Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Recovery Day

Well, I feel frickin great from yesterday. I want to thank all of you for your feedback both given to me and Rif. We are lucky, it is special and I am grateful.

So, today Mia, Jaz and I went out for a afternoon hike in the hot summer sun and got a good sweat. We did the trail in back of the LG house which is a 3.5 mile hike (the route we choose) which enabled us to take Jaz to swim. Then we came back to the casa and did a nice 25 minute Yoga session and I have to say I feel great. I wanted to have gas in the tank for tomorrows snatch session and just let my back, hips, legs, shoulders rest from heavy loads. This is how I felt today and this is what I did, listened to my body but I still got some active movement in and did some good regeneration/recovery work. Now, tomorrow physically I will be ready, I am just keeping the fingers crossed that the hands hold up, if not tough luck I will push on through and figure a way to get my work in.

Enjoy your evening and happy hump day!

Monday, July 30, 2007

Deadlifts and Pull-ups

Wow! What a fantastic workout today. The energy at Stones was off the hook. Rif, Tracy, myself we were all in a great training place today. I walked into them doing there Max VO2 workouts and was inspired.

365/1x2 Belt
517/1x1 PR

YES! This was awesome. Rif felt I was looking strong and I admit I was feeling strong. I have to say the first time I looked at the 5 plates on each side I was thinking, "this is some serious weight", but I nailed it and Rif decided to through 2, 5kg plates on and Bang, got it!

I feel I am on a good pace for the TSC and all this training, the submax loads has truly made me feel strong and technically far better than ever. I am so happy to have Rif as a coach and have the support that I have had through this journey.


I did not have enough time to properly rest since I had a client therefore sets 2 and 3 were a little short of what I felt i could have done with proper rest, still I am again pleased.

Super stoked and to go on a journey and see and feel the progressions and to give positive feedback to your coach as well is great and sooooo worth every training day!

Friday, July 27, 2007

More Swinging

I am a firm believer if I can swing well, form, technique and for reps (which will condition my cardio) then I will snatch well. At this point, I decided to wait until next week for snatches and replaced them with some more swings.


Just wanted a good stretch and to increase my shoulder stability. This always helps me find my body especially in relation to mutliplanar movement

1 Arm swing
24/20/20 feel good can do more
24/30/30 feel good can do more
24/40/40 feeling it...hmmm watching my right low back
24/30/30 right low back tightened...done

Only did this with 1 transfer and I think the overload with the hook grip and the combination of all this weeks work just has me fatigued. Overall though I was pleased

push-ups and pullups (super set) morning
10 and 5 x 5 sets

20 and 5 x 5 sets

Key was the 50 pull-ups and the 150 push-ups just is something I enjoy (truly this is not a lot of push-ups but it works for me)

that is all! Have a great weekend and just remember life is beautiful and life is fleeting so tell your partner you love them, tell your kids and parents and just enjoy yourself!


Wednesday, July 25, 2007

1 arm swings and TSC Reflection

That is all today. my body is feeling overall fatigue from the past 2 days and I only slept 3 hours last night. But I knew I had to hit my swing numbers so here is how it went down

1 arm swing


total 200

Now, this was not a cardio workout, which is a great thing. I know my vascular system is well developed. However, on the 20 and 20 sets I noticed the grip strength, especially the right hand which was weaker around 15. Now, I did hook grip which is part of my new method and I could for sure feel the benefit of the overload. All in all I was pleased. My low back was a little tight afterwards but I believe this to be the case of the prior days workout not anything else.

Overall I very pleased after Monday's workout and yesterdays follow up with the 40kg and the bodyweight exercises which I used for recovery and general conditioning. My legs are so much stronger as is my complete body. The training for the TSC has been the best thing I have done. Simply the process alone has really helped me focus more than ever eventhough I have done some nontraditional training (mountain biking specifically) I have been super consistent with getting what I needed accomplished done.

The one thing I was I had more prep work for was the 32 snatch. In the beginning I would say no, because I accomplsihed 90 in 5 minutes. However, the total cummulative work combined with the deadlifts and pull-ups really put my hands through the ringer. I need more hand callus development, LOL. But I think even now if I focus on the 24kg snatch and 16kg Max VO2 workout combined with heavy overload swings I will get at least 70 reps during the competition.

