Back to KBs

Post your training journals here if you like. I'll make back-ups to avoid losing your data.

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Mickey O'neil
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by Mickey O'neil » Tue Oct 21, 2008 9:54 am

Nice work JasonC. You've got a great log. I really like your explanations and insights on your gs training. Good stuff.

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JasonC
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by JasonC » Tue Oct 28, 2008 1:57 am

I've come off (well, not yet entirely off) a long sickness, so I just went for a short Heavyhands walk for maybe 12 or 14 minutes with the 5-pounders.
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JasonC
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by JasonC » Mon Nov 10, 2008 12:23 am

A couple of Heavyhands walks in the last week. Tonight, some haphazard recreation with the 24: snatches, OAJs, then 20+20 swings.
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by JasonC » Thu Nov 20, 2008 3:44 am

I haven't been that interested in KBs lately--I've only practiced 5 of the last 10 days and haven't even bothered to log the sessions. In cold weather I'm more interested in Heavyhanding than GS, but (a) I think I get results for my health by GSing, and (b) I don't want to go year to year without progress. Crikey, look at me; I'm still flailing around with the 20kg snatch, and I haven't done a two-armed jerk in weeks and weeks.

I'm trying to dial the workouts back into the "pleasant exertion" range where I was for most of the late summer and early fall. Today, the following:

SN 20kg 6:00 at 15/min
--just a moment's rest--
OAJ 24kg 16+16 fast
--just a moment's rest--
SW 24 15+15

Resting very little is not what VF taught us, but I just want to move through the workout quickly. In the snatch, trying to let pendulum effect do more of the work. And as always, it's a fine line for me between snatching in a wide, wasteful arc on a mostly-straight arm and dropping & snatching too close to the body, where momentum gets wasted and the grip is taxed.

total V: 203 poods, quite a bit faster than usual
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JasonC
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by JasonC » Fri Nov 21, 2008 4:29 am

Hot damn, what a fine workout today! I made smart decisions, and I feel like a million bucks.

I got off my ass and finally took the bowling shoes to the shoe repair man today to get an extra half-inch on the heels for jerking.

Then I came home and (in a strategy that's been successful) changed immediately into my KB clothes and went straight outside. After a very quick warm-up I went straight into snatches.

SN 20kg 15/min for 6:30
--I've decided that it really is important to start with the lightest bell, do a few reps, and work up to the day's working weight, and also do a few reps with that before the work set. It's not so much that the muscles and joints need the warm-up (doubtless that's good too); it's to reinforce technique.
--Today I was very conscious of catching the snatch in a place where it's poised to drop back down in a split second: upper arm touching head, a little forward of ear. It's not quite as relaxing to hold it there, but it takes no effort to drop it back down. No "corkscrewing" has to happen. My hand is already at 45 degrees and the ball is poised to fall off my arm and straight down my centerline.
--This made the set so much easier that I almost went 8 minutes, but age and experience said, "Look, dude. You keep saying you want a pleasant, invigorating set and not work close to your limit every day. So do it!"

SW 24kg 20+20
--Again, pretty pleasant. The set almost did itself. Concentrated on leaning down far enough that my forearm doesn't even touch my junk. Supposed to be better pendulum action that way.

OAJ 24kg 15+15
--Tried to get same lockout position as in today's snatches.

JS stretches

total V: 218 poods, I think
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JasonC
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by JasonC » Sun Nov 23, 2008 2:13 am

Not a magical blissfest today, but I'm mostly back in condition.

SN 20kg 15/min for 10:30
--Form wasn't as good as yesterday. The bell seems to want to travel a little outside my centerline, making the lockouts bumpy.

stretching

total V: 225 poods
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by JasonC » Mon Nov 24, 2008 2:12 am

Snatches were a little challenging today. The first minute or so of each hand was fine, but things got wobbly later on. I guess I'm training in about the right zone then.

