Thursday, October 28, 2010

Finding Eduardo Sanchez

10/28 mexico
10 minutes warm-up walk on treadmill around 6-8km/h
5 cycles of:
10 pushups
10 abs (v-ups, bicycle, side-ups, crunch etc)
10 pull-ups
lunges from one end of workout room to the other and back

I did this cycle 5 times and finished with around 5-10 minutes on the treadmill at the same 6-8km/h pace and some basic yoga poses to stretch.  I hope this loosens my back and neck up.  I've been feeling under the weather since we arrived at the hotel.  I think the combination of air and land transport motion sickness plus heat and sun have taken their toll.  I just hope I don't have any food related issues while south of the border.

Wednesday's Leftovers

10/27 lift squat 3x265 bench press 3x230 pull-ups with +45lbs and overhead presses with 50lb dumbells plus my rotator cuff workout

Tired, that sums up this workout perfectly.  We were tired and worn out before we even started.  I hope the break will give us both time to recover and revitalize our training.  Now for the Mexico workouts....

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


10/26 lift power clean 3x210 deadlift 3x335


10/25 lift box squat 2+1x335 towel bench 2+1x270 

Missed a bunch of snatches with the 100lber, I think I only completed 1-2 per side with another 3 almost there.  Pull-ups were equally hard.  I think we are both burning out a little bit.  I'm dropping weight, so that is part of the problem.  I think the Mexico break is going to be good for us.  It might be time to taper back down and then build up again.  I can feel it mentally, as well.  You can tell just by looking at my recent posts.  It's all I can do just to document each day.

Sunday, October 24, 2010


10/23 spin 60 mins

Did another one of these on some pretty beat up legs.  The girl in front of me was always out of rhythm, which kept throwing me off.  My knees are aching right now, but I hope some sleep tomorrow will alleviate that.  I'm taking Sunday off.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

almost there...

10/22 lift squat 6x255 bench press 5+1x220 plus dips and pull-ups.

I don't know what it is about 10, 8, 6 week, but it's turning into one of the hardest weeks.  We have moved the weights up for each working set to our absolute limits.  Instead of working up to a maximum effort, it's now warm-up sets and then 3 sets of maximum effort lifting.  I'm glad we wrap this up next Wednesday, but I'm not looking forward to 3 lifting days back to back.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Finish Strong

10/21 spin 60 mins

Doing my best to get in at least two spin classes a week.  I do think I'm getting a little better at it, but I still have no rhythm.  Since we are leaving on next Thursday, the plan is to lift on Mon, Tues and Wed.  I want to get in at least one workout this weekend too.  Now if I can finalize these holiday plans..

Too Busy to Post

10/20 lift power clean 2x225 deadlift 2x365 plus 2 sets of 55lb dumbell incline curls and 3 sets of incline dumbells press working up a 10x80lb set.

Not bad progress, as both the core lifts are using the weight I singled last week.  The deadlift is still in my head pretty bad, but I haven't hurt my back yet...I think this is my longest stretch with reinjuring the back.  I've been so busy trying to sort out holiday plans I nearly forgot to write up a post.  Not much else to report.  I did nothing on Tuesday.  I need to hit the afternoon yoga and the spin class tomorrow, unless I'm out chasing the +1 on my bike (which is a good possibility).  If that's the case, I will need to really push hard the whole time, as I really need some brutal cardio.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Medoc 10 Mile Trail Race Report


I barely had time to eat my breakfast before they finished galavanting through the woods for 10 miles.  It seemed kind of silly to have the first mile be a down and back on the access road, but it was a great opportunity for spectators and allowed me to figure out and relay their positions in the pack.  Medoc is probably the best trail race for a spectator due to the out and back first mile and the long field run to the finish.  The +1 one finished 8th in her age group and TD finished 5th in hers!  They are definitely in for next year as everything about Medoc was great.  The trail, organization, layout and schwag were all awesome.  If I ever decide to do longer runs, this one is definitely at the top of my list.  Say it with me:


Squat and Cycle

10/18 lift 1:30pm box squat 4+2x315 towel bench 5+1x240  snatches 4x100 and the usual pull-ups

Wow, we have pushed our weights up on the working sets for 10, 8 and 6 reps to the point of bombing on occasion and this was one of those occasions.  This used to be an easy recovery week, but now each weight is at the limit for the required number of reps.  I was so tired on the snatches, I had to do 6 on my left side as I missed lock out on two of them.  I had a really scary moment on my first rep with the 100lber, as my right hand slipped at the top of the snatch.  Thank goodness I was able to get my palm under the weight or it would have fallen on my head.  So I completed my first rep looking like a waiter carrying a tray.

