Friday, December 31, 2010
I have already stated my goals for 2011 and I have set up a plan on how to accomplish them. But I also have sort of a bonus goal. Something that I have never seen anyone do: juggle three kettlebells. I figure it is basically the same technique as in juggling with clubs. Not that I know how to do that but I have watched some tutorials and I'm starting with two 8 kg bells and will take it from there. Progress will be filmed.
Thursday, December 30, 2010
It turns out that I have an inflamed biceps tendon so I'll be laying low with presses for a while. I Guess Kettlebell Muscle Program wasn't for me after all. But oooh how I be working the rubber! Rehab is always more fun when you get to buy something and how I love my new rubberbands. They come in happy colours and with a funny booklet of instructions. Listen to this:
- Do you exercising in a well ventilated room
- Attach long hair so as not to be hindered during exercising
- Do not let children or household pets play near the appliance when you are training (Fredrik, maybe you should keep that one in mind next time, and for the rest of you look at his latest vid.)
- Consult you doctor before undertaking the exercises (Or as Fredrik says: Ask your doctor if getting off your as is right for you)
I'm not so frustrated as I usually would be though. Am taking some well deserved rest, playing with photshop (see below) and planning for how to train the coming year and trying to come up with a way on how to achieve your goals without getting injured. Everybody seems to do it but me. What's the key? Sometimes I think my body wasn't made for training at all. But what do you do?
I'm thinking maybe one of the solutions is to set up long-term goal. Really long-term so that there's no need at all to rush things. Am following Jons example and am setting up goals for the whole year to come with #1 being staying whole. Will be getting back for the rest of them in the days to come.
Not sure this will be the official KBC-logo. But it's at least a sample of whats to come. For our Barcelona readers you will recognize the pattern from the paving tiles.
Am working on the webpage for Kettlebell Catalunya. You will find the temporary page here. Come and train with us! New years day there'll be no training but from wed 5/1 we going on strong as usual.
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Ten years have soon passed since the black monolith should have been found on the dark side of the moon but things are pretty much as they always has been. 2011 will however be a year of immense change.
Just read my blog post from a year ago and it struck me how little my training has progressed. It felt a bit sad really. I mean, a lot has happened this past year. I do think that I am a better athlete and I am for sure a much better teacher but I don't know if I am that much stronger. This, however, makes me even more confident in what I should do this comming year: set up clear goals, program for them and write a training log. So here they come. My 11 goals for 2011:
1. Deadlift double bodyweight. This should be one of the easier goals since I already has lifted 160 kg at 82 kg bodyweight. Have to wait to start training it for real until I find a proper barbell. Our two 56 kg kettlebells will have to do meanwhile.
2. Squat double bodyweight. I have never tried out a 1 rep max squat so I really don't know how hard this is going to be but I'm starting to work it with double kb front squats while I'm still in Bcn.
3. Benchpress 1.5 x bodyweight. Have never benchpressed 100 kgs so this will be interesting.
4. Pistol. It's just a shame that I can't do it already.
5. Press double 36s for 10 reps. I prefer to keep on doing the double kb work since I hope it will even out the imbalance I've got between left and right side.
6. Flip double 36s for 10 reps. Love the double kb swing flips. Did 325 of them with th 20 kgs and are now bringing the 24s to the park.
7. Pull-up +50 kg. It's a shame that I haven't progressed more in the weighted pull-up during the year. Have done 45 kgs so 50 kgs shouldn't be a big thing.
8. One arm pull-up. Everybody needs a mountain to climb...
9. Comfortably put the palms in the floor with straight legs. I probably should have more flexibility goals but I don't.
10. Snatch test with 32 kgs. Haven't done the snatch test since the RKC but I'm pretty sure it wouldn't be a problem. Movin up. It feels more interesting to increase the weight than to do the SSST with 24 kgs.
11. One minute handstand. Yepp.
That's it!!! If I reach these goals in the coming year I feel I'm pretty much at a good athletic level for a 38 year old.
Tuesday, December 28, 2010
I have written before about circus. Or more specifically: Contemporary Circus. The contemporary circus artists really are a sort of role model of athleticism for me. They are well rounded in almost all aspects of the word (except maybe when it comes to cardio vascular capacity). Kudos to them.
Contemporary circus as art or performance however is often another story. Pornographic in the the sense that it uses a story a a framework for the show that is at best secondary to the tricks - the money shot. The story also has a tendency to be quite pretentious dwelling on such subjects as mental disease, fractals etc. Until a few day ago I thought that this was the destiny of contemporary circus: cool tricks loosly connected by a story that just might include a pizza boy or the pool boy. I like it when I'm right.......but I love it when I'm wrong. And boy was I wrong!
Went to see Oscar and the other guys performance the other day and I completely blown away. I haven't laughed this much since ........ (insert optional whatever).
The show really doesen't tell a 'story'. It has a framework in that you sort of recognize
the narrative: Four guys being guys. That's it. No Fibonacci numbers, no Wittgenstein, no paranoia. Just very well performed physical comedy.
