Sunday, December 30, 2007

Simply Moving

I've decided to still pursue the KISS principle with my training. Simple but effective. That's what i'm after. I want strength and health. Here's how i'm going about it lately...

12/29 - Saturday

Z health routine
TGU w/ 24kg
3/3 x 4 sets
2 handed Swings w/ 24kg
20 x 5 sets
Swings w/ 24kg
10/10 x 5 sets

12/30 - Sunday

Z-health warmup
Same side One Legged Dead Lift w/ 32kg
5/5 x 5 sets
MP to Windmill w/ 24kg
5/5 x 5 sets - I like these
Pull-ups w/ 16kg
3 x 5 sets

That's it. Nothing fancy. But it will get the job done.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Back in the Saddle

Well, after about a 2 week lay off, I'm back at it. I got lots of rest and did lots of Z. Over the last few days, i've eased into training with some light swings, snatches, TGU's and windmills. Windmills feel so good... Anyway, today I got my feet a little wetter:

Same Side, One legged Dead Lifts w/ 24kg: 5/5
Bottoms Up Press w/ 24kg: 5/5
Pull-ups: 6
Windmills w/ 24kg: 3/3

I repeated this "circuit" 5 times. I was in no rush to complete it so that I could focus on good form and generating tension. Everything felt solid and good.

That's today's session, Tomorrow brings cardio. Yes, swings to the rescue.

Hope everyone had a good Christmas.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Something About Christmas Time...

It's almost here! I love this time of year. Ever notice how everyone around you seems to be just a little happier this time of year? Ever notice that you're happier this time of year? I know there are plenty of exceptions, but for the most part this world, our communities, our homes and our lives seem just a little bit brighter around Christmas time. I think it's because Love is in the air. And it's contagious, infectious and wonderful. People are nice to each other. Families and friends get together. People give gifts to loved ones; to strangers. People donate gifts to those in need. People give themselves. People start living like the Person Christmas is all about. People start Loving. God sent Jesus here because He Loves Us. Jesus lived a life of Love and changed the world forever. Like it or not, that is why we have this wonderful time of year called Christmas. In the end (and the beginning) it's all about Love. Merry Christmas!!!

Friday, December 14, 2007

God Bless George Washington Carver

For he is the father of the peanut... Since i'm not training this week, and i'm bored i thought I'd say a little about my favorite food: peanut butter. To me, there is not much food that peanut butter can't make taste better. By itself on a spoon, or on top of a banana, peanut butter rocks. This food is solely responsible for keeping me at my current weight. Here are some of my favorite snacks w/ peanut butter:

pb and banana (i eat about 3 to 4 of these a day!)
pb and apple - granny smith
vanilla protein and pb mixed together like pudding
vanilla yogurt and pb
ritz crackers with pb and marsh mellow - roasted in the oven - w/ a glass of milk
(only for very special occasions)
chocolate pb - available in stores!
even a pb and turkey sandwich is kinda good.
and of course, the old stand by: pb on a spoon

I like the natural no stir versions.

Well, that's it. I have a lot of crazy pb recipes but i wouldn't want you to think me too strange...

Sunday, December 9, 2007


Well, I took it easy this week. Still lots of Z and streching. As far as my training went, I practiced lots of turkish get-ups and windmills with a light kb. A few slow, light swings here and there and a lot of pull-ups. My glutes seem to be better. I have more of my usual range of motion now when doing windmills. Oh, and I can sit for longer periods of time now! That's good...

I realized something the other day that sucks. I've done all this training, tearing my body down and never did anything to help it recover. My nutrition has sucked over the last few months. I've trained harder and ate less. Less food, less vitamins, just less. My muscles always feel tired and I press on - whipdeedoo. I forgot to feed them, to rest them. Now, they've turned on me.

This week I'm going to try something completely new to me. REST and FOOD. Well, that's what i'm going to do, but not because I think it will help. I have to. More on that later... Anyway, hopefully my body will forgive me and recover. Hey, it's almost Christmas. I wonder if I can find anything good to eat?

Have a good one!

Monday, December 3, 2007


Last week was a down week for me. At the advice of my friends, I decided to take it easy. I had a week of Z-health and stretching. Yep, took a week off, on purpose... And I learned something: i didn't wither away! Anyways, thanks to everyone for your advice, I appreciate it.

Saturday, i didn't completely rest. I had the opportunity to train 3 outstanding gentlemen in Zebulon, NC. It's so much fun teaching people how to use kettlebells. And, it felt good to do some get-ups!

So good that today (Monday), I did some light get-ups with the 16kg. Felt really good. Then i did some pull-ups and halos. All followed by more Z and stretching.
And with any luck, i'll still feel good tomorrow.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Let Down

You know what the best part of Thanksgiving is? (for me anyway...) Family. What a wonderful thing. It's a shame we only get together like this once or twice a year. Family is cool. I had a great Thanksgiving and I hope you did.

Now on to business...

Ended the week with 295 lbs x 5 on the deadlift. Started the week with 285 lbs. May have to change the plan a bit. A few weeks ago I bent over to pick up some fire hose and felt a sharp pain in my butt, hip and hamstring. Thought not too much about it, however i'm thinking more about it lately as it is bothering the crap out of me. I can no longer sit in a chair for long periods of time. That's a good thing, right? Anyway, Dead lifts are starting to get uncomfortable; atleast some of the time. Can't be a good thing though... So maybe, if I've learned anything from the past and I can learn not to be so stubborn, I should change away from dead lifts or anything else that causes pain. That's right, no more sitting in chairs either.

So, what to do? I should avoid pain. I love my kbells. So far it seems they don't cause any pain; certainly not as much as riding in a car does. Maybe my kbells love me too!
We'll see. I am/was enjoying deads. Although, they don't always hurt.......

Have a good one.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007


It's been a good year. I've met a lot of good people; great people. I've made some really cool friends. I went to Minnesota for RKC Level 1 & 2; Adventures I will never forget. I've had the opportunity to train and infect several people with kettlebells. I have a beautiful wife who puts up with my insatiable insanity. I have two beautiful boys who have helped me see the world through a different lens. Being a husband is a blessing. Being a daddy is an honor and a gift I could never deserve.

I have had a great year. All the annoyances, pains, inconveniences are really nothing in the grand scheme of things. They are just distractions. I think that's why we have them. They try to make us lose sight of what's important, of how blessed we are. I admit sometimes, most of the time, I get distracted. But once in a while I see a bigger picture. It's a gift just to be here. I really have a hard time wrapping my head around the idea that I get to live this life. I've never done anything to deserve the blessings I have. Nor could I ever deserve them. I am blessed. I am Loved. And for that I am thankful. Happy Thanksgiving.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

My Progress

Well, it's been another week of Power to the People. I've been waving down 10 lbs at the start of each week for my dead lifts and side/bent presses. Instead of going through each day, I thought i'd just post how the week ended. The progression has been steady and surprising.

