Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Tues. Messy Morning

Decided to start out my morning with my KB workout and then go to yoga later in the day. As usual I always "over do" and went to too many vinyasa yoga classes last week and messed up my shoulder. I knew that, but what I didn't know is that I screwed up my elbow too! That became apparent after a couple of combination sets that included cleans. Ow!

I had to abandon my original routines and switch over to something completely different, so again, and still, my workouts are all over the map.

I realized that I have been doing too many 2 hand swings lately (because I felt it right where I messed up my shoulder blade), so I switched over to 1 hand swings. Snatches didn't hurt, so I ended up swinging and snatching the 36.

8:00 KB

Warm up

40 2 hand swings, 1 min. on, 1 min. rest x 4 sets
10 L, 10 R, 10 L, 10 R, 1 hand swings, 1 min. on, 1 min. rest x 2 sets
Total 12 min.

The work set combinations originally included cleans, presses, lateral trans. and snatches. They were 2 min sets, but I had to change it when my elbow started "pinching". But I got in 9 min. time before changing to:

Work sets w/36

10 L, 10 R, 10 L, 10 R 1 hand swings 1 min. on, 1 min. rest

3 trans., 1 snatch x 8 repeats, (4 L, 4 R) 1 min. on 1 min rest

I alternated these 2 sets 5 x each. Total time 20 min.

10 L, 10 R x 2 (20 total reps each side) bottoms up swings, 2 min. on 1 min. rest = 5 min.

Total WO time 46 min.

I decrease my total WO time when I go up in weight. Mentally disappointing WO. Not used to injuries. Just a big reminder to be smarter.

3:30 bikram yoga

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Just a Number.

Weight is just a number. The importance you put on it depends on how you look at it. And if you want to change your weight you have to face it head on. Sometimes that means weighing yourself after years of denial, and sometimes that means weighing yourself everyday to make note of subtle changes.

I was never in denial of the fact that I was fat. I had a pretty good idea of what I weighed and was actually surprised that I didn't weigh more than I did when I finally stepped on a scale! In fact I remember stepping on the scale and when it landed on 245 (I know I had weighed more at one time, I thought it was more like 260) I did a "double take" and asked my friend (the witness for the bet) "Does that say 345?". I was the only one (of the women involved in the bet) that admitted my weight out loud.

Although I, at times, felt ashamed about my weight, I wasn't ashamed of myself. My weight was a reflection of an addiction to food, but it was only part of who I was. And I was, for the most part, pretty proud of myself. I had hobbies I enjoyed and were good at, my kids were fine, I had a successful marraige, and I didn't have to want for anything. At the time I didn't even want to be thin! I wished I was thin but, obviously, I didn't want to be thin.

People are more than just a number. Admitting out loud what you weigh can be a very freeing experience. You take responsibilty. You become more accountable. You admit to the world and yourself that part of you. It's the first step in making change happen. A starting point.

I'm now at a point in my diet that I weigh myself everyday. I know if I weigh more than yesterday I ate too much, and if I weigh less I ate too little. But I still sometimes "trip out" when I see a number I don't like. Just another sign of emotional imbalance, because I know weight is just a number. A number that I already know how to manipulate. So I have to remind myself to use that as a guideline for change, if I choose to change it I can.

This morning I weighed 129.2, yesterday 128.4, and the day before 127.4. My calories were within my limit but the type of food I ate affected my weight more than I wanted to admit. But the scale keeps me on track. I know too many carbs make me hold water, and yesterday I had split pea soup, meatloaf (I make mine with oatmeal instead of breadcrumbs, like my mother does!) and roasted butternut squash.

So I'm writing about this subject today to remind myself to calm down, stay positive, and make the changes I need to. My weight is just a number.

My KB Style

I can't believe it hasn't even been a year since I became certified to teach KB's last April in Minnesota. It was so exciting for me to learn all the mechanics. I had already showed some of my friends how to swing prior to going to the cert., but afterward I had more confidence in my ability to teach.

We all have our own personal style of teaching. I am the first one to admit that I do not have a mind for the scientific side of training, nutrition or the body. Living with, and being married to, someone of Mark's caliber I see the talent of what a true expert personal trainer/coach must have. I read his blog daily, along with other talented KB trainers' blogs, to gain further knowledge of the mechanics of training the body and the personal journeys that go along with that.

I have a more intuitive mind. More of a "common sense" approach, especially when it comes to dieting. And my training also reflects that. Since I'm not a competitive athlete I have the luxury of changing my routines often, mostly every workout! But that doesn't mean that I don't push myself. I am interested in the most "bang for my buck" that's why nothing beats KB training. I have always trained on my own. Mark taught me the movements and all of my routines come from my own head.

When I go into the gym (the garage!), I think of my training in terms of progressions (I got that from Mark, I mean Rif, lol). My mind seems to work mathematically and in patterns. I have an idea of a combination starting point, it's usually a warm up to a more difficult combinations in terms of weight, exercise, and/or repitition. As I add different combinations I feel for level of difficulty. I want to make it as hard as I can, progressively, to maximize my effort.

Sometimes I put together up to 4 combinations and alternate them and sometimes as little as 2, alternated. Sometimes I don't alternate them and I'll do all of the same combination sets in a row before switching to another combination.

Some of my most difficult sets are what I consider "boredom" sets! These are sets of the same movement, no combination, in a row, rep after rep after rep. This is when I challenge my mind get tough and "just do it".

My style of KB training has worked unbelievalbly well for me, both physically and mentally. And now I can see that with a "little tweeking here and a little tweeking there" I can continue to change and evolve my training goals. I can get stronger, leaner, better.

Just like my training, I never really know what I'm going to write about on this blog until I start writing. Sara Cheatham wrote some awesome technical posts on her blog about the mechanical details of KB training (Thank you Sara!). Her style, my style, and a kettlebell, take what you need.

Life is good!

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Lateral swing,snatch trans.combos

My training has been all over the map lately. I still don't have a set schedule, things seem to be constantly changing. Luckily for me I'm not a competitve athlete, I'm not training for a specific goal. There are many reasons my training can handle, and in fact thrives on, variety. My training priorities are;

muscle tone
fat loss
overall fitness

My style of kettlebell training makes these goals almost effortless and , I hate to say it , fun. The most fun part comes after the training. Seeing my hard work pay off.

This latest video shows a portion of all 4 combo sets. The audio is delayed slightly behind the video, but I hope it's still helpful.

8:15 KB

Warm up sets w/26

40 2 hand swings, 1 min on 1 min. rest x 5 sets = 10 min. total

5 TGU's each side w/5lb. DB (just praticing the movement)

5 windmills each side w/5lb. DB (just practicing the movement)

Work sets

1 swing L, 1 lateral trans., 1 swing R, 1 lateral trans., x 30 reps = 1.5 min.

1 snatch L, trans., 1 snatch R, 2 lateral trans. repeat 10x = 1.5 min

1 snatch L, lateral trans. 1 snatch R, lateral trans., 12 each side = 1.5 min

1 snatch L, 1 lateral swing x 8 each, 1 snatch R, 1 lateral swing x 8 each = 1.0 min

I alternated these 4 sets in this order 5 x. All 4 sets took 9.5 min x 5 = 47.5 min.

I then taped the video set 1.5 min which shows all 4 combos combined.

Total WO time 59 min.

3:30 Bikram yoga

lateral swing,snatch combos

Evolution of a Cheat Day

I originally started my diet with a "cheat day". Usually on Saturday because that was the day that Mark and I had reserved for each other and I didn't want to drag him down by my restricted diet. My cheat day has also been called my "pig out day" and now I'm ready to change it to my "high calorie day".

In the begining I would not eat much, coffee w/cream of course and maybe an apple, until around 4:00pm. Then all hell was allowed to break loose. Usually including a whole pint of ice cream. I always ended my eating spree by 6pm, and followed it the next day with a semi-fast.

During the summer one of my hobbies is shopping at yard sales on Sat. mornings. I found myself being tempted by the cookies, brownies and rice krispy treats young children would make and sell, and of course I wanted to support them by buying their goodies. So my eating started earlier in the day around 10:00am. I would go crazy on all of these types of goodies and then go into my 1:00 KB workout wired and swing my ass off! That started my addiction to sugar before my WO's. I would then continue to eat what I wanted until around 3:00 and nothing afterward. Also following up the next day with a semi-fast.

I am convinced that allowing my calories to shoot up one day and then dropping them really low helped to keep my weight from plateauing. It also gave me relief from strict dieting, I needed that emotionally.

