Friday, November 27, 2009

Strained Adductor!

On Monday, I decided to go ahead and give one of Mike Mahler's kettlebell programs a try, and it freaking owns! Except that, somehow, during the last few sets of renegade rows, I managed to strain my left adductor. It freaking hurts.

I think it happened because I wasn't tucking my hips in and really focusing on overall body tension.

Tonigh I tried the same plan and I discovered several things: One, and I should know this already, is that Tension Is Strength - I went from using the 16kg bells on Monday to using the 24kg bells today and only got 2 fewer reps, which is fine with me; Two, is that my adductor was still more sore than I thought and it started to hurt again, which forced me to stop using that leg. Just about any movement causes it to really smart and it became too distracting.

Several lessons learned. I will nurse the adductor back to health and get back into hard training. I'm really looking forward to the heavy program that Mike laid out. Check out Mike's original post here.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Whoa

I've been so busy the past few weeks that I've forgotten to blog!

Training for my Microsoft certifications has been taking up a lot of time, but it's paid off. I passed the first exam, for Windows XP Professional, and have more tools in my toolbox and a new entry for the resume.

Tonight's kettlebell training was:
  • 6:30 of getups with a 24kg bell. I tried to focus hard on keeping the tension up during this as I'd noticed that I was getting some leakage during the last few times I'd done it and even for the first few reps of today. After tightening up, nearly white-knuckled the handle of the bell, I saw instant stability, which felt great.
  • 10:00 of kettlebell swings, alternating the first few sets between two-handed swings with the 24kg and one-handed with a 16kg; last 5:00 I stuck with just the 24kg, still alternating between one and two-handed. Work to rest was 30 on/40 off. Tried to average 18 reps per work period, but didn't really count.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Kettlebell Training: October 18, 2009

Today I felt like doing something, rather than sitting around. The weather here was absolutely beautiful and so I took the bells outside.

One run through a ladder, with 5 rungs, using two 16kg bells, of swings, cleans, front squats, and presses. Rest periods between sets was fluid and probably ran between 30 and 60 seconds. I just didn't want to think about it or keep track.

I waited a few minutes and then dragged an already beat up tire out from the old dog run in my backyard and did 100 swings with an 8 pound sledgehammer at the poor, defenseless thing. I alternated sets of 20 and 10 (switching arms at 1/2), resting between sets for approximately the same time as in the KB ladder, until I hit 100.

Simple and fun.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Kettlebell Training: October 17, 2009

Warmup consisted of circuits through the following:
  • Halos, 5 each direction
  • Face the wall squats
  • Pump stretch
Followed by:
  • 6:30 minutes of Turkish Getups with a 24kg bell - had a shaky rep when I wsa pushing off of one lunge and felt a cramp starting, it threw off my balance but I recovered fine without incident and the cramp quickly went away; total of 6 reps per side.
  • 10 minutes of swings with a 24kg bell, 30 seconds on/40 off for 9 total sets, 18 reps per set; for a total of 162 reps (3888 kg/8571.5 lbs total volume).
My squat form is just so disappointing. My right ankle just simply doesn't have the flexibility and stability that it should, due to several sprains I've experienced in the past year or so. I need to get in to see a doctor that uses ART or the Graston Technique to start breaking up the scar tissue and help me rehab it. It's really start to bug me. Maybe then my squats will improve.

However, since I am currently unemployed it will be hard to get to a doc. I have a job interview tomorrow so here's to hoping that I get good news!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Kettlebell Training: October 13, 2009

Warmup, with a 16kg bell:
  • 20 minutes of Z-Health, R-Phase, FBTS.
  • Halos, 5 each direction.
  • Hot potato, 5 each arm.
  • Slingshot, 10 each direction.
  • Low Slingshot, 10 each direction.
  • Figure 8's, 10 each direction.
  • One-handed swings, 10 each arm.
Workout, with a 24kg bell:
  • Turkish Getup ladder with 3 rungs and almost lost the last rep on the last set due to a lot of arm soreness.
  • 2 minute rest.
  • 10 minutes of swings using a 24kg bell, two-handed, using a 30 second on/40 second off timing.
For the swings I did exactly 18 reps per work period and got 9 sets completed (set the bell down after the last rep and my timer chimed in to let me know the 10 minutes was up), for a total of 162 reps (3888kg/8571.5lbs total volume, an 11.7% increase over last Wednesday).

That was a tough workout and I felt myself messing up, starting to round my back and look down, about 75% of the way through. I did not let that continue, and focused hard to keeping my eyes forward and my hips snappy. Finished strong.

Bad thing about the getups is the pre-existing issues with early carpal tunnel in my right wrist. I'm having to really squeeze the handle hard to keep it stable and prevent my forearm from hurting, and gripping it like that makes my arm sore.

I did see a Youtube video by Scott Sonnon describing some wrist work he uses for prehab/rehab in kettlebell training, so I may jump into that and see if it helps. Will update this post later with the URL for that video, but for now it's bed time.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Kettlebell Training: October 07, 2009

Earlier in the day I did some ASLR and Brettzel work (I really need to do this every day, as my range is terrible in both).

For kettlebells I warmed up with a 16kg bell:
  • Halos, 5 each direction.
  • Hot Potato, 5 each arm.
  • Slingshot, 10 each direction.
  • Low Slingshot, 10 each direction
  • Figure 8's, 10 total
  • One-handed KB swings, 5 each arm
I typically run through that circuit twice, but I still felt pretty warmed up from doing some housework (yes, I do it sometimes) so I just dove into the meat of the training, which was:
  • 6 minutes of Turkish Getups using a 24kg bell, switching sides each rep, and I think I got 8 on each side, but I lost count while focusing on the movement.
  • Two minute rest.
  • 10 minutes of swings using a 24kg bell, two-handed, using a 30 second on/45 second off timing. I averaged 18 reps per work period and got 8 sets completed, plus one last rep on the last set before my timer went off, for a total of 145 reps (3480kg/7672lbs total volume).
On Friday, I'll do one more workout with identical timings, but next week the Getups go up to 6:30 and the Swings drop to 30:40.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Krav Maga Saturday: Major Soreness

Krav Maga training this morning was not bad. I've got some gripes about the instructor who has been teaching some of the classes, though I have not said anything to the school owner, for various reasons.

Basically, none of the instructors there really know how to safely and efficiently warm people up for training. Doing arm circles and 2-second shoulder and hamstring stretches is insufficient and I find myself having to bite my tongue to prevent me saying out loud: "Why are we doing this crap?"

There's a new guy in class, maybe early to mid twenties, who definitely has a good athletics background as his punches and kicks are devastating, especially on the old pads and shields we have (they really, really suck). We were doing low roundhouses today and this guy just pummeled my thighs into oblivion. My left leg is so sore that it's hard to walk. I'll need to foamroll but I am not looking forward to that.

