CMS Training Update #7

Deadlift Barbell - C. Knight / krider

It has been a while since my last CMS Training update. Mostly because of a two-week holiday and then getting back into things again. No point covering things I’ve already covered in previous posts 🙂

I was both pleased and surprised that my strength was still pretty good on getting back into training after the break. My cardio was impacted, and the DOMs were painful and intense initially, but it could have been far worse. I’ve also done some sporadic pull-ups with no ill effects on my elbow. Even more impressive was that I expected to fail them, so helped a friend out with them using a band for assistance. Having demonstrated what I wanted to, I decided to have a crack at an unassisted one and managed several! So now I have a new training plan: stop doing most activities, walk a lot, eat and drink Cuban food, get gains 😉

I’ve changed my barbell work to more volume oriented rather than trying to add any more weight as I need to focus more on the bells now. It’s a form of DUP, utilising compound lifts three times a week, with some accessory work. As usual I’m targetting my shoulders to ensure they stay healthy, and can handle the 20kg bell. Interestingly at my last sports massage I had a lot of knots around the upper trap and scapular area. Which while they needed sorting, did show I’d managed to work those muscles that had been (and still is) the intention!

I seem to have improved my strength all over as well. I’m now squatting beyond bodyweight with no padded bar or hood (from a hoodie 😉 ) across my traps. I also did 3×4 this morning with no belt too, focusing very much on my core.

I am still using interval running because I find it makes so much difference to my endurance during kettlebell sets. Learning to go hard, actively recover, repeat, etc. helps with recovery in the rack position. The first week back from the break I did a 5 minute set with the 20kg bell. I was down three reps on the set just before I left, but still at or faster than 10rpm. What caused me to struggle was my stamina whereas I felt I could keep going during the last set before our holiday. A week of running got me back to where I needed to be.

Since then I’ve done a six-minute set, and a six-minute and ten-second set (should have been seven minutes 🙁 ). However in that 6m10s I equalled my all time rep PB of 64 reps with the 20kg bell. Annoyed at my lack of grip, which is what was giving out, but happy with the pace.

I also had some feedback during that longer set from my coach. I’ve discovered that listening to feedback, trying to act on it, focus on form, and count reps is slightly tricky. My multi-tasking skills need some work apparently 😉 I still don’t slam my heels down enough. But I find that hard act unsettles the smoothness I’m aiming for with the other aspects of the lift. Suggestions welcome!

The plan over the next couple of weeks is to work on adding time to my 20kg sets, keep my other lifting and nutrition on track to support my KB work (so I may need to tweak volume down a bit) and try to do more to address the feedback from Anna. I am also going to monitor my forearms, as I felt they had improved with the barbell, but the fatigue with the kettlebell was frustrating. A friend suggested that it may be down to lack of recovery rather than no improvement so I will see how that goes.

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