#OperationIdris – Month 1 – January *19

For those that read last week’s entry, welcome back. For those that are new to #OperationIdris, you can check out the first entry here. To quickly recap, last week was essentially a ‘brief’ introduction about my journey so far in the ‘Church of Gainz’ (aka the gym). There’s been incredible highs. There’s been incredulous lows. But, through it all, I always somehow managed to stay true to the faith. Once you’ve been baptised in the sweat of pain, you’re now part of the fellowship of ordained lifters. There’s no convertin’. This week, I introduce to you: #OperationIdris – Month 1. 

As you can see from the feature image, I made some relatively decent progress in the first month. But, this is an ongoin’ operation. There’s no ‘end goal’ per se. I’ve merely returned to somethin’ I love with a purpose and a structure. Besides, I’ve got a long way to go before I’m happy with what I see in the mirror. And even then, we keep goin’. In the words of the late Nipsey Hussle (rest easy to a REAL G): “constant repetition is the path to progression”. True words indeed. But, before I get ahead of myself, here’s how we’re gonna do this goin’ forward. I’ll provide a breakdown of the month’s split, then I’ll jump into how the month went etc etc etc.

IMG_6050To the initiated, I can hear the screams of outrage as you’re readin’. “That ain’t a true bro split, bro”. Big man, relax. You’re on my time now. Don’t jump the gun fam. Go mix your your pre workout and line up your playlist while ‘Farda Demz’ (love to my CH1 family) chats to the rookies. How’s your calves lookin’ anyways? Nothin’ to say? I thought so.

What is the ‘Bro Split’ you ask? From what I’ve ascertained over the years, it’s a weight trainin’ method in which an individual hits one body part per day. For example one may do; Monday: Chest (international chest daaay); Tuesday: Back; Wednesday: Shoulders; Thursday: Legs (uninformed bros don’t train legs – don’t @ me) and Friday: Arms (even though the pump will be gone long before your 8pm link up wit the spice you swiped last week). While some swear by it, others opt for different methods (check out next week’s blog post). The important thing to remember is different things work for different people. We are NOT all the same. This is why I stress the importance of enjoyin’ the journey whilst you’re usin’ the ‘trial and error’ principle to determine what works best for YOU. Anyhow, bein’ the skilled Legilimens that I am, I already know what you’re thinkin’: “why did you start on Wednesday?” Let me hit pause and rewind a hot sec.

So boom, I did the Christmas n New Year blow out where I ate and drank like there was no tomorrow. We’re in January now. Time to pay the piper. Remember I said I was ready to join in November but man did Superman and messed up my knee? Cool. These times, I had a link at my local gym who had a discount code for me with no joinin’ fee. Fast forward to Jan now. I shouted him and he said: “yeah code still deh yah when yuh ready”. He must have thought I was one of them waste man that talk up gym and never go, or I was on a ‘new year, new me’ flex and he would see me the first 2 months then I’ll dip off. Does man not know when I say gym, I mean gym! Semi talkin’ sh*t at this point as I’ve already admitted my in 13 years of liftin’, I was only consistent for a year n half (no missed weeks). Like a lost soul, I’ve returned to the Church of Gainz to repent for my sins. Bench Press – forgive me! Anyhow, he sends the code, I go on the website, I enter my details, I get the email, I’m now a member. When do I train?

In last week’s post, you’ll recall I said after uni when I trained with my bro for a while, it was after work and after a period, I no longer enjoyed it to the point of not wantin’ to train. I was always tired. And, at the point of signin’ up to the gym back in Jan, I was doin a ‘government name ting’ two days a week, and, I didn’t fancy bein’ in the gym on a weekend – I already decided I’d jump in on an ‘amended bro split’ to ease my way back in. Faced with the dilemma, I relayed this in conversation with a close friend who responded with: “go in the mornin’ before you head out”. I had to turn roun n look over my depleted traps coz I know she weren’t talkin’ to me. Mornin’ meant up at 6am, leave by 6:45am, gym by 7am so I can hold a solid sesh n shower so I’m out by 9am in time to head to the legal ting. But the more I mulled it over, two things came to mind: “Do you have another option?” n “how bad do you want this?”

