things.  We'll see.  I am certainly not going to be stubborn about these.  


Reverse Lunges - 2x8 w 10 lbs for B1, 2x8 w 20 lbs for B2.  I hate lunges.  I am terrible at not banging my knee on the way down.  I'm not really going to use these as a progressive loading exercise so much as a balance/core one, so I may experiment with weight placement for a while.  Or maybe I will just hate doing them so much that I switch to Turkish Getups instead -- I've never tried those, but they look neat.

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2/11/2015 20:10 - 21:08 A3:


Sun Salute A, twice

bear crawling for a bit

10 squat-to-stands

Triangle pose sequence

Dancer pose, about 30 sec each side

lying down sequence w/ hip and ham stretches

Wheel pose x 2, 30 s both times 


Deadlift @ 115: 4x1

Pushups, feet stacked: 4x5

Box Jumps, about 2.5 ft high, 5 lb plate in each hand: 5x2

Reverse Pullups, 5-count: 2x6 attempt, got 4 the 1st time and 6 the 2nd

Pistol Squats to box: 2x6


Notes:  The deadlift started to feel like honest-to-god work this time.  I weighed in at 125.6 lbs, so the next time I do this I will already basically be at bodyweight.  I wonder if I should have started a little lighter.  Oh well, I felt great doing it, and my form seemed pretty good, so I will keep on truckin'.  


The pushups were easier this time, which is cool.  I may not ramp up much for a bit though, because I feel like my rows are a lot weaker, and I don't want to get too imbalanced.  So I will work on finger strength and rep speed until my rows catch up.


I feel like I don't exactly know what I'm doing with the box jumps.  But holding weights in my hands seemed to work for now, so I will keep with that a few times.  I am working on keeping my landing soft, and that went well.


Everything else was OK to good.  I felt like a total beast for about 10 minutes after I was done, and then I suddenly became very sleepy.  I had to wait around for my SO to finish his workout, so I read a book (as if though mental cotton).  Good thing he was driving.

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I've been ruminating on how best to articulate my goals.  Yeah, stronger = better, but why, exactly?  


The main thing for me is that I want to have more energy.  That involves having the 'initialization energy', so to speak, to successfully start things.  It means having adequate endurance to keep doing them.  And it means having enough resilience to recover from doing stuff quickly, so that I can do more stuff.   There can be an interesting balancing act with these. 


Strength training, in the right dose, helps with the initialization energy and resilience, but has either null or negative effect on my endurance.  And too much of it makes the other two worse on a day to day balance as well.  No exercise at all leaves me with basically no initialization energy, which creates a self-perpetuating trap.  My physical endurance is not terrible, actually, except that there is a tradeoff between it and physical resilience, and I would like to improve resilience even at the cost of short-to-medium term endurance.  


And of course, each of these has mental components, which are as much or more of a limiting factor in most cases, and which have different interrelationships.  So I guess I can break my energy goal into some sub-goals:


1a.  Better understand how stuff affects my energy levels and why.

1b.  Use that knowledge to inform my choices.


2a.  Improve my physical initialization energy.

Things that will probably help achieve this:

    - getting stronger

    - eating well

    - getting plenty of rest

    - taking early action on stuff that could put me out later (taking allergy meds, getting flu vaccines, etc.)

    - lowering the activation barriers if possible (make things comfy and not harder than they need to be)


2b. Improve my mental initialization energy.

Things that will probably help:

    - physical well-being (see most of above)

    - managing my anxiety

    - lower the activation barriers if possible (brainstorm on this!)


3.  Pay attention to my mental/physical endurance, and try not to trash it, but move some of the energy burden to other phases of activity.

    - keep deliberate pacing in mind for recurring activities

    - focus (be here now)


4a.  Improve physical resilience.

    - rest, relaxation, recovery

    - preventative maintenance (mobility work, nerve-flossing -- flossing, for that matter, etc.  Sunscreen!)

    - low impact exercise 

    - good nutrition

    - pacing (see above)


4b.  Improve mental resilience.

    - manage anxiety and stress

    - deep relaxation

    - acknowledge and celebrate successes

    - acknowledge and move on from failures

    - reach out for social support


See, wow.  I started from 'why do I want to be strong?' and ended in a much bigger place.  I know I want to have strength and power because people who have those things weather aging better than those who don't, and I don't want to be the kind of person who is already practically broken by the time I am in my mid-forties.  I already feel like I don't have enough spoons most of the time, and I don't want to start dropping them uncontrollably as I age.  I'd rather pick some more up, if possible! 

