1a L-sit chinup, 3 x as many as possible, 90 sec. rest (after last set, hold knees up as long as possible)
1b Incline dumbbell press, 1 x 8-10, 1 x 5-7, 90 sec. rest
2a Inverted row, 3 x as many as possible, 60 sec. rest
2b Parallel-grip dumbbell floor press, 3 x 8-10, 60 sec. rest
3 One-arm barbell curl, 3 x 6-9, 60 sec. rest
Sprint or bike intervals
Jump rope intervals, 15-20 min.
1 Bench press, 3RM, then one set at 90%
2a Incline dumbbell row 2 x 6-8, 1 x 9-12, 60 sec. rest
2b One-arm dumbbell clean and press, 2 x 6-8, 1 x 9-12, 60 sec. rest
3a Incline hammer curl, 3 x 8-10, rest 60 sec.
3b Angled-bar pushdown, 3 x 9-12, 60 sec.
Sprint or intervals on the bike
1 Squat, 3RM, then one set at 90%
2 Deadlift, 3RM
3a Modified Turkish getup, 3 x 6-8, 60 sec. rest
3b Glute-ham raise, 3 x 6-12, 60 sec. rest
4 Prowler push, 20 x 1, 20 sec. rest
Light jump rope, 15-20 min.
The chinups got harder. By keeping my knees raised above my waist throughout the set, I got a major core workout without devoting any extra time to hitting the abs. I got up to 9 reps in my third week and a 30-second hold.
The one-arm barbell curl was another killer. Grab the middle of an Olympic bar and curl away--just balancing the thing in your hands is a bitch, and 45 pounds never felt so heavy.
The modified Turkish getup (or any variation on a TGU) is something everyone should try. It's simple. You just lie on the floor holding a dumbbell/kettlebell over your chest and then stand up as quickly as you can while keeping the weight overhead at all times. Yes, simple, but not easy. What I did was a modification where I didn't stand all the way up, but bridged with my hips so that my ass was off the floor while holding a kettlebell overhead. This was the closest thing I did to a direct ab exercise for a whole month, and yet it worked my abs more than almost anything I've tried before. That's because the abs' main function is to stabilize your spine isometrically, and it has plenty of opportunity to do that when you're awkwardly trying to get off the floor without dropping a heavy weight on your face.
As I mentioned in an earlier post, I had to switch around my sprint and jump rope days to allow for more recovery. Still, the squatting and deadlifting (or as we dedicated lifters say, "pulling") proved to be too much along with everything else I was doing. In Week 6, I plateaued on the deadlift, getting 415 for three reps. They were slow, "grinder" reps, and when I hit three, I knew I wasn't getting four. The following week, while working up, I got to 405 and it felt mighty heavy so I didn't push it any further. Burning out halfway through the program would have been the worst thing I could do, so I simply dropped the lift from the workout. I was proud to get 415. After all, my best ever pull was 415 for six--not far from where I ended up this time, and that was at a body weight of 240. Last summer, at my absolute strongest, I probably could have gotten right around 500 pounds for one good rep. All things considered--squatting on the same day and losing (what at that point was) about 20 pounds through low-carb dieting--I think 415 for three was as good as I could have expected. I'll get back after the deadlift when this program is over.
All my other lifts have continued to climb while the number on the scale gets lower and lower. That's how I know I'm losing the right kind of weight. Check back here next week. If all goes according to plan--and even if it doesn't--I will squat 405 this weekend for a new personal best.