Saturday, March 31, 2012

Snatches and Deads( again)

It looks like the high rep sets, and not the dead were responsible for my unusual left leg pain so I decided to put the deads back in again.
This was a pain week from hell and for some reason I didn't get a day off of some kind of tweak or spasm or basic body pain all week. Until this morning, when for no good reason things let up. My fibula went back into place so my ankle and knee worked better( well, without cramping anyway) and my levator scapula, which woke me up at 12 midnight last night to be stretched, let go and let me train

It's just so weird as it seems that there is only one pain, but it moves around the body,; and as I try to catch it and  get rid of it it just runs a tail end.. Whack a mole indeed. I push it down here and it pops up there. No reason solid reason or logic to when or where either.


My legs felt better yesterday, but my shoulder(s) were talking to me as was my grip( from the high volume clubs) and I just felt beat up. This week has to be medium as next week, the week before the Cert is a light, download week. Definitely felt like I was not adapting to the workload and then I woke up and it seemed I had.

Not full of vim and vigor but not jacked up either. So strange. The plan was to start slow and see how I felt. I wasn't married to the 24 kg today either.I know I need to slow it down and recover more.

7-7:45 stretchout

back on board with this, which I know I have been neglecting of late. Putting in some time but not with the priority and concentration it needs and it requires to really square me as much as possible. It's insidious, the asymmetry. You really have to get enough done so that you are not moving in that twisted direction because all those little tweaks add up to one big one once and then you're out of real training for awhile, stuck on real rehab patrol and that is no fun.

As I said before but now have to really do, is to put my flexibility and mobility training AT THE TOP OF MY DAYS PRIORITIES . If I don't my kettlebell and bodyweight training will  come to stall or a halt.

My ability to keep myself as square plumb and neutral as possible is what allows me to train. At all.
And yes it is boring and repetitive and tedious but so is brushing and flossing. Be neglectful of those and see what happens. Same with flex and mob work. It's a necessity. Especially for me and I know it.

AS with kbs it's about the basics and I know mine, just have to get them done first thing, asap.

One arm swing 
16 kg x 5/5/5/x 3

16 kg x5/5x2
20 kg x 4/4

24 kg x 5/5
70 reps
3710 lbs

When I started I figured I would do my reset 5x5/5 workout but it felt ok so I went up. 70 reps is a good back off place. Groove felt pretty good but not perfect. Left shoulder, while 95% better than last night was not perfect.Decent workload all things considered.
Glenn must have been feeling better than me and killed it on his last set of 5 x10/10/5/5 with this pr.

It's hard to remember the Glenn that started training kbs just 8 months ago and was dying with 16 kg one arm swings and could barely move. He will pass the RKC Snatch test standard, I have no doubt and even with his extensive training and competition background he's getting into a condition he's never felt before. 

Kbs bring people back from the dead., no lie.

And this week I really realized the importance of legs that can lift and carry, shoulders and arms that can pull and push things,a back that is stable and able to bend and twist with no pain and the joy of energy, of extra energy to work hard and long and do it again and again and again. Because that's what everyday life requires.
Yes one has to be strong enough to lift the heavy things that need to be lifted every so often but its more about the little things that have to be lifted all the time that really make up the bulk of our life work as well as the ability to be able to stand walk and move for hours on end without fatigue.To not need a chair and be comfortable squatting, sitting on the floor or kneeling easily for your rest position.

And, most important, to not be in pain, and if so, have a strategy to get out of it. Being able to perform basic maintenance on oneself , as Mr Starrett's motto goes.

" A back of iron and legs that never quit."
Still my goal.

So onto deadlifts
135 x3 x 2
179 x 2
201 x 2
220 x 4 singles

these went great. Should have taken video but my form was more basic and I tried to think about it less and feel it more.Set my grip a bit wider( still double overgrip no hook) about 1/2 inch off the smooth, locked into the lats then pushed my knees more forward and used legs off the ground then hip extension.
Pretty much and OL clean grip deadlift. Felt good

Two hand clubbell arm casts
25 lbs x 10/10 x2
Shield cast
25 lbs x 10/10

tired now. want food:))

Sisu/Never Quit

Thursday, March 29, 2012


It struck me today, after we did  140 reps in the clubbell swipes in sets of 10-15 reps, that perhaps three days focusing on high reps might be too much. I am seriously sore! From stem to stern, in a good way( except for my left knee, as usual) but stiff and sore

But I also realized that I might actually adapt to this workload-eventually, perhaps- and that if I wanted to really bump up my strength endurance for the snatch test goal that this might be a good path. Especially since the clubs are more natural to me and stress out the joints even less than the kbs do.

We'll see,but now I realize that it might not have been the deadlifts that made me so freakin' sore but the high rep snatches instead- even though they felt so easy.All I know is that my left leg was not happy and I walk funny enough already.