As far as my membership at this school is concerned, I prepaid for a year, so I'm just biding my time. The membership will be up in March of 2010 so I haven't got that much time left, but I will admit that there are some people I'll miss so I have to think hard about leaving. Of course, if I am not employed by then I won't really have a choice.

I've applied to be a sheriff's deputy in my county and if accepted, and I pass the academy, then I'll likely be golden on Krav Maga as there is a local KM school (KM only, no mixed arts like at my current school) that is run by two deputies and I bet they don't screw around. My long term goal is to become both a kettlebell instructor and a KM instructor (and maybe FMS too, if I can), as I feel combining the two here in town could be awesome.

Now, there are some RKCs here in my city but I don't think they are affiliated with any of the Krav schools, though I do know that one of the owners/instructors of a local KM school does train with a RKC trainer, I just don't believe the training is linked. I would like to be setup for both.

So, we'll see what the future holds. 2010 is a year of big plans for me: RKC, further KM training and instructor training, if I can, starting college (for anything!), achieving some further IT certifications (MCSE) seeing as it's already paid for and I just need to pass the tests, and continuing my KB training.

Twisting Myself Into A Brettzel!

Over the past several months I'd been hearing about this stretch called the "Brettzel," named after Brett Jones, a personal trainer and Master RKC instructor. Mr. Jones seemed to include it in almost every workout he posted on his blog but I couldn't seem to find a good description of it anywhere so I stopped looking for a while.

Well, I finally found it on Sandy Sommer's blog, and Sandy even had a video of it! Finally!

Gray Cook, one of the "co-creators" of the stretch, posted a description of it on the Dragondoor site.

I just got done with my first Brettzel and I can say two things: 1: Wow! What an incredible stretch, it just feels amazing, and 2: Whoa! I am not very flexible and I understand why Sandy said he wished he'd recorded his first few attempts.

It appears from my first try that my left hip flexor needs more work than my right, but they are both fairly tight and I'll definitely include more work for them (daily, I promise!). I felt the stretch mostly in the quadriceps on both legs and what I assume is the iliotibial tract/piriformis (?) on both legs; that is, I felt a good (uncomfortable but not painful) stretch along the top and middle of my hip joint of the top leg during the movement.

I felt an almost immediate sense of "wellness" flowing from this stretch. Awesome!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Creatine Monohydrate Supplementation May Boost DHT Levels

On pudmed.org there is a new study released showing that supplementing with creatine monohydrate may increase serum DHT levels and increase the DHT to T ratio.

Essentially, the rugby players mentioned in the study loaded with 25g of creatine (along with 25g of glucose, which helps with creatine digestion and uptake) each day for 7 days, then decreased the amount to 5g of creatine with 25g of glucose per day for two more weeks. Serum DHT and T levels were taken at baseline, 7 days, and 21 days and there was a significant increase in DHT (56% at 7 days, 40% at 21). The ratio of DHT to T also increased, 36% at baseline and 22% at day 21.

I have another blood test slated for the last half of November so I'll talk to my doctor about creatine then. Since my DHT was a sliver low on my last blood tests, creatine may be a good solution, seeing as I have a good-sized tub of creatine in my supplement cabinet.

Of course, I'm not a college age rugby player so the results may not be the same for me but any boost that comes from it could be a good thing.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Rambling, rambling, rambling

Haven't updated in a long time, obviously. I'm going to try and correct that and keep updating regularly.

Kettlebell training has been going well, but I am still not performing at a level that I should be. Maybe poor nutrition, maybe insufficient rest, but more likely overall stress levels and the ongoing issues with testosterone and all that. I've been working with a doc to get everything figured out, however I am still not happy with my overall progress.

I'm trying to be patient, which is a difficult thing for me to do. My doc just increased my T dosage a little bit, so I'm hoping that things will smooth out a little. My estradiol still seems a bit high, higher than what a guy my age, with my T levels, should have according to some things I've read.

As far as nutrition goes, I'm still *mostly* following the vegetarian diet I mentioned in previous posts, though I have slipped a little. Even with messing up some, I've still lost more weight and at the latest weighing (late last week) I weighed 208, down from my original of 220-222.

I truly need to buckle down and clean up the eating, which is not easy given the difficulty of doing so when family members and friends eat terribly, along with my love/hate relationship with fast food. The stuff is truly garbage and I hate the way it draws me in. Damn our genetic weaknesses towards high fat, sodium, and sweetness!

As for my kettlebell training, I've been doing Turkish Getups and swings almost exclusively for several months and have benefited greatly. Only a few alternative lifts otherwise, mostly just to break the monotony.

Last week I decided to try a kettlebell snatch test, trying to see how long it would take me to get 100 snatches done with a 16kg bell. It took me approximately 6 minutes, 45 seconds. My form wasn't perfect but it's getting there.

Overall, I was rather surprised that I knocked it all out, though I did get some cramping in my right hand and my calluses were catching. What got me was the terrible muscle soreness I experienced several days later. That was the worst case of DOMS I'd ever felt in anything other than calves, but I can admit that setting that time was well worth the pain.

More later, as it's getting late and I'm trying to train myself to get to sleep at a reasonable hour.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Quick Update

Life has been rocky since I became unemployed. Many ups and downs, including the ongoing health issues and accompanying bills.

However, there is some light in the darkness. I decided to give vegetarianism a try and am currently following a lacto-ovo veggie diet. I'm feeling pretty darn good and have finally broken the 220 lbs plateau I was stuck on forever. This morning I weighed 216.5 lbs and that's only from one week of eating vegetarian. Going to continue it for another week and see how things go.

Friday, July 3, 2009

What I've Been Doing

For the past month, I've been working a fat loss program, and it's been moderately successful.

With the difficulties of low testosterone, progress has been slower than I'd like but I'm still far ahead of where I would have been without treatment. I remember how hard it was to just do basic work about six months ago and the difference now is night and day. I'm not really satisfied with how I currently feel, but I admit that I do feel a LOT better than just a few months ago. My work capacity is much higher and my strength gains seem to be fairly consistent as I'm using the 24kg bell almost exclusively now.

My weight hasn't changed much, but I've gotten comments on how I appear to be losing fat and putting on muscle. That's always good.

I've been following the Kettlebells for Fat Loss program that Dave Whitley wrote for the Precision Nutrition site. Dave based it off of the Program Minimum from the Enter the Kettlebell book and I've pretty much been doing only turkish getups and swings for the last four weeks, not counting the movements in my warmup.

It's been a fun, but demanding four weeks.

