Thursday, June 25, 2009

Functional Fitness and Combat Conditioning Workshop: An Overview

I was excited and truly grateful that I was able to attend this workshop. My husband took a half day off work to be with the kids while I headed off to the Israeli Krav Maga Training Center in Hamilton, NJ.

Upon walking into the training center, I saw good sized group of people. I'd say about 40 people, mainly men and I was 1 of about 6 women. The first thing I noticed was the varying ages of the people. It was great to see!

We all started by taking our socks and shoes off and entering the training area. From here Dr. Cheng started talking about the two things that will hold you back in your training: 1. not paying attention to the details, and; 2. being overconfident.

We then started with basic squatting/deadlifting technique. Keeping the feet facing forward and flat on the ground, and pushing the knees outward and hips back while squatting. He had us partner up and had our partners watch our form and give feedback. Were the arches of the feet lifting? Were the knees buckling in during a part of the movement? He also had our partners kneel down and put their hands on the lateral part of the knee and gently push medially while we tried to squat and fight the resistance and push the knees outward. This is known as Reactive Neuromuscular Training or RNT to help reprogram the nervous system to perform the squat effectively.

This by far was the most interesting part of the workshop for me. I recently posed the question on Twitter about what shoes one should wear while lifting and most people responded with either nothing, or something with a little cushioning like Chuck Taylors, or Vibram 5 Fingers. I asked Dr. Cheng the same question, and he agreed with those suggestions. I couldn't believe how the muscles in my feet and ankles were just untrained. It took me a while to be able to keep my feet flat on the ground while performing the squat without weight! Imagine I was adding weight in the form of a barbell and plates while doing this dysfunctional squat!

From there, we learned the swing and Dr. Cheng said I should use a 16kg kettlebell which I thought might be too much but it was fine! Once the form is good, it is much easier. We also learned the deadlift. We learned turkish get ups without kettlebells, also known as naked turkish get ups. Wow! An amazing amount of detail in this exercise. Dr. Cheng said we should not even think about adding a kettlebell until we can do 5 good form turkish get ups on each side. I better get practicing!

The workshop was assisted by a few local RKCs. One of them, George Samuelson, did a short write up on the workshop and you can find it here.

All in all a very interesting and informative workshop. 4 hours went by so quickly! I feel as though I am still taking in and processing all of the information. If you have the chance to take a workshop with Dr. Cheng, you most certainly will not regret it. Keep an open mind and be willing to learn!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Workout and Meals 6/23/09

This morning I got up to do NROL4W Phase 1 workout A. Still at 3 sets of 10 for the exercises and I increased my weights slightly.

Here's my day:

a.m. - workout
1. syntrax nectar protein drink w/brown rice cake
after shower - green drink w/1 tablespoon flax oil, green tea

2. 1 cup strawberry kefir w/scoop of Miracle Reds, serving of Mrs. Mays nut berry crunch

3. 2 egg white, 1 egg omelet w/black bean avocado salsa, a pear

4. raw organic cauliflower, broccoli, sugar snap peas w/3 tablespoons hummus

5. My raw food dinner experiment! From the Thrive book, we had almond flax burgers w/spicy sun dried tomato marinara sauce. I served it with a side salad of spinach, red onion, red pepper, string beans, balsamic vinegar and EVOO. Here's a photo for your viewing pleasure!

I thought the burger was very dense. I couldn't finish it or the salad. I ended up feeling really stuffed. It was tasty but not sure if it agrees with me. My husband liked it though. I would try a different burger recipe from the book.

6. cherries, nut and seed crunch

NROL4W Phase 1 workout A

5 mins bike then some bridges

squats - warm up 45x5, then 3x10 - 55, 65, 65

push up 3x10
seated row 3x10 - 80, 90, 100

step up 3x10 - 12, 15, 15
prone jackknife 3x12

5 mins bike + stretching. Weight portion of the workout was 28:40 + bike and stretching about 40 mins total.

Since I will be going to a kettlebell workshop tomorrow afternoon, I will not be getting up to workout tomorrow morning. Nice!

Looking forward to learning new stuff and meeting some great people!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Workout and Meals 6/22/09

Monday again! That means my favorite 5:45 am spin class! The week has started off right :).

Here's my day:

a.m. - workout - 45 min spin class
1. after shower - green drink w/2 tablespoons hemp protein powder, 1 tablespoon flax oil, organic coffee w/organic 1% milk

2. chobani plain greek yogurt w/handful blueberries, serving of Mrs Mays nut berry crunch

3. 2 egg white, 1 egg omelet w/black bean avocado salsa, a pear

4. raw chocolate almond smoothie - a frozen banana, 1 pitted date, 1 c cold water, 1/2 tablespoon each hemp protein powder, raw cacao nibs, flax meal. Delicious!

5. raw organic broccoli, cauliflower, sugar snap peas w/2 tablespoons hummus, then 3 oz grilled shrimp, 1/4 c quinoa, green beans, green tea

6. cherries, nut and seed crunch bar

I am loving this raw chocolate almond smoothie but I am finding I miss eating my regular raw vegetable and hummus snack so I just added it in with dinner!

Tomorrow I am making a raw food dinner for me and my husband. Stay tuned to see how it comes out!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Workout and Meals 6/21/09

Nothing like DOMS to greet you with a slap in the face first thing in the morning! Wow! Even though I was sore from yesterday's workout, I still felt okay to run some steady state. It was pouring rain this morning (what else is new) so I headed for the gym. Walked for a few minutes to warm up and BAM, the iPod battery is dead! UGH! Cannot run steady state without music. I walked for 3 mins then did 1 min intervals (from 8 to 10 mph) followed by 2 min rests (at 3.5 mph), then walked the last 5 mins. Total of 2.5 miles in 30 mins.

Here was my food intake today:

1. green drink w/ lots of greens, 2 tablespoons hemp protein, 1 tablespoon flax oil

2. chobani plain greek yogurt, handful of blueberries, Mrs. Mays nut berry crunch

3. Father's day celebration! Few baked tortilla chips with black bean avocado salsa. Then about 2 oz filet mignon, 1/2 baked potato w/a little butter, 6 grilled shrimp, green beans. I had a tiny piece of tiramisu cake and then a 1/2 of a cannoli with a chocolate dipped shell. HELLO! Cup of green tea.

4. 6 grilled shrimp, 1/2 baked potato (no butter), green beans

5. cherries, nut and seed crunch

Here's the projected plan for next week:
Sunday - run sprint intervals
Monday - spin
Tuesday - lift (a.m.)
Wednesday - kettlebell workshop (2 - 6 pm)
Thursday - OFF or run
Friday - lift
Saturday - OFF or run
Sunday - lift

I am going to be spinning tomorrow morning bright and early!