Personal Training: Helping a Friend Day 35



Happy Wednesday! Glad all of you could join me for another day of my blogging about our workout today. Today was a bit different than the usual, actually a lot different for John since he normally does not do any of these exercises when I assign him workouts (for good reason) but we will be starting resistance training workouts soon.  Yesterday I had asked another gym-goes whom I have worked out with once before if I could join her for today’s workout since I had nothing planned for myself and it would save me some time and give John a break from cardio a bit – something new and fun.  It was her leg day (I know, luck me right) lol & she is good for making the workout so you really feel those gains – I would know because I was aching for 2-3 days after the upper body workout we did, but my back is looking good; so worth it. Therefore, I decided to have John workout with us as well:

John’s Workout:


  • No proper warm up, but he did walk on the treadmill for a little while, waiting for her to show. 

Workout Session:

Air squats (pyramid):

  • 1 X 12
  • 1 X 15
  • 1 X 20
  • 1 X 25
and all the way back up to 12 reps.  He said he could feel the burn with these, which was awesome, I demonstrated the movement for him and made sure to watch his form/ which was actually fairly well for a first timer. I had to remind him to get low, but I realize his hip flexors could be tight or core, so I didn’t enforce it too much – something we will work on because I have always had tight hip flexors & it sucks to do squats when you do. He was sweating afterwards.
Sumo Squat (barbell)/ smith machine:
  • 1 X 12, 35LB
  • 1 X 10, 55LB
  • 1 X 6, 65LB
  • 1 X 3, 70LB
The sumo squat was a bit harder for him to do, I wanted him to just try it out and let me know what he thought, he has a weak core ( which I can tell) but something we are learning to work on and it helps to know this because then I can aim goals at strengthening it and making his weaknesses into improvements.  I gave him a few pointers and stood behind him guiding him through the range of motion during his squat, so it helped a bit, but not enough for me to allow him to do them on his own yet and something we will work on when we cross that bridge.
  • Leg extensions (machine): 4 X 8, he did the first 3 sets at 50LB and the last set at 70LB. 
  • Weighted walking lunges: 4 X 10, he did one set with 10LB dumbbell, one set with no weights, and one 2 sets with 5LB dumbbell. 
I will say that he has poor form when it comes to lunges and many people do, especially if you have suffered injuries, or have a weak core or not great stability. He does better with no weights vs weights and he does better with 5LB dumbbells versus 10LB dumbbells. This was giving me an opportunity to see where his weakness was in his lunge. Of course there are other functional exercises I can have him do in place of lunges when necessary but I want him to work on this. Posture during a lunge is very important, I will be the first to say I never had “great” lunge posture for the longest time, and it was always difficult for me to do lunges- I dreaded them. The leg extensions he did well on, he doubted himself, saying “he couldn’t do 70LB” but when he least expected it, he pulled through. 
  • Cable kickbacks: 4 X 10, he did 5LB for the first two sets and 10LB for the last 2 sets
  • Goblet squats (using the cable): 3 X 6, he did 1 set at 10LB and the last 2 sets at 30LB. 
The cable kickbacks were awkward for him using his right leg, because he is left handed, but something we can improve on and he hasn’t quite mastered them, but it was all new to him and new to me as well. The Goblet squats he didn’t struggle with, he did well with those for the most part. 
Overall, I realize he isn’t ready for strength workouts yet, but I wanted to give him something different to experience. We shall be starting resistance training within the next month or so.. depending on his progress. I wasn’t upset with anything he did because he was learning and participating and didn’t give up and that matters to me most! I love that he didn’t allow these workouts to intimidate him but did what he could – this is always a positive site for any trainer. Tomorrow it will be back to the stuff I create for him. 
My Workout:
  • I was on the treadmill for about 5-8 minutes doing 3.5 speed
Workout Session:
Sumo Deadlift (barbell)/ Pyramid: 
  • 1 X 12, 65LB
  • 1 X 12, 105LB
  • 1 X 8, 135LB
  • 1 X 5, 155LB
My highest deadlift has been 170-175, but I have never done sumo deadlifts before so it was a bit awkward for me at first and I didn’t do a perfect job, so this is an exercise I will pay more attention to and work on, because I want to better myself in it. 
Sumo Squat (Pyramid) (barbell/smith machine): 
  • 1 X 12, 35LB
  • 1 X 10, 55LB
  • 1 X 6, 65LB
  • 1 X 5, 70LB
I have never done a sumo squat either, again another awkward exercise for me, but I did what I could, I definitely realized I couldn’t get as low on a sumo squat compared to my normal back squat.  Which kind of bothered me, but I wasn’t too worried about it. My hips were tight as hell today per usual. The girl we did the workout with, did a great job with these workouts, she introduced them to us – I am thankful for that. 
  • Leg extension machine: 4 X 8, 70LB
  • Weighted Walking Lunges: 4 X 10, 10LB