For the last few weeks I've been video taping my training sessions so I can go back and review my progress. However, I've lost some as it appears the latest ones aren't accessible. I have an older Sony digital camcorder and the latest tape can't seem to be read. That really sucks, as it looked like it was recording fine.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Considering the RKC

I've been thinking for a while (*cough* years *cough*) about getting my RKC. I think I'm gonna start training for it, though I won't be able to get to the one in August.

Over the past year or so, I've had some health issues that kicked my butt, primarily discovering that my body didn't really want to make testosterone anymore. Maybe a hereditary thing, maybe environmental. I am not sure of the cause but my total T dropped to about 200 and I was losing strength and muscle, gaining fat, and feeling down in the dumps (a major understatement).

I got my doctor to start me on testosterone replacement therapy and my situation is improving, but is still not optimal.

Now that I am finally starting to be able to train at a good level, I've decided that I am going to prepare for the RKC, maybe whichever one will be available in early 2010.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Training for May 25, 2009

Prior to starting my training for tonight, I decided to see if I could press 32kg using one 24kg bell and an 8kg bell. I got a solid single rep on each side, and I'm sure I could have gotten a second. I've tried pressing 32kg before and just couldn't get it, but that was a long time ago and I've been on TRT for several months now, and my strength is really starting to come back.

That success fueled the rest of my training session.

The warmup: One round through the Dynamic Kettlebell Warmup by Mike Stehle, using a 16kg bell. This includes halos, hot potatos, slingshots, low slingshots, figure 8's, and finishes with 10 swings (5 per hand). I'll start to add a second round through soon. Using a 24kg bell is too much for me as a warmup right now, and the 16kg is just right.

After that, I did 5 minutes of Turkish Getups with a 24kg bell, alternating one rep per side. I stupidly lost concentration and just about dropped the bell in rep 4 on the right side, but since I was training inside (it was raining outside), I couldn't just drop the bell and I had to catch it and lower it as best I could, while I was basically in a lunge position. I took a few deep breaths, re-focused and finished that rep, then went on to complete one last set.

Lastly, was 10 minutes of two-handed swings with a 24kg bell. 30 seconds on, 60 seconds rest. Averaged 20 reps each 30 second period and my grip was absolutely smoked on the last set; I almost dropped the bell as I simply couldn't continue to hook it.

All in all, even though I almost dropped the bell during the Getups, I felt really good about this session, and it's fired me up for tomorrow's.

I really want to get a pair of 32kg bells, now, but since I'm unemployed, it's gonna be a while. Anyone wanna send me a birthday present? ;) My b-day's in June.

Edit: Oops! I just realized I only did half the swings in the warmup that I was supposed to. Oh well. If I had, I may not have been able to finish my swings at the end. I'll see how it goes next time!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Melancholy Update

Things have been rocky lately, and I'm still trying to work though them.

Not-so-rhetorical rhetorical question: why is it that the people closest to you are the ones who tend to enable bad behavior? Encouraging bad eating habits by offering food they know you shouldn't be eating, or making you feel down when they should be trying to help lift you up?

Negative comments, assumptions, taking things personally that have nothing to do with them. Why can't some people just stop being so damn . . . uninspiring?

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Diet Considerations

After thinking about this for the past week or so, I've decided against going with the Cheat To Lose diet. Instead, I've chosen to do Ori Hefmekler's Anti-Estrogenic diet.

I've done Ori's Warrior Diet in the past and had some good results on it, but I came to dislike the food preparation that I was doing every day. It became a hassle gathering all the ingredients and cooking for an hour or so every day, when I just wanted to sit and eat when it came time. I bought a crock pot then and will also use it this time around, to make healthy soups and stews, but will be focusing on easily prepared foods like hard-boiled eggs, fruits and raw vegetables and maybe juices from those. I really enjoy steamed cruciferous vegetables, and they're quick to make, though I will certainly try to eat a wider variety of vegetables, using the guidelines that Ori suggested.

The Anti-Estrogenic diet follows the same pattern of eating that the Warrior Diet does: undereat during the day, and eat one main meal at night. During the day I'll be eating small servings of fresh fruit and raw veggies, protein (like fish or a hard-boiled egg) and drinking tons of water. In the evening, I'll eat a more substantial meal, consisting of at least two large servings of fresh or steamed veggies, followed by lean proteins (fish, kefir, aged cheese, legumes, etc).

More on this later.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Training for May 04, 2009

Started with a good warmup, aka Mike Stehle's Dynamic Kettlebell Warm up:
  • Halos w/16kg bell, 10 reps in each direction
  • Hot Potato w/16kg bell, 10 total reps
  • Hand-to-hand passes around the body, 10 right, 10 left
  • Low hand-to-hand passes, same reps as above
  • Figure 8 passes, 20 total passes
  • 20 two-handed swings w/24kg bell
I then proceeded on to the Turkish Getups. I did 5 minutes with a 24kg bell, alternating left and right. I did fewer reps this time, and just focused hard on perfect repetitions. Total of 4 reps each side.

That just didn't feel like enough work, so I threw in 10 minutes of two-handed swings with a 24kg bell, doing 10 on the minute, each minute.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Weigh In and Update

I've been so busy the last week and a half that I let my updates get behind.

As for intermittent fasting, I've stayed pretty much on schedule, though I did eat meals several days in a row that I shouldn't have. Last Friday and Saturday evenings I ended up hanging out with friends and we ate Italian on both days, which has helped contribute to me getting more carbs than I usually get.

Over the past two weeks, I haven't lost any more weight. In fact, I've gained two pounds since last weigh in, so I'm up to 222 lbs.

I like how IF makes me feel: light, a little hungry, and alert, but I'm wondering if I'm just not getting enough calories.

Today is Day 39 of my experiment in intermittent fasting, and I can look back and say that after about three weeks I started to lose some interest and things started looking like they were slowing down.

My thought now is to get back to a more active eating pattern; to do what is called a 'leptin reset' where I will be eating 5-6 meals per day, starting with low-carb for a week, then low GI/GL for a week, then higher GI/GL for a week, then on the 21st day, have a 'cheat day' where I eat anything and everything I want. People may recognize that this matches Joel Marion's Cheat To Lose Diet (which is currently being renamed and updated to Cheat Your Way Thin, which will be officially released tomorrow). I will be following Joel's plan, as I've had some good success with it in the past.

After that three week period, I'll do the maintenance phase, which is low-carb for Sunday and Monday, low GI/GL Tuesday and Wednesday, higher GI/GL Thursday and Friday, and then a Cheat Day on Saturday. I'll work on that for another three weeks, so I'll have a total of 6 weeks of eating this way.

