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 Post subject: Re: Jordan's Training Log!
PostPosted: Sat Jul 31, 2010 11:54 pm 
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So here's a video of my reverse crunches... it may be a little off since I was on a fairly hard floor, and my spine doesn't like hard floors very much. Suggestions? Is there another ab/core exercise I can switch to, or my technique horribly wrong? (keep in mind, my current technique is minimizing impact on my boney back)

Courtesy of my girlfriend and my terrible quality iphone video camera:

Reverse Crunches

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 Post subject: Re: Jordan's Training Log!
PostPosted: Sun Aug 01, 2010 2:23 am 
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Here's a few pointers that could help your reverse crunch

1) Your thighs should never go past 90 degrees on the way back down. Control them and don't let them pass vertical.

2) Put something at the back of your knees (held in place by flexing your knee as much as you can, kind of held between your calf and lower hamstring, i use a roller, anything works). This stops your legs from opening up and makes it harder. (this makes a BIG difference)

3) Your hands shouldn't leave the ground, ever. If you can't do this, hold a light weight until you can.

Try these first before switching to another exercise (hanging leg raises would prob be good).

Good luck!

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 Post subject: Re: Jordan's Training Log!
PostPosted: Tue Aug 03, 2010 7:25 pm 
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Location: Edmonton, Canada.
08/02/10
------------------
StrongLifts Workout B:

Squats 5x5 @ 65LBS (bar + 10lbs on each side)
Overhead Press 5x5 @ 50lbs (bar + 2.5lbs on each side)
Deadlifts 1x5 @ 100lbs (bar + 27.5 on each side)
Chinups 3xF 7/5/5 (SO much easier than pullups!)
Pronebridges 3xF 90sec/60sec/60sec ... did the two 60 second sets alternating one leg up for 10 seconds.

Overall, it was a pretty easy workout (save the deadlifts... ugh).

So, here are some videos courtesy of my brother (also a vegan weightlifter!... I'm going to try and get him to create a profile and show his stuff off!). Please critique my technique!

Deadlifts
Overhead Press
Front view of Squats
Side view of Squats


ps. My trueproteins order arrived. 50% brown rice, 30% gemma, ad 20% BCAAs with unsweetened chocolate and stevia. It tastes surprisingly good! 5lb bag shipped to my door only came to $54.

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 Post subject: Re: Jordan's Training Log!
PostPosted: Wed Aug 04, 2010 2:14 am 
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Deadlifts - These are actually looking good, but apart from the first and last rep, the bar was too far away from you at the start of the rep. When you're getting the bar back on the floor, you're bending at the knees first, which isn't allowing the bar to go down in a straight line. You're having to go round your knees, and because you're not resetting the bar, it's ending out a couple inches in front of you when you start the next rep (you can see it clearly from where it's sitting on the plate). Break at the hips first, and when you pass your knees you can bend them (keeping a tight, straight back the whole time of course). Look at your first and last rep on the way up, almost a perfect vertical bar path. You want this every rep, whether the way up or the way down. Don't be scared to completely reset to get into position until you get this. It's better you get good 5 reps.

Overhead press - When you're racking/unracking the bar you don't want it floating about in front of your chest. When it's on the rack, get your grip (tight) and push your elbows forward and it should sit tight against either your shoulders or upper chest depending on flexbility, it shouldn't leave here till you start the rep (and when you're done it shouldn't leave your shoulders until you get it on the rack). The idea is so that if you look from the side your forearms are vertical (would be good to get a vid from the side too). Also, at the end of every rep, you need to shrug up http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GJFjYyA40ss (2:20, also the rest of this video is good for getting into position).

Squats - Looking quite good for starting off, though I'm pretty sure you're doing a high bar squat instead of a low bar squat (I done this, and didn't notice for at least 6 months or something lol. so you're better getting a 2nd opinion from someone on here haha). From the front view right before you lifted the bar off the rack you slid your right hand out making the bar unbalanced, it looked like it was starting to cause you problems on the last couple of reps. This will be a BIG PROBLEM with more weight, so sort it out early. I noticed you pull your knees back at the start of each rep but I don't really know if that'll lead to anything bad, just pointing it out. Also it looks like your back bends a bit at the bottom, but this will prob change a bit when you change bar position.

http://images3.wikia.nocookie.net/startingstrength/images/8/8b/Squat_Bar_Placement.jpg

From the side view when you're at the bottom you get a good view, looks like the bar's on your traps instead of further down. It'll feel kinda weird when you try a low bar position to start with but you'll get used to it.



Btw, don't be discouraged by all this, you're doing really good for someone just learning the lifts. I was making these mistakes for a long long time, because I wasn't taking videos or getting people to help me, they went on for a while. (and my technique's still far from perfect, still got a lot to learn, bad habits and flaws).

Keep up the hard work!

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 Post subject: Re: Jordan's Training Log!
PostPosted: Wed Aug 04, 2010 1:37 pm 
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So what's the main differences in bar position? Why did you switch from a hi-bar to a low-bar? The diagram was very helpful, thanks.

