Monday, April 30, 2007

More pics from Sunday.

One of the seeming hundred of hands I taped this weekend.Hi, Naina sounds like Banana,lol.

Happy Rif
Me and my assistant Marc "Spud" Bartley. What an honor to work with this World Class Powerlifter,. this is one brutally strong man. The man is flexible too, he can get in almost full side splits!
Senior Instructor, Pressing Cyborg and serious kb research scientist Kenneth Jay.Can't wait to go to the Danish RKC next year in Copenhagen. Now THAT is going to be fun.
The Dr's Cheng, Courtney and Mark RKC, and Tracy and I. Courtney did two hand swings with the Beast at the end of the day no problem. It does weigh more than her!First time she has even picked up a bell weighing more the 24 kg!
Of course on seeing that Tracy had to get in on the act and did the same. Unreal.

Vibration therapy and stretching.

The hardest part of this weekend was being on my feet so many hours a day. Especially the standing. Walking can get tough if my hammies and calf tighten up but standing is always death on my knee. With no articular cartiledge at all it's just bone one bone and standing without regular movement just hurts.

I am so much better than I have been in years but the last four days was tough. I have been getting spoiled lately with how well my work capacity has increased as I have managed to balance my work loads and the recovery necessary to improve. This weekend made my realize I have much work left to do on my left calf and lower hamstring as when they lock up my extension dissapears and walking gets even less balanced than normal.

I spent SO much time releasing scar tissue and adhesions from my lateral hammie and IT band on my left leg that I was enjoying not having to dig in so deeply for awhile. BUt I can tell its back to work on my calf as this is now the weakest link in the chain and the soleus, posterior tib and even the inner gastroc need way more release and scar tissue erradication.

SO mucho more time on the G5 and also more time on the ground. Discovered a great new hamstring/gastroc stretch/release this weekend(being in pain usually results in some new idea of how to get rid of it) and having big Dave Whitley stretch me out helped immensely as well.SHowed me just how much further my flexibility needs to go. CHinese weightlifter distance.

The looser I get the better my knee feels so thats the path.As usual I just need to do more/

Time to get back on the floor.

Some more cert pics/ the Graduation workout

The start of the farmers walk to begin the real Grad workout segment. Just a short 300 yard stroll with double kbs!
Ah yes, in the meat of it. Pain is good!
More pain is even better, but with the support of your teammates it doesnt hurt nearly as much.
The finish line! Sean made it the whole way with double 24 kgs which is NO joke!
Another pic of the finish. The energy and support that was generated simply had to be experienced to be believed.

What a finish to an amazing weekend! Sr RKC Kenneth Jay came up with this brutal combination of walking see-saw presses mixed with two handed swings for the length of the football field! What a rush of energy the students had knowingthey had gone through this Crucible and came out the other side- RKC!
As many certs as I have attended it never fails to impress me how much more people can do than they can even imagine and how good they feel accomplishing this. It resets their internal gauge as to what real work is and how much the mind controls everything they do. You gotta want to! Congrats to all the new RKCs.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Day two RKC

One of the tension drills in the workout
My first presentation as a Senior instructor. Another drill to teach total body tension.
David Whitley with a two hands anyhow with the BEAST overhead and a two pood.It was too easy!
Mark help Naina( sounds like banana,lol) learn the loaded clean

Man I forgot how long the days are at the cert! even if you are teaching and not doing the five million reps the students have to do its a very long day in the sun. But what a great day. It was amazing to see just how much my team improved from just yesterday. By the end of the brutal day their form and technique was exponetially better.

I taught a segment on Tension and Srength, taught a workout based on those concepts as well as taught the Press portion.I loved it and got good feedback for my presentation.Such a difference than my normal one on one teaching. Very cool stuff.Here's some pictures,sorry I didnt get any up yesterday but the video of Will wouldnt convert and I ran out of time this morning.

Day one

Had a great video of Team Leader will williams doing a pistol with the Beast during the Beast Challenge but for some reason the laptop is not converting it correctly and I couldnt get it to upload! Day one was very long but solid, all of Team Rif passed their snatch test and everyone realized just how very hard and tough the RKC cert really is.
I have my lecture and workouts to give today so I have to get going now to finish up the prep. Check tracys blog for pics and I will try to figure out the videos when I have more time.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Meet and greet at the Cert

The trip to Minnesota went well and the party is just getting started. so great to see old friends and meet new ones. Here are some pics:

Got to get to sleep, its a long day tomorrow!

