Day 162: Hang cleans are getting tough

Day 162

It was a pretty busy day for me today.  Although our office is officially closed, I came in today this morning to interview an applicant for one of the positions in my department.  I was glad that I was able to avoid the traffic on the main roads by hitching a ride with a friend so we passed through the side roads.  The applicant wasn’t bad, so it was time well spent.

I got home just in time for lunch, then waited for my Mom to come home so we can go to the mall together; me to do my training in the gym, she to do our Christmas food shopping.  We planned to meet afterwards so that I could help her with the grocery bags.  We don’t have a car, so we rely on public transport to get the groceries from the shop to the front door.  Not easy when you have over 14 bags worth of food and drink!  Of course, this was a real-life application of my strength training, hehe.

My training went quite well today.  I did my foam rolling before leaving the house, then mobility work once I arrived at the gym.  I wasn’t too happy with my squats the last time (I got a bit too much help on my last set from my spotter), so I stuck to the same weight of 107.5kg today for 5X5.  This time, I still had a spotter standing by (the helpful new trainer), but now he only helped stabilize me when I was trying to push through my sticking point.  That makes me confident enough to go for 110kg on my next workout.  I stuck with 3 minutes rest between sets, which I feel I can reduce a little bit next time.  After every set I felt woozy so I know I’m working pretty hard!  I was drinking lots of water throughout so I don’t think it was my hydration.

With my 5X5 barbell bench press, I upped the weight to 75 kg.  It was a bit difficult on my fifth set, but I got through it okay.  I was glad to have a spotter for that set to help me unrack and re-rack the bar.  Having a spotter on heavy (for me) bench presses allows me to keep my shoulders pulled down and back, which, as I read from many sources, helps with keeping healthy shoulders and allowing one to push more weight.

As I finished my bench presses, I realized that I had to hurry as I was supposed to meet my mom outside the supermarket in about 30 minutes.  I still had my 5X5 hang cleans (at 60kg) and 3X5 pushups (at 30kg).   The hang cleans were becoming more and more difficult, as it’s hard to generate the power needed to “clean” the bar after pounding my legs with heavy squats.  The first 2 to 3 reps are okay, but the 4th and 5th reps were very difficult.  I missed my last (5th) rep on my 3rd hang clean set, so I’ going to repeat this weight next time.  I also need to review my books (and online) to check if there’s something that I can do better with regard to my form. No such problem for my pushups; the 30kg weight was quite manageable for me.

I completed my workout by doing exercises from Flatten Your Abs Level 5, then I took my protein shake, changed clothes and rushed off to meet my mother at the supermarket.  I still had to have a meal, so I got some steamed buns and dumplings.  Not ideal, not at planned time either (my workouts are getting long), but still better than missing a meal.   I then helped her cart the groceries and put them on and off the tricycle which is used as the public transport within our subdivision.

Eat right, train hard, and expect success!

P.S. I woke up today and jumped on the scales to check if my weigh-on yesterday was a fluke.  The scale today said 67.6kg, back to the same weight as two weeks ago.  Hmmm, so it doesn’t seem to be as bad as I thought; could be a case of slight dehydration.  I may need drink even more water than the two glasses with every meal.

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Day 162 - Front Day 162 - Back Day 162 - Side
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6 thoughts on “Day 162: Hang cleans are getting tough

  1. Good job with the squats ron!
    Also did the 5×5 benching with 75 kg today.
    Its really tough though I also made it 🙂

    Danny

  2. 5 x 5 is really working great for you Ron. It’s confidence boosting to have a spotter and I’m sure your lifts will continue to increase.

    • I really feel that it is, Mike. It’s great to know my strength has been increasing well beyond my previous limits. It’s tough, and I’ve been aching all week, but I know it’s working!

  3. I agree with Mike, this program is doing wonders for you. Your physique is becoming extremely strong looking, and you’re maintaining a good balanced look, too (ie, not having huge arms but a weak-looking back etc). Great work mate! 🙂

    • Thanks for your feedback, Mark! A good balanced physique is one of my objectives on this mission, so I guess I’m on the right track. 🙂

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