Friday, December 28, 2007
Well, not completely. About half the time I have eaten whatever I feel like, including cookies, sweets, etc. The rest of the time has been relatively nutritious.
I have been enjoying it, but I am amazed that I used to eat like this ALL the time. I haven't stepped on a scale, mosly because I know that water retention and undigested food in the intestinal tract can cause an unrealistically high reading.
I am looking forward to getting back into a routine.
Training has been good. Fun but not brutal.
Christmas day I did thrusters w/24kg. 10 sets of 5/5 on the top of each minute. Finished off with a 5:00 set of snatches 40l/r, 10l/r, didn't put the KB down.
Yesterday, 300 snatches in 17:30.
I got the Zhealth R phase and have begun looking at it, but have not put it into practice yet.
Revving up for 2008!
Monday, December 17, 2007
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Time for an update from the Hard Loser front. After the end of the PN contest, I felt that post-goal void. I needed a break.
Frankly I have been a little slack since Thanksgiving, this past week especially. I managed to get a little cold right after Turkey Day Weekend, as we were doing all the last minute business and packing before we bought the new house.
I let the sniffles, the busy-ness of buying the house and moving distract me. I have remained a little distracted by unpacking, settling in at the new place, and Christmas. I realized last night, after running up the street to a fast food place (we were tired, it was convenient, I got lazy), that without careful attention to the path, I will undo all that I have done.
The time between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day can derail even the most dedicated. I have been about 50% compliant to diet and training has been below-par. I am fully recovered from the cold, I think. Time to ramp it up a bit.
I am realistic enough to know that with the hectic Christmas schedule, travel, etc. My best bet is to stick with a "program minimum" mindset & plan, not to expect to destroy everything in my path. Training will be by feel, no specific plan, no specific goal, just enjoyment of the misery. Cruising speed for the remainder of 2007, building emotional momentum for the next couple of weeks.
Tuesday, December 4, 2007
The #1 Rule For Cutting Calories
Recently I started training a new client who has coming to the gym 5 days a week but was not losing any weight whatsoever. In fact, he had been plateauing for 2 straight years!
I have a lot of respect for the guy to be coming to the gym for 2 years in a row without making any progress. He was doing a lot of the typical workout stuff that most people do that pretty much destroys their chances of making progress.
He was putting in lots of time walking on the treadmill at a slow pace followed by using the strength training machines. We quickly modified his routine to making it take a lot less time and make it more effective.
But the BIGGEST change came when he lost 13 lbs in the first 2 weeks. Believe it or not, this was not from the exercise routine. The new routine we started was in fact pretty basic. Some cool functional moves followed by some interval training.
He is definitely getting stronger, but the 13 lbs came about by making such a small change.
When I first looked at his food log there was one thing that jumped out at me. His diet wasn't the best in the world but wasn't the worst I have seen either. The part that really struck me was what he was drinking! Regular Coke, Yuengling Lager, chocolate milk, coffee with cream and sugar, and sweetened iced tea were among the beverages he was drinking on a daily basis.
For the next two weeks he only drank water, green tea, and unsweetened iced tea.
13lbs in 2 weeks.
Lesson: Don't drink your calories!
This goes for all the beverages listed above as well as some of the "surprise" drinks that are bad for you. Gatorade and Vitamin Water are both that are loaded with sugar. A lot of green tea drinks are also full of sugar too.
Be sure to read the nutrition labels on everything you drink. If possible, just drink water. If you need caffeine, use black coffee or diet soda. Diet soda certainly isn't healthy, but at least it will help you cut out all the calories from regular!
Friday, November 23, 2007
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
I ran across this quote today. I am reminded of the decision I made 2o-something lbs ago to subject myself to public scutiny as I began the quest of the Hard Loser.
I can only fail in the long term if I give up...quit. I know because I have done that many, many times.
I eliminated the possiblity of that by putting my professional reputation on the line and posting public pics of my overweight self. No retreat.
Today my bodyweight was 261, the lowest it has been in at least 8 or 9 years. I did 300 24kg snatches today in 15:27.
Thursday is Thanksgiving day, and Friday is my 38th birthday. I am in better shape and stronger now than ever in my life. And I am nowhere close to being done.
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
To everyone who has sent me congratulations via email or forum post, thank you very much.
I will do my absolute best to carry the title with the honor it deserves and to lead from the front.
Saturday, November 10, 2007
As promised, here are some progress pics.
When I put the pics side by side I see what has really been going on. For the first time I know with 100% certainty that I have total control over this fat-loss thing. FInally, I understand my body type, what I call the "Hard Loser", and finally I know exactly how to train, eat and think to get the result.
Thanks again to all who have sent email supporting and encouraging me. Keep watching, it will only get better.
23lbs in 4 months. I'll take it. Proof that a Hardloser can get it done.
Photos and other measurements will be posted within a few days.
There were spots during that time that I could have done better, been more compliant with my diet, etc, but overall I fell pretty successful. I am gonna get new clothes for Christmas.
I have not missed a single scheduled workout in over 4 months. My SSST (24kg) numbers went from a PR of 230 to 260, and my 32kg number has gone from 137 to 166.
My next short term goal is my birthday, which is Nov.23rd, the day after Thanksgiving. I'll weigh in for that on Wed. the 21st, since we'll be travelling. Plan is to drop below 260lbs for the first time in over ten years.
I have recieved a LOT of support from people via email and if I am very thankful that so many people have been so kind and have found something useful from my journey so far. You have helped keep me on track.
Time to go train.
Tuesday, November 6, 2007
First of all, do not mistake this with "collect what you think is cool." or "do what you like". Absorb means absorb, not look at, read about or play with. It takes a LOT of effort to absorb something. It requires study, discipline and patience.
Let's look at the ENTIRE quote: "Absorb what is useful, discard what is useless, and add what is uniquely your own."
Here is how I make it work for me.
1. Decide what you want to do.
2. Find someone who is accomplished at what you want to do. Do what they did. Copy them until you get results.
3. Fine tune your approach as you figure out WHY it works and can explain it clearly and concisely. It is only at this point have you truly begun to "absorb" the material.
4. Continue to refine your behavior to match your goal, elimnating anything that is counterproductive or non-essential.
4. Learn to create variations based on your true understanding and knowledge of self. This is harder than it sounds. It requires an honesty of self that is so uncomfortable for most people that they give up.
5. Innovate. Make it your own. Completely your own.
Find something useful in this. Absorb it. Take action.
Wednesday, October 31, 2007
Looking back on my own life, I am constantly reminded that I am healthier, happy and better off now that at any time in my life. God saw fit to keep me alive through all the stupid self-destructive Rockstar shit that I did in my 20's, then led me to the RKC.
I meet people all the time who talk about getting fat, back pain, etc., and then they'll say somrthing like "It sucks getting older" or " I'm not as young as I used to be".
Recently I had a conversation with someone that started with "I guess I need to do something to lose this weight" Of course I started talking about kettlebell training, describing in detail what my class is like. I got a response that KBs are "fine for younger people like you (me), but when you get my age, it's alot easier to hurt your back".
I asked how old they were after a comment like this and the response was "36".
I asked "How old do you think I am?"
"I dunno....26? 27?"
I will be 38 in a little over 3 weeks. I am in better condition, stronger and healthier than I was at 28. Some of the stuff that I am able to do now--Thanks to traing with Pavel and the RKC--are beyond anything I ever imagined, and I ain't done yet. I'm not as young as I used to be....I am younger.
Monday, October 29, 2007
Monday, October 22, 2007
Then for some reason (that probably has to do with my childhood) I proceeded to "throw down" for most of the weekend. I include non-compliant meals each week but this is the first time in 14 weeks I have gone overboard like this.
Friday night it was a birthday party: Guiness, a red wine called"Bull's Blood" that I had never tried and about 8 or 9 chocolate chip cookies. Then Pizza when we got home from the party.
Saturday started out on track. I did about 2 hours of teaching and filming for what I hope to be my next DVD, then went to a late lunch with some of the students. At Chili's. Ribs, fries, molten choclate cake. Mandy got home from shooting a wedding and a couple of friends came over to watch a movie. Mandy made spaghetti. It was tasty. So were the Dorito's.
Sunday was on track until about 5pm, then we ate at a place in Nashville called "Batter'd & Fried". Guess what kind of food they serve there? I had fish & chips & a couple of chicken tenders. Later we made lasagna and topped off the evening with cookie dough ice cream.
Today I am back on my regular eating schedule and all is well, but I have been feeling it in my belly. I am not upset or going "why did I do that?" Rather I feel pretty good about the fact that I did that and now am back to my regular plan.
Workout was good (I attribute this to an inadvertant carb-load effect from the over feeding) hit a PR in the 32kg UST (165) and I am closing in on my goal for that. C&P ladders 1,2,3,4,5 x5 the first 4 with 32kg, the last with 32kg & 18lb in one hand.
The PN contest ends on November 9th, my original goal was to drop 22lbs by then. I am on track to do that.
Saturday, October 20, 2007
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
New girl shows for class today. She WON 12 weeks with me in a bridal drawing I did and today was here first day. She needs to drop some weight before she gets married next spring.
She tells me she already knows how to do the swing. Upon demonstration I am reminded of Brett Jones' wisdom -"Swinging a kettlebell and doing kettlebell swings ain't the same thing."
I clean up the mess and proceeded to the Getup, which she had some trouble with, but nothing that wouldn't work itself out in a few reps. I explain to her that she is going to be very sore in the next few days. "I doubt it, I already do a lot of squats."
Now, I can tell but the way you look and squat how much squatting you do on a regular basis. She doesn't squat much. She doesn't move like she squats and she isn't built lke she squats.
"Besides," she continues, "it can't be worse that the hiking trip I took this summer." Really?
Musta been some hiking trip.
The rest of the crew shows up and it is time for class, which looks like this:
10 lunges/10 pushups 10:00
She didn't make it.
During the 1st set of post-swing running, one of my other ladies cuts me a look that says "She doesn't belong here." I am inlcined to agree. On the 2nd set of swings, she started :30 after everyone else and dropped the KB with :10 to go. Some kinda hiking trip indeed...
After the 2nd set of swings, new girl is walking, not jogging.
After the 3rd set, she doesn't even bother to walk. She tells me "This isn't for me." I ask why.
"It's just so BORING" she gasps. " I need a lot of variety."
By BORING I think she meant "too hard" and by "variety" she meant "treadmill".