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Quick and Dirty

I hate 'short and sweet'. I was going to take today totally off but the OCD gods determined it was not in my best interest so just had the main course, no dessert.

One Arm Swings

16 kgx5/5/5/5x2

24kg x5/5/5/5 x 10 sets
200 reps
10,600 pounds
16 minutes.

Since I was not doing much volume I tried to speed it up a bit.Really hit each rep hard as I only had to do 5 an arm. Quick and Dirty, Baby; lots of power per square inch of rep :))

The 24 is starting to feel like it should, light.

BW 163( thats better)
BF 8.6% ( can certainly live with that
Water 61.0%

Leave for the cert tomorrow at lunch and have to work in the AM so there is much to do tonight. This is going to be fun! Can't wait to go.These will become what my powerlifting competition weekends used to be. A high energy, jam packed weekend with hard training, hardcore people who are or will become friends, a sustained,focused intense energy and the feel of a serious strength and conditoning think tank for physical culture. Excellent.

datsit,gotta pack.

PS I will be bringing my laptop and will post something each day about the goings on. Will take some pics when I can too.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Darc taper.

Well, at least that was the plan, lol. As usual Monday is always a slow starting day for me after eating up and laying around all day yesterday like one of my cats. I absolutely need a day of total rest but it is sure slow going for the Mondays workout.

Knew I wanted to taper a bit for the cert and didnt want to do 100 rep sets but still wanted to put in some work so:

16 kgs x

410 reps PR
14,760 lbs

these were so easy I can't beleive it. woke up pretty quickly after the first set of 50 but settled in very fast. Played alot with tempo of each set slowing down and transfering higher or speed ing up and pulling myself down into hip flexion. When it's light it can be easy :))

snatch holds with 16 kg
45 sec
60 sec x 3 set

rack walks with 20 kg
200 feet per arm
400 feet per lap
4 laps/1600 feet.

these were solid but the right weight.bell didnt touch ground til the end of lap.

BW 164
BF 8.4%
Water 61.2%


Sunday, April 22, 2007


This is the movie that sealed the deal on me bodybuilding. They guy had something no one else had or has had since. Freaky.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

A great post on Russian KB training for Olympic lifters

A very interesting piece by Randy Hauer on Russian KB methods for their Olympic lifters. Tons of special exercises as one might expect.Like the variety of tempos included. As Pavel says : 'the same but different".

Finishing Knee-hab and the most important strength.

I just realized that what I have been mainly doing these last 2.5 years since kettlebells became my primary method of training is finishing the rehab that I never got done on my knee 33 years ago. And that the most important strength, the keystone,lynchpin and starting point from which all other strength evolves is bodyweight strength.

Until you can support and control your own bodyweight and limbs everything else is not necessary.This is especially true when there is an injury involved. When I started this RKC journey two and half years ago I could still squat 400 pretty easily in my gear but couldnt support my bodyweight on my left leg to walk more than a few blocks without knee pain!

The kettlebell training built me back up from the inside out,establishing and building a much more solid foundation of connective tissue as well as muscle tissue with the so basic but so primal swing motions.

The same is true with my shoulder as well. The ability to handle such high volumes of work in such compound motions with so little 'breakdown' of the system and the muscles is amazing.

I doubt whether I will ever get the full flexion and extension that I would like my knee to have. I am also pretty sure I will get the old thing replaced some time in the not too distant future. Regardless of any of that I still want to regain as much function, mobility, strength and endurance I can get from this leg and now that I see what actually can happen I am even more motivated!

Getting back to my gymnastics body, and the flexibility that went with that has been key to all of this as well. I am stretching more and more all the time and I keep feeling better so that will continue. After seeing( and being reminded again of) how flexible those Chinese Olympic lifters were, and just how strong AND flexible all good olympic lifters are, I am redoubling my stretching efforts!Just in specific stretches but I am pushing things much more and making sure I stay pretty light in BW as well. It's tempting to let my bw creep up again and get even stronger but I know better :))

And the use of some serious weighted stretching on my knee has me thinking I might actually get full extension again!

Solo Mojo.

Training solo this AM and it always amazes me how much more I can get done by myself than when I train with others. Much easier to fall into a rythym and just keep it going on your own pace than the stop start staccato when you have to take others into account. Especially when they are not doing the exact same workout as you. Also got to start earlier today which is always good. Love it when the caffeine and the swings hit at the same time,lol.

