T Nation

Tears, Sweat, and Blood on the Brain


#1

Haven’t logged anything in a long time, was chugging along pretty well without it for a while and making decent progress. Bit of a change in my situation recently and I’ve got to shift my training focus for a while - logging will keep me more accountable.

Bit about me, was an aspiring powerlifter for a the first few years I logged here, finally bit the bullet last November and competed.

Went 212.5/110/230 at 98kg.

Nearly hit a PR 3rd attempt on squat, had a shocker on bench because my feet moved on the first two attempts at my opener, got a solid pull in but missed my 3rd attempt.
Really enjoyed the day, proud of myself for dropping about 8kg to get to the weight class and still hitting close to my PBs, qualified for BDFPA nationals but didn’t end up going due to funds.

After that I let my weight creep back up above 100, and focused on getting my bench and deadlift up. PRs since then are a 227.5kg squat, 125kg bench, and 240kg pull.

Since then, I’ve had a bit of a setback. In May I was doing a dropset on the legpress and started getting a serious headache, along with nausea and general feeling of wanting to die. Being a medical student and constantly hammered with “sudden onset severe headache over the back of the head is a bleed”, I had a little bit of a worry, but I ended up getting driven home and riding it out for a couple of days before finally going and getting a head scan - logic being, if I’d survived the 25 minutes it took for me to stall going to hospital, it shouldn’t be anything serious.

I turned out to be half right. The scan came back showing some blood in my subarachnoid space. That’s generally quite a big deal, it normally comes from a burst artery and basically leads to a loss of oxygen to and compression of the brain.
Mine was slightly different, I apparently had a venous abnormality which has existed for years, perfectly happy, then randomly popped. Probably the leg press triggered it, but it could’ve gone any time.

The end result is, I had to take a month of training at all, I’m now under strict instruction to take it easy until I am properly signed off in November.

I’ve been doing light bodybuilding training for my upper body, and very little lower body work at all.

My limitations are basically, I can’t make my intrabdominal pressure spike too high. That limits lower body work. I’ve spent the last few months prefatigueing every upper body muscle before going anywhere near anything heavy, and just driving up volume.

I’m now home from uni for summer and will be training mainly with 24kg and 40kg kettlebells. The goal is getting my bodyweight down and fitness. That’s where the accountability of logging comes in. There will probably be shirtless pictures. With downlighting :+1:

Starting weight (buying scales tomorrow) 107kg range.


Max's Maxes: Squats and Bench Every Day
#2

#3

Great to have you back and sorry to hear about the subarachnoid haemorrhage! Christ!

Edit: also didn’t realise you competed - great result! Looking forward to following your comeback.


#4

Thanks Furo. Yeah, hell of a weekend, the school love it though - patient experience and everything. Leaky cavernoma if you’re interested, so not quite on the scale of a berry aneurysm.

Today

Ring chins
6 x 2

Ss/ Box jumps
6 x 2

Pressups
3 x 20

Ss/ KB bent over row
24kg x 3 x 15/arm - harder than I expected

KB clean and strict press
24kg x 4 x 8/arm

KB circuit of upright rows, OH tris, hammer curls
24kg x 4 x 15

Ss/ KB swings
24kg x 4 x 25

Quite an easy workout. Most days will be similar to this and just add volume. Will probably graduate to the 40kg kettlebell on some rows and swings eventually, and get some quad work in as well.


#5

Yesterday

2 mile run - 16 minutes. I’m bad at running.

Today

Parallel chins
5 x 3
Ss/ Pressups
5 x 20

Supine chins
5 x 3
Ss/ Diamond pressups
5 x 10

KB circuit of upright rows, OH tris, hammer curls
24kg x 10 x 10
Ss/ KB swings
24kg x 10 x 20
Ss/ Pullaparts
10 x 20


#6

I promised down lighting didn’t I?

Not letting myself do any posing/flexing, or I might trick myself into thinking I look good.


#7

Today

Run
3.94km - 21:54 - 5:39/km - found a spot halfway to stop for ten minutes and let the dog get in the river.

Tracking runs in km now because that’s what the fitbit does and it’s convenient. Back working in a care home for the summer after a 2 year break and I’m getting 8km of walking back and forth on the average shift. Me feet hurt.


#8

Yesterday
Off

Today

Deadstop KB high pull
24kg x 5
40kg x 5 x 5
Ss/ Ring chins
6 x 2

Kb floor press
24kg x 10,12,12
Ss/ KB row
24kg x 3 x 15

Pressups
5 x 20
Ss/ Pullaparts
5 x 30

KB circuit of upright rows, OH tris, hammer curls
24kg x 3 x 20

Run
2.49km - 13:33 - 5:25/km


#9

Ring chins
6 x 2
Ss/ Box jumps
6 x 2

KB clean and strict press
24kg x 5 x 8/arm

Pushups
3 x 25
Ss/ KB row
24kg x 3 x 15 - found a staggered stance that works for these, I figured out over the last couple of sessions that it was my lower back fatiguing that was making these suck so much.

Run
1.35km - 9:04 - 6.43/km
5 minutes rest, ran on a bit, then all the way back. Not a good pace at any point.

Felt quite sluggish today, the box jumps were noticeably difficult and then the run was dire. Working quite long shifts on my feet a lot at the moment, and I’m making an effort to get my exercise in before I have the first meal of the day, neither of which are helping, but I think I’ll adapt.


#10

Couple of days off to go watch my sister graduate.

