Saturday, June 30, 2007

Saturday workout with Ang

Angela is my sometimes training partner. We are both trainers at Gold's Gym. Angela has participated in four body building competitions. She is by far my most favorite person at Gold's. Ang started training with KB's a couple months after me. I brought her to one of Andrea's classes and she was hooked. We trained together at The Press Gym in an effort to attract some attention to my classes. This is what we did...

Swings 30 seconds on, 30 seconds rest; 20 swings every round - 20kg

Swing, Clean, FSQ, PP, NP; alternating combo - 16kg 4L/4R x2 - 20kg 2L/2Rx1

Single Leg RDL's - 16/16kg - 5x3

Lunge with a Press and Push-ups - 12kg; a press at the bottom of each of the eight steps, eight push-ups, eight lunge/press steps back X2 - Ang LOVED this combo.

Some abs, Angela loves abs - I hate them, so she always picks out the ab stuff and I always complain (because complaining while doing abs makes me feel better).

Latter this afternoon I did my pull-up work out while Aaron watered my flowers.

BW 2x2
Plus 20lbs. 1
plus 20lbs. 1
plus 15lbs. 1
plus 15lbs. 1
plus 10lbs. 2
plus 10lbs. 2

I am beginning to wonder if I will ever get a 53lb pull-up. I know I just started, but some days pull-ups feel difficult.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Pretty Dang Boring

I haven't done anything exciting... which is fine. However, boring doesn't make much for blogging.

Tuesday... did some standing and forward bend yoga Asana. I worked out with my KB class, which wasn't terribly hard (they are beginners), which was fine. I can't go full tilt boogie all the time.

Wednesday... Restorative yoga class with William... much needed but I have already blogged about restorative yoga. I did my pull-up exercises in the power rack at Gold's and pissed off a couple guys who wanted to do shrugs and bicep curls. I hate the pull-up bars at Gold's. They are attached to the cable machine and have spongy stuff on the handles. Then I took my most CNS challenged client to see my Z guy, Mike Nelson.

Thursday... I worked out with one of my clients, again not challenging, but such is life. I picked up a new client today... Dr. Matt. He is a chiropractor... the one who popped my rib back in a couple weeks ago. We are exchanging KB training for adjustments. I trained him... then he cracked my back and and squared up my hips. After that I took my pup to see my aunt who is an Osteopath. My dog goofed up her knee a year ago... my aunt fixed her knee this past fall. Two weeks ago she played to hard and goofed up her knee again.

Tomorrow is going to be a busy day... I see nine clients. YIKES! Better get to bed.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Monday Training....

Swings - 16kg; 30seconds on/30seconds rest x10

Long circuit thing...
Single hand swing+Snatch+Neg. Press+FSQ+PP; alternating - 16kg; 4L/4R x3

Dragon Walks + Push-ups (8) - 16kg x3

Latter that day I had a spare 15 minutes...
Snatches 16kg 10L/10R x6

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Pull-up goal...

I have a goal, I am going to do a single pull-up with my body weight plus a 24kg. I would like to achieve my pull-up by this time next year. I'm not a goal oriented person, so this is a pretty big deal for me.

Here is where I am at today...

8 BW pull-ups
1RM - BW plus 12kg

Brett Jones gave me some advice on how to achieve this. This is how I remember the plan...

WK1 - 3xper wk; Weighted Pull-ups, sets of 1-2

WK2 - Grease the Groove - 3 pullups several times a day (i'll shoot for 6) nowhere near failure

WK3 - 5x5; 3x per wk

WK 4 - Back off week, some pullups but easy

Pull-up workout with Aaron today in the back yard on the clothes line...

8kg got 1 up pretty easy... no go on the double (yes, it is a green brand X KB; i call it the lip gloss bell)

12kg, Challenging but doable...

1 pu bw+8kg
1 pu bw+12kg
1 pu bw+8kg, one "nose up"bw+8kg(Aaron gave me a red light for my attempt at a double)
1 pu bw+8kg
1 pu bw+8kg
1 pu bw+8kg

Then we did some TGU's; 16kg about 3 each side, OH squat style.