During the last year I did experiment with skipping cheat days completely and that could be responsible for a 1 or 2 pound weight loss, but I concluded that it was not an advantage.

I also experienced very unsatifying cheat days by surrendering complete control and not planning and really giving thought to what I wanted to treat myself to. I still considered "pigging out" as a treat.

Now here I am. Feeling really crappy about my cheat days. Giving careful thought to what I want to eat and then eating it, but not satisfied. My cheat day is leaving me feeling bad. I can really feel the damage of the high calorie, sugary foods I've been "treating" myself to both physically and emotionally.

Last week it wrecked my KB workout, and yesterday I felt so crappy I actually postponed my KB workout until this morning (Sun.). That's when I finally had it. Missed my KB's because I ate too much of the wrong crap? No more.

So I've decided instead of defining that one day a week as "cheating" or "pigging out" I will define it as simply a "high calorie" day. A day when I continue to eat good quality food, but will allow myself more of it. Take advantage of eating more nuts and PNB, beans and maybe some bread. It has to always include ice cream, but I want to focus more on not eating the whole stinkin' container!

I ended my last Evolution of a Diet post with writing about feeling the need to eat better. The changes of my cheat day have finally evolved into a need to not pig out, a need not to chose to be out of control and a need not to feel bad and guilty. The consequences cost me too much. And all of these have other emotional parallels in my life. Choosing control. Needing control.

Sunday menu, low calorie day
AM weight 127.4

5:30-11:30 coffee w/cream, cocoa 215
1:30 oatmeal w/1/4c. lowfat milk 245, 1/2 small apple 50 cal.
5:00 lg pear 150 cal., lg apple 150 cal.
6:00 veg soup w/beet greens and 4oz. buffalo burger 300 cal. 1/2c. mashed potatoes 120 cal.

Total calories 1230 (not as low as I would of liked, I didn't keep a running total!)

Saturday menu, cheat day
AM weight 126.6

coffee w/cream, cocoa135 cal.
apple 100 cal.
prunes (4) 80 cal.
cookies 1800 cal.
cabbage salad w/pork, beans low cal bar-b-que dressing 500 cal.
ice cream 350 cal.
more cookies 300 cal.

Total calories around 3200

Friday menu
AM weight 127.4

5:00-9:00 coffee w/cream 85 cal.
11:00 oatmeal w/milk and sugar 295 cal.
12:00 coffee w/cocoa 120 cal.
12:30 prunes (5), triscut (4) 160 cal.
3:30 cabbage salad w/4oz. pork, 1/4 white beans, pineapple and low cal bar-b-que dressing 400 cal.
5:30 veg soup w/kale and 4oz. chicken 350 cal.

Total calories 1410

Thursday menu
AM weight 126.6

coffee w/cream, cocoa 115 cal.
triscut (4), prunes (5) PNB 1 1/2 T. 240 cal.
oatmeal/milk 250 cal.
small apple 100 cal.
2 ginger candies 40 cal.
broccoli salad w/tuna and cranberries 300 cal.
veg soup w/butternut squash and 6 oz. chicken 450 cal.

Total calories 1495

Starting this next week I'll be recording my whole week's food journal at one time, probably on Sunday. I do keep a daily hard copy but it'll be easier for me to make adjustments seeing it all at once, a week at a time.

This was a good week, life is good.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

A New Respect

I still hate my new yoga! I hate it because I'm not good at it. I have a brand new respect for the strength and balance that goes into those poses. When I'm trying to get into some of the poses I can feel my whole mid-section tremble, trying to find the strength to balance. But I'm determined to keep it up. I'm determined to conquer this new challenge, because I know I need the benefits it can give me.

I'm so reminded of when I started my KB workouts. I hated them too. It was hard and uncomfortable. But thank goodness I stuck with it. I wouldn't even be doing yoga right now if I had not gotten in such great shape using KBs.

So I've decided to use KBs to help me get stronger for yoga. I've not been doing any windmills or TGU's so I'll be adding those exercises at least one day a week.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Heavy 2Hand Swings, Hi / Lo

1:00 KB

Warm up

40 2 hand swings w/26 1 min. on, 1 min. rest x 3 sets
40 2 hand swings w/36 1 min. on, 1 min. rest x 2 sets
5 sets total = 10 min.

Work sets

#1 (see video)
24 two hand swings, 1 high, 1 low w/36, 24 two hand swings, 1 high, 1 low w/44
1.5 min., on 1 min. rest

40 trans. w/36 1 min. on , 1 min. rest

20 one swing, one trans. L, R, (40 reps) 1 min. on 1 min. rest

I alternated these 3 combos 6 x. All three sets = 6.5 min. x 6 = 39 min.

I repeated combos #2 & #3 two more times each = 8 min.

Total WO time 57 min.

Evolution af a Diet (part 3, cont. from 1/15)

Diets don't work. Don't be stupid, of course they do! What doesn't work is the ability to stay on them. That's why it's so important to find out what works for you. Identify your problem. Pull yourself out of denial. Keep an honest food journal and accept that you're in it for the long haul.

I am a true believer in calorie counting. Every diet trend that comes along ultimately suggests lower calories. It's the type of calories that can be different for different people. I know that too many carbs make me hold water and make me feel bloated. I also know that too little carbs cause me to crave sugar and feel weak. I know that raw vegetables work better than cooked vegetables at keeping me "regular". And NO vegetables will plug me up. I know I have to vary my total calorie count to keep myself off of a plateau. And eating the same basic meals day after day makes it easy to prepare food in advance and takes away having to make yet another choice about food. Also when I "screw up" I can have some mental releif knowing that I just have to be honest and count those crappy calories along with the good ones, and as long as the math works out I can recover. And these discoveries have evolved during the last 2 years.

My problem is overeating. Not any particular foods just food in general! For some it's sodas, wine/alcohol, fast food, eating out, bread etc.. Some things you can work around by simply cutting back on. Sometimes you have to go "cold turkey" and just remove them from your life! For instance, I have to have cream in my coffee every morning, real cream! I started out with 2 tbls. in each cup of coffee in the beginning and I have weaned myself down to 2 teas. over the last 2 years. I could now drink it black if I had to. Now fast food, on the other hand, I knew was shit and I had to remove it from my life (cold turkey!). Know what you can and are willing to change.

Unless you have an incredible memory and/or you are highly motivated, keeping a food journal helps you look at all of the details. If you think you're ready, if you think you're motivated to finally do something about your weight and you're not willing to at least try keeping an honest food journal, question your commitment.

You can never, never, go back to eating the same way you are eating now, if you're currently unhappy with you body weight or body composition. You will know you are successful when you don't want to go back to eating the way you're eating now. You have to find heathly, nutritious foods that you love. If you eat healthily and nutritiously your diet will evolve from a weight loss diet to a diet for life.

A friend asked me the other day if it ever gets any easier, if you do it right it absolutely gets easier. Eating heathly, nutritious foods will no longer be a choice but evolve into need. You'll need to feel good, you'll need to feel stong and lean, you'll need to feel in control, you'll need to make the right choices about food. To be continued...


6:30 vinyasa yoga
AM weight 128 2

Wed. menu

4-9:00 coffee w/cream 85 cal.
11:00 coffee w/ cocoa 120 cal.
12:00 apple and dates 165 cal.
1:30 yogurt shake w/blueberries, strawberries and fiber 375 cal.
4:00 2 prunes 40 cal.
6:15 veg soup w/butternut squash and 4 oz. chicken 400 cal.

Total calories 1185

I think I've eaten more chicken in the last 6 months than I have the last 6 years! Since I try and cook things in advance it's been extremely easy for me to cook extra chicken when I cook the chicken stock for my soup. And since I always need bones for stock I buy alot of chicken. I make about 6 quarts of chicken stock every 10 days or so.

Tues. Train and Eat

6:30 Bikram Yoga
11:00 KB Clean Press

Warm up

40 2 hand swings w/26 1 min. on, 1 min. rest x 3 sets
40 2 hand swings w/36 1 min. on, 1 min. rest x 2 sets
Total 10 min.

Work sets

1 two hand swing, 1 two hand high swing w/36 1 min. on, 1 min rest ( 30 reps, 15/15)

6 clean press L, trans., 6 clean press R, trans., 6 clean press L, trans., 6 clean press R
2 min. on, 1 min. rest

I alternated these two combos x 4 sets. Both combos took 5 min. including rest x 4 sets = 20 min.