10/18 spin 5:45pm 60 mins

So apparently doing heavy squats before a spin class isn't a good idea.  I made it through the class, but not my best performance.  I would rate this one up there with the intermediate class, maybe a few less sprints, but if you keep your tension where it should be; it's just as hard.  I think I excel at slow, high resistance climbs and suck at sprints.  This kind of makes sense with my build and how I train.  These last two spin classes feel like I'm moving backwards.  My legs feel heavy and my lungs are struggling to supply them with oxygen.  Hopefully it's just a little bit of overtraining and lack of sleep giving me troubles.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Out of Sync

10/17 spin/yoga spin 30 mins yoga 45 mins

We made it to another combo class at SYNCStudio today.  I think taking the last two days off did more harm than good.  Working all night and waking to an upset stomach didn't help either.  My legs felt sluggish the entire class, and I still have no rhythm.  The yoga went fine,  I even brought my mat, which I haven't used since I hurt my back.  It's nice to do a shorter practice as I ease my way back into it.  My foot is unhappy again, but I've stopped taking the diclofenac for now.  My plan is no running and no NSAIDs for another week.  I really hope this foot problem doesn't become chronic and I can start my running again.  I would like to do a trail race in early December before the big one in February.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

random diet info

10/15 just work

Since we did our Friday workout on Thursday, I didn't do anything today outside of regular work.  I think I should devote this post to something of use, so I'm going to talk a little about my gluten free diet.  I have celiac disease that was caught fairly early and it's been a real blessing in disguise.  I used to eat this clean, but slowly, over the last few years, I drifted away from it.  This made the transition to gluten free eating relatively painless for me and I have added motivation to eat clean (so I don't feel ill).

big ole bowl of quinoa w/ raisins or banana & walnuts (sometimes honey or maple syrup)
whole avocado
2 hard boiled eggs

carrots and/or sweet peppers
string cheese stick
berries or piece of fruit
2 corn tortillas with turkey and apple butter

sweet potato
lean protein (burger, chicken breast, fish etc)
frozen veggies (things like peas, brussels sprouts, corn, greenbeans

There are plenty of days I don't eat this clean.  Dinner is the big offender, and sometimes gluten free desserts sneak into the house...  The main adjustments I've made from a more traditional clean diet are the addition of the quinoa and the corn tortillas instead of bread for my sandwiches.  The quinoa is easily cooked in a rice cooker.  I realize there are better rice cookers out there, but I've had this one for 15+ years and it's still going strong.  Yes, I actually asked for a rice cooker for Christmas...  I've learned to cook it using the brown rice instructions instead of the white rice ones, which softens the texture a bit (more water).  For eggs, we use our toaster which can hard boil up to four eggs at a time.  I haven't dusted off my bread maker yet, as I'm worried about trying to clean out all the gluten from loaves past.  I have the original Trillium Breadman, it's so old I can't even find a picture online.  You can see it on the cover of The Breadman's Healthy Bread Book.  I think I made just about every recipe in this book back in the day.  I have fond memories of having a slice of fresh bread I made before heading out the door to wait for the school bus, so I was definitely under, I must have been a weird kid.  I use a Foreman 360 Grill to cook lean proteins, gluten free pancakes and grilled cheese.  If anyone has a question about my diet, which I call "eating clean for lazy people," please leave a comment.  I'd be happy to help with any celiac related questions, as well.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Thursday is the New Friday

10/14 lift squat 1x285 bench press 1x260 plus 3 sets of pullups and dips with +40lbs on the 2nd set

I should point out that we made significant increases to the weights we used for our 5,4,3 and 2 rep sets, so this made the singles even harder.  We should start adding more weight on the dips, even though my shoulders sound like rusty hinges doing them.  The squat was brutal for me, but I'm still relearning how to fire my back and hips without pain.  If I can keep from hurting my back again, I bet I could hit some of my old numbers in the next two months.  My lifting partner tried to talk me into doing 275 on the bench, but I stuck with my 5lb increase from last month.  This was probably for the best, as I got a little crooked when I went to press it out and I don't think I could have recovered with another 15lbs on the bar.

