Deadlifts were my first love when I discovered strength training. I have always thought of them as the "bad boy" or "bad girl" of weightlifting, the sexy rogue that's a beast to tame. Deadlift day is my favorite in my training program, and it's always exciting for me when a new client finally understands how to deadlift.
Lately, the hardest thing about deadlifting has been my grip. I use a lot of chalk, but sometimes that's not enough. When I was maxing out last night, I was given the amazing suggestion to use a mixed grip (one hand over, one hand under). At first it made me nervous, but then I decided what the hell. The bar was falling out of my hands anyway.
I had already tried once for a rep at 185lbs and failed. My previous PR was 180lbs and that was well over a month ago. I knew my legs could lift more, but my hands kept giving out. I tried the mixed grip at 185 and it went up like cake. I could have held it there all day. I did another single rep at 190, and then finished with a slow, clean PR at 195. To the lyrics of "Legacy" and the cheers around me to "GET IT UP" and "PUSH" and on the way down "NINJA DROP." Hearing all my favorite cues warmed my heart as the nearly two times my body weight fired up my legs. I won't feel like a legacy until I hit my goal of 210lbs (that's two times bodyweight, now only 15 pounds away), but that night was certainly legendary.
Now that we're safely into September, I can reflect on all the amazing summer activities I was able to do and start planning my upcoming fall fun. I can't begin to imagine the amount of calories I burned fighting the waves at Jones Beach during high tide, or attempting handstands on uneven sand or rock climbing under the Brooklyn Bridge at Dumbo Boulders. My point is this: There are plenty of ways to burn off the extra calories in those sweet summer cocktails. And as you start to hunker down for sugary spiked cider and apple pie this fall, don't forget to brainstorm cool ways to offset that caloric damage. Hiking through the colorful woods of upstate New York or Vermont is one of my favorite fat burners. A late summer rafting trip along the Hudson is a dynamite full body workout and lots of fun. Take your rock climbing game indoors with some high up routes to build your upper body endurance. That kind of routine workout will get your arm muscles peeking out of any close fitting long sleeve T's.
Here are a couple upside down relics from my summer outdoors: One was snapped in front of the Flatiron Building and featured in Well+Good. The other was taken in Newport, Rhode Island inside of a cave on the historic Cliff Walk which naturally became a Cliff Run!