Today, I hit a number which I thought was pretty much impossible for me for a few reasons…the first being that 135lbs is the olympic sized bar, which weighs 45lbs, loaded with two 45lb plates, usually the biggest plates that are in the weightlifting area. When I first went to the weight room back in June or July, I saw some guys lifting with these plates and was sure I could never do that, because of the second reason which is that I have had a torn meniscus which I have never repaired. The third reason I assumed that would prevent me from lifting that much is frankly age. I never anticipated getting here, to where I am age wise, and did not think that my body would be capable.
So now, what actually happened was that after five sets, where I started at 90lbs, which is double what I first started with months ago, then 100, 115, 125 and was then able to do 3 reps of 135lbs, I felt strong enough that I could potentially put on those large plates and shoot for 135lbs, which I did, for three repetitions, I felt I could have done more, but I did not want to push it, just making it there was amazing enough to me.
What can we learn from this experience?
First, for all of us people in our ‘prime’ or even past, lets get off of age as an excuse as to why we cannot get physically stronger. It clearly is a fallacy. And for those who are younger, for sure you have no excuse!
Second, this validates the idea of going gradual, not that it needs much validation, since it makes sense, but the point is that do not walk into the gym expecting to lift heavy weights your first day, and if you do not, then just get frustrated and leave. No. Start with a comfortable weight, and build from where you are now. Wherever you are right now, go from there, but keep building, gradually, and eventually, you will get to a higher plateau, and you can keep growing. This idea is applicable to every area of your life, our lives.
As I write this, I am doing sets of pushups, which I might write about again today, because I am on a mission to blow past a former pushup high for the day.
Third, keep your feet shoulder width, pointing more straight ahead than out to the side (unless that it the only way it feels comfortable) and make sure your hips go lower than the knees. So, of course, check with your doctor if necessary, but so far, so good, and I believe that my legs and even knees are stronger than they have ever been, certainly than for the last ten years.
Zehhu, that’s it.