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  1. #241
    Registered User Imp81318's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by erickem View Post
    I would advise you give the next few a break also until the pains subside
    Thanks for the advice. Combination of work deadlines and taking care of my sick daughter has kept me out of the gym, and it is probably for the best.

    I did manage to take a couple mile hike last weekend, and I went to interval class Sunday morning. Other than that though I haven't worked out in the actual gym in quite a while. Weight has been keeping pretty steady around 157 pounds which marks a total loss of around 47-48 pounds since I started this journey last February. I'm looking forward to getting back into some semblance of a regular routine and getting back in the gym. I miss my time there quite a bit. It is a really nice stress reliever to start the day at the office feeling good.
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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  2. #242
    Registered User Imp81318's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by GirthRogers View Post
    I really enjoy working out in the morning. I think you'll like it a lot too once you adjust to the schedule.

    Great log, keep it up!
    Thanks, man! I agree, once I adjusted my schedule and got things figure out, I really do enjoy working out first thing in the morning quite a bit. Now I just need to get everyone in the family healthy so I can get back into my normal routine.
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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  3. #243
    Registered User Imp81318's Avatar
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    Interval class on Sunday, 2/11. Had really good energy and intensity. This was the best I've felt in a while, and I think it is a sign that I am finally over my lingering chest cold.

    Today's Workout, Workout A:
    Back Squat, 3x5 - 140lbs
    Bench Press, 3x5 - 85lbs
    Pendlay Rows, 3x8 - 74lbs
    Face Pulls, 3x10 - 47.5lbs
    Superset:
    Calf Raises, 2x15 - 160lbs
    Tricep Extensions, 2x10 - 50lbs


    Finally got back into the gym. Combination of me being sick, my wife being sick, sick kids, and work deadlines has kept me out for the last several weeks, but all of that (except for work deadlines) is behind me now, and it felt great to hit the weights again. Weight is remaining steady at around 157.5 lbs right now, which is a grand total of about 47.5 pounds lost since I started this journey last February. At class on Sunday the trainer suggested I be done losing weight and look to put a few pounds of muscle on. I'm not sure that I entirely agree that I'm ready to go onto a true bulk yet, but ideally I'd like to hit 155 pounds then go into a recomp period until my lifts start to stall, then transition to a very slow bulk. No real specific reason that I'm aiming for 155 pounds other than I weighed right around there one day when I was dehydrated and thought my stomach looked about as flat as I'd like it to. Plus, it would be nice to be able to say that I lost an even 50 pounds.

    My main point of focus right now is just on maintaining a consistent gym schedule. This continues to be my biggest hurdle through everything. I enjoy my time in the gym, it is just the easiest thing to cut when I get busy or am cut short for time.
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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  4. #244
    Registered User lukepeter's Avatar
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    And he is back in the gym...

    47.5 lb is significant - Glad you are remaining in control and on top of things Steve. Its always going to be a challenge fitting regular gym into what appears to be a full schedule (its unfortunate, as an effective human being your time slots fill up very quickly), What you are doing seems to be working just fine for you.
    Transformation Log - http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173294941
    Workouts logged in bodyspace along with weekly progress pics.
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  5. #245
    Registered User Imp81318's Avatar
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    Thanks, Luke. I haven't posted any updated progress pics in a while. One of these mornings I'll think to snap a few pictures when I get up and upload them. It will be good to mark the approximate 1-year mark. For now, yes, I'm finding an acceptable balance of fitting gym time into my schedule as often as possible. Just for fun, I programmed my stats into my scale this morning to see what it said my body fat percentage is. According to my scale, I am around 17% bodyfat, which I think is reasonable based on my photos. The scale has seemed to be fairly accurate when checking first thing in the morning throughout my journey. So I'll take that number as close enough.
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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  6. #246
    4chan ruined me GirthRogers's Avatar
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    The top end of a natural bulk should be 15%. Drop two percent then switch into recomp mode. You'll be in a good position to really pack on some muscle. Once you get to a point you really like, start to cut again until you get to 10%. You'll look like a stud then.

    During the recomp mode, you can't miss workouts or set meal times, so establish a routine that works now while you drop that last two percent.
    What did the water say to the boat?

    Nothing, it just waved. :)
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  7. #247
    Registered User Imp81318's Avatar
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    Today's Workout:

    Workout B:

    Deadlift, 3x8 - 185lbs
    Overhead Press, 3x5 - 60lb barbell
    Leg Curl, 3x5 - 125lbs
    Lat Pull downs 3x10 - 110 lbs
    Superset:
    Hanging leg raises, 2x15
    Bicep Curls, 2x10 - 50 lbs (w/ ez-curl bar)
    ____________________________

    Good workout this morning. I was distracted by my phone throughout the workout so it took longer than normal. Oh well. Intensity felt good and I should be ready to resume my progression next week. Onward and upward.
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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  8. #248
    Registered User Imp81318's Avatar
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    As promised, here are some updated progress pics:

    Before:







    December, 2017 (last update, weight = 161.1 lbs):







    Today, February 15, 2018 (current, weight = 157.6 lbs):




    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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  9. #249
    4chan ruined me GirthRogers's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Imp81318 View Post
    As promised, here are some updated progress pics
    Bro, that is a huge difference! You should be proud. Get a few more pounds off then switch into a hardcore recomp program. This time next year, you'll look freakin' awesome.
    What did the water say to the boat?

