I have not been neglecting the workout, but I've not been blogging about it (lazy, in that way), so rather than going back and entering all the reports since February 11th, I'm just going to reset and start with last Sunday's session. This works especially well because...
We have a new TotalGym!
This one is the top-of-the-line XLS model, which we scored on Craigslist for, I believe, $300. It was barely used, and the guy we bought it from was amused to know that we were buying it because we had actually worn out another one! It has the most of the attachments that we need to do the same routine we've been doing all along, with the exception of dip bars. Now, we are still able to do dips using the cables, but it is very difficult to keep the handles stable -- they want to move all over the place. I want the bars, and will probably order them soon.
Another issue is that I am no longer allowed to load more than 200 extra pounds on the bar. We just do not want to end up with another dangerously stressed piece of equipment, with breaking welds and such. This means that I have to do Squats and Bicep Curls with only 200 pounds (202, really), and thus I have to go verrrrrry sloooooowly in order to get to complete muscle fatigue in as few reps as possible. Since I was up to 13 or 14 Squats on the old machine, using 252 added pounds, I really have to slow way the heck down -- and I'm still already up to ten reps on both exercises.
I mentioned Dips. There are two ways to do them using the cable-handles: You can leave the pulley attached to the slide platform, or disconnected it for that exercise. The difference is that if you leave it connected, the total force is only half of what it is if you disconnect. I tried both methods, and found that it was much easier to keep control of the handles in pulley-connected half-force mode. When I tried it the other way, my hands were wobbling all over, and I looked something like the Robot in Lost in Space flailing about, shouting "Danger! Danger, Will Robinson!!!" However, it is the latter mode (pulley-disconnected) that gives the same resistance as using the bars. Using the bars, though, means there is no need to expend effort to stablize, since they are solidly fixed to the frame. I wish I could just use the dip bars from the older machine, but they do not fit correctly on the new XLS, so I'll need to order them.
We are scheduled to Slow Burn again today (Friday), so I should be back with a new post before the weekend is out.