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Fitness and Training => Training Journals => Topic started by: Eli Kurtz on September 18, 2008, 06:15:34 PM

Title: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on September 18, 2008, 06:15:34 PM
Here I find myself, starting a training log after starting my actual training about a year ago.

I'm 20 years old, a male, and a junior at Drury University.  I'm in pretty good shape--I'd say great shape, but I have horrible cardio.  When I was a kid I let asthma keep me from being active, and now I'm paying for it.  I found out about parkour a little over a year ago, and I've been learning a lot about it since then.

Here's some info about my history:

Some of the obstacles I know I'll have to overcome during my training are:


That said, here are some of my goals for right now.


Thanks for checking out my training log, guys!  I hope to include my weight training as well as parkour stuff, to keep track of not only how much my skills are improving, but also how my strength is developing.  Here we go!
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on September 18, 2008, 06:58:57 PM
9/18/08


Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on September 18, 2008, 08:04:19 PM
are you doing starting strength?
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on September 18, 2008, 09:04:14 PM
Yeah... more or less.  I've never had to occasion to learn the clean, because I'd like to have someone to watch me.  I'm actually meeting with a guy this Saturday to get the basics down.  Also, I know the suggested programming for SS is alternating between the 5 exercises, doing 3 each day for 3 days per week.  Right now I'm doing the 4 that I know two days per week, then going to a weekly jam for my third workout day.

I've been doing a half-hearted SS for the past 4 months, and I've only just a few weeks ago actually read the programming section of the book, so I've been a little off.  Do you think I ought to start over, or just move on?
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on September 19, 2008, 08:52:45 PM
9/19/08

Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on September 19, 2008, 10:11:18 PM
don't start over, necessarily, but fix your program to be consistent with Rips, especially once you learn the clean.  You can do the day of cleans without cleaning very much weight, also...

drink your gallon of milk a day, too
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on September 20, 2008, 12:32:19 PM
9/20/08

Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on September 21, 2008, 05:14:56 PM
drink your gallon of milk a day, too

Quote from: Mark Rippetoe
One of the best ways to move in the direction of [high calorie numbers] is to drink a gallon of milk a day, most especially if weight-gain is a primary concern.

The only problem I have with this is that weight gain is really not a primary concern for me.  For the record, I'm 6'0" and 165lbs.  At the very most, I'd be comfortable weighing 175.  It seems to make so much sense that in parkour, a person's weight is an important factor of their ability level.  A person may be able to squat 400 lbs., but how hard is it to apply that sort of strength to a wall run or long jump if they weigh 215?  I've noticed this is in my training recently, because I'm about as strong as my 5'10", 135lbs. friend, but it's like I'm training in a weight vest compared to him.  He's capable of reaching places I'm not and konging heights I can't, simply because he's got that much less weight to move. 

Ideally I think I'd like to settle in at a magnificent, chiseled 155.  One of the first strength training books I ever read was Bruce Lee: The Art of Expressing The Human Body, and it had a lot of interesting information.  Most notably, it said that at the height of Bruce Lee's training (when touching his skin was once described as touching "warm marble") he was 5'7.5" tall and weighed 135 lbs.  If I applied the same ratio to myself, I would weight right around 144 lbs.  Because I'm pretty sure my bone structure isn't quite the same as Lee's (his lowest waist measurement was 26 inches and I don't think my bones will let me shrink past 31) I think 155 is a pretty reasonably scaled goal.  Even if my strength only grows marginally over the course of the next year, if I compact that strength down into a 155lbs. body, I would be so much more physically capable.

P.S. - Chris, this is by no means an attack on you or anything.  Since this is my training log, I'm going to be putting goals down on here as I think of them, and your gallon of milk comment just got me thinking about it.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Kyle Ryan on September 21, 2008, 05:42:14 PM
Quote from: Eli Kurtz
If I applied the same ratio to myself, I would weight right around 144 lbs.  Because I'm pretty sure my bone structure isn't quite the same as Lee's (his lowest waist measurement was 26 inches and I don't think my bones will let me shrink past 31) I think 155 is a pretty reasonably scaled goal.  Even if my strength only grows marginally over the course of the next year, if I compact that strength down into a 155lbs. body, I would be so much more physically capable.

I know exactly what you mean right here, bro. This is EXACTLY my goal. I weigh a good 172 right now and I am wanting to get down to around 150-155. Why? If I get down there I will be so much more capable of things. The way I see it is if I keep doing "light" strength training, then I will be able to drop the fat off my body without gaining too much mass in muscle. Because if I was to "bulk up" I don't think it would help my parkour life, mainly because you need more muscles to keep the same routine at higher weights. It's basically simple physics haha.

Anyways, I digress. I know what you mean by wanting to drop weight. Because I am in the same boat. We both want to keep about the same muscle mass, only in a smaller weighing body. This will allow us to move with much more power than people would think. Bruce Lee was a physical science genius and I think no one will be able to replicate what he has done for quite some time. If you watch his video's you will see a very small man, but once you see him flex you will be in awe. He managed to put a bodybuilder's strength into a smaller man's body. That is why he was capable of doing things that many would not expect him to do. Examples: Elevated V-Sits for 30+ minutes, his one-inch punch(which I am a practitioner of) able to knock men twice his size off their feet with ease, his one finger push ups. He was a freak of nature, in a nutshell. He was a man that should be remembered for coming the closest to breaking the laws of physics.

Sorry for the off-topic rant on Bruce, I am just an admirer of his. Like you said, we are basically the same person haha. I think I have superior cardio, whilst you have superior strength. I think that we should hold a few little competitions between ourselves. :P

Good luck with your training!
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on September 21, 2008, 06:26:35 PM
drink your gallon of milk a day, too

Quote from: Mark Rippetoe
One of the best ways to move in the direction of [high calorie numbers] is to drink a gallon of milk a day, most especially if weight-gain is a primary concern.

The only problem I have with this is that weight gain is really not a primary concern for me.  For the record, I'm 6'0" and 165lbs.  At the very most, I'd be comfortable weighing 175.  It seems to make so much sense that in parkour, a person's weight is an important factor of their ability level.  A person may be able to squat 400 lbs., but how hard is it to apply that sort of strength to a wall run or long jump if they weigh 215?  I've noticed this is in my training recently, because I'm about as strong as my 5'10", 135lbs. friend, but it's like I'm training in a weight vest compared to him.  He's capable of reaching places I'm not and konging heights I can't, simply because he's got that much less weight to move. 

The issue here is absolute vs. relative strength.  As a traceur, you want to monitor your relative strength and ignore absolute.

An example of this is as follows...
220# Man can DL 400# -- he can lift 400# (WOW) but thats only 1.8x his body weight.
180# Man can DL 370# -- Less absolute strength since he can't lift the height amount but he can lift over 2x his bodyweight.

Think these numbers are unreal?  Jim from beastskills.com can DL 500# with a trap bar and weighs around 170 (thats almost 3x his weight!)

If you gain weight but monitor your relative strength, you can see when you will peak, then stop gaining weight.  The strength gains will slow but your relative strength gains will continue up at a steady pace.

This is why football players can have 11' broad jumps.  They lift heavy things explosively and don't gain much weight.

In short, if you want to gain weight, you need to keep track of your relative strength and bodyweight skills like broad and vert jump along with progress on BW skills like pushups and pullups.

But, why would you want to gain weight?

When your muscles are bigger it allows for 2 things:
1) Bigger muscles can generate more force, even when isolated from the bone in ex-vivo studies (when they rip the whole muscle out and stimulate it to test contractile strength)
2) Bigger muscles allow the muscles to pull on bones in-vivo (in the body) at a more advantageous angle causing increased force production through the whole ROM.

The key for someone like us is to get as much muscle mass as we can before the added weight starts negatively impacting performance....and this amount of muscle is a lot higher than most people think.

Following the gymnastics scheme for elite athletes, someone who is around 5'5 would need to be at around 135# to be elite.  Every inch, add 7-10#.  That means that someone at 5'10 with the same proportions would be 175-185#.  Someone at your height may be closer to 190 since your bones are longer and require bigger muscles to pull on them from more efficient angles.  This is why you don't see 6 foot tall gymnastics...their kinesiology makes performance more difficult.

Now, I am not trying to change your mind.  If you simply want to get strong and don't want to gain weight, then just do SS without the milk.  However, you will see great relative strength gains, which are the more important ones, if you put on a bit more mass.

Hope I wasn't overwhelming with this.

P.S. - Chris, this is by no means an attack on you or anything.  Since this is my training log, I'm going to be putting goals down on here as I think of them, and your gallon of milk comment just got me thinking about it.

I'd have to be pretty silly to take offense to that :P  You are approaching your training with intelligence which is the best start.

Happy training man :)
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on September 21, 2008, 06:32:19 PM
Absolute vs. relative strength is a pretty intuitive concept, but I had never thought of it before.  I was looking through your training logs a few days ago, and noticed that when you listed your goals, instead of saying "I want to squat x weight" you put it in terms of how many times of your own bodyweight that was.  I recognized it as a good idea at the time, but I didn't really bother to think about it until you put it in these terms.  I think this is the direction I want to take my training, but I don't know that I really want to shoot for 190.  Obviously gymnastics is a pretty legit place to pull parkour fitness levels from, so I'll do some looking around and see what I can find.  Thanks for the info!
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on September 21, 2008, 06:39:30 PM
Keep track of your vert and broad jump as well as weighted pull strength.  These will be good indicators of your relative strength, aside from the math you will be doing on your lifts.

Another note is that you WILL put on fat.  This is almost inevitable with weight gain.  While I put on 21#, I put on 15# lean and 5# of fat.  That's 75% lean gains.

You can lose some of that excess fat when you hit your relative strength goals with some Metabolic Conditioning to supplement your strength work, which will bring up your relative strength through fat loss, not weight gain.

190 may be a bit high, thats why its kind of a gray area with people who are taller.  Just be on top of your relative strength and you will figure it out man :)
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on September 22, 2008, 05:58:12 PM
9/22/08

Note: Sundays are officially my rest day.

Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on September 23, 2008, 12:55:30 PM
9/23/08


Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on September 23, 2008, 01:29:14 PM
Note: Right elbow felt damaged.  Chris, any thoughts?

What do you mean by damaged?  Do you still experience pain after the bout?
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on September 23, 2008, 04:45:57 PM
Yeah, I should have been more descriptive.  I don't feel pain anymore, but at the time (while I was doing bench press, and practicing power clean) it felt like a really ugly, deep muscle soreness.  It almost felt like I needed to pop it like I would my knuckles, but I thought that was probably a bad idea, so I didn't try.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on September 23, 2008, 05:16:06 PM
if no residual pain its likely you have nothing to worry about.

report if this happens again.

why aren't you doing your bench/chest press with a barbell, btw?
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on September 23, 2008, 06:46:03 PM
I don't have a spotter and would rather not take the risk.  From what I understand, bench press with dumbbells does a good job of working stabilizer muscles also, which is useful, I think?
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on September 23, 2008, 06:58:52 PM
I don't have a spotter and would rather not take the risk.  From what I understand, bench press with dumbbells does a good job of working stabilizer muscles also, which is useful, I think?

DB Press is superior to BB press in that it works stabilizers.

Though, you won't get the raw amount of strength the barbell will produce...meaning you will have lower numbers but higher stability.

Not really a problem, i was just wondering why you made that choice. 

It makes the most sense to me to stick with one thing (BB or DB) and be consistent throughout the period of linear gains...
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on September 24, 2008, 11:24:16 PM
9/26/08

My girlfriend and I are going to try out for our college's new track program, so we decided to start conditioning together today.  It will be really nice to have a reliable accountability partner to keep me motivated about running.  After running, I gave her crash tutorials on the parkour movements I've working on right now, because she'd like to get into parkour also.

Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on September 25, 2008, 08:42:08 PM
9/25/08

Note: I'm switching my layout, because it's a time-consuming hassle to format those lists all the time.

Warmup
Body Squat - 20x2
Pushup - 15x2
Pullup - 6x2
Samson Stretch - 3 each side x2 Note: I've been forgetting to mention this exercise the whole time.


Workout
Squat
(45x5)x2 warmup
95x5 warmup
135x3 warmup
185x2 warmup
(225x5)x3

Press Note: After doing press tonight, I think the elbow discomfort I was talking about may have been related to inflexibility in my wrist.  I felt around my elbow to find the place where it was most tender, and it was one of the insertion points of my forearm muscles.  Could that be a flexibility thing?
(45x5)x2 warmup
65x5 warmup
75x3 warmup
85x2 warmup
(95x5)x5 Note: The last two reps were a great, big fight
85x4 Failed on last rep; psyched myself out

Deadlift
(115x5)x2 warmup
135x5 warmup
185x3 warmup
225x5 Note: the gym was closing as I was doing my sets, so I had to speed it up and skipped one of my warmups.  Pretty sure I could have done 235.

Stretching afterward for about 10 minutes.  My calves are really angry at me for running.  I told them to shut up.

Workout time: 00:45.  I had to push myself pretty hard at the end.

No QM today.  Get better!
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on September 28, 2008, 07:17:22 PM
9/26/08 - Rest Day

9/27/08 - Rest Day

9/28/08

Today is traditionally my rest day, but because of family get togethers and school responsibilities I haven't been able to do anything for the past two days, and I was getting antsy.  I didn't do a whole lot to be honest.  I went to a park nearby and climbed a huge, awesome tree.  In all seriousness it looks like something out of Fern Gully.  This thing is gigantic and knotted; it has swallowed  steel stakes, and it will do so again.  I got about 3/4 of the way up the tree, but I was exploring more than pushing myself, so I wouldn't consider it a workout.

What definitely was a workout was running.  As I may have mentioned, my girlfriend and I are going to try out for the new track program at my college this semester, and the deal is that I'm going to run with her if she will lift with me.  :P  I know one of my goals is to be able to run two miles without stopping, and after today I think that goal is not too far off.  I've never been able to complete a mile before, with the last time I tried being about four years ago.  I didn't really realize how much my cardio and endurance has improved since then, because I was able to run a mile today without nearly as much hassle.  I was still pretty exhausted by the time I finished, but I felt like I could have gone on for another half mile before doubling over on the road.  Honestly, I felt kind of like a baby for complaining so much about it before.

Mile time: 9:10.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on September 29, 2008, 09:13:07 PM
9/29/08

Not much of a workout today, either.  I was pretty busy and only had an hour I could set aside for conditioning, but I was going to make it work.

Warmup
Climbed a tree and monkeyed around a little, approx. 5 minutes
Body Squat - 15
Pushup - 10

Workout
Sidle along top of wall, hanging from hands - 10ft. x3
Dips from the top of a wall - 10x3

Cooldown
Stretching - 15 minutes.

My intention was to go back into the dorm to work on pull ups, rolls on harder surfaces (concrete with thin carpet), L-sits, and Handstands, but I'm a Resident Assistant and there was a situation that I had to take care of.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on September 30, 2008, 02:08:41 PM
9/30/08

Great workout today.  Not perfect, but really good.

Warmup
Body Squat - 20x2
Push up - 15x2
Pull Up - 7x2
Samson Stretch - 5x2 (each side)

Workout
Squat:
(45x5)x2
95x5
135x3
185x2
-------
(225x5)x3

Bench Press:
(20sx5)x2
30sx5
45sx3
55sx2
-------
(65x5)x3 Note: Failed on the last rep again!  I might be psyching myself out here.

Deadlift:
(115x5)x2
135x5
185x3
205x2
-------
235x5 Note: Felt really good about this.  I'm almost positive I can get at least 255.

Press:
(45x5)x2
65x5
75x3
85x2
-------
(95x5)x3 Note: This felt really easy.  I feel awesome.

Cooldown
Stretching for 10 minutes.

Total workout time: 1:45 hours
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 01, 2008, 08:57:42 PM
10/1/08

Ahh, October.  The month of my birth.  The first full month of Fall (which is when we learn to pick ourselves back up).  What a great time to be alive.

My training today came in two parts.  During the afternoon I was surprised to find that my science class would be taking a field trip to a local park for some "nature therapy."  I just got my Merrell Maipo shoes in the mail today, and I was anxious to try them out on the fallen trees, streams, etc. that I heard were there.  I was not disappointed.  Throughout the course of three hours, I walked (mostly), jogged a little, balanced on some fallen trees to cross streams, jumped, ran, climbed... it was light Methode Naturelle Jr., and it was wonderful.  I almost ran into some truly prodigious spiders, I saw a baby copperhead, and a few hours afterward my hamstrings were unexpectedly sore.

I had intended to do some parkour drilling outside tonight, but a) I was already tired/sore, and b) it's pretty cold out at the moment.  Instead, I decided to do some stuff indoors that I had been meaning to do for quite some time:

Warmup
Body Squat - 3x20
Pushup - 3x15

Workout
Rolls from squatting position - 10x2 each side.  Note: I'll be damned if I don't keep hitting my iliac crest when I come out of a roll.  There are those rare times when it feels completely smooth as I'm rolling more over the side of my hip, but about 70% of the time I keep hitting my hip bone.  Get better.
Pull ups - 5repsx4sets  I've found a nice little ledge in the stairwell near my door.  It's just at fingertip length, and it's a perfect place to practice pull ups the way I'll more than likely have to do them in the real world (i.e. without a bar).  Here I focused on exploding up into position, then working the negative motion as controlled as possible.  It was pretty tough, but is this useful?  I'm shooting for 10 muscle-ups as a goal, so I figure explosiveness and overall strength are important.

Cooldown
Stretching for 30 minutes.  I've been stretch almost every day for the past two weeks, following Muse_of_Fire's suggested routine (http://www.americanparkour.com/smf/index.php?topic=5887.0), but I haven't begun to notice any increase in flexibility.  My plan is to go with it for another week, and if I don't notice improvement I'll see what I can do.  A physical therapist who helped me through a horrible back problem I had once said that some people just can't hold onto flexibility.  He said he could "stretch into the splits every night for a year" but he'd be just as rigid the next morning.  Is that in any way possible?  Do I suffer from terminal inflexibility?

