Training Log

Starting Strength in the Real World

Seven Weeks of Starting Strength

by Eric Lowery | April 07, 2020

In the last 11 years, I have survived a round of Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever with a massive DVT and multiple pulmonary embolisms, and later a ruptured appendix (without knowing it), an emergency appendectomy, more DVTs, and another pulmonary embolism. My final diagnosis is that I have an unknown/undeterminable blood clotting disorder. So I hit the jackpot and won a lifetime supply of blood thinner medication. 

All of this led to me getting out of shape, overweight, and with blood pressure creeping up enough to take two low dose blood pressure medications that really didn't do much. My mom and her aunt died of aneurysms (Mom at 52, her aunt in her 30s). Between the two of them, my mom's two full brothers had 6 open heart surgeries and neither of them made it to 60. My 43-year-old cousin just had a triple bypass last Monday at 43 after his second heart attack. 

Fast forward: I just finished week 7 of my NLP. I have missed one session due to a schedule conflict I couldn't change, and have stuck to resting on my rest days and have done everything I can to reasonably follow the program. A month ago I posted that I was ecstatic to deadlift 235 as a lifetime PR. Today, I'm truly shocked at how far I've progressed in 7 total weeks. There's no way I would have accomplished these numbers without Jayne and Matt at Starting Strength Dallas dialing in my form. 

Results from my first 7 weeks of Starting Strength:

  • Deadlift – 175 to 335 lbs
  • Squat – 165 to 265 lbs
  • Bench – 135 to 175 lbs
  • Press – 95 to 127.5 lbs
  • Chest – Lost an inch
  • Waist – Lost an inch
  • Thighs – gained 2 inches
  • Butt – definitely less flat 

But perhaps most important, after two years of not much happening I'm finally seeing a real change in my blood pressure numbers. I've already come off one medication, and today my diastolic was at 80 for the first time I've seen in two years. My systolic was down about 15 points and the dropping trend started about a week ago. I'm looking forward to that continuing. I still have plenty of fat to lose at some point, but just getting stronger has already begun to affect my total health. It really is amazing what 5 pounds a workout can do.

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