T Nation

It's all about the journey


So, this is my first stab ever at a training log. I'll give a little background so you can understand where I am at and where I have been, my ever changing goals depending on the time of year and other stuff.

I have been working out for a little over 3 years now. Started out with the goal of losing fat and I am happy to say I lost 50 pounds in two years. I am 5 foot 3 inches and wander around the 145# mark at the moment. I found an amazing and incredibly frustrating sport called the Highland Games in my second year of working out. If you have no clue what that is, search for videos on youtube. Yes, I throw the weights, the hammers, the stones and even the caber. I always get confused for a dancer because when people think highland games heavy events, they think 300# men. They're not wrong but there are some incredible women making achievements in the sport in leaps and bounds.

Finding this sport opened up the world of power lifting and generally trying to get stronger to me. I've had setbacks occur. I recently had bursitis in my left knee that was caused by a combination of torquing my knee during throwing the weight and some form problem with my back squat. As of today, I have discovered front squats do not tweak my knee and I fixed the form problem with my weight throwing.

My season for throwing encompasses May - September. Throwing is my life throughout that time. When season is done, I focus on getting stronger, faster and improving my technique. I'm tiny. Technique is key to me or I will tear myself apart and get thrown by the implements I use. Every so often, I hit the stage where I want to lean down a bit. That's where I am right now. Season is over 6 months away and I have time to play. As long as I maintain strength for the time being, I'm fine. I'll focus on getting stronger in February :slight_smile:

I'll give PRs so there's a base to work from:
2 Board Bench - 110#
DL - 185#
Front squat - ? I'm still letting my knee get used to this. I spent 4 months not being able to DL the bar. NOT going to push it.
OHP - 70# Upper body is sooooo weak!

Right now I'm training 5 days a week with two days leaning towards cross-fit interval training (weeee cardio) and three days of weights. I'm in week two of a seven week cycle at the moment mixing strength and body building. Total tonnage on the BB is my bench mark. Everything weight related will be in #s unless I note otherwise. Notation I use goes weight x rep x set.

Today looked like this:

Week 2, Day 1:
Warmups - Agile 8, Simple 6
2B Bench - 50x5, 60x5, 70x5, 80x5, 85x3x2 Felt smooth and easy. Excellent.
Incline Bench - 30x8x3, 25x12, 20x12, 15x20 Oh drop sets, you really suck!
Cable Curls - 45x12x4
Cable Pressdowns - 45x12x4 This was supersetted with the curls.
Pushups (EDT) - 44 in 4 minutes. We'll see what I can push this up to.
Elliptical sprints - 10/50x5 (10 seconds sprinting, 50 seconds normal pace) Should bump this up to a 15/45 split. Gross.

Done and done.


Ooooh, the Highland Games sound fun!

I am quite impressed with your push-ups :slight_smile:

Good Luck with everything :slight_smile:


Oo the Scottish Olympics! You’re in good company here, with the body part set backs.


[quote]rondastarr wrote:
Ooooh, the Highland Games sound fun!

I am quite impressed with your push-ups :slight_smile:

Good Luck with everything :)[/quote]

It’s a lot of fun and the throwing community is amazing :slight_smile: Thanks for the compliment!


Okie, Week 2, Day 2:
Warmups - Agile 8, Simple 6, step back lunges, glute bridges

Class 1 - Interval work
This is all low weight or bw work for 1 minute intervals and repeating sets.
Warmup - 1 min of bw squats, toe touches, squat jumps, step ups each. There was another minute of stuff in there that I just can’t remember post workout.
Set 1 (2 sets) - 1 min of OH squats with a 5# bar and core twist at the top, step back lunge with core twist at the bottom each.
Set 2 (3 sets) - 1 min of jump squats (jump onto a step and ride it down into a squat, rinse, repeat), db cross punches, db burpees (regular burpees except you hold a weight and do a push press with the dbs during the jump) each.
Set 3 (2 sets) - 1 min of push-ups with a leg lift at the bottom, knee highs, v-sit flys, single leg reverse flys each.
10 minutes of abs - V-sit, russian twists with a 10# plate, bicycle, leg lifts, etc.

I’m sure I’m missing a lot of stuff in here. Essentially, 45 minutes of constant motion, sucking wind and sweat. Yay cardio!


Welcome, highland games sound intense.

I know Agile 8, I’ll have to google simple 6.


[quote]lil power wrote:
Welcome, highland games sound intense.

I know Agile 8, I’ll have to google simple 6.[/quote]

Same guy as Agile 8 except it’s stretches for the shoulders mostly. Good stuff.


Hi Pixie thrower-

Your training and the highland games look fun! I look forward to following along.

Looked up Agile 8 after reading it in here and gave it a go this morning-thanks!


welcome Pixie. Highland games look like fun :slight_smile: do you wear a kilt?


@lulalula - Hope you like it!

@nlmain - I sure do! I have two different kilts that I can rock depending on the weather and what mood I’m in. My Heart of Scotland kilt is heavier and a little longer for the cold weather days and my Lock Ness kilt is cuter. Better for hot weather days and when I feel like showing off my legs :wink:


Hey welcome. Training sounds tough but Highland Games also sounds like a lot of fun. I guess we have more over here in the UK - nothing like watching muscular men in kilts.


[quote]Cal Jones wrote:
Hey welcome. Training sounds tough but Highland Games also sounds like a lot of fun. I guess we have more over here in the UK - nothing like watching muscular men in kilts.[/quote]

Yeah, the pros that I’ve been able to watch are absolutely spectacular. The challenge of the sport is what keeps me interested but it’s definitely the community that keeps me coming back.