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So, with those goals in mind, here are some thoughts about categorical stuff I can do to reach them.


1.  Diet.  I feel like I'm in a pretty good place with this right now.  I decided back in August 2014 that I really wanted to start having a deeper relationship with my food, and I am on a good path with that.  My diet has never been outrageously bad, and I don't (usually) have issues with quantity, but the quality has improved a lot.  I am cooking more, eating a ridiculous amount of veggies, and trying new things.  How did I manage this?  By joining a CSA.  Now I pick up a big load of veggies once a week, and I'm determined to use them because I've prepaid.  Cooking has become easier because I start with what I've got and figure out what to make, rather than the other way around.  That puts enough constraint on my options to keep me from being paralyzed by choosing.  I am becoming a better cook (both in tasty results and efficiency) because I practice more.   I eat out way less, and buy fewer groceries during the rest of the week, and so I have extra money to buy higher quality treats (mostly expensiver (heh) meats).  I have stopped getting pre-prepared convenience foods without even having to resolve to -- I just have to cook so much food (to use the all the veggies) that I have a ton of already prepared stuff in the fridge and freezer for my work lunches.  And I feel a sense of camaraderie with the other CSA participants.  It's oddly comforting to think about how other people around the city are thinking, 'OK, what can I do with these beets?' at the same time as me.  So my current food plan is to keep going this way as long as it remains satisfying.


2.  Exercise.  There's the gym regimen, above.  I will follow that and periodically assess how it is going.  I also would like to do more yoga, or at least better yoga.  I've been doing some for my warmups, but I think I need to have a dedicated yoga session every now and then, where my focus is deeper.  Once a week seems like a good frequency to start with.  This may be a good 6-week challenge.  I also want to ride my bike more often and do some swimming.  Or at least, I want to want to do these things.  Coming up with ways of lowering the activation energy for these activities seems like a useful short-term task.


3.  Stress and general anxiety management.  This is the fire-breathing dragon in the room, I think.  I have some ideas, but they seem like toothpicks to me when I need some sort of destructo-lance.  Maybe I should be thinking about them as seeds which I should plant and grow, and will eventually turn into a mighty forest which engulfs the dragon and hampers its ability to rampage (I will work on this metaphor).  I would like to plant the seed of regular meditation.  I actually meditated every day for a week right before the end of January, but I got distracted by a work-related schedule upheaval, and haven't gotten back to it since then.  This seems like another good 6-week challenge candidate.  

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Here are some more immediate workout-related goals, with soft deadlines:


1.  Deadlift 4x1 @BW (by the end of next week)

2.  4x5 fingertip pushups (by March 15?)

3.  Jump to the 3rd stair step (before the end of 2015?)

4.  1 chinup (March 15)

5.  1 full pistol squat (end of 2015)

6.  Squat 4x5 @ BW  (end of May)

7.  4x5 horizontal inverse rows with good form (end of March?)

8.  power clean the empty Oly bar (end of March)

9.  resist temptation to progress with pike pushups (end of Feb)

10.  4x5 lunges where my knees 'kiss the floor'  without banging into said floor (tomorrow?)


We'll see how well I've estimated the proper time frame for these -- I am also hoping that is a skill I will get better at through practice.

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2/14/15 13:45-14:45 (B3)

body weight: 124.8 #


Warmup:  the usual, plus attempted a couple Turkish get ups at the end, with a 3 lb weight.  I don't think I did these correctly, so I'll have to do some homework.  


Squat @ 60: 4x5

Inverse rows: 4x5

Power cleans @ 30: 5x2

Pike pushups: 2x5

Reverse lunges: 1x5 with 10# dumbbell held overhead, 1x8 with 5# db held overhead




My left thumb hurts right after a set of low back squats.  The other one is fine.  Maybe I need to keep my left wrist straighter.  My rows improved -- I think I need to keep my feet closer to the bar, though.  Power cleans were good.  Holding a weight over my head for the lunges really showcased how much less stable my left arm is right now. I need to be careful not to overdo that kind of thing.  I did not bang my knees, but they did not kiss the floor during every single rep, either.  So I will aim for that next time.

