T Nation

Full Capacity Training

I’m not big on keeping a log so we’ll see what happens. Most of my info is in my profile and doesn’t bear repeating. Goals are a bit sketchy for now, but conditioning is a bit of a priority due to the MA program. Lifting is mostly maintenance. (Read as: boring) I’ve just switched variations on a couple of things, so those movements should be moving up, albeit slowly. I’m not in any hurry.

Diet is dialed in. I seldom deviate or fall down there. Sleep sucks. I’ve just gone through menopause and I’m waking up at least 4-5 times a night sweating profusely. Last winter was worse (up every 30-45 minutes), so I shouldn’t complain. Menopause really screws with your entire body. I’m not real happy about this, but I’ll try not to whine about it.

Muay Thai: 8:30 AM

Conditioning work (20 mins). Paired off and practiced bobs and weaves for 3 minute rounds each, then 2, 2-minute rounds each of taking head punches. (Covered) The idea being to get used to getting clocked without spazing. Fun stuff! The rest of class time was sparring.

BJJ: 9:30

Ug. Total rookie here. (Only rolled once prior) Practiced arm bars, chokes, passing the guard. Rolled with a very petite 25 yr. old female that I out weigh by 25 lbs. She doesn’t lift weights so her upper body strength is somewhat lacking. She has been doing BJJ for 3 months and knows some basic technique, but I can out-muscle her easily even though I don’t know what the heck I’m doing. A couple of times I just bench pressed her up and off me. I got some individual help with some basic moves after class, during open gym. I love this class, but it’s going to be slow going. Grrrrrrr.


Chins: BW x 6 x 3
Seated DB curl: 25 x 10 x 3
CGBP: 85 x 10 x 3
PGDL: 85 x 4, 105 x 8, 135 x 8 x 2
RDL: 95 x 6, 105 x 8, 125 x 8
Bench Lunges: 30 x 8 x 2
incline shrug (DBs) 60 x 10 x 3
hypers: BW x 8, bw+15 x 8 x 2
Weighted Abs: 2 movements, 2 sets, 8-16 reps ea.
Timed towel hang: 50 seconds

eliptical: Intervals, 30 mins.

Agility (Dog):

Set up a course. Lots of tight turns, front crosses and long sends. Ran her through five times, then made a few tweaks to the course and hit it agian twice more. Worked on just the weave poles a bit.

Kinda tired tonight. OK, I was passing out on the couch (sitting up) at 8:30. Sheesh.


Hi Cappy! That’s some good looking stuff, I hope your sleep patterns improve. It’s so important to help you feeling good and energized. My wife makes fun of me for my ability to fall right away, 20 seconds after my head hits the pillow. Hope you keep the log up, we don’t have enough women in this forum.

Decided to dive in, huh. Good deal. I can relate to the bad sleep patterns. Hopefully not for the same reasons. I did see we men now have our own change of life called andropause. Told the wife I was gonna start having mood swings. She just gave me the wife look.
BJJ? Form of Ju Jitsu?

The name of the log is GREAT punishment! Love all the MMA stuff too. I have never wrestled or fought but I am thinking of doing some MMA when the season is over. The discipline appeals to me.

Good Luck!


Glad you have taken the plunge. With that training schedule I’m REALLY glad you are not down here in eastern NC! It made me tired and sore reading it as well.

I am planning to go back to Asia again in the fall. I’m going to have to line up seeing a match while I am over there. I missed a chance to go to a bout when I was in Saigon last month.

I’m excited about keeping up with your log, and experience.

Oh, I fight sleep issues too. I know it is a completely different root cause, but the effects are equally devistating to your psyche.

Great stuff Cappy…always good to see a new discipline (MMA) brought to the discussion. A couple other members (Colin, Streamline, Hel) have very different goals and it is great to read their logs to see how they are preparing.

Awesome, Cappy! Glad to see you’ve started a log. They may try to keep pairing you with a woman in BJJ, but especially with your higher level of strength, its very important to roll with men, too.

I’ve been looking for you in the combat sports forum, but now I’ll be checking in here. Its good to see you.

Hel320, BJJ is Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. Grappling.

Belated welcome, Capacity. Great title for the log. I can see that yours is going to be one of the more interesting logs on the forum already.

Thanks for the official welcome, guys!

About the thread title. It’s based on an old nick given to me by a dear lifting friend. It was implied that I’m a tad … ah… intense? Imagine that!