As I move forward I will share more about my journey through this process to the end goal. The most important aspect to me and for me is the journey and staying committed to the goal. This is something I ask of others all the time and I am glad I can step up and lead the way!

Video of my 482 Deadlift with Rif


thanks Rif for the great coaching/program design!

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Pistols, Presses, 40kg and more

Sometimes after a big deadlift day and following up with a big Wednesday workout Tuesdays are hard. See I want to do something workout wise but I am never truly sure. I think of this day now as just a play day, to do what I want depending on Monday.


They get easier every set but never easy enough. This exercise really raises the blood pressure with the immense amount of tension necessary



10x2 (supersetted with the 2 sets of 50 push-ups

Bosu deck squats
50x4 (mixed with 2 sets of 50 push-up sets)


Good movement, great sweat

Monday, July 23, 2007

Deadlifts and Pull-ups

Cool day at Stones. had the chance to watch and support Rif and Tracy today while they did 25 minutes worth of snatches using the 16kg going 15 sec on, 15 off the whole way through...350 total for each. Tracy is AMAZING.

315 Belt

347/1x10 (15 sec rest between)

What can I say but I felt great today. Strong, fast, connected and on my way up the ladder. Sure puts things in perspective when you are deadlifting next to mulitple pics of men pulling 800's plus, including the 1003# deadlift!!!!!


Military Press

8x5 (2 sets chim-up style)

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Performance Enhancers

Well it is safe to say that in the world of sport, media and society that this is a hotly discussed topic. If you look in any newspapaer, listen to any sports radio station, watch any sports TV (especially ESPN) you will find performance enhancing drugs being discussed or so it seems.

In my experience and through my studies and discussions with other educated professionals I have found much of what is being reported to be short on factual explanation and long on opinion. The challenge for me is who is expressing these opinions and the question of their resources and possible motives. I am not sure 'reporters' are often as informed as some of the more knowledgable experts in the field of Sport Performance.

In addition, I am not sure any of us who are not competing at the highest levels, with millions of dollars on the line in salaries and endorsements, the fame, the glamour, etc. understand the pressures behind what it takes to succeed as a professional athlete, in ANY sport. Therefore, I have compassion for these athletes and I cannot truly say if I was faced with the decision to use performance enhancers to enhance my chances for success that I would not do so. For this reason I have no judgement against these athletes.

A number of arguements exist for the banishment of these drugs, the most common I have heard is to level the playing field. In theory this sounds excellent but I am not sure a level playing field exists with or without. Truth be told, I am not sure such an ideal exist in life. This being said, I am for banning the use of illegal performance enhancers and testing of athletes. However, I do not believe we should convict anyone, no matter what until prove exist and that person has jurisprudence.

In the meantime, I am going to sit back and enjoy reading, watching, etc. sports as they are, as they exist. I respect these athletes for their commitment to wanting to be their best and for all the hard work they put into their craft. Because no matter what one takes to help their performance, you still have to work your arse off and show up and perform. The drug does not make the athlete but it can help.

I believe moving forward that it is important to educate athletes, especially the young kids about performance enhancers and to have responsible, educated professionals leading the way and that includes me. You may ask why I wrote this piece today and I will tell you because I have had been asked by a young athlete about 'steriods'. This made me go out and do more research to educate myself so I could give him facts not just opinions.

The reason he asked is because he is competing in an unfair playing field and it has nothing to do with the use of performance enhancers but more to do with parental pressures on coaches in youth leagues and parent coaches playing favorites. This is tough for a young kid to understand, the politics and reasons behind decisions and we can see that life is not always fair and this lesson is learned at a young age. My advice to him was to work hard, prepare yourself to be the best everyday and no matter what he will know in his heart and soul that he did everything he could to be his best and did so in a clean, healthy, safe and with respect for himself, the game, and his opponents. Since in life it is not about the destination but it is about the journey!

Thank you for taking the time to read this! I welcome any thoughts.


Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Tight body, light weight

My back was really tight for the big deadlifts with the belt. So did not want to push it.

1 arm swings

DARC Swing

Burnt but I must say that doing this light weight really allowed me to find my groove and work with great technique, I really appreciate the 16kg and what it teaches....correct form!