I had an excellent yoga class today at Neti Neti. We did some backbends and lots of standing poses. My rib thing is finally starting to feel better.

Dinner with the Big Guys...

So, Aaron and I decided to go to the Downtowner and skulk around in hopes of seeing Mark Reifkind, Doug Napodal and I also wanted to Aaron to meet Andrea DuCane, my primary teacher. As luck would have it, Dennis Armstrong was sitting at the bar when we walked in. Dennis is the person who organizes all the certifications for the RKC and Dragon Door stuff. Dennis is an important person to know. About 2 minutes after we arrived and sat next to Dennis the Big Guys walked through the door... Pavel, Mark Reifkind and Brett Jones, what luck!!!

Our intention was to chit chat a little, then have a little something to eat in the bar... wait to see if there were any other RKC folks we knew, and say hello to them as well. Mark, being the super fantastic guy he is invited us to join them for dinner, we tried to decline... but, we couldn't resist the opportunity to dine with this group of interesting people. We were soon joined by Mark and Courtney Cheng and even Dennis Armstrong joined us. Courtney took the Cert in April same time as me. Mark was an assistant, he was also in the last HS issue. Courtney is an Osteopath, in my book that is pretty cool. There are so many people at the RKC certification that it is impossible to remember everyone. Some people stand out in my mind and I certainly remember the Chengs and was thrilled to sit next to them at dinner.

I have always been a huge admirer of Bret Jones. This was the first time I had the chance to meet him in person. I have been reading his blog for quit some time. I like his training style and I love the fact he is a regular looking guy who is crazy strong. He was just what I imagined him to be... good sense of humor, humble and very knowledgeable. I bugged him for some pull-up training tips. Now I had better follow through. I will post more about that latter.

I was going to try my best not to act like a star-struck little school girl while I was dinning with Pavel. It was hard for me not to... I have several of his books (valentine's day gifts from Aaron) plus he is super knowledgeable about things I really wish I knew more about. He is a real celebrity in my world. My goal was not to do or say anything regretful.

An unexpected surprise guest that showed up latter that night up was Mark Toomey! One of the assistant instructors for my team back in April! He is a big time 2nd amendment guy like Aaron and I was thrilled to see him. He is the guy that pointed out to me that maybe I have a little talent for squatting... and encouraged me to work at it.

I was hoping to have an opportunity to chit chat with Andrea DuCane a little more. I know I get to see her in class regularly, but it would have been nice to act like a regular person around her outside of class for once. Aaron did get to meet Andrea, but only after dinner and when she and John were on their way out. I also missed seeing Doug Napodal.

We gave Rif a ride back to his Hotel... What a great guy! I would love to get a private lesson with him next time he is in town. Tracy was my team's assistant, because of her, Aaron and I really got a great opportunity to meet some wonderful people.

Well, that was a really fun night. I am so lucky to live right in the heart of Kettlebelland. I'm off the the Farmer's Market in Saint Paul, then off to Yoga with Lisa at Neti Neti.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Saturday training with Aaron

Today I started my first Kettlebell class at The Press Gym. The Press is a very cool power lifter oriented gym. Owners are Kim and Dan; one (if not both) of them are usually on the premises. I have had a couple free domos at The Press. One was very successful and lots of people showed up... even some of the big huge PL'ers. The other was much more casual... fewer people showed up and the PL'ers only watched... Today three people showed up and I was thrilled!

I love training with Aaron. Aaron wrote our work out, because I was done thinking for the day... especially thinking about what to train. So, here it is...

Single hand swings... (Aaron used the 24kg) 20kg, 5L/5R adding one rep per set to 10L/10R, then subtract one rep, back to 5L/5R. Plenty of rest between sets, maybe not plenty... about one minute. Then we did some DARC's, I backed down to the 16kg. This all took about 25 minutes.

Friday, June 22, 2007

A reason to continue with class...

I went to Andrea's Kettlebell class on Thursday. I love being a student, actually I prefer it much more over teaching. I encourage everyone to train with someone or attend classes. Thursday was a lesson why it is so important for me to attend classes regularly... Andrea pointed out a couple bad habits I managed to pick up.

