Yes, this and not wanting to be seen as threatening, and of course IT work ...
Originally Posted by Oldster
I trained as a massage therapist many moons ago, and would have specialised in Structural Integration / myofascial work if I hadn't been able to find work as a researcher again. So I find all of this endlessly fascinating. Most of the ladies I worked on were hunched forward - their shoulders were up, their neck was inched down and forward (a bit like a turtle), and my aim in massage was to release the cramped muscles to enable the shoulders to come back down and the neck go up a little bit more.
Ericholas, if you want some resources about Gaelic / Scotland online, DM me - there's quite a lot happening online.
Rusty9, thanks for the tip re lower rep sets - will talk this over with my PT when we reset my programme.
Next workout this afternoon - I was in Brussels for two days. My hotel was right next to where they were trying to save the Euro. Didn't do any weights, but worked on nutrition and posture. I must try to get a bodyweight routine in place for travelling ...
OK, today's session was a long one. In future, I'd like to try and do two long and one short session per week.
Bench press: 20 x 15, 20 x 10, 20 x 10. I think I will move that to 6 sets of 8 - when working out without a spotter, I'm a bit hesitant to go too high rep
Lat pulldown: 25, 3 x 15. Felt moderate; may move to 30 next time.
Squat: My first time in the squat rack! Wow, that felt good. Started with the empty bar, 20 x 15, then tried 30 x 15. Form broke down, so backed up to 25 x 15. My hams and quads groaned, but a bit of stretching silenced them. I also found that I can go deep enough if I use a very wide stance (child-bearing hips and long legs, anyone?)
Triceps dips: 45 x 15, 45 x 15, 40 x 15. Will start with 40 next time
Bicep curls: 7.5 kg, 3 x 15. Got very tired on the last set, but you should have seen the (transient) pump I got from this
Kettlebell lunges, 8 kg bells each side: 3 x 15
I stretched very thoroughly and deeply, and that felt so good.
Next workout on Wednesday, when I have my PT session; will do some bodyweight stuff at home (hopefully)
Didn't manage to get the bodyweight work in that I wanted to do at home, but we did some more 1 rep sets today.
- Triceps dips: down to 20 kg assistance
- Squats: 45kg x 2
- Deadlifts (stiff legged): 47.5kg x 2
My bodyweight is 64kg. So, squat and deadlift are at 2/3 bodyweight now. (can I have a W00T!)
I am still not quite at parallel in the squat, but I will do what I can to get there. What I have at the moment is a 5/6 squat (I hope), so I "just" need the flexibility to go the further sixth.
Last edited by mariawolters; 12-14-2011 at 02:44 AM.
I'd be interested in us having a look at a vid of your squats. In my experience, flexibility isn't that much of an issue. I can only just touch my toes, yet I can squat to a depth where my bum is one palm's width from the ground. It's usually a matter of adjusting the person's stance to help them achieve the depth, and their having the confidence to go deep.
I agree with Kyle. I've taught many people to squat deeply, many of whom were not flexible at all. I only failed with one, but he was 165kg (364 lbs) at the time. At 120kg (265 lbs) a year later he could squat deep so I suspect the problem was thigh thickness mostly.
One thing that often helps is to hang onto something fixed like a railing or door knob and squat right down. You won't do it the same way you do a real squat but it will convince you that flexibility is not the issue.
I've worked with a fair few ladies, and the easiest way to get them to squat i've found is to tell them to assume the position they would if they were taking a piss in the woods. Might help, might not.
Hi Kyle, hbriem, and Jon,
thanks a lot for your squat suggestions! I'm definitely going to post a vid for critique once I've (ahem) mustered the courage.
Jon, my stance in the situation you mention is actually a pathetic half-squat, and I usually "squat" on the balls of my feet, with my hands on the floor.
I think it'll be the stance - I found that I can get deeper if I squat wider (think childbearing hips-wide), and I am going to practice, practice, practice until I feel secure (and no longer afraid to lose my balance). I think part of this is mental, as well.
Next workout today, which will include squatting - will let you know how I get on!
Give goblet squats a try. They will get you back on your heels, knees and hips wide and help you go deep.
Reporting back in ...
Bent-over rows: 6kg x 3 x 5 (courtesy of Dan John, as rhomboid training and bench press prep)
Bench Press: 22.5 x 15, 20 x 15 x 2 - YES! For the last few reps of each set, I got extra strength by pushing through my legs. Very effective; this not only helped me lift, but also gave me the much-needed confidence that I had reserves I could call on when my pecs got weak
Lat machine: 25kg x 3 x 15 - good work weight, will go up to 30 for at least the first set next time
And now *drumroll* GOBLET SQUATS with a 10 kg dumbbell. Ladies and gentlemen, what a revelation. I did them in front of a mirror, checking my form from the side and back. I got below parallel! I calibrated my stance with a few vertical jumps as recommended by Dan John. Thank you, michele and Marlin!
(Oh yes, 10kg x 2 x 8)
Alternating lunges, 8 kg kettlebell in each hand, 3x15
Followed by - SQUATS. As recommended by Kyle, jon cowie and hbriem, I checked my stance, calibrated how wide I could go, and did a few bodyweight squats hanging off the squat rack. Below parallel, nice. I get under the bar (22.5 kg), and ... inch closer to parallel, going to or below on a few occasions. 15 reps, rack, then 20kg x 2 x 15. Interesting finding: part of the barrier is mental. I mean, I used to be convinced I couldn't squat, right? Thanks to the goblet and bodyweight squats, I now know what it feels like to push upwards through the glutes. And lo and behold, once I was done, my glutes told me that they had been indeed worked; the hams and quads were suspiciously quiet.
Triceps dips: 35kg assistance x 15, 40 kg x 15, 40 x 10.
Biceps curls: 7.5 kg x 3 x 15. Form getting steadily better.
Summary: you people are awesome. Here's to better squatting! Next workout on Sunday. I can't wait to practice my squat again!