( my new pain balls on the right.batting machine balls.supposed to be softer than lacrosse ball but I don't think so. Just larger :)) I know they will be getting lots of use)

Two clubbell swipes
15 lbs x 10, 15, 20, 25
          x 10,15,20, 15
130 reps
3900 lbs

these were easy and hard at the same time. trying to keep things easy and low key but the reps definitely felt like they added up. The grip stress is different than kbs but serious as well. perhaps more serious than kbs as the thumb is heavily involved where with the kbs it is not. you could swing kbs with a false grip to a certain extent if you wanted.

P bar Handstands
MUCH harder than I expected and it took me 2-4 tries to get all the way overhead for the first 3-4 sets before I settled down. Shoulders( muscular/ upper back ) were also saying hi at the top of the handstand, sore for the first 3 sets than relaxing.
6 sets of 5-10 seconds

Rack Walks
200 feet per arm x 4 laps
100 feet per arm switch x 1
1000 feet

these actually were feeling great. shoulder was staying quite and knee and gait were the best they have been all day.

We'll see how this plays out, not sure at all but it's fun for now:))


Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Another day at the office

Some times their are no epiphanies, sometimes it's just work.
Today was one of those days and that's just fine. In fact it was great.

Of course my left leg didn't stop aching until about 10 am today but then it did, just all of a sudden and I knew the workout wouldn't be as hard as I thought it would be when I got up at 4am and my leg and knee were still sore from Saturday's whatever  I did. Wouldn't stretch out, thump out or roll out.

Trying to square my body out is like a whack a mole project, smack it down in one place and it just pops out somewhere else.

But it popped out square just in time for training, which is what counts.First day doing light snatches on tuesday and it went easily, AFTER my ten minute scalding hot bath to try to warm up. For California it's been too damn cold for this old body. The Russian passive warmup works great though.

One arm swings
16 kg x 5/5/5 x3

16 kg x5/5
16 kg  x20/20/10/10
          x 10/10/10/10 
these went easy, breathing VERY moderate until last 10 in the first set and the whole time the last.

One arm swings
24 kg  x8/8 x 3
28 kg x 5/5

these were surprisingly hard after those snatches. back was a bit tired as was whole body :)) I can see in the video my right shoulder was too high, didn't feel that way in the set. Not sure if the next technique has something to do with that or fatigue. have to video the lighter sets to see next week.

Also have to alternate which exercise goes first. if I do snatches first every workout it'll take alot out of the swings, which is my strength work and needs to progress as well.One the days I swing first I will probably only do one high rep snatch set with the 16 or the 20 kg.

it might look like this:

24 kg snatch: working up to sets/reps of 

week one
one arm swing : heavy loads and progressive 5's-10s
16 kg snatch : one set max reps 80 % effort

 week two:
20 kg snatch : working up to one set of 100
( first goal= 50, then 60, 80 then 100 rep set)
one arm swings: medium weights for moderate to high reps

Floor Handstands and ring extensions
4 sets of each. Handstands felt better than ever with Glenn giving me just a light tap spot as I did then free of the wall.

Ring work was 4 sets of 10-12


Saturday, March 24, 2012

Towards the snatch test

After Thursday's great success I wondered how today would go. I felt too good so I got worried, :)) I know I needed to back off a bit but wasn't sure how. Need to get my 100 reps in but in what combination?

I settled on 5/5/ 3/3/. that would keep the volume of reps per set up to where it was last week but lower the intensity(only 5 reps per hand is easier than 10).Shoulder felt good. legs finally felt recovered and back was mobile as well. Now I'm really suspicious :))

Little did I know the problem child would be the DL not the snatch.

stretchout 7 -7:45 AM
the Basic Seven first:

1) Back bend over stability ball
2) Foam roller
3) Brettzell with straight leg
4) Strap Stretch/ hammies
5) Up Dog
6) Down Dog
7) Thai squat

these are my first crucial seven stretches I must do first every day.There are others that are great to include but these set me up for my workout and my work day.
After those  are:

8) Kneeling Hip flexor stretch with toe dorso flexion
9) Overhead stick stretch
10) Behind Back stick stretch
11) Straddle stretch on floor
12) Pike stretch on floor
13) Overhead hand from bar
14) Hip opening squat stretch
15) Wall toe/ foot/calf stretch

that's my 45- 60 minute stretch routine in various permutations; given whatever is tightness that day and yelling at me the most :))

8 am
One arm swing warmup 16 kg x 5/5/5 x3

16 kg x 5/5 x2
20 kg x 4/4

24 kg x 5/5/3/3 x 5
         x 10/10 x 1

100 reps

Over all went fine although my left shoulder took awhile to warmup out of the blue and my downstroke on left was sloppy for a few sets, then it settled in. At a whole 'nother level with my snatch endurance training these days for no good reason. But I'll take it.