I do this weird thing where I experiment how subtle changes in form feels... I don't know why I do this... but lately I have been trying to really "blast" the K'bell when I swing. Somehow I have translated this into "flipping" the K'bell up before decent. I have also managed to pick up shrugging at the apex of the swing... I hate shrugs. Thank god someone pointed this out.

I don't recall exactly what we did for a workout... we did pistols, single leg deadlifts, oh press, swings and snatches.

Today I was vigilantly practiced better swings... I experimented with different ways to blast the K'bell without shrugging or flipping. I also practiced not blasting the K'bell.

I am totally envious of the Level 2 students in town this week... but relieved that I have another year or two to perfect my form. I still have level one to digest.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

The Summer of Backbends

Yoga this morning was totally awesome... like always. William declared this to be the summer of backbends. Backbends is just what I needed to pull me out of my funk. Plus I learned something extremely helpful... when extending into a back bend allow the space right by your armpit, the part of your lat on the bottom part of your scap... that spot needs to extend out (latterly). At the same time... the humerus is pulled into the glenoid fossa. Elbows are kept in line between the wrists and shoulders.

When I was pressing up into the backbends, my shoulder was bugging me with some painful clicking near the posterior delt... of course William had the advice that fixed it... more external rotation of the humerus, this caused my scap to stabilize and descend down my back.

We practiced dropping into backbend from headstand. We used a chair... then kicked off the chair to come out of the backbend. There is hip flexor training... the psoas is the strongest of the hip flexors, I wonder how much it works while the back is in extension? Any way... it has been awhile sense I have dropped into a backbend from headstand and then kicked back over... it was pretty fun.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Tuesday Training

Aaron and I trained together outside after work today. Despite the wind, the weather was pretty nice... sunny and cool (78 degrees).

Swings 16kg - 20 x2
Single hand swings - 16kg - 10L/10R x2

Snatches 16kg - 15L/15R x2
20kg - 5L/5R x2

TGU's - 20kg - 2.5L/3R

I gassed out on the left side in the middle of my 3rd set of TGU's. I could get up, but shoulder wouldn't hold the weight on the way down. Oh, well.

Sunday and Monday

I am feeling low on energy... Yoga with Lisa on Sunday was challenging. It wasn't the postures, or the sequencing, or the heat... I can't even say what it was. Maybe it was that I just couldn't drop into Parsva Bakasana from headstand for anything. I would think the heat would actually facilitate the twist.

Another factor to my poor performance... I seamed to have popped a rib out of place a couple weeks ago. At first I thought my back muscles were growing, then I thought I may have strained a intercostal... I saw a chiropractor on last Wednesday and he popped the rib back in place. I would have cried after the adjustment, but I could hardly breath. I didn't care, I was just glad to have the rib back where it belongs.

I can't say the rib thing is really painful, but it is quite distracting. I did get some Kettlebell practice in on Monday...

Swings 16kg - 30 seconds on, 30 seconds rest - 10 minutes total. I consistently got 20 swings every 30 seconds.

Snatches 16kg - 15L/15R x2

The swings were killer... Snatches, not too bad.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Saturday with Andrea, 100 + Swingie Things

I just got home from Andrea's class... as alway it was a mean workout. Somehow she always manages to pick out something I avoid, and add it to the class workout(double swings). The weather here in Minnesota has been hot (90's) and humid... Class was sticky and sweaty, this was our workout;

Pistols - 20kg 3L/3R x3

OH Presses - 16kg 3L/3R x2, plus one waiter's walk L/R

Seated Seesaw presses - 12kg 6L/6R x2

Double Swings - 16/16kg 10 reps 5 sets

Snatches 12kg - 10L/10R x2 5L/5R

Between the double swings and snatches Andrea wanted us to do 100 swingie things, so we ended the set with a sort of darc style snatch left and right.

Last we did some ab stuff. I hate doing abs. My best workout bud, Angela, LOVES to do abs, evidently so does Andrea because we do them every class (much to my chagrin).

