2012: High points, low points and what you learned.

Discussion in 'Strength & Conditioning Discussion' started by JauntyAngle, Dec 31, 2012.

  1. JauntyAngle

    JauntyAngle International man of mystery

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    So, the year is nearly over (or is in fact already over if you live East of where I am writing this from). And as I did last year, I thought it might be nice if those of us who wanted to shared their high points, low points and lessons learned from 2012.

    So, what were:

    Your high points from 2012: What went really well with your S&C? Were there any events or achievements that really stand out, that are really satisfying?

    Your low points from 2012: What really sucked in S&C? Were there any moments and events that were particularly tough?

    Your lessons learned from 2012: What do you know now about S&C, or your own approach to it, that you didn't know on January 1st 2012? What have you learned that will make 2013 better than 2012?
     
  2. Jester

    Jester Don't rope swing over a dirty river Senior Moderator

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  3. JauntyAngle

    JauntyAngle International man of mystery

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    And in answer to my own thread:

    Low points

    For me, the low points would be connected to injuries, especially the rotator cuff tears I had. Re-tearing after a cortisone shot and a few weeks of (badly done) rehab was a particular low point. Probably the lowest point would have been after the second tear and second cortisone shot, when I picked up a minor secondary injury right at the end of my 6-week rehab programme. I tripped while running and experienced quite strong pain in my shoulder, and then again the day after. I didn't know what it was, and was worried I had torn it a third time. It was crushing to think that even after another cortisone shot, 2 weeks of complete rest and a super cautious and diligently applied 6-week rehab programme, I still wasn't through it. It did turn out to be a different and less serious injury, of course, but I didn't know that at the time.

    High points

    A lot of the big high points have been connected to getting quarter decent at running. I started because I noticed my HR was *really* high, and also because there were long periods of time when I couldn't use my arm much, but I got to the point where I now really enjoy it and do it regularly. I guess one high point, or group of high points, were the times I realized I was 4, 5 or 6km into a run and still felt fresh and was enjoying it- it felt great, at the time, to look back a few months before and remember when I couldn't even run that far, or if I did with grueling effort. It was also very satisfying when, after about 6 months or running, I ran 5km in under 25 minutes the first ever time I tried to run the distance with any kind of speed. (I know it is not fast, but it is a decent base to get to an okay speed with, and it is not bad as a first attempt.) I was also really pleased when I went to see a Doctor in October, he took my pulse and said "do you run?"- even though I knew my HR was down plenty, it was nice to get the external validation.

    I guess the other high points have been related to successfully rehabbing my torn rotator cuff. When it was really bad, after the second tear, I actually physically couldn't do an overhead press with the empty bar- the pain would just cause my arm not to move. I started a Linear Progression with the empty bar, and it was very satisfying to see the weight continuing to go up slowly but surely, with no pain. I guess if I had to single out one high point it would be from a two days ago when I was doing some DB push presses. It was more weight than I've had above my head in 6 months, and it didn't feel painful, didn't feel especially heavy and there's been no reaction since. It's a great feeling when pain and tedious rehab have been your bedfellow for 6 months or more.

    Lessons Learned

    Woops, forgot these! Way to not answer your own thread properly...

    - When training through an injury is not working, you need to step back. Odds on you need a period of rest to allow the actual injury to heal. And then you probably need a properly designed and properly applied rehab programme.
    - Training around injuries is possible, but the biggest issue is how to maintain some kind of consistency while you're doing so.
    - Conditioning, particularly LISS, is awesome. At first it is exactly the wrong blend of hard and boring, but the more you do it, the more you like it. And the payoff to how it makes you feel is fantastic.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2012
  4. JauntyAngle

    JauntyAngle International man of mystery

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    Well, I think we know what you low point was.
     
  5. Jester

    Jester Don't rope swing over a dirty river Senior Moderator

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    haha yup :D

    great thread idea though JA, ill answer it later when im on my computer and can type alot out
     
  6. Keosawa

    Keosawa Black Belt

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    I'm going to limit myself to two things for each:

    1.) My high points:

    First, packing the room with prospective lifters for our first Iowa Powerlifting team meeting, and maintaining a number of them through the semester. I also got to see Babyeater start her powerlifting career and compete in her first two meets. All of this has made me immensely proud! Seeing Babyeater compete has been the only time I've ever gotten teary-eyed at a meet; my own lifts aren't satisfying in that way.

