Tag Archives: Strength training

Updated Aspects (Training)


Shanna comic

The other half of this blog is here entitled Updated Aspect (Life) if interested.

Lately I’ve been having trouble getting into the gym to get in more cardio work.  Lifting has never been a problem once I enter the gym with my mind in the zone, scowl and broad shoulders.  Still, the emphasis is cardio because I have a lot of weight to lose by my standards.  This bad habit started when my ankle broke and when I isolated myself from the world.  I tried going back to the gym to be the fitness buff I was, but nothing was the same.  It was me against trauma, coming to terms with mental illness and recovering from the worst year of my life.

Nevertheless I needed to feel a rush; I needed to balance out the chemicals in my brain somehow.  I wanted to feel alive again.  I wanted to feel my body in motion, so I learned pretty quickly how to workout at home.  I looked at the upsides of home workouts:  not being bothered by anyone or anything.  Working out at home was safe and therefore it became my retreat.  I never thought I’d make fitness at home my full-time job.  I never thought I would pay a subscription to stream videos.  I also never thought I’d canceled a gym membership after being a gym-goer for 13 years.

Of course a month and a half later my headspace was in a much better place after I canceled the gym membership, but it still took a year and a half for me to get back into the gym a few times a week.  Still, a dilemma hovered big as an elephant – getting to the gym on a regular basis seem to be a problem.  This is also something I’ve never had before.  I started feeling like one of those average people.  I’ve never felt gym ordinary before.  I’ve always been the one to rise above the starting point.  Again, nothing is the same.  I’m in no rush to lose weight, which is very unlike me.  I used to drop 8lbs in a month, month after month like I was going to compete somewhere on stage.  Not this time.

The bright side is when I do go to the gym my adrenaline takes over and I forget about the time or when’s the last time I ate or what else I have to do after I stroll out the gym at midnight.  I don’t stop until I have nothing more in the tank – my usual – and I thank God that’s still the same to this day.  My mind-muscle connection is even more in depth, which I find both absurd and incredible.  I’m starting to believe for the first time in my life that less can actually be more.

I’ve changed my training style again.  I used to move around heavy weight all the time.  I toned it down.  I used to do a lot of volume.  I can’t say I toned that down.  Right now I’m focused on basic exercises (not unique ones) and variations of the basics.  I like working with my bodyweight.  I leave the isolated movements and core training for Ballet Beautiful and other Ballet-inspired workouts.  I do tons of unilateral sets since my accident – I still feel an imbalance within my body.  I do pump out high reps; mostly because I was always a 5-10 rep woman.  But how will my body react long-term when the switch has been/is 20 reps and over?  I also do strength-training at home in circuit-training fashion at least 2 times a s week.  Also, twerking which is a fun way to do cardio at home.

I notice other things I don’t do anymore in the gym I used to do is scout out who I wanted to compete with for poundages or on cardio machines.  At this moment, I don’t have the urge to compete with anyone anymore because I’m in my own groove and free in my own zone.  This is both good and bad.  Good because fuck everybody else in the gym – I’m here for me yet bad because you can always get extra drive and push yourself further when you and the stranger are knowingly competing with one another.

So, what about this gym ordinary thing?  I’ve been giving thought to what I have to do to make sure I get into the gym at least 2-3 times a week every month.  I shouldn’t be comparing myself to the 5-6 times a week of cardio I used to do especially because I’m not feeling it.  At the moment, I don’t want to live in the gym like I used to.  I want to perform more than the minimum, but live out of the gym.  But, what can I do differently?  What did I used to do before to get in the gym multiple times a week for hours at a time?

Well, for one I didn’t make excuses.  Two, I always made sure to established good work ethic every single time I stepped foot in any gym.  Three I would think about the professional fitness enthusiasts and how busy their lives are and just how they make time to get their cardio in multiples times a week.  If they could do it, so could I.  Four, I need to create a set routine, one I can’t easily get out of and also with at least 3-4 back up plans just like I used to do.