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Yesterday and today have been full of cooking.  I'm trying to prepare enough stuff to get me through the work week, and I also made a nice V-Day dinner for Mr. Rambler and me.  It was pretty glorious, and I feel like bragging -- we had salmon, dill, kale, green onions and bell pepper slices cooked in parchment packets, with a side salad of roasted beets, greens, goat cheese and almond slices drizzled with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.  Plus bread and potatoes for Mr. Rambler, because that's how he rolls.  Some nice Spanish white wine to drink, and orange slices and heart shaped vanilla bean macaroons for dessert.  It was gooood :)


Today I'm making a big pot of chicken soup, and a frittata made of leftover veggies, salmon, and other yummy things.  Linguini with clams + salad is on the menu for tonight.  Mr. Rambler has plans to make Russian style cutletas today, and roasted pork loin later this week.  So I don't think we will starve!

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Reading about nutrition on the internet is kind of depressing, especially when you are looking for guidelines on optimum nutrition for a particular health condition.  I was trying to look up what kind of nutrients are needed for producing myelin, because I figure that since my body does such a shitty job of making it, I should at least make sure I'm not making it any harder by missing important ingredients in my diet.  Most of the stuff that comes up is geared towards Multiple Sclerosis.  Some of that is relevant to me, but most of the inflammatory-related stuff, not so much.  Anyway, a good portion of what I would call 'wishful thinking' nutrition is mixed in with scientific info. 


As far as useful information goes, here's what I came up with.  B-12 and D-2 are important for myelin production, and the basic building blocks are cholesterol (cholesterols?).  Lecithin is probably important.  The best sources for all of these things are animal-derived:  fish, eggs, milk, red meat, and yogurt.  Fermented vegetable products, legumes, and leafy greens are also decent sources.  That fits in well with my subjective eating experience -- I've tried a vegetarian diet a couple of times, and it has always been associated with a drastic crash in energy levels for me.  I haven't paid enough attention to tell whether there was a more direct connection between nerve issues and low meat/dairy for me, but I wonder about that.


I may try to increase my fish intake, or supplement with cod liver oil, and see whether I notice an improvement in resistance to fatigue and how easily I get numbness (I frequently have a minor amount going on in fingers or toes).

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I meditated for 10 minutes today.  I can build the habit of doing this every day for ten minutes.  I got derailed last time by a couple things -- one was working unexpectedly on the weekend, which tends to wipe me out; the other was that my timer was set up with an escalating plan.  You know, 2 minutes the first day, 3 the 2nd, and so on in varying steps until you get up to an hour.  Well, I started having trouble at 15 minutes.  I'd rather have the habit of consistently meditating than the stamina to do it for a whole hour, so ten minutes it is from now on.  When I do it every day for 8 consecutive weeks, that will mean I have successfully acquired the habit, and I will assess to see if I want to up the amount of time.  

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Yesterday evening I went for a leisurely run, somewhere in the 1-2 mile ballpark.  It's nice to get out and see the mountains turn pink during pre-sunset.


I also bought a neck cradle thing, and spent some time lying on the ground and using it.  I was practicing relaxing.  It's funny to think of relaxing as something I have to practice, but it is true.  At least physically.  During my normal 'relaxation' activities, I tend to be doing stuff that is either exercise, or not focused on my body at all, and leads me to be slouched or bunched up or something.  So deliberately relaxing is harder that it seems.


Today I'm at the office, and I want to take some exercise and relaxation breaks.  So here's a physical 'to-do' list for today:

1.  Meditate for 10 minutes. (DONE)

2.  Use the neck cradle for about 10-15 minutes. (DONE)

3.  Go down to the outdoor circuit pullup station near the math building and try a chinup. (DONE but did not get chinup.  Yet.)

4.  Stretch the ol' hamstrings and calves.(DONE)

5. (optional) Do a short jog across campus and back , if I feel up to it in the afternoon. (NOPE)


Tomorrow I go to the gym and deadlift my bodyweight.  I am looking forward to it!

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Welp, I forgot on Wednesday that I had actually planned on going to the gym Thursday.  Wednesday was kind of a bust in the 'to-dos', but I did ride my bike to work Wednesday morning and so I declare victory anyway :)


2/19/15 19:15-20:30 (A4)

body weight: 124.0 #



Sun Salute A x 2

downward dog sequence (lifting limbs and such)

Triangle pose sequence

10 squat-to-stands

Dancer pose

Wheel pose x 2

shoulder dislocations

neck rolls

a couple TGU with light weights

a couple YTWLs with light weights


Deadlift @ 125: 4x1 (+10 gain)

Pushups, feet stacked: 4x5 (same but faster, more fingertip support)

Box Jumps, about 2.5 ft high, 5 lb plate in each hand: 5x3 (+1 rep gain)