30 trans. (60 reps) w/36, 1.5 min on, 1 min. rest

Repeat #2
6 clean press L, trans., 6 clean press R, trans., 6 clean press L, trans., 6 clean press R
2 min. on, 1 min. rest

I alternated combos #3 & #2 x 4 sets. = 24 min.

10L, 10 R, 10 L, 10 R, bottoms up swings, 2 min on 1 min. rest x 2 sets = 5 min.

Total work out time 59 min.

Tues menu
AM weight 128.2

coffee w/cream 85 cal., cocoa 130 cal.
oatmeal w/1/2 & 1/2 290 cal.
5 almonds 50 cal.
prunes, PNB, triscut 300 cal.
broccoli salad w/tuna and grapes 390 cal.
veg soup w/onion, carrot, parsnip, celery root, kale and 4oz chicken 350 cal.

Total calories 1595

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Check it out!

I never know where I'm going to end up these days. I guess I better start dressing up for my videos!

Monday, January 22, 2007

Video for Swing, Clean, Squat

Quick Swing, Squat, 1 min. Combo

Today is not a regular KB workout day, but I needed to do something! Since I haven't done any squats in eons (I hope I'm not sore tomorrow) I decided to go into the gym and after working my pull up I did some quick 1 min. sets. Here's what I did;

11:30 KB

Warm up

40 2 hand swings w/26 1 min on 1 min rest x 3 sets = 6 min.

Work sets

40 2 hand swings w/36 1 min. on 1 min. rest

#2 (see video)
1 two hand swing, 1 two hand clean, squat w/36, 10 reps each 1 min. on 1 min rest

I alternated sets #1 & #2 in this order 5 x ending with 1 additional set of #1 for a total of 11 sets
= 22 min. total

1 two hand swing, 1 two hand clean x 15 reps each, 1 min. on 1 min. rest x 3 sets = 6 min.

Total workout 34 min.

6:30 vinyasa yoga (1 hour)
Pm walk 45 min.
AM weight 126.2

I'm having a love/hate relationship with this new style of yoga. But I know it'll greatly improve the flexibility of the back of my legs, exactly where I need it! My weight should be up tomorrow I was really hungry today and ate alot. I keep wanting to cut back on my carbs only to eventually pay the price. But I should be nice and strong for tomorrows press WO.

Monday menu

2:00am (yes a.m. I couldn't sleep!) prunes and PNB 380 cal.
4:30-8:30 coffee w/cream 110 cal.
10:45 lamb tenderloin 160 cal.
11:00 oatmeal w/milk and sugar 220 cal.
1:00 2 apples 250 cal.
1:45-2:30 variety of salads 500 cal.
4:45 veg soup w/butternut squash and 3.5oz. chicken 300 cal.

Total calories 1920

I went to a friends house today to show her how to make a few different salads. The salads had a ton of veggies of course, but some other ingredients were pork, tuna, white beans, pineapple, grapes and dates.

Today was a good day, life is good.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

One is Harder than None

As I've mentioned before I have an "all or nothing" personality. Bingeing is the "all" part, starving is the "nothing" part. That's one reason why I can have a semi-fasting day after a high-calorie day. But I'm growing tired of the extremes. And extremes can get dangerous.

I used to have feelings of panic around hunger, or what I perceived as hunger. For instance, I never left the house without "my food". I didn't trust myself to be able to stay calm enough to resist the temptation of junk food if hunger hit before I could get to better choices. Once I got through the holidays and had my share of feeling out of control when it came to food two things happened almost similtaneously;

I read Tom Furman's post "Don't be a sissy" where he mentions that "skipping a meal won't kill you". For some reason a light bulb went off in my head and it made sense to me. It provided a feeling of relief. I left my house the next day for a walk without any of "my food" with me. Now I feel as if I can leave without that secruity because I finally feel in control. Control of making the right choices whether it's waiting until I can get to my own food or not panicking before I can get to a store for an apple or some prunes etc..

I also had a conversation with Mark about overeating around the same time. He explained to me the reason why he doesn't overeat. He doesn't like the feeling of being stuffed with food. He likes feeling lean. Because he's been an athlete most of his life, when he feels stuffed he can't train. He told me he likes feeling as if he could go out and train at any moment. That feeling of leaness kept him ready. I was able to relate to what he was telling me and agreed. I also liked feeling lean, but until then didn't make a connection.

So with my new found motivation to feel calm and lean, I found it easier to not eat. I was able to stay on my weekly diet without cheating. It almost became challenging to see how little I could eat. How strong was my control. But control is about more than being able to take it to extremes. Control is also about being to stay in the middle as well.

My post about the chocolate cupcake the other day only told part of the story. I don't need to get into all of the ugly details, but I actually ate 2 cupcake tops (the part with the frosting) and threw away the bottoms. But the point is that once I decided to let myself eat one, I felt out of control and ate two! Why couldn't I only eat one? The decision to only eat one is way harder than eating none.

So this is my new challenge. The balance of control. I know it will be as hard as I decide to make it. Let's see how it goes!

Saturday High Calorie Day

5-8:00am coffee w/cream, cocoa 135 cal.
11:30 oatmeal w/1/2c. vanilla ice cream! (try it, it's yummy!) 440 cal.
2:00 - 3:00
grapes 60 cal.
veg soup w/ butternut squash and chicken (4oz.) 350 cal.
2 pieces cornbread 400 cal.
3/4 pint pumkin icecream w/toasted coconut 690 + 150 cal.

Total calories 2225

Sunday Low Calorie Day
AM weight 128.0

5-9:30 coffee w/cream 110 cal.
10:30 apple 120 cal.
11:30 coffee w/peppermint cocoa 80 cal.
2:30 veg soup w/butternut squasn and 6oz chicken 425 cal.
3:30 melon, grapes 150 cal.
3:30 a couple of bites of chicken pie (at sister's house) 100 cal.
6:00 tea w/ honey 25 cal.

Total calories 1110

Life is good, I had a great weekend!

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Sat. 5 min Snatch Test

I did a quick warm up before attempting for the first time a 5 minute snatch test.

12:30 KB

Warm up

40 2 hand swings w/26 1 min, on 1 min. rest x 2 sets
40 combinations of 1 hand swings trans. and snatches 1 min on 1 min. rest x 2 sets
Total warm up 8 min.

5 Minutes of snatches 140 reps w/10 trans.
Roughly 15 snatches every 30-40 secs. the last 40 secs 10 each side.
( see video )

Work sets

#1 w/26
1 swing , 1 snatch, 1 trans. 6 L, 6 R 1 min. on 1 min. rest

#2 w/36
10 2 hand swings, 20 trans., 10 2 hand swings 1 min. on 1 min. rest

#3 w/26
12 snatch L, 1 trans., 12 snatch R 1 min. on 1 min, rest

#4 w/36
10 2 hand swings, 10 trans., 10 2 hand swings, 10 trans. 1min. on 1 min. rest

I did these 4 sets in this order for 6 sets each. All four combinations took 8 min. x 6 sets = 48 min.

Total workout 62 min.

The work sets in this workout were fairly easy. In fact the 1 min. rest inbetween sets was probably 15 secs. too long. But after yesterdays 4.5 min sets and the 5 minutes of snatching I just wanted to put my time in, that's why I kept a slower pace but for longer than I normally would.

8:45 Bikram yoga (the new studio still doesn't have the heat right)
AM weight 126.4

Five Minute snatch test

this is a minute and half segment of Tracy's first shot at the Secret Service five minute snatch test with the 12kg.She got 140 reps.

Walk Away from the Chocolate Cupcake

Friday I was determined to get my regular life back, so I went to 6:30 yoga, 9:00 KB, prepared my food for the day, and went to work. I had a lunch break between clients at 2:45 and decided to eat my salad. I accidently dropped my salad while taking the lid off of the container and spilled about 75% of it on the floor! Bummer! Even though my salads are huge I knew it wasn't going to be enough to hold me until my dinner break. So I went to heat up my soup and when I went into the kitchen at work to use the microwave, I walked head on into a potluck! Free food!

I guess it could of been my lucky day since I had just dropped my lunch on the floor! Most of the food didn't even tempt me. But there was this tray of muffin size frosted chocolate cupcakes. Cake I can resist, but frosting! Now that was challenging. So as I sat waiting for my soup to heat up the mental debate started in my head.