Total time: 1:30 hours.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 02, 2008, 03:42:28 PM
10/2/08

Warmup
Body Squat - 20x2
Push up - 15x2
Pull up - 6x2
Samson Stretch - 4 each side x2

Workout
Squat:
(45x5)x2
135x5
185x3
215x2
-------
(235x5)x3 - New PR  Note: Turns out, everytime I've recorded "185" during my squat workouts (but not deadlift), I was actually lifting 215.  Silly addition.

Bench Press:
(20s x5)x2
30s x5
40sx3
50x2
-------
(65x5)x3 - Definitely new PR  Note: Finally!  I think using lower WU weights helped out, but it just feels good to get it done.

Deadlift:
(135x2)x5
185x5
205x3
225x2
-------
245x5 - New PR  Note: I had to take about ten seconds between reps 4 and 5 to adjust my grip.  I had already supinated one hand, and I thought about reversing the hand positions, but changed my mind.

Press:
(45x5)x2
65x5
75x3
85x2
-------
100x5
100x3 - Failed on third rep
85x4 - Failed on fourth rep Note: Today wasn't a good day for press.  Last time felt perfect, today I felt sort of weak, then I ended up psyching myself out.

Cooldown
Stretching for 15 minutes

Total Workout Time: 2:00 hours

Next week I'm going to have to try to find time for lifting in my super busy MWF schedule.  I'm starting track evaluations on T-R next week (my usual lifting time), and I don't want to be the least bit fatigued for this.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 03, 2008, 04:33:50 PM
10/3/08

Today I didn't know that I was going to be able to do any training, etc. due to a pretty busy schedule.  Usually I can manage to train at night, but tonight I'm going to First Friday Art Walk here in town with my family, so that's out.  Luckily, this week has been Fall Fest at my school, and today's theme was American Gladiator.  Bob Barker has been a pretty big deal around campus lately (he's an alum of Drury and we named a street after him last Friday  ::)), so Fall Fest was themed around TV shows.  Anyway, they had this cool guy (http://www.magicbounce.com/product.php?productid=42&cat=5&page=1), an inflatable American Gladiator "Q-Tip Battle" arena, and one of those really easy climbing walls that unloads from a trailer.

Anyway, I had a blast spending about two hours out there doing all sorts of "twelve year old" parkour.  For the first hour or so I got a feel for all the inflatables by going through the course 2-3 times, then backtracking through the course 2-3 times (that final slide in the middle is so much fun to run up, then jump over).  The wall was no real challenge, it was just a nice opportunity to work on speed climbing, climbing without footholds, etc.

After the first hour Chad, a friend and fellow traceur, showed up, and we had a competition: once through the obstacle course (I won), then best 2-3 in the q-tip arena (he won), then best 2-3 on the wall (I won, and I've never climbed anything faster in my life  8)), then backtracking through the obstacle course again (I won, but it was closer).  That was a big awesome time, then I toyed around with the events for a little longer before Sean, another fellow traceur, showed up.  We did the same thing, and he actually beat me in the obstacle course, and in the q-tip arena, but he climbed the wall without me.

Eventually, a lot more people showed up, and we all hanged around the q-tip arena while some people did a little tricking.  Two or three people were old gymnasts, and they got everybody else excited about backflips, etc.  I tried a backflip for the first time in my life, and I landed on my hands and knees, but people said I was getting a lot of air.  It's not really something I intend to work on, but I suppose all I have to do is tuck more and I'll have it.

Total workout time: 0:45, breaks taken into the equation.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 04, 2008, 03:54:21 PM
10/4/08

Weekly Springfield Jam today.  It was really nice to get back since I wasn't able to come last week.  I showed up a little later than the first group of people, so I did an abbreviated warmup to catch up.

Warmup:
Bike 1 mile to the jam
Pushup x15
Body Squat x20
Pushup x15
Body Squat x20
QM - 10m x4 - Lizard, Cat, Rabbit, and "Gorilla Gallop"

Workout:
Rolls - 10 on non-dominant side
Speed vault progression - 10:00 min
Precision Jumps in varied environment (distances between 5'-7', height differences between -3" and +3")
Kong Vault progression - 10:00 min
Cat Leap - 5:00 min
Lazy vault progression - 5:00 min
Misc. climbing - 2:00 min

Cooldown:
Stretch - 15:00 min
Bike 1 mile back home

Total workout time: 3:00 hours

Most of the jam was spent teaching a few new people of the basics.  We worked on landing and rolling a lot, then I began to introduce them to the speed and lazy vaults.  Someone else started to teach them how to kong, and since I didn't want them to hurt themselves I stepped in and made sure they were doing everything right.  It wasn't so much a skill-training workout for me today, and more of a light endurance exercise, as I was demonstrating things almost nonstop for the duration of the jam.  Note: Looks like I'm going to need to make sure to train skills on my own during the week, because I may not have much opportunity during the jams.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 05, 2008, 01:34:50 PM
10/5/08

Officially, today was a rest day.  That being said, I went to the gym to work on power clean, being coached by a friend who does power clean.  I would have preferred to practice the movement on a day other than my rest day, but we're both really busy and today was the only day that worked out.

Warm up

Workout

Pull-up progression
3 pull-ups with emphasis on a slow, negative movement.
5 pull-ups with emphasis on a slow, negative movement. Note: I noticed that the hardcore pectoral muscle soreness from the past few days (I forgot to log it), was noticeable when I doing the negative movement.  I would assume that means that the source of the soreness is my negative pull-up workout from 10/1/08.  Is it normal to experience pectoral soreness from pull-ups, or am I doing something wrong?

Power Clean
(45x5)x3
At this time, my friend showed up and looked at my form.  I didn't expect him to be able to quote SS for me, but I used the comments he was giving me (and the mirror that was right in front of me... I know, bad  ::)) to figure out how I was out of line with SS, and how to bring myself closer to the ideal.
(45x3)x3
95x5
115x5 Note:  This was at my friend's insistence, because I was having a really easy time with the snatch at the lighter weights.  This felt like a little bit of a strain, but I could have probably done more weight.

Cooldown
Stretching  - 15:00 min

I'm feeling antsy tonight.  I might practice head/handstands in my hallway, and L-sits in my room.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 06, 2008, 09:32:15 PM
10/6/08

Today my traps have a lot of healthy soreness from practicing the power clean yesterday.  :)  Now that I know the power clean, I'm going to switch to the explicitly-mentioned training schedule in SS: Squat, Bench, and Deadlift on one day, and Squat, Press, and Power Clean on another.  This week I'm going to be lifting MWF, but my usual schedule will probably continue to be just T-R.  I'll have to see how I feel about adding weight training to my already packed MWF schedule, then make a decision.

Also, today was a horrible day for me.  I had an ugly wake-up call in one of my classes, I'm going through a bit of an existential crisis, I've been feeling congested, and I slept away most of my afternoon (which I usually hate).  Working out was really nice and therapeutic.  As an extra post-workout pick-me-up, I decided to take my measurements when I got back to my room.  I used to lift for aesthetic purposes, because I wanted to look pretty awesome (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_(Michelangelo)).  I don't care about that as much as I care about practical strength anymore, but back then I stumbled upon a Grecian Ideal calculator (http://www.sandowmuseum.com/ideal.html), and decided to revisit that today.  As it turns out (given my 7" wrist diameter), the only things that are out of line are my chest (it needs to grow about 6 inches) and my arms (forearms=2" under, upper arm=3" under).  Previously I had a good deal more work to do, so it was a nice opportunity to see how much "bigger" I've gotten over the past year.

Warmup
Body Squat - 20x2
Push Up - 15x2
Pull Up - 6x2

Workout
Squat:
(45x5)x3
135x5
185x3
225x2
-------
(245x5)x3 - new PR (1.4x BW).  Note:  Wow.  Maybe the hardest squat has ever been for me.  My legs (esp. quads) were still feeling it 15 minutes later in the middle of my bench press.

Bench Press:
(20x5)x3
30x5
45x3
55x2
-------
(65x5)x3 Note:  I don't know how I feel about switching from dumbbells to barbell this far into my training, but you can control the amount of weight added much more precisely with barbell bench.  I think the plan right now is to work one target weight every week, and fiddle with the warmup weights to get less/more total weight lifted throughout all sets.  Hopefully that will continue to push me adequately?

Deadlift:
(135x5)x2
185x5
215x3
225x2
-------
255x5 - New PR (1.5x BW)  Note: This felt challenging, but I think my 5RM is probably around 270 at this point.  We'll find out Friday (Maybe up to 275-280 by then?).

Jumping Muscle Ups - 4 Note: When I jump it's not too much of a challenge to hoist myself all the way through the motion, though I have to bring one arm up into the dip position at the time.  Also, I'm doing a slow negative movement here to build more strength, and I find that during the transition from my lowest dip position (with my chest touching the pull up bar), to my highest pull up position I have almost 0 control.  I guess I should just keep working on it?

Cooldown
Stretching: 15:00 minutes

Total Workout Time: 1:45 hours.

P.S. - My goals on my first post have been updated.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 07, 2008, 07:36:16 PM
10/7/08


Today was day 1 of 4 of track evaluations.  I had to get a physical at 2:30, and I was pretty pressed for time since evaluations started at 3:30.

Warmup
Body Squat - 20

Workout (Note: all are best out of 3 attempts)
Standing Vertical Jump - 25"
Standing Broad Jump - 8'5"
Standing Triple Jump - 24'4"

1 "Wheel" Note: on a standard track, run 100 meters, walk back 50 meters.  Repeat 7 times.

Cooldown
Walk 100m
Jog 150m
Walk 50m
Jog 100m

Stretch - 10 minutes

Total workout time: 1:30 hours

I had intended to do the APK WOD today (20:00 min handstand/planche progressions), but I decided to watch the presidential debate instead.  Kind of wish I would have done the WOD.  Also, I may be getting into a little bit of a fever.  >:(  Orange juice and sleep are both in my future.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 08, 2008, 08:12:11 PM
10/08/08

My legs are tired from evaluations yesterday.  My knees are a little sore at the top, like right where the quads insert at the kneecap.  I have a sneaking suspicion that this may be bad.

Warmup
Body Squat - 20x2
Pushup - 15x2
Pull up - 7x2
Samson Stretch - 4x2 (each side)

Workout
Squat:
(45x5)x2
135x5
185x3
215x2
-------
(245x5)x3  Note: Again, this was very hard.  I noticed that towards the last 2 reps of the last set I wasn't squatting as deep as I ought to.

Press:
(45x2)x2
65x5
70x3
90x2
-------
(100x5)x3  Note:  Felt good about this, though I used my legs a little more than I usually do.

Power Clean:
(45x5)x3
65x5
70x3
95x2
-------
105x3 Note: Failure!  I need to practice this movement at lower weight for at least three more workouts before I start to use it as a strength exercise (do it after the rest of my workouts, no matter what).  I'm using my arms way too much.

Cooldown
Rolls 5x2 each side from a crouching position.  Note: This was on the floor of my dorm hallway, which is concrete covered by thin carpet.  As a whole, I felt better about these rolls than I did about previous training, but I can still feel a little impact on my iliac crest.
Stretch - 15 minutes

Total Workout Time: 1:30 hours.  Note: I've got it down so that my warmup and cooldown take 15:00 min., which makes my workout just about 1 hour.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on October 09, 2008, 10:55:07 AM
245 squats with 105 P.Cleans?

I would put my savings down that your P. Clean form is awful.  Your hip extension is plenty strong.

Hard to explain how to clean over the internet...i suggest checking out x-fit for videos...

The steps are as follows:
1) Stance - Put your feet such that your shins are ~1 inch or less from the bar.
2) Grip - WITHOUT MOVING THE BAR, reach down and grab it with a hook grip.
3) Shins - WITHOUT MOVING THE BAR OR YOUR FEET, let your shins meet the bar
4) Chest - Lift your chest up, tighten your WHOLE BACK and ARMS
5) Pull (Slow) - Pull the bar up over your knees, slowly at first while you learn form
6) Torso - Make your torso go a bit more vertical
7) Explode (Fast) - When the bar passes your knees, with a vertical torso, EXPLODE your hips and SHRUG your shoulders violently upward
8) Catch - Throw your body under the bar into a quarter squat while simultaneously THROWING your elbows out -- good cue is HUMERUS OUT so that its parallel to the ground.
9) Stand up.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 09, 2008, 11:01:35 AM
Thanks for the tip, Chris.  I've looked at a few of the x-fit videos, as well as reading SS a few times and even working on it with a friend that does power clean.  When I worked with him I more or less listened to what he said to figure out how I was out of line with SS (since he's never read it), and "re-align" with SS regardless of the advice he was giving me.

Those steps will be helpful, but I pretty much had them down.  Getting into the starting position is the same as with deadlift, only with a hook grip, right?  Actually, it's pretty much identical to deadlift until you explode when the bar comes over the knees, right?

My problem last night was that I was using my arms too much, and also I wasn't focusing like I needed to be.  My plan is to work on form with lighter weight during every workout, and then only do the movement for weight once per week.  I won't be doing it for weight until next Wednesday, so that will give me Friday and Monday (with the possibility of squeezing another day in just to work on form) to really hammer things out.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on October 09, 2008, 11:07:36 AM
Thanks for the tip, Chris.  I've looked at a few of the x-fit videos, as well as reading SS a few times and even working on it with a friend that does power clean.  When I worked with him I more or less listened to what he said to figure out how I was out of line with SS (since he's never read it), and "re-align" with SS regardless of the advice he was giving me.

Those steps will be helpful, but I pretty much had them down.  Getting into the starting position is the same as with deadlift, only with a hook grip, right?  Actually, it's pretty much identical to deadlift until you explode when the bar comes over the knees, right?

My problem last night was that I was using my arms too much, and also I wasn't focusing like I needed to be.  My plan is to work on form with lighter weight during every workout, and then only do the movement for weight once per week.  I won't be doing it for weight until next Wednesday, so that will give me Friday and Monday (with the possibility of squeezing another day in just to work on form) to really hammer things out.

The SS clean differs from the O-lifting clean.  Its something you become more aware of as you learn how to clean properly.  I still do the SS clean and have gotten quite strong with it.  There are som minor differences in a "proper" O-lifting clean but the SS clean is the best way to start, imho.

The SS clean IS identical to the deadlift.  The deadlift in the SS clean gets you to the knees then step6 in my list where we straighten the torso gets you to the hang clean position.  From there its just a hang clean.

The hardest thing to learn is to SHRUG the weight up so it floats and goes weightless.  If the bar doesn't FLOAT then you aren't cleaning anything, you are curling.

A good way to practice the shrug is to take a medicine ball of 45# plate standing on its edge.  Do the clean pull so that the ball/plate goes weightless and pops up without your bending your arms.  A good clean shrug will have the 45# plate/medicine ball fly upwards without turning at all OR without having the laces of the ball rotate at all.

From there it is just being more violent with the shrug, doing it with a bar, and getting under the damn thing :)
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 09, 2008, 02:37:14 PM
10/09/08

Day 2 of 4 for Track Evaluations.  Today was 60m and 150m sprints.

Warmup
Body Squat: 20
Light Stretching
100m accelerations - x2
200m jog
Light Stretching

Workout
60m Sprint: 7.92 secs
150m Sprint: 19.3 secs

Cooldown
Stretch - 5 min.
Rolls - 5x each side from a crouch

Later tonight I am going to do practice parkour with a friend at a local park, expect another update.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 09, 2008, 05:02:22 PM
So I've pulled a muscle in my back.  More specifically, I think I've pulled both of my trapezius muscles near where they insert in the middle of my back.  I felt sore and a little bit worse than sore this morning after my workout last night, but I didn't notice much of a change throughout the day.  After evaluations this afternoon I was feeling it just a little bit more, and it really hit me when I went to do parkour this evening.

I was really excited because a friend who does parkour here at college decided to take me on a run he does around campus.  It's really good, practical training for parkour (i.e. you're going to be running a lot more than anything else), but after the first few vaults I noticed my back was feeling a lot worse.  Like a fool I kept on pushing, and soon it was hard for me to move without stabbing pain in my back.

Now I'm here in my dorm room, feeling really sharp pains no matter how slightly I move.  Many times it's hard to breathe because of these pains.  I've got ice on my back right now, and the plan is to do as little activity as possible tonight.  I think I also plan on not working out tomorrow, and depending on how I feel I may not do anything at the weekly jam on Saturday, which would completely suck.  I need to be completely better by Tuesday at the latest, for the next day of track evaluations.

Any advice?
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on October 09, 2008, 06:24:29 PM
sadly for you, i suck at injury advice -- ask steve or ken :P
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 10, 2008, 08:11:56 PM
10/10/08 - Rest Day 1 of 3

My back pain was easily twice as bad as it was last night, and I decided I had to do something about it.  I remembered that it felt almost identical to a time a few months ago when my lower back relapsed into its former state of awfulness, so I decided to try and get into a chiropractor today, or risk letting the possibly maligned joints get a chance to settle in their position.

I scheduled an appointment with a guy I had never heard of, but he was the only guy I could get ahold of on such short notice (it was 2:45 this afternoon).  I also have never needed a chiropractor anywhere but in my hometown, so I figured it wouldn't be a horrible idea to try out someone here in case I end up living here after college.

As it turns out, I really enjoyed this visit.  The chiropractor felt around on my back (which is something my old chiropractor never really did) and determined that in addition to some minor slippage here and there, the thing that was causing all the pain was a rib that had come out of place.  He righted me six ways from Sunday and told me to take it easy for the next couple of days.  He also said that the muscles in my back were probably strained a little, and I assume they are strained from trying to keep that rib from doing anything worse for such a long time.

Something is leading me to believe that I need to work on my kong form over rails.  The last time my back relapsed was when I was practicing the upward jump at the beginning of a kong (to get the body parallel with the ground), and this time the closest I can hone in on when it started to hurt really badly was when I tried a kong over a rail.  I think it's such a psychological thing for me to bring my feet up over a rail (I'm always terrified that I'm going to hook my feet on the rail and faceplant at least a few feet below) that I tense up and my form falls apart.  One of the things I notice especially is that I tend to grip the bar instead of using it to push off of and away from, which I think causes me to compress my body too much too fast, hence things popping out of place.  When I get better (i.e. hopefully by Tuesday, we'll have to see) I'll have to gently toy around with this and find out where the problem lies.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 13, 2008, 09:40:05 PM
10/11/08 - Rest Day 2 of 3.  Today was also the Springfield Weekly Jam, and I couldn't help but jump around on some of the obstacles.  To my credit, I didn't do anything that wasn't a short precision, or any more harmful than skipping a few steps on the stairs.

