Saturday, October 29, 2011

Channeling Max.Double 28 kg Press for PR

Shank that is. It was short cycle double bell press day and for some reason I thought the double 28's would be a good choice.I been seeing Max's amazing double Beast clean and press at 182 lbs in my head and used him as my inspiration, motivation and technical ( virtual) adviser.

Watching Max's old school handstand position gave me renewed confidence in the strength and stability of it and further realize just how much the modern handstand's hypermobile upper chest hollow position is just fashion . Nice if you can get into the position but really not necessary for a very strong inverted position on one's hands.

I learned a lot at the bodyweight cert and one thing I got was some confidence, finally, that my upper body strength is actually returning and that I can, once again, train a bit and not just spend time in rehab with one foot on the gas and two on the break.

It's seriously frustrating to constantly be holding back from trying to improve when one's whole life has been devoted to that, but hey , when you're injured the basics are just fine.

But it seems that more than a little of my 'lost physical function' has returned. Nice.

And I did have last week off pressing, although I did a ton of bodyweight pressing work, and I had gone light the week before so why not take it up a notch? I didn't have time to search blog or youtube archives to see if I had ever even cleaned double 28's but I was pretty sure I hadn't. Which meant I've never pressed them.Which meant a real world.real time PR. Nice.

For some odd reason I wasn't worried about it, I just didn't know if I could do one rep or maybe two. I didn't even hope for triples. But that's what I got,lol. Even nicer:))

The old style handstand is much more about total upper body strength with more pecs and triceps in the mix, compared to more shoulder and upper back in the more strict version.

Either way that's how I planned to press today and it was amazingly strong. All the tricep and handstand work paid off.

7-8 am full stretchout
Here's some video of the first part of my stretch routine which I taped friday on request.

it's boring but hey, that's stretching. I flagged on my stretching a few weeks ago and paid the price in some nasty hip tightness. Don 't be lazy!

I"ll put up the rest of my routine in short segments so as not to kill people with boredom. You've been warned.

8 am
one arm swing warmup
16 lg x 10/10+5 trn x 3

Double clean and press( short cycle)
16's x 5 x2
20's x5
24's x 4 ( good sign, these felt light)

28's x 3 x 5 sets!!!! PR!

Wow, this shocked me and they got stronger each set!

One arm swings
24kg x 10/10
28 kg x5/5
32 kg x 5/5 x2

while I'm doing this Nick swings the beast for the first time . easy!

Band triceps extensions
5 x 20-12

I'm totally convinced these are helping Everything for me. shoulder and elbow stability, pressing strength, handstand position and arm size :)) ( hey, that's important)

Ring Supports and bent knee and L sit
4 sets!!!!

Crazy. I just tried these as a lark as we were walking out the door to see if being able to do them at the cert would hold up and they were super easy. Even the L sit! AND my shoulder stayed where it should, even better.

datsit. Sisu

Thursday, October 27, 2011

CB swipes and lots more handstand work

On my way to a pike up to handstand stack at the workshop.
No problems from Tuesdays workout so back to norm for today. That means two cb swipes with the 15's trying to build both density and volume. Also wanted to see whether I could still do a lot of cool tricks I could do at the Bodyweight cert last weekend or was that just a fluke,lol.

Good news is that it was not a fluke and my handstands felt even stronger than ever today. This seems to have turned a corner with my ability to get back into old gymnastics positions not only getting easier but more familiar as well. My body has finally decided not to act as if I had never done these movements and positions before. I can't believe I did so many hollow rockers and pike position moves and my back held up perfectly :))

CB Swing ->Torch swings
2 10's x 10 and 5 x 2
2 15's x 5 and 5 x 2

2 10's x 20
2 15's x 15
x 17

I wanted to do another set of 25 and then do the 30 but didn't know if my grip would hold. These are getting far better than before and I am definitely finding my groove and it's easier all the time. I am striving to be as efficient as possible here as I am chasing high rep numbers, not max strength or weight.This is a pretty natural movement for me and I want to be able to break my old pr of 106 continuous reps.

