One week down, a few to go! Week 2 of training was more fun than the last because I felt even more challenged. I am feeling really good about how efficient high quality weight training is. I know Erin would probably love me to be a client for life, but I also feel like she is “teaching a woman to fish” and I am absorbing new exercises to keep in my back pocket for when I’m out on my own.
Weight training has always been hard for me to do on my own. I’m really good at doing 15 minutes and making my muscles burn – a little – but I’m really bad at thinking up exercise that really challenge me. Erin is pushing me to the limit, so I hope I can carry that with me when I’m on my own.
Week 2 – Upper Body
upper body: week 2 [18-20 reps]
- cable rope high row – 50lbs x 18 x 2
- freemotion low to high chest fly – 10lbs x 10 + 15lbs x 8 | 13lbs x 18
- slider mountain climbers – bodyweight x 30s | bodyweight x 45s
- marine core pushups – bodyweight x 18 x 2
- incline bench hammer curls – 12.5lbs x 14 | 10 x 8
- decline bench abs with medicine ball drop – 8 x 18
We started with upper body this week and I was glad since I had done a lot of lower body work in the few days before in classes (cycle, yoga and things). I was actually having a pretty bad morning thus far when I arrived – Mazen had been particularly testy and getting out of the house by 8:30am was a challenge. But I made it, and Erin greeted me with 2 laps around the track. They were actually really refreshing and reset my buttons for the workout ahead.
We started with the most challenging exercise we’ve done so far – a back row done in an air squat. (It’s really hard for me to describe everything we do because I’m not all that familiar with the lingo!). We used a really heavy weight and I could barely finish! I kept breathing though, and did fine.
My competitive side came out when Erin had me do 18 Marine Corps pushups – the kind where you dip under an imaginary bar. She told me I could take a break at 10, but I kept going and completed all 18 in a row not just the first time but our second rep too. I found them easier than traditional pushups because the core isn’t as activated.
I have told Erin that my stabilizing muscles often give out before the ones I’m working on. Like in traditional pushups, my core tires before my shoulders do. My back tires before my glutes in squats. Or in lunges my toes start to hurt before my quads do. We are trying to figure this out, and Erin is doing a good job of choosing exercises that are challenging and multipurpose.
By the end of our session I was pretty tired. I didn’t really get out of breath, yet I felt as tired as if I had done cardio for 30 minutes. This must be the magic of weights!
Week 2 – Lower Body
We took a few photos this time! Although they’re anything but crisp – I was busy working!
lower body: week 2 [18-20 reps]
- oly bar full sit to stand – oly bar x 20 (4 risers) | oly bar x 20 (3 risers) | ATG squat – oly bar x 10
- weighted full sit up – 10lbs x 10 flat x 10 crossed legs | 15lbs x 18 crossed legs
- single leg squat off step – bodyweight x 18R/L (#4)
- TRX hamstring 3x threat – bodyweight x 18
- clamshells – bodyweight x 5 each R/L
- TRX plank with open/close legs – bodyweight x 20
Today’s lower body workout was our hardest yet. I used to (as of 2 weeks ago) think that lower body exercises were a lot easier than upper body – perhaps because I do a lot of running and things and my lower body is in shape. But when you really challenge those big muscles you feel it from head to toe! I was wishing I was working a tiny tricep in the middle of this workout : )
I also broke a sweat this time (It’s really hard to get me to sweat!), and felt legitimately tired at the end. We ended with the hardest exercise yet – killer hamstring curls using the TRX equipment. I could barely finish my 18 reps of these they hurt my hamstrings so badly!
Legs in and out on the suspended hooks –
I’m feeling really good about this program! I asked Erin if she thought I was doing enough to really gain strength and muscle and she said absolutely since our program is in addition to all the other classes I do throughout the week (like 2x Athletic Conditioning, which includes a fair amount of strength). We are also headed into heavier weight territory in the next few weeks, so I have a feeling we’re just getting started!