10/12/08 - Rest Day 3 of 3.

10/13/08

I think my back muscles are almost back to 100% from being strained last Thursday, but I'm feeling a little joint pain in my spine, especially when I slouch a little at the computer.  Could this be a bruised bone that will just take a little while longer to heal, or is it a possibly more serious problem?  Come to think of it, are "bone bruises" a legitimate injury?  My mom always used to tell me that I might get them from more serious spills as a kid, and I never thought to question her.

So those three days of rest were killing me.  I wanted to take it as easy as possible to insure a quick recovery, but I was about to kill myself.  Today I'm still feeling a little joint pain like I said, so I didn't lift (ugh, I'm going to fall back in my progress...), but I went running instead.  Tonight I ran 1.5 miles in about 15 minutes (I forgot to time).  To be honest, at this point I'm still concerned about completing the runs at all, and not so much worried about how fast I complete them.  When I accomplish my goal of running two miles non-stop (which may be in the next week), I'll switch things around and start to shave down my mile time.

Tomorrow is day 3 of 4 for track evaluations, and we're doing the 300m sprint.  If we feel up to it, we may also do the 600m run.  Hoo boy  :-\.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 14, 2008, 06:13:56 PM
10/14/08

Today was track evaluations day 3 of 4, and it was a joke.  Granted, it was probably the most challenging joke I've ever experienced, but a joke nonetheless.  We warmed up with some jogging, ran 300m for time, cooled down with some jogging and stretching, and were out of there.  The whole thing took, like, 45 minutes.

300m sprint: 00:44:12

I was 5-6 out of 6 in my group.  It ended up working out so that there were three groups of two guys running side by side, trying like anything to beat the other one.  I think the fastest guys ran 39:something, and considering that the 300m for me four years ago would have resulted in my hospitalization due to a horrible, HORRIBLE cardio system, I'm pretty proud of myself.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 16, 2008, 07:29:21 PM
10/15/08 - Unintentional rest day.  This semester is catching up to me.

10/16/08

Track evaluations 4 of 4.  Today we ran the 600m.  I can't even imagine what an 800 is like.  I've been in a funk since I stopped weightlifting a last week.  I'm super excited to get back into it, but it's looking like I won't be able to start again until this Tuesday.  I'll lighten up on each of my lifts and start progressing from there to compensate for the downtime.

Anyway, for a warmup I did some dynamic stretching, about 300m of jogging, and 300m of walking.

600m: 01:57:00.  Ugh, what a battle!

Cooldown
pant desperately -  1:00 minutes
walk 200m
jog 100m
stretch - 15 min.

Afterwards the coach talked to me about my evaluation results.  After a few confusing minutes and more charts and graphs than I'm comfortable mentioning in mixed company, he told me that my ideal events would be the 800m, 400m, and maybe the 200m.  He said that if I were to be competitive in the 800m I would have to be able to add 200m to my distance without increasing my time (in other words, I'd have to run the 800m in 1:57:00 to be any good), but 400m might be a better possibility.  I asked him about jumping, and he said that my results (8'6.5") were about 6" short to be a competitive jumper.  He told me to get back to him over the course of the next couple of days with my decision about whether or not I wanted to commit to track.

Tonight I emailed him and told him that it seems like a much more efficient and practical use of my time to increase my broad jump 6"+ and work on sprint so I can be a competitive 200-400m runner AND either long jump or triple jump, and that 800m wasn't really an interest of mine.  At the end of the day, I'm doing track to condition for parkour, and the things I want to focus on are light mid-distance (i.e. 400, but 200 training could translate into longer distances) and explosiveness (i.e. jumping).  If the coach isn't willing to give that a chance then I don't have any hard feelings for him, but it's not accomplishing my goals and I don't care to spend my time doing something that I'm not passionate about.

And that's that.  :)
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on October 16, 2008, 07:59:37 PM
You have 8'6 Jump with a 100# Clean man..

Be a sprinter and work cleans for this year.  Sprinting will increase your performance in pretty much all domains you are interested in.  200m would be a good sprint to prepare for.

Next year, with the sprint and clean work, you will likely be in a lot better shape for long jumping.  Make sure to work jumping technique at the same time, as well, to get those numbers up.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 16, 2008, 09:30:06 PM
I'll probably end up taking your advice, but I'm curious: I really feel like my problem with cleans is form and not so much strength, so shouldn't it be possible for me to get form down even over the course of the next month, and be ready for jumping by the time Spring semester starts?

Now that I think of it, when you say "next year" do you mean next calendar year or next academic year?
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on October 16, 2008, 09:35:49 PM
I'll probably end up taking your advice, but I'm curious: I really feel like my problem with cleans is form and not so much strength, so shouldn't it be possible for me to get form down even over the course of the next month, and be ready for jumping by the time Spring semester starts?

Now that I think of it, when you say "next year" do you mean next calendar year or next academic year?

Next season/acadmic year...

The limiting factor is form...when u learn the form u will still not be at ideal explosiveness...your squat numbers are high enough that you should have a heavier clean than 100#.  150# at least is what I would expect...

You can't use the clean to train explosiveness unless you learn it though...

You CAN use sprints, though.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 17, 2008, 07:06:08 AM
When you say sprinting, what distances are you talking about specifically?

I just got an email back from the coach this morning, and he basically said I would be conditioning for 800/400/400 hurdles, or nothing.  I know how my body felt after each of the events, and I know how my times in longer distance runs compared to the other guys that were trying out (I finished 6th out of 6 with both the 300 and 600), and I know how technically demanding hurdles are, and it seems like a total pipe dream to think that I can condition for those events faster than the 200, maybe the 400.  I felt really positive about my 150 time, as it was the 3rd best out of all six of the guys trying out, but apparently that means I should be working on longer distance and not trying to speed up shorter distances?
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on October 17, 2008, 07:29:15 AM
400 is a good distance.

Make sure, on your own time, to do sprintervals ranging from 10m, 20m, 50m, 100m and 200m to increase your power production, as well.

This is a major downfall in most sporting areas...coaches think that people are pre-programmed for a certain event or something...thats really not the case...

With proper training anyone can be REALLY GOOD at something -- elite is a different story all together...but you can be REALLY GOOD at any of those events with proper training.

I would stick with the 400m sprint...
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 18, 2008, 11:58:24 AM
10/17/08 - Unintentional rest day again.  Ugh, I hate it.

10/18/08

Springfield weekly jam today.

Warmup
Body Squat  - 20x2
Pushups - 15x2
Samson Stretch - 5x2 each side
--------
Body Squat - 10
Pushups - 5
Samson Stretch - 5 each side Note: my energy crashed after the 2nd set of warmups here.  I didn't sleep too well last night, and I haven't been active almost at all this past week.
QM - about 80m


Workout
There was a new guy again today, so I went through all the basics with him: landing, rolling, the two-handed vault, speed vault, and intro to the kong.  Normally I would have kept him doing landings and rolling the whole time, but he was only in town for today, so I showed him how to progress with each vault on his own, and told him about this site.

As for myself, here's what I did:
Landing - 15 times, alternating arms inside and arms outside legs
Rolling - 20, 10 on each side.  Note: Tried 2-3 rolls on concrete, and it's way firmer than grass, but there wasn't much pain.  I still need to work out form.  I noticed one time when I rolled I came down and hit my ankle sort of hard.  I need to figure out a way to fix that.

Two-handed Vault progression- about 15 times spread out through 3 stages
Two-Handed Vault - 5

Speed Vault progression - about 8 times spread over 3 stages
Speed Vault - 3

Kong progression - about 20 times spread out over 3 stages
Kong Vault - 10

Eventually he told me that he has weak knees, and we stopped immediately.  I talked to him a little bit about setting up a weightlifting routine with really low weight to start to condition himself, then he sat out for the rest of the time.

We went to another place to train, and ended up having a more-or-less unstructured training.

Lazy Vault - 4
Turn Vault - 2
Kong Vault - 6
Butterfly Kick - 6 Note: Turns out I can still do these, but because of my flexibility and lack of training they still look like crap.
Turn Vault - 4  Note: I've never tried these before.  They're kind of goofy.

Next we did something that was a lot of fun.  A couple of the guys left, and the rest of us decided to apply our training thus far.  We jogged from where we were two or three blocks to the city square, vaulting when we came up to obstacles.  Once we got to the square we spent about 30 minutes practicing movement.  The obstacles weren't really appropriate for most of the "standard" movements, so we improvised and found what worked.  We did some precision work (I couldn't get my head around this one jump, even though people with a shorter broad jump than me were able to do it), some cat balancing, some tree climbing, a few vaults and some rolling.  After that we jogged back to our usual training spot, doing parkour movements where appropriate.  It was a lot of fun!

Cooldown
Nonexistent :-[  It was 1:15, and my friends and I remembered the commons back at school closes at 1:30 on Saturdays, so we had to hurry to get our nutrition.  I plan on doing stretching later in the day (probably as a break in this paper I've got to write), so I'll get that done.

My back is feeling a little tired after today.  I'm not too surprised because I didn't do anything this past week, but I'm feeling a little cautious.  It might just be sore muscles, but I'm worried that my spine is still not feeling 100%.  I'll have to pay extra attention to it when I stretch, and decide what to do from there.

Also, I feel fat and haggard from a week of lethargy.  I pushed myself and was proud of what I did, but sweet mother I felt like doing a LOT of complaining.  I refrained for the most part.


Note: I noticed that my recorded dates for the past few workout posts were horribly jumbled.  They're sorted out now.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 20, 2008, 08:22:07 PM
10/19/08 - Rest Day.  After a long week of school, I spent most of this day asleep, and what a day it was. :D

10/20/08

Today I had a meeting with the track coach to talk about my results again and go over the possibility of him working with me in terms of what I want to do.  I've got a lot of stuff on my plate already in college, and since he couldn't work with me I told him that I wasn't going to be able to make the commitment.  I felt really terrible after making the decision, because my mom has always made an issue of times in the past when I quit something or didn't try my hardest, and I know that I have a tendency to hold myself back.  Sometimes I feel like it was a good decision to turn track down, and other times I feel like it was an incredibly stupid waste of an opportunity.  There are still a few weeks before conditioning will start, so I guess I'm not finished thinking about this.  I would hate to go back and forth with the coach like I might end up doing, but I'm concerned about doing what's best for me while trying to keep perspective of everything else on my plate.  In the past, I've found that overextension can be really tough.

Warmup
Body Squat - 20x2
Pushup - 15x2
Sampson Stretch - 2x2 on each side  Note: I feel like these take such a long time to do, and I have to remind myself that they're warming up the leg muscles that squats don't, like my hip flexors.
QM - 10m to the door.  :(

Workout
Kong Vault progression - 10 times from standing position, 10 times from a step away
Kong Vault - 20 times on a picnic table, going lengthways and sideways.  Note: I can't seem to get enough of a launch to clear a picnic table lengthwise.  This will come in time.  Also, with about 1/3 of these I did a roll after landing.

Speed Vault progression - 5 each side over a picnic table sideways
Speed Vault - 10 each side over a picnic table sideways.  Note: Speed vaults are MUCH easier when you're actually vaulting over an obstacle.  When I usually practice speed vaults I have no choice but to vault ONTO an obstacle, i.e. landing on the same surface on which I plant my hand.

Cat Leaps - 6 with a jump away from the wall and a roll upon landing.  Note: I practiced on a wall that's along a shallow grade, such that the first cat leap was toward a wall about 5'5", whereas the last one was towards a wall about 7' tall.

Kong Vault - 10  Note: this time on a railing.  I have a psychological issue about konging over a railing, and welcome the practice.  My momentum was practically nonexistent coming out of these.  Any help?

Speed Vault - 6, again on a rail

Precision Jumps - about 8 from a distance of 6 feet with a 1.5 foot drop.  About 4 of these were with a solid landing.
                      - about 8 from a distance of 6.5 feet with a 1.5 foot drop.  Again, about 4 were with a solid landing.
                      - about 6 from a distance of 7 feet with a 1.5 foot drop.  About 4 of these were with a solid landing.

Jogging - Approximately 1:00 min of light jogging from my dorm to the training area, and 1:00 min back.

Cooldown
Stretching - 15:00 minutes.

Training today was short, but more intense than usual.  I had to find time to train between two meetings tonight, and I think I made good use of my time.

Total Workout Time: 40:00 minutes.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 22, 2008, 11:11:36 AM
10/21/08

Finally lifting again!  :D

Warmup
Body Squat - 20x2
                - 15
Pushup - 15x2
          - 10
Pullup - 7x2
         - 4
Sampson Stretch - 4 each side x3  Note:  Falling apart on the third set of the warmup... this will be a great workout!  ::)

Workout
Squat
(45x5)x2
135x5
185x3
205x2
-------
(235x5)x2 Note: This probably dropped off about 5 pounds in the past week of inactivity.  Nothing I can't fix.

Bench Press
(20sx5)x2
35sx5
45sx3
55sx2
-------
65sx5
65x3
60x3  Note: Ugh.  My bench press has fallen off a lot in the past week.  >:(

Deadlift
(135x5)x2
185x5
205x3
225x2
-------
255x5  Note: I stayed at the same weight as earlier (on the 6th?!?! Woah) because that wasn't much of a strain.  Today it felt a little harder than back then, but I'm still pretty sure my 5RM is higher.

Cooldown
None.  :(


Yesterday was a little weird.  It was my first day back into lifting for almost 2 weeks (4 workouts) so I decided to decrease some of the weights.  I'm really glad I did.  This minor reset will make for a nice platform from which to make some nice gains again.  Also, I wasn't able to cool down because my birthday is tomorrow, and yesterday my mom wanted to take me shopping in a pretty small window of time, and my workout was a little longer than I anticipated.  My hamstrings are pretty sore, but I'll stretch them extra tonight to try and make up for it.  I noticed today that I have a little discomfort in my spine between my scapulas, which I can only attribute to poor squat form.  I need to get my chest out more, I think?
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 26, 2008, 05:45:26 PM
10/22/08 - Nothing.  :(
10/23/08 - My birthday, and I did nothing.  :)
10/24/08 - Nothing, I had a lot of things to do today.  :(
10/25/08

Today I went to do parkour with a friend in my hometown.  We both go to Drury together and we went to the same high school, and we do parkour together in Springfield.  Since both of us were on Fall Break, we decided to get some training in and check out our local park.

Warmup
Jogged the fitness trail and did the various exercises, including
 - Pushups
 - Situps
 - Pull ups
 - Monkey Bars
 - etc.

Workout

We pulled a picnic table out from underneath a gazebo and got to work.

Kong Progression - 15 divided into 3 stages
Kong Vault - 10 over the width (short) of the table. Note: with most of these I didn't actually clear the table.  I feel like my momentum dies in the middle of my kongs.  Video pending.

Speed Progression - 9 divided into 3 stages.
Speed Vault - 8 each side over the width of the table.  Note: Planting with my right hand is MUCH easier than planting with my left.  Maintaining my momentum out of a speed vault is much easier than out of a kong.

Underbar progression - 10  Note: We practiced on a lower swing set, so we wouldn't have to deal with the mental aspect of fitting through a tiny space.  Instead we focused on making sure our feet passed under the bar before our hands made contact, and swinging through as fluidly as possible.

Precisions - Creek jumping from a standing and running position, ranging in distance from 6.5 ft. to 8 ft.

Cooldown
Finished the fitness trail (we left just before the cooldown phase of the trail to go into the park), stretching upper and lower body


I need to get back into consistent training.  I feel like the weather and my lack of training recently has made it easier to say "nah, I'll train later," and I want to be as disciplined as possible going into the winter months.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 28, 2008, 10:47:12 AM
10/26/08 - Rest Day.  This is my usual rest day.

10/27/08

It looks like Mondays are going to see me training at night just before my 10:00 RA meeting for a long time.  I always seem to get busy in the early evening, and can't find time to train until 8:30-9:00.

Warmup
QM (ABOUT TIME) - down my hallway (20m), then down three flights of stairs
Body Squat - 15x3
Push Up - 10x3
Pullup - 5x3

Workout
Kong Progression - 10 divided into 2 stages
Kong Vault - 10 over the width of a picnic table

Speed Progression - 5 each side
Speed Vault - 5 each side

Cooldown
Stretch 10 minutes

I didn't work on a lot today, but I made some real progress on what I DID work on.  My momentum completely dies coming out of a kong, so I toyed around with some tips I read here on the forum, and things went a little better.  I'll have to continue to work on it, but that's what training is, right?

I need to get more serious about my flexibility training, and also about my nutrition.  I'm lucky if I stretch once every day, and I want to get to the point where I stretch at least 2 times EVERY day without fail.  I also don't eat BAD, but I'd like to add some things to my diet.  For instance, I have access to as much milk as I can handle (although it's either 2% or chocolate, no whole) so I'm going to try this "gallon of milk every day" thing.  I also need to be eating a little more regularly (i.e. consistent meals at consistent times), and I need to work on my sleep schedule.  It's really tempting to say "ahh, there's so much free time at night, so I can squeeze just one more thing in before bed," and that needs to stop.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on October 28, 2008, 11:14:56 AM
??????

Where is your muscle up work?  Ain't gunna get to 10 MUs by doing vaults! :P
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 28, 2008, 11:23:23 AM
I know, I know.  I didn't have time enough to go down the gym and work on muscle ups last night, but all is not lost.  This afternoon I'm going to work out at 3:00, and I don't have anything to do until dinner at 5:00, so I plan on getting some solid work in on both MUs and power clean.

In related news, when I went to the park on Saturday, 10/25, I showed was explaining MUs to my friend Chad and decided it would be easier just to show him.  I managed to do three really slow MUs from a dead hang (I had to kip up, though), and I was pretty impressed with myself.  Would it be a waste of my time to work on jumping MUs is I can handle them from a dead hang?
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on October 28, 2008, 11:25:39 AM
You might want to work some concentrics with a little kip and focus on the controlled, slow negative as you have been doing...

You will likely get burned out of the kipping in a few sets...so if this is the case, continue with jumping and do negatives...

You want to keep doing negatives until you can do a couple of reps pretty solid and clean, then switch over to mostly concentrics...maybe even weighted concentrics or weighted negatives.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 28, 2008, 11:27:28 AM
Thanks, man.  You're a doll.  :P
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 28, 2008, 02:57:17 PM
10/28/08

I hereby declare that today I am resuming a consistent workout schedule.  I may be switching to MWF evenings next week, but I'll do it regularly or it will be the end of me.

Warmup
Body Squat - 15x2
Push up - 10x2
Pull up - 6x2
Samson Stretch - 3 each side x2

Workout
Squat
(45x5)x2
135x5
185x3
205x2
-------
(245x5)x3  Note: I need to squat a little lower.

Bench Press
(20sx5)2
30sx5
40sx3
50sx2
-------
(65x5)x3

Deadlift
(135x5)2
185x5
225x3
245x2
-------
265x5 New PR  Note: Wow.  This was tough, but it felt good.  How long can you wait in between reps before they're considered to be not in the same set (i.e. failure)?  On the last three I took a second or two to refocus before lifting again, and I feel like that's okay but I want to make sure.

EDIT:
Power Clean Work
45x5 hang clean
45x5 power clean
65x5 hang clean
65x6 power clean Note: by the end of the hang cleans my forearms were SUPER tired.  I did one extra rep of power clean @ 65 because my 5th rep felt really good and I wanted to duplicate it.

Muscle Up Work
2 MU negatives, from a jump  Note: My intention was to do 2 sets of 5 jumping, negative muscle ups (what a mouthful), but my forearms were so tired from power clean that I couldn't manage more than 2 separate negatives.  I'll focus on this more on Thursday.

Cooldown
Stretch - 15 minutes
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on October 30, 2008, 04:01:47 PM
10/29/08

I was super busy today, and had planned on getting an hour of parkour in during the evening.

(really abbreviated) Warmup
Body Squat - 15
Pushup - 10
Pull Up - 6

Workout
Kong vault - 5 Note: I didn't quite go all the way over a picnic table here.  I intended to do those next.

At this time I realized I was about to be late for a meeting I forgot, and had to leave. :(

10/30/08

Still a busy day, but better than yesterday.

Warmup
Body Squat - 15x2
Push Up - 10x2
Pull Up - 6x2
Sampson Stretch - 3 each side x2

Workout
Squat
(45x5)2
135x5
185x3
205x2
-------
(225x5)3  Note: I noticed last time that my squat form is sloppy (I don't go below parallel at higher weights), so I'm resetting to work on form.  It was good today.

OH Press
(45x5)2
55x5
65x3
75x2
-------
(95x5)3  Note: I pulled back on the weight from last time expecting this be REALLY hard.  It was difficult, but I hadn't diminished here as much as I thought I would have.

Hang Clean
45x5 Note: This was just to get the second phase of the movement down.

Power Clean
(45x5)2
55x5
65x3
75x2
-------
(85x5)3 Note: This felt much better than last time.  I'm doing low weights until I can really get the form down, then I'll start to build up.  Also, before each work set I would stand over the bar, let my arms hang loose, and do 5 hang cleans without weight.  My goal was to take my arms out of the equation completely, and see if I could "flail" them up over my head just my shrugging my shoulders and jumping explosively.  Is this a good exercise?  I felt like it was pretty useful.

Cooldown
Stretch - 15 min.

I wasn't able to work MU negatives today, because I'm on duty in my dorm tonight and had to run some errands before.  Ugh, this has been a busy week!

Total workout time: 1:00 hour
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 01, 2008, 10:01:01 PM
10/31/08 - Nothing, on account of Halloween.

11/1/08 - Springfield Weekly Jam

Pretty awesome day today.  We got to the park at around 11 to set up for the weekly jam, because some guys from a local high school wanted to come out and shoot some video for a little story they're doing on parkour.  I was a little nervous about presenting parkour accurately and successfully (http://www.americanparkour.com/content/view/962/236/), but I decided to go ahead and go through with it.  I've only been practicing parkour for 2.5 months now, but I've been studying it for the past year, and I feel much more confident talking about parkour than I do actually doing it.

Warmup
Body Squat - 20x2
Push Up - 15x2
Sampson Stretch - 2 each sidex2
Burpees - 5x2
QM (up two flights of stairs) - x2

Workout
Unfortunately, my workout was really pretty pathetic.  I did a few rolls, precision jumps, and some really light vaults.  I was focused mainly on talking to the film guys, making sure they were getting the shots they wanted, and making sure they understood what is parkour.  My plan is to make up for lost time tomorrow afternoon.

Cooldown
Stretching - 15 minutes

Total Workout Time: 1:30 hours

Like I said, today was more about PR than anything else, but I did make sure to experiment with my warmup and cooldown routines.  Next weekend will be the first ever Missouri Parkour Jam, and I've been asked to lead the warmups.  I wanted to make sure I had a solid core of things to do, so I've been watching videos like the PKGen warmups from the Ohio jam, and the Yamakasi rendezvous with PKGen to get ideas.  Today the warmup was just the simple APK warmup (minus pullups), but I plan on adding a few more things (most likely some more QM stuff) to the routine for next Saturday.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 03, 2008, 08:33:49 AM
11/2/08

Today I taught my girlfriend a little more about parkour, so I didn't get much of an opportunity to drill technique, but I pushed myself hard and got a decent cardio workout if nothing else.

Warmup
10 rolls on each side Note:  Half of these were from a squatting position, half were standing into a dive.

Workout
Cat Leap - 10
Cat Leap into a climb up - 5

Kong Vault Progression - 10, divided into two stages
Kong Vault - 5

Speed Vault Progression - 10
Speed Vault - 5

Cooldown
Stretch 10:00 minutes

Total Workout Time: 40:00 minutes

I've started doing GTG Pull Ups, because I'm not satisfied with my upper body pulling strength.  There's a perfect little ledge going down the stairs of my dorm, and I've decided to do at least 6 pull ups every time I pass it going up or down the stairs.  Yesterday I did about 7 sets, with my reps ranging from 6-8 each time.  Today I'm going to do at least 7 more sets, but probably more.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 03, 2008, 04:34:16 PM
11/3/08

The plan was going to be to introduce my girlfriend to the Starting Strength workout today and this week since she's going to be starting Track conditioning next week, but we're both too busy and I don't think we can match up our schedules for it.

Instead, I spent 45 minutes doing 7-10 minute intervals of intense movement throughout my campus.  I jogged about 1 mile in total, and I would stop at interesting places to practice:

Wall runs
Climb ups
Rolls
Landings
Two Handed Vaults
Kong Vaults
Speed Vaults
Pop Vaults
Lazy Vaults
Precisions

It was a really nice workout.  :)
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 04, 2008, 04:27:51 PM
11/4/08

Before I work out I check out my weight, and today was the first time I weighed 170 even.  I've been at 168 for the past week or so.  I think ideally I'd like to stay here, but I won't lose any sleep over a couple extra pounds.

Warmup
Body Squat - 20x2
Push Up - 15x2
Pull Up - 8, 5
Sampson Stretch - 2 each side x2

Workout
Squat
(45x5)x2
135x5
185x3
205x2
-------
(235x5)x3 Note: Failed on the fifth rep.  I'm not really upset, because I'm been thinking about the possibility of failing in the squat and whether or not it will be potentially dangerous, and it's nice to get it out of the way.  Also, I was definitely going below parallel (when is a squat officially ATG? At the bottom of your range of motion?), so I failed while still maintaining good technique.

Bench Press
(25sx5)x2
35sx5
45sx3
55sx2
-------
(65x5)x3  Note: This was a little easier than I expected, but it was still tough.  Also, when I'm pressing the weights don't follow a straight up and down line (which is proper form as far as I know), but they don't even travel in a straight line.  I may need to reset to focus on control.  Blargh, I don't want to back off on the slow progress I'm making. >:(

Deadlift
(135x5)x2
185x5
225x3
245x2
-------
275x5 New PR  Note: Again, wow.  I'm beginning to feel pretty strong.  I had to adjust my grip twice during these reps, but when my grip was right it still didn't feel like this was my 5 RM.  If I had to guess, I'd put it somewhere around 290, which just tickles me pink.

EDIT:  Forgot to mention a few things.  First, when I was doing parkour yesterday I went for a roll (practicing the advanced rolling techniques described here (http://www.americanparkour.com/content/view/2260/305/)) and bailed, landing on my shoulder.  I finished the roll, and actually it was not a bad roll, but the initial contact really sucked.  This morning my shoulder was sore, but after working out I stretched a little extra and now it feels much better.

Also, GTG pull ups are coming along, but not perfectly.  When I eat lunch I'm eating a whole lot because I'm freaking starving after working out, so I find that I have no desire to do them right after eating, which cuts out two opportunities up and down the stairs.  I've been averaging about 4-5 sets of 6-8 reps for the past few days.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on November 04, 2008, 09:38:03 PM
you are ATG when it feels like you are teabagging the platform O.o
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 05, 2008, 06:28:19 AM
you are ATG when it feels like you are teabagging the platform O.o

Fair enough.  I'm not going ATG (there are still about 5 inches between me and the platform), but I'm going almost to the bottom of my range of motion.  Do your legs have to be pretty wide to go ATG, or do you just have to be really flexible?
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 05, 2008, 04:02:18 PM
11/5/08

Today was a busy day, but I found an hour to practice before dinner.  I was warming up with some kong progressions on a picnic table, and decided to try and kong the table lengthwise, which I never seem to be able to get the explosiveness to do.  I had just finished telling a friend that I was afraid to hit my knees on the first edge of the table, when I run, jump, and hit my knee on the table.  I was thinking "how can I get farther on this kong?  Well, I could always start my jump just a little later..."  Turns out, a little later was too late.

It honestly wasn't that bad.  I scraped some skin off and it bled, but it's not like I broke my knee or anything.  I went ahead and continue training, but I worked on slower endurance stuff like cat balancing and things that didn't involve my legs too much like climb ups.  Luckily, the scrape is on my non-dominant side, so I didn't feel bad about practicing wall runs.  I'm pretty sure my effective wall run height is around 12', maybe a little more, which was happily surprising.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Dustin Smith on November 05, 2008, 07:10:16 PM
Eli your a beast, the length of a picnick table is something i had to do randomly cause i would always bail if i thought about it to long
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on November 05, 2008, 07:15:55 PM
you are ATG when it feels like you are teabagging the platform O.o

Fair enough.  I'm not going ATG (there are still about 5 inches between me and the platform), but I'm going almost to the bottom of my range of motion.  Do your legs have to be pretty wide to go ATG, or do you just have to be really flexible?

If you are 5 inches from the ground, you are pretty damn close.

Try widening your stance.  You are doing squats that are already at the bottom of your ROM.  I wouldn't change anything if you are comfortable.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 05, 2008, 08:53:29 PM
Fair enough, I think I'll stick with what I've got.  My stance is already wider than my shoulders by an inch or two.

Question:  I was talking to a friend who's a powerlifter (he recently deadlifted 560# at the Show-Me State games weighing something like 190#... wow) and he congratulated me on deadlifting 275x5.  He said it was pretty close to the ideal in terms of functional strength.  I know I feel great about it, but I figured I'd double check his statement.  Am I doing pretty good?  SS seems to indicate that a good weight lifter can lift a good deal more than that, but I know SS wasn't written specifically for parkour, so I think that might not be reliable in this case.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 06, 2008, 07:36:34 PM
11/06/08

Warmup
Body Squat - 20x2
Pushup - 15x2
Pull Up - 6x2
Samson Stretch - 2 each side Note: I didn't do the second set because of the cut on my knee.  It's just a tad swollen, and putting my weight on it was pretty uncomfortable.

Workout
Squat
(45x5)x2
135x5
185x3
205x2
-------
(235x5)x3 Note: Last time was totally a focus issue.  This was way easier.

Press
(45x5)x2
55x5
65x3
85x2
-------
(100x5)x3 New PR

Power Clean
(45x5)x2
65x5
75x3
85x2
-------
(95x5)x3 Note: I feel like I'm using my arms too much, and I know the bar is traveling too far away from my torso.  Fix your form, Eli!

Cooldown
Stretch - 15 minutes

Total Workout Time - 1:45 hours

After today I'm noticing that my knees are feeling a little tired, maybe a little sore.  I have a suspicion that my toes point out more than my knees, but it's more because I've always had slight duck feet than it is due to ignoring a "knees out" cue.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 09, 2008, 05:44:07 PM
11/7/08 - Rest day in anticipation for...

11/8/08 and 11/9/08 - statewide Missouri Parkour Jam!


This weekend was pretty much a blast.  Five of us from Springfield PK and three from the KCPK scene met up in Camdenton at the Ha Ha Tonka State Park.  We decided to go there because I knew there was a lot of karst geography there, and figured we could find a few good places for PK.  As it turned out, when we got to the park and asked a ranger if there were any spots that would be good for trail running and "bouldering," we were asked to stay on the trails, because human interference destroys the landscape.  :(  We decided to have fun in spite of that, and actually stayed in the places we were allowed about 95% of the time.  On Saturday afternoon I lead the warmups (in the 40 degree weather!  :-\):

Warmup (plus conditioning)
Monkey Walk drills - 5 minutes
Random, varied QM/rolls - 2 minutes
2 sets of:
 - 10 Body Squats
 - 5 Pushups
 - 2 Burpees
1 set of:
 - 15 Body Squats
 - 10 Pushups
 - 4 Burpees

Once we had done all this, we started drilling landing and rolling a little bit, both on a wooden deck and on the grass, and then tried to find some (legal) training spots around the ruins of this old mansion at the park.  We found a few cool vaulting spots, and a few precision places, but for the most part we found ourselves looking at the wealth of options actually inside the ruins, on the other side of a fence.  Why do all the awesome PK places have to be off limits?

Eventually we went back towards our vehicles, which were parked about 1/4 mile away near a natural bridge formation.  Underneath there were a lot of small-to-medium sized boulders, and after exploring the area for about 10 minutes we decided to play "The Floor is Lava."  Each of the eight of us had 3 lives, and me and another guy managed to last about 40 minutes working on precisions and flow.

At 3:40 we left to check into our hotel, and grab stuff for a dinner cookout.  We ended up not getting back to the park until 5:00ish, and we only had about 30 minutes until the park closed at sunset.  At 5:50 or so (:P), we had scarfed out our food, packed up, and headed back to the hotel.  Thankfully the gates weren't closed, and I think a ranger had even come by at 5:30 and didn't stop to tell us to leave or anything. :)

Back at the hotel, we got situated, grabbed our swim suits, and headed to the pool.  I alternated between a game 500 with a frisbee in the pool, and relaxing in the hot tub, and after about 1.5 hours of that, we hopped into the hot tub to warm up the lazy way, then got out and stretched, then headed back to the rooms.  We watched TV for a few hours, then we all went to bed at about 10:30.  We were exhausted!

This morning we woke up and had breakfast at the hotel (as Laurie said, "carb city, whoo!") and headed for the Camdenton city park.  We warmed up by doing monkey walking, then played a game of QM follow the leader around some playground equipment.  The park was kind of a bust, but there were a few picnic tables, swing sets, and playground equipment, which is all an intrepid traceur really needs. :D  There was even a mini skate park (basically an old basketball court with a drop-in ramp, a quarter pipe, and a box-ish thing... I don't know skateboard terminology) where we did a little parkour (read: goofing off, turning the ramps into slides...).  The Springfield PK crew had to head out at 10:15, so we left at that time and made it back here by noon to shower and nap.  What an awesome weekend!
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 10, 2008, 04:21:19 PM
11/10/08

Today was a cold, rainy day, and I wasn't quite ready to ring in the season just yet.  Instead, a friend of mine and myself decided to do some indoor conditioning.  We decided to do the full APK warmup (http://www.americanparkour.com/content/view/254/223/), then work on QM, handstands, and landings according to our fatigue level afterwards.  As it turned out, the full APK warmup was rough, and we didn't do a whole lot after. :P

APK Warmup
Body Squat
 - 25x2
 - 20
Pushup
 - 15x2
 - 12
Pullup
 - 9
 - 7
 - 5  Note: We had to do these on a painted ledge, as there was no bar available.  Our hands were already sweaty from the previous sets of exercises, so holding on was more of a problem than the actual movement.

Agility Work
2 rounds of:
On 10 rung ladder:
 - High Knees, one per rung
 - High knees, two per rung
 - Side steps
 - Butt kicks
 - reverse high knees, two per rung
3 burpees with 5 counts
1:00 of random, varied QM

After this we tried to do handstands, but our arms were too fatigued.  Instead we drilled landings.  What we did was start on a set of stairs two steps up from the floor, and practice one landing with our arms inside our knees, and one with our arms outside.  We repeated this taking a step up each time until we were jumping from the sixth step, then we worked our way down.  This made for a total of 22 landings.  I found that (tonight at least) landing with my arms inside my knees puts a lot more stress on my lower back than with my arms outside.  It's possible that I'm balling up too much with my landings, and need to lean forward a little more to absorb more of the impact with my arms/ make my torso a little more parallel to the ground.

Cooldown

Stretch - 10:00 minutes
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 10, 2008, 09:18:03 PM
11/10/08 - Round two!

For whatever reason I found myself extremely hyper at around 8:00, so I decided to do another workout.  I did five squats and five diver bomber pushups for a warmup, then ran a circuit around my dorm. 
One lap of this circuit consisted of:
 - Run 50 meters down one hallway
 - Descend 1 flight of stairs
 - Run 50 meters down another hallway
 - Descend 1 flight of stairs
 - Run another 50 meters
 - High Knees up 1 flight of stairs, one high knee per stair
 - Run 50 meters
 - High knees again, one knee per stair

I did this circuit twice with a short break (:30) in between, then ran it twice with no break.  Intermittently I would stop at the top of the flights of stairs and do 5 pullups... I did 15 total.