Running Shoes for a Guy who Hates Running and Shoes

If you have been reading my early posts before I started to have problems with my left foot, I was running exclusively in Vibram KSO treks.  The only problem I had with them was blisters on my big toes, until I started to develop the tendinitis in my left foot.  I think this is really a mechanics issue, as I've always rolled in more on my left foot and I can tell it's not as strong as my right.

I was wearing Mizuno Wave Inspire 5's and Wave Ascend 4's before I got my VFF's.  I wore the Ascend 4's for the Leatherneck (USMC Mud Run) as I wanted maximum traction.  They didn't let me down, but they did get super heavy after slogging through the deepest, thickest mud I've ever seen.  After the race I did one last one run in my VFF's, which is what put me out of commission.  I haven't run a step since September 30th, in the hopes of healing this foot and coming back stronger than ever.

When I first started having problems with my left foot, I tried to find a pair of shoes that would allow me to keep my barefoot running style, but still offer some protection from rocks and support for my plantar fascia.  I went to Bull City Running Company and Evan had me try the Brooks Green Silence, Saucony Kinvara and Mizuno Wave Precision 11.  I got to run up and down the block in each pair and tried most of them on more than once.  I'll go ahead and tell you I ended up with the Brooks Green silence, but that isn't where the story ends.  A little background before I give you my thoughts on each shoe.  I wear between 11.5-12.5 in a 2E width, so the toe box can be a big issue for me.

Mizuno Wave Precision 11:  These shoes felt the most familiar to me and probably the most comfortable.  I think this is because they really aren't much different than my Wave Inspire 5's.  If you had blindfolded me and put me in a new pair of each, I probably couldn't tell the difference.  This is a good thing if you like the Inspire 5, which I do, but it's really not a minimalist shoe.  The shoe is pretty light, but the sole is of traditional thickness with a normal heel to toe drop.  I think it's a great shoe, but not one that encourages a forefoot strike or a barefoot running style.

Saucony Kinvara:  This is probably the best shoe for a hard surface forefoot runner or someone looking to dabble in barefoot style running.  The sole is thick and supportive, but the heel to toe drop is minimal (4mm I think).  They felt pretty good, but I'm concerned about the lack of rubber on the forefoot, especially the prime impact areas (outside edge).  The shoe didn't seem rugged enough for trails or with enough rubber to survive very long on pavement.  If I started running on hard surfaces, I think this would be my shoe until there are more options with a minimal heel to toe drop.

Brooks Green Silence:  These are the shoes I took home and did two runs of about 3 miles in.  They are pretty minimal.  Not much support and very lightweight.  They do have a pretty substantial heel to toe drop and a decent amount of sole.  I think my problems with them relate to me being such a heavy guy with wide feet.  They just felt too squishy and I had to get them in a larger size to accommodate the width of my feet.  The extra length and squishiness made it hard for me to get comfortable in my stride.  I found the shoes exacerbated my left foot issues.  I could manage the pain and adjust more easily in my VFF's.  I think they would be a great shoe for a lighter runner with narrower feet.

This brings me to my latest pair of shoes.  I'm still not running yet, but I did some shoe shopping the other day, as I really think I need a shoe to alternate with the VFF's, especially when I start my rehab running.  I think I might have found a winner in the New Balance MT101.  I've been reading some of Anton Krupicka's articles and I find he's most in tune with what I'm looking for in my running.  I know he runs a good bit in the MT101 and helped design it, so I figured it was worth checking out, as the New Balance Minimus won't show up until February.  I'm really digging this shoe.  The sole is thin, there is a nice rock plate to protect me.  The toe box is extremely wide, so I could buy it in my actual size.  The shoe still has a heel to toe drop, but I think the minimal sole height is going to be a bigger factor.  I'll report back once I actually run in them.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Mental vs. Mechanical

10/13 lift power clean 1x225 deadlift 1x365 plus incline dumbells 5x65,5x70,7x75 and dumbell hammer curls 2x7x85