However, I think I kept this long enough.  Also, I’m open to suggestions.  Please don’t say running, jogging or walking because I’ll cut you with my ankle bone.  Walking still hurts me and this is one of the main reasons I go to the gym to do cardio because I can sit on a machine (bike) and burn calories away with minimal pain.

Happy training!

-Pennington

Accommodating Self (Part 2)


BB fitness
The best decision I made was breaking up with the gym.

I did a ton of reflecting.  In general I have no problem working out at home, but I just never knew I’d feel more comfortable working out at home around the clock as much as I do.  Training at home has allowed me to take the pressure off mentally as I can’t compare myself against who I used to be.. way back when.  Aside from less self-demands I can’t ego lift at home like I can ego-lift at the gym.  It does suck I can’t feed off people’s energy in the gym, but the focus is deep having to feed off my own energy.  It’s been about 4 months since I’ve been strength-training at home and I must say it’s been beneficial for me mentally, emotionally, physically, financially and spiritually.

Here are a few reasons why I enjoy training at home nowadays aside from the little I just mentioned:  I can be myself.   I don’t have to smile, be polite, and pretend I’m in a good mood or have small conversation when I don’t want to.  I can workout whenever I want without time restraints or gym holidays getting in the way.  I can focus 110% on my form, on my breathing and zero in on the way I feel mentally or emotionally.   I have to push myself differently and get extra creative making home workout programs so they are super effective and exhausting because that’s what I enjoy.

Also I don’t have to feel uncomfortable or awkward trying to hide my extra fat in huge hoodies and sweat pants.  I can rock a spaghetti-strap tank top and spandex and I wouldn’t secretly judge myself in front of others and make the awkwardness awkward and obvious to those who may or may not judge me at the gym.  (Judgement-free zone only happens at home and not at Planet Fitness.)  I don’t have an aversion at home, but I do have one outside – where I secretly believe people can tell if I previously hurt my ankle or not.  (Yes, it’s mental.)  Also I don’t have to spend over $112.00 on Metro Card money to travel to the gym and back home.

Then there’s the other obvious like I don’t have to wait for machines during peak time.   I compete with myself, build my confidence and track record rather than pressure myself to compete with the person I used to be in the gym while being at the gym.   On a really good note, with at-home workouts, I can do laundry at the same time I train.  And as an introvert – I do enjoy my time alone.

New inspiration?  Now over the past month and a half I’ve been newly inspired by Ballet Beautiful.  I owe it to BB for re-motivating me again.  I can do any of their workouts at home and spread it out among the day (on top of my weight training) for minutes at a time multiple times a day and night.  The exercises, technique and workouts themselves are extremely challenging and work very well!  Ballet Beautiful approach comes off more about quality than quantity and the workouts itself are about strength, power, flexibility, balance, technique and grace in a totally different way.

BBStrengthI absolutely swear by Ballet Beautiful and I haven’t been doing it very long at all.  In the past I’ve written about how I enjoy the extremes of both bodybuilding and ballet as I find them both to be very similar in terms of disciplinary action, strength, beauty, aestheticism, athleticism and art.  I love them both.  And I feel like I want to embrace them both and see where they lead me to.  For the good month of August I fell in love with Ballet Beautiful for countless reasons aside from what I perceive ballet to be – graceful.  One reason why I love Ballet Beautiful is because of the minimalist style.  Two is because the exercises and stretches involved are complex, detailed and difficult.  Third reason is BB has increased my motivation by 100%!

All this time, I was searching for something.  Strangely – and out the blue – I fell in some kind of dear love for Ballet that started around 2009.  But, I didn’t know something totally different from weightlifting would give me the “wow” factor and innovative inspiration I needed.  In ballet, there’s a quiet and classical tone set, as well as an elegant breathtaking history, same as Bodybuilding for me.  There’s art, power, focus and balance in every single ballet movement which I find irresistible.