The superset wasn’t bad, I felt the burn during the lunges, because honestly we probably did 20 lunges per set since we went both ways down the aisle of the gym

  • Cable kickbacks: 4 X 10, 2 sets at 10LB and 2 sets at 5LB 
  • Goblet cable squat: 3 X 6, 1 set at 10 pounds and the last 2 at 30 pounds. 
I liked the Goblet cable squat (never have done it) and it was a good workout, definitely could feel it my legs.  The cable kickbacks were awkward for me using my left leg. It was something to get used to but no complaints because it was a good exercise to implement into my workout routine. Overall I enjoyed today’s leg day, it gave me new ideas and good laughs.  Feel free to share your workouts in the comment section.
Your Fitness Blogger,
Shay-lon xxx

Triceps Dips/Standing Dips

Dipping Station (wide & narrow) (the absolute king of all triceps exercises)


So we meet again.., muahahaha! I know some of you thought you rid of me, but I thought I would make your lives hell again and come back to write another post. I have had people ask me when am I going to create more content that “tell a story”, “talk about debatable topics”, and bring back my topics that have more of my opinions.. and thoughts – this is my answer, no worries, I will do that because I have a list of 75 topics that I have written down of new content, so I have plenty to talk about. I always add more to my list when ideas strike me, or if people request something from me to discuss, so please ALWAYS feel welcome to request certain topics from me as long as they stay within the fitness/health boundaries. I don’t mind discussing pop culture around fitness/health, sports, music when working out (my playlist), discussing mental health topics, injuries, occupations dealing with fitness/health, college courses with my degree, etc. It doesn’t matter to me as long as it makes sense to talk about basically – this goes for my YouTube channel as well, please feel request exercises you want me to demonstrate, topics to discuss, motivational things, etc around fitness/health. 

I decided after seeing my blogger friend Chape‘s blog post today about triceps dips, that I would snatch his idea and make it my own, jk. I decided to do this post because in his video he showed his audience the “at home” version of the triceps dip and I wanted to show everyone the gym one (although this one can be done at home if you have the machine) and his can be done at the gym. The one I am going to discuss is the one I do (above picture). 

How to do Standing Dips:

  1. Hold your body at arm’s length, with your arms nearly locked above the bars
  2. Inhale and slowly lower yourself downward. Torso remains upright and elbows should remain close to your body. You will lower yourself until there is a 90 degree angle between the upper arm and forearm
  3. Exhale and push your torso back up using your triceps to bring your body back to the starting position
  4. Repeat the movement for the recommended amount of repetitions.
Which muscles does this exercise target?
  • Triceps
  • Chest 
  • Shoulders
Would I recommend this exercise to beginners?
  • Yes, as long as they have no prior injuries and conditions that would otherwise hinder them during this exercise
  • Always ask your Doctor before performing if you have an injury or prior injury that involves the above muscles
How many Reps can I do before stopping?
  • My highest at the moment is 8 reps. Although it used to be 3-5, so I am proud of myself.
Can this exercise be modified?
  • Yes, of course. I would recommend the bench dip (check out for that demonstration if you don’t think you are yet ready for the standing dip, although there are many different dip variations.
  • The bench dip can be harder if you use weights on your thighs, it is closer to the ground and in my opinion, I find it to be easier – although it still hurts the same. LOL 
  • I would even go as far to say that if the BENCH DIP is still too hard, then proceed to the floor dip – especially if you are someone who is significantly overweight and cannot yet do a full range standing dip or bench dip or someone who may not yet be strong enough.. definitely a great one to do! 
Dip Variations:
  • Floor dip
  • bench dip
  • standing dip
  • banded assisted dips
  • Jumping dips with negatives
  • Assisted dip machine
  • Weighted dips
  • banded resisted dips
  • Weighted bench dips
  • Dip to leg raise
  • Side to side dips
  • Ring dips (many CrossFitters do these) – where my CrossFit friends at?! 🙂 
  • Korean dips
  • Bulgarian dips
  • Pronated grip dips
  • Supinated grip dips
  • Gironda Dips
  • Reverse Gironda Dips
  • Elbow dips
  • Planche dips
  • One arm dips
Most, if not all can be researched on YouTube for direction and technique. I would say I have only done about 2 kinds of dips and didn’t realize how many variations there were, but something to look into if I want to add some spice to my workout. I will warn you by saying, some of these are very advanced dips, so don’t be discouraged if you cannot do them all, just one is honestly good enough, you don’t need to be dip king/queen – but I say why not try them all if you want to and add some variation if you get bored. I am all of variety. Please feel free to share, comment, like, and follow. I would love to hear from all of you if you have questions or want to share how many dips you can do without stopping, what dip variations do you like most & least, which variations do you know how to do, which dip variation would you be interested in trying and do you like doing dips? Thanks for reading!
For more exercises, click here
Your Fitness blogger,
Shay-lon xxx