Actually, I was the kind of person who used to roar through each day like the Tasmanian Devil. I had a long list of “to dos” that I tackled with such ferocity and determination that I either irritated most people or pushed them away.

Or so I’ve been told. I was a wee bit of a control freak and somewhat of a perfectionist. Wait. I’m sure that’s an understatement. I was a micro-manager and an over-organizer. Heck, I got kicked out of Girl Scouts for being too prepared.

I discovered the hard way that some things simply can’t be controlled by sheer willpower alone. Like health, for instance. Oh, you can lift weights until you become very strong and look great … perhaps even better than some … and still not have any control over your health. And you know what they say about good health …

Today, I’ve got nothing but time. I had to retire with 100% disability the year following my third spinal operation. My team of docs never even broached the idea of my returning to work.

Instead, they preferred to tap dance around the subject of my future, which I learned much later is typical in a situation gone horribly awry. Look in a medical dictionary under ‘complications’ and you will find my name.

Everyone on my medical team hinted at how fortunate I was. I had been blessed with the extraordinary strength and fortitude to survive a very dangerous ordeal and managed to come out the other side still able to do a few simple things for myself. Well, I don’t mean to sound like an ingrate; I felt lucky to be alive yes, but my ‘can do’ list was pretty darn short.

I spent spring and half of the summer of '97 in and out of the hospital. I had to wait a year before they would let me begin any type of rehab. A year. Remember that prognosis the next time your doc tells you to lay off the weights for a few weeks. Between each operation I forced myself to walk.

A true overachiever, I built up to several miles a day. Each time I had to start over using a walker. I couldn’t feel either foot and the left leg had drop foot, which meant I didn’t have it’s full cooperation.

Can you say stumble? I lurched like a drunk. Some days it was brutally hot, but I’d strap myself into a heavy fiberglass body brace, grab my cane and walk. At least this had all the makings of a true aerobic workout; blood, sweat and tears!

I won’t bore you with the gritty details, but for several weeks I pondered the fate of my basement gym. I refused to drape laundry over the useless equipment, but I did wonder if I ought to just suck it up and have big sale.

Deep down I knew I’d be back, and when I eventually did succumb it wasn’t pretty and I didn’t have the blessings of anyone. Nobody knew. Not even my husband. It was just me, the iron and the pain. What could have been more fun? Perhaps getting beaten with a baseball bat!

I was outed eleven months later when I was sent to a physiatrist in another state. (Spinal specialist) He was supposed to design a special rehab program for me.

He took one look and he knew. Those guys are pretty sharp. He told me he couldn’t do anything for me that I hadn’t already done for myself. Then he had my husband come in. He said in most cases like mine the patient usually goes home with a wheelchair.

Right. Over my dead body, I thought. For the first time in a year I actually felt good about something. It was a big victory, but little did I know it was the only silver lining I was ever going to get.

I went back home and picked up where I left off.

Starting all over again is humbling. Ego, fear, pain and pride can stand in the way of progress. Anyone who has ever contemplated the possibility of failure will tell you there’s a moment of truth when you must face the obstacles that have the power to make or break you.

If you’re strong enough to defeat the thought of failure, you’ll move forward. If you can’t, you’ll stay stuck. Much of the battle with Iron is won or lost in our head before we even touch the weight.

Lifting isn’t always bucket load of fun for me. There’s a lot of discomfort that goes way beyond the normal realm of lifting pain. I had my little “prove yourself” fling with strength after I got up and running, but I haven’t had the desire to do anything that remotely resembles such foolishness since.

I could probably still hit some old PR’s and I did set some new PRs in things I never pushed prior to my demise. That’s good 'nuff for me.

Thankfully (all things considered), the pursuit of extreme strength has never been my gig. If there is anything worse than wanting something you can’t have, it’s losing something you once had.

There’s probably nothing worse than the lifter or BBer who is unable to train due to a career-ending injury or health issue. What happens when he ends up having to give back his physique or strength? He gets caught in the “Twilight Zone,” especially if he can still train to some degree.

Most of these guys will spend years and go to great lengths to try to avoid calling it quits. Some risk and/or get reinjured time and time again, while others pretend they can still cut it if they just beat the crap out of the parts of their body that still work.

And many an injured lifter ends up feeling like they have “unfinished business.” There’s no closure for them and never will be. Most can’t learn to just walk away. Some can, but most just can’t let go. I didn’t want to end up like that.