    Nothing, it just waved. :)
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  10. #250
    Registered User Imp81318's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by GirthRogers View Post
    Bro, that is a huge difference! You should be proud. Get a few more pounds off then switch into a hardcore recomp program. This time next year, you'll look freakin' awesome.
    Thanks, man! This is the first time in my life I've ever remained committed to fitness for any extended period of time. I feel great and continue to look forward to the next steps in the journey. I've gotten to the point now that going to the gym is something I look forward to working into my schedule instead of something that I force myself to do.

    Today's Workout, Workout A:
    Back Squat, 3x5 - 135lbs
    Bench Press, 3x5 - 85lbs
    Pendlay Rows, 3x8 - 85lbs
    Face Pulls, 3x10 - 37.5lbs
    Superset:
    Calf Raises, 2x15 - 160lbs
    Tricep Extensions, 2x10 - 50lbs


    Good workout this morning. A guy had the squat rack tied up doing shrugs for most of my workout so squats had to wait until the end, hence the slight deload from Monday. I also wanted to video myself and work on form a little bit between sets. Actually felt good and form looked pretty good, so next week I'm going to continue with the progression and bump up to 150. Bench press felt light, so I'm definitely ready for the progression there. Pendlays felt good, next week should be tough but doable with the progression. I backed off on face pulls a bit to work on form after the first set. Felt like I was pulling with my arms more than my back on the first set. After I dropped the weight down, I felt more activation in my back so that felt good too.

    Other than the guy camped out in the rack I had a good workout. When I got done I was hardly sweaty at all, which is unusual for me - I'm guessing it was due to squats not taxing my entire CNS at the beginning of the workout. Going to try to get a run in tomorrow while visiting the in-laws out of town, and then back to the grind on Monday.
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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  11. #251
    Registered User Imp81318's Avatar
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    Today's Workout:

    Workout B:

    Deadlift, 3x8 - 185lbs
    Overhead Press, 3x5 - 65lb barbell
    Leg Curl, 3x8 - 140lbs
    Assisted Pullups 3x8 - 55 lbs assistance
    Superset:
    Ab wheel, 2x15
    Bicep Curls, 2x10 - 50 lbs (w/ ez-curl bar)
    ____________________________

    Another good workout. I just realized that I've had the wrong rep numbers for leg curls and pullups/lat pulldowns in my updates for Workout B all this time. They are corrected with this post. Deadlifts felt really taxing for the first time in a while. Ditto leg curls. Nearly failed the last rep on my last 2 sets, but just barely managed to squeeze it out. Someone had the lat pulldown machine tied up for most of my workout, so I subbed in assisted pullups instead. Took me about the first set and a half to really get my lats engaged, but finished strong. Could've done with less assistance, but I think I would've just relied on my arms more and not gotten as much lat engagement so I'm happy with the level of assistance I used. Since I knew I was relying on my arms more heavily on the pullups I didn't progress weights on the curls, and that ended up being the right choice too.

    Nutritionally, I put on close to 3.5 pounds this weekend according to the scale. Saturday was my wife's cousin's baby shower which the whole family attended and ate wraps, chips, candy, cake, etc. and drank wine throughout the day. Then Sunday morning my FIL made a big pancake breakfast, and last night was capped with a daddy-daughter dance fundraiser for my daughter's daycare with pizza, tater tots, and ice cream. Not surprising the scale was up this morning, but it should drop back off pretty quickly. Looking forward to the week ahead.
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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  12. #252
    Registered User Imp81318's Avatar
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    Today was supposed to be a gym day, but my daughter came down with a fever overnight last night so I'll be home taking care of her all day. With deadlines looming at work, this will most likely mean that I don't get back into the gym again this week. Man I need this cold & flu season to end so I can get into some semblance of a routine. Every time I build up a little bit of momentum in the gym I am forced to take a break for one reason or another. Frustrating.
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  13. #253
    Registered User Imp81318's Avatar
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    Since my wife is home with the sick kiddo today I was able to sneak into the gym early. Got there within 10 minutes of them opening at 6AM. First half of my workout the gym was dead, but by the time I was finishing up I was having to adjust every workout because the equipment was being used. Oh well, at least I was able to get back in the gym with only a one day delay.