135 x3 
      x 2
185 x1
220 x 1 x 5

I'm taking these out of the program again. Slightly tweaked my left adductor on a perfectly solid ,easy rep.This just shows me I still don't do well with locked in bi lateral movements, be it the two hand swing or a barbell lift. It sucks but I don't have a choice. No need hurting myself trying to get stronger to avoid hurting myself :))

The  single KB still reigns supreme for me; being so asymmetrical it gives me the greatest latitude to adjust, bio mechanically and not tweak.

Band Rear delts s/s Pbar handstands
4 x 15 reps and 10 seconds.

HS felt very solid today. Much more work on this movement to come. taking out kb presses as well and putting in Handstand practice as it's own first movement on Thursdays. These don't hurt me I do them well and they need way more work for me to improve.

New(est) Schedule:

24 kg Snatch
Two hand Clubbells
P Bar handstands
Band Rear Delt

16 or 20 kg Snatch test work
One arm swings
Floor handstands
Ring Tri extensions

Handstands ( floor and Pbar)
2 CB swipes
KB walks( racks and farmers, one or two bells)
BodyBlade laterals

Sisu/Never Quit

Thursday, March 22, 2012

1st 100 continuous snatches/ 16 kg

When I did my RKC the snatch test was a one hand switch test. I weighed in one pound heavy ( 166) and had to do 28/28 reps with the 24 kg. I had trained for 25/25 and barely could hold on to that.My technique was newly learned and I was arm strong and pulled too much. I also had/have big forearms that pump up like crazy.

Lets just say I wasn't a fan of this GS style test where grip endurance was the limiting factor. It took me five tries( three slips of the grip over the weekend and one success where the video camera "didn't work" . I got it on the fifth try.

Then I did 80 reps with the 24 when we were coming up with the numbers for this current version of the RKC snatch test and 80 was what we thought it would be, for a guy my weight ( not age) but then it got bumped to 100 reps for everybody.

When I did the 80 reps I did 20 reps in 40 seconds , put the bell down, rested 20 seconds ( which soon turned to 10 as I fatigued). I never did more anything over that 56 reps continuously and didn't want to.

ANd as a Master ( in age) I COULD use the 20 kg for my test but I don't want to. I want to be able to pass the snatch test with the 24 EASILY pretty much all the time . I can't think of a better barometer of my strength, endurance, cardio fitness, mental toughness  and power.
BUt I hate the damn thing. Have hated it because I really didn't have the right groove for me. I think I do now.

I want to be able to, eventually, do the 24 kg snatch test as strongly as I did the above with the 16. This was a big breakthrough for me, finding( re finding) my groove.It never made sense to me why I could reps so easily with the clubs but not the bells. Now I know; I had my right groove with the cbs but not my swing and snatch. Not really.

Till now.

Glenn couldn't make it today so we were supposed to go light and easy but I just had this idea in my head to just do our weekly 100 reps in one set. I wouldn't have been opposed to stopping early if it was hard. I know we are supposed to be backing off.
last weeks  two high rep sets were easy and I knew today would be too.

One arm swing warmup

16kg x5/5/5 x3

16 kg
10 right


handstand practice

11 sets of HS
5 sets tap off against wall
6 sets free kickup from 5-10 second

these went great and I'm think of replacing my press workout with handstand practice.

Rack Walks
16 kg
2 400 ft set 200 r 200  continuous
1 200 ft set r & l

1200 ft total

bodyblade laterals

Ring tri extensions: 3 supersets


Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Lessons from my bench press

When I was a bodybuilder I could barbell bench press 275 for 2-3 reps, on a good day. Most time I could only use 225 for 5s and I rarely did it as it 1) killed my shoulders( even the "good" one) and 2) did nothing for my pecs, which was the muscle I was using it to train.

At the same time I could incline db press 140's for 4 reps strongly and without pain.My incline barbell press was way stronger than my flat bench and didn't cause pain. The difference was on the inclines I could get my chest up( arch) retract my shoulder blades into the sockets and 'pack the shoulders'.

I didn't analyze it then as I didn't care what exercises I used, I just wanted chest development.

But when I became a powerlifter I was stuck with the bench as it was one of the three lifts of the total, which determined the best lifter.Just like All Around in gymnastics. You're only as good as your weakest event, so I had to get better at the bench.

Luckily I discovered Louie Simmons and WSB and the idea of the vertical forearm in the bench. Lowing the bar with a totally vertical forearm meant the barbell came to rest about 2 inches below my sternum, not on the top of the pecs as the bodybuilders did.

To my surprise this didn't hurt my shoulders in the least and Louie's admonition to not press up , but to push away from the bar as you "shoved " it made a huge difference in power AND strength.

