Today I did a little homework. A while back I came across a couch down the alley that someone had decided to rid themselves of. Opportunity knocking and light bulbs flashing in my brain, I removed the two seat cushions, unzipped them, and made off with the slip covers. They've been sitting on my window sill ever since.
Fast forward to this afternoon. In preparation for a workout later this weekend, I took the covers down to Ankerpark along with some medium sized garbage bags and proceeded to transform them. My method was simple: Fill 4 double thick trash bags with wet sand, stuff them inside the slip cover, and voila! A new toy to play with. Now, I originally thought that I could put 4 sand bags in one cover, but this proved to be waaay too heavy for reasonable usage (I couldn't even get it to my shoulder). So, instead, I split the weight between the slip covers, winding up with 2 functioning sand bags rather than 1.
This is only an estimate, but I'd say each bag weighs around 90 lb. No way to tell for sure, since I don't have a scale, but based on experience with weighted bags in another life, I don't think this estimate is too far off. Also, they're pretty floppy and tough to handle because of the excess slip cover space left unfilled. I had to carry these the 1/2 mile back to my house (2 trips), and their effectiveness cannot be disputed. I was sweating like a pig, fighting to maintain an upright posture, and all around upset that I didn't have a car to help with the burden. This homework assignment had turned into quite a little challenge in its own right.
I plan to use these a lot, perhaps starting with a daily "Walk the Bag" session in the mornings before class. I'm hoping this will significantly strengthen my core and help me to break through some barriers in the deadlift and squatting movements.