I hate doing high reps in kbs but don't mind them here at all. it's a good break from, and compliment to, my kb work

When I can ladder up to a set of 50, 5 reps at a time, my foundation will be good for a high rep set.

Handstands against wall into free stand
5 sets here and the holds were very solid. 8-12 seconds easy.

Straddled, straight leg press to headstand
5 sets here!!

wow this was a gift from the cert. haven't done headstands for decades and last time I tried a few years ago they were awful . Nice, tried some pike attempts that weren't there yet but they will be. the straddles were solid.

I can also see where this will re teach me how to do a press from headstand to handstand with the optimal arm, head shoulder position.

Triceps extensions black band

supersetted with

Handstand pushups

triceps were 4 x 20.20 15 15
HS pushups were 4 x 4-5 about half way down!!!

Pumping up the triceps first with all the above work really helped a bunch here as I felt very solid and went down farther than ever and my shoulder stayed in ( for the most part :))
Lots of weight on the heel of my hands as I crunched the elbows in on descent.

I used the same one leg bent position Pavel taught me in Hungary.

I don't have to get on a plane again until next April which is AWESOME for my training momentum. I am already really psyched about next years bodyweight training workshop and can't wait to see what I will be able to do by then!

datsit. Sisu

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Back to work, snatch day

The weekend at the first ever RKC Bodyweight seminar/ workshop is over and it far exceeded my own expectations. Things gelled SO well between Pavel , Max and I that dragondoor has already scheduled the next one for next Aug 3-5 at a bigger site and open to everyone, not just RKC's.

I peaked even better than I hoped for and ended up doing things that I seem to only be able to do at certs, lol. Dips, front lever drills, hollow rocker work,L sits on rings as well as all kinds of stability ball party tricks I haven't done in ages were all easy and pain free ( pike up to handstand on two stability balls). Nice.

I learned a ton from Max and Pavel and am even more interested in expanding my bodyweight training. I can't wait to learn Ginastica Naturale from Peter Lakatos, who also took the course and demonstrated to all what an amazing athlete, as well as instructor he is. I got to stretch and move and play and teach for three days straight with an amazing group of RKC athletes, all high level themselves but all getting into their beginners mind to learn something new.

Let's just say that Max Shank is a serious talent and get it out of the way. As an athlete on NUMEROUS fronts, but also as a VERY thoughtful trainer and student of the game with a serious passion for all things athletic and corrective. What an addition to the RKC Team.

But I was cooked this morning and new that the adrenaline shut down was in effect and I was feeling weak and flat and unmotivated.

Stretching out helped get me back into my body( 6-7 am ) but the first few sets of swings reminded me I hadn't trained with a kettlebell for a week. BUT it also pushed the re boot button and reset me back to base one.

I wanted to snatch the 20 kg but not with any interval constraints so snatch vo2 was out, sets and reps with rest were in.

It was an amazing weekend, with RKCs from all over the world in attendance, Hungary, Italy, Sweden and Germany were all ably represented.


16 kg x 5/5 x2
20 kg x 5/5
x 9/9
128 reps
5632 lbs

form felt good although it felt( and looks) like I really shortened my stroke to be more efficient as nothing felt strong. Will get back to my power form next week.

Rif Swings

I called them Power swings but Pavel likes Rif Swings so that be it. We have some pretty big plans for this movement soon and I have some testing to do so I will be playing with this movement more again.

( this was taken last July) This is a serious movement but today was only:

24 kg x 10 x 3 sets

this was hard enough.

CB Two hand swipe

20 lbs x 8/8
x 10/10

ouch. I be tired now.

Bodyblade Laterals

3 sets of 8/8


Datsits. Sisu

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Snatch Vo2 Taper week

Teaching at certs are my competitions these days, the time when I have to be rested and ready to perform; even if that performing means standing walking and teaching for 12 hours a day for three days. This weekend's BodyWeight Workshop in MSP with is different, it's going to be HARDER as it's only Pavel Max and me teaching for the full three days!

So even though I needed to keep my condition up with some snatch vo2 today I also knew I needed to back off the volume and intensity a bit and leave a lot in the tank for the weekend

6-7 a,

Full stretchout focused again mainly on leg work, calves, hammies hips splits Right glute was weirdly tight today for no damn good reason other than I have to go on a trip this weekend and didn't have enough to concentrate on it seems :))

What it does tell me is that I've been too lazy with my serious stretch practice and need to get back to it asap. Will be good mental prep for the weekend's emphasis on just bodyweight anyway.

snatch vo2
16 kg
40 sets of 7
280 reps
10.080 lbs

these were very easy but my right glute/ham tie in was talking to me so I backed off even more than expected. I was planning on 50 sets but didn't want this to tighten up so 40 it was.

Two Hand arm casts
20 lbs x 10/10 x 2
25 lbs x 10/10 x 2

5 sets for 5-10 seconds

definitely not as easy after all those snatches :))

Bodyblade laterals
3 x10/10

datsit, out of time


Saturday, October 15, 2011

28 kg long cycle PR

Woke up this morning thinking I was going to do alternating clean and presses with the 24 kg. Keep it light and safe as I have to travel to MSP next Thursday and teach for three very interactive days. But I felt very good today and the 24 was just going to be too light, so the 28 kg it was.

Had a great 60 minute stretchout at 7 am and that was a tell. Got back to doing hurdle step drills with my left leg only with the stick at the squat rack position as well as the overhead snatch position. CAN'T forget these as they are crucial to me for a variety of reasons.

They build my lagging left hip flexor, pattern the left leg gait pattern, pattern a strong hip, ankle dorsi flexion position which helps keep me square.This, as well as stretching in these positions has got to get back into the daily mix.

Also back into the mix was serious left quad stretching which has to go to the top of the que. It sucks to do but pays off big dividends in gait ease and less knee pain.

left shoulder was IN, which was great and I didn't push it at all with over head hangs at all. That helped a lot when it was pressing time

8 AM Long cycle clean and press
3 sets of 5/5/5 one arm swings and transers

16 kg x 5/5
20 kg x5/5
24 kg x3/3

28 kg x3/3 x 8 sets PR

I'm too lazy to look back for it but I do think this is an all time pr or ties it. Either way it rocks because it was way easy( could have done 5's), felt light and, most importantly, my left shoulders stayed in place every set and got more stable with each set as well.

One arm swings
24 kg x 10/10 x 10 sets
15 minutes
200 reps
10,600 lbs/nice

this was very good. My need to go heavier than 24 was slaked with the presses so high reps and fast pace was in the mix. This is a very good sign that my condition is getting to a peak, perfect timing. The bell felt light, the rep speed was fast and the power was high. What more could I ask for/ ( that it felt that way with the 40 kg but don't be greedy :))

Triceps extensions ( black band)
20,20, 15, 15

Bench Pistols

grease the groove. A whole bunch throughout the workout.

I realized this week that I dropped pistols from my schedule and decided today to put them back in the mix; BUT only doing bench pistols and doing them grease the groove style. Whenever I was sitting down, either on a bench or a stability ball, I have to get UP from the bench with a left leg pistol! It worked great and I did a lot of concentric followed by a negative pistol and then back up again. This should work very well for really solidifying this move.
datsit. Sisu

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Double CB swipes and free handstands.

Good energy today and I even got to do a full stretchout as my first client overslept and I got paid to stretch. Nice.
Left bicep tendon and shoulder has been behaving so that is a great change from the last couple of months.

One CB torch swing
10 lbs x 5/5
15 lb x 5/5
20 lbs x 5/5
25 lbs x 2/2 pr
15lbs x 5/5

These get tough real real fast. The 15's were very strong and the 20's were much stronger than last week (hence the attempt at 25's) but the 25's,even with a healthy choke up, were TOUGH! especially on the left side. But at least I got some reps in.

Just swinging that club with one arm is no joke.

