Okay, let's start this ball rolling. Some of my workouts are still playing catchup from;
a) A period of inactivity
b) Recent injuries - particularly a problem with my core.
c) Lack of motivation making regular attendance a problem
I have recently completed a fat-loss phase losing a total of 16Kg of fat. My current weight is 71Kg and my Tanita Balance estimates my fat percentage as around 15%.
My stubborn bodypart has always been chest and it is, ironically, the part of me I most want to develop. At the moment I'm keen to create bulging shoulders, and that is a part I have tended to neglect in the past, so the weight I can use on shoulders is comparitively low. Additionally, since I do a lot of cycling (not specifically in a sports/exercise context, just in the sense of getting around cheaply!), I tend to leave legs until last and recently I have not been completing all my routines so legs have been a bit neglected too.
However, I'm starting to look a lot better in the mirror. My chest workout has started to enter a "working" phase rather than a catch-up phase and hopefully if I can keep up with regular workouts, then all my workouts will soon be in the "working" phase.
I've been a bit reluctant to start logging my weights on here because they are low compared to other people's, but everyone has to start somewhere, right? I'm hoping that if I lose motivation again, people on here can help me stay on track.
I was debating mentioning this or not, but it's relevant so I'll state it here.
I am recovering from a nervous breakdown which has left me in a state of depression for the last 8 years. Most recently I have been having sleep issues making me tired all the time and only active for six hours or so a day, and not continuous hours at that.
However, in November I took the decision to come off my antidepressants and found that the sleep issues were side effects of the medication. Now I'm starting to put my life back together and I'm much more active. It is only since stopping the antidepressants that I have been able to lose the excess weight and the self-esteem boost I get from looking in the mirror in the morning and seeing myself slim and watching my muscles (re)develop is beyond price.
Still, I have mood issues and in particular I have a short temper which I struggle to control. Things are steadily improving, but if I have snapped at your recently or if you have been a victim of my temper issues then I apologise.
I'm making these statements here because, (a) I think honesty is the only way to really tackle my issues, (b) I want to be understood and (c) I think exercise is vitally important in the management and treatment of Mental Health issues. There may be other people on this forum who are similarly having mood or depressive problems and I hope that by talking through these things together we can be of mutual benefit and support each other.
Dumbbell Wrist Curl Over A Bench (Supinated (Palms-Up)): 12Kg x 12, 12Kg x 12, 14Kg x 12, 14Kg x 12 Previous: 12Kg x 12, 12Kg x 12, 12Kg x 12, 12Kg x 12
Dumbell Wrist Curl Over A Bench (Pronated (Palms-Down)): 9Kg x 12, 9Kg x 12, 9Kg x 12, 9Kg x 12 Previous: 9Kg x 12, 9Kg x 12, 9Kg x 12, 9Kg x 12
The following two exercises are of my own invention to try and round-out the forearm workout (If anybody knows of an official exercise which works the forearms in this direction, please let me know, so far I have not found one.
The first exercise is performed standing upright with a dumbell in each hand, held with the thumb uppermost. The wrist is then rotated backwards without moving the rest of the arm (this means the thumb travels in an downwards motion, hence the name), and then returned to the rest position.
The second exercise is the reverse. Standing with dumbell in each hand, held with the thumb uppermost. The wrist is then rotated forewards without moving the rest of the arm (this means the thumb travels in an upwards motion, hence the name). This time the wrist is also turned outwards at the peak of the motion as this maximises the contraction of the forearm, then returned to the rest position.
Thumbs-Down Standing Dumbell Bends: 22Kg x 12, 22Kg x 12, 22Kg x 12, 22Kg x 12 Previous: 20Kg x 12, 20Kg x 12, 20Kg x 12, 20Kg x 12
Thumbs-Up Standing Dumbell Bends: 20Kg x 12, 20Kg x 12, 20Kg x 12, 20Kg x 12 Previous: 20Kg x 12, 20Kg x 12, 20Kg x 12, 20Kg x 12
This was a great workout!!! Normally I would do Arms/Forearms on a seperate day to chest, but recently it has been convenient to merge them together as I have not been able to get to the gym five times a week.
