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The Mental Side
http://exrx.net/forum/viewtopic.php?f=24&t=8300
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Author:  KenDowns [ Mon Sep 12, 2011 8:07 pm ]
Post subject:  The Mental Side

In my recent question about using main lifts as accessories in 5/3/1, Erick kind of hit me from the side with a long post about knowing what you can do - the point being that you don't really know what you can do, and it's more than you think. This is something that is just opening up for me and I'd love to hear any opinions on what it can do for you. How do you tap into this?

On the positive side, I've recently realized I can squat and dead more than I think (notwithstanding my horrible squat day last week). The "all-out" set on 5/3/1 had me realizing that for deads on 3+ day I was thinking, "5 would be respectable, if I can make that I can quit the set." Then I thought, "screw that I'm pulling till my head explodes!" So I did 5, then 6, then 7, and was grabbing two breaths and about to pull #8 when Matt said, "Ken you rounded your back on that, better stop." I was a little upset but decided to "check my ego" and trust my training partner.

Anyway, main lesson on squats and deads: I've felt form loosen on Rep X and told myself "Ken shape up we can do more than this" and kept going with correct form. Awesome. But....

But with presses and pulls it doesn't work.

So, question 1 (kind of a segue): If I push the bar when I think I've got a rep and I don't make it I immediately drop the bar -- I never push if motion stops. Now technically that is of course a failed rep, but is that "going to failure" in the bad way that we're supposed to avoid?

Question 2: Is there some mental angle that would let me get those reps that I think I have and miss? Like I said, with squats and deads it seems as simple as just committing to the rep, but with bench, row, press and chins I either have it or I don't and no amount of mind games seems to change it. Is there something I'm missing on the mental side that will let me "dig deeper" as it were?

Author:  Oscar_Actuary [ Mon Sep 12, 2011 10:31 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: The Mental Side

I empathize
I've generally chalked it up to the larger and more muscles involved with Squating and Deadlifting reach "failure" at a slower rate, whereas when my anterior delts are done... they are done. Anterior delts and Triceps for me go from "ok" to "not ok" more suddenly, that is.

Upper body pulls fall in between the two, but generally, more like Deads and Squats, I can always seem to squeeze ut a couple more.
Now to think how to program to take advantage of this.

Author:  nygmen [ Wed Sep 14, 2011 11:05 am ]
Post subject:  Re: The Mental Side

I didn't mean to mess with your head, man, lol. But I'll take a stab at addressing your post.

Keep in mind you (and quite a few of you guys here) are WAY more analytical than I am, and that isn't a bad thing. It helps you progress, and that is what matters, so keep on keeping on how you are comfortable. But in the context of my post, just remember I'm just a dumb meathead that moves heavy $h1t because it feels good...

Quote:
Is there something ... on the mental side that will let me "dig deeper" as it were?


This to me is where the rubber meets the road.

The measure of a man is what he does when no one is looking, what he does in the face of adversity, and how he deals with change. There are people that will never start because it is hard. There are people that will quit when it gets hard. And there are people that are going to push back into the face of hard, and kick hard's ass.



Hard is going to be relative to the individual. And kicking hard's ass doesn't have to mean grinding out every rep every workout, and squatting until your nose bleeds. I find change hard, switching gyms can set me back weeks. But then again, my max pull is in the low 500s and my first warm up set starts with 225, that doesn't mean someone who's max is 135 isn't kicking hard's ass too.

But, to get to the point. There comes a time, when you are doubled over, head spinning, and you think about stopping. You think you've done enough... And then, then something happens. The world slows down, life stops living you, a calm rush over comes you. A bead of sweat falls from your nose, and you hear the splash on the ground, you smell the sweet sent of victory, of pain, and of domination. In that moment you know you have more.

You can't manufacture this, and I think everyone is capable of getting there. It is just very few are willing to put in what it takes to get to that point. And then you realize you have. You gave blood and guts, time and pain to get here. You gave back, you punched the suck right in the mouth and shouldered every load you have had to bear. You realize you are the production of tens of thousands of years of evolution, and you'll be god damned if you aren't going to act like it.

Then you stand up, grab your heart, re-affirm its contents, and smash the life out of the next set, you make that bar your bitch, and smile every second of it...

Author:  The_dog_mom [ Wed Sep 14, 2011 11:08 am ]
Post subject:  Re: The Mental Side

Quote:
Then you stand up, grab your heart, re-affirm its contents, and smash the life out of the next set, you make that bar your bitch, and smile every second of it...
You are quite the poet:-) I even got inspired by this one!

Author:  teafan [ Wed Sep 14, 2011 11:30 am ]
Post subject:  Re: The Mental Side

You should write Hollywood speeches!

Author:  Oscar_Actuary [ Wed Sep 14, 2011 11:51 am ]
Post subject:  Re: The Mental Side

High School football coach in the making

Pushing hard without fear of injury; or more relevant - Pushing without increasing the chance of injury too much, would be a goal for me.

Author:  Wouter [ Wed Sep 14, 2011 12:25 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: The Mental Side

Nygmen for president?
nygmen wrote:
You smell the sweet sent of victory, of pain, and of domination.

Author:  TimD [ Wed Sep 14, 2011 1:00 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: The Mental Side

Eric's add on to this was just to good to let this thread go into the archives. I'm not letting it close until I move it, just keep adding on.
Tim

Author:  KenDowns [ Wed Sep 14, 2011 2:35 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: The Mental Side

Holy cow. That was too well said for me to spoil it by saying "me too" and trying to say it again.

What little I can add is that I first felt what Erick is talking about when I continued with squats on SL when they got brutal. If I were going to quit, that would have been the time. That was my first real before/after moment in lifting. Then came those volume squats, then the all-out deads. The slowly dawning realization that I've got more in me than I know.

As for my OP and the question of press and pulls, the answer is in what Erick said. Call it discipline, commitment, dedication, whatever, I *will* increase those lifts. I don't know how yet, it might be finding the right assistance exercise, it might be volume, it might be a deeper breath and more explosiveness, it might be anything, but I want those lifts to go the way of squats and deads.

Cool.

Author:  Jungledoc [ Wed Sep 14, 2011 4:56 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: The Mental Side

Oscar_Actuary wrote:
High School football coach in the making

Pushing hard without fear of injury; or more relevant - Pushing without increasing the chance of injury too much, would be a goal for me.

It's not just pushing hard. This isn't the product of a moment's inspiration. This is the sum of all the little moments when you did your last set even though you didn't feel like it. It's even the result of the times you wanted to let your ego push you and you did the smart thing. It doesn't come from a few weeks of training or necessarily even from a few years.
nygmen wrote:
You can't manufacture this, and I think everyone is capable of getting there. It is just very few are willing to put in what it takes to get to that point. And then you realize you have. You gave blood and guts, time and pain to get here.

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