Friday, October 31, 2008

October Has Left the Building

I ended the week and month with a great VO2 Max session.

12 kg
7 rep cadence
60 sets
420 snatches in 30 minutes

Then I went home and made a big batch of chili and handed out candy to the trick or treaters. After that, some friends came over to eat with us. We had a relaxing evening. Good times. This is how a weekend should start!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Hope - Believing in Possibility

I continue to have hope. Hope that I will press that 20 kg bell by Christmas. I believe in my strength. I know it is possible. If I didn't, the goal wouldn't even be in my sights.

I remember the first time I pressed the 12 kg. It was exciting. I couldn't believe that I would ever be strong enough to press more than that weight. Look at me now! Some of you have been watching me branch out; some are new to my journey. Regardless, I want you to see how important hope is, how active hope is, how motivating hope is.

Wishing is NOT hoping. Wishing is wanting something that isn't possible. That is why we wish on stars and birthday candles. Wishes have no power.

Hope gives you power. You must believe and you must know it is possible. Setting goals is crucial. Have someone - a trainer preferably - that you set your goals with so that you can set goals that are attainable. Then trust that trainer to guide your work. Finally, believe in yourself during the process. If you stop believing, the possibilty vanishes.

I wear a ring that says "HOPE" on it to remind me to believe in all of my life's possibilties and to work to make them happen.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Soup Du Jour

Monday = EDT

Last Monday I did 90 pushups and 152 tricep dips in 17 minutes.
This Monday, 100 pushups and 165 tricep dips.
Amazed myself.


Because I'm extremely dehydrated and haven't been able to eat much today. After the EDT, I called it good. I'm hoping to get in my high pull descending ladder and the squat/one-legged deadlifts tomorrow. All I can do is all I can do.

My body is rebelling from wedding cake, M&Ms, Templeton Rye, and bread. Too much sugar. I had more sugar this weekend than I usually take in over the course of a couple weeks. Yuck! I just never learn. Everytime I eat this kind of crap, my digestive system gets even with me. It is a mystery to me how I ever functioned eating all the simple carbs. Makes me appreciate all my veggies.

I made veggie soup yesterday. Good move. I call it my "Faux Cream of Broccoli." It is made with chicken stock, broccoli, cauliflower, summer squash, onion, and garlic. I smash it all up with a hand blender when the veggies are tender. It tastes like a creamy soup without the cream. I have Tracy Reifkind to thank for the soup ideas. She is the soup queen!!

Well, look at that. I've managed to ramble on for quite a bit. I'll put this issue to bed, along with myself.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Still Feels Good

Yeah, I know. I didn't post my Friday training. It wasn't too exciting, but it felt good. It's the same protocol I've been doing the past three weeks or so, only I've upped my sets.

VO2 Max Snatch
12 kg
8 rep cadence for 10 sets
7 rep cadence for 40 more sets
360 snatches in 25 minutes

Last week I did my VO2 max with the 16 kg. This week I was tired, tired, tired, so I used the 12 kg. I did 8 reps to get my heart rate up and then did the remaining sets at 7 reps.

Waiter Windmills
12 kg
5 x 5 L, R

I will most likely be doing the same weekly training routine for three more weeks. I really have to work on being okay with the same training 6 weeks in a row. I have a brain that gets bored, so doing the same training each week can grate on me. I've been working hard at finding a challenge in the training each week. Hence, the EDT has served me well. I also set goals each week for each session.

I used to complain to Brad that I was bored after 4 weeks of the same training. He didn't give in to me. I had to trust him and do what he prescribed. When I quit fighting him (about 5 months ago) I found that training became more productive. Doing the same training cycle allows my brain to focus on improvement instead of learning the "routine." I don't have to worry about what comes next as far as drills. I can put my energy into doing the drills better, increasing my reps, increasing my strength.

If you struggle with training boredom, I challenge you to set goals and to look at the routine as a positive. It puts your brain to use for good instead of evil, so to speak, the evil of stagnation.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Growing Stronger

Nikki Shlosser talks about goals in her latest post, how they keep you moving forward. She must have been reading my mind. I had my heavy press day and I was thinking about how far I've come in a few short weeks and months. When I attended the April RKC, pressing the 12 kg was challenging after 8 reps. Pressing the 16 kg was nearly impossible for more than 3. Today I am close to pressing the 20 kg. There's my goal.

