Dizzy Squats

My blood sugar and pressure drop when I squat.  It was so bad when I first went on Metformin that I’d get black edges to my vision when I squatted down to feed my cat.

Because of this, I pretty much cut squats out for the last couple of months.  I would sometimes try a pistol squat or two, sometimes a few front squats, but I always had this fear that I’d pass out and didn’t want a lot of weight on my back if I did.

I’ve finally decided that I’m done with this wussing out and am attempting to find ways to stay conscious while squatting.

My current standby, that I know works, is to pop glucose tabs between heavy sets.  I know this isn’t good for me, and I know it’s not really addressing the problem.  It is what I’m using to rescue me so that I can keep on going.

A paramedic suggested peanut butter pre workout, supposedly it stays with you better than sugar does.  I don’t have any, so I tried almond butter.  It helps, but not enough to keep me from needing the glucose tabs.

I know that salt raises your blood pressure, so I added some to my almond butter this morning.  I then added some to my electrolyte-fizzy-tab water.  The salt sank to the bottom, so it tasted fine at first and then horrible as I started to empty the cup.  I got the blackness edged vision after 2 squats at 135lbs, so clearly none of this was enough.  I popped a glucose tab, and was fine for my next 2 sets, then another tab got me through two more.  (They were all sets of 2 and 3 – I clearly need to do this more often.)

I had this problem before I went on Metformin, but it’s much worse now than it used to be. I refuse to stop squatting, I’m just concerned that I’m losing so much strength – I want to be able to keep competing and wasn’t all that strong compared to my weight before this happened.


UD 2.0: Day 2

I had a stressful and exhausting day yesterday, but woke up feeling fairly neutral today.  I was not overly sore, although not exactly looking forward to yesterday’s workout again.  Still, I was reading last night about a group of people who did 10,000 kettlebell swings in 10 days, they swear that it got better after the first 2-3 weeks.  Also, I don’t have to do this again until next Monday \o/

Morning weight: 201.8 lbs (Note that the loss from yesterday should be all or mostly water weight)

Today’s Workout:

  • Leg Press 135×15-120x15x15-105x15x15x15
  • Leg Curl 75×15-90×15-105×15-120x15x15x15
  • Incline Bench Press 45x15x15x15x15-40×15-30×15
  • Lat Pulldown 60x15x15x15x15-75x15x15
  • Lateral Raises 5/5x15x15-3x20x20 (Dumbbells, first front, then side, then side with thumbs up)
  • Calf Raises 135×15-115x15x15x15x15-135×15
  • Bicep Curls 40×15-30×15-20×15-25×15
  • Tricep Pushdown 60×15-75x15x15x15
  • Breathing ladders with a kettlebell: 35lbs 1-10-1
  • Bike for 30 mins, 10.8 miles.

Today’s food intake:

  • Protein shake with 2 scoops.  Water, no milk.
  • 7oz chicken breast, smoked with lots of spices
  • Big handfull of spinach and feta
  • Mushroom cap stuffed with feta and spinach
  • Protein shake with 2 scoops.
  • Protein shake with 2 scoops.
End of day macros:
  • Calories: 1,131
  • Protein: 227
  • Fat: 19
  • Carbs: 7


  • 88mcg Synthroid
  • 1 Claritin (am)
  • Morning mix + 5g creatine + 2g l-tyrosine
  • 600mg Calcium (4 hours after Synthroid)
  • Evening mix
  • 1200mg Calcium
  • Iron
  • Daily Multivitamin
  • 5g Glutamine
  • 2 ZMA
  • Potassium
  • 6 Fish oil
  • 8,000 iu Vitamin d


Decided to try pause squats today.  Had to deload quite a bit, they’re difficult.  I ended up with the bar on the safeties a couple of times, but I don’t think that’s a problem.