    Second, breaking into the next tier of powerlifting with a 1355-lb. total and a #1-ranked squat. I've accomplished things this year that have put me up with a higher class of lifter, and I'm very proud of that, because it's further than I expected I'd go.

    2.) My low points:

    First, losing my training partner and good friend after he left our Ph.D program and moved away to Chicago. I miss him a lot, and training isn't the same without him.

    Second, watching Babyeater grapple with herself, with being an athlete, and with encountering the various struggles that come with hard training. She has done so well, but she has also had occasions where she has suffered a lot emotionally, and that has been difficult for me to endure.

    3.) What I've learned:

    * That the sky's the limit as long as I train hard, train consistently, and train intelligently. I'm further along this year than I thought I'd ever be.

    * That one should have strong beliefs as a strength athlete regarding methodology, but one should keep no gods by listening to only one perspective. Once I began opening myself up to other approaches, I started tailoring my training to what I really needed as a lifter.

    * That the more people I make myself responsible for as a 'coach' and/or training partner, the greater the emotional burden is to ensure they're successful, and that I need to be very strong emotionally in order to deal with that. You share in their successes, but you also experience their suffering. Feeling helpless because someone who isn't you is struggling badly with training--or with themselves--is an awful feeling.
     
  7. Im so Moldy

    Im so Moldy Blue Belt

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    High points: Finding this forum and progressing from using isolation machines for sets of 12 to using free weights for more appropriate rep ranges. I've gotten bigger and stronger in the few months since I switched, felt better in everyday life, had better self esteem, and received compliments about my appearance that I'd never received before. I went from being 6'3" 155 lbs to 175 (probably more with all the Christmas food I've been eating, haven't weighed myself in 2 weeks) and still growing. I can be helpful when people need things moved which feels great.

    Low points: Hurting my back in BJJ class. I re-aggravated this injury probably more than 10 times in BJJ, everyday life, deadlifting, throwing my back into an overhead press, and the worst one when I leaned forward and lost my arch on a squat. Now over a month later It's better, I'm always being careful and cautious with lifting form in the gym and in everyday life, and I just successfully deadlifted a few days ago with no pain for the first time.

    What I learned over the year: pretty much everything. like I said my workouts before a few months ago were 1 set to failure of 12ish reps on machines, one for each body part. A couple times some friends got me to bench press but I never caught on. I never thought I might be doing it wrong until I found this forum, I just thought it was because of my genetics that I wasn't getting significantly bigger or stronger. I did have a nice 6 pack though :D I also learned to eat more! I'm so much more energetic and I just feel happier now that I eat more, and my friends know to give me anything they don't feel like eating and hide anything they don't want me to eat.
     
  8. Fighting Sprite

    Fighting Sprite Green Belt

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    High Point: My first powerlifting meet. I still have no clue what happened throughout the day. It's all a blur but I had a fucking blast.

    Low point: Whenever I missed a training session. This happened way too much.

    Lessons Learned: Get to the fucking gym every time you plan.
     
  9. DrBdan

    DrBdan Something clever

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    High Points: Finally getting the 1000 lb total. Getting back into Muay Thai training regularly. Gym finally getting a power rack to go along with the one squat rack.

    Low points: Starting 2012 with a 970 total and taking 12 months to add 30 lb to it. Not doing enough sparring in the second half of the year.

    Lessons learned: I don't know if I had any big training epiphanies this year. I guess I learned that if I nag my gym enough about equipment (power rack) they will eventually get one.

    EDIT: I learned that if I clean up my diet (fewer carbs, less junk, more fat and protein) I can slowly lose weight without starving myself and without having it affect my progress in the gym.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2012
  10. KnightTemplar

    KnightTemplar Halloween Belt Platinum Member

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    High points: Captaining Team Blitzkrieg and winning the Squatr Bowl. It was an honor to Captain a Team of such hard-working, motivated, strong individuals. I wish I could claim I hand-picked the Team, but it's nearer the truth to say I was damned lucky with my Draft.

