I'm lucky to have a full set of teeth right now. Hell, I'm lucky I have a head right now. Maybe I should stick to swimming in the pool instead of trying to continue this Monkey Bar Gym crap.
So like I mentioned in the last post, on swimming days in my workout schedule I'm doing body-weight workouts instead, focusing on upper-body strength and endurance and trying to work the swim-specific muscles. I know there is no replacement for actually swimming, but as I said, I hate the pool, so this will have to suffice. Plus, I feel like a badass listening to Metallica and walking around my apartment without a shirt on doing handstands and weird body-weight moves.
Tonight was the Vegas workout. This workout can be modified to include any four exercises, and is very flexible, very fun, and very exhausting. You take a deck of cards and assign one exercise for each suit. Then you shuffle the cards, and perform the appropriate amount of reps for each suit. Aces are 14 reps, Kings 13, and so on, down through 2's. So in essence, you're getting 104 reps of four different exercises, which is way more volume than if you merely did 3x12 or even 3x20. And it provides variation in that you never know what the next exercise or amount of reps will be, so it' good fun.
I did two of these workouts tonight, back to back. I spent nearly 6 days a week for a month in Prague doing variations of this workout, and at first it would take me about an hour to complete a full deck of cards, or 416 total reps. The goal is to complete the deck as-fast-as-possible, with as little rest as possible. By the end of the month, I was completing most of the decks in 45 minutes or so, and tonight I completed two decks in 1 hour 15 minutes. Not too bad.
Towards the end of the second deck (I only had 3 cards left) is when I almost lost my head. I have one of those pull-up bars that you put in a door frame. It's steel, and compresses itself between the frame, not unlike a curtain rod that holds up a shower curtain. You simple screw it into place, and it's remarkably sturdy. I also have these rubber-band like devices with handles on the ends that I can do different resistance exercises with. Well, for this particular exercise, I had the bar placed about chest-hight in the door frame and the bands attached to it. I stood with the bands stretched towards me, facing the door and the bar, arms stretched our straight, parallel to the floor, holding the bands in both hands. Then, I'd lift my arms straight up over my head, stretching the bands and creating resistance. An excellent shoulder exercise.
About the 5th rep of this, the bar broke. The bands were stretched to the max, and, consequently, acted like a slingshot and fired the broken bar, now released from the door frame, directly at my face. I was standing about 12 feet away, and the force of the bands catapaulted this 3 foot piece of steel like a boomerang. It did not lose any height due to gravity, and was moving pretty freakin' fast. Somehow, the bar hit my chest first, still parallel to the floor, then bounced up and hit me square in the mouth, immediately inflating both of my lips. I thought for sure that I'd have a mouthful of teeth, and because I couldn't feel my mouth from the impact, I rushed into the bathroom to investigate. There was blood, but it was from my lips, and my teeth were all there.
I was literally in shock for about 2 minutes afterwards and could not believe that had just happened. Not that it just happened, but because it didn't hit me in the face. The bar weighs like 10 lbs. and was shot at me as if from a cannon and probably could have killed me. I'm still kind of in shock, and still can't feel my face (this only happened about 10 minutes ago). Amazing.