The only bad thing I saw on eating this way before was that I was only getting around 1800 calories per day, and that stalled me pretty quickly as I was doing heavy weigh-training and martial arts. So, this time around I'll up the calories to around 2000 for the first week, then work up to 2400 the second week, and then level out at around 3000 for the last four weeks.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Training for April 18, 2009

Similar workout to Wednesday:
  • 10 minutes of pumps, halos (w/16kg bell), and face-the-wall squats
  • 12 minutes of alternating between kettlebell swings (w/16kg bell) and jump rope
  • 3, 3-minute rounds of heavy bag work, punches and kicks (30 seconds rest between each round)
During the day, I did a few GTG sessions of cleans and presses with the 80lb sandbag.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Intermittent Fasting, Day 29, April 17, 2009

Decided to check my body temperature first thing this morning: 96.8 degrees F. That's rather low, and I'm beginning to wonder if this diet is slowing down my metabolism.

I'm going to monitor this for the next several days to see what happens.

Morning supplementation:
  • 2g Vitamin C
  • 2 capsules green tea extract
  • 75mg DHEA
  • Men's multivitamin
  • 50mcg zinc
  • Vitamins A & E
Note to self: Don't ever take all those supplements on an empty stomach again.

I'll take the BCAAs and l-Glutamine later, closer to my workout time.

Edit: I felt miserable for most of the day. Just a feeling of "crapness." Tired, hungry, cold, weak. I think that I've been cutting my calories too low, as I hypothesized in the previous entry about diets and testosterone. Today I just needed to eat whatever, whenever, plan be damned.

Around 1pm, I was just so hungry that I decided to eat. This hunger wasn't the "oh, I'm hungry but I can ignore it" kind of thing. It was a deeper feeling, something that felt like it needed to be resolved. I suppose that doing intermittent fasting has made me more sensitive to actual periods of need, rather than my socially conditioned meal times.

A few hours after eating and I began to feel much better, but it wasn't until about 6:30PM that I felt un-crappy enough to exercise. I didn't feel like I could do much, so I decided to not push it. Just some simple sandbag training, cleans and presses; 80lbs in the bag,

I feel tons better now, as I write this, but I think that I will get to bed early and try to recuperate. Maybe I'm just fighting a cold, but I'm not sure. It doesn't feel like a normal cold, it feels deeper than that.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Training for April 15th, 2009

Today's workout:
  • 10 minute warmup, alternating pumps, halos (w/16kg bell), and face-the-wall squats
  • 5 minutes Turkish Getups with a 24kg bell
  • ~20 minutes of heavybag work, practicing punches and kicks (I already had sore shins, waaaaahh!!)
Had a break through on the squats today. I realized that I was slightly rounding my back, which was making it difficult to get lower, more comfortably. So I focused on keeping my back straight, and immediately got more stability, even with my right ankle being as weak as it is.

I've been squatting for years, and I know the proper technique, I think that it just started slipping my mind or maybe I was training incorrectly for a while due to the ankle and other issues and just didn't catch it until now.

The Getups were harder this time, and I think that's due to the fatigue I had from last night's Krav training. My right shoulder bothers me sometimes (also felt some achiness and tightness during the pumps) . . . I need to focus on that, and my ankle, in Z. I've skipped some Z sessions and I need to get off my ass and do it.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Training for April 14, 2009

One hour of Krav Maga starting at 6:50pm. Was all standup work, mostly light sparring. Got sore ribs today from taking a couple good hits. One thing I noticed is that one hour is not enough work for me. Afterwards I wanted to keep going, and I may start taking grappling or Jiu Jitsu classes to supplement my training.

I had my ankle taped up and it got rather sore. Maybe it was too tight. Anyway, at least my ankle feels pretty darn good today, much less sore than last week.

Other than that, I did a little GTG with windmills (w/ 16kg kettlebell) and sandbags.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Training for April 13, 2009

As per the EtK Program Minimum:
  • 10 minutes of pumps, halos, and face-the-wall squats, alternating every 3 reps of each
  • 12 minutes of swings (w/ 16kg bell) alternating with jump rope, minimal resting
and the results are . . .

Tired legs, heavy breathing, curse words, and contentment.

Another week or two and I will move up to a 24kg bell, I think.

Edit: Forgot my post-workout nutrition: 3 capsules of Vitamin Shoppe brand BCAAs. I can't eat until 6pm, so these puppies will have to do til then!

Edit: Worked in some rehab for the ankle after resting for a while.

Intermittent Fasting, Day 25, April 13, 2009

Today, I will be fasting until 6pm (last meal I ate yesterday was around 3pm).

Morning supplementation:
  • 2g Vitamin C
  • Men's multivitamin
  • 5g l-Glutamine
  • 3 capsules Vitamin Shoppe BCAAs
  • 2 capsules green tea extract
  • 75mg DHEA
  • 50mg zinc
I added the zinc to help with fighting the slight cold I was experiencing this weekend. Sometimes, adding zinc makes me feel odd, so I'll keep it in every day and will remove it if I start to feel strange. I already get some zinc in the ZMA supplement I take every night.

Edit: What I ate for dinner.

I grilled up some lean ground turkey with some onions, and mixed that with some nice pasta and a delicious pasta sauce (Blue Parrot that I picked up from CostCo). I ate a big bowl of that along with an equally big bowl of steamed broccoli and cauliflower and two slices of bread. I was totally stuffed after that, and I didn't want to eat anything else, which is odd. :)

Not Quite A Weekly Weigh In & Training Update

As of this morning I weighed 220 lbs, which is 4 pounds less than last time, which was two weeks ago. So, averaging 2 pounds per week isn't bad at all.

I am visibly smaller and both my gut and sides seem tighter over the past week.

As for training, I took the weekend off from heavy training because of two reasons: 1, my ankle still wasn't feeling too good and I didn't want to stress it by going to Krav Maga training, and 2, I felt like I was catching a cold this weekend, so I mostly relaxed and drank Theraflu (but not enough water, stupidly). However, I was not all laziness this weekend.

Did GTG work with sandbags (not much, mostly cleans and crossovers) and also did shoulder flexibility work. I am capable of doing one-arm overhead squats (woohoo!) with a 16kg bell but that darned ankle still makes things a tad difficult at the bottom. I tried doing doubles but I just don't have the flexibility to quite get it. I can get almost parallel with two 16kg bells, but not lower.

Also, I can finally do reps on deck squats, using a 16kg bell for counter-balance. Previously, my weakened ankle made it hard, and likely my upper body fat did, as well. But yesterday I did 4 solid reps without much issue at all. I was able to keep my upper body nice and tight and driving through with the hips while pushing hard into the ground with my feet was quite easy.

