Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Max based 36:36 intervals

Thank goodness I took a picture of Saturdays Max based 36 sec interval workout! I always think I'm going to remember, but if I don't post it right away then some of it gets lost...like the last part of this workout.....

But here's the first part....

36:36 w 12kg

18/18 x 10 (5 sets R, L)

18 L, 25 tr, 18 R, 36 sec rest x 10

9 L, 9 R, 25 tr, 9 L, 9 R, 36 sec rest x 5

snatch ladder staying with 36 sec intervals, no rest periods,

9/9, 8/8, 7/7, 6/6, 5/5, 6/6, 7/7, 8/8, 9/9

760 snatches (375 swings)

Here's a video I took this morning after my second "100" workout at Equinox to demonstrate the snatch sets using transfer swings during one of the 36 sec rest periods. I used the 8kg for demonstration purposes as I was kinda tired....and I ended up taping it twice...both videos did not come out that great, but this one was better...if you can believe it, lol

Now if you look at the picture of the white board above we did not follow my original plan...it's a bit hard to read, but the original plan was to snatch w/12kg and ladder up the weight of the bell for the transfers in between (that's what is meant by the " tr 14" and "tr 16")

Tracyrif's "100" workout

As usual I never know what I'm going to do in class until I start doing it, but during my drive to Palo Alto this morning I had the idea of training long swing sets of at least 100 reps.....little did I know that I'd build up to a 100 rep snatch set too!


100 swings 2.5 min.
30 sec rest
10/10 x 1 1.0 min (20 snatches)
30 sec rest
100 swings 2.5 min
30 sec rest
10/10 x 2 2 min. (40 snatches)
30 sec rest
100 swings 2.5 min.
30 sec rest
10/10 x 3 3 min. (60 snatches)
30 sec rest
100 swings 2.5 min
30 sec rest
10/10 x 4 4 min. (80 snatches)
30 sec rest
100 swings 2.5 min.
30 sec rest
10/10 x 5 5 min. (100 snatches)

This was so much fun that I drove over to Equinox for my second class and did it again....but in reverse (laddered down starting with 10/10 x 5 100 snatch rep set)

10/10 x 5 5 min. (100 snatches)
30 sec rest
100 swings 2.5 min.
30 sec rest
10/10 x 4 4 min (80 snatches)
30 sec rest
100 swings 2.5 min.
30 sec rest
10/10 x 3 3 min (60 snatches)
30 sec rest
100 swings 2.5 min.
30 sec rest
10/10 x 2 2 min. (40 snatches)
30 sec rest
100 swings 2.5 min.
30 sec rest
10/10 x 1 1 min (20 snatches)
30 sec rest
100 swings 2.5 min.
30 sec rest

These workouts are an even 30 minutes! Cool!

All snatch sets were done at a moderate pace of 10 snatches per 30 seconds. To be honest, it was my intention to alternate the 100 swing reps sets with an equal number of 100 rep snatch sets....but I decided it would be more fun and entertaining to work our way up to the 5 minute, 100 rep snatch set one minute at a time. But I was hell bent on keeping the rest periods to only the 30 seconds established after the first set.

If you are interested in the swing combinations I used for the 100 swing sets here they are using my own Swing Workload Progressive combinations. If you are not familiar with how I program swing combinations from reading some of my past workouts posted over the last 3+ years, then you'll be happy to know that I go into more detail on my DVD that will be released in the next couple of weeks!

Since each swing set consisted of 100 reps, I broke them down into five 20 rep swing combinations....done in a progressive way, of course (the workload of one handed swings ladders up in difficulty)

20 2 hand sw
20 tr
10 sw/tr (2 reps per sw/tr= 20 reps)
20 tr
20 2 hd sw
20 tr
10 sw/tr
5/5 x 2
1- sw/tr
20 tr
10 sw/tr
5/5 x 2
5/5 x 2
10 sw/tr
5/5 x2
20 2 hd sw
5/5 x2
20 2 hd sw
20 tr
20 2 hd sw

The beauty of the second workout is that as the snatch sets got easier (and shorter), the swings got harder by the addition of more and more one hand swings. So there was a "laddering down", and a "laddering up". The first workout, which was the trail run (lol) laddered up both swing difficulty and snatch endurance.

