Monday, September 29, 2008

Frustration = Good Training

I put all of my energy into having a kick butt training session. I left my frustration in the bells. Release. Out of the negative came much positive.

Here's what I did to get rid of my negative energy:

TGUs - 5 x 4 L, R w/ 12 kg
Swings - 4 x 30 L, R w/ 20 kg

I found that if I didn't take a large step back on the TGUs that they didn't bother my knee too much. It took me over 20 minutes to do them, but I got r done!

For the swings, I did 30 L, rest 20 secs, 30 R, rest one minute. I did that four times for 240 swings with the 20 kg!!!! That really worked my grip and got my heart pumping.

I feel like I could take on anybody right now, including my own self-doubt. I'm tired, but I'm exhilarated all at the same time. I pushed myself to do some demanding training. ROAR!!!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Wednesday's training went like this:

Squat Jumps - 10
High Pulls - 12 L, R w/16 kg
3 times w/ 30 secs rest between

Push Press - 6 L, R w/16 kg
Tricep Dips - 10
3 times w/ 30 secs rest between

Step Up onto 18 in. bench - 5 L, R w/ double 12 kgs
Squats - 8 w/ 16 kg
3 times w/ 30 secs rest between

Rows - 8 L, R w/ 16 kg
Pushups - 6 military

All in all, I felt good during the session. However, my left knee gave out during push presses. This morning it feels "tweaked" for the fourth day. I did squats fine, but the steps ups were shaky at best on the left side. I must have twisted that knee or something.


On Tuesday I gave two sessions introducing kettlebells to my colleagues at the college. About 35 employees came over their lunch hour to learn about the benefits of kettlebell training. Then I gave them all a little preparation work - face the wall squats, hinging, sumo deadlifts. Then they got to do some swings. It was so much fun watching these folks -from 25 to 55 - pick up a kettlebell and have a taste of my passion. I was proud that they tried it out with such enthusiasm. Kb training may not be for all of them, but they gave it a try. Many are interested in attending classes. Our college is building a new wellness facility, so that will work out perfectly to offer classes on campus. I will be working to make that happen.

I'm off to work now. I get a massage this afternoon! Then I have play practice tonight. Run, Run, Run!! Gotta keep busy!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Training Surprises

Several things took me by surprise during my training today. Let me make a list.

1. My left knee gave out on my first round of TGUs. WTH??? I almost had a cast iron hat. I didn't hurt my knee, so I don't understand why it kept giving out. So, I Z'd the knee. Well, actually I Z Healthed my right elbow for my left knee. Then I did some ATG squats. It felt much better, but I didn't want to press my luck. Time to edit the training program for the day.

2. I did 5 rounds of 4 push presses L, R with the 16 kg. After the third round, I was feeling very strong, so I picked up the 20 kg and did 3 rounds of 2 L, R with that bell. I don't think I've ever done a push press with the 20 kg. Surprise!!

3. While doing my push presses, I noticed a couple of college students playing around with my kbs. They were touching my bells without permission. Panic! Panic! I heard one say "Those things are Russian. I've seen those in a movie." Another one was swinging my Russian Red 16 kg. Pardon me. I'm a certified kettlebell trainer. If you would like, I could show you how to swing that to get maximum results. BTW, my name is Amy. Do you want to bring that kettlebell into the Tae Kwon Do room and have me get you started?

Two scurried away, but one curious cat hung around. "Okay. I'm supposed to do some cleans and snatches," he says as he opens his issue of Muscle and Fitness. He follows me into the TKD room. I talk about hip thrust and force generation. He picks up the 12 kg and snatches it, bent armed with a thud to his wrist. That's pretty good hip thrust. Now, lock out your arm at the top. Two reps later, he's pretty darn good. He's done snatches with a barbell, but never a kb. He's intrigued. He played football and has lifted weights for many years. Now he's in the powerline program. He's a naturally physical guy.

He returns to the TKD room four more times to snatch the 20 kg. While he does that, I do the following:

Snatch - 16 kg, 12 L then 12 kg, 10 L
rest 20 seconds
Snatch 16 kg, 12 R then 12 kg, 10 R
Rest 1:30
4 rounds

The guy can't quit asking about kb training. His friends wander in and out giving him shit. He ignores them. I like him already. He wants to know when I'll be back, when he can use the kbs again. Wednesday. That'll work. He's got to do triceps and biceps on Tuesday anyway. Uhggggg! Okay, baby steps. Rome wasn't built blah blah blah.

