Thursday, 4 October 2012

My first post in a while... A recap

I haven't posted in a while due to unforeseen circumstances. I say unforeseen, but actually I should have seen the bollocks coming due to my previous record of misfortune...

I had a couple of really positive training sessions at the gym, gaining PB's on pretty much everything I did. Terry was really pleased with my progress even more so than usual. No complaining, good form, good consistency, bigger weights & generally better/quicker recovery on my rest days. I did a 52.5kg deadlift for 2 sets of 3 reps in my last session which was impressive (for my standard) compared to my previous best of 50kg for 1 rep or 45kg for sets of 5 reps. So all was looking great in my stupid crippled world of hypermobility.

As anyone who follows my blog will remember, my car broke so I had a bit of an enforced break from the gym due to no transport. I was given a car to use by a friend; another extremely reliable German car in fact. So once again we had transport... Until the ignition barrel of reliable German car no.2 fucking broke & we couldn't turn the bastard car off; even taking the key out of the ignition did nothing, the engine just continued to run... So once again I was trapped at home with no way of getting anywhere. Luckily my best friend leant me his Toyota for a week so that I could get to work at 4am every day. That car is the ultimate in reliability; it's old as fuck, has no air con, but always gets you from A to B with no issues. Unfortunately I can't keep it forever so had to hand it back before me & Terry headed off to Los Angeles for this year's Worlds Strongest Man. Talk about shitty timing huh?? As if life wasn't already stressful enough without having to worry about that situation!

Luckily the hotel we were staying in had a gym, so I was hoping to get back on track with my training to stop myself seizing up the whole trip. I wasn't expecting a fully kitted out amazing gym, but what equipment they actually had was fantastic... For losing weight. Cross trainers & treadmills. Awesome. Both of absolutely no use to me other than for a bit of fat burning or cardio. There was also a vintage piece of equipment with some weights on it - so vintage, that we had to look at the instructions on how to use it. So basically I did some lat pull downs, some rows, chest press & some leg extensions. It was shit & I didn't bother entering the 'fitness studio' again on my trip. I contracted tonsillitis & a stomach bug too, so it was best I just let the heat do its job on my body. I've put some pictures on so you can see the crapness of the 'gym'. All I needed was a medicine ball or a couple of dumbbells. Even a bar with a few weights. It's hard to improvise around total uselessness!

I went back to Bulks yesterday for the first time in a while - car is running (touch wood) & although I'm really unwell with kidney & chest infections, I really couldn't wait to get a workout done. Seeing as I left my support belt in the pub (haha, yes! This is true) I had to do upper body until I can go & collect it. Terry trained with me which was a bit of an annoyance for him. Seeing as we take our lifts in turns, it's quite inconvenient for him to keep removing lots of 20kg plates for my go! We got through it anyway, and although I felt like a useless sack of crap, apparently I hadn't lost any strength and was still doing the same weights I was pre-broken car(s) & LA. All was not lost.

One thing I'd like to mention about post workout protein... Jay convinced me to have a protein shot as they're a lot quicker to drink, have 0g fat & sugars & have good amounts of what my body needs. I think I'll fuck that idea off in future & do some extra fat burning to be able to have a protein shake instead. It tasted foul. Like rancid, fruity, sour, coffee poop. I need to learn. Why do I keep drinking these disgusting things?? Never again.

I've learnt some very interesting things from a sports masseuse I saw prior to my trip to America. He tested my joints & said as expected, they are extremely lax because of my hypermobility. An unexpected finding, was my muscles being the exact opposite of my joints; extremely stiff & hard. A well looked after muscle should feel soft when it's not being tensed. Mine constantly feel hard & this is why I struggle to move sometimes. Another interesting point he brought up was about my working day. I sit in a train for the majority of the day. What does a train do? It shudders & vibrates when it's moving. What also does this? The power plate! Obviously a power plate is a lot more intense, but you only use them for short periods of time. 9+ hours is a very long time. For those of you who aren't sure about what a power plate is, here's a brief description: you do regular exercises while standing on or leaning on the power plate - it causes your muscles to work extra hard, thus shortening the length of your workout, but with the same results of a much longer one. By sitting in a vibrating machine all day, and quite often in a position of stress on certain joints or muscles, I'm actually exacerbating the problems that I have. I need to really take note of this and in future, sit with a more appropriate posture. Easier said than done right? But now that I'm aware of it, I can do my best to try and minimise the stress on my body.

I recently started randomly chatting with someone on a game I play on my phone, only to find he's a professor of musculoskeletal problems. Of all the people in the world, I make friends with someone who knows everything there is to know about my condition. On describing my various symptoms to him, he's said that I should be tested by a genetic specialist as he is sure that I have the vascular type of Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome. That type is the least common and the most dangerous as it involves the internal organs. Very frightening stuff. Armed with this information, I will be seeing my doctor this week & demanding to be sent to a specialist (again), and this time not taking no for an answer. When there's a possibility of serious health complications that could lead to my death, I think it's definitely worth pursuing further! Let's hope my doctor agrees & I don't have to force the matter by crying/complaining/having a mega tantrum.

Watch this space...

As always, I've added some pictures of me looking a total spaz in the gym. If there's anything in particular anyone would like me to add to my blogs, please do get in touch.

Adios for now :)

PS - my super cool grey t-shirt in the crappy LA gym is by 'Strong Stuff' - Phil Pfister's own brand of clothing. You can get them with keg toss, truck pull, atlas stones, dumbbell & other strongman designs on the back :)


  1. Someone should be punished for that carpet :D

  2. I know right?? It was the Crowne Plaza too, you'd expect a much nicer floor from such a big chain...!