As Pavel would say...."Enjoy!"

PS these workouts did not include our 30 minute warmup, nor an additional 15 minutes of heavy 2 hand swings I did at after the end of my workout w/16kg, 20kg & 24kg

Saturday, July 24, 2010

No Matter What I Weigh....the #1 reason why I didn't pass my Pull-up

#1 reason I didn't pass my pull-up? I didn't think I could. For weeks I knew I would not pass my pull-up....weeks.... But why not? There are lots of reasons, both mental and physical, and I'll list them all, but let's focus on the #1 reason. Belief, and the conditions I set on myself to have that belief.

I didn't believe I would succed at the Tactical Pull-up strength requirement (overhand grip) at my current bodyweight of 140-144lbs. I did believe I could succeed if I dropped 5-8 lbs....but I wasn't able to get my head into dieting down, and therefore this "bodyweight contingency" I put on myself hung over my head everyday that I didn't wake up lighter. Everyday that I didn't get lighter (lose weight) I pounded another nail in my coffin.

Here's a little history.....

About 3 years ago, when my bodyweight was a little lighter, on a whim I grabbed onto a pull-up bar and miraculously almost did a pull-up with no training whatsoever. Well, no specific pull-up training, but plenty of overhead pushpresses, not to mention all of the other high volume KB training I had been doing for over 2 years..... Now you have to remember that I had been a severly overweight woman, in her 40's just 2-3 years prior, with no "real" athletic accomplishments to speak of, previous.

Skinny fixes everything....or does it?

So, I'm not "skinny" anymore, or at least my definition of "skinny", and the whole reason why I thought I could almost do a pull-up was because I was skinny...right? Umm, no!

This is how I messed up my mental "game".

Fast forward to the first ever National HKC, Sept. 2009, in St Paul MN..... Strength requirement for women, 15 second bodyweight "hang" (overhand or underhand, your choice...underhand is easier, FYI). I knew weeks, if not months, beforehand that I could not meet that requirement. That's right, Queen of Swing could not support a bodyweight hang for a mere 15 seconds.

Although I assisted Team Brett Jones at that Cert, I was the only person to not sit in on the photo of all of the participants that day. Why not? Because I felt I had no business including myself with all of the other woman that tested their hang that day, pass or fail. I, myself, did not meet the requirement. So when I got home I was hell bent on training to pass, within the next 3 months....which I did within 6 weeks to proudly assist at Girya's first HKC 12/6. And then what? The requirement changed to a 25 second bodyweight hang! So, I trained for that, and I succeeded. Now what?

RKC, School of Strength. Strength is a skill. If you don't "train" a specific skill, you will not be able to perform it. Unless you are naturally, genetically, and physically talented for that specific strength. I am "pear shaped", "bottom heavy", whatever....upper body strength is not my natural talent. Endurance training is. I'll swing forever. I'll do back to back Bikram's Yoga 2-3-4-5 times, whatever. But the whole reason why I decided to take the Level 2 RKC was to push myself into what is uncomfortable, and to test-run this philosophy of "School of Strength". If I can train to do a pull-up, at this bodyweight, or whatever freakin' bodyweight I am at, then I have truly understood the science and discipline behind training for strength.

The skill of doing a pull-up, is not about being lighter, it's about being stronger....strong enough....and training the movement. Don't get me wrong, I mean being lighter helps, but it's about being strong....."Strong fixes everything", not skinny!

Good Lord...hang in here with me because for some of you this is really important to hear.....not to mention giving credit where credit is due.....Diana Behrend

Sept, 2009, first ever National HKC, I had three of my regular students that train with me attend this Certification. Two of the three I knew would not pass the hang requirement, but they didn't go to get Certified they went to "survive"! And survive they did! They rocked it, hang or no hang! I also had another long distance student attend (I regularly do phone consults with potential HKC's and RKC's for program design), Diana B.

Diana is a former "fat girl"....I hope she realizes this a compliment (former fat girls rock!). Diana showed up for this first ever HKC weighing in at around 188lbs (I asked her permission before publicly posting this information), and guess what? She passed her "hang test"! Diana passed her freakin', frackin', hang with a bodyweight of more than 40lbs over mine! How did she do it?

