2014-06-30 training log

Realized something today…

Based upon Paul Carter’s Strong-15 (LRB365)

Phase 2, Week 1

  • Squats – cycle goal: 325
    • BW x 10
    • BW x 10
    • bar x 5
    • bar x 5
    • 150 x 5
    • 175 x 4
    • 205 x 3
    • 225 x 2
    • 235 x 1
    • 250 x 1
    • 265 x 1
  • Pause Squats
    • 195 x 3
    • 195 x 3
    • 195 x 3
  • Deadlift
    • 165 x 5
    • 205 x 4
    • 250 x 3
    • 290 x 2
    • 330 x 1
    • 350 x 1
    • 365 x 1
  • Deadlift – Back off
    • 290 x 3
    • 290 x 3
  • Leg Curls
    • 40 x 20
    • 40 x 20

Today starts the second phase of the Strong-15 cycle. While the weights went up, the work still felt light. I reckon that’s a good thing at this stage.

I did notice something significant today.

I realized that, when squatting, when I’m down in the hole I lose tightness. If I stay fully tight, really pressing out, Valsalva in full effect, when I get down in the hole there’s a wicked pain in my glutes and hamstrings, on the “rear, outer” portion of my legs from waist to knees. It’s hard to describe, but it happens without fail. What I think has happened is, my body KNOWS this is going to happen, so as I get into the hole my body loosens up, doesn’t press as hard into the belt, doesn’t hold everything as crazy tight, and thus avoids the pain. It’s not a big change… I just have to not be “clenching” as hard, just slack off a bit, but it’s enough — enough to both alleviate any pain and keep me from being fully tight and thus reaping the full benefits of tightness.

It crept up on me during the singles, and I really got it on the last single. I worked to stay uber-tight and it hurt. I then played around with it during the Pause Squats to see what I could discover. I played with my belt height, etc… but no difference in terms of the pain.

What I think it might be? Tightness. As in not flexible enough. When I stretch my hamstrings I usually do it in some sort of “toe-touching” modality. What I think I need instead is laying on my back; keeping my back straight, at a minimum up to trying to fully arch (no rounding); then pull my knee up to my chest. I did some of that after I was done lifting and yes, that was hitting directly to the muscles that were affected. I may just need to do THAT stretch and increase my range of motion there. I can’t say for sure, but I’m going to add that stretch to a daily routine and see how it goes.

Meantime, I just have to remember to cope with the discomfort and cue myself to “increase tightness”. Not just maintain, but to think towards increasing it, because that will help ensure I don’t slip back… at least I’ll maintain, at best I’ll get tighter.

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