Today I was able to push through the mental barrier I've been harboring on the deadlift.  After another back injury with 365 four weeks ago and a few times where I went to pull 365 and felt like I was going to re-injure myself; I finally did it.  I was only planning to do 335, but my 325 double felt so light, I knew I had the strength to complete the lift, I just needed to get my head right and keep my back lined up and evenly pull my left and right sides.  The actual pull was easy, if I wasn't scared of popping something loose, I could have done something in the 380-405 range.  The best part is my core actually felt stable.  This is the first time I can say that in a long time.  I've done some heavy box squats, regular squats and deadlifts, but I haven't felt stability in my core since I first injured my back.  I wonder if the NSAID is part of what's helping.  Whatever it is, I'll take it.  I used to have incredible back strength and it feels great to see a glimmer of that again.  We have to max out on regular squat and bench tomorrow, so hopefully I will have good things to report on Thursday!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Spin Cycled, Permanently Pressed and Tumbled Dry

10/12 spin 60 mins beginner/intermediate

Apparently I'm a baby spinner because this class kicked the crap out of me.  I think in part due to the intermediate level, there was no instruction prior to each move and they were all done so fast I had trouble catching on.  I had a hell of a time trying to keep up.  I could keep my pedals at the right cadence, but I could never get my upper body to match.  The various 6+ minute climbing sessions didn't help either.  I just hope my knees and my foot feel alright tomorrow.  I think I spent a lot more time off the seat and with significantly more tension and higher pace.  My left foot was starting to hurt like it did from running toward the end of the class.  I think I will try and stick to the basics classes for a few more weeks.  I also wore a new pair of compression shorts that were crushing my FUPA, which messed with my breathing.  I never realized I was such a belly breather until I wore these shorts!

The schedule for this week has changed again, as my lifting partner couldn't make it today, so we are lifting on Wednesday and Thursday.  I still might try to get in a yoga or a ninjafit on Wednesday and Thursday.

Monday, October 11, 2010

All Mixed Up

10/11 lift box squat 2x325 (failed 335) towel bench 1x280 dumbell snatches 4x100 and pull-ups +40lbs

I made good on my promise to get 4 reps of snatches on each side with the 100 pounder.  I also successfully added 5lbs to my towel bench max.  My box squat was up, but still no where near what it should be.  For comparison's sake, my lifting partner did 410 for his single, which means if I hadn't hurt my back, I would be doing at least that much.  I still don't have the feeling of stability in my core I had before my back injury.  I hope this comes back with time, as I think it keeps my body from firing on all cylinders on back related lifts.

This week is going to be all mixed up, as we are doing the power cleans and deadlifts tomorrow.   My lifting partner is out of town on Friday, so I think we will do Monday, Tuesday and Thursday for lifts.  I've also signed up for a spin class already.  So, my plan for Wednesday will be ninjafit and yoga.  Thursday weights and ninjafit.  When we made these plans I think he was trying to avoid lifting on Thursday, but I hope I'm wrong, as I really don't want to try and do max outs on 3 days in a row!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Easy Like Sunday Morning

10/10/10 nothing

Today I took it easy.  Cooked my quinoa for the week in the rice cooker with some sweet potatoes in the steamer rack.  I used the brown rice instructions for adding water last time.  This time I used the white rice instructions and it's definitely made the texture much firmer.  I'm not sure which style I like better.  I made 4 cups this time, so 1 more cup from last week.  Made omelets with deli turkey and cheese for the +1 and myself.  Also got some groceries for the week.  Cooked some salmon on the Foreman for dinner.  This is my first time doing a salmon fillet on the new Foreman and I overcooked it.  I tried a last minute marinade of honey and a fresh orange.

My foot is still not right, but my gait is getting better each day.  I'm still taking the diclofenac and I think I will for the next week.  I did work the legs and feet over with The Stick and my Foam Roller.  I guess this counts as something, as I was pouring with sweat after working out all the knots.  This week is 5,4,3,2,1 on the weights, so I'll be trying to hit some new max outs.  I'd also like to get in two ninjafits, yogas and spinning classes.  I figure with my forced layoff in less than three weeks (Mexico), I should try and peak.  I'm not talking about competition level, but I haven't tried to push myself like I used to in a long time.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Dead Legs

10/9 spin 60mins

Did another "basics" class at SYNCStudio on Saturday.  I decided to try my mountain bike shoes (Specialized).  They worked pretty good, but the bottoms of my feet started to get numb about half way through.  I also felt like I have my cleats set a little too far back from the ball of my foot.  I never noticed this on my mountain bike before and I remember spending a lot of time to get it setup right, so I wonder if the clips are offset on the spinning pedals.  My shoes have laces and velcro, so they are a real pain to put on and take off before and after class.  I'll probably get a dedicated pair of spin shoes if we decide to keep going.

