Saturday, January 30, 2010


Today I went to a No-gi seminar with Jeff 'the snowman' Monson. The seminar was hosted by Ivan Salaverry, and was great.
Besides making the finals of the prestgious ADCC tournement 3 times, fighting for the UFC title once, (among literally dozens of other athletic successes) Monson is a local guy, well educated, and very politically active. Personal opinions of his politics aside (those who know me know where I stand) I really appreciate a professional athlete that is active politically at the grass-roots level, and genuinely taking a stand. It is very easy for someone to say nothing, do nothing, and just train, compete, and retire.
There are a bunch of internet keyboard heros that slag on Monson (just check the comments on any video of him on youtube) but the guy has been very successful, was a great instructor today, and is the most physically impressive human being I've ever seen in person. Unless you've won Abu Dhabis, or fought for a UFC title I'm pretty sure your opinion on him should be: he's better than me.
The seminar focused on fundamentals: control points, space (when to create it, and how when to take it away) . He covered a couple of guard passes, a great drill, a great way to recover guard from side control, a bunch of half guard stuff and the north-south choke (most people call it the Monson choke). My head is still trying to keep tabs on all of the details. I am sure I'll lose a few, but there were so many good points I can honestly say "My jiu-jitsu got better today."
Great stuff.

Friday, January 29, 2010

One piece, moving better.

There are going to be some changes to my training here soon. More on that later.
I was inspired by reading a bunch of Coach Dan John's work, and decided to warm up on overhead squats, then move on to the split squats I've been doing.. Well after a LONG warm up I worked my way up to 1 hang snatch, then 3 oh squats (full depth) at 95.
Not good, but progress. I did a bunch of sets here until I got tired and had to dump the bar because it got out in front of me. So I transitioned to 1 hang clean 5 front squats. Did 4 sets here.
Hip mobility has come a long way. That was the most fun I've had in the gym in a long time.
Took today off. I am a bit sore today, and am going to a no-gi seminar all day tomorrow. My sleep has been pretty crap. None of that alone would lead me to take a day off, but with all of those combined.. it was time.
Have a great weekend.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Focus on muscle.

Interesting post up at Pandagon (one of my favorite lefty political/news blogs) discusses health, muscle, fat and feminism. This is a subject I've touched on, but have had a hard time juggling the sensitive "feminism" bit.. Now I don't have to. Check it out.

Decent training yesterday:
5/3/1 week 2 bench day:
worked up to 8 at 210 (left a couple in the tank)
then did 2x 5 at 175

1a Dumbell rows:
all at 95

Chins: some.

I am going to be training a couple of folks twice a week starting today. This will be the first time in a while I've actually trained someone consistently. Most of the time, I'm dealing with athletes for whom I do an assessment, write programming, correct their form for a couple sessions and let them go through the program. (usually with a confer/re-assess/and more programming.. repeat ad nausium)
I am going to take the time to go through the warm-up with them every Monday and Wednesday, god knows I could use the mobility work.
Good folks, I think they'll stick it out, and if they do the results are going to be great.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Broccoli and catch up..

The wife is at a meeting at the boathouse, so I'm catching up with you folks.
when last we spoke was Tuesday, I got a decent lift in that afternoon.
5/3/1 military day:
worked up to 9 at 145.
Did some heavy 1 arm rows (3x8 at 95)
lots of chins.

Wednesday was class.
Felt a little flat and slow. I was moving ok, but kept coming up a little short.. timing a little off.
Happens some days.

Tuesday, 5/3/1 deads.
for the first time the low cals got to me.
5x405 it was fast, but got light headed. I had 1-2 more in me at least. I'll have to adjust pre-training cals.
from there suitcase carry the length of the basketball court, clean and press, and waiters walk back (55 lb dumbbell)
4x each arm.

Friday fun:
inch worm with a push-up (+20lb weighted vest)
kb suitcase carry/waiters walk 4x (timing station)
pinch hold 2x25 lb plates hold at chest height and step-up
grapper's twist, grappler's twist, row

full rest
2 minutes each:
trx scarecrow
kneeling floor to ceiling with 15 lb dumbbells+25lb of chain.
hip extensions.
planks rolling the 6 lb med ball to partner
planks rolling the 6 lb med ball to partner

went to class, didn't roll much. Had a good roll with B, and with a couple new guys. Had a good conversation with Jimmy from T-town MMA. Seems to be a good guy who really cares about his athletes.

Then the wife and I met up for 'date night' we pushed the prowler for about 20 minutes. She on the high handles, I used the low handles.

Then we went to see Invictus. Decent flick.The rugby scenes were accurate, if a little too stilted. Couple poor directorial decisions that really hurt the movie: too much manipulation, and some of the music was down right horrible. The director's son: Scott Eastwood was terrible as Joel Stransky. Those problems aside, it was pretty good.. Matt Damon did a respectable job (even if he is 6 inches too short to play Francois Pinaar) Morgan Freeman was great. In fact most of the acting in fact was fine. the story is great, just handled poorly.
Read the book. It's much better, and wait for the film to come out on DVD.

Went to class today. Got to roll with the professor, always a great learning experience.
Most of all had fun and got some quality mat time.
Then I had some lamb and broccoli rabe for supper. The wife hates broccoli, so I only get to eat it when she's away.. it was fantastic.
Enjoy the rest of your Sunday.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010


My face is numb. I had the temporary crown put on my tooth this morning.. I loath the dentist.
Last night I got stuck at work, and missed class.
I went to the gym instead and did:
1 minute all out 2 minutes rest
on the versaclimber.
I hate that thing, but it makes me feel like Ivan Drago.