One arm swings( non continuous)
16 kgx10-10x2

32 kg x8-8
x10-10x11 sets
238 reps
17,136 pounds

New pr for one arm swings with the two pood. Rested 30-45 sec between each arm and each set. Form felt great and bells went chest height and above each rep.Pretty tired from all the volume in the last few weeks but this is the peak; going to taper down this week to get ready for the cert. Want to be fresh for that.

Clean, press, windmill(l)
16 kgx5x2
24kg x3
x5x2 ( took me a little to unkink the hips,lol)
Snatch holds (R)
16kg x30 sec x2
24 kg x 45 sec
x60 sec x2 ( this is tougher alone,lol)


Face pulls
4x12 heavy

not bad. whole thing took just about an hour including warmup.

datsit, gotta stretch.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Some serious weight overhead

This is either 130 or 150 kg.Probably 150.Thats a decent deadlift for me now,lol.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

This weeks numbers

Swings: 240+370+380=990 ! ( a grand is coming soon)

Pounds 17,280+13,320+20,140=50,740

ave swings=330
ave poundage=16,913

Never Quit.

Especially on the days when you want to quit the most. And never before you start the workout, you never know when the training gods are going to shine upon you.
Today was such a day. I have been up since 3 am( don't ask me why but I always wake up an hour before my alarm is set,not matter when it is.Sucks.) and just had no juice. Lollygagged around after I got home and basically tried to stall as long as possible as I just didnt think I had much in me and today was speed day with the 24 kg. Didnt feel real speedy. Monday's million freakin reps must have taken something out of me and when I looked back and saw I did 300 Darcs last time I did this workout I was Not encouraged.

I was hoping for a solid 200. Little did I know.

16kg x20x2 sets

24 kgx20 x 19 sets!
380 reps
20,140 lbs! *( oops, there it is,lol. 20k)

When I ran and raced bikes I always ran negative splits. Which means I finish the last half of the race or training ride faster than I started. Many time much faster. Today was the same and the last half of the sets were so much better and easier than the first half I can't almost believe it was the same workout!
Smart move to stay with 20 reps on the day instead of the 30 I did last time. Focus is on bell speed and power not endurance. That's mondays ;).
Staying under lactate levels my recovery just gets better each set and this is what happend today. Started feeling really good around 150 reps and the rest time was cut in half. Now I HATE to watch the clock during workouts but I know I was getting back to the bell much faster, not sitting down and not feeling winded at all. My lungs had opened and the swinging was easy.
So after I did 200 I thought 260 sounded good. Blew past that and saw 300 easily in the sights.
Kept feeling better and killed 320, 340, then I did the math and saw that 380 would give me a 20,000 pound workout and knew I had to do that.
Thought for a sec about doing 400 just because but decided not to get greedy and leave some in the tank. Still had waiters walks to do.
Never quit,especially before you start.

Waiters walks
16 kg
100 foot per arm
200 feet per lap
5 laps/ 100 feet

Suitcase farmers walks with 16 kg
100 feet per arm
1000 feet CONTINUOUS! PR!

Switched hands each 100 feet. This was very easy all of a sudden!

Face Pulls
3x12 -heavier here too. bumped up the weight. excellent.

BW 162.4
BF 9 %
Water 60.7%

Wow, very, very pleased with this workout. ANd man I felt like death before it.You never know.This is the last hard week before I taper a bit for the cert. Want to be fresh for all that time on my feet.

Datsit, gotta stretch.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Good thing swings dont build muscle

Or I would be in trouble,lol. weighed in at a beefy 164 before todays workout with pretty much the same BF % as I have had for the last few months, 8.9%. I have a definite increase in upper body mass with my pecs, arms(!?), delts and abs exhibiting thickness I havent felt since I was a powerlifter a few years ago.My back seems to be tolerating it so far. Just have to stay stretched out and stay out of flexion.

I dont want to get too much heavier as its easier on my knee and back to be lighter, even if I am less strong.But its fun :)) Reminds me of the old days.

Playing consistently now with the two pood has to be part of it as well . Its a LOT heavier and harder the 24 kg by ALOT.Much more balance and stabilization required as well as shear white fiber force.Much less room for error. Gotta concentrate more, too.