I've been doing push presses with the 20 kg for the past several weeks. I can feel my strength gains from week to week. I'm able to handle the 20 kg for swings, cleans, and push presses. I am anxious to get back to snatching it and to work up to TGUs with it.

However, I know that I need to take my time too. I need to prepare my joints, tendons, and ligaments for the heavier load. I can't be stupid and hurt myself.

But I have goals.

Training goals. These will take focus, determination, and grit. They have nothing to do with how I look. I'll keep branching out, pushing myself, to see who I can be.

Here's what I did today:

Press Circuit
Clean & Push Press - 20 kg - 4 L, R
Clean & Push Press - 16 kg - 7 L, R
Clean & Press - 12 kg - 5 L, R

3 Rounds - 1 minute between rounds

Burpee - Swing Circuit
2 Burpees - 20 Swings
4 Burpees - 18 Swings
6 Burpees - 16 Swings
etc. down to
20 Burpees - 2 Swings

Monday, October 20, 2008

4:15 Brought It

By 4:15 p.m. I had taken my spot on the TKD room floor. 16 kg kettlebell ready for action. I did some Z Health warm ups, set my timer for 17 minutes, and got jiggy with the EDT.

PR Zone 1
BW Squats
One-legged Deadlifts (16 kg)

I did 150 squats and 150 DL (75 each leg) in 17 minutes. Man, my low back keeps having spasms during the DLs. Anyone got a suggestion for me to get that to stop?

PR Zone 2
Tricep Dips

I did 90 pushups and 152 tricep dips in 17 minutes. At the 15 minute mark I had 78 pushups and 132 dips, which is up from my numbers last week. Go me!

I finished off my session with a 10-1 descending ladder of high pulls with the 16 kg. That took me 5:00 on the dot.

Well, I've got a good start to burning off the crap I put in my body this weekend. I know I'll sleep well tonight!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Mondays Don't Always Stink

I made some great strides since last Monday.

EDT (Escalating Density Training)
Last week:
52 pushups and 91 tricep dips in 15 minutes.
This week:
72 pushups and 120 tricep dips in 15 minutes.

High pull descending ladder 10-1 L, R w/ 16 kg
Last week: 5:15
This week: 4:03

Why the improvement? I have no idea. I did vow to improve my numbers from last week, and boy, did I ever.

Now I get to top these numbers next Monday. Yeah Baby!!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Friday Mojo

Today's training was fantastic!! I had focus and felt strong.

V02 Max Snatch 15:15
7 Reps w/12 kg
40 rounds = 560 snatches

Not too long, not too short, but just right.

Waiter Windmills
12 kg - 5 x 5 L, R

It's amazing how much of a difference it makes to open your hand and hold the KB like a tray when doing windmills. That's a neat trick to make a bell that is getting too light work harder for you. I can do windmills with the 16 kg, no prob. Using the 12 with the open palm worked my stabilizing muscles differently. Very cool.

As far as Fridays go, this one was sweet. I had a great end to my week. I'm still feeling my center and my focus. Usually by Friday afternoon I'm toast, dragging my sorry butt from class to class. Not today. I felt energized. I don't know what I did right, but I need to do more of it. I guess I found my Friday Mojo!

I'm ready to go do another long Z session. I'll have to decide on my Z music. The new Staind album is pretty good. That's probably going to be my muse tonight.

I want to wish Brad and Jordan Nelson a safe and successful trip to Africa. You two are amazing!! Married less than a month and you're off helping others. I can't wait to hear all about your adventure. I'm praying for all to go well.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Z Health - Finding the Lost

I found something today, something I forgot I lost. Huh?

I found my center. I found it while focusing during my Z drills today.

Let me explain. After yesterday's training, I was, shall we say, a bit sore. I had to do Wednesday's training today because I won't be able to on Wednesday. I knew that if I wanted any chance of completing the training today, I would need to Z. Brad had quite a few push presses planned.

First, I did the following:

20 Burpees - 2 Swings (16 kg)
18 Burpees - 4 Swings
16 Burpees - 6 Swings
etc. to
2 Burpees - 20 Swings

That took me 9:30. I looked at the press work on deck.