Progress!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Intermittent Fasting, Day 24, April 12, 2009

I decided to skip today's supplementation, just to stretch out my supplies. Since I'm unemployed as of April 30, I may do this several more times.

I've been working my IF days in a sort of random fashion. For example, Saturday and Sunday were both "Breakfast" days, where I would eat after waking and every 3 hours or so after, stopping at 6pm.

The meals on both days was pretty similar:
  • Egg white omelet (1.5 cups eggwhites w/2 whole eggs) w/ onions and lean ground turkey
  • 1 slice low-fat swiss cheese
  • An orange or an apple
  • 2 capsules of Biotest Flameout
Lunches and snacks were similar, as well:
  • Bowl of high-protein cereal (mostly flax, pumpkin seed, grain cereal) with
  • 1% milk mixed with a scoop of added protein
  • High-fiber grain toast with a little peanut butter
Only once in the past week did I eat fast food. I went to Arby's and got one of their new "roastburger" sandwiches, along with a medium fry and a diet dr. pepper. It really wasn't that great. The sandwich wasn't bad, but the fries tasted horrible and the soda was disappointing.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Built a Pull-Up Bar!

I got sick of waiting for one to magically fall out of the sky and decided to build a pull-up bar today. I ran over to Home Depot and bought:
  • 2 72" long, black powder-coated 1" diameter pipes
  • 1 48" long, black 1" diameter pipe for the bar
  • 2 90 degree elbow connectors
  • 2 t-connectors for the bottom supports
  • 4 12" long black 1" diameter pipes for the feet
Ended up costing about $80 USD. I could have spent less, but I didn't want to attach it to a wall at this point, as I wanted something that is fairly easy to move around just in case I want to lug it outside when the weather gets warmer.

It seems strong and stable enough. :)

Now, I really can't do pullups. Maybe one, and that one is pathetic. I've been avoiding pull-ups because I'm so weak. That's about to change. On my off-days from doing the EtK Program Minimum, I'm going to work on pull-ups. 'nuff said.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Training for April 10, 2009

Again, following the Enter The Kettlebell Program Minimum. Today it was the Turkish Getups!

After a 10 minute warmup of pumps, halos (w/a 16kg bell) and face-the-wall squats, I proceeded to do 5 minutes of Getups with a 24kg bell. I felt strong, and really enjoyed them.

I think that made today's workout such a great experience was that between the movements in the warmup, I focused on complete relaxation. Bouncing lightly on the balls of my feet and shaking out all tension, breathing deeply throughout. I think it's just too easy to forget to do this.

My right ankle definitely has some flexibility and stability issues, which made the face-the-wall squats slightly difficult at the absolute bottom of the movement, but it is slowly getting better.

After all that . . . I ended up getting suckered into helping my mom move a granite slab-topped table she'd just bought. Darn thing must have weighed 500, maybe 600 pounds. Good thing I had the help of one of her neighbors.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Strict Diets Decrease Testosterone Drastically?

Over at Muscular Development is a new article that has some interesting points (this article is directed towards males, as it focuses on testosterone levels):
  • Resistance training while dehydrated can increase cortisol and decrease testosterone response
  • Severe dieting, where calorie intake is highly restricted, causes testosterone levels to plummet, interfering with the body's natural negative feedback loop of testosterone regulation, even when protein intake is considered high and anaerobic training is included
  • That athletes, fitness professionals, and likely anyone training to just lose weight and improve their physique, should reconsider their nutrition if they are experiencing symptoms of testosterone deficiency
What are symptoms of testosterone deficiency? Here are some:
  • Fatigue
  • Depression
  • Loss of strength and/or muscle mass
  • Diminished work capacity
  • Etc.
Normally, resistance (aka anaerobic) training results in increased serum testosterone, as does a diet that provides sufficient nutrition, mainly lean proteins for the basic building blocks of muscle (amino acids), fats for the production of hormones (surprise! cholesterol is vital for sex hormone production in both men and women), and carbohydrates for fueling exercise (though protein and fats can provoke an insulin response, nothing does it better than good old glucose). Yes, I know this is a simplification and I may be wrong about some technical particulars.

This article has me rethinking my decision to start intermittent fasting. Sure, IF can assist in weight loss and there are potential benefits in regards to insulin resistance and hormone balance, and while I do not seem to be exhibiting the symptoms of testosterone deficiency right now, I was diagnosed with low testosterone recently (around the middle of last year). I am wondering if I might be making things potentially worse for myself by fasting. Weight training can decrease insulin resistance, so am I really doing myself a favor by combining them?

Being that I'm still working on figuring out my own testosterone issues, choosing to do IF right now might be muddying up the waters. My calories are really not as restricted as the wrestlers mentioned in that article, but mine might be low enough to eventually cause issues.

I think I'll do some calorie counting, just to see what my intake is.

Training for April 09, 2009

Decided to "get back to basics" today, by doing the Program Minimum from the Enter the Kettlebell book by Pavel Tsatsouline.

I did about 10-15 minutes of "pumps," face-the-wall squats, and halos, the latter with a 16kg bell. The halos feel wonderful, by the way. Right ankle is just unstable enough that squatting begins to get difficult after a while.

Following that was 12 minutes of alternating between two-handed swings with a 16kg bell and jumping rope. That was pretty killer and it felt great. My right ankle is a little sore afterwards, but the great toe on that foot feels OK.

I've decided (thanks for the reminder, Sandy!) to go back and do just this for at least 6 weeks. I am really enjoying the VO2max snatch work, and I will throw in a few days of it here and there, but I really did need to go back and work on the core movements.

Missed updates!

I've been pretty busy due to interviewing for jobs and studying for my IT certifications.

Supplementation has been consistent. Yesterday I did mostly body weight training while watching TV. I love Lost. :)

Mixed in floor presses with a 24kg bell with pushups, situps (mixed regular situps with Janda situps), pushups (alternating widths and throwing in some dive bombers at the end). Also threw in some partial getups with a 24kg bell.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Turf Toe Update

My great right toe feels pretty good today, after doing the Turkish Getups yesterday. I was afraid it'd be more sore than it is. If anything, my right ankle feels worse than the toe, as I kinda tweaked it near the end of the cardio kickboxing class on Saturday. Will need to tape my ankle for Krav.

I'm falling apart!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Training for April 06, 2009

Warmed up with several minutes of Turkish Getup/Windmill combinations (two sets with a 16kg bell, 2 sets with a 24kg), then moved on to two sets of 5 reps each of cleans and high pulls with a 16kg bell.

Realized I wasn't keeping full body tension in the cleans, and once I corrected that, all the movements after got much crisper and more powerful.

After a minute or two, I then proceeded to do 6 minutes of VO2max snatch training with a 16kg bell. Chalked my grip before starting. What a huge difference that makes. I need to get more chalk.

