This second chapter of “Recovery from Chaos” covers early April (April 2) up to April 20. It is also the period when the assessment of strength loss and injury expression is concluded. We now go into a period of addressing imbalances, which we (meaning Dani Overcash and myself)  believe will be basic to enter a competitive preparation period.

 

“Recovery from chaos 11” – this was the first time, in over 6 months, or even more, due to the many, many injuries (way back from last year’s adductor + rectus abdominalis major longitudinal tear, vastus medialis tear and, in December, hamstring tendon injury), that I did some sumo deadlifting over “nothing weight”. This is 295lbs/133kg, which is a warmup weight for “normal me”, but a great advance in “the Road our of Chaos” or “Crawling from Rock bottom”. Remember that last time I tried precisely this weight, minutes before all injuries cried in chorus: DANGER!! WE’RE ABOUT TO TEAR. And as I set up and tightened, they screamed as loud as to make me stop. Today I was surprised, and, therefore, unstable, as the weight came with no pain (just a little background soreness…). I walked up the plate support and grabbed another pair of 10lbs. Why not? Then I thought better: I’m alone here. I don’t have my network of great doctors and hospitals as I do where I used to call home. If some catastrophe happens (and many did, in my athletic life), it will be a problem without a solution. Better not. Consider it a win and call it a day. #rebootinglife #recoveryfromchaos #recovery #mariliacoutinho #powerliftinginjuries #powerlifting #deadlifting #postactivationpotentiation

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“Recovery from chaos 10” – Same thing as before, only more stable and very little soreness. The process is slow. There are random flare ups of old injuries. They vanish as mysteriously as they show up. One week you are bloated as a potato – the next one you start shedding fat and fluid. The neuroendocrinology of chronic stress is the hardest human physiology puzzle science faces today. I think one of the toughest and most frustrating things serious coaches, doctors, health science professionals in general and the educated patient face is to keep moving in the semi-darkness of very incomplete knowledge. This was a good Saturday. #rebootinglife #recoveryfromchaos #recovery #mariliacoutinho #powerliftinginjuries #powerlifting #deadlifting

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“Recovery from Chaos 9” – Yesterday was an “on” day in the present on/off day system, which seems to be leading to improvements in inflammation. Working on low volume, low intensities for extra-painful chronic injury sites, like the cartilage-less elbows. What seems to work best is a higher number of sets, smaller weight increases, lower intensity range and low volume in specially painful days. This was a “up to” 195lbs/88kg dead bench workout. By “up to” I mean there was a long warm-up and small weight increases. Then there is rehab work to do, which takes a lot of gym time. That seems to be working well, for the moment. “Why so many dead bench sessions?”, you may ask. If you are following this series, you might have seen an explanation concerning the type of bench upright, setup quality and benching. With my very (very) short arms, no training partner and the equipment I have available for benching, racking and unracking the bar has been leading to so much instability that dead benches are more efficient except in under 50% intensities. Some conclusions are applicable to anyone: 1. it is always possible to train, even to follow a less-than-optimal competitive cycle; 2. Benadryl should not be taken right before a workout, especially in higher doses; 3. While “Marilia’s axiom” of “stability is the mother of strength” remains valid, another one can be coined: “creativity is the mother of consistency” #rebootinglife #recovery #recoveryfromchaos #mariliacoutinho #powerliftinginjuries #powerlifting #bench #benchpress

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“Recovery from Chaos 9” – that was the day before yesterday, after the dead squats. How interesting: the RIGHT vastus medialis myo-tendinous junction started acting up again, an important tear I had in 2014. My concerns now were focused on the LEFT vastus medialis myo-tendinous junction, the LEFT hamstring tendon origin and elbows (cartilage, to which epicondilitis is a seconday inflammation). One of the interesting things I have been observing during this phase of my work is that the more intense the external stressors are, the slower the recovery and the more RANDOM old injury flare up (although all of them do) and new injury incidence. Inflammation is fascinating. In a publication for the Journal of Sports Medicine. Not fun at all to handle it. “Decision-making in a context of unpredictability”. Heard that before?… These were the lasts squats in the “squat day”. After that I did some rehab work. #recovery #recoveryfromchaos #rebootinglife #mariliacoutinho #powerliftinginjuries #powerlifting #mariliacoutinho #myotendinousjunction #squats

