Saturday, November 27, 2010

Rollin' w/ Noobs

I love the word noob. Some may say it's derogatory. Yet, for me, it's a term of endearment for the beginners. I've trained in the martial arts(poorly) for 30 years. I've been a noob MANY times. Switching styles, starting over from white belt on multiple occasions - I believe I can speak for us noobs. I've heard brand new black belts in BJJ refer to themselves as whitebelts among black belts. This is so true. We are all noobs, and will continue being noobs forever!

The poor noob will make a few mistakes along the way. One of the most critical mistakes a noob may make in any martial art style is CONTROL. Rather not a mistake per se, it's something learned over time. Until that time, noobs should be treated with the respect usually reserved for an unexploded TNT pile after the detonation plunger has been pressed...

Let me draw a few pictures to explain. You may need to click to zoom.

And the match starts IBJJF style....

And the metamorphosis starts. As a rule of thumb, if your opponents pupils are spirals, one should probably sound the alarm...

Aaaand he attacks. 2000% as usual. Another sign you may be in SERIOUS danger is the "...saw on Youtube..." statement. One must be wary of the Youtube Warrior, and wear your steel gi.

Any attempts at demonic possession, or multidimensional soul extraction by your opponent should not be taken lightly.

As always treat your noobs with respect after the roll, no matter how bad you smash him...

There you have it! Be nice to noobs, you were once one!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

A soldier will fight....

 ...long and hard for a bit of colored ribbon.  ~Napoleon

My longtime BJJ buddy Vernoplata came over today for some cardio work. First time for him ever to train cardio with me. I warned him :)

He wants to compete in NAGA so I offered up The Bat Dojo as a place for him to expand his lungs and feel what almost dying is like. Twice a week until NAGA, Vernoplata will be over here for a lovely gut wrenching time.

Today the plan was this: three(only did two) 5 minute rounds of Tabata intervals, with 1 minute rests between rounds. NAGA rounds are 5 minutes each, we'll need to simulate NAGA pain as much as possible.
He got 2/3 rd's of the way. Not bad for his 1st try! Most people do not make it past 8 minutes. These workouts are very hard if you push yourself 100%. No shame stopping after round two.

Here's what we done did:
mini ball slams
squat thrusts
pull-up hangs by an old gi (probably the worst of the exercises)
bag tackle (basically do a double leg without your knee touching the mat)
bag spins (spin grappling dummy 360, back and forth)

Two rounds of:
20 seconds on, 10 seconds off x 10 times = 5 mintues
1 min rest between rounds

He'll probably be a bit sore tomorrow :)

p.s. as I sit here, I'm realizing I might be bit sore in the quads too. Hell yeah! 
p.s.s. post workout recovery :)

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Jiu Jitsu Life...

So...I was thinking about the various characters around the many dojo's I've visited and trained at. For 30 years I've witnessed the carnage that is the "student". I of course am one of those train wrecks :)

I've decided to draw pictures(poorly) of a few examples of what one sees in a typical Americanized Brazilian Jiu Jitsu school.

The first is the Average Joe. He want's to learn self defense, and to get in shape. Does not want to be in MMA or fight in a Mexican jail for food scraps. In general he's pretty much prey for the rest of the school...

Next is the Brick Shit House. He's the mean bastard who likes to smash your guts but can't get a damn sub to save his life. Typical matches involve him laying on you for 5 minutes, then you going to the doc for compression fractures in your spine. Also, the instructor hates you for denting the mats with your face after rolling with this guy...

The fat guy. Yes, I said it. Round, rotund and impossible to get a guard on. Although he has no cardio, never underestimate his initial burst of Twinkie supplied energy. Surprisingly fast when Krispy Kreme is involved; he will roll over you uncontrollably... Watch out for your balls. (and lunch)

Every gym has a 'roid hound. The guy who claims never to have taken steroids. The military milked his breasts for some form of super soldier serum. He's strong enough to throw actual Grim Reapers at you during rolls. He has zero technique, his primary defense against your guard pass is to lift you with one hand, while shooting up an anabolic with the other. His only sub is to SCREAM; you die from the air compression smashing your atoms into a fusible mass, you then implode into a nano-sized black hole.