Reverse Pullups, 5-count: 1x7, 1x5+1 failed (3-count instead of 5)

Pistol Squats to box: 2x7 (+1 rep gain)


Cooldown:  static stretching

20 minutes in neck cradle + meditation


Notes:  The right side of my body was super tight at the end.  Lying in the neck cradle was not as meditative as I would have liked.  I kept trying to relax, and my muscles were fighting me.  Maybe right after a workout is not the best time for it.  Today my leg muscles are twitching, and my neck's a bit stiff, so I took a couple ibuprofin to try to prevent inflammation (which exacerbates my nerve problems).  The workout itself felt pretty good, and I feel good other than twitchy thighs.  I have been doing a couple of warmups for the deadlift the last two times -- 1 rep of just the bar, and 1 @ 95 #.  I should probably add one next time.


My next workout will be either Sunday or Monday, depending on how I feel.  I have a lot of field work next week, so I will be light on the posting.

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2/23/15 20:00-20:58 (B4)

body weight:124.6 #


Warmup: the usual 


Squat @ 65: 4x5 (+5# gain)

Inverse rows from 3rd hook of Smith machine: 3+2, 1+4, 2+3, 1+4 (where the 1st number= good reps, and the 2nd=failed reps)

Power cleans @ 30:5x3 (+1 rep gain)

Pike pushups: 1x5, 1×6

Reverse lunges @ 20#, dumbbells held arms hanging at sides:2x6 (+1 rep gain)

Notes: My knees kissed the floor every time on lunges today. All was pretty good, except that my car's brakes decided to give out on the way to the gym. I left the car in the lot. I guess I have to ride my bike in tomorrow. This does not help in the stress front, universe.

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Weekly Post-Mortem


I am going to make this a regular feature from now on, where I review the past week and make note of things that worked, things that didn't, and so on.  I'm doing this in the battle log rather than the challenge log, because I imagine it will be more useful in a broad and long-term way.


So, as I discussed above, my goal is to have more energy to do stuff.  Implied in that is that I want to do more stuff.  It seems to me like (when I bother to plan) I start off with really high ambitions about what I can do, and then at the end of the week, I am tired, and also frustrated because I didn't do many of the things on my list.  This week is a good case in point.  I had a 6- week challenge to start, a field run to plan and then go on, some social stuff planned, my CSA veggies to collect, transportation issues to take care of, and so on.  See this post in my challenge blog to get an idea of some specifics.  


Work-wise, the big challenge this week was to visit my remote field sites and take care of both routine and specific stuff.  My first problem was that I had a commitment Tuesday night and Friday, so my window of time was not big enough to visit all 3 sites I had in mind.  So I decided to just visit 2, leaving Wednesday, doing 1 site in the afternoon, and the next on the following day.  Well, I seriously underestimated the prep time I needed on Wednesday, meaning that I didn't make it to near my first site until about 4 pm Wednesday.  That didn't leave me enough time for a site visit, so I revised my plan to visit both sites Thursday.  The 1st visit on Thursday morning went well, although I could see that I wouldn't have enough time to do one of the low-priority things on my list.  I finished up by about noon, and headed to the next site.


I got my truck high-centered on a big rock in a wash on my way in to the site.  I messed with everything for a little while, and tried jacking up one of the wheels so I could put rocks under it in the hopes of raising it enough to get clear, but instead of lifting the truck, my jack was driving itself into the sand.  Fun times!  At this point (about 3 pm) I made some really smart decisions.  I found a spot near the truck with cell phone reception, and called my boss, and told him I would need some help getting out.  A colleague of mine was en route back to town, passing near where I was, so my boss decided to call him and see if he could swing by and help me out (this would be quickest).  In the meantime, I decided to hike the rest of the way to my site and get some of the stuff there taken care of, while I still had daylight.  


I was pretty relaxed, for the most part, for two reasons:  1) I had all of my camping gear and supplies, because I'd opted to camp out the previous night, rather than stay in a hotel.  So I didn't feel any huge panic about being stuck for several hours or possibly overnight -- I had food, water, a warm shelter, firewood, and so on.  Which meant I could defer getting unstuck while I got my most important site tasks to take care of, which meant I would not have to come back out again next week.  And 2) I knew help was on the way in some form or another; either fairly quickly, if my colleague was nearby, or as late as the following day, but I did not have to try the frustrating task of unsticking my truck alone.