DL w/ 285 lbs x 5 - felt easier than 275 lbs did the other day!
DL w/ 260 lbs x 5
Bent Press w/ 80 lbs x 5/5 - this is great! I only got it 3 times last week and probably should have waved the weight down lower at the start of the week.
Bent Press w/ 70 lbs x 5/5

Also, still been practicing snatches and Long Cycle Clean and Jerks. I really enjoy these practices. I feel the movements are crisp and I'm staying fresh.

So that's it. This week has stayed on track. I plan on continuing w/ PTTP for another 3 weeks, then taking a break. That's the plan...

Today, I just did some very focused Z and windmills w/ 16kg. Trying to stay loose and flexible.

Oh, I'm in the mountains on a small vacation and it snowed! In NC, it was snowing. Just 2 days ago it was 78 degrees! I love this state.

Have a good one!

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Second Verse, Same as the First!

As you might imagine, this week's routines look pretty much like last week's. That's kind of how this works. Nothing fancy or flashy, just a steady pace. Yes, it's the KISS principle. I'm keeping it simple, thanks to Pavel...

DL w/ 255 lbs x 5
DL w/ 230 lbs x 5
Side press w/ 65 lbs x 5
Side press w/ 60 lbs x 5
Followed up with snatches again (just for practice, less I forget...)
16kg x 25/25, 25/25, 25/25

DL w/ 260 lbs x 5
DL w/ 235 lbs x 5
Bent press w/ 70 lbs x 5
Bent press w/ 65 lbs x 5

Pull ups b/w sets: 5,5,5,5

DL w/ 265 lbs x 5
DL w/ 240 lbs x 5
Side press w/ 75 lbs x 5
Side press w/ 65 lbs x 5

NW leg raise b/w sets: 5,5,5,5

DL w/ 270lbs x 5
DL w/ 245 lbs x 5
Side press w/ 80 lbs x 1! - No go bro. Just got one rep each side. Unexpected...
Side press w/ 70
lbs x 5 - No problem here. 10 lbs makes a big difference.
Followed up with Long Cycle C&J (for practice)
w/ 2(16kgs) x 15,15,15,10

Tomorrow was to be another go at the bent press with 85 lbs. However, I may need to rethink that one. I may need to set 'er down. We shall see, I may have had an off day today!


Friday Morning...
DL w/ 275 lbs x 5 - this felt so heavy :(
DL w/ 245 lbs x 5
Bent Press w/ 80 lbs x 3 each side. I had to try...
Bent Press w/ 70 lbs x 5

Now I will rest a couple of days and evaluate.
Have a good weekend.

Friday, November 2, 2007

The Road I'm On

Nothing exciting to report, staying with the Power to the People Plan. I like it. I'm not tired and feel pretty fresh throughout the day. Here is the rest of the week's story:

DL w/ 255 lbs x 5 reps
DL w/ 230 lbs x 5 reps
Side Press w/ 65 lbs x 5 reps
Side Press w/ 60 lbs x 5 reps
Naked Warrior Hanging Leg raises b/w sets = 4 sets of 5

DL w/ 260 lbs x 5 reps
DL w/ 235 lbs x 5 reps
Side Press w/ 70 lbs x 5 reps
Side Press w/ 60 lbs x 5 reps

Then PRACTICED long cycle clean and jerks with 2(16 kgs) x 15, 15, 15
these felt good, but they did get me a little winded...

DL w/ 265 lbs x 5 reps
DL w/ 240 lbs x 5 reps
Bent Press w/ 75 lbs x 5 reps
Bent Press w/ 65 lbs x 5 reps

(i think the bent presses felt heavier than i thought they should...)

Now, I rest for a couple of days. Well, i'm sure i'll keep practicing my Z drills...

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

The Plan So Far...

Well, so far the plan is good. That is to say, I like it. I am not any where near tired after my training, I actually feel fresh. Who new? Anyway, here is how it is going:

DL with 245 lbs x 5 reps
DL with 225 lbs x 5 reps ( i don't have any 2 1/2 lb plates so it's not quite 10% less than the first set.)

Side Press with 55 lbs (on bar) x 5 reps
Side Press with 55 lbs (on bar) x 5 reps (it was so easy, i just kept the same wt.)

Snatches w/ 16kg: 25/25 x 3 sets.
This was slow and easy, just practicing. Don't even think my heart rate went up...

I felt great.

DL w/ 250 lbs x 5 reps ( i don't have any 2 1/2 lb plates so the bar was unbalanced by 5 lbs - not noticable)
DL w/ 225 lbs x 5 reps

Side press w/ 60 lbs x 5 reps ( the bar was unbalanced by 5 lbs - not too noticable - but i'll bet it's good for me!)
Side press w/ 55 lbs x 5 reps

Did Tactical Pull ups between all sets: 4 sets of 5 reps

Felt great!

That's it. Steady the pace wins the race.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Power to Me.

Still sticking with my plan, but it is now modified. Change is good, right?
Friday, i went the Power to the People route on my training. I'm going to try and give this a clean go. It may rejuvenate me, at least that is my hope.

DL w/ 255 x 5 reps
DL w/ 230 x 5 reps

Bent Press w/ 70lb (on bar) x 5 reps
Bent Press w 65lb (on bar) x 5 reps

I thought i'd use fridays for bent presses...

Saturday and Sunday:
Z-health and that's all.

That's the new plan. Mondays i'll wave down the loads and build up to fridays.
Again, that's the plan...

Tuesday, October 23, 2007


It's fun to infect people with kettlebells. I did a workshop last week at my local health club and the attendees are showing all of their friends. They look so excited and happy. It's amazing to see people on fire about exercising. I love it. The kettlebell has power. A dumbbell could never light someone's wick the way a kettlebell can. I'm not against dumbbells, mind you. I'm just so passionate about kettlebells. I think that passion is spilling out to other people and infecting them. Not all infections are bad.

For me this week, i'm continuing on with my plan. Still dead lifting, still doing pull ups and side presses.


DL w/ 245: 4 sets x 3 reps

Pull ups w/ bw: 4 sets x 5 reps

Side Press w/ 24kg: 4 sets x 4 reps

Doing my best to create total body tension on each rep. This is exhausting. But i feel great after i'm done. It's a very short and sweet workout.


Just practicing DBL jerks and snatches w/ the 16's. Trying not to do too much or get a "workout". Also did some windmills. My right hamstring is suddenly tight as a tick. A tick with a big knot in it.

Anyway, tomorrow more dead lifts. Up to the big 255lb! Not much i know, but i'm practicing and regrooving. And I have a plan i must stick with.

See ya.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

It's dead, I'm not.

Monday I ended up training. I started dead lifting again. But, I'm going to ease into it like a warm bath and not dive into it like an ice cold pool. It's time I start applying all this knowledge I'm collecting on myself and not just other people...

Monday's dead lift was light, just trying to see if my body remembered it.

A1: 225lbs for 4 sets x 3 reps. Ah yes, it feels familiar.
A2: Pull ups w/ body weight for 4 sets x 5 reps. Elbows have no problems!
I really focused on tension. Tension is Strength, but tension is also tiring.
Then I got dumb and did double snatches w/ the 24 kgs for
5 sets of 5. Too much after dead lifts...

Wednesday, back for more.

