Wednesday, July 27, 2011

THT 4.0 Volume update

So, a bit of an update that will explain my silence.

 I was on vacation last week and sprained my ankle. This gave way to a still-voluntary, somewhat cautionary and entirely unwanted week off from the gym. I was back on Monday for chest and managed to bench 250lbs for 5 reps. That was WICKED!

So, I'll attempt to recover my THT 4.0 Volume 1 week (this week) by doing shoulders tonight, along with back and biceps. I'm skipping legs as my ankle is far from 100%, although I CAN walk on it - so I might try a set of leg extensions and a set of leg curls. Triceps will be Thursday. I'll then aim to be back on my regular rotation for this cycle starting Sunday with chest again.

Time will tell. I don't have a full range of motion without extra resistance or pain yet, but walking on level ground brings no discomfort. I can walk thru the gym carrying 45lb plates in each hand without grief, so that's something. I just don't want to be right off the "leg training" wagon for too long!

Have a great day all, train hard but smart!


Thursday, July 14, 2011

THT 4.0 V1 Chest and abs day done! Back and biceps too!

Hooookay. This was a lesson in "how do I lift this much weight?" The answer to said question is: carefully and focus on downsizing my progressive sets. This way by far the most trashed I've ever been after a chest workout. The same goes for my abs.

The new THT 4.0 Volume #1 cycle allows you to really isolate your chest well with cabled pec deck workouts, while also hitting it with the extra beefy goodness of bench presses. The end result is that you feel like a million bucks after the workout, but flexing for progress shots takes serious concentration. OK, you feel like a million exhausted bucks.

EDIT - everything after this point is written today, July 12th. I had meant to finish this post yesterday but I ran out of time. Figures. At least I can incorporate things in from last night's wokrout as well!

On that note, my chest is seriously feeling it this morning! 2 days later, I'm reminded of how people can make such drastic changes for themselves using Mark's amazing programs. I can flex my pecs, but it feels like my chest is flexing every muscle fiber independently.

Last night was back / biceps night. I'll attack this one right out of the gate by mentioning that I missed my decline lat pull-overs last night and subbed in an extra set of dumbell rows to make up for it. I just couldn't get cable station time. Biceps went markedly better than that, but I've also decided that as of next week, my final barbell curls set will be followed by at least a single set of single-handed cable curls. Mentially, I need that isolation exercise to help myself grow. Other than that it was an amazing THT 4.0 Volume workout.

Triceps are tonight. I'm really enthused about the fact that triceps get their own day. Something about that just makes a lot of sense to me.

Have a great day everyone. Train hard and lift smart!


PS - I've often been told that I don't "flex my abs". This is actually a mental trap of mine wherein my abs have always been hard to train up, and to notice their increase, because of my tall frame. So, I decided to give a good pec / abs flex a shot. If I'm pretty impressed, that says a lot because I'm still my own toughest critic. You can judge for yourself!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

THT 4.0 V1 Legs day done!

I knew that this was going to be a challenge. Leg day. Subbing in hack squats for Smith machine squats. Tackling a new cycle. BRING IT.

So, I went and kicked some ass. And then I walked slowly, very slowly, out to the car to remember why driving stick sucks after leg day!

THT 4.0 is proving to be the toughest MuscleHack workout I've had in quite some time. It might be the extra half-weight set to failure. It might be because I'm coming off of a HIT cycle series and I'm not used to the single-day intensity. Any way you slice it, THT 4.0 Volume rocks!

Tonight is chest and abs night. I'm likely going to be as weak as a kitten after this one, but it's going to be worth it for the benefits I'll get for doing that kind of work!

Keep lifting folks, you'll be kicking ass and taking names long after everyone else is wheezing and stumbling their way around!


Monday, July 11, 2011

THT 4.0 V1 Shoulders done!

In the interest of not eating up space everywhere, THT 4.0 Volume Cycle #1 (isn't that a mouthful!) will be referred to in new post headlines as "THT 4.0 V1" followed by whatever day it is - Shoulders, Back / Biceps, etc.

With that said, yesterday's first THT 4.0 Volume workout reminded me why I try to support Mark McManus so much. I started a tad bit low for my opening sets of overhead press and lat raises, but I quickly found my groove after that. Plus... 4 sets of trap shrugs? That's WAY more intense than I was doing with THT 3.1 HIT because that's how a volume cycle works. You hit one / two body parts harder than you'd hit them for a HIT cycle. I couldn't easily raise my hands above my head after my workout yesterday because my workout hit my shoulders that hard.

THIS is why I MuscleHack. THIS is why I shamelessly promote Mark's work to everyone, 24/7 - but nicely, I hope. I believe in this "system" because it WORKS. You can do over a year's worth of training now, indeed several years now, without repeating the same cycles. How awesome is that? And it's all still FREE.

It's really simple, folks. Do you want to be in better shape? Do you want to do the things you love to do even more frequently, all the while feeling better about yourself because doing what you love is less tiring and more enjoyable? Your choice is quite clear, then. Join the MuscleHack FB page, visit and download the latest THT 4.0 workouts. You can also join the MuscleHack forums and get tips and advice on lower-carb / low-carb eating that will assist you in your transformation into someone who can literally do more in weeks than they likely believe is possible.