Of course, a few times a week I will continue to devote time and effort to strength-training, but it was Ballet Beautiful that took me to another place mentally, emotionally and physically.  It’s because I can start fresh and it’s because I’m not bound to the past decade and associations of weightlifting.  Recently I started to realize how my training has been changing in ways I’m not fully understanding yet.  It seems weightlifting doesn’t have the same flavor for me – maybe because I associate the past decade with weightlifting?

I’m a new person now.
And I want my training to reflect this as well.

BBQuickTip-ReEnvision-final-revHere’s what I know now:  I have a new vision for my body.  I don’t want my old body back because I don’t go backwards.  I want a more symmetrical and streamlined look.  I want to be more refined.  I want to be less soft.  I want to be less bulky.  I want less of the comfort I’ve had with my body in the past.  I want new strengths.  I want new exercises.  I want new challenges.  I want new posture.  I want new everything!

I will continue to focus on smaller muscles because all the bigger muscles on my body are well-developed.  I will continue to work on the tiny details in every single muscle.  I will continue to use my first love – dumbbells and barbells no more than twice a week and no less than one.  Weightlifting will always have a home in my heart, but what I want now and what motivates me now is vastly different.  I’m going to enjoy shifting.

And who knows what it might bring?

P.S.

One of my current goals is to go to the gym twice a week for extra cardio purposes.  I have an initial 30lbs to lose.  I’ve already dropped 7lbs in 2 weeks.  It’s game on.

-Pennington

Break a Sweat in a Different Way


aeon_flux_by_lucirgoI’m a big believer in doing things differently in life every few weeks, months or years as it shows maturity and continual personal development.  I carry this thought process in every aspect of life – especially fitness.  I like to switch things up all the time.  I can’t even do the same workout twice in one week unless I’m no good at something and I need to improve to make a set of gains I find to be necessary.

It’s incredibly easy to get caught up in everyday routines because it doesn’t take much conscious effort.  A routine and few redundant examples are: Traveling the same way to work, spending quality time in the same exact way with your kids, knowing what your partner is going to do later on tonight in the bedroom and using the same training program your uncle wrote you when you were like fifteen years old.  Being on auto-pilot is safe on one end, but dangerous to your health and depressing in another.

This leads me to being a big believer in changing my workouts.  (I despise doing the same workout twice even in one month.)  On top of my weightlifting workouts, I now have reintroduced a lot of things I used to do because I must keep it funky fresh and because my ankle has made some gains.  Some of these workouts are total body circuits, dance fitness, ballet, Yoga, Kenpo X and Pilates just to name a few.

These workouts on top of the strength-training aren’t JUST because I want to lose weight or gain a better core or reintroduce balance again, but it’s because my metabolism is sluggish since I broke my ankle a mere year ago and have gained weight.  I’ve notice in the past – when I want to kickstart my body and have it be a fat-burning machine my body needs something different.  My body needs something out of left field in order for it to start responding in the way that I like.  I believe it’s partly due to having a low thyroid as well as my dietary intake – it’s not the best or the worst.

And this is where my theory comes in, and why I’ve chosen to once again mix my workouts heavily.  I have twelve years of weightlifting under my belt and some of my fibers are used to this weightlifting plan.  This means that focusing on the strength-training aspect to pick up my sluggish metabolism initially doesn’t work for me.  It’ll actually work against me since my body is already used to picking up steel and putting them down.  So, my body needs a different shock.

It’s not a wonder why over time one has to overload their muscles to the point of no return, and that’s simply to make a small gain.  It’s easy to gain muscle in the first 3 years, but after that it becomes harder and harder to make the gains AND at a quicker pace.  I believe that on one end, weightlifting for twelve years has hurt me in some respects, and in others it has blessed me.  I’m restarting from a different place where I had mobility, balance, proprioception, strong fibers and a decent metabolism for the longest time.  Now I’m working to gain each and every one of these back and much stronger than before.