    I added 22kg to my Front Squat, and 20kg to my Deadlift.

    Low point: a bad knee strain left me unable to Squat or DL heavy for a few weeks. I also didn't do any running for several months, as I was paranoid about injuring my knee again. Bench, SOHP and Pull-Ups all continue to suck. I only managed to put 5kg on my Squat in six months.

    Nowhere near enough Martial Arts training. Unforgivable since I have one of the best instructors in the world in my home town.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2012
  11. toonie

    toonie Tuesday

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    High points: setting some big PRs and learning to push myself harder.

    Low points: the small injuries (two popped ribs, recent knee problems).

    What I learned: I can work much, much harder and put in way more effort. I respond well to frequent squatting. I need to put more effort into benching frequently with a good mix of volume and intensity. My press progresses well with the above mentioned mix.
     
  12. Tosa

    Tosa Red Belt

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    High point: resolving my glute issues and being able to deadlift seriously again, and rebuilding my deadlift so that it's technically far better and slightly stronger than it's ever been.

    Low point: I didn't like it when I hurt my foot.

    What I learned: That I get something out of pushing the reps and AMRAP work, but it comes at the price of rep speed and quality.
     
  13. Oblivian

    Oblivian Aging Platinum Member

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    High Points: 300 lbs Push Press, 405 lbs x 5 Squat
    Low Points: Injured back, injured pec, slight elbow strain
    What I learned: I'm old
     
  14. casperthegst

    casperthegst Blue Belt

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    high points:watching some of the lifters here progress and grow as a lifter as well as myself
    low points:having to sort out my squat form technique and refine technique on other lifts sense i do not have a knowledgable live coach available
     
  15. miaou

    miaou barely keeping it together

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    Low Points

    Too many fucking injuries, including, in chronological order, an ACL strain, reaggravating my shin bone edemas resulting in another spree of multi-month pain, a pretty painful ankle injury from handball, multiple hamstring injuries from trying to get back to sprinting, aggravating my shitty lower back from shot putting, aggravating my shitty neck from sleeping (dafuq?!), acquiring a nagging pain on the elbow, and injuring/aggravating my shitty lower back from squatting (first time I ever had a lifting-related lower-back injury), plus shoulder pain here and there throughout the year.

    Getting a 2nd degree hamstring tear in August, after having suffered a 2nd degree tear on the hamstring of the opposite leg in June and having spent the time between doing rehab for that, was definitely the lowest point. Second lowest was getting bone edema pain (which lasted for months) just as I was getting ready to attempt my first 160 kg squat.


    High Points

    Highest point, by far, is being able to engage in normal lower-body training, for the first time in 3.5+ years. It's incredible how long it took; last time I was healthy was before my 26th birthday and now I'm almost 30. At this point, and having talked about this in my log on multiple occasions, it feels like I am patting myself on the back, but those were 4 incredibly hard (and life-altering) years for me and it's an enormous relief to be done with that shit.

    Another high point is getting back to "heavy" (for me) upper body lifting, even if I still don't bench press heavy, and even if my shoulders are still not healthy enough to deal with all types of activities.

    Everything else regarding my S&C training is really only a derivative of the above and relates to finally making some progress in my lifting. Highest point was getting a 2xBW squat, which had been my goal all these years.


    Lessons Learned

    A better understanding of "injury physiology" and injury rehab.

    I realized that my body isn't what it used to be and through all these years of mobility limitations, and even though I'm now stronger in terms of lifting number, I've developed tons of myoskeletal deficits that have to be addressed before my body is "fully functional" (in terms of athletic abilities) again.

    I had my first real experience with lifting heavy and working towards strength goals, and are now beginning to actually understand all the mental and organizational aspects of this type of training. One main thing I've realized is that, apart from the "stress the tissues and allow/force them to adapt" process that goes into strength training, getting stronger is quite literally an actual learning process.

    Finally, I got a better understanding of pain, and how the physical and mental aspects of pain can have a pretty dynamic interaction.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2012
  16. Poseylifts

    Poseylifts Orange Belt

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    Great thread idea.

