Monday, April 1, 2013

TMI My second ever 10 minute snatch set 196 reps (one hand switch) "whoop, whoop"!

Good-ness!  This morning I completed a 10 minute long 12kg snatch set, one hand switch at 5 minutes, for only the second time ever, so I guess I had a PR (personal record).  On March 21, just a few weeks ago I completed my first ever 10 min, one hand switch 12kg snatch set!  This is kind of a big deal because I've been interested in the mystery of this sport, Kettlebell Sport, for a number of years but there were a few things holding me back from looking into training it more seriously.

The first is that I did not want to give up my own style of training based on "Hardstyle" kettlebell movements, or really what Mark calls "Tracystyle"!  What is the difference?  Well, Mark explains it pretty simply by defining "Hardstyle" as focusing on power and acceleration in the quick lifts and maximum tension in the "grinds".  "Girya Sport" (GS aka Kettlebell Sport) as focusing on maximum efficiency of movement.  A few other reasons but that is the main one.  I love my own training and once I realized I did not have to give one up for the other I was "in"!

Much more to come about this addition in my life, and I describe it as an addition not a replacement.  Back to my workout this morning.

Since I've had an interest in this method of training long sets of snatches and jerks with only one hand switch I started playing around with "pacing" years ago.  Pace work added to my own style of training beautifully!  And wow!  It has given me tons and tons of really great workouts.  In fact way back in the really early days of teaching my style of swing training I recognized the importance of pace and included a pacing drill in my very first DVD Programming the Kettlebell Swing, and of course many times what works for programming the swing works for the snatch as well!  Because of all of my years of training pace I have a pretty darn good timing but never really went beyond 2-3 minutes without switching hands.....because I could not go longer!  I had practiced it enough times to know I could not do it!

Knowing what I know about progression, my first goal was to do it with the 8kg!  I was successful a handful of times with the 8kg, but I was inconsistent.  And to be fair it wasn't my main gig, it was just challenge and play.  I'm pretty sure I did it once with the 10kg...that must have been a good day!  But because I knew how freakin' frackin' hard the 8kg was, I knew how hard the 12kg would be!  I had total respect for it!  Total!  This is why, at the last minute, when I, for some crazy ass reason, agreed to "try" the 10 minute 12kg jerk I was scared as hell!  I had total respect for this sport and never once did I ever think it was going to be easy.

Fast forward...kind of....

January 29 I had my very first GS coaching session with John Wild Buckley.
January 30 I got sick, no practice
February 1, I left for a workshop in Columbus Ohio, no GS training but hundreds and hundreds of swing reps (maybe over 2000), and still not feeling 100%
Feb 3rd, back home, Sunday, no training.
Feb 4th, I better get my ass in gear!  I'm going to be on a platform in less that 5 days
Feb 9th, my first ever 10 min jerk set!  Whew!  Did I really do that?   Tears of joy!

Feb 11th, Monday and completely sold on the whole competition experience!  Sign me up!

Feb 16th, first private session at Juno....what?  What did I get myself into?  Good God I still have to train and survive SFG in Houston in a couple of weeks!
Feb 25th-March 6th, my first week of training GS in addition to all of my other Tracystyle workouts and SFG practice (heavy shit!).
March 6th, the day before I left for SFG I completed my second only 10 minute 12kg jerk set (forgot how many reps but I have it written down)

March 7th, leave for Houston
March 8th, first day of SFG, having fun, feeling strong and happy, pull hamstring at the end of the day....argh!  What?
March 9th second day of SFG, not really happy.  Worried about hamstring and the rest of my life.
March 10th, third day SFG.  5 minute 20 kg snatch test, killed it, and all of my other strength requirements for certification!  Whew, now back to regular programmed schedule, right?


Hamstring pull.  No yoga.  I need my yoga.

Blah, blah, blah.

Not much of any, what I consider, "real" training until Tuesday of last week.

March 28th finally back at Juno.  And what am I treated to?  Oh yes, I'm treated to a whole other world of swings!  GS swings!  One hand swings, 10/10 w/32kg and 5/5 36kg  (80lbs).

March 30th, The Swing Quest! Awesome!  This is what I love about my life!  The training, the practice, the teaching. the coaching, the leading, the following!

Monday, April 1st, GS workout, 10 minute 8kg jerk (I mistakenly did 12 min set, 6/6), and 10 min, 12kg snatch.  Whoop, whoop!  Yikes!  Last week I was scheduled to do a 12 min set! Yeah right!  I managed 8 minutes (4/4), but today 10 min was on the schedule.  Boom!  As my coach would say (and did I might add).  196 total reps!  103/93, blowing away my first ever 10 minute set on 3/21/13 of 84/77 (R and L)!

Now until a possible GS meet in Seattle in less than 4 weeks...should I go?  I'd be competing in the biathlon, 12kg 10 minute jerk and snatch.  One thing I know now is that I'm not scared.  I'm not scared at all!  It's just 10 minutes, 5/5.  I have plenty of respect for the time, but I also have respect for myself.  I am the one that will show up.  Nothing is handed to me or anybody else in this sport, or any other competitive sport for that matter.  The heart does the work, the body follows, and so does the mind.  Do the work, nothing else matters. You can't buy a life, you have to live one.

PS one of the funniest things....if you post video of yourself training GS be ready for all kinds of amateur coaching!  Amateur coaching is when someone tells you what they think you are doing wrong, but doesn't tell you how to fix it!  If you don't offer corrections then you are simply criticizing!  And besides, did I ask you?  I've been doing this for only a few weeks, give me a break!  

"whoop, whoop" is when cardio, grip and technique all go out the window!  Why do I love this stuff?

For your copy of a really great DVD, "Programming the Kettlebell Swing" here is the link (and geez, I was so young!  God bless having videos of when you are younger!  lol)  Although it is not listed as a "work along" video, it was taped during a live workshop that includes over 1000 swing reps!


Mike Moran said...

That is great that you can do both! I would like to try GS sometime myself but I will wait till I pass my SFG first. Good luck on your future competitions. Looks fun!

chrystad72 said...

Congrats on the 10 minute long snatch set. That is such a feat!! By the way the Swing Quest sounds awesome and I hope one day I can make it. Your doing one in June, right?

Tracy Reifkind said...


I did have to back off a bit while doing a specific training cycle for SFG. Now that it's done, it's "on"! The weird part of it is learning different patterns of the basically some of the same movements! But the longer you have to survive the set the quicker the new techniques kick in! They have to!


Tracy Reifkind said...


Yep, June 29th! And I hope to have much more info up in this month of April. Info about how to get ready for it and how to scale it, less work, more work, to your ability and skill level.