Compared to the snatch the increased muscle tension I get from swinging is very noticeable.Especially as the bell goes head height and above.Maintaining contact and connection to the belland through the floor and not overcontrolling it is very tricky.Cool shoes.Plus having shorter, more power driven sets is helping hit some white fiber too, which is nice.Havent been able to do THAT in quite awhile.

Also,with the swing my abililty to keep my elbow straight througout the full ROM has helped unload that joint as well as the biceps/ shoulder right up the road.

My training volume is consistently higher as well ;as much because I am not going through down time because of my shoulder. Plus, its easier to get higher numbers with swings than snatches as you can easily do more swings.I can feel a lot more upper back stabilization from the top end of the swing reps as well and thats a good thing.

Also,knew today was going to be 2 ,100 rep sets and was not looking forward to it but knew it had to be done.

One arm swings with 16 kg

total reps =370
total pounds=13,320

Not bad . Did the first set by myself as Joe was late. Second set was much easier.High reps by yourself suck.But the first hundred reps was much easier than it has been and the second as well. The last set of 80 could have been 70- but felt good.I like swings better than DARCS;its easier to maintain the connection to the bell with the swings than letting go and resetting each rep.Its all good though :))
Recovery between sets getting much better as well. DOnt feel like I want to puke at all,lol :))

Snatch holds
16 kgx30s ec
x45 sec
x60 sec
x60 sec

rack walks with 20 kg
200 feet per arm
one lap= 400 feet
1200 feet total 3 laps

these were easier than last week, rack position improved.tired though.

BW 164!
BF 8.9%
Water 60.7%

datsit ,gotta stretch.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

DARC Land.

Lots of transfers with the two pood this morning and overall it went very well. Having the full morning to prepare is just great and I still can't beleive that after working saturday AMs for the last 9 years I dont have to anymore.It's like my weekend got extended by almost another day!

24 kgx 16,20

x30 reps x 2 rounds= 180 reps
x20= 240 reps total
17,280 pounds total ( closing in on 20 k!)

I have to remember to respect this weight as it can't thow me off balance really quickly if I'm not fully paying attention. Especially at 162 lbs. A bit dehdrated from yesterday though and i can't let that happen again next week,its way too important. So I was a bit stiffer and creakier than normal this AM ,plus its raining bigtime and cold(er) again.

Kb Overhead Complex
Left side: snatch, windmill, negative press
RIght side: snatch, snatch hold, negative press

worked up to one set of 5 in the windmill with the 24 kg,left side
worked up to one set of 60 sec hold on the right side
5 sets overall and VERY pleased to see I can do the negative press on the right side with NO pain in the shoulder. very good.
Also putting this AFTER swings is better but definitely makes the weights heavier,lol.

Halos with 12 kg

datsit, gotta stretch.

Friday, April 13, 2007

A swing primer by Randy Hauer

What a great article from Randy's blog. This should be required reading for RKCs.

Chin Up
Here's a little tip for kettlebell swings and snatches that I have been playing with's more appropriate for short burst power production kettlebell usage, I think, since it is adapted from Olympic Weightlifting. But I think it will also add a margin of safety and make your power production more efficient for longer, higher repetition efforts.You may first want to read an article I wrote awhile back regarding my take on kettlebell swings and snatches here: to get some insight into my take on proper pulling form.The tip I've been playing with is one that I picked up from strength coach Dan John who uses this idea in his Olympic Weightlifting teaching progression. I am finding it also works extremely well with kettlebell swings, cleans and snatches.

First let me review a few things. In my opinion, the four keys to maximizing the powerful posterior chain muscles in kettlebell swings and snatches is to mimic the position Olympic Lifters assume as the bar reaches knee height in the barbell snatch and clean. As the bell swings back between the legs:

1) The knees are only slightly bent
2) Shins are vertical and even tilting back somewhat towards the heels
3) Balance is focused towards the heels
4) The lower back is locked and arched

Think of the position in the kettlebell good morning stretch or a Romanian Deadlift. The kettlebell swing and snatch are not "squatting" exercises...if your knees travel forward during these exercises you are cheating yourself out of a lot of power and diminishing the value of the movements. And don't fool yourself: squatting swings and snatches won't improve your jumping ability, if you are justifying this form break for that reason. Whether one is broad jumping or vertical jumping, the bulk of the power is generated not from the quads but from the hips and hammies.