In my partner’s words, “You’re getting sleeker”, but it’s not necessarily due to the weightlifting at the moment, it’s due to everything else my body isn’t used to handling.  I laugh hysterically whenever I pick up 3lb-10lb dumbbells and have a tough time doing a difficult exercise and am not allowed to perform reps and sets that constitute ego lifting.  I’m humbled every time I perform the Swan Arm Ballet Workout and Bun Shaper wanting to cry from the scorch I feel throughout my body, yet I can do 100lbs and more of Barbell Hip Thrusts for 4-5 sets on a working bench with no problem.

Because the fact remains that the things your body is good at and is used to – you can do it forever without breaking a sweat; however the things your body isn’t used to – you can only do for a small amount of time and break under the sweat of a new raging world.  I know I love to do things I’m good at.  (How about you?)  I know that I hate to make myself look bad or stupid or like I’m not strong enough in front of others.  But that’s just fear, embarrassment and ego talking.

This also comes from a place where one doesn’t want to evolve because of fear, but making the conscious effort and having the desire of wanting to excel despite looking silly, or knowing you’re going to fail and such leads to maturity and personal growth.  We learn more about ourselves from adversity than we do when we’re full of joy and happiness.

In hindsight, breaking a new sweat because you opted to do something different will break you (people) out of your (their) safe routine life.  And in turn, will break you out of your plateau – yes this includes fitness – the kind of plateau YOU (they) weren’t even aware about.

Happy Training folks! 😉

-Pennington

Alteration


ghost in the shell 1
TRX is one of the truths of fitness along with weight-training, cardio, calisthenics and a host of many other activities within this realm.  And sometimes I’m good at putting in a little bit of everything in a single week for a workout program.  But other times I forget to be well-rounded. Sometimes I stick with my reasonable rep scheme and my above moderate to heavy weight training with compound exercises and/or Total-body programs (all resistance-related) that I forget that there is anything else in the physical activity world.

So once again I was reminded by a training session (isn’t this one reason why people get actual Personal Trainers no matter how good they believe they are? – for getting out of the comfort zone) with Dark Knight just how pairing TRX, Stability Ball exercises along with Plyometrics could accomplish for my mental and physical state during, not to mention the remembrance of soreness the very next day which I’m experiencing lovingly and heavily.

TRX is amazing although not one of my favorite things to EVER do because the difficulty and exert level is beyond ridiculous when you carry a lot of weight (like me).  I also associate the TRX to be highly core related.  And let’s face it, I dislike doing core probably more so than I do visiting my mom at the nursing home/hospital. But aside from these negative relations these reasons are exactly why the TRX is extremely important.  My muscles worked super hard during these movements that my flesh seared red, my bodyfat diminished for a moment in undetectable time and I didn’t want to provide another rep despite the fact that I grinded my lips and teeth like a bad dream as my biceps and forearms wanted to fall off in sweet deliverance.

I got through some intense TRX Rows.

And I got through the Banded Pull ups, Jumping Squats, Rope Pulls, Dynamic Lunges, Tricep Rope Pull-downs, Planks and Push ups both done on the Stability Ball.  I was quite amused although I’ll be honest; I’ve never liked the unstable feeling of my body being out of control.  I like muscle fibers shaking when I lift weights (and even that I had to learn to get used to) but when the body is going completely haywire and excitingly random because it’s wondering what the hells going on within the unknown trying to make it known.. I feel tremendously uncomfortable and by uncomfortable I mean I spaced the fuck out and I needed to bring my head back down from the cosmos because it’s concentrated and very present and at the same time a stirring out-of-body-experience.

The goal before New Year arrives is to make sure I’m working on getting to the next level even if it means getting over my immense hate for core and extra bodyweight work because it’ll help me achieve more of the best. During this process I’ll be required to break through old beliefs, training rituals, destroy my mind and body all over again to gain a newfound structure and a special level of physical enlightenment.