A1-Dead lift w/ 235lbs for 4 sets x 3 reps
A2-Pull ups w/ 16kg for 4 sets x 3 reps
feeling good
Side press while holding a bell in each hand, staying tight.
16kgs 4/4, 4/4 --> 24kgs 3/3 -->
16kg(hold),24kg (press) 3/3
This was challenging on the old obliques.

Anyway, I'm going to ease into the dead lift and practice strength.
My plan is 3 times a week. Going to keep the reps LOW and wave the load down every 2 weeks. On the inbetween days I'm kbellin' for cardio and beauty!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Time Out

Tried something new today. I did nothing. I did this yesterday too. Can't remember the last time i just decided not to train 2 days in a row. I'm tired. Don't know why, but I'm tired. So, i took a break. May even take one tomorrow. Guess i'll wait and see. The way my body feels, i'm sure i need the rest.

Anyway, had a pretty good week. Training has been good. Tried pull ups again for the first time in about 3 months. They felt good. I actually bought the Tactical Strength Pull-up bar/stand in July and never even got to use it because my elbows were so angry. Well now i can finally say i've used it. Only did 4 sets of 5 with my body weight, but hey i did pull-ups and they didn't hurt...

Yesterday I had another Kettlebell Workshop at a friend of mine's studio. It went well. The victims had prior kbell experience so it was pretty smooth. One of them has sighned up for the RKC cert in April. She'll definately be ready.

I've taken a side job of managing personal trainers at the local health club where i live. This should be a fun/interesting experience for me. I'm trying to infect the club with kettlebells. I'm also having a kbell workshop there tomorrow. May the infection begin...

Over the last few days i've been thinking about changing the way i train. I think i want to focus more on pure animal strength. I even went to the sporting good store the other day to buy some 45lb plates for doing dead lifts. Just incase i needed them. It's been so long... I've been practicing heavy one legged dead lifts with my kbells lately. They don't bother my elbows or my shoulders. Having said that, i think i am almost out of the "Pain Woods." The body is feeling pretty good pain-wise. But it is just flat out exhausted...

Anyway, I'm excited and greatful to be able to do kbell workshops. It's so awesome to teach others about something I love to do so much. I really can't believe I get to live this life sometimes. I am blessed.

So are you.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Stumbling Blocks or Launch Pads?

Kind of a neat weak. I've been working with double kb lifts/exercises this week. Just mostly with the 16kgs; once in a while the 24kgs. My shoulder is still jacked up. Well, jacked up when it comes to any kind of pressing movement. Infact, Tuesday my shoulder said it didn't even like the push-up position. It just plain hurt. Funny thing though, it doesn't mind swings, or snatches, or even jerks. So, i've been playing a lot with double snatches and jerks... Maybe not smart, but there is no pain whatsoever. The hips drive the bells up and I catch them with the arms straight beside the ears. I get a good stretch for a few seconds and then I lower them. With all the frustration I had with my elbows, I gotta say, it feels so good to snatch. Maybe I'll be able to press again soon, but for now (and again...) I will focus on what I can do. Oh yeah, LOTS OF Z DRILLS TOO.

By the way, I had an infected/swollen salava gland in my lip. (I need to learn to eat more carefully) It was Angelina Jolie huge. I got it CUT OUT Thursday. Now my lower lip is bigger than my whole head! And it hurts. Who needs botox? Anyway...

Double Front Snatch w/ 16kgs
Double Snatch w/ 24kgs
Double Jerks w/ 16kgs
Double Snatch w/ 16kgs

Swings - not many - 15 sec on/15 sec off

w/ 32kg (2 hands) x 10 reps of 10 sets = 100 reps
w/ 24kg (1 hand) x 10 reps of 10 sets = 100 reps
Really just focusing on flexing the lats and sucking the shoulders in.
Overhead Holds

w/ 16kg: 30 sec/30 sec, 30 sec/30 sec
w/ 2(16kgs): 60 sec, 60 sec


A1-Pistols w/16kgs
A2-One Legged Row w/ 24kgs
Double Front Snatch w/ 16kgs
Double Snatch w/ 16kgs
20,20,20,20,20 - WHOOOOO! Felt great and solid. Also Tiring...
Farmer's walks w/32kg: 30 sec / 30 sec x 3 sets
w/ 2(32kgs): 30 sec x 3 sets


Swings 30sec on/30 sec off
w/ 16kg: 17 reps x 10 sets = 170 reps
w/ 24kg: 17 reps x 10 sets = 170 reps
Halos w/ 16kg

Todays workout:
A1- Front Squats w/ 24kg x 5,5 --> w/ 32kg x 5,5
A2- One legged rows w/ 24kg x 5/5, 5/5, 5/5, 5/5
DBL Jerks w/ 16's x 10,10,10,10,10
DBL Snatches w/ 16's x 10,10,10,10,10
DBL Jerks w/ 24's x 5,5,5,5,5
Farmers Walks w/ 24kg x 30 sec each arm x 4 sets

Well that's it. Just playing and learning. Happy to be snatching and jerking. Slightly bummed about the shoulder, but this could be another good learning opportunity. The elbows feel next to great and I'm still Kbellin'. Life is good. Have a good weekend.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Back at the Beach

For some reason it seems like I have some of my best workouts at the beach. Don't know why. I guess it means i should go to the beach more often! Anyway, i was up so early this morning I did my workout outside again. The moon was full and big. Very cool looking. :Yep, i worked out in the moon light and then later the sun rise. Very cool. Today's workout was with the 16kgs. Trying to focus on moving pain free...

A1-Pistols w/ 16kg
A2-High tension push-ups
5 reps x 8 sets
Double Swings w/ 2(16kg)
20,20,20,20,20 = 100
Double Bruce Lee Front Snatch (from jason brown's website) w/ 2(16kg)
Double Snatch w/ 2(16kg)
10 reps x 10 sets = 100 These felt great!

Did numerous sets of halos and Z-health toe pulls between sets of snatches

All in all, feeling good.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

New Week - New Issue

Well, last week was interesting. Monday I had that great snatch workout. Tuesday was pretty awesome too. During my workout, I did double military presses for 2 sets of 2 reps with 2(32kg)! I was overjoyed to say the least. I only weigh 160 lbs now and the elbows felt great. I guess all those get-ups helped me keep my strength, or even made me stronger.

Then on thursday I did another press workout, only with the 24kgs, and my shoulder started feeling weird. Thursday afternoon, i cant even raise my arm over my head. My teres minor seems angry at me for some reason. Good news: i'm no longer focused on my elbow. Bad news: i'm focused on my shoulder. Good news: it'll be okay, i'm learning to use Z health and i know some great kettlebell exercises for the shoulder.

This could be a blessing in disguise, i may keep getting smarter and smarter if i keep getting these annoying inconveniences...
Oh well, time to go do some toe pulls.

I'll keep posting the events of this coming week. I'm curious to see how it works out my self.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Sunset Beach

Well, the name of the beach is Sunset, but i was up with the sun rise this morning. A new day, and i'm feeling pretty good. So good, i decided to try my hand at the VO2 max workout. Elbows are telling me they can snatch the 16kg alright so, what the heck! Let's do it.

VO2 Max Snatch workout w/ 16kg. 15 sec on, 15 sec off.

