Sunday, January 29, 2012

STFU and Squat

Yesterday I went to my new gym for my first Saturday workout with a group of men - and one woman - who meet each week to squat, deadlift and bench press. The most helpful of these folks was Jack (#1). Age 77, Jack #1 is a former team USA powerlifter who deadlifts around 440 lbs. Did i mention, he probably weigh 150 lbs soaking wet? He helped me rack and unrack the weights and set up for each person we were working with. He also followed me at the end of each set to ensure I got it racked correctly and safely.

Also in the mix was Jack #2 (nicknamed 'the old Russian'). Aged 60-something, in his day, Jack #2 held 14 powerlifting records. I'm not sure if they were state, National or International - I will find out and get back to you. Anyway, the two Jacks were quite helpful and I found it very motivating to work in with them.

Since the rack we were using was not adjustable, I had to step outside of it to get ATG in my squats. They all said my form was spot-on and, if anything, that I was going "lower than I needed to." These guys all think in terms of competitions, not necessarily full ROM or even functional strength, so they were giving me tips related to "the rules" of meets. Regardless, I performed all of my squats, except my heaviest set, outside of the rack and even heard some of the guys watching me say things like, "she's really going low," which motivated me to keep my form and continue going as deep as I could while focusing on the rebound off the bottom. I have found that it's true, if you hesitate at the bottom of your squat, you lose the energy that was stored in your glutes and hamstrings on the way down. You have to literally 'bounce' off the bottom of the movement and explode up through your hips to complete the movement.

I also love the fact they they put a sheet over the mirror where you squat so you can't watch yourself. All you can do is pick your spot on the wall and focus on the movement. While it was a bit intimidating to work out with so many critical eyes on me, I believe it will ultimately only help me to improve my form, increase my motivation and even make a few new friends.
As for the diet, I've taken it quite loosely over the weekend as I was feeling weak, a bit sick and not great late last week. I'm still eating mostly protein and veggies, but I gave the scales a break - no weighing food and no weighing me. My mood has since improved and the bit of extra carbs I ate on my rest days are helping. I'm still under 75g carbs and within my macros, so I think I'll be ok.

It's Sunday and time to get moving. I've got lots to do today and don't have time to sit here, chatting with you folks all day. Take care. 


iamgmo said...

Going ATG is not going to help you with muscle development... And this comes from Rip and the SL crowd... So just deep enough is better than ATG. Unless you will be performing OLs (which i think you won't).

Jay Kinfolk said...

keep up the good work,I have not started squatting with weights as I want to get my form down correct before i do. but I live by my squat workout routine