December 31, 2016

Back injury

My back was hurting after getting ran over by a vehicle a couple weeks ago. At first it was just a nagging pain and I was able to train through it. But instead of getting better my back pain has gotten significantly worse. I started physical therapy to get this thing fixed.

Since I'm unable to train for weightlifting right now I keep thinking about world and Olympic weightlifting champion Norbert Schemanski. He had a dibilitating back injury that he worked through twice to set world records afterwards. My back is in a lot better shape than his was. So it shouldn't take long to get back into the weight room. That's my hope at least. Until then my sport will be walking with my wife and kids in the evenings.

UFC 207 and retirement from the prison

Last night was UFC 207. Rousey's return. My wife and I hosted a fight party at our house. A few of my wife's high school friends and her brother showed up. Not one person I invited showed. I really love my new job here. I have a great nutrition coach who lives in the city. Most importantly I have one of the top weightlifting coaches in the nation. But I worked at the prison since I got out of high school. I lived on prison grounds. All my friends were fellow prison guards. My entire life was there. Albuquerque has a lot of potential. But I'm home sick. I miss the camaraderie of the prison. I miss feeling needed. I miss the feeling of belonging. But mostly I miss my friends. So far I think retirement from the prison kind of sucks.

December 24, 2016

Physical and mental weightlifting setbacks

Since getting ran over by a car I haven't been able to clean anything higher than %70 of my max. My snatch and jerks are still good. It's just my cleans that I'm struggling with. That leaves me contemplating..... Did I lose strength? Or is it some sort of a mental block? Perhaps a combination of both? I feel that if it's a loss of strength then it's not a problem. I'll rebuild my strength in no time. Muscles have memory. But unfortunately I feel it's some sort of mental block. Last night anytime I tried to clean over 105k I'd freak out once it was time for me to drop under the bar and I'd jump out of the way or push the bar away. I'm pretty sure the problem is in my head. Some sort of response to the trauma of having been ran over. And I have absolutely no idea how to handle this. Do I use lower weights until I start feeling comfortable dropping under the bar again? Or do I keep attempting to lift the heavy weights and force my way through it?

I've seen my weightlifting coach, Joaquin Chaves of High Dessert Athletic Club, do some pretty amazing things with his athletes. He's always able to coach his athletes through any problem they're having. Sometimes he focuses on form. Sometimes he talks them up using motivation. On occasion he'll even jump down one of his athletes throats, using hard coaching, or tough love. On some athletes who are particularly hard on themselves coach Chavez will always use positive and inspirational coaching. He seems to know each of his athletes and knows exactly what each one is capable of and how to get them there. 

Last night coach Chaves saw I was struggling and he had me drop down to 90k and build back up to 110. I missed 110 so he had me drop back down again. On the third time through this pattern he had me stop with the clean and jerks and had me move on to squats. I've never seen him do that before. He always found some way of coaching his athletes through whatever struggles their facing. But last night he somehow knew that the problems I was struggling with wasn't something that should be pushed through yet. That I was facing something more than a problem with my form or motivation. He just somehow knew addressing the issue again later was the best course of action. After last night I realized that I don't have to stress or worry about how I'm going to get through this. I have a great coach and mentor. All I have to do is show up and he'll figure out how to get me through this. I'm in great hands. 

December 22, 2016

December 2016, a month to remember

The last couple weeks have been challenging to say the least. My 1996 Chevy Suburban broke down. It was $1200 to fix. I've had a ton of problems with that vehicle the last two years. I've replaced just about everything on that vehicle but the engine and transmission. A few days later my wife's minivan broke down in Santa Fe. The radiator had a hole in it. $900 to repair. Shortly after that I had someone intentionally run me over with thier vehicle at work. Then a few days after that my wife and I almost split up. But on the bright side  I'll have Christmas off of work. At the prison I always got called in to work on Christmas. I've never once had Christmas off with my kids. I can't wait. Being able to experience Christmas with them is going to be wonderful.