It was still a surprise to find a young man eager to pick up the kb and learn more, even if his friends gave him a hard time.

3. Third surprise - I did windmills to end up my training. 3 rounds of 5 reps L, R with the 16 kg. That was shocking that I could do that many with such ease with the 16 kg considering it's been months since I've done a windmill.


Tomorrow I'm presenting at a Lunch and Learn at my college. My pickup is loaded down with every kb I could get my hands on. I'm going to get a workout just hauling all of those puppies into the college!

Thanks Julie and Katie for loaning me your kbs. I will bring them back safe and sound!

Friday, September 19, 2008

50 with 35

VO2 Max
5 rep cadence
16 kg kettlebell (35 lbs.)
50 sets
After 40 sets I really wanted to stop, but I pushed myself. I had to make it. I had to prove to myself I was capable. I probably could have made it to 60 sets, but I was running out of time.

That's been the story of my week. I've been meeting myself coming and going. By the time I got to Des Moines on Tuesday, I was shot. Four nonstop hours driving alone is too much for me. I can travel all day if I'm the passenger, but driving makes me sooooooo tired.

Wednesday I had 10 hours of meetings. I was in no shape to do training. My brain was exhausted. Thursday I had fours hours of meetings and then the four hour drive home. Done. Finished. No way I'm touching a KB.

Sorry Boris! I would have loved to take you up on your offer to train, but it just wasn't going to happen. I'll be back in November for the IASB convention. I'll see if I can break away to get in some training with you.
I'm off to watch Greta on Fox News and then it's bed for me. Tomorrow - soaking up the sun!
Oh, here's a couple of pics of Lauren from her birthday. She's too stinking cute for words!
Webkinz characters on her cake.

New shirt - such a poser!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

I'll Be Back!!!

I'm heading to Des Moines for the Iowa Association of School Boards board meetings today. I'll be driving (270 miles one way) or in meetings until Thursday night. (I represent nine counties in NW Iowa on the IASB board of directors. I've also been a director on my local school board for nine years. The IASB director position is one I've been filling for the past year.)

Never fear! I will be training in my hotel room. Brad gave me a sweet bodyweight circuit custom made for hotel rooms. I'll be jumping on the bed (YIPPEE!!!!) and doing burpees and hindu pushups. I'm even going to throw in a KB and do a VO2 max snatch session.

I'm still available by phone, email, and facebook on my crackberry. I can check in on all of your blogs as well from my phone.

Look for a post by me by the weekend. Later!

Friday, September 12, 2008

60 - 7 - 1

It had been a long, long time since I did a V02 Max session, probably four months. So, today was the day. I threw my training schedule out the window (figuratively) and set out with my 12 kg bell and the Gymboss.

15:15 protocol
7 reps w/26 lb. KB

My initial goal was 50 sets (25 minutes). When I hit 50, I felt pretty good, so I decided to keep going to 60. I'm glad I did. It felt fantastic and I was really sweating. Love that!!!

I didn't know if Gymboss was going to make it, though. He needs new batteries. I've had him over a year and haven't had to replace the batteries. I'd say he did pretty good. He made it to 60, but barely. I stopped for his sake, of course. ;-) lol

My baby girl turns 7 tomorrow. Seriously, where does the time go? It's crazy.

I must congratulate Brad Nelson and his new bride Jordan on one week of wedded bliss. They were married last week and should be getting home from Hawaii. I wish you two a lifetime of joy as you discover all that life has to offer you together.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008


Come to Mama you sweet little berries. I've been waiting for you all summer!
My raspberries are finally starting to ripen. Soon I will be drowning in raspliciousness. And look at the size of them! I've been picking about 2 cups every two days, but there are gazillions lurking on the bushes patiently ripening.

I don't raise a garden (my favorite dentist does, so I buy from him) but I do have a huge raspberry patch. My grandma always had them and I would help her pick (eat) them every year. When I moved into her house, I HAD to resurrect the raspberries. I have hundreds of thriving bushes. I usually get three different crops from July through September. This year wasn't hot enough to have the July/August berries. However, the September berries seem very happy. Happy raspberries = Happy Amy.