After this I took a breather, then worked on rolls.  I did five rolls on each side from a crouching position, and five rolls from a standing position, springing as far forward as I could.  Next I literally danced like a fool for about two minutes to get my body temperature up a little and my muscles warm again, then cooled down with stretching for 15 minutes.

Again, I have no idea why I got so hyper.  It was a nice, solid, breathtaking workout, though. :)
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 11, 2008, 05:03:50 PM
11/11/08

Pretty good day in the weight room.

Warmup
Body Squat - 15x2
Push Up - 10x2
Pull Up - 6x2
Samson Stretch - 2 each sidex2  Note: I feel like my warm up is more or less a waste of time when I'm doing warmup sets anyway, so I'm going to keep it here unless somebody thinks I should be doing more.  I know how much I should do is pretty relative to my ability level, but I feel like this raises my temperature and warms my muscles nicely without putting me out of breath.

Workout
Squat
(45x5)x2
135x5
185x3
205x2
-------
(245x5)x3 New PR  Note: Didn't have to strain as much here as I have previously, but my quads were tender for awhile after.  I need to make absolutely sure that my feet are directly under my knees, as they have a tendency to flair out thanks to my duck feet.  Injuries are not an option.

Bench Press
(25x5)x2
35x5
45x3
55x2
-------
70x5
70x4 Note: Fought hard to get the 4th rep, then I felt all the power drain from my triceps.  Tried for one more rep and couldn't get it.
65x5 Note: Last rep was intense, but solid.  No squirming.

Deadlift
(135x5)x2
185x5
225x3
265x2
-------
290x5 New PR  Note: Hot Damn.

Cooldown
Stretch - 10:00 min. Note: I would have stretched longer today, but I suddenly realized I had meetings to go to. :(

So I reading through the ol' training log, and realized that it was suggested that I track my relative strength via squat and deadlift to keep track of my progress more accurately.  I hadn't done anything about it until now, but luckily I've been keeping track of my weight throughout the past two months, so here it is (I haven't included dates, but I can if that would make things better):

Weight  - 165
    Squat - 225# (1.36 BW)
    Deadlift - 225# (1.36 BW)
           - 170
    Squat - 235# (1.38 BW) --> 245# (1.44 BW)
    Deadlift - 245# (1.44 BW) --> 265# (1.56 BW)
           - 175
    Squat - 235# (1.34 BW)(Form reset)
    Deadlift - 275# (2.57 BW)
           - 170 (back down 5# today)
    Squat - 245# (1.44 BW)
    Deadlift - 290# (1.71 BW)

Note: For squat, all of these numbers are for 3 set of 5 reps.  For deadlift, these numbers reflect set set of 5 reps.  Also, from now on I will include the BW ratio next to squat and deadlift each workout.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on November 11, 2008, 09:04:24 PM
you are getting very strong :)
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 11, 2008, 09:07:11 PM
Thanks!  ;D  I've never been really strong before, and I like the feeling.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on November 11, 2008, 09:15:12 PM
Sadly, I need to reset my squat because of my time off from it...I am starting back at like 215....saddening really :(

However, I can still DL and Clean like a mother ;)

Good luck on the rest of your progression man!
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 13, 2008, 06:23:38 PM
Sadly, I need to reset my squat because of my time off from it...I am starting back at like 215....saddening really :(

However, I can still DL and Clean like a mother ;)

Good luck on the rest of your progression man!

Thanks again!  I've found that I really, REALLY hate resetting.

11/13/08

I was going to lift today, but I didn't have class this morning, so I played an awesome card game (http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/3955) and maybe got a little drunk, and maybe didn't get to sleep until 1:30, and maaaybe had to wake up at 8:30 to start my day anyway.  That said, I was going to take a 20 minute power nap this afternoon before working out, but accidentally slept for 1:30 hours, and missed my opportunity to lift.  I'm a little upset, but I think it will be a nice excuse to start lifting on Sundays, so I'm not going to cry myself to sleep about it or anything.

That said:

Workout
 - 15 fingertip pushups
 - 20 weird sit ups Note: Starting from a lying postion on the floor with legs flat, do a normal sit up and bring one knee up to meet your torso in the middle.  Return to starting position, then do another sit up, bringing the other knee to chest.  That is 1 rep.
 - 30 body squats
 - 20 jumping lunges Note: Lunge on one side, explode up, lunge on the other side.  Wash, rinse, repeat.
 - Plank on elbows - :30
 - Rest :20
 - Plank on elbows, one foot in the air - :15 each foot
 - Side plank - :30 each side
 - Side plank, one leg in the air - :15 each side Note: each set of side plank/one legged side plank combo had a :30 rest in between
 - Inverse plank - :30 Note: lay on back, lift butt up off the ground, hold.

Cooldown
Stretch - 15 minutes


My girlfriend recently started track conditioning, and this is the "body circuit" she's been complaining about.  Granted, at track conditioning they would do running conditioning before and after this, but I didn't think it was all that challenging.  I had to push a little, but it wasn't as strenuous on my body as even one lift would have been.  Apparently this was taken from a Marine training course?  Whatever. :P
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Travie the Clown on November 13, 2008, 07:01:58 PM

 - 20 weird sit ups Note: Starting from a lying postion on the floor with legs flat, do a normal sit up and bring one knee up to meet your torso in the middle.  Return to starting position, then do another sit up, bringing the other knee to chest.  That is 1 rep.


I think they're called Bicycle Crunches. :P
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 13, 2008, 07:17:05 PM
I think they're called Bicycle Crunches. :P

Thanks!  That'll work way better than "weird crunches." :P
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 15, 2008, 11:00:38 AM
11/14/08


DAMNIT.

Well, I went out at about 7:30 to do parkour with a friend, and things were going really smooth for about two hours.  We practiced rolling, cat leaps, a little vaulting, and generally spent the evening exploring the city around our college.  We jogged about 1 mile to a park, played around there, and found some cool low walls we could cat leap to.  There was about 9-10 feet of bushes between the end of the sidewalk and the walls, so it was fun to try and runnning jump over the bushes into a cat leap.

Eventually we jogged back to my college and started working on wall runs at a favorite spot.  A guy walked by and saw us, then said it looked like fun and ended up learning some of the basics from us for about 15 minutes.  We were just talking to him about the slow progression mentality of parkour, and how there's a big emphasis on safety and not trying things that we're not sure we are capable of, when I suddenly decided that I could handle a precision that I KNEW I really couldn't.

Long story short, I have a 4x2 centimeter gash in my left shin, I can see my muscles, and I spent a few hours in the ER last night.  I didn't get stitches because the skin is too far apart to stitch, so I'm going to have to take it really slow for the next 1.5 weeks at a bare minimum.  I don't expect to be able to get back into any serious parkour training for at least two weeks, which sucks.

The whole time all I could think about was "Trying a precision jump that you know is too far, in the dark?  Great, what a great way to demonstrate how safe parkour can be if you're responsible."  I'm extremely disappointed in myself, but I'm going to spend a substantial amount of this recovery time letting the lesson sink in, and figuring out the best way to help other people learn the lesson.

Damnit.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eric Jarvis on November 16, 2008, 01:01:29 PM
Hey man I am sorry to hear about the accident. Maybe you could work on your upper body strength for the time being. I am kinda afraid to see what happens when I do not make the jump I think I could. Hope you have a speedy recovery!!!
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 16, 2008, 01:11:10 PM
Hey man I am sorry to hear about the accident. Maybe you could work on your upper body strength for the time being. I am kinda afraid to see what happens when I do not make the jump I think I could. Hope you have a speedy recovery!!!

Thanks, man!  I plan on working upper body pretty intensively until I recover.  I feel like my upper body isn't relatively as strong as my lower body anyway, so maybe this will be a good thing?
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 22, 2008, 08:51:18 PM
11/15/08 - Rest day
11/16/08 - Rest day
11/17/08 - "I wonder if my leg's any better?" day
11/18/08 - "Woo!  It's starting to scab up!" day
11/19/08 - "Vitamin E lotion+scab=back to day one" day :(
11/20/08 - "Sitting on my hands" day
11/21/08 - "Past stir-crazy" day

11/22/08 - Springfield Weekly Training Session

So my leg hasn't been hurting nonstop in 2-3 days, and I decided to go to the jam and test a few things out.  Mind you, I'm not stupid enough to think "No pain?  I'M PERFECT!" and go off and train 110%, so all I did today was the lead the warmup with everyone else, then work a very little bit on climb-ups and handstands.  My leg didn't hurt any more than the occasional bump, and the wound didn't reopen or anything, so I feel like today was more or less a success.  I feel much better about starting to lift again this week, but I'm going to stick to upper-body stuff until next week.

The plan is to take is easy, and make sure I don't jeopardize my shin any more than it already has been.

Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 22, 2008, 08:55:47 PM
(This is a double post because this is my journal, and damnit I'll do what I please. :P)

P.S. - I feel miserable doing climb-ups/muscle-ups.  I can pull myself up so that my shoulders are level with the surface, and I can press myself up from the bottom of a dip position, but I have no strength in the transition between the two positions.  Will negatives help this?  Is there some lift I can do in the weight room that will target the muscles (posterior deltoid? lats? triceps?) that I need to strengthen for this movement, or do I just need to keep drilling it until I get it?  I feel like I'm wasting my time.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eric Jarvis on November 23, 2008, 03:52:21 PM
Hey Eli what was the point of sitting on your hands. does it help with handstands or something?
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on November 23, 2008, 04:01:41 PM
Will negatives help this? 

Yes

Negatives

GTG if possible

If not, as high volume as you can do without the negative speeding up too fast.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 23, 2008, 06:18:20 PM
Hey Eli what was the point of sitting on your hands. does it help with handstands or something?

lol Nah, I was pretty much feeling mobile again by that day, and going absolutely crazy about not being active.  I told myself that I was going to wait a few days after the pain went away to help make sure that I wasn't jumping in too quickly.

Negatives

GTG if possible

If not, as high volume as you can do without the negative speeding up too fast.

Rad.  What do you mean exactly by "high volume?"  I'm picturing something like "diet" GTG, but that seems wrong.  And what do you mean by the negative speeding up too fast?  Do I need to keep it slow and controlled?
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 24, 2008, 06:41:46 PM
11/23/08 - Rest Day
11/24/08

I had 30 minutes to work out tonight, so I headed to the gym and decided to find out a way to effectively train the Muscle-up.  I've been really frustrated lately with what feels like a wall not only in my muscle-up training, but in my climb-ups and even in my pull-ups.

Warmup
Body Squat - 20x2
Push Up - 15x2
Pull Up - 6x2

Then I did MU negatives for a little while, which just made me feel dumb.  I can jump up into the position without too much of a problem, but when I come down I have absolutely no strength during the transition back down into the pullup position.  I've been reading the article over at Beast Skills (http://www.beastskills.com/MuscleUp.htm), and I just read that negatives aren't very helpful for a beginner, so I guess I won't be doing them again for awhile! ::)

Since I felt worthless doing the negatives, I began looking around the gym for other ways to practice the movement.  I spotted the cable system, and decided to do the MU movement (or as close as I could get on a cable system) from my knees.

Cable MUs
50x5
72.5x5
80x5

After this (considering I had been doing MU work for the entire 30 minutes with almost no rest) I was pretty shot, otherwise I would have shot for another 2 sets at 80.  Since I don't have rings and don't have a way of bringing the bar closer to the ground or getting hold of a box tall enough to do the MU progressions listed in the article above, I feel like this is a pretty good method for working my way up to an MU.  Unfortunately, there are only 2-3 plates left on this cable machine after 80#, and I may have to get a little more creative.  Oh well, parkour is about overcoming obstacles, right?

Cooldown
Stretch - 10 minutes

.::EDIT::.

I got a burst of energy this evening and decided to work on handstands for a little while.  I managed to hold one for at least 5 seconds, but I didn't have a watch to keep track or anything.  I couldn't repeat it (my next best hold was something like 3 seconds MAYBE), but it's something!

Also, I wanted to thank everyone for reading my log so far!  I notice the "time viewed" ticker every time, and it's an honor that so many people are interested in my progress.  Feel free to comment if any of you have anything to say!
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on November 24, 2008, 10:57:52 PM
Didn't realize you were only on the bar -- guess I had a brain fart.

Do the negs on rings, can u get a pair?  Those are FAR more beneficial.

Also, by high volume on negs I mean you do as many until the negs get fast.  A negative should have about 5-10 seconds of time under tension.  If you are shooting through negatives your muscles are not working at all and you are just collapsing.  Using a TUT model allows you to really see that your muscles are working through the full ROM towards your goal.  If oyu can only do one before you speed up quickly, then just do 10 sets of 1 if you must.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 25, 2008, 12:08:19 AM
The only rings I'd be able to get are ones that I would buy, and I'm in the process of saving for a camera.  Goofy priorities, I know.  ::)

I did a quick google search for "TUT model" and all I could find was a lot of stuff about Egypt (:P) and something about 85-100% of your weight max for 3-5 sets of 5-12 reps?  If there's something else then I think I'm missing out.

Since I don't have rings to work with, and since I can't even do ONE controlled negative, I'm definitely going to stick to the cable machine for a little while.  I'll work my way up to doing negatives, but for now I can't really handle them.  I never realized I had such an absence of strength in that one little spot!
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on November 25, 2008, 06:48:45 AM
cable machine will NOT help your muscle up :( 

do weighted pull ups to the sternum, explosive pull up work and dips where your shoulders are as close to your hands as possible.  The muscle up, especially on the bar, has a pretty good explosive component to launch yourself up before you transition, so kipping and clapping pullups willbe useful here.

TUT model is Time Under Tension model (the model I just described by keeping the negatives at around 5-10 seconds)

The TUT model in conventional BB training is to do slow, controlled reps keeping the muscle under tension...and for concentric movements I find it fairly useless.  Use the TUT model on negatives though as it allows you to work through the whole negative...then when you get into concentric movements you do them as fast as possible.

Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 25, 2008, 08:19:52 PM
11/25/08


So I totally understand what Ozzi meant by our "sour down moments."  A friend invited me to do a little parkour this evening around our campus, and I basically felt worthless the whole time.  I'm really anxious to get this giant whole in my leg healed up, and I don't want to do anything to jeopardize or even stress the healing, so I've been pretty light in my training.  My friend doesn't train recklessly, but he does focus a lot on vaults and tic-tacs, and since I'm taking it easy by sticking to less stressful/slower movements like QM, climb-ups and rolling, I felt like I was just tagging along and slowing him down.  On a side note (and I swear I'm not being sexist), is this how girls sometimes feel?  I know that when I've invited girls out to do parkour in the past they've always been pretty timid (even the more athletic ones), and I suspect it has something to do with the fact that guys seem to be interested in pushing the limits of their strength when they do parkour, and girls tend to be weaker than guys.  Have any traceuses out there thought about situations like this, and could offer me a little edification?

Anyway,  I don't prefer to do a parkour workout unless it's pretty solidly in the aerobic realm of exercise, and I wasn't breathing very heavily at all through this whole thing, so I don't really consider it much of a workout.  I practiced balancing on a rail a little, I did some turn vaults, I even did a handful of speed vaults and one or two kongs, but I didn't really push myself through the whole thing.

Wa-wah.  :-\
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: TraceuseDS on November 26, 2008, 09:28:40 AM
11/25/08


So I totally understand what Ozzi meant by our "sour down moments."  A friend invited me to do a little parkour this evening around our campus, and I basically felt worthless the whole time.  I'm really anxious to get this giant whole in my leg healed up, and I don't want to do anything to jeopardize or even stress the healing, so I've been pretty light in my training.  My friend doesn't train recklessly, but he does focus a lot on vaults and tic-tacs, and since I'm taking it easy by sticking to less stressful/slower movements like QM, climb-ups and rolling, I felt like I was just tagging along and slowing him down.  On a side note (and I swear I'm not being sexist), is this how girls sometimes feel?  I know that when I've invited girls out to do parkour in the past they've always been pretty timid (even the more athletic ones), and I suspect it has something to do with the fact that guys seem to be interested in pushing the limits of their strength when they do parkour, and girls tend to be weaker than guys.  Have any traceuses out there thought about situations like this, and could offer me a little edification?

Anyway,  I don't prefer to do a parkour workout unless it's pretty solidly in the aerobic realm of exercise, and I wasn't breathing very heavily at all through this whole thing, so I don't really consider it much of a workout.  I practiced balancing on a rail a little, I did some turn vaults, I even did a handful of speed vaults and one or two kongs, but I didn't really push myself through the whole thing.

Wa-wah.  :-\

Don't worry about taking it easy for a bit. It sounds like you're training smart - you'll just be out even longer if you reinjure yourself, so being careful is a good plan right now. You have the right idea. :) Also...as far as negatives are concerned, Chris is right on with the TUT thing. The slower the better. They probably WILL be pretty fast to begin with (my first pullup negatives were basically controlled falling), but it'll get better.

For your question about traceuses...I don't know how any other women out there feel (I'm sure it varies from person to person), but for me the simple answer is "yes." The guys I train with are great. They're super patient, and they're all really willing to help me out if I ask. Nobody ever intentionally makes me feel bad if I can't do something - quite the opposite. But sometimes new guys can do things on their first night that I've been training to do for months. I've been working at it, and things are *starting* to get better, but there are still plenty of awkward moments when everyone else starts working on something that I know is currently WAY out of my range...and I end up going somewhere else to train balancing or something. :-\ There must be guys out there who feel this way too, though. And I'm pretty sure that with practice I can be just as good as a lot of the guys I practice with. It just might take a little longer. :)

For another perspective, check out this blog: http://heartonsleeve-parkour.blogspot.com/2008/09/you-make-me-feel-like-na-tur-al-women.html
It doesn't specifically answer your question, but there are a lot of ideas in it that'd probably be related.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on November 26, 2008, 12:49:53 PM
Thanks for the insight, and for that link!  It was a great read.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 01, 2008, 09:31:55 PM
11/26/08 - Nothing
11/27/08 - Nothing
11/28/08 - No thing
11/29/08 - Not a thing
11/30/08 - Nothing
12/01/08

Getting back into the swing of things after a holiday weekend.