2 CB Swipes
10's x 10
15's x 10 x 13 sets
x 20 x 1 set ( video)
150 reps.

Nice. This form and groove is coming along very well. Much stronger all the way around. SO cool to get to train this with Tracy too. She did great.

8 sets of 5-8 seconds
5 sets Free Hands

this went very well too. the first eight sets were with a one tap touch against the wall and then into a free HS. The last five were free. the first 2 took 2 attempts to get to the hs. The last 3 were all done on first attempts.

This is key. If you can't do it three times in a row without missing you don''t own it. Today I owned it. Hand strength is key and is coming along very well, as well as delt strength, Crucial for a strong HS.

Can't WAIT to go to MSP next week and teach this bodyweight seminar with Pavel and Max. I've seen lots of data on the participants and almost everybody's main interest in the handstand. Perfect :))

Triceps extension, black band
2 sets of 20

datsit. Sisu

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

24 kg snatch 140 rep workout

Today was the heavy day in my snatch microcycle progression. First SnatchVo2 with 16 kg, the snatch Vo2 with 20kg then a total volume day with the 24kg. Each workout should ride off the last one and make the next one that much easier.

Seems to be working, today's snatch workout with the 24, which I haven't trained for sets and reps in weeks was easy.

6-7 am full stretchout. Left bicep tendon still continues to slip in and out the groove so finally gave in and just kinesiotaped the pec pec tie in and the brachialis and bicep insertion and voila' it felt stable almost instantly. I don't know why I just didn't do this almost always works :))

Stretchout mobs went very well and spent a ton of time on teres major with the pain ball as well as mobilizing first ribs. the rest was on lower body and splits. Doing all my split work on fingertips.

This ONE tip alone has really made the forearm flexors release a lot. the perfect balancer to all my grip work.

8:30 Snatch

one arm swing warmup
16 kg x5/5/5/5 x 3

16 kg x 5/5
x 6/6
x9/9 ( slight palm tear on this one)
x 10/10 ( video above)
x5/5/ x 5
140 total reps
7560 lbs

The set looked easier and faster than it felt but it was nice to see I can throw the 24 around like I do the 16 . I wanted somewhere between 120 and 150 reps, this was perfect. So cool to train with Tracy at my side as she crushed the 16 kg for volume as well :)) And of course this was after 2 hours of training classes before hand,

Capt America CB Arm casts
20 x10
25 x 10
35 x 8

these were strong but still very hard! SO much grip work it's amazing. Very interesting as the clubs in this move wouldn't seem to have such a high grip requirement but it does.

CB Shield Casts, two hand
20 lbs x10/10
25 x10/10 x 2

easy breezy.

Bodyblade laterals

3 x 10/10

did these VERY deliberately, making sure to take each rep ALL the way to the top and bottom without losing ANY tension at any part of the rep .Man they are tough. but it's such a good shoulder stabilizer.

Datsit. Sisu

Saturday, October 08, 2011

Double 24 long cycle and high pulls

Was definitely not interested in pressing the 32 kg again today so it meant 24's. Since I did single long cycle last week I thought double long cycle clean and press would be a good choice. Double bells are always a tough one for me since my legs are short and I have to take a pretty wide stance to do the swings/clean well.

It's ironic that my best competition squats were done with a super wide stance but now with kb's my stance is pretty narrow and I feel so uncomfortable wide.taking off the suit bottom, belt and not squatting to a box changed more than a few leverages :))

Warmup/stretchout/ mobility was going great til I did some hangs from the TAP bar and felt my bicep tendon slip out in my left shoulder. Now this thing can sublux from doing side planks as I do bodywork on my roller and it's not a big deal except the shoulder is JUST not in the right position and all the accompanying muscles have to spasm up a bit stabilize it and it's instantly tight and I lose ROM.

I know how to knock it out but I haven't figured out how to put it back in just yet. Working on it.

So that meant my presses could be sketchy but many times just doing the moves and alternating sets with overhead stick shrugs resets what I assume is the first/rib/clavicle linkage.

7-8 am: full warmup( splits are really coming along now that I support upper body with rumble rollers to get a more upright torso position as I work the splits. Everything was opening up nicely til the bicep tendon went south.