With this technique I benched 435 at 181( with a bench shirt) and did 490 in the gym. I regularly used 400+ lbs in various "special exercises"  in our weekly max effort workouts on  1,2 and 3 board close grip presses, barbell inclines, floor presses and declines. So I know if I got the shoulder in the right position it would be strong. Just a bit off, nothing. Except Pain. It dawned on me this weekend that I should try to emulate the same "feel" I had benching in my Kb pressing. Forget about the "right" way to do it and find the "strong" way, for ME. So far so good.It is, however,entirely different than what I have been doing so it will take some time.

My press has sucked of late and I have to find the answer so today I played around with mimicing the  vertical forearm position I used in my bench press. In RKC one is supposed to keep the forearm vertical but  once I lay the lower arm across the chest I lose it.

I focus on pressing back into that position but it hasn't worked of late and it makes my shoulder make weird noises. Then it aches. not good.

In my rack walks I discovered that holding the elbow lower resulted in far less "clunks" and seemed more stable. So I tried using that as the starting position of the press today and it worked brilliantly.No adjustments in the shoulder at all and I got a great vertical forearm throughout.

As usual my form doesn't look like "the" form but it's the best I got.

One arm swing warmup
16 kg x5/5/5 x3

Mil Press
16 kg x5/5 x2
20 kg x5/5 x 5

One arm swings
24 kg x 10/10 x 5

Two Hand CB arm cast 
25 x 10/10 x 3

Triceps band extension
black x 15 x 3

definitely feeling beat up and tired so this was a much needed back off workout. Left feeling like I didn't do enough which is perfect:)) Need to do more handstands though.


Sunday, March 18, 2012

Chuck Volgelpohl

Has there ever been a more intense powerlifter? Vogelpohl has and did personify the powerlifter's Red Line as well as was the embodiment of Westside Barbell Method. Extreme is who they are and Chuck is at the top of that list.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Snatches and Deads/ stepping back

So I don't fall off. It's been a great ramp up of late but I know I need to back off both the volume and intensity a little and rebuild. Especially when it seems ALL of my lifts are taking off, which is rare.

SO I decided to do sets of 7's in the snatches today and I had thought about 8 sets, or 112 total reps, until I got to set 4 and then realized it was one set too much.7 sets would be good enough although my form felt solid and strong. I also made faster jumps in my warmup, a sure sign of confidence in the techniques and how my overall body feels.

7-8 am stretchout

the left shoulder, thank g-d has been holding in place very well since I discovered that oh so simple forearm/hand stretch that seems like a direct link to my biceps tendon,labrum and sterno/clavicula joint. If I keep that as open as possible, with the lacrosse ball and that internally rotated straight arm stretch,it's been holding. will take that. All the other basics this AM, back over ball, bretzell, up and down dog, sumo squat, quad stretch and lots of calf torture with the rumble roller and pain  ball

one arm swing  16 kg x5/5/5 x 3 sets

16 kg x5/5
20 kg x 4/4

24 kg x 7/7 x 6 sets
         x 10/10 x 1 sets
102 reps.

the 7's were easy and I wanted to keep in touch with 10's :)) Felt totally safe.

Barbell Deadlift

I definitely wanted to cut the volume here but didn't want to do NO work so I worked up to a decently heavy single. New PR too. Nice. once I hit 315 I can buy myself those York Legacy plates :))

135 x3 x 2
185 x2
205 x1
230 x1
250x1 PR
270x1 PR

Played around a bit with form trying to get the same hip/back angle as I do on the swing. Didn't really get it to the end when Glenn and I did a dissection of the position and it looks like I should bring my feet in even closer to get the left knee under the hip.

BUT the weights went up like nothing and felt like nothing. very happy with this

Band Rear Delts
4 x12 blue band ( thicker)

Scap Pullups
3 x 5

just checking how my shoulder is hanging from a bar. not bad but not perfect either.:))

Sisu/Never Quit

Thursday, March 15, 2012

When hard is easy; the good groove.

Today was a good training day, capping off just about four weeks of great training, leading to something I haven't felt in forever: a peak.It's something I've always said, you know you are in shape when you are doing more work than ever, or lately, and it feels easy.Almost too easy. Not enough.
Then you are getting somewhere.

When you do a PR and it feels like there's more left in the tank. When you do the hardest workouts you've done in a long time and there's more in the tank. Of course,one shouldn't be greedy and the next step off of a peak is always down it's SO nice to feel strong and fit again. So nice.

And this is in no small part to my newest training partner Glenn. It's great to have Nick train so hard on Saturdays but having Glenn arrive early and raring to go on the harder weekday sessions that I have to do after work in gold. And man has he gotten in shape fast!He feels it and the synergy between both of us is making each better.

Of course it's not been all easy and my left shoulder was definitely "out" after Tuesdays press day. I felt it ratchet a few times and from Tuesday night til this morning.The last few months have been really frustrating with this shoulder, especially after FINALLY getting my right shoulder squared away.:((

But I had a 6 am cancel so I spend one hour working every single aspect of that shoulder and releasing everything I could
Lacrosse ball on pec minor,lat,teres major, rhomboids,levator scap,briachialis, pronator teres etc, etc etc.
then overhead stretching bar hangs overheads on TRX band distraction etc.