I love going to Andrea's class, it keeps my practice honest. I'm not disciplined enough to do things I hate... plus it's pretty cool that there are classes five minutes from my house taught by a senior RKC! Thanks Andrea, you are awesome!

Friday, June 15, 2007

Friday Workout

I have a Kettlebell class on Fridays, I train along with the class... mostly as feedback and to demo examples. Latter that day I had a quick and dirty workout with one of my favorite clients,

Swings with the 20kg for a warm up

Snatches 16kg - 10L/10R X3

C+FSQ+PP+NP - 16kg 5L/5R, 20kg 5L/5R X2

When I got home I was going to work out with Aaron, and I did, kind of... then I got distracted by the fact that my flowers were wilting from lack of water, so I had to water and workout. I ended up doing something lame like some OH presses, some with the 12kg, some with the 16kg. On the 30 second rest I ran around and moved the sprinkler to water flowers.

I have class with Andrea tomorrow... I am sure I will make up for my sloth then.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Stuff I can do with a 24kg.... so far

I got home from work early and wanted to find out what I could do with the 24kg.... I don't really get the opportunity to goof around with the K'bells very often, so I took Aaron and the pup outside to give me a spot and snap a photo for the blog. Sometimes I pick up a K'bell, here are some photos to prove it. Form is adequate... I will post improvements.

Windmills... it's like trikonasana with a Kettlebell.

ATG over head squat... I love squats. Pistols with the 24kg... 1 down two to go. Finally something cool about short legs... close to the floor, easier to squat.

Aaron, nice DARC.

Elsa wonders where her Bonebell is....

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Wednesday Yoga

Yoga with William was awesome like always... We started out with a vinyasa of standing postures, which is part of my standard home practice. I love standing poses... William says we should practice postures until there is neither attraction or aversion, I think I will be working on not being attracted to standing poses for a long time. Next we worked on back bends, deep big long back bends. We used a stool and bolster for a supported deep back bend. Supported postures can be held longer, benefit is the ability to work the posture with less fatigue.

So, this is a recreation of what we did in class today, not as nice as earlier, but I wanted to show a supported back bend that I really like to work. I feel like my back bends are getting back to where they were before I found weight training....

Monday, June 11, 2007


As always Monday was very busy... 11 clients again. I just can't say no.... I love all my clients. Plus now one of my current clients husband wants to train kettlebells with me. Classes... I need to do more classes. Anywhooo...

Training today was crammed in the midst of a pile of clients.

Swings - 16kg, 20X3

Snatches - 16kg, 5/5
16kg, 10/10 X3

Step back lunges - 16kg 8/8, 8/8 X3

OH Presses - 12kg, 6/6 X3

C+FSQ+PP+NP - 16kg, 6/6 X3

I absolutely love the clean, front squat, push press, negative press combo... probably because I can blast something heavy over my head even when I am just about gassed out. I have been playing around with the combo with 20kg and once with a 24kg. Push press under a bar was in my regular rotation, until I went to kettlebell camp in April.

I skipped all structured KB training for the weekend... I did attend yoga with Lisa at Neti Neti on Sunday. I am doing more kettlebell demos in the attempt to gain more interest in classes this week.


Saturday and Sunday

Aaron was a victim at yesterday's RKC Certification. I tagged along to watch, I wanted to meet Taikei and see Mark Reifkind. It was a beautiful sunny day... Doug Nepedol was there, we had a chance to talk a little. I have been looking at his blog, it is always nice to talk in person. Pavel of course was there, he seamed to remember me from my cert in April, which was flattering being that there are so many of us and only one of him....

The energy is so intense at these certifications... when I watched all the students doing there final graduation workout, I really really wanted to join in. I remember all the feelings I had doing my final workout... at one point I remember feeling like I would do just about anything to make it all go away... I remember Lenard (a fellow student I sat next to once) cheering for me at the finish line, Karen, my partner for the weekend was right behind me the whole way, I crossed first and cheered for her to cross... Looking back it was so much fun!

Taikei looked very strong... his presses looked great. The graduation workout was swings and seesaw presses, just like my graduation workout. I stood by the sideline and cheered for him to cross the finish line. I have been reading his blog, and it was especially nice to meet him.