F*cking Noobs. These little shits will wreck you. NEVER UNDERESTIMATE A NOOB. Later drawings will show why. Because they cannot tie their belts or pronounce "omoplata" correctly only means one thing: they believe their primary purpose on the mats is to have some sort of spastic-colon retard fight with you. They will attack you at 2000% during drills and try to punch your babies.

This bastard is just the huge guy in the corner no one, not even the instructor will roll with. Strong, huge and ugly; this guy will simply eat you and your pet goat. No one knows where he(or she?) came from, because no one will speak Or perhaps it just cannot speak?

The tall guy: Mr Rubber Guard Guy, Mr Spider Guard Guy, Mr. HaHa You Can't Pass My Guard Guy, Mr Triangle You All Day Guy. A message from us short people, "Fuck you".

The Token Girl. Fear her. Just because she is a girl, one should not take her lightly. She been known to blog on her website: about how she quote, "..and then I f*cking choked the ever living shit out of him for not doing the proper IBJJF handshake at the beginning of our roll. I mean come on! Even my puppy, snookie wookums knows you slap hands, then fist bump. Next time that son of a bitch rolls with me I'm going rip his cup off and gore his eye out...Love Pretty Princess"

So there it is...a few examples of what you see in a typical dojo.


Sunday, November 7, 2010

2nd Place 2010 U.S. National Sambo Championships!

4 x 6 min matches in round robin format. Only 1 single point scored on me during the whole ordeal. The bat dojo cardio saved my ass. I was burned out my last match! My head hurt; it pretty much felt like my brain had crawled clear out my ass and died infront of me. Most of cardio involved #1 grappling, #2 morning long walks and punching my heavy bag obnoxiously. That's really all I did...

One big lesson from prior tournaments in which I was able to apply: ATTACK LIKE A SCALDED APE!! This is what put 3 out of 4 guys on either their heads or their backs. The one guy I lost to, was an "A" division ringer, whom had to drop to my "B" division due to no one there for him to fight. He's a VERY experienced MMA fighter, grappler and SUPER tough dude. So, congrats to him. I was happy I still engaged with him offensively, and didn't run 1 inch from anyone.

Much thanks goes out to my jits buddies and for Reilly Bodycomb being my Sambo coach! I couldn't hear a damn thing he said during my matches, due to my Rhinoceros like grappling style...which is 98% deadbutt them until they die and 2% levitation. More importantly though, he taught me how to throw. Which is really helpful when entering a Sambo tournament hahaha :)

The following video is a reenactment of all of my matches:

Fight Video

Muchas gracias to Georgette Oden for letting The Dude and I crash at her place! We visited her school for a bit today and played around with techniques in the corner. Then a quick roll with a tough 4 stripe purple belt with a nasty spider guard. Cartwheel pass is a handy tool for this occasion :)



Monday, October 25, 2010

If you woke up breathing...

 ...congratulations!  You have another chance.  ~Andrea Boydston

This morning at the Bat Dojo I woke up as early as I could....Which means something after 0730... I grabbed a rash guard, some sweat pants and a hoodie. It's late October now and the weather is perfect for morning jaunts. With the exception of a fairly wild Rottweiler down the street, my little workout should be successful. I walked my 1 mile loop at high speed, while listening to some sort of animal screams from some guy related to Vlad The Impaler. I don't know how fast I walked it, but I only got through a couple songs before I made it home. 

There is temptation of walking in the front door and plopping my ass back down, figuring this was enough. I resisted the urge to check my email, or compile a Linux kernel and continued my way into the Bat Dojo.

Once in, the feelings of despair instantly subside and I began smashing the heavy bag, and doing pull-ups on my pool ball apparatus. I love that stupid thing, it's so awesome!

Today, I experimented with an old school technique called a breathing ladder. I had read about this years ago and never really put much thought into it until today.

Basically it goes like this, you forget your timer and use your breathing as your stopwatch. Yet the kick in the pants is, you adjust your next interval on less and less air until you drown in your own saliva...

Here's what I did:
Smash the bag at 100% (power/speed) with two hand strikes, two knees and two strikes.
Count 10 breaths
Smash the bag at 100% (power/speed) with two hand strikes, two knees and two strikes.
Count 9 breaths
Count 1 breath
Smash the bag at 100% (power/speed) with two hand strikes, two knees and two strikes.
Then die.