I enjoyed the class, but I continue to struggle with keeping in time with the teacher.  I seem to catch on to a little bit more each class.  I think I might finally get my seat setup just right in the next class.  So far my knees feel ok this time, but I'm reserving judgment until after the next 48 hours.  Otherwise, my body is done from the waist down.  Between the lunges, burpees, squats and spinning over the last few days, I just want to sleep through the rest of the weekend.  I was thinking about getting in another workout on Sunday, but I'm going to take the wait and see approach on that one.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Tired Legs

10/8 lift squat 5x255 bench press 4x225 (needed an assist on the 5th one, as I was uneven at the bottom and hit the stops, throwing off my alignment)  pull-ups and dips

My upper glutes and quads already felt swollen and sore from the lunges and burpees yesterday.  I couldn't believe how heavy each set of squats felt.  I had to do breathing squats once we got over 200lbs.  I don't know how my lower body has gotten so weak, but we still moved up 5lbs on the squat and 10lbs on the bench.  I think my foot is feeling a little better today.  I'll be interested to see if spinning on Saturday makes it sore again.  I think I might wear my mountain bike shoes.


10/7 ninjafit WOD lunges from the dojo to the end of the shopping center and back, followed by 100 burpees

I'm not sure if this was easier than running 3 laps around the complex or not, but the runners finished before the lungers (yes, I know that is not a word).  So I think we got the short end of the stick.  I might have skipped a few burpees, as I'm not used to counting that high, especially under duress. I didn't make the morning yoga, but, instead, I got some DIY improvement projects done around the house.  I think we have spinning class on tap for Saturday and I'm not sure about Sunday yet.  I know the +1 has to run more miles on Sunday than I usually drive in a week, so she's probably going to want to take it easy by the time I wake-up.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Double Day

10/6 1:30pm power clean 5x185 deadlift 5x335  Also did some 5x75 on the inline presses and I did some incline and regular curls 5x55 dumbells.

The cleans went well and I moved up a good bit, although I wasn't moving my feet, but I didn't have to with the weights.  The deadlift really got in my head after hurting myself again on 365 two weeks ago and feeling like something was hurt on the top set last week.  I worked hard on keeping my back protected and the 335 felt good.

10/6 5:30pm Duke obstacle course (mostly upper body)

The course was fun, I feel like I should have worked harder and done each obstacle more times, as we walked it due to my foot injury.  I was planning to do another loop, but we ran out of daylight.  I really didn't have any business doing the box jumps or some of the other jumping obstacles, but I did them anyways.  The walk back to the car is pretty hilly and I could tell my foot was pissed off at me.  Hopefully I didn't set myself back too far doing these.  Tomorrow, my plan is to hit yoga at 11am and ninjafit at 7:30pm.  This should keep my cardio up, assuming the WOD isn't something that will do more damage to my foot.  Speaking of which, I forgot to take my evening diclofenac...  Bedtime!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Along for the ride

The +1 had her speed work today, so I took out my mountain bike and tried to get in a few miles along with her.  I biked the whole time she was running, going ahead and coming back to check on her progress.  I made a point to try some of the stuff we did in spinning on a live bike and it's hard!  Just like running, it takes a while to settle in on the bike.  When I first went out to catch her, I found my quads were burning like crazy as I tried to power along at maximum velocity.  I would do sprints here and there and then try and hold a fast cadence.  Hopefully my knees will feel ok tomorrow, as I was clipped in with the SPD's and I'm still not sure I have the angles right.

