Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Strain Campaign

A month ago I had a wild-hair idea to prepare this 47-year old body for the '09 season.

What was it?

Just a little thing I called the 30 Days of Strain Campaign. I would for 30 days in-a-row do some kind of strength training in addition to a reduced swim, bike, and run routine. Each day I would either hit the gym to lift weights or, if the gym was closed or I couldn't find the time to get there, I would do a series of Army calisthenics (push ups, sit ups, one-legged squats, repeat) at home. These calisthenics also were my so-called easy days.

Some said that I shouldn't embark on such a campaing calling it a sure-fire way to get hurt and I was reminded that triathlon ain't a weightlifting contest. But, being the stubborn type, I went ahead with my own idea. However, I knew that strength training without setting a goal really wasn't of much use if it didn't lead to functional strength. So, I had to set a base line of performance.

On November 29 I put myself through this physical evaluation:

Eight repititions of two-legged squats: 160 lbs. ............ 1 minute rest,
Push ups to exhaustion: 42. .......... 1 minute rest,
Pull ups to exhaustion: 5
Body fat: 8.9%

Following a plan of alternating days of low weight/high repetition  and high weight/low repetition seemed to be a logical sequence to increase endurance as well as strength.

The campaign ended yesterday and that means today is final evaluation day. Here are the results:

Eight repititions of two-legged squats: 235 lbs. .......... (75 lbs. increase)
Push ups to exhaustion: 78 .......... (increase of 36)
Pull ups to exhaustion: 16 ......... (increase of 11)
Body fat: 7.2% ......... (decrease of 1.2%)

Something, unexpectedly, I learned about myself was, I didn't like the gym. And I definately didn't see the gym as a place to be social. I was there to get a job done. Give me a set of dumbells, some high-energy music, and a place to stand and I was set. The life of a gym-rat is not for me. Leaving the building gave me a puppy-escaping-the-pound rush.

Another good thing after the 30 days is my left knee is stronger than it was before I began the campaign. It's not 100% but it no longer hurts to run or climb stairs.

What's next?

30 Days of Running!

Stay tuned...


Greyt Times said...


untpawgal02 said...

30 days of running... HAH! I'll believe it when I see it!

Javier said...

It looks like you definitely achieved some pretty good improvements. NICE!


Damn Boy!! That is awesome! I'll brag the day I can do ONE pull up!

Eric said...

Sounds like a great plan!!!

Anonymous said...

Awesome improvement Triboomer! Way to go.

I'm sure all the leg strength from the squats will set you up for a great 30 days of running and help fight off that injury from coming back.

SixTwoThree said...

Good job man! I know. You're just getting ready to impress the girls in Wellesley!!!!

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