Pull-ups (bodyweight)
Last 3 sets invovled long pauses after each rep...ouch this hurts but really works well.

Great workout!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Movement and a 100# Press

Today I pressed a 100 lb kettlebell, cold. One of my trainer friends has a 100lb bell that he just acquired and he showed me the bell and I could not pass up cleaning and pressing for 1 rep on each side. He said, that right side went up easy, YES! Feel strong baby.

The importance of joint function cannot be overstated. It is imperative that we keep our joints health and as fully functional as humanly possible (which may be limited for various reasons to individuals). I believe that most (like I said some will have specific limitations) people should have full range of motion in every joint or at least approach life with this idea. Recently I read an article by Pavel in the Dragondoor magazine where he speaks of a Russian doctor named Amosov who would wake every morning and do 1000 moves of various likes

Side bends
Forward Bends
Hip/leg raises
torso twist

and more. Amosov found that a morning workout known as his morning recharge that focused on proper Joint (function) mobility was essential and even more so as one passed the age of 30. I could not agree more. I will write more on this at a later point. PS: This can be a great workout as well, I was sweating

Therefore today I did 30 minutes of Joint mobility, plus 20 minutes of yoga/stretching. I woke up today feeling sore and tight in my body from the big lifts and knew this combo workout would be a great follow-up to yesterdays great workout. Plus, I am going to do a nice 4 mile hike this afternoon with Jaz, my lovely pooch.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Deadlifts and Pull-ups

Big pull Day! Felt strong and I feel the numbers match. Plus my first day using a belt and I must say there is a bit of mental edge with the belt on.

Deadlifts (Speed Day)
after warm-ups (following typical pattern).

405/1x10 (no more than 30 seconds rest)

Simply put these moved really well. A big speed day such as this was great for the confidence and I waws able to put together last weeks tip of protracted shoulders and have some really good pulls

Rack Pulls (2 pin hole) approximate start place was mid shin.

Feels good having this big weight in my hands. I feel a good 500 pull in my body coming!


I felt I had 15 in me on my first set which is great.

This was a great day for my confidence. If I only knew the GS Snatch for this test just for the hands. I love the hard-style approach being that is my attitude type, hard and fast. But I understand and repsect the GS Snatch and can see why the techniques exist.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Yoga and a Hike

Started our morning with a nice Yoga session. Focus was on hip opening and some real good laughs along the way. Then we hiked into town with another run involved and had a Crepe...yummy!!! and then did a return hike/run. Nothing too much in terms of distance but felt good to move and work up a sweat!

In the afternoon I took Jaz for a hike at Lexington Resevoir and did some push-ups and ab crunches for fun.

I must confess that I am a trail runner. I felt so high after yesterdays run and was so pleased with the relative ease the run went. I am thankful for all the kettlebell work because it makes me ready to go for any activity. I may not be the fastest up the hill but hey no running and I went 2 miles all up with no warm-up and even sprinted to the top!

Oh do I love exercise!

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Trail run

Straight up with a couple flats and back down the same route. 4 miles total! I cannot begin to say how strong I felt running today. this was my longest run of the year and only my second. I have to give credit to the training program, especially the Kettlebells which really have developed my cardio system which did not feel taxed like I do on the swings and snatches and leg strength, especially the ability to apply force to the ground (like swings and snatches) andpropel my body up the hill. Mia and kicked ass but tried not to force the downhill since that really taxes the quads fromthe eccentric force going down hill.

Plus did 15 pull-ups.

I am surprised my legs are not super sore from yesterday. When I did the 100 squats and lunges last week on Monday they were super sore for a couple days and I went out and beat them up.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Limiting Factors

One of the drawbacks for myself snatching the 32kg has been the degradation of the hands. I cannot count how many times I have torn the palms but it is one too many. Nonetheless, this is part of the training. I do not care about the tears per se but it does have an affect on the other training days and this is not productive. Thank goodness I am creative and wise enough to work around this but the fact that I am having to constantly work around this issue is a challenge. Therefore I figured I was going to go for a couple big swing sets with the 24kg since I could hook grip this bell into my finger tips.

