Sometimes you have to fail to succeed

It has been almost a week since my 3+ of squats and nothing has gone quite right.
Flash back to Wednesday July 12th, it was a morning like any other. The rain that has plagued my area was holding strong as I got ready to go to a gym in the next town over. Working out in a new gym is always exciting and being faced with particularly heavy squats only added to the nerves.
Flash forward a couple hours, the gym is nice. It’s clean, it’s roomy, and nothing is rusty. Now don’t get me wrong, I enjoy the gritty feel of my gym, but sometimes it’s just annoying to be covered in sweat and rust while struggling to load/unload the bar.

Warm up involved much more stretching than normal because there was actually a place to spread out and without getting covered in beach sand and grime.
Warm up sets went smooth as well, starting some 3×5 @95, 105, 115.
First set of 3@135 went great. My shoulder was still bugging me but I did manage to keep a tightness to everything throughout the entire session, which is a win.
Second set of 3@145 felt hard but still smooth. I focused a lot on leaving the rack, keeping my bracing and not rushing myself. I was feeling pretty confident about my final set.
Sadly my 3+@160 was a complete and total fail. Before I even left the rack it felt heavy, it felt wrong, my mind was screaming at me staaaaaahp but I plowed ahead anyway. My goal was 7 reps, I failed coming up on the 3rd. Crushed would be an understatement. Doubt clouded my mind until I watched the video. The bar was not quite low enough on my back and I somehow pushed it higher on the ascent on that 3rd rep. My torso fell forward so much so that I actually took a step forward once I got to the top thanks to momentum. I was irritable, cranky, upset, and pissed at myself. So I took a 5 minute break, got out of my head and tried again. I wasn’t sure how it would go, it still felt heavy, but the weight felt more secure on my back. I managed to knock out 7 more solid reps, so in the end I pushed 160 for just about 9 1/2 reps.

Lifting is more of a mental game than a strength one.

Perhaps it was a carryover of energy from the squats or maybe I’m just getting stronger, but my 5×10@155 deadlifts have never gone so smooth nor so fast.

From there I laid on the floor for a solid 8 minutes and ate my sour patch kids.

Tempo squats, walking lunges, front squats and box squats followed suit. The whole workout took over 3 hours but I got everything done. I hit a new PR on front squats 5×5@95, my wrist is finally getting used to them and feeling much better. It helps that I’ve stopped being stubborn and started using my wrist wraps more so if it hurts it gets wrapped. I’m hoping it will loosen up as it get used to the ROM, I have noticed a lot of improvement already, just some days are worse than others.

I should mention that this workout and completed with a friend, so I’m pretty sure some of the 3 hours was us goofing off. The squat fail has still shaken my confidence, though it really doesn’t help that my back is still bugging me. I made the classic mistake of hanging out with said friend for most of the day after the gym, which means I only ate a grilled chicken sandwich from Chick Fil A after the workout. I didn’t eat again till much later that night and by then I think it was too late. My body crashed, I felt like I was getting the flu and to this day I’m not back to 100%.

It took me almost a week to try and get my thoughts together on this workout. In hindsight the workout really wasn’t a failure, I still hit 3ish reps that first go and it was a technique/form issue not a strength issue. I know my muscles can do it, it’s just a matter of getting it done.

I’ve been taking this week off of cardio, though I have both benched and deadlifted since last Wednesday and while bench went fantastic, my deadlifts did not. Though I did hit a PR 5@205 on deads.

I’ll recap those later though. For now I’m just trying to prep myself for squats again. There is a certain nervousness that has never been there before and it’s going to be interesting come Friday.

 

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