Friday, July 30, 2010

Catch-Up Through 7-29-2010

July 29, 2010

3 miles - 19:43 (Eq92Brdway)
OHS - 155# x 7, 160# x 6, 165# 6, 155# x 6
Front Squat - 205# x 7, 185# x 6, 6, 135# x 12

I completely chickened out of an attempt at 180#. I'm just never confident about my ability to push-jerk the weight overhead. The OHS is a very tricky exercise that really requires that your entire body be "up" to get top flight performances. I hit 175# x 10 the previous OHS workout, so was very surprised that 155# as a warm-up was difficult. As always, for me, the shoulder girdle was the weak link. Of course, since, in most gyms in NYC (like NYSC or Equinox) the OHS is actually an exotic exercise, I get lots of compliments for doing a load < bodyweight (180#) from trainers.

Read the above .pdf on the train before getting into the workout. Lots of things to process and I'll detail them in a stream of consciousness way:
  • Snell kept a training log; but, like me wouldn't write down all the workouts because, frankly some of them were too depressing to note. I loved that. One of the few things an Olympian/WR holder will have in common with me. 
  • The interview is wide-ranging and is a conversation. The interviewer (Richard Englehart) doesn't just ask questions but actively participates and is a good runner (not Int'l class, but very, very, good). 
  • It's pretty clear there's not even a an idea of what improves performance. 
  • VO2max is not the holy grail. Snell mentioned that his VO2max didn't change in between '65 an '74. But in '65 he could run a 4 minute (or better) mile. No way he could have done that in '74. The difference? Muscle fibres. 
  • 3 types of muscle fibres - slow twitch, 2a and 2x (fast twitch)
  • 2a fibres are recruited by moderate intensity; but 2x require heavy intensity. Translation, highly anaerobic activity where you're left gasping for breath; so hard interval training or intense weightlifting.
  • Confirmation bias exists everywhere, it's actually all pervasive. 
  • Snell critiques U.S. methods for being so blinkered that they fall back on "the opponents are genetically superior" if Americans don't win. In other words, the U.S. athletic thinking is that "our methods are perfect, failure to produce top results is a condemnation of the talent not of the training." He clearly thinks this is bullshit. He's right. 
  • Snell thinks that top flight talents like Alan Webb should have skipped college. I'm inclined to agree. College athletics is about a lot of things but the focus is always: win now. The focus is never ensuring the long term health of the "student-athlete" career.
I'm just going to quote a passage that speaks to how moderate (NOT low) intensity training can/should improve high intensity performance: 

"So, the way that slow running makes you fast is because if you’re doing a moderate pace – and by moderate pace I’m – my experience is 7 minutes a mile or faster, not slow plodding. You have to be moderate, at least. And you run for a sufficient duration, where if you run long enough, eventually the fibers that are being recruited to handle that pace will become depleted of their glycogen stores, and they can’t continue to contract. So other fibers are recruited to take up the slack, to be able to continue the effort. And so – and we have some evidence of this. It wasn’t done with running, it was actually done in cycling. But eventually you get to these type 2 fibers if you run long enough.
And so, if you say, okay, I’m only a middle distance runner, therefore I’m only going to run 6 miles, then you don’t get much of a training effect at all. But if you go out as far as, say, the 20 miles occasionally that we did, then you’re really getting in and using those fibers."

July 28, 2010

7 miles - 50:33 (7:14.3 mins/mile)
The LifeFitness machines are ridiculously easy to run on. Running 5 miles on a Woodway at 7:30 per mile is much more taxing. I can see that the marginal benefit of running on treadmills is getting lower and lower. Switching to outdoor running 2x a week is going to be the way to go. At least I that gives me an excuse to pop for some cool Oakleys. I like this one:

or this

The half jacket is favored by most runners. I'm not a runner per se, just a guy who uses running to keep the triglycerides low. 


    Tuesday, July 27, 2010

    Workout July 27, 2010

    July 27, 2010

    Starcraft 2 premiered today. Nothing else seems important. Work got done today, but blaargh.
    6 mi - 44:38 (Continental Plaza)

    Monday, July 26, 2010

    Workout 7-26-2010

    July 26, 2010

    2 mi - 13:30, 2.77 mi 20:03 (Precor Eq33)

    Incline Press: 135# x 8, 235# x 3, 205# x 5, 185# x 7, 135# x 9 (1 minute rest max between sets)
    Dips 3 x 6 (30 Mississippi count between sets)
    Dumbbell Flye  + Piston Press 35# x 6 (One set only)

    I'm going to switch to flat bench presses as my main chest movement once I hit 235# x 10 on the incline bench.

    Sunday, July 25, 2010

    Catch-Up through July 25, 2010

    July 25, 2010

    2 mi - 13:50 (Precor Fitness) Eq74
    OHS: 155# x 7, 175# x 10, 155# x 7, 135# x 9
    Front Squat - 225# x 3, 205# x 4, 185# x 5, 135# x 10

    The key to the OHS from a power rack is to start feeling your way into a push-jerk motion so as to get the weight overhead. The execution of the push-jerk is the only way to get weights overhead as they'll be considerably higher weights than the individual is capable of pressing, especially from behind-the-neck. 

    July 24, 2010
    7 mi : 54:12 (Woodway Eq 33)
    Sometimes you just need to run for a long time. It's a good way to sweat out any toxins and excess water. 

    July 23, 2010

    3 mi - 21:19, 3.75 mi - 30 mins
    IBP - 135x 10, 225# x 5*

    *Sometimes you set a one-and-done goal. If you can do that weight for those many reps, you're done. Next time I do IBP the one-and-done will be 235# x 5.

    Wednesday, July 21, 2010

    Catch-Up 7-21-2010

    July 21, 2010

    2 mi - 13:47
    2.52 mi - 20 mins (Woodway 33)

    OHS - 155# x 7, 165# x 10, 135# x 7, 8
    Front Squat - 225# x 2, 205# x 5, 185# x 5, 135# x 10 (no rest between 185# and 135# set)

    I have to start learning how to jerk the weight overhead. Jump squatting and activating the shoulders causes some anxiety and beyond 165# I'm not confident I can get the weight cleared. As it were, on the 2nd set of OHS, the 165# had to be "eased" onto the floor. 

    July 20, 2010

    6 mi - 44:28 (Woodway 33) (that's a PR on 6 hours of sleep too!)
    20 Kettlebell Swings - 40Kg

    July 19, 2010

    2.75 mi 20 mins (Woodway 33)

    Incline Bench Press - 135# x 8, 225# x 3, 185# x 7, 185# x 5, 135# 9
    Close Grip Bench Press - 145# 3, 5

    Sunday, July 18, 2010

    Workout 7-18-2010

    1.25 mi - 8:47 (Woodway EqxPk)

    Not allowed to crank up the speeds above 8.6 mph on the TechnoGym treadmills anymore. I guess at my weight it's too much wear and tear. I might languish from boredom, but I wonder if I can do 8 mph for an hour. Hmm. 

    OHS - 165# 8, 5
    Front Squat - 205x 5, 5, 185# x 8, no rest 135# x 10
    In general I'll rest for 45 sec to 1:30 between each set.

    Traps still hurt from Friday's pull-centric workout. Not sure what happened to my OHS. A few weeks ago I hit 185# x 8. I think I tweaked my lower, left back and that's made my shoulders and the shoulder girdle area less able to stabilize the weight overhead. Fingers crossed. I hit 205# x 10; I jump to 225#.

    Catch-up 7-17-2010


    6 mi (Woodway) : 44:44, personal best on a woodway

    3 mi (Woodway): 20:44 (74th and 2nd, Equinox)
    Clean and Press - 135# x 3, 115#x 6, 95# x 6, 7, 8
    Sumo DL Hi-Pulls 95# x 5, 6, 7, 7, 10

    2 mi - 14:05 (TechnoGym)
    OHS 165 X 6, 6, 135# x 7, 7
    Front Squat 185 x 8, 6