Sunday, July 27, 2008

Progressive Conventional Dead-lift Singles Video

Saturday July 26, 2008

Weight: 176 1/2 lbs. Felt extremely low energy and rested the entire day including several naps.

Sunday July 27, 2008

Weight: 176 1/4 lbs. Felt much better today. I owed Rif a video of progressive singles which had been postponed several times over the last 6 weeks. With the Cert completed and my back and right knee much better, I shot it early in the afternoon:

Z-Health: R-Phase + NWU2

I didn't notice until now that my butt is also viewable from the broken mirror (a flying kettlebell that got away in March) behind the support wall. It seems as if my hips are too high when initiating the lift. As usual, everyone is invited to critique my form.

Late Afternoon:

24kg MaxVO2 Snatch Protocol @ :15/:15, 5rep/set
Total: 60 sets, 300 reps in 30 mins (PR)

I almost puked the last two sets and forced myself to stay up and moving. I also got so hot that I stripped to just my briefs by set 35. I knew that at after finishing set 50 I would gut out another 10 sets to avoid having to try and get to 60 another time. The mind plays funny tricks like this.

It seems as if my pace has picked up since last time as I finished my 5 reps with a second or sometimes two left on most sets. This is encouraging as I move to 6 reps per set next VO2 session. I also noted that at about set 40 the bell was crimping the tape in my palm and beginning to get uncomfortable on the decent. To remedy this I switched to a more GS style grip on the downswing by holding the bell with mostly my thumb and index finger. This released the tension in the palm. I also noticed that I always swing my right arm back when snatching left so I made a conscious effort to mirror this on the right by swinging my left. It feels weird but does help my hip snap. Perhaps the few sets of hang snatches I've done recently are already helping.

I also wrote a very favorable review of Marty Gallagher's "The Purposeful Primitive" which is now available on the DD site which I copied below:

The best I've ever read! Rated 10 out of 10

This book must be savoured as a quick read does NOT do it justice. Some of the photos are so compelling that they tell complete stories. Gargantuans of size and stature that I had never heard of before like Ken Fantano, George Hechter, Pat Brego, and Anatoli Piserenko will forever haunt me when I try to find excuses to skip a training session.

For the last three weeks this book lies open on my kitchen table as every meal requires a re-read of another ditty. Some of the stories are so vivid and detailed in their presentation that they elicit in me ear-to-ear grins or vulgar outbursts of joy. As predominately one who trains and instructs almost exclusively within the RKC Hard-Style system, at first I was aghast at only a fleeting mention in this huge tome of the kettlebell as an amazing strength and conditioning tool. Then I as I read and re-read, I realized that the dumbbell and barbell free weight centric tools discussed in detail in this book were the implements Marty has used over several decades and he knows them best. And at the end of day, only a little imagination is necessary to modify his recommended routines and splits into ones with kettlebells.

Some have criticized this work as being a compendium of routines and ideas available in other publications. If this is the case, I challenge anyone who can come close to the way in which they are presented here with such enthusiasm, sense of balance and beauty, and breadth of knowledge.

Franklin B. Herman, RKC - LIttleton, MA


Howie Brewer said...

First of all, those deadlifts look too easy for you!

Second, no puking allowed!

Third, Marty was THE reason I found my way to kettlebells. After reading his article in Men's Health's single, experimental magazine entitled "Muscle", I tracked Marty down to his Washington Post weekly column. From there, to his own Purposefully Primitive website. I also own one of his PP Deadlift t-shirts. One of his articles discussed a gentleman named Pavel Tsatsouline and kettlebells. Shortly thereafter, I purchased The Russian Kettlebell Challenge. Not buying in immediately to the hype, it wasn't until a year later that I ordered my first 16kg bell. And the rest is history...

Franklin B Herman, RKC said...

Hey, Howie, I really like your new avatar with that shiny new 16kg pro bell.

The pulls are getting easier but I'm still not close to being competitive for the upcoming TSC (I'm at 275 and need 350+).

Thanks for the nice anecdote about Marty and your introduction to kbs .. and get the book or borrow it from the library, the guy can really clearly communicate his ideas.

Sean Schniederjan said...


I am really following your VO2max training for increasing your 5 min nos. I've intuitively thought this was a fantastic way to train but I haven't seen a living example to follow, so this will be good. Are you following the instructions/advice of the KJ video? Do you fly through the sets of 5 or do you take a little rest in the overhead position?

Very nice review of PP. It can be a little frustrating at times for the avid kettlebeller, but once you get past that and open your mind to this man's depth of knowledge and anecdotes, it has to be one of the best reads about the human body ever crafted.

Its inspired me to throw in some heavy KB front squats to my training as well as floor presses.

Colin said...

Hey Franklin great work as usual - deadlift form looks solid to me but I wouldn't comment in the company who follows your blog these days. ;)

I do feel I have to pull you up on Purposely Primative though. Not so long ago you were in agreement with me that it wasn't great. I have been thinking about giving it a less than favourable reveiw on DD. Worst resource I have purchased from there by far.

fawn said...

I think the DL's look great! I'm with Howie, too easy. You know what Rif says... it's all easy until it gets heavy. The only little tiny thing I would tell you to watch for is don't let go of your breath until you set the bar down. Stay tight. I think your hips look fine.

Franklin B Herman, RKC said...


Thanks, I really believe VO2Max is the way to train for the TSC and SSST. Also please checkout Jordan Vezina's Average to Elite Blog where he has numerous videos on the subject and is making fantastic progress.

Front squats are lacking in my training but there is only so much room in a given cycle. I plan on repeating a Mike Mahler 5 x 5 doubles template I did back in late Feb. It had front squats and they were awesome.


Thanks! The deads are coming along albeit slow and steady. I really had a change in heart regarding PP .. it just got so much better the 2nd and 3rd time through.


I really appreciate the positive feedback on the deads .. they are slowly becoming more natural. But as Marty Gallagher in PP relates that it took him ten years to finally get comfortable with DL mechanics.