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Doji Grovesai's log

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 4:54 pm
by Doji Grovesai
This seems to be where everybody posts their progress, so I'll come back to this topic week by week for that. I think I'll be elsewhere on the forum pretty least I hope I will.

Quick Bio.
32, 175lbs, 6'1". No athleticism to speak of, though I have participated in 4 martial arts over the years, and was almost certified as a yoga instructor (about 10 years ago - didn't have the funds to pay for the program, lost interest soon after). I'm definitely what the literature calls a "hard gainer." This is my absolute first day doing this program, and I'm kind of excited because I think I finally found something that resonated with me enough to stick with. So, day 1 progress...

Level 1, Day 1
10 rounds.

Notes: It was actually more like 19:20 when I finished, because I knew I wouldn't be able to get another round in. :oops: On the plus side, round 1 consisted of an actual honest to goodness normal pullup! All other rounds were substitutions (I did all of them except for bodyweight rows). By round 7, however, my hangs/negatives didn't last more than 2 seconds. I tried, but no dice.

Pullups are really the problem. I can do tons of squats, and my pushups are ok (nothing to right home about, but I can do about 20 nice ones before I start losing form). Any advice? I feel like I should stick to Level 1 until I can at least do a Day 1 workout with no subs. Is that not realistic?

Re: Doji Grovesai's log

PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2013 4:21 am
by KTG
Welcome on board! That's a solid start.

The pull=ups, not surprisingly, are the big issue for most people. If you keep at it, they will come.

Different people have taken different strategies on building up to the pull-ups. Some people do the subs up a few levels and then move back down to level 1 when they get the pull-ups ready. Others hold at level 1 until they can do it as prescribed. I think the rule is: whatever motivates you and keeps you engaged is a good way to do it.

Posting here and keeping accountable is a helpful motivator as well.

Re: Doji Grovesai's log

PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2013 7:19 pm
by Doji Grovesai
So my previous post was not entirely accurate (post workout fog, I imagine). My later rounds were not 2 second hangs, but straight drops. The results were not good. I overworked my arms, and came too close to pulling something. But I got checked out and everything was "fine". Very limited range of motion for a few days, and some bad sore spots.

Needless to say, I did not work out the rest of the week. I did, however, do a lot of reading on these forums. And I tried again...more safely.

8 rounds

Rounds 1-3, pull ups subbed with "assisted" negatives (had to usey feet for support.
Rounds 4,5 bodyweight rows on the door. My knobs are too low for my height.
Rounds 6-8 I tried rigging something up on my pull up bar. I don't know how effective it was.

Going to try and find a different solution for the future...

Re: Doji Grovesai's log

PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 6:02 am
by KTG
That's absolutely the right approach. You have to start slow and careful. Working a little under your potential, especially at the beginning, is better than pushing it and either getting injured or burned out. As you'll see on these forums, L1 is deceptive. The numbers look low, but it builds up.

Here is a great site with some progressions for easing into the exercises with good form:

Re: Doji Grovesai's log

PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 10:34 am
by Doji Grovesai
Thanks! It seems that negatives are also too hard to do enough of, but after reading that link, I think I wasn't going down fast enough - at least I think I took longer than 3 seconds to get down. Given my first run in with SF, it's clear I have no concept of time... :-)

I'm going to dig around youtube and see if I can't find some reasonable DIY suspension deals to hang from my pullup bar, because it seems that I can more accurately gauge progress based on body-position (and if I don't keep switching substitutions mid workout).

We'll see how it goes...

Re: Doji Grovesai's log

PostPosted: Mon Feb 25, 2013 10:53 am
by Doji Grovesai
So, while the internet is full of DIY suspension rigs, they range from $9-40 to assemble, and it turns out that a lot of the parts that I would need were not sourced locally (out of stock). But on a rogue trip to Wal-Mart, I picked up this guy on sale: ... r/21811900

Hooked that to the pull up bar, and had to spend about 5 minutes trying to adjust it for height.

Day 1 was the only thing I did that week...too busy.

So, here we are a L1D1 again, but this time with 17 rounds total. I think I rested too much. I probably could have gone more, but I was nervous from some lingering tightness/fatigue persisting from Friday (the Mrs. dragged me to the gym - not a bad experience, but I'm really trying to stay with SF because it is easier to track progress, among other things).

Pull ups were subbed with bodyweight rows using the suspension trainer. I fell in somewhere between the 30-45 degree angle for the rows. The plan is to do D2&3, and if I earn advancement, I'll decrease the angle.

Re: Doji Grovesai's log

PostPosted: Wed Feb 27, 2013 4:38 am
by KTG
Great plan! That's a nice way to create a smooth progression Keep us up-to-date on the progress.