8-9 Long cycle clean and press/doubles
warmup : one arm swings 16 kg x5/5 + 5 trns x 3 seets
double bell swings 2/16 kgs cx 8 x 2

Long cycle clean and press
16's x 5x2
20's x 5
24's x 5 x 8 sets

We could have easily done ten but we had heavy one arm high pulls to do.

KB High pulls

since we went light with the presses I wanted to amp it up a bit for the one arm swings but was worried my left shoulder wouldn't like the long arm of the swing so I settled on one arm high pulls. It was a good choice as the movement felt solid and strong and actually helped re position things.

24 kg x10/10
28 kg x8/8
32 kg x5/5 x 5 sets

Band dyna band triceps extensions
4 x20
1x 19!!!

so close but felt right triceps ready to lockup on the 19th rep after having to do some serious rest pause( in the fully stretched position of course :)) to get the last 9 reps. The first three sets were positively EASY and I had to work a bit to get the right amount of fatigue for the set by holding the lockout position, really working the stretch and generally squeezing the crap outa my triceps.

Then, tricep death occured, as it always does, suddenly and without warning. The best part is is that with 3 workouts a week I get another chance very soon.

datsit. I have razors to sharpen :))


Thursday, October 06, 2011

Light clubs and handstands

Tuesday's snatch workout kicked my butt a bit and for some reason sleep has been poor the last two days so today's late afternoon clubbell training had to be light and short. Last weeks two clubbell swing a thon had my right SI a bit tight so I figured I would give one arm clubs a go today.
Good time to experiment as I knew volume would be low.

Haven't done one arm swipes in forever so it would be interesting.

1 pm
One arm swipes
10 lbs x10/10 x 2
15 lbs x8/8x2
20 lbs x 5/5
x 10/10
x 8/8

this was good! the movement felt very natural and smooth to me, just as the one arm kb work does as compared to two hand or two kb versions. I guess it's my imbalances helping me out :))
I have never done 20 lb swipes before and they were solid.
The back swing was even shorter and more efficient than the two club version. But, we'll see how everything feels in the AM>

One arm Torch swings

10 lbs x 5/5
15 lb x5/5
20 lb x 5/5 x2

this was pretty amazing as the ROM was so much better and the move so much easier than the last time I did them. Of course the last time I tried I still wasn't able to do kb military presses or really anything overhead but snatch holds for time.

Handstands/wall/ free
ten sets again and this is getting to the point where I believe my HS might actually be back. Pretty soon start adding in stack ups to free hands in the mix and take the volume up a bit. each HS was held for at least 5 seconds free and many much longer.

Black mini band extensions, narrow hand space
18, 10

lol, triceps death, they fall off fast. serious pump too; which I have missed.Love to feel like I have some triceps mass again. My favorite muscle in the arm.

Black dyna band reverse grip pushdowns
3 sets of 10.8, 8

finishing touch.

datsit.quick and dirty. but it got did.


Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Snatch Vo2: 60 sets of 7

It seems like my training cycle for snatches is working. Going to just one day a week of snatching instead of two, and cycling the loads with a 16 kg snatch vo2 workout one week, a 20 kg snatch vo2 workout the next and followed up with a 24 kg snatch workout that focuses just on total volume and not time.

Doing the 20 kg for last weeks workload made the 16 kg feel like, well, a 16 kg( at least what it should feel like :)) My main problem with max vo2 training is not the volume, or the short rest periods or having my heart rate so high it feels my heart is going to jump out of my chest but the speed.

Eight reps per 15 seconds just require so much more 'accuracy' in the movement with NO MISTAKES in form, to keep up that pace.Seven rep sets now just feel like I am almost cruising and could keep up that pace for a lot longer.

SO that's what I did today; kept the pace at 7 per 15 sec and did 60 sets. It's been two plus years since I did 60 sets of max. and it was strong up until the last ten sets, lol.