    Today's Workout, Workout A:
    Back Squat, 3x5 - 150lbs
    Bench Press, 3x5 - 90lbs
    Pendlay Rows, 3x8 - 90lbs
    Face Pulls, 3x10 - 42.5lbs
    Superset:
    Calf Raises, 2x15 - 170lbs
    Tricep Extensions, 2x10 - 42.5lbs (rope press downs on cable machine rather than my normal skull crushers with ez-curl bar)


    Was barely able to power through the squats. Didn't realize I had inadvertently increased by 15 pounds instead of 10. That'll do it, I suppose. Next week I'll increase by 5 lbs to get back on track. Everything else felt/went good. Debating whether to try to hit the gym tomorrow again, hold off until Saturday morning (decent chance I won't actually be able to make it that day) or just skip the third workout and get back onto my regular routine next week. I am going to do the interval class Sunday morning, so if I workout Saturday that would be 3 consecutive days, but if I workout tomorrow that's back-to-back days of my normal full body routine which is not preferred either.
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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  14. #254
    Registered User Imp81318's Avatar
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    Today's Workout:

    Workout B:

    Deadlift, 3x8 - 185lbs
    Overhead Press, 3x5 - 65lb barbell
    Leg Curl, 3x8 - 140lbs
    Assisted Pullups 3x8 - 55 lbs assistance
    ____________________________

    Today's motto was done is better than perfect. Ended up only getting 2 workouts + a 2.25 mile run in last week so I kept at the same weights today. Should've worked out yesterday, but was home with a sick kiddo again. Everything in my routine was off this morning, so I ended up getting to the gym late and felt rushed throughout my workout. When I got there, one of the regulars was camped out in the squat rack doing overhead presses. Kept moving on to my next exercise waiting for him to clear out, but he stayed camped out in the rack for my entire workout. Finally when I was done with everything else I had to sub in the shoulder press machine for overhead barbell press. Skipped the isolation work at the end due to time constraints. Tonight we'll be eating out for my daughter's birthday dinner (after eating out and having birthday cake all last weekend, and to be followed with another birthday party for her next weekend as well...). I've gone back to having 8oz of almond milk and a scoop of whey protein for breakfast instead of a cup of oatmeal with whey. It doesn't fill me up quite as much and I'm hungry throughout the day, but it saves some calories so hopefully I'll start to see some movement on the scale again soon and I can finally end this cut officially.
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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  15. #255
    Registered User Imp81318's Avatar
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    Today's Workout, Workout A:

    Back Squat, 3x5 - 150lbs
    Bench Press, 3x5 - 90lbs
    Pendlay Rows, 3x8 - 90lbs
    Face Pulls, 3x10 - 42.5lbs
    Superset:
    Calf Raises, 2x15 - 170lbs
    Tricep Extensions, 2x10 - 42.5lbs (rope press downs on cable machine rather than my normal skull crushers with ez-curl bar)

    __________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ _

    Decided to keep weights the same this week as last week since I only got 2 workouts in last week. Everything felt good. Glad I didn't attempt to progress on squats as I struggled through the last 2 reps on each set. I feel like my form is improving, however I still get a bit of forward bar movement from time to time and my knees have a tendency to want to cave in when I get fatigued. Enjoyed the tricep press downs on the machine last week, so I stuck with them again this week. The same guy had the squat rack tied up again doing a variety of exercises, none of which actually required use of the rack. Grrrrr....

    Weight continues to be up a few pounds. Last weekend we had my daughter's birthday party so I ate and drank too many calories, followed by taking her out to dinner for burgers and fries (too much salt and WAY too many calories) Tuesday night. But now I'm back on track and cracking back down on my diet more strictly. We'll have another party for her with her friends this weekend, which will test my willpower, but my goal is to not snack habitually on the food that is sitting out all day long and keep my intake within reason (i.e. at or below maintenance) for the day. We'll see how I make out.
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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  16. #256
    Registered User Imp81318's Avatar
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    Saturday's Workout, Workout B:

    Workout B:

    Deadlift, 3x8 - 185lbs
    Overhead Press, 3x5 - 65lb barbell
    Leg Curl, 3x8 - 140lbs
    Assisted Pullups 3x8 - 55 lbs assistance
    Superset:
    Ab wheel, 2x15
    Bicep Curls, 2x10 - 50 lbs (e-z curl bar)

    Today's Workout, Workout A:

    Back Squat, 3x5 - 155lbs
    Bench Press, 3x5 - 95lbs
    Pendlay Rows, 3x8 - 95lbs
    Face Pulls, 3x10 - 42.5lbs
    Superset:
    Calf Raises, 2x15 - 180lbs
    Tricep Extensions, 2x10 - 42.5lbs (rope press downs on cable machine)

    __________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ _

    Saturday's workout was great, other than getting to the gym an hour before they opened by accident. Oh well, still got it done. Failed on squats today. Form was good on the first 2-3 reps of each set, and I could feel it tending to break down and reps got increasingly more difficult on the last 2 reps of each set, and each set got harder than the last. Final rep of my last set I completely broke down on my descent and nearly fell. Bar tapped the safety arm on the left side, I recovered, stabilized, and managed to stand back up but it was a clear failure of form. I'll try it again next time and hope to fare better. Other than that, the rest of the workout went well.

