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New Rules of Lifting for Women Stage 3 Recap

by Meghann on October 19, 2011

It may have taken a little longer than I originally intended it to, but Stage 3 of New Rules of Lifting for Women is donezo.


This stage proved to be a tricky one. The workouts themselves were great (I’ll get to that later), but the timing of it hit hard with training for the Augusta Half Ironman.

My original plan was to finish Stage 3 the week before the race and pick up Stage 4 the week after, but that didn’t happen. Instead I listened to my body and realized I needed to cut back if I wanted to survive the race. I ended up taking a two week hiatus before August and a week hiatus in recovery from it.

The extended hiatus ended up being just what I needed. I rocked the race and came back to NROLFW with a vengeance. :)


The Workouts

Stage 3 was by far my favorite stage so far! It was very similar to Stage 2 with a total of 8 workouts (4 of Workout A and 4 of Workout B), but there was a tad more variety in each set. The workouts were also a bit longer with the introduction of longer D sets and an additional E set.

The YTWL move would probably go down as my least favorite move of the bunch. It’s not that it wasn’t effective, it just killed me every time. Ouch. It was the one I would loved to have skipped, if it wasn’t for the fact that I knew I hated it for a reason – because it worked. On the flip side, the reverse wood chop was my favorite. It hurt-so-good as well, but the target on my obliques made me want to do it over and over again to get that definition I crave.

The body-weight matrix at the end of Workout A was nice change-up to the typical routine with squats and lunges. It allowed me to step back from the weight area and do some of my favorite old school gym moves. The lunges (and jumping lunges) killed my glutes every time!


Stage 3
Workout A
One Arm Dumbbell Snatch Workout 1 12 lbs
Workout 4 15 lbs
Dumbbell Single-Leg Deadlift Workout 1 12 lbs
Workout 4 20 lbs
Barbell Bent Over Row Workout 1 30 lbs
Workout 4 50 lbs
Dumbbell Single Overhead Squat Workout 1 8/15 lbs
Workout 4 10/20 lbs
Dumbbell Incline Bench Press Workout 1 15 lbs
Workout 4 20 lbs
Reverse Wood Chop Workout 1 40 lbs
Workout 4 45 lbs
Workout B
Barbell Deadlift Bent Over Row Workout 1 40 lbs
Workout 4 50 lbs
Wide-Grip Lat Pulldown Workout 1 60 lbs
Workout 4 70 lbs
Back Extenstion Workout 1 6 lbs
Workout 4 10 lbs
YTWL Workout 1 8 lbs
Workout 4 10 lbs

*Note these are not all of the workouts from the plan, these are just the ones where I could track my weight increases.

With such a huge break in the middle, I’m not surprised with how small the increases in weight are. When I returned to the gym I was scared to try adding more weight on than where I left off and – for the most part – felt stuck where I was. Some of the moves (YTWL, Dumbbell Bench Press, etc) were pretty difficult with the weight I started at and adding anymore just seemed too much. However, when I did make the small increases I could feel the burn – a good sign I was moving in the right direction.


Now, the moment of truth. Did the huge break derail any results?

5/26/11 7/15/11 8/22/11 10/18/11
Chest 34in 34in 34in 33.5in
Right Bicep 11in 11.25in 11.25in 11.75in
Left Bicep 10.75in 11.15in 11.15in 11.5in
Waist 31in 30.25in 30in 29in
Hips 39in 38.65in 38.4in 38.1in
Right Thigh 21.5in 21.30in 21in 20.75in
Left Thigh 21in 21in 20.80in 20.75in

Not a bit. :)

Actually, I had to measure twice here. Considering I just got back from a very indulgent vacation and took a good 3 week break from the plan, I wasn’t expecting any changes. I guess the numbers don’t lie?


NROLFW Before.png

NROLFW Stage1 Complete.png

NROLFW Stage2 Complete.png

End of Stage 3 Photos: 10/18/11

IMG_0038.JPG IMG_0045.JPG IMG_0039.JPG

Photos don’t lie either!. ;)

Ok, I know the changes are very subtle, but I swear I can see it! Particularly in my stomach, I’ve never had great ab definition before, but – if you look closely – you can see where the reverse wood chop is starting to pay off. ;)


See it? Kind of? Sort of?


When I started this plan I was +15 lbs on the scale (re: Scales Lie) and when I weighed myself two weeks after Augusta I was -5 lbs from where I started, but still +10 lbs up overall (hence why I referenced only 10 lbs last week). Since I’ve stopped HIM training I’ve seen a huge difference in the foods I crave, the energy I have, and the results I’m seeing. It’s pretty incredible.

Ok, enough looking at photos and numbers. The real question is how I feel and – truthfully – I feel great. The results aren’t coming overnight – and sometimes it’s hard to see them – but I know they’re there. I feel stronger overall as a person and a runner.

I’m looking forward to continue on with Stage 4 and see where the remaining stages take me.

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