The Lifting Between Mountains - Raising the Valley

Startin’ off my own log with today’s train station walk loaded carry with backpack (lol) and yesterday’s BBB Beefcake.

5/3/1 BBB Beefcake
Week 2, Bench Day (TM: 150)

Main Work - Bench

  • 105 x 3
  • 120 x 3
  • 135 x 12 (huge 1 plate rep pr, stopped when reps stopped coming quickly)

Supplemental Work - Bench

  • 5 x 10 x 105 (tough after the pr set)

Accessories - superset one exercise set in between each warm up, main work, and supplemental

  • Single, Straight Leg Deadlift - 3 x 9 x 40
  • DB Bent Over Row - 5 x 12 x 40s (seated because the sldl blew up the lower back)
  • Lateral Raise - 3 x 15 x 10s
  • Bicycle Crunches

Finished in 43:11


Conditioning ideas post (some borrowed, some stolen, some blue in face):

  • 135 x 20 squats straight to 135 x 20 deadlifts
  • Prowler/Sled: 10 x 40yds x 90% BW (60s rest)
  • Litvinov-esque Workout: (heaviest kettlebells x 8 front squats SS 400m sprint) x 3

Wouldn’t that just be 135x40?

Woop, thank you, straight to 135 x 20 deads!
(Borrowed from your log and scaled for my strength)

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Ah. THAT is definitely a good time, haha.

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Well, today’s run was cut short by my left foot going dead (this chronic compartment syndrome, agh). Relegating the Altras back to walking and only running in something with a decent heel elevation. We’ll try again tomorrow… and the next day…

Run: 2.14 miles, slow pace, minimal elevation
Climbing: Chill, social climbing - top rope - no training goals for this session

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Run: 4.08 mi, slow pace, every time I saw a hill on the way I went up it

  • The heel elevation helped the calf pump. I did have to stop twice to walk it out, but no dead foot today, halleloo.
  • Honestly, it’s a real mind fuck to be back in a running shoe with a 10mm drop after running in zero drop since I was 15. There goes all my Born to Run cred.

5/3/1 BBB Beefcake
Week 2, Deadlift Day (TM: 260)

  • bought some straps! Climbing is for grip strength, deadlifts are for the back.

Main Work - Deadlift

  • 180 x 3
  • 205 x 3
  • 235 x 6

Supplemental Work - Deadlift

  • 1 x 10 x 160 (oops, loaded the bar wrong, but still gotta do all the sets)
  • 5 x 10 x 180

Accessories - superset one exercise set in between each warm up, main work, and supplemental

  • Dips 5x10
  • Facepulls 5x20

Finished in 44:42

Off to go pick up my mountain bike from my parent’s! Shred season is here, baby.


Goal Post
This seems to be the year for some ambitious, time intensive goals. I’m out of the Midwest, my girlfriend is harder core than I am, my job is flexible and awesome, and I have few responsibilities outside of my dog. So here we go.

Running: Complete the Sawatch Ascent 2023
I attempted this race for the first time last year. It is a 33 mile ultra that starts at 9,000+ feet, circumnavigates Mount Princeton with 7,000 ft of elevation gain to an apex of 13,300, and then rapidly descends back down to the start. Training was two months of completely flat running in Chicago, which was less than ideal. Regardless, I had a wonderful time despite dropping out at 30 miles because my right knee stopped bending at about the marathon mark. I kept going until I hit the time limit and then called it off.

  • A goal: Complete the whole 33 miles
  • B goal: Complete in under 12 hours
  • C goal: Complete in under 11 hours

Training goals for running:

  • 503 miles minimum total for the year
  • Working weekly elevation up to 7,000’

Strength: 1/2/3/4
No timeline for this - however long it takes 5/3/1 to get me there is how long it takes

Climbing: Back to 5.6 leading in the Gunks
Back burner, but will be fun for summer weekends

Mountain Biking: Just have fun and get out whenever I can
Super back burner. Maybe will focus on it for 2024 with a race or something


Hike 1: 3.5 mi, 875’ of elevation gain
Is there anything more fun than watching your two, nearly matching black dogs charge up snowy hills so they can run down them as fast as possible (right at you)? I don’t think so.

Kettlebell ABCs x EMOM 14 mins

  • 6 mins x 1 ABC x 40/30 KBs (switching hands) - roughly 20sw/40sr
  • 6 mins x 2 ABC x 30/25 KBs (“”) - roughly 30sw/30sr
  • 2 mins x 3 ABC x 15/15 KBs - roughly 40sw/20sr
    Flamed out on the 3 ABC rounds - gonna work up to 6 rounds of those. Lower back pump is wild these days - gotta stay tight as I get tired. Might throw on a belt for these next, just to have the physical reminder.