    Changed up my breakfast a bit this morning - made a simple low carb protein waffle. It was quite delicious and surprisingly filling considering it was essentially the same ingredients I normally eat for breakfast plus one egg but minus a cup of almond milk or oatmeal.
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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  17. #257
    Registered User Imp81318's Avatar
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    Today's Workout, Workout B:

    Deadlift, 3x8 - 195lbs
    Overhead Press, 3x5 - 70lb barbell
    Leg Curl, 3x10 - 145lbs
    Lat Pulldowns 3x8 - 125 lbs assistance
    Superset:
    Ab wheel, 2x15
    Bicep Curls, 2x10 - 55 lbs (e-z curl bar)
    ________________________________________________

    Finally was able to successfully progress past my 50 lb limit on curls. Everything else progressed nicely as well. Looking forward to breaking the 200lb mark on deadlifts next week.
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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  18. #258
    Registered User Imp81318's Avatar
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    Today's Workout, Workout A:

    Back Squat, 3x5 - 155lbs
    Bench Press, 3x5 - 95lbs
    Pendlay Rows, 3x8 - 95lbs
    Face Pulls, 3x10 - 42.5lbs
    Superset:
    Calf Raises, 2x15 - 180lbs
    Tricep Extensions, 2x10 - 42.5lbs (rope press downs on cable machine)

    __________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ _

    Had to postpone my normal Friday workout until this morning due to busy schedule on Friday. Had a great workout though. Blasted through the squats with relative ease compared to Monday. Everything else felt good as well. Weight was also down a pound this morning, so things are looking up on all fronts. It is going to be sunny and mild today and tomorrow so I should be able to get outdoors a bit to either do yard work or play with the kids too. Have a great weekend everybody!
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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  19. #259
    4chan ruined me GirthRogers's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Imp81318 View Post
    Had a great workout though. Blasted through the squats with relative ease compared to Monday.
    If you feel like switching it up, try front squats. Those will rock your world.

    Beyond that, you are doing great, keep going!
    What did the water say to the boat?

    Nothing, it just waved. :)
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  20. #260
    Registered User Imp81318's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by GirthRogers View Post
    If you feel like switching it up, try front squats. Those will rock your world.

    Beyond that, you are doing great, keep going!
    Thanks for the suggestion! I toyed around with front squats a couple of time when I first started out a year or so ago. I am kind of finicky about stuff around my neck and felt like the bar was choking me. I may work them into my routine at some point, but for now I am enjoying the workout program as I'm doing it and I am getting great motivation out of being able to follow the progression week-to-week when I remain disciplined at getting into the gym consistently.


    Today's Workout, Workout B:

    Deadlift, 3x8 - 205lbs
    Overhead Press, 3x5 - 75lb barbell
    Leg Curl, 3x8 - 155lbs
    Lat Pulldowns 3x8 - 130 lbs assistance
    Superset:
    Ab wheel, 2x15
    Bicep Curls, 2x10 - 55 lbs (e-z curl bar)
    ________________________________________________

    Deadlifts were taxing, but it felt great to push through and successfully complete all three sets. I think I am getting close to needing to deload & reset on multiple lifts - squats, deadlifts (barely managed to get through this week), & overhead press namely, but I've thought that before and once I pushed through the near-breaking-point I was able to continue my progressions so we'll see how it all pans out. Happy to have broken the 200 pound mark on my first lift. Next minor milestone is to get my bench press into triple digits on Wednesday.

    I also attended class yesterday, and had a really good workout. I really felt like I had more power throughout the class. Pushups seemed easier, didn't get winded as badly, had more drive & motivation, etc. Not sure if it was just a good day or if I really noticed the progress I've made all of a sudden. My unassisted pullup number was down a bit from what I've typically been able to do, but I didn't have a rest day before the class and I can, somewhat suddenly, feel much better lat engagement when doing them. I can also really feel my lats firing on the lat pulldown machine much more today than I have in previous workouts. It has been interesting to me to be able to see how, as I have begun to develop my muscles, over time I have been able to start targeting specific muscles more and I've gotten more in tune with how my body is working.

