Monday, April 26, 2010


Monday, April 26, 2010

This post will be a little here and there, but here goes....
I earned my next "prize" by staying the course for the last 2 weeks. The end of the two weeks came Saturday and with it a splurge meal, with that a literal drugged feeling, my food hangover. It's taking me a while, but I am beginning to learn. Crappy food makes me feel like, well, crap.

Today I am feeling overwhelmed by life. It seems everything I do in turn leads to something else I must do and maintain and I'm freaking a little about it. My summer calendar looks like someone vomited multicolor ink all over it. ( I will reiterate, "HOW DO PARENTS DO IT?!") I haven't been able to keep in touch here, and it's killing me. Which leads me too...

I have picked up a couple more followers here lately. I am constantly humbled that people read what I have to say. Many thanks to all of you for coming here.

I made my hotel and flight reservations for CK-FMS last night. WOOHOOOOO!

Back to that overwhelmed thing...I know it doesn't sound like it, but I really am trying to pare life down some. Over the winter, I became really fond of those days when I had nothing to do but be at home. I found a peace that I had not felt in a long time, a sort of radiant happiness with life. Sometimes, on my stretches off from work I might not leave home at all. I'd get up, have a nice, long workout that wasn't pressured for time, play with the dogs, wander around the property, eat a little something, maybe do some cleaning, maybe complete a project, maybe do nothing. There was a time when this would have driven me apeshit, but not now. Now I relish these times. I wish I could describe it better, but these days like this are my recharge. Because the seas got blown out further south in Venice, I am enjoying one of those types of days now. I was supposed to be shark tooth diving today. As it is, I'll be cavern diving this afternoon and the next 2 days, then work, then cave class, then work, then--well, you get the picture.I'm trying to get a few more blank days on the calendar and keep them that way. The blank days are good for the soul.

Not only am I behind writing posts, but I am also behind reading them. I did a little catching up before writing this post and had an interesting observation in the process. While part of me enjoys reading Tracy Rif's blog, another part of me finds a great deal of anxiety there. My comparing myself to her is one of the major reasons I feel so inadequate as a girevoy. She is AMAZING, ripping that 16 around like it's nothing, maintaining a beautiful physique, cooking, cooking, cooking. In many ways this is inspiring, in others it is a banner telling me how pitiful I am. But something she wrote in a recent post really hit home to me today. She mentioned being fortunate enough to work out 4-6 hours every day. 4-6 HOURS! How wonderful! I can't even begin to imagine. She has mentioned that before, but for some reason it registered today. I am comparing apples and oranges.

WORKOUT: None today. It's an off day.

THE LAST 5 DAYS' WORKOUTS: Again, Pavel's fighter pull up routine. This week was 7RM with the pull ups and push ups, 5RM with the partial pistols.
I can feel things beginning to really wake up and figure out these motions. My lats continue to learn to fire better and with that, my elbows are tracking a stronger route, both in the pull up and the push up. I am also beginning to learn the sequence of tension from the ankles up, especially with regard to the pull-up. Generating full-body tension in the pull up has been difficult for me, but I am beginning to get it.
I am learning a lot in the pistol, too. Foot position has become huge for me. I have learned that a slight angle of the foot outward allows my great toe to line better with the rest of my leg, thus allowing my quad and ham to fire more productively.
Progress is coming in small increments, but I can feel it coming.


  1. Nice Post~!!!. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

  2. sounds like you learned a lot this week....

  3. Faizal,
    I have. Now the question is how well I will apply it. ;)

  4. I was going to make a comment on you comparing yourself to Tracey Rif. But you noticed it, she has more time to work out and spend cooking than you do.

    However, I'm sure she'll look at some of your posts and say man, wish I was more like Jen. RKCs can help people change their lives. You, you stand before Death and say Thou Shall Not Pass. Sometimes he even listens. :)

  5. Thank you, Chris. Sometimes I forget that I have some redeeming qualities myself. :)

  6. Here are some things you can apply...

    The end of the two weeks came Saturday and with it a splurge meal, with that a literal drugged feeling, my food hangover.
    ==> A cheat meal should not only taste good, but you should feel better after eating it.

    Pull up tensioning is hard, but a good pull up feel much different than a bad one. The key is leverage, and it is affected by the following:
    * Position of your center of gravity relative to the bar. I judged a TSC two Saturdays ago, and all three competitors were really poor on this. The bar was moving left and right. The is affected mostly by the position of your hands and your thoracic extension.

    * The position of your hands. If the hands are too wide, your lats can't pull up. If they are too narrow, the initial line of pull is out, not up.

    I have a fool proof way of figuring this out for everyone.

    I suck at pistols, but you are right in that you have to find the foot position that enables the entire quadricep group to fire. You have to push through all toes. Franz S. has a great video on this.

  7. Faizal, Thanks. I think I have the hand/arm position pretty good. I was going too wide, but when I went to the Hardstyle Ventura workshop in October, David pulled my hands in some (almost as if I were a cheerleader with "spirit fingers") and that helped a lot. If I make it down to Tampa at any point and have some warning that I'm going to do it, I might give you a call to work on it. thanks for suggestions with regard to Franz. That's actually what got me working on foot position.

  8. what is the proper hand position? I'm usually about shoulder width, which is about how wide my hands are for push ups.

  9. Chris, according to the way they were teaching us at Hardstyle Ventura, it is just wider than shoulder width. For instance, if you stand up and put your hands over your head at their natural position, that is where you want to be.

  10. Jennifer
    Came across your blog from I can't even remember anymore. I've been searching around fellow kettlebeller blogs to find some good stuff.
    I am going to St. Paul next month to achieve RKC status. I got HKC last October there and am anxiously awaiting my big weekend!
    I love the paragraph on your sidebar from "Elitism" true. The minute I slipped my hand through a kb back in 2008, I knew we were going to be GREAT friends! And we have. They've helped me lose over 100lbs and now help me through running/biking and swimming events!
    Look forward to more of your posts!
    I hope you don't mind that I put your blog on my site-we need more kb blogs out there!

  11. Diana, I am honored that you consider me worthy to share. Thank you, and thank you for reading. Congratulations on your life changes and your HKC! Fantastic achievments! I look forward to hearing how much you love the RKC weekend.It truly was one of the greatest times of my life.

  12. Anytime you are in town -- give me a jingle...

  13. Will do. I set you an email with my number.