Don't take my word for it, test it. First, jump with your knees traveling forward and focusing on your quads and see how you do and next try a jump from a good morning/Romanian Dead Lift stance with minimal knee flex, shins vertical and the hips pushed well back...feel free to record your observations in the comments section.So here's the tip: as the kettlebell reaches its furthest point in the backswing, focus on jutting your chin forward and sticking your butt back as far as you can. Visualize stretching the chin and tail bone as far apart from one another as you can.

As the kettlebell swings forward and you start adding power, lead with the chin. Don't throw your head back at the top of the pull, should still finish standing tall with the head in a neutral position, but visualize maintaining the distance between chin and tail bone.If you have correctly executed the four key elements in the backswing position described earlier, your hamstrings should be almost maximally pre-stretched.

By adding this tip, you will not only increase the hamstring pre-stretch even more, you will find your upper body and core more completely locked into one unit and this will facilitate more power transmission from the hips and glutes. Dan John uses the analogy of a bow and arrow. Think of the kettlebell as the arrow in this analogy and the body as the "bow". By stretching the chin and tailbone as far apart as you can, and maximizing the hamstring pre-stretch you are maximizing the tension of the "bow".

The bigger the stretch, the more powerful and explosive will be the release, which is in this case, as in the Olympic Lifts , a vertical jumping motion. Try this tip. Your swing and snatch strength and power, especially with double bells, should improve dramatically.

Hyper irradiation

Man, do I feel my upper body as well as my legs, from Wednesdays power swings.Swinging the bells that extra 2 plus feet and having to stabilize and control them really brings some muscle into play. One thing I've realized since I've stopped doing repetition snatches is that you really dont have to pull the bell that high to snatch it overhead, and a lot of the motion from mid ribs to overhead is following the bell.

Not so with swings, lol. And the short sets really made a difference in the power output and that made a difference in the muscle involvement. Can also feel the difference between just pure hinging and letting my knees bend more and getting more leg as well as hip into it.
Like Randy Hauer said: A flat footed vertical jump. Compress the ground;Push the earth away.So glad my back seems to be able to take it now.

15-20 second sets, its my bag,

Maintaining the link to the bell as it goes head height or higher is getting interesting too. A muscular tether to the bell,like a gymnast swinging around a high bar. No slack, no dead spots in the arc; just pure swing.

Awesome Old School Olympic Lifting Video

Much Thanks to Randy Hauer for finding this. Lots of Russian Special exercises and perfect teshnik for demonsration. Plus the ever elusive Adidas Black Olympic lifting shoes! Sure wish they still made these,lol.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

This is what natural deadlifters look like

this form would kill most regular people.Ano is a beast.

This weeks Numbers



Hard style one arm swings.

After Mondays DARC marathon and last weeks overreach with 30 rep sets I decided to really focus on high force and low rep sets on the swings today.I did each arm separately and did 10 rep sets with as much compensatory acceleration as possible, as well as sitting deeper than I did on Saturday.45 sec rest, then the other arm.Each set took about 15 seconds so a 1:1.5 ratio.

Good to see my swing on video and even though it worked fine for the reps and the power was good I think getting a wee more knee bend will help,lol.So thats what I did today.

This is what I'm good at: going hard for a short set, getting a decent amount of recovery and doing many sets.AS long as I stay out of lactate I'm good.POwer and force output stay high and I can do many sets. If I go hard into lactate I get one good set then I'm finished. If I want to do high reps I have to really pace myself and moderate the force.BUt this is fun stuff! Reminds me of box squat and bench speed days.

One arm swings with 24 kg

warmup: 16 kg x5/5/5/5x2

30 sec rest
30 sec restx 14 sets

280 reps

14,840 lbs

Lots and lots of great power and accelearation for each set. KB swung to head hihg and some higher each rep. Really staying linked to the bell throughout the whole arc, much like swinging hi bar. Just enough tension to stay linked but not too much.Lots more time to root this way plus thats where the upper body growth is coming from, I now know.Can feel it in the reps.

Waiters walk with 16 kg

100 foot per arm

200 feet per lap

5 laps/1000 feet

Suitcase farmers walk with 16kg

200 feet per arm

400 feet per lap

2 laps

1800 total feet.




Face pulls


BW 162.8

BF8.4% ( there we go)

Water 61.9% ( lowest in ages)

Going deeper on the swings was good.Added a new stretch to my Rifga practice, a power squat stretch with a stick in the low rack position. An extension of my sumo squat frog squat stretch I do each day but with the bar on my back. Gets my shoulder really stretched out at the same time working on my knee and hip opening. Perfect. Plus I get to pretend I can still power squat,lol!

Basically the Ed Coan squat position. Love it.

datsit, gotta stretch.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

I was there

at this meet, watching from the sides as Coan killed this 959 on his second attempt.I was handling superheavyweight Jeff Stanley who, in his very first Nationals squatted a very respectable 863. Jeff and Coan shared the backstage warmup platform and I got to watch Ed go though his every ritual as he warmed up and then posted the greatest powerlifting total in history: 2401 at 220 lbs.

Ed missed his third attempt squat of 986 at the very top when he lost his balance and took a step forward.He pulled 903 on his second so fast I SWEAR it looked like 135.He barely missed 925 on his third AT THE KNEE.
What a privilege to watch Ed work at that historic moment and what a object lesson for me in classic powerlifting at its best.

The AMAZING David Rigert.

One of the best Jewish athletes of all time.

Olympic Style squats

Grease the groove from the start.

More Weightlifters

I guess these guys are the quintessential 'skinny strong' guys.
Found these pics and more at this site:
thanks to Tom Furman for posting the link originally!

Monday, April 09, 2007

weightlifters are studs

Of all the sports I never got to really train in this is the one I really wished I had. These Chinese lifters are incredibly flexible as well and seem to do tons of static stretching.

100 rep DARCs

Starting not to hate this day so much, lol.Learning to relax on these high rep sets and ' climb the hill". Watched the Tour of Flanders one day bicycle classic yesterday and that was my mental image as I paced myself through the sets.

Since I did one 100 rep set last week I decided to set a goal of trying to catch up to my wifes light swing day and work up to 5 100 rep sets. It might be in another lifetime but you gotta shoot for the stars no?

16 kg x30
x100 ( not too bad actually)
x100 ( this stung a little but still not terrible)

405 reps( had to beat last times pr)
14,580 lbs.

Such a contrast from Saturdays monster weight. I think that's the idea, :))

Rack walk with 20 kg
200 feet per arm,400 feet per lap
4 laps, 1600 total feet.

this was tough and I broke my rule about only using the 3 weights( 16,24 and 32 kg) for my work. After yesterdays long walk( for me) I didnt want the workout to be too endurance centered. 16 is actually too light for shorter walks( about time!) and the 24 too heavy , on my knee,not my legs. SO the 20kg is was. It was tough!

Face pulls/stick press


Trained with Joe again today who is really getting his DL form down. He pulled 438 for six strong singles and when he masters his dl form watch out! Great to have someone push me too and keep me from cheating on my reps( actually, just a pure, innocent inability to count straight).

BW 163.2
BF 8.7%
Water 60.9%

back in the nines, finally. Back to the stir fry first!

datsit gotta stretch.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Remembering that training is not just lifting.

Did my 30 minute walk today after being lazy the last two weeks. The cert is fast approaching and I want to have some miles in my legs. BUT after yesterdays fairly hefty volume and thinking about tomorrows very hi rep darcs tomorrow made me realize my legs were pretty stiff and sore this early AM. I chose not to stretch out first which was a mistake.

I have to remember as I constantly gain more work capacity, have more energy,have better mobility and less pain that I still have to work on all the 'side' modalities to make sure I continue going in this direction.ANd that means paying attention to all the little things; the Rifga yoga poses,continue to assess and correct 'square and plumb' daily, and now that I can such a killer thumper :USE IT. My left knee still tightens up and the left calf has to be way more pliable and 'human tissue like". BUt the better I feel, and the more I do the less energy there is left over for all the 'boring' pre/rehab stuff. But I have to do it, there's just no real choice.

Plus I have to push the left knee's ROM much more diligently.It only bends 90-95 degrees and that aint enough. The least bit of tenision and that turns into 75-80 deg.Gotta stay loose, eh?
Start moving from double to single leg squat stretches.

Gotta stay vigilant.

And that thumper is little piece of heaven. It literally melts the tension right out of a tight flexor. amazing.

Serra Wins!

I can't beleive it! I didnt buy the fight because I didnt think Serra had a chance,who knew?

Saturday, April 07, 2007

32 kg one arm swings.