    High Points:
    -Progressing and hitting a few decent PRs. 500 back squat, 385 front squat, 525 deadlift, 295 bench
    -Increasing my conditioning from pretty bad to not as bad
    -Briefly (Recently) beginning to work on other athletic areas not specifically static strength (Box jumps, sprints, medicine ball throws)

    Low Points:
    -Overuse injuries on both right shoulder and left shoulder/rotator cuff leading to almost 3 months of no consistent pressing
    -Gaining too much weight/bodyfat under the excuse that "I'm lifting 3-4 times a week so it's ok to eat like shit"
    -Wanting to go too far, too fast, not listening to my body, and not adopting the "Less is more" mentality
    -Letting my ego get in the way and get me hurt. Also, letting peer pressure from lifting partners persuade me into doing too much when I knew better

    Lessons Learned:
    -Strive for slower, consistent progress and learn when to back off. As soon as I tried to speed up my progress and make too many changes at once I ended up getting hurt, being under-recovered, and not making progress but instead making excuses
    -Do not neglect nutrition or conditioning! I should strive to be a better overall athlete, especially since I don't have plans of competing in anything specific right now, and not let myself get out of shape. What you eat is going to have an effect not only on your training but on your health in general so diet is a big part of the game
    -Recovery work, prehab/rehab work MUST be done. Stretching as needed, SMR, ice baths, etc. should be used to make sure I can keep training consistently and pain-free. I must also be careful how I use certain things (NSAIDs for example) because at one point I didn't realize I was hurting because I was covering it up with painkillers
    -I don't really want to be a powerlifter; I want to be an overall strength athlete. If I wanted to compete in anything right now it'd be strongman, so my training has to reflect that.
    -I'm not as advanced as I think I am. Basic, compound exercises should make up the most of my training. I'm not a bodybuilder, and the only isolation exercises I should be doing are to prevent imbalances and strengthen weak areas that support my main lifts (Rear delt exercises, rotator cuff exercises, core/low back exercises)
     
  17. Rex Poppa Pump

    Rex Poppa Pump BANG BANG NINERS GANG Platinum Member

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    High points: Using this forum to actually train the right way and all my lifts have been slowly going up. Being able to squat and DL nearly pain free.


    Low points: Messing up my hips in the middle of the year and not being able to squat or Dl for a few months.
     
  18. Modern Warrior1

    Modern Warrior1 Purple Belt

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    Low point: injured lower back at the end of november.

    High points:
    Ran 1 mile in under 6 minutes.

    Did 50 burpees in less than 2:10.

    Pressed 140lbs and squatted 225 for reps.

    Edit:

    Things I learned:
    1. Don't overtrain like i did this year, next year.

    2. Running is good for you.
     
  19. Pearse Shields

    Pearse Shields Amateur Fighter

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    Well, let's see.

    Pros:
    Stronger than I've ever been in the past, have some form of amateur record, learned a lot about myself and what works well for me, as well as what works well for clients.

    Cons:
    Deadlift progression is hard to keep when I have to cut weight for a fight, receding hairline is worse and worse, and I'm just not as sexy as I should be.
     
  20. kotriz

    kotriz White Belt

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    Low Points

    -Hurt my back while deadlifting because even though my lower back was taxed very much and hadnt recovered i said never mind, lets do this


    High Points
    -12.5kg PR with Smolov JR. at the bench press(the same time i hurt my back i focused on bench)

    -First 2xBW Squat(July of 2011 i had a surgery to remove hardware from my knee - had to walk with crutches afterwards for some time, legs atrophied a lot -> chicken legs)

    -240kg squat (529 lbs)! Huge milestone for me! The surgeon that operated on me and inserted the hardware had told me to avoid pretty much all the leg exercises... he told me to even avoid the stairs and use an elevator every single time. i didnt listen to him. im glad i did that

    -150kg bench (soon to change). i considered bench to be one of my weakest points but by trying hard and being consistent i managed to improve.

    -cut quite a bit for summer and looked jacked and tanned lol


    Lessons Learned
    if it hurts, take it easy, its not the end of the world. you gotta train smart, to be able to train the next day/month/year.
     

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