Monday, August 31, 2015

Workout D #2 Practice Makes Improvement (Workout 19)

Workout D #2 went a lot better. :D
I'm relieved (but not totally surprised) to find that the second time doing my new Workouts C and D has gone a lot better than the first did. I'm feeling much less awkward and uncertain of what I'm doing. I'm glad about that -- I'd definitely liked the confidence I'd built with Workouts A and B and was afraid I'd broken something by changing.

Not too surprisingly, with extra sets (even though the total number of reps is the same) and one whole extra exercise these workouts are taking a bit longer -- more like an hour and 10 minutes than an hour all told. Fortunately, Patrick doesn't mind. He's just extending his cardio time at the end, I think. 

Today's workout was: 
  • Spiderman Plank - 2 x 10 - These were giving me a terrible time today because my feet were slipping. I'm not sure what to do about that, but it makes it really hard to keep going with the knee-to-elbow (while in plank pose) reps. I had this problem doing yoga as well -- my feet and hands would slip and it made me feel very insecure. My yoga teacher recommended getting a heavy blanket for on top of my yoga mat and it made a huge difference. I wonder if I could take something like that to the gym. Hmmm...I need to do something, because I'm afraid I might hurt myself if my feet slip out. 
  • Coordination Rows - 2 x 10 - (One-Leg, One-Arm Cable Rows). I did a little bit better with these this time -- still newborn baby giraffe-y, but maybe about 20 minutes older and more coordinated. I talked with one of our doctors (we have two we see more or less interchangeably) about my balance issues and he pointed out that some of it is strengthening and conditioning the small muscles of the knees and ankles that stabilize you when you're standing on one leg. I still am thinking that these are a long-term project. I'm still working with 15 lbs on the cable machine. The instructions say to work first on getting the movement to be smooth and coordinated, then improve speed, and only then increase the weight. I'll probably be working on the first goal until...umm.. Christmas. There was someone working out at another pulley on the cable machine and he was watching me play Baby Giraffe with obvious bemusement.
  • Alternating sets of:
    • Offset-loaded Step Ups - 3 x 10 - I used a 25 lb weight, which is what I used last time. I absolutely need to raise that next time because it was way too low. I'm getting into a groove with doing these on the deck of a treadmill, I guess, though I liked being way in the back of the gym in the circuit area. Ah well. It was difficult to figure out how to hold the weight -- I need to look at some pictures to see how people do that. 
    • Single-Arm Shoulder Press - 3 x 10, 8, 7 - I used a 20 lb weight and that's still a little heavy, I did 10 reps the first set, then 8, then 7. It's a tough exercise for me -- remember when I started with weights I had No Muscles in my upper body. They're coming, but it is hard. I'll stick with 20 lbs next time and try to make my reps. 
  • Alternating sets of: 
    • Dumbbell Squats - 3 x 10 - I used a pair of 30 lb dumbbells and I need to increase the weight pretty dramatically here as well. These are supposed to be front squats -- with the weights held at shoulder height, kind of in the vicinity of the collarbones. I couldn't even imagine how I'd get the 30lb dumbbells up to my shoulders. I could maybe have done it today, but I was having the same problems with figuring out how to hold the weights that I had with the step-ups. So I just did squats with the weights held at arm length at my sides. This worked totally fine but I need to up the weights next time, this was too easy. 
    • Lat Pulldowns, Kneeling  (cable machine) - 3 x 10, 10, 8 - I used 70 lbs again. It was tough, but mostly doable. I didn't make my reps on the last set and I was working hard the whole way through, so I'm going to start with this weight again. I did these kneeling because I wasn't feeling like experimenting to see if I could make the high pulley work when I'm standing. 
  • Cardio Intervals - 7 x 20:40 Intervals of Insanity - I've gone back to using the elliptical machine for these because the exercise bike and I just didn't get along at all, I never felt like I was getting my heart rate up or getting the whole body moving and coordinated. The elliptical machine burns 200 calories in 10 minutes and I can put my upper body into the Insanity Intervals, which ,makes them feel that much more worky. I'll keep thinking about this, because I would like to do something different. But it went well today -- I did seven intervals and thought of an eighth but just didn't have it in my. I like exercising to that point
It was a great workoutt! I'm feeling really well-worked and like I've done something which is pretty cool. I'm also sleepy and have beer coming. 

Next work is scheduled for Wednesday. Goal for the workout: do more and better than last time with Workout C.

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