She trained for it, that's how!

So, here I was, completely down on myself for not losing a measley 5 lbs, or so, and blaming that for the reason of my defeat......the pull-up did not defeat me, I defeated me.

Once my first attempt at the pull-up was over, then it was over....I did not suceed. OK, whew, now there were no expectations. If I failed again (which I did 2 more times before the weekend was over!), who the hell cared? No one expected me to succeed anyway, most importantly me.

I could have declined to test again that weekend and left without putting myself in the position of failing....again. But I decided that I had nothing to lose, and how great would it have been if I actually had pulled it off, lol!

Home again, home again, jiggity jig.....I got home and decided that no matter how much I weighed I was going to train for strength and get that damn pull up!

Remembering the discipline and determination of Diana, who at the bodyweight of over 180lbs, did what I could not do, at my own bodyweight of 140-ish lbs, I knew that I had to change my training strategy. My new training strategy? To get strong enough to pull my ass up over that damn bar no matter what I weighed....period. My new strategy was to get stronger, not lighter. what a concept, eh? Besides, there were plenty of women that weekend that weighed as much, if not more, than I did, and passed the pull-up test. Age? Weight? Bodytype? It's only one pull-up.

more to come......

Photos and video above.
Top video is my last attempt at my pull-up as my Team Leader, Keneth Jay was coaching me. Did I think I could do it? I didn't care at this point! Whatever....I had nothing to lose, and I thought, maybe through the miracle of Christ it could happen....the worst part was over afterall! LOL! OK people, you have to realize the courage it took for me to even post this attempt publicly! I'm all about being real though (NOT! I want to look badass....oh well!) Anyway, I will get that freakin' pullup in Hungary within the next two weeks time. As this will be last chance I have to succed in front of Kenneth Jay, and the freakin' world....am I making too big a deal of this? Hey,

Kenneth expected me to fail my pistol too....I'll show him. Watch the video below....he had me do it twice because he didn't believe I did it the first time! That's why he was standing on the wrong side of me to make a judgement. (This old gal has a little more to prove....)

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Thursday Presses....the gist of it

5:45am-6:30am, first thing is a 1-on 1 PT appt. then up to PA Equinox for a 7:00am Beginning class.

Thursday workout is always doubles. Lots and lots of doubles. Presses, cleans (tons of dbl clns...I love them), double swings and squats w/dbls. But today it turned out to be mostly presses. Here's the gist of my press workout this morning, and then I went on to 25 minutes of 1 min. work/30 sec rest swing combinations with the 12 & 16kg. Next class swings and snatches w/12 for an additional 30 + minutes.

6 dbl cl press w/12's x 5 (30:30) strict

3 cl pr R, 2 cl ppr L w/16 x 5 (30:30) strict on R, ppr on L

3 cl ppr R w/16 rest and alternate with 3 cl ppr L w/16 x 3 (15:15)

6 dbl cl press w/12's x 5 (30:30)

3 cl jk R, 3 cl jk L w/16 x 3 (30:30)

6 dbl jk w/12's x 5 (30:30)

26 minutes of strict press, push press and jerks.

My intention was, as always, to strict press as many reps until I have to start push pressing, or using the jerk but, I have been training and teaching alot and when I got to the gym this morning my back was as tight as it's ever been. So tight I thought I should probably take it easy, if not completely off from training! I don't know if it's too much Bikrams (blogpost to come), or it's from teaching kettlebells practically everyday....

Strict pressing dbl 12's is no problem, but when I switched to the 16 I only got out one strict press! Only one....yikes, but I felt it. If I had been not been training intervals, but focused on the lift my training would have went differently, but Level 2 weekend caught up with me....but so what! I still showed up, made the adjustments and came away with a nice workout!

Pull-up training took up the next 40 minutes of gym time. I've stopped Spinning for a few weeks. I decided to not go to Bikrams (9:30-11:00am), instead, shower, and walk for 30 minutes before my last client of the day.

I usually do my last workout with Mark from 12-1:00pm @ Girya, more Level 2 stuff (pistol, windmills, bentpresses), but he did his workout earlier when he found out he had a couple of cancellations, so I didn't get the rest of my training in....good thing I've already passed those other Level 2 skills!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Snatch Vo2 based workout

" Snatch, Vo2."