The Cos doesn't like the dentist either:

Monday, January 18, 2010

UFC fight night 20 and WEC 46

Brief notes on UFC fight night 20:
Beautiful display of jiu-jitsu by Evan Dunham to submit Efrain Escudero.

Escudero should have tapped sooner. Getting your arm mangled when you are caught in a submission is stupid. Just tap. You've lost, no point adding injury to insult.

Tom Lawlor v. Aaron Simpson fight was a good one. I had it even with a slight edge to Lawlor, but I can't fault the judges for calling it the other way. Close close fight.

Amir Sadollah looked good, all be it against fairly questionable competition. Don't get me wrong, Brad Blackburn is a local guy, and a great athlete. I just don't think he is representative of the next level of competition for Sadollah.

I think Gray Maynard stands the best chance of beating B.J. Penn. If he does, it will be a horribly boring fight. A good number of Gray's fights have been boring. I think THAT is the reason the UFC gave Frankie Edgar the title shot over Gray. Right now B.J. is the only healthy champion the UFC has, and one of the more entertaining. If he were to get beaten in a snoozer buy a guy who tends to fight in snoozers it would be bad for business. I think when GSP, Silva, Machida and/or Lesner get healthy then the UFC will take a chance and make that fight. Then again they might not.

Ben Henderson was getting tooled before he pulled off the 'Hail Mary' guillotine choke on Jamie Varner. Varner should know how to get out of that choke better. Oh and to all of the folks who were talking about Henderson fighting B.J. ask Carlos Condit how the transition from WEC champ to UFC fighter works.

The California kid looked good against Raphael Assuncao. I am tired of him as the perpetual #1 contender. I understand that he puts butts in seats, but every time someone wins the WEC featherweight belt they have to fight Faber. It's getting a little tired. Aren't there more guys out there?

Welcome back Mike Brown.

Kamal Shalorus could be a lot of problems for a lot of people. The guy has a chin of granite, throws bombs, and has the best takedown defense I've seen in an MMA fight.

This weekend was good for me. I've been on low cals for the past two weeks, and am down about 5 lbs. I had a short refeed sunday morning at Salty's. Best brunch in town. I had about 2 lbs of crab, some shrimp, prime rib, and splurged with a scone and a piece of coconut cake (every good southern boy's favorite). I feel like a million bucks right now.

Monday, January 11, 2010

You're Failing Seymore!

epic fail pictures

Good Monday, gentle reader. I am not doing well at blogging... you may have noticed. I'm not abandoning you. I'll have my thoughts on the UFC and WEC fights as soon as I watch tonight's UFC event.
Training is going well, but it's just boring. It's boring to do, and I assume boring to read. Lots of intervals, reduced cals. The weights are moving well, but nothing too interesting. Last week looked like this:
Monday: BJJ with extra conditioning and takedowns before class.

Tuesday: Military day: worked up to 140 for 9. Did a bunch of rows. After work did some longer (10 minute) intervals

Wednesday: BJJ with extra conditioning and takedowns before class.

Thursday: Dead day: worked up to 385 for 8, had 1-2 left in the tank, but my back was cranky. 2 sets of 5 at 315. After work 30 minutes of tossing the med ball.

Friday: 7 sets of 3; box squats (technique and speed emphasis) 185+25lbs chains. then immediately to 15x 15 seconds on 30 off prowler pushes.

Saturday: BJJ and open mat, then 3x 3 minutes slideboard (moderate pace)/3 minutes hand bike (all out)/3 minutes rest.

Sunday: rest and meal prep.

I am working my back into the swing of things and will have some more compelling posts forthcoming.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010


Dan John (who I discussed at length here) has a new blog see to the right.
and a great interview here

Is this thing on?

Ok folks I'm back. Sorry about the lag, but you probably weren't here reading any way.
Over the break I finished another cycle of 5/3/1.
Here are the numbers:
New Pr's all around:
Military: 6 at 155
Deadlift: 9 at 395
Bench: 8 at 215
I've slowly built up my 1 arm row to sets of 12 at 90 lbs, and I'm generally feeling strong.
The bad news is I've picked up some fatness. Too much fatness to be honest. I'm sitting in the upper 220s which is a bit much on a 5'10" frame.
Not a problem. Tighten up the diet, and add a little more metcon (my conditioning is terrible right now) and the weight will come off. I'm going to keep riding the 5/3/1 wagon to keep my strength, but am going to dial back the assistance work to keep from burning out. Upper body days I'll add 3-4 sets of rows, lower body days will be 2 sets of 5 of the exercise for the day.
Food changes:
no more lunches out.
smaller dinner portions.
desserts on the weekend will be reduced to fruit and greek yogurt.
more water.
That should cover it.

I should say this is not a "new years resolution" or some b.s. This is me taking a month (December) to work on hypertrophy: eat whatever I want, lift with more volume, and condition with less. Monitoring my body weight and performance, and deciding that it's time to dial things back. I'm going to do this for a month and see where I am. Further decisions will be made from there.
New years resolutions don't work because people make binary resolutions (on or off), and once they have a minor setback the resolution is "broken" and they go running for the fridge/smokes/booze/clown car/whatever. Make decisions, not resolutions. Try different methods, and see if you get improvement, that way you don't "fail" you just "proved that method doesn't work for you." The latter leads to a healthy mindset, you can do it you just have to figure out the best way. The former leads trying and failing over and over, which leads to depression.
Decide (resolve if you must) to fix problems in your life, but try as many methods as it takes. Don't fixate on the method, focus on your goal, and you'll get there.