Okay, Week 2, Day 3:

Rest day. Weeeee rehab! Read the knee rehab article that was posted on the site recently and decided to give some of his suggestions a try. Today consisted of foam rolling, rolling out my quads with a lacrosse ball (OUCH!), 100 glute bridges and 30 kb swings with a 30# kb per arm. I could have done more but I’m lazy.

Bought a new foam roller today on the advice of a friend and it’s an absolute torture device. It’s called the travel roller. All I have to say is that this will definitely be going with me whenever I travel. Light weight, hollow and tiny.


Hi, Pixie and welcome! I’m just starting out with front squats too, so I’ll look forward to following your learning curve on those.


Week 2, Day 4:

My knee slapped me in the face with the fact that I HAVE to back off and take care of it. I’m a little bummed right now because of the constant ache in my left knee so I’m going to be smart and take however long it takes (I HATE making indefinite time frames) to strengthen and fix it. It’s my fault for not taking care of it sooner and having the mindset of getting it ‘good enough’ to get through season. So, I’m taking out ANYTHING that causes the ache to flare up. Sadly, this includes front squats. I’m a little pissed because I miss squatting and I thought I had found something I could do. It also kills off my classes. Turns out jumping isn’t good for my knee either :stuck_out_tongue:

For now, I know kb swings and two-legged RDLs are fine. Step-back lunges, hamstring curls and limited range leg extensions are fine. Guess I’ll find out if DLs are fine tomorrow. It’s silly, seeing all these things I can still do and mourning the one exercise I can’t do.

Guess I should write down what I did today…

Warmups - Agile 8
Front squats - 45x8, 65x5x3, 75x5x2
Right after I finished my last set the ache flared up pretty hard. Boo!
kb swings & rdls supersetted - 25x12x5 & 60x12x5
Surprisingly, the ache had receded by the time I finished these.
Leg extensions & hamstring curls supersetted - 40x10x5 & 60x10x5
As long as I watch the ROM on the extensions, my knees are fine.

Overall, I’m mad at myself for not fixing the problem at the start of the year. Maybe I’ll learn from this.

@Kimba - Sorry I’m dropping out on you. If it helps, I found this article to be fairly interesting in describing proper form: http://www.T-Nation.com/free_online_article/most_recent/front_squats_made_easier


Week 2, Day 5:

Morning workout:
Rehab work - foam rolling, lacrosse ball rolling on the quads, glute bridges 20x3 and kb swings 30x10x3

Afternoon workout:
Warmup - couple minutes on the elliptical, Agile 8, Simple 6
OHP - 30x8, 40x5, 50x5, 55x5, 60x5
DL - 95x5, 110x5, 130x5, 150x5, 160x3x2 My knee is happy with these. So am I. 160 went up pretty easy.
DB OHP - 20x10x5
Seated Row (EDT) - 4125# Must beat this total next week.
Superset of:
Lat Raises - 10x15x3
Back Ext - 10x5 (not using any weight yet)

Hectic weekend of travel coming up. I’m going to take my kb with me so I can do some stuff when I get the opportunity. We’ll see.


Here’s my motivation for the next little while :slight_smile:


Has Agile 8 made a lot of difference so far? I really know I should do a lot of lower body re/pre-hab but I’m basically lazy.


We have very similar numbers. I’ll definitely be following along. Props to you for being consistent with the lower body mobility work.

I can’t find ANY information on the ‘simple six.’ Got a link?


Hey Cal: Yeah, I’ve found that it helps out a lot. Keeps my warmups consistent and beyond that it really does a lot to start the blood flow. It’s helped my flexibility too. I can always tell when I have to spend a little extra time foam rolling my back and legs when my feet can’t get all the way over my head. Hip mobility has definitely improved as well. I’ve added other stuff into that routine like the bird dog to give my lower back some time to wake up as well.

Dani: Thanks! Some days the lower body work is the only thing that keeps me from not hobbling around like an old person after a harsh leg day. Stairs are not my friends then :stuck_out_tongue: I do have a link for you!



Yay gym time!

Week 3, Day 1:
Back was all kinds of tight. I hate traveling. I have yet to find a bed where I don’t wake up looking for the heat packs to start loosening up all the knots. Oh yeah, the driving part sucks too!

Started with a warmup on the elliptical today - 2 minutes at a medium pace then went through 5 sets of a 15/45 second sprint. I have to get this back up to 10 sets. Can you tell I hate cardio? BORING!

Agile 8 and Simple 6. By the time I was done this I had a good sweat going.

2 Board Bench - 50x5, 65x5, 75x5, 85x3, 90x3x2 I think I’ve really found a groove with these. I’ve tried focusing more on pulling the bar down to me and that’s really helped the bar path. 90 was feeling a little heavy but I got it done.

Incline DB bench - 30x8x4, 25x12, 20x12, 15x20 Minimal rest with the first four sets and constant movement with the last three sets. Finish the set with the 25s, go grab the 20s and start pushing. I’m sure I looked like a doofus to anybody watching me with the 15s. My arms were shaking, I was making faces… didn’t help that I couldn’t stop giggling at how hard I was making it look :slight_smile:

Superset of:
Cable curls - 45x12x5
Cable pressdown - 60x12x5
Biceps are definitely weaker than the triceps. Should probably work on that…

Pushups - EDT for 4 minutes - 51 total (7 more than last week) Before you get all impressed, I’m cheating and doing pushups off my knees. I keep my elbows close to my body so it’s working my triceps again (and putting less stress on my shoulders).

Finished up with a continuous plank - front/right side/left side/front for 4 minutes.

Now, a question for the ladies. Kettle Bell swings. Do you do them? If not, why? I absolutely love what they do for my legs :slight_smile: I can see dramatic improvement in the tone and overall feel of my legs by doing 30 swings per arm a day. It has the added benefit of giving me a little cardiovascular training at the same time. Opinions? Thoughts on the matter?