Mark renamed "max vo2", " snatch vo2" which I think is funny. Because, really, it's about snatching and using the snatch to increase your oxygen uptake. So here's today snatch based workout:

We've been training 36:36 for a couple of weeks but since I'll be out of town, and out of the country this summer, I'm just playing around right now. September, we're going to hit it strict.
Lucky for us we now have the 14 kg which is challenging but, c'mon, we're superwomen.
But you never go balls to the wall the first workout. So, knowing that I've got plenty of time to make a pr, I thought we'd ease into 36:36 with the 14 kg.

Set your gymboss for 36 second intervals:
These first 10 sets are done with one hand switch in the middle of each 36 sec interval
8/8 x2
9/9 x2
8/8 x2
9/9 x2
8/8 x2

Alternating a fairly easy number of reps (16 + 1 tr), with a more difficult addition of 2 more snatches. Speed is the real demon to our hands, not the weight of the bell, so I thought we would ease into, and then back off, of the faster pace.
Next 10 sets,
16 L rest 16 R rest
17 L rest 17 R rest
18 L rest 18 R rest
17 L rest 17 R rest
16L rest 16 R rest

Laddering up, then laddering down., again easing into, and then backing off. No halfway handswitch.

Well, that was all good and nice but lets get to some high volume snatches; no rest. who needs rest? BUT, let's not get too crazy...back down to the 12kg....our comfort zone.....

8/8 x 10 consecutive 36 sec interval sets= 6 minutes non stop.
When we put down our bells, I have to say I was kinda happy! Could I have gone a full 10 minutes at that pace? Sure, but then what would I do next week?
Whoops! Do we still have 20 minutes left before the class ends...what to do.....what to do?
I ended the class with six, 1 minute on / 30 seconds off, snatch pacing sets, (9 minutes),
5/5, 6/6
6/6, 7/7
7/7, 6/6
6/6, 5/5
5/5, 4/4
4/4, 3/3
and the grand finale....one continuous snatch pacing set.....
1 minute intervals, with a handswitch every 15 seconds,
7/7, 6/6, 5/5, 4/4, 3/3, 2/2, 1/1
So ,the last two snatch reps were 1 snatch with a 15 sec hold....but still we had the bell in our hands for 3 1/2 minutes.....seemed longer......
End of class....well, this class. Next? 45 minutes of Intermediate Swing Class, dash over to Equinox for a luxury Spa Shower (lol), and then back to Lululemon PA for # 2 Demo.
Life is freakin' good.

I stand corrected, here's Meg's comment....
Meg Lloyd, RKC said...
Don't tell me that you forgot our last 3.5 minutes of going back up the ladder: 7/7, 6/6, 5/5, 4/4, 3/3, 2/2, 1/1THEN 2/2, 3/3, 4/4, 5/5, 6/6, 7/7
This was a good one. It fixed my sore back right up...

Friday, July 16, 2010

The Zen of it

It kills me that I haven't made the time, or I haven't had the energy to write very many new blogposts about food. Food and cooking is my hobby, I love everything about cooking and preparing fresh homemade foods, but, blogposts about food and recipes take a ton of time. More time than any other subject. I mean, writing down my workouts? Easy. Writing down crazy ass thoughts about how my mind works for and against training, eating and my body....fairly easy. But when I write about food, my motivation is not to brag about how "healthy" I eat, it's to inspire and teach anyone reading my words, looking at my pictures, or reading my recipes, to do it for themslves and for their families...if they don't already do it.

I already have a wealth of information on both of my blogs about how I eat and what I cook, not to mention plenty of my own personal recipes. My philosophy about food and eating....along many, many pictures of how I prep foods, what I eat, and how I've deveolped what most home cooks do on a regular basis....cook with no recipe. Relying instead on cooking methods and techniques to create original, sometimes not repeatable (lol) recipes on a daily basis, based on what's fresh at the markets, or what they already have on hand in their pantries and refrigerators. (the first thing I did when I got to Fawn's house last weeknd was look in her fridge, lol! Goodness, lots of yum, yum, yummy stuff! And all home prepared and fresh!)