I thought to myself, "if you can walk away from the chocolate cupcake, you can walk away from anything!" To make a long story short I ate the cupcake! After all I justified it by asking myself "how skinny do you need to be?" What does all of this mean? It doesn't matter. Just my thoughts!

AM weight 125.6

Friday menu

coffee w/ cream, cocoa 205 cal.
oatmeal w/milk and sugar 290
really small broccoli salad 100 cal.
veg soup w/ butternut squash and chicken 260
misc. potluck 100 cal.
huge chocolate frosted cupcake 400 cal.

Total calories 1355

Friday, January 19, 2007

The Shortest, Longest Workout

9:00 KB Swings w/26

Warm up

40 2 hand swings 1 min. on 1 min. rest x 3 sets = 6 min.

Work sets, Swing Ladder w/ 26, one hand swings

1 swing, 1 trans. L, 1 swing, 1 trans. R
2 swing, 1 trans. L, 2 swing, 1 trans. R
3 swing, 1 trans. L, 3 swing, 1 trans. R
4 swing, 1 trans. L, 4 swing, 1 trans. R
5 swing, 1 trans. L, 5 swing, 1 trans. R
6 swing, 1 trans. L, 6 swing, 1 trans. R
7 " " " 7 " " "
8 " " " 8 " " "
9 " " " 9 " " "
10 " " " 10 " " "
11 " " " 11 " " "
12 " " " 12 " " "

This set took my 4.5 min w/2 min. rest x 5 sets = 32.5 min.

I think it adds up to 900 swings not including the warm up.

Warrior Diet Style

Yesterday was brutal! I had many things going on that kept me away from home. I didn't get any workouts in, not even a quick walk. Food wasn't a problem because that's always a priority. But something interesting happened. Because I was away from home I had small snacks with me throughout the day, prunes of course, fruit, nuts, lots of water. I didn't really eat until 6:00 when I got home. At that point I ate quite a bit, not huge but it wasn't until I added up my calories for the day that I realized I was at almost 1800! Almonds add up quick!

But when I woke up this morning I felt thin. I got on the scale and was almost 2 pounds down from yesterday. I realized that my eating yesterday was more of a Warrior Diet style, a semi-fast and then eating most of my calories at 6:00. Although I'm not ready to go back to that style of eating an a regular basis, I'm thinking that it might be worth practicing once a week. After all I'm not interested in losing any more weight at this point.

Anyway, I'm going through exercise withdrawl and have to hit the ground running today! I have to go to yoga, I have to get in a good swing workout, I have to get my food prepared and spend the majority of the day at work.

P.S. most of yesterday afternoon was spent in Santa Cruz at Samuel O'Reilly's Tattoo Parlour, check out Mark's blog. He now has one bad-ass KB tatoo celebrating his promotion to Sr. RKC.

Thurs AM weight 127.4
No exercise

Thurs. menu

coffee w/cream, cocoa 185 cal.
oatmeal w/milk and sugar 275 cal.
prunes/PNB 190 cal.
lg apple 125 cal.
grapes 60 cal.
cabbage salad w/6oz. pork 500 cal.
crimson raisins and almond 150 cal./300 cal.

Total calories 1785

I recently started eating my oatmeal with milk and plain white sugar (2 teas.). Because I took my oatmeal to work one day and all they had at work was white sugar (for coffee) so I used some and the flavor took me right back to my childhood! Remembering being a kid, it was a comforting feeling! So I like it, I'll keep it that way for a while.

Thurs. was a busy, but good day. Life is good.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Prunes (natures candy)

Prunes get a bad rap. I don't know why exactly, after all they're just dried plums. They're plump, juicy and chewy bites of nutritious goodness! A few months ago I topped a prune with peanut butter and stumbled on currently my favorite snack.

In fact I compare it to a Reese's PNB cup! If you think about how long it takes to eat a package of Reese's (2 pnb cups), it takes seconds! Before you know it, it's over and did you really enjoy those 250 calories? Most of the time it would only leave me wanting more (why do you think the make king size pkgs.?)

But one plump, juicy prune topped with 1/2 teaspoon af PNB and a sprinkle of kosher salt lasts about minute in your mouth and is more satisfying (to me). I've recently forced these yummy treats on friends and co-workers that first turned up their scrunched noses, but those scrunched up noses quickly turned to smiles and surprised responses like, "omg I would of never thought this would be so good!".

1 prune (20-30 cal.)
1/2 teas. natural PNB (20-25 cal. I use fresh ground from Whole Foods)
sprinkle of kosher salt

Use the prune to scoop the PNB out of the measuring spoon, sprinkle w/salt and top with an almond (10 cal.) or place on a triscut cracker (20 cal.) or you can even dip 1/2 way into some melted dark chocolate and make you own version of candy. You can eat 5 pieces for the same amount of calories of 2 Reese's cups (250 cal.)!

Tues AM weight 127.2


coffee w/cream, cocoa 205 cal.
oatmeal w/lowfat milk and sugar 285 cal.
prunes, PNB, triscut 320 cal. (6 pieces)
apple 120 cal.
red grapes 60 cal/
veg soup w/chicken and butternut squash puree 350 cal.
prune PNB, triscut 200 cal. (3 pieces)

Total cal. 1540

Wed. AM weight 127.4


4-7am coffee w/cream 85 cal.
11:00 prune, PNB, almond, 2 peices 100 cal.
11:30 coffee w/cocoa 100 cal.
1:00 cabbage salad w/chutney dressing and chinese pork 500 cal.
3:00 prune, PNB, almond 2 pieces 100 cal.
5:30 veg soup w/chicken 250 cal. roasted butternut squash 250 cal.
8:30 small piece of chinese pork tenderloin 60 cal.
Misc. 60 cal.

Total calories 1505

I weighed the veggies in my salad today (Wed.) and they weighed just under 1 lb. (15.5oz). 5.5oz. green cabbage, 3.5oz. red cabbage 3oz carrot, green onion, jalapeno, cilantro 3.5oz.

Chinese pork marinade

1/2 c. soy sauce
1/2 c. oil (veg. or olive)
1-2 cloves garlic, crushes
1 tbl. sweet/hot mustard
1t. honey (or sugar)
1t. chinese five spice powder

All measurements are approx., I just usually throw them all in a ziploc bag and add 2 pork tenderloins, marinate overnight.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Kettlebell Fun Set #2

Kettlebell Fun

Tuesday workouts

6:30 Bikram yoga (again with little heat and no humidity)

10:00 KB clean, press, snatch combos

Warm up
40 2 hand swings 1 min. on 1 min. rest x 5 sets = 10 min.

I hope to have video of one of these sets, they're kind of complicated to write down. In the video I will call out the combos while doing them. Alot of times I do this (call out loud) in my workouts when I do new combos to help myself remember the order.

Work sets

clean, press, trans. L, clean, press, trans. R, snatch, neg press, trans. L, snatch, neg press, trans. R, snatch, trans L, snatch trans. R, repeat 4 x = 2 min. on 1 min. rest

clean press, snatch, neg press, snatch, trans L, then repeat on R, x 4 = 1.5 min. on 1 min. rest

clean press, snatch, neg press, snatch, repeat 3x on L, then trans. R x 3 = 1 min. on 1 min. rest

I alternated these 3 sets in order 6 times. All three sets took 7.5 min x 6 = 45 min. total

I finished up with 2 sets of bottoms up swings 10 L/10 R, 10 L/ 10 R = 5 min.

Total workout 60 min.

I started with 4 moves. The swing or trans. The clean, press. The snatch, coming down with a neg press. And snatch. The first set I did each move 1x on each side, then repeated 4x. The next set I did all 4 moves before switching sides 4x. And then I did 3 moves (without the trans.) all on one side 3x before switching to the next side repeating the same 3 moves 3x.

Sun., Mon. Food Journal


AM weight 127.8
9:15 bikram yoga (new studio, not enough heat, barely broke a sweat!)
2:00 3 mile walk

Mon. menu

4:30-8:30 coffee w/cream, cocoa 205 cal.
1:00 1/2 c. vanilla yogurt 100 cal.
1:15 broccoli salad w/tuna, cranberries 360 cal.
3:00 prunes 100 cal.
3:30 apple 120 cal.
5:00 pumkin, parsnip and carrot soup w/kale, 2 tbl. parm cheese and 4oz. chicken 480 cal.
6:00 5 triscut crackers 100 cal.

