I know I planned out all my workouts for an entire year. Technically, I still have 8 weeks on my Starting Strength routine. I'm just not feeling it. I am having a very difficult time staying motivated to eat right and exercise. I've been slacking on my cardio a lot. I feel like, after three years, I'm in a rut. My weight loss isn't going anywhere and I've lost my love of exercise. I need to do something drastic.
So, I'm going to bulk. That's right. I am going to deliberately gain weight. Hopefully a lot of it will be muscle. Honestly, the thought of having to eat more terrifies me. It could very easily turn into a free-for-all clusterfuck. I need to make changes to my diet. I'm eating too many carbs, not enough protein. So, I am still going to do Weight Watchers, but I'm going to move into maintenance (35 points per day) and eat all of my (45) weekly points, plus whatever activity points I earn. More primal/paleo leaning.
That's the food plan. It's the strength training plan that has me stumped. Not stumped, because I'm pretty familiar with how it works. I have narrowed it down to two routines, and I'm not sure which one I want to do.
Bill Starr/Glenn Pendalay 5x5 Periodized Advanced Workout
squat 5x5 (same weight for all 5 sets)
bench press 1x5 (five times, increase weight with each set)
row 1x5 (five times, increase weight with each set)
accessory - calf raises
squat 5x5 (use 10-20% less weight than Monday, same weight for all 5 sets)
dead lift 5x5 (same weight for all 5 sets)
military or incline press 5x5 (same weight for all 5 sets)
pull/chin up 5x5
accessory - skull crushers, overhead tricep extensions, or dips
squat 1x5 (five times, increase weight with each set)
bench press 5x5 (same weight for all 5 sets)
row 5x5 (same weight for all 5 sets)
accessory - planks or jackknives
Weeks 5 & 6:
squat 3x3 (same weight for all 3 sets)
bench press 3x3 (same weight for all 3 sets)
row 3x3 (same weight for all 3 sets)
squat 3x3 (70% of Monday's weight, same weight for all 3 sets)
dead lift 3x3 (same weight for all 3 sets)
military or incline bench press 3x3 (same weight for all 3 sets)
pull/chin up 3x3
12 Week 4 Day Split (all 5x5)
db calf raise
reverse db calf raise
bb military press
lat db raise
rear delt row
close grip bench press (sub skull crushers)
lying leg curl (sub good mornings)
bb calf raise
seated calf raise (I need a sub for these because I don't have a good way to do them)
front delt raise
lat db raise
rear delt row
standing bb tricep extension
bent over bb row
incline bench press
stiff leg dead lift
Cardio will be limited to HIIT once or twice a week. My Go Far running club at the elementary school will be starting again soon and I don't want to do too much. I intend to keep my monthly 5K, even if I walk it. I may throw in a Primal Blueprint Workout of the Week on occasion.
But I don't know which lifting routine to go with, or even how long the bulk will be. I know it will be at least 12 weeks. So I can do the first routine twice or the second routine once. The first routine has been recommended over and over on various bodybuilding forums. The second one has also been recommended, though not as often, and it appeals to me because I can see the smaller muscle groups it works. However, there are more exercises per workout, some of them unilateral (which extends the time spent working out because I would be working one side of the body then the other). The first routine is shorter and hits all the muscle groups as well, I just can't "see" it in print.
Whatever I'm doing, I'm starting Monday, and I will be wrapping up a couple weeks before my 36th birthday. I'll then diet down a bit before summer. I don't expect huge muscle gains. It's a short bulk period, I'm a woman, and I'm older. I may have to be happy maintaining and just eating more for a while, then do a longer bulk (maybe 16-20 weeks) starting in November.
This is probably all going to bite me in the ass but I have to shake things up before I just fall apart.