Saturday, November 29, 2008

Road to Atlanta (Day 6)

Saturday 29th November

Training Log [day 6]

-5 mins of joint mobility
-3 mins on the summit trainer
-1 arm swings @ 16kg (20/20)
-1 arm swings @ 24kg (20/20)
-1 arm swings @ 32kg (10/10)

The Workout: Snatch @ 24kg's
-5 mins @ 10rpm (25/25 with 1 hand switch)
-3 mins @ 10rpm (15/15 with 1 hand switch)
-3 mins @ 10rpm (15/15 with 1 hand switch)

*The right arm feels really smooth almost effortless at the moment which is encouraging. However, haven't locked in the technique on the left arm yet. I feel like I'm not creating the momentum with the left swing as with the right. I'm definitely slower driving the had through the bell handle at the top, which is resulting in less than perfect hand position and a weak lock out at the top. Such seemingly minor imperfections, but accumulated together they lead to serious muscle fatigue and ultimately the termination of the set.

The snatch above all is the most challenging and humbling of lifts. I mean here I am feeling like I could probably hit my goal of 50-60 reps on my right arm with little problem and flawless technique, while my left feels as though i've only just begun snatching the past few days! On the bright side, maybe I'll just push for the full 10 minutes on my right eh!! Just kidding, the left will come good. If this sport was easy everyone would do it! I've just got to spend the time getting my left arm as fluid and smooth as my right. 

After all.... "that's the name of the game, every rep the same!" Hey that rhymes! I may have to trade mark it!

Road to Atlanta (Day 5)

Friday 28th November

Felt pretty good today after spending yesterday in recovery mode. My wife informed me that today was apparently what they call "black friday", which to those of us who are not honorary members of the national women's bargain shopping league (NWBSL), is apparently the biggest shopping day of the year! Great news for mum's and wives on the hunt for sale price holiday gifts, bad news for us husbands and dads who will by the end of the day undoubtedly here that famous sentence our female counterparts love to through at us, "I saved you so much money today, everything was on sale!" Only a woman can rationalize a sentence like this, saving money by spending a bunch of it! 

Women... can't understand em, can't reason with em, can't control em, can't curb their spending, can't shoot em, and they pee standing up, but regardless of all this us blokes just can't seem to live without these beautiful creatures and so on we go on together through this wonderful adventure called life!

And so my son Brayden an eye were left to fend for ourselves while my beautiful wife and her lovely mother put their skills to the test in an all out onslaught on my and my father-in-laws checking accounts at the local mall! 

Following completion of a set number of chores affectionately known here in the south as a "hunny-do-list" which included a trip to the local Walmart. Bray and I spent the better part of an hour wading through the hoards of "crazies" before we finally made it to our temple of salvation and seclusion from shoppamania, The Edge Fitness Center. We remained closed today for the holiday and so Bray was free to run wild and perform his own person exercise routine consisting of swinging on the rings, punching the heavy bag, bouncing on the bosu, and performing shuttle sprint the length of the gym with and ab wheel! He loves it, definitely a chip off the old block!

Training Log [day 5]

Just a short work out, wanted to focus solely on the jerk for today. 

-5 mins of joint mobility
-3 mins on summit trainer
-2 arm oh swings @ 16kg (20)
-2 arm swings @ 24kg (20)
-2 arm swings @ 32kg (20)

Workout: The Jerk @ 2x 24kg's
-6 mins @ 5rpm (30)
-4 mins @ 5rpm (20)

*The 6 minute set felt really good. My rack feels solid, I believe in addition to my weight loss lower lumbar flexibility has improved because I'm now able to hold the k-bells lower, with my elbows securely on my hips with legs completely locked out and it feels pretty effortless. I feel I could have gone on for at least another minute or two  today, but I'm sticking to the program. 

**I feel good about the jerk right now, which is usually difficult for me as the Michigan meet highlighted. But it's first week of training and I'm only a couple of minutes and 14 reps away from my all time best jerk set. Keeping in mind that my primary focus is still to go the whole 10 minutes for the first time. 

Jump Squats @ 2x 24kg's
-3x 50 reps

*A brief, but productive workout today, just gotta keep it rolling! 

Signed up myself, my wife Sarah and one of my students, Dianna for the meet today. No turning back now, it's on!

Friday, November 28, 2008

Road to Atlanta (Day 4)

Thursday 27th November

Training Log [day 4]

Happy Thanksgiving to all! 

I contemplated hitting a short workout this morning, but thought better of it. I mean what better day is there than thanksgiving to just relax, chill out, eat good food (or bad depending on your perspective), perhaps indulge in a glass of wine and enjoy my beautiful wife Sarah and play with my fiery little son Brayden. 

So that's what I did, no training for me today. Had a wonderful thanksgiving with my family which by the seems even better to me being British and not having this holiday up until the past five years. It still feels like a bonus holiday that has been added to my calendar that affords me the luxury of time off work! It's quality, feel good about it. 

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Road to Atlanta (Day 3)

Wednesday 26th November

Training Log [day 3]

Feeling pretty sore all over from the past two days today so I think I may take tomorrow off completely. After all it is thanksgiving! 

-10 minutes of joint mobility
-3 minutes on the summit trainer 
-2 arm OH swing @ 16kg (20)
-2 arm swing @ 24kg (20)
-2 arm swing @ 32kg (20)

Long Cycle @ 2x 24kg's
-5 mins @ 4rpm (20)
-3 mins @ 4rpm (12)
-2 mins @ 4rpm (8)

*LC felt good, my new rack position feels solid. It took me a little while getting backing in to a rhythm with my clean, but that was to be expected since this was the first time I have hit the 24's on the LC since I competed in Michigan last August. 5 minutes first day in, I'm happy!

Snatch @ 24kg
-4 mins @ 12rpm (24/24)

*Just the one set for today to keep the feel for the snatch. It wasn't fun! My hands were a little tender by this point from the LC sets, but it's another 4 minutes in the bank so i'll take it!

Jump Squats @ 2x 24kg's
-3 sets of 50 reps

*Another step closer to Atlanta. I surprised at how well this week has gone so far. I wasn't expecting to hit 5 minutes on anything quite yet so it's all good. Still a long way to go though, I know it'll only get harder from here on out. 

A happy thanksgiving to all!!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Road to Atlanta (Day 2)

Tuesday 25th November

Training Log [day 2]

I was feeling a quite a lot of soreness today following yesterday's re-introduction to the 24's so I decided not to work K-bell Sport lifts today. I have limited time until Atlanta I know, but I don't want to make the same mistakes I made prior to the Michigan competition again. Let me elaborate, Michigan was my first competition so the training structure I used leading up to it proved to be a massive learning experience for me. I trained basically nothing but k-bells day in-day out for 8 weeks prior to the meet which worked well for me in some respects as I won the long cycle and placed second in the traditional (jerk/snatch) in my weight class. However, I remember being pretty beat up going into the event. My shoulders were sore constantly the last 3 weeks of training and I remember having to ice them the night before the event. Plus I wasn't to happy with my performance in my opening lift, the jerk. Nerves played a part I'm sure, but my shoulders were fatigued and I had posted bigger numbers than I hit comfortably in training 2 or 3 weeks prior to the comp. 

I'm rambling, but the point I'm trying to make is that I feel my biggest weakness is the fact that I'm highly motivated and I love to train! Strange for that to be a weakness I know, but for me the hardest thing is to lay off and let my body rest, I would train 7 days a week if I could, I'm mad for it! But rest is a important as the hours of training and I'm trying to take a different approach this time around. 

So as I mentioned in a previous post, i've been hitting a lot of CrossFit type workouts and began developing some of my own which have produced some excellent results with regard to my overall work capacity, strength, and power endurance, plus i'm lighter than i've ever been which all transfer well to k-bell lifting. 

Anyway, today I hit a conditioning workout, no kettlebell sport lifts, i'll save those for tomorrow.

The Workout

21x knees to elbows
21x k-bell OH swing @ 53#
21x push-ups
45x towell pull-ups (shifting hands hi-low)
21x box jumps (24" box)
21x back extensions
42x walking lunges

*3 rounds for time.

