Training 08/07/10 – Strength

I’ve decided to concentrate on heavy compound movements in the gym, due to limited time and reading somewhere that it would be a good idea. I’ve not done them for a little while so I’m easing myself back in. The plan is to increas by 5lbs every time I go, and try to go Mon, Wed, Fri. I’ve already ballsed that up by having severe DOMS from my session on Monday and then the kickboxing on Tuesday. I realised yesterday that I probably went a bit OTT with the circuits, the pain in my legs had gone away so I was going a bit deep on single leg squats because the adrenaline was pumping. Anyhow, back to today.


5 x 95lbs
4 x 115lbs
3 x 135lbs

5 x 5 170lbs

Was ok at 170lbs until the last set of 5. I think my form suffered a bit through fatigue, I felt myself rolling forward on my toes a bit, so next time I’ll either remember to curl my toes up or put 2 1/2lb weights under them.

Bench Press

5 x 45lbs
5 x 95lbs
4 x 115lbs

5 x 5 120lbs

Struggled with this. managed it, but the last 2 sets were difficult.

Will probably be back in the Gym on Monday, so aside from a few runs over the weekend I shall let my muscles rest!


IMUK 70.3 – What have I done?!?!?

Just had a real proper good look at the course for Wimbleball. What have I done? It is the toughest course out there! ha ha. Matthew you utter berk.

Well, I have some serious work to do I suppose. I don’t want to be one of these people that just gets round. I want to be the best I can be, so I really have to train hard for this. 11 months to get into the sort of shape that can swim 1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike and 13.1 mile run.


Kickboxing 03/08/2010

Left hook to the body. Why do I find it so difficult? Well, I find it all difficult, but that punch particularly. more of that in a bit.

Was feeling a little stiff after running on Monday, particularly in the quads and calves, but didn’t think much of it, unfortunately I absolutely sucked at the monthly challenge because of it.

Did some running up and down the Dojo rather than running around it, I found it really good as we had to increase effort over 10 lengths. I’m really trying to concentrate on this for tri training as a lot of the sessions I will be doing rely on the notion of Percieved rate of exertion (RPE) so getting an idea of these levels is really helpful.

Monthly Challenge – 8 down:

Step ups + burpees. 8 step ups, 8 burpees, 7 step ups, 7 burpees, 6,6,5,5,4,4,3,3,2,2,1,1 – Sounds pretty simple? Ha! It’s horrible! It could have been worse apparently. Hazel wanted to make it 10 down!

I managed an appaling time of 2.17 which I am going to say was down to being really sore from running, I realise now I’ve said this that I have to do it again and get a better time, but I think I can do it. Also, I think this is a challenge where weight really matters. And because of that I’ve done some calcualtions and worked out that with a time of 1.45 I will have a faster time than Stu. Bear with me, I am right.

For a man who weighs 65kg (I think that’s right) it takes 76 seconds. I am not 65kg, I am 90kg so I’m never going to get the same time as a lighter man, therefore by my calculations, each kg of bodyweight means 1.1s more over the course of the exercise, so with my 25kg overweightness, to get the same time as Stu I get an extra 28.4 seconds in which to complete it. So, if i get a time of 104.4 seconds, or 1 minute 45 (rounded up a little bit) I will be the best.

I did try other calculations, but they didn’t give me the result I wanted so I haven’t used them. 🙂 ha ha

Anyway, back to the session. I think some of the totally basic stuff that Stu has had to drum into my stupid head is sinking in, I don’t drop my hands as much as I did. my punches are getting a little better and my flexibility is improving – my side kicks are a world apart from 4 or 5 months ago.

Left Hook Body

By the end of the session there was some improvement in the left hook, but it is taking so long to get right. I really struggled with a combo:

Left Hook body, right hook body, left hook head and right cross (I think) I woke up about 3 this morning finally understading how the movement worked. It must have taken an utterly frustrating 10 minutes for Stu to work out that I had no clue about what he was trying to tell me.

I don’t know why I can understand logical concepts no problem, but physical takes me forever!

