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NROLFW Stage Four Recap

June 27, 2013

And another stage bites the dust!

So I’ll be honest: this was the stage where I hit my “wall,” in so many different ways. First and foremost, this stage was essentially the exact same thing as stage two, but with the expectation that you will use heavier weights and, therefore, will do fewer reps (and potentially fewer sets: 2-3 instead of the firm 3 in stage two). While part of me liked the idea of repeating the exact same exercises as a few weeks ago, if only to see my progress, the other (much bigger) part of me was so, so bored with the idea of essentially repeating the stage for another eight workouts. But I stuck with it, tried to push myself, and did see some solid progress (anywhere from a 2.5 lb weight increase on awkward/difficult exercises like the dumbbell cuban prone snatch to a 10-20 lb weight increase on others like Bulgarian split squats and deadlifts).

Here are some other random “end of stage four” thoughts:

  • This stage took me a full week and a half longer than I expected, largely due in part to the random (miserable) cold/cough I developed on the last day of school (great timing, right?) I still worked out for most of the five or so days I felt sick, but I took it *really* easy—like, slow walks or pedaling on the elliptical easy. Not a huge deal, but definitely a bit of a setback.
  • Not sure if I was getting bored with the program or just the repetition of the stage, but I found myself wanting to opt out of strength/lifting days more during this stage than ever before. For the last three or so months, I’ve looked forward to the break from steady state cardio, but these last two weeks, I’ve been craving some mindless running/elliptical/stairmaster time.
  • Still loving the cardio speed intervals (in a love-hate kinda way). I like pushing myself to see how much faster I can go, which is usually a lot faster than I ever give myself credit for.
  • One pair of my shorts fit me. The others are too tight in the legs and way too big in the waist. I think this is supposed to be a relatively good sign, but it’s kind of a pain in the ass (no pun intended). It’s almost July, and suddenly none of my shorts fit!
  • Nick has a pull-up bar attached to the door frame in our guest bedroom/office and has been helping me with some assisted pull ups every few days. Those things are HARD, but I’m happy to get the practice in before the program actually calls for them!
  • Still hating step ups (and Bulgarian split squats). Still loving horizontal wood chops.
  • 120 seconds of planks is NO JOKE. But so, so effective. People need to stop doing crunches and start doing planks.
  • I haven’t weighed myself in over a month. That’s probably an entirely different post for a different day, but right now, I have no desire to get on the scale, so I’m not.

Four stages down, three to go!

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