Monday, January 21, 2008

Train Smarter

I enjoy all of your advice. Still, this "live to fight another day" piece came at just the right time. I too was deadlifting. With 495 on the bar and a plan to get a few at 585 I felt a twinge. Lucky I had checked my email earlier today. Your course is already helping me to put on more size with less time in the gym than I've experienced in a decade, so, there was no way I wasn't going to listen to this tidbit. I decided to put away the fangs, ratchet back down and move on to chin-ups. Not a doubt in my mind it was the right thing to do. Nor do I doubt I would have gone the other way if you had not interjected. Tomorrow instead of cursing myself, I look forward to some cardio. (not really but I'm going to do it anyway ; )

Lonny MacDougall

I can't tell you how helpful this would have been had I thought about this last week. I appreciate your newsletters and benefit from their guidance and suggestions. I love the kettlebells myself!

A brief history of my lifting career...I started powerlifting about 6 years ago with Donnie Thompson and Mark "Spud" Bartley, Carl Tillman, Shedrick "Tex" Henderson and a few others at the Compound in Columbia, South Carolina. During that time I did about 4 strongman meets. I did well in the powerlifting setting some state and national records but never did very well in the strongman because I wasn't conditioning myself nor was I training for it very often (did a few weekend training sessions with strongman/powerlifter Mikey Johnson). Then after recovering from a torn distal bicep tear, surgery and PT, about 15 months later I had regained all the strength I had before but my passion for PLing was gone. So, about April of '07 I switched to olympic lifting and began training with a renound oly coach here in SC, Mike Srock. I have been doing that full time for the last few months and haven't really gotten into the groove with the %'s during my workouts or without using gear.

Last week, doing heavy front squat singles (I have never done heavy front squats), I decided to see what I could do for a single. On my last set of 365lbs I went down and "POP!" I dumped the weight, left the gym and went to an orthopedic doc the next day. I have either torn my IT (unlikely he says) or my vastus lateralis. There is no bruising, but it does hurt=pain when I squat down/stand up. From the looks of the deformation in my outter quad, I think it's a partial tear of the IT.
I'm 28 now and have been lifting long enough to know, not to do something as stupid as I did. I shouldn't have tried to go heavy on the front squats, much less tried heavy singles! :(

But this too, has been another learning experience, just like the torn bicep tendon tear. I will be that much more of a cautious/smarter lifter.

Very Sincerely,

Aaron G. Pickens, CSCS
Spartanburg, SC


I couldn't agree more. This principle has saved me a few times here recently. Keep up the great articles. I've learned a tremendous amount from your previous e-books and look forward to learning more in the future.


Ken Finley

I couldn't agree more. I am in the same boat with my back. When I
feel this "twinge" on the left side, I am better off terminating the
training for that day. I will be way stiff and unable to train for a week
if I ignore what my body is trying to tell me. Took me a while to realize
this, but I can get back in the gym sooner if I listen to my body. Keep up
the great work.


Solid advice today bro.

I made the mistake of continuing through the pain a while back while I was performing dynamic squats. I was using about 50% of my max with light bands and had already done 2 sets before I tweaked my back but wasn't smart enough to call it early. By set 5 I was about crippled. Took several weeks for me to get back to normal and now feel weak as piss.

I guess one day i'll learn.


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