    Nutritionally, I had way too much fun this weekend. Had friends over for dinner Saturday night which turned into too many calories eaten and drank. Was great to relax and laugh harder than I have in a looong time though and I have no regrets. Other than that, I've been doing a pretty good job of limiting my intake throughout the day. I pack basically the same food for the workday as I've been eating the entire time I've been cutting but I'm allowing myself a bit bigger portions at dinner but nothing that should be pushing me into surplus mode. And then it happens - we put the kids to bed and I start cleaning up the kitchen and finish my daughter's potatoes or rice or steak or whatever and then we sit down to relax before going to bed and I grab a bag of pretzels. I'm doing a good job of limiting my portions of these snacks most nights, but I know that they are unnecessary and right now they're the biggest hurdle keeping me from dropping these last 5 pounds. I have decided that, as of today, I am done with all of this casual snacking until I decide that I am officially done with my cut, and that will not happen until my 7-day average weight is 155 pounds and I have lost a full 50 pounds. If I feel the need for a snack in the evening I'll go back to having plain celery (which I happen to LOVE for some reason) and/or sunflower seeds like I did at the height of my cut.
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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  21. #261
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    Had really good portion control at dinner last night. Our meal was heavier on carbs and a bit lower on protein, but I'm pretty confident I stayed well below maintenance for the day. Woke up hungry this morning. Ate my breakfast and morning snack before 8:00. Ate part of my lunch as a morning snack around 9, and was still hungry so I ate my lunch around 10:30. Ate my afternoon snack around 11:30 (normally don't eat it until 2). Hunger hasn't been as bad this afternoon. I take this all as a good sign that I'm in a solid deficit once again. Fish tacos for dinner tonight, so it will be a nice low-carb, high-protein meal (I only eat 1 or 2 small tortillas and the rest of the fish and veggies as a salad). Onward and upward, folks!
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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  22. #262
    Registered User lukepeter's Avatar
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    You are making great progress on your lifts Steve, I think its a bit of an eye opener when you compare where you are now to where you were when you started - even on a deficit you have improved dramatically in strength. You may not realise it, since your benchmark is often the others in the gym, but lifters, even casuals like us, are actually far stronger than the majority of the population. This translates into pretty much every physical task being just that little bit easier.
    Transformation Log - http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173294941
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  23. #263
    Registered User Imp81318's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by lukepeter View Post
    You are making great progress on your lifts Steve, I think its a bit of an eye opener when you compare where you are now to where you were when you started - even on a deficit you have improved dramatically in strength. You may not realise it, since your benchmark is often the others in the gym, but lifters, even casuals like us, are actually far stronger than the majority of the population. This translates into pretty much every physical task being just that little bit easier.
    Great idea to look back at where my lifts started and compare to where I'm at today, and a much needed reminder this morning following yesterday's workout. I'll get into that more below, but thanks for the timely words of wisdom and perspective Luke! And I find it laughable that you put the two of us in the same category of lifters/atheletes.


    March 15, 2018 Workout, Workout A:

    Back Squat, 3x5 - 165lbs
    Bench Press, 3x5 - 100lbs
    Pendlay Rows, 3x8 - 100lbs
    Face Pulls, 3x10 - 42.5lbs

    __________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ _

    Had a busy morning at work so I couldn't get to the gym first thing in the morning like I normally do and didn't think I'd be able to work out at all yesterday due to my schedule. Tough day in the office resulting in me feeling a need to blow off some stress before picking the kids up for fear that they'd suffer from my issues at work. So I ducked out of the office a bit early and hit the gym before picking them up. I think this was a good move because I really felt so much better by the time I was done with the workout, but I was rushed throughout the workout and I felt the effects of that time crunch in a bad way. The motto for yesterday's workout was absolutely "done is better than perfect." It started off with me kind of rushing through my warmup sets on squats. I skipped my first ultra-light warmup set that I normally do with an empty bar just to get the feel of the movement down and jumped into my loaded warmup set. I could feel myself rushing through the reps and my form was all over the place, but I didn't worry too much about it assuming I'd just tighten everything up for the working sets. In each working I felt OK for the first rep or two, but then everything would fall apart - I just couldn't brace my core tightly enough, I could feel my back rounding at the bottom of my squats, and several times I dipped below parallel and/or felt the bar drifting forward as I stood back up. Barely made it through the first set, second set felt a little bit better, and the bar felt lighter on the third set but my form got worse and worse with each progressive set. It got to the point that I stopped my last rep well above parallel, racked the bar and called it done. This really kind of surprised me because I was so pumped after having crushed 155 in my last squat day.

    Similar issues carried over into the rest of my workouts as well. Bench and pendlay row form actually improved as I progressed through my working sets, but it was never completely locked in. Face pulls were engaging my arms much more than my shoulders, even on my warmup set. By the time I finished the face pulls I had run out of time so I skipped the iso work and ran to get my daughter. I got through the entire workout, but I'm considering it a fail on every lift except for pendlay rows which didn't feel too bad. I'm going to repeat with the same weights for both workouts next week and hope that things feel better. At this point I'm chalking it up to just my first really bad day in the gym, but by the end of the workout I felt really dejected and like I hadn't done anything right. Frustrating to be sure.