I am certainly out of my element trying to unwind the historical background of comedy but for me the success of the show has something to do with it not taking the cirkus as a whole as a mould for its structure but rather the clown.
Contemporary circus usually comes across to me as really beeing traditional circus were the different numbers are connected not only by the tent, the ring, the sawdust or history and tradition but also by a 'story'.
This performance however takes the figure of the clown and enhances it to a whole show. The clown as being the most versatile figure in the circus, capable of performing a large variety of tricks bound together not by story but rather by character.
For me this is a oh so much more intelligent approach than the 'let's tell a story' one. There is no gasping between the tricks and there is no 'youtube trick fatigue'. As an audience you get so involved in the characters that the tricks no longer are you just tricks that might or might not have seen before but rather tricks performed by someone that you know and care about.
Bravo, bravo, fuckin BRAVO!!!
If you're in Bcn, go and watch it.
Saturday, December 25, 2010
It's all good working on splits and other spectacular flexy moves but I've recently realized how ridiculously tight my upper body is.
I guess you could say that I'm the equivalent to guys who practice only their show-off-skills forgetting to work on the basics. Guys with an upper body of Conan but with legs like Goofy who can do one million chins but who can't even perform one decent air squat. Yup that's me. Only when it comes to flexibility.
The ballet classes have been an eye opener when it comes to this. In second position when arms are held out to the sides I can feel it really pulling all the way from my fingertips, through my biceps, shoulders and chest and I'm suddenly realizing what Jon's talking about when he says that some stretch poses just feel so bloody akward.
I believe that the biggest cause are all the internally rotated lifts on the pole. But then presses, push ups and pull-ups probably play a part in it as well. So externally rotated chest/shoulder/arm- stretch. Here I come!
We started christmas day morning with some yoga and then huffed and puffed in some quad and hip-flexor torture. But then I was left to my own devices with the rest. I'm really trying to open the chest, lower the shoulders and reeally externally rotate the arms. That's where it feels tightest. I'm also trying diffrent positions with the head as I'm suspecting that some muscles in the neck and even trapezius is part of the blame.
So, if your arms are pulling in Deuxième - Don't be that guy. Join me for some non-extraordinary moves.
Sunday, December 19, 2010
Yes. I do belive in movement quality. I belive in stopping when or before movement gets bad/changes/slows down. Not all the time though. What I most firmly belive in is listening inwards, to your own body and mind and to find joy in movement this way. Most of the time I aim for my training to be controlled and precise but sometimes.... well sometimes I just want to see what I'm made of.
Last sunday Anna found this workout that seemed absolutly horrible in a simple and....well horrible way. We posted it as a challenge to some of our friends who responded - if at all - with some slight hestitation. Well, hestitate no more for we few, we happy few, we band of brothers; for he to-day that sheds his blood with me shall be my brother.
It is originally done with a 28 kg kettlebell. I did it in the park where I have only two 20s available so I had a choice: Do it with one or two bells, with 20 or 40 kgs. As an old philosopher I went for the third choice though: double 20s with flip. That way I get to practice my double juggling skills at the same time as the workout gets less boring.
It took me around 50 min. After I got to around 20 burpees/6 swings I started to feel my wrists so I changed from burpees to roll ups. Not the same but better than nothing.
In hindsight I can say that it is not the kind of workout I would do on a daily basis or even once a week. But here and there when you just have to smoke yourself, it works just fine.
After hanging out in deepest sidesplit for the whole duration of 'Oh Holy Night' by Mariah Carey (ha ha ha, it's true) it was time to evaluate our progress over the past three months. The measuring method was putting the heels up to a line in a split. Then folding over as far as possible (with control) with a pen in your hands and putting it down as far away from the line as possible and then measuring the distance between the line and the pen.
Unfortunately I wasn't there the day when we measured the initial data so I had nothing to compare to. But now I have a measurement for the next check up. Some of the less flexible people had massive improvements, up to a 20 centimetre difference in reach! Although everyone but one had improved their reach singificantely. Around six centimetres in 2 months must be regarded as a pretty good increase for an already flexy person.
My flexy status have been very turbulent lately. Or perhaps it's always been like that. (Note to self: must learn to keep a flexy diary.) By the end of the summer I reached a "touch-down" in my front splits in one of Marinas of North Pole Studio amazing (think russian gymnast coach style) stretch class. I was happy as a schoolgirl with full score in a spelling competition but pretty soon after that I could feel how I started to stiffen up. Of course I refused to acknowledge it and kept going beyond my limits and further in the stretch classes here in Bcn and I think I managed to pull both of my hamstrings slightly some 1 1/2 months ago. My legs have been felling like logs and stretching for splits have been out of the question for a while.
When we are trying to improve ourselves, be it in flexibility, strenght or whatever I think there are two very common mistakes most of us make. At least I know I keep doing them over and over again! One is thinking that someone elses road to succes is the path for you. The other is being way to eager trying to get where we want that we are running the risk of hurting ourselves while focusing too much on the goal and forgetting the journey which is half of the fun.