It wasn't that tough mechanically. My lungs were a different story, I thought I was going to suffocate! The desperation for air, gets worse as the intervals continue. This was a test, I'll formulate a nasty workout around these principles later and give it a try. No stopwatch, purely breathing based intervals. Like the famous 300 workout, mine will be 300 breaths!


Sunday, October 17, 2010

Pull Up Ball

So I'm rebuilding my house, room by room. Pretty much gutting it and starting from scratch. Starting with the room where The Dude was my live in pet, on multiple longterm occasions. Then he got all married and stuff....

The basic beginnings is ripping out carpet and splitting/removing carpet spike strips with a screwdriver and hammer. Both are GREAT grip exercises! When I yanked up the carpet, I literally tore the carpet, by hand into long 3 ft by 10 ft long sections. I kind of felt like I was in one of those 1940's strongman shows where some dude would bend horse shoes with his thumb. It's quite a testosterone filled event! I was shredding and ripping everything in my path, doing the sorts of things my parents said not to do. I was smiling so much I'm sure I had carpet fibers in my teeth.

Upon the sad completion of my shredding activity I contemplated my next Jurassic-like endeavor. I stacked the carpet and foam into two piles. Then using grip alone dragged the pile through my house into the Bat Dojo (garage). Dragging this shit was awesome, I knocked over pretty much everything in my house to include myself....

The spike strips require a different type of grip strength. One to hold the screwdriver, the other to grip the hammer. Then repeatedly smack the screwdriver or my hand in a ratio of about 4 to 1. Warning, gripping or stepping onto an old pile of spike It felt like an episode of True Blood, minus the hot sex and a semi-nude Sookie.

The cool thing about renovations is I get to play with the MASSIVE amount of tools I've collected over the years. I have a workshop about half the size of a garage, stuffed full of cool stuff to play with. One of which is a drill. Every guy needs a drill and today I got to use it.

My old pool table is going away and I decided to drill a hole through one of my old pool balls. Yes, right through the center to see what happens. I grabbed my Dremel too with a diamond bit and commenced cutting a small divot to center the drill. This was remarkably easy. Next I grabbed a real drill, a MAN's drill with a 3/4 inch chuck and about 4000 watts of power. I expected this was going to dim the lights in my neighborhood trying to bore my way through the pool ball. With a big stupid smile on my face I slapped on a 1/2 inch masonry bit and began the attack. Surprisingly, the bit chewed a perfect hole right through the ball with a mellow, smooth chalky smell, and purple powder residue. Whoa, my drill kicks ass!

I slipped some nylon rope though the ball and whipped it over my chin up bar. Slowly, I latched onto my new chinup toy and lowered my weight. It held! I was a little worried it would explode and shower me with purple powder. Not a good look for a guy. I tried a few pullups and sure enough, this little device will add all sorts of dimension to my grip strength training! I think I'll go build another!

See ya

Monday, October 11, 2010

World Tour

Well not quite worldly, but this weekend my friend Amanda and I visited Las Vegas for some MMA work. Amanda is working on her degree and wants to be a part of the MMA community as a whole. This overachiever decided to fly out to Vegas to meet the #1 top industry professionals to finish her school project.
We left on a Friday and U.S. Airways decided to overbook the flight. I had a seat, but poor, little defenseless (blue belt BJJ, black TKD...kicks like a dude) Amanda and her sad puppy dog eyes did not. So I manned up and and gave her my seat. Just kidding, I wouldn't do a thing like that. :)
Actually, we just stayed home Friday night and made our way back. At least U.S Airways gave us vouchers, cash and a 1st class upgrade for the next morning! How awesome!
We repacked our stuff, learning from the dress rehearsal from the prior day and made it to the airport in record time. Las Vegas was warm and windy. I could smell the prostitution and gambling immediately upon landing. Foreign to Amanda, I had to point out the lack of grass everywhere!

The hotel was right off the strip, right across from an In-N-Out Burger. I don't eat burgers and fries; I bring this up because someone I know loves this place. I immediately had to txt her and tell her I was within smelling range. Txt responses had multiple mentionings of "FU", "devil" and "evil"...

