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Archive for April, 2009

As hinted at during the previous post, I did end up doing a straight-up high intensity interval UAW session this afternoon. A good little sweat-fest. I started off for a couple of minutes with bokken cuts, then went right into it.

As I cycled through the first round, I was starting to feel it. A little nausea crept in, and some wheezing breaths–not surprising considering the coat of yellow pollen covering everything.

However, just as I was really feeling the workout, suddenly, in the second cycle after the second ab set, I caught my second wind or something. I actually felt stronger! And felt like I could really pelt the workout, and I was able to kick it up a notch and still catch my breath. It was almost as if I was getting stronger with every set. Very strange, but pleasurable. I had that feeling that time was winding down, and I had plenty of reserve left, so I’d better really give it all I had to make the workout worth it.

And so I did, and it was great! I finished off the squat-thrusts springing as hard as I could from the squat up to the ceiling. Sure, I was breathing hard, but the nausea was gone, I didn’t even feel that lack of oxygen feeling where my teeth get numb, or anything. I felt energized rather than tired. I then took off to the gym and hit the sauna and the jacuzzi. I really started to come down in the jacuzzi, and was ready for a nap. On the way home, I picked up salad fixin’s and such at the supermarket, and really started to feel the hunger.

I was thinking about heading over to the College to help out with the fencing, but I didn’t know if they were still doing it, or if things were winding up in the semester (in the crush of things, sometimes these things don’t get communicated). As it happened, the roommate showed up and said that nope, they aren’t fencing today. Which is cool by me, I could use a nap! 😀

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Friday night, there was no longsword practice, so I went ahead and did a fairly heavy-duty Controlled Fatigue Training (CFT) session. It went a little something like this:

Pre-Fatigue
5 minutes brisk UAW (got through the push-ups and crunches portion)

Core
1-3 reps *attempted* clean & jerk (Oly barbell, 80.285849 kg/177 lbs)
5 reps, each arm, LCCJ (24 kg)
5 reps, side lateral (raising the arms in a wing-like fashion from waist high to above shoulder height) (5 lb dumbells each hand)
5 reps, rear lateral (bent over, arms hanging down below, raising in wing-like fashion to be even with back) (5 lb dumbells each hand)
5 reps, front raise (arms at waist, raising the arms straight ahead to full overhead) (5 lb dumbells each hand)
5 reps, each arm, LCCJ (24 kg)
1-3 reps *attempted* clean & jerk (Oly barbell, 80.285849 kg/177 lbs)
5 reps, each arm, LCCJ (24 kg)
5 reps, side lateral (10 lb dumbells each hand)
5 reps, rear lateral (10 lb dumbells each hand)
5 reps, front raise (10 lb dumbells each hand)

Post-Fatigue
1 minute towel swipes (grabbing one end of a beach towel and vigorously snapping it continuously for the duration)

Repeat for another cycle:

Core
1-3 reps *attempted* clean & jerk (Oly barbell, 80.285849 kg/177 lbs)
5 reps, each arm, LCCJ (24 kg)
5 reps, side lateral (10 lb dumbells each hand)
5 reps, rear lateral (10 lb dumbells each hand)
5 reps, front raise (10 lb dumbells each hand)
5 reps, each arm, LCCJ (24 kg)
1-3 reps *attempted* clean & jerk (Oly barbell, 80.285849 kg/177 lbs)
5 reps, each arm, LCCJ (24 kg)
5 reps, side lateral (10 lb dumbells each hand)
5 reps, rear lateral (10 lb dumbells each hand)
5 reps, front raise (10 lb dumbells each hand)

Post-Fatigue
1 minute towel swipes (grabbing one end of a beach towel and vigorously snapping it continuously for the duration)

You’ll notice that I ran through the Core and Post-Fatigue phases twice, and used Post-Fatiguing at the end of each Core phase, instead of how I’ve done it before, as one big Post-Fatiguing session after all the Core cycles. This is more in line with the CFT book, so I thought I’d give it a try.

You’ll also notice that there is a more strength-centered focus in this one, as I was using the Olympic barbell set for the heavy portion of the “Upside Down Pyramid,” as Ori calls it. It was only 177 lbs (I’m sure Rob is laughing at that! 😀 ), but it had been a while since I tried the barbell groove and I could tell that it had been a while. A different motion than the kbell C&J, that’s for sure. I was able to clean it a few times, and jerk it a few times, but mostly they became high-pulls (a worthy exercise in itself, but not the intent).