It’s all about parts and making them into absolute and reassuring wholes, strengthening strengths but also strengthening weaknesses and dislikes until they’re no longer a phase to ponder about while enjoying the journey which keeps us on the edge of the magnificence of uncertainty. 🙂

-Pennington

Training Maturity


Camera 360

I’m not speaking about how older muscles have hardened over the years with recurring lifting or mean this by the density which occurs with steady reliability and perseverance that comes from the power of character and passion to train.  But I mean this in terms of the mental and belief development and how wonderful it is to be receptive to change.

I love change, more specifically when there isn’t a conscious decision made to transform.  I love when the tiny things in life flow under the disguise of remarkable intuition and unquestionable faith.  The splendor within the apparent connection of mind and of body has been excellent to me when it comes to Training.

Across the decade, I’ve made several mistakes, I’ve taken on the delightful delights and terrible burdens of injury, I’ve underwent many setbacks and on the flip of the coin sprung with vigor forwardness, I’ve followed like a scared newbie on what others did inside the gym and learned to lead my own path and training philosophies and now I can reflect on some changes that are coming out on top: Training maturity.

The first thing I noticed over time is I slowly strayed away from isolation movements and went into exercise programs that only allowed room for compounds.  This proved well as I have less muscle imbalances and various smaller muscles have caught up to the much bigger ones giving me fewer injuries and smaller amounts of overcompensation overall.  And although switching out isolation exercises for compounds may seem logical, the combination of misinformation on top of the endless harassment of the ego is a complex mission to prevail.

Second thing I noticed more this coming year is how I’ve found myself taking pleasure in working my body in multiples planes and engaging every muscle to work in synergy.  This has introduced lots of gains at a quicker pace in terms of visual definition.  For years I relied on Bodybuilding style.  Except I realized the gains are time-consuming if you don’t couple this approach with extreme dieting as close to one-hundred percent of the time.  I’ve realized it’s better for me to push to train (almost) like an athlete with total body workouts with a wide range of labor.  I can do this now because I’ve developed vastly and because of this quality I’ve been able to grasp one plain fact:  There isn’t one road to being fit or appearing the part.

Nowadays, my motivation comes differently and as one fitness enthusiast or gym rat can say, motivation is hard to sustain and throughout the years motivation comes in different behaviors, different apparel, through different gym clubs, through different people and different frames of intelligence and strategy.

Lately, I don’t find it challenging or motivating to lift and stick with one or two body parts per training session.  I don’t find it challenging or motivating to stick with basic tried and true exercises with a rep and set scheme.  I don’t find it motivating to be in a box or keep myself trapped in there.  A perfect example was how for many years I’d remain limited on a rep scheme.  I would write it down on paper long before heading into the gym and because that number was the one in my head it was all I ever did for a long friggin time.  I never went pass that particular number, almost as if it were a crime.

This led to a chain reaction because the questions were obvious:  How many times could I have gone pass the rep and created new and improved muscle growth?  How many times could I have increased the poundage if I weren’t afraid to pass beyond the rep in my head?  Why did I choose to limit myself in this way?  Was this a part of self-sabotage?  Or what I constructed around the entire belief system of the rep scheme?

Another thing where I’ve matured is actually utilizing the training partner at hand.  Tonight I trained my ass off and stood probably 2 hours in the gym just zoning out and lifting to my hearts content. However back then I wouldn’t have used my training partner the way I did this evening because pride and selfishness.  During the Hammer Strength Incline Chest Press I had him assist me by pulling on the lift itself first (at extension) so I didn’t have to waste not an ounce of pointless exertion pushing entirely on the first rep.

I didn’t have all the bright energy I’m used to having on a regular basis.  But this helped me enormously and I didn’t allow myself to feel crucified by my ego or having to be prideful to do every little thing myself rather than saying, “Yeah we can use a little help today to cut a slight corner or two and what’s wrong with that?”  Nothing, if you don’t limit yourself (or abuse help).

The permanence of the mind and what things we hold close to our chest in the act of searching for meaning can be a tricky thing.  How do you learn to let go of concrete beliefs when they become too old to even be useful anymore?  Surely, every person has their own response.  Yet if you ask me, I’m more than willing to say maturity is my answer back, along with being aware with what is the precise type of intuition within your significance of mind, expansion and substance.