50 sets! hitting b/w 6 to 7 reps per set -> a minimum of 300 reps
Elbows feel great!

then i did 10 sets of swings immediatley w/ 15 sec on and 15 sec off.
10 reps per set. -> 100 reps

I would have done more sets of swings, but i was outside on the deck of the beach house and apparently i woke my wife up with all the heavy breathing and such... She wasn't happy and politely told me to stop! Anyways, 60 total sets and i wasn't even tired. What a great day and it's not even 8:00 am yet!

I love Mondays. Have a good one.

Thursday, September 13, 2007


It's on. Today was a good day. I did some snatches. I've been doing some here and there over the past few days, but today I decided to do a little more. About 200. Only with the 16kg, but hey, I'll take it. And, they felt good. I completely focused on hip drive and hip hinge. Powering it up with the hips and absorbing it with a good hinge on the way down. Nice and slow with a good 1 sec pause at the top. Man it felt great. I'm getting better everyday. I'm not 100% yet, but I have it in my sights.

Today's routine:

Snatch w/ 16kg
10/10 x 10 sets w/ 15 to 25 sec rest b/w sets (towards the last sets, i really didn't rest much if at all b/w sets)

Swings w/ 24kg
This was pretty tiring. I was fresh as a daisy after the snatches, but dry as a weed after the swings.

Like I said though, it all felt good. Really concentrating on how I lower the bell. Don't want to back track with the elbows.

Anyways, I'm happy. Hope you are too.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007


Well, I got my Z-health manual a few days ago. Been practicing the moves. I got hooked when just a few moves seemed to help my elbows. I went from pressing very little weight (16kg) and snatching hardly ever to pressing the 32kg and snatching quite a bit. It feels good mentally, but maybe a little too aggressive physically. So I may tone it down a bit but I can't say I would have done these things if it weren't for the Z-health drills. Maybe I could have, but the reduction in elbow pain since I started the Z-health drills is very noticable.

SO, I got a manual and a dvd. The moves seem real simple, only I can't really do them with any sense of grace or accuracy. So i'm trying to learn the moves to teach my nerves to make my muscles do what they're supposed to do. The funny thing about Z-health is that I am still clueless as to how it works or how it helps get rid of pain. But one phrase keeps running through my head that I heard over and over again at the RKC certs: Do you want to understand hydrodynamics, or do you want to be able to swim? I want to swim (or snatch...).

Well, time to go do some ankle circles.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

A Come Back?

Could it be? My elbows feel miraculously better today. Hmmm? I spent most of the day yesterday doing Rif's stick extensions and the Z-health drills Geoff showed me. Today, things feel good. I like that...

Today's workout was pretty good, too. Atleast for me anyways. I went heavy. Heavy getups, heavy windmills and semi heavy swings.

TGU w/ 32kg
2/2 x 4 sets
Windmills with 32kg
3/3 x 5 sets
Dbl swings w/ 2 (24kgs)
10 x 10 sets

Getups felt heavy, windmills felt good. Together they made 9 sets each arm. I snatched up the 32kg before each set, and today i lowered it the "snatch" way. Elbows - I still have them! No pain, no rain. I'll take it. Elbows have felt great all day. I'll take that too. It might be a come back, still too soon to tell. Don't want to rush anything. BUT, it could be... And if so, I would just like to thank God, Rif, Geoff, Franz, Brett and Doug. You guyz rock.

Goodnight everybody.

Monday, August 27, 2007


Interesting day today. I met Geoff Neupert today. Aside from being a really great guy, he introduced me to Z-health. I don't know enough about Z-health to say anything about it other than I need to learn more about it. I'm convinced there is something to it. I walked away from Geoff's studio feeling pretty doggon good! So, before today I was curious, now i'm fascinated. So, i'll be trying to learn more about Z-health.

Also today, I ran across a link to Eugene Sandow's books from the dragondoor forum. I read a couple of his books online, and i've got to say he was a genius. A man before his time, or atleast a man before our time. It's amazing how we have complicated exercise and health. Eugene was perhaps the greatest strongman that ever lived and he knew the secret to strength. Simple focus. That's it. Simple Focus. Put your mind on the muscle. Put your mind in the muscle. Concentrate. The weight doesn't matter, the focus and the tension matter. It was an awesome thng to read his material. It was a humbling thing as well...

Anyway, these two events have been the highlight of my day. To sum it up, I feel enlightened. Z-health is cool, Geoff Neupert is a great guy, and Eugene Sandow was a simple genious.

Oh I worked out too:

TGU w/ 32kg
1/1 x 5 sets
Windmills w/ 32kg
2/2 x 5 sets
DBL swings w/ 2(16kg)

See ya.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Another Week

Well, training this week was interesting. Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday were pretty much carbon copies of last week's training. Thursday and Friday, however, were different. Different for two reasons:

1) I didn't feel like doing anything. Nothing. This never happens, I never feel like doing nothing. I must be tired, or toast.
2) I did something anyway and actually had what I would call 2 great workouts. Go figure.

Both Thursday and Friday I didn't want to do what I did last week, and I just felt zapped. But thursday morning a voice in my head (I'm really certain it wasn't my own voice.) said "try presses today, but keep it light." So, I did. I pressed the 16kg. I know, big whoop. But it was a big whoop. It didn't hurt my elbows. It felt good. And, it felt great to focus on total tension and get my lats flaring like Cobras. Oh yes, Cobras.

That made Thursday great. But, I have to give credit to that voice. It wasn't my idea to press. I've been afraid to do it.

Thursday's Show:

A1-Pistols w/ 16kg x 4/4, 4/4, 4/4
A2-MP w/ 16kg x 5/5, 5/5, 5/5
B1-Single Leg DL w/ 2(16kg) x 5/5, 5/5, 5/5
B2-DBL MP w/ 2(16kg) x 5, 5, 5
C1-Windmill w/ 24kg x 3/3, 3/3, 3/3
(I snatched it up into position-bonus...)
C2-Buttoms Up Press w/ 16kg x 5/5, 5/5, 5/5

Again, it all felt great. Yeah for me.

Friday was similar to last Friday, but when i did my TGU's I started from standing and I snatched up the 32kg into position.
No pain, Yeah again for me. Don't know why i tried this, i just did...

Friday's Show:

TGU w/ 32kg
2/2 x 4 sets

Swings w/ 24kg for 10 minutes
210 total

I wasn't tired (winded) but the burn in the butt and hamstrings was a set stopper...

Anyway, things are looking up and I am feeling good.

See ya.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007


How many of us got started with kettlebells just because we were curious? How many of us saw someone else use them, maybe a friend or colleague, and just had to give them a swing? Lately I've noticed that kettlebells are contagious. People seem to get kettlebell fever much like catching a cold or flu. They get around someone who uses them, they pick them up, then boom! They're addicted.

It's a really neat phenomenon. Just at my fire department kettlebells are spreading from one person to another, from on station to another, from one shift to another. It's an awesome thing to witness. People who never before even cared to exercise are drawn to the small looking ball and handle like a moth to a flame.