I’ll have to go back and get into practice with the barbell C&J, I can see. My main focus is sustained strength and keeping my heart strong, so that’s why I typically go for the high-intensity interval training. But I don’t want too much of my strength and explosive power to be lost. So I’ll be working cycles in to take care of that.

Today, I will probably go for a straight-up UAW session, and maybe some swimming pool time at the Y.

Cheers.

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A kettlebell rep count, that is. Just got finished with a good PT this afternoon.

I scheduled my kbell interval training in similar fashion to what Rob has mentioned from the new Kenneth Jay book, “Viking Warrior Conditioning.” I say similar, because there are specific measuring protocols, and timing factors that are prescribed, and I just ended up winging it, using a similar but not exact protocol.

Basically, I started off with snatches for 30 seconds, took 30 seconds rest, switched hands, 30 seconds on, 30 seconds off. I think you can see where this is going. Because I hadn’t done this type of protocol for a while, and I wanted to maintain it over several minutes, I stuck with the 16 kg bell.

At the end of 10 cycles through (left hand/right hand), I switched to the same pattern with 16 kg LCCJ. Then for a spot of intensity I finished off with two minutes of 32 kg jerks.

This time I counted repetitions (finally!) in order in order to kind of see where I was at with the rhythm, and what was a stimulating but maintainable rep/set count. Of course, this led to possibly miscounting sets… yeah, I know… anyway… if there was a question, I just re-did the set, and I think I did that a time or two, so I might’ve done more than what I’m counting.

For the snatches, I guesstimated a rhythm of 10 snatches per 30 seconds. That seemed about right. Got the blood flowing, but I felt like I could keep it up all day.

For the LCCJ, I guessed at five repetitions per 30 seconds, but that didn’t feel right, so I upped it to six, and that worked out great. It felt really do-able, and easy to keep count. I’m not including that first set in my calculations.

I did notice a little trick I ended up playing on myself. I had intended to do ten minutes of each, but if you look, I did 10 sets each hand, at one minute per hand, which came out to 20 minutes for the snatch set and LCCJ set each. Silly me. I wondered why the stopwatch said 52:55 when all was said and done (includes loosening up with the bokken, and active stretching and cool-down at the end).

Looks something like this:

Loosen up with bokken

Snatch Cycle
30 sec, left hand, 10 snatches (16 kg)
30 sec, rest
30 sec, right hand, 10 snatches (16 kg)
30 sec, rest
x 10 (obviously, 200 snatches for 20 minutes)
(and furthermore, that’s 200 x 16 kg for 3200 kg/7,054.7924 lbs)

LCCJ Cycle
30 sec, left hand, 6 LCCJ (16 kg)
30 sec, rest
30 sec, right hand, 6 LCCJ (16 kg)
30 sec, rest
x 10 (that’s 120 LCCJ for 20 minutes; 120 x 16 kg = 1920 kg/4,232.8754 lbs)

Jerk Cycle
1 minute, left hand, 10 jerks (32 kg)
1 minute rest
1 minute, right hand, 10 jerks (32 kg)
(20 x 32 kg = 640 kg/1,410.9585 lbs)

Stretch/cool-down

Totals:
54:55 minutes
200 snatches (16 kg)
120 LCCJ (16 kg)
20 jerks (32 kg)
5760 kg/12,698.626 lbs

I did get a little blister or callus ripping on the left hand. Went a little longer than I intended, due to a silly miscalculation. But overall, I feel pretty good. Not dead-tired and used up, just nicely worked. The most intense part for me was the two sets of jerks, with the 32. I wasn’t really even breathing heavy until then. We’ll see after some more research about how you’re supposed to feel after the snatches part. I may not have been intense enough with that, and used a slack amount of reps per 30 seconds.

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Tonight’s PT was all-“MetCon,” all-tabata, all-kettlebell.

I’ve been doing a lot of aiki tai-sabaki and ken throughout the week. This kept me loose, warmed-up, and nicely glowing. But of course, you need that hyper-intense workout every now and again, so tonight was the night. I wasn’t going to hoof it up to Manassas for longsword tonight; indeed, any sort of travel up or down I-95 was out of the picture for me today (being a holiday weekend and all).