A lot can be said about my class, but boring? No....not hardly. It was too hard and she didn't have the courage to look at herself and admit it. She did not even have it in her to finish the class, which is actually kind of rude in my opinion. Had she told me it was too hard, I would have respect for her decidion to QUIT before the end.
As she walked away, one of my other ladies was returning from the short jog. She looked at the quitter, hobbling off to her car and said "Well, there you go" and got back on the line for the next set of swings.
Thursday, October 11, 2007
I decided to go without setting the KB down. The first set was 15/15,everything after that was 10/10.
I wish I had the video rolling on this one, but I didn't. I set the gymboss to beep every minute for pacing. Here is the minute by minute breakdown of the reps:
Total of 260. I'll take that. My goal for the PN Challenge was 256. I think I am done with this for now. I am looking at what is possible with 32kg.
This is especially sweet since it was just June when I nearly killed myself with 140 reps after recovering fro the Danish bird flu, or whatever it was. Today I hit 140 at a little past 5:00.
Wednesday, October 10, 2007
Sunday: 500 reps w/24kg in 38:30
227 in the first 10:00, the rest was in sets of 10.
Monday: I did some EDT stuff with pullups & 2x32kg C&P, some burpees w/2x32kbs and then
150 32kg snatches n 15:00. All sets of 10 or 10/10.
Wednesday: SSST 24kg 239, roughly 96% of my max of 250. 26 RPM, Switching hands every 13 reps for 7:00(182) :30 break,14 reps from 7:30 to 8:00(196), rest :15, 13 reps from 8:15-8:45, rest :15 & 30 reps for the last minute.
Tough, but not as bad As I expected.
Friday, October 5, 2007
First of all, it is pronounced just like "Allen", don't let the old-school Scottish spelling fool you. Here are some of his thoughts on fat loss, present in the ever-so-gentle Cosgrove fasion..
Here are a few basic truths about fat loss that no one really wants to hear:
- Think about the foods that you are about to consume. Are they going to bring you closer to your goal? Or will they make you feel like crap and take you farther away from what you want? Yeah, I know that when you were younger before you had kids you could eat blah, blah, blah and not gain weight. Too bad. Times have changed.
- You do not need something sweet to finish your meal. This is a conditioned response from your childhood days when cleaning your plate meant ice cream. “Need” something sweet? Do you realize how much you just ate? You don’t need anything. Dessert is not a physiological need for survival. It is just a bad habit. Habits can be broken. You do not need the cheesecake.
- Cookies, doughnuts, and muffins are crap food choices. You can't ever justify eating them on a regular basis. And low carb, fat-free cookies, doughnuts, and muffins are still crap. Don't kid yourself.
- Yes, you can eat fast food. It's called grilled chicken sandwiches or a turkey sub, Jarod. Fries? No. And you do not need to “super size” for an extra 50 cents.
If you want to eat whatever you want, you have two choices.
1) Move a lot. A LOT.
2) Gain weight, get fat, accept it, and stop complaining.
Wednesday, October 3, 2007
Tuesday, October 2, 2007
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
BW is 269 this AM.
I hit 267.5 last week, but I think that with the heat, dehydration may have been a factor. It has cooled down to the low 90's now ;)
10 weeks into this and feeling good. I compared these shots to the ones from July, it is working well.
Monday, September 17, 2007
A1: Split squat x10/10
A2: SLow Pushup x10
B1: 40kg C&P x5/5
B2: 40kg Row x8/8
Swing 40kg +16kg in one hand 2x4 reps
Swing 40kg x20 (roughly :30)
Snatch 16kg x7/7 (again roughly :30)
repeat for 4 rounds
Then I decided to see what the pace would be like for 300 reps for the full 10:00, so I grabbed a 16kg, and away I went.
Switching hands every 10 reps, I got 304, 34 reps the first minute, 30 per the rest of the time. Ran out of time on the 4th rep with the right hand, but finished the set of 10 after.
No big deal until about the 7:30 mark, then my mind went into a slow-motion-tunnel-time-warp kind of state.
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
I believe in full-body movements that may (or may not) emphasize one aspect or attribute more that another while retaining full-body power. This is one of the key aspects of the RKC and the Hard-Style School of Strength.
Example 1: The military press. What is the difference between the "shoulder press" and a proper Hard-Style military press?
Full-body tension. Total tension in heavy lifts equals safety and improved perfromance. Grip the ground with your toes. Tighten the legs, lock the knees, squeeze the glutes, pull up the pelvic floor, compress the ribs, compress the breath and squeeze the weight as you press. You WILL be stronger.
Example 2: Hanging leg raise. Try a HLR and see if you can do it WITHOUT tensing the arms and legs (which incidentally, ain't part of the core). Again, Full-body tension is needed.
Example 3: The beloved Pushup. Not the sway back, chicken head pushup most people try to get away with. Do a pushup with a 3 second descent, 2 second pause and explode back up. Full-body tension.
Example 4: Any and all grip work. Try to close a hard CoC gripper, bend a nail, tear a phone book, farmers walk and what will you need?.....I'll take "Full-body tension" for $500, Alex!
Example 5: We mustn't forget the snatch! Try heavy KB snatches in multiple sets of low reps with short rest periods. You obliques will thank you.
Example 6: The deadlift....are you starting to get the picture?
Your body is a single unit, not a collection of parts. Train it that way.