Run
Around 3km - phone crashed but saved the first 2km with paces of about 5:10. The final one will have been slower because I was going through long grass. Better going than recently.

Weighed in at 104kg


#11

Swings
1 handed - 24kg x 3 x 5/arm
2 handed - 40kg x 6 x 5

Ring chins
5 x 3

Pushups
4 x 25
Ss/ KB row
24kg x 20,15,12,15

KB snatch
24kg x 3 x 8/arm

Unilateral farmers walks
24/40kg x 8 x 40m - swap hand each walk

Upright rows
40kg x 3 x 8
Ss/ OH tris
24kg x 3 x 15
Ss/ Hammer curls
24kg x 3 x 15

Band pullaparts and curls
Some


#12

Yesterday
Run
3.09km - 15:25 - 4:59/km - finally cracked 5 minute kms, chuffed with this. Around the 5:10 mark for the first 2k then crushed the last at 4:30. My best run time ever was the 1500m in 5:25 on sports day when I was 16 and around 50lbs lighter. My long term goal is to get back to that pace - around 3:40. Big cut in time but I have a lot of room to improve into.

Today

Ring chins
1,2,3,2,1,2,3,2,2,2,2,2

Swings
24kg x 10,15,25,25,15,10
Ss/ KB OHP
24kg x 6 x 10

Feet up pushups
4 x 15
Ss/ KB side bends
24kg x 4 x 20

Stopped there because I twinged my trap a bit, I’ve pulled the left one a few times and both of them get sore when I go on long runs/play a rugby match or something. I don’t know if that;s a weakness or a running technique, will pull my finger out and do some reading. Good session even without the isolation work.


#13

Run
4.03km - 20:38 - 5:07/km. Good, especially with having to slow down to put the dog on a leash around livestock and get through gates.


#14

Yesterday

Swings
40kg x 5 x 3
Ss/ Box jumps
5 x 3

Ring chins
8 x 3
Ss/ KB high pull
40kg x 8 x 8

Walking lunges
BW x 20
24kg x 3 x 20 - passing between legs
Ss/ Pullaparts
4 x 40 - bunch of angles

KB OHP - paused
24kg x 8,9,10,9,8

Feet up pushups
4 x 20
Ss/ KB upright row - superstrict, hold and squeeze
24kg x 4 x 10

Today
Off


#15

Run
1km - 4:45 - 4:45/km - felt good, comfortable pace to be warming up at.

1k into the road I run on there’s a 200m straight.
I did 4 sprints along it, using the walk back for rest. First 3 around what felt like 80%, and I was recovering fully by the time I got back to the start, so the final one I pushed it up around 90%. I’ll do more of these, and throw in some 100m ones as well as pushing up the intensity and number of reps.

Run back
1km - 4:20 - 4:20/km - yas

Happy with both mid distance runs today, can do more on the sprints but started easy.


#16

Set myself some overall rep goals on 4 exercises today. I was gonna just do them sporadically throughout the day and tally them up but they ended up being done in multiple circuits with set reps per exercise. Completed over the course of about 4 hours.

Chins: 23 x 2, 1 x 4 - total 50 reps

Swings (40kg): 23 x 8, 1 x 16 - total 200 reps

Pushups: 23 x 20, 1 x 40 - total 500 reps

Pullaparts: 23 x 40, 1 x 80 - total 1000 rerps


#17

Run
2.33km - 11:05 - 4:43/km

Underestimated the heat today, didn’t drink enough before the run and didn’t take any water with me. Was gonna go another couple of hundred metres then run back for a 5k total but ended up walking back from here and taking it as recovery. Thought my pace was a lot slower so was quite pleasantly surprised by being quite far sub 5, but irritated that I didn’t prep properly and run a decent distance.


#18

Yesterday
Off

Today
Run
1km - 4:15 - 4:15/km
Sprints
200m @80%
200m @90%
100m @80%
100m @90%
200m @80%
200m @80%
Run
1km - 4:04 - 4:04/km - when the fitbit told me halfway that I was close to 4 minute kms I geared up to give it my all on the final stretch, apparently should have started a bit earlier because I overran by 50m at a pace of 3:45, which would’ve chipped away at the time a little bit.
Ah well, next time.


#19

Monday
Off - finished at the home and started work on a farm, somehow getting twice as many steps in per day and doing a load of manual labour as well. Was planning on some kettlebells but the moment I sat down I wasn’t standing back up.

Yesterday
Run
3km - 14:12 - 4:47/km - this felt slow but ended up at quite a good pace for me still.

Today
Chins
1,2,3,4,3,2,1
Ss/ Feet up pressups
10,15,20,25,20,15,10
Ss/ Swings
40kg x 5,8,12,15,12,8,5

No rest between last 4 supersets/circuits.

KB upright row
24kg x 3 x 15
Ss/ OH triceps
24kg x 3 x 15
Ss/ Hammer curls
24kg x 3 x 15


#20

Hey mate, do you have any particular performance goals at the moment? With your running or anything? Also I was thinking the 10,000 swing routine might be a really good fit for you right now, although it’s not very fun lol. You’re doing an awesome job of making the best of your situation. Anyway November will be here before you know it. Do you have a plan for how you’re going to attack things when you get the green light?

Also what sort of stuff are you doing on the farm? I remember reading about you working as a farm hand before, that’s really cool. I’m looking forward to the day I can quit and run a smallholding/be a househusband haha. So long as my wife is making the money and I don’t have to worry about making an actual profit.