Saturday, August 11, 2007

NC State Powerlifting Championships Today...

...and I'm not there.

I was going to go.

Then, I met with Dr. Cobb during I-Phase and he changed my mind.

Well, he helped me think clearly about this knee injury.

My focus was on staying out of the ROMs that would negatively impact the cartilage damage, so the only obvious conclusion and therefore decision at the time was no more weightlifting. His point of view was why not examine the leg and determine what's the cause of the problem and if it is repairable/re-trainable. So, the cause was the patella dislocation. The result of that was tibial external rotation. In order to return the tibia to its natural/optimal location, he taped the patellar tendon to decrease/eliminate pain in knee extension and taped the gracilis and sartorius to increase mechanoreceptive input and retrain their ability to keep the tibia aligned correctly.

So what does all this mean? It means I jumped the gun with powerlifting. In my heart of hearts I still hold out hope to compete again in weightlifting, so as long as there is even a remote possibility, I owe it to myself to follow that possibility. So, back to the platform.

What have the results been? Virtually pain-free all the time in almost all ROMs with this right knee that I can't honestly remember having before--even the dreaded right lateral lunge is pain free. My body responded very quickly to the new tape job and the VMO is growing nicely. The VL is growing again and the right quad is quickly starting to look like the left. Also, this changes the mechanics of my squat, so I'm recruiting even more of my left glute. Even the bone rhythm work feels better on the right side. I knew something was wrong because I could rarely get the right side to feel as easy or as fluid as the left while performing bilateral work, like squatting or deadlifting.

What about training? Was going well until this week when I had too much of a SNS overload and locked down my left knee (I know, weird that it was the left one.). It took some serious PNS stimulation to unlock it. This was a valuable learning process for me: I need to plan active recovery work into my training program. I can't just use passive means such as rest and sleep. When I look back on my most productive training, I used AR work daily. It allowed for much higher workloads, quicker recovery, and therefore faster adaptation. If that was the case at 24, how much more so at 34.

Therefore, my new training program will be based on a 3 day cycle:
Day 1: Speed,
Day 2: Strength
Day 3: Active Recovery

I will most likely employ some form of AR work on days 1&2, but day 3 will be solely devoted to it.

I think this should work well.

So, back to the platform today to play with some comfortable doubles.


Blogger Tim Anderson said...

Geoff, maybe next year you will not only compete in the powerlifting championship, but you will dominate it.

4:05 PM  
Blogger Frankie Faires said...


I think an appropriate quote from Eric is,

“You should move better at the end of your workout than at the beginning.

Let's take it to its logical conclusion...

If my workout (or even better - my movement practice) is leaving me moving worse than I was before my movement practice,
it is because of 1 of 2 things:
1. Wrong set of movements
2. Right set of movements
performed in the wrong way

How I like to program or periodize my movement practice is very simple...Test it!

I do each set of my movements with minimal load in the elements of efficiency and then test the effect. I do a gait, flexibility or muscle test immediately thereafter. If I am moving better, then I am doing the right movement set(s).

All I have to do now is perform the elements of efficiency while lifting and terminate my practice before I consistently practice too much tension. If I do that, I am pretty much gold.

If I am moving worse, this is the wrong set of movements. From time to time (or period-ically, if you will) it will be time for me to perform a different set of movements. This may be one of those times...or at least right now, I need to do something different.

More than likely those movements will be antagonistic or at least novel to the ones I was recently performing. Sooner or later, it will be time for some other set of new movements or previously practiced movements to be practiced again. The only way to know for sure is to test - consistently and rigorously.

This is the simplest and most effective periodization approach I have encountered. Periodization is much simpler than everyone makes it. It simply demands personal research in the form of preemptive testing before practice.

Testing movement efficicacy and performing the elements of efficiency efffectively negates the need for "active recovery."

If I am having to "recover" from my movement practices, then doesn't it stand to reason that my movement practice was damaging me? I am either moving toward better function or toward injury in every movement I do. Don't I want every step to be toward better function?

It doesn't seem to me that you need to plan active recovery as much as you need to perform timely, efficacious movement patterns in the elements of efficiency.


5:01 PM  
Blogger Geoff Neupert said...

Tim, no powerlifting for me for awhile--not till I'm completely through, or over weightlifting.

Frankie, VERY interesting take. I try to practice the 4 EEs within each training session. In fact, my last set of snatches was better than the first today, and so was my last set of cleans. The AR work is not so much to counterbalance the lifting, but the stressors of life: business, personal, etc.

Have you experienced this yet: neither R- nor I- improves your movement or gets you out of pain? At that point, you have to try something else, perhaps only if to quiet the mind and relax the "heart." I'm looking at it as balancing the SNS and the PNS--that's the reason for the AR work. Back to training: A standard and relatively simple way for me to test a good training session is if I need to adjust the rearview mirror up in my car or my shoulders feel "dropped."

9:58 PM  
Blogger Mike T Nelson said...

Hi there Geoff! Thanks for the nice update.

As you well know, ALL stress is the same to your body--life, work, weights, etc. Sometimes that means the weight training (one of the things you have HUGE control over) has to be lower or at min changed.

I have not experienced R or I Phase not working yet, but some times I need to get the right drill and always make sure I am present and not just "going through the motions"

Keep us updated!
Mike N

11:08 PM  
Blogger Frankie Faires said...

I'd be interested to see how the preemptive testing of movement sets as a cue for periodization of movement sets affects your progress.

In re: to the stress of living life...sounds like time for lateral transfer of EE beyond movement into the rest of life? I'm still working on that one.

11:38 PM  
Blogger Geoff Neupert said...

Mike, Z not "working" at any particular moment for me just means it's not working the way I want it to, which of course means I need to take a different approach to those movements, like floor work. Foot work while seated with palms flat on the floor and shoulders in extension supporting the trunk seems to be a big winner for me. Did some on Friday night and had a huge payoff. But, I also had hit the AR work earlier in the day. Unfortunately, I'm very introverted so in order to recharge, I need high quality periods of time alone to reflect. This drives my wife crazy. I noticed this week that the two AR sessions helped in this process.

Frankie, I like your idea of lateral transfer. I try to be aware of 4 EEs in daily movement, however, I am "blissfully" unaware of them in any intellectual and emotional endeavors (for lack of a better word). Time to start being more aware, I guess. That's where David Allen's "Getting Things Done" book that Mike gave me comes in I'm assuming.

10:41 AM  
Blogger Frankie Faires said...

Disengagement is your AR?

I am a Human Growth & Development nut.
One of things babies do is avert their eyes when they are too visually stimulated...especially by a parent.

If you take EE into account, activities need to be moderated before disengagement is a necessity and/or disengage before it is a necessity. There will be an interesting adaptation.

It is necessary for me to do the same thing.

12:42 PM  
Blogger Mike T Nelson said...

Let me know what you think of David Allen's book. I have found that it has allowed me to decrease tension in my life overall; as I can "download" the stuff in my head (buy cashews next week at the store, replace my car tailight, etc) into a trusted system and get it out of my head. I don't think your brain was designed to hold on to all the stuff anyway--that is why they made paper!

Mike N

6:33 PM  
Blogger Franz Snideman said...

Awesome Geoff,

You must be excited to get back to the platform?

Are you and your wife coming out here to Southern California?

You guys can always stay with us,please keep that in mind.

12:18 PM  

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