Monday, March 31, 2008


Ever have one of those training sessions where you overanalyze and just overthink every move? That was me today. Here's my training log along with my running thoughts:

Snatches w/ 16 kg
15 L, R - rest 1 min
That feels pretty good. I'll never get to 50,000 when I only do snatches once a week. Plus, I can't risk getting injured before my cert weekend.

10 L, R - rest 1 min
Am I snapping my hips enough? Okay, I didn't bang my forearms with the bell.

10 L, R
Why don't I ever get blisters or big callouses? Am I doing something wrong? I wish Brad were around to check my form.

Now seriously, why would I need to worry about my LACK of callouses? I have little ones at the base of each ring finger. After I take a bath, they flake right off. Doesn't my lack of callouses mean I'm doing my training right? Why do I always have to think so much?

TGUs w/ 12 kg
3 L, R (I was supposed to do 5 L, R for the record)
What is the matter with me today? I feel weak. I can barely eek out 3 reps. I hate TGUs.

ATG Squats w 16 kg
5 L, R
Oh yeah! Those feel good, especially if I really snap my hips at the top. How can 16 kgs feel so stinking heavy?

Clean & Press w/ 12 kg
6 L, R
I wonder how many I can do without re-cleaning the bell. Oh wow. I can do 6. Hmmmm I'm gonna try doing as many reps as a I can before re-cleaning on the next 3 sets.

I did three rounds of the above circuit and then did an extra set of C & P. I then did some GTG with lunges. In between rounds I did leg circles and the prescribed arm circles. That right hip is just being a bugger for me.

I think I think myself into a tizzy sometimes. Maybe I just wasn't feeling it today. Maybe tomorrow will be totally different. My body can't feel 100% all the time. I'm going to stop thinking about it now. Really.

I mean it.

Just one more thing before I stop thinking about it.

Why can't I do TGUs strongly and confidently? They are my achille's heel. I'm sure that's why Brad has me do them twice a week.

Okay I'm done thinking.

About training. Now I'm thinking about how badly I want to get my Harley out of the garage and let loose. Free and easy. Warm and fast. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

Saturday, March 29, 2008

An Interesting Friday

Brad's training prescription consisted of

TGUs - 5 x 3 L,R w/ 12 kg KB
One-Handed Swings - 3 x 20 L,R w/ 20 kg KB
40 seconds rest between sets

I warmed up with some Z, focusing on the drills for my right hip.

I started my TGUs. Left side - no prob! Right side - tipsy and can't stand up. WTH? Try again. Look straight ahead. Tighten up all muscles. Clench my left fist. Whoa! Abort!

So I decide the TGUs aren't going to happen. So, I do my snatch test instead. 40 snatches w/ 16 kg in 2 minutes. Not bad! See, Tracy. Life is full of crazy goodness!

After the snatches, I did my one-handed swings with the 20 kg KB. I might have to consider trying to snatch that puppy one of these days. I don't want to go too crazy yet since I'm working up to my certification course in a month.

It's Saturday morning and I'm off to the natural food market. I have to drive an hour, but that's fine. I love the journey! I get to reconnect with my family (if my 10 year old isn't engrossed in a video game in the back seat) and I might even get a little snooze in since my husband always drives.

Here's an updated photo of Penny. The breeder said she is starting to stand up now. She's three weeks old already.

I can't wait to snuggle her!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

5 Great Rounds

With the 26 lb. KB

Windmills - 5 L, R
Walking Overhead Lunges - 8 L, R
Renegade Rows - 6 L, R
Step Ups - 12 L, R
High Pulls - 10 L, R
Planks - 30 seconds

1 minute between rounds - which I didn't need, BTW!!!

Another student of mine from the college tried out the KBs today. He is in the Powerline program. He climbs poles every day and trains pretty hard on the weights. He did some swings and then wanted to try the walking lunges. He was surprised how difficult it was. He did not want to even attempt a renegade row. I give him a lot of credit for trying out the KBs. Most people look at me like I have a horn growing out of my head. They judge without giving it a try. The bonus to the story? I'm old enough to be this kid's mom!

Another positive note: I kept my balance on the walking overhead lunges. Yipee!! The Z is working Nelson. Love that Kool-aid!