After a few sets I had another realization, that I wasn't fully locking out my arm at the top of the snatch. Once I corrected that, and made sure to keep my bicep close to my ear, the snatches got noticeably easier. My punch through started to just fall into line and I didn't need anywhere near as much effort to keep going.

That said, I was still sucking wind at the end, but I felt great. Win! I'll continue to do 6 minutes for the rest of this week, and attempt an increase next week if I keep everything tight like it was for this session.

However, I still need to practice the punch through.

Intermittent Fasting, Day 16, April 05, 2009

Friday and Saturday were pretty normal, as far as diet goes. Same supplements as usual.

I did overeat a little on Sunday, during the day, but I did stop eating at 6pm on Sunday night, as scheduled. I just ate more than planned, during the day. So, for the next week I will be more strict and get more vegetables and lean protein in.

What did I eat on Sunday? A huge veggie omelet (1.5 cups egg whites w/2 whole eggs, onions, green peppers, swiss cheese), an orange, and then several hours later a chicken pot-pie and a banana, and several hours after that 1/2 a medium pizza. Also ate a few bites of a Toblerone chocolate bar (3 pieces).

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Training for April 05, 2009

None! I took Sunday off as a rest day. Just tried to totally relax, reading and watching movies.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Training for April 04, 2009

Went to Krav Maga training today, but I was the only one who showed up. Everyone else was afraid of a little cold weather. Wimps!

Three ladies showed up for a cardio class, so I decided to go ahead and jump in. My butt was kicked.

I took a 16kg kettlebell with me and did some windmills for a warmup before class. Turns out that the school actually bought a couple kettlebells and I didn't notice them at first. Looks like they had a 16kg and an 8kg bell.

I mentioned to one of the instructors that I have several sandbags available and that I'll bring them in for future training.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Intermittent Fasting, Day 14, April 03, 2009

Missed a few days of logging the diet, but nothing really interesting happened in those days, except for yesterday. Yesterday was my "Breakfast Day" where I eat up until 6pm. I must not have eaten enough during the day because about 8:30 at night I was so hungry that I was hurting.

I decided to finish off a small amount of chicken and pasta that was left over from the other day. Bad idea. I don't mind having slipped up once, and it may even be a good thing but today I actually feel sick. My stomach has been hurting all morning.

So, I'm back on track and won't eat anything until 6pm tonight.

I had one supplementation change: I've increased my DHEA intake to 100mg as of yesterday. In another post, I'll be detailing why.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Training for April 2nd, 2009

Warmup: 5 minutes of Turkish getups with a 16kg bell. Shoulders felt pretty good during and after.

Session: 6 minutes VO2max snatch training with a 16kg bell.

Was sucking wind afterwards!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Training for April 1st, 2009

I was feeling kinda tired, feeling like I'm coming down with a cold, so I decided to skip the VO2max training for today. I just worked on the form of my cleans and did some body weight stuff, like pushups and squats. Just enough to feel good and not stressed at all.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Training for March 31, 2009

7 minutes of VO2max training with a 16kg bell for lunch instead of eating. First 5 minutes were ok, but those last two were getting pretty tough. My snatch form started to get a little sloppy, but that just means I need to really focus on powering through it mentally.

It's an interesting paradox: doing snatches shows you just how bad you are at them, but high-rep work on them, or this VO2max I'm doing, forces you to learn proper technique, because without it you just can't get through it. I find that I start having to muscle through the movement the last quarter to third of the sets as my technique starts to go due to fatigue, but once the fatigue starts to peak, I must focus on technique to complete the remaining reps.

My upper back and shoulders actually feel pretty good. The camshafts and other shoulder work from Z-Health have really helped my shoulders out.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Intermittent Fasting, Day 10, March 30, 2009

Still following my normal morning and night time supplementation.

As for what I ate for dinner:
  • Three bean burritos from Taco Bell
  • Three soft-shell tacos from Taco Bell
  • One hour later: A bowl of flax, grain and pumpkin seed cereal mixed with
  • 10oz skim milk with a scoop of protein (about 30g added protein)
I was absolutely stuffed but not uncomfortably so. Borderline. Must try to avoid Taco Bell, and fast food in general, in the future. Just costs too much and doesn't provide solid nutrition. Good thing I take vitamins and fish oil supplements.

I've been without any caffeinated drinks for about 48 hours and the itch to drink the bubbly is pretty strong. I will fight that, though. I need to break the diet soda habit. I was drinking 6-8 of the damn things a day, mostly Diet Dr. Pepper.

Training for March 30, 2009

Just got done with my first VO2max training. I started with a 16kg bell.

For those who don't know what VO2max training is, here's the definition from the Wikipedia page:

VO2 max (also maximal oxygen consumption, maximal oxygen uptake or aerobic capacity) is the maximum capacity of an individual's body to transport and utilize oxygen during incremental exercise, which reflects the physical fitness of the individual
The short of it: a fitness protocol that will show you just how weak and out of shape you really are. :)

I started with 6 minutes total. 8 kettlebell snatches with left arm for 15 seconds, then a 15 second rest. Switch to right arm. Repeat for a total of 6 times through. Heavy breathing and cursing commences. I missed one freaking rep on the next to last set! I was pissed, and determined that will never happen again.

Tomorrow I up the time to 7 minutes. Yay for self-inflicted torture! I would have it any other way!

Some additional links for those who want more info:

Weekly Weigh In

Ok, last Monday my weight was 224 pounds.

As of this morning, my weight was 220.5 pounds.

Now, this Intermittent Fasting diet I am doing is not really low carb, and I have even included some foods I shouldn't really be eating, such as the carrot cake roll from Saturday or the nasty tortilla chips from a few days before. I've also been drinking between a half-gallon to a full gallon of water each day and I've practically eliminated all the diet soda that had become such a bad habit for me (had a low-carb Monster energy drink at 5pm Saturday).

My activity is roughly the same as it was before I'd started the diet, so I feel I can say that something is definitely working.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Intermittent Fasting, Day 09, March 29, 2009

Morning supplementation:
  • 1g Vitamin C
  • 2 capsules green tea extract
  • 50mg DHEA
  • Men's multivitamin
  • Forgot the creatine
Breakfast:
  • Eggwhite omelet: 1 cup eggwhites w/ 1 whole egg
  • 1 slice non-fat cheese
  • Topped with the remaining lean ground beef and onions mix left over from the other day
  • 1/2 cup sliced pineapple
  • 4 capsules Biotest Flameout
Didn't eat anything else the rest of the day. Just didn't feel like it. I am quite hungry now, but I am simply drinking water, and chewing gum. Only complaint is that it seems like my acid reflux has kicked in a little and I think it's because I've been kinda slouching most of the day, working on the computer.

