Fitness Journal Entry | 02
Here’s what my chest workout looks like currently:
Flat Dumbbell Chest Press
1x set / 12x reps / 45lb dumbbells
1x set / 6x reps / 70lb dumbbells
3x set /12x reps / 100lb dumbbells
Incline Dumbbell Chest Flys
3x set / 10x reps / 80lb dumbbells
Seated Dumbbell Overhead Press with Supinated Grip
3x set / 12x reps / 35lb dumbbells
Standing Low-Pulley Deltoid Lateral Raise
3x set / 12x reps
1x set / 12x reps, negatives only
Standing High-Pulley Face pulls
3x set / 12x reps
My goal is to work out between 3-4x a week. With at least 1 rest day in-between workout days. Sometimes 2 consecutive rest days after a heavy leg workout day. I try to keep my workouts shorter than 1 hour because the longer you’re in the gym, the higher your cortisol level goes up. Cortisol is a catabolic hormone (breaks down muscle) so you want to prevent your cortisol levels from getting too high.
Another way corisol can rise, is from being stressed. So if you’re looking to optimize, it’s worth noting, that it’s better for you if you’re less stressed. High cortisol levels can also encourage fat gain because it makes your blood sugar drop, making you crave sugary, fatty foods. And that’s probably one of the contributing factors to me gaining so much fat the past 6 or so months: chronic stress.
When I do chest, I’m not doing any isolation exercises for my triceps because as a secondary muscle group, they’re already getting an adequate amount of tension when doing any pushing exercise. I might add some down the line, but my main focus is to stick mostly with heavy compound lifts to maximize my testosterone levels and increase overall muscle mass (upping your fat intake helps increase testosterone levels as well). I do a few sets of shoulder isolation though because it’s one of my weaker areas.
I should probably also mention a word of caution: chest flys is a dangerous exercise, even with a proper warmup. Out of all of the chest exercises, it has the highest risk of resulting in a pec tear. So the way I do them, I actually keep the arms perpendicular so that the center of gravity isn’t too far away from my body which helps to mitigate excessive strain. You may think then what’s the point, if the point is to stress the muscle; but there’s a limit to everything so one shouldn’t sacrifice safe standards for potential gains. So at the end of the day, the flys end up being more of a variant of an incline chest press than your traditional wide-arc fly.
I had Haagen Dasz ice cream two nights in a row. I actually don’t have much of a sweet tooth. But my problem is when I have junk food readily available in the fridge, and in the pantry, it’s hard to say no. We had some coupons that our brother in law gave us so the ice cream was free too, so it’s the typical mind game that we play on ourselves (“well we can’t throw it away, that would be wasteful!”); that said, I’m not beating myself up about it because I’ve already failed. No point in reliving the past. Just need to get back up and keep pushing forward.
I’ll end with this: 5 steps forward and 2 steps backwards still results in a net positive of 3 steps!