I finished the day with a 1/2 hour massage therapy session. I'm ready for La-La Land. Night!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Z Sickness

I completed all of Brad's prescribed training:

10 Burpees
10 Squats ATG
8 Pushups
20 Mountain Climbers
8 Inverted Rows

6 Rounds w/30 seconds rest between rounds

I also did some GTG with lunges to improve my TGUs. Those were fine on the left. When I switched to the right (my "sticky" side) I could not keep my balance. I put down the 26 lb. KB and tried them unweighted. Still tippy. I stood up and did some leg circles on the right. Yowsie! Z sickness. (That's what I call the naseau I get when I do a Z drill on an affected joint.)

Nelson, we have a problem! ;-)

This lack of balance freaked me out a bit. I've been off-balance before, but never to the point of tipping over. Weird! I put a call in to Brad. He gave me some shoulder Z and now I am monitoring the situation.

I'll try the GTG on the lunges again tomorrow and see what happens.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Loving Monday

This was my last day of spring break. I took full advantage of the opportunity to train when I felt best. I did my training at 11:00 a.m. Here's what I had the pleasure to do:

Snatches w/ 36 lb. KB
15 L, R - 1 minute rest
10 L, R - 1 minute rest
8 L, R

TGUs - 3 x 5 L, R w/ 26 lb. KB
Squats - 3 x 5 L, R w/ 36 lb. KB
Clean & Press - 4 x 6 L, R w/ 26 lb. KB

Another good training session. Tough and fun. It felt great to do it and even better to be done with it. :-)

It also felt great to work off all of the birthday cake, potatoes, rolls, ham, and chocolate I ate yesterday. That stomach ache I had made me appreciate all of the days when I eat healthy, optimal food and feel great. I am also proud of myself for not feeling guilty for my food choices. They were my 10% for the week. Nothing more, nothing less.

I will make choices for myself that will provide me with positive outcomes as often as I can. In the long-run, this is the way to maintain my healthy lifestyle.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Catching Up

I completed all of my training this week! The soreness went away by Thursday. Here's my Thursday and Friday training:


Windmills - 26 lb. KB / x5 l,r
Overhead Walking Lunge - 26 / x8 steps each leg
Renegade Rows - 26 / x6 l,r
Step Ups on bench - 26 / x12 l,r
High Pulls - 26 / x10 l,r
Plank hold on elbows -30 seconds

Did 1 set of each exercise each round / 1 minute between rounds
Did 5 rounds


Turkish Get Ups (TGUs) - 5 x 3 L, R w/ 26 lb KB
Swings - 1 hand 3x15 l,r w/ 44 lb. KB. Did 15 reps one hand / switch on the fly and did 15 reps the other hand (30 reps total) before setting it down. Rest 30 seconds. Repeat 3 sets.

Both days felt good. Both days I was apprehensive about being able to do the volume after having two weeks of light training. I surprised myself. Here are the things I feel best about:

1. Completing all of the TGUs on Friday. That was the first time I was able to do all 30.
2. Easily completing the swings with the 44 lb. KB. When I finished, I remarked "Is that all you got Brad?" I love swinging that big bell.
3. Increasing my reach on windmills. I noticed that I have a great range of motion on windmills. I am flat-handed on the floor even when I reach behind the leveraging leg. Being 5'11" I feel like I'm pretty flexible.
4. I have managed my shoulder/neck pain. After the marathon snatch session on Monday, I developed my nagging neck knot again. Instead of getting upset, I did my Z. Today I can report the pain has been gone for two days.
5. I'm figuring out that I have a serious hip imbalance and eye issue. I need to talk to Brad about these. It's weird how I can now pinpoint for myself where my movement issues are. I love that I am so in tune with my body.
6. The scale moved!! I tried on a pair of size 8 pants, and they fit! I haven't been that size since high school. It's motivating and scary all at the same time. I want to lose that final bodyfat, but I don't want to spend the $ on new clothes AGAIN. Oh well! A girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do!!

All in all, a great week of training and learning about myself.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Oh, How Quickly You Forget

I forgot what it is like to be sore. Tuesday reminded me, and I am still feeling it a bit this morning. After two back off weeks, starting right back in with 160 snatches, TGUs, squats, and presses, my arms and sides were tight. This helps me appreciate all the weeks when I wasn't sore from my training.

