return to deadlifts!

Week IX, Workout B

Wednesday morning I was up and raring to go; got there early, got an early start, and had a decent workout. My first post-surgery heavy pulling day! I finally did some two handed deadlifts. They felt great and I have begun my new linear progression.

Warm-Up: 500 meter row, 1:50.1, s/m 22, res. 7.

Hip and Shoulder Mobility

Jump Rope: 1000 single unders (10 x 100, alternating sets with sets chosen from among the following sets)

Forearm/Wrist Rehab: (a) pronated wrist curls w/ DBs: 10 x 5s / 10 x 8s / 10 x 10s w/ FatGripz / 4 x 15 x 5s. (b) 3 x 10 x 10lb FatGripz DBs: Supinated Wrist Curls; Hammer Curls; Triceps Extension; High Pulls; Shoulder Press; Curls; Bench Press; Side Delts

Push-Ups w/ 3 point PVC contact: 2, 2, 2, 2, 2

Chin-Ups w/ Orange Band: 2, 1, 1, 1, 1

Fat Grip Bar DEADLIFT: 3 x 20 lbs / 3 x 40 lbs / 3 x 60 lbs / 3 x 80 lbs / 5 x 100 lbs. This felt awesome. 120 lbs next week, and 20 lbs per week until further notice.

Hang Snatch: 3 x 5 x 10kg

Good workout.

wednesday squats and an update on my shoulder pain

Week VII, Workout B.

Feeling much more rested on Wednesday I got up super early (4:30 am) and made it to the gym by about 5:20; got most of my workout in before Mike and Lauren arrived.

Warm Up: Row 500m, Res: 7, s/m: 16-18, Time: 2:10; Jump-Rope about 200 single unders; Hip/Leg Mobility.

Squats (alternating with shoulder mobility sets, written just below): 5 x 45, 3 x 95, 3 x 135, 1 x 185, 5 x 190, 5 x 190, 8 x 190 (f on 9). I found that I had to push harder on this than I expected. I think maybe the interval of Friday to Wednesday for heavy squats is TOO long, by at least one day. I missed the optimum window for taking advantage of supercompensation. But I still got my sets and 8 x 190 is technically a PR. This is with body weight of 192, as of Wednesday morning.

Shoulder Mobility: dislocates, “spiders”, rotations.

Bilateral Wrist/Forearm Rehab: 3 x 12 x 5 lb FGDBs: pronated and supinated wrist curls; shrugs; hammer curls & triceps extensions; reverse curls & side delt raises; 400 meter waiter’s walk.

In keeping with my discovery last day that I can perform lightweight barbell movements with both hands, I took our heavy kid’s bar (10kg) and did the following:

Hang Power Cleans: 3 x 5 x 10kg

Hang Power Snatches: 3 x 5 x 10kg

Finally, Push-Ups. Time to start adding volume in these. They are feeling ok!

Push Ups: 3 x 1.

Update on My Right Shoulder Pain

So… I figured out what happened to my right shoulder.

Things improved markedly starting on Monday. I did multiple sets of shoulder mobility exercises Monday through Wednesday morning and kept feeling more and more life in my joint. The shoulder is still sore as all get out. But I came to realize that it wasn’t some piddly little set of low-weight high volume bench presses or deltoid raises that had screwed my shoulder up. After everything shifted back into place, the pain localized, and this triggered my memory. And my common sense.

The localized pain sits more or less on the protuberances of the bones on top of the shoulder: the distal clavicle, the Acromion process, and maybe the Coracoid process. The tissues between, among, and under all these protuberances is also quite sore and complains alot during various movements.

It was while I was contemplating why these bones and tissues on top of my shoulder might hurt, I finally remembered something I had done on Saturday that might have aggravated them.

Oops! On Saturday, while helping T-Bone reorganize the gym, I twice moved around the giant strongman competition implement called “the yoke.” I found out this week that this thing weighs about 150 lbs. And I did not balance this thing properly on my back, as in a walking back squat. I just put it all on one shoulder, the right side, hoisted it carelessly, and moved it around.