It's really quite amazing if you think about it. I've seen people run marathons; even have friends that do. But i've never been drawn to running, especially after running a mile. I have a bicycle because i see other people riding them. Thought i'd give that a try; not really my thing. My point is how many things out there in the exercise world have the same feverish effect as a kettlebell? People seem to stick with it, then spread their kettlebell germs to others. Don't really know why. It's one thing for me to love it and stick with it. I've always exercised since i was 13. It's another thing for people that don't like to walk to the mail box to be suckered in to exercise by swinging a kettlebell. It's pure magic.

If you don't know what i'm talking about, or if you've never picked one up, just try it. But BE CAREFUL; you might catch the kettlebell fever and get in the best shape of your life.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

What I've learned so far.

Well, here are some things i've learned over the last few days. For one, deep tissue massage with the thumper, especially on trigger points, really helps my elbow. For two, I can grip anything if my arm is straight; even heavy kettlebells. For three, I can press all day long if my hand is open and flat. And for five, if i use my grip while my elbow bends, it freakin' hurts. But knowing all this, i'm actually having a lot of fun with handstand pushups on blocks and swings.

For the handstand pushups, i put my hands on blocks to allow my head to lower past my hands so it is more military press like. This has gotten cool for me because I weigh almost 170 (lost 8 lbs since elbow pain started) and I can do these easily. Lately i've been practicing total body tension and really trying to use the lats. Different experience upside down; at least for me.

With the swings, i eased in to them at first about 2 weeks ago. I was scared a little because of having to grip the bell, though it is a hook grip it's still a grip. Well, the swings have been causing no pain or problems. So today i did double kb swings with the 32kgs. I wanted to feel like like i could lift heavy again. It worked, they were heavy. Maybe i can put that 8 lbs back on. Anyway, not even the slightest hint of discomfort.

So, Today's workout looked like this:

A1-Double Swings
2(24kgs) x 5,5,5
2(32kgs) x 5,5,5,5,5 - Wow, heavy. Cool, very cool.
2(24kgs) x 10,10,10,10,10 - So light and easy after 32kgs!

A2- HSPU on blocks x 3 for 13 sets = 39 total reps

I did this today because I did a kb workshop this afternoon called Pulls and Presses. So i had the urge to pull and press....
Oh, and the workshop went well.

Yesterday's workout:

TGU w/ 32kg for 5 minutes = 5 per side
Getting the kb to straight arm position hurt today; fine after arm is straight. Elbow no like bending while gripping. With a lighter kb, I can cheat it up better using other arm.

32kgs x 10 for 10 sets = 100 reps @ 30 sec b/w sets
24kgs x 10/10 for 5 sets = 100 reps @ 15 sec b/w sets
Hand to Hand w/ 16kg x 50 for 5 sets = 150 reps @ 30 sec b/w sets

That's this weeks lesson. Hopefully i'll carry it with me to next week. In September, I hope to ease into snatches. But if the bo's still say no, i just won't go...

Have a good weekend.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

I Am Random

Been reading and studying my RKC manual some today. Trying to prepare for another workshop that I am doing on Saturday. It's good to go back and re-read, re-think, and remind myself of things I already know, did know, maybe forgot, and maybe took for granted. It's amazing some of the little details that I forget. The learning process never stops. If it does, you're dead in the water. I know I could read this manual 1000 times, and though I pretty much know it from cover to cover, I would learn something everytime.

Today I read about cleans and presses. (setting myself up for when i start doing them again, I guess) They seem simple enough, but they are so not simple. Take the press for instance, you could grab the bell and simply press it up with your arm. OR, you could crush grip the bell, brace yourself, tighten and contract every muscle in your body that you are cognitively aware of and wedge yourself between the bell and the ground. Whole body; one solid muscle. Wow..........

Anyways, I'll be teaching presses this weekend. Could you guess?

Today, real simple workout:
A1-Pistols w/ 16kg
3/3 x 6 sets
A2-Handstand Pushups on blocks
4 x 6 sets
B1-Resilient elbow press w/16kg
8 x 3 sets
B2-Windmills w/ 24kg
3/3 x 4 sets

Felt great and fresh as a daisy.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Staying the Course

Been sticking with the plan this week. Almost been 2 weeks now and haven't deviated away from it. I honestly think it may be working. Elbows are having some good days. They remind me every now and then that they are there, but they feel better. And to me that's a good thing.

Doing lots of streching, thumping, rubbing, trigger point therapy, extensor strengthening... Workout wise, lots of get-ups, swings, hand stand pushups on blocks and pistols. Again, I see/feel some progress. It's a little at time, but it's progress. I'm going to try another 2 weeks of this and evaluate as I go...

TGU w/ 16kg for 10 minutes: 20 per side
Swings w/ 16 kg; 15 sec on, 15 sec off
10 reps by 30 sets = 300 reps
Hindu Pushups 10 reps x 3 sets
Body totally tapped/tired/fried. Don't know why, but this zapped me. Long days at the fire station???

A1-Front Squats w/ 24kg
6 x 4 sets = 24 reps
A2-Handstand Pushups on blocks
5 x 4 sets = 20
A3-Halos w/ 16kg
5/5 x 4 sets
B1-Windmills w/ 16kg
5/5 x 4 sets
B2-Resilient French Press w/ 16kg
5 x 4 sets

TGU w/ 24kg for 10 minutes: 15 per side
Double Swings w/ 2(16kg)
10 x 20 sets = 200 reps
Hindu Pushups x 10

That's pretty much how it's been going and what I've been doing... With all the handstand pushups and get-ups i'll bet my press will really increase when I get back to it. We shall see.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

The Right Way

Is there a right way to train? Absolutely! What is it? Well, it may be the thing you like to do, or at least the thing that you will do. Whatever gets you moving. If you hate riding a bike, would riding a bike be the right way to train for you? No matter how good bike riding might be for your body, if you don’t like it, you won’t do it.

Everyone wants to know “What is the best way to train?” It’s really a loaded question that will take decades to answer. There are more effective modalities than others, but for what goals? There are movement patterns that are good for your body and there are movement patterns that are stressful on your body. But none of it really matters if a person can’t pull themselves up off the couch. None of it really matters if a person doesn’t like performing that particular modality. None of that really matters if a person doesn’t even know why they are training.

A better question might be “Which way will you train?”, or “What are you training for?” I’m a firefighter and I want to be ready for whatever. I like to train with kettlebells. To be fair, I’ve been training for 19 years. I’ve tried many different things. Powerlifting, bodybuilding, high intensity training (almost killed my body), all bodyweight training, isometrics, I’ve even tried flexing and moving like animals. Nothing I’ve ever done has been as fun, as effective, and as rewarding as training with kettlebells. Kettlebell training is the best modality of training out there; for me. But that’s me. On that note, however, as a trainer, I’ve never seen clients take to and enjoy training like they seem to do with kettlebells. People seem to fall in love with this beautiful little ball with a handle.