Re: Doji Grovesai's log

PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 5:10 pm
by Doji Grovesai
OK! D2&3 done!

round 1 - 1'10"
round 2 - 1'15"
round 3 - 1'12"
round 4 - 1'21"
round 5 - 1'22"

I had about 6 minutes of rest spread throughout D2. I think the round times are ok, though. Especially since this is my first D2 ever.

D3: 6'25"

Had a question about D3. Do most of you out there pre-plan how you'll split up your sets? I just went for it, and ended up with Rows (my pull-up sub) as 10,9,1 and my pushups as 10, 7, 4. Squats were easy; I've been doing Hindu Squats since the restart, and I just blasted right through those. But the rows and 'shups seem too haphazard to be effective.

Any help/advice is appreciated!

Re: Doji Grovesai's log

PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2013 9:12 am
by KTG
I do pre-plan my sets (although I don't always live up to my aspirations). I probably spend too much time thinking about the right decay curve. There are others who advocate going pretty close to failure on each set and then just going until you reach the requisite number.

Re: Doji Grovesai's log

PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2013 8:24 pm
by Ruli
i am one of the "others"

Re: Doji Grovesai's log

PostPosted: Fri Mar 08, 2013 7:18 pm
by Doji Grovesai
Week 2 done! As stated earlier, I'm still working Level 1, and the plan is to stay there until I can do at least Day 1 with real pullups. So...

D1: 26 rounds. Still doing 45 degree bodyweight rows. I probably could have (should have?) kept going after the 20 minutes, but I'm just going to stick grimly to the pre-set plan for now, before doing anything fancy.

D2: Total time: 8:01. I really only shaved 5-15 seconds off of each round from last time. The main difference was eliminating over 3 minutes of rest.

D3: Total time: 4:16. Under 5 minutes! Even when I docked myself 30 seconds, because my rows were in bad form for the last 3-4, so I should have rested. My rows were 10,10,6,4. Pushups were 10,8,3. Squats were again done in one set. Barely felt 'em.

Since I was under 5 minutes for D3, instead of going to Level 2, I'll be doing Level 1 straight under the bar. So 0 (or 90, depending on your perspective) degree bodyweight rows. We'll see how that goes!

Thanks for the help, dudes! (or dudettes! - anonymity of the internet, and all...)

Re: Doji Grovesai's log

PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2013 9:27 am
by Doji Grovesai
Week 3.

I didn't work out on Wednesday. I should've, and I had the time, I just didn't. That said, I went ahead and did D3 today, just to see what it looked like with the change to my bodyweight rows.

D1: 24 rounds. A 2 round decrease from last week, but since I expected to go back down to the 17-20 range. So that's better news than I expected.

D2: null. This might have had an effect on D3.

D3: 6:49. I tried to pre-plan my sets for reps this time around. I think reducing the number of sets per exercise might make for a good progress indicator. I planned on 3 sets of 10 for my rows, a set of 11 and a set of 10 for the pushups, and squats in one go. Reality was pretty close. My pushups and squats were done as planned (which is big-time progress for my pushups!!), but my rows were 10,6,4,4,6 (took up over 4 minutes of my time!). I'm not very happy with that. As I said, though, I didn't work out on Wednesday, and that might have been a factor for the rows.

Anyway, that's this week's report. Laters!

Re: Doji Grovesai's log

PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 9:07 am
by KTG
Nice job. Keep at it and you'll see the real progress coming pretty soon!

Re: Doji Grovesai's log

PostPosted: Mon Mar 25, 2013 4:27 pm
by Doji Grovesai
So...last week had the following:
D1: 24 rounds - and I had to REALLY push just to get the last two. A little discouraging, but not too bad.

D2: null. Again. On the plus side, the Mrs. and I took a 4 mile walk. So I wasn't inactive. Just not doing SF.

D3: 8:35. This was really discouraging. My head was really not in it, to the point that I did to rounds of D2, because I forgot it was Friday! I chalked that up to a warm up, but a little over 5 minutes of my "judgement" day was just for the bodyweight rows. My pushups and squats were in the same sets as before, and I don't even remember how my rows shook out (didn't care, either, to be honest).

So, trying to push back a fair amount of discouragement, I just did D1 again, and managed 25 rounds. It's progress, so I won't complain. And hopefully I won't miss D2 again, either.

Re: Doji Grovesai's log

PostPosted: Wed Mar 27, 2013 4:54 pm
by Doji Grovesai
Didn't miss D2!! Also, I have a new record. This is awesome, because the current L1 workout is harder than the last one 3 weeks ago (horizontal body-rows instead of at an angle).

round 1 - 0'56"
round 2 - 0'56"
round 3 - 0'56"
round 4 - 1'02"
round 5 - 1'07"

Total time was 7'17", which means I only had 2 minutes of rest. Also a record (low). D3 looks to be promising!