But it wasn't until mid day when I was just doing a simple hand against the wall( out to the side in the frontal plane) that I really felt how stinking tight my flexor digitorum profundis was and how really it just released the entire shoulder!~ Bang! ALL the tightness in my pec levator trap , etc was gone!

The shoulder was instantly pain free, with solid ROM and no ache at all! Crazy! It WAS subluxed ;held out by my stinking big ass forearms! I knew it was somewhere in there but didn't know exactly what trigger to pull, Just hope it stays!
Now onto some snatches and hoping my swing and snatch groove would still be there!

These last two snatch workouts have been the best my snatch form has ever felt. About freakin time but better late than never :))

2 pm Snatch
One arm swing warmup
16 kg x5/5/5 x 3

16kg x 20/20/10/10
        x 15/15/10/10
110 reps.

this was so easy it felt crazy. Even light snatches have never felt easy for reps because my groove was wrong. It is right now and for ONCE I can really feel exactly what I am supposed to do at every step of this move, as well as the swing. I can finally feel my hips working the way they are supposed to and, most importantly, I can feel the "bottom" of the lift and I can hit it.

I never had that in the squat because of my knee  and I knew it existed in the swing and snatch( Tracy hits the bottom better than anyone I know) but I just couldn't find it.

In gymnastics we use to say "if you can't swing it, muscle it" so I did . Now I can swing it . much easier.

I can now see how I will be able to finally master the snatch test with the man's bell without it being my top end. Most excellent. Not tomorrow but soon.

15 lbs CB x10
90 reps
even these were easy as pie. same groove here. Really understanding and recognizing my lumbar pelvic rhythm and USING it makes all the difference

Rack walks
16 kg x 200 feet per arm 800 feet.

these were easy and should have done more but it was enough. kept the left arm lower in the rack and didn't have a single " clunk" the whole time. perhaps this will fix my press. holding it high doesn't help.

Bodyblade laterals

3 x10/10  got this back in the garage . I need this thing and have slacked on it of late. much nicer on the shoulder joint but still really trains the side delts and supraspinitus,

Datsit! We be peaked and now we back of and re build again! very cool. THIS is what I've trained for all my life, THIS feeling, This zone. It's been hiding itself from me lately but I am one patient man, I knew I would get it again one day and that day is today.:))

Sisu/Never Quit!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

28 kg presses and one arm swings

I freakin hate daylight saving's time. especially this part. let me tell who ever is in charge of this that March 11 is NOT April 21, the first day of spring where we " spring forward".
I get up too early to begin with and when 3:45 turns into 2:45 it gets ugly fast.

3: 45 is very early morning. 2:45 is the middle of the night and I don't function well the rest of the day when I get up that early.Especially if I wake up even earlier in anticipation of that. ack

Lots of coffee and green tea today and I was still asleep on my feet. If Glenn hadn't been there I would have been napping and not training but it turned out well

one arm swings
16 kg x5/5/5/ x3

Mil Press
16 kg x5/5
  20 kg x 4/4
24 kg  x2/2

28 kg x 2L/2 R
         x 2 L/ 3 R
         x 2L/ 4 R

these were very strong and I could  have done 10 with the right arm amazing how little strength I lost not pressing for 6 weeks :)) same as before when I was rehabbing my right shoulder.Left shoulder still not 100 % and the groove was off but there is hope.

One arm swings
24 kg x10/10
28 kg x 10/10 x 4 sets

easy! the new/old technique was solid and speed and power were excellent.

two hand arm cast
25 lb cb x 10/10 x 3 sets

strong. didnt want the 35 lb today strong though here.

2 db kickback
12 x 15
15 lb x 12 x 2

ouch. big triceps cramps. nice

one arm band lateral
3 x 15

Sisu/never Quit

Monday, March 12, 2012

Active rest

6-7 am

Full stretchout from splits to overhead stick work. lots of back bends over ball, abs are tight, too.

8 am
Left foot calf raise(still with right leg partial support) 80 reps in sets of 20
left leg bent knee calf raise( ") 3x10 30 reps
left leg lunges 3 x 15
100 ups : 80 reps  2x 40
left leg tke purple band 40 reps

pretty beat up stiff and sore today definitely needed to go very easy. legs and back tired

Floor Handstands
5 set of 10 second  touch off of wall.

this is a good day to do these, fresh for a change.

got to keep in balance with work  and rest and movement and stillness, heavy and light, easy and hard.

dats the goal:)

Sunday, March 11, 2012

These were my some of my other powerlifting role models

Steve Goggins
900 pull hook grip

800x5 squat

800 for 5 deadlift with straps

Gene Bell 843 at 181 ( this is the squat form I should have used)

Ausby Alexander ( 738 squat at 165!)