A question I always get is what makes the kettlebell so great? I have an answer for that. But set facts, physics, body mechanics, and whatever else aside. The real answer and the only answer that matters is once you pick it up, it hooks you. You’re addicted. You can’t help but feel powerful with that handle in your hand held high in the air after you’ve gotten up from a Turkish Get-up. You can’t help but be amazed at how hard you’re breathing after you perform your first set of 10 swings. You can’t help but notice how good your body feels after just a few sessions with a kettlebell. Best of all, it is fun. And, it’s hard to ignore the results training with a kettlebell brings.

YES, it’s just another tool in your fitness tool box. But it’s a tool that calls you out, it’s a tool that begs to be used. YES, kettlebell training is just another training modality. But it’s a modality that yields awesomely powerful results. NO, it’s not just a weight with a handle. It’s a kettlebell. It will make you stronger than you’ve ever been. It will give you the heart of a race horse. Don’t knock it till you try it. Pick it up. Swing it, Snatch it, Press it. Or, just look at it and wonder. Smirk at it because it’s not attached to a bench. It may be the right tool for you, it may not…

And yes, there are different styles and philosophies for training when it comes to all modalities. What matters is that you choose the style you enjoy. If you like running, do you like to sprint or do you like to jog? IF you are a sprinter, sprint. IF you are a marathon man/woman, run the marathon. Train for you, your goals and your style.

Oh, as I was saying when I started, there is a right way to train. It’s the way that fits you; the activity/modality that you enjoy. For me, it’s kettlebells.

Friday, August 10, 2007


Yesterday, I practiced a few pistols and handstand pushups for about 30 minutes. Today, I’m still keeping it simple, just doing swings and get-ups. Simple and sinister, so says Enter the Kettlebell. Still trying to concentrate on what my body is doing and how it feels. Really trying to make my swings “pretty”.

A- TGU for 5 minutes
32kg x 6 reps per side

B- 2 hand swings w/ 32kg
15 reps x 7 sets; 30 second rest b/w sets = 105 reps

C- Swings Proper w/ 16kg
10/10 x 10 sets; 30 seconds rest between sets = 200 reps

Get-ups felt heavy; 5 minutes was all I needed. Swings were good. Used a hook grip through-out and tried never to squeeze the bell. Hip hinge was good and crisp, good stretch in hamstrings. Felt fresh when I finished. I’m just so happy to be able to swing.

That’s it, real simple. May or may not workout tomorrow. If I do, it will probably be mostly “Resilient” exercises. I have my first Intro to Kettlebells workshop tomorrow. Hopefully all will go well. Time to grow! The journey has just begun.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

And the Beat Goes On...

Worked on TGU's and swings again today. Keep reading everyone's blogs and their experience/joy/self torture with Kenneth Jay's VO2 Max workout. So naturally, I'd love to try it. But I know I should wait. Again, I will focus on what I can do...

So, why not combine the VO2 max workout with swings. I can do swings, atleast I can for now. Today went something like this:

A-TGU's w/ 24kg
10 minutes --> 14 per side.

Felt good, a challenge today. Monday's workout must have worked on me a little bit. I did have the ambition of a double TGU with the 24 kgs until I picked the one up. Oh well, I now have a goal to train for.

B-2 Hand Swings w/24kg
15 sec on, 15 sec off: 9 reps x 11 sets = 99 reps

C-Swings w/ 16kg
15 sec on, 15 sec off: 9 reps x 36 sets = 324 reps

I'm tired now. No mas, senior.

Did about 10 sets with eyes closed. Trying to focus, trying to get perfect. I'll keep trying...

It's about 13 hours later, elbows and body feel okay throughout most of the day. We'll see what the morning brings.

That's it for now.

Monday, August 6, 2007

What I Can Do

Today started a new beginning for me. I have decided to focus on the things I can do for now and not worry about the things I can't do. If you knew me, you would know this is a monumental decision...

Today, I can do Turkish Getups. I've also decided I will do them extremely well. So,Here's what I did:

A-TGU w/ 16kgs
15 continuous minutes; ended up being 26 reps per side. I know, this is an exercise not a lift. I focused on my body. It was strong through out, the last rep was as strong and pretty as the first rep. 15 minutes, it was easy.

THEN (because i felt strong, and i'm a little crazy), I successfully attempted a double Turkish Getup w/ 2(16kgs)! Twice!

B-Double TGU w/ 2(16kgs)x 2!

C-Towel Swings w/ 24kgs
20, 20, 20, 20, 20 = 100 reps

Focused on body, strong and crisp. Elbows fine.

D-Swings w/ 16kgs
10/10, 10/10, 10/10, 10/10, 10/10, 10/10, 10/10 = 140 reps

Could have done more, but decided to set her down... Elbows felt good. Will pay attention to how they feel the rest of the day and tomorrow when I wake.

I feel good. I was extremely pumped after the double TGU; Especially after doing 15 minutes of TGU's to start with.

So, new week, new day, new focus. I will be good at the things I can do.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Press On, Brother

Today I wanted to work on presses. My friend Rif suggested that I might try some Waiter's Presses to help with my elbow problems. So, in the spirit of keeping my training simple, I just did some presses, pistols and one leg deadlifts. Because I can't train the way I want I'm really trying to focus on my body and using total tension. This is a hard skill to master. For me anyways...

16kg x 5/5
24kg x 3/3, 2/2, 2/2, 2/2
A2-Handstand Pushups
Bodyweight x 5,5,4,4

B1-One Legged DL
2(24kgs) x 5/5, 5/5
2(32kgs) x 4/4, 4/4
Still trying to / pretending to extend wrist while hook gripping bells. Does not seem to aggrivate the elbows...
B2-Waiter's Press- My name is Tim, I'll be your waiter this evening...
24kg x 5/5, 5/5
32kg x 1/1, 1/1, 1/1
24kg x 5/5
If weight is not right over bottom of palm, elbows feel it. But if weight is not near fingers and over bottom of palm, all is well.

Friday I did 11 minutes of TGU's with 24kg => about 13 TGU's per side
Not gripping hardly, no problems.

Thurday's Workout was pretty similar to today's

A1-Dbl front squat
2(16kgs) x 5
2(32kgs) x 5,5,5,5,5,5,5
A2-Handstand Pushups
bodyweight x 3,3,3,3,3,3,3,3

B1-One Legged DL
2(24kg) x 5/5, 5/5, 5/5, 5/5
B2-Bent Press
24kg x 5/5, 5/5, 5/5, 5/5
light weight for me and not gripping hard, no problems...

Well, I've determined one thing out of the last couple weeks of my training: I need a new hobby.
Have a great weekend.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

The World Upside Down

Today, I reached back in my vault of exercises. I love pressing and I want to do it. So I had to think of a way I could press without using KBs. KBs would tempt me to crush grip, or just grip. Either way, I should lay off the grip. SO, I did handstand pushups, elevated on blocks. Hey, these were challenging and they felt oh so good.

A1-Pistols with 8kg: 5/5,5/5,5/5,5/5
A2-Handstand Pushups on blocks: 5,5,5,5
B1-One legged DL with 2(16kgs):

5/5,5/5 => w/ 2(24kgs): 5/5,5/5
(extending wrists and just hooking KBs while doing DLs)
B2-More Handstand Pushups on blocks: 3,3,3,3

I weigh about 170lbs, Handstand pushups on blocks were by no means a walk in the park. A good pressing exercise for me... Practiced pressing with lats and using tension.

