22 years…

September 18, 2007 at 11:34 pm (Life, School, Training)

Well this week isn’t getting any slower than the previous weeks.  Last week a lot of training had to be modified due to the insanity of the previous week.  My back is finally feeling human again thank goodness because me and prescription anti-inflammatories are not a great combo.  In other news I feel like the world is spinning in double time right now.

I can only make it to the gym today during my normal time, the rest of the week I’m cramming in gym time when it fits.  Last night I went to the Canucks first pre-season game which aside from losing was fun.  Since my best friend is moving 3000 miles away we’re cramming in all the time we can. Thursday we have a concert, another training day, and also the day I will have been on this earth 22 years.  Man oh man.  Friday I have plans so more afternoon training.  Like I said things are crazy. Amongst all these things I also have class.  I’ve decided to take only 4 classes and drop my 4 credit analytical chem lab, because with 5 courses, 2 of which are graduate level I wasn’t going to have time to focus on training or have any social life.

Another tangent – why is it always when I do not have time for something positive to happen in my social life it does???? Like seriously do they just wait in the wings until I have no time to date and then appear…rant off.

Gym time.


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What a week

September 10, 2007 at 3:48 am (Life, School, Training)

This entire week had me out of sorts.  Thursday was the kicker when I somehow managed to break my toe getting in the shower.  I don’t know how it happened I just know that clearly I did something to make karma mad.  I trained thursday night, not like I could do anything about it, so I taped it took some advil and iced after…shades of burgandy appeared the next day, but it’s alright.  Friday training was just messed up.

I powercleaned up to 79, which was a misload it was supposed to be 77, but I made 79 no problem.  Then couldn’t make it again, couldn’t make 75, was sooo pissed went back down and up and down and up and down until I reached the point of utter frustration after oh 50 minutes of power cleaning.  Left the gym to sit in my hidden corner and be pissed off because by this point I was ignoring everyone and ready to snap.  The mood in the gym was already shitty I didn’t need to add to it.  My training partner I. came out to give me a pep talk and I hate ra-ra shit like that so I kind of snapped and told her to leave me alone.  I feel a little bad, but that’s not what I needed or wanted to hear.  When my workout is going that shitty I need to reconvince myself why I weightlift and sometimes it’s fast sometimes its slow.  Eventually I went back into the gym set up a new platform and started all over again, managed to do 3 75s in a row and walked away from power cleans. Coach wanted me to clean, by this point I’d been at power cleans for about 80 minutes and my legs were shot, my traps were tired and I admitted which caused more yelling in the gym.  I tried to full and eventually did a few but I was on a shitty lacquered platform and ended up falling on my ass. Moved on and did clean deads for sets of 4 at 95, did 4 sets.  Then to back squats, my legs were already tired, but I went anyway.  I was supposed to attempt 125 for a single then go back down to 115 for 3 sets of 3.  Well in my infinite wisdom I totally misloaded.  Had 85 on the bar and added a 15 to each side and somehow in my head thought this was 105, did a triple it felt a bit heavy but I just figured it was the cleaning from earlier.  Added a 10 to each side thinking this then would be 125, but no after my first misload it was 135, I took it off and wasn’t totally sure.  Bottomed out and it rolled all the way down my back because I didn’t jump out of the way fast enough.  Then went back down to 115 and couldn’t do it, left the gym in a major funk.  I’m hoping monday brings something better, shitty work outs put me in a bad bad mood.

On a more positive note I had a pretty decent weekend, invested in a new computer, a macbook.  I love it, if I wasn’t a student I’d cough up the money for a powerbook, but alas my budget doesn’t allow for that.  I’m very happy with it so far.  And on Saturday night after finding out my best friend is indeed moving to New Hampshire we had 2 bottles of wine and some good times.  The wine doesn’t really fit into my whole lifting eating habits, but given she’s moving 3000 miles away and to a different country it was warranted.

Today I spent 5 or 6 hours in the library studying.  This semester is crazy but I’m committed to keep on top of it because these courses matter for grad school.  First exam tomorrow so we’ll see how that goes.  Then training to release exam stress.

