Seeing Stars at the Gym (Whole30 Day 19)

Eating right is only part of the battle. Ok, it’s a big part of the battle. As Tim Ferris says, “You can’t outwork your mouth” (or something like that). His point is that you can be a gym rat and run everyday, but your food choice ultimately has a bigger impact on your weight.

The first couple weeks of the Whole30 I took things easy at the gym. I was feeling weak, so I just did enough to stay engaged at the gym. But I don’t want to lose a whole month of progress, so I’ve been working out a little harder this week.

The Deadlift: The Babe Ruth of lifts

olympicblackplateToday is deadlift day. If you ask people about the deadlift you’ll get one of two responses: the deadlift is the greatest lift ever, or the deadlift leads to chronic back pain. I’m part of the group that believes deeply in the deadlift. Ever since I started lifting, I can’t think of any lift that has made a bigger impact on my whole body. Before I started deadlifting heavier weight (for me), I did a lot of research and made sure I had the right form. Deadlifts with poor form lead to all kinds of problems. But once your lifting is sound, I’ve just been focused on adding more weight to the lift.

I had taken the last couple deadlift days pretty easy. Today I tried to get back to my heavier weights. I like to lift in a pattern of five sets of five reps. Everything went well the first three sets. Sets four and five got a little goofy, however. At the end of both sets I started seeing stars. It was like a little fourth of July display was going on in the periphery of my eyes. This has happened once before, but this time I decided to do a little digging for a cause.

Other people see stars too: Yay!

Now, I have doctor friends who I could ask about this, but Googling the answer is much more fun. It turns out that the stars phenomenon is most likely caused by forgetting to breathe (I could see how that would be problematic) or a sudden change in blood pressure. Whatever the exact cause, it’s pretty harmless if it only happens occasionally (according to the internet). So, as long as I keep breathing I should be stars free. This odd sensation probably isn’t related to the Whole30, but we’ll see if it continue for the next 11 days.

quote-in-training-you-listen-to-your-body-in-competition-you-tell-your-body-to-shut-up-rich-froning-jr-89-3-0346When in doubt at the gym, I’m always reminded of the wise words of multi-time CrossFit
champion Rich Froning Jr, “In training, you listen to your body. In competition, you tell your body to shut up.” We are on the backside of the Whole30. It’s time to stop complaining body, and just get through it.

I’m writing about the Whole30 everyday (unless I forget). Leave a comment and check back tomorrow to see if I’m getting better at eating hard-boiled eggs.

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