Now I’m a very nocturnal person. Since I was 21, unless under the influence of a ‘government seal’ or a ‘natural remedy’, if I get more than 5 uninterrupted hours of sleep a night, that’s a blessin’. And I usually fall asleep anywhere from midnight to 2 bells. The thought of gettin’ up that early, after goin’ sleep at that time was alien to me. You gotta remember this was in the middle of winter when when the wicked winds were wailin’ wagin’ war. Ain’t no one tryna be active when the wolves are out. Sidenote – I actually live in the city so the chances of wolves are minimal. I get a tad carried away when writin’. So why Wednesday? I was doin’ legal Monday n Tuesday so instead of 6am wake up, I eased myself in with an 8am wake up when I wasn’t doin’ office.

Goin’ through the notes in my phone, I made an unfortunate realisation – I didn’t log the weights I did in month 1! Which made me a tad peeved tbh. The purpose of returnin’ to the Church of Gainz was to not train blindly. I wanted to have accountability for everythin’. That bein’ said, I shouldn’t be too hard on myself. Overall, I had a great first month back and as mentioned already, I made decent headway into what I hope shall be an ongoin’ thing. Throughout the process, I’m learnin’ how to train smarter as my knee (yes I keep goin’ on about it) still hasn’t fully healed. I really should see a physio so I don’t do anythin’ that will cause lastin’ damage. Though I cannot recall the exact weights, I believe I worked in the 4 sets by 10 rep ranges on all exercises. But what exercises did you actually do I hear you ask? You’ve forgotten I’m a skilled Legilimens haven’t you? Let’s break it down.

BackDeadlift / Seated dumbbell reverse fly / Single arm dumbell row / Bent over barbell row / Pull ups / Seated cable row 

Biceps: Preacher curls / Hammer curls / Standin’/Seated individual curls 

Triceps: Skull-crusher / Close grip press / Individual dumbbell tricep extension

Shoulders: Military press / Seated dumbbell press / Upright rows / Dumbell shrugs / Dumbbell lateral raises

Chest: Flat bench press / Incline dumbbell press / Dumbbell fly / Straight arm pullover / Around the world

Legs: Squats / Leg extension / Prone leg curls / Seated calf raise

Abs: Ropes – Obliques / StraightKettle-bell obliques / Flutter kicks

Cardio: 10 Hit sprints / 30 minute hit run

But “Demz” you say, “I don’t know what some of these exercises are”. Relaxxx. I already covered that. Just press the screen or click the mouse (whatever tickles ya fancy) and boom, you’re sent over to YouTube to see what’s good. Respect to the people who put together the tutorial videos I’ve used. Goes back to what I was sayin’ last week about sharin’ knowledge. Even I discovered some things I need to tweak in some of my movements. Train smart people. As for the cardio listed above, again I can’t recall the exact speed, but for the 10HS (10 hit sprints), I did like a 2 minute moderate paced warm up, followed by a 30 second sprint, then I’d jump off the movin’ treadmill and repeat 10 times. The 30 minute hit run was done in a park near mine. Imagine a square path that surrounds a grass area. Got it? Brilliant. I’d start at one corner and run at a moderate pace for 3 laps to get the heart rate up. Once I did the 3 ‘warm up laps’, I would walk the first ‘length’ to catch my breath, run the next three, repeat (for 30 minutes total).

In closin’, solid first month back. It took some mental strength gettin’ up early, but to quote the late Nipsey once again: “constant repetition is the path to progression”. I can’t stress that enough. Tbh, once I made it public knowledge I was back in the gym via my daily #OperationIdris uploads, there was no retreat! I couldn’t have people think I flaked. Again. My pride’s too much for that! Want proof? Remember that January morn we all woke up to a freak overnight snow storm? Don’t think man didn’t still go for a run. I actually smiled to myself and thought, I’m gonna go for a run in this n upload it so they know I ain’t playin’. I did fall over. Once. But like Mr Pennyworth said to a young Master Wayne: “Why do we fall? – so that we can learn to pick ourselves up”. FYI, that’s my ‘little’ brother in the back. The big Rass!

“Constant repetition is the path to progression.”