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“Recovery from chaos 8” – still figuring out how injuries (or injury ghosts….) manifest themselves. This was supposed to be a light dead squat session (this was a day when I had many rehab exercises to do). However, after a 235lb/106kg X 5, no weight, with long pauses, I went to 265lbs/120kg. Still easy and light with long pauses. But I cut it to 3 reps. I have no idea where a sudden tear can come from. I’m trying to play it safe. More to come today. #recoveryfromchaos #recovery #mariliacoutinho #powerliftinginjuries #powerlifting #squat #deadsquats #assistancework

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“Recovery from hell 8” – deads are not supposed to be the every-session assistance work for the bench press, but given the type of bench at regular gyms, very short arm lifters like myself will be in such disadvantage for racking and unracking the weight that something counter-intuitive happens: dead pressing is easier than the bench press. That is exactly what is happening. This is a 5 X 79kg/175lbs and a 3 X 85kg/185lbs dead bench workout. Usually, my dead benches max will be around 80% or less than a full bench press. I calculated that for other lifters and it is more or less this. Now, honestly, I can’t do 5 X 100kg/220lbs on that support as this ratio would predict. Not a chance. Actually, it is easier to do dead reps than full ROM reps at this point. Since I’m very far from competition yet (August), basically that will be the strategy, especially considering avoiding more injury. #benchpress #mariliacoutinho #powerliftinginjuries #powerlifting #recovery #recoveryfromchaos #rebootinglife

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‘”Recovery from chaos 6″ – Still from the day before yesterday. At some point it felt like impact and fast stretch reflex was a problem. No, it wasn’t. This has just 35kg/77lbs. It was another experiment. But done with enough volume, makes for a pretty good workout. Interesting, because today (two days after the “experiments”) ALL soreness is gone from the area of the old vastus medialis myotendinous junction injury. Again, lesson to learn: life-stressor related injuries are dangerous because they have an apparently (just apparently) random behavior. The loss of performance is inevitable and this is well backed by published evidence. I have ignored these periods and just “followed my strength” before, since one day you feel great, no pain, and the other is weird, with little sore patches and itches inside. The result was catastrophe. Usually major muscle tears. #recovery #recoveryfromchaos #rebootinglife #mariliacoutinho #powerliftinginjuries #powerlifting #squat #myotendinousjunction

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“Recovery from chaos – ‘ Let’s see what’s going on’ 1” – This is very light: I just needed to understand where and how the injury pain manifested itself. So: not at the higher flexion points of the squat, either descending or ascending; not in isometry… hum… Again, it is fascinating how life-stressor related injuries behave. Fuck’em. @danicashdpt #injury #powerliftinginjuries #powerlifting #mariliacoutinho #recoveryfromchaos #recovery #rebootinglife

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“Recovery from chaos 6”” – Yesterday was “day 2” of the training week, but because the day before the gym was too full, “day 1” of my program was done then. Squats. What one day will be “heavy squats”, but now there are only “squat 1” and “squat 2”, both recovery. Since Friday, they left vastus medialis myotendinous junction started acting up again, who knows why (the injury is pretty old: November 2015). I need to understand it. It doesn’t seem to hurt more during either descent or concentric phase at or under 90o. I feel it walking or jumping. Yesterday was a study day. These paused squats, with 90kg/198lbs were fine. Stomping my feet to set up for the static holds with 150kg was more painful. One of the most interesting (or deeply annoying, depending on whether you are the observer or the subject) aspects of life-stressor related injuries is their apparent randomness. @danicashdpt @onelifefit #mariliacoutinho #powerliftinginjuries #powerlifting #squat #myotendinousjunction #scienceandpracticeofstrengthtraining #recovery #recoveryfromchaos

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