SN 20kg 18/min for 6:30
--I started with this rhythm: Snatch-two-three-snatch-five-six-snatch-eight-nine-ten. But by the end of the set, the first and second snatches were slow and I barely finished the third one in time. I need to get some video of me snatching so that I and other people can figure out whether there's something that's making these reps take extra long.
--This wasn't an easy set. Tomorrow I think I'll drop back to 16/min for 8:30.

OAJ 24kg 20+20

SW 24kg 23+23
--This was pretty good. I was sure to get a good long backswing and focused on really relaxing the arm. That seemed to help. I sensed that I may also have been "leading" with my shoulder; that is, it seemed I rotated my trunk, keeping the shoulder near the centerline, instead of squaring my shoulders.

stretches
jogging

total V: 271 poods
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JasonC
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by JasonC » Tue Nov 25, 2008 3:26 am

Wobbly. Did something earlier in the afternoon to make my legs rubbery, and it seemed to make a big difference.

SN 20kg 15/min for 6:30

Cut it off after that.

total V: 135 poods
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by JasonC » Wed Nov 26, 2008 5:49 am

Only had a few minutes to train today, and the warmups felt smooth, so I picked up the pace.

SN 20kg 20/min for 6:30
--I'm putting together two things I heard from Valery and CI. (1) Valery says the snatch is a back lift. (2) CI says Valery says the time to pull the bell is when it's between your feet. So, putting them together, I'm getting this: After backswing, let bell swing down to perpendicular to the ground, and then pull it with the lower back, by standing up. That puts a nice upward arc on it (remember, I've been struggling with needing to pull it up rather than out-and-up) and gets it high enough that I don't have to dip to catch it, which was costing time and making it impossible to snatch the mo-fo 20 times a minute.

total V: 150 poods
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by JasonC » Thu Nov 27, 2008 5:17 am

Back up to what I consider normal-range volume today.

SN 20kg at 15/min for 8:30
--Form not as smooth as yesterday. I was putting some leg into the pull (to save my back), but I had to remember not to rebend them and dip to catch the bell. (The dip takes too long; it won't fly at 18 or 20 reps/min.) Also, adding the legs may make the path of the bell more complicated and get me messier lockouts.
--I'm not doing a good job of not rushing the swing forward.

SW 24kg 23+23
--I did these the way I explored yesterday (i.e. good long backswing and then bell swings to between feet and then I pull from lower back to get it fly in a somewhat straight path upward). More demanding on lower back, but I got great height, up to shoulder level.

OAJ 24 20+20

stretches

total V: 279 poods
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by JasonC » Fri Nov 28, 2008 12:27 am

I'm exceedingly thankful today to be healthy and able, and also not to be a shoeshine boy living in a garbage dump in Lagos.

Back in the saddle and pretty much recovered from my lazy-ass layoff in November. Tomorrow I also get my bowling shoes back with the extra heel so that I can jerk again.

SN 20kg 18/min. for 6:30
--I should either lift in front of a mirror sometimes or get video. It happened that I was lifting in daylight today and could see my shadow, and that helped. This set wasn't easy, but it wasn't a big stretch either. That's the zone to be in, I'd say, at least most of the time.

OAJ 24kg 22+22
--Back to a slower pace (2-3 exhalations between reps). Concentrated on dipping under the bell.

SW 24kg 30+30
--I think this ties my PR with the 24kg. Same form as yesterday. It helps a lot to consciously relax the arm on each rep.

stretches

total V: 291 poods
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by Eric B » Sat Nov 29, 2008 2:14 am

This is a great training log, lots of helpful stuff. Thanks for posting it.
Over time, your quickness with a cocky rejoinder must have gotten you many punches in the face.

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Re: Back to KBs

Post by JasonC » Sun Nov 30, 2008 2:34 am

Thanks, Eric. I love that people actually read these things; it makes my numbers matter more.

Today nothing exceptional to report.

SN 20kg 18/min for 6:30
--This is getting me used to doing a rep in just three seconds. Thank heaven. Toward the end my form got a little raggedy at both the top and the bottom of the motion, even though the set didn't feel particularly hard.