Monday, September 10, 2007
Now, I haven't seen the movie Sicko, mostly because I don't care what Michael Moore has to say about anything. I know the movie is about the health care system in this country. I saw a clip on youtube where Moore says that it is important that we "remove the profit incentive from health care" in the US. That was enough for me.
Anyway, a guy in the public eye as much as he is has the ability to make an impact. I think he should lead by example. So do my friends Jim Labadie and Ryan Lee. Check out: http://michaelmoorehealthchallenge.com/
Wednesday, September 5, 2007
Friday, August 31, 2007
Something I noticed and even posted about lately is when people work hard, do something they have never done before and then take the wind out of their own sails by saying things like "It's nothing compared to what some people can do...." or words like that.
NEVER apologize for your strength!
Just because Brett Jones or Kenneth Jay or anyone else can do it with 4 times as much weight or 10 times as many reps, THAT DOES NOT TAKE AWAY THE FACT THAT YOU DID IT! If you never pressed a 16kg kettlebell before and you work up to it over time, that is YOURS. Do not apologize for it. You earned it. Now get back to training.
Monday, August 27, 2007
Stop me if you know this one:
Effective goal setting must be SMART
I am sure you've been through this drill, so I won't bore you with all the details, but it is the difference between "I'd kinda like to lose some weight" and "I want to lose 12 lbs over the next three months." It makes goals setting more real.
In concept, I agree with it. "I'd kinda like to lose some weight" isn't a goal, it is an idea.
"I want to lose 18 lbs over the next twelve weeks" is a good target. It is an achievement.
The problem is, it doesn't take into account the action that is required. A goal without action is a fantasy, a day dream.
To hit the target, I believe goal setting is best structured around behavior rather than outcome.
Let's say that 2 people want the same outcome. We'll use the same example as before: lose 18lbs in 12 weeks.
Person A writes down the goal like this: "I want to lose 18 lbs over the next 12 weeks"
Person B writes: "I will complete a total of 48 workouts (4x per week) and eat according to my plan to 90% (by updating my food log daily) over the next 12 weeks"
Who do you think has a better chance?
Target the behavior, the outcome will follow naturally.
Sunday, August 26, 2007
Friday, August 24, 2007
Saturday, August 18, 2007
Rif said on a Dragon Door post "the MOST important component of any program design is the users incredibly intense desire to achieve the goal the program is designed to produced"
The kind of desire that makes a man post portly pics of himself on his blog is the same desire that results in a 13lb fat loss and and SST increase from 216 to 241 in less than 5 weeks.
It makes you do another set of snatches when you want to lay down and gasp for breath like a fish on the beach.
It makes you order a steak salad and water when everyone around you orders chicken tenders, fries and beer.
It gives you a willingness to sacrifice the thing you think you want right now for the thing you REALLY want overall.
A friend of mine called it "laying your nuts on an anvil and passing out hammers"
It makes you win the toughest competition-the one with the voice of laziness and complancy in your head that say things like "you're already pretty strong, why beat yourself up any more today?"
Then there is the most dangerous one of all: "This one little bit won't hurt, will it?"
Well, if ain't helping, it's hurting. If it doesn't bring you closer to your goal, it takes you a step away.
I believe in listening to your body. If you really don't have it in you today to do what you planned, don't push. You need rest more than you need additional training stimulus. DO NOT however, confuse laziness with the need for rest.
If you have been strict in your diet for 6 day and you want to eat a cookie because it will help you crush a craving and stay on track, go ahead. DO NOT mistake this with giving yourself permission to eat a whole box of cookies, a whole pizza and half a gallon of ice cream.
I follow John Berardi's 90/10 rule- If you stick to your plan 90% of the time, you can intentionally break the rules 10%. In a week this allows me 3-4 opportunities to eat a cookie, drink a couple of beers or miss a meal. It is a part of my plan. It brings me closer to my goal.
Without Desire you are not even going through the motions....you are only pretending to, fooling yourself in the process.
Cultivate your desire. Harness it and direct it toward the thing you really want.
Thursday, August 16, 2007
Today was a stop-by & follow up. I happened to have a 48kg in the car and I showed it to them. They dug it, a few kids ( 6'5" 240+lb kids) did some swings and a couple of the coaches C&P'd it. One of the players asked if I could snatch it, so I knocked out a set of 11 on the right. Fun times.
From there I went to mantis class, played hands a little, then it was off to the park for my own workout.
I hauled out the beast, with the intent of doing some sets of 5/5. I grabbed ahold, swung back and couldn't complete the lockout.
"What the hell is this??? I just did 11 reps not two hours ago!" I am screaming inside. Same thing on the right. I made 4 or 5 attempts before I could get a clean SINGLE with it. I felt like a malnourished kitten.
Finally, I get a few singles, doubles and a set of triples, and moved on. I went to clean and pushpress ladders 1,2,3 x3 times thru.
Then the Red Bull Fairies stopped by. See, in Nashville there is this little car that is painted up with the RB logo and this girl named Drew who drives around giving away Red Bull. She stopped by a class once before and gave everyone there FREE RB.
Today she stops the car, gets out and yells "Hey Iron Tamer, you need a sugar free??" She was training a new girl, and this was the girl's first day. Thanks Red Bull Fairy!
She goes on her way, spreading the RB wings across the Music City and I decide to finish with 24kg snatches. Some lady plopped down at the picnic table to smoke cigarettes and watch me try to survive my own self-inflicted madness.