Lamar Gant 672 deadlift at 132!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Goal met, 5 x 10/10 Snatch with 24 kg

When Glenn started training with us regularly he asked what was my goal with my snatch training. It's been so long since I've been really able to "train" and even think about setting real goals that I didn't know how to answer.

My long term, basic goal with my snatch training is always to stay within striking distance of the RKC snatch test. 100 reps in five  minutes is no joke for me and even though, at my advanced age I would be 'allowed' to use the 20 kg what will not do.

I used to try to get to double the test volume as my workout but I don't have the time or patience for that now, especially since I am deadlifting too on Saturdays and need to have some back hips and legs for that as well. SO it' 100 reps total and I though when I could do 5 sets of 10/10 regularly and easily then that would put me in the best set position to peak quickly if someone holds a gun to my head and  makes me do it:))

Thursdays sets of 50 and my new swing groove gave me some confidence but I really didn't know what to expect today( as I rarely do til I start swinging) but Glenn was peaking today and he was going for  5 x10/10 so I thought I would give it a shot.

It went great. Easy peezy.
Given where Glenn was 8 months ago this was a serious serious milestone for him and showed him not only the power of the kb swing and snatch but of his own recovery ability, strength and endurance he has left.

Plus he's pulling me along for the ride too.

7-8 am stretchout

8 am
one arm swing warmup 
16 kg x5/5/5 x 2 sets

16 kg x5/5 x2
20 kg x4/4

24 kg x10/10 x 5 sets 

Nice. SO much easier to push when the body cooperates :))

here's set two( I took video early in case I didn't make all five sets :))
Of course Nick had to show us all up easily by doing
24kg x10/10
28kg x10/10x2
32 kg x10/10x 2!
28 kg x10/10

Man he is bull strong!Way to go brother.We make a great crew:))

185 x2
205 x1
220 x1
240 x 1 x 6 

top of the ladder. next week goes to 245 and 3 singles. OR back to 220 for 10 singles, we'll see :)) These felt craZy easy and solid.

One CB Shield Cast
10 x 10/10
15 lb x 10/10 x 3

Band rear delts
4 x 20


Floor handstands
4 sets 8 seconds ( better today but still have to start doing these fresh)

Sisu/Never Quit

Friday, March 09, 2012

Cooked legs

well I hoped and planned on doing my bodyweight circuit today but my legs were TOAST. So I spent the first 45 minutes of the day on the floor, foam rolling and stretching out

Later towards lunch they started opening up so I did some light work

left leg forward lunges ( stabilize on trx) 30 reps
left leg calf raise ( right leg support) 30 reps
left leg bent knee calf raise 20 reps
two leg calf raise 20 reps
100 ups 80 reps

datsit. My rectus femoris was seriously tight yesterday and most of the morning so I cut the reps down and left out the squats. did plenty of squat stretches all morning though.
24 kg snatches tomorrow am. and deads:))

Thursday, March 08, 2012

When Grace shows up.

You have to be ready to grab it and today I did. It was one of those days that you train for, wait for and hope for. When suddenly things just, finally fall together. About freakin' tine :))

Saturdays swing day was a revelation. It all fell back in to place for my swing and I was hoping it would translate into my snatch. Today it did, even though it was very light I was able to higher rep sets than I pretty much have ever done, with any weight. easily.

Basically what I figured out is how to get out of my own way when i swing and snatch and this upper the speed and power dramatically; as well as lowered my energy output so I could do more with less effort.

This sounds like the opposite of hardstyle but it really isn't.what I am referring to is efficiency of the technique, for me, of  maximally producing power with the most advantageous mechanics and positions FOR ME. That's a big thing because how I move is not how most do. I have to think "lean forward" to get my hips to hinge.

When I think" just sit back" my body squats. That's just the way it is. my lumbo pelvic rythym and I can accept it and work with it and get more powerful or fight it( like I did in my power squat) and leave tons of weight reps and work on the table.

I choose to do what works, for me,So I let myself lean and my hips went back perfectly and I just popped up. My arm went back further, my elbow was straight, I had no shoulder pressure and 50 rep sets were damn near easy.

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

16 kg x 10/10/10/10/5/5= 50
         x 10/10/ 15/15= 50

easy breezy. I know this going to translate to my 24 kg snatch as well.

two CB swipes
15 lbs x 10
          x 16
100 reps

applied the same thing here and these were the easiest sets I've done in age. Now i can remember how I did 106 reps continuous with these :))

rack walks

800 feet with 20 kg

these were strong as well. did 200 feet with left arm and then the right . 2 sets each

DB laterals
3 x 12 with 12s

Pbar handstand
4 sets 10 sec  stronger today than Tuesday

Very strong easy day today. I can feel myself finally getting back into "shape", that condition where you can do more work, with more weight than normal and it feels like nothing.I LOVE that state and haven't been able to visit in a long time. But that's about to change ...