Today's stop was with Shawn Tompkins at the Tapout Training Center. Immediately upon entering the facility, Shawn was right there! He graciously let us in and showed us around. "The gym is yours!", he said. I've never been to a gym where that happened. It immediately felt like visiting someones home rather than a place to get punched. The facility is multiple thousands of squarefeet of pure MMA. The floors are stained concrete with hand drawn cracks and the Tapout logo artfully drawn in. The walls are my favorite part. Adorned with images of gorgeous MMA girls and MASSIVE painted Tapout/Samurai images. When I say MASSIVE, I mean 30ft high, 40ft wide paintings! Even the trashcans were painted with Tapout logos. Seven zones, each with it's own set of "tools". One zone would be hanging bags, another a boxing ring, several cages, grappling mats and weightlifting/strength training zones. Each area was immaculate! I don't know who cleans the gym, but I need them for my house. One could easily sit down next to the cage and eat dinner, knowing nothing bad would get on his plate. No smells, no grime, no dirt, no dust (amazing for Vegas) no nothing.

The back area is a cage and a caged in grappling arena for the pro fighters. When we walked in, there was a grappling class for kids going on. It was PACKED! Must have been 40 kids from ages 6 to 14 in there. They were doing so well dropping levels, double legging each other. These kids will be smashing fools in the UFC in 10 years for sure!

In the main cage, Shawn was mitting one of the UFC's top fighters: Sam Stout. Sam immediately showed why he is in the UFC, ripping out a amazingly fast, staccato of punches as Shawn called out the combo. In between rounds of of striking, Sam would jump in with the grappling cage full of willing and very capable opponents. It looked tough and fun, everyone was having a good solid class of weekend training.

We hung out for a bit and watched some of the other fighters jump in with Shawn. Each one received solid, personal training in the striking game. One of the fighters whom trained with Shawn was a young 12-ish year old girl. She received the EXACTLY the same, very high quality training Sam Stout did. No differences in training material or style. How awesome is that! One thing I did notice, everyone who walked out the cage after training with Shawn were smiling. Tired, sweating, shaking...but smiling. Happy to have trained and happy they are now a tiny bit better than when they walked in the door.

I also need to mention the super cool and friendly Robert McMullin.  He is the Tapout Training Center strength and conditioning coach. His website is on the way: Combat Performance I can't wait to see what will be posted so that I can steal borrow some of his training methods! His knowledge and experience in the S&C/MMA world is damn impressive! If you need your lungs worked on, or have a need for the ability to squeeze someones head off with one hand. Please contact him! You'll be very happy you did. He's on FaceBook.

In my opinion this is the #1 MMA gym I have ever had the privilege of visiting (and I've visited a lot!). The people were absolutely awesome, friendly and very family oriented. If you ever make it to Vegas, do yourself a favor, call first, make sure Shawn is around and go visit. Bring your mouth piece!


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The whole...

is greater than the sum of its parts. Gestalt theory tries to explain human processes with the concept which states, "what we are is more than what we're made of." For example, when we look at something, our eyes sample the light information, modulating neurons in the visual cortex. Some how, something in our cranial goo breaks down this information and makes sense of it. The output is greater (in information) than the input. But WTF does this have to do with exercise?

The people of a gym are the input, and together create a greater output. No matter the quality of the equipment, the size of the training area, the smell, the temperature, noise, fleas or rodents; the athlete can excel. The individuals at the gym are more important than anything one can buy or build. A dumbbell will not push you. A medicine ball will not praise your success or cheer you up on failure. In fact, failure is an option for a chinup bar, but not for the one holding the timer bitching at how slow you are.

I couldn't get to BJJ/wrestling today due to my work schedule so I called up The Dude and it was game on. As part of the plan each week is 2 minutes added to the workout. Whether we workout or not.

Today's workout was a simple fighters workout.
4 exercises x 2 rounds
2 minutes each + 1 minute break = 23 minutes of heart pounding death and destruction.

1. Jump rope fast
2. Box the bag until your knuckles bleed
3. Squat thrust + pushup, jump to a chinup bar and do a chin up
4. Kick/knee the shit out of the bag

No pics today of the devastation. This workout was seriously cardio intense. Muscle fatigue was not even an option, this was purely the cardiac pump controlling the action. The chest burning reminded me of my first no-gi BJJ tournament 4 years ago. After 5 minutes into a stalemate, we had a 3 minute overtime. During the very short 1 minute break, I distinctly remember the thought that the burning in my chest was due to lava pumping through my aorta. I slammed my mouthpiece onto the mat, and bitched at my coach I was gassed. He just glared at me... I picked it back up off the dirty mats, stuffed it into my even dirtier mouth and went back out for more. He won, only because I jumped guard during his takedown attempt and lost two points... It was at that point I knew fitness was just as important as technique and the first concepts of The Bat Dojo were born. I went home and wrote one thing down, "build some sort of workout, which will make my chest burn like it did today." Today's workout was just that.