I set gymboss to 1:00/:30 and laid into it. 2 sets of 13/13 and I was seeing spots. "What the hell is wrong with me today??"
One more set of 10/10 and I call it a day. After loading 159 lbs of iron into the car, I get in and the "Outside Temperature" reading was 108 degrees.
"Oh..." I think, "...that must be it...it's too hot to sit still and I am out here snatching a piece of iron the size of a Rottwieler!"
I get home, step on the scale...270 even, I was 272 this AM. Dehydration = weakness.
Soooo I am a couple of quarts of h2o fuller now and feeling good. I wonder what tomorrow will be like?
Tuesday, August 14, 2007
My goal of 250+ by november 9th is in reach.
After resting for 6 minutes I did 3 supersets sets of Bulgarian Split Squats x8/8 + pushups x8. Rep cadence was SLOW 4 sec down, 2 sec pause explode up.
rest 1:00 between
finally a circuit of:
Squat & Press
Clean and Press
x 5reps per arm, KB not touching the ground until both sides are complete.
2 rounds of that.
BW this AM 274.
Sunday, August 12, 2007
8 reps per set
:15 work / :15 rest
320 reps total in 19:45
I don't know that I can go any faster on this and stay clean.
8 reps per set is 32 per minute, that is fast. I was COOKED at the end of 40 sets, and the last 4 took all i had in me mentally to get today. Of course it is 102 degrees F and about 60% humidity here, and that takes a toll.
Working up to 50 sets? I dunno....that is pretty daunting to me this minute. I need to eat.
Thursday, August 9, 2007
I don't know how much faster I can get this, my original goal was sub-15:00.
BW today is 276, after training and drinking WO drink + 1/2 L of h2o. Forgot to weigh first thing, I'll do that tomorrow.
Wednesday, August 8, 2007
I got a Gym Boss a few weeks ago and I love it. No more watching a clock or stopwatch for intervals, I just listen for the beep.
This thing is truly, painfully awesome. It is a definate love/hate relationship. It never misses a count, always keeps time and it never, ever apologizes. The beeping sound that it makes taunts me and calls me a sissy sometimes, but it makes things like the Dane's VO2 max workout simpler because there is no need to watch a clock, just listen for the beep and revel in the misery.
I have been using it strategically for the Secret Service Snatch Test too. I set intervals at :50 and :10, snatch 10-12 reps per arm and set the KB down at the first beep and go again at the second beep. It's horrible, but in a good way.
If you are doing any kind of interval training I highly reccomend it.
Sunday, August 5, 2007
Training was on, every single day. Lots of snatches, presses, thrusters and swings. I didn't plan out any workouts, but they were all tough, all good and ranged from 20-70 minutes in the scorching FL sun. Lots of swimming ( that is how I refer to being clobbered by waves) and laying in the sun.
Then there was the diet. A couple of times I let it slide, but overall it was good.
The day meals were fine, cottage cheese, turkey, beef, veggies, fruit, etc.
I gotta tell ya, the hardest part was sticking to the eating plan when 11 other people are calling the restaurant shots. I made do with what I had, but there were some burgers and beers involved.
In the past I would've blown off the whole week, but I continually reminded myself of the photos I posted 3 weeks ago and that kept me on track. I would look a doughnut in the eye and say, "I am better than that".
Friday, July 27, 2007
As for Progress Report on the transformation:
I am down 11lbs in 12 days, hit a PR in the 40kg snatch, tied my previous PR in the SSST and set a baseline for Crazed Viking's VO2 max workout. A good week for training all in all.
Diet wise: With the exception of Sunday's aforementioned Black Velvet, fries and ice cream, I have been 100% compliant to the Precision Nutrition Guidelines. (Click the link over on the right side of the page for the PN 8-day nutritional makeover).
I am taking a single 32kg Kettlebell with me. Call it a working vacation ;).
Take care & I'll talk to you all next week.
Thursday, July 26, 2007
This clip shows otherwise:
Wednesday, July 25, 2007
A2-40kg clean and press
Box pistol x 5,4,3,2,1 per leg
V-up x 5
Burpee x 10
40kg swing x20
x 3 round in just over 5 minutes.
this was TOUGH.
I laid down in my yard ( another way of saying collapsed into a puddle of sweaty smelly exhaustion) and sucked wind for a couple of minutes after this last bit.
Got up and practiced some Praying Mantis forms, Som Bo Gin and Som Bo Pin Kui.
I will do split work later, but now I must eat.
Tuesday, July 24, 2007
46 sets of 7 reps per arm
15 sec on
15 sec off
322 snatches total in 22:45
There were a couple of sets of 8 reps in there, but who's counting?
This thing sneaks up on you. The first few sets were no big deal. The last few are sheer torture. I think that for a little bit I could get 50 sets, but today I stopped when I started getting sloppy & slow.
The protocol is for 16kg for men, but I felt pushy at the beginning.
Monday, July 23, 2007
20/20 reps, done on a whim, no prep.
I believe this is a good example of what a week of good, consistent nutrition can do. I ate very clean since last Monday, with the exception of some fries, beer and ice cream last night, which was a pre-planned "off" meal.
I am down nine pounds in the past week, from 285 to 276. I know that six-seven of that is water, but what a great first week!