So, I brought the bokken down, did a few strikes to loosen up a little more, and commenced to sweat it out with the 24 kg bell. For the kbell work, I first did eight 20-second sets of as-rapid as possible snatches, switching hands after each set, with a rest set of 10 seconds in-between lift sets. I ended up with a minute in-between the first four sets and the second.

Then a minute off, and four sets of long-cycle clean and jerks (LCCJ), then a minute off and went on to four sets of jerks.

Cool-down and stretch out.

Like this:

20 sec snatches, left hand (24 kg)
10 sec rest
20 sec snatches, right hand (24 kg)
10 sec rest
… for two more cycles
1 min rest
20 sec snatches, left hand (24 kg)
10 sec rest
20 sec snatches, right hand (24 kg)
10 sec rest
… for two more cycles
1 minute rest
20 sec LCCJ, left hand (24 kg)
10 sec rest
20 sec LCCJ, right hand (24 kg)
10 sec rest
20 sec LCCJ, left hand (24 kg)
10 sec rest
20 sec LCCJ, right hand (24 kg)
1 minute rest
20 sec jerk, left hand (24 kg)
10 sec rest
20 sec jerk, right hand (24 kg)
10 sec rest
20 sec jerk, left hand (24 kg)
10 sec rest
20 sec jerk, right hand (24 kg)

Cool down and stretch out

Obviously, my preferred method of training is high-intensity intervals. What I’ve found that there are different names, but they often act out the same way, with some minor differences. But that seems to be what I’m attracted to. I’ve mentioned before how the Scott Helvenston SEAL Training is, in fact, interval training, it can also be used as form of Controlled Fatigue Training (CFT), etc. After reading the above-linked article that helps explain the concept, you can see that CFT, tabata, etc.–anything that brackets high-intensity strength an/or power sets with low/no rest times in-between sets would function for MetCon. Or met-con, or met con… I’ve seen it spelled different ways. Of coures, Cross-Fit is practically defined as met-con.

Happy training!

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I was just at my friend Nicki’s, and her cousin Amanda’s combined birthday party. Apparently, Tom Selleck is well thought of here:

Tom Selleck cake at Nicki and Amanda's birthday party.

Tom Selleck cake at Nicki and Amanda's birthday party.

😀

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BBB

I guess there is something to be said about being so annoying that people will solve your problem just to shut you up.

My friend and former co-worker N called this the “BBB” principle, for “Better Business by Bugging.” I politely didn’t point out that that’s actually four “B’s”. 😀 Anyways…

And she was masterful at constantly, but cheerfully and politely bugging someone until they finally got her the info or service that they owed her.

Last night, after making a trip to Chantilly, I called her to see if her and her spousal unit wanted to meet for some grubbage before I had the normal Friday night longsword class. They did, and we agreed to meet in Manassas at a Red, Hot, and Blue. I am not familiar at all with that area of Northern Virginia, so I asked her for directions to get there. She tried, and grew frustrated, and had her husband W call me. We went back and forth a couple of times until we had points of reference I could understand, and then, boom, I was off. This reflects similar interchanges that happen every now and then.

Made it to the RHB no problem. Turned out to be a quick and easy trip. After a bit, they showed up. Whilst we were eating, they mentioned that they needed to go over to the nearby Sears and pick up something, and would I help? Of course, sez I. Love being helpful and useful.

We go over there and W says that he’s looking to get a flatscreen for the home office, etc., so we go about looking at them while N wanders off. I’m also looking at TV’s too, ‘coz the one I have is an old tube, not super huge, that was given to me by one of my brother’s friends. It’s so old that the only connection to it is through coax. It does have a remote, but doesn’t work (yes, even with batteries). The resolution’s not too good, and we can’t get the captioning to go off. So yeah, I’ve been thinking about getting a newer TV.

As we’re looking about, Nancy comes back and say’s, “Here ya go!”

I’m like, “uh, what?”

“It’s a GPS. Like the one we got recently, but not quite as big. The Garmin. We love it.”

“What? No way!”

“Yup. Now you won’t have to call us and bug us whenever we’re going to meet somewhere!”

And the TV? Just a ruse. It’s been a long time since I’ve been suckered like that.

Ah, friends. Gotta love ’em. Thanks again, guys. 😀

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