Home > Weight Lifting > Mathematical rounding errors in the gym

Mathematical rounding errors in the gym

Lifting weights is an interesting activity. It can be cathartic and liberating as much as it is something that makes you feel good while making you hurt. At other times it can leave you wiped out and clueless, and that is the story I’m about to relate.

I’m in my last week of this particular routine. It’s been a good one, but I’m starting to stagnate and I don’t mind admitting I’m tired of the minimal rest between sets that is kicking my butt. That combined with a cutting diet has me wondering if I’ll survive the trip home after the gym each night.

Seeing as that it’s my last week, I’ve been pushing myself a little harder. I upped the weights to 80lb dumbbells for incline benching last night, for example, and found it challenging but the right weight to use, especially as I pushed for a few bonus reps on my last set.

With that in mind, I started out low doing trap bar deadlifts – a measly 260 pounds. I could have slept throught it and the next set as well, at 350lbs. The third set, however, pushed me up against the wall. 8 reps at 480 pounds was no picnic, but they were solid reps. Afterwards I spent a few moments gasping and sweating and gathering myself while I racked more weight on for the final set.

The final set was ready and eventually so was I. I squatted down, chalked up my hands, then grabbed on and heaved. My lower back protested with a sharp pain. Upon closer examination it appears that I racked up 45lb plates instead of 25lb plates on the bar. That put it at 570lbs, 5lbs more than I have ever lifted before – especially after exhausting myself on 480 for 8.

Thus the mathematical error was my ability to add simple numbers. The rounding error was what occurred in my lower back. Couple days of rest and it’ll be good as new though – and now that 570 has spit in my face over time I will eventually defeat it!

Categories: Weight Lifting
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