Cycle to and from the gym (25 mins, 4 Miles x2)
Warm-Up: 5 Mins Rowing
Machine Shoulder Press: 45Kg x 12, 50Kg x 12, 50Kg x 12, 50Kg x 12 Previous: 45Kg x 12, 45Kg x 12, 45Kg x 12, 45Kg x 8
Dumbell Lateral Raises: 10Kg x 12, 10Kg x 12, 10Kg x 10, 10Kg x 8 Previous: 9Kg x 12, 9Kg x 12, 9Kg x 8, 9Kg x 8
Barbell Front Raises: 15Kg x 12, 15Kg x 12, 15Kg x 12, 17.5Kg x 12 Previous: 17.5Kg x 12, 15Kg x 12, 15Kg x 12, 15Kg x 12
Dumbell Bent-Over Deltoid Raise: 8Kg x 12, 8Kg x 12, 8Kg x 12, 8Kg x 12 Previous: 8Kg x 12, 8Kg x 12, 8Kg x 10, 8Kg x 8
Dumbell Shoulder Shrugs: 28Kg x 12, 28Kg x 12, 28Kg x 12, 32Kg x 10 Previous: 20Kg x 12, 20Kg x 12, 20Kg x 12, 20Kg x 12
Machine-Assisted Pullups: 26Kg x 12, 26Kg x 12, 26Kg x 12, 26Kg x 10 (Bodyweight -45Kg) Previous: 19Kg x 12, 19Kg x 12, 19Kg x 12, 19Kg x 10
Wide-Grip Cable Lateral Pull-Down: 40Kg x 12, 45Kg x 12, 45Kg x 12, 45Kg x 12 Previous: 40Kg x 12, 40Kg x 12, 40Kg x 12, 40Kg x 12
Machine Seated Row: 80Kg x 8, 70Kg x 10, 70Kg x 10, 70Kg x 10 Previous: 60Kg x 12, 60Kg x 12, 60Kg x 10, 60Kg x 10
Straight-Arm Cable Lateral Pulldowns: 15Kg x 12, 20Kg x 12, 20Kg x 12, 25Kg x 12 Previous: 15Kg x 12, 15Kg x 12, 15Kg x 12, 15Kg x 12 This is the exercise that I think caused my core injury last time, as a consequence I am quite frightened performing it that I will repeat the problem. Previously I did this exercise at around 35-40Kg, but I dialled it right down to 10Kg following my injury and now, as my confidence increases, I'm slowly increasing the weight but I'm really cautious as this exercise really engages the core for stability. This week it has made my core very sore but - I think - in a good way.
Machine Back Extension: 35Kg x 12, 35Kg x 8, 30Kg x 12, 30Kg x 12 Previous: 30Kg x 12, 30Kg x 12, 30Kg x 12, 30Kg x 12 Peformed with a straightforward "hinge" motion of the lower back, I used to perform this exercise using the full stack of around 90Kg. After the core injury I got a bit scared and dialled it back to around 20Kg. In recompense I changed the form I used for the exercise and I am currently doing it by curling my body downwards, as if trying to move one vertabra at a time (and engaging the core), and then straightening the spine by uncurling in reverse. This makes this exercise the equivalent of a sort-of inverse-crunch, engaging the erector spinae the full length of the back
Usually I would perform Back and Shoulders on seperate days but I was really keen to make sure I got all my workout in this week so I decided to double-up again, as I had with Chest/Arms. This was not as good a workout as Monday's, but I'm still playing catch-up on this one. Also, since this was the routine I was doing when I injured my core (and since I'm not sure which exercise caused the problem, or if it was all of them) I am being really cautious with the weights. I'd rather make slow progress, than stall altogether because of injury.
This is particularly noticeable on the Lat Pulldowns where I'm working around 40Kg whereas before I was working 60-70Kg (and in the past I've worked 90Kg and above). Because of this what I am using does not fully reflect what I'm capable of... but; slowly, slowly catchee monkey...
Still, I did increase the weights on most of the exercises this week so that is progress of a sort!
PS: I forgot to mention that I also attended my first PoleFitness class of the year. I have had difficulties learning this artform because my excess weight and lack of upper body strength and forearm strength made this near impossible.
Now that I've lost weight and improved my muscle tone and strength, this has been easier and - although I lacked the skill to do this properly - hopefully over the coming weeks I'm going to get better.
Today's class included Shoulder Mounts, Handstands, and a variety of grips techniques. My core strength has improved which made some of the lifts easier.
Last edited by OptikaNET; 04-20-2012 at 11:52 PM.
Reason: Forgot PoleFitness Class
Thanks for being refreshingly honest about your depression...it can be overcome through natural solutions (e.g. good fats). I hear you regarding the temper...I'm there too...feel sorry for the weights though...they are the frequent abuse victims of my anger.
The problem with mental health issues is that society likes to "sweep them under the carpet". For this reason, more than any other, I find it necessary to be open about my problems because; (a) only by understanding my issues can people understand (and forgive?) my behaviour, and (b) only by making the public aware can changes in attitudes (and improvement in care would be nice!) occur.
Still, having said all that, I did wonder whether this post was the place to air these issues.