Warmup

Body Squat - 15x2
Pushup-like movements (including pushups, dive bomber PUs, static holds, pushups favoring one side, etc.) - 1:00x2
Sampson Stretch - 4 each side x2

Workout

Tonight my friend and I analyzed each other's vaulting technique.  We spent about an hour going over the kong and speed vaults and critiqueing each other with our takeoff, our body position in flight, our hand plants, our landing, our overall momentum, and a lot of other things.  We trained on two low walls, one approximately 24in. high, and the other approximately 36in. high.  Both were about 18in. wide.  I feel like we made a lot of progress with our form, which will help focus my training on perfecting that form to increase the distance of all of my vaults, as well as flowing into and out of them.

Cooldown
Stretch - 15:00 minutes

Tomorrow I'm getting back into the weight room.  I plan on reducing all of my target weights by my standard increment (10# for squat/DL, 5# for bench, power clean, and press), but I'll warm up with weight as if I were not moving down in weight.  If I feel good after the warmup, I'll reverse my decision and go for my previous target weights.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on December 01, 2008, 09:44:28 PM
week off probably did u well

keep up the good work eli
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 02, 2008, 06:16:23 PM
12/2/08

Weight: 165

Warmup
Body Squat - 15x3
Push Up - 10x3
Pull Up - 5x3
Sampson Stretch - 2 each side x3

Workout
Squat
(45x5)x2
135x5
185x3
205x2
-------
235x5
235x3 Fail
225x5 (1.36x BW)

Press
(45x5)x2
65x5
75x3
85x2
-------
(95x5)x3

Deadlift
(135x5)x2
185x5
205x3
225x2
-------
285x4  (1.72x BW) Note: This was a little too high.  I'll redo 285 next time I do DL, and we'll set this thing right.

Cooldown
Stretch - 15:00 min.


I hate resetting.  Oh well, time to get back on track!
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on December 02, 2008, 08:49:06 PM
Squat
(45x5)x2
135x5
185x3
205x2
-------
235x5
235x3 Fail
225x5


OUCH a fail on squats.  This was likely the cause for that Deadlift fail too...

Your warmup sets seemed good and it seems like you did everything right.  Might have just been an "off" day or maybe your form just kinda went to crap causing a fail...because you are a bit out of practice.

I will put money down that the next time you squat you will feel stronger than ever in that position....thats usually the case with the second heavy workout after a week off :)
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 02, 2008, 09:03:44 PM
Rad!  I think I might have just lost that much strength in the time off from lifting.  In between now and the 11th (REALLY?!?!  Ugh.) I've had at least seven days of complete lethargy, and over the break my parents kept shoving sugar in my face, which I'm too deferential to reject ALL the time, AND I think I was getting close to being sick these past few days.  Regardless, I'll get back on track soon enough.


By the way!!! I just found out tonight that there's a Price Cutter near my college that sells gallons of organic milk for something like $2.75.  GOMAD just became a much bigger possibility.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on December 02, 2008, 09:29:44 PM
...over the break my parents kept shoving sugar in my face, which I'm too deferential to reject ALL the time, AND I think I was getting close to being sick these past few days.  Regardless, I'll get back on track soon enough.

I found that when I switched to saying "I don't eat that" it worked a lot better in the long term than "No thanks, I don't want any".  Might be a method worth exploring, if you have not already.

By the way!!! I just found out tonight that there's a Price Cutter near my college that sells gallons of organic milk for something like $2.75.  GOMAD just became a much bigger possibility.

Wow -- your organic milk is cheaper than my crazy hormoned milk :P

Go into the gym optimistic next time -- though I doubt u will need to -- you will probably FEEL very strong under the bar.  I look forward to Dec 4 when I can see for sure :P
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 02, 2008, 09:41:20 PM
I found that when I switched to saying "I don't eat that" it worked a lot better in the long term than "No thanks, I don't want any".  Might be a method worth exploring, if you have not already.

I remember saying something like "I've decided to start eating healthy, so I don't want any more gummy bears, thanks," a long time ago, but I don't think my parents got the message.  Sad as it is to say, I don't go home often enough for this to be a really serious problem, so I usually forget about it.


Quote
Wow -- your organic milk is cheaper than my crazy hormoned milk :P

Yeah, I've never actually bought organic milk before.  I saw it at the store last week, and since I've lived exclusively off of college food all semester, seeing the $6.00/gal pricetag didn't set off any alarms.  If I can get it for half that much, then why not?!?!  :D

Quote
I look forward to Dec 4 when I can see for sure
Yeah, you'd better just be ready. :P
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 04, 2008, 04:58:34 PM
Chris, you were right. :)

12/04/08

Weight: 168

Warmup
Body Squat - 15x3
Push Up - 10x3
Pull Up - 5x3 Note: I could get my chest up to the bar just fine on the first set, but I kept inching further away during the other two sets.
Sampson Stretch - 2 each side x3

Workout
Squat
(45x5)x2
135x5
185x3
205x2
-------
(235x5)x3 (1.39x BW)  Note: These felt good.  The very last rep was a struggle, but I'll be ready for 245 on Tues. for sure.

Bench Press
(25s x5)x2
35s x5
45s x3
55s x2
-------
(65s x5)x3  Note: This felt about the same as it did right before I moved up to 70s.  That said, I'll be moving up next time.

Power Clean
(45x5)x2
65x5
75x3
85x2
-------
(95x5)x3  Note: These weren't really physically taxing like most of my other lifts, so I think I'm much stronger than this.  I still plan on progressing by increments of 5-10#, because it will be an opportunity to work my form gradually rather than my weight.

Cooldown
Stretch - 20:00 min.  Note: I was still sore today from Tuesday, so stretching felt particularly gratifying.  Mmmm.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on December 04, 2008, 07:50:35 PM
Chris, you were right. :)

Sick :)

Good job on the squat PR man.  Keep it up....and don't forget to take another week off in 4-6 weeks -- you should be getting real heavy by then.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 06, 2008, 02:21:55 PM
12/05/08 - Nothing, had a busy day

12/06/08 - Springfield Weekly Jam

Today was a great day.  There were six of us at Founders, and we did a lot of good work.

Warmup

Monkey walking (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G5lxtmfp7po)/random QM - 5:00 minutes  Note: My quads really feel it after doing this, but not so much my arms.  I will have to toy around with this technique to see if I can stress my arms a little more.  If not, we'll probably have to integrate push ups, handstands or something next time.

Workout

A new guy Jesse was there today, so we spent a reasonable amount of time looking at his technique, helping him improve, and showing him some new stuff.  I also spent some time on my own practicing stuff I've been wanting to work on.  Throughout the course of the day we worked on:

 - rolling (I rolled on concrete from a crouch, mostly)
 - Kong Vault
 - Speed Vault
 - Wall Run
 - Tic Tac
 - Cat Leap
 - Climb Up

We also played a little game where we started at one end of our concrete paradise, and took turns moving through to the other end as powerfully and gracefully as possible.  As it turns out, running and doing techniques is a lot harder than just drilling technique! :P  This will have to become more of a staple, because it rocked.

In addition to a faster, more powerful climb up, I'd also like to get a smoother, more graceful transition from crouching at the top of a wall into a cat hang from the top of a wall (sort of a "climb down").  I feel about as graceful as a fat kid crawling out of a pool when I try this, and I need to build up grip strength, negative muscle strength, coordination and overall confidence to be able to do this.

Total workout time - 1:20 hours

Cooldown

Stretch - 15:00 min.

A less than an hour after training, I noticed how tired my legs and arms felt, and how good it feels to be pushing myself again. :D


Injury Report

My gash is doing pretty well.  I can see a ring of new skin around it (the wound has shrunken accordingly), but the new skin looks pretty dry.  I think a moisturizer would only slow down the scab's healing work, but if it doesn't get better I'll have to think creatively.

Also, today a silly accident happened.  I was sizing up a cat leap, and wanted to know if I could make the gap.  I measured out the distance on flat ground and did a running jump (it was only about 8 feet so I was pretty needlessly worried), but when I landed my right foot slipped out from underneath me.  It was just normal concrete and my shoes are normally pretty grippy, so I'm not sure what caused it... maybe just a wonky form issue.  Like I said I was on level ground so there was no real danger, but my left leg took all the force of my momentum, and I thought for a minute that I had really pulled some muscles on my shin and maybe my calf as well.  It feels fine as of right now (thanks no doubt to my strength training) and I don't think I pulled it after all, but I'll be keeping an eye on it for a day or so just to make sure.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 06, 2008, 03:02:15 PM
Also, I think I'm going to log my diet for a few days.  Generally I know I avoid really unhealthy foods and I'm really not that concerned with my diet, but I know there's room to improve, and seeing exactly what I eat in a day might help point me in a good direction.


Breakfast: Usually I have access to the Commons on campus, but I ran out of meals this semester, so I'll post both my typical and my current breakfast.
 - Typical
   - When I have time (MAAAYBE once per month):
       - Two serving spoons full of scrambled eggs Note: These may or may not be real eggs.  They taste good enough, but I've heard rumors.
       - 2-3 pieces of bacon Note: I've heard from most places that bacon is bad for you, but I've also heard from a few that it's one of the better things on a breakfast menu.  What's the deal here?
       - One serving spoon full of fruit (mainly strawberries and pineapple, but also cantaloupe and honeydew)
       - One banana
       - Half a serving spoon of hash browns Note: This is inconsistent.  I know they're basically just starch and grease, so I steer clear of them most of the time.
       - One glass of 2% milk Note: I wish the Commons served whole.  Chocolate wouldn't be a better substitute, would it?
       - One glass of "Orange juice beverage"  Note: I hate drinking this, because I'm pretty sure it's 90% HFCS, soo...
       - More often: one glass of water
   - When I don't have time (much more often):
       - One glass of 2% milk
       - One cinnamon roll Note: Yeah... I know
 - Lately
   - Two Blueberry off-brand Nutri-Grain bars Note: Because I'm poor and it's better than starving.
   - Either: one glass of whole milk or one glass of water (depending on whether or not I've recently bought milk)
   - A Centrum mutlivitamin and Vitamin C supplement (833% of my DV!) Note: These were given to me to help speed up the healing of my gash (Vitamins C and E, I think?), but I don't plan on taking them anymore after I run out


Lunch/Dinner:  This varies a little depending on what the Commons has to offer, but generally
 - Typical
    - PB&J on wheat
    - Turkey Sandwhich on wheat/ Carved turkey/ Chicken
    - Half a plate of "fresh" spinach
    - a handful of baby carrots
    - Mashed potatoes (when available)
    - Banana (when available)
    - Apple
    - One glass of 2% milk
    - One glass of water
    - Fried rice (occassionally)
 - Lately
    - One sandwhich of peanut butter, jelly, and peanut butter (three slices)
    - Apple sauce
    - One glass of whole Milk (if I've got it, otherwise) water

VERY Occasional lunch/dinner add-ons/substitutions Note: I know, and I only eat each once in the course of 2 months, approximately.
 - Pasta w/ marinara sauce
 - One grilled cheese sandwhich
 - Serving spoon of tater tots
 - Two oatmeal raisin cookies (with another glass of 2% milk)

I was really picky when I was a kid, so I'm pretty good at getting settled into "eating routines" and I don't mind eating the same thing just about all the time.  This makes it easier to remember what I usually eat, so this list is about 95% accurate.  Like, I said, I know it's not perfect, but I feel like it's pretty good.  I know I can eat better by cutting out more carbs and by eating more protein and vegetables, but the Commons here at school really isn't ideal, and I don't have the kind of money to buy my own food regularly.  What I would really like to incorporate into my diet much more regularly (i.e. what I like to see the commons serve) is:

 - blueberries
 - walnuts
 - decent sandwhich-sliced turkey (the stuff they have now is usually slimy and sketchy)
 - maybe fish?  Every time the commons has had fish it's been completely revolting.
 - More vegetables, but I'm not sure what would be best

I've also toyed around with the idea of protein shakes, but I don't know.  Thoughts or comments about any of this?
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on December 06, 2008, 04:24:03 PM
Did you read my "Eating Right" article?  It might help you get on the right track.

If anything in your dining hall is questionable, ask.  If they don't tell u, assume the worst.  You have the right to know what you are putting into your body.  I used to ask the women at the buffet if these were real or "boxed" eggs and they were usually straight up with me.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 06, 2008, 06:24:44 PM
I'm reading through it now, and I just read Muse's article about eat right on a budget.

At the store tonight I bought more milk, turkey breast, plain yogurt (just tried it for the first time: URK!), bananas, grapes, carrots, spinach (fresh), and more Centrum.  I thought about buying fish oil pills, but I couldn't find them.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: TraceuseDS on December 06, 2008, 06:58:42 PM
plain yogurt (just tried it for the first time: URK!)

Haha, yeah...it tastes gross at first. Try cutting up fruit (the bananas?) and putting it in the yogurt. Or use it like a salad dressing or as a dip for the carrots. Sometimes that helps. ;)
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 06, 2008, 10:41:47 PM
Awesome, thanks!  I had originally planned to buy some strawberries for the yogurt as well, but I didn't.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 09, 2008, 03:12:54 PM
12/07/08 - Rest Day
12/08/08 - Fighting off the plague day

12/09/08

Weight: 170 lbs.

Warmup
Body Squat - 15x3

Push Up - 10x3

Pull Up - 6x3  Note: Same issue today with gradually losing strength.  By my last rep I couldn't hardly even touch the bar with the top of my chest.  I'll just have to keep at it.

Workout
Squat
(45x5)x2
135x5
185x3
205x2
-------
(245x5)x3 PR matched from 11/11 (1.44x BW)  Note: Yes.

Bench Press
(25s x5)x2
35s x5
45x3
55x2
-------
(70s x5)x2
70s x4 Note: Couldn't get that last rep up in the air.  Lookout, next Tuesday, I'm coming for you.

Deadlift
(135x5)x2
205x5
235x3
255x2
-------
300x5 New PR (1.76x BW) Note: When do I turn into a Super Saiyan?  Also, my back felt a little rounded on the last rep (which I DON'T like), sooo...
135x5 Note: With perfect form.

Cooldown
Stretch - 20:00 min.

Injury report:  My shin still feels good, but its still a great big ol' scab that's going to be a great big ol' scar one day.  I did NOT pull any muscles in my shin from my impact on Saturday, which is actually kind of impressive.  It was almost unnoticeably tender on Sunday morning, but it went away by the afternoon.

Also today, as I was standing up from one of my push up sets, I grazed my right knee just a tad on the ground, which tore open a brand new scar from my little mishap way back on 11/5 (about 1/3 down on page 5, if you're curious...).  It wasn't painful at all, but it bled a little bit, so I took a trip to the bathroom between my warmup and workout to dab it up.  All is well.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 11, 2008, 03:21:40 PM
12/10/08 - Focus on homework Day.  I experimented with a few things, but nothing that I would really consider a workout.  I was curious to see how long I could hold a Frog Stand (from these Planche and Front Lever progressions (http://www.dragondoor.com/articler/mode3/229/)), so I tried it.  I didn't time myself, but I held it for around 10 seconds, and I felt like 25-30 sec. would have been my max right now.  I also had my girlfriend take some pictures of me while I was doing it, and noticed that at first I was leaning way forward.  I held the position for 10 seconds AFTER readjusting to be almost perfectly level.

12/11/08

Weight: 168 lbs.

Warmup
Body Squat - 15x2

Push Up - 10x2

Pull Up - 6x2

Sampson Stretch - 2 each side x2

Workout
Squat
(145x5)x2
185x5
205x3  Note: At this time, I noticed a pinch in my lower back.  It wasn't really painful, but it was definitely uncomfortable (probably a 4 on a scale of 1-10), so I decided not to finish the rest of my squat.  (255x5)x3 will have to wait until Tues. :(

Press
(45x5)x2
65x5
75x3
85x2
-------
(105x5)x3 Note: Failed on the last rep.  Would have been a new PR, but I'll get it next week no problem.

P. Clean
(45x5)x2
65x5
85x3
95x2
-------
115x5
115x3 Fail
105x5 Note: This set felt better than the previous set, but I feel like my power clean is just pathetic.  I don't feel like I'm jumping enough, and it doesn't feel like my traps are pulling like they should.  I wish I had a way to record myself.  Also, I think I may have done poorly on this exercise today because (unlike normal) I didn't plan out exactly what weights I would lift before coming to the gym.

Muscle-Up Practice
5 MUs on an assisted pull up machine (standing on the support instead of kneeling).  Note: I saw this recommended at the beginning of this video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HLjvnuhCeVo), and I like it about as much as I thought I would (not very much).

Instead, I moved to the cable machine and did that same thing I did a few weeks ago.  It's similar to the second method in that video, except I'm on my knees and facing the weights.  Also, I use a handle that is about 2.5 feet long, so I can get a wider, more traditional pull-up grip on the bar.  I notice it engages my core a lot.

(40x6)x2
57.5x5
65x3
70x2
-------
(87.5x6)x3  Note: These really feel like they're helping.  My main problem is with building strength in the negative movement, and I have MUCH more control here than if I'm attempting negatives with my whole bodyweight.  Also, I've been mentioning that I can pull up all the way to my sternum when I warm up, and that motion is much easier this week than it was before I tried this cable technique for the first time a few weeks ago.  I'm definitely sticking to this for a little while, then I'll move to doing kipping pull ups on a normal bar.  There's only one more weight that I can move up to on these cables, so it shouldn't be too long before I move up.  Maybe two more weeks of solid training.

Cooldown
Stretch - 15:00 min.

I'm beginning to think about a new workout program once I stop making linear gains on SS.  As of now, my plan looks something like this (comments and criticism are welcome!):

 - Once per week in the gym for a long strength-maintenance session.  I'd like to do all five SS lifts--and I probably will--but I have a little time to decide for certain.
 - Divide the rest of the week up alternating between parkour-specific training and high-intensity bodyweight strength training/ explosive power training.  These days will include planche, handstand, and (hopefully) front lever progressions (with pushing/pulling exercises for each), sprinting and longer, slower distance, plyo stuff (which I don't know much about... I'll have to research), and a much bigger focus on flexibility training.