I used to tell myself I’d be OK if they said I couldn’t lift or if I had to cut way back. At least I’d have the satisfaction of knowing I reached most of the goals I set out to achieve.

Well, sitting on the other side of that fence I can tell you that if you’re a true lifter at heart it’s never going to be OK to have to quit lifting. Never. Better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all? I don’t think so. Lifting ain’t about love. It runs deeper.

Some abbreviations:

BJJ = Brazilian Jiu jitsu.

MT = Muay Thai

KA = Kung-Fu/Karate

PGDL = Parallel grip DL (Trap bar)


7-7:40 AM barn chores. Had to clean and carry 4 bags of gain from garage to barn. (50# each). It’s about 75 yds. The rest of chores were the norm: pushing a heavy wheelbarrow uphill, carrying hay, shoving big animals around. Ho-hum.

7:45-8:30 Powerwalk (treadmill) progressive incline.

11-11:45 Kata/defense practice

11:45-12:20 Stretch

5:00 Spin. Intended to do 30 minutes, but got into sprints at that point and went a full 40. I should preface this by saying I HATE spinning.

I’d rather shoot myself in the foot than spin. Today I rode at a moderate pace broken by standing and climbing for 2 minutes every 5 minutes mark. Then closed with the sprints.

5:45 Barn chores.

Was thinking about yesterday’s MT class. It was the first time since I started that I felt like I’ve made real progress. My speed has picked up and I’m thinking and reacting faster. I don’t get as flustered when I screw up rather, I just correct myself, make note of what I did wrong and move on.



I now understand foundation of your point of view. You are a welcome addition to this forum.

Some of old farts (i.e. me) need perspective to keep us straight!

I completely understand from where you come. I think that is why this forum gets along way better than most, we are all cut from the same cloth. When I told people I was going to play semi-pro football again after not playing for 20 years they all told me I was nuts. After I blew up my Tricep and had to have surgery they told me I had to stop. When I showed up the next year wanting to play again, You know what guys in this forum told me? “Knock the shit out of someone for me!” Your either busy dying or busy living, might as well live life on your own terms!

I just saved this in a “life quotes” file I keep…Damn good!

Hot, not quite as muggy as yesterday, thank doG.

7:30 AM. barn chores. Uneventful.

10:15-11:30 Bike trail. 17 miles. Moderate grades. I should enjoy this, but I don’t. shrug

2:00-2:30 Stretch

5:00 PM Lift

Jump rope: 8 minutes (Warm-up)

Pushups: BW x 10 x 3 (Warm-up)
Incline DB press: 35 x 10, 40 x 10, 40 x 8
Front OHP (Seated, in squat rack, off pins) 65 x 4, 75 x 5, 95 x 8 x 3
DB OHP (Seated, to finish) 25 x 8 x 2
Incline laterial DB raise 10 x 10 x 3 superset with BB upright rows 45 x 10, 55 x 10 x 2
Neck flexion and extension
Front and back neck bridges 3-15 second sets each
Pinch plates: 20 x 35 seconds per hand.
Abs: Rope crunch 2 sets x 16, side bends 2 x 12

A little tired after that bike ride. Normally have KA class at 8:30 AM, but sensei is teaching at a seminar, so class was cancelled. Was kinda nice not to have to rush out the door and hit the road.

I’m freakin’ starving!!! Gonna go get me a big hunk of beef and refuel like nobodies business!


God, I haven’t thought about neck bridges since back in my football/wrestling days! Hated those damn things. Don’t have much of a neck. It hurts to even read about them now.

Excellent work out. Do you compete in any MA or do it for exercise, relaxation, self-defense?

[quote]Capacity wrote:

I’m freakin’ starving!!! Gonna go get me a big hunk of beef and refuel like nobodies business!


I like the way you eat! Great training today.

[quote]hel320 wrote:
God, I haven’t thought about neck bridges since back in my football/wrestling days! Hated those damn things. Don’t have much of a neck. It hurts to even read about them now. Excellent work out. Do you compete in any MA or do it for exercise, relaxation, self-defense?[/quote]

Funny you should ask … :wink:

Actually, I’m a relative rookie. I just started in April. I was beginning to have a tough time staying motivated to lift and I know this sounds lame, but after 27 years I was starting to feel like I was just going through the motions.

