Uneventful Hodgepodge Notes

As I have stated numerous times before, growing consistently doesn't always read well - maybe a bit boring, actually.  However, while being in the driver's seat it is far from boring.

This week I have a bunch of odd notes that I want to post as to how things are going:

*Scale weight is holding and so is my condition.

I see pics and video and wonder if I am staying too lean and limiting gains, but that is the nature of this beast.  We always tend to second guess what we are doing so I am staying with my plan because I feel that it has been producing the results I originally planned for.

My scale weight starts the week in the low 230s and ends the week right around 228 so there isn't much fluctuation in scale weight during the week but my fullness early in the week is crazy and I feel is more dramatic than the scale is showing.

*Strength continues to improve but slower than it has been

This is to be expected, though, because the rate of progression can't remain dramatic week in and week out for a long time.  The fact that I am still able to consistently increase weights or reps is a huge bonus so I am not going to start complaining when for a week or two I feel I am unable to push more weight or reps.

*Aches and pains are still an issue

I am starting to really feel the intensity of the training and the weights.  My back is holding up quite well so no complaints there.  However, small aches and pains are not getting better and that has my attention.  These aches and pains haven't caused me to have to overhaul my training, but they forced me to make minor changes either by trading out exercises, skipping an exercise all together or simply not training a muscle group that week.

List of aches and pains:

*right elbow is still an issue and is mildly inflamed.  As long as I warm it up carefully, it does not impact my training.   In fact, it is more noticeable outside of the gym than IN the gym.

*upper abs are back to normal after 2 weeks of pain where the top of the abs connect to the ribcage.  To give you an idea of how painful it was, I couldn't blow my nose because the pressure on my abs would be too painful.

This happened while training legs (doing hacks squats) due to the pressure on my abs while coming out of the hole on a PR set of hacks.  I was able to finish training legs with only moderate discomfort but the few days following that leg session, I was in quite a bit of pain.  I did not train abs for 2 weeks until yesterday and they seemed to be fine.

*left biceps femoris where it attaches up under the glute.  This doesn't bother me during squats or presses but does while doing seated leg curls (but not lying leg curls or standing leg curls).  It is just a dull ache and is concerning because I want to squat heavy again this week and I don't believe it is a good idea just yet.  I am going to baby it for another week and try to avoid any movement that irritates it.

*right wrist is now fine and not an issue.

I am now roughly 7 weeks into my current 12-week phase.  I am going to continue to push hard for the next 5 weeks as long as I don't have obvious signs saying I need to back off or else.  After this current 12-week phase I will be "cruising" for roughly 8 weeks on TRT and backing off of the gas pedal a bit to let my body recover and catch up.  This should allow me to step on the gas again after that 8 weeks and go strong for another 2 phases of 12 weeks to continue to maximize growth.  This should take me through the end of 2019.

Though 230 simply sounded like a good number to end this current 12-week phase on, it does appear that the number was probably pretty accurate.  In fact, I may actually be over 230 by the time I finish in another 5 weeks.  I am fine with that as long as my condition remains solid like it is now.

The main question I will have to deal with during my cruise phase for 8 weeks is whether I want to continue to maintain condition for the rest of the year or give up some for more growth.  As it stands right now, I feel that after an 8-week break I should be able to continue to progress well for the remainder of the year while keeping condition very close to what it is now.

I was going to do a DEXA scan again in 2 weeks but that doesn't make too much sense to do it 1 month before I finish this phase and then cruise for 2 months.  It would seem more logical to hold off a month and do it at the end of the phase, instead, to get a more accurate read of how my condition held for the entire 24 weeks of these last two 12-week phases.

The only other thing I have my plate that I need to make a decision about is whether to load a meal or two late on Wednesday nights, setting up the last 2 workouts of the week including leg day on Thursdays.  I am torn on this and really struggling with it.  On the one hand, my condition is very, very good and I know I could benefit from this change as far as the 2 workouts later in the week.  My only concern is whether I all of a sudden start to add too much body fat and then would need to quickly pull it back in.  I need to make this decision very soon and I am leaning towards doing the Wednesday load but just need to get there 100% before I will lock the idea down and put it into motion.

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