To loosen me up, Brad had me do 6 rounds of the following:

10 Burpees
10 Squats (Arse to Grass - ATG)
8 Pushups
40 Mountain Climbers
(I was supposed to do 8 inverted rows, but I don't have a bar at home, so I had to forego those.)

That got my blood pumping and got me loosened up.

I stepped on the scale today. Nothing. Nada. Zip. No movement. I gotta figure out what's going awry. Where am I sabotaging myself? It has to be my diet. I think I'm going to keep my food log again so I can analyze where I'm going over my 10% cheating. David Whitley blogged about his diet yesterday, and that got me thinking. He follows the 90% rule for diet as well, but he was gaining weight. Once he looked at his 10%, he realized he was adding a lot of extra calories in his 10.

Life has been stressful the past few weeks, so I would suspect I am sneaking in foods/alcohol that are putting me over 10%. I'm a stress eater/drinker. Food/alcohol calm me. I had cut out alcohol for awhile, but I have been having a few on the weekends when we're out with friends. That won't happen this weekend - Friday is church; Saturday I am going to a play; and Sunday is Easter and my son's 10th birthday. Great! Cake and ice cream! Geez!!!!!!!!!!!! I just need to prepare myself ahead of time. I will not feel guilty for having cake on my son's birthday.

I'm off to Sioux Falls, SD today. I'm heading to the natural foods market to stock up again. That should help me plan my nutritional choices better.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Time Well Spent

My two back off weeks were worth it. I approached my training today with renewed strength and a little bit of nervousness.


Yes. Brad threw me right back into the training schedule I was doing before my back off. I didn't know how my body would react. Here's what went down:

Snatches w/ 36 lb. KB:

I was supposed to do 9L, 9R on the top of the minute for 10 minutes. I thought that might be a bit too ambitious, so I did the following.

9L, 9R one minute 7 L, 7R one minute for 10 minutes

That means I did 160 snatches in 10 minutes and moved 5760 lbs. of cast iron.

After that I did three rounds of

TGUs - 3 L, 3R w/26 lb. KB
Squats - 4 L, 4R w/ 36 lb. KB
Clean & Press - 7 L, 7R w/ 26 lb. KB

It took me awhile, but I did everything. I felt stronger than ever; I just needed a little extra time between drills to recover. Driving home I felt amazing. I did it! After two weeks of very little training, I made strength gains. I don't feel drained; I feel energized.

Sunday night I did a nice long session of R-Phase Z Health. I was nauseous for 45 minutes afterward. I will do Brad's Rx tonight and see if I'm any better. I hope so!

On a side note, we named the puppy - Penelope/Penny. Lauren will call her Princess Penny and dress her up in princess gowns. Go figure!

Friday, March 14, 2008

Too Cute!!!

Here she is! Our newest family member. Like Sophie, she's a boxer. Unlike Sophie, she is brindle, which means she will have black stripes, almost like a tiger. Seeing her makes me miss Sophie terribly. It will be nice to have a little pup around again. Lauren will be so excited.
Just an update on my training today:
It didn't happen. I took a nap instead. I feel totally recharged now. It's amazing - I don't even feel guilty for sleeping instead of training. That must mean I'm listening to my body.
Monday I'll definitely be back at it. I have six weeks until the RKC!

Friday Fuel

I'm gassed up and ready. Today is the start of my spring break!!! I slept in until 7:00 am. I dropped the kids at school and I'm sipping on my protein shake. Ahhhhhhhhhhhh

Today is a day to recharge. I need to get over to Sheldon to my KBs and do my light training. I also have a large Z session planned to work out all of the kinks from sitting in a car and in meetings for two days straight.

I drive to Des Moines (270 miles one way) every other month for board meetings of the Iowa Association of School Boards. I represent NW Iowa on that board. To charaacterize those board of directors meetings as "meetings" isn't quite accurate. It is actually more like training. I learn so much about how Iowa schools are working to improve education. This isn't your father's school system, let me tell you!

