My legs are constantly sore these days and they’re starting to get tight and I’m scared pretty soon I’m going to pull something. Since my legs are strong anyways (from soccer, spinning, yoga and oh yeah, running) I don’t think I need to work them during my weights workouts. I’m doing hills during my runs, I’m doing sprints on Wednesdays, soon I’ll be doing plyos…and I want to make sure that they’re properly rested to not only do everything that I’ve planned, but to do it well! Otherwise I’m never going to improve and I’m going to get injured.
All that to say, I’ve changed my weights workouts on Tues and Thurs to take legs out and to focus on my upper body – which right now is my weakest link. This morning was my first time doing the new workout.
Here’s how it went, the first number is the reps performed in set 1, the second is set 2. I did a set of each exercise in the group (1, 2, 3) and then repeated them before moving on to the next group of exercises.
- Chest – Standard Push up – 10/12 I used to be able to do about 30 push ups on my feet and thought I was very strong. That was until a trainer at my gym approached me one day and suggested I put my hands further back, so they’re in line with my elbows instead of being in line with my shoulders…which is the proper way to do push ups. Sadly, that’s taken me from being able to do 30 push ups to being able to do 10 proper pushups…emphasis on the proper though! For my second set, I could only do 4 on my feet and had to drop my knees not to lose my form. I did 8 there for a total of 12.
- Back – Wide Front Pull up – 8/8 I haven’t been able to find bands to assist me in doing pull ups so for now I’m stuck with the pull up assist machine. I could feel my abs engage (and hurt from yesterday’s workout) as I pulled to lift up. It’s only when your muscles hurt that you realize that everything really does work together!
- Shoulders – Alternating Shoulder Press – 8/8 I started with 25 pound weights here and was really struggling to keep my form. During my second set, I was only able to do 2 reps with the 25 so I went down to 20s to finish out the other 6 reps.
- Chest – Military Push up – 8/8 I’m going to say this is as much triceps as it’s chest. I wasn’t even able to do one on my feet without arching my back so I went to my knees to do the reps. I’m holding on to weights with my pushups to raise my body off the floor and to allow me to drop my chest lower so I was feeling this one very early on.
- Back – Reverse Grip 45 degree pull up – 12/10 I love this exercise, I can really feel my back working, my abs are engaged, it makes me feel really strong…except I never know what to do with my head. I try to keep it straight and in a comfortable position but the more I think of it, the more awkward it feels.
- Shoulders – Dumbbell Upright Front Raises – 9/10 I’m doing 15 pounds here it was pretty tough not to put my back into it. They might be a bit too heavy but I’m going to keep using them since 9-10 reps is pretty good.
- Chest – Wide Push up – 8/10 I was feeling so weak by the time I got to this that I wasn’t able to use the weights, I kept pushing them away as I was attempting to push myself up, so I used the floor instead. I was on my knees for both sets as my arms were not cooperating anymore.
- Back – Dumbbell bent-over row – 12/12 I love this exercise too…it’s so funny how my back is so weak yet I love the back exercises. I guess it’s the only time I feel my back muscles engage. I used 20 pound weights here since I’m not sure I can hold the 25’s. I might hold it at the top for a couple of seconds next workout to get more out of it.
- Shoulders – Lateral Raises – 8/8 Great shoulder exercise, but doesn’t feel so great at the end of all these. I used 15’s and I could have used nothing and still have felt it by this point. By the 8th rep I really had nothing left in the tank.
- Biceps – In & Out Bicep Curls – 12/8 I love the in and out action of this exercise. It keeps me thinking of what to do next and the exercise flies by. I used 15’s for it and would stay at this weight for now.
- Triceps – Chair Dips – 12/10 I put my legs on a ball thinking I was fresh and could challenge myself, but I forgot the military push-ups from earlier so my arms were spaghetti. I almost dropped to the ground at the end of the second set.
- Biceps – Crouching Cohen Curls – 8/8 I started out with 15’s and these sucked! I was only able to do 4 reps of the first set before I had to go down to 12’s. I did 12’s for the second set, but it was painfully slow at the end.
- Triceps – Tricep Kickback with twist – 12/10 I used 12’s here and they seemed too heavy. By the end of the set I was using my elbow more than I should have been. I’m blaming this on the chair dips!
- Biceps – Hammer Curls – 12/14 This is such a power exercise, if you’re ever working out and are pissed off, do this exercise…the whole hammering down action is very therapeutic! I used 12’s because of my experience with the Cohen Curls earlier but should have gone up to the 15’s.
- Triceps – Side-Tricep Raises – 8/8 (on each side) These were uuuggglllyyyy!!! No matter how hard I pushed, I could barely get my body off the ground. My legs were trying to help, even my abs were pitching in…everything but my triceps which had long given up.
The whole workout took about 45 minutes, so sadly I couldn’t use the excuse that it was taking too long so I’d only do 2 chest/back/shoulder groups and 2 bicep, tricep groups. Now my arms feel like jello and I can barely write or type. I’m taking it as a sign of a great workout!
8 down, 172 workouts to go…