On the Grind: My Endless Pursuit of Athletic Aspiration

I’m Starting a new journal because my old one got too long and I’ve had it since my sophomore year of HS. So good-bye old journal!

Current Numbers:
Age - Just turned 19
Height - 5’10-5’11
Weight - 173 w/ shoes on
40yds - 4.72ht
20yds - 2.73ht
10yds - 1.63ht
BJ - 8’8
VJ - 29"
5 Bound - 48ft
OHB(8lb) - 18yds
Bench - ~285
Chinups - 17
Bulgarian Split Squat - 85lb DB’s x 5
*These numbers are far off my personal bests.

If you haven’t read any of my previous journal, I’ve been striving to get back to where I once was before my lumbar spine surgery which was roughly 1.5 years ago. I’m living and learning of what it takes to train so I won’t have to train around my spine injury. Pretty soon I’m going to feel confident enough to do back squats, deadlifts, olympic lifts, and plyo’s again like a normal athlete.

For now my main goals are to:

  1. Get rid of any muscle imbalances and structural issues that could be causing strain on my spine. I’m also going to balance my pushing strength with my pulling strength as it is unproportional.
  2. Make sure every speed session that I have is of the highest quality possible. I feel that in my previous sessions I wasn’t getting faster because I wasn’t loose enough, and I was also doing things the wrong way in my warmup. I also plan to have a timer on hand for every speed session I do. This is another reason why I didn’t make any progress because I had no idea of how fast I was running. Now that I’m in college, I actually know people who will do speed work with me!
  3. Gradually increase work capacity, right now all I’m doing for HI training is speed work. Not going to do anything else until I feel confident in my spinal stability.

[b]“Strive to be the very best you can be. Run the race against yourself and not the guy in the other lane. The reason I say this, as long as you give it 110%, you are going to succeed. But as long as you’re trying to beat the guy over there, you are worried about him, you’re not worrying about how you’ve got to perform.”

  • Herschel Walker[/b]

Monday, 10-26-09

General Warmup

Neutral Grip Chin-ups - 5 x 8, BW
Incline Bench Press - 135 x 5, 155 x 5, 2 x 5 w/ 185. No more back arches on any pressing movements!
Chest Supported Row - 4 x 10, 37.5’s
Flat DB Bench Press w/ knees on bench - 37.5’s x 10, 45’s x 10, 55’s x 10

Core stability:
Plank Progressions - 30-35sec, 60sec rest
Non Tripods - 150reps

Plank progressions are from RJ’s book and they are not easy. While doing these today, I realize that one side of my core is stronger than the other, could be a normal asymmetry but I’m going to do the best I can to fix this.

Cool man, good to see you’ve got clear cut goals and have some numbers to work off of. Only way to go is up from here.

Warmup (Jog, hip mobility, sprint drills)

Speed work: Done upstairs at my school’s recreation center. Did these in my Nike Free’s. Had some slippery starts except on the 1m run-in.
3 x 30yds
3 x 20yds
1 x 30m w/ 1m run in. Ran 3.65ht, but I don’t think it was very accurate.

Trap Bar Deadlift Machine: 4 x 10, w/ 135
Leg Press: 195 x 10, 385 x 6, 485 x 6, 485 x 6
Reverse Leg Press: 3 x 8, 150lbs
Decline situp ISO holds: 3 x 30sec

I doubt that my 30m time with the 1m run-in was that fast. Even though he claims he was dead on when he started and stopped the timer. The surface was hard rubber and I really had no place to run today though. All the grass fields were puddled. I’m sure later this week I can get some better times on a better surface.


Weighted Chins - 25 x 3, 35 x 3, 45 x 3, BW x 10
Bench - 135 x 8, 155 x 8, 185 x 5, 205 x 5, 205 x 5. Lot harder with the new technique
Chest Supported Rows - 40’s x 8, 55’s x 8, 55’s x 8
Incline DB Press - 45’s x 8, 55’s x 8, 65’s x 8

Core series:
Landmines - 3 x 10, bar
Plank Progressions - 30secs per exercise
Non tripods - 60reps

Was going to do sprints upstairs but I’m betting that I will have access to the track tomorrow morning and a timer as well. It’s been tough to find a decent surface to run on lately as the rain here is very heavy lately.

Warmup (light jog, light static stretch, hip mobility, non tripods, sprint drills, 2 x MB throws, 2 x buildups)

Speed work: Done on track with spikes
3 x 20yds, best was 2.75
3 x 30m, best was 3.84
2 x 40yds, best was 4.69
3 x 10yds, best was 1.5 but averaged around 1.6

Vertical MB throws: 3 x 5

Trap Bar Deadlift machine - 135 x 10, 155 x 10, 185 x 10
Leg Press - 360 x 8, 420 x 6, 555 x 5
Single leg Deadlift - 2 x 8, 20lb DBs

Plank Progressions - 35sec on/60sec rest

My timer isn’t very consistent as the first 30m he clocked me at a 3.4 which isn’t right. The next two I averaged around 3.8 so I’m guessing that may be accurate, I’m not counting on it though. Overall my abs are starting to feel stronger with the plank progressions so far. It’s also time to start putting on some weight again. I’m shooting for 180 which is about 9-10lbs away.

What is your plan to put on 9-10 quality pounds?

I currently eat only about 3 meals per day along with my post workout shake which has 900 calories. I’m thinking that if I can eat 2-3 bigger snacks imbetween my main meals, then I can do it. Any recommendations?

