Thursday, September 25, 2008

My Core Values In Bullet Points

The following is a short list that I was compelled to put on paper and will hopefully help me to be more accountable in adhering to my core values. Even though these are things that I believe in, I am sometimes led astray and don't always walk the walk. They are listed in no particular order with exception to the first bullet. This was a very good exercise as I not only attempted to define who I am, but who I want to be, which might be more important because life is a process. I feel the list may eventually evolve, but it's a good starting place for now.

  • God First, Family Second, Career Third.
  • Predicate your self image with action.
  • Carve yourself by what you do.
  • Don’t be concerned with the outside influence of materialism.
  • Looks are temporary, actions may last forever.
  • Help others when you CAN.
  • Eliminate negative thoughts and trash the words, “Can’t and Won’t.”
  • Don’t enslave yourself with excuses.
  • Don’t be an excuse.
  • See yourself without limitations.
  • Make confidence a forethought in everything you do.
  • Harbor confidence with quiet humbleness.
  • Be unpredictably strong.
  • Be content to learn for the rest of your days
  • Never settle.
  • Assume nothing.
  • Enjoy life.
  • Appreciate everything.
  • Take opportunities when you get them. They may never come back.
  • Embrace youth.
  • Respect the elderly.
  • If you believe in something, always stand your ground.
  • Be nice.
  • Agree to disagree.
  • Never quit.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Firing On All Cylinders

Have you ever had one of those days where everything clicked? Everything just felt right? All the planets and moons were in alignment? Your engine was firing on all cylinders? I had one of those days today. I had an excellent, restful night of sleep last night. I woke up refreshed and had a small, but healthy breakfast meal. I was very productive at work (day job) all day and snacked on healthy little meals all day until training. I taught a newbie (great job Emily!) before my late class and was feeling even better. I decided to lower the hammer on the 6:30 class tonight. They're mainly my advanced guys and we experimented with a different warm up and I introduced them to an RKC Grad Workout. I participated with them during the warm up after teaching the progressions and I couldn't believe how prepared I felt for the workout. The main course of the workout was tough and challenging, but not too stressful. A little stretch routine at the end completed an extremely fulfilling session. I ate well right after training and chilled out in front of the tube for an hour or so. Off to bed to see if I can't duplicate this tomorrow!!!

Here's my workout today including warm ups:
Z Health - Neural Warm Up Level 1
Planks - Various Positions - :30 Each - 4x

Demo for newbie - About an hour of core exercises...all very light.

Warm Up w/ Advanced Class - Various Partner Active Straight Leg Raise Exercises

Continued Warm Up Circuit - 3x
Single Leg Dead Lift - 40kg - 3/3
Turkish Get Up - 24kg - 1/1

Strength Circuit - 5x
Front Squat - 28kg - 3
Row - 28kg - 3/3

Finisher - RKC Grad Workout - 20 Sets
Walking See Saw Press - Double 24kg - :20
2-Hand Swings - 24kg - :20

BTW: The guys did awesome in this one! It was extremely demanding and I'm sure they're looking forward to the next one!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

TSC Results - 9-13-08

The TSC was a success this weekend. There were 4 competitors including myself. 2 of the guys drove all the way from Edmond, OK (5 hours) to compete. Here's how everyone did:

Andy Tschetler - 22
Body Weight - 187
Open Division
Best Dead Lift - 425
Pull Up - 23
Snatch Test - 136

David Spriggs - 22
Body Weight - 278
Open Division
Best Dead Lift - 445 (PR)
Pull Up - 1
Snatch Test - 94 (PR)

David Kliewer - 23
Body Weight - 189
Open Division
Best Dead Lift - 545 (PR)
Pull Up - 21
Snatch Test - 122

Jason Marshall - 30
Body Weight - 189
Open Division
Best Dead Lift - 550 (PR in Conventional Stance)
Pull Up - 20 (PR)
Snatch Test - 123 (PR)

Here's a video compilation of the event. I'll eventually have a video of each competitor's lifts posted individually. Youtube can be a bit slow on the upload.

My thoughts on the challenge:
I chose to pull all my dead lift attempts in the conventional stance. My natural stance is sumo and I definitely feel I have more leverage in sumo with my body type (My Sumo PR is 565). So conventional is out of my comfort zone, but I'm getting better at it. The attempt at 550 was the slowest pull I've ever done (10 seconds I think). I pulled a callus during that attempt which set my hands up for a day of brutality.