Followed all up with 10 minutes of rebounding.

That's all for now.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Getting up

Today, I did TGU's. Nothing fancy, just TGU's followed by some Resilient exercises. I like TGU's. They make me feel strong. Even when the kb is light, they make me feel good and strong. 10 minutes of TGU's with the 16kb. 14 each arm. Not really counting but couldn't help it. There is something awesome about holding that kb overhead from the ground to the sky and back again. Anyway, they felt good and I felt good. I felt so good i fought the urge to do more.

Saturday's Workout:

Tabatas anyone?

Tabata Burpees (20 sec on, 10 sec off for 8 sets)
Tabata Swings without KB (you got to try it before you knock it. really explode and tighten...)
Tabata Pushups
Tabata Bodyweight Squats

Simple. Not easy. Tough enough.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Still Movin'

Still nursing the elbows... So again today, I worked out with exercises that where pain free. As it turns out, I can do TGU's as long as I don't crush grip the handle. Also I tried to be a little creative and do kb-less swings. Yep, just stood there and rapidly hinged back and exploded forward. Surprisingly enough, it felt like I was actually getting something acomplished. I payed particular attention to what my body was doing; practicing the move. Also did some one legged dead lifts trying to extend my wrist while holding light kettlebells. Trying to be creative... Anyway, here it is:

A- TGU with 24kg x 10 minutes (12 TGU's each arm)
B1- KB-less swing x 20 for 5 sets
B2- One legged DL with 2 16kgs x 5/5 for 5 sets
B3- Pavel's Resilient Tricep Extension with 16kg x 6 for 4 sets

Not too much, but I felt good about it. Worked forearm extensers and streched throughout the rest of the day.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Easy Does It.

Today, I kept it easy. Simple. All I did was joint mobility drills followed by light Bent Presses and Pistols. I paid careful attention to how I picked up the kettlebells each time, assisting each hand with the other hand. Trying to ensure I don't aggrivate the elbows. I gave myself one rule: if it hurts, or feels uncomfortable, DON'T DO IT. And for once, I listened to myself. Lucky for me, it didn't hurt! But only because I used light KB's, was careful and not willing to push anything...

A1-Bent Press with 24kg 5/5 x 4 sets
A2-Pistols with 16kg 3/3 x 4 sets

After that I went and ran sprints. More than one way to skin a cat... I'll get an anaerobic workout without using my grippers. (I think kettlebells are easier than sprints.) Oh well, nothing fancy but it feels effective; to me anyway...

Thursday, July 19, 2007

A way Around the Pain?

Welp, got golfer's elbow, or medial epicondylitis, or a pain in the butt inside the elbow. Whatever it is it's frustrating. So now, i'm trying to find away around it. I took a week off, but only a week. And really, i just didn't do kettlebells for a week. Now I'm using light KB's and trying to find what doesn't aggrivate my elbow.

This is what I did yesterday:

Swings with 16kg 15/15 x 4 sets
TGU's with 16kg 3/3 x 3 sets
Jerks with 16kgs 20 x 5 sets

The jerks seemed to bother the elbow but only a little.

Spent the rest of the day stretching my tight, sore elbow (probably the jerks weren't a good thing, or maybe the swings...) and doing finger extensions with rubber bands.

Today, I did this:

Dbl front squats with 16kgs x 5, 5, 5, 5
Dbl Military Press with 16kgs 5, 5, 5, 5 (minimum pain, more like sensation)
Buttoms up press with 16kg 5/5, 4/4 (no pain, go figure...)
Windmills with 16kg 5/5, 5/5, 4/4

Bent press with 24kg 5/5 x 5 sets (no pain. I love these!!!!!!!!!!)
One legged DL with 24 kg 5/5 x 4 sets
Pull-ups on rings (minimum discomfort, probably should not do...)

I'm sure i'll be stretching my elbows and doing forearm extension work for the rest of the day. The pain is always worse during the day and not during the workout. Probably because I love to work out. That's where I'm at. Trying to stay at it, trying to be a little smart about it, but at the same time probably not too smart.

Monday, July 16, 2007

My Wife

We just got back from vacation yesterday and last night my wife decided to write a review on my dragondoor site. This is not something she would normally do. Anyway, she's been through a lot so I thought this was cool...

As Tim's wife, I'm biased about his instruction skills; however, I have to write what my kettlebell training experience has done for me, especially since I have a unique health situation. I have a horrible back. I wore back braces for scoliosis during middle school and part of high school. The braces left me very inflexible and weak. Every summer since those braces, I haven't been able to get up on one ski (deep water start) at the lake - my back just couldn't handle the drag, year after year. There were other things I couldn't do, but this one bothered me the most! In my mid twenties, I worked out very regularly at the gym (traditional exercises), and I thought I was in the best shape of my life. For one time one summer, I actually pulled out of the water on a slalom ski - it was so hard to hang on to the rope, but I did it. Then within a 3 year time span, I had two kids, and then became extremely ill - hospitalized for almost a month. I lost half a lung and a section of a rib bone, plus my lat muscle was cut during surgery. At 5'11", I wasted away to 112 lbs. The last two years since my surgery have been a slow climb back up to a normal weight, and I've always considered myself in rehab mode ever since. Now, for the last 6 months, I've been training with kettlebells - swings, snatches, windmills and side presses. My back has felt the most flexible and stable than it has in years, not to mention I've made the best progress rehabbing my surgery site (shoulder and lat area). This past week at the annual lake trip, I decided to try to slalom ski starting in the deep water. I pulled right up on the second try - and it wasn't even that hard to handle the drag! I was on cloud nine! After the surgery I've been through, plus with the loss of so much muscle mass through the healing process, I never really imagined my core and upper body would have the strength that it used to have at what I thought was its prime. I still don't have all of my muscle mass back, but I'm so much more flexible than I've ever been, and I know how to use what muscle I have. I'm thrilled with the results of my kettlebell training!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Speed Kills

Still on vacation. And enjoying it... Last night we went out for mexican food. I ate more than I normanlly do. But hey, it's a vacation, right? Anyway, this morning I felt like I needed to do something anaerobic. I'm trying to let my body get a little rest this week, but last night's meal makes me want to move around a little. All we brought on our trip is my wife's 8 kg kettlebell so I decided I would run some sprints. I used to be a sprinter. I pretend I still am. I ran sprints for 10 seconds at a time followed by 10 pushups, with a 30 second walk/rest. I did this for 9 times. 9 because 10 seemed really tortuous. After that I just walked around with my wifes 8kg kb over my head letting my shoulders sink down into their sockets.

Spinting was tough but it felt good, it felt familiar. It feels good to feel like you can fly. And its GREAT exercise. Look at a sprinter's body. They are completely ripped. Sprinting is a great tool to use in your exercise/muscle building tool bag. And it helps work off last night's mexican fiesta. So if you have to leave your kettlebells at home ( or whatever else you use) go for a run, but pretend like a rabid dog is after you.

Later that same day...

