Monday, June 1, 2009

Sunday TRX workout & Monday kettlebell practice

Sunday's workout was Metabolic Circuit B from the Infamous TRX Workout program. As mentioned below, now that I'm on Phase 3 the work periods within the set are longer (45 sec. per exercis, or per side if it's a unilateral exercise, or a total of 6 minutes per set since there are 5 exercises per set, 3 of which are unilateral ... and did you really follow that???) and the mid-set breaks between exercises are shorter (20 sec.), but the rest periods between sets are longer (3 min.). Oh, and now there's a power element added to two of the unilateral exercises, thank you Fraser Quelch, like I really needed that extra challenge.

So, here's the exercise breakdown:

Swimmer's start, with power, 45 sec. each side
Deep chest press, with tempo, 45 sec.
1-arm row with rotation, 45 sec. each side
suspended lunge with power, 45 sec. each side yeah right
pendulum with hold, 45 sec.

I knew I was in trouble when even Brave Test Animal Vanessa in the demo video couldn't do the power moves for the entire 45 seconds and had to modify in order to finish out the set! Actually, I was glad the modifications were demonstrated, because I certainly had to avail myself of them! I did okay with the non-power moves and I actually made it most of the way through the swimmer's starts with power, at least my first two times through the circuit, but I never really found my rhythm with the suspended lunges. I felt as though I was sacrificing form to speed--it would have been helpful if there'd been a mirror on hand to see whether that was really the case. The pendulums with hold weren't really so bad because it's really not much of a hold, more of a halting the momentum, And the chest presses with tempo wouldn't have been bad either if I hadn't had major DOMS from the upper body workout the day before.

Later in the day I attended a workshop the purpose of which was to hone my skills as a "Bodyworks" instructor. "Bodyworks" is sort of like a poor man's BodyPump, meaning that you lift weights to music, but it's not a licensed product so there are no real standards and no quality control other than what individual gyms choose to impose. The way it's taught at my gym ... well, let's just say that I reallyreallyreally don't want to do that. Biceps curls before chest work, simply because biceps curls are performed standing up and chest work is usually performed either supine on a bench or prone on a mat?? It's perfectly true that the class will "flow better" if you do it that way but, hello, shouldn't that be a secondary consideration in a class that's meant to provide muscle conditioning benefits? The only rationale I can see for doing it that way is if it's a class of seniors for many of whom a lot of up-and-down would be inappropriate. For a class of supposedly fit adults the more up and down the better as far as I'm concerned. Use it or lose it.

I need to lighten up a little, maybe. I mean, if the only way a gymgoer can be persuaded to lift weights is by attending a class with "flow," then such classes certainly serve a purpose. Sort of. They tend not to do much good either, and I hate to see people wasting their time. My way would be more effective ... but not if people didn't want to do it ... I totally go around and around on this issue, as you can tell. And it's sort of a moot point because doing it my way is not an option.

On to more pleasanter topics. After a great conversation yesterday with RKC Sandy Sommer of (thanks again, Sandy, for taking the time!), I spent the evening giving some thought to what I need to be doing over the next few (or not so few) months to prepare for my goal of RKC certification in 2010. I reviewed Enter The Kettlebell, and I think that for now at least my plan is to do the workouts outlined in Anthony DiLuglio's companion workbook. I completed the RKC Minimum a while back, but I think I want to keep on doing at least one workout per week consisting of 50 swings/1 minute active recovery, lather rinse repeat for 12 minutes (or more), and one consisting of 5 minutes (or more) of Turkish getups, alternating sides. It just seems like it'd be a good idea.

Today I did the Day 1 Week 1 program from the Rite of Passage section of the workbook. Clean & press/pull-up ladders, 3 rungs to the ladder, 3 times through, all performed with my trusty 12 kg kettlebell. Then, 5 minutes of snatches, 10 to the right, 10 to the left, rest 1 minute until 5 minutes is up. Took me about 50 seconds to do 10 snatches per side, so I was able to get in 3 sets in the five minutes. Taking the 1 minute to rest annoyed me but I made myself do it so I could concentrate on my form without fatigue being an issue. Still, 60 snatches in five minutes (about 4 1/2, really) is not so bad, especially since I felt as though I comfortably could have done quite a few more.