In addition to the board meetings, I ran up to the Capitol and talked to a legislator. It's amazing to be part of the discussion on education-related legislation. I feel like my work is actually making a difference for schools. I'm just one person, but I'm part of a larger group working together and sending consistent messages out there about what schools need to be successful in our global economy. I am filled with hope for our children and our future.

Wow, I'm getting too reflective for a Friday morning. On to something lighter.....................

I'm a new mom! My baby was born March 8. A little girl. Here's a link to her photos:

Click on "Gallery" and then you'll see the thumbnail for the puppies.

She's the flashy female. The momma had to have a C-section and only three pups survived. It'll be a few months before she gets to come home, but that'll be good since I'll be off for the summer then. I think we'll try to buzz over and see her this weekend. Now I have to pick out a name. Any suggestions would be appreciated. We like people names for dogs over cutesie names like Cuddles and Cocoa.

I'll probably post later after I've done my training. I just needed a brain dump after the week I've experienced. Later!

Monday, March 10, 2008

I'm Alive!

After nearly a week without training, I'm back and lovin it! Although, let me confess that this is a back off week so my training was light today.

Here's what I did:

26 lb. Kettlebell
10 swings
5 squat to push press left, right
5 windmills l,r
10 snatches l,r
5 clean and press l,r
10 high pulls l,r

No rest between drills. 1 minute rest between rounds. 3 rounds.

I'm glad that last week I was able to recognize that I was in need of a rest. Lucky me, I start spring break on Friday until Monday, March 24. The perks of the profession! I'm not sure if that can compensate for all of the papers I grade. ;-)

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Tuesday's "Training"

I use the term "Training" lightly. I'm feeling overtrained and in need of a break. I came to that conclusion Monday evening. Here are the signs:

1. I'm extremely tired. All I want to do is sleep.
2. I'm irritable. Nuff said.
3. I feel weak.
4. I have no motivation to tear into my training schedule.

So, Tuesday I decided to just have some fun with my training. I threw out Brad's plan and just did what I felt I needed to do. I know I have a major weak area and I wanted to devote some time to it. That weak area?

Turkish Get-Ups

Here's my issue with the beloved TGU. I have been doing them with a squat stand up instead of a lunge stand up. I'm pretty flexible and this position felt the best to me. As I result, my lunging power has suffered. I feel like I'm starting from scratch. Brad has prescribed a lot of GTG with lunges, but I have been a bad Jedi and not followed Yoda teachings. "Pay the price am I." (That is Yoda speak.) So I spent some time GTG with the 12 kg and I did 3 x 3 L,R TGUs.

After that I did some clean and press. My presses aren't as strong as I think they should be. Perhaps I expect too much, not sure. I did press the 16 kg 3 x 2. On the left, I could only get one rep. The second rep had to be helped up. Then I slowly lowered it. My goal is to press the 20 kg. Just keep pressing, pressing, pressing!

Wednesday (today) is an off day. I will cherish the rest and go to bed early.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Thank Goodness for Z

It saved me this weekend. I had some major stress this weekend, and my neck/shoulder pain was creeping up on me. I did my Z religiously (on Sunday, ha!). I woke up this morning feeling no pain. Back to the grind.

Or not.
There would be no presses tonight. Why?

Brad is trying to kill me! ;-)

He prescribed 10 minutes of Snatches - 9 L, 9 R on the top of every minute for 10 minutes. That's 180 snatches in 10 minutes - pretty ambitious, but I was up for the challenge. Last week I did 16/minute for 8 minutes. Surely I could do 18/minute for 10 minutes.

I was on my way. After 5 minutes, my lungs were smokin. I knew I was halfway there. Minute 6 - the 9th rep is tough on the left and right. Minute 7 - I barely eek out rep 9 on each side. My shoulders feel like they'll give way. Minute 8 - I cannot get past rep 6 on the left. I don't want to drop the KB on my head. I change arms, but I am defeated. My confidence is blown. I do 6 reps on the right and drop the bell in disgust. I am toast.

I go on to the rest of my training prescription, but I have no strength left. I do 3 TGUs on each side and am done. Beaten by the bell.

Three hours later and my lungs are still smoking. I wonder if I am coming down with some crud. Dang it all!!!! I refuse to get sick. Next week is my back off week, so I wanted to go into it strong and healthy. Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr