Rented a car today to drive to our car and remove the license plates and all our personal belongings. The whole process took about two hours and it sucked.
It was weird to see the vehicle, with no obvious damage visible to the eye, and think that it could be "totaled." But that's the fact. The water got in pretty high. (If anyone had been sitting in it, the water would have reached the bottom of the kneecap.) It ruined a lot of the electronics, wiring, and crept through the transmission line into the car's mechanical nethers. The insurance adjuster put a big sticker on the rear side window, that was like a checklist of what was "good" and what was "damaged." Looking at it, I could sense used parts dealers or junkyard owners squatting in the bush, waiting to pounce. Waiting to pull it apart like carrion. Each tire was listed individually. The "good" box was checked for each. There were about 20 items on this list, and the score was fairly even between good and bad. However, the radio/cd player was marked "damaged," which I know to be incorrect.
Anyway, it was saddening to walk away from that car. We drove it off the lot on 11-20-05, and the rain killed it on 8-8-07.
* * * * * *
I have been working out hard and quite efficiently in the last month-plus. I devised a new periodization cycle for myself and I've stuck to it with religious dedication. It's based on ten days of workouts and four days of rest every 14 days. That's the length of the cycle. I keep my max-effort, overload days heavy; but more importantly, I keep the weights low on dynamic effort (speed) days.
It's still powerlifting training, so my focus is on the big three: squat, deadlift, and bench press. Anything I do outside of these exercises is done for the sole purpose of improving my technique and increasing my strength for those three. I do a lot of grip work (DL), abs (all 3), neck (S, DL), and hips (S, DL) solely for their benefits for squatting, deadlifting, and benching. That's all I care about. Not cuts or muscle size or any of that crap. I don't do biceps, or any other vanity exercise. All I care about is strength. Moving heavy weight.
Today was heavy squat day. My favorite. (Until recently, my fave was heavy DL day. But that's been getting crazy-nauseating.) I went to the gym with nothing in me, I thought. I'd had a disappointing workout yesterday -- even though I felt good walking in -- so I didn't expect much today. I did well. After a few warmup sets, I kept raising the weight and doing singles. I felt good. I had a good spotter. I kept increasing the weight. I didn't use wraps, but for the last two sets I wore the belt.
I managed a new personal best in the squat. Within two weeks, I believe I can finally break the 400# mark for sets. I've been training toward that magic number for a couple years, but something (illness, injury, work schedule, travel) always seems to get in the way of the training and set me back. I've never been this close.
One very weird thing happened during this session today. Four or five people stopped their workouts and came over to watch. After my final set one young man approached me and, even though he'd just watched me double-rep it -- with his own eyes, asked, "Did you lift that?" I sat on the floor for a couple minutes talking to him and his friend. They tried to lift it up off the pins together and giggled their asses off when it didn't budge. I asked if they did squats and said it is one of the best exercises anyone could do for themselves. In broken English, he asked, "Why do you do it? Can't you break a muscle?"
Tomorrow is the hardest workout of all. I'll run, do hundreds of crunches, do neck work, and work with my flex bands and Blast straps. I will not pick up any weight, that's what makes it so hard. But that's psychological, an ego thing I have to get over.
[posted with ecto]