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Everything posted by RealFolkBlues

  1. Nice progress! Have you got any sort of yard or outdoor space? That's might be good for weight space if you have to. Also, if you have space for deads (granted with a non-Olympic bar,) it would seem you have room for bench and press, though you might have to get creative on how to rack your weight. I would suggest maybe some cinder blocks. At the weight you can put on your bar right now, you should have room for that I would think. It's kind of hard to visualize. @zircon: Hell man, nice work. Those hacks looked nasty to me. The first two or three might have been a little high, but the end seemed pretty legit. Also, as you say, that's a lot of weight. Leave some plates for the rest of us!
  2. @zircon: Good work again on that bench. You went from 185x2 to 215x1? Was the 185x2 just where you felt comfortable stopping at that point? Also, your incline bench is that much higher than your flat? I generally find the incline a lot harder than flat, even if it is on a machine. Meanwhile, I got squashed hardcore on my squat max last month, and hard on my push press 5's this month, but man it has felt good to be a gangster this week. Did my squat 1rm weight for 2 reps on Sunday (possibly could have done 3 but didn't want to overwork myself,) and got my push press 3's and 1rm over the last week. Persistance pays off, my friends. It's tough on those squash days, but man it feels good when you make it. Totally worth it.
  3. Good job on raising that bench. I'm doing my cut now and thus far haven't seen too much hurt on my lifts, but I got squashed on my power jerk the other day hard and it didn't feel good. I bet going the other way is a lot more fun. Nice hack squat! You're going down to parallel, right?
  4. @zircon: I don't work from home either, and while I don't have a humongous appetite, I can certainly eat, especially when the right foods are around. Top of the list for me are pizza and sweets. To that point, though I feel like IF is working really well on cutting my cravings. Did I mention that my second job that I just got is at a pizza place? So, for the last two days, I've been working for several hours around pizza, pasta, wings, and yesterday some cupcakes, and feeling very little craving for them. I don't know, my calorie count is somewhat short, and I was moderately hungry by the time I left (my body is still getting used to the routine, after all,) but I really felt little desire to eat any of what I saw. I guess maybe some of it at least is the psychological fulfillment I get from feasting during my window. After two big meals, I don't feel any need to eat because I know I've already spent some time doing so.
  5. I'm looking forward to that, though really, dead lift just feels right. I know I'm activating big muscle groups, and it's working on super functional movements. I mean, come on, who doesn't need to be good at picking stuff up here and there? That seems to be the way it goes for pretty much everyone, anecdotally at least. For me, caffeine has helped, because I've always been a hardcore breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, dinner guy. Now I'm just doing coffee, giant breakfast, pretty much fine until a big supper, fine for the rest of the day/night with maybe a green tea to help for the final stretch. A lot of the research is pretty new/questionable at the moment, but again, anecdotally there's lots of evidence to the above. For me, it's mainly just convenient. Grazing seems pretty nice, but I really just have a hard time with compliance. My schedule is a mess on any given day, but I can make two big meals work. Add to that that it seems to be leading to both feeling better and working in a caloric deficit, and I figured it was worth a shot. I also was scared, because I can be a real ass when I'm hungry (not as bad as my brother, but still,) but thus far being mindful and supplementing with water and caffeine has been fine for the few times I've been hungry. I do look forward to when my body just "knows" when it's time to eat.
  6. No doubt. I gotta get more into the full method, with my meal and exercise placement, but for now, the 8 hour feeding window is nice. I've patterned my eating off of James Clear's plan of two big meals, which has been great. It's a ton more convenient and I just feel better. I also figured you would appreciate I'm doing more back training now, too.
  7. Jeezum crow, Modus. Between that and the pics, you're a manster. Nice work, guy! I feel you, too, about life being messy, but gainz being something to take pride in. Slowly but surely, I'm approaching being strong. To that point, I have changed up my routine quite a bit over the last few days, actually. So, last week I got a second job, which is neat, cuz I needz those money gainz, yo. Natch, though, that's going to cut into my lifting time. Soooo, I started doing two major lifts in one session on Saturday, and continued the trend yesterday. I kind of like it, to be honest. I'm doing less assistant lifts and ab work, but man, I feel good doing dead lift again, and it's pretty quick. Also, circumstances arose that made it convenient for me to just go ahead and start up intermittent fasting (IF.) I'm on the LeanGains method (16 hour fast, 8 hour feed,) and thus far, I love it. I'm tracking my stuff on MyFitnessPal, as well, and have been doing two big meals mostly. This is only my fourth day on, so far, but I can see how this might be my new thing. I'm also reading a book on IF by Dr. John Berardi, which is pretty good.
  8. Can we form a brute squad from the OCR Fit Club? I volunteer.
  9. Great work, bro! Lol, your 3RM's are the same weight or more than my 1RM's. You're a manster. Seriously, though, everything here looks doable to me. That OHP might be hard, but like you say, you're always training shoulders, and there's a lot of year left still, so I wouldn't worry about it.
  10. Oh man, it looks like a lot of us have had a tough go of it lately. For me, this past week's lifts have been good (3's week is not the worst,) but I got squashed on my 5's of bench and squat the week prior (5's week is the worst,) and have gained like 4 pounds of fat over the last couple of weeks. It's okay, I let my discipline slip and ate a bunch of nonsense that my girlfriend fed me. I'll get it off just about as fast, probably, and plan to start my actual cut here in May, methinks. I'm a little bit out from then, still, but when it comes time to cut, how should I modify my lifting schedule, if at all? I don't think I would be able to effectively continue increasing my weights, so I'm wondering what ya'll recommend as far as that goes. @zircon, Neblix, XPRT: Hang in there, fellow bros! @Modus: are you fairly certain you haven't got fat anywhere else? Regardless, the stomach fat is the last to go, and you've got to do some serious caloric deficit to get it off. That's your body's starvation account, for when we can't get any mammoths and we still have to outrun the saber-toothed cats.
  11. Good job, man! Looking beast mode. Thanks to you and zirocn for the pizza alternatives! They sound pretty good.
  12. Bump. So, I got into this guy earlier this week. Pretty cool, methinks. He's a jazz pianist who takes influences from Armenian, Indian and other folk music, scat, and metal riffs. Very rhythmic music, for sure, which is great to me as a drummer, but I feel like he's got a decent sense of melody as well when he wants to bring it.
  13. Good for you. It's so bad for you. Anybody have a recipe for a reasonably healthy facsimile thereof that's actually good?
  14. For me, I tend to agree with a comparison to traditional pen and paper RPG's like D&D. That is, the game should have a numerical system of power progression, and generally a strong emphasis on story. Many games of various genres will have a focus on story to some degree, and almost all games have a progression of power, but RPG's place even more on theme, plot, character, setting, etc. and use some of the conventions established by D&D and other games like it to track that progression, such as experience points, levels, and character stats. Therefore, Final Fantasy is an RPG, Zelda is not. Zelda is an adventure game, as it doesn't use a numerically tracked leveling system or anything like it. Games like Zelda II or Symphony of the Night that blend genres are doing exactly that; they are multi-genre games. For both of these examples I would call them adventure/RPG's.
  15. Thanks, Soul Splint and everyone for the kind words! I need 'em, cuz I got squashed on my top lifts in bench AND squat this week. 5's week makes me hate life. :/ Yeah, thanks man, I'm excited. That's like the kind of gains I need the most. I need to up my max money press, lol. Now that the weather is not quite so stupid for you, I'm sure you're about to get back into full-on beast mode, so I'm excited to see this. @Modus; I like your idea. I really feel like they could totally do this on the Food Network or Discovery or something. The first episode would probably be french fries. Or pizza. Oh man, pizza. It's so delicious, and almost always so bad for you. Yeah, zyko! You doing all 4 major lifts? I still need to start up my deadlift on 5/3/1, but I'm doing bench, squat, and push jerk on that program, and feeling good about it. If OA says he's doing it, that's pretty good endorsement, methinks. @zircon: man, that is confusing. I don't envy you, though from what I've seen thus far, I'm fairly certain that yes, that's just water weight. With 5-6x workouts a week, I wouldn't sweat it, so to speak. @kitty: yeah, that can def happen. It's like they say, muscle does weigh more than fat, so two pounds and a visible difference actually says a lot more than it might sound like. Basically, you've gained some muscle and still lost enough fat to have an overall reduction in your weight, which sounds like a big win to me. Slow and steady wins the race. @Cyril: nice work! It's tough to keep real strict on your diet when your better half has good reason to do convenience food, but good goals and progress thus far!
  16. An update on my goals! On Fitocracy and consistently tracking my stuff! Next up will be to track my nutrition. Just put up 210. Feel like I could probably do 215, 220 if I just went straight in with no other working sets beforehand. Getting there, but this one will be hard if doable. Put up 265, with decent form. I feel like my form in general is improving, and I feel pretty good about hitting this goal. Did 155 last week. My form is getting there. Explosive lifts are tough to do right. That 155 was almost more of just an OHP than a true push jerk, but ce'st la vie. I feel pretty good about meeting or exceeding this goal, so that's good. I might change it out for deadlift at some point, though man, some explosive movements are really what I need. Hmmmm... I am consistently stretching, dynamic before I do my hard work and static afterwards, and feel like I'm getting some gains slowly but steadily. I plan to do an actual cut here in the next few months (haven't decided which.) I don't want to mess too much with improving my lifts at the moment, and I just had a birthday. My girlfriend loves to feed me delicious nonsense. And real talk, I love to eat. Joined a grappling club! I plan to go every Wednesday afternoon. Those guys are badass. I got tapped out so much and so easily. They were super nice, though, and I feel like I can get some good learning, so I'm excited. Haven't really worked on any of these. I got plans, though. So I took the plunge and bought my ACE Personal Trainer exam material. A voucher for the exam plus tons of study material, all just for the low, low price of $850. Lol. Ouch. If you do it that way, though, at least you get to spread it out over 4 months, which is what I'm doing. Still, I'm getting it done now. As for becoming an MA instructor? Welll...I've had a couple of offers, but I couldn't take them up for schedule conflicts. We shall see where my schedule is later in the year. I'm getting there... How are you guys doing? I know winter was fubarred for a lot of ya'll. Almost was for me, but I managed to get some work done. OA, good job on your body fat cut! You're a manster.