  • Squat: 45×5-85×5-115×3-135×5
  • Pause Squat: 115x3x3x3-125×3
  • Bench Press: 45×5-55×5-65×5-105×4-110×2-105×3 – 2 negatives at 110
  • Cable tricep pulldowns: 27.5x6x6

I went 3 minutes on the Concept 2 rower and got 650m.

Tuesday Workout

Feeling achy after yesterday.  In addition to my workout, I went out walking with a friend and covered several miles, my calves are extremely tight and one of my knees is sore.  No squatting today.

Worked out with a friend today.  She showed up after my hip thrusts, so most of the remaining weights were me doing some volume with what she had on the bar.  I made her shrug!  I think she likes it, even though she pretended she didn’t.

  • Overhead Press: 45×10-55×5-65×5-75x3x2
  • Smith Machine Hip Thrusts: 10/10×10/10×10/10
  • Romanian Deadlift: 115×10-135x10x10x10
  • Barbell Shrugs: 135x3x10x10-225x6x4
  • Overhead Press: 45x10x6-50×4

50×4?  Yup, shoulders are trashed.  Maybe not such a great idea after shrugs, I just wanted to make sure I was getting enough overhead work in.

Tomorrow’s the 4th, time to not work out and eat lots of grilled yummies 🙂

Monday Workout

I didn’t get the chance to post this yesterday, so here it is now.

I was extremely sore from my Saturday workout, mostly in my quads, upper arms, shoulders, and a little in the upper back.  I started light and worked my way back up gradually.

  • Squats: 65×5-85×5
  • Bench Press: 45×10-55×10-65×10-85×7-95×6-105×3-115x1x1
  • Dumbbell Snatch: 30×10/10×10/10 (Left arm/Right arm)
  • Preacher curl machine: 25x10x10 (I needed a break and wanted to sit down.)

I tried Tabata front squats again, this time with a 20lb curl bar.  This weight was MUCH better, I got through it with less trouble than I expected to, still using the 10seconds squat 20seconds rest ratio.  I’m going to keep the weight at 20 and see what happens when I switch the ratios next time.

I’m Back!

I am so happy to be back to the gym today!

My deadlifts were terrible, I can’t remember the last time 225 felt so heavy.  I did some other stuff for volume and to mess around.  Not following a program at the moment.  I’m planning on going on a program with the Ultimate Diet 2.0 when I start the week after the 4th, so there’s little point in getting overly fancy for the next week.  I just plan on doing lots of benching and playing with Tabata front squats.

  • Overhead Squats: 45x6x4-55×3
  • Overhead Press: 45×5-55×5-65×3-85×0-75×2
  • Dumbbell Swings (like a kettlebell swing): 45×15-50×10 *Was trying to find my working weight.  50 is too heavy.
  • Bench Press: 45×10-55×10-65×3-85×5-95x7x5x5
  • Deadlift: 135×5-195×2-225×1-285×0-275×0-225x1x0
  • Seated Cable Rows: 45×10-75×10-90x8x10-105x8x7x6

I haven’t done Tabata front squats before, so I flipped the cycle times to get me started: 10 seconds of front squats, then 20 seconds of rest.  Around the 2 minute mark, I started getting really sloppy – banging the bar on the rails and dropping my arms.  I finally realized that I couldn’t get my arms up into the rack position at all, so I put the weight down.  I looked at the stopwatch, and was at the 3 minute mark.  I’ll call this 3 minutes, though it was a bit less.  I just used the standard bar.

Considerations for next time: Don’t use the squat cage.  Use the power cage with the safeties at the bottom or no cage.  If I have to stop again, I should just drop the bar and finish with bodyweight. Should I switch to a 20-40lb curl bar?

After that squat session, both my legs and shoulders were trashed.  I was having trouble walking, so I went over to the light dumbbell area to do some shoulder raises.  I was struggling with the 5lb dumbbells, and my form was bad, so I stopped.  At this point, that kind of squatting is clearly both a shoulder and quad exercise.  Excellent, I need to work on my shoulders 🙂