As it happened, my colleague was close by, and was able to help me out fairly quickly.  I got the most important site visit tasks taken care of, and got home fine (but late).  My student cancelled on me today, so I now have a chance to catch up on some office tasks.  And I'm pretty tired, but I feel physically not too bad.


Positive Observations:

- I can tell my strength training is helping to make my field work easier.

- The new posture insert in my truck seems to be helping with long drives.  My neck is not nearly as sore as it could be.

- I got the most time-critical things on my field work list done.

- Camping and fishing was excellent.  It was relaxing, I had fun, and I was well-prepared for the cold at night.  I was able to stay near one of my sites, which cut down on a lot of driving time the next morning.  Plus what I mentioned above -- because I had all my camping gear, I did not feel too panicky about being stuck.

- I put some prep time in for my field run last week, and I can see that it paid off in terms of making some things simpler.

- I have been thinking about getting an electric motor for my longbike for years.  And I finally did it.  Yay for doing things one wants to do! 


Negative Observations:

- I'm frustrated that I didn't get any of the non-routine things taken care of at any of my sites.  I took some steps that should make those things easier next time, but it's not the same feeling as being able to cross the task off my list.

- I over-scheduled.  I really need to plan to have an extra day next time.  Even an extra night would have been nice, because the drive home after a long field day Thursday killed me (I'm still dead, but getting better).  It's not realistic to have only 1 overnight on this field run.  I must accept that and plan accordingly.

- My car is seldom a happy bringer of joy to me.   The latest mechanical issues, and the fact that the place I usually buy my biodiesel looks like it might be going out of business soon, are maybe a sign that I need to get rid of it.  With the money I save from not owning a car, I could probably take taxis and get rentals for the few occasions that I really need an autonomous motor vehicle.

- But ugh.  Selling a car is work which I am unenthusiastic about.

- Need better communication with student volunteer.


Random Observations:

- I though about NerdFitness on this trip.  I have never done any rpg stuff, but I wanted to when I was younger (no one around me was into that kind of stuff).  So I'm intrigued by the way approach people have here with real life role-playing, but I'm a bit shy to do it myself.  But I thought about it on my field run -- if I went by my job, I would probably be classified as a Ranger.  So I sort of imagined myself as a badass Ranger Adventure Scientist, and ... it was really fun.  It gave me a way to move out of my head, where the moment to moment anxieties live, and look at myself from the outside, where I can admit I am frequently awesome.  So I still feel a little silly, like maybe I'm doing it wrong somehow, because I don't want to bother with character stats and points and stuff, but I see the appeal.  

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2/28/15 18:30- 19:20 (A5)

body weight: 124.0 #


Warmup: the usual.

Deadlift @ 135: 4x1 (+10 gain)

Pushups, feet stacked: 4x5 (same but better)

Box Jumps, about 2.5 ft high, 8 lb dumbbell in each hand:5x2 (+6# gain)

Reverse Pullups, 5-count: 1x7, 1x3 (dodgy shoulder)

Pistol Squats to box:2x8 (+1 rep gain)


Notes:  Dunno what's up with my left shoulder, but the bottom of the negative pullups did not feel good, so I didn't push it.

Aw yiss, put big-person weights on the bar for deadlifts this time.

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I had my dad visiting this weekend.  I was worried that it would be tough to get in a workout with him here, but I was able to talk him in to going to the gym.  He did some exercise, and used the pool and hot tub.  This makes me happy, because my dad has health problems, and has been trying to get more exercise, and I can see that he is taking it pretty seriously (but in a sustainable way).


I forgot to mention that I rode my bike home on Friday.  I got an electric assist motor on my long bike, in the hopes that it would get me commuting regularly by bike instead of car, and I was happy with how it worked.  We've got a long, steep hill on the way to our house from work, and that's the thing that kills my motivation.  The assist took the edge off the hill while preserving the experience of actually riding, rather than being transported.  I didn't ride today, though, because of looming rain (and also because I am spoonless after my dad's visit).

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3/8/15 18:50-19:45 (B5)

body weight: 124.8#

Warmup: the usual, more or less

Squats @ 70#: 4x5 (+5# gain)

Inverse rows @ 3rd hook of Smith machine: 1x5, 3x(3+2)

Power cleans @ 35#: 5x2 (+5# gain)

Pike pushups:2x6 (+1 rep gain)

Reverse lunges @ 20#:2x7 (+1 rep gain)

Notes: Our gym has a yoga studio with a gorgeous view of the desert and mountains, and I got up there just after sunset as it was getting dark. There was already someone in there doing yoga, and I was reluctant to turn the lights on, because I didn't wnt to ruin her groove. So I did my warmup in the deep dusk light, and I liked it -- it gave things a totally different feel.

