9minutesSo I have not used a watch at the gym for quite awhile.  I didn’t think it was a conscious decision, instead I just sort of drifted into doing some other body weight formats, doing plenty of sets/reps but not watching a clock while doing so.  Well today the watch accompanied me to the gym.  Now I suspect I know why it hasn’t been there in a long time, it is cruel, painful and heartless.

Adding a time element to your sets and rest periods transforms and defines them.  All of a sudden that rest period you were taking that seemed pretty short actually turns out to be almost 2 minutes.

So anyway I decided to use the watch to time a 5MD (five minute drill).  The drill I had in mind was the 50/100, the goal being to complete 50 pull ups and 100 push ups in 5 minutes.  I knew I hadn’t a snowball’s chance in hell of doing it that fast but I was going to go as fast as I could.

I had thought I would do pretty well.  In my gym workouts the last few months I have been trying to mix in multiple sets of the basic movements (push ups, dips, or pull ups) so I wind up with triple digit reps across multiple sets.  I thought that the high volume training would help me here. It didn’t.

Nothing prepares you for lots of reps in short periods of time except doing lots of reps in short periods of time.  My opening sets were 20 pull ups and 25 push ups.  Before starting I thought I might be able to drop down to sets of 10 pull ups and maintain 25 rep push up sets.  Well that idea was quickly adjusted.

The rest of the way I did 5 reps of pull ups and 15 push ups so my sets for pull ups went 20-5-5-5-5-5-5 and push ups 25-15-15-15-15-15.   By the time I finished my last pull up I was sucking major wind.  Looking at my watch, I was really disappointed in my time of 9:23.

Like it or not, I am going to need to bring the watch along more frequently and start firing up the Ray’s Ways as well if I want to get my rep endurance back up to respectable levels.

In other fitness news, this week I pulled two 315 pound dead lift reps on Wednesday.  Not only did that break my prior one rep best of 310 pounds, I did it using a more difficult overhand grip instead of the mixed grip for the prior PR.  Despite my original objection to resuming dead lifts in my exercise menu I now actually sort of look forward to them.  Yes lifting heavy weight off the floor can be uncomfortable and painful at my age but it also makes you feel strong and powerful.

I’m hoping to keep inching up my numbers.  I need to walk the fine line between effort and injury.