    And then on the other side of this equation the scale has been remarkably consistent for the last week or so. So consistent, in fact, that I've actually been starting to wonder if the batteries are low and it isn't reading accurately. According to the scale my weight has fluctuated between 159.8 and 160.2 nearly every single day for a week. But on the plus side, I feel like there have been some minor visual changes in my body so I'm confident I'm continuing to make progress even if it isn't showing up on the scale. I'd just really like to hit that 50 pounds lost mark psychologically.
    Last edited by Imp81318; 03-15-2018 at 05:52 AM.
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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  24. #264
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    March 19th Workout, Workout B:

    Deadlift, 3x8 - 205lbs
    Overhead Press, 3x5 - 75lb barbell
    Leg Curl, 3x8 - 155lbs
    Lat Pulldowns 3x8 - 130 lbs assistance
    Superset:
    Ab wheel, 2x15
    Bicep Curls, 2x10 - 55 lbs (e-z curl bar)
    ________________________________________________

    Missed Friday's workout and wasn't able to make it up over the weekend. Couldn't attend class on Sunday either, but I did a Rocky-style workout throughout the weekend. Helped my dad hang 12-ft sheets of drywall on a ceiling and cut down trees/cleared brush to make a food plot on Saturday and then spent a couple of hours splitting firewood on Sunday. Not incredibly physically taxing, but I kept myself on the move and kept my TDEE up throughout the weekend, and it felt good to accomplish stuff outside.

    For this morning's workout, I kept the weights the same as last Monday since I skipped Friday's workout and everything felt so heavy last week. Felt about the same this week, but I look forward to hitting all 3 workouts so I can progress weights next week. I'm a bit worried about squats on Wednesday and am already preparing myself mentally for the possibility of failure and a need to reset. Last week I think the big issue was an inability to properly brace my core - for whatever reason, I just didn't have the core strength to maintain proper form. I'm hoping that it was an anomaly and this week goes better, but if not the reset will give me opportunity to build my core up to where it needs to be for my next attempt.

    Weight-wise, I am making a bit of progress once again. Showing 0.5 pounds of loss in the last week, and that is with a high weigh-in due to water retention on Saturday. I expect my number to continue to drop throughout the week.
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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  25. #265
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    March 21, 2018 Workout, Workout A:

    Back Squat, 3x5 - 165lbs
    Bench Press, 3x5 - 100lbs
    Pendlay Rows, 3x8 - 100lbs
    Face Pulls, 3x10 - 42.5lbs

    __________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ ___

    Frustrating start to my day. I has been snowing since yesterday, so I woke up early figuring schools would be closed and I could get to the gym earlier than normal. Checked websites, nothing posted, so I went back to bed for another half hour. Checked website again, and both my son's district and my wife's were closed. By that point, I was running later than I planned but still should've been able to get a fairly early start. Everything just seemed to move slowly this morning, took a long shower, spaced out for a bit in the middle of making my lunch, etc. So I got to the gym around 7 instead of 6 like I had planned. No biggie, it was dead because of the weather anyway. Head to the squat rack, and a trainer had a client working there. Decided to swap my order and start with bench, but didn't want to push squats any later because I was already anticipating potential failure since I failed on the same weight last week. While benching, I heard the trainer mention that they were doing a 20 minute squat workout. Dammit. So I jumped over the treadmill for a 10 minute jog while I waited. Headed back over to the rack and another guy was in it. Fortunately, he worked fairly quickly, but this all pushed my workout much later than I wanted. Finally, it was my turn in the rack. Warmup sets didn't feel great - a fair amount of tightness in my hip flexors limited mobility on my first set, loosened a bit but was still there on my second warmup set. Then it was time for working sets. Loaded the bar up and it felt like it took all I had to unrack it. I thought there was no way I was going to pull this off. Braced my core, and proceeded with the set. My hips, especially interior flexors, were tight but the set went off with good form. Rested, and pounded through the next 2 sets. Skipped the iso work at the end of the workout due to time constraints again, but it felt great to get through it with good form and no failure, and it totally reset my mood for the day. Everything else seemed to go just a little bit easier throughout the workout, and I'm feeling great about life in general right now. I definitely felt those squats as I was walking up the stairs to my office a few minutes ago though...