You CAN do it, but you need to BELIEVE that you can do it in order to succeed. Without positivity, you can't succeed.

Of course, I'll happily answer your questions and comments here, or you can message me via Facebook.

Train hard and even use the new THT 4.0 cycles as a springboard to launch yourself forward into a healthier, more energized life.

Have a great Monday everyone!


PS - A quick pic. Note the trashed traps and delts! Traps especially are really starting to come up!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

THT 3.1 HIT cycle - COMPLETE

AND.... that's a wrap!

Another successful THT 3.1 cycle is complete, and it wasn't 100% true-to-form in my usual, inimitable fashion. I went over a month doing just one Mass component day per week. Summer and a new getaway place that we seem to visit every weekend kept me from doing more than periodic Consolidation-day workouts.Of course, we all make those choices consciously so I really have no one to blame in the end but myself.

With that said, I'm still enormously pleased with my results after this cycle. I have to honestly say that I can see the results, especially in my legs, shoulders and chest. Hell, I can see definite changes everywhere.

A snapshot of my progress: Benched 200 x 9 to start the cycle - ended at 240 x 6 (+1). Trap shrugged 240lbs to start, ended at 290 x 8 last night. Lat rows were all over, but progressed nicely (went between 3 separate exercises for the course of the workout cycle).Squatting was hack squats for 2 weeks, then went from 220 to 260 for Smith machine squats (to 90 degree knee bends). Calf raises, seated (one of my hardest parts to train), went from 180lbs to 200lbs. Triceps were a monster gain, up to 210lbs. Biceps were insane, cable curling 80lbs x 11 per side for form last night. I can do more weight for curls, but I get sloppy. This gives a nice, full-range curl.

Just remember, though: the numbers do NOT matter. The weight does NOT matter. I am not any "stronger" or "weaker" than the next guy, because the numbers don't matter - only your personal progress matters! What works for me weight-wise has nothing to do with what works for you. Lifting less than me doesn't make your progress any less significant - remember that!

On Sunday, I'm starting one of the two THT 4.0 Volume cycles - going from Sunday to Thursday so I can get maximum trailer/fishing time in with my babe.

Which one do you think I should do? I'm honestly split 50/50 either way right now. Leave your comments here or at the MuscleHack FB fan page!

Train had and lift safely!


Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Week #10 THT 3.1 HIT Day #1 done!

Yesterday was a welcome change in pace. In other words, we were late to the gym and had to bust our asses to finish the day before close at 9PM! Apparently they're on "summer hours" now until September, which means no 10PM close at all. Bummer.

I just need to go back tonight and hit my delts and lats. We only had 45 minutes in the gym and I just didn't have quite enough time.

With that said, my THT 3.1 HIT Mass workout went perfectly! I cut back on my overhead press, benched a critical set (220 x 12 + 1) and hit big gains where I needed them (260lbs x 10 for Smith machine squats, 200 x 9 for seated calf raises). Theoretically, I have 2 days left in the gym this week, not counting tonight's quick run.

I'm not looking forward to leaving THT 3.1 HIT, but I am looking forward to getting back on to a Volume-type workout - and THT 4.0 Volume is really looking good right now. If you don't have your free copy of the book, go and grab it now! Also, Mark has created the THT 4.0 Voluime 3-day routine for those of us with extra-tight schedules who still want a Volume-style workout. The man is a machine for creating wicked workout programs for us! Thanks Mark!

On an unrelated note, I'm getting tired of all of the "Royals" Canadian trip coverage. Few know this outside of my circle of friends and family, but I don't have "Cable" TV (anymore) or satellite (yet). I refuse to pay exorbitant pricing for a handful of shows we might find interesting. We get all of our news from all over the Internet - including those selfsame TV stations' websites. Now, even my favourite news websites are slathered in "Royals" articles. Please. Stop. The madness. We're Canadians, we've been our own country for over 140 years, we really don't need a meaningless figurehead that we throw tax money at to tell us what and what isn't a law - we already have Stephen Harper for that. William and Kate seem like nice people but I cringe and then anger a tad at the sight of people bowing and scraping to two people who don't really do anything to further our country (aside from secondary tourism and memorabilia markets). at all.

Whew! Rant over!

Train hard and have a great day everyone!


Monday, July 4, 2011

THT 3.1 HIT Week #9 done, Week #10 starts today!

THT 3.1 HIT Week #9 is a wrap!

So, I managed to get two full workouts in last week. Everything was met with gains all over except for overhead press. I do think that I've over-committed on my overhead press so I'll be scaling that back a bit to focus on proper cadence and form.

This is my last week to effect THT 3.1 HIT-type gains before I get into the 4.0 Volume cycle world! I will, however, be hitting 4.0 extra hard as I'll be going with the 5-8 rep range for everything. I'm also going to take a step back on my bar squats and do hack squats where the cycle calls for them.

I'm really, really looking forward to THT 4.0. Of course, I might be biased because I'm actually IN the book.

I'm pumped to finish this week and hit next week running HARD! Who else is already doing a THT 4.0 cycle? Let me know in the comments or on the MuscleHack FB fan page.

Train hard and lift safe!