Total calories 1465


AM weight 130.8
No exercise

Sun. menu (low calorie day)

4-6:00am coffee w/cream 85 cal.
10:00 apple 120 cal.
1:30 prunes 120 cal.
3:00 veg soup w/3oz chicken 250 cal.
5:30 apple 100 cal.
7:00 tea w/honey 20 cal.

Total calories 700 cal.

I'm headed off to yoga this morning (Tues.) before my KB workout. Can't wait to get to KB's after such a dissappointing workout on Sat. I took yesterday off from KB's because my right hamstring and glute were sore from the heavier weight on Sat. It's also the side I tend to overstretch in yoga. Hope to have more video up this afternoon.

Life is good!

Monday, January 15, 2007

Evolution of a Diet ( part 2, cont. from 1/4)

Last time I wrote about this subject (1/4) I started with food journaling. And because I didn't food journal my first year, I'll be going on memory as to how my diet evolved that first year.

When what works in the beginning stops working or starts to slow down the speed of success it's time to re-evaluate your diet. Depending on how much weight you want (or need) to lose will dictate how much food you need to eat tolose that weight. What kinds of foods you eat can also affect your success.

I started out my weight loss (Jan. 05 - April 05) with this basic menu;

2 cups coffee w/2tbl. heavy cream each cup
oatmeal w/2% milk
spinach salad w/grilled salmon (6oz) and lemon herb vinegrette
traditional dinner w/extra veggies, for example; 1 serv. pasta, 1 serv. protein, 2 Tbl. parm. cheese, lots of extra veggies (mostly spinach in the begining)
No food after 6:00pm

I walked at least 5 days a week for 2.5 miles, and 1 day a 4 mile walk. No KBs yet. All food was prepared by me. And I'm guessing my calorie count was around 1600-1750. And I always had a cheat day on Sat. consuming 2500-3500 cal. followed by an apple fast on Sun. (coffee in the morning, of course w/cream, and 4-5 apples, about 600-700 cal. that's all!).

After the first 3 months and a 45lb. weight loss (remember I started at 245lbs.!) I knew I had to step it up and tighten my calories even more.

I dropped the oatmeal because I realized I wasn't hungry until around 11am. My theory was the fat in the cream (in my coffee) was holding me until lunch. I changed my lunch 1/2 of the time to a yogurt shake. I also started eating a salad (spinach, cabbage or broccoli as the base veggie) for dinner 1/2 of the time alternating traditional dinner w/extra veggies. Here's an example of my new updated menu;

coffee w/2tbl. heavy cream
yogurt shake w/blueberries and fiber
salad w/pasta,or barley, protein (chicken, beef, fish etc.) and oil and vinegar dressing.
No food after 6pm

I continued my same walking routine and added in KB in May 05. Basic KB swings for 15-20 min 2 days a week (sometimes 3 days). All food was prepared by me and I lowered my calories to 1200-1400. I still had my Sat. cheat day followed by a low calorie day on Sun. I eventually found it difficult to only eat apples on Sun. so I changed that to traditional calorie counting keeping my calories that day und 900.

Over the next 3 months I dropped an additional 25-30lbs., now weighing 170 by July!

Around that time I had noticed tone and definition in my shoulders and arms and knew it came from my KB workouts because I had never in my life had that kind of shape! I bumped up my KB workouts to 3 days a week 20-25 min. I was even more motivated to continue this progress. My goal weight was now 145lbs. And I knew I could do it!

The next 3 months were basically the same. I was still losing weight at the rate I wanted to (5-8lbs a month) so I didn't feel the need to make changes. By Oct. I was closing in on my goal and attained that goal by Thanksgiving. That's the time Mark wrote the article in Vitalics about my success.

My KB workouts were now consistly 3 days a week 30-40 min. In Dec. I added Bikram yoga to my workouts and knew I wanted to work toward my KB certification in April 06. I also set yet another goal weight of 132lbs. At this time I changed my diet to more of a Warrior Diet style.
Not eating until 2-3pm and still stopping by 6pm. I started eating more raw vegetables in the form of salads.

From Jan. 06-April 06 I started my food journal. I was doing Bikram yoga at least 5 days a week, walking 3-4 day a week and KB 3 days a week 40-50 min. I made my new goal by the April cert.

I also want to add that I was "perfect" on my diet only about 75% of the time. In other words 25% of the time I wasn't able to feel as if I could control myself. I gave into emotional eating and had my share of "a bite of this, a bite of that", "the candy dish at work" to an all out "mini binges". As well as snacking on little things after 6pm.

Over the last 9 months I've been able to fine tune my diet and now find myself being able to deal with my emotions about food. Now that I've established 2 years worth of good eating habits, I can now focus on my feelings around food. Up until now I tried to focused on the choices I made about food which I think comes first. To be cont...

Interesting facts about my diet

No fast food for over 2 years now
I've prepared 95% of all food consumed in the last 2 years (not including candy and cookies and ice cream!)
I've eaten bread less than 10 times in the last 2 years.
I always (100% of the time) take my own lunch to work

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Back to basic swings. Going up in weight.

Decided it was time to start swinging the 36lb. more often, the 26 just seems too easy. The differences were apparent right away. The handle is bigger on the 36 and my grip wasn't strong enough to swing aggressively, so I couldn't get enough speed on the bell to get my heartrate above 155, even though I did timed sets of 1 min. on 1 min. rest for 60 min.

Swinging the 36 for an entire workout is new, like starting from day one. I decided to go back to very basic swing combos. These are an example of combos I would give to a beginner (with appropriate weight of course). Here's what I did:

2:00 KB

Warm up

40 2 hand swings w/26 1 min. on 1 min. rest x 5 sets = 10 min.

Work sets

10 trans., 10 1 swing 1 trans. (5 L, 5 R), 5L, 5 R ,1 hand swing, 1 min on 1 min. rest (40 reps)
x 10 sets = 20 min. (see video)

#2 (reverse order)
5 L, 5 R, 1 hand swing, 10 1 swing, 1 trans. (5 L, 5 R), 10 trans., 1 min. on 1 min rest (40 reps)
x 10 sets = 20 min.

40 2 hand swings w/36 1 min on 1 min, rest x 5 sets = 10 min.

bottoms up swing, 10 L, 10 R, 10 L, 10 R, 2 min. on 1 min. rest x 2 sets = 5 min.

Total WO time 65min.

I did not alternate sets I just did them all before moving on to the next combo.

7:30 2.5 mile walk
8:45 Bikram yoga
AM weight 128.0

Sat. cheat day

coffee w/cream
ginger cookies
PNB and prunes
ice cream
broccoli salad w/ tuna

I think my calories were under 3500.

PS My neighbor (a professional chef) just brought over warm pannecotta bread pudding w/dark chocolate sauce, 300 cal.

Back to basic swings. Going up in weight


Man, today was rough! I just couldn't find my groove. Started out on a walk with a friend at 7:30. I had a little extra time before an 8:45 yoga class, so I stopped at a convenient store and bought a large bag of plain M&M's. Today is my cheat day and I found myself obsessing about food first thing. I knew I would eat my favorite cookies today but the obsessing part came in to play when I tried to not only choose what kind of food to "cheat with" but exactly when I was going to eat it.

I know that sounds confusing, it is. Basically this is the conversation in my head;

(I'm at the convenient store) "O.K. you know you want some M&M's. Which size should you buy? If you buy the small one you will only eat the small one, after all your going to have your cookies later. But I know the small one won't be enough. So. If you buy the small one and leave you won't have a choice, and you'll feel better. But the small one cost $.65 and the larger $.99 and the largest $1.99 and you get the best deal if you buy the largest. And if you buy the largest you won't run out (of M&M's) before you feel full. You can eat M&M's before yoga at least it's not cookies, cookies wll stay in your stomach and make you feel really crappy. In fact I don't think you could even get through yoga if you ate alot of cookies, but I think you're safe with M&M's. Now peanut M&M's wouldn't be good. Just buy the large bag. It's your cheat day.
Relax about calories. Etc....

I bought the large bag. Ate them all (745 cal.) before I got to class. Then started the vicious cycle of denial, guilt, shame.

And that was just the start. If you don't have issues with food I'm sure you think I'm crazy, you might even think I'm disgusting. But I'm also sure that you have crazy and disgusting things that you do, you just don't post them on the internet!

I just want to share with any one that does have food issues that this is why I can never let my guard down. I never take for granted that I'm "cured". I work my ass off and make really good choices 99% of the time. I can even feel my attitude around food changing (for the better).