The biggest reason why I haven't blogged about food/recipes lately if that my life has changed tremendously this past year. I used to cook first thing in the morning, between 5-7am, but now I teach and train so much I'm out the door by 5:30am most days. That leaves me time to cook later in the day around 4pm. That's fine, but that's also the time I feel most creative to blog. I can't do both!

So....the reason why I don't blog more about cooking, or what I cook, is because I'm busy cooking! That's the Zen of it!

This morning, instead of rushing out the door to try and make the first 5:30am yoga class, I stayed home to put a quick pot of green chili together in the PC, along with a batch of quinoa for lamb salad tomorrow night. I'll grill a butterflied leg of lamb after I get home on SAturday afternoon, along with a few veggies for dinner, add some greens along with a olive oil and lemon dressing. That's it.

Here are the links that explain in more detail the recipes

http://tracysfoodandthought.blogspot.com/2008/12/vegetarian-white-bean-chili.html Here's the recipe for my green chili. The only addition I made was to add chicken thighs to the pot.

http://tracysfoodandthought.blogspot.com/2009/04/tis-season.html This recipe is the one I used to prepare my butterflied leg of lamb for my dinner salad tomorrow. I prefer to use farro, but I made some quinoa this morning because that's what I had in my pantry. I have some roasted peppers in my freezer, and I'll pick up some other fresh veggies at the Farmers Market in the morning after training....maybe some string beans, and summer squash. I already have baby greens in the fridge. Hey, are Heirloom tomatoes at the Markets yet?

I remember when I used to go to as many cooking classes as I could fit into my schedule (I've already copped to being obsessive compulsive...at times)...the classes were free afterall because I worked, part time, at Home Chef, a cooking store that also offered classes. I realized one day that instead of attending classes I should have my ass at home actually putting into action all that I had learned.....I don't think I've taken another class since then.

In the words of my brilliant husband Mark:

"Zen" is the direct experience of anything. So thinking about cooking, reseaching cooking, theorizing about cooking is not cooking. Cooking is cooking. And you realize the direct experience of doing anything is when you really experience it's essence. You can know all the recipes in the world but your food still has to taste good! Thats Zen. You have to be able to cook. You can't eat the menu!"

Picture above is of me and my BFF Fawn Friday, at our Level 2 Cert this past weekend. Fawn is a former professional Chef and the strongest woman I know. Fawn is one of THE best Russian Kettlebell Instuctors ever, and if you live in her area you'd be crazy not to train with her. http://www.fawnfriday.com

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Level ll...the last day was really the first day....

Last summer (Aug?) was the first time I "party crashed" a Level 2 RKC, and at the time, I had no intention of ever trying to qualify for this more advanced Certification. Why not? Well, I felt that Level 2 focused on some skills of strength that were not relevant to my professional job as a Kettlebell Instructor (a seriously part time job!), nor anywhere near my "comfort zone", and therefore that's how I justified not wanting, or "needing" a RKC ll. Last summer I saw some seriously strong woman attending and earning this Certification with no problems whatsoever, or so it seemed. I was, afterall, just a "Former Fat Girl" who lucked into finding a method of training the KB swing....

I have the lucky position of being married to a Master Instructor, and therefore I can, kind of, come and go during the Certifications that Mark is teaching at (inbetween Bikram yoga classes, of course....priorities...). I try and stay in the background, not taking advantage of this luxury. Although I sit, foam roll, and/or stretch, during some teaching lectures, I never participate, nor ask questions, or practice drills alongside those that pay for the experience. This time is theirs, and being able to be a "fly on the wall" is perfectly fine with me....more than fine. How lucky am I?

This past Feburary I was a "fly on the wall" at the Level 2 Cert in SJ, a week after my own RKC re-certification, and I had no intention of ever attending a Level 2.....until I realized that many of the strength principles taught at this level were applicable to many other aspects of my athletic life, mainly my yoga practice. It then became very clear... I needed to train for these skills, and to learn these principles to become a better teacher, coach, and athlete.

And so the decision was made.

Little did I know how transformative this whole experience would be......more to come.....

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

TracyRif Teaches the Kettlebell Swing @ Lululemon Palo Alto

I've been working on this project for a few months now....

