Entry 1 Migrane Throws Off Schedule
Just another cold-ass winter's week here in Jersey ... Another week paying dues ... Another week in paradise ... Training was hard and intense as usual, but nothing spectacular -- just another brick in the wall. Starting with the standard grueling Tuesday back session with my boy Vinny "Pots & Pans." Wednesday brought with it a sinus-induced, dome-in-a-vice, migraine-type headache that kept me out of the gym and forced me to shake up the normal split.
Returning to gym on Thursday, I decided to train biceps first because I had missed them on Wednesday. I then hit quads and hams solo. The bicep workout was brief and focused. I've gotten better at keeping the small muscle group sessions short and sweet. I can now blast biceps full tilt in less than 20 minutes.
Friday, known in my gym as "Big Friday" is chest day ... Still making up for my missed Wednesday, I had to lump tris and calves in with pecs to catch my ass up to speed. That is why I fu*@ing hate missing a scheduled workout. But such is life. You make due and get your training in by any means necessary. Saturday was the typical delt session, except this week I pre-exhausted by doing all of my laterals before pressing and was really into my trap training so I ended up doing like 10 sets of shrugs.
Some days you just have to be instinctive and go with the flow. My diet was typical off-season: 350g of protein per day, 4 shakes per, trying to keep the junk food consumption to a minimum. Had several helpings of venison chili this week.
This was my first time eating it and considering the fact that deer meat is a lean and high-protein food source, I decided I'd give it its day in court. I felt sort of guilty eating Bambi, but I realized that such feelings made me little more than a hypocrite.
I can eat chickens and cows all day long and not feel the least bit bad about it. The way I look at it, if it gave its life for me to get bigger, it did not die in vain.
My supplementation was on point all week, the highlight of which is my favorite anabolic postworkout concoction: 1 pack Animal Nitro G, 5g creatine and 10g glutamine mixed in 6 oz. of cold water. I bang that down even before my shake and at least an hour prior to my first post training whole food meal.
It's the little shi* like that which makes the difference in the long run-that is the shi* that will give me my edge. There it is, a week in my life.
Training and eating, struggling and striving, clawing and scratching my way, trying to get ahead in this world. Looking for that elusive edge. Doing whatever it takes to get mine ...
Entry 2 The Cardio Bandwagon
This week I jumped on the cardio bandwagon. Even though I'm offseason and trying to blow up, I've got a plan. You see, I've always had the skinny boy metabolism, so even as I've progressed as a bodybuilder and gotten bigger and stronger, I never made huge jumps in bodyweight -- just steadily added lean mass.
This past winter, making a concerted effort to pack on the weight, I threw caution to the wind and had gained ten pounds over three months, before recently screeching to a halt.
This is where you've gotta switch shi* up. I've added the cardio to allow me to up my calories while remaining hard.
Walking on the inclined treadmill at a good pace, keeping the abs tight and squeezing my wheels with every step, what I've dubbed "the big guy walk."
The cardio, as I see it, has many benefits.
- First, it speeds up what was already a fast metabolism making it tough for me to store bodyfat.
- Second, it increases my appetite making me even hungrier, helping me put away the necessary growth calories.
- Third, it is good for my ticker -- you see at some point back in the day, bodybuilding was about being healthy, and considering I want to be a big, bad motherfu*@er when I'm 60, I figure I better start making that investment now.
- Finally, I find it therapeutic. I get on that treadmill, put on my headphones and zone out. I can't do that when I'm training -- I have to concentrate too much to not get murdered by a quarter ton plus in the squat rack. It's just me, alone with my thoughts, in my own world -- a fu*@ing scary place to be. I'm there plotting and scheming and thinking of a master plan. To paraphrase Arnold, while the next guy is thinking about how hard this is or how much its gonna hurt, I'm thinking about how I'm gonna make my first million. Motherfu*@in' right.
Entry 3 Shelter From The Storm
This lifestyle of ours provides shelter from the storm. Stress, problems with relationships or family, lack of cash flow, career issues ... Life can fu*@ing beat the living shi* out of you if you let it. But no matter what shi* sandwich you get served, it is no doubt a blessing to have the structure and comfort of routine that bodybuilding provides. Eat, train, sleep when you can ... Wake up and do that shi* all over again.
When all else fails there is the gym, a place of solace and refuge. Like a Tibetan monk escaping to a remote mountain cave to meditate and be at one with nature, we can go to the gym with a chip on our shoulder, go to the squat rack and throw down, punish our quads for the inequities of the world and leave it all on the gym floor ...
Like a spiritual and physical cleansing all at once. Plus, we are able to make a positive investment in ourselves, our goals and our future, even during our low times.
Moments when others choose to walk a path of self-destruction, we build and grow and flourish. Bodybuilding is steady and solid. It is hard and unyielding like the cast iron of a 45-pound plate. Times change and trends come and go. Interest rates rise and the Dow Jones plummets. But the gym is always there. A 100 pounds will always be 100 pounds. And I like that.