15 July 2014

I Pick Things Up and Put Them Down

After over a year of just messing around with weights in the gym with no real focus, I have started a lifting program!

I had been wanting to do one for a while, after B said I had "eff-around-itis" when it comes to the weight room (although he used a much less-PC term). So I finally kicked my butt into gear. I wanted one designed for women, so I got the book New Rules of Lifting for Women by Lou Schuler, and read it cover-to-cover before doing anything.
Did I get this from the public library? Mayyyybeeee
I started day 1 and screwed myself over (started too heavy, crazy DOMS), so I decided to wait until after our vacation was over and start again. I did Day 1 last Wednesday, and I have been sticking with it.

So far, I'm really liking this program. It's a 6-month program with different stages and a Workout A and Workout B in each stage. I like variety! There's also a good variety in the workouts themselves--barbells, cable stations, dumbbells, and even the Swiss ball. You have to keep a workout log each time you go to the gym, and now I have them in a handy-dandy binder for reference.

Here was my starting point from each of the first 2 workouts:
Squat: 24-lb body bar
Deadlift: 40 lbs

Seated row: #5 (I think it's 25 lbs?)
Lat pulldown: #5 (25 again?)

Step-up: 10lb dumbbell (20 lbs total)
Shoulder press: 10lb dumbbell (20lbs total)
Lunge: 10lb dumbbell (20lbs total)

Yes, the weights are LOW (for me, I have actually done much higher just doing a few reps), but that's how it is designed. The first few workouts are high reps at lower weights, then you gradually move the opposite direction for higher weights and lower reps.

I'm excited about this. After 3 workouts, I already feel stronger and more confident. Sometimes just having a clear sense of direction can do that for me. Since you're wondering, yes, I am still running! I have a 5K this weekend, actually. Stage 2 of this weight program starts including cardio interval training, and I'm definitely hoping that will help my 5K times.

Any other lifters out there? I'd love to hear if you ever did a set program like this!


  1. I have been lifting for two months now in preparation for the NYC Marathon, I got my hubby to write me out three different workouts to do through the week between runs. I wish I had done this more before! I do not enjoy weights one bit, opting for yoga or a run but I am stronger, and faster than ever before. I can almost do an unassisted pull up.. Something I never thought possible :) Necessary evils I suppose, especially if you want to prevent injuries and protect your joints down the road

    1. There's actually an optional stage of this lifting program (which I fully intend to do) in which the whole goal is to get you to one unassisted pull up. I'm excited about that!

  2. I did lifting for a while (and a modified version of crossfit about 2 years ago). I mainly lifted because I am a golfer and strength training is important. Now that I'm running a lot, I don't lift as much, but I really do enjoy lifting.
    My goal is to be able to do a pull up. I'm at about 50lbs of assistance on the machine at my gym. Hopefully one day!

  3. Back in the day when I would go to the gym 3-6 days per week (depending on which gym phase of my life we're talking about) I lifted weights (not including high school cross country and track). I didn't have a "program", more like arms and torso one day, legs and glutes the next, switching off. I consider my children my weight program now, and I have to say my arms don't look too bad, lol. (Torso not so much lol). That's awesome that you're doing a program though - it will definitely help improve your running time and will help prevent injuries. I will say that my muscles were at the best and strongest when I worked at a horse stable when I was a teenager. It was a lot of really hard work and my body reflected it. :)