Take nutrition as seriously as your training. I was always able to gain whatever I wanted by making sure I ate every 2-3 hours and by using a 3:1 CHO to Protein ratio in my post workout shakes. Having a 40g protein shake along with some milk and a tablespoon or two of olive oil every 3 hours can work wonders…

Ya I’m going to make an effort to eat many PB&J’s, bananas, and sweat potatoes for snacks along with adding cottage cheese to my shake before bed.

And BTW, it’s funny how I see you on billboards in Waco when I come back home on some weekends. Seems like the town misses you or something.

Warmup (light jog, light static stretch, hip mobility, sprint drills)

Extensive Tempo: 960
4 x 4 x 60yds, 30yd walk imbetween reps

General Strength:
Waterloo - 3 x 10, 60sec rest imbetween sets

Landmines - 3 x 10, 45lbs
Decline Russian Twist - 3 x 10
Deadbugs - 3 x 20

Weight - 172 in Nike Frees

I wish the grass fields would have been dry enough to use for tempo today. Instead I did it upstairs on a harder rubber surface which isn’t the best thing to do over the long term.

Warmup (light stretching, light foam roll)

Plank Progressions - 60sec on/90sec off
Non tripods - 200 reps

I had so much fun doing the plank progressions today…

Hahahahaha! :smiley:

I managed to go the full 60sec but man was I shaking at the last exercise! I was on the ground for a solid 5 minutes after I did these.


Weighted Chinups - 2 x 5, BW. 3 x 6, 25lbs.
Incline Bench - 135 x 6, 155 x 5, 185 x 5, 205 x 3
Chest Supported Rows - 4 x 12
Knee’s On Flat DB Bench - 3 x 10, 55’s

Decline Russian Twists - 3 x 10, 25lb plate.

Weight - 175.2 w/ cross trainers

Solid Chinups today. My bench has gotten very weak ever since I corrected my technique. Form and function is what matters, while amount of weight lifted means nothing to me anymore.

Warmup (light jog ~ 360yds)

Core Series:
Landmines - 45 x 10, 55 x 10, 65 x 10, 65 x 10
Plank Progressions - 60sec on/90sec off
Non Tripods - 100reps

No speed work today because my workout partner said he had to run a marathon for a fundraiser :rolleyes:. I was also feeling pretty flat in my jogging today. I’m really hoping that I will have access to a grass field or field turf tomorrow. I need a break from the harder surfaces.

Today’s session was a waste… I’ve been stressing a lot with my school work lately and it has been hard finding time to do speed work with a timer on hand. I wound up doing a fairly short warmup and ran some very slow times so I called it quits after 3-4 sprints. I’m getting plenty of sleep but I still don’t feel like I’m recovered good enough. It could be from taking my preworkout supplement too often. My right hip flexor is also starting to feel tight and it could be from the poor warmup I did. I’m looking forward to having a better day on Friday.


Weighted Chin-ups - BW x 5, BW x 5, 25 x 6, 35 x 5, 35 x 5, 35 x 5
Knees-on Bench - 135 x 5, 155 x 5, 185 x 5, 195 x 5, 205 x 5
Chest Supported Row - 3 x 10, 42.5’s
Decline Pushups on Swiss Ball - 2 x 20

Weight - 171 w/ cross trainers.

No ab work today as I really feel that my hip flexors are being over worked. I’m going to have to really foam roll my right hip flexor as it is very tight. I barely penetrate it and it’s tender. I feel like I’m pretty drained mentally and physically. I highly doubt it could be CNS fatigue but whatever it is I’m pretty worn out. Depending on how the warmup goes will depend on whether or not I will even both doing speed work tomorrow.

Man, if you’re that drained, don’t do the speed session tomorrow. This is your first year of college. You’re going to get worn down. All you can do is back off a little bit, eat well, get some more sleep, and wait until you feel better.

Pushing yourself is likely to just dig you in deeper.

I agree with your suggestion. As much as I’d hate to miss another day, it will only make things worse if I continue to push through. This hasn’t been a good week of training so I’m just going to take the weekend off and start back on Monday. I also have to make a trip back home so this should give me a lot of time to relax.

Warmup (light static stretch, hip mobility, sprint drills, light buildups, MB throws)

2 x 10yds
1 x 20yds
*Righ hip flexor started tightening up on me.

MT (Bomb) - 3 x

PM workout:
RDL - Bar x 10, 95 x 8, 115 x 8, 135 x 8, 155 x 8, 165 x 6
45 Degree Back Hyper - BW x 10, 10lbs x 10, 25lbs x 10, 35lbs x 10, 45lbs x 5
Swiss Ball Leg Curl - 3 x 15

LONG day today. Started out with driving 2hrs back to school today. Then my right hip flexor started to give me more problems so I limited my speed work. I immediately decided that I wanted to get some ART. So I drove all the way to south Houston and back for the appointment and they said that it was a mild strain. I’m thinking it was because I went overboard with the Non Tripods and Plank Progessions. I’m going to take lot’s of ibuprofen, foam roll, stretch, and ice it as much as possible. I will stick to pure PC movements in the weightroom right now.

I also have a training partner who is a former natural bodybuilder competitor. He plans to do speed work with me because he’s trying for the football team. He’s 5’9, 200lbs, and I clocked him in the 4.7 range. He also benches 405 and squats in the 500’s.