**My time was 23:45. Felt pretty good, it was work, but I wasn't too wasted afterwards. Ready to hit some long cycle tomorrow now!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Road to Atlanta (Training Log, Day 1)

Monday 24th November

Training Log [Day 1]

Initial Goals for Atlanta: 
-To achieve VII Rank in the 75kg weight class [150 reps for jerk/snatch and 35 reps for long cycle]
-Jerk [2x 24kg, 5 rpm (50) for 10mins]
-Snatch [1x 24kg, 12rpm (120) for 10 mins]
-Long Cycle [2x 24kg, 4 rpm (40) for 10 mins]

2 Arm Swings:
-20x OH Swing @ 16kg
-20x Swing @ 24kg
-20x Swing @ 32kg (first time using my 32kg bell)

-2x 24kg, 5 mins @ 5rpm (25)
-2x 24kg, 3 mins @ 5rpm (15)
-2x 24kg, 2 mins @ 5rpm (10)

*Just wanted to ease back into this one today and figured 10 minutes under the bells wouldn't be a bad place to start. I rested about 3 minutes between sets. 

**My rack position was immediately different from when I competed in Michigan. I was able to find a comfortable position with the bells overlapping as usual, but today I was able to keep the bells closer than previously and was able to overlap one hand over the other which made the rack feel a lot tighter and more secure. I had attempted this before with little joy. However, since I last competed I have dropped a few pounds, I'm down from 183# to about 168#, so I think this may be a contributing factor with regard to my rack.

1x 24kg, 4 mins @ 12rpm (24/24, with 1 hand switch)
1x 24kg, 3 mins @ 12rpm (18/18, with 1 hand switch)
1x 24kg, 3 mins @ 12rpm (18/18, with 1 hand switch)

*I rested about 3 mins between sets.

**First set felt the best, second wasn't good technique felt sloppy, third set was a little better. I need to put in some quality time on this one. Definitely the toughest lift for me.

Jump Squats
-2x 24kg, 3 sets of 50reps

1 Arm Swings
-1x 32kg, 20/20reps

I'm fairly happy with today's workout, if nothing else it's a starting point to work from.

The Road to Atlanta (day 1)

Monday 24th November 2008

It's been a while since my last post. Life's been hectic and my time has been limited, but caught a minute here so I thought I would throw something down. 

It's Monday morning 6:30am. I have decided I'm going to attempt to journal my road and preparation to the AKC Kettlebell Meet in Atlanta, December 13th. 

Firstly, here's a little background info on recent events in my life and training. Following my CKT certification in NYC last August I suffered a severe hamstring injury which put me out of commission for quite a while. In the quest to work out at lighter loads and allow my leg to recover I stumbled upon CrossFit training and thought I'd give it a try. I was extremely shocked to discover that my fitness level was not as high as I had always believed. The CrossFit WODS kicked my butt initially and I felt humbled seeing the kind of performances other crossfitters were producing! This proved to be the fuel I needed to ignite my motivational fire inside to get back on the road to recovery and ultimately peak condition. So I decided to hit these type of workouts for a while and lay off the K-bells until I was 100% and my fitness level had increased. 

This worked well for me. My hamstring recovered and I feel that my level of fitness right now exceeds where it has ever been, so life was good! I had planned to next not to compete in K-bell competition until the New Year, but then I got an e-mail from my good friend and mentor Ken Blackburn regarding the AKC meet in Atlanta. Which happens to be on my doorstep as I live just outside Charlotte, NC so I immediately wanted to go. I got this info 4 weeks out from the meet, so I immediately went into a panic as I knew that was little prep time and I hadn't picked up the 24's since my last competition in Michigan in July! 

Initially I thought I'm not going to be able to compete, it's not enough time. I'm not the type of person to just enter competitions, If I go, I go to win or at least perform to the best of my ability. The last thing I want to do is show up at Atlanta and post lower numbers than I hit in Michigan! What to do? I pondered a while... Then it became clear, I'm a Kettlebell lifter and I love a challenge! The decision was made. Time to go to work! 

This was a week ago. I managed to hit a short 4 minute jerk set and a 2 minutes snatch set last week before I was hit by food poisoning! Yeah food poisoning, I mean are you F$@*!#ng kidding me! This cost me another week of training! So here I am 3 weeks out, feels like I'm starting from scratch, but I made my decision to compete and there's no backing out now! So today's the day, Day #1. Stay tuned, this should be interesting.......