Today I wrapped up week 2 of the plan that Jeremy’s ripped brother Kyle’s equally ripped girlfriend Danielle (@fitnessfani on Instagram if you want some motivation!) created for us. We are “lifting heavy” and so far I love it!
The plan is comprised of two different weeks of workouts which we rotate. Each week contains 3 workouts:
- Chest and Back
- Combo Day – emphasis on arms (biceps, triceps and shoulders)
Week 1 we got in the workouts all in the same week but this past week things to derailed and I wasn’t able to wrap up the third workout (combo day) until today. All I have to say about “lifting heavy” is I’M SORE!
Danielle’s method of lifting involves a few kinds of sets:
1) A set high weight, low rep (up to 8 max and you shouldn’t be able to do more) immediately followed by a set of lower weight, higher reps working the same muscle (example – overhead shoulder press with 17.5 lb barbells immediately followed by 15-20 straight arm shoulder extensions with 5 lbs)
2) A set of high weight, low rep of one muscle immediately followed by a similar set of another muscle (example – today I did 8-10 bicep curls with the bar immediately followed by 8-10 skull crushers working the tricep).
3) 10 x 10 with a moderately heavy weight (example – 10 sets of squats with a weighted barbell)
4) 5 sets of max rep push-ups or pull-ups (assisted in my case).
I really enjoy the variety and I’m finding that I like going to the gym since it’s actually really social. I was able to do 5/6 of these workouts with Asia ( sometime we have to spot each other so it’s pretty important to have a buddy!). Although we can’t talk the entire time we can chat during set breaks and before and after the workout. Mike and Jeremy also joined the gym so the four of us try to go at the same time when possible.
We’re also learning that you have to be patient with gym equipment. Although our gym isn’t too crowded, there are times that the equipment we need is taken. This means that the workout can be extended if you have to wait. Today for example the machine I needed for my last exercise (we typically use a machine at least once during each workout) was taken. Instead of waiting, I hopped on a nearby machine and did a few chest press sets while I waited. I don’t like to waste time!
When in doubt, we use our friend Google to learn form. Jeremy and Mike also are great resources when they are at the gym with us. In general I know good form for most of the moves but some of the newer ones (dead lifts, squats with a heavy barbell, bench press) we need assistance. Form is extremely important in weight lifting, especially heavy weight lifting. I don’t want to hurt myself! Although Danielle encouraged us to use very heavy weights, I often don’t use as heavy as I probably would be advised to because I fear hurting myself. Not to mention, I want to be able to lift my arms and walk the day after! So far I’ve been cautious with my weights and still have felt it for days to follow.
Since I won’t be in the gym for 2.5 weeks for the wedding and honeymoon, I plan to leave off the plan for now and then pick it up when I return. I’m really hoping that after a little time my legs get more used to the lifting because running hasn’t been very fun the last few weeks due to the soreness and stiffness. When we return I’ll need to ramp up some miles for the Ragnar Trail race we’re doing in November as well as the half marathon I signed up for in December. However, I want to continue with the weight lifting plan as much as I can. Since finishing the marathon in May and getting back to strength training, I’ve seen some great changes in my body and strength and I don’t plan to give that up again.
Do you incorporate any heavy weight lifting into your routine?