So here it is, 3:30, and I just finished my KB workout. I did get through my yoga class and then buy and eat my cookies. The crap I ate wrecked my KB workout and the only good thing that came out of this is that I realized that the more good, healthy, nutritous food I eat the less I want crappy food. Even though technically I can continue to eat whatever I want to I have no desire for any more junk today. I'm even thinking about redefining my cheat day.

Life is good, but today was rough.

Friday, January 12, 2007

New Challenge

I went kicking and screaming to a yoga class that's in a new style for me. I've been praticing Bikram yoga for a little over a year now and there's a ton of things I like about that style. I think, personally, that it's easy to get good at and the poses themselves are not that difficult. Like I've said before I don't like change very much, but I knew that I should expand my practice.

The class I went to this morning was not heated, but much more difficult. We were always moving and the strength and balance you need are going to be much more of a challenge for me. In fact I'm thinking of not adding Karate into my cross-training and do Bikram 2x and Vinyasa 3x a week.

I'm excited for this new challenge, but I hate not being good at something and it's going to take a long time, and alot of practice.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Snatch Ladder

9:30 KB Snatch


40 2 hand swings, 1 min. on 1 min. rest x 5 sets = 10 min.

Work sets

1 swing, 1 high pull 6 L, 1 swing, 1 high pull 6 R, repeat 6L, repeat 6 R = 1.5 min. on, 1 min rest

#2 (video shows most of this set)
1 snatch, 1 swing L
2 snatch, 1 swing L
3 snatch, 1 swing L
4 snatch, 1 swing L, trans.
1 snatch, 1 swing R
2 snatch, 1 swing R
3 snatch, 1 swing R
4 snatch, 1 swing R, trans.
Repeat = 2min. on 1 min. rest

Reverse ladder
4 snatch, 1 swing L
3 snatch, 1 swing L
2 snatch, 1 swing L
1 snatch, 1 swing L, trans.
4 snatch, 1 swing R
3 snatch, 1 swing R
2 snatch, 1 swing R
1 snatch, 1 swing R, trans.
Repeat = 2 min. on 1 min. rest

I alternated these 3 sets 4 times. All three sets took 8.5 min to complete x 4 sets = 36 min.

1 high pull, 1 snatch, 1 trans., 5 L, 5 R, 1 min. on 1 min. rest x 5 sets = 10 min.

Total WO 56 min.

AM weight 127.4
7pm 45 min. walk

Thurs. menu

coffee w/cream, coffee w/ peppermint cocoa 165 cal
oatmeal w/1/2 & 1/2 280 cal.
veg soup w/lamb and roasted butternut squash 450 cal.
large apple 120 cal.
Misc. 60 cal.
broccoli salad w/tuna, mayo and red grapes 420 cal.
caramen tea w/1tbl. 1/2 & 1/2 25 cal.

Total calories 1520

Today was a good day.

Swing Snatch Combo

Supersize Diet!

Last week I saw a client I hadn't seen for over two years. After seeing that I had obviously lost alot of weight she asked me what I had done. I didn't have time to get into the whole story so I gave her our website and she checked it out. She quickly called me and said " I can't believe that you and your husband are into KBs. My daughter was just certified last June! She works at San Jose State in the athletic dept. working with KBs and the football team! No one (else) knows what KBs are!"

Yesterday we finally had time to sit down and talk. She is a little older than me, but unlike me she has never been overweight. But she doesn't exercise and feels as if it has finally caught up with her. After reading my blog and seeing me train on video she became more motivated to do something about it. Her daughter started her out on a beginning routine of cardio and trational weight resistance exercises, not exactly what I would of done but everyone has to start somewhere.

Something else she mentioned in our conversation that I feel needs to be addressed was when the subject of my diet came up she said, " I've read your food journal and you don't eat very much, a bowl of soup, a salad, that isn't very much food." I happened to have all of my food right there in my lunch bag (shopping bag size) and quickly showed her exactly what I was eating that day.

As I mentioned before I like to feel full (very full), so I've become a master at what I call volumizing food! If I could write a diet book it would probably be called "Supersize Diet!" My bowl of soup probably weighs 1 1/2 pounds! When I make soup I usually make 2 serving at a time (2 Tracy size servings). I start out with 4 cups of chiken stock to which I add;

1 large onion, diced
2 large carrots, diced
2 celery stalks, diced
1/2 head green cabbage, large shred
1 large parsnip, diced
1 bunch kale including stems (stems seperated and diced, leaves rough chop)

All veggies are sauteed in 2 tbl. olive oil/butter first. And that's just the base to which I add my protein (chicken 4-6oz., meatballs, sausage, lamb, etc.) and if calories allow a carb (1/2-1 cup of brown rice, barley, pasta, etc.). My salads are equally large. So I eat alot of food!

AM weight 128.0
9:00 Bikram yoga

Wed. menu

coffee w/cream, coffee w/cocoa 155 cal.
1 large pear 120 cal.
2 prunes 40 cal.
large cabbage salad w/chutney dressing, 4 oz chicken, raisins 450 cal.
coffee/esspresso w/1/2c. 1/2&1/2 70 cal.
large veg soup w/lamb (5-6oz.) and extra chard 400 cal.

Total calories 1335

Lots of food on Wed. but not alot of calories, I'll eat more today. Maybe I'll have some ice cream!

Wed. was a good day.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Clean, Press Tues.

My schedule got turned around because of the holidays and being sick. Still trying to work out a solid schedule of KBs, walking and yoga. I was hoping to add in karate on Tues. afternoons but haven't had the time , I mean haven't made the time to look into it.

Tues. was the first good clean, press WO I've had in weeks. I used to CL PR on Thurs. I don't know exactly yet how things are going to fall, but here's what I did on Tues.;

8:30 KB

Warm up

40 2 hand swings 1min. on 1 min. rest x 5 sets = 10 min.

Work Sets

12 clean, press, trans. L, 12 R 2 min. on 1 min. rest

clean, press, press, trans., 4 L, 4 R 1 min. on 1 min. rest

6 1 swing, 1 clean press L, trans.,6 1 swing, clean press R, repeat 6 L, R, 2 min. on 1 min. rest

8 clean, trans L, 8 clean, trans. R w/36 1 min on 1 min. rest

I alternated sets #1-#4, 5x. All four sets combined took 10 min. (including rest period) for a total of 50 min.

10 L, 10 R, 10L 10 R bottoms up swings 2min. on 1 min. rest = 6 min.

Total WO 66 min.

This WO felt great! I decide that I wanted to get strong enough to swing the 36 on a regular basis, so I incorporated one set w/36. I like how it forces you to concentrate on form, really aware of using my legs and hips to move that weight.

AM weight 127.4

Tues. menu

5-8:30am coffeew/cream, coffee w/cocoa 155 cal.
11:30 lamb shanks, red chard and butternut squash 550 cal.
3:00 yogurt shake w/fiber and blueberries 375 cal.
Noshed on med. roasted yam throughout the day 250 cal.
6:15 broccoli salad 250 cal.
8:00 2 small prunes 40 cal.

Total calories 1620

My food was basically the same as yesterday, the difference being I swapped out the oatmeal for the yam. And I had bigger portions because my weight was low.

This morning (Wed.) my weight was up, 128.0. Too many carbs too many days in a row. The butternut squash catching up me and then I added the yam. Today no squash!

Tues. was a good day.

Tuesday, January 9, 2007

Salad Dressing 101

I live on salads! Salads give me the volume of food I need to feel full without alot of calories. The amount of veggies that I use also give me an incredible amount of nutrition. I easily go through, between soups and salads, 2 heads of green cabbage, 1 head of red cabbage 10-12 lg. carrots, 3 lg. broccoli heads, 3 bunches kale, 1 bunch chard, and other misc. veggies ( parsnips, fennel, green, red onoin, fresh herbs, beets, jalapeno, etc.) PER WEEK. That's just for me, that does not include other family members. When I say I eat alot, I'm not joking!

My salads are always main dish by adding a serving of protein in with the veggies (shrimp, chicken, pork, tuna, etc.) I never eat a salad with lettuce of any kind as the main ingredient. I feel that lettuce does not give me enough fiber and nutrition. I use cabbage mostly. I like to make my own dressings, alot of time with a Mayo/yogurt combination as the base. It's easy to make a single serving of dressing because you start by measuring out 1 Tbl. of each (mayo, yogurt) adding more of one than the other, depending on your allotment of calories for the day, then your acid (vinegar, lemon, etc.) and then additional flavoring (sugar, honey, garlic, etc.)