An even bigger deal to me than the snatches: We went to my little cousin's 2nd birthday party yeasterday and rather than cake, they had one of those gigantic chocolate chip cookies with the decorative icing on it. This is absolutely the most lethal junk food in the world for me. I have dreams about these cookies, no kidding.
Now, I had planned to take a meal "off" and go out with some friends to an Irish pub, drink a little Black Velvet ( Guinness and Cider) and eat fish & chips after the kid's party. It would have been REAL easy to say something like "It's only a couple of hours difference, I'll have some cookie."
I didn't. I didn't have a single taste of the cookie. I didn't get a piece to save for later when we were at the pub either.
IT WAS NOT PART OF THE PLAN. I planned for fried fish. I planned for fries. I planned for Guinness. I did not plan for cookie, so I did not eat cookie.
Oh, yeah....I didn't eat battered fish either, even though I planned to. I had a steak. 12 oz of quality protien, steamed vegetables and an order of fries.
For dessert, I had a some Ice Cream. That plus the Black Velvet was it for my junk food. Previously, I would eat relatively clean all week, then on Friday night start eating junk.
Today I snatched 40kg for 20/20.
Coincidence? I think not.
here is the youtube link to the same video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XITSfMM_2fk
Sunday, July 22, 2007
Tuesday, July 17, 2007
Over the past few months I have spent a great deal of time and effort researching and studying the art and science of fat-loss.Two of the most knowledgeable guys in the world on the subject are Craig Ballentyne, Men's Health magazine writer and author of Turbulence Training and Alwyn Cosgrove, author of Afterburn Training, who I have already mentioned. The two programs are more alike than different and they have proven track records.
I have adapted the principals of TT and Afterburn to my bootcamp classes and to applied them to Kettlebell training. Craig was interested enough to interview and have me write an article on the subject for his membership site http://www.ttmembers.com/ .
The simplified formula is this: Alternating/supersets of non-competing full-body movements + Intervals. Also known as hard freakin' work.
This is the basic template I have been using for clients and will be using for myself for the next several weeks.
Here is yesterday's workout:
24kg For all
A1-dbl Squat 3x8
A2- Renegade Row 3x8/8
B1- Dbl Clean & Press 3x8
B2- V-up 3x8
Snatch 4x15 (2/side) w/ Jog / Walk 1:30-2:00
Monday, July 16, 2007
In this spirit, I am embarking upon a transformation.
See, I help other people lose massive amounts of bodyfat. I am good at it.
But the question came up (again) recently: "He claims to be able to get people lean, but where is his 6-pack? If it works so well, why isn't he lean?"
This isn't the first time I have heard this.
I will answer these questions publicly now.
Thursday, July 12, 2007
Wednesday, July 11, 2007
10 sets of 3reps per arm (10x3/3)
1:00 rest between sets
32kg Clean and Press
Wednesday, July 4, 2007
Monday, July 2, 2007
Thursday, June 28, 2007
I have never trained with, met, emailed or spoken with Mr. Sonnon. My comments are in no way an attack on him.
I would however, like to counter some of the points he makes in his post.
My comments appear in red, his appear normally.
"..some are still resisting the urge to improve their technique."
I can only assume he refers to those of us invloved in the RKC Hardstyle approach to kettlebell training. From other comments in his post, he claims that GS is the only "proper" way to ift kettlebells. By definition that means that non-GS kettlebll lifting is improper.
Since I have achieved CMS in the sport and teach the RKC principals, I feel qualified to speak on this. And rest assured, I lift my KBs properly.
1. These newer methods can be used for bodybuilding. Now, I’m not speaking of competitive bodybuilding, but rather the approach to building XYZ muscle: Z exercise will build X muscle.
There are inherent problems with the bodybuilding “parts” model of the human body, since the whole synergy of our human movement is greater than the sum of the parts (muscles.)
The RKC teaches maximization of tension in slow lifts and maximum acceleration in quick lifts. We neither teach nor practice body-part training. Full body tension and spreading the load across the body are prescribed in "muscle building". In fact, there is quite a lot of emphasis on being as strong as possible while being as light as possible. Hardly typical of bodybuilding.
2. These newer methods can be used for sports-specific training. Some trainers feel that they can take a kettlebell and load a specific sport skill to increase its resistance.
At the Danish certification, Sr RKC Kenneth Jay did a 45 minute presentation on how sport-specific conditioning is different from overall conditioning that improves a sport. We leave technique to sport coaches and teach kettlebells as a means of conditioning. Performance improves as conditioning and strength levels increase, as well as when the athlete improves the abitlity to rapidly move from tense to relaxed. This is how kettlebells are applied to specific sports.
3.These newer methods can be used for powerlifting.
Absolutely. When a guy like Donnie Thompson goes from 766 to 832 on his deadlift and adds 100lbs to an already elite level bench press in nine months, I'd call that validation of the method and principal.
4. These newer methods are being used for physical therapy: corrective exercise.
This works as a by-product of smart technique. There are many RKCs who were physical therapists long before touching a kettlbell, and in my own experience I have had many, many clients report improved range of motion and elimination of pain when training RKC style, often after one session. The reasons understanding of body alignment and tension principals, which are universal, not some special "corrective exercise".
5.These newer methods can be used for the novelty of having fun. This is probably the only logical reason for not lifting kettlebells properly, because if it gets someone off the couch, then it’s a good thing.
