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Destroying strength PRs at just 178 pounds, and I can’t explain how.

45 pound plate

45 pound plate

The final workout of last week (Friday’s back/biceps/abs workout) was a good one, but I was feeling weak for the very first time this year. As I stated in Saturday’s blog, I decided that I wasn’t going to read too much into a single day where I was feeling sub-optimal.

On Saturday morning I was still feeling a less than 100%, but I still managed to break my personal record on the timed opening 3 mile mountain biking leg at Wekiwa. The rest of that ride was pretty spectacular, too.

So yesterday I mentioned that Lisa came home from Las Vegas with a bad flu (she’s feeling much better this morning, by the way!), and it was looking like I picked up whatever was ailing Lisa (slightly sore throat and a little congestion, but nothing serious–yet). The question was, would the flu take hold of me, or would I be able to shake it off?

Which brings us to yesterday’s leg workout.

I was feeling good at workout time, and was not experiencing any of the weakness that I felt at Friday’s workout. After seven straight weeks of adding weight to every exercise, I knew my leg workout was going to be a huge challenge. The weights I used for last week’s leg workout (every exercise) are the heaviest weights I’ve used since late 2009/early 2010.

Yesterday I added weight to every exercise for the eighth week in a row, and that includes +10 to my squats and +10 to my lunges…

…. and I hit my target reps on every exercise. Wow.

After almost a decade of tracking my diet, strength, health and overall fitness, surprises have become exceptionally rare. Well, color me baffled. I honestly don’t understand how this is happening. I’ve been in a caloric deficit for almost two months, I’ve been borderline overtraining with no days off, my body weight this morning is just 178.4 pounds, my last body fat reading (Sunday) is 6.9% and I’m lifting significantly more weight than I was lifting at 200+ pounds!

Obviously I’m feeling very good about this, but there’s one potential problem in the back of my mind: The weights I squatted and lunged with yesterday are both well past the weights that have caused my chronic lower back pain to flair up in the past. I didn’t feel any back pain while I was training yesterday, but I did feel some pain in the hours that followed. This morning my back, thankfully, feels perfectly fine. My problematic lower back is my one and only concern–especially because I’ll be adding +10 pounds to both of those lifts again next week. 🙂

Just typing that last sentence knowing what I lifted yesterday seems surreal.

Bring it on!