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Life is about to get very busy

September 6, 2007 at 4:04 am (Life, School, Training)

School has offically started and I’ve not had all my classes once and at this point I am shaking my head…what was I thinking registering this semester, I must me a sadist. It’s probably the same reason I weightlift, I thrive on a challenge and this semester is going to be one. I have 15 “midterm” exams in 4 classes, one of my courses has no midterm. I use the term midterm lately because in my immunology class we have 7 exams, one every two weeks on at least a chapter of material, if not more. It’s a lot of material, and it’s going to be interesting. I’m still absorbing the magnitude of the term and I just got back from studying at the library.

Now on to training. I had 4 days off due to some previous commitments Friday and then the holiday Monday. I had a pretty decent day on Tuesday, it was too heavy, but the focus on not rolling the bar away from my shins at the beginning of the snatch is f-ing with my technique, so we’re slowly adjusting. Cleans went surprisingly well, power cleaned up to 77, which is more than I full cleaned at the last meet. We’re spending a lot of time on power clean right now, just getting it up is all we want. Back squats for 115 triples was hard but not impossible and then some snatch deads again working on not rolling the bar away from my shins. Did half an hour of core work and felt amazing after. No ill affects today which was nice, usually my abs hate me.

I’m trying to decide the best time to integrate cardio into my training, the morning of training days I have time, or my off days…or after training, if anyone is reading any suggestions would be cool???

Anyway I have a paper to read before my 9:30AM class tomorrow woohoo, schools back.

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A Million Ways to be Cruel

September 4, 2007 at 3:39 am (Life, School, Training)

Weightlifting, despite its overall low rate of injuries has many, many ways to be cruel to your body.  Millions if you consider all the combinations.  The pain in my patella tendon seems to be subsiding, I think that was just my body getting used to be being back under heavy weights.  My wrist are the problematic area, or I should say my right wrist.  I have a strange shooting pain from the base of my thumb up my forearm, and then a general ache when my wrist is bent back in a lift, worse in the snatch due to the length of the time my wrist is turned over.  It doesn’t ache too bad in cleans.  Regardless it’s strict regime of ice and advil for me.

Since it’s been a while since my last training session…I’ll just do a brief recap of last week overall.  It was a good and bad week.  Cleans were bad and then improving.  After a horrendous clean workout on Tuesday I wasn’t sure how bad I wanted it.  I walked away once from the sport in a flurry of frustration with my clean and a handful of nagging injuries.  Could I walk away again…could I give up “unfinished business” for lack of a better term???  Following Tuesday’s workout all my coach asked was that I inch the weights up, we’re not focusing on the magnitude of the weight, but little improvements.  I did 70 Tuesday, so we just want to bump that up on Thursday and build confidence.  No more attempting the same weight for 20 minutes (we all know I’ve been guilty on that on a weekly basis and it takes a ton of energy out of my system and messes with my head).  Thursday I did 74 for 3 singles as a power clean…easy.  Small improvements, build confidence, that’s the new plan.

It’s been interesting integrating different forms of the press into my workout.  Muscles I don’t usually use so they scream the loudest.  The goal with that is to be able to do at least one pull-up because I can’t do any!!! I suck at them.  I’m also starting on protein powder and creatine something I’ve never done before.  At 16 my coach figured I was too young, now my body is a lot more mature, apparently I bought the wrong creatine though…so back to the drawing board on that one.  No worries I’ll get it right.

School starts tomorrow so more recovery time is going to be available, hopefully this will lead to bigger training weights.  I know 115 for a triple in back squat is coming this week.  Another week of 95 for triples in front squat.  I’m loathing pulls from podium, they confirm how WEAK my back is.  Strong overall, weak, weak back.  I need to amp up the core workout at the end of training, but I hate sit ups they’re soooo boring.

Wish my luck! Tons of stuff to get accomplished tomorrow before training.  Can’t wait to get settled in my new routine. Good luck with everyone’s training.

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Just me and the bar.

August 30, 2007 at 5:41 pm (Life, School, Training)

Today is my second to last day at work and it’s all about tying up the loose ends. I pulled together my work term report and with all the appendices it’s 75 pages…yes that’s right 75. Not all of it was written as part of the report, some of the pages are a computer script and a selection of the XML file created but the script, but it’s still all work I’ve done. It feels odd to be leaving here, despite the fact I didn’t gain the friends I did while working to my former law firm, it’s still a really cool and relaxed environment where I have been exposed to some of the best scientific minds in the world.

