Wednesday, March 5, 2008

A Basement Gym

Here are pictures of my probably fairly typical unfinished basement home gym: Kettlebells, interlocking floor mats, hard foam roller, think nylon rope, stop watch, GymBoss, pen, work gloves with fingers cut off. Also note the elliptical trainer, my main stay for many years, which I never re-assembled after moving to my new house ... I had ditched this type of exercise in favor of KB strength and endurance training shortly after being introduced to it. My company supplies free passes to a local gym equipped with all the latest hardware .. except KBs .. haven't been there since the beginning of the summer.

Went to bed at 11pm and got up at 6am .. a very good nights sleep. I weighed in at 180.5 lb again .. very pleased to able to stay here. Woohoo! .. no pain in the elbows this morning! I really think the gentle Z-Health and QiGong last night really help lubricate them. Today I am still going to give the KBs another day off and do a little BW work with more joint mobility, Z and Qi.

1 bowl of Kitchari with a little sweet potato and Toor Dal
2 cups of coffee with tbs of 1/2 and 1/2

GD (Greg Donahue) GTG Pull up Program:
Day 5: 1 set of 2 neutral pull ups (5,1,2)

These felt real good and I'm back to being a good boy .. NO extra sets today!

Morning snack:
4 oz of Kefir

Now that I'm back with pull ups, I wanted to start thinking about some pushing exercises for balance. I haven't done any KB C&P work (or any weight pressing of any kind) since October (they really aggravated my elbows when I was starting to make good gains with ETK ROP) so I thought I would ease back into some milder pressing with the old gym standard, the push-up. I use push-up stands .. they give a much greater range of motion by allowing my chest to sink below my hands and gently touch the floor each rep.

BW 4 x 15 push-ups one set every 15 minutes

Did these at work (where I keep my push-up stands) in the aisle way. I have recently learned that standard push-ups can be slowly morphed over a number of years via a set of progressions into the very challenging HSPU's (BW handstand push-ups). For information on HSPU progressions and other gymnastic type training check out the many articles at:

You can also search the DD forum for anything Coach Sommer posts ... the man is gymnastic training genius.

I went home for lunch and did:

BW 5 x 100 jump rope with short rests between sets. Time: 7:30

BW Superset x 2 with one minute rest between the sets:
  1. 20 Front squats
  2. 20 Cossacks
  3. 10 Deck squats

That's a very slow jump roping time compared to a moderately accomplished speed rope jumper which would take he/she less than half my time. I fell into jump roping by accident when I bought the thick nylon rope in the photo above back in October. After reading Joe Pavel's article on DD

Look-ma, no hands!

I used it only to practice swing hip flexing, by looping it through the handle of my 24kg bell and behind my neck (protected by a rolled up towel). After adjusting the length to let the bell hang freely between my legs, I would then perform the swinging motion without my arms just using my core and hip flexing. This was also at the time when my elbows were too sore to do any kind of lifting, so I was on the look out for creative ways to do something!

Then a month ago after getting tired of running in place for active rest between sets of C&Js, I looked down saw the rope and began clumsily jumping rope. Apparently this is considered a great full body endurance exercise. After seeing this youtube video clip:


by Olympic wrestler Buddy Lee you can easily see why. I bought an inexpensive speed rope recently but didn't like .. someday I'll give it another whirl.

1 protein shake with 6 oz of Kefir
1 bowl of Gujarati green beans with brown rice and sweet potato
1 large Naval orange

Afternoon snack:
1 handful of roasted almonds
1 handful of cashews

1 bowl of Gujarati green beans with brown rice and sweet potato
1 large helping of S.O. prepared Beijing style Hong Shao Rou (soy-sauce braised pork)
1 helping of steamed Kale with a little olive oil and salt
2 pieces of pie
2 scoops of ice cream

Oh yes, the double desert .. ahem .. when my S.O. suggested why don't we finish the strawberry rhubarb pie, I only put up the mildest resistance.

Following the elbow rehab success of last night, I this evening I did Z and Qi.


Howie Brewer said...

Ha... looks a lot like my workout area. I'll have to take some pics as well. I have an elliptical trainer too which is now collecting dust. Why spend 40 minutes on an elliptical when you can burn just as many calories and have more fun swinging kb's for 20 minutes?

Buddy Lee is a bit too advanced for me. If you haven't already, take a look at my link for Ross Training. Under videos he has a few on jumping rope. This guy is awesome as well.

Franklin said...

Howie, I did check out the Ross Training site and videos .. the guy is an amazing athlete.

Yes, and please go ahead and post the pictures of your home gym .. I sure its just like mine .. minimal but brutal.