-Pennington Hall

Documentary: Pulling John


One word: Wow!

First off I know nothing about arm wrestling.  Except that it involves arms and you need techniques to get by.  Now that we got that out the way, all I know is that arm wrestling is exciting!  How exciting?  Let’s just say I wasn’t expecting this sport documentary to have my adrenaline boost to edgy nervousness within the first 5 minutes of the film.  I also wasn’t expecting to fall hopelessly in love with the subject at hand and the three amazing guys they follow on the journey.  Nor did I know that at least 120 countries actually compete in arm wrestling.

On the flip side I had no idea how arm wrestling isn’t necessarily all about brute and muscle strength.  Or about being the bigger size person, say Thor.  Or arm density.  Or arm mass.  Or large tendons.  Or hand grip.  Or hand size.  Or reaction time.  Or wrist endurance.  Or even good referees.  Better yet going through a tournament, taking on many different competitors until you’re finally the one on top within the same day (I’m uncertain on how many hours?) is downright ludicrous.  Imagine the arm/mental/stamina and physical strength that takes.  I’m sinking in my panties just thinking about it.

You meet John Brzenk, the main character.  He doesn’t appear superhuman, not by his size, not by the calm collected look in his eyes.  But by the twenty-five years of his arm wrestling career.  Let’s just say, well, it speaks for itself:  Unbeatable.  Now is he to relish in a stellar streak forever as he questions his age and retirement to the sport itself?  Or will the hot-headed powerhouse American Travis Bagent or the muscular beast with good morals from Russia (who’s very good-looking) Alexey Voevoda snatch John Brzenk’s title?

You’re just going to have to find out.  On a final note however, the other other best thing about this film is just how easy it flows with it’s storytelling, how every champion is introduced from family to the arm wrestling sport itself, to a hint of their training and so on.  John, Travis and Alexey bring different qualities and traits to the film itself.  Ultimately Pulling John lures you (I know it did me) in and keeps you at suspense right to the very end.

Watch this film if you like good documentaries or good movies.  If you’re into the Training or Fitness Life.  If you need motivation and extra inspiration to take you to new heights mentally, spiritually or physically.  If you like to look at strong people tackle other strong people.  If you like your blood boiling.  If you’re a fan of any sport.  If you like fun and refreshing topics.  If you get excited over competitions.  Than watch this!  Otherwise skip this movie if you’re a punk ass bitch and have shitty taste in movies anyway.  😉

P.S.

I’m so moved by Pulling John that I want to learn about arm wrestling and perhaps even train for it.

-Pennington

Strong Days, Weak Days, Egging On And Acceptance


You’re going to have strong days and weak days.

Surely, when it comes to life and every single aspect it has to offer you in general.  However in this case, I’ve learned to accept this strong vs weak days truth just like I’ve accepted the system in the United States of America is corrupted beyond means.  But, yes, I’m talking about the many episodes of my Training Life.

What’s interesting enough is there are still days and nights where I want to go against myself and the acceptance of naked reality when there’s someone egging me on quite in the way groups will instigate an all out brawl in High School.  (But maybe that was my High School and not to be confused with yours?)

There are moments of betrayal even when I know how hard I should or shouldn’t push myself.  Even when I’ve kept to close examination and intuition of my own body.  I know when I’m feeling weak as a person who’s lost their will before they even began a weight-loss or school program and I also know when I’m feeling army strong and can take on all the planets in the solar system.

Last night I wasn’t completely weak.

I noticed on numerous occasions, on the days I’ve let out shit loads of emotions externally (mostly anger) that by the time evening falls and when it’s my time to shine I can’t gain that lost energy back.  So it’s tremendously vital for me not to waste precious exertion on anyone or anything.  But there are good days when every street corner presents a red light to drivers so you can cross.  And than there are bad days where the beauty of the sky becomes a state of hell.  I can’t promise myself to be a saint when it comes to maintaining composure at all times.  But I can try.