Problems? How to teach Kettlebells for a group....for free (!)....at a Lululemon Retail Store.

How many bells?

How many people?

Do you know what kind of time and effort goes into teaching beginners? The most amount of time you'll spend as a trainer goes into teaching beginners. Here's what I came up with, and my proposal to Lululemon, Palo Alto....

Lulu....give me 4 employees willing to commit to 2 workouts a week, Tuesdays and Saturdays, for only 30 minutes, (a total of 4 beginning lessons), and I will bring the bells, I will teach them how to swing, and within 2 weeks time they will see, and feel, a visible difference in their physical apperance, in their cardio conditioning, and overall level of fitness.....be ready to commit though, no missing, no excuses..... There is no other more qualified Kettlebell Swing Instructor that you will find in this area, period. Kettlebells are THE hottest "new" training tool, and I know how to teach it!

Woo Hoo! Today was the first day I got my hands on 4 Lululemon employees! Good Lord are they going to be feeling the hurt tomorrow! But they have no choice but to meet with me again this Saturday for the 2nd installment....1 hand swings! I only ask for the commitment of consistency.

Here is a short video Mark took of my Lululemon Debut! I'm working with Christine and Sara, my second pair of Lulu's "victims", lol, in the Palo Alto location. If you are local, then come by and see us train again Saturday from 11:30am-12:30pm.

(the audio is kind of trippy! Mark was trying to tape it and another Lulu employee was trying to have a conversation with him....but you'll get the idea)

Tuesday Workout (s)

6-7am All Level Swing Group Training @ Girya

warm up w/12kg
10 2 hand sw x 3
10 tr x3
60 swings ( 3 min.)

1st block of work sets 45 work/15 sec rest (30 reps per set) w/12kg

10 2 hd sw, 10 tr, 5/5 (1 hand sw) x 2
10 2 hd sw, 8 tr, 6/6 x 2
10 2 hd sw, 6 tr, 7/7 x 2
10 2 hd sw, 4 tr, 8/8 x 2
10 2 hd sw, 2 tr, 9/9 x 2
10 2 hd sw, 10/10 x 2
30 2 hd sw x 2

420 swings (14 min.)

In preparation for the 1000 continous swings w/16kg challenge, I'm making my class train alongside, as I hope we'll all be able to do it together!

2nd block of work sets w/12kg & 14kg

5 minutes of roundabouts w/12kg = 200 swings
1 min. rest
5 minutes of roundabouts w/14kg = 200 swings
1 min. rest
3 minutes 5/5 (1 hd sw) w/12kg = 120 swings
1 min. rest
3 minutes 5/5 (1 hd sw) w/14kg = 120 swings
1 min. rest
20 minutes work = 640 swings

total so far.....38 minutes = 1120 swings

now for a few snatches...oh, and a few more swings

1 sw, 1 sn, 1 tr x 12 = 1 min. / 30 sec rest (this a moderate pace)
1 sw, 1 sn, 1 tr x 14 = 1 min. / 30 sec rest (same combination, but a bit faster)
1 sw, 1 sn, 1 tr x 16 = 1 min. / 30 sec rest (same combination, but as fast as you can go)

These three sets were done in an uphill pacing ladder with rest inbetween sets. The last set was a 3 minute set, combining all three, done in opposite order (downhill pacing ladder).

1 sw, 1 sn, 1 tr x 16 = 1 min. (same combination, but as fast as you can go)
1 sw, 1 sn, 1 tr x 14 = 1 min. (same combination, but a bit slower)
1 sw, 1 sn, 1 tr x 12 = 1 min. (slowing down again to this moderate pace)

46 minute workout

7:15-8:15am Equinox Max based Workout

Quick warm up of swings and a few snatches. At this point who's counting warm up swings? On to 36:36......

16 sn R, rest, 16 sn L, rest
17 sn R, rest, 17 sn L, rest
18 sn R, rest, 18 sn L, rest
19 sn R, rest, 19 sn L, rest
20 sn, R, rest, 20 sn L, rest

10 sets down.....