10/5 bike 10ish miles

Monday, October 4, 2010

Photos of team "Ground Game" from the USMC Mud Run

At least someone looks like they are having a good time!
Practicing our zombie impressions for Halloween.
Just out for a stroll.
Is that a floater!
Ten feet never seemed so high.
Half way there!
All you can do is hang on for the ride.
I'm pretty sure this is right after the guy dropped me.
I decided to mix it up with a little Frankenstein's monster impression.
Bulletproof tiger!
You can do-eeet!
Coming down the mountain.
Almost there!
But a true champion, face to face with his darkest hour, will do whatever it takes to rise above. A man fights, and fights, and then fights some more. Because surrender is death, and death is for pussies. --Kenny Powers

back in the 5x5's

10/4 lift box squat 5x275 towel bench 5x245

The most dreaded week of lifting has returned.  We are back on five sets of five reps, which is always demoralizing.  I did my snatches 5x65 and 3x100 again.  I definitely need to do four or five reps with the 100 next week.  Pull-ups were with 40lbs, our second week at the new weight.  My back feels a little funny from being hunched over on the spinning bike over the weekend.  I made sure to look at the ceiling on the squats and not allow my back to round when I would sit on the box.  I have started doing the 6 holes showing on the box for all my sets.  The bench was really hard, as we did 225 for the 4th set and that was a struggle.  Somehow I still managed to gut out all 5 reps using 245 without any help.

Looks like I might be doing the 8 mile Uwharrie Mountain Run in February.  The +1 has asked me about it and today I brought it up with my lifting partner and he expressed an interest in joining me on the 8.  This is probably for the best, so the +1 doesn't feel like she's leaving me behind if she does the 20 miler (which she should).

My foot is still bothering me, but it's much better than last week.  I plan to do ninjafit tomorrow and take it easy on the foot otherwise.  I would see about spinning again, but my old posterolateral corner injury is bothering me after Sunday.  So I've been babying both legs today.  If it clears up by Thursday, I might try and get in a spinning session.  I'm still a long way from trying to run again, but at least things are getting better instead of worse!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Spun Out

10/3 30 min spin 45 min yoga

We did another spinning class at SYNCStudio.  This one was half spinning and half yoga.  Online registration showed the class to be mostly empty, but when we arrived the only pair of bikes available were on the front row next to the instructor.  This sucked extra bad, as I was the only dude in the whole class.  I struggled to keep in rhythm with the instructor, but we survived the class.  As long as my back feels good lifting this week, I'll continue to work in a few spin classes.  The vinyasa portion of the class was a nice change of pace and my back felt ok.  I still don't like doing all the forward folds, but I think my back is doing better with them.

I will be getting in some of the ninjafit classes this week and maybe a few Anusara classes, as well.  I think this should keep me in decent shape without being able to run.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Spin it to Win it

10/2 spin 60 mins

This is my first time trying to do one of these.  My only complaint is the height of the handlebars.  They don't go up high enough.  My seat ends up being higher than the bars, because they run out of adjustment.  This was fine for the first half or so of class, then my back begin to really really hurt.  I think I will do some more of the classes and see if it gets to be more manageable as I become familiar with the classes.

On a positive note, it loosened up my foot for a few hours, allowing me to walk normally.  Things have tightened up again, but I think it might be good for it in the long run.

Friday, October 1, 2010


Ok, it's official, I seriously messed up my foot.  I can no longer walk normally without excruciating pain on the push off of every step.  I now walk flat footed on my left side, which results in a nice Igor style limp.  I can flex my foot up and walk on tip toes without much pain, but the push off from full extension is like being stabbed with a knife around the back sides of my heel.  I'm not sure if it's just the tendons on either side of the achilles or more stuff is going on.  Looks like I won't be trying to run for a week or so. I plan to keep taking the NSAIDs and work around it.  I hope I can learn from this one.  One of my biggest training goals, right now, is consistency.  It's something I have felt I've lacked in the past few years and an area that makes the biggest difference in long term results.  I need to realize consistency at all costs is not the best way.  There is a fine line between pushing through to the other side and drowning on the way there.  I think I pushed too hard this time.  Now I need to practice consistency in my other training and my rehabilitation

Lift 10/1 squat 3x260 bench press 3x235 

Also did the pull-ups with 40lbs, up from 35lbs for the new month.  We swapped the overhead presses for dips, as they seem to be more applicable to the obstacle course based training.  We used the same 40lbs on the belt this time.  It felt pretty light, so I think we will be back up to the 90lbs+ we used to do on dips in no time.  Squats are still a struggle with the back injury, but I managed to move up 5lbs.  I need to focus on building my squat variations and take it easy on the deadlifts for awhile.