I have a BPM chart below. One can clearly see the long mountain peaks of heavy heartrate work. Interestingly both of the jumprope segments exhibited a "U" shaped dip. We believe this was actually due to the screaming of The Dude telling me I was a pussy and to hurry the hell up. Amazingly, it worked.
It's also easy to see in the 2nd round of four exercises, the acceleration rate into the activities was much less aggressive than the prior round. Ideally, I want the leading edge to nearly slam straight up, much like the 1st exercise in the 1st round.

Recovery rates in during the breaks were averaging around 25 BPM +- 10 BPM deviation.

And the protein part of today's dinner :)


Tuesday, September 21, 2010

All great masters...

...are chiefly distinguished by the power of adding a second, a third, and perhaps a fourth step in a continuous line. Many a man had taken the first step. With every additional step you enhance immensely the value of your first. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

I've not been away, I've been secret squirrelling :)

Today I wanted to drill some basic BJJ techniques to:
1. Keep sharp
2. Test my body to see how things go.

I feel tiny bit rusty, but not too bad. I drilled techniques with The Dude and the Nigerian Nightmare today. Just some things I think increase my odds of effectiveness. A triangle setup and some halfguard concepts I researched. I'm building a small rolodex in my mind of a few techniques I want to be my go to moves. My little safe zones to get good at, and expand from there. It's easy to want to build a 10000 technique library yet suck at all of them. I'm focusing on a few things, while ignoring a lot of other things. Actually ignoring isn't quite accurate. It's more of store the technique to be aware of it and come back to it as my arsenal needs to expand.

Ever notice how the superstars in any discipline get typecasted by their technique? Marcelo Garcia's armdrags, Roger Gracie's full mount/x-choke, CroCop's roundhouses and the UFC ring-girls'...eyes. I assume this is a natural progression of finding the answer to one's personal riddle. Right now, I'm all knotted up in this riddle to determine what I'm good at and what works for me (even if I'm not good at it).
My injuries are good. I'm not in any pain, just when I wake up in the morning sometimes I feel like King Arthur is pulling Excalibur out of my gut. Yet, this is happening less and less everyday. Today after drilling and even after about 10 minutes of light rolling with the Nigerian Nightmare I feel pretty good. Although the fat bastard FELL on the back of my head attempting some half retarded guillotine swan dive... Now my neck hurts like hell. We'll see how it goes in the morning....

I'm off to bed!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Sleep... the most moronic fraternity in the world, with the heaviest dues and the crudest rituals.  ~Vladimir Nabokov

Holy crap! Check this out! Ran the Garmin all night while I slept. Looks like there were a few moments of no data.... NO DATA! WTF MAN! Did I flatline??? ;)

(click to zoom in)

One can see definite zones such as the mess at 1:55 to 2:25. Plus a bunch of weird spikes. The spikes at the end are the 7 minute intervals between my snooze button! Everytime my alarm goes off my heartrate goes to 80-85 BPM from 55 BPM!!! This cannot be good!

I wonder what those other spikes are? Perhaps rolling around? Or thoughts?? I was originally going to joke and scribble "Angelina Jolie" and arrow to a spike or two LOL

Interesting stuff for sure!


Thursday, September 9, 2010

To fight and conquer... all your battles is not supreme excellence; supreme excellence consists in breaking the enemy's resistance without fighting. ~Sun Tzu

ok kids, in lieu of photos, I have for you a stop action video of today's workout. First up was me, then The Dude. Today we did Tuesday's workout but backwards and in 2000 degree heat....MUCH tougher! I think I nearly popped my medulla oblongata.

And some heartrate data:

This shows some serious upward stair stepping trends. The bag dragging and ball busting shrimps were whimpy compared to the rest of the crap we did. These two were at the beginning and the middle valley(11:30 min).

My 90 second recovery was about 30 BPM, just like last workout.

See ya!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


...has a flavor of neurosis.

