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Humble Pie

August 3, 2011

Sunday, April 10, 2011

So it turns out that this kettlebell sport thing is hard. I’m not sure if there are some athletic people out there who haven’t tried it and think “Oh, I’m fit and strong, that looks like it’s so easy, I could dominate without even trying”….well if there are people like that out there I want to walk right up to them and punch them. I’m not saying its impossible or anything, but I’ve had to re-evaluate my concept of what constitutes a heavy load, and it is quite a weak departure from loads I would do in more kettlebell-fitness type activities. Even when I think about loads I can lift with barbells, when I try to equate it to what I think I should be able to do with a kettlebell, they don’t match at all.
My recent most humbling example: the workout below was mostly jerking. I have never jerked a kettlebell, only a barbell. So I have never really jerked with one arm. I felt 12kg should have been a relatively easy load. I did the first 5 minute set and thought I was going to die. Everything hurt – my grip, my shoulder joint, my knees… everything. I switched to 8kg and in some ways it was almost too easy, but in others it was just right. I’ve injured my right rotator cuff numerous times, and I find all of this kettlebell work sometimes makes it flare up. I did the last set using 8kg and I think it was for the best. I think 1 or 2 more workouts at 8kg and my shoulder will be used to it and ready to try a heavier load.

The next humbling experience is back to considering 16kg a “heavy” load for “swings” although the GS technique is very different from the fitness technique. Still… the competitive part of me is frustrated at this frickin’ sport! But for all of my moaning things have been getting easier. I can feel myself improving and developing some kettlebell muscle memory. I’ve learned a lot in 3 weeks and I know I’ll learn a lot in the next 3.

GS Swing – 2sets – 3min – 1 hand switch (12kg)

1 Arm Jerks – 5min @ 10rpm – 1 hand switch X 3 sets – 2min breaks. This was more challenging than expected which is why I had to embarrassingly move to 8kg. I did feel more confident with the technique with each set and my weaker right shoulder is more used to the movement. I feel like this kettlebell work will really help my barbell work as I will be working out some of the imbalances between my left and right.

1 Arm Presses – 1 set – 2 minutes 1 handswitch (12kg)
I broke this up into 1 minute per arm. I was able to do 15 on the right side and 14 on the left.

Heavy Swings – 3 sets – 30 reps – 1 minute break (16kg)
This just about killed me! 😉 I struggled to hit 30 each set.

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