Saturday, May 19, 2012

20kg one hand swings

Good-ness!  I had to return a 12kg kettlebell to the gym this morning and it felt like a rock when I picked it up out of my trunk!  I should have known one hand 20kg swings were going to be horrible!  And I mean "horrible" in a good way!  Very challenging workout this morning after dbl 12kg jerks.

I've got some new thoughts about where to take my training in the next couple of months.  The first thing I want to focus on is my continued squat and push-up/pull up training.  In fact I've recruited a couple of my training partners into the mix for accountability, on my part (lucky them, lucky me!).  I also want to snatch the 20kg again.  Too much training and specifically way, way, too much ballistic training keeps this from reality.....first?  One hand swing training with the 20kg and the 24kg.  It'll come...if I want it to!


Hanelle said...

Impressive and inspiring stuff, as always! I've been reading your posts from 2008 about doing high(er) rep/endurance training with 12kg or lighter to get smaller. Did this work out for you back then, and do you still recommend this? I love my heavy weights (although I haven't tried a 20kg yet, so I bow humbly in your presence, oh KB goddess ...), but have always packed on muscle quite easily and find that my thighs and rear - although shapely and muscular - are rather bigger than I'd like them to be. I'd really like to get into my old pants and narrow skirts again (without looking like I'm giving JLo a run for her money)! Any thoughts, tips or ideas, please? Thanks for all your awesome blog posts - I'm really enjoying the workouts!

Tracy Reifkind said...


You are talking to the wrong girl here! I'd like to give Jlo a run!
I'm going to post a portion of my Modesto workshop where Mark is explaining the differences between force and intensity regarding light/fast, and heavy/slower resistance.

All training has a different effect. I train the ballistics up to 8 hours a week (Tues/Thurs/Sat), and that equals out to some kind of crazy rep count of, I don't know, 5000-6000+ swing and snatch reps? I've cut back dramatically because I want to actually achieve something besides rep count! (not that that was ever a goal)

Personally I don't put on muscle very easily and most people don't (women). If that were the case the world of bodybuilding would be much larger! (no pun intended). And if I wanted to pack more muscle I would cut back my ballistic training, which I am.

I look at my training in "cycles". because all approaches have different effects I try some of this for a "cycle", I try some of that for a "cycle". At the end of the day you still have to get back in the gym. And as Mark quotes Louie Simmons...."Everything works, but nothing works forever!"....(Louie Simmons is the inventor of Westside Barbell Method of powerlifting and one of the best strength minds in history).

Did I answer your question?

Hanelle said...

Hi Tracy

Believe you me, a big bum isn't all it's cracked up to be (pun probably intended ...). I noticed this a few years ago, before I even started training with KBs - increased weights and "bum specific" workouts led to a quick increase in size, followed by a similar decrease or "deflation" as soon as I stopped. I love squats, lunges, deadlifts and all their variations, but have noticed that if my workouts include these too often (and with increasingly heavier weights as I grow stronger), my ... er ... dimensions certainly change. And as I said - a shapely, toned rear is one thing; not being able to fit into your regular clothes is quite another. So, it would seem as if I need to sacrifice a bit of muscle to cut down on size (right?). Apparently I have a slightly higher level of testosterone than most other women (although that comes with its fair share of negative side effects as well, so don't envy me that, sigh ...). I love my increasing strength, but NOT the bulk - so what do I do? I like the idea of training in cycles - would I i.e. alternate between cycles of strength workouts (possibly with a greater focus on upper body strength) and longer workouts/higher rep with lower weights to cut down some size? I do KB training between 3 and four times a week, with some yoga in between. How long would a cycle typically be - around 8 to 12 weeks? Less? Sorry to bug you with all these questions - at the moment I'm so confused with all the information I read about fitness and training all over the show, and I suppose what I'd really like is for somebody to put the dots very close together (with lots of verbs in between) and say "OK, if you're going to do KB training, here's what you need to do."
I'll look out for the post from the Modesto workshop in the meantime - sorry to be such a "nag", but thanks so much for your input and support!!

Hanelle said...

Forgot to ask: so KB swings, push presses, cleans and snatches are examples of ballistic training, right? If you say that cutting back on ballistics increases muscle, then I suppose that if I want to "deflate" a few bulky(-ish) muscles I'd have to increase ballistic training? I'd be interested to read Mark's explanation from the Modesto workshop. I remember one of the comments you made on the speed sets you did with the 12kg (40, 48, 42 - or something along those lines) was that it made you too hungry, and that workouts with longer, slower sets were the answer. So I'm aiming for 40 swings a minute with 10kg or 12kg, doing the 7/8 min work - 2 min rest x 5 sets workouts you posted back in 2008. Questions, questions ... And I was at the back of the queue when patience was handed out - I usually want results yesterday! :D Sorry that I'm being such a pest about this. :)