Some Thoughts on Rhodestown

TAGS: Some Thoughts on Rhodestown, recovering from injury, future plans, reflection, matt rhodes

I've been injured for about four months now. This has given me a lot of time to think about things—lifting, life, relationships, friendships, career...all kinds of stuff. Some of it good. Some of it not so good.

This has also given me a lot of time to sit back and reflect on my weight lifting career. When I started...Damn! I was skinny and weak. I was about 185 pounds at 17 years old. At my biggest, I was 331 pounds at the age of 34. Since then, I've teetered between 290 and 310 pounds. Now, at the ripe old age of 37, I'm about 265 pounds. I can dunk a basketball again, and college girls keep saying, "Coach, you look great. Did you lose some weight?"

In turn, all of this has caused me to look back at all of the stupid stuff I've done to myself because I had nothing else to do. I wouldn't change much, that's for sure. Rhodestown was brilliant! The idea behind it was always, "Do what you have to do to reach a goal if it's that important to you." Most of the "rules" were jokes and funny little things that I noticed as I got bigger. However, the underlying theme, at least to me anyways, was always, "You gotta do what you gotta do."

Regrets? A few. For instance, I spent way too much time worrying about lifting. I really hated training from 2004 until 2010. Honestly, it sucked. All I did was worry about eating enough, lifting, working, and repeat. I hit a great 930-pound squat and stood up with 1,000 pounds. I benched 605 pounds and pulled 760 pounds. Wow...I was weak! My abs sucked.  My body was big, but I wasn't really fat. Still, I looked terrible, felt terrible, and injured myself slowly. Some will say I was just being hardcore, but no—that was just stupid! I wouldn't change it, but I'd do it a little differently.

First and foremost, training is what we do 95% of the time. If 95% of something sucks, why would you do it? It makes no sense, right? Now I'm just counting the days until I can get back to some real training. I definately hammered out some squatting during my biceps recovery, but I'm kind of done with that crap. That's not to say that I won't squat every week, but I need to focus on some other lifts.

What I'm really looking forward to is overhead pressing and pull-ups! Benching...eh, I really couldn't care less. Again, I'll bench every week, but it will not be a main focus. I'm also looking forward to doing some dumbbell rowing. For the record, I hate dumbbell rowing. I love the chest-supported row, but we don't have one. So I'll be doing my fair share of dumbbell rows during my rehab. This should be a nice change-up for me. (Not to mention the fact that I've had over four months off from any significant upper body training). I have a feeling that I'm going to be very sore for the first three weeks! Although, maybe with the addition of some very high-volume rehab work, along with some high-volume restrengthening work, I should pack on a few pounds.

I'm not looking to gain or lose any weight. Whatever happens, happens. I'm eating "cleaner," and I'll be taking some supplements that I'm getting from Dave Tate. So I'll be dialed in for sure. Squatting will continue, and deadlifting will be used as an assistance exercise to get myself back into the swing of things. I have to get my jacked-up hand back up to par and get used to supinating my other hand. Why not use this time to do it with light weights? This is why I'm so damn smart!

So, how does any of this relate to Rhodestown? I want to squat 700 pounds, bench 500 pounds, and deadlift 800 pounds unequipped. I just may have to pack on 20 to 30 pounds in order to get this done. Who knows? Maybe a resurgence will happen. I'll break the powerlifting trend that is all about carb-backloading, nighttime solutions, paleo dieting, and all the bullshit that's out there to help you look better while you tell yourself that it's only for performance purposes.

Crazy thought? I might just eat. I might eat carbs while the sun is out. Whoa! I know. I might eat some protein via dead animals and via shakes. Crazy! I might eat some fats...mostly the unhealthy ones, but possibly some good ones too. So, to summarize, I'm going to eat food and all three macronutrients to get bigger, recover, and build muscle. There will be no fancy name for it—no solution or loading or timing. Well, maybe timing. I might just eat when I'm hungry! I might even eat before I workout. Novel ideas? I might eat or drink a shake after I workout. I won't call it pre-workout, peri-workout, or post-workout nutrition. I'll call it eating and drinking.

I don't know when I'll do a meet. I don't know if I'll go for a total or just go after each number individually. I can say, however, that I'd love to do a squat-only meet. Imagine that?  Warm-up, squat, and head home to catch the first game on a college football Saturday? Now that sounds like a fun meet to me. And that is what lifting is all about.

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