10 Ab Wheel (Knees)

Hike 2: Loaded backpack with 25lbs and went up 1000’
Living with a serious mountaineer is good for training


5/3/1 BBB Beefcake
Week 3, Press Day (TM: 95) - finished in 43:02

  • Jumps/ Throws Warm up

Main Work - Press

  • 70 x 5
  • 80 x 3
  • 90 x 6

Supplemental Work - Press SS w/ Rows

  • 5 x 10 x 70 press
    these ended up being a real struggle
  • 5 x 10 x 70 rows

Accessories - superset throughout whole workout

  • Crunches 5 x 20
  • Single Leg Split Squat 5 x 6 x 60lbs
    brutal after all the weighted hiking yesterday

Ended up bagging two laps of Mt.B for 2000 feet of vert w/ 25lbs in the bag
Slow and hard, but got them done. The nice thing about the hardness was that it wasn’t heart and lungs, it was just tired, tired muscles.

Slammed some dinner (ground beef tacos and roasted sweet potatoes) and so excited to be in bed. Good ending to a big weekend of training.


Weekly Summary

Headed into Week 3 of BBB Beefcake and its volume is really starting to pile me up with the running and conditioning and weighted hiking. I’m tired. Gonna keep eating my way through completion, but I’m excited for next week’s deload.
Then it’s onto a template that leaves a little more room for long runs, weighted hiking, and outdoor climbing season. Now that there’s light at the end of the work day, I can catch up on running mileage (barring a worsening of this compartment syndrome).
Actually, if anyone has 5/3/1 template recs for something that will balance nicely with lots of running volume, drop em! Thanks.

Weekly running/weighted hiking mileage: 19.2mi (So low!)
Weekly elevation: 4,275’

Edit: Additional thoughts on the week
Keeping weekends for big leg based training (running, hiking) makes a lot of sense time wise, so I’ve got two options for scheduling.

  1. Try to get all the lifting days done during the work week (Mon - Thurs)
    Challenging with a four day a week template, but definitely doable with a 3 day.
  2. Keep one weekend day of training and just make sure it’s an upper day

I’ll try both. This week, I kept Sunday a lifting day and just did OHP, but I have a feeling I’m going to want to keep Fri-Sun lifting free so I don’t have to be near a gym.
After the deload, I’m switching to a 3 day for awhile to see where it gets me. I don’t think I need a deadlift volume day with climbing, based on past experience.

Food wise, I ate pretty well for the most part. Desperately needing and eating an entire baguette on the train ride home has me thinking I probably under-fueled in the early part of the week and could stand to bring more food into the city. Goal: Bring two meals to eat during work and try to shovel a breakfast down in the morning.

Future goal: On deload week, make up all miles behind goal.


All right, it’s Monday 3/13/23, busiest work day of the week so just gotta fit it in.
already this log has got me finding areas to push my training and fit more in! awesome!

Quick Morning Conditioning
2 rounds of:

  1. 10 x Devil Presses (15/15 KBs)
  2. 10 x Band Pull Aparts (Yellow)
  3. 10 x Ab Wheel Rollouts (Knees)
    Completed in: 6:40
    The BPAs serve as a nice spot to catch my breath in these. I won’t fall and slam my knee next time, so should cut down time significantly. I’ll slowly add rounds to these in the mornings. Goal here is just to add a little conditioning in the mornings and eventually translate the habit to getting either strength or running work done before work, once it’s warm and the habit is built.

Lunch time run: 2.75 mi, vv slow pace, 182 ft. of gain
Absolute slog, leg turnover in slow motion.

  • Ended with 4 x strides
    in hopes of clearing out the liquid death running through my legs instead of blood. Ideally, they’ll help get the old logs ready for squats tomorrow

The more miles I get done this week, the less catch up I have to do next week during the lifting deload. Once April rolls around, it’ll be time to start adding some hill sprint workouts once every week or two weeks.


5/3/1 BBB Beefcake - 3/14/23
Week 3, Squat Day (TM: 215) - finished in 45:17

Run Warm Up - 1.3 mi, medium pace, flat treadmill
Felt incredible, especially compared to yesterday’s slog. Openers really work, I guess. Gotta remember this lesson.

Main Work - Squat

  • 165 x 5
  • 185 x 3
  • 205 x 6
    strong feeling, fast reps

Supplemental Work - Skwat

  • 5 x 10 x 165
    the nice thing about the four weeks of Super Squats before surgery is that these 5x10s are a bit less daunting since I know I can do the weight for 20 in a row at least

Accessories - superset throughout whole workout

  • Dips 5 x 8 x 5lbs
  • Pull Ups 5 x 5
    These pullups felt zippy. Final frontier post-surgery is the stretch in the very, very bottom position.

Well, didn’t succeed in bringing food into work, but did succeed in not eating a whole baguette on the train. Mixed victories.
That said, everything felt so strong today that I must have eaten something right.