I found this after a google so I’m going to research:

A perfect example of a power left hook is one thrown by MikeTyson or Arturo Gatti. Notice how they move their entire body.
A perfect example of a digging left hook is one thrown by Marco Antonio Barrera or Mickey Ward or Ricky Hatton. Notice how he leaves his head there to the side when he throws it.
A perfect example of a pivoting left hook can be seen by Miguel Cotto (he’s actually good at throwing all 3 types of left hooks) or Wladimir Klitschko or Floyd Mayweather Jr.
A perfect example of a lunging left hook is one thrown by Ricky Hatton (against carlos maussa) or Roy Jones Jr.or Prince Naseem.

We ended the session with a push up circuit which I’ve totally forgotten the details of, and a sit up circuit for me which was:

15 sit ups, elbows to knees, then slowly up over 5 seconds, quickly back down x 5 then up quickly and down slowly over 5. Some dorsal raises to finish.


Why did I bother? Should have stayed for 7.15 instead. Had absolutely no energy for swimming, managed about 100m, went for a Steam and went home.


Swimming Lesson

Bit more of a break than I had intended, but after the stag do I really struggled to motivate myself to do anything. I had my first swimming lesson since school on Friday with Keeley from Swim For Tri ( and it was bloody brilliant.

I was trying really hard to understand what she was trying to tell me and for the most part I think I succeeded. I think sometimes when someone is explaining something physical to me, I struggle to get it. Kickboxing is a prime example, it must be everso frustrating watching me totally miss the point of whatever’s being explaine. Give me something technical and I’ve got no problem at all. Odd.

Areas for improvement:

Focusing on breathing will help you relax in the water. Make sure you exhale all the air under the water through your nose before turning your head to breathe in again.

Head is being lifted when breathing. Remember to pivot the head to the side (so you are looking no higher than the gutter) to take your breath. Any forward lifting of the head will effect the body position.

You are swimming flat at present. Really work on upper body drills so you are swimming with increased rotation. This will help incorporate the stronger muscles of the back. As the stroke becomes stronger you will be swimming more efficiently making you more streamlined in the water.

Timing is out on your stroke. At present your arm pull is swimming at opposites and you are losing balance at the front of your stroke. This will also distribute the body weight over a greater area making you more streamlined

At present you are kicking from your knees. Focus on achieving a straighter leg kick generated from the hip. Toes should be slightly inverted, with floppy ankles.

Your elbow and hand are entering at the same time. By allowing your arm to enter at the same time you are making it more difficult to gain full extension and acquire a good position to start your catch.

You are missing the extension at the front of the stroke. Once the hand has entered the water really make full use of your upper body rotation and wait for at least a second. The arm should be extended in front of you and parallel to the surface of the water before the arm moves into the catch.

Straight-arm catch. By pushing down with a straight arm you are creating more upwards lift than forwards movement and not utilising your stronger back muscles. Remember that you are trying to reach over a barrel/beach ball.

Fingers are open, keep the hand flat, fingers together and use along with the forearm as a paddle.

Exit of the stroke is finishing under your elbow. This part of the stroke is the most propulsive phase of your stroke. By finishing early you are losing power. Really focus on a straight-arm finish.

Arm recovery is wide. Try to think of trailing the fingers through the top of the water when swimming to really allow the hand to travel underneath the elbow.

I have some drills to do before the next session:


Kicking with Arms Outstretched: Kick initiates from the hip, legs working closely together upward and downward. Floppy ankles with toes slightly inverted, kicking no deeper than the depth of your own body. Practising legs only will allow you to bring full attention to them. Practise this with your face in the water, focus on a controlled outbreath.

Basic Extension drill: This is the first of the drills to develop full upper body rotation. The swimmer practices the fully rotated position whilst only using their legs. The position is one arm in front of them and the other is held at the side. The shoulder of the leading arm is fully rotated under the chin, which gives a fully extended position. The legs should be kicking in a downwards plane at all times. No scissoring should be occurring. The swimmer breathes every 6 kicks.


Running 02/08/2010

After the longer than intended hiatus from exercise I thought a nice long run would be good. I was wrong. I don’t know why it was so hard, but the planned 12k got cut down to just over 9 and even that took 1h3m which is pretty poor for a route with an elevation of just over 13m! I also thought that the route was longer than it actually was. After that exertion I was a little dissapointed to see the gps on 9.36km. I need to be running every other day from now on in order to nail this half marathon. I’m not going to be too hard on myself as it was the first bit of proper exercise in almost 2 weeks, but it has reaffirmed that you don’t get anywhere without a bit of hard work!

Kickboxing + Swimming this evening. Woop!