Addicted to weights?

I’ve not posted a training update for a while because, well, I’ve been busy training. Since finishing my beginners Olympic Lifting course at the end of January I’ve graduated to the intermediate group and have been going along to weekly sessions at Crossfit Evolving on a Saturday lunchtime.

I know you've seen this before, but I love it so here it is again!
I know you’ve seen this before, but I love it so here it is again!

The intermediate sessions run like a weight lifting club. You pay for a certain number of sessions and then go along whenever you can. Each session is a different mix of drills and lifts, some focussed on specific aspects of technique, some focussed on building strength and then some full lifts. The last session I went along to was a ‘PB’ day – an opportunity to work on heavy singles of both the snatch and the clean and jerk with the purpose of seeing how heavy we could go.

I matched my snatch PB of 30kg and added 5kg to my clean and jerk PB which now stands at 37.5kg. Small numbers but I’m still in the very early days of my lifting career and there’s so much to learn in terms of technique. I’m loving it though, which is the main thing.

This was taken ages ago, but it's the only photo I've got of me at the bench.
This was taken ages ago, but it’s the only photo I’ve got of me at the bench.

I’m also still having my weekly PT sessions with Jess. Recently we’ve been working on increasing my bench press strength. That’s involved some heavy benching sessions with a lot of assistance work (think tricep dips, tricep presses, triceps cable work – loads of triceps stuff!). I’ve increased my bench PB up to 60kg which I’m delighted with – the numbers have gone up quite quickly with the assistance work and I’m intrigued to see how much higher I can take them.

And the rest of my training is online with Julia Buckley in her online fitness club Extreme Inferno. At the moment I’m working my way through her Challenge XXX programme. A 30 day challenge that features a mixture of High Intensity Interval Training and strength training. Each training day of the programme there is a different video to follow – the whole programme is designed so that it can be done at home, although you could easily do it in a gym if that’s what you wanted to do. There’s an amazing community of people on the site now which I love being part of – supporting each other in our fitness journeys which are mainly focussed on fat loss.

11046547_10152575977936012_8873313979053143207_nI’m doing some of the sessions at my gym Limehouse Marina Elite. It’s only been open since November so it’s still relatively quiet and I’m loving having the equipment almost to myself on some occasions. Last Sunday I set a new squat PB of 85kg. That’s the equivalent of my body weight (yeah, I’m heavy) and I’ve been wanting to do that for some time. It’s fantastic that I’ve got the facilities to do this kind of thing literally on my doorstep.

So what about the running I hear you ask? While my love affair with weights has continued I’ve barely done any running at all in 2015. I took part in the Winter Run at the start of February and my lungs really objected to being out in the cold – I was wheezing for days afterwards. I decided at that point to leave the running until the weather warmed up a bit.

With spring now definitely in the air it feels like time to lace up my trainers again so I’ve signed up for the Nike Women’s 10K in June and am going to be joining a running group at the gym. It’s been such a long time since I’ve run regularly that I’m going to classify myself as beginner and go right back to basics. I’d love to run that race non stop, something that I’ve rarely managed in the past. To do that I’m going to have to leave my ‘I’ve run two marathons’ jacket at the door and start from scratch.

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These days I’m far more likely to describe myself as a lifter who likes to run rather than a runner than does strength training. And while I’ve definitely developed a slight addiction to lifting heavy it feels like the right time to take some of my training outside and into the fresh air again. I’m looking forward to it.

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