The pull ups were much better this time around. Last TSC I did the pull ups on my fat bar pull up bar on my power rack. My buddy, Kevin Hays, constructed a pull up apparatus that'll hold 5 people. We can now hang rings, heavy bags and ropes. Plus the pull up bar is of a normal diameter. I again pulled another callus on my pull ups. Next up was the snatch.

I knew this was going to be a killer. I hadn't practiced snatches at all for the TSC. Even after slathering my hand and the KB handle with chalk, the skin on my hands peeled back like the rind on an orange. At the end of the day the callus pull and blister tally was up to six. I was sort of happy with my results (PR in this test), but I was disappointed in my conditioning. I'll be working on this very soon...can you say Vo2 Max?

All in all, it was a good day. I really enjoyed hanging out with the guys that participated. They all did very well and everyone hit PR's which makes the event worth it. Mr. Kliewer is a helluva puller and I'm sure we'll be hearing more from him in the future. Mr. Tschetler has amazing muscular endurance and blew me away with his snatch and pull up numbers. Mr. Spriggs made huge strides from the last TSC (PR in all 3). He's only going to get better and stronger! I'll definitely be up for the next one in the spring and hope to see everyone back and some new faces.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Day Before TSC

I did some corrective and warm up work today as well as played around with the Jump Stretch Bands a little. Had a good day with the classes. The routine was as hard as it's ever been and couldn't have been more simple.

Warm Up
Z Health NWL1
2 mins of Various Planks
2 mins of Suit Case Farmer Carry

Circuit the following for 10X
Swings - 15x
TGU - 1/1
Burpees - 5x
Planks - 10 sec

I had the fighters used an old trick from an article Pavel wrote for Rock Climbers to strengthen grip....Soapy Swings. We soaped up the hands and KB handles and rotated 2-Hand, 1-Hand and H2H for the circuit. I also had them to the Burpees and Planks with a Jump Stretch Band wrapped around their neck and under their feet. A couple other guys did the Accelerated Eccentric Swings for the whole circuit.

This was a great workout for any level of class and was scalable and tailored to the diverse client base I train. You've got the Program Minimum with a couple Body Weight exercises and "Presto", you've got an efficient yet difficult workout for an entire group of people.

Tomorrow morning I'm hosting my second International Tactical Strength Challenge. I'm looking forward to it and I'm especially interested in the results and who will come out to compete. Good luck to all who are participating!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Vo2 Max and Staying Fresh

After last Thursday's base line test for the Vo2 Max snatch protocol, I tried it out as a workout accompanied by my corrective strategies. I hit 40 sets :15/:15 @ 8 reps per set w/ the 16kg. This was a nice cardio booster, but the high humidity that day and my hands fought with the kettlebell handle and I landed 3 nice-size blood blisters under my calluses (2 Right, 1 Left). Very little pain involved, but a nuisance none the less. Without much practice in the snatch the last month or so, I have neglected my hand care and suffered the consequences.

Friday, Sept. 5, 2008

Corrective Work

Wall Sit w/ OH Press
Arm Bar
Corrective Get Up
Farmers Suit Case Carry

Vo2 Max Snatch - :15/:15 - 16kg
40 sets - 20 minutes
8 reps/set
Switched hands each set.

Monday, Sept. 8, 2008

Corrective Work
Same as Friday

Following Circuit 4 Times - Done w/ 24kg
SLDL - 5/5
25 Swings
2 Point Renegade Row - 5/5
25 Swings
Push Up on KB Handles - 5
25 Swings

Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2008

Corrective Work
Z Health NWL1 - Twice during the day

Various Pull Ups and Snatches Between Classes

Wednesday, Sept. 10, 2008

Corrective Work
Z Health NWL1 - Twice during the day

Also various Pull Ups, Snatches and Few Bottoms Up Presses between classes

The classes did:

- TGU - 5 mins.
Then Circuit the following
- :30 work, :30 rest - 3X
- Box Jump or Step Ups
- Planks
- Jump Rope
- Med Ball Slams
- KB Dead Lift
- Halos or Accelerated Eccentric Swings

I'll take Thursday and Friday off before the TSC and see how it goes. I really haven't trained that specifically for the TSC this time around, so I'm interested to see how I'll do. I haven't decided whether I'll compete in the Open or Elite division. I think I'll play it by ear and decide the morning of. I honestly haven't tried to snatch a bell heavier than 24kg in months. Even then I've only snatched the 16kg for my Vo2 Max stuff.