I'm excited for my workout this afternoon. I'm going to shred those BOSU pushups and inverted rows. Work is going by dreadfully slow.

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 Post subject: Re: Jordan's Training Log!
PostPosted: Wed Aug 04, 2010 1:50 pm 
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Jordanlee wrote:
So what's the main differences in bar position? Why did you switch from a hi-bar to a low-bar?
Starting strength/stronglifts recommend that you use a low bar position. http://stronglifts.com/correct-bar-placement-on-squats/. That shows you the differences there. Basically low bar uses less quads and more hips than the high bar, and you can use more weight.



Don't give up on those dips! Try 'em before your pushups.

Glad you're pumped!

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 Post subject: Re: Jordan's Training Log!
PostPosted: Wed Aug 04, 2010 1:56 pm 
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Great, thanks Chewy! I'll definetely give the dips a shot.. But my weak elbows won't like it.

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 Post subject: Re: Jordan's Training Log!
PostPosted: Wed Aug 04, 2010 3:49 pm 
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Damn, I forgot to say about trying negatives for the dips, they'll help!

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 Post subject: Re: Jordan's Training Log!
PostPosted: Thu Aug 05, 2010 1:29 pm 
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Location: Edmonton, Canada.
08/04/10
------------------
StrongLifts Workout A:

Squats 5x5 @ 70LBS (bar + 12.5lbs on each side)
Bench Press 5x5 @ 55lbs (bar + 5lbs on each side)
Inverted Rows 3xF 12/8/9 ... with knees up, and chest within a few inches of the bar.
Dips.... couldn't even do one proper one, so did 5 negatives and moved to...
Elevated BOSO Ball pushups (feet on the BOSO ball, and hands fairly wide) 3xF 12/10/8
Reverse Crunches 3xF ... still not really feeling these at all, even with implementing Chewy's observations. Is there something else I can switch to? I'll try and get another video to ensure that I'm actually doing them correctly.

Squats were terrible... I couldn't quite figure out the lo-bar squat position. It just seemed to be jabbing into my spine quite hard. And then, added to that, my knees felt weak, and my hip flexors were acting up. It's not that the weight was too heavy, it's just that my knee strength and general felxibility is shit. Hopefully this will improve. Other than doing squat stretches and obviouis hamstring/quad/groin stretches, what other ones should I be doing?

On a dietary note... I really need to figure out how to be breaching the 4000 cal/day mark with primarily healthy, whole, raw foods. My skin responds adversly to gluten, so large portions of seitan, or pastas and bread are out of the question. I'd like to gain weight and muscle without my skin getting worse than it is. Ideas?

ps. Trueproteins RULES! I got unsweetened chocolate with stevia, 50% brown rice, 30% Gemma and 20% BCAAs and it tastes great! I'm very happy that I've found a non-soy, afforable protein supplement!

That is all for today... looking forward the B on Friday, since it's usually the tougher one.

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 Post subject: Re: Jordan's Training Log!
PostPosted: Thu Aug 05, 2010 1:32 pm 
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Also, is it a bad idea to be doing pushups (both diamond and wide stance ones) at work on my off days, to get a more full workout feeling? Since I'm at the beggining of the program, and the weight is still light, I'm not really feeling too much muscle burn. Will it help or hinder my progress to be adding things to stronglifts?

I've also noticed that my chest feels severly underworked (and it's something I really want to focus on, since I look sickly in that area...ha)... will it get better as bench press gets higher weight? Can I add flys?

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 Post subject: Re: Jordan's Training Log!
PostPosted: Thu Aug 05, 2010 2:34 pm 
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I wouldn't add flys. I barely experienced "soreness" during my 5x5 squats/bench/press and 1x5 deads for the most part of a year, but fortunately it doesn't mean the muscles don't grow. I doubt your quads get totally burned out every workout, but you wouldn't add leg press. You could probably take any muscle and do the same.

Until bench gets heavy try this;
Dips, 3x10 negatives (AS SLOW AS YOU POSSIBLY CAN. From full arm lockout, to just below parallel. Don't get lazy, don't drop before you get to the bottom). After this do 3xF normal pushups, then 1xF pushups on your knee to burn out. If you do wide pushups, your triceps will barely get touched. When bench gets heavy your triceps will be falling behind and your chest won't get a chance at a good workout. Is there a reason you're doing "bosu pushups" over standard?

Be patient, it won't be long before you're stalling on the main lifts, you'll effectively be maxing every workout. In the meantime you need to work on your technique, and nail the hard versions of bodyweight exercises.


Squats - the bar should NOT be resting on your spine. Experiment and find the spot, you don't need to do a set to know whether it's in the wrong place, keep racking and unracking till you find the spot. Note that your elbows should be UP. This forms your muscles into a "shelf" that the bar sits on and keeps it off your spine.


Reverse crunches - did you put something behind your legs to stop from cheating? I'd get another video up just to be sure. Hanging knee/leg raises would be good to switch to, but try getting a video up first.