The way I see it right now, my once weekly strength-maintenance session will serve as an opportunity to A) preserve my lifting strength, and B) see if bodyweight strength training has a noticeable effect on my already established strength records.  Sprinting will build cardio endurance fast, and LSD has always been a goal of mine (I think because that's what everyone does).  Plyo will help increase my explosiveness, which is something I feel is a little lacking with my SS training.  I definitely want to avoid being a lumbering strongman, and I know there are better things out there for targeting explosiveness than JUST the SS lifts.

What are everyone's thoughts?
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 12, 2008, 08:43:15 AM
12/11/08 - Part 2

I was on duty in my dorm last night, which means being required to stay up until 1am. :(  Luckily we can do pretty much whatever we want so long as we don't leave the dorm, so I invited some friends over and we watched the Last Samurai.  I warmed up at around 10:30pm for a few minutes, then stretched until 11:30ish.  I focused a lot on my hamstrings and my groin muscles, but I paid attention to my hip flexors as well.  After this I did some handstand practice.  I'm getting better, but I can only hold one for about 3-4 seconds, and I have to "walk around" a lot to do it.

This morning my traps right by my neck are feeling pretty sore from power clean yesterday.  That's really good news.  I would feel better about it (because my arms aren't sore), but my arms have never gotten sore in my 4ish years of lifting (not even in the past 9 months of dedicated, serious lifting), so I can't really tell how much I used my arms in the lifts.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on December 12, 2008, 09:02:28 AM
Regarding SS:

I suggest you stick with SS and not focus on explosive movements until you either:
1) Exhaust Linear Progression
2) Reach your strength goals

After that, I would focus on either:
1) More explosive lifts, i.e. Cleans and Snatches
2) Focused jump and plyos training, i.e. Box Jump Linear Progressions, Triple Jump, Depth Jumps, etc.
3) Combination of both

Not going to the maximum of Linear Progression kind of defeats the purpose of SS.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 12, 2008, 12:07:45 PM
Thanks!  I guess my wording was wonky, because I meant to say that I was going to continue on SS until I stop progression.  ::)  I don't think that will be for another 2-3 months at least, but I'm just starting to think about a new program now to get some work done ahead of time.

That advice about the explosive lifts is great, and I'll definitely incorporate it into my routine.  The plyos stuff is also good, because I'm still not as knowledgeable as I'd like to be about constructing a solid plyo routine.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 13, 2008, 08:11:22 AM
12/12/08 - Springfield Weekly Training Session

Today I had to train at 8am instead of 11am because of a busy schedule, but train I did.  Holland was the only regular who showed up (understandably... it's freaking early), and there was a new guy Andrew there today (Prancer here on the forums).  We did basically a normal workout, and he kept up pretty well, so he should be a lot of fun to train with!

Warmup
Body Squat - 10x, 15x

Push Up - 10x2

Burpees - 2x2

QM - about 100m worth to give Andrew a feel for the movements.  Split up into two sessions.

Workout
Landing Tutorial/drilling - ~15:00 min.

Rolling tutorial - ~10:00 min.

Cat Leap Tutorial - ~10:00 min.

Intro to Kong - ~15:00 min.

INTRO to Speed Vault - ~5:00 min.

Cooldown
Stretch - ~15:00 min.

All-in-all it was a pretty good session.  I was a little groggy and a little cold at first, but both cleared up without too much of a fuss.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 16, 2008, 07:52:12 PM
12/14/08 - Nothing
12/15/08 - Finals
12/16/08

Weight: 170

Warmup
Body Squat - 15x3
Push Up - 10x3
Pull Up - 6x3  Note: These don't seem to be improving at all.  I'd say today they were maybe even a little worse than usual.
Sampson Stretch - 2 each side x3

Workout
Squat
(45x5)x2
135x5
185x3
215x2
-------
(255x5)x3 New PR (1.5x BW)  Note: These took a little work, but they were a lot easier than I expected.  I think I could have handled 265.

Bench Press
(25s x5)x2
35s x5
45s 3
55s x2
-------
(70s x5)x2 Fail
65s x5  Note:  No idea what was the issue here.  Any ideas?  Could it have been that I haven't done any parkour since Saturday, which conditions my arms a little bit?

Deadlift
(135x5)x2
185x5
225x3
275x2
-------
310x5 New PR (1.82x BW)  Note: about a 15 second pause before the last rep to readjust my grip.  Also, I was a little shaky after racking this for about 5 minutes.

Cooldown
Stretch - 15:00 min.

All in all, today was a pretty good day.  I had to readjust my schedule a little because I have two papers: one due Monday the 15th by 5:00, the other due Wednesday the 17th by 5:00.  Sadly, I got their deadlines switched somehow, and when I got an email from my professor at around 1:30 I had to drop everything and get that late paper out. 

Because of that, I wasn't able to find anyone to bum dinner off of, so my dinner consisted of a few tablespoons of peanut butter, a handful of raisins, a cup of strawberry yogurt with granola, and 2 cups of water.  Far from ideal, but I don't have much left in my room, and wanted something that would keep me energized before the traditional late night breakfast tonight at 10:00.  I have a feeling this is why I was shaky after the deadlift, and possibly also why I failed on the bench.

I have a question: how fast should my reps be, and how much of a pause should I allow between reps?  I know that my reps ought to be completely under control, but should I try to perform them as fast as possible so long as I maintain complete control?  Also, with my squat, I have maybe a 1 second pause between reps, with bench it's pretty much no break in between, and with deadlift I find myself taking as long as 5 seconds between reps.  Should I be working to fix any of this?
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on December 16, 2008, 09:11:25 PM
Reps should be done as quickly and explosively as possible without sacrificing form.  When your motor pathways are solid, speed is not an issue which is why it pays to be rigid on form from the start.

Reps should be done at a decent tempo -- allowing for 1 breath between reps is standard.  2 breaths is acceptable.  3 breaths, you're just psyching yourself out.  If you have to take more then 2 breaths with a deep hold before your rep, you are not in the right frame of mind...you should be there to work!
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 16, 2008, 10:11:56 PM
Awesome, thanks!  For the first two weeks of January I'll be in Hawaii, which I'm so excited about I can't even talk about it, but it also means I'll be away from a gym.  I plan on staying active as much as possible, and probably working on static bodyweight holds to try and maintain my strength as much as possible, but I'm almost positive I'll have to bump my weight down a little bit.  However, I think I might just plan to bump it down anyway, and focus on lifting explosively instead of just lifting heavy weights.  I can't really think of any downsides to that.


In related news, I've noticed that my explosive power has fallen a little bit by the wayside.  My standing broad is pretty consistently about 9" shorter than it was a few months ago when I was at my peak.  There might be a few variables to account for, like wearing different shoes and jumping on carpet vs. concrete, but I don't think those would account for that much of a discrepancy.  This shift in focus in my lifting I think will help address this issue.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Max G on December 17, 2008, 03:15:28 PM
nice job on the deadlift pr eli. are you using a mixed grip? if you are, kudos still, but if not, then double kudos  :)

i wouldn't worry too much about the drop in explosiveness; the new strength you have will mean you'll be a pinball soon enough.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 17, 2008, 06:48:29 PM
Thanks!  I alternate my grip throughout my warmup.  For the first 3 sets I do straight grip, then on the 4th I pronate my right side, then 5th I pronate left, and for my work set I pronate right again.

I would have insanely good grip strength if I could straight grip 310 lbs.  ;D
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on December 17, 2008, 06:52:36 PM
I would have insanely good grip strength if I could straight grip 310 lbs.  ;D

I can :P  and oddly, i am pretty sure my grip strength isn't too hot.

I didn't switch to alternating grip until I had a very hard set or felt like I was near failure.  Past few times, only my work sets were alternating grip because my work sets were like 355/365 for 1.

Kinda just...participating here unsolicited i guess :P
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 17, 2008, 06:58:44 PM
Show off. :P

I hereby make it officially known that Chris Salvato if formally "solicited" in every discussion in my training logs.  His response is entirely his prerogative.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Chris Salvato on December 17, 2008, 07:16:45 PM
lol

i guess my point is that you should do DLs until you can't anymore (or feel like you can't anymore) with the overhand grip.  If you fail on overhand grip you will likely still succeed with an alternating grip...best to just switch when you feel NEAR failure though.  Try to avoid alternating grip as long as possible, imho.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 18, 2008, 03:25:21 PM
12/17/08 - Finals
12/18/08
Today I had to condense my workout so I could make it to two of my friends senior acting presentation.

Weight: 170

Warmup
Body Squat - 15x2
Push Up - 10x2
Pull Up - 6x2
Sampson Stretch - 2 each side x2

Workout
Squat
95x5
205x3
-------
(265x5)x2
265x4 Fail  Note: I couldn't stay focused on squat today.  My 4th rep of this last set was sloppy, and I stopped myself.

Press
45x5
85x3
-------
(110x5)x3  New PR (0.65x BW)

P. Clean
(45x5)x2
65x5
75x3
85x2
-------
(115x5)x3 New PR (0.68x BW)

Cooldown
Stretch - 15:00 min.


What I learned about the power clean today:
 - Legs a little wider than I have been
 - JUMP!  Where have I been?!?

Power Clean felt really, really good today.  I reread the section in SS last night and watched all the videos I could on CrossFit, and then I fell down like an ocean on the Power Clean today.  I mean really, it felt almost perfect.  I'm pretty sure I could have handled 125 today, but I had already planned to make 115 my work sets, and I did.  Serious, wonderful breakthrough today, I think.  ;D
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Max G on December 18, 2008, 05:04:43 PM
I can :P  and oddly, i am pretty sure my grip strength isn't too hot.

damn you chris...now i have to give you a +1 for grip props  :P
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 20, 2008, 11:20:02 AM
12/19/08 - Nothing
12/20/08 - Springfield Weekly Training Session

There were seven people there today, and we had a lot of fun, despite the low temperatures.

Warm up (yeah, right)

Body Squat - 15x3
Push Up - 10x3
Burpees - 2, 2, 3

QM - On two flights of stairs:
 - up forwards
 - down backwards
 - up backwards
 - down forwards

Workout

Since there were some new people today, most of training was spent going over the basics.  As Bruce Lee said "I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times."  Drilling the basics never hurt anyone.

For about an 1:15 hours we drilling landing, rolling, cat leaps, one step wall runs into cat leaps, precisions, kong vaults, speed vaults, and lazy vaults.

For the next 15 minutes, we played tag in our playground (http://www.americanparkour.com/content/view/2453/5/), which rocked my socks off.  We started off playing in only half of the park area, but after 5 minutes we realized that was way too much space, and halved it.  About 5 minutes later we halved it again, because we were all getting pretty tired from constant running.  It's always amazing to me how much successful, genuine parkour is related to endurance training.  You can drill all the moves you want 80,000 times, but it doesn't matter if you can't sustain constant activity for more than a few minutes.

Cooldown

After tag we stretched to cool down, but we sort of hurriedly because the wind was so cold.  I'm still feeling tight, so I'll have to warm up later tonight and finish stretching out.  I would recommend everyone else at the session to do the same.  :)

All-in-all, it was a really, really fun 2 hours.  I'm exhausted and starving, and I love it.  ;D
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Ozzi on December 22, 2008, 02:06:22 PM
Looks like you have been training, I am looking forward to the things I will be learning from you bro.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 22, 2008, 02:13:07 PM
12/21/08 - Travelling home
12/22/08

Pretty crappy day in the gym today.

Weight: 165lbs. Note: I forgot to weigh myself beforehand, so this is my weight after.  I didn't sweat very much and drank a lot of water, so I think it's more or less accurate

Warmup
Body Squat - 15x3
Push Up - 10x3
Pull Up - 6x3
Sampson Stretch - 2 each side x3

Workout
Squat
(45x5)x3
135x5
205x4 Note: Spaced out because I was thinking about how much heavier this seemed than normal, and accidentally did an extra rep.  Turns out, I puts 35# plates on instead of my usual 25# plates, so it WAS heavier than normal.
225x3
-------
265x5
265x4 Fail
245x5 Note: My knees felt a little tender today for some reason.  I think it was because I wasn't visualizing "the chain" pulling my butt up like I usually do, which caused me to push more with my quads and less with my posterior chain.  This could also account for why the sets went so poorly.

Bench Press
(25s x5)x2
35s x5
45s x3
55s x2
-------
70s x4 Fail  Note: What the hell?  Am I actually getting WORSE on the bench?
65s x5
65s x4 Fail

Deadlift
(135x5)x2
205x5
225x3
275x2
-------
305x5  (1.85x BW, new relative PR) Note: Backed off the weight a little today to work on form and energy throughout all the reps, but I'm also glad I did because my other lifts were so poor.  Also, I did straight grip for as long as I could, which was until the first rep of my work set.  After this, I pronated (or is it supinated?) one side for two reps, then the other side for the final two reps.  The bar was really wonky, and felt pretty slick.

Today wasn't a very good day.  I don't know if it was because I was lifting on a different schedule than normal, if it was because I around different equipment, or if I'm getting into high enough weight ranges that I need to take another week off.  Any advice?
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 22, 2008, 02:13:35 PM
Looks like you have been training, I am looking forward to the things I will be learning from you bro.

Oh my God I'm going to shit my pants I'm so excited!  Two weeks!
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 26, 2008, 11:16:26 PM
12/23/08 - Night of drunken (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beer_pong), zombie-slaying (http://www.l4d.com/) ninja (http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=t-shirt%20ninja) revelry with friends.  I have now officially played beer pong.
12/24/08 - Day of mostly sleeping.  I slept too late to make it to the gym, which closed at 2:00pm.
12/25/08 - Merry Christmas!
12/26/08

After three solid days of sloth and revelry, I decided to stop fooling around.  Today after I left Family Christmas Gathering 3 of 4, I noticed that the exposure to lots of questionable food and no real activity for the past days has left me feeling fat and nasty.  That said...

Warmup
Monkey Walking - 5:00 minutes Note: I made a point to try and warm up my arms more this time, since last time it didn't work so well.  I leaned well forward a lot, did a lot of push up movments, etc., and I felt it a lot more.  Also, I did some rolling.

Workout
Handstand Work - 15:00 minutes  Note: I was breathing pretty hard after this, and it felt wonderful!  I only managed to hold a handstand for 4-5 seconds tops, but I'm making slow progress, so that's what's important.

*Rock Band Break*  My little brother was playing, and I wanted to give him some company.  I tried to be as energetic as possible. :P

Handstand Work - 3:00 minutes Note: Just to warm back up a little.

Cooldown
Stretch - 30:00 minutes


Over the course of the next several days I'd like to spend a nice percentage of them practicing parkour-related movement.  I know that at least one (hopefully two) days will be spent lifting, then in a week's time I'll be in Hawaii, ready to work out with Ozzi and the gang!  In the meantime, I want to get back in touch with the reason why I've started this path of physical fitness, and I'm looking forward to it.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on December 30, 2008, 01:29:18 PM
12/27/08 - Nothing
12/28/08 - Nothing
12/29/08 - Nothing
12/30/08

I took it easy today, but it went much better than last Tuesday.  Like I mentioned last time, Wednesday didn't work out.  I had intended to work out yesterday, but time slipped away from me, so I did it today instead.

Weight: 165 Note: I'd like to get this weight to settle somewhere.  Is a 5# fluctuation that big of a deal?  I think I'll set a goal for a consistent 170.

Warmup

For two rounds:
Body Squat - 15
Push up - 10
Pull Up - 6
Sampson Stretch - 2 each side

Workout

Squat
(45x5)x2
135x5
185x3
225x2
-------
(255x5)x3 (1.55x BW) New Relative PR Note: Eh, I guess stronger is stronger.

Bench Press
(25s x5)x2
35s x5
40s x3
50s x2
-------
(65s x5)x3 (0.39x BW)  Note: These relatively easy, but I still don't feel like I could handle the 70s.  Should I be doing lighter warm up sets?

Power Clean
(45x5)x5
65x5
85x3
95x2
-------
125x5
120x5
115x5 Note: I felt like I couldn't explode at 125, but listening to my records rather than my body and bumped it down just 5#.  Tried 120 and felt about the same way, so I bumped it down another 5#, and felt better about the last set.

Cooldown

Nothing yet.  I'm going to have to warm back up and stretch later tonight.

I think this will be the last time I'm able to lift before I go to Hawaii.  The goal is to find time for parkour every day, but my girlfriend is coming with me, and she has to do exercises for track every day, so at the very least I'll work out with her every day.  Add that to the fact that I'm not going to be further than a mile away from a beach for 12 days, and I'm not so much worried about my fitness. Maybe my strength a little, but setbacks can be dealt with. :)
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on January 03, 2009, 11:35:33 PM
12/31/08 -Nothing
1/01/09 - Nothing
1/02/09 - Nothing
1/03/09

Warmup/Workout

Body Squat
15x3

Push Up
10x3

Burpees
5x3

QM - 5:00 minutes, as varied as possible, including as many parts of the body as I could.


It wasn't much, but I've been dying to exercise lately, and just haven't been doing it.  I'm in Hawaii until the 15th, so I'm sure between the beach, hiking, etc. I'll have plenty of exercise.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on January 05, 2009, 05:34:29 PM
1/04/09

Morning: Hike Diamond Head.  The hike itself wasn't too hard, but it was exercise, and what a view!  Definitely a cool place, it reminded me a whole lot of Far Cry.


Afternoon: Training with Hawaii PK.

What a day!  Oh, man was it great!  Big thanks to Ozzi and the rest at Hawaii PK for showing me a great afternoon!

I don't remember everything that we did, but I know that we did upper and lower body conditioning for at least an hour, and it wrecked my shit.  The lower body was mostly plyo stuff and QM, and it made me realize how pathetic my explosive power is.  I'm definitely coming at my training from a new perspective now.

After conditioning we did parkour for about 30 minutes at this one really cool spot with benches, tables, and trees, and I had a blast.  Before long I had to leave to meet up with my school group to see an aquarium, and although it sucked leaving so soon, I still had a great time with everyone.  Mahalo, guys!

Evening: I couldn't catch a bus from UH, so I ended up walking 1.5ish miles back to Waikiki to meet my group for the aquarium.

1/05/09

Morning: Snorkle in Hanauma Bay for about an hour.  It was really touristy, but it was super beautiful and I got some really cool pictures with an underwater disposable.  I was swimming with fish I've only ever seen in an aquarium!  Awesome.