"Crazy!" is often the response of my coworkers to my workouts. Occasionally, at lunch we might chat about nutrition and exercise... Actually it's less than occasionally, it's rare. But when we do, I try to softly lend out a helpful hint, then quickly shut up. No one likes a zealot proselytizing their doctrine!  I prefer to just be a good role model. An extremely overweight individual I know bought a popular prepackaged exercise DVD plan... I'm typically straight forward about these things and told him he'll never use it. Not in a nasty way, but in a brotherly, truthful method with a genuine interest. He obviously wants to change, yet does not want to attack the problem at the source. Diet? Nope. Exercise? Try again. Killer instinct? Yes.

He has no intention of actually doing the work. No predatory demeanor, stalking good health like a lion in the jungle. Humans have a highly evolved and primal instinct to stalk, hunt and kill a prey. Why cannot your well being be the prey in the absence of a tasty wooly mammoth? Use your carnal skills to rip and shred illness, tearing it apart leaving the bloody remains of modern environmental diseases for buzzards. Not that I want buzzards to get sick, I actually like them.

Today I wanted to get a good feel to see if I'm injury free-enough for BJJ. I wanted to see if I could handle grappling takedowns and vertical stress(parallel to the spine). So far so good! We'll see in the morning though. Maybe this week I can get back into BJJ :)

Here's what we did, incrementing by 2 mins per week:
1 minute each - 20 seconds of break x 2 rounds = 18 mins 40 seconds.

1. Texas Triangle - 3 miniballs setup in a big garage sized equilateral triangle. With the Atlas ball in the center. Run from the Atlas ball to one of the mini balls, touch it with your palm. Run your ass back to the Atlas ball and perform one pushup with both hands on the Atlas ball. Repeat this mess to another miniball etc.. etc.. etc...
2. Bearcrawls around the mat edge - Two opposites sides are just normal bearcrawls. The other opposite sides have a kickpad one must hop over during the bearcrawls.
3. Grappling Dummy squats - underarm grab the bag, step back into a reverse lunge. Stand, swing the bag under the other arm, step back with the other leg and repeat.
4. Grab the 10lb sand filled miniball and beat the hell out of the punching bag with it.
5. Double leg takedowns vs the hanging bag. To make things worse, you have to snatch a kettleball under the bag with the rear hand and stand.
6. Shoulder walk shrimp with the 40lb nut crusher on your junk (lower stomach). When your legs are almost straight, bring feet to your ass and bridge fast keeping the ball crusher connected to your belly button. Repeat the mess.
7. Simple. Low crawl and drag the grappling dummy with you. :)

This workout was tough! A quadriceps beatdown with some nice hamstring action as well. I can already feel my hamstrings getting sore three hours later!

MiniBrock busted up the Grappling dummy a few workouts ago, blowing a nice chunk of guts out's it's newly formed A-Hole(yes, again!). Immediately, during the live workout we taped it up, just as MiniBrock used it for his next exercise. For today's craziness, I added another layer of Gorilla Tape...just to be sure :)

Heartrate graph:

Some cool shit in this graph. 5 BPM psychosomatic lump...40 seconds before the beginning. There are 14 peaks matching the 14 exercises. The 1st round BPM were about 10 BPM lower than round 2. The shrimp with the Atlas ball was a huge rest period with a mini spike both times(~9:00/18:00 min) and a quick drop off. This means, it immediately reached it's maximal intensity then the body recovered quickly while keeping up the pace; interesting! All of the other exercises had nice wide peaks (with the exception of the first exercise in the 1st round). I believe this is the goal. Wide, long duration at maximum intensity. Imagine being about to sprint at 100% for hours!

Sixty seconds of recovery from workout end: my heart rate dropped 37BPM. I'd love for this to be about 50. We shall see if this happens :)

Here's some proof of today's insanity:
**Technical note on the photography. No flash today. Batteries were dead. I cranked the ISO up to 3200 running f5.6/24mm. With almost no ambient light, noise and bizarre artifacts crept in. This time I'll just call it art instead of photography.  Enjoy :)

The Dude Ball Bashing

The Dude Ball Grabbing

The Dude Dragging His Bag

The Dude Dragging More of His Bag

Colonoscopy (1st timer newbie!) Bravely Grabbing his Ball

MiniBrock Angrily Bashing His Bag

MiniBrock Banging His Head Against His Bag

Me Attempting my Best Predatory Hawk Impersonation

Me Bashing my Ball Against my Bag


Sunday, September 5, 2010

Triangle of Doom Part 3

hahaha forgot one painful image... :)