I implemented and coached the Accelerated Eccentric Swing yesterday and everyone loved it. (Okay, maybe some have love/hate relationship with it) Thanks to Pavel for bringing it back to my attention! You can use a bell 1/4 to 1/2 the size you normally use and it'll smoke you even worse than the heavy bell. I'd for some reason forgotten about this little gem and haven't taught this version in a while. Now it'll become a staple for my more experienced KB'ers.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

A Great Link And Feelin' Good!

First off I'd like to share a link to a song that was forwarded to me via email today: Before You Go This was written and dedicated as a small token of appreciation for the aging veteran population that have fought and died in this country's greatest wars. Please go to the link and forward it to those you know. Think of what our lives would be like if these heroes had not selflessly given of themselves to preserve our way of life. Everyone of us is or has been touched and influenced by the military in some way, whether it be a grandparent or parent, wife or husband, sister or brother, aunt or uncle, cousin or friend. Thanks to all of you for what you have done and what you continue to do!!!


I've been feeling really good the last few days. Sleeping well. Eating well. Training well. By falling asleep on my back, I've drastically reduced the amount of pain I was experiencing in my shoulders. I've also taken the last few weeks to back off any heavy over head work other than isometrics or BUP (which have all been light). The new sleeping habits combined with a mindful work ethic has really paid good dividends.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Corrective Work

Elevated Conventional Dead Lift - Standing on 45# Plates
225 - 5x5

Grip Work
COC - Trainer, #1, #2
Ripped a 2" Phone Book
Bent a Yellow Nail - Double Overhand

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Corrective Work

The Following Circuit For 20 Minutes (Total Reps for the whole workout in parentheses):
Pull Up - 12kg on foot - x3 (24)
Push Up - x5 (40)
Dead Lift - 245lbs. - x3 (24)
KB Front Squat - Double 20kg - x5 (40)
Renegade Row - Double 20kg - x3/3 (24/24)
Tire Sledge Hammer Slams - 20lb Sledge - x5/5 (40/40)

Hit 8 Rounds Right At The 20 Minute Mark.

Vo2 Max Base Line Test - 16kg
Minute 1 - 8
Minute 2 - 12
Minute 3 - 15
Minute 4 - 20
Minute 5 - 30 (30/4 = 7.5)
Round up to 8 reps for future Vo2 Max Sets.

This felt really nice on the shoulders. The perfect load with the perfect range of motion for the perfect amount of time!

Then...goofed around with some hurdle jumps and broad jumps. I hit 9 feet exactly (108 inches or 274 cm) on the broad jump. I don't know if that's good, but it's fun to do!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Ripped A Workout And Some Crazy Stuff

I totally ripped off of Brett Jones today. I read his blog and his workout on Sept 1 set off that tuning fork inside and I decided to pass on the glory of simplicity training. A couple tweaks here and there, but a very nice workout. Thanks Brett!

Last two training days...

Friday, August 29, 2008

Worked Out with the BJJ guys both days.

Corrective Work:
Wall Sit w/ OH Press
Corrective Get Up
Suitcase Carry

SLDL 3x10/10

H2H Swings 10x20 - 24kg
Sledge Hammer Tire Slams 10x5/5 - 10lb Sledge

Guard Press in 3 Bridge Positions 3x10/10 - Double 24kg
Armadillo Sit Ups 3x5

Monday, September 2, 2008

Corrective Work

Brett Jones' RKC Prep Workout

All Done 2X
2 arm Swing x 20 - 48kg
Get-up x 5/5 - 24kg
One arm Swing x 10/10 - 32kg
MP x 6/6 (Changed this to Cleans 6/6) - 32kg
Alternating Swing x 20 - 32kg
Clean and Front Squat x 6/6 - Double 32kg
2 arm Swing x 20 - 48kg
Snatch x 10/10 (Changed this to Cleans 10/10) - 32kg
Alternating Swing x 20 - 32kg

The weights are what I used, not necessarily all classes, and it smoked my butt!

Then....some crazy stuff ensued after classes while I was teaching a little plyo circuit to my little brother (basketball player). I got on the hurdles he was jumping which are just some PVC pipes about 18 inches tall and started doing some L-sits into hand stands (probably 5). Then I went to my power rack and tried the Human Flag - maybe 2 seconds. I've got a client that can do this at will (former gymnast). And then I tried out the new rings for my first Muscle Ups. I got 3 and tried the Iron Cross - totally crapped out on this. I have a new and complete appreciation and admiration for gymnasts. Holy crap!