Misc. walking for the rest of the day.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on January 17, 2009, 11:00:15 AM
1/06/09 - 1/05/09 - Hawaii vacation.  Lots of hiking, swimming, etc.

I'm back!  I'm excited to start lifting again on Tuesday, and also to get back into some parkour movements sooner than that.  My gash on my left shin is now just a big scar, which is great, and all other systems are go!
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Holland Wilson on January 17, 2009, 11:01:31 AM
Welcome back.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on January 27, 2009, 04:33:35 PM
So maaaybe I'm a slacker and maaaybe I haven't done any sort of exercise until tonight.  This is my "get back into the swing of things" workout.

Warmup
Body Squat - 15x3
Push Up - 10x3
Pull Up - 6x3
Sampson Stretch - 2 each side x2

Workout
Squat
(45x5)x2
135x5
185x3
205x2
-------
(235x5)x2 Note: I felt like if I pushed myself much harder on this one I was going to hurl, so I decided to stop at 2 sets.

Bench Press
(20s x5)x2
30s x5
40s x3
50s x2
-------
(60s x5)x3 Note: I didn't know how much my bench would have dropped off, so this started out as a test weight.  It ended up being just under my comfortable target weight, so I practiced lifting more explosively.

Deadlift
(135x5)x2
185x5
225x3
245x2
-------
265x5 Note: This was good, but not as much as I could have done.  I'm still glad I didn't do any more, though, because my form went to crap on the last rep.  I felt my back bending a little, and my grip almost faltered as I was lowering it.

Cooldown
Stretch - 15:00 minutes
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: BelatuCadros on January 27, 2009, 05:28:45 PM
Congrats on your triumphant return.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on January 27, 2009, 06:53:31 PM
Thank you, kind sir.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on January 29, 2009, 04:44:54 PM
1/29/09

Wow, have I been sore for the past two days.  It's nice getting back into it!

Warmup
Body Squat - 15x2
Push Up - 10x2
Pull Up - 6x2
Sampson Stretch - 2 each side x2

Workout
Squat
(45x5)2
135x5
185x3
205x2
-------
(235x5)x3  Note: It was easy this time.  New PR, here I come.

Press
(45x5)2
65x5
85x3
95x2
-------
105x3
(95x5)2 Note: Failed the first set, bumped the weight back down and it was a little easier than I wanted.

Power Clean
(45x5)2
65x5
85x3
95x2
-------
(115x5)x3  PR tied Note: This was easy as pie.  I'm starting to like the Power Clean more and more.

Cooldown
Stretch - 15:00 minutes
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on February 03, 2009, 05:25:58 PM
2/3/09

Today I focused on lifting with explosion and power.  I feel like my lifts are always what I would call "slow strength," and I definitely don't want that.

Weight: 168 lbs.

Warmup
Body Squat - 15x2
Push Up - 10x2
Pull Up - 6x2
Sampson Stretch - 2 each side x2

Workout
Squat
(45x5)2
135x5
185x3
205x2
-------
(245x5)3

Bench
(20s x5)x2
35s x5
45s x3
55s x2
-------
(65s x5)3 Note: I was going to go for increments of 10 and finish with 70s, but I could find one of the 30s, so I did this instead.  I feel like it was a good decision, because I really struggled on the very last rep.  I had to squirm and I felt my right lat helping me out, so I think it was actually a failure.

Deadlift
(135x5)2
185x5
225x3
255x2
-------
285x5 Note: I had to hurry because a bunch of athletes needed the rack, and this was by far the fastest I've ever done a work set for deadlift.  It took about 12 seconds, and it felt great.

Cooldown
Stretch - 15:00 minutes

Today was a really good day.  I was focused the whole time, and I was under a little bit of a time constraint, so I managed to get warmed up, worked out, and cooled down in 50 minutes, which is an easy 20-30 minutes faster than my normal workouts.  It was sweet.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on February 05, 2009, 08:22:09 PM
2/5/09

The intention was to work squat-press-power clean today, but I got a call from a friend about 30 minutes before I was going to head out, asking if I wanted to take advantage of the great weather (almost 60!) and do some parkour.  Of course!

For about an hour we just went out and had fun.  It was a much different method than drilling techniques and stuff, and I really liked it.  I warmed up with handstands and rolling, then we did some simple tic tacs, tried to gauge our wall runs with snow that hadn't melted yet, tried QM on the ice (that was fun!), and messed around with some vaults.  About the most structured thing I did was 20 standing broad jumps as far as I could each time.  My abs are already feeling that, which surprised me.

I get the feeling sometimes that people are looking at training the wrong way.  Here in the West we're very goal-driven people, and unless we're doing something with an intention or structure that we can watch results from, then we're not doing something valuable.  I'm definitely guilty of that from time-to-time, but I don't really like it.  Today was a nice breath of fresh air, and I came to realize something: if I don't have a really rigid training structure where I push myself all the time, I won't see results as fast, but I will have fun the whole time.  Considering the idea of "slowly building up your body armor" I think I'm completely okay with that.  I'll be experimenting for the next few weeks, and we'll see how things go.

By the way, I'm not planning on abandoning the strength schedule.  That's still set in stone, but my approach towards parkour will be undergoing some changes, maybe.

Also, about a week ago I tried a handstand and held it for about half a second.  The next day, I held about ten handstands for 4 seconds each, and I'm getting consistently better every day.  I don't know why I changed so drastically so soon, but I did and I like it!
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Charles Moreland on February 06, 2009, 08:42:59 AM
Never forget how to play or have fun Eli! It's perfectly okay to just have one of those days where you go out, explore, and train.

RE: handstands, are your exercises labeled "Presses" over head presses or was that short for bench press? I have a couple clients and friends interested in holding a handstand for a decent period of time and I found that OH presses actually helped them out immensely in learning proper shoulder and spine positioning.

Also, wall supported handstands (belly against the wall) I found extremely beneficial. Walk your hands as close into the wall as you can and you will find that a lot of stress has been placed on your fingers. To keep yourself up you will need to push your body back into the wall with your fingers. This is exactly the feeling you need to hold your handstand 10+ seconds.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on February 06, 2009, 10:21:43 AM
Awesome, thanks for the advice!

Yes, my "presses" are OH Press.  I'm on SS, so I have a healthy respect for that exercise. :)
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Max G on February 06, 2009, 04:24:00 PM
good to see that you found a lighter side of training; it always feels great just to ease up on the drilling and turn it to play.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on February 07, 2009, 09:29:01 PM
2/7/09


Saturday weekly Springfield training session

Today was the first day I had really trained parkour since I left for break mid-December.  The weather was fantastic, and we just chilled out most of the time and had a good two hours.

Warmup
Monkey Walking, Handstands, Rolling, Pushups - 6:00 minutes

Workout
Jog .25 miles
10 Standing broad jumps
Rolls - 10 minutes
Bouldering on a concrete "rock play gym" - 10 minutes Note: Wow, that was fun and hard.
"The Floor is Lava" - 10:00 minutes

Cooldown
Walk - 10 minutes
Stretch - 15 minutes

It was a really fun way, and--like I said--a nice way to break back into training.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on February 21, 2009, 08:36:50 PM
It has been two weeks since my last time training or lifting.  I don't have an excuse, I've just been lazy.  I don't like it.  Let's get back on track.

2/21/09 Saturday Weekly Training Session

Warmup
Body Squat - 15x3
Push Up - 10x3
Burpees - 5x3

Workout

Conditioning  Note: This is going to be a monthly thing for Springfield Parkour, to make sure people are constantly reminded of what they could be doing between Saturdays.
Squat Jumps: 10 Note: This involved holding  squat position for 5 seconds, then jumping up as high/explosively as you could, then immediately getting back into a squat position.
Monkey-slide thing: 10 Note: this is the movement where you begin in a squat position, then take one sort of crab step to the side and settle into another squat position before doing the movement back.  Anyone know what I'm talking about?
Revenge of the Monkey-slide thing: 10 Note: As above, except hold the "outside" leg parallel to the body in the air for three seconds before settling into squat position.
Distance Monkey-slide thing: 2 trips Note: This motion is the same as the first exercise above, except the movement is repeated along a 20 foot line.
High Knees/Mountain Climbers: 10 Note: Each set was 8 high knees followed by an explosive vertical jump, followed by 8 mountain climbers and an explosive vertical jump.

There were 4 new guys there today, so we went over landing and rolling for about 30 minutes.  For the next 30 minutes, I showed them the basics of speed and lazy vaults, cat landings, QM, climb-ups, wall runs, and precisions. 

I'm still tuning my methodology as a teacher and as a student, but I think I like the idea of hitting people hard with a lot of structure at the beginning.  I feel like it shows newcomers that we're serious about what we do, and we're interested in working hard to make parkour as safe and easy as possible.  Learning how to have fun with it isn't a problem, so I feel like we need to teach people how to make it more like work, and let the fun work itself out.  Thoughts?

Cooldown
Stretch - 15:00 minutes


It has been a long time since I've done any decent parkour exercise, and I have missed it.  My hands have gone soft on me, and I'm excited to build callouses up again!

Also, I made a presentation on parkour to my college last week, where I spoke with the Dean of Students, the Assistant Director of Security, and the head of Campus Facilities about the positive aspects of parkour.  Eventually we might try to set up an on campus group, but for right now we're only looking for permission to use campus as a training grounds.  The meeting went well, and although we haven't got an answer yet, I'm optimistic.  I spoke with a Assistant Head of Security a few days later, and he said that not only would he be interested in sponsoring a group should we choose to start one, but he's also interested in coming to train with us!  Really exciting news, because it says to me that we did a good job of showing how parkour is a positive, mature, constructive force in the world. :D
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on February 22, 2009, 12:36:13 AM
Also, I've been continuing to work on my handstands, and they continue to get better.  I have good days and bad days, but generally I'm seeing improvement.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on April 03, 2009, 09:45:19 PM
I lifted yesterday?  For the first time in two months?  My legs hate me for it?

Warmup
squat - 15x3
dips - 10x3  Note: These are harder than push ups, but I like them more and they're more in line with my goal of doing a muscle-up, so there.
pull ups - 5x3 Note: Doing dips may have had an effect on my performance here, but this was harder than it used to be.  Then again, all of it was harder than it used to be.  I guess I got weak? :P
sampson stretch - 2x3

workout

squat
(45x5)x2
135x5
185x3
205x2
-------
(235x5)x2

Bench Press
(25x5)x2
35x5
40x3
50x2
-------
(55x5)x2


Deadlift
(135x5)x2
185x5
225x3
245x2
-------
265x5  Note: My back was letting me know that I should correct my form before getting heavier.  It wasn't immediate "something's wrong now" pain, but it was "if you fix things we're going to have a serious talk" pain.

I ended up doing just two sets of the target weight instead of three.  I want to ease back into this.

I've been doing random handstands all the time, and I can pretty reliably stay inverted for 10 seconds.  I'm not completely still (actually, my body is pretty straight and still, but I walk around a little on my hands to maintain balance), but I'm making improvement all the time.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on April 04, 2009, 11:08:54 AM
4/4/09

Springfield Weekly Jam

Today was a blast.  I haven't been to a weekly jam almost at all for the whole semester because of business, laziness, and the crappy weather, but this was just great.  The whole day was focused on play rather than training, and I think I like that a lot better.  It may take me a long time to make progress, but I think this is the way to go for me.  For the first hour and a half we roamed our little downtown paradise and tried everything from precision jumps and kongs to rolling and cat leaps, then came back to Founder's Park to play tag for 30 minutes or so.  We stretched afterward a headed to a great lunch.

I've been reading and watching videos about methode naturelle in my time off from parkour, and I think I prefer it.  I consider methode naturelle to be a less specialized discipline geared more towards overall preparedness than parkour is, and that's what I want to go for.  I'm reading through "Exuberant Animal" by Frank Forencich right now, and it's a really great book that's got a lot of cool insights in it.  I don't think I'm ready to give up strength training (because I can see the benefits of it), but I'm going to be switching gears a little bit.  I'm no longer concerned with how much weight I can lift, but rather how explosively I can lift it.  I'll still be pushing myself to lift progressively more weight, but the numbers aren't the goal anymore.  I'm also interested in more bodyweight oriented, gymnastics-style exercises like the front lever and planche.  I have a general understanding of how movement, strength training, and gymnastics-style stuff can all benefit each other, so I guess my training won't change radically in any way but how I approach it mentally.  i'm getting tired of quantifying, and I want to play. :)
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on April 14, 2009, 03:51:40 PM
4/14/09

Warmup
Body Squat - 15x2
Dips - 10x2
Pull-ups - 5x2

I feel like my 3 set warmups were really long, so I'm going to try these out for a while.

Workout
Squat
45x5
135x5
205x3 Note: Again, I felt like 5 warmup sets was too long, so I'm trying out three sets to see how they feel
-------
(235x5)3  Note: This felt lightish.  It was a challenge, but my target weight was a little higher, I think.

Bench Press
25sx5
35sx5
45sx3
-------
(55sx5)3

Power Clean
45x5
65x5
95x3
-------
(125x5)3  Note: I did a LOT better than I thought I was going to, since it's been so long since I last did P.Clean.  My form was at about 90%, but my strength and power were just fine.

Cooldown
Stretch - 15 min.

I haven't been really "sedentary" since the 4th, but I haven't done much that's worth logging.  I usually do handstands, rolls, frisbee etc. daily, and most of the time I just get really tired with how slow walking is, so I run a lot of places instead.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on April 16, 2009, 08:18:00 PM
4/15/09

Wednesday I went out with a friend and climbed trees on MSU campus here in town.  It was a lot of fun, and was a light to moderate workout.  Pretty good stuff!

4/16/09

Today I did some light parkour stuff with some friends for 1:30 hours or so.  We were just sort of playing around and having a good time, but it was nice to get parkour back in my bones a little bit.  We did some wall runs, long jumps into a sand pit, various vaults, and I even did a butterfly twist...sort of.  I'm really not that into tricking etc., but ever since I saw Darth Maul in Ep. I I've wanted to be able to do butterfly twists.  I've been able to do a mediocre b.kick for several years now, and I decided that since we were in the sand I could go ahead and try it out.  Long story short, my legs weren't very straight, and I didn't tuck my arms tight enough, but I landed on a foot and one knee, which is better than I would have expected.  Pretty soon they'll be old news!
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on April 18, 2009, 03:57:25 PM
4/18/09

Today was the weekly Springfield Jam, and it was a lot of fun!  Eight guys came out for two hours of precisions, landings, rolling, and vaults.  I brought my camera out, and I've already put up the pictures that turned out on Facebook.  Anyone is welcome to check them out; if you friend me, just send me a message along with it to let me know you're a traceur or traceuse, and all will be well. :)

I feel that for whatever reason (and in spite of all logic), weight training inhibits my ability to do parkour.  When I wasn't lifting for a few months, I felt like I could jump farther, run faster, etc.  Now that I'm lifting again (albeit sparsely), it feels like I'm getting sluggish and heavy.  It might just be in my head, but I'm definitely going to be paying more attention to this for the next few weeks.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Max G on April 19, 2009, 08:18:34 AM
when you say you feel sluggish, how close to your lifting sessions are you jumping/moving around? same day/next day/2 days after?

if you're attempting movement practice relatively close to heavy weights sessions, then it would make sense that you feel heavier and sluggish. If you lay off lifting for a couple days, there won't be any significant drop-off in your strength, and you will be fresh, so you'll definitely be able to do more/go farther in a case like that.

Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on April 19, 2009, 11:25:52 AM
Ideally, I life T-R and do parkour MWF, but it usually ends up where I only lift on one of those days, and I do parkour once or twice per week, but never on the same day.  I hadn't considered that my body might still be tired, but that's a possibility.  Thanks!
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on April 25, 2009, 02:57:43 PM
4/25/09

Saturday Weekly Training Schedule

This week was filled with papers (i.e. no parkour or lifting), so it was nice to run into the weekend all of a sudden.  Today was a pretty awesome time!  We only met for an hour or so, but we got a lot done and had a lot of fun.  We had a new guy there today, so for the first time in probably too long we drilled the basics: landing, rolling, jumping, and vaulting.  Dusty and his brothers also finally had a chance to come out, so it was great to see them again.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on April 27, 2009, 06:35:34 PM
4/27/09

I'm helping a friend get ready for a Lifeguard Certification challenge course in three weeks, so my workouts until then will be largely about swimming.  After that I'll be in the Rockies at Estes Park Center working as a Lifeguard (with nary a rack nor lifting platform for a 30 mile radius), so I'm getting really excited to try out some Methode Naturelle stuff.  I'm sure there will be trees and rocks aplenty out there in nature (that's been my experience elsewhere), so it should be fun to run around like my ancient ancestors: near-naked and exuberant.

Anyway, today was about seeing where my friend is at, so I introduced him to all the different strokes.  He's never done any lap swimming, and it's been about 6 months since he's been in a pool at all, so it will be a long journey.  That said, I think he can pull it together in time to make things happen (and it will be nice to get used to lap swimming again), so I'm looking forward to it.
Title: Re: No limits, only plateaus - Eli's Training Journal
Post by: Eli Kurtz on May 01, 2009, 11:15:56 AM
5/1/09

There had been another paper crunch in my life, and I think all the water from the atlantic ocean is currently falling on Springfield.  No joke, there has been almost constant rain for the past 18 hours or so.  That said, I haven't had much time for training in the past few days.

This video is a huge inspiration. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HvGy7QRZS-I)  I am almost mesmerized by the grace and power he shows off.  When he glides into those QM gallopsWow.

I still practice handstands every day, usually 2-3 separate sessions of 4-5 holds, usually for 4-5 seconds each hold.  I also do QM down my hallway pretty regularly, because let's face it: walking is the most boring thing ever invented.  I also run almost everywhere I go, just because walking is so. damn. slow!

Anyway, yesterday before it started raining I ran a little course as fast as I could.  It was about 200 yards, and was mostly about open running and rounding corners.  I also rolled a few times, did a few vaults, and generally enjoyed myself.  I've found that when I think less about the movements and let my body take over, things seem to be much easier.