Work Outs: July 25 – 31, 2021 (Twelve Week Deadlift Program, The Lost Librarian’s Grave anthology progress, and Barbell Jack)

I’ve been spending a lot of time editing The Lost Librarian’s Grave, and I still have a fair ways to go. I’m about a third done, and my plan is to reach the halfway point for editing by the end of this week. Once editing is complete, the next stage of the process will begin: turning TLLG into an e-book.

I also plan on working some more on the front cover. I’m going to add a glowing effect around the gargoyle and change the tag line, though I’m not sure to what yet. Whatever I do, I’m planning on keeping the word “sorcery” and probably “doom” as well. Also, instead of twenty stories I ended up finalizing things with a princely thirty-three stories and four poems, so it’ll be a good-sized tome.*

As for the workouts, I decided to start doing barbell deadlifts again, now that we have a nice set up for it. Since it has been quite some time since I last did them, I’ve decided to go back to a 12 week program I had very good success with a couple of years ago.

The general idea is to set an end goal and then start out with a low weight and perform eight sets the first week. Then each week you increase the weight by lifting an increasing percentage of the end goal while gradually decreasing the number of sets and repetitions. Then you test your one rep goal for week twelve. Since, as I said, I haven’t deadlifted with a barbell in quite some time, I decided upon a goal that would be easy for me: 225 lbs. or a little over 102 kg.

Sun, July 25th

Afternoon Walk: 8.97 miles.

Mon, July 26th

  • Morning Walk: 3.48 miles
  • (Morning Workout) Warmed up with dynamic stretching, indian clubs and light calisthenics
  • BB Deadlifts (Week 1 of 12): 123.75 lbs. x 8 sets x 6 reps; used double overhand grip
  • (Combo Set): DB Bicep Curls: 20 lbs. x 4 sets x 8 reps, DB Reverse Wrist Curls: 10 lbs. x 4 sets x 12 reps, Face Pulls: 15 lbs. x 4 sets x 12 reps, One-Handed Deadlifts (Rolling Thunder Handle, ea. hand): 61.88 lbs. x 4 sets x 5 reps; finished workout with a timed hold: 20 seconds with left hand and 30 seconds with right hand. (Handle, carabiner and pin weighs 6.88 lbs.)

Tues, July 27th

Morning Recumbent Bike: 30 Minutes, Hill Program, Level 11. RPM’s: 70 – 80.

Wed, July 28th

  • Morning Walk: 3.26 miles.
  • Afternoon Recumbent Bike: 30 Minutes, Hill Program, Level 11. RPM’s: 70 – 80.

Quite some time before I purchased the barbell, I found a new-looking barbell jack at the thrift store. I was surprised that they were almost giving it away for free, and when I went up to the checkout I learned this was because no one in the store knew what the heck it was.** I told the clerk it was a “barbell jack,” and then she and I (and the guy standing behind me in line) talked about barbell jacks for about five minutes until someone else stepped into line. Anyway, they are far from essential, but they are a nice thing to have laying around.***

The purpose of the jack is to make it easier to load and unload multiple plates of the same size onto the bar, especially multiple 45 lb. plates. The way you use the jack is to position it near one end of the bar as pictured in the above left picture. Then you push down on the top lever with your hand or foot (I find using my hand safer) so that the bar is as pictured on the above right. Then you can load or unload plates as needed.

Thur, July 29th

  • Morning Walk: 3.28 miles.
  • Afternoon Workout
  • Captains of Crush Gripper (Trainer, 100 lbs.):
    • (Set 1): Left = 4 mm x 4 + 1 reps, Right = Closed x 2 + 3 reps
    • (Set 2): Left = 4 mm x 3 + 2 reps, Right = 4mm x 5 reps
    • (Set 3): Left = 4 mm x 3 + 2 reps, Right = 2mm x 4 + 1 reps
    • (Set 4): Left = 4 mm x 1 + 4 reps, Right = 4mm x 4 + 1 reps
    • (Set 5): Hold Guide (60 lbs.) closed with piece of paper for time: Left = 31 sec, Right = 35 sec
  • (Afternoon Workout) Arnold Press: 30 lbs. x 4 sets x 8 reps
  • Lateral Raises: 12 lbs. x 4 sets x 8 reps (Supersetted these with my bench press warm-up sets.)
  • BB Bench Press: 65 lbs. x 12 reps, 75 lbs. x 12 reps, 85 lbs. x 8 reps, 95 lbs. x 8 reps
  • (Superset): BB Standing Skull Crushers (ez curl bar): 51 lbs. x 4 sets x 8 reps +
    • Set #1: Dead Bugs (2-ct): 20 reps
    • Set #2: Standing Side Crunches (2-ct): 12 reps
    • Set #3: Heavy Spring Bar: Hands Pronated x 4 reps + Hands Supinated x 4 reps
    • Set #4: Face Pulls: 17.5 lbs. x 12 reps

The red plate on the ends, in the picture above, come from a set where you can add 2.5 lbs. on each side in quarter-pound increments. These are handy when doing routines like the 12 week deadlift program where one is doing different percentages each week of the eventual maximum attempt, such as 123.75 lbs. for week one. I could have just rounded it up to 125, but I tend to like precision in such matters so the little, vinyl weights are something I like having around.