I'm not an expert in stretching for flexibility but there's Dynamic stretches for hips, and one for groin as well on the stronglifts website.

Nuts/seeds are high in calories and protein, pumpkin seeds have a great amino profile. Beans/rice aren't raw but you can rack up calories on them.

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 Post subject: Re: Jordan's Training Log!
PostPosted: Thu Aug 05, 2010 3:20 pm 
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Chewy,

I'm doing elevated pushups on a bosu ball to make them harder. I was getting go over 20 a set with regular, so I changed. Also, my triceps are definetely getting worked, as I'm doing diamond pushups as well.

I will add the dips/pushups like you said next A workout. As always, thanks Chewy!

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 Post subject: Re: Jordan's Training Log!
PostPosted: Fri Aug 06, 2010 4:59 pm 
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Location: Edmonton, Canada.
08/02/10
------------------
StrongLifts Workout B:

Squats 5x5 @ 80LBS (bar + 17.5lbs on each side)
Overhead Press 5x5 @ 55lbs (bar + 5lbs on each side)
Deadlifts 2x5 @ 100lbs (bar + 25lb on each side)... messed up on reading how much I did last deadlift... so I did two sets of this lower weight, and really worked on technique.
Pullups 3xF 2/1/2 ... plus I did 5 negatives on each set.
Pronebridges 3xF ... did till failure, alternating which leg was up, and trying to focus on keeping a tight core. I found my arms giving out before my core really felt much of anything, so I did them as supersets with crunches.

I also did some inverted pushups (both normal stance, and diamond) when I got home to really burn.

Overall, it was a good workout. I managed to skip out of work early, and hit the gym when it was fairly dead. My knees were acting up on my squats again, but I got through them fairly. My technique for deadlifts and OP were A LOT better today. I was very happy with the deadlifts in particular (thanks to Chewy's tips!). Pullups were hard as usual, but I managed to get TWO in twice, so I was happy with that.


Until next time, I'll just keep eating and sleeping!

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 Post subject: Re: Jordan's Training Log!
PostPosted: Tue Aug 10, 2010 10:25 am 
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Location: Edmonton, Canada.
08/09/10
------------------
StrongLifts Workout A:

Squats 5x5 @ 85LBS (bar + 20lbs on each side)
Bench Press 5x5 @ 65lbs (bar + 10lbs on each side)
Inverted Rows 3xF 18/13/14 ... with knees up, and chest within a few inches of the bar or touching the bar.
Dips.... couldn't even do one proper one, so did 5 negatives and moved to...
Elevated BOSO Ball pushups (feet on the BOSO ball) 3xF around 8-10 each set. Lost track.
Reverse Crunches 3xF ... I think my technique is better now, and I feel a little bit of a core workout, but still not as much as I'd like. I think I'm going to try incline reverse crunches, and hanging raises next time.

Workout was pretty good. Squats are starting to get hard. My knees started really hurting about two sets in, and the pain remained late into the evening. Does knee pain mean poor technique, or just weak knees? I'll try and get a video again soon.
Inverted rows were good... I must be getting stronger :0

In addition to all of this, I'm often doing squat stretches, and inverted pushups in my office.. ha.

Still not gaining any weight, even though I'm eating like never before. Hopefully it starts stacking soon.

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 Post subject: Re: Jordan's Training Log!
PostPosted: Thu Aug 12, 2010 3:51 pm 
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Location: Edmonton, Canada.
08/11/10
------------------
StrongLifts Workout B:

Squats 5x5 @ 90LBS (bar + 22.5lbs on each side)
Overhead Press 5x5 @ 60lbs (bar + 7.5lbs on each side)
Deadlifts 1x5 @.. didn't get to do them
Chinups 3xF 6 (7th failed)/4 (5th failed)/5
Pronebridges 3xF ... didn't get to do them.

Possibly the worst workout of my life. I woke up the night before at 2am vomitting, and didn't get much sleep (I must have gotten food poisioning from something). I wasn't able to eat much in the morning because of my extremely upset stomach, so by the time I was at the gym, I only had about 2 bananas in me, and I weighed 141lbs (normally I'm around 147-149). I felt very weak, but still managed to get through my squats, chinups and OP. But after that, I felt exhausted, and was unable to finish the workout. I went home, ate, and rested, and now feel a lot better. I'm going to make up for the missed deadlifts tomorrow. I wish I knew what got me sick, so I could forever avoid it... I only managed to get to about 1500-2000 calories yesterday, since half of the day was spent feeling ill.

Also, I'm still having trouble with my squat bar position. It always feels rough on my back/spine. When I watch others do it, they all have much larger back muscles than I, and the bar rests comfortably on them. For me, it's either pretty much on my spine, or it's jabbing into my shoulder blades. Is there something I can do here (like use some padding until the muscles develop), or should I just stick it out and hope the muscles develop and make it more comfortable as the weight increases?

Also, I think I'm getting close to my max on squats... already. Yesterday's (though I was admittedly weak) squats were very tough to get through. Hopefully tomorrow I can manage the extra weight.

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