Aaron and I added a few larger K'bells to our collection. Now we have a 28kg and 32kg to play around with. It is so much fun for us to train together... I am going to try to go to the level 2 next summer. I can't wait.

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Thursday and Friday

On Wednesday evening I met up with my Z Health guy, Mike. He was working with one of my favorite clients. The main complaint was a very tight and irritating IT band. The first couple of joint "movements" didn't change much... however after the hip circles were preformed, a remarkable change in gate happened. That was pretty cool to see. My client could only tolerate about an hour of working with Z on that Wednesday... it must be very stimulating to the CNS.

I also got my very first Z health assessment from Mike. It was the end of a long day, so unfortunately my CNS didn't have much left to work with. My upper traps were very tight, along with my entire back... no wonder, I think I have been over working my posterior chain the past few days between back bends and KB snatches.... Mike gave me some thoracic Z movements. Mike is a way cool guy, interesting to talk to, I am looking forward to working with Z and Mike more.

I have started a couple group Kettlebell classes at Golds as well as The Press Gym. So, I haven't been doing anything for my own workout... I feel like all the demos I have been doing, plus I do work along with the group... is enough right now. I have been working mostly standing yoga asana and forward bends along with some hip opening postures.

Well, I have to get to the gym.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Wednesday Yoga

We had a nice Vanilla yoga class today. We worked mostly basic postures that are all in my regular rotation. Focus was on tail bone extension, actually lengthing and extending into the body. This along with actual femoral extension... Esoteric, I know, but that is Iyengar style yoga... working muscles at the origins and insertions. William is very scientific about his descriptions of movement, using muscle and bone names, this style of teaching is so helpful to me... I actually visualize the action of the bone and muscle. The movements are subtle... but powerful. Having access to an instructor who can verbalize instructions this way is truly a gift.

We worked Pincha Mayurasana before and after back bends... Extension and stamina came much easier after the back bends. Shoulder both felt VERY healthy... and have for the past few days. I have been doing both stick presses (thank you Mark) and Z drills (thanks Mike). My shoulders like back bends and Pincha... however on unhealthy shoulder days I have to *ease* into these postures and I don't have much for stamina... maybe 20 seconds compared to healthy days... a minute and beyond.

Ineresting things....

Aaron, my husband who has just started to swing K'bells as of my RKC certification is going to be a victim at the up coming June cert.

I have been working with Mike Nelson doing some Z Health stuff... and actually will be working with him and another one of my favorite clients tonight.

I met the guy who makes our Kettlebells at Golds last week... He has made 10's of thousands of Kettlebells and has never trained with them. I gave him my card and he promised to give me a call.

Two on Tuesday...

I had my first group Kettlebell class at Gold's. Everything went well, 5 people showed up, all at various levels, which made things challenging. I really want the group classes to work out, I am working too much.

For my workout, I wanted to train snatches for time, to make Andrea's one minute snatch classes not so sucky.... plus I was very inspired by Tracy's SSST.

Swings for warm up 16kg - 20 X2

Snatches with my Gymboss 30 seconds on 30 seconds rest with the 16kg - 5Left/5Right - 10 minutes total. I consistently got 12 reps per 30 second interval on both left and right. The SSST in not in my near future, not by a long shot.

OH Press - 16kg 5L/5R X3
16kg is pretty heavy for me, it was a real challenge.... I was sick of being stuck on 4 reps with the 16kg, so I powered through that last 5th.,

Step back lunges 16kg - 8/8right - 8/8right X3 I like lunges

I finished work early today, Aaron and I had a little workout in the front yard. The weather was beautiful, and I love training with Aaron....

Swings for a warm up, then snatches with the 12kg

Snatches 16kg - 10L/10R X3

Double Front Squat - Push Press - 16/16kg 6 X3
The most challenging part is the double clean... simply to rack the K'bells. I have tried this lift with the 20kgs, the double clean is just barely doable.

Monday, June 4, 2007

Monday Training....

Quick workout for a long day...