OAJ 24kg 20+20
--Nice solid rack position made this easy. It seems to help when the ball is canted a little bit backward (onto my bicep) and inward (onto my pec). Makes for a good rest position and a good platform to pust from.

SW 24kg 30+30
--Once again, this ties my PR, as far as I can remember back to last year. The secret seems to be to consciously relax the arm.

stretching

total V: 284 poods
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by JasonC » Mon Dec 01, 2008 4:20 am

Just read that the AKC is going to move amateur men's competition to the 28kgs!!! WTF?! Here I am at 35, already light and hoping to sneak down to 65kg bodyweight when I compete in 2009. Going any appreciable duration with the 24s is already an accomplishment at that weight. But now they'll have my jerking close to my bodyweight as an amateur??!!

Folks say that this is part of VF's long-cherished vision for GS. Maybe so, but it's a vision that doesn't have me in mind. Maybe moving amateurs to the 28s will be good for that at the macroscopic level. I know VF's deal is to think about the sport as a whole. He is more interested in finding a small cohort of GS prodigies. He's not in this for 35-year-old college professors with small hands, but forchrissake...

Today's session very good.

SN 20kg 18/min for 6:30

OAJ 24kg 27+27
--This has got to be a PR. It at least ties my PR. Put into practice the rack tips I talked about yesterday. This was easy. (OAJs are just boring in the longer sets.)

SW 24kg 30+30
--30 reps will need to be my new standard. Consciously relax the arm!

stretching

total V: 298 poods
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by JasonC » Tue Dec 02, 2008 4:52 am

Got the converted bowling shoes back today. Cost me $40 (ouch!), but they're nice. I've got at least a half inch of added heel there.

J 16kg 6.5/min for 6:30
--First time doing the two-arm jerk in over a month. Felt fine, though with the weather getting colder I wore a long-sleeved cotton jersey with no water on it. Consequently, less friction to hold my elbows. I'm stressing about the AKC rule that forbids resting on the belt. I haven't read the wording, but the fact is that my right elbow (and sometimes left) routinely drifts down to my belt.

SN 20kg 16/min for 8:50
--After starting what I planned to be an 8-minute set, it went well so I aimed higher, at 10 minutes. The L went fine (hard at the end), but when I switched hands either my hand or the handle was wet, and my R crapped out before the end of the 4th minute.

OAJ 32kg 10+10

SW 24kg 30+30

JS stretching

total V: 383 poods
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by JasonC » Thu Dec 04, 2008 12:21 am

Internet out at home. Here's yesterday's session. Because of the big increase in volume the last two days, I'll probably skip either the swing or OAJ today, unless I feel superb.

J 16kg 6.5/min for 7:30

SN 20kg 18/min for 6:30
--Grip tired fast for some reason. May just be that I increased my daily volume by about a third starting yesterday.

OAJ 24kg 20+20
--Crapped out fast in these too.

SW 32kg 15+15

stretching

total V: 340 poods
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by JasonC » Fri Dec 05, 2008 2:45 am

Yesterday's session:

J 16kg 6.5/min for 8:30
--I'm wearing a jersey with a t-shirt on top of it. By just wetting the t-shirt, I don't get cold.

SN 20kg 15/min for 8:30
--This was harder than it should have been, on the lockout and also on the grip. As in the last couple sessions, my L does alright but then my R can hardly keep up. My R-hand grip was shot by the end.

OAJ 32kg 10+10

stretching

total V: about 290 poods
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by JasonC » Sat Dec 06, 2008 4:41 pm

Great one today. I think I have learned from (repeated) past mistakes not to do assistance exercises after a couple of ten-minute sets in the jerk and snatch. (Another is not to do anything hard the day after a ten-minute set.)

Before the workout I spent a couple of hours hiking in the hills with my dog, and that got my lungs nice and opened up. I took care to think about relaxing during and after and blowing off tension as fast as it accumulated. This stuff is only fun when I can get myself to relax (relatively speaking) while I am doing it.