Night time supplementation:
  • 3 capsules of ZMA, taken 30 mins to an hour before bed

Intermittent Fasting, Day 08, March 28, 2009

Morning supplementation:
  • 1g Vitamin C
  • 50mg DHEA
  • Men's multivitamin
  • Two capsules green tea extract
  • 1 scoop Biotest Creatine
Nighttime supplementation:

  • 3 capsules Vitamin Shoppe ZMA

I ate dinner at a friend's house. What we had:
  • A nice green salad with a wonderful, but unknown salad dressing, sprinkled with some tasty croutons
  • I had a huge 16 ounce steak. Medium rare.
  • Followed up with two thin slices of a carrot cake roll I had brought along with me
  • 1/2 glass of red wine
  • Two glasses of water
  • 1 bottle of Guinness
I drink alcohol very rarely, so it was nice relaxing with the gang, playing boardgames and laughing at each other's misfortunes.

Intermittent Fasting, Day 07, March 27, 2009

Supplementation was the same as the day before.

For dinner, I had cooked up 1 pound of 96% lean ground beef, along with a 1/2 of an onion (chopped), and about a 1/4 cup of some great-tasting barbecue sauce. I took half of that and mixed it with about two cups of steamed broccoli. It was damn tasty. Next time I make it, I think I'll use some spicy peanut sauce instead. Dessert was a small apple.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Training for March 27, 2009

I've missed posting about my training for the past several days, and I'm working on remedying that. Mostly Z-Health, some FlowFit, and some kettlebell training.

So far today I've done some GTG snatch work using a 16kg bell (1x5 left/right), just trying to really focus on the punch-through and keeping the arm locked out. Just from today's practice I saw a marked improvement from the 1st rep to the 5th.

Later on today I'll switch to the 24kg.

Edit @ ~1:00PM: Just finished a GTG 1x5 set with a 24kg bell, left then right. Form was better than ever on my snatch with the 24kg, and I can say that it's all due to watching this video on Youtube.

Edit @ 5:00PM: Did a second GTG set, 1x5, with a 24kg bell and it was a little sloppy. I started to feel tired after a couple reps.

Intermittent Fasting, Day 06, March 26, 2009

Forgot to post this before going to bed yesterday.

Morning supplementation:
  • 1g Vitamin C
  • 50mg DHEA
  • Men's multivitamin
  • Two capsules green tea extract
  • Forgot the creatine
  • No l-glutamine as I was eating during the day
Nighttime supplementation:
  • 3 capsules Vitamin Shoppe ZMA
Now, I actually kinda horked up a little bit and only ate once yesterday. I started to get pretty hungry later on and today I am not scheduled to eat until 6pm tonight. So, this is about a 30 hour fast. We'll see how it goes.

What I ate yesterday:
  • Bowl of chili with
  • Too many tortilla chips
I think I got stuffed because of the chips. They were heavy and I am not buying and eating them again. They were a store brand made in a local Rancho Liborio, which is a Mexican grocery store chain that just opened a branch here in my home town.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Intermittent Fasting, Day 05, March 25, 2009

Morning Supplementation:
  • 1g Vitamin C
  • 50mg DHEA
  • Men's multivitamin
  • Two capsules green tea extract
  • 5g Biotest Creatine
  • 5g Glutamine
I had forgotten that I had a big bottle of Glutamine (l-glutamine) capsules in my supplement stash.

It has been suggested by some studies that supplementing with l-glutamine during periods of injury, high stress, or fasting may help prevent muscle loss, and also keep the walls of the intestinal tract healthy and strong, boosting the immune system (some studies have been compiled on this page).

For dinner I ate:
  • 2 small chicken breasts, cubed, covered with a slice of
  • Low-fat swiss cheese and
  • 1/3 cup of sauerkraut
  • 1 slice high-fiber bread
And about an hour later:
  • Bowl of high-fiber cereal (Kashi Go-Lean, I believe), mixed with
  • 8 ounces skim milk mixed with
  • 1 scoop EAS protein blend (has about 30 grams in a scoop)
I feel like I'm eating too much, but it's hard to gauge it. I've done the Warrior Diet in the past, where the point was to fast all day and then gorge yourself until pleasantly full at night. I guess I've just been eating until I feel full. Since this is the first week, I'll cut myself a little slack and take the time to learn how to judge it.

I'll definitely cut back on the bread, as it seems like I'm eating it every day (even though it is damn high in fiber: 16g carbs, 6 of them fiber, per slice). I should be getting my fiber from veggies, so I'll start eating more veggies as of tomorrow morning.

Drank about 3/4 of a gallon of water today.

Night time supplementation:
  • 3 capsules of Vitamin Shoppe brand ZMA

I Hate Dental Cleanings

Just got back home from my regularly scheduled dental cleaning!

Someone needs to develop some kind of enzymatic mouthwash that takes care of most of this stuff . . . come on, it's the 21st Century! We shouldn't need to have metal picks and tools shoved into our mouths.

While I was laying there getting poked and prodded, I did some of the physical therapy work for my right ankle, so I was able to be at least a little productive. The work was just moving my ankle though ROM: medium-sized circles at a nice slow pace, clockwise and counter-clockwise, then dorsi- and plantar-flexion, followed with inversion/eversion.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Intermittent Fasting, Day 04, March 24, 2009

Morning supplementation:
  • 1g Vitamin C
  • 50mg DHEA
  • Men's multivitamin
  • Two capsules of green tea extract
  • 5g Biotest creatine

Today I ate two meals, before 6pm, as scheduled.

The first was a huge eggwhite omelet for breakfast. It was made of 1.5cups of eggwhites, mixed with 1 whole egg, fried green peppers and onions, and topped with two slices of non-fat cheese. I also ate three slices of high-fiber bread (each slice contains 6g fiber!) and also ate a banana.

The banana was too much. Followed up that meal with 4 capsules of Biotest's Flameout.

I was stuffed for about 4 hours after that meal, and then I did a stupid thing.

I went to McDonalds. I really am starting to develop a hate for fast food, but I find myself craving it. Sounds like an addiction to me.

So, what did I get? A double-quarter pounder value meal with fries and a Coke, and an extra quarter pounder. Tasted so good, but eating like this always makes me feel like crap.

I have got to break this addiction to fast food.

Now, I will eat nothing else until after 6pm tomorrow night!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Intermittent Fasting, Day 03, March 23, 2009

Last night I was terribly hungry, from about 8pm until I went to bed.

So far this morning I am hungry, but not as bad as last night. Just took my normal morning supplements: 50mg DHEA, 1g Vitamin C, 2 capsules green tea extract, 1tsp creatine, and men's multivitamin.

I won't be eating until 6pm tonight.

Edit: What I ate for dinner:

  • One big bowl of home made veggie and chicken soup (cabbage, tomatoes, pickles, some grated carrot)
  • Two small chicken breasts, diced and put into the soup
  • Two slices of high-fiber bread drizzled with a little honey

And about two hours later when I got hungry again:

  • A bowl of flax and raisin cereal made with...
  • 10 ounces of skim milk, mixed with...
  • 1 scoop of a hiqh-quality protein powder blend

I was pretty darn full after all that. One thing I didn't like was the energy boost I got from, the bread and honey. I felt a major sugar high from it. I'm not gonna eat like that again so late at night. From now on, all dinner meals after 6, up to 2 hours before bed, are all going to be low-carb, veggie and lean protein-based.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Training for March 22, 2009

Took one of my newly assembled sandbags outside and did some basic, light work. I loaded the bag with 60 pounds of sand (I have smaller bags each containing between 2 to 2.5 pounds each) and proceeded to just do about 20 minutes of random movements. I didn't want to think about it, I just wanted to do what felt right at the moment as I was using this as a deloading day.

I alternated, in random order and random number of reps, the following moves, beginning and ending each rep with the bag on the ground:

  • Cleans
  • Bent-over rows
  • Zercher squats
  • Military press
  • Crossovers, which consist of cleaning the bag and throwing it over one shoulder, then dropping the bag to the ground and repeating on the opposite side
  • Drags - dragged the bag backwards in grass, moving as fast as I could, given my turf toe

Even though I was certainly sweating at the end of the 20 minutes, I was only slightly tired and felt rather refreshed. Goal accomplished!

Starting Intermittent Fasting

Ever since reading the posts made by Michael Eades M.D. on his blog, about Intermittent Fasting, I've been curious to give it a run (link 1, link 2). I decided to start it this weekend, and I'm currently on day 2.

On Friday I ate my regular diet (which is crap, by the way), but made sure not to eat about 2-3 hours before bedtime. On Saturday I did not eat anything until 6pm and only drank water throuthout the day. I had dinner at a friend's house and I ate a simple salad followed by a rather delicious and huge steak, and some lemon-flavored desserts.

According to the basic description of the diet, I should have then eaten a regular diet up until 6pm Sunday night, but I let myself sleep late and missed the breakfast period. For lunch I had two big bowls of a nice chili, to which I added green peppers, spring onions and a little ground flax seed. After 6pm, I will fast until 6pm Monday. Rinse and repeat.

Since I am still eating everyday, I will continue taking fish oil and all my regular supplements, but during the fasting periods I am supplementing with glutamine and BCAAs, to help preserve muscle mass. Since the caloric content of these supplements is so low, it's not an issue.

I am not planning any reduction of training frequency or load during this experiment, and I'm actually going to be increasing my total volume by going back to Krav Maga next weekend. Now, I only plan on adding at most two days of Krav back into my schedule as my right great toe is still being nursed. I'll be taping it for Krav training and will try to wear stiff-soled shoes in addition to taping.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Followup with the Podiatrist

This was the one month followup with the podiatrist regarding the turf toe, for the great toe on my right foot ("great toe" sounds better than "big toe," eh? My toe is great!).

It's been significantly less sore and feels stronger since I've been taping it and wearing a inflexible shoe when I didn't feel like taping. Damn athletic tape started taking skin off with it and that is really painful.

Doc said that the progress is good and that I should continue with taping when needed, and wearing shoes that are as stiff as I can get. I am continuing with the physical therapy, which consists of band work and mostly Z-Health work. The PT at the doc's office had given me a sheet of things to do every day, and I have been swapping between Z and those, but I've missed both for the past several days. Must start again and stick with it!

I've been feeling the itch to get back into Krav Maga, so I'm gonna head over to the school this Saturday and talk to the owner. I'll go as often as I can, but I'll just need to be really aware of how the toe feels, and keep it taped up when training. The bad thing is that I won't be able to do much running or jumping, but kicking should be ok as long as I don't stupidly mash that toe, again.

I've got some serious weight to lose, gained too much after taking a break from Krav. Sigh.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Z-Health Rocks! And Tonight's Training

I've been doing the full body R-Phase just about every day for the past several weeks and it feels wonderful. I've been adding additional time and hitting certain areas more than others on some days, depending on how the movement feels.

As time has gone on, I discover that my right foot just wants to turn outwards, and I find that I have to work on keeping it facing forward, and when I do that I feel like the movements are more difficult. Also, I'm working hard on keeping tall, because as a computer person, I tend to hunch over a good deal of the time.

As far as kettlebell training, I've been cycling through some complexes that I like. With the turf toe I am working through, it can be difficult to do some moves like lunges, but I'm doing the best I can with them.

Tonight my training will be:

Pre: Foamrolling
A1: Squat Press or Clean & Press w/2 35lb bells, 3x8
A2: Bent-over rows w/2 35lb bells, 3x8
A3: Stiff-legged Deadlift w/2 35lb bells, 3x8
B1: Alternating lunge & reverse lunge w/1 35lb bell, 3x8
B2: Pushups, 3x8

One minute rest between each set of A and B, and one minute of rest before moving on to B.

For the lunges, I may need to drop the weight some, depending on how my toe feels. I'll have it taped up, so hopefully I'll be able to get it all done.

I'll report back about how the session goes. Since I had taken so much time off due to my foot, and other issues, this is gonna be difficult, but it should be fun.

Edit: training ended up being:

Pre: 12 minutes of foamrolling
Warmup: A few sets of windmills with a 35lb bell
A1: Clean & Press w/2 35lb bells, 3x8 - Last 2 reps of the last set were tough
A2: Bent-over rows w/2 35lb bells, 3x8 - Last 2 reps of last set were tough
A3: Stiff-legged Deadlift w/2 35lb bells, 3x8 - Can increase the reps to 9
B1: Alternating lunge & reverse lunge w/1 35lb bell, 3x8 - Hard with turf toe, had to use no weight
B2: Pushups, 3x8 - Used a pushup pro, which helps my right shoulder

Rested one minute between A cycles, and when switching to B. There was't supposed to be any rest between sets of each cycle, but I allowed three deep breaths between each set.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Good morning!

Just got done with my full body, morning Z-Health R-Phase session. I'm still trying to get into the groove with all the movements, but I can say that the shoulder part feels absolutely awesome! I love how it feels like an energizing warmth flows into my shoulders. It is a powerful sensation, almost sexual in how it floods the body and awakens the senses.

Edit: Ok, so did my comment about it feeling pseudo-sexual weird people out? X^D