So I started with Box Squats (which I’ve never performed in my life).  Did 5 sets of those.  I moved right into Military Presses than came Deadlifts.  Typically I warm up with 135lbs (doesn’t everyone?) and increased.  When I did my reps for 175lbs (grip: double-handed) I felt that it was tough as oppose to last week when it felt light as a feather.  Up to 195lbs, (making a snow-white of a mess with chalk because I like being dirty) still came off like a struggle.

My personal record is 210lbs for 4 reps.  However with the way I felt last night I knew I wasn’t going to hit that mark or even break a fucking record.  I told my partner in crime, “I don’t have it in me.  I don’t even want to do those 5 goddamn reps for 205lbs.”  He went on, “You got it.  Let’s go.”

I did 2 reps.
It seemed fairly easy.
I counted 10 inhales.
Got another rep in.
Both my entire hands hurt.
I grimaced in pain.
Is this chalk not working? 😉
I shook it off.
Once.  Maybe twice.
No more buying time.

Partner in crime says,
“You’re almost there.  You got it.”

But deep down inside I’m fucking scrambling.
My normal chants in my mind aren’t working.
I searched around the gym for strength.
I’m sweating under my own pressure.
15 inhales/exhales later.
I get the 4th rep up.
My grunt is even louder.
It comes from the womb I believe?

And once the dead weight comes to it’s deadness.
I crouched down and shuddered.. at knowing the 5th rep is a no go.
I still refused to admit defeat of any kind.
Partner In Crime is saying,
“You got it.  You got it.”

20 inhales later.
I make the first attempt to my 5th rep.
Not even halfway up I crashed the weight back down.
I felt pitiful while trying to keep composure.
But I make no mention out loud.

Partner in crime with his odd words of encouragement:
“You’re not giving up that easy.”
As I walked away from the barbell.
Smacking my hands together in anger.
Powder flourishes in the air.
I shake my brain this time.
I snapped, “I’m not!”

I attempted another rep after 15 inhalations.
With my body trembling,
I pulled more than halfway this time…

And I want to make it for me.
I want to make it for him.
I want to make it for every Fitness Family Member I know.
I want to make it for every woman.
I want to make it for my aggression.
I want to make it for everything I stand for.
But I didn’t have it.
And even though I had someone egging me on.
On one of my weak days.
And though I kept pushing.
Betraying my body.

I was reminded by nearly injuring myself.
To stop.
Even if my partner didn’t know any better or know my body.
Because my form was crumbling.
Because my struggle quivered in my sneakers.
Because it occurred during my anger..
Of not getting the last rep where I needed it to be..
When I know in every shred of my being
I’m fucking stronger than this.

Years ago I’d get depressed and mope.
But now I understand how you have to handle your business.
By handle I mean:  GIVE IT YOUR ALL!
Because sometimes it’s going to be one of those weak days.
Even when you’re mentally:  One-hundred percent.
So accept it!

-Pennington

START SOMETHING: A REMINDER


(IT’S ABOUT TIME I REMIND MYSELF OF WHO I AM.)

I DON’T KNOW.
I DON’T KNOW.
I DON’T KNOW.

IF I CAN DEADLIFT 195LBS, 200LBS OR 210LBS FOR 5 REPS WITH SUPERB FORM. SOMETIMES A LITTLE BODY ENGLISH IS NEEDED FOR ADDITIONAL GREED.  CAN I SMELL THE ALLURE? TORCH THE STORM IN THE NAME OUT OF NORM?  HOW MANY TIMES MUST I AUTO-SUGGEST THE BEST OF THE DAY’S MANTRA AND SURRENDER RIGHT IN THE DAWN OF MY TANTRA?  DEVELOP MY MIND UNTIL IT’S OVERLY PREPARED AND WITHIN THE PROCESS BECOME CONSIDERABLY IMPAIRED? BECAUSE TOO MUCH TIME MEANS TO THINK AND SUFFER AT THE HANDS OF THE UNDECLARED.