Fri, July 30th

Morning Walk: 3.30 miles.

Sat, July 31st

Morning Walk: 7.35 miles.

  • (Afternoon Workout) Cable Lat Pull Downs (Hog Bar): 70 lbs. x 4 sets x 8 reps
  • Standing Cable Rows (Hog Bar): 60 lbs. x 4 sets x 12 reps
  • (Superset) DB Bicep Curls: 20 lbs. x 4 sets x 8 reps +
    • Set #1: Dead Bugs (2-ct): 12 reps
    • Set #2: Standing Side Crunches (2-ct): 12 reps
    • Set #3: Full Squats: 12 rep
    • Set #4: Face Pulls: 15 lbs. x 12 reps

I am the same weight as last week. My total loss thus far is 28.4 lbs. I’m currently on a maintenance food plan until either the book is finished or I start feeling some enthusiasm to drop some more weight again.


* Including a 10,000 word bit of horror entitled “Mother Winter” about the misadventures of an unfortunate private soldier named Herrick, who is getting a taste of cold weather (and something far more sinister) on the eastern front during World War Two, which I’m editing today.

** I found it in the automotive section. Their best guess was that it was some kind of weird, specialized tire chalk block.

*** They also make “full” barbell jacks so you can lift both sides of the barbell at once. A gym I used to go from 2014 – 2017 had one of these and I became quite addicted to using it.

13 thoughts on “Work Outs: July 25 – 31, 2021 (Twelve Week Deadlift Program, The Lost Librarian’s Grave anthology progress, and Barbell Jack)

  1. Pingback: Work Outs: August 1 – 7, 2021 (“The Kraken” and other liquid libations.) | Ann's Immaterium

    • Thanks, Alex. The deadlifts are fun and seem to be pretty functional as well. That is neat you do them as well; I agree they are primal, which probably has to do with their functionality, and I often find myself having to tote and carry various things in life where it makes me think of deadlifts and farmer’s walking.

      Do you favor a particular type of deadlift, such as conventional or sumo? I’ve been using just my regular bar but I’m thinking of getting a trap bar for my husband as a present. He moves a lot of weight still but has become somewhat fragile at times as he’s gotten older so I’m thinking the trap bar might be a better solution for his back. (He doesn’t like doing deadlifts with dumbbells.) Have you had much experience doing deadlifts with a trap/hex bar?

      Liked by 2 people

      • I have tried sumo a few times but I find it puts a lot of side pressure through my knees which I find uncomfortable… I may be doing it wrong, but yeah, not my preferred method.
        I don’t bother with the trap bar at the moment – I’ve managed to not mess my back up so I’m still able to go traditional (at least for the time being!). I think the trap bar would be awesome if my back becomes an issue, or if my back is the bit that stops me going heavier… In fact, you’ve made me think now – I’m annoyingly stuck 10kg short of a double-bodyweight one rep max, so I might give the trap bar a try next week & see if I can hit it 🤔

        Liked by 1 person

        • Yeah, everyone’s body is different. I like both the conventional and sumo, though I have to warm up a lot more for the sumo but I can pull more weight with the sumo since my legs and hips are my relative strong points, which isn’t too surprising, I guess. Back when I cared about lifting as heavy as possible, I almost always did sumo but these days I like to train both.

          One thing I noticed is after I stopped competing with lifting, I got rid of the suits, shirt, belt, wraps, chalk, etc. and my core got much stronger doing deadlifts, squats, and overheading pressing. Even without doing any direct ab work. I also had fewer sports injuries involving my back.

          I’ll be curious to read how it goes for you with the trap bar. I bet you’ll be able to hit your max with it.

          Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, John. I’m plugging away at both and also hope for progress. I’m pleased with the progress with the editing since I decided to speed things along a little. I’m on target to surpass my goal of having the book 50% edited by the end of the week. I’m itching to move on to the process of turning the manuscript into an ebook and paperback.

      Hope you are doing well with your various gaming and modeling adventures.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Pete. I wished I had known about barbell jacks many years ago, so when I saw that one for a song I had to grab it, even though at the time I didn’t own a barbell.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you very much, Dave. I think I need to step up the editing process a bit; I’ve been fairly thorough but I’ve been taking too long. October will be here before we know it!

      Liked by 2 people

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