Training on Tuesday wasn’t stellar, my clean and jerks are still an exercise in frustration…I couldn’t even do 75. I was pretty upset, but took out my frustration doing easy triples with 95kg in the front squat. It will get better, I just need to figure it all out. Sometimes the clean problem leads me to question why I’m in this crazy sport…why oh why do I show up everyday to punish my body anymore. The football team has been having training camp lately and they come in and when one of them is doing power cleans it’s like they’re all involved with the yelling and the grunting. Olympic lifters walk on the platform and it’s just you and the bar. It seems like when I’m doing clean and jerks, it’s me, the bar and some force greater that I can’t figure out. But I am not going to let it get to me, I’m just going to keep going to the bar until it happens and it will happen. I don’t do giving up, just like I don’t do failing.

In other news I have a new “job”. It is a work-study position, I went to two meetings with professors for positions in their labs, one who was doing research with mosquitoes as disease vectors and the second who is doing among other things research on curvyback guppies (similar to idiopathic scoliosis in humans) and is getting into some human immunogenetics. The first may have been slightly better suited to where I think I might want to go, but the second just came across as caring more. The research seems really interesting and once I get the hang of feeding fish and cleaning tanks there is some serious opportunities to get my hands dirty in the lab. The other great thing about it is it’s flexible hours and really only about 10 hours a week. Lots of time to study and lots of time to rest/train. Oh except for the fact that I am now registered in the hardest course in my program…Biweekly exams. Very interesting immunology course…but biweekly exams.

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Time Flies.

August 27, 2007 at 7:09 pm (Life, School, Training)

It’s been almost 8 months since I started working at my co-op.   It has been a great opportunity which lead to my first published research (woohoo for me!) and also invaluable research and networking skills.  That being said I am not unhappy to see it end, it was interesting and worthwhile, but I’m ready to get back to school and continue pursuing that.  I know that while bioinformatics is interesting, it is not exactly where I want to end up so just need to plug away and finish my Molecular Biology and Biochemistry degree.

This week is going to be busy.  I have some meetings on campus tomorrow morning, I have training Monday, Tuesday, Thursday this week, plans Wednesday night, a fundraising concert to go to after training on Thursday and I’m going to the BC Lions game on Friday night.  I’m also still working right up until august 31, but thankfully I’ve finally handed in my draft for my work term report.  Currently trying to figure out whether it needs to be marked here due to the technical knowledge needed to understand it, or if someone through the co-op program can mark it.

Training on Friday was uneventful, did bench press for the first time ever and I won’t post the shameful amount I was doing yet.  Training is shifting getting into more deadlifting, pulls from the podium to work on my first pull because it’s SLOW way way too slow.  I’ve seen my training for the next couple of weeks and it’s going to be challenging mentally.  I’m working on being really focused. This week I need to do a 75kg for a double, not heavy but it’s the location of my mental block.  Next week it’s 80kg clean and jerk for a single.   I’m missing training Friday unfortunately because of the football game, and then the gym is closed on Monday for labour day, so I’ll have four days off, not sure how I feel about that.  Then school starts again Tuesday morning, 9:30AM for me, assuming the course doesn’t get cancelled.

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A quick update before I head back to the trenches

August 23, 2007 at 3:48 pm (Life, School, Training)

I didn’t blog about Tuesday’s workout yesterday because I was working on my work term report which is rapidly becoming the bane of my existence.

Clean and Jerk up to 67 x 2 for 3 sets
Power clean from hang 55 x 3 for 3 sets
Front Squat up to 85 x 3 for 3 sets
Clean Pull 85 x 3 for 3 sets
Seated Press 30 x 10 30 x9 30 x 6 

Overall the workout was fine, 55 is way too light for power cleans.  It should also be noted here that I’ve been challenged by my training partner I. for the meet Novemeber 19th.  If I clean and jerk more than she snatches she will pay me $50, if I clean and jerk less than she snatchs I have to pay her $50.  Pretty decent incentive to get my clean and jerk up.  The goal for November is at least 80/95.   Doing 80 in the snatch will be no problem.  95 in the clean in jerk is going to take all my brain power.

Ok, now back to focusing on work…7 more days and then a long weekend and then school…

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Something to Prove

August 21, 2007 at 5:40 pm (History, Training)

I am for the most part a competition lifter.  I like to show off, I like people to know how strong I am, I don’t necessarily like them to watch, but I want them to know I have muscles.  Therefore in the gym my heavy lifts are not always as amazing as they would be in competition.  It’s the same reason the best papers I’ve written have been written between 11pm and 5am the day they are due.  No matter how far in advance I start the bulk of the writing seems to get done them.  Hence why over the next week I will put in my full days at work, go to training and then go home and attempt to continue writing the draft of my co-op term report…until Thursday night when most of it will probably get written to be handing in Friday.

Training yesterday also turned on my show off gene, or more so my I’ll prove to you I can do.  A training mate was teasing that the weight I was squatting (105kg) was light and she could jerk it for a double.  I was only doing it for a triple, but had previously done it for an easy 4 last week.  The training mate, we’ll call her I. said she bet I couldn’t do 105 for 5.   I’m not a big fan of people telling me I can’t do something, I’ve been called stubborn and belligerent more times than I count.  So I went up took 105 off the rack, did 1-2-3 paused 4-5 no problem.  Coach wasn’t super happy, but understood that I had to prove something to I. and myself.  He also said something interesting on Friday about training me differently.  He wants to see if being a little tough on me would help, so he says from now on he will “train me like a Nigerian”.

The actual workout yesterday was

Snatch up to 57 x 2 for 3 sets
Power Snatch from Hang 47 x 3 for 3 sets
Jerk Behind Neck up to 75 x 2 for 3 sets
Back Squat 105 x 3 105 x 5 105 x 3 
Snatch Pull 75 x 3 for 3 sets
Snatch Grip Press Behind Neck 25 x 10 for 3 sets
Hyper-extension bodyweight x 10 for 3 sets 

  Overall it was a decent workout.  Snatches were light, but we’re really focusing on speed and finishing the pull.  I have a tendency to cut my pull just a bit short, and with the weights I’m snatching I can still handle it, but eventually when 90 or 95 kgs is on the bar I’ll need every inch.

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Believe…In the resolute urgency of now

August 20, 2007 at 4:34 pm (Life, Training)

So the last post was pretty vain and I can’t say much more for my weekend.  Today is two weeks plus a day until my butt is back in classes so this past weekend I spent some serious time with my mom.  Got a pedicure, got my haircut (finally, it had been a year since I’ve had a real cut…don’t ask), stocked up on groceries and fresh veggies.  Things I don’t always get to do being a regular bus rider and student.  I’m working on cleaning up my diet even more than it has been, so I got a bunch of turkey from “The Turkey Shop” out by where my Mom lives and now it’s frozen in my freezer.  The funny thing is I used to work at “The Turkey Shop,” handling raw meat was not as fun as it looks.  So I sympathize with all the high school kids there toiling away scooping ground turkey.

Training on Friday was pretty good.  I worked from the hang and pushed a little bit in the power clean and squat portions.  The last two sets for each were increased after I asked coach if it would be alright.

Power Snatch from hang up to 50 x 2 for 4
Power Clean from hang up to 60 x2  for 2 sets, 65 x2 for 2 sets
Back Squat up to 95 x 4 for 2 sets, 105 x 4 for 2 sets
Snatch Pull 75 kg x 3 for 3 sets  

Post scheduled workout I did a few presses with 35 kgs, then some romanian deadlifts with 65kgs and then some extra power cleans with  65 working on speed.  I was also stalling waiting for my friend to meet me post football training camp, they’re on two-a-days for the next little while.

Sunday I fit in a quick cardio workout, taking advantage of the fact I life on a mountain and near a university that is built into the mountain I used the hills and stairs for an extra boost…my legs hurt more than heavy squats.


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A picture post from the Ogopogo Open

August 20, 2007 at 4:17 pm (Competition, Ogopogo Open)

 I finally got my Dad to pass along on the photos that were taken of me. They were posted by a training mate, as my Dad was stuck at centre referee during my session. I hate when my Dad is centre referee and I have to lift, I’ve learned to deal with it and it doesn’t distract me like when I was a 13 year old lifter, but it still adds to my pre lift jitters. Regardless here are a few pictures and a link to the rest.

Best snatch – 75 kg

75kg Snatch

Best Clean and Jerk – 75kg75 kg Split

75kg jerk Complete

And a couple more because I can and I’m having a particularly narcissistic morning:

Snatch Extension 70kgApproach

Snatch Extension 65kg

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