J 16kg 6.5/min for 10:30

SN 20kg 18/min for 10:30
--By the end of the second minute I was outside my comfort zone, but itonly got really hard close to the ninth minute. Once again, my R grip tired sooner. (Maybe it is from sweat? Even though the temperature is in the 30s, after a set of jerks and half a snatch set, I do get some sweat on the handle and my hand. I will have to try chalking tomorrow.)
--In the last minute I could only get 15 or 16/min.

stretching

total V: 350 poods
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by JasonC » Sun Dec 07, 2008 7:34 pm

Hell, the wifi just sneezed and my post got lost in the ether. Here's the short version: I only had 20 minutes yesterday and crammed in three moderate sets with almost no rest.

J 16kg 7.5/min for 6:30

SN 20kg 16/min for 6:30
--My R-hand snatch really is off; it's not because of sweat. As I've warmed up the last two days I've noticed it's off-track. It flies off the centerline and also the handle flops off my hand-hip (as I interpret that still somewhat mysterious phrase) and into the middle of my palm-heel.
--But I'm finding the middle way between dropping too close to the body and hurling it out too far. Two good cues are to think of the wing chun "immovable elbow" that stays tucked near the body, and throwing the bell UP, not out and over.

SW 32kg 15+15

total V: 270 poods in 20:00 (faster than usual)
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by JasonC » Mon Dec 08, 2008 5:28 am

This was supposed to be a lower-intensity, higher-volume session. It was a harder workout than I have had in awhile, and I felt a little more mental resistance than has been usual lately. Still, not a huge deal, and performed just fine.

Once again today, I rested very little between sets. My recovery is getting so good that as soon as I put the bells down after the jerk or snatch, I felt just about ready for the next set.

J 16kg 7.5/min for 7:30
--Jerking stirs up weird emotions for me lately. Anyway, that’s one for a shrink. This set tired my arms mostly, and as usual my feet. I must be cantilevering my hips a little far forward to cramp my feet up so much, and I bet I could do a better set if I relaxed the feet some.

SN 20kg 20/min for 6:30
--This was not so bad. I’ve been bellyaching about the 20/min pace, but I had enough time here to cycle through each rep. (Thinking “straight up” on the pull helps.) I'm proud of this set. Didn’t get hard until a ways into the final minute of each hand.

OAJ 24kg 21+21
--My arms were tired by this point.

SW 24kg 30+30

stretching

total V: 407 poods
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by JasonC » Sat Dec 13, 2008 11:21 pm

[I HAD NO INTERNET SERVICE THIS PAST WEEK. HERE ARE THE WEEK'S ACCUMULATED LOGS.]

Monday’s workout:

I felt surprisingly fresh today, and I was so excited to find that I hadn't lost the notes for my book manuscript that I got a little ambitious with my volume. (OK, I was also excited about breaking 400 poods of volume yesterday for the first time in a long time.) Historically, volume pride goeth before the fall for me, so I have to rein it in tomorrow.

J 16kg 7.5/min for 8:30
--Even though I was wearing the slippery cotton jersey, this went just great. I could have gone ten minutes if I’d needed to.
--From what I’ve gleamed from Cate Imes’ logs, long sets (over 8 minutes) are just plain hard to recover from, so I'm not going to go up to nine minutes tomorrow (which would be the next step in a linear progression). Instead I’ll keep it at 8 minutes or less until I am ready to do the 10-minute set at this pace and move on.
--Today it was more tiring for the legs (as it should be). Arms and feet were fine.

SN 20kg 20/min for 6:00
--I didn’t drop back to 18 or 16/min today. I was a little nervous about that because I have been intimidated by the 20/min pace (this after trying to jump from 15 straight to 20 earlier in the season—it was too big a jump). However, this went just fine, and I'm starting to “own” this pace. Not sure what I’ll do tomorrow though.

OAJ 32kg 15+15
--This was fairly hard.

SW 32kg 20+20
--This is the first time I’ve done this many with the 32 this year.

SW 24kg 15+15
--A little “back off” set. Was this really a good idea, after logging so much volume yesterday? We’ll see in a week or so.

stretching

total V: 455 poods

Whoa! That settles it—two days of reduced volume, starting tomorrow.