    Scale read 157.2 pounds this morning. Nice to see the downward trend on the scale again, and I'm looking forward to hitting my final goal of 155 lbs. Even in the last month or two when the scale hasn't been moving I've noticed changes in my body indicative of progress, and when I hit a day like today with reduced water weight I am noticeably more lean than I was, say, a month or so ago under similar conditions.
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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    Registered User Imp81318's Avatar
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    It is officially spring time here in PA, but we had a nice little 9.5 inches of onion snow yesterday, so I left work early yesterday to go home and play with the kids. Had a ton of fun sledding, throwing snowballs, etc. And on the even better side, my old snow pants from high school & college fit me perfectly! I haven't been able to wear those pants in a loooooong time. Felt awesome!
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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    March 23 Workout, Workout B:

    Deadlift, 3x8 - 205lbs
    Overhead Press, 3x5 - 75lb barbell
    Leg Curl, 3x8 - 155lbs
    Lat Pulldowns 3x8 - 130 lbs assistance
    Superset:
    Ab wheel, 2x15
    Bicep Curls, 2x10 - 55 lbs (e-z curl bar)
    ________________________________________________

    Same workout as Monday, EXCEPT I subbed in full body weight chin-ups for the lat pulldowns, figuring I'd do as many chinups as I could to start each set and finish the set off with lat pulldowns. I also decided to superset the leg curls and chinups/lat pulldowns to save a bit of time. I was expecting to get around 2-3 chinups on each set, maybe 4 on the first set. First set I did 6 straight, took a brief 10 second rest and finished the set with 2 more chinups. That is BY FAR the most I've ever been able to do in my life. Second set was about the same, but 5 then 3 more to finish after a brief rest. Third set I got to 4, rested for 10 seconds, and maxed out after 2 more so I finished off the set with 2 reps on the lat pulldown. I could feel the last 2 reps really engaged my shoulders and biceps more as my lats were fatigued by that point which I feared would show up in my curls later on. And it did - first set of curls went fine, but on the second set I failed after my 8th rep. Another guy at the gym offered to help me lift the curl bar so I could lower it for a negative, which I declined accepting my defeat and riding the high of the chinup success. I called it a workout and went to the locker room and got changed for work. As I was getting dressed, I started to get more and more frustrated by the failure on curls. So after I got dressed I took my bag and coat over to the preacher bench, loaded the bar back up, and finished my last 2 reps to cap off the set. I just decided I wasn't going to end that workout on a failed set. Busting out those chinups just felt oh so great! Have a wonderful weekend everyone!
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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    Registered User Imp81318's Avatar
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    3/26/18 Workout, Workout A:

    Back Squat, 3x5 - 175lbs
    Bench Press, 3x5 - 105lbs
    Pendlay Rows, 3x8 - 105lbs
    Face Pulls, 3x10 - 42.5lbs
    Superset:
    Calf Raises, 2x15 - 135lbs
    Tricep Extensions, 2x10 - 42.5lbs (rope press downs on cable machine)

    __________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ _

    Good workout this morning. Had trouble getting out of bed this morning, but once I was up and awake I felt great for some odd reason. Workout went well and all lifts progressed on schedule, even squats. Also made it to interval class yesterday morning and had a good workout there as well. Followed that up with working on installing a drop ceiling in our basement bathroom for a few hours in the afternoon and spent the rest of the day enjoying time with the family. Had a really nice weekend overall including too much fun with friends Saturday afternoon/night. I think I'm getting over the cold that I've been fighting for the last 4 or 5 days too, so that is a plus as well.

    I also think that I made some plans/goals for myself in terms of physical fitness. I have never wanted, nor do I currently aspire to be a bodybuilder. I have always viewed my venture and interest in physical fitness as a means to losing fat, getting healthier, and improving what I call "functional fitness" or my ability to perform routine tasks like yard work, home improvement/maintenance projects, playing with the kids, carrying kids, moving furniture, etc with increased ease and less physical demand on my body (i.e. do these things without getting exhausted by doing them. Improvement in ability to play sports at family gatherings, swim longer distances, etc. is also part of that goal as well. As my lifts and improved on my my current body building style workout I have continued to remain focused on these primary goals. And with that in mind, I have always viewed this current workout program to be a means to establish a solid base level of strength/muscle/fitness from which I can continue to improve my "functional fitness". I have decided, as of this morning, that I am going to set some "benchmark" lift values/goals at which point I will consider myself to have an acceptable base level of strength. Once I achieve these goals I am going to switch my workout program and style from the current bodybuilding routine to something geared more toward "functional fitness" like an interval training program or something that incorporates both cardio and strength training simultaneously. The strength benchmarks that I set somewhat randomly this morning are:

    Deadlift 300 lbs
    Squat 200 lbs
    Bench Press Body weight (i.e. ~155-160 pounds).