Swings - 16kg 30 seconds work/30 seconds rest - 3 sets
Single hand Swings - 16kg - 30 seconds work/30 seconds rest R/L/R/L

Double Cleans - 16/16kg, Double Squat Press - 16/16kg - 6 X 3
No rest between the double cleans and double squat presses, about 2 minutes between sets

TGU's - 16kg X 1 , 20kg X 2
20kg was difficult, but doable

Single leg squat - 16/16kg X 6 X 3

Sunday, June 3, 2007

Yoga Lisa... Neti Neti

Neti Neti is the name of Lisa's yoga studio. It is Sanskrit for "not this not that". Lisa is an amazing teacher, she is very easy going... at the same time she inspires an intense practice. Taking classes from her has really expanded my yoga practice at home. She breaks from the traditional rules most yoga studios have... it is a serious class, yet we laugh and joke (just a little). Lisa also has a strength training background, so she is very understanding when I come to class tight and sore from deadlifts or heavy squats. She actually encourages my strength training on the side, which is nice. I feel like my Yoga practice is my spouse and Kettlebells are my boyfriend.... Luckily, reality is Aaron is my spouse and he encourages all of my different practices.

Lessons that stand out today....

We entered Koundinyasana 2 from a both feet forward position, so I had to tuck one leg under and through my arms to shoot it back... amazingly it works better for me this way... today.

Not a great example... but adequate. I need to extend my right leg more, level out my hips and lift my shoulders.

I was feeling pretty low on energy when I went to class, when I left, I felt much better.

Saturday, June 2, 2007

Andrea's Saturday Class....

I still go to Andrea Du Cane's classes even now that I am an RKC. I go because she does things I would never do on my own. Here is what we did in class...

One minute snatches... again..... with a 12kg

1 minute left
30 seconds rest
1 minute right
30 seconds rest
1 minute left
30 seconds rest
1 minute right
30 seconds rest
1 minute transfers - shingle hand swings
30 seconds rest
1 minute left
30 seconds rest
1 minute right
30 seconds rest
1 minute transfers - single hand swings

The two sets of transfers was a great way to rest, with out resting...
My forearms gassed out first again. Again, 23 snatches a minute, exception was the last two sets, 20 and 20. I have to say this experience was much better than last week.

OH Press, standing on one leg - 12kg - 4L/4R
- 16kg - 3L/3R
- 12kg - 2L/2R + waiter's walks around the room
Front squats - 16kg

Stright Leg DL's - 32kg

I need to do leg work with barbells... my grip was too gassed to hold anything that would be a challenge. Oh well.

Friday, June 1, 2007

Friday Workout

Nothing exciting to report at the gym today. So here is my workout...

Swings 16kg - 20 X3
30 second on 30 seconds rest (Aaron got me a Gym Boss!!!)

Single hand Swings 16kg - 18/18 X3
30 second on 30 seconds rest (fewer reps with the shs?)

C+SQ+PP+NP - 16kg - 5/5 X3

Lunges - 16kg 12 steps out 8 push ups 12 steps back

Renegade Rows - 12/12kg - 10
16/16kg - 10 X 2

Pull Overs on a SB - 12kg - 12
16kg - 10 X2

TGU 16kg - 3/3 using the squat method - I love overhead squats...

I really want to try tgu's with the 20kg... but I am scared I will have to get Aaron to spot me.

I have a client who has been reading my blog... she told me today that my blog is a little "reserved". So, I will rant about one thing that has been bugging me, and I don't really know what to do about it...

There is a trainer at my gym who made fun of my Kettlebells when I first started training with them. I was pretty enthusiastic... I told everyone at work how great they were, I would show off all the neat new things I could do with them. This is to my co-workers... not the members. These are the people who should know a cool thing when they see it, this is our work...

So... here is my beef.... now this person is using MY (the K'bells are mine and Angela's) K'bells on his clients. He doesn't know what he is doing. Plus he is going through a phase of being WAY into functional training, spending almost the whole hour with a client doing all this one leg standing forward reaches; crap on the Stability Ball, weird stretching movements. I am sure everything has a good purpose... but a whole hour?

Now I am a libertarian... do I just let it go? He is not hurting my K'bells, or me or my clients... or do I say something?