Sunday, March 27, 2011
On a good day (i.e. when I am eating well - which I'm afraid I'm having some trouble doing) I can squat 3 sets of 5 reps of 43kg squats. Which is okay. But can be better. Much better. Much much better. Psychological reasons aside, I know that there is something off about my technique.
Vince Lombardi once said, "Practice doesn't make perfect. Perfect practice makes perfect."
How true. The squat, to me, is highly technical. It doesn't matter if you're practicing often. If you're using the wrong technique, you won't be impriving anytime soon. You may even risk knee injury.
So in pursuit of improving technique, I revisited this clip again.
I don't know about you, but Coach Rippetoe's way of squatting looks a bit weird. But I might wanna try it anyway just to experiment whether it'll improve my squat numbers. Will experiment tomorrow... oops. I mean later today.
Thursday, March 24, 2011
As a result, her skin is smooth now and devoid of any scars whatsoever. And I thought, if it worked for her, perhaps it could work for me. I'd do anything to rid myself of eczema without having to resort to lifelong medication.
So throughout this week I had spinach for lunch (together with rice and fish of course). It made a heck of a lot of difference, I can tell you that. Usually I'd get hungry again by 5pm and feel sluggish as heck. But I don't feel hungry at all throughtout this week (after my bayam-fueled lunch) and can train (usually at 8pm) without having to eat a light meal prior.And the performance in my training has not been compromised as well. This spinach thing is pretty amazing indeed. I'm going to try to ramp up my spinach intake and see what else is going to happen to me.
Yeay! I'm a guinea pig!
I've also discovered something interesting. Last night was workout night. My hams are still hurting from the kettlebell class so I decided not to squat but to deadlift instead. I came home late yesterday. And only started training at about 8pm - 8.15pm. My workout went like this:
1st set warmup
8 reps x 43kg
2nd set warmup
8 reps x 53kg
5 reps x 63kg (3 sets)
It was a pretty quick workout. I was done in less than half an hour. But that's not the point. The point is that the only meal I had before my workout was lunch which comprised of a heck of a lot of spinach, a piece of fried fish and 'paru'. Only that and nothing else after that.
Maybe the workout wasn't that intense. Maybe I was pretty sedentary until the time I start to deadlift. Although I have a suspicioun it had to do with what I ate. I'll try to choose similar types of lauk again and see whether I can replicate what I did.
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
Sunday, March 20, 2011
- The Swing: One armed, two armed, Russian, American
- The Snatch
- The Press
Although I have done my research prior to the class, I have always thought that the kettlebell moves (save the kettlebell press) are more focused on the lower body. As my battered body can attest, it targets everthing: glutes, hams, lats, delts, forearm, wrists, grip... the list could go further.
The experience of doing the swing and the snatch i.e. heartrate, the exhaustion is akin to what I experience whenever I go for a running session. Less than 10 minutes into the snatch (we didn't do that many, mind you, because we were more focused on technique compared to volume) left me dripping with sweat.
Needless to say, I always looked forward to our water break.
However, I'd like to highlight that the swing and the snatch in particular are highly technical. The bruises I got at the back of my forearms were souvenirs of the wrong snatch technique. Heck, even the swing is quite technical.
I would honestly not advice a newbie fitness junkie to go straight to kettlebell swings without first knowing how to do proper bodyweight squats. If you can't do a proper bodyweight squat you should not touch a kettlebell yet.
All in all, the kettlebell is a very good tool for conditioning purposes (it's way cheaper than a bloody treadmill - that should be a huge plus point in itself). And I think it is a good tool for assistance exercises. It's also great for training grip strength as well.
I would say that the using the kettlebell is complimentary to your training. Nothing beats a barbell. But during those days when you don't feel like running outside (or maybe you avoid running like the plague) - the kettlebell swing is an excellent alternative. The snatch is a fantastic assistance exercise that smokes the whole body. Both the swing and the snatch make fabulous finishers to end a good training session.
p/s the fees include the purchase of our own kettlebell. But it would only arrive in April - of which a short refresher course will be conducted. I don't mind waiting till April. And I certainly don't mind going back to Pushmore.
Thursday, March 17, 2011
My diet is down the drain - I am not eating enough.
I am losing weight. But not losing strength (yet). However, I'm not gaining strength as well. So it's still bad.
I am reverting to old bad habits.
No, this is not a nosedive. Not yet. But if I am not careful it will get there. So I must buck up.
Perhaps, the kettlebell workshop this Saturday will be the catalyst for me.
Sunday, March 13, 2011
So yeah. The financing is pretty much arranged. But is it really worth it?
Space is an issue. Although I can easily tweak the arrangement of my furniture (I have lived 5 years in my apartment, and the furniture layout has not changed at all) to accomodate the rack.
Getting a squat rack would address quite a number of issues actually. I can train alone without worrying about not having a safety catch or ruining my dining chairs (too late, they're already ruined). I could hang my TRX at the frame. It's pretty much a complete gym.
Any opinions? For or against?
Saturday, March 12, 2011
But anyway... there's really not much to update. Training's been good. My squats are improving. My overhead presses, not so much. Perhaps I need to deload and build up to a new personal best.
I think I can hit a bigger number for my squats but I'm kind of scared that I might hurt myself since I don't have anyone to spot me and my crude safety catch is not very safe anymore.
Could it be that this is a good time to buy myself a squat rack? Hmmm.....
The cost aside, where the heck am I gonna put it in my pigeon hole?
Thursday, March 3, 2011
It is a very busy period at the office. Work seems to overflow despite the additional team members. I come home extremely tired, and if no one picks me up and have dinner with me I tend to sleep without having a meal.
Training is out of the question. Totally exhausted, lacking nutrition... I'm just happy I can still walk. Hopefully when work subsides a bit I will have more energy. Right now I am so drained I'm hardly able to type this out.
Okay. I'm off to sleep. Yeah, it's only 8pm. But I'm super tired. Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz....