31 March 2011

2 x 20 kg jerk:
3 min/22 reps
3 min/23 reps

Rest untimed.

20 kg snatch:
on the minute:
5L, 5R, 5L, 5R, 10L. 10R

2 x 20 kg FSQ:
10 x 2 sets

Snatch workout variation.

Browsing through old posts on various GS forums I stumbled across an interesting post on the Ukranian GS board. One of those moments: something you've seen before but didn't appreciate it at the time. The post was from esteemed Ukranian coach Moroz on snatch training, his reply to a question how to improve snatch numbers. The poster could snatch 24 kg 165 times, after that his grip gave up. His training included snatching 32 kg 5 x 50 on Mondays (25 + 25) and 24 kg on Thursdays: 8 x 80 reps (40 + 40), up to 200 - 220 per hand.

The reply is as follows.

Alex, your general endurance is sufficient, you have to work on the special one. Try work out three times a week. In order to avoid overtraining train like this: Monday - medium load, Wednesday - light, Friday - heavy. After 2 or 3 weeks of serious training deloading week: minimal load with light weights.

Variants of medium session.

32 kg - 3 minutes or 24 kg 4 minutes. Alternatively - half snatch (high pulls). Alternating hands or switching every 3 - 8 reps until failure. This way, however, has one danger: almost everybody gets their hands ripped.

Variants of light session.

16 kg 10 - 20 min or 24 kg - 3 min.

Variants of heavy.

1. 24 kg - 7 min
2. 28 kg - 5 min
3. 24 kg (28) - left to failure, switch, right to failure. Without rest switch again and so on. If best snatch is 160 plan to do 220.

4. Left: 28 kg - 50 reps, put down, 24 kg - 30 reps, then 16 kg - 50 reps (130 reps total). Without rest repeat the same with the right arm.

5. 24 kg - 5 min. Minimal rest - repeat.
6. Sometimes (not more often than once every 1 - 1.5 months): 32 kg switch every 10 reps.

Variants are endless, however work closest to competitive conditions should predominate. Make it a goal to snatch 24 kg for 220 reps. Based on this perform this lift at 21 per minute, slower with heavier bells. Think this through and plan for the next 2 months.

After deloading week you can plan max set, not necessary with 24 kg, you can do it with 16 kg as well, but at good tempo and for 12 - 15 minutes.

Every Friday stand with the 32 kg bells (by the sides - Smet), gradually increase the time from 2 to 5 minutes. Strengthen the back and the legs. It is desirable to run once or twice a week. Obviously, work on the technique. Work on "the pendulum", powerful pull and relaxation. Best wishes. The end of post.

It is interesting to see how serious coach avoids giving definite set/rep recommendations. It's rather "think it through and plan", with lots of options and tweaking, not something that sells very well to the masses. Lots of templates are variations of continuous snatching. Static standing holds are also popular with Russian gireviks (as are hangs from the bar) and apparently quite useful.

29 March 2011

2 x 22 kg jerks:
2 min/14 reps
2 min/16 reps
2 min/17 reps

Rest 3 minutes

16 kg snatch:
max GS set::


27 March 2011

2 x 22 kg jerk:
5 x 1 min/10 rep, rest 2 min

16 kg snatch:
switch every 20 reps
10 minutes/160 reps

BW dips on bars:
15 x 2

26 March 2011

4 km jog.

24 March 2011

2 x 16 kg jerk:
10 minutes/64 reps

This is the last workout of the microcycle. The goal has been met (55 - 65 reps in 10 minutes).

Cutting it short: I think I am coming down with a cold. Wanted also to do long snatch set, but taking into account that I have to work this weekend I rather not. These bells aren't going anywhere.

I am enjoying my current program. It is easy to follow, and only one workout out of six has ten minute set in it. So far - so good. Next cycle starts next workout, whenever it's gonna happen.

19 March 2011

2 x 18 kg jerk:
7 minutes/37 reps

Short session. Lately I have insomina and have been waking up at ridiculously early hours of the morning. Today isn't so bad, I just woke up 2 hours earlier than set alarm time. Instead of idling in bed I went downstairs and jerked some bells, the next step of my training progression. Doing this in the morning is hard: I am not a morning people. So one set and then breakfast.

I haven't done long sets in a while, and for now the biggest problem for me is pain in the heels of my hands, the pressure areas of the handles. There is no remedy for it except for getting used to. Otherwise GSing two 18 kgs is not particularly hard. Next session is 10 minute set with 16 kg, hope my palms are gonna let me do it.

Training template and thoughts

Few months ago I contacted Sergey Rudnev and asked him (Him!) to write me a simple program for jerks, taking into account my age, physical fitness and the fact that I don't have much time to train. He kindly did that, however soon after I damaged my back and abandoned lifting altogether for good several months, only after a few workouts. In a few words, the template was doing jerks with varying weights, with the duration of the sets gradually increasing, culminating with one 10 minute set at the end of the microcycle. Next microcycle - increase the weight by 2 kg, repeat. After completing 10 minutes with 24 kgs - start again with higher cadence. The recipe for eternal progression.

To be an absolute pain in the butt couple of weeks ago I contacted Rudnev again with a strange request. The problem is that I have Etalon bells adjustable by lead shot. It is a bit of a pain to change the weight in the middle of the workout, mostly because it took time. So I asked for a program where every workout is done with the bells of the same weight. I even suggested some sort of progression myself. Rudnev was surprised but very accomodating, and suggested somewhat different template.

I am not at liberty to disclose it, because Rudnev has contractual obligations with IKSFA. As Shaf said, training for GS is not that difficult to figure out. The scheme I am following is a microcycle going from chorter sets with heavier bells to longer sets with lighter weights, culminating with one 10 minute control set. You can get some idea by following my blog, it's not a rocket science and everyone can figure this one out.

On a different note, I've been somewhat disappointed in IGx. This is my favorite forum: uncensored, unregulated, rude and unreserved. Opinions are shared freely, and names are called without delay. I like shit stirring and have been called names a few times. I like provoking that crowd, and results haven't been disappointing most of the time.

Lately, however, I get a bit uneasy, for several reasons. Over the last couple of years there have been more and more strange posts. Rant, for instance, has been frankly fooling around forever, but recently his outright jokes - that should be taken with laughter - have been met with spite. Frankly, Rant is one of the most interesting posters there, fun and politically incorrect, with very high threshold for being offended. Sure, he throws provocative posts now and then, but that's what that forum is supposed to be for, not serious discussions by gurus.

I am surprised by the lingering hate of Eric Lifford. I've never met that man and personally have no opinion of him. Sure, couple of years ago he wrote some dubious blog posts promoting AKC, where he mentioned apparently non-existent military event in Afghanistan, with emphasis on kettlebell fitness. So now there is this sticky thread with name calling which apparently will hang there to the eternity. From the very beginning I was surprised by the intensity of the reaction to Lifford's post. I have deep dislike of the army, and my service in the army is limited to the Faculty of Military Medicine and one month in the actual army barracks, the obligatory in then USSR, therefore I don't feel the same way servicemen do about this. But this is how I see it. Sure, Lifford may have invented stuff, which is not very nice.On the other hand he wasn't critical of the Army or the war, neither he insulted servicemen directly. At worst it was a lame story used for dubious marketing, hardly the first or the last. To me, the reaction it caused was out of proportion.

Alas, as I said, I am not in the military and cannot understand the feeling to the full extent. However, I disagree with the fact that the issue still lingers on the forum. Even accepting the point of view of Lifford committing the most serious crime, by keeping the topic alive gives the perpetrator more power than he deserves. Would you like a plate on your house announcing that someone is a cunt?

Lastly, the couch thread. Crossfit or not, how come the thread dissing others is the most popular on the whole forum? It is not even sticky, but gets refreshed virtually every day. I still don't know why Crossfit gets so much bad rap. I know one of CF coaches in Sydney, and his knowledge and attitude to training is solid. Sure, rhabdo and cult like culture. I don't see however how it is different from the Biggest Loser or Boot Camps. I still don't give the rat's ass about either, but I find the popularity of the thread distasteful. What was it: superior minds discuss ideas, while inferior ones talk about people?

Whatever, I guess. This is my blog, and I can allow myself a rant or two once in a while. Irongarm is still a fun place, free and lightminded. I hope it does not deteriorate to the level of celebrity magazine.

16 March 2011

2 x 18 kg jerk:
4 min/25 reps
5 min/29 reps

16 kg snatch:
max set, one switch
50L/62R, just under 9 minutes


14 March 2011

2 x 18 kg jerk:
3 min/21 reps
3 min/23 reps

2 x 18 kg FSQ:
10 x 2

Brisk walk 4 km

13 March 2011

500 m breaststroke swim.

Front plank, one legged:
2 x 10 seconds

Ring dips: 15, reps

Towel pullups: 8 reps.
This shit is brutal.

Chinups on bar:
10 x 3 sets

12 March 2011

2 x 20 kg jerk:
2 min/14 reps
2 min/17 reps
2 min/20 reps

16 kg snatch:
switch every 10 minutes
200 reps/16 minutes

Cadence of snatch during the set was about 12 per minute. It was intended more as a cardio workout than specific training for snatch. Kind of long slow run. Though my HR at the end of the set was 188/min, so this intensity is probably at lactate threshold rather than aerobic.

I just ordered Maffetone Method on Bookdepository.com. Very curious to read it.

I want to experiment with some 16 kg snatches. Want to do the same 200 reps but making sure heart rate doesn't go above 130 - 135, my range according to 180 formula. So, if it goes above, put the bell down and rest until HR is below 125, then snatch again. It will probably take 30 - 40 minutes that way. Want to see if these workouts will make any difference in addition to what I am currently doing.

10 March 2011

2 x 20 kg jerk:
1 min/8 reps
1 min/9 reps
1 min/10 reps

20 kg snatch:

Aerobic fittness

I did some search on Maffetone Method and bumped into his website. There are several interesting articles, and I got interested in his method of calculating max heart rate. Instead of the traditional 220 minus half the age he uses 180 minus age minus some number depending on your fitness level, Full article is at this link: Maffetone MaxHR formula The number obtained is considerably lower than that derived by using conventional equation. According to Maffetone training at low intensity is more beneficial than pushing yourself every time you train. I guess read the article and make your own opinion about it.

Maffetone method seems to be quite popular among runners, and there are lots of testimonials where running slower during training resulted in faster race times. Are long sets with 16 kg bells similar to long slow runs? Who knows, I guess.

3 March 2011

2 x 20 kg jerk:
2 min x 5 sets, rest 2 min, @6 reps/min

2 x 20 kg bumps:
20, 25. Rest liberal.

Hanging leg raises x 10

Alternating static holds:
20 sec rack/20 sec OH:
3 reps. Pain in the heels of the hands, need to get used to longer time under.

10 x 2 sets

2 March 2011

45 minute run

Played with the HR monitor. The idea was to keep my HR below 70% max. The formula is

HRrest + (HRmax - HRrest) x 0.7

In my case it is 70 + (193 - 70) x 0.7 = 156

Actually, most of the time my HR was below 150/min. The run was very pleasant, and I could have easily run double the distance. An easy session, by definition.