Clean & Push Press - 20 kg - 3 L, R
Clean & Push Press - 16 kg - 6 L, R
Clean & Military Press - 12 kg 4 L, R
Three rounds

Time for Z. I needed strength, physical and mental. I set my iPod for several of my new tunes - Staind "Tangled up in You" and "Believe," Shinedown "If You Only Knew," 3 Doors Down "Your Arms Feel Like Home" and "She Don't Want the World." (I need the right music for all of my activities. I'm very tied to music.) I closed my eyes and practiced the Z drills that my body told me it needed. Everything clicked. The movement, my breathing, the release. Then, the calm.

I've been running like a crazy person for weeks. My Z session chased all that tension and anxiety away. All my attention was directed toward my center. It's so hard to explain how it feels to be in the "Z Zone" except to say it is a calm release. I usually cry when I'm there. I can't help it. Today was no exception.

Now that I felt my center, I was ready to press those bells. Each lift was a joy. I was aware of my entire body; every part felt connected. Amazing!!!

I need to take the time to do this more often. There are too many times I just rush through a few Z drills and move to the next thing that is begging for my attention. I have to stop and focus on my Z. I need to keep my center close now that I found it.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Why Everyone Needs a Trainer

I would never put together a training program like this one for myself. It takes an objective outsider to put a person through the hell that is EDT - Escalating Density Training. If I had to count on myself to come up with this torture device, it would never happen. That also means I would never push myself beyond my comfort zone.

Conclusion: Hire a trainer to push you to your limits and beyond.

Here is a breakdown of the EDT fun Brad prescribed for me today.

PR Zone 1 - 15 Minutes
1. Box Jumps - 150
2. One-Leg Deadlifts w/16 kg KB - 75 per leg (150 total)

Okay - can you say spasms in the lower back. Yeeouch!

PR Zone 2 - 15 Minutes
1. Pushups - 52
2. Dips off Bench - 91

Most of the reps were completed in the first 10 minutes. After that, my arms were spaghetti. My upper body strength is almost non-existant apparently. I have a fire in my belly to change that. (I need more cowbell!) I know I'm female, but that doesn't mean I have to be such a girl!!

As if the EDT weren't quite enough, Brad threw in

High Pulls - w/ 16 kg KB
Descending ladder 10 L, R down to 1 L, R.

This took me 5:15 to complete. I could have done it faster; however, I couldn't feel my hands after the pushups and dips, so I had to rest my grip to prevent the KB from flying out of my hands.

I can't wait to see my EDT numbers after a few weeks. I am confident that I will do my RKC community proud! Hold me to task. Don't let me wuss out. Brad is going to be in Africa for a couple of weeks, so I will need you all to hold me accountable while he is gone.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Winding Down

My weekend is here. The weather was gorgeous today. My classes were fun. Jerry, the kids, and I had a fantastic meal at our favorite restaurant after I had another good training session. Here's what I did.

Burpee to Clean - 16 kg - 7 L, R
Swings - 20 kg - 15 reps
Clean & Press - 12 kg - 8 L, R
Walking Lunges - 10 L, R
Hindu Pushups - 8 reps

4 rounds - no rest between drills, 1 min. between rounds

My knee has felt pretty good this week. I think it is almost healed, though I don't know what I did to it in the first place. Oh well!

Now I'm ready to change into my jammies and get ready to watch O'Reilly. Did you see him chew out Barney Frank last night? I couldn't believe my eyes and ears. And in the words of Forrest Gump, "that's all I've got to say about that."

Thursday, October 2, 2008


Wednesday training rejuvinated me. I felt strong and exhilarated after I completed the tough training program.

3 Rounds of each "couplet"
Step-ups onto 18 inch bench w/2 12 kg bells - 8 L, R
Squats - 2 12 kg bells - 6

Rows - 16 kg - 10 L, R
Pushups - 10

Bench jumps - 12
High Pulls - 16 kg - 10 L,R

Push Press - 16 kg - 7 L, R
Tricep Dips - 10

I'm looking forward Friday's training. Today I'm off. Good thing - I'm a little sore! That's how I know I didn't wuss out. HA! ;-)