{I'm beginning to think that coming out of retirement to work law enforcement in one of the top 10 most violent cities in the nation wasn't the most sane idea I've had in my life}

December 18, 2016

front squats and Rich Kahle

Rich Kahle ended up being a no-show for the weightlifting meet. My state records are safe for now. I need to start training. And hard. Because Rich Kahle is a beast. And if he's back on the weightlifting scene then I'll have my hands full with some extraordinary competition.

Front squats have always been my weakness. I used to hate front squats. I haven't done any in about 9 months. From here on out coach Chavez said he's going to have me squatting three times a week. 2X back squat, 1X front squat. Surprisingly I'm thrilled. I've missed those danm front squats. My front squat programming will be based off of a guess of a 150k max.

December 15, 2016

back at HDAC and most blog hits

Tuesday and Wednesday was my first day back to weightlifting in 3 weeks. It felt great being back in the gym. My weightlifting coach seemed genuinely happy to see me- I really think the world of that guy. The members of my weightlifting team were giving me hugs, high fives, and yelling "Cody!". It was wonderful being back. It was a perfect welcoming. And surprisingly my form was a lot better than I thought it would be after a three week break.

Yesterday I had a the most hits on my blog in 10 years of blogging. I'm not sure why. Might be all my fellow 12 steppers using 12 step terms in Google search. Or fans of the show I talked about. I usually only average 30-40 hits a day. Yesterday I had almost 900. Interesting. I'm dumbfounded.

December 14, 2016

if ya spot it ya got it

I watched a documentary on Netflix called "Last chance U". It was an awesome flick. It's about division 1 talent who has to play college football at a comunity college because of poor grades or getting in trouble. There's one kid on that show who's a bad ass defensive lineman, Ronald Ollie. He was amazing. The only reason he wasn't playing for an SEC team was he was an idiot. Anytime things didn't go his way he disappeared. I told my wife about how bad that kid pissed me off. That he was a waste of tallent. I told my kids that it takes 2 things to be successful, good attitude and good effort. And that kid lacked the right attitude. 3 weeks later, and that kid Ronald Ollie is still on my mind. One of my old 12 step buddies once told me,"If ya spot it, ya got it". It dawned on me that the reason that kid on Last Chance U got under my skin is I'm the exact same way. I'm the "go to guy", until I think someone close to me is going to give up on me or I'm going to be unable to meet thier expectations. And then I disappear just like him. Ronald Ollie's guidance counselor said he has trust issues. I think a better explanation is he has abandonment issues. He feels its better to disappear on someone than to have them give up on him or hurt him. He and I are exactly alike.

If there's something about someone that annoys or infuriates you, that means there's something in you that is just like that. "If you spot it, you got it."

I was a blue chip high school football player. I gave a verbal commitment to go play for the University of Wyoming. Before I could go play football I became a homeless teenager. I lost my scholarship. And because I had to provide proof of my parents taxes to get student loans and I wasn't in contact with them, I wasn't able to go to any college at all, much less play collegiate football. I always wondered what my life would have been like if I'd have been able to play football and get a degree. But after watching that show I found closure. I probably would have ran away half way through a season. And then my heart would have been overflowing with regret amd guilt. I'm exactly where I should be. My life couldn't have ended up any better than it did.

December 10, 2016

he's trying to break my state records!

This morning I built up enough courage to contact my powerlifting coach, Rich Kahle and tell him I am going to go back to weightlifting. That kind of stuff is always really hard for me. I hate hurting people's feelings or disappointing. Truly, I hate it. He was awesome about it. He also told me two other things that shocked me.

1) he'll be trying to qualify for the masters national weightlifting championships at High Dessert Athletic Club (my weightlifting club) on Saturday. That got my anxiety up quite a bit. I'm hoping like hell he doesn't tell my weightlifting coach Juaquin Chavez that I had quit weightlifting for a couple weeks and started powerlifting. I don't know how my weightlifting coach would handle that.

2) he told me he's a super heavyweight 40-44. That's my age group! What's the chances of that? My powerlifting coach showing up to break my state records a week after I fire him!?!

December 08, 2016

being a mediocre weightlifter

I recently came to the realization that I was just about at my full genetic potential in weightlifting. My body is better suited to powerlifting than weightlifting. So I switched sports last week to powerlifting exclusively. But this week something happened that took me completely by surprise. I missed weightlifting. I missed the speed lifts. I missed my team. I missed the group workouts. And I especially missed my weightlifting coach Joaquin Chavez. I'm really glad I tried powerlifting because I learned something. I learned I'd rather be a mediocre weightlifter than a great powerlifter. So starting on Friday I'll be back with weightlifting at High Dessert Athletic Club. I feel like the last week I've been an athlete with no impulse control. "Hey, I'm a weightlifter. Now I've decided to dedicate myself to powerlifting! Now I'm a weightlifter again!" Man, the last couples weeks has been a trip.

December 06, 2016

new to powerlifting

I did my first powerlifting workout. It was so much fun. My delts burned so bad during the training session. I can't remember the last time I trained my delts. A decade maybe? Tonight I'll be doing my first powerlifting squat routine.

The powerlifting coach I hired is extemely knowledgeable. He trains a lot of top level powerlifters. I've competed in a few powerlifting meets he was coaching at or a referee for. He's pretty awesome.

December 05, 2016

my first powerlifting workout

Today I'll be doing my my first powerlifting workout. For the first month so I'll be doing hypertrophy to build volume and more muscle to be able to tolerate the eventual load increases. It's all high intensity and short rest training for the next month.

My last two training sessions were tests. Those two tests were the hardest thing I've done in a very long me.  I was so sore after both of them I had to have my wife help me get dressed. It was a struggle to walk.

Both test/workouts were: do 5 reps starting at 135 lbs and go up 20 lbs each set until I can't do 5. Then go down to 3 reps and increase 10lbs each set until I can't do 3 rsps. Then go down to 1 rep and  and increase 5lbs until I couldn't get any more.

The 1st test I ended up doing a total of  16 sets and 54 reps of squat, 9 sets and 34 reps of bench. The second workout I did 15 sets & 65 reps deadlift and a ton of overhead press. To be honest, I think this was way to much. I was right on the edge of an injury on the squat workout.

Tonight I'll be doing the following, all with 45-60 second rest intervals.
Barbell bench 9x1 @ 225 lbs
Tate press 4x6-1
Superset the next two exercises
1) 5 sets incline DB press
2) one arm DB row 5 sets with 3 second negative, 2 seconds positive, and second pause at top
Superset next 2 exercises:
1) 4 sets Gironda DB swings x8 reps
2) 4 sets zottman curl x6-10 reps 3 second neg, regular up, then one second pause at top.

December 03, 2016

from weightlifting to powerlifting

A couple weeks ago I competed in the USPA New Mexico state powerlifting championships. Even though I'd been training really hard since I moved to Albuquerque in April my strength has decreased. After the meet I've been sitting on my butt, not working out, trying to figure this whole thing out. My training and eating has always been symbiotic. When I'm kicking butt at one I'm doing well in the other. So the last couple weeks has not been pretty. Of course I'm a weightlifter, not a powerlifter. But still.....

I trained with a guy, Philip Christopher, who was an AMAZING weightlifter. I could squat the same as him, but when it came to weightlifting he'd smoke me. I mean he crushed me into dustl! I can lift a 100k & a 125k. He could cllift lift a 130/160k. The difference is form. And the difference is frustrating as fuck. I still love the sport. But I think I'd be a much better powerlifter than weightlifter. I'd be a lot happier, successful, and less frustrated as a powerlifter. So yesterday I contacted a powerlifting coach, Rich Kahle out of Las Cruces New Mexico, and asked him to start training me. So, after 4 years of dedicating myself entirely to weightlifting I'm on to a new adventure. Powerlifting.