This yoke did feel uncomfortable while carrying it; there was intense pressure placed through the tendons of my trapezius muscles onto the distal end of the Clavicle, which in turn was pressed down, affecting the so-called “Acromioclavicular joint” and the “Acromial bursa” beneath it. The pressure would have affected the Coracoacromial, Superior Transverse Scapular, and Coracoclavicular ligaments.

To put a less fine point on it: this point-specific weighted compression probably displaced and bruised some shit, and basically messed stuff up. Definitely stretched and maybe lightly tore some shit. The good news is, I think, this is an eminently recoverable injury… it will be history after two weeks. And I’ve learned a lesson… and some anatomy… for my trouble.

You gotta be careful, Baldwin!

squat progress

Friday I showed up early and got in a decent workout. I’m having a bit of a hard time pacing myself effectively through my available training window; I am often supervising (or at least consulting about) the training of two other trainees during my period. Be that as it may, I’ve been making progress with the squat, am enjoying being able to row again, and in general doing the best I can given the limitations that have been imposed on me by recovery from a broken left forearm! It’s been 8 weeks. I anticipate another 10 weeks before I return to a “normal” training routine, and then, I suppose I will have to work my way back up to actually using heavy weights on anything involving pulling or pushing with my left arm.

Week VI, Workout C

Warm-Up: Row 500m Res 7 S/M 21-23 Time: 2:10. 210 single unders w/ jumprope, in one continuous set. Shoulder mobility.

Bilateral Forearm/Wrist Rehab Work: 3 x 10 x 5 lb FatGripz dumbbells: supinated & pronated wrist curls; hammer curls and bent over rows; curls and high pulls and shrugs; shoulder press and deltoid reverse flyes; bench press and side delt raises; forearm pronation and supination.

Back Squat w/ One Arm (Right): 10 x 45, 3 x 135; 2 x 5 x 185; 1 x 10 x 185 (PR). This was awesome. Very hard. It left me feeling quite spent afterwards! One of those on-line “theoretical one rep max calculators” told me later that this corresponds to a theoretical one rep max of 247. But I have no intention of testing my 1 RM until mid December. I’ll be going back to using both hands and I will CRUSH this number.

One Arm (Right) DB Press: 3 x 5 x 35.

One Arm (Right) DB Bench Press: 3 x 5 x 55.

“Conditioning”: Row 1000m, Res 7, S/M 23, Time: 3:50. Corresponding to a 500m split of 1:55, and a several second improvement over last time. I am loving rowing again.

another ohs pr

Wednesday AM at ASC I met up with Brian at 6:15. A quick warm up row (500 meters, 1:47, reverse splits from 2:03 to 1:33) followed by minimal mobility work, and we set out to do some Overhead Squats.

Overhead Squats: 10 x 45 / 5 x 75 / 3 x 100 / 3 x 120 / 1 x 140 / f x 150 / 1 x 150 (PR). Volume: 1,775.

That’s right: that’s my third Wednesday in a row for a PR in overhead squat. Wednesdays are OHS PR day!

That was just supposed to be for starters, but we took our time, and then, when we got to our singles, we got interrupted by Coach Dan; it was time to unload his solid wood 6×8 platform. Holy cow.

All things considered, the workout ended up being a lot less volume than I planned, and no conditioning work either. Which leaves me with no choice but to do something more later today, either by going back to the gym or perhaps doing something else entirely.

wednesday OHS pr

Afternoon Training at ASC:

Warm Up: 500 meter row (1:41). Besides that it was a freaking super hot day. Mobility. Light db shoulder press reps (2 x 10 x 20 lb dbs)

Deadlift: 10 x 45 / 5 x 135 / 3 x 5 x 205. Volume: 3,075.

Back Squat: 10 x 45 / 3 x 5 x 160. High Bar. Volume: 2,400.

