Well, it’s time for another off-season update. I’ve been following my old faithful 4 day split:
Monday: Shoulders & Back + occlusion for triceps & biceps
Tuesday: Quads, Hamstrings, Calves + occlusion for quads and hamstrings
Thursday: Chest, Triceps & Biceps + occlusion for triceps & biceps
Friday: Backs (upper and lower), Hamstrings, Glutes, Calves
While i’m only doing weight training 4 days a week, i’ve been doing cardio up to 6-7 days a week (30 minutes at a time) + throwing abs/core in 3-4 days per week outside my main workouts. Now that spring is upon us, the outdoor work begins…fired up the lawnmower this weekend (rain prevented me from finishing my task) + did some weeding
In the last couple of months, I feel that training has been going quite well and i’ve been firing on all cylinders. Been weighing around 218-220 lbs in the morning. I have implemented a couple of things in the last few weeks to shock my body into growth. The first is 100 rep totals on exercises. Do your warm-ups sets and choose a weight to do all your sets with…continue doing sets until you hit 100 reps total.
a few weeks ago, I did this on incline D-bell press for chest with the 100 lb d-bells…last week on my tuesday leg workout I did it on squats w/ 315 lbs…then later in the week did 100 reps on SLDL with 315. You take the equivalent volume of GVT and add the element of time (performing the same number of reps in as few sets as possible). We had another chest workout where we did 100 reps w/ 3 plates per side on HS Chest Press and then 100 reps w/ 100 lbs per side on cable flys…BTW, if you get to 100 but your workout partner hasn’t yet, you keep going until he/she finished, so sometimes you end up doing more than 100…i think i ended up doing 120 reps on seated lateral d-bell raises with the 30′s on a shoulder workout.
In addition to the 100′s (which we don’t do every workout), i have also added the occlusion training for triceps, biceps, quads and hamstrings back in the last 3 weeks…I always feel I get a nice response in terms of strength and muscle fullness when I perform occlusion training.
The Fitness Challenge to raise money for the humane society is coming up on April 21st:
the last time I promoted this event, I did trap bar deadlifts with 405 lbs:
and 850 lb tire flip:
with the event right around the corner, i’ve had to decide what i’ll do to raise money this year. Friday, I finally had a decent show of strength on Trap bar deads friday at 500 lbs, so i’m considering doing this:
I will likely also do Barbell Pause Squats w/ 315 lbs:
So those are my numbers to beat.
Friday I had the opportunity to use a Prowler…Been itching to use this thing for awhile now…F***ing awesome!!! Absolutely Brutal!!! This was exhausting (done after 4 heavy sets of deads)
I will definitely be incorporating this tool in my training on friday’s on a regular basis…great for conditioning
That’s about all there is to report at this point.
In Memory of Taylor
November 26th, 2000 – March 7th, 2012
Last week I was faced with one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do…I had to say goodbye to Taylor, my 11+ year old female Rottweiler. Taylor has been my loyal companion for over eight years. I adopted her from Northeast Rottweiler Rescue (www.rottrescue.org) in October of 2003, a little over a month before she turned three years old. I was living and working at an all-boys private prep school in New York, called Trinity-Pawling…I lived by myself in an apartment on campus and I was financially independent. While I have lived with dogs my entire life, Taylor was the first dog I ever owned. Having a dog is no different than having a kid…you have another being who is dependent upon you to provide food, shelter, care, mental and physical stimulation, and love. With this newfound responsibility comes a new sense of purpose.
Over the last eight years Taylor was a beacon of consistency in my otherwise transient life. Through a move from New York to Virginia, a career change, occupation of numerous homes and involvement in different relationships, one thing always remained the same…Taylor was always at my side as my loyal companion.
We all have days when life seems hard and we stop to question our purpose or direction. Sometimes it’s the simplest things that keep us going…Every day, seeing me when I got home was the most exciting part of Taylor’s day. I always reminded myself of this. Life gets busy…but for a dog it’s very simple…they can’t wait until you get home, because you’re all they have! They always look to you for love, affection and attention. No matter how busy I ever was, I always stopped to recognize Taylor and what she meant to me when I got home. I knew that Taylor wouldn’t live forever and I wanted to always make her know how much I loved her and how much I appreciated her in my life. It takes very little to make a dog happy and they offer so much in return for your love and affection. When everything else in life sucks, a dog can still bring a smile to your face.