There is NO reason to advocate lifting kettlebells improperly. The problem with this tatement lies in understanding that "proper" defined as safe and specific to the goal.
Unfortunately, anything works for the first two months in getting you fit. What happens after those two months is the true test of your methods. If you don’t have long decades of experience you may be setting up those people for injury, burnout or worse.
Decades? Really? It takes Decades to become a qualified coach? What coaching program in the world requires that you spend 20+ years training before being an effective teacher? Medical school doesn't last decades.
Not competing does not mean it’s not a sport. If you run, but don’t race in marathons, running is still a sport.
So, the kids on the playground that are chasing each other around the tree for no reason are doing a sport? Have they been coached to do this properly? Does their coach have decades of experience training children in the "proper" way to run around a tree?
If you do martial arts, but don’t fight competitively, fighting is still a sport.
If a woman defends herself successfully fighting off a rapist is that a sport too? What about our soldiers in Iraq?
Saying that the only way to "properly" lift a kettlebell is with GS is tantamount to saying that the only proper way to lift a barbell is Olympic lifting. It simply isn't true. Ask Louie Simmons or Ronnie Coleman.
Is there a "proper" way to train for GS? Absolutely, and Valery Fedorenko is tha man to seek in the states for that.
Is there a "proper" way to lift kettlebells in a NON GS fashion. Absolutely. RKC.
Wednesday, June 27, 2007
In other words: Whatever the endeavor, don't make it more complicated than it has to be.
Let's examine this in context of training.
The RKC Program Minimum:
Get-ups and swings.
Variety doe not mean complexity.
There are TONS of ways to put this together, aside from the "do each exercise 2 days per week" as outlined in the Enter the Kettlebell book.
Swings :30 on, 1:00 off for 5 rounds.
swings :30 on, :30 off for 10:00
If you don't think there is a HUGE amount of difference between those two workouts, you haven't tried them.
What if you don't have a kettlebell?
How about a bodyweight version of the Program Minimum?
Burpee (Squat thrust) and pullup.
I like these two exercises because they hit every angle.
Here is a starting point:
Burpee :30 on, 1:00 off for 6 rounds.
Try it. Simple and brutal.
Tuesday, June 19, 2007
Bud had several pieces of steel with him, the kind he bends in his strongman shows. He taught me how to do some very basic scrollwork:
Start the bend:
Don't crush your own head:
Continue bending in the same direction to form a loop:
The finshed product.
650lbs of twisted steel and sex appeal...WOOOOO!!
Sorry, I went a little Ric Flair there for a minute.
If you wanna have some fun, try some scroll work. If you wanna know more about Bud, stop by his site http://www.strongerman.com/
Friday, June 15, 2007
Thursday, June 14, 2007
Am I a jazz singer?
A professional artist?
And all this time I thought I was a guy who teaches people to pick up chunks of iron.
Well, that guy (the one called Iron Tamer) finally broke through 200 in the Secret Service Snatch test again. I am almost myself again, despite what google says......
Tuesday, June 12, 2007
One of my favorite quotes ever came in the middle of an especially delightful section of training at the April 2007 RKC. RKC Team Leader Will Williams said, “So you wanna be an RKC?? I hope you see now that it’s more than just a snatch test for reps!”
So true. The right to be called RKC must be earned.
Those of us who teach at that course take it very seriously. It is more than a snatch test, definately more than paying some money and showing up.
It is also much more than a piece of paper.
A few days ago this appeared on ebay:
Notice it says "Russian Kettlebell ASSOCIATION".
Not RKC. Not Dragondoor or Pavel.
So, for $39.99, you too can have an Instructor Certificate from the Russian Kettlebell Association, whatever that is.
I googled it and there ain't such a thing.
Just for the record, a legitimate RKC Instructor Certificate looks nothing like that, despite the almost-copyright-infringment -but-not-quite picture of the double headed eagle.
From the same seller you can also get a Martial Arts Weapon Master - Ninja- Black Belt certificate. I am not making this up. I wish I was.
The RKC is a School of Strength and a School of Thought. It is a Brotherhood (and Sisterhood) of Iron. We strive to be the gold standard of instruction, integrity and professionalism.
You can't buy that on eBay.
Monday, June 11, 2007
In the interview, Dennis talks about his training, the various feats of strength he is famous for and how an ordinary guy (or girl) can develop super-human strength.
Want to hear it? Go get it at www.strengthsecretsrevealed.com
Short because it was under 15:00.
Sweet because it is SWEEEEET to feel my strength returning.
4 reps per hand, per set
6 reps per hand for the final set.
100 reps total (50/50).
Each set of 4 took about 20 seconds and I rested untila the top of the minute which of course is about 40 seconds.
I got 10 sets in 10 minutes, but had to rest a bit before and between the final 2 sets.
Total time was 13:40.
Friday, June 8, 2007
1. “You can find all that stuff on the internet for free.”
So it is smarter to spend 20 hours searching all over the internet to find free info so that you don’t get “ripped off”. Suppose you are doing this to avoid spending $30 for a book. How much does that make your time worth?
If you divide $30 by 20 hours = $1.50 per hour. On top of that, most of the people who do this are probably doing it on the job, when they are supposed to be working. No wonder they don’t have any money.