    I expect to hit my benchmark on squats first, followed by deadlifts and bench press. Based on my current progressions, assuming no setbacks/resets I will reach these milestones in around 10 weeks or so. I have started at programs to switch to and, while I am not yet set on any one program I am looking at crossfit and Brute Force Training. Both of these offer daily workouts that are varied and incorporate cardio and strength/endurance training in a variety of ways and combinations. Brute Force is geared toward training with sandbags, but most if not all of the movements can be modified to accommodate use of dumbbells/barbells in a gym. Or, if I like the program, I might also buy a set of sandbags so I can work out at home. It would be much less expensive than buying an entire set of weights or an annual gym membership. But those are decisions for later. If anyone reading this knows of any other workout programs that are similar to these in their focus on combining strength and cardio in more dynamic/athletic styles of training, I'd be interested in hearing your recommendations.
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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  29. #269
    Registered User lukepeter's Avatar
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    I started to smile around half way though this last post, and was in a broad grin by the end

    This whole thing, finess, lifting etc. kind of sneaks up on you as you progress. Can you imagine presenting those goals to the Steve that started this log? I can't really help with crossfit style program recommendations - my training always used to be a supplement to whatever sport I was playing at the time, or now as a means to hold on to some lean mass while I shed fat, but I would be interested in what you come up with and transition into. Ideally, something with an element of fun involved, that makes progression seem less tedious than hanging additional weights onto a bar and moving it up and down...
    Transformation Log - http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173294941
    Workouts logged in bodyspace along with weekly progress pics.
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  30. #270
    Registered User Imp81318's Avatar
    Join Date: Jan 2017
    Age: 36
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    Imp81318 is offline
    Originally Posted by lukepeter View Post
    I started to smile around half way though this last post, and was in a broad grin by the end

    This whole thing, finess, lifting etc. kind of sneaks up on you as you progress. Can you imagine presenting those goals to the Steve that started this log? I can't really help with crossfit style program recommendations - my training always used to be a supplement to whatever sport I was playing at the time, or now as a means to hold on to some lean mass while I shed fat, but I would be interested in what you come up with and transition into. Ideally, something with an element of fun involved, that makes progression seem less tedious than hanging additional weights onto a bar and moving it up and down...
    Thanks, Luke. Yeah, it amazes me how my entire outlook on fitness and health has changed in the last year. I have come so far, and yet it seems the farther I progress, the more I want to continue progressing. Lifting progressively heavier weights gives me a great feeling and measure progress, but it the functional stuff that really makes me proud of my progress - (spoiler alert for below!) doing 3 sets of chinups in my workout this morning for example. And yes, while I thoroughly enjoy my workouts right now I definitely want something more varied and 'fun'. For me, 'fun' is something more similar to the Sunday morning interval training class I attend which has a lot more dynamic movements like box jumps, farmer carries, etc mixed in with conventional presses and pulls. I have an idea of what I want the program to be, I just feel like I need to find an actual program to give me varied daily workouts or else I'll end up doing the same stuff day after day and it will lose the 'fun' element I'm looking for.

    On to the regularly scheduled update...


    March 28 Workout, Workout B:

    Deadlift, 3x8 - 215lbs
    Overhead Press, 3x5 - 35lb dumbbell each hand
    Leg Curl, 3x8 - 160lbs
    Chin Ups 3x8 - Bodyweight
    Superset:
    Hanging leg raises, 2x15
    Bicep Curls, 2x10 - 55 lbs (e-z curl bar)
    ________________________________________________

    Great workout. Deadlifts were heavy and taxing, but gone them done. Weight is really starting to tax my grip and hurt my hands with conventional double overhand grip. First 2 sets I did with overhand grip, third set I used mixed grip and switched my hands after 3 reps since I nearly dropped the bar on the last rep of my 2nd set. Hands still hurt a bit an hour and a half after deads. Dry skin sucks.

    The rack was tied up by a trainer again today so I had to improvise and use dumbbells for my OHP instead of the barbell. Scheduled barbell weight was 80 pounds, so I decided to try a 35 lb dumbbell in each hand, and I think that was the right weight. I got through each set, but I could really feel the extra taxation on my biceps, triceps, and all through my back to stabilize the weight.

    Leg curls were leg curls. My legs went from straight to bent back to straight again and the weight rode up and down on the rails. Probably the single exercise I get the least enjoyment out of doing, but I understand its purpose.

    Completely subbed chin ups for lat pulldowns today. Completed 3 sets of 8 reps successfully with only 1 quick (5-10 second) break to catch my breath during each set. Felt great to complete all 3 sets, next step is to complete all 3 sets without needing the break for rest. Last few reps of each set really fried my biceps, which were already taxed from OHP. Cannot believe I can do 3 sets of 8 chinups.

    Subbed in hanging leg raises for ab wheel because I just haven't been feeling like the ab wheel has been burning as much lately. Good decision - I could really feel the activation of my abs again. I suppose my body had gotten a bit used to the ab wheel motion. I do feel like maybe I should do some more rotational work to target the obliques, so maybe that will be on the docket for next week.

    Managed to complete both sets of bicep curls despite all of the extra activation of my biceps during earlier exercises. Very happy about that.

    It does not look like I am going to be able to work out Friday or Monday due to travel plans for the holidays this weekend. But that's OK - life is a priority. I'll try to find time for a run or two over the weekend if the weather is decent.
    My fat loss log: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173571151
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