I actually was snatching at an 8 rep pace after the first ten sets warmed me up but as I wrote about before there is a world of difference between eight rep pace and eight reps per set :))

I actually did some nine rep pace but that just left me more time to rest at the end of the interval in the overhead hold.

6-7 am full stretchout

For a change I actually did the full 60 minutes in stretchout getting everything from toes to nose including my overheads and the overhead in split snatch ( barbell style) position. This is a keeper. ANother global stretch that I love.

Floor splits are coming along very well and found that if I prop the arms up on rumble rollers I get more upright much more easily( which I knew) but also get a better hip flexor loading( which I didn't).

I have been doing all floor split and stretches on fingertips ala Convict Conditioning 2 advice and it is helping my flexor forearm muscles release tension and strengthening the hell out of my extensors. It's also making my fingers seriously gymnastics strong again.

Snatch Vo2
16 kg
7 reps per interval
60 sets
420 reps
15,120 !! nice most I've done in ages

Two hand arm casts
20 lbs x10/10
25 lbs x 10/10 x 3 sets

Shield Cast
25 lbs x 8/8 x 3 sets

Bodyblade laterals
3 x8/8

One arm band triceps extensions
4 x 20/20
x 15/15
x10/10 x 2

I like doing these one arm at a time as well

AS always, having my Queen of Swings and KB Snatches train alongside of me is the best. Watching the video it's way cool how synchronized we get in our pace without even trying.Of course tracy was doing double sets with the same rest period but really, would we expect any less? lol Of course not.


Saturday, October 01, 2011

28 kg Long cycle cl/press and 28 kg one arm swings

It's so nice to sleep well but especially so before my heavy Saturday workouts. Also good before my 28 kg clean and press day. I actually looked back at my last 28 kg workout and saw that I did 6 sets of 2( which was a conservative load) so I knew triples were on the menu.

How many, I didn't know but I 6 sets of 3 sounded good, 6 more total reps than last time, but when done in triples much harder by way more than 6 reps worth. AS always I never really know what's going to happen til I place hands on bell.

That's part of the fun and now, at my place in my training journey a good place to be. I don't HAVE to make any numbers to make sure I get my REAL number at a comp because I don't do that anymore and it's fine.

Actually way more than fine. I don't need that stress anymore. Been there, done that, tore shit up. Now its' time to just build not break. Training not testing.

7-8 am stretchout.
Got caught up with printer issues at the studio and only had time for 40 real minutes and paid most attention to the legs. Right SI was a little weird after all those swipes and rockits ( thanks for jinxing me Ramon! :)) so I started there. Didn't get much overhead stretching or mobilizing done but left shoulder has been feeling normal of late so I wasn't worried.

Plus I FELT strong and my mind was right, the MOST important thing of all.

Clean and press
one arm swing warmup
16 lg x 5/5/5/5 x 3

16 kg c/p x 5/5
20 kg x5/5
24 kg x3/3
28 kg x 3/3 x 6 sets
36 total reps /18 per side

Nick kept bugging me to do 7 sets but I wasn't greedy and 6 was the TOP end of my plan so I stuck with it and finished strong. Like I COULD have done 7 and that was the point. Leave some in the tank for the next workout.

Left shoulder was 90 % perfect( no adjustments) and I was more confident on each set. Right side was VERY strong and easy.

One arm swings
28 kg x 8/8 x 8 sets
x 8/8/8/8 x 1 set
160 reps
these went really well too and I could have easily done sets of 10 but decided this workload was perfect for today. Nice to feel strong and untweaked! I decided to do both of the last sets back to back as much out of laziness than bravado. I knew I had one good effort in me but not sure about two.
It's always harder to put the bells down and pick them up again than to keep going. BUT it was a good rep count anyway.

Black Band Triceps extension
5 sets of 20 GOAL!!!

I've been doing these 3 x a week trying to get all five sets and got it done today, and it was strong too. Hey, when it's a good day it's a good day. I like having triceps again, too :))

Much thanks to Fabio Zonin RKC TL for the great Pure Power t shirt! See you soon man.

datsit. Sisu