Here is a radical idea: Instead of spending a hours and hours combing the web for free information in order to save $30, Invest the money in the book, and use the remaining time to apply what you learned.
2. “You can learn how to do that from a video, you don’t need to pay somebody to teach you.”
OK. I can go to youtube and find video of heart surgery, listed as number 2, right after a clip from Saw 3. Would you want me to do your bypass?
Maybe that’s pushing it a little. How about this: Scour the web for a pirated version of “Construction Basics DVD” (or just cough up the $30.60 to buy it if you learned lesson #1) and then spend the next 5 months building a deck for your house in your spare time. If you manage not to cut off your thumb with the power saw, or smash it with a hammer, come back and tell me that you got a better deal than if you spent the couple thousand to have some PROFESSIONAL do it in one afternoon.
3. “The RKC is a ripoff, you don’t need to spend $2000 for a 3-day course to be able to use kettlebells.”
I love this one. First of all, at the RKC, you DO NOT to spend $2000 to learn to use kettlebells. You learn to TEACH kettlebells. It is an instructor course, not a user’s course.
Second, if you spend $2000 and earn $2001 dollars from what you learned, you are in the black financially.
If you take on 8 clients per month (that is 2 per week) at $50 per session (which is WAY to little) in a year you will have made $4800. This is working less than part time. Of course, you’d have to tear yourself away from that internet forum discussion about how much fitness professionals are ripping people off for about 2 hours a week, so it may be too much of a sacrifice.
BTW, if you ever hear of anyone talking about a ripoff that is making a car payment, they are clueless.
The RKC is a ripoff, but spending $24,000 on something that is going to worth $3000 in 5 years is smart?
Wednesday, June 6, 2007
Naina (rhymes with banana) Bhasin (rhymes with “machine’) came down from Iowa to pay a visit to a lucky few of us here in Music City over the Memorial Day weekend as a part of her spring tour 2007. She was still reeling from the RKC experience and, as always, full of enthusiasm.
Last year she was living here, about to move to the cornfields to cut the hearts out of rodents for a living (she is a research scientist who is doing some extensive work with heart arrhythmia, but what I said sounds way cooler).
Her last workout with me before moving off was on Memorial Day 2006 and it was hard. Really hard. She asked for more this year, saying something about making it an annual tradition.
It was a busy day and a half for her and by the time she got to my house to do the workout, she had about 20 minutes to get to the airport. I went into "300" mode here is what she did:
Beast Sumo Deadlift. (This is within a couple of pounds of BODYWEIGHT for her.)
18lb Clean and press
25 per side
100 total, switching every 10 reps
25 per side
16 kg Swings 50 reps
Try it. If you are a guy 200lbs or more double the weight. I dare ya.
I want to back up a little in time and talk about some of the events of the past few months. Specifically the Spring RKC in MN and the RKC in Denmark.
Over the course of 12 days, I spent 6 full days on the field with RKC instructor candidates, SrRKCs, Team Leaders, Assistant insructors, Dragondoor staff and Pavel. It was incredible.
I also spent a lot of time NOT sleeping, blundering around Copenhagen trying to beat jet lag, talking to people with a lot more knowledge than me and somewhere in the neighborhood of 28 hours on airplanes. And of course one night with Will Williams and Kenneth Jay trying to kill me with Guiness and vodka.
Returning home after running non-stop on caffiene and enthusiasm, I had a sudden crash and burn that ended up in a bronchitis so severe that I would go into a coughing fit and nearly pass out just from answering the phone. I insist on calling it the Danish Bird Flu.
After a week of antibiotics, decongestants and cough syrup that contained hydrocodone, I was beginning to resemble my old self. This was two weeks ago.
I picked up a 24kg kettlebell and it seemed ponderously heavy. I decided to snatch it anway and in 10:00 had knocked out a mighty 140 reps, SSST style. By "mighty" I mean "mighty embarrassing".
So....what to do? For me it was back to Program Minimum. Last week Monday, Tuesday and Thursday it was 24kg get-ups for 5:00, rest for 2:00 and then 24kg swings. Monday sucked in that special way that comes only from lungs still holding phlegm. I did a total of 150 swings with a little jogging/walking between sets of 25. Tuesday was better and Thursday better still, 6 sets of 50 swings with about a 200 yard jog between each set.
Friday, I decided to SSST again. I got 180 in 10:00, which is better, but normally I can get 200 on any given day and my PR is 230. I continued until I reached 300 total, with a time of 27:28.
I am feeling MUCH better. Monday I did 140 snatches total with 32kg, not pushing hard, lots of rest between sets. Total time was about 40:00.
This week: more program minimum, playing with 32 and 40kg.
Tuesday, June 5, 2007
What does this have to do with training?
Nothing. It's my wife's birthday.
Monday, June 4, 2007
This is diferent. The final bit that put me over the edge was a comment from my friend Sr. RKC Mark Reifkind (know to most as "Rif").He put it very simply: "You NEED to start a blog of your own. I want to read it."
So here it is. The Iron Tamer Blog.To start things off, I want to share a video clip put together from the 2007 Danish RKC. This is NOT the same clip featured on www.kettlebells.dk. Thomas Andersen of www.strongstuff.dk put this together after spending all weekend asking me "So Dave.......what ELSE can you do?"
I think he did an outstanding job on both this clip and the other clips from the Danish RKC.