  17. Rest in peace, you beautiful Vulcan, you.
  18. Nice one! In my experience, the only bad workouts are the ones you don't do, or you overdo.
  19. Yeah this winter's been one cold bastard. We had an ice storm here in WNC last week. That's like even more BS than a snow storm. Seriously, my porch was a death trap until the day before yesterday...and then more snow this morning. And tonight. And tomorrow night. Pretty tired of it. Like a few years ago, I was tired of it. And for you poor bastards in the Northeast, my heart goes out to you. For reals though, spring will be here pretty soon. March 1st is Sunday. Keep calm and lift on, my bros.
  20. Good job, man! You're making me excited for when I actually try and cut. I've been making a whey protein shake asap after lifting and take multivitamins, mainly cuz I'm bad on my vegetable intake.
  21. Counter-intuitively perhaps, stress actually generally causes you to gain fat. It releases all sorts of bad hormones for fitness. If you can, try to relax. Do you practice any sort of relaxation/mindfulness activity? This could be anything, not just directly meditation or yoga, but could be painting, playing music, or video games that are at least mostly relaxing, like Harvest Moon. So, to be clear, you're looking to build mass/improve strength mostly? You're going to want in that case to do high weight and low reps. I would recommend the 5/3/1 program. I've had good success with it. As for rest, it's up to you. Limiting rest is mainly just to keep your heart rate up. Natch you don't want to rest too much or it will give you a false sense of your strength, but if you're doing lifts of moderate to high weight, you could give yourself a minute or so between and see how that feels. Yup, this is a big problem. I feel ya on this. I sleep really well if I get the chance too, but nowadays I rarely do. It's insidious how much this influences your fitness. As for continuous versus not, I don't know, but I would think you'd probably be ok so long as you can continue to sleep in longer shifts as opposed to short naps. The 90 minute nap you mentioned, for instance, would probably work pretty well, because you would be able to get down to a deep sleep for a little bit. You can look into it on your own, it's neat stuff, but basically there's light sleep, which doesn't do too much for you really, a couple levels of deep sleep, which is very healing for your body and somewhat for your mind (this is mainly what I would say you need for recouping from lifts,) and then REM sleep is the deepest sleep, where you dream and get the most benefit to your mind. Considering what you said about your stress though, don't skimp on REM sleep. It will def help quiet your mind. Glad to help! @zyko: Nice one. I feel ya on refusing to yield to an injury. I too am stubborn. That's a weird progression, but it makes sense really. @MockingQuantum: I'll third zircon and zyko's advice, cuz it's good stuff. I especially want to impress upon you that weight loss is fast for some and slow for others, and is often best done slowly, so please be patient. Slow and steady absolutely wins the race when it comes to fitness. Just take it one day, one week, one month at a time. You'll see the results. @Soul Splint: These things happen, man. The weather has been awful, so be safe, for sure.
  22. Nice one! Way to get back in there to you as well! It's funny how sometimes downtime doesn't hurt us as much as we expect or can even end up helping us come back stronger. I've definitely done that at least once. What are your goals at this point? Mainly recoup/heal? That would make sense to me.
  23. Way to keep at it! I'm a firm believer in the healing power of picking up heavy stuff and sweating. @Bejack: That guy AthleanX seems pretty legit to me. I didn't look at too much of his stuff, but what I saw looked good. As to front raises, you would be activating more muscles with raising to ceiling, engaging some of your posterior muscles to pull that high. That being said, those muscles are a lot weaker usually, so you might not be able to use as much weight safely, which of course would cut how much you can develop your anterior muscles.
  24. An amazing game, ahead of its time and boldly made in a lot of ways. For me, my memory boils down to one scene: in Ikana Valley, when you play the Song of Healing to return the scientist to his normal self and he embraces his daughter. Even thinking about it now just about makes me tear up. Very, very effective. Also, I had never heard of that Ben Drowned stuff. Pretty creepy. Nerdy ghost stories ftw.
  25. Nice one. This pretty much seals it for me. Next step on that path will be adequate calorie tracking. Myfitnesspal, here we come.
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