Overhead Squat: 5 x 65 / 3 x 95 / 3 x 115 / 1 x 135 / 2 x 145 (PR). Yeah, two reps. I liked the first one so much I did a second one too! Volume: 1,120.

Front Squat 4 x 80% Max Reps and 500 meter Row

Strength: Front Squat

Front Squat 4 x 80% max reps in 30s @ 180s intervals. I used 125 lbs. Result: 12, 11, 9, 9. 41 reps. Total volume = 5,125. In comparison with last 80% max reps session (Sep. 16), with volume of 4,945, this represents a slight improvement. But not a great one. My left knee was hurting enough that it discouraged me some and the lack of sleep last night was also limiting. The whole thing pissed me off a bit, to be honest.

WOD: 500 meter row, plus warm-up exercises

400 meter run, 12 GHD sit-ups, 500 meter row warm up (time: 1:58), 12 GHD sit-ups.

Then… 500 meter row for time.

Result: about 1:36. I did not set the machine to count down from 500, a mistake, so I don’t have the EXACT time. My PR in the CFA gym is 1:34.7. So I do not appear to have gotten there today. But it felt good, and to be honest, I was going only about 90-95%.

Update on Plan HTFU

Today’s Additional Volume: Push-Ups (5 x 12). This includes 1 set of 12 ring push ups during warm-up. Pull-Ups (? x 12). 1 set was w/ red and purple band combo, the rest with blue). One set during warm up, the rest post-work in the afternoon.

Today’s Mobility and Relaxation work: Worked on learning and practicing the moves in Mobility WOD episodes 4, on the Psoas and 5, on the shoulders.

Diet: continuing to fast 12-14 hours every day, training in AM in fasted state w/ BCAAs and Jack3d. Paleo or 95% paleo… not counting this past Saturday night (date night with my wife), where I just ate whatever I wanted including glutens and sugars.

Sleep. Plan HTFU is not snagged, but my body is having some trouble… with sleep. I am fighting chronic sleep disregulation from a variety of sources, most especially children. But also alcohol on the weekends messes with sleep, as does evening time TV and computer. I have every intention of improving my sleep; steps I am taking include: no caffeine after the 16 oz. cup I fill up at 9:30 am (thermos of Decaf comes with me to work); restricting TV during the week; trying to do some reading before bed. Steps I haven’t been taking: going to bed early enough, keeping lights dim in evening, etc. I have work to do!

Bear Complex (in Rehab)

Work out this morning: 5 rounds of 7 reps of “the bear complex” (Power Clean, Front Squat, Push Press, Back Squat, Push Press), with 500 meter rowing “buy out” at the end. Not for time. I went light and very fast on the reps, but took plenty of rest (2-3 minutes) between rounds (rehabbing my left shoulder): 30, 40, 50, 60, 70 lbs. These were done rapidly, as: squat clean, thruster, back squat directly into push press (a back thruster?). I finished before everybody else, rested, and then rowed. I took the row easy. Slow rate: throughout I kept my strokes per minute at about 22. Built speed: I warmed up for the first 100 meters, then brought the splits down from my warm-up speed of about 2:05 to about 1:40 at the lowest; last 300 meters averaged 1:44 or so; total 500 time about 1:55, I think (I didn’t notice the end time; I actually rowed about 550 meters). I was not trying for my best time.

Two by Five (Active Rest)

I checked the CrossFit Asheville WOD yesterday before bed.  I liked to see it posted in advance, but I was worried about the workout: “Lynne-Like,” five rounds of max reps of ring dips followed immediately by pull ups, with 3-5 minutes of rest between rounds.  I was already feeling shredded and tattered in my lats, triceps, and shoulders from my workouts on Saturday, Monday, and Tuesday, and from my pull-up challenge.  I worried about a new torn callus, injury, or general over-training malaise.

Last night, as I lay in bed, my hand calluses actually were HURTING.  Ouch.  When I woke up automatically (before 5:00 am). with less than 5 hours of sleep under my belt (poor choices last night), I knew in advance I wouldn’t do the workout. But I went in to the 6:00 am class anyway, just to hang out. No breakfast. A bit of coffee. Instead of workout out, today would be a day of “active rest.”