My friend Jill was nice enough, again, to let me come over to her kitchen to show her and another friend how easy it is to throw a salad together. Here are a couple of dressings that we made;

Chutney Dressing (single serve)

1 Tbl. mayo
1 Tbl. yogurt
1 clove garlic, pressed
1 squeeze lemon (a good squeeze!)
1 dash apple cider vinegar ( a little more than a teaspoon)
a little sugar or honey (1/2 t.)
1 heaping teaspoon hot mango chutney

Whisk together at the bottom of a large salad bowl then add;

green cabbage, shredded
red cabbage, shredded
1 lg carrot grated
2 green onions, sliced, green part included
1/2 jalapeno, diced tiny
chopped dates, or golden raisins, or pineapple, etc (in moderation of course)
large cooked shrimp. or diced chicken, or diced pork tenderloin, etc.

Dressing for Broccoli Salad

1 Tbl. mayo
1 Tbl. silken tofu (or yogurt if you like "tang")
squeeze of lemon (1 t.)
dash of red wine vinegar (1 t.)
1 t. sugar

Whaisk together at the bottom of a large salad bowl then add;

broccoli, chopped
red cabbage, shredded
carrot, grated
red onion, finely diced
red grapes, or dried cranberries, etc
sunflower seeds, pumkin seeds
I like tuna with this one, but add any other protein that you like

Quick Ceasar Dressing

1 Tbl. mayo
1 Tbl. yogurt
1 clove of garlic, pressed (sometimes I use roasted garlic, 3-4 cloves)
squeeze lemon
squeeze of anchovy paste or 2 anchovy filets, chopped (to taste of course)

All of these recipes are guidelines. Use common sense when adding high calorie ingredients like dried fruits, nuts, seeds, and your protein source. Always season your dressing and salad with S&P.

AM weight 127.4 (Mon.)
9:15 Bikram yoga
7pm 40 min. walk with Jill

Mon. menu

coffee w/cream, coffee w/cocoa 185 cal.
oatmeal w/1/c. 2% milk 260 cal.
braised lamb shank w/red wine, fennel sauce 300 cal.
sauteed red chard (1 bunch)50 cal.
roasted butternut squash 200 cal.
2 prunes 50 cal.
yogurt shake w/fiber and blueberries 350 cal.
small broccoli salad w/red grapes 200 cal.
1 chocolate filled peppermint candy 35 cal.

Total calories 1530

My shoulder feels good, lookig forward to a clean and press WO this morning.

Monday was a good day.

Monday, January 8, 2007

Great Denver Post article about KBs, with a GIryaStrength mention

as well as my story. My mom lives in Denver! Plus this article has some fantastic art work! Just click on the headline above for the story.

Stretching out my shoulder

Floor Bow pose
Camel pose

Ahhhh! Yoga

I went to my first yoga class Sun. morning since last Tues., it was awesome! I tweeked my left shoulder getting out of the bathtub 10 min. before Sat.'s swing WO, and realized that I hadn't stretched out my sholuders during the week at all. It felt great to stretch it out.

I broke my left arm when I was four years old and when they put it back together I was left with what is known as "shotgun arm". Because my arm is crooked it changes the center of gravity on my left side, when I do anything overhead it affects my shoulder. Since starting yoga I noticed my shoulder pain had dissappeared and attributed it to the stretching I was doing in class. Just another reason why, for me, yoga is a nice fit with my other training.

I was tempted to go for a walk late in the day (4-5pm) but remembered that I had an extra long walk on Sat. and I was just being paranoid into over-exercising. Spent the time teaching my son to drive a stick-shift!.

Sunday is a low-calorie day since Sat. is my cheat day.

8:45 Bikram yoga
AM weight 128.4

Sunday menu

5-11:00 coffee w/cream, coffee w/cocoa 185 cal.
11:30 large pear 125 cal.
2:00 veg soup w/4 oz. chicken, butternut squash puree 320 cal.
4:30 braised lamb shank 200 cal.
5:45 large apple 120 cal.
8:00 ginger tea w/honey 20 cal.

Total calories 970

I had a little trouble editing my Sat. swing WO but I wanted to mention my heartrate. Mark gave me an awesome heartrate monitor so I recorded my heartrate during my 5 sets of three min. swing combos;

After set #1 169 HR, #2 171 HR, #3 169 HR, #4 174 HR, #5 172 HR

I also recorded what my HR came down to inbetween sets after 1 min. rest and it was 151-159.

Sunday was a great day!

Saturday, January 6, 2007

The consolation prize

For carrying around 250 lbs for ten years: calves!

Two min swing combo


7-8:30am 4 1/2 mile walk

9:30 KB 2-3 min. Swing sets

Warm up

40 2 hand swings 1 min. on 1 min. rest x 5 sets = 10 min.

Work sets

#1 10 2 hand swings, 10 trans., 10 1 hand swing L, 10 R, 10 trans., 10 2 hand swings

2 min on., 1 min rest x 5 sets = 15 min.

#2 20 L 1 hand swings, 20 R, 20 L, 20 R, 20 L, 20 R

3 min. on, 1 min. rest x 5 sets = 20 min

Repeat set #1 x 5 = 15 min. ( The video shows most of my last set. I count 2 reps, L & R as 1 trans., so 10 trans = 20 reps)

Total WO time 60 min. (40 min. actual swinging to 20 min rest)

AM weight 126.6

Sat. menu/ cheat day

coffee w/cream 105 cal.

bag of molasses cookies 1820 cal.

ice cream 400 cal.

peanut butter an jelly sandwich 450 cal.

broccoli salad 250 cal.

Total calories 2925

Friday, Life Happens

No workouts today, not even a walk. Inbetween workouts and dieting, life happens! I had to take my new adopted stray cat to be nuetered today, I had to drive to Santa Cruz this morning and I had a full schedule at work. Mostly upset about not being able to go to a yoga class, but I guess life's not all about me! This is where the "balance" comes in!

AM weight 128.2

Friday menu

5-9:00 coffee w/cream 135 cal.
9:30 1/2 large pear 60 cal.
12:30 oatmeal w/milk and 1 t. sugar 280 cal.
2:15 2 prunes (nature's candy!) 50 cal.
5:00 large apple 120 cal.
5:15 veg soup w/tortellini, 2oz. chicken, butternut squash puree 460 cal.
6:15 decaff coffee w/peppermint cocoa power 65 cal.

Total calories 1070

Friday was a good day (not for Eddie!)

Friday, January 5, 2007

Snatch WO

One of the hardest things about working out in your own garage is that's it's stinking COLD! It never gets warm out there from Oct thru April. I used to walk for 20-30 min beforehand to get my old body to warm up, but nothing works better than a hot bath for 10 min. That's what Mark started doing and it works wonderfully. I was actually sweating my ass off about 20 min into my WO. Felt good!

Since my yoga schedule has been so screwed up I haven't made it to class more than 2x a week. And I always overstretch, especially my hamstrings. Physically I have recovered from my cold, I feel great, so I was really looking forward to doing my snatch WO. But after my warm up I felt a little pulling behind my right thigh (from overstretching in yoga) and I knew I would have to combine my snatches with alot of swings and be careful not to push too hard.

Here's what I did;

7:00am KB w/26

Warm up

40 2 hand swings, 1 min on 1 min rest x 3 sets = 6 min.
30 L, 30 R 1 hand swings, switching every 10 reps. 1.5 min on 1 min. rest x 2 sets = 5 min.

Work sets


1 swing, 1 snatch 1 trans, 11 L, 11 R = 2 min. on 1 min. rest

1 snatch, 2 trans., 10 L, 10 R = 2 min. on 1min. rest

1 snatch, 1 trans., 12 L, 12 R = 2 min. on 1 min. rest

I alternated these 3 sets in this order 4 times adding in 1 repeat of #1 at the end of the WO. So 13 sets = 3 min. each (including rest period) = 39 min.

Total WO time 50 min.

AM weight 128.8

Thurs. menu

5-9:00 coffee w/cream, coffee w/cocoa (1 tbl.=35 cal.) 120 cal.
12:30 large apple 120 cal.
2:00 decaff coffee w/cocoa (2tbl.) 70cal.
2:50 2 prunes 50 cal.
3:00 veg soup w 5oz. chicken, butternut squash puree 350 cal.
5:45 ice cream 60 cal.
6:00 broccoli salad w/tuna (broccoli, carrot, red onion, red grapes, tuna / dressing, 1 1/2 tbl. mayo, 1 tbl silken tofu, red wine vinegar, squeeze of lemon, 1 t. sugar) 350 cal.
6:15 1/2 large pear 60 cal.