Sisu/Never Quit

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

leg 100's

did these first before stretchout:

left leg lunge 50
bodyweight squat 50
left leg straight leg calf raise (right leg bent and assisting) 30
left leg bent knee calf raise 20 ( burn!)
two leg calf raise straight knee 20
two leg calf raise bent knee
100 ups 70
TKE purple band 40

legs felt good afterward, lots of blood in there and the knee felt ok.

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Now, my swing is back!

Well it wasn't exactly gone but it hasn't felt 'just right' in  a long time.Since, of well I could do 400  32 kg one arm swings in one workout no problem or 600 24 kg one arm swings. That was three plus years ago and I've been trying to get it back for awhile.

Today I think I figured it out :)) ( inside joke).
Just as always the answer was for me to do it the way I felt I should rather than the way I thought I should. Bottom line for me is that in order for me to really get my hips to load I have to let myself lean forward; it's my particular lumbo pelvic rythym and it always works, I just forget, or are too damn stubborn, to do it.

I want it to be 'prettier" or more 'technically perfect' but my groove is my groove and then it becomes perfect. when I do it the way that for me , produces the most power and force and tweaks me the least :))

I noticed watching  more of Pavel's old picstures and DVDs that his back angle in the bottom position is almost parallel to the floor. I used to let myself swing this way but thought I wasn't getting enough "leg" into it and got more upright.

Today I leaned more and got way more backswing, way more hip loading , way less elbow flexor ( and hence shoulder) issues and way more power and speed.

The above blurry photo was from that Golden era of my swing and snatch and now I think I have the magic elixir again.

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

KB press
16x 5/5
20 x 4/4
24 kg x 3/3 x  4 sets
          x5/5 x 1 set
Pretty damn good! Almost no shoulder issues at all. Still focusing on using the scapula tp stabilize the rack position as well as on the descent. Definitely on the right track and things are getting better. right arm felt awesome and could have done 20 rep sets :))

One arm swing
24 kg x10/10
28 kg x8/8
32 kg x5/5 x 7 sets

THESE felt awesome. I got the idea right from the first set and these easily the strongest swings I have done in ages. Could have done toms more sets.Everything was better,shoulder stress, grip stress, back and hip stress, even the knee.

I basically just got out of my own way. What a concept :))

Two hand CB arm cast
15 x10/10
25 x10/10
35 x 8/8x2
     x 5/5

these were very good but tough at the end, hence the last set of 5's.tons of lats triceps biceps, and need I even say it GRIPPPPPPP!!!!!

DB bent laterals
5 sets of 12 reps  12 lbs

need these to balance the shoulder . getting stronger each week

Rev grip band pushdowns
4 x 20

Floor handstands
3 x 8 seconds.
 better but still tough. especially after all the shoulder and triceps work. I plan on putting these on my EOD schedule with the rest of the bodyweight training

BW Legs/ calves

toast. it's so much easier to do this when you have a committed consistent and totally dedicated training partner like I do now in Glenn.> The man is Old School and Real Deal and what more could I ask for?

Sisu/Never Quit

Monday, March 05, 2012

Bodyweight 100s

I've been re reading Convict Conditioning 1 and 2 and have been re inspired to restore even more bodyweight movements and skills that I have lost.The most important being my left leg and overall squat strength.It's great that I can deadlift again, and honestly, that function, being strong while bending down and being able to pick up moderately heavy things off the ground is vital it's nice to have strong quads and calves too.

I used to do a ton of quad and calf work and my knee was much stronger than it is now. Of course I am older but I truly believe the stronger my quads and calf is the better my leg will function. The problem is finding the movements and loads that I can do, and, recover from.

This seems to be the start: goal = 100 reps per exercise, done every other day (EOD) between KB workouts

left leg forward lunge
left leg straight leg calf riase
left leg bent knee calf raise
two leg straight leg calf raise
bodyweight squat
100 ups
Terminal knee extensions with band

did this today and got about 60 reps in each exercise.I want to start very slowly. I used the TRX for stability in most of the exercises and it worked well but the wall did too.

It's funny but just getting a pump in the calves and quads made the leg feel more springy immediately.
Also did the full stretchout as well from 6-7.

Need to stay on top of this

Saturday, March 03, 2012

24 kg snatches and pr deads

It's been a good birthday week so far. All the bodyparts are staying their respective places and the workouts have been good. I feel like I have some forward momentum again and I don't have to get on  an airplane until mid April so I have some time to increase my strength and conditioning.

My knee position experiment seems to working out and the ankle and calf are adjusting as well. Shoulder is behaving as well as my back. Time to get worried, lol :)) I'm as close to square plumb and neutral as I have been in eons.