Great workout today.No Saturday AM client anymore so I was able to put my full energy and thoughts into the workout from the moment I got up. I used to be be able to do that with all my workouts but dems the breaks! This was great.Stretched out, got fully caffeinated and went to work.

Clean and press into Windmill( left only)
16 kg x5x2
32kg x3 x2!!

Awesome! Havent pressed this in ages and it was easy.One press and three problem

One Arm swings
16 kg x10/10x2
24 kg x5/5/5/5
24 kg x10/10

32kgx8/8 x 13 sets
208 reps
14,976 lbs!!

This was great,although my balance was off on a few reps, as I was swinging the bell higher than I have in a long time. This thing comes down FAST,LOL!

snatch holds( right only)
16kgx30 sec
24kgx35 sec
x60 sec
x50 sec
x40 sec

I realize now that I need to do clean/press/windmill left and snatch holds right AFTER I do my swings.Left shoulder was not needing any snatch holds after the 'warmup'.Normally one does heavy grinds first and then ballistics. As usual I'm backwards.

ALSO did easy negative presses at the end of each snatch holds with no shoulder pain! My shoulder is definitely healing.

The swings went easy, it's good to feel strong!

datsit, time to stretch.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Climbing hills again.

Today was A LOT tougher than I expected it to be. Figures. I slept well, and enough, ate better and was mentally prepared for what I wanted to do. Nothing good ever comes on days I feel good, lol :)) Felt just like going up a long hill on a bike; steady and deliberate but not as explosive as I wanted.

I did 240 darcs with the 32 kg on saturday so thought 320-340 with the 24kg should be a walk in the park. Forgot about those 400 one arms I did on Monday with Joe ( which means I went harder than normal). I tend discount the 16 kg as a "nothing" workout but it certainly showed me differently.The 24 didnt feel heavy but I didnt feel snappy either.

I also did sets of 30 which was 1o too many. today is speed day and all reps should be super crisp.especially after the 100's on Mondays.I wanted to do more than Sat but the last 10 reps,especially in the last five sets;were too slow. So 20 rep sets on wednesdays . 20 on the darcs and 10/10 on the swings. One arm swing sets done singularly are in sets of 15-20

24 kg
10 sets of 30 reps
300 reps
15,900 lbs

This Weeks Numbers
Reps 944 up 22% from last week
Pounds 47,724 up 30% from last week.

Waiters Walks
16 kg x 100 feet /arm
200 foot laps
6 laps/ 1200 feet

Suitcase Farmers walk
1 16 kg 100 feet/ arm
400 foot laps
2 laps

2000 feet.
This is the best the waiters walk has felt! Not rep snatching but oding lots of overhead holds seems to be paying off. THis is a fantastic drill for perfect posture as you can't walk at all without it! the assymmetrical farmers walk is interesting as well.

Face Pulls
Stick press mobility
3 sets of 5 with triple shrugs

Big jumps in volume.No wonder I'm tired.Form feels good though and rythym was better. Have to remember to really let the non weighted arm swing back hard,sets me up much better.

BW 161.4
BF 9.1%
Water 60.8%

datsit,staying loose.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Getting bigger from swings.

It's very odd. Since I stopped snatching and just do swing variations I swear my upper body has grown! I feel like I have pecs again, lol. The swing has more time under tension for the muscles than the snatch; on both the ascent and the descent.Plus there is no resting at any point in the movement so the TUT really goes up.A little rest goes a long way in a tough set.

But there is no where to rest in the swing and working to stay as linked as possible at all times really seems to be working the torso in a pretty unique way. Cool.

The mother of all thumpers.

After spending hundreds of dollars on percussion massagers that I have continued to break I decided to step up to a medical grade model with a real motor. Just got this thing and it is amazing!
You don't have to push with it and, in fact, if you do it works less well. It creates tons of blood flow,heat in the area and the tight muscle literally melts out of spasm. Insane.My clients went nuts.
Trigger points that with just a bit of thump pressure were painfull could take the full weight of the thumper with no pain at all. And this baby really hums along.Testing the old one side by side the equalizer pro seemed to be vibrating in slow motion.

The hardest working man in powerlifting

Chuck Volgepohl is 43, been training like an animal and competing at the top for 20 plus years and seemingly NEVER gives up. I remember watching him on Louies first videos do insane things like 500 pound 'nose to the bench' seated good mornings and other insanities and thinking no way could he last. Well, its not the first time I've been wrong. He IS WSB. Watch how fast he comes up with 1080! Too bad speed training has no role in powerlifting ,lol.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Lotsa swings and DLs with Joe.

