Sunday, December 20, 2015

Workout J #1: Visiting at a different gym (Workout 57)

Kind of rushed and weird at a different gym, but a good
workout nonetheless.
Workout J #1 was last Monday, December 14. Because Patrick had to work late, I wound out going to a different Planet Fitness (one near where I pick him up every day) instead of our home gym. I've worked out at this gym before (under similar circumstances) and it works out fine. It is a much smaller space than our usual place -- they have pretty much the same equipment (for the most part), though, so the other place is really a lot more compact and sort of compressed. 

Among other things, there's not really a comfortable place for me to work with the dumbbells. This is purely a psychological thing -- at our home gym there's some space near the windows that's sort of on the edge of the free weights area and out of people's way. There's no place like that at this other gym so I'm either crowded into a corner (where I'm emphatically in the way of people getting to the squirt bottles of disinfectant they want people to use) or kind of on display in the middle of the crowd. Neither of which is psychologically all that comfortable for me. But they have everything I need and the folks seem nice there, so it's okay. 

While I was doing the workout, I realized something that I'd missed during my walkthrough of these Phase 5 workouts -- Dumbbell Push Press and Dumbbell Front Squats are very similar, at least for part of the move of the Push Press. Doing them one right after the other is too much of a muchness. I've changed the Front Squats to regular Squats, which will be just fine. 

Monday's workout was: 
  • Core Stabilization (at least that's what The Women's Health Big Book Of Exercises calls it) - 3 x 30 seconds - (You can sort of see a video of this here. The trivial difference is that I'm using a weight plate rather than a medicine ball. The significant difference is that I do them a lot slower and the focus is on keeping my torso and core *still* while moving the weight around them. It's all about stabilizing my core in the face of the weight moving around instead of using my core muscles to move the weight around.) These are good -- one of the challenges is holding a 10 pound weight plate at arms length for 30 seconds at a stretch. I wrote this down originally as 2-3 sets, but wound out doing three on Monday. They challenge the core, but they're not a beat-down. 
  • Rolling Side Plank - 2 x 6 - (You can see a video of this here. Though actually what she's doing in the video looks a little easier because of how her arms are positioned. I'll have to do it that way.) This is a really good exercise and really challenging. Especially after the good core work of the Stabilizations above. I kind of think I have two dynamic stability exercises rather than one dynamic and one just about stability. But I'm okay with doing these two together -- they're a challenge and I like it.
  • Dumbbell Push Press- 3x5 - (You can see a video of this here. Though I do a bit more of a deep squat than the video shows.) I was doing these in Phase 4 with lighter weights (though not as much lighter as you'd think) and fewer sets (though a higher overall number of reps). That makes me want to raise the weight or something, except that a pair of 25lb dumbbells is the right weight for now. I suspect that the first thing I'll raise is the number of reps per set before I raise the weights (because I don't want to over strain my shoulders). 
  • Alternating sets of:
    • Single Leg Dumbbell Deadlifts - 3 x 8 - (You can see a video of this here, except that I'm resting the non-working foot on a weight bench. This takes some of the balance out of the equation, though not all of it, and keeps the focus on my hamstrings and glutes where I want it.) I used a pair of 20lb dumbbells for these which is a considerable increase over the amount of weight I was using for 3 sets of 12 in Phase 4. (I'd gotten up to 10 lb dumbbells.) These are tricky, even with my foot supported, but seem to give good work to my hamstrings. So okay. 
    • Push Ups - 3 x 8 - (I don't figure you need to see a video of these.) Because this is a heavy phase and I'm only doing 8 reps per set, I'm doing these from a weight bench rather than  the windowsill I'd been on for ages. I'm actually pleasantly surprised that I can, with some struggle (some lots of struggle) make all my reps off the bench. If that keeps up, I'll have to figure out some way to go lower -- maybe use a pair of dumbbells as supports or something.
  • Alternating sets of: 
    • Dumbbell Front Squats - 3 x 8 - (You can see a video of this here. Except that I'm using dumbbells and the video shows a guy using a barbell.) This is the one that was too similar to the Dumbbell Push Presses (as I do them). Especially since I'm using a pair of 25lb dumbbells for these as well. Front squats are more of a core exercise for me than really a quad exercise, because I need to stabilize the weights up high. I want this to be a quad exercise, though, so it's changing to regular squats.
    • Standing YTLWI Raises - 2 x 8 - (You can see a video of someone doing something very similar to what I was doing here, though I was standing and leaning forward at the hips about that much and I wasn't holding any weights. I also do the last ones (the I raises) differently.) I'd been doing these as 10 rep sets in Phase 4 without any weights. I'm doing them here as 8 rep sets with a pair of 5 lb weights. Adding that little bit of weight has me back to dripping sweat off my nose as I do these. Which is extremely cool. 
  • Cardio -- I started out with 8 minutes of walking (at almost 4 miles an hour on the treadmill) to get warmed up. Normally, I do ten minutes, but in the interest of time, because I knew it was going to be a crunch, I kept it to 8. I didn't do any Intervals of Insanity for the same time-crunch reason. 
It was a good workout, though it is weird working out in a different space than I'm used to. And while I understand that sometimes it's a necessity, I don't like being pressed for time as I'm working out. Main thing is that it was good. 

I'll make another post soon about Workouts I and J #2. Those were the next workouts. 

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