Eric Van De Vens Blog

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Weight Training Day 1.

Today was the first day back at the gym. Having switched gyms, at least using the first day as a barometer, appears to have been a good decision. The old gym was just that, old, dirty, and poorly run. Retro Fitness is pretty good, but could use a few improvements. Way, way back, when I used to work out at Golds Gym in Hollywood, that gym was set up in a manner that made working out easier.

Every body part had its own section. All the leg machines were grouped together as well as bicep, triceps, etc. This gym could learn a lesson from Golds in that regard as the machines are scattered everywhere. I found everything eventually and now, the workouts will be about 45 minutes in duration. Speaking of the workout…..

I started the day off with a one mile run, then off to the gym before I lost the “sweat”. I got to the gym at 5:20 am and started with chest exercises. First the bench press. I started light with just one 45 lb. plate on each side. Happily, this was too light! I added a 25 lb. plate to the 45 plates and then did three sets of 10 repetitions. I made it through that easy enough and probably could have done more, but it was the first day. The machine that I used moved with your body so there wasn’t the pain in my left elbow and shoulder that I get when just doing the bench press on a regular bench. The range of motion was also much more consistent with the machine.

The next exercise was the seated fly, again using a machine, the lat/fly machine. After properly adjusting the machine, I set the weight at 100 lbs. and did 3 sets of 10. The last set was getting a little hard to do at around the eighth rep, but I did finish. I wanted to do the decline bench press but the gym only has one decline bench and no decline press machine! I may have to mention that to the owners! 🙂

Since there was no decline bench available, I used the incline machine, which of course, was right next to the regular bench press machine which could have saved me energy switching weights! I put one 45 lb. plate on each side and did 3 sets of 10. Probably could have added weight, but, I still had “arms” to do and I didn’t want to peak too soon!

Now it was time to work the biceps. I prefer the “preacher curls” as they focus all the weight on your biceps and there is no way to use your other muscles to “help”. I put one 25 lb. weight on each side of the curling bar, and did 3 sets of 10 reps. Made it through that fairly easily. Now it was time for the alternating seated curls. I used 15 lb. dumbbells and did 3 sets of 10. Then, it was time for the “hammer” curls. Again, 3 sets of 10 with a 15 lb. dumbbell. Finally, cable curls using 20 lbs. Three sets of 10 and I was done with biceps!

On to triceps. At Golds, they had the best tricep machine ever. You sat in the machine and then, pulled the weight with a cable up in back of you. It was very effective. Perhaps I can convince the owners here to get one. They do have a nifty push-down tricep machine though. I got in that machine and set the weight at 70 lbs. Three sets of 10 and on the third set, my arms were getting numb. This has never happened. I’ll have to see if this happens again Friday and if so, I may have to use a different machine.

I moved to the standing tricep pull-down machine. This machine is one of my favorites and the machine at this gym is the best one yet. The manufacturer, Cybex, thoughtfully placed a pad right where your butt goes. This forces you to keep your shoulders pressed against the top of the machine, which prevents injury as well as providing a very effective workout. Again, three sets of ten with 70 lbs. as the weight. Now, my triceps were starting to feel “pumped”! (Insert Hans & Franz “pump you up”)

To finish, I use the rope with the knobs at the end of it and do two sets of ten over my head and then two sets of ten at my sides using 20 lbs. as the weight. This is a finishing/shaping exercise so it is not necessary to use as much weight as possible.

Now it was time to finish with some abdominal work. Everyone but me hates ab work! I have always loved doing abs! I got in the standing frame where you support yourself with your elbows. You stand in the machine and then, step off, bringing your knees up and then letting them hang. Twenty of those would be good for the first day. I then altered the method by lifting my legs straight out. This was a mistake!

There was a very sharp pain coming from my upper left quadricep! I am beginning to get a little annoyed with all of these pains that are coming from my legs. The calf issues, quad issues, it is really starting to get irritating! I immediately got off of the machine and began to massage my leg and stretch. Things loosened up so I decided to do some sit ups using the bench where you wrap your legs under the post and then are inclined on a bench. Thirty of those without incident and, my leg loosened up! 🙂 I finished at 6:20 am and got home before 6:30 am which is when the school zone starts..had there been one today!

All in all, a very successful first day.

I was so excited that when I got home, I ran another mile! See the running blog for details.

Tomorrow will be “Legs” day. I am preparing for the worst and hoping for the best. We will see what happens and also how sore I am tomorrow from todays workout!

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February 21, 2011 - Posted by | Home, Weight Training | , , , , , , , , , ,

1 Comment »

  1. […] I then went to the gym for my first workout in three years. You can find that here: First workout. […]

    Pingback by Running Day 17 2 miles..sort of! « Eric Van De Vens Blog | February 21, 2011 | Reply


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