* * * * *

Tuesday’s workout

Predictably, I had less to give today. And in fact for the last couple days I’ve noticed signs of two of my old friends, the urge to eat whether I'm truly hungry or not (especially sweet things) and tenderness in the elbow. So as planned I pulled way back on the volume today, and I’ll do the same tomorrow.

J 16kg 7.5/min for 6:30
--Legs and arms both tired today.

SN 20kg 16/min for 7:30
--I should only have tried for a 6-minute set today, but I decided to go for 8. I made it with my L, but two minutes into my R hand I was getting sloppy. I could have finished the full 8 minutes, but it would have been a pointless triumph and probably counterproductive. I'm getting too smart for that. So I terminated the set at 7 minutes.

OAJ 24kg 15+15
--Went right into this with little rest. In retrospect, I should have skipped this. I just did it because I had a preconceived notion of how much volume I should get today, and so I did this grudgingly and somewhat mindlessly. Not the way to be.

Skipped stretching because I had little time

total V: 276 poods

* * * * *

Wednesday's workout:

J 16kg 7.5 for 8:30
--This felt hard, even after yesterday's lighter day.

SN 20kg 20/min for 6:30
--This was hard too.

total V: 270 poods
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by JasonC » Sat Dec 13, 2008 11:46 pm

I took Thursday and Friday off. Missing Friday wasn't a calculated decision: I just had a lot of research that I felt anxious about doing, and I also just didn't want to work out. I ate a good wallop of sugar on Thursday, and I think I'm finding that sugar makes me damned anxious, to the detriment of, well, everything good. We'll see if this insight keeps me from eating the cream pie at tonight's department potluck.

Another factor to consider is that I did two high volume days in a row last week, after which I crashed. Now, there may be something to be said for intermittent high volume loading. (PT certainly thinks so, and even level-headed Dan John says that what makes a mediocre athlete is that his 'highs are too low and his lows are too high'.) However, it seems to be a motivation killer for me, who has no coach and no club to provide exogenous motivation, and keeps me from practicing the prescribed six days per week. So, unless VF himself calls me up and tells me otherwise, I'm not not not doing big days back to back anymore. When in doubt, I have to choose the lighter workout.

Still another factor is that my body will probably want some unloading soon. I've been feeling the ghostly, wispy beginnings of elbow pain in my R. And as it happens, I'll be away for the holidays, for close to a month. That's been bugging me, since it seems poised to mess me up right when I've recovered from the last layoff, and in particular now that I'm close to getting 10 minutes in the snatch at 20/min. But not only can't it be avoided, it may also head off a larger overtraining problem. I'll jog or heavyhand, and I'll also reacquaint myself with barbell presses and back squats, which depending on whose training philosophy you believe, could be good for my GS.

So, today's workout:

J 16kg 7.5/min for 10:30
--Went fine, and my rack was great, really a thing of beauty, with a nice layback. But my L thigh was tired.

SN 20kg 20/min for 8:30
--Big progress today in my form. Instead of doing a big, arcing swing-snatch, I was (for lack of a better phrase) "punching through." Or better yet, I was palm-heeling through. There was a pretty distinct unbending of the elbow as the bell flew fairly straight up, and my arm reached full extension with archy sitting on my comfortably opened hand/wrist/whatever, turned neatly out at 45 degrees. Very, very pretty. (Not coincidentally, I was snatching in the daylight too and could see my shadow. Very helpful.)
--This set was not particularly comfortable, but I didn't feel as rushed as I sometimes do at a 20/min pace. I went on for several reps with my L after the 4-minute-mark before switching to the R. My form with the R was not as good, and I only finished the 8 minutes by snatching in emergency mode (you know, where you can't get any backswing) and missed the equivalent of 3 or 4 reps that way.

stretching

total V: 350 poods
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Re: Back to KBs

Post by JasonC » Mon Dec 15, 2008 1:18 am

This was not easy after yesterday's test day. I think I should just expect that as a matter of course.

