New toys, training like a Viking and the beginning of my 2nd coaching session

June 18, 2011

My first session of distance coaching with Sandy Sommer has some to an end. I’d definitely call it a success. I dropped a few lbs, deadlifted 250 pounds (never done that before, EVER) and my clothes are fitting better.

The program was simple. It was a mix of kettlebells, freeweights a little bit of my chinup bar and my jumprope. 4 times a week. None of the workouts were more than 30 minutes, except for the last few swing/jumprope supersets. Simple isn’t always easy, however. They were challenging to say the least.

I’m starting round 2 with him. There is going to be an emphasis on conditioning while maintaining my strength. Also I’ll be paying more attention to joint mobility. So important once you round 4o. I’d say if you pay more attention to it while you’re in your 20′s and 30′s, you won’t have to concentrate so much on it while you hit the big four-oh. Said another way, mobility, and fitness, is easier to keep and maintain than it is to get back.

That’s where the new toys come in. To improve my conditioning, I’ll be spending more time on the mVO2 protocol outlined in Viking Warrior Conditioning. I did that in round 1, but only once a week. My first week has 3 sessions. YIPE. This is where the first of my toys come in to play. I’ve recently bought a Polar heart rate monitor to see just how hard I’m working and how hard the mVO2 protocol will be working me. I actually got the idea from one of the kettlebell guys I follow on facebook, Faizal Enu. He owns Bayshore Kettlebells. I liked his thoughts on them, so since I’m about to test the upper limits of my CV system, I figured it would be fun to track. Check his blog out, he’s the real deal.

Toy #2 – this one is a simple one. Lacrosse balls. Sandy turned me on to a great mobility site, Mobility WOD. Kelly Starett, DPT runs this site and has excellent ways to keep loose and “supple like a leopard”. His words, not mine :) Anyhoo….. back to the lacrosse balls. Both gentlemen recommended them for trigger point release, or, in a simpler terms, to get to those deep knots that we all have living in our backs and necks, and who knows where. They’re cheap and easy to use. I have some shoulder mobility issues. The first day using the balls, I found a NASTY knot that I believe will help solve some of the problems in my left shoulder. It may not totally fix it, but I can already feel an improvement. I’ve been using a foam roller to help with those spots, but the lacrosse balls really target those tough spots.

One last thing, I’ve got my semiannual doctors visit on Tuesday. Bloodwork was drawn last week. I’ll be interested to see how my cholesterol and other important numbers are looking.


Week 2 Coaching

April 21, 2011

Just finished up week 2’s workouts and I’m really enjoying it. I know I keep saying this, but it’s true and a testament to planning your workouts at least a day in advance, if not a week if possible.

My Coach, Sandy Sommer took off this week on vacation so he sent me this week and next weeks workouts. I got a little peek and understanding to what he’s doing. Definitely a method to his madness.

Saturday 4-16

Military Press

 45, 55 x 5, 65 x 3, 80 x 5, 90 x 3 and 100 x 1
Deadlift 135 x 5,5 3, 170 x 5, 195 x 3, 215 x 1

     I like this workout and it’s a nice progression. Hits the whole body and doesn’t take all day.

Sunday 4-17

Kettlebell Snatches VO2 Max 15/15 with 16kg bell for 11 minutes

     I LOVE this workout. Last weeks VO2 was for 10 minutes, next weeks for 12. Slowly working up to improve my   conditioning. I need to go ahead and get Viking Warrior Conditioning to get more out of this concept. My first couple of sets I got 7 reps on each side well within the 15 seconds. By the end, was barely getting them in.

Tuesday 4-19

Military Press 45,55 and 65 x 5
Deadlift 135 x 5,5,5

Nice simple deload workout. This week was crazy and I did this Tuesday morning before I got into my day. I don’t think I like deadlifting that early in the morning before I’ve had time to get up, properly caffeineated and loosened up. Glad it wasn’t any heavier.

Thursday 4-21

TGU 35 lbs 12 minutes. 3 breaths at each phase

I think Sandy is trying to torture me me with these. The slow progression is killer. I definitely need to record this and have him critique me. Some parts of the progression are easier than others, even from side to side.

Super Set
10 2H swings
10 pushups
as many rounds as possible in 10 minutes. I used a 44lb bell.

I don’t think I swung much last week. I missed it. Maybe I could do that in my “active recovery” days. I really like the swing a lot. From what I saw in next week workouts, I’ll be making up for this.

All in all another great workout week designed my Coach Sommer. I’ve weighed and the number was good, but I’ll weigh another time to make sure it wasn’t a fluke. It does seem that my pants are getting a bit looser and that’s awesome! Which brings me to another point, DIET, not as a verb, but as in what I eat. I’m not being very disciplined with my eating. I need to get that back together. Maybe even post an eating journal. Wouldn’t THAT be scary. All I know is you cannot out train a bad diet and all the work in the world will be lost if I keep this up.

MJS


Day 2 VO2 max

April 13, 2011

Day 2 was a good one, quick but good

One thing about Kettlebells, they’re simple and this workout was about as simple as it gets.

10 minutes of Snatches with a 35lb bell using the VO2 max protocol.

What it that you ask? It’s 10 minutes of buttkicking.  Kettlebell snatches using :15 seconds of work and :15 seconds of rest. My goal was 10 minutes or 20 sets and I hit it. And oh yes, you’re doing 7 or 8 snatches during that 15 seconds. I did 7 per set. Doing the math, that’s 140 snatches in 10 min.

It was tough. In fact I don’t think I’ve gotten near the 10 minutes with this type of workout before. Not that I couldn’t, but I hadn’t set out with a goal of 10 minutes. Once again, a testament to planning your workouts. To tell the truth, it felt really good when I finished. Partially because I was done, mainly because I accomplished the 10 minutes I set out to do.

Kenneth Jay, Master RKC, has a book out that I’m about to read called Viking Warrior Conditioning. This protocol comes from that book.  While I don’t pretend to know all of it yet, I’ve gotten the jist of it and it seems like a fantastic way to increase your conditioning. This protocol is a big part of it, from what I’ve seen about the book so far.  I’m looking forward to reading it. One of my fitness goals is to increase my cardiovascular conditioning. This will help. When I started training for the Freeze Your Fanny bike ride this past February, I vividly remember my first training ride. It seemed like I hadn’t laid off riding at all. I attribute that to Kettlebell work.

Next up Active recovery day. Actually that turned into a straignt rest day.

Michael