This morning was my first time through the HIAH Get Lean Phase 2, Workout A.  Always fun to do something a bit new.

The Barbell Row was not a problem.  I knew what I was doing and just had to find the right weight to limit my reps to between 4-6.

The Barbell Push-Press was interesting.  Just finding and setting up the right equipment was a treat.  There is one Squat Rack which works, but I first had to unload some idiots left over weights and then set the bar at the right height.  I did this first with just the bar as a warm up, then added light weights to get me moving.  I am going to have to warm up the shoulders.  I felt a bit of strain in the left rotator cuff area.  The Push was done with less than a fluid movement.  I will have to work on this.

Then there is the Clean or Power Clean.  The difference between the two moves is whether you go into a full squat or quarter squat.  You do that from the final position which is equivalent to a front squat.  I have two problems.

First:  My arms – which are longer than “normal” for my height – do not work with a normal grip on a front squat.  I have been using a cross over grip.  There is no way to convert from the regular grip to a cross over during this movement.  While using light weights – this does not matter – it will matter as the weight gets heavier.

Second: My knees.  When I was in high school I was the quintessential “Schlub.”  I along with the other rejects were put into “Corrective Gym.”  The sadistic SOB of a Gym teacher, put us in the weight room and spent his time laughing at us attempting to do exercises well beyond our ability.  His favorite – having us do Duck Walks with a 100 lbs on our shoulders around the periphery of the gym.  Here is a warning I just picked up from one exercise site:  Deep Knee Bends – A deep knee bend, where hips are dropped below knee level, will place strain on the ligaments and cartilage in the knee. This can cause chronic degenerative problems in the knee. (This move may be camouflaged as a duck walk).   Yep – that’s me.  Still can’t bowl 3 games without feeling it in my knees.  Because of my knees, I am very careful in doing squats and lunges.  I will default to quarter squats until fully warmed up and will keep the weights lighter than I could otherwise handle.

So – between my arms and my knees – the Clean or Power Clean – is going to take time to get into.

The final exercise was the Ab-Wheel Roll Out done from Knees.  I put a cushion down, found the wheel and rolled out.  No problem.  First go was 10 reps followed by 5 and 5.  I made sure that I rolled out as far as I could – even felt my gut brush the floor. 

This morning’s workout was a good starting point.  I will raise my weights the next time around.  This is a 4 week program, so it will continue through the beginning of the Summer 52DC which starts in less than two weeks.