Triangle of Doom Part 2

The Dude emailed me at work asking what we were doing today (actually 2 Sep). My simple reply was, "That's classified information." Mostly because I didn't know yet. Although I had an idea...a big fat repeat of last workout because I f'd up by not getting any data! The other part is my theory that states, "Every workout should be unknown and random." It's a little tricky for me as I develop the workouts, but I still do not know the outcomes. I'm uncertain if anyone will survive or whether it will be taxing enough to reap some sort of benefit. A few years ago, The Dude and I literally had a sheet of exercises and we would click on a random number generator on the internet in order to build our task list. Sometimes the internet would be mean and lump a bunch of nasty things together. Pushups, then pullups, then squat thrusts/pushups...etc.. There was no emotional leveling humans do to make the workout fair and reasonable. The cold heart of the computer decided our fate and sometimes it was brutal. We will be back to that intensity in about 4 weeks based on the 2 minute increase per week rule.

Jump back to last week to check out the task list. We executed an exact repeat, with Martian going first  to make it home before the wife poisons his lasagna. Second up is a special guest star Kaveman. He brought up a great idea. Try a different exercise philosophy per week and compare the biometric output. For example, a week of P90x, then Crossfit, Yoga, The 300 etc... This is a fantastic idea and I'll be planning that as soon as possible!

The data this time was fascinating, exhibiting all sorts of crazy shit.

0:30 Psychosomatic lump...repeatable in nearly every workout.
Work out starts at the 1:00 mark and ends at the 15:00 min mark.

The 10 second breaks(in light gray) certainly mark the demarcation between exercises.
The grappling dummy guard exercises were a massive active-rest period. Yet it was taxing as hell. This was almost certainly a strength/anaerobic task. The waveforms were weird, all lumpy and crazy looking. Usually starting with a higher BPM then reducing to a 2nd sub peak. Must be some sort of 2nd wind from the aerobic rest.

The second time through the rings, shows a break due to the prior ToD and general beatdown. A couple ring hops in, then a fatigue induced break kicked in. The funky waveform shows this. The ring hops certainly wore everyone out!

The second time through the bean bag was a train wreck as compared to the first time. Cardio was breaking down, strength was practically gone. At the 30 second mark, I pretty much fell apart.

Both guillotines showed a solid grip for about 30 seconds. Then a BPM breakdown, although...the waveform shows it looks bad, the guillotine hang is really an anaerobic task and heartrate decreases significantly after the first grip failure at the 30 second mark. The successive times clamping on were actually quite solid and long lasting for all of us. BPM vs power output does not always a correlate!

 Martian Whipping the Bean Bag Around

 Martian Ring Hopping

Kaveman Ring Hopping

 Kaveman Grappling Dummy with KettelBall

 The Dude Grappling with the 25lb Plate

 The Dude Grappling with the KettleBalls

Me and the Ring



Triangle of Doom Part 1

No...not Sanakaku Jime/Triangle Choke; the choke using the legs. Rather, the name of one of the tortures we did on the 31 Sep. I know, I'm a few days late... I'll have part 2 done up today and posted.

The problem with some workouts is the motions do not often fully simulate the sport one is training for. Not that exercising is worthless, or that running sprints is going to hurt your baseball pitch. My goal with this workout was to simulate a few things we deal with in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. If you're unfamiliar with BJJ, it is a martial art involving grappling. During sparring one is often trying to squeeze the ever-living shit out of their opponent's neck. At other times desperately trying not to have the same done to you. As you can imagine there are times of intense, high-speed scrambling for position or moments of slow, crushing, exhausting fights to escape a pin.  We can enhance our scrambling speed with ladder drills, sprints, box jumps etc... The low-speed, smashing is a bit harder to simulate. Today we'll be addressing squeezing, scrambling and crushing.

Each week I've been incrementing the workout times by 2 minutes. This allows us to increase intensity without dying. It also gives noobs a chance to jump in, without exploding. Even if we get to 30 minutes, the workout is adaptable and can be broken down to smaller time segments for beginners, while leaving the rest to the advanced guys.