Holy Cow Batman! I am so sore. It's as if i found a whole bunch of muscles i've never worked before. I wonder how sore i'll be tomorrow. Maybe I should start sprinting on a regular basis again. I use to do it all the time. Kettlebells and sprinting. Sounds like a deadly effective combination.

Monday, July 9, 2007


What a day. I got up early, did my super joints, jump roped a little, practiced pistols and total tension pushups. Spent the rest of the day greasing the elbows from Pavel's Resilient DVD.

Enough about that. I spent most of the day playing with my kids. Both my 4 year old and 3 year old skiied behind a boat for the first time. They were both so proud. Then tonight we went to the carnival and rode rides. A really great family day with a really great family. And the week is just getting started.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Bang Bang!

Bang Bang!

My last freestyle workout for the week was yesterday. I chose to focus on pistols. Very simple routine. I basically mixed up TGU’s with pistols, swings, halo’s and waiter’s presses. The exercises where all done randomly; some of my reps looked like this:

bwx 5/5
16kg x 4/4
24 kg x 3/3
32 kg x 1/1
(not aesthetically pleasing, but I did it. Will work on making it pretty…)

Waiter’s Press
24kg x 5/5 for 3 random sets

24kg x 30
24kg x 40
24kg x 30
24 kg x 30

Over all, a good practice for each exercise. Still really trying to focus on how my body feels and what it’s doing during each rep.

Saturday, July 7, 2007


I'm going on vacation tomorrow. I've been wondering which kettlebells to take with me; the 16kgs, 24kgs? Maybe both sets. I just don't know. On the other hand, I haven't taken a real break from training in quite a while. I probably should just take it easy and enjoy the week. After all, my joints would probably appreciate it. If I didn't love training with kettlebells so much, it wouldn't really be an issue. But I do love it, it's addictive. But perhaps rest is the best thing for me right now. Sounds logical. Yes, it does make sense. I should rest.

I know what I must do... Take the 16kgs.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Portable Perfection

One of the great things about kettlebells is that they are portable. We traveled to be with my wife's family for the forth of july and I didn't want to miss a workout so i took my kbells. At first I grabbed the 24kgs and then i thought maybe i'll "practice" with the 16kgs. After reading Mark Reifkin's blog I thought 16kgs may be plenty, especially since i'm putting them in the back of my accord with my two kids.

As Rif pointed out, light does not mean easy. I tried a freestyle workout again focusing on snatches. I mixed double snatches with double jerks, double front squats, pistols, swings, pushups, halo's and windmills. I got smoked. Period. Double snatches with 16kgs will put something on you, especially when you go from one exercise to another. I stayed fresh for each exercise but Holy Cow Batman, what a workout. Or should I say "practice." After all, I was practicing, trying to use perfect form, trying to concentrate and learn from my body.

You get out of it what you put in to it. That's what I learned today. Oh, I still like the freestyle workout. I do feel fresh and strong while doing it. I especially feel good through out the day after i've done it. Happy 4th!

Monday, July 2, 2007


I've been trying freestyle training over the last few days. I think I kinda like it. I've always wanted to be a circus-like strongman so this may be my ticket. Today, I focused on pressing. For about 35 minutes I mixed front squats, bent presses, pistols, military presses, halos, swings and windmills together. Constantly moving from one exercise to the next, from one hard set to an easier set. Back and forth... It was pretty cool, when i was finished i felt great, i felt strong.

Like I said, my focus was on pressing. Here is some of what I was able to do as I was freestylin' and profilin':

2* 24kg x 5
2 * 32kg x 2 (never done this, ever!)
2*32kg x 2 (now i've done it twice!)
2* 24kg x 5

Bent Press
24kg x 5/5
32kg x 3/3
40kg x 1/1
40 kg x 1/1
32 kg x 3/3
24 kg x 5/5

ofcourse, i was freestyling, so the order wasn't really like this. Everything was all mixed up. But it felt good, and i feel good. I'm going to be a circus strongman when i grow up.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Tension is Strength

I thought this was worth mentioning... The other night at the fire deptartment we were dispatched with EMS for assistance with lifting a patient. As usual the patient was upstairs and had to be carried downstairs, outside, and then placed in the ambulance. Also as usual, I was the one going backwards down the steps holding the end of the back board. This is the posistion that gets most of the weight and stress.

Going down the stairs I felt very nervous and unsteady as I was carrying a lot of weight. Then for some reason I started thinking about what I learned at the RKC: Tension is strength. So I took a breath in through my nose, braced my abs, clinched my butt, and tightened my whole body. Suddenly I felt solid, I felt strong. The patient felt light. The only thing that would have made it better is if I had tightened up before I ever lifted her. Never-the-less, lesson learned. Tension is strength.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Level 2

Well, I did it. Went to MN and completed the RKC Level 2 Workshop. What an experience. I've never met such a great group of people. DragonDoor and Pavel are the best at presenting great, useful information. I truly beleive RKC is to movement what Harvard is to law school. There is no comparison with any other fitness program out there. If you really want to learn what kettlebells are all about, or you just simply want to learn how to move properly, you need to go to an RKC workshop or find an RKC instructor. You won't be disappointed.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Nerves going nuts...

It's Thursday afternoon and i'm getting ready to head to MN for RKC Level 2. I think my nerves are going crazy. I've tried my best to recover from Level 1 two weeks ago. Been doing lots of swings, TGU's and Bent Presses. I did some light jump roping and pull-ups yesterday. I've laid completely off today. My hands seem to be healed. I guess i'm as ready as it gets. I know tonight will be sleepless. I love this stuff...

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Who knew?

I've been training (myself) for 17 years. Religiously. I'm competitive. The world would stop if I missed a day. I was obsessive about it. All those years I trained because I felt I had to, not wanted to, but had to. I really didn't enjoy it; it was just something I did.

Then came kettlebells.... I found these beautiful round cannonballs about 4 years ago, and I've been in love ever sense. I LOVE to train. I look forward to it. Now I train because I want to. If you haven't tried them, you should. Get some and take 'em for a swing. Training can be fun.

TGU w/ 32kg --> 2/2, 2/2, 2/2, 2/2, 2/2
2H swings w/ 32kg --> 20, 20, 15, 15, 15, 15
2H swings w/ 40kg --> 10, 10, 10, 10, 10
2H swings w/ 16, 24, 32kg --> 10/10/10, 10/10/10

Feels good.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Simple Life Part 1

Why do we always try to make things so complicated? If something seems complicated, does it make it seem better, smarter, or more effective? For instance, eating and nutrition. Is this really as complicated as all the diet books and media make it seem? I really don't think so. I think nutrition is supposed to be simple. If it grows naturally the way God made it, it is probably good for you. Eat it. Eat what you need, then move through out the day. Eat whole foods and move. Sounds simple. I think it actually works. People don't like simple though, we want complicated. We want new diet books, we want new exercises, we want magic bullets. Perhaps we are just supposed to live the simple life. We complicate everything. EVERYYHING: we complicate exercise, we complicate eating, we even complicate God. We want rules, regualtions, and hoops to jump through. But maybe all we really need is to move (or exercise if you wish), eat smart, and love God. Sorry, i know this started out about nutrtion, but nothing is simple. Right?