Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Busy Weekend for Revolution Fitness!

This last weekend was super busy. On Saturday I gave a one day NSCA sponsored RKC Prep Course to over 50 NSCA personal trainers in Irvine at Koh Physical Therapy Lab in Irvine, CA. This was the part two course after Pavel's level one course he did earlier in the month. Congrat's to all who participated. Thanks to RKC's Yoana Snideman (my lovely wife of course) Robert Budd, Cassie Charlebois, Paul Daniels and Steve Belinger for assisting. They all did very well and represented the RKC with pride and with honor.

There were comments from the first seminar that people wanted fresh and new material for this workshop. The problem was that none of them had even come close to mastering the RKC Drills of: Swing / Get Ups / Clean / Press / Snatch and Front squat. I made it very clear to the students that the RKC is not about seeing how many cool variations of exercises you can do, it is about mastering the basics. If you don't have the basics, you will not pass the RKC, not even close!

On Sunday Yoana and I were at the La Jolla Farmers' Market 10 year anniversary where we got a booth and marketed our business to the locals. It was fun....but I was ready to take a nap by the end of the weekend. Very busy......but all good stuff!!!! Revolution is growing!!!!!

Training Today

Weighted Pull ups
w/16kg KB 4 sets x 6 reps

Double KB Front Lunges
w/16kgs 4 sets x 5/5

Bottoms Up Press
24kg 2/2, 2/2,

Monday Training

Clean and Press
32kg 1 set x 2/2 w/Trainer Gripper in opposite hand

Swings w/32kg
5 sets x 20 reps = 100 reps

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Kettlebells........My life has never been the same again!

So here I am listening to Josh Henkin's Interview with Anthony Dilugio from Punch gym and Art of Strength and it brings me back to how my journey started with Kettlebells. I was certified in April of 2003 along with a stellar class of strength coaches and trainers that have all gone on to do huge things in the fitness industry and push the fitness industry to new heights. Who was there at the April RKC 2003?

Josh Henkin
Anthony Dilugio
Jason Brown
Steve Rochet
Josh Everett
Steve Cotter
Mike Burgner
Tim Larkin
Shawn Mozen (Agustu KB's)

Check out Josh's Interview with Anthony here!

and many more. From what I can see everyone on that list has gone on to do huge things in this industry and continues to influence people in a MAJOR way. I am proud to be part of that group.

And since then my life has changed in ways I could have never imagined. I came back from the 2003 cert on FIRE, and told Yoana that we were going to open up a Kettlebell studio and that is jsut what we did. Next month in November will be 4 years that we have been open and it has been a dream come true for both Yoana and myself. And it all started on a friday afternoon in fall of 2002 in Santa Monica. Like a lot of people, my life was forever changed when I met Pavel Tsatsouline. A client of mine and I met up in Santa Monica and hired Pavel for two hours to help us get started using these kettlebells. The bottom line is that the session changed the direction of my life forever. It was also brutally hard and showed me how dysfunctional I had become using corrective exercise for years. From that day on I stopped using the wobble boards, woopie cushion discs for standing on, and all the other "functional" toys and got serious about my training. I had essentially "wasted" so many years on balls and boards and started focusing on my kettlebell skills. But it wasn't until the April 2003 Certification that I was able to really get the technique downs and progress as a kettlebell student and athlete.

And today.....today I am more excited about kettlebells and health than I was back in 2003. Am I where I want to be? No. Am I headed in the right direction with my training? Yes. My body feels better than it ever did when I was doing the "functional training" and I attribute that to Pavel and to kettlebells. Are kettlebells the only tool I use? No, but they certainly make up a fairly huge chunk of my training and I don't see that changing in the near future.

As Anthony Diligio says, Joint mobility and corretive exercise are built into the kettlebell movements, especially the foundational RKC movements:

1) Swing
2) Turkish Get Up
3) Cleans
4) Military Presses
5) Front Squats
6) Snatches

If you can get those movements down, even if they don't look pretty in the beginning, you will look and feel better, period! I know I am preaching to the crowd here but those six movements above are life changing and so is the RKC!

Power to all of us! I thank God every day for the opportunities He has given me and Yoana and I am so glad to be alive at a time like now where their is a Renaissance in the fitness industry like their right now!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Finding the Right Groove

(Our precious little Angel, Marianna!)

Last Tuesday I had the honor of working out with Mike LoBue (track and field coach and strength coach for SDSU). Needless to say, he put me through a tough workout....so tough I had to rest the remainder of the week. But it was tons of fun and it taught me first hand about the SAID principle. He had me use an Axle (thick barbell) for DL's and Clean and Push Presses along with Plyo's on high boxes, pistols, swings, Double KB clean and Presses, and some sledgehammer work. It was tuns of fun...but it smoked me.

Tuesday Training
Today I did what Master RKC Kenneth Jay wrote about in the RKC manual. Grab two different size KB's and press them in one hand. This forces you to keep your forearm vertical and makes you find the perfect pressing Groove. I gotta tell you....this just feels right! I think this will help my pressing woes, big time!

16kg + 12kg Single arm Military Press 1/1 x 10 sets = 20 reps

Single Arm Swings
24kg 20/20 x 3 sets = 120 reps

short and sweet. Felt great to train at home in our garage gym. I need to do this more often.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Re-thinking the PRESS

Last week I finally was able to PR in the press by duck-taping a 10 pound weight plate to the bottom of a 32kg KB. Was able to only 1 rep on my right. PR!!! Left? Not yet :(
But I still feel like I am missing something. Something is still not quite working....especially on my weaker left side. Now I realize this is a common problem, especially for a right hand dominant person like me. Anatomically and functionally something still feels "OFF" on my left side.

After reading Kenneth Jay's article on Training for Maximal Strength with the Russian Kettlebell (in the RKC manual on page 127), I realized that I have been lifting primarily the 28kg and 32kg for low reps. What is Kenneth's advice? To go much HIGHER on the VOLUME. I had been maybe getting around 8 to 25 total reps per training session (and that is with both arms combined). Now I am going to keep the high load day in for sure...but I am just adding in a higher volume day to get my pressing volume up which I cannot do safely with a heavier bell.

In other words my Pressing volume is way to LOW. Therefore I am taking the advice of Kenneth and adding in one super high volume day on pressing with the 16kg with the goal of being able to get around 100 reps per arm per session. I instinctively feel that this is important for me and will help practice my SKILL of pressing as I am using a lighter weight. And that is exactly what I started off today with.....a high volume day(at least for me).

Monday (high volume pressing day)
Barbell Dynamic Lunges 95lbs 3 sets x 5/5

Military Press with 16kg
10 sets x 5/5 = 100 total reps

Double Swings w/ 16kgs
5 sets x 10 reps = 50 total reps

Sunday Training w/ Yoana
10 x 10 100 yards Tempo Runs at 60% effort.
BW exercises after each 100 yard run (jumping lunges, mountain climbers, jumping jacks, shuffles, burpees, fisted push ups)

On another note I was able to assist Pavel (along with some other RKC's) at Pavel's NSCA Kettlebell Seminar up in Irvine. It is always awesome to watch Pavel teach and hang out with him. Pavel is just such a class act and has so much integrity! I will be teaching a Level II Kettlebell Seminar for the NSCA (an RKC prep course) on Saturday October 25th at the same place in Irvine. Should be fun!!!