20 sn R, rest, 20 sn L, rest x 10

20 sets down.....let's switch it up to 36:36:36

20 sn R, 20 sn L, rest
19 sn R, 19 sn L, rest
18 sn R, 18 sn L, rest
17 sn R, 17 sn L, rest
16 sn R, 16 sn L, done.... (I forgot to mention that this was freakin hard! The last three sets my grip was about to give up on the last 2-3 reps on each side...seriously! I'm surprised there wasn't a flying bell in the air a couple of times!)

560 snatches

After about 1 or 2 minutes, now swings. Let's stay with the time on the Gymboss, 36 sec. intervals.

25 2 hand swings w/14kg
25 2 hand swings w/16kg
25 2 hand swings w/20 kg
25 2 hand swings w/16kg
25 2 hand swings w/14kg
25 2 hand swings w/16kg
25 2 hand swings w/20kg
25 2 hand swings w/16kg
25 2 hand swings w/14kg
25 2 hand swings w/16kg
25 2 hand swings w/20kg

250 swings.

On to Level 2 skills practice

pull up
hanging leg raise

misc stuff....

30 minutes Spinning

Shower, and off to Lululemon Palo Alto to demo and teach the Swing!

PS If anyone actually reads this and cares, I'd be amazed!

Back in the Gym

One of Mark's phrases about training...... "Win, lose or draw, it's always back to the gym the next day." It's Tuesday morning and I've got a couple of Swing classes to lead, and then? Pull-ups!

I have so much more information about training this lift, now that the Level 2 weekend is over, but more importantly I have a different kind of motivation, which I'll write about when I have more time. (lots of thoughts to write about!)

Monday, July 12, 2010

skinny and pretty...is that all that matters?

As a woman, is that all that matters? skinny and pretty?

no matter how old we are.
no matter what kind of person, mother, or wife we are.
no matter how much we "lift", or how heavy, or long, we swing a kettlebell.
no matter how many miles walk ,or run......

make-up, no make-up.

designer purses.......high heels.

is the "goal" to be the "hottest"?

what the "F" is "hot"? is the measure of "hot" gauged on who, or how many men want to have sex with us? I'm guessing...if we want to "give it up" there will be some man willing to take us up on it....so what! good lord.

who do you, we, want to impress?

is the goal to be the "hottest" 20-30-40-50-60-70-80-90-100 year old? How ridiculous does this start to become?

these days young girls want to become strippers! really? yep, really..... not just young girls, but old girls too! just go into the shoe dept of any major department store.....stripper shoes! is ther no other choice but stripper shoes?

all I need is my husbands love. all I need is to know that I am with someone who loved me when I weighed 250lbs, and wanted me as much then as he wants me now...how lucky am I?
PS if you are interested on purchasing the shoes pictured above, just fo to zappos.com!

Home again, home again, jiggity jig....

I'm home from my Level 2 RKC and to put everyone out of suspense, I nailed all of my Level 2 skills, except for the pull-up....almost got cha, huh? I'm way too tired to blog about it all now, but here are a few pictures from my awesome weekend and I'll be posting much much more about this amazing experience over the next week or two.

What made this experience even more memorable was that my BFF Fawn Friday (the strongest woman ever) earned her Level 2 this same weekend. Fawn threw the dbl 16kg's around like they were 8kg's...I mean what's 72lbs to a woman that deadlifts, squats and benches hundreds of pounds?

Fawn inspires me everytime I spend time with her, in many ways. I'm lucky to have her in my life, and although Mark and I stayed with Fawn and Aaron we didn't get near enough time together over the past 4 days.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

RKC Level 2 Pistol, no problem. Pullup...pending!

Here's what Mark has to say about my descision to train and participate in getting my RKC Level 2 Certification;

"What I think is the most impressive thing that you've done is that you've taken on a challenge based soley on your weak ponts, when you could have easily coasted on your 'swing volume training' which is your strong suite. But you chose to embrace that which your are not naturally strong at....and you followed through these past 3-4 months. That's what athletes do. Challenge your weak points to become a better athlete."

When you keep doing the stuff you know your good at, then what, or where's the challenge?

I leave in the morning for my Level 2 RKC in St Paul.....ready or not. Here's what I'm ready for. I'm ready to have a whole lotta fun, learn a whole lotta stuff, get stronger, learn to teach others how to get stronger, have my brilliant husband and personal coach by my side, and my best friend Fawn getting Certed alongside of me. What more could I ask for? Well....

Level 2 skills to be tested

1/4 bodyweight Strict Military Press...check
Bent Press....check
Double KB Jerk....check
Viking Push Press....check
Tactical Pullup (1 )....pending....

Oh I have alot of theories that may explain what may or may not happen in two days time....but today, right now, none of anything matters.

Did I train as hard I could have? I'm not going to make any kind of excuses. I did the best I could, and on Sunday at the end of the day I will know, without a doubt, that my Level 2 experience will be one I won't soon forget. I will pass all of my skills. I will earn a Level 2 RKC. I will have the time of my kettlebell life with my closest of friends.....shit, I still have to pack!

My horoscope today...."I am a crafty and compassionate Warrior who finds amusement in every challenge"....yep, that's me!"

Sunday, July 4, 2010

36:36:36! 994 Snatches

If you do any kind of Max Vo2 training at some point you finish 15:15, and then you have no choice but to switch it up to 36:36 (even though the original protocol starts with 36:36, most start with 15:15...why? see note*). Although my own personal Max training veers off from the original protocols because I've been training Max for so many years, I've been able to build my conditioning to exceed equal work to rest w/12kg. So, for at least the past year, I've been adding much more work to change the w/r ratio to better suite my abilities.

The obvious progression, once someone has completed 80 x 8 (15:15), and 16-20 x 35 (36:36) is to increase the weight of the bell and start all over. But, in my opinion, the increase from 12kg-16kg for women is a big jump......80 sets of 8 is no joke! Here's my Max PR w/16kg (15:15).

5/5 x 4
6/6 x 6
7/7 x 10
8/8 x 42
7/7 x 8
total 518 snatches w/16kg
35 minutes

Now that we have a 14kg available, sure we'll go back to some of the original protocol, we'll even go back to the challenge of the 16kg, but we have the rest of our lives to train, so let's mix it up a bit, lol! But don't think for one second I think I can come close to using the 16kg for any of these longer "Max-based" workouts!

36:36 equal work to equal rest

16/16 x1
17/17 x2
18/18 x 17
20 sets total

1 minute rest

36:36:36 2 work intervals to 1 rest interval

18 R, 18 L x 5

1 minute rest

8 R, 8 L, 8 R, 8 L x 5

1 minute rest

4 R, 4 L, 4 R, 4 L, 4 R, 4 L, 4 R, 4 L x 5

In other words, all snatches were done taking 72 seconds, and then we rested for 36 seconds before repeating the above snatch rep combinations 5 times each. (#1 36 snatches 1 tr, #2 32 snatches 3 tr, #3 32 snatches 7 tr)

Since I almost always design our training routines moments before, and sometimes during each workout I had no idea how much work we were doing, and afterwards I mentioned to Meg, "I wonder how many snatches we did?" knowing she would count them because she's doing the 50,000 rep snatch challenge. She emailed me later in the morning....994 snatches! What? Only 6 away from 1000!

I personally did no warm up snatches as I had been swinging in my previous class, but we did plenty more snatches in my next Intermediate Class (along with at least 800-1000 swings)..... Meg shared her 4th of July weekend snatch goal with me....1776 snatches by the end of the weekend! Hopefully she'll take today off and finish up tomorrow....who wants to bet she'll do more than 1776....maybe 2010!

Here is video of me training 36:36 back Sept 2007. I was snatching 20 reps per set....looks like Meg and I have some stepping up to do!

note* Mark was the first to take this type of training past the 6-8 week protocol Kenneth designed it for, and as we all know many, many, many have followed. Here, in his own words is the reason he started with the 15:15 version

When Kenneth Jay first gave his presentation on his Advanced Strength Strategies at the July 2007 Level 2 cert, the research he presented centered around the 36:36 protocol. This is where he unveiled the research about Max Vo2 training using the KB snatch as the tool. While it was interesting to me, because of my wonky shoulders and forearms that pumped up at the sight of high rep anything I wasn't all that interested in trying it.

When I found out there was a second protocol one could do;one which involved only 15 seconds of work I knew it was for me. I can either go long distance with low intensity or use high intensity for short work periods. Trying to go high intensity for long periods isn't for me. After all, I'm not Tracy.