I'm Too Young to Be This Damn Old: Training Update

TAGS: I'm Too Young to be this Damn Old, training programs, Jeff Guller, 5/3/1, exercises, powerlifting, training

I am still really excited about attending LTT7 on November 1st. I get to meet members of team elitefts™ with whom I have only corresponded. I'll meet people whose lifts I admire, whose logs I read, and whose writing I admire. I'll be like a little kid in a major league locker room. The only difference is that I'll be the oldest guy in the locker room. There has been some discussion among team elitefts™ as to who is the oldest. Let there be no doubt. It is me. I may be the oldest in years, but probably the youngest in terms of experience. That is why I am in awe of all these great lifters.

By the time this article is published, I will have completed my three weeks of introductory training: that is doing each of the three lifts each session and increasing the weight each session. I will have also completed the first eight weeks of 5/3/1 training. The weights seemed quite light the first four weeks so I increased my 1RM by 15 pounds rather than 10 pounds. I have made all the weights so far and have not been greatly challenged. I will proceed to the final four weeks of the twelve week cycle with another increase of 15 pounds in 1RM. I know that will be very challenging. Then I'll do the four week meet preparation. Actually I'll have five weeks before the meet. I'll use the fifth week to taper and the last week to rest by doing some very light work. If I can hit all the numbers, and I hope I can, I will be ready. The trick then is to execute on meet day. All the physical preparation will have been done. All that is left is the mental preparation. If you have done all you can do, hit your target numbers along the way, you should have the confidence to execute on the platform. Being prepared for all that can go wrong , and usually does, comes from having been there before. It allows you to adjust to the unforeseen events that too often occur.

I have made a discovery, had an epiphany. Yea right— What the hell could this old man have discovered that is not already known? Nothing really. I don't claim to have discovered an old exercise, changed its name, and now claim it as my own. The more we think we've discovered, the more we find that nothing is new. I have read article after article about training the posterior chain. I have heard people discuss it at length, but I never really did it. Sure, I've done the occasional good morning. I didn't like it so I did not do it regularly. I always did some rows, Romainian deadlifts, tricep work, and squats. But I never really trained the posterior chain until I looked at a muscle chart from the front and rear. It seems the biggest muscles in the body are the ones that you cannot see in the mirror. It also seems that those very muscles are the ones most involved in powerlifting. So it finally dawned on me that I had better get my ass (literally) to work. Now I do good mornings, Romanian deadlifts, dumbbell rows, barbell rows, leg curls, face pulls, shrugs, dips, skull crushers, and close-grip bench presses regularly. This is my own epiphany, I take full credit for it, it is my discovery. Yea right!

Intellectually, I have known that training the posterior chain is essential to being a competent powerlifter. I just did not do it. I think the impetus came from six months of reading after heart surgery and the realization of training the posterior. I have never been considered brilliant, neither have I been considered stupid. I realized what I had to do and am doing it.

I did discover that while I was tentative at first to "go for it," that has not entered my mind of late. I have gone for heavy singles pursuant to the program, without regard for my health situation. Actually it hasn't entered my mind until after the training session, for which I am grateful. Furthermore there have been no ill effects from doing it. There you have it;  training goes well, and there are no health issues. I see four different doctors in October for followups and I expect them to all confirm that. The only thing keeping me from big numbers is strength and technique.

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