Small successes

There hasn’t been a lot of new stuff going on in my training. I did try Reactiv’s protein powder in my soy milk today, and quite liked it. Which is good, because I have a 500g bag of it. Good call on that one Nick!

But what I really came here to write about was a small success in the gym today. I did negative chin ups, which is one of the exercises in NROLFW which is meant to bring you closer to a proper chin up. The following video is an example, but the lady is using an overhand grip, so technically it is a negative pull-up (less bicep-heavy, and generally harder to do).

So I can jump to the top, and I can hold myself there! I have my stopwatch on my phone running to time myself as I slowly control myself downwards… I got to nine seconds. When I started this stage a few weeks ago, I couldn’t hold myself up. Small successes!

Deadlift Prep (video)

I started with Starting Strength, so Mark Rippetoe is one coach I quite respect. The SS book goes into a lot of detail into how to properly perform each of the six SS lifts, and fittingly there are many videos of him coaching groups on proper lifting form. This one talks about getting ready to perform the deadlift, one of the three Big Lifts of powerlifting, and an excellent compound lift.

Working up to pistol squats

I saw this video a month ago and thought it was a great idea! On NROLFW you do have the option of doing this (if and when single-leg partial squats get too easy… Haha!)

Pistol squats are single-legged squats with your other leg held straight out in front of you. It’s a lot harder than it sounds!

Nia Shanks is the awesome chick who put this video together on how to gradually work up to a pistol squat. I recommend you check out her site for more badassery!

Dumbbell Snatch

With an awesome (and slightly rude) name like that, it’s a shame I don’t see many (or any) other people doing snatches at the gym. The one-arm dumbbell snatch is one of the exercises in Stages 3 and 5 that start the workout, and it’s a lot of fun. Just try not to think how ridiculous you feel as you thrust the dumbbell up. It’s an explosive movement as you can see, which I think are the most fun!