In the first few years I had Taylor, she used to suffer very bad separation anxiety when I left for more than a day or two. My parents would take care of her while I was gone and she would go to the window every time a car passed, thinking and hoping it was mine. When I finally did get home, she was beyond happy to see me…pretty good feeling to get that kind of welcome from someone.
Some of the things I will always remember about Taylor:
Taylor loved to go for rides…this was about equal to biscuits! If you left the car door open, she would jump in, thinking she was going somewhere, even if you had just returned home. In the last couple of years Taylor was alive, I had to lift her up into my truck, because she was no longer able to jump up.
Taylor on her 10th Birthday
Taylor liked to demand biscuits…certain times of day (before bed, after she had gone outside), she felt she was entitled to treats. She would let you know with her intense stare in conjunction with her woofing at you. If you didn’t give in, she’d start to throw a fit, stomping her feet, pointing at the biscuit jar, looking back at you and then woofing louder. Taylor tried to use her Jedi mind tricks to persuade people into giving her treats…it usually worked!
I will never forget Taylor’s smile! Taylor had the best smile!
When Taylor wanted affection, she would bury and rub her giant head into you and practically knock you over.
Taylor’s favorite place was the front deck…she could see and hear everything and she enjoyed being outside, taking it all in, feeling the breeze, watching the birds, picking up the different smells in the air.
Taylor was always a stop to smell the flowers type of girl…she loved being outside and just had an appreciation for life and everything that was going on around her.
Over the years, Taylor had several playmates. ..it was fun to watch her goofy personality as she got to play with other dogs, including some she lived with.
Taylor was a couch potato!
Taylor liked water, but only if she could touch the ground with her feet
In the end Taylor still had the same exuberant look in her eye. She was still coherent and attentive. Unfortunately, she outlived her body. Her hips deteriorated in the last couple of years leading to instability at times when she walked. An injury to her foot, trying to stand made her limp with her front right leg. Having only one strong limb led to a secondary injury to her shoulder (x-ray could not confirm what the exact issue was), no longer allowing her to compensate with the front legs. This left her immobile for the last eight days she was alive. I did everything I could to help her overcome this. We tried laser treatment therapy on the shoulder…I carried her to my truck numerous times to take her to the vet in the hopes that I could get her to walk again. I tried to assist her in standing by using a towel under her ribcage and having someone else support her back end. Not only was Taylor unresponsive to the laser treatment therapy, but days of immobility were causing her back end to further atrophy. Even if she could overcome the shoulder issue, her hips were too weak to support her body weight. She was becoming increasingly uncomfortable, even taking pain medication twice a day. On Saturday, March 3rd, I came to the realization that I would have to say goodbye to my little girl. The thought of losing her tore me apart, but I couldn’t watch her suffer any more. Taylor was always so full of life…this was no way for her to live. I know she felt trapped in a body that didn’t work anymore. She needed to be set free.
From that point, knowing I only had a few days left with Taylor, I did everything I could to make her comfortable and happy. I wanted Taylor to leave feeling loved. I wanted her last days to be peaceful. Wednesday, March 7th was Taylor’s final day. I made sure to spend extra time with her. It was absolutely gorgeous outside, so I pulled her bed (with her on it) out onto the front deck, so she could enjoy her favorite place one more time. In the final days Taylor was visited by several people who knew and loved her. Wednesday evening Dr. Jones of Blacksburg Animal Clinic came to the house to set Taylor free. I insisted this was done at home. I wanted Taylor’s final moments to be at home being held by me, surrounded by love in an environment she was familiar with that would leave her with happy memories and thoughts. As I watched her take her final breaths, I cried my eyes out. It was very hard for me, but I knew it had to be done and I was able to ensure that Taylor had a good last day.
Taylor’s condition deteriorated very quickly in the last two weeks of her life. While I wasn’t prepared to lose her, I know it was somewhat of a blessing…she lived life to the fullest up to the end. I did not drag things out and let her suffer. While it was extremely hard for me to let her go, I know that I was able to give her a good life. It’s hard for me to put into words what Taylor meant to me…the simplest way to put it is for those who saw the smile she brought to my face while she was alive and for those who saw the tears from my eyes at the end, you know.
Taylor will always have a place in my heart and I will cherish the memories of when she was still with me. Her spirit is free and she has found a new home amongst others who have passed before her (Maverick, Addie, Schultz, Wolfy). She’s probably demanding biscuits from a greater power with her Jedi Mind tricks, woofing and foot stomping…hopefully she’s going for rides and playing with old friends. I can only hope that someday I get to see her again. There will never be another Taylor. I love my little girl and I miss her!