Here's what we did(I'll try to explain my madness):
1. Triangle of Doom (ToD) - I set up a triangle shape on the mat with three 10lb miniballs. The triangle is as large as the mat area, with about 12 feet inbetween the balls. As you stand there infront of one of the balls, the 2nd ball is 60 degrees to your front right. If you were to run to that ball, still facing forward, the 3rd ball is 60 degrees to your front left. Basically I made a two angled zig zag.
For this exercise, one keeps their shoulders parallel to the garage door. Squat into a low grappler's stance, palm touching the first ball. Sprint in forward right, JUMPING over an old kick shield on the floor, squat and palm the 2nd ball. Immediately change directions to forward left, JUMPING over another kick shield to squat and palm the 3rd ball. Turn around 180 and go back the opposite direction. The key with this workout is to sprint, jump, squat all the while keeping the shoulders parallel to the garage door. This is a 3D motion, forward, up and diagonal!

2. Ring hops - This is a bitch. Grab the gymnastics ring with both hands. Step back a few feet, straighten arms, squat, then jump! Jump high enough to punch down with both hands until your arms are straight. If you bust your head into the ceiling, you jumped high enough.

3. Grappling dummy guard drill - A surprisingly difficult movement. Lay on your back, and guard(wrap legs around) up the grappling dummy. Hug the dummy and grip a 25lb plate tight to it. Lean left until your are on your side. Right foot underhook the dummy, lean right until upright. Lift the dummy with your right hook, switch to the left hook, right foot guard wrap. Lean to the right, left leg comes over to complete the guard. Repeat, backwards to the left. This was one of those funky ass mental/physical combos which confused the hell out of everyone.

4. Bulgarian Bean Bag Spins - This one sucks. Assume a wide-ish stance; feet about shoulder width apart. Grab the bag with both hands on one end and chuck it into the air rotating it 90 degrees...catch it. Whip it back into the air 90degrees, catch it again and keep going. Every 360 degrees, reverse direction. The exercise attack the grips, the arms, shoulders, legs, butt, pancreas and something else I'm sure.

5. Grappling dummy spins - Guard up the grappling dummy and grab two 15-ish lb kettle balls(preferably homemade). Shoot your arms straight in the air. So far so good. Now, start rotating the grappling dummy 180 degrees. Without using your hands, and without resting your arms on the mat. You may use your elbows and forearms to help manipulate the dummy. After 180 degrees, spin in back the other way. This is an obnoxiously difficult task. My goal was to create the sensation of drowning under a gigantic bag of lard...and that's exactly how it felt to me.

6. Guillotine Choke Hangs - Pure 100% testosterone fueled mental exercise. Get rabid and latch onto the hanging bag with a Guillotine Grip (not Gable!), lift your feet off the mat. DO NOT GIVE UP! when I demonstrated this stuff, the looks were of disbelief and of concern I had forgotten to take my meds. Originally, my poor math skills had me state 2 minutes each, with 30 seconds of rest....TWICE. Yet, my cohorts reason (I call it mutiny) stated that would be 24 minutes and certain death. Woops, I don't want anyone to die, so...ok two rounds of 1 minute each exercise, with 10 seconds of rest was negotiated (14 mins total). Pansies.

So how did it feel after roughly 14 minutes (12 min work + rests) of exercise? It felt like I was steam rolled into the hot pavement! Certainly one of the most intense workouts we've ever had. Mostly in the realm of muscle fatigue. Heart rate was good, but it didn't feel all that horrific.

Here's the heart rate data. Oh wait... I totally screwed up and lost my data... MY FAULT! I think I jabbed the start button on my watch on one of the exercises early on. Sucks. Oh well.

We also had a noob join the ranks for a try. Sucker! We'll call him Martian.

Here's Martian, two seconds into the ToD, all hibbly-bibbly like a cat. He wasn't happy afterwards though...especially since he got home late and had to suffer the wrath of the wife...oops sorry! Next time(if he comes back), we'll get him out the door first.

Martian under the bag.

MiniBrock on the bean bag...taking nap :)

The Dude damn near putting his head through the ceiling.

The Dude fighting off the grappling dummy.

Numbnuts dangling off the bag

The Four Grips of Doom.

At the end...the look of, "Fuck, that sucked!"

Another workout partner. He's doing the Tarantula drag. In record time!