Morning Workout
100 squats
100 walking lunges
100 push-ups
100 crunches

Evening workout
1 Arm swing
24/10/10/10/10/10/10/10/10/10/10 (50 per arm a person record of 100 total 1 arm swings)

Now, I decided at this point to go for a big set with the 32. I was successful hook gripping the 24 and figured I could do this with the 32 even with transfers and not affect the hands.

32/10/10/10/10/10/10/10/10 (40/arm for a total of 80) this took 2 minutes and 20 seconds to complete and my heart rate was 180 at the end. I could feel the skin pulling on the transfers but not having to snatch and just swing allowed me too set my grip and maintain for the reps. This was tough and those last 10 hurt but no biggie. :-)

Pull-ups (finger tips)

Well I made the adjustment, had a great workout and plan on really working the 1 arm swing with the 32 for big rep sets and making sure to pop the bell up to shoulder height simulating a good snatch. Just need the hands to heal as these last tears were the worst I have had.

All part of the most fantastic journey we call life and I love every minute of it. I am blessed and pleased and look forward to the next workout and the next breathe.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Snatches & Swings

back to the snatch work. I love this exercise eventhough it grinds the crap out of my hands. 3 more tears today and as Rif mentioned with the 32 I have it deep in my hand and doing the snatch hard-style, my preferred method really taxes my hands...oh well


Fast, fluid and felt good

2 hand Swing

Snatch Hold
24/1 min/side x1

Wow, what a great move. Real emphasis on full body tension and linkage. Great for mental focus as well!

That is all, not much too say today but I hope yours was a great as mine, if not better!

Monday, July 09, 2007

Pulling Again

Been a couple of weeks since I pulled some big weight so back to the grind today


Wow, that was a big pull and did not have my shoulder blades properly positioned which pulled me off balance making the grind much more challenging. The second rep was definitely the best

Speed Pull
337/1x12...30 sec rest max between reps

These were the best. Rif figured out the shoulder blade thing around rep 5 and then I was able to bang out the additional rep with strong form.


Felt really well connected to the pull-up bar today. Thought my body called on the appropriate muscle groups at the right time. Very pleased with this.


Just had the urge to pick up the dog and press it! As the workout progressed I felt stronger and more engaged physically to the protocal for the day, therefore pressing the dog felt appropriate! Shoot, feels good having the big boy overhead especially when it is more than half my weight!

Great to be back at Stones, training again but what I would do for an extended vacation. I truly am a travelling man. I love being on the road experiencing the splendors, riches, peoples, scenery, foods, cultures, and the beauty of taking the roads least travelled to new land. As life progresses I am planning more big trips and within the next 5 years I hope to be on the road more and doing more humanitarian work along the way as well as write and do photography. The world is just so amazing and this last week we had the opportunity to explore our own backyard and all its glory!

Sunday, July 08, 2007


Well we are back from our 1500 mile journey thru northern california and southern oregon. We drove, hiked, relaxed, slept in, exercised our bodies a lot and minds very little, enjoyed some of the most beautiful coastline in So. Oregon and NorCal, saw many unique landscapes from redwoods to rolling meadows, to volcanic rock formations to beaches with huge rock outcrops to many small towns. We hiked up Mt. Shasta to 11,000 feet from around 9000+, hiked up castle crags, hike down to Crater Lake in Oregon (WOW, that water is cold...54 degrees), hiked along the oregon coastline and the Lost Coast Beach in NorCal. We even did Kettlebells, kayaked, yoga, and a whole lotta sitting on the beach absorbing the sun and as you can tell a lot of driving.
What a magnificent journey and who would have known how much beauty exists in this west coast without a little trip down the road less taken.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Road Trip Time

I will be heading off today on a road trip through Northern California, into Oregon (Crater lake, Ashland and the Shakespheare Festival, the southern Oregon Coast) and the Lost Coast and Avenue of Giants. This will be an extremely active trip with plenty of hiking, yoga and even some KBs with the lady and Jazzy the wonder Labrador.

Going to be nice to rest up the body and mind. Will read the Dalai Lama's book, Open Heart, write in my journal, camp at beautiful beaches, and well we leave it there.

Look forward to chatting with you all in a weeks time

Enjoy your 4th, Free yourself and those you love!