When I got there, I was happy to learn that the coaches were cool with my plan. Which rapidly evolved to include a couple of 500 meter rows for time on the C2 rowing ergometer.


Judo/MMA warm-up: shoulder rotations, 360/45 lunges, forward roll w/ bear crawl. Shoulder dislocates. Squats, Hindu Pushups, Shotguns, Supermans (10 reps each… taking it easy).

Active Rest: Two 500 Meter Rows

I stood around a bit, then hopped on the rower. I did 500 meters for time. Waited about 15 minutes, and then did it again. That was the extent of my workout.

Results: 1:38; 139.3.

Postponed: Pull-Up Challenge Day 21

I have decided to postpone today’s pull-ups until tomorrow. And I may even put them off until Friday (and then do 43). My body is feeling kind of wrecked, sore and extremely tired. I think I need to take care of myself more than I need to push through this self-motivated Pull-Up challenge. I will continue with it! Just not today.

Bench and Row. PUC Skipped Day.

My trip to London has been great. I bought a one week membership at a little gym right on Belsize Park Gardens, about 2 blocks from Gadi and Mimi’s place. They have Concept II rowers and some crappy olympic weights, so I decided to do the WOD from the mainsite that was posted for Monday:

For time:
Row 500 meters
Body weight Bench press, 30 reps
Row 1000 meters
Body weight Bench press, 20 reps
Row 2000 meters
Body weight Bench press, 10 reps
Post time to comments.


So, I arrived at the gym about 6:45 am. There wasn’t a good place to do warm-ups, so I just did a few squats, push-ups, and sit-ups. I should have done some pull-ups too, but I figured I might get them in for the challenge, later. But now it looks like I have to skip the challenge today. Details below.

Bench and Row

I didn’t have a chance to check the main site, so I had the details backwards. I did bench first, then the row.

I did a few warm up sets with the bench. It’s been a long time since I did this awkward, no fun movement. It hurt my right shoulder. Also, I quikly realized that there was no way I was going to do 60 reps of a full body-weight bench. I did: 20 kg x 10; 40 kg x 5; 50 kg x 5; 60 kg x 3; and then attemted 80 kg, and failed. So, I started my workout at 60 kg. 13 reps into the 30, I backed it down to 50 kg. Then I did my second set with 50 kg. My last set I did 55 kg. Also, the erg was on a totally different floor, so I had to walk through this facility, and up a staircase, to switch stations in the circuit. That slowed me down some of course. And my first set of bench presses was insanely slow.

Results: 47 minutes. First set of Benches: 13 reps x 60 kg; 17 reps x 50 kg; First Row: 500 meters in 1:43; Second set of benches: 20 reps x 50 kg; Second Row: 1000 meters in 3:53; Third set of benches: 10 reps x 55 kg; Third Row: 2000 meters in 7:53.

I got a good sweat going. Had a steam, shave, dressed, and now I am out and about biking through London.


Yesterday I probably rode 10 miles on my bike. I have similar plans for today. I am out and about, fully clothed, fighting London traffic. The insane taxi drivers, white van drivers, and bus drivers are a serious threat to my life. And the occasional bouts of severe rain (!) are more funny than anything else. I am seeing the city in the best possible way. Convinced of it!

Pull Up Challenge Day 15

Well, I found out where to DO pull-ups: the very cool “Trim Trail” at the base of Primrose Hill Park, just north of Regent’s Park. They have everything for the body-weight only workout crowd there. I saw some truly burly dudes doing pull ups there yesterday. Only trouble is, my schedule today won’t permit me to find the time to work in my 15 pulls. What I’ll have to do is go super early there tomorrow, and do 31 pulls. It’ll probably take me the better part of an hour and a half. That may be my whole workout for the day, that and bicycle riding. So, with that promise to myself, I sign off, no pull-ups today.