Long walks and no blogs.
Greetings my little Blogranauts! It’s been absolutely bloody ages since I’ve last posted one of these. It doesn’t mean that I no longer love you – nothing could be further from the truth. It’s just that I have been ridiculously busy this past few months. A cleverer man then I would probably be able to work hard and blog at the same time. Unfortunately there is only the space for 1 very small thought to occupy the very limited space in my head at any one time.
Fortunately I have nearly finished all my thinking for this year and I now have a little room in my life to continue blogging. Yay.
I will write at length about the radical changes that the gym is undergoing in a later post. For now let me tell you about my current and recent training.
Some months ago the Headmaster of my kids school approached me about doing a sponsored walk for charity. Well, to be honest he first approached Zoe (my wife), who turned him down flat. He then sidled up to me and, being a fool for a challenge, I said yes.
You’re probably thinking – what’s the big deal about a sponsored walk? Well, this is no ordinary amble around the school playing field this is The Thunder walk!! 24 hours. 54 miles. 1 million blisters. All of which is done around the Brecon Beacons, which is a particularly vertical part of the Welsh countryside.
Easy it is was not going to be. Fitter and lighter is what I must become.
Fortunately I had recently acquired a new training partner to better help me in my epic journey to buffdom. Ladies and Gentlemen bow your heads, lock up your daughters and sacrifice a bull for here he is. All hail . . . Rhod!
Rhod has been working for me for a couple of years and is after the same things as I am – training wise. All we desire is physical perfection, ungodly strength and the adoration of the masses.
To help carry us onwards on our mythical odessey towards Valhalla we brought forth our secret weapon. 5/3/1!
If what you want is a routine that can do all things to all men (and women) then look no further then 5/3/1.
Do you want to be strong and muscular? Then do 5/3/1 with lots of extra volume work on your accessories.
Do you want to be strong and fitter then a cyborg ninja? Then do 5/3/1 with lots of complexes and sprints as the accessory work. It truly is the most versatile training system on the planet.
Mr Wendler Dave’s Gym salutes you and your beard.
What Rhod and I have been doing is this:
Warm up – 3 barbell complexes.
5/3/1 – Depending on the day we would work up to 3 sets of either squat, bench, dead or clean and jerk.
Accessories – Squat day: squats supersetted with ab wheel roll outs 5 x 10 reps.
Bench day: floor press supersetted with bent over rows 5 x 10 reps
Dead day: deadlifts supersetted with hanging knee raise 5 x 10 reps
C & J day: military press supersetted with chin ups 5 x 10 reps
Fitness – some form of cardio inspired nastiness lasting anywhere between 10 and 40 minutes.
I did this for about 3 months consistently and made huge improvements. My strength went up. My fitness increased. My body weight was slashed by 3 stone (42lbs or 19kg).
I was ready for all the Thunder Walk could throw at me. Bring it on.
The Long Walk
I didn’t finish the Thunder Walk.
My kid’s Headmaster did. My wife did. A team from the Royal Opera House who were all in there 50’s and 60’s did. But I; former Royal Marine, former British Kickboxing champ, all round tough guy and badass viking warlord, did not.
I woke up on the morning of the event not feeling to bright but just put it down to pre-event nerves. On the walk towards the starting point I felt a bit on the grim side. Less then a mile into the walk I started sweating like a racehorse and shivering. By the time we hit the big hills some 14 miles later I was a feverish mess and another 7 miles after that I didn’t know my own name. The rest of the team threw me in the back of our support teams car and I was driven back to the base house in disgrace.
The other guys continued onwards throughout the night in freezing conditions and with terrible blisters and chaffing issues but completed the long and arduous route in 23 hours and 39 minutes. They were amazing. I was delirious.
Oddly enough spending the next 5 days in bed in shuddering, sweaty turmoil actually made me feel somewhat better about dipping out of the walk. It turns out that you can’t out-train the viral equivalent of an asteroid strike.
I, obviously, took the rest of the week off from training but I’m now rested, re-invigorated and re-vitalised. It is time to unleash a new level of hell.
Weeeeeell . . . maybe not straight away. Maybe I’ll take it a little easy this first week back. But next week? Oh brother. You’d better watch out. Next week I’ll be unstoppable.
Glad to be back.