Last week I took Tracy Reifkind's advice and made some soup with the veggies I had in the fridge. I sauteed some onion and garlic in olive oil. Then I cut up zucchini, broccoli, and cauliflower and put that in the pan and filled with organic chicken stock. I let that cook for an hour and pureed it. OMG!! Is that ever good and easy schmeezy, lemon squeezy. The kids even like it.All I have left is one, little bowl for work tomorrow. Look at those tomatoes and that yellow squash! (Both from the gardening dentist.) I really am in fresh produce heaven!

Monday, September 8, 2008


or How to Snatch Your Butt Off - HARDSTYLE!!!

Got back into the swing, or should I say snatch of things, today. Here's what my training looked like:

TGUs - 5 x 3 L, R w/12 kg

Snatch - 12 L w/16 kg to 10 L w/12 kg
rest 20 secs
Snatch - 12 R w/16 kg to 10 R w/12 kg
rest one minute
3 Rounds

Finished with a snatch test - 19 L, 19 R w/ 16 kg

Finishing with 38 snatches after 3 rounds of 44 snatches was a killer. It was almost worse than the grad workout at my RKC. I really wanted to push myself, though. I wanted to prove to myself that I could do it. Now I feel invincible!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

The Light Bulb Came On

or How I Figured Out Why I Couldn't Complete My Strength Training Thursday.

My son came home sick yesterday. Feverish, sore throat, and weak. Weak. WEAK! Hey, that's how I've been feeling. I had chills yesterday and felt weak. Thursday I couldn't do any push presses or military presses. I was quite concerned about my loss of strength.

Yesterday I made it through all four rounds of my circuit, but I REALLY had to push myself to do it. I couldn't figure out what was wrong with me. At one point I sat down and just held my head in my hands. Why did I feel so weak?

When I got home to a sick boy, the light bulb came on. I tuned in to my body. How was I feeling? I had the chills, I was tired, and I just felt drained. Ding, Ding, Ding!!!! Amy gets the award for blonde moment of the week!

It's been sooooooo long since I've been sick that I didn't even recognize it. No one in my family had as much as a sniffle all last year. No sick days from work for Jerry or me, and no sick days from school for either kid.

Our family's healthy lifestyle really pays off. Today I have a slight headache and I'm tired, but I'm up and functioning. I won't be doing any training, but I went through all of my daughter's clothes to determine what fits and what doesn't already this morning. Last night I went through all of mine. I weigh 20 lbs. less this fall as compared to last fall, so none of my clothes fit. That's a shame!

Guess what I'm doing this afternoon? Banana Republic, here I come!

Friday, September 5, 2008


or how to train when you feel too weak to do what Brad has ordered you to do.

Yesterday I was slated to do four circuits, 4 times each. I started well completing the following:

Circuit 1:
Squat jumps - 10
High Pulls - 12 l, r w/ 16 kg
4 rounds, 30 secs between rounds

Circuit 2:
One arm rows - 8 l, r w/16 kg
Military Pushups - 6
4 rounds, 30 secs between rounds

So I was supposed to do some push presses w/ the 16 kg, but I was weak, weak, weak. I tried substituting 12 kg MP, but that didn't feel much better. I was also supposed to do some squats, but I wasn't feeling those either. Do you ever get that where certain drills feel impossible? You just want to give up and go home? That's where I was yesterday.

I knew that I couldn't just stop, though. I had to salvage the training session. So I asked my body, "Body, what do you need? What sounds like fun?" The answer came loud and clear.


Elevate the heart rate and burn some cals.

So, I decided to see if I could do 100 one-handed swings nonstop with the 16 kg. Off I went.

20 L
20 R
20 L
20 R
10 L
10 R
It took me 2:30 to do those 100. HR was 150. I rested 1:00. Then

20 L
20 R
20 L
20 R
10 L
10 R
It took 2:30 again! HR was 160 I rested 1:30. Then

20 L
10 L
10 R
10 L
10 R
10 L
10 R
10 L
10 R
That also took 2:30. I didn't take my HR. I was done.

It felt good to smoke my lungs and see that I could do high volume work without much rest. Today I have a longer circuit on the docket. I hope my strength is back. If not, I'll swing, swing, swing again.