If you’re new here you might like to read about the Balanced Existence Challenge and about the workout program I’m following as part of the Balanced Existence Challenge. I wrote about that in How to Look Good and Feel Great in Just 10 Minutes a Day.

Having purchased a 140kg (300lbs) Olympic weight set last week I was very excited to start the Power to the People! program. So excited in fact I had to stop myself every day for the first couple of days from doing a second deadlift workout later on in the day. The program is so minimalist that this morning I completed my workout by the time my eggs had boiled for breakfast.

And that’s what’s so great about this. I’ve been working with kettlebells almost exclusively for more then a year now and I haven’t used the deadlift since I was 16. So there is the excitement of something new. There is the challenge and progressive accomplishment ahead of me of lifting heavier and heavier weight. There is also the excitement that comes from setting and systematically achieving goals. It just feels good.

When I first got the Olympic weight set home last week I started playing around with my deadlift with relatively light weight to work on my technique. At a bodyweight of slightly under 80kg (175lbs) I did some singles to see where my current strength levels were. I needed to figure out what weight to start with on the Monday (Day 1) of this week. I pulled (deadlifted) 80kg (176lbs), 90kg (198lbs), 100kg (220lbs) and 110kg (242lbs) then backed down to 90kg (198lbs) for a triple.

100kg (220lbs) felt solid and like I could go 5 reps at that weight without too much trouble. However my technique does not feel like it’s ready to handle seriously heavy weight yet. I’m still concerned for my lower back and I think I wasn’t pushing away with my legs or hipping though correctly.

Day 1
Monday looked like this:

90kg (198lbs) x 5
80kg (176lbs) x 5

TGU (each arm)
20kg (44lbs) x 1
32kg (70lbs) x 2

Instead of bent press I decided to switch that for kettlebell Turkish Get-Ups (TGUs). I don’t feel good messing with a tried and proven program such as Pavel’s Power to the People! which is what I’m following here but I really like TGUs with the 32kg kettlebell and think it will go well with deadlifts for all around functional strength. So I’m going to stick with TGU for now and see what happens.

I plan to progressively add an additional TGU rep every couple of weeks. The aim being to hit somewhere in the range of 5-7 reps each arm 5 days a week and then move up to the 40kg kettlebell and start all over again.

Here is a video of how to do Turkish Get-Ups (TGU):

I get the feeling that working with the 20kg and then 32kg kettlebell has made me stronger then I realized. My short-term goal of pulling 300lbs for single rep doesn’t feel that far off and my longer-term goal of double bodyweight deadlift certainly feels achievable through the Power to the People! program. I’m going to need to buy more weight!

Read more in Day 2.

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