IF THERE’S ONE THING I DESPISE IT’S BEING SLIGHTLY FRIGHTEN DESPITE THE HEART AND STRENGTH OF A TITAN.  TO BE OUT OF ONE’S COMFORT ZONE IS TO BECOME HEAVILY ENLIGHTEN.   SO YES, PENNINGTON, IT’S TOTAL BULLSHIT!  IF THERE’S ONE THING THAT PUSHES US OVER THE REPS, SETS AND GETS US THROUGH THE LIFTS, IT’S THE THUNDEROUS ANGER, THE MANY GEARS AND SHIFTS OF THE COLOSSAL RAGE OF NOT GETTING THE END RESULT TO FULLY STICK.

IT TOOK ME THREE TOTAL WORKOUTS TO GET PAST THE MILITARY PRESS.  WAS I HAPPY?  NO!  WAS I THRILLED WHEN I PUSH THROUGH THE RESISTANCE EVEN WHEN IT WAS TRYING TO CRUSH ME WITH ITS TENSION LAUGHING.. ENOUGH TO THROW MY INTELLIGENCE FOR A LOOP – AURA SCATTY?  FUCK YEAH!  FUCK YEAH!  BUT I REMAINED COOL.  COOLER THAN A PEPPERMINT PATTY.  COOLEST LIKE THAT TROPHY WIFE ON THE ARM OF AN ATM FATTY!

I KNOW I CAN GET X AMOUNT OF REPS IN.  I HAVE THE GUTS AND HERCULEAN DEPTHS TO TAKE BRASS BALLS ON MY CHIN.  THE FIRE, THE GLUTTONOUS BLOOD EDGING ME ON WITH FERVOR LIKE THE COMPULSIVE NEED FOR ONE-HUNDRED AND ONE LOVERS MIDST A CARAVAN INN.  I HAVE THE LIFTING DISEASE AND THERE ISN’T ANYONE WHO CAN SAVE ME!

-PENNINGTON

Life Seems Pretty Boring


When I don’t workout!!

I, honestly, don’t know how people go through their lives numb off denial, drugs and alcohol, how people go on auto-pilot, living like zombies for their mediocre job and silly titles.  I don’t know how people can come back home and mindlessly eat right in front of the television and call it relaxation.
HOW.  THE.  FUCK.

When I’m immobile, when I’m resting, when I have a day off, when my brain doesn’t have a window open processing information, surely it’s suppose to be relaxing.  But I don’t believe in relaxing because it’s the closest thing to death there is.

I would find my life SO boring!!

I’ve been doing my best to not hit the gym since my body has endured so much stress in the last few days.  It’s officially now 5 whole fucking days!!!!!  And I feel like I’m dying for Christ Sake’s!  I have fever blisters on my lips, letting me know how fabulous it is to fucking have the body stress under critical conditions.  The lymph nodes are the only things truly stopping me from doing a short and rather intense workout at home.  I seem to know better when anything is swollen in my body.  *rolls eyes*

Just last night I have these Fear Dreams where I guess deep down inside my subconscious is letting me know just how I’m truly feeling about all these days of not being physically active.  It was quite interesting how in my dreams I started my Ipod and went to work.  But it seemed the 35lbs weight were too heavy for me to pick up.

I was frowning in seclusion so no one would see the frustration building up within me.  Tears were being held back.  And it seemed like every time I was going to get ready to pick up the set of dumbbells and get a set in, someone I knew came my way to interrupt me.  It felt like everything was brand new all over again.  And I was lost just like a beginner.  And the next thing I know, I wasn’t able to complete any workout.  So I went to school.

This will never happen!  But this is a reflection.  Thanks dream!

HELLO!

This is Oh So Boring!

I scratch my head and wonder how the hell people don’t find the heart and the adrenaline to fill their bodies up for what they were designed to do: MOVE!

Pennington