Quick Morning Conditioning - 3/16/23
10 mins to fit in:

  1. 25 KB Swings (40 lbs)
  2. (5 + 5 to switch hands) KB Clean and Press (30/40 lbs)
  3. 25 KB Swings (40 lbs)
  4. (5 + 5 to switch hands) KB Clean and Press (30/40 lbs)
  5. 25 KB Swings (40 lbs)
  6. (5 + 5 to switch hands) KB Clean and Press (30/40 lbs)
  7. 25 KB Swings (40 lbs)
  8. AMRAP Burpee Chins to finish ten minutes (10 reps) - finished ten in 10:10
    to progress: more burpee chins in the time limit and ten straight C&P in a row

Run: 5.41 mi, slow pace, 353’
feet went numb at 3 mi. gonna go see if a different shoe will work

Climb: chill sesh, 8 routes, all 5.10 and under

Can’t wait to shower and sleep


5/3/1 BBB Beefcake - 3/17/23
Week 3, Bench Day (TM: 150) - finished in 46:14

5 min 20s on / 10s rest Jacob’s Ladder
Jumps + Throws

Main Work - Bench

  • 115 x 5
  • 130 x 3
  • 145 x 8
    Felt heavy. Definitely didn’t eat enough after yesterday’s run.

Supplemental Work - Bench SS DB Rows

  • 5 x 10 x 135 bench
  • 5 x 10 x 45 DB rows

Accessories - SS with each other

  • SLSL Deadlift 3 x 8 x 40lbs
  • Hanging Leg Lifts 5 x 5 (just above parallel with the floor)

Run: 3.75 mi, easy-moderate pace, 206’ gain
No calf pump!!! The Nike Free Run 5.0’s might be the ticket. Unbelievable.

Nutrition: Ate waaaaay more protein today than usual and got much closer to “goal”. Also learned that one package of tofu is almost exactly the same, macronutrient wise, as 4 eggs. Got duck legs defrosting for tomorrow, mmmm.


Day of running and vert hiking

Run: 5.51 mi, trail, walk/run, 844’ gain
H. State Park is still the hardest freakin’ place to run quickly! So techy! But that’s good, moderated my effort so I could get the 1000’ up Mt. B after and so I’m not crushed for deadlifts tomorrow

Hike: One lap Mt. B, 1000’ gain, unweighted
Easy peasy

Nutrition: Duck confit in the oven. I’m in heaven.


It’s cold today so, I’ve gotta be honest, I do not want to do the 1700’ of vert I had planned today. Okay, I’ve said it, off my chest, now to go do it. I want to crush Gothics in two weeks, so I better be able to drag my ass up a chilly peak without snow today.

Will do the deadlift day and wrap up BBB Beefcake first, in hopes that it warms slightly by the time I hit the trail.


5/3/1 BBB Beefcake - 3/19/23
Week 3, Deadlift Day (TM: 260) - finished in 58:36

Jumps (SS in DL WU)

Main Work - Deadlift

  • 195 x 5
  • 220 x 3
  • 245 x 10
    Right side lower back felt… off… after every set. I felt strong and fast on these reps, but then I would stand up and my back would be in a bad/weird way. Glad that I’ve got a deload coming up this week - hopefully that just resets everything.

Supplemental Work - Deadlift SS Weighted Dips

  • 5 x 10 x 195lb DL
  • 5 x 10 x 5lbs Dips

Accessories - SS with each other

  • Face Pulls 5 x 20
  • Back Extensions 5 x 10

Think I’m gonna hammer hamstrings and single leg work in this next cycle and see if that clears up the lower back stuff. I think I’m shifting to the right a lot to compensate for a weaker left leg and my hamstrings could use some work anyway.

“Run:” 3mi, hike up/“run” down, 1,111’
Terrible, terrible conditions up on the mountain today, so the full loop will have to wait for some snow to melt. It was hardly a run, wasn’t really possible with the snow and jeep tracks and ice, but I set out with the intention to run and ran what I could, so I’m counting it.

GF is back after two weeks away, so dinner should be a fancy date meal. Can’t freakin’ wait and glad I got all of this done before she arrives. It’ll be fun to run with her again this week, now that she’s back. She’ll probably kick my ass, if her Strava is anything to go by, but I’ll try to keep up.


Weekly Summary

Lifting: 4x, finished a cycle of BBB Beefcake
Run/Vert Hike: 23.9 mi, 3,655’ of gain

Enjoyed Beefcake, but definitely was a little too hammered by it to keep running it as the weather gets nice. Definitely a winter program for me. Next full cycle will be 5s PRO, FSL, 3 Day.

Nutrition: Found a farm stand that has delicious local meat and enjoyed it all week. Big win, it’s like two miles away from my house. This week, gonna bring lunch to work both days.

Plan for the coming week:
Got a friend coming into town and gonna show off NYC for most of the week, so vert training may be hard to come by. Will lift twice and catch up on all running mileage for yearly goal (only an additional 2.8 mi), maybe even get ahead.

  • Mileage goal: 20 mi
  • One hill sprint day
  • 2 days lifting, test training maxes (maybe a joker set or two)


Quick Conditioning
2 ABCs EMOM for 10 mins

  • first 4 mins: 30/40lb KBs
  • last 6 mins: 25/30lb KBs

next time: 25/30 for all rounds and 3 ABCs per min

Run: 3.51 mi, easy/mid pace (pushed the hills a bit), 270’ gain
tomorrow, hill sprints - WU, AMAP in 20 mins, CD

Notes: That right lower back/right hip issue was still there during the ABCs and seems like they made it worse, so gonna stay away from hip hinges for most of the week to let it chill out. Squats felt all right.