J 16kg 8.5/min for 5:30
--OK, this wasn't hard. My arms were tired, and my legs were feeling a little tired when I was lying back in the rack, but still not a serious challenge. I considered doing a sixth minute but remembered what I wrote yesterday about needing to make more conservative choices.

SN 24kg 20/min for 6:30
--Ok, this was hard. My wind was bad (I felt it by the start of the second minute) and my form wasn't all beautiful like yesterday. My R in particular was arcing outward. (I managed to correct it some in the last minute by paying a lot of attention to it, but it still wasn't beautiful.) I think I was feeling hurried and maybe pulling too soon. Tomorrow I'll drop to 18/min and think more about form.

OAJ 24kg 15+15
--Don't ask me how, but this was kind of hard to finish.

SW 24kg 20+20
--This was also kind of hard. I tried mimicking the form shown by VF in that slo-mo snatch reel. As the bell swings forward he bends his legs and scoops his butt under and then pulls. It pops the bell up nicely, but my back tired.
--Speaking of the vid, I have a little bit of doubts about whether that particular selection is a good representative for VF. That was his 155th snatch, and by 160 he's visibly tired. Ideally we should look at slo-mo of a side view of him early in a set.

forgot to stretch

total V: 343 poods
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Simple & Sinister: Loving KBs again

Post by JasonC » Wed Apr 02, 2014 3:04 am

Background: I did KBs consistently from 2000 to 2008. Then I moved into a house, bought a rack, and started PLing for five and a half years: Faleev, 5/3/1 (which made me huge but not stronger), RTS (worked great but demanded more than I was willing to keep giving), and Rogozhnikov.

In that last year, I learned two things: first, I was fat. When I train exclusively with barbells, I get big, muscular, and fat. (I can't believe now that I ever stressed about how to put on weight. All I have to do to grow is squat, bench, and dead, even half-heartedly and lazily. When I did 5/3/1 for a few months, I was eating vegan but put on 20 pounds.) Second, even on Rogozhnikov, which tries to spare your energy, I didn't have the will to train seriously. Still don't. So I decided I needed an indefinite break from PLing and a renewed acquaintance with KBs.

Fortuitously, there was S&S. It was a good fit--I didn't have the energy for GS anymore, always hated ETK, and did great on the original RKC freestyling program but wanted something more structured. And since I was feeling so low-energy, the "easy strength/easy endurance" approach was perfect. (Lucky thing, too, because my cardio went to shit a long time ago.) That was five or six weeks ago.

I do it as early as I can each morning, outside if possible, and most of the time it recharges me wonderfully, just as advertised. Not surprisingly, my TGU is way ahead. 32kg quickly got boring, so I've been waiting for a 40kg to arrive, I've made to by quadrupling up a big chain and tying it to the horns of the 32kg. The swing is advancing more slowly. I've got more than enough pulling strength for the 32, but my wind isn't good enough to move on yet.
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Re: Simple & Sinister: Loving KBs again

Post by Alfred_E._Neuman » Wed Apr 02, 2014 10:18 am

JasonC wrote:
Fortuitously, there was S&S. It was a good fit--I didn't have the energy for GS anymore, always hated ETK, and did great on the original RKC freestyling program but wanted something more structured. And since I was feeling so low-energy, the "easy strength/easy endurance" approach was perfect. (Lucky thing, too, because my cardio went to shit a long time ago.) That was five or six weeks ago.
I've always liked the original RKC program. It plays right into my training ADD and lets me play around with different things every day. In 2001 or so when I got the book and KB for Christmas I was KB only for a couple of years. Those were some of the most enjoyable training years of my life. Tossing the bells around one day. Pressing and BW the next. Maybe a run on the third day. Then maybe some DL'ing the next day. Kept me in great shape and I could play weekend warrior at just about anything and not worry about it.

Just like everything else that works, I had to change it.
I don't have a lot of experience with vampires, but I have hunted werewolves. I shot one once, but by the time I got to it, it had turned back into my neighbor's dog.

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