Total calories 1180

I can feel my attitude about food shifting lately. Thurs. was a good day.

Thursday, January 4, 2007

Evolution of a Diet

I have so many to thoughts about this subject, "evolution of a diet", it will take me days to sort it out. So I'll just start, and see where it goes.

I think that most personal trainers and/or anyone in the business of helping people lose weight would advocate food journaling. I certainly do. So I''ll start here, I did not food jounal the whole first year of my diet. I started this time last year when I set a goal to become certified to teach KB and I needed to get my weight down from 138 to 132. At below 132 my snatch test would only require me to snatch 20 reps R & L instead of 32 ( I'm not entirely positve of these numbers). I knew I could meet the requirement of the lower weight class and didn't want to fail trying for the higher number. After all I hadn't even been training for a year at that point.

The reason I didn't feel the need to food journal my first year was because I was highly motivated and I knew what I needed to do. I was not in denial about how many calories I had been eating to make me fat. Alot of people choose not to face exactly how many calories they consume in a day. Or they honestly just don't know (mostly the former). In fact even after you decide to write everything down you might still be tempted to lie about it, I know even I struggle with this to this day! So one of the first reasons to food journal is to come face to face with your calories.

So when it came to the point of "fine tuning" my diet, and that can mean a variety of things;

exact calorie count,
nutrition distribution (protein, fat carbs etc.),
what types of food affect my weight,
what time of day I eat,
it can also include feelings about food,( lack of or too much of)

I knew I was at the point of having to look at the details. It was critical to develop this discipline to reach, for me, this very serious new goal. So another reason is to be able to "fine tune" your eating. This also, of course, applies to your training as well.

My food journal is my personal account for me. What I hope to accmplish by posting my daily food is to encourage the habit of food journaling to those that can benefit from this type of discipline. Just the fact that I make myself do it , not the details of exactly what I eat, is the example I would like to set.

I'm still currently at the point of "fine tuning". In this last year I have been able to see how my eating and training has evolved. How my goals have evolved. And now how at this point my feeling about food are evolving.

To be continued...

Right now I have to go out in my cold garage and do my snatch WO!

Tues. menu
AMweight 133 (5am) 132.4 (6:30am) 131.2 (afternoon)
7pm Bikram yoga

coffee w/cream, coffee w/cocoa 155 cal.
large apple 140 cal.
veg soup w/5oz chicken 300 cal.
decaff coffee w/cocoa 70 cal.
large pear 120 cal.

Total calories 775

Wed. menu
AM weight 129.8

coffee w/ cream 85 cal.
3 prunes 75 cal.
broccoli salad w/tuna 360 cal. (broccoli, red cabbage, carrot, dried cranberries, sunflower seeds, low cal dressing, tuna and mayo)
coffee w/ cocoa 70 cal. ( should of had decaff! )
veg soup w/chicken 300 cal.
large pear 120 cal.

Total cal. 1010

Wanted to do a quick 30 min swing WO before work but decided it was more important to clean my house. Trying to remind myself about the importance of balance.

Tues. and Wed. were great days!

Tuesday, January 2, 2007

Hope for the New Year

So much has happened to me in the last few weeks, in the last few days, I can only wonder what this next year holds for me.

Two years ago today I was happy. My life was good. Yes, I was fat, but I never defined myself by my weight. I always felt that I was smart, talented, and had a good life. I enjoyed eating alot of food and took responsibility for the results of that. In fact besides being phyisically uncomfortable at times I felt the biggest drawback of being so heavy was the judgement of other people about my weight. I felt invisible. Not respected. And I did feel shame about my weight.

Being Mark Reifkind's wife, many times I wanted to hide. Married to a personal tainer and being so over weight I remember asking Mark when he would want to introduce me to a client or friend " Did you tell them I'm fat? You need to tell them I'm fat, because I don't want them to be surprised." I felt bad for him because I didn't want my weight to be a reflection of him. After all should the worlds best personal trainer have such a fat wife?

I knew I had it in me to lose the weight and start exercising, I just didn't want to. Why? I don't even know the answer now. I think everyone knows how to lose weight. The question is why don't you want to? I, personally, don't think it matters why. You and I have the rest of our lives to try and figure that out, if we want to. It doesn't change the fact that 2+2=4. In otherwords, the fact is if you count your calories and start some sort of exercise, you will lose weight. You don't need me to tell you that.

What I want to offer is hope. Hope that you can recover from being overweight. Hope that you can recover from being out of shape. Hope that you can recover from being ashamed. Hope so that you can feel healthy, strong and proud. And that you can come through it looking and feeling better than you ever have before.

That's what kettlebell training has done for me. I tell everyone that my diet (food) changed the size of my body, but kettlebell training changed the composition of my body. And I wouldn't of believed it until I experienced it. Kettlebell training has given me hope. Hope that I can keep the weight off and feel and look great. Sometimes I think if I only would of known about KBs 10 years ago I might never have gained so much weight.

I hope that you find the motivation this year, if I can give you any I will. If you have already found your motivation, like me, I hope you keep it going strong.

New year day

AM weight 130.6
9:00 am KB
3:30 1 hour walk


coffee w/cream, coffee w/cocoa 105 cal.
oatmeal w/lowfat milk 260 cal.
1 sm head of cauliflower, roasted w/2tbl. olive oil, s&p 300 cal.
yogurt shake w/fruit and fiber 350 cal.
butternut squash & veg soup w/ 5oz. chicken 370 cal.
1/2 cookie 100 cal.

Total cal. 1495

Monday, January 1, 2007

Don't piss me off.

I found some new motivation to swing some heavy weight today( new years day)

Warmup sets:

4o 2 hand swings 1 min on one min rest x5 sets= 10 min total

Work sets:

2 hand swings
w/26 18 reps = 30 secs.
w/36 18 reps = 30 secs.
w/44 18 reps = 30 secs.
w/53 16 reps = 30 secs.
Total set = 2 min on 1 min. rest x 2 = 6 min

2 hand swings
w/36 18 reps = 30 secs.
w/44 18 reps = 30 secs.
w/53 16 reps = 30 secs.
total set = 1.5 min on 1.5 min rest x 10 sets = 30 min

Total WO time 46 min.

New Year Eve Swing Combo

Still not feeling great, but good enough to go to yoga class in the morning and get an easy KB WO in the afternoon. I wanted to do some combinations that were long but relatively "easy" because I still wasn't feeling 100%. I wanted to make sure I got in at least 55 mins. of KB and when I do long combos the time goes by more quickly. Also since I missed my press WO on Thurs. I wanted to incorporate clean/press with snatches.

Clean/press requires more strength for me but doesn't get my heartrate up because they go slower. Snatches are easy, strength-wise, for me but they get my heartrate up faster. So I combine them often to compliment eachother without working "too hard".

I chose to work one side (L or R) transferring once to the other side and back to the same side, for 1 min. and then switching to the other hand for 1 more min., for a total of 2 min. per set.

8:45am Bikram yoga

1:00 KB swing, clean/press, snatch combos

Warm up w/26

40 2 hand swings 1 min. on 1 min. rest x 5 sets = 10 min. total

Work sets w/26

8 clean/press, 2 trans L, 8 clean/press, 2 trans R = 2 min. on 1 min. rest

10-11 snatch, 2 trans L, 10-11 snatch, 2 trans R = 2 min. on 1 min. rest

6 clean/press, snatch, 2 trans L, 6 clean/press, snatch, 2 trans R = 2 min. on 1 min. rest
( the video starts 30 secs. into this set )

I alternated these 3 sets in order 5 times. All three sets w/rest took 9 min. x 5 = 45 min. total.

10L, 10 R, 10 L 10 R, bottoms up swings = 2 min. on 1 min. rest x 2 sets = 6 min.

Total WO time 61 min.

My food was easy, I think my new attitude is might work for a while!

AM weght 130.6


coffee w/cream, cocoa 85 cal.
lg apple 120 cal.
4 prunes w/ 1/2t. PNB each 180 cal.
pork and corn stew w/ extra veggies 150 cal.
6oz. poached chicken 300 cal.
broccoli salad w/sunflower seeds, dried cranberries, tuna (2tsp. mayo) and low calorie dressing 410 cal.
chocolate tea w/1/2t. demura sugar 20 cal.

Total calories 1365

Set three