These both two things are certainly applicable on me when it comes to stretching. I've been strecthing for a long time. Well, at least in one way or another for the past - say - 12 years. There's been dancing, yoga, yoga again, poledancing, and now dancing and yoga again and I think that it might be that it's only now that I'm starting to get the hang of what type of stretching is right for me. And I think that it's only now that I'm learning not to rush myself too fast forward because I know it's gonna hit me like a ton of bricks the day after.
To post exactly the kind of stretching that I think is right for me is perhaps a bit contradictory scince I'm advocating to try and find your own path and keep away from other peoples succes stories. (Although - with my, in comparison, lacking flexibility - this is of course not a succes story.) But if I weren't writing about my own experiences of the shit I'm trying out and thinking about, why then keep a blog in the first place?
I've found that for me, number one when stretching is not to go too far. I have a pretty high pain tolerance when it comes to that kind of agony and going beyond the point where I probably should stop happens easily. I guess for some people it's the opposite. They have to learn to push themselves further but for me it's about holding back and never ever try to impress someone and go a liiitle bit further than you know you should (ehhh, yes it's happened).
Number two is to alternate light and hard practice. The periods when I'm more flexible than ever is when I'm doing yoga (i.e. light stretching) more or less every day and then have one or maybe two hardcore days per week. No more.
And number three is to be really warmed up when working. I know some people don't really need it or they do a quick little warm up before they leap into a stag-jump. I need to be so warm that there's sweat dripping down from my nose before I spread my legs. Ha ha.
Now that I've come so far as to write down the rules for my elongating program I'm hoping I can be so mature as to follow them, (especially the holding back part) that I can enjoy the journey and that I will learn even more from my body from doing that.
Let me finish with a last disclaimer. This is, like I said earlier, what I've found works for me, (through years of trail and error - mostly error) when working leg/hip flexibility for splits. I shall post some thoughts on what I belive is right for people who need to learn reach their toes or release their tight hip flexor some other day.
Thank you for reading this lenghty post!
(no pun intended)
Saturday, December 18, 2010
Thursday, December 16, 2010
UV tattoos or blacklight tattoos are tattoos made with a special ink that is visible under an ultraviolet light (blacklight). Depending upon the ink, they can be nearly invisible in non-UV environments, thus they are a popular consideration for people seeking a subtler tattoo. They are particularly popular in the raver subculture.Although the tattoos are sometimes considered invisible in normal light, scarring from the tattoo machine in the application process may remain, and therefore still show. A UV tattoo becomes visible under blacklight, when it glows in colors ranging from white to purple, depending on the ink chosen. Colored ink is also available, where the ink is visible in normal light (as with a regular tattoo) but the ink will glow vividly under UV light. However, some UV inks are not as bright under normal light as normal tattoo ink and are considered not as vibrant..
I was really impressed with my dear husbands viking warrior skills yesterday. And a bit jealous as well. I too want to snatch! But I'm waiting for my shoulders to feel A-OK and for the last viruses (or bacterias which one is it?) to leave my body before I throw myself into the snatch pond. And also, I'm a bit annoyed because I'm pretty sure that if I was to do the Vo2 protocol for the first time in a year, my results wouldn't be half as good as Jons.
I think that snatches are coming my way soon. There hasn't been much cardio work for me lately and I'm feeling the urge growing. I guess the burpee/swing workout that I posted earlier is some kind of premonition of what is to come. And I'm not talking about the Messiah. When it comes to the above mentioned workout I was planning on doing it on sunday, I hope to feel better by then. But if I don't, you'll just have to wait a few days. Doing 325 burpees (Jesus Christ!) in one workout if your not feeling well is probably like asking for a heart-attack (yes mother I'm exagerrating). And i'm not trying to kill myself here, remember. I'm trying to get better, faster and stronger.
Well, back to Jon and his superman performance when casually testing the Vo2 yesterday. I guess that's all well and good but this, my friends, is the broken down piece of meat he turns into after ca 20 minutes of Asthanga Yoga.
Kim Kardashian doesn't have any real tattoos which we know about, however she was spotted with a cluster of temporary flowers tattooed her shoulder.
Kim Kardashian - Love her or hate her, KK’s tat is a rare example of how the rich & famous don’t need to be the dumb & clueless. This colorful, trippy flower design is actually pretty dope
Kimmy K. says, "You don't put a bumper sticker on a Bentley."
For the 36% of young American adults who have tattoos, it sounds like Kim Kardashian thinks we should have consulted with her first. Little sis Khloe just got her husband Lamar Odom's initials on her hand, and now Kim's giving her a slap on the wrist.
This wasn't Khloe Kardashian's first tattoo -- she reveals that it's one of a few. Reportedly she has the words "I love you" in her late father's handwriting somewhere on her body, and it sounds like she must have one on her lower back. "I don't like the location," she was quoted saying on Monday. "I got the trendy location. It's a tramp stamp basically." However, there's sentimental value to all the ink she's collected. Khloe says that "all my tattoos are meaningful. They're all for my dad or for Lamar."
But Kim Kardashian, 29, still thinks tattoos are bad-bad. Khloe says, "Kim told me you don't put a bumper sticker on a Bentley," Khloe jokes. "I guess I'm not a Bentley! I don't know what I am."