Joe Sarti joined me at Stones gym today and it was just like old times.Joe is super busy working with Team Shamrock but he is committed to serious training for the next TSC so of course he wanted to train at Stones,lol. I am happy for the company,especially on Mondays which is 'bore me to death with reps' day with the 16 kg( thanks Brett :)BUt is what I need so I have to 'git er dun'.
So having Joe there to count reps for me as well as watch him dl so strongly was great. I can really see some progress with my high rep endurance already so its not so bad. Just think I am back on my bike climbing hills. Get into the zone and just BREATHE through the set.stay loose and still be as strong and forcefull on each rep as possible.Quality reps.

One arm swings with 16 kg

404 reps
14,544 lbs

this was not as bad as I expected. Got the 100 rep set in earlier this time,lol.the extra energy of joe was great for getting through .not a bad workload.

Snatch Holds
36lbx 30 sec
x45 sec
x60 sec
x80 sec

rackwalks with 36
200 feet per arm, 400 feet per lap 5 laps
2000 feet total

these were easy.

BW 163.6 !!!( all that pizza this weekend)
BF 9.4%
Water 60.8 %

datsit,staying loose.

He blinded me with science!

Great post and data from Sr. RKC and exercise physiologist Kenneth Jay. Of course it confirms what I already knew but it is so good to get real data.

with 24kg snatches. This was just meant as a preliminary force/velocity testing on the force-platform but to me it confirmed what I believe to be true. The conclusions from this CANNOT be extrapolated to include other kettlebell weights- this have to be tested separately.I compared three types of kettlebell snatches:
1)Hard Style snatch
2)GS snatch
3)Power snatch from hang (no back swing and more like an Olympic snatch)

Calculations made from the sampled data are not easy to make so I have spent the last two hours trying to get something meaningful out of them and this is the results:
1)24kg Hard style snatch: Peak Force generation = 101,5 kg
2)24kg GS snatch: Peak force generation = 70,5 kg
3)24kg Pwr snatch from hang: Peak Force generation = 112 kg

Now what this data does is it confirms that when using the 24kg bell for Sports training (GPP etc) the GS style is inferior to the Hard style and the snatch from hang.

When the weight is so submaximal as a 24kg bell is, there is simply no point in doing GS because the main object is always to generate the highest power output. So unless you compete in GS don’t do GS style snatches. (as it is already pointed out during the RKC)

Now comparing the Hard style to the snatch from hang the power output is the highest (10,5kg more) when one snatches from the hang position. This is due to the fact that the bell travels in a much more vertical line and this kind of snatches involves the quads more which are important. However the difference between the two is not much. Doing snatches from hang is preferable if your sport only requires you to generate power a limited number of times. If your sport however, involves repeated bursts of explosion it makes sense to do the snatches hard style because the accumulated fatigue will be distributed between a larger amount of muscle mass (hips+quads) compared to snatches from hang (mostly quad dominant).

This is of course a theory that has to be validated by more testing (EMG activity etc.).Now all this may not be new knowledge to any of you but it is always nice to have theories validated (at least I think so…)I will continue to do Hard style snatches myself and the athletes I work with are NOT going to learn GS style at any point in their training. It is simply a waste of valuable training time to an athlete who uses the kb as a tool to do better in another power sport.All the best in your training and be ferocious!!!

/Kenneth Jay

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Stretching out.

I've been as square and plumb in the last few weeks as I have been in many, many, many years. Its been nice to get a break from the need for constant bodywork, stretching, foam rollering,thumping and rifga stretching that I had to do for so long just to have a chance at being 'unwound'and be able to train.

But as I like to say the only thing harder than figuring out what to do to get yourself out of pain or advance your training is REMEMBERING to keep doing it!At least still it stops working. So into the gym I went this midday to stretch out and do my stick presses and squat rack stretches.I used to 'stretch out' regularly as a gymnast and now I remember how good it feels to be 'loose' and ready to move.I'm sure it still looks like I creep around like an old man but it feels better,lol.

Stick presses
Squat rack position stretches
Press behind neck stretches with stick
Rifga on floor
Foam roller

twenty minutes.

What benching used to look like

here we go: Raw, drug free and using serious muscle to do the job.Dennis Cieri benches 525.