Now is the time not to get greedy and just enjoy this:))

7-8 am stretchout

todays focus was on quads, especially the left one which I have been neglecting. stupidly. It's just so dam tight and takes so much energy to not even budge it sometimes I think it's not worth it. But it is; because if I don't stretch it I lose even more ROM and when 90 degrees is all you've got in a joint that is supposed to be 135 at LEAST, then you can't afford to lose even one degree.

SO wrap it up and pull on it in my brettzel, do the couch series as well as my normal quad stretch against the bed.

back ot the hammy strap stretch as well as the toe work ( also really opens the knee) and then the standards back over ball. up and down dog, straddle splits etc.

Warmup ( 40 deg in garage)
One arm swings
16 kg x5/5/5/ x3

16 kg x5/5 x2
20 kg x4/4

24 kg x 7/7
          x 7/7
96 reps
5184 lbs

a great workout! haven't been up in these rep ranges for too long and they were solid and not hard at all.Nice to have all the parts working together and the groove pretty solid.

Deadlifts( double overgrip, no hook)
135 x3
185 x2
220x1 ( big jumps!)
240x 1 x 4 sets!!! pr time baby. baby pr's I mean but they still count!

these felt great and it was cool to make the almost normal jumps again. the double overgrip with no hooks should keep me sane about weight at least for awhile:)) definitely helping the grip strength too.

I felt very square with this technique although I still need to internally rotate the left leg more. way more than I think I have to and that will take some getting used to; to "feel" where I need to be and just go there without having to think about it so much.

This is completely different than my old style powerlifting deadlift, which was mostly back, abs and balls :))

I am really trying to spread the load much more evenly and , most importantly, wedge myself under the bar. Today's weights felt light , square, fast and safe. this is important. No specific loads on the lumbar spine.

Two hand CB swipes
15 x8/8
25 x 8/8
35 x5/5 x 2

cooked. these were hard. definitely time to back off. Those 55 swipes took their toll on Thursday.

band tri extensions
purple band x 3 x 20 supersetted with

floor handstands
3 x 5- 8 second. 

THIS is an indicator as I had a hard time getting locked in overhead. too tight! time to get more bodyweight and mobility stuff in and back off the loads a little.

Great end to a great workout week

Sisu/Never Quit

Sunday Post workout report:

goal achieved. I feel NOTHING today. No shoulder "out", no knee or ankle issues, no back or hip aches. Nothing but general tired which is perfect. That's my goal; to do harder progression training and feel like I've done nothing the next day. That's how I know I'm getting in shape and squared away.

Thursday, March 01, 2012

Birthday Workout 55 at 55

I'm 55 today and I wanted to do something for 55 reps that would challenge me.Last year I did 54 long cycle clean and presses with the 20 kg ( 27/27) and I had hoped to do that with the 24 kg today but my shoulder decided to not cooperate lately so I had to find something else.

Something that would challenge me a bit but WOULD'NT injure me. Tough task when I can tweak something rolling over in bed :))

Plus today is a scheduled light day and I needed it after the last two hard days. Good hard but still tough.

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

16 kg snatch

100 reps. these went great and  felt very very easy. I definitely see getting to 100 rep sets here and then start playing with longer reps on each arm. Nothing that will tire me out too much for Saturday but prime the pump. Form felt "on", groin felt fine and back too.

Focuses on really turning my left knee straight ahead is a life changer for me, I can feel it. Some minor issues with lower calves and ankles due to the new alignment after oh, just 35 years but it's the right move. Point both tires in the same direction . I was letting my femur turn out too much. Simply turning the leg in from the thigh bone and making both knees track straight ahead.

The key is to have my knee under my hip and set the foot off that. not the other way around

CB Swipes
15's x 10

15's x 55 Recent PR 

I've done 106 reps with this weight but not in recent memory. My best to date has been 35 reps so this is a big increase. No problem and I could have done at least 10-15 more strongly but wanted to just get my 55 :))

I really got in the zone here too. I was pretty serious for the first 40 reps but once I hit that I KNEW I was going to get 55 and just got into it. I felt myself smiling, spontaneously, and the hair on the back of my neck stood up, always a great sign when I'm lifting.It signals the zone, the flow the ease and strength of what I am doing or about to do.
I love that place and haven't gotten to visit there for awhile. Nice to be back :)) hope to come again soon.
Sheer Joy. SO hard to beat that.

One arm shield cast
10 x 10/10
15 x 10/10 x 2

these were strong

rack walks
16 kg x 200 feet x 5  1000 feet

these are getting much easier. keeping the knee pointing straight ahead is making my gait much more solid.

db laterals
3 x 12 with 12 lbs

rev grip triceps pushdowns
4 x20 superset with
Pbar handstands
4 x8 seconds ( wore my shoes and it through off the balance . still strong. can't forget to do these. 3 x week on bar and floor

So this is 55:)) Off to a good start. I'm leaner strong and more functional this year at this time than last. Can't ask for that. I'm getting younger and older at the same time.

Sisu/Never Quit