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I'm just sticking this link in here for now: http://www.jneurosci.org/content/26/4/1179.full


with plans to edit this post with a discussion.  A quick summary: researchers compared the development and physiology of mice with both copies of PMP22, neither, and one missing.  PMP22 is the gene that I am missing a copy of, which causes HNPP symptoms.   Thank you, researchers, for researching; and thank you, lab mice, for being pawns (and sorry for that, too).  

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3/12/15 18:45-19:40 A6

Didn't weigh myself


Warmup: the usual, with some more focus on twisty things.

Deadlift @ 145: 1x1 

Deadlift @ 135: 3x1
Pushups: 4x5 (slow, weight on fingers)
Box Jumps, about 2.5 ft high, 8 lb dumbbell in each hand:5x3 (+rep gain)
Reverse Pullups, 5-count: 1x7, 1x3+4 3-count
Pistol Squats to box:2x5 (removed 1 step)
Notes:  I failed at deadlifting 145# on the 2nd attempt.  It could be because I rushed my warmup lifts.  Likewise, I seem to have stalled out on reverse pullups.  I'm thinking I should switch to 4-count as sort of a 'deload' for those.  Everything else is going pretty well, though.  Since I made my deadlift goal, I should figure out the next one.  1.5 BW would be about 218# for me, but 1.25 BW is a little more than 180#, and that seems more like it's achievable within a short enough time span to be motivating.

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Ha!  So... yeah, I fell off of the 6-week challenge wagon during the last week.  It was still a good experience, though.


I've been working out just fine, though.  I finished 8A yesterday.  I'm not sure it's valuable for me to report these in detail here, since I record my notes in my gym book and so it's like doing the work twice.  But to sum up, I've lost a couple of pounds over the last 2 months, and so I probably need to eat more.  I am still gaining strength (slowly), so it's not a super emergency, but I should try to add a bedtime snack or something and see how that works.


I'm kind of stalled with my deadlifts at 140 lbs.  Everything else is progressing, though.  I can do a chinup again!!!  One and a half chinups, even!  So I'm stoked about that.  Next goal: 2 chinups!  I'm gonna start greasing the groove whenever I can.  And I may not really be stalled on the deadlifts -- I had to switch the order of everything for my last workout, due to the gym being all crowded, so I was doing them later in the workout than usual.  Which would make them harder.


I stopped doing box jumps because they feel redundant with the power cleans.  I started doing Turkish get ups instead.  These are fun!  Also, I love power cleans!  I can tell this has been a very functional lift for me to learn, with telling results.


I had an introductory Dr.'s appointment recently (my previous PCP moved), and I asked whether it would be OK to try supplementing with creatine.  I am curious whether it can help offset the fatigue effects of HNPP.  So I have to get some tests and whatnot.


In general life stuff, I've got a kayaking trip coming up this weekend, so that should be fun.

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Well, here I am.  I'm still alive!


Things got rather busy and stressful at work for the last couple months.  Also, I was out of the country for a bit.  I visited Helsinki and Tallin -- nice cities, both!


I am still doing my workout and making (slow) progress.  I have been finding that I pretty much need an entire week to recover between workouts, though, so I am planning on adjusting things a bit so that I can add a lower intensity strength/mobility workout as my 2nd workout of the week.


My current stats:


Deadlift -- 160#

Squat -- 95#

Pushups -- diamond pushups w/ feet elevated

Rows -- going to have to transition to weights soon, I think

Cleans -- 45#

Pullups -- I can do 1 inconsistently, 1.5 max, but I often fail at my 1 attempts.  But I also often succeed!

Pistols -- I'm using a strap to assist me, going all the way to the floor.

I'm doing an OHP with the bar (unloaded) now, rather than the pike pushups!


I've changed a few things.  I'm giving up lunges because I just don't care about them, and feel like I get nothing out of them.  I haven't totally figured out the best replacement for them, though -- I may try TGUs in that slot, since I have also decided to make my other power exercise (for the A workout, originally box jumps) one-armed dumbbell snatches.  And maybe graduate to real snatches at some point.


Sometimes I feel a little frustrated, like I'm not doing enough.  But my strength keeps increasing, and I have not had any injuries or setbacks, and my neuromuscular health has been better than it was before I undertook this program.  So I am pretty sure I am on the right path.  I just can't expect to be able to do intense stuff at the same frequency as other people. 

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