Biceps, Back pain, Burn

Ironman 2/8/2022 by @Blackberry –
attendees @D2  @Fidget Spinner @Blake VanDonkelaar / LOW LIGHTS, @Butterfinger @loveseat @Blackberry @Mrs. Howell, @Blackberry

I had pretty ambitious goals for our brief workout; some would say cruel as they involved sprinting across the church parking lot and crawling endlessly through the mud.  But as the rain pushed us onto the porch, it wasn’t so bad.  Goals were:

  • How to Stop Back Pain Instantly
  • Build Better Biceps
  • other things that start with “B”
  • Plyometric power exercises.  Power = Force x Distance / Time.  Faster movements = more Power = more fast twitch muscle growth, coordination, extended calorie burn, etc.  If you are well conditioned, you will get more benefit in less time and often less injury, particularly tendonitis, than doing lots of reps of something easier

So we did the following, interspersed with focus on bicep curl techniquesand some back work:

  • Plyometric Star Jacks  (also known as side straddle hops)
  • Plyometric 90 degree bent knee Star Jacks (also known as Smurf Jacks)
  • Plyometric American floor push (the Hand Clap Merkin.  @D2 is disdainful of these and modified with the slow twitch old school Hand Release Merkin)
  • Plyometric jump down/jump ups (also known as The Burpee)
  • Bent over arm circles (also known as 90 degree bouncing hamstring stretch with Little Baby Arm Circles)

Bear crawl laps under cover to complete:

  • Plyometric Burpees x5/lap
  • Carolina Drydocks x25/lap
  • Overhead Press with Dumbbell x25/lap
  • Little Baby Leg Circles x10/lap

Back work:

  • Alternating Leg-Ups with Butt Wipes
  • Jane Fondas from Hell – extreme hip adduction for gluteus medius
  • Little Baby Leg Circles, a Blackberry invention, less silly looking but harder than Jane Fondas if done properly

Bicep Curls for the Girls

The purpose of Bicep Curls is not reps. Curls are to get Girls, @D2 reminded us.  To get more Bulge in your Brachials and build muscle, that means basics like:

  • Keep your elbows out in front
  • Go slow, especially on the negative/eccentric.  Don’t cheat with momentum, don’t hurt your tendons trying to sling the weights, don’t swing your butt or back to move the  weight.  Use the biceps.
  • Stretch/use full extension of the biceps muscle to engage all the muscle fibers.  Do a little tricep extension to straighten the arm out at the bottom.

Wall Isolated Biceps Curls: we used the back-against-the-wall technique to avoid momentum, engage the core, keep the elbows out, and to go slow enough to not knock a hole in the stucco.  25x reps done slowly.h

Standing Curls: having now been discouraged from swinging/cheating in bad form, we did 25x reps the right way and slowly.  Holding the dumb bell off center also encouraged twisting during curls.

No Money Curls:
This starts with weights down knuckles forward. Twist your arms inward and outward until weights are above shoulders, keeping knuckles facing forward. The twist will engage both bicep muscles and a little shoulder/delt action too and should pop your biceps out nicely. x25 reps

Cheat Curls:
Your muscles are worn out by now so you might as well do like they do in CrossfitTMand cheat! Cheat with momentum, sling the weight, swing your butt or back to help move the  weight.   Alternate one arm at a time and get it up there, x30 reps, x15 each arm.  Go easy on the negative.

This is normally done in the gym to gain size by doing more weight than is normally possible on the eccentric phase, so it’s great for already fatigued muscles from doing the previous sets using the same weight as before.


These are really good at killing the back/hip pain which is caused by long hours of sitting or driving, for which a weak gluteus medius in the hip is to blame.  They also strengthen back & core for all types of back issues.

  • Jane Fondas from Hell – this is the hip abduction in the Athlean-X  feature  I got rid of substantial back pain after doing these for 2 weeks.
    • Lay on side with knees bent slightly
    • Bring the top leg down and touch your knee to the ground
    • Bring the knee back and behind you – not up.  It’s key that you the leg goes somewhat behind your midline
    • Raise the leg and pause at the top, focusing keeping the leg back behind the midline.  Don’t lift your leg forward – that engages the quads and hip flexors that may be causing the problem to begin with.
    • Pause at the top for 3 seconds if you are a badass.  Repeat slowly in a controlled fashion x10 times on each side.
  • Alternating Leg Lift with Butt Wipe – this is “Heels to Heaven” lifting the legs & pelvis straight up.  To make sure your pelvis comes off the floor “wipe” the floor under your butt with your hands with each rep.  Bring one leg almost down to the floor, bring it back up to the other leg and repeat the rep raising both legs together & pelvis straight up, wiping under your butt as you do so.  Start the next rep by bringing the other leg down.  Repeat for x20 reps
  • Little Baby Leg Circles  – a simpler way to get in that hip abduction. Lay on side, x5 rep forward circles, x5 rep backward circles.  Flip to the other side and repeat.

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