Oh, once I got the ball rolling I was 100% into it, but I just didn’t get the same kind of satisfaction I used to get from lifting. So I started thinking about what I could do that would utilize my training and give it some purpose.

I could have gone back and redone a bunch of stuff I’ve already done, but what fun is that? Also, when I passed my 50th birthday I started thinking about my Mom, who was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s in her mid-50’s.

Now I don’t exactly sit around wondering if I might have the A-gene, but they say it’s good for the brain to learn something new. So in keeping with my Full Capacity moniker, I decided to jump into MA.

I mostly love Muay Thai. I’ve just started taking BJJ because one of the teachers really wants me to give it a try … and I suspect that’s because he knows I have a fair amount of physical strength and tenacity. But I do have a significant disability to consider.

In fact, I picked MT because it’s (predominantly) a stand-up game. BJJ presents a lot more obstacles for me to test and (hopefully) overcome, but right now I’m not even sure if it’s doable for me. I’m taking Karate because I want the fluidity and balance. I have no desire to do anything competitive there.

Will I ever compete? Gee, I don’t know. I’d LOVE to, but I just don’t know what the odds are. In 6 months I’ll be 52 . How many 52 year-old women compete in MT or BJJ? I don’t know, but I’m sure I’ll find out.

Oddly enough, I considered MA back in 1981. My hubby (then, boyfriend) was taking classes and I used to go watch. (Young love) The environment was far to military for my taste and it was easy to see that the two women in his class were not treated very equally.

I was already a pioneer in a hard core lifting gym and I really didn’t want to have to be a cutting edge female in both endeavors. So I stuck with lifting and the rest is history … so to speak.

I’m not sure where all this will lead, but I do believe that generally speaking, a sport picks you and not the other way around. If something is meant to be, it will unfold.

What I lack in youth I make up for in discipline, attitude and maturity. And I do love to encourage and teach, so If nothing else I can always strive to be a resource or a great inspiration to younger women who want to travel this road.

I will say that I love the raw athleticism and primal feel of MMA. You can sense a bit of that from watching it, but that can’t compare to stepping up to the plate and doing it yourself.

Thanks for asking!


Now I’ll be waiting to hear all about the mental aspect of MT and the strategic approach to training as well as the bouts. I always enjoy the subtle aspects of activities like that.

Then I’ll be trying to piggyback the thinking in my business.

Yep…My wife thinks I’m weird too…

Not so weird JW. Many of Sun Tzu’s teachings from the Art of War are incorporated into the martial arts and eastern business practices, too. Western business went through a period of studying it.

[quote]daddyzombie wrote:
Hi Cappy! That’s some good looking stuff, I hope your sleep patterns improve. It’s so important to help you feeling good and energized. My wife makes fun of me for my ability to fall right away, 20 seconds after my head hits the pillow. Hope you keep the log up, we don’t have enough women in this forum.[/quote]

I’m finally able to log on, and it is good to see you posting.

Like the name of the thread too :wink:

You will find that you can learn a lot faster than you think with mat work, though having the strength can make a huge difference. When I wrestled I broke some pins that way.

I don’t know if you’ve focused on neck strength in your training (beyond just bridging),* but it will help with the Mui Thai and the jujitsu. The arm strength is going to let you do things in stopping and in getting arm bars that others can’t.

That said, work with the patterns so you don’t find yourself using strength and not learning.

I’m hoping to return to Judo in January, this time with my upper body strength caught up with the rest of me (so I don’t wrack my rotator cuffs up again).

Anyway, welcome again.

(*when I was younger I could bridge with the other guy on top of me and against a figure four. As a result, I never had to fear certain kinds of pinning combinations. Our heavy weight was actually able to bridge and pancake another heavy weight in a match. I’ve never seen a reversal quite so dramatic in my life. When I transitioned to Judo, I could pretty much ignore choke attempts which allowed me a lot of freedom in certain kinds of moves. Now, of course, I need to add that to my training …)

Ouch :wink:

What kind of kata are you doing if I can ask?

There are masters level competitions in most martial arts (though I’m not sure I’ve every heard of one in Mui Thai).

“masters” = “senior” athlete (since in most martial arts, “senior” means adult, the word was taken).

Realize that your back offers serious limits and a need for care. But you will find that there is a lot of competition open in most traditional karate styles that isn’t too brutal in the lower belts (brown belt and down) and that is open to many ages.

Wish you the best.