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SwissDanny

Swiss Danny Workout Log

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Going to run a Stretch training log here. My usual logging software (beyond the whiteboard) is not going to work for ST, way too Crossfit specific. Plus I'm going to teach some ST too, so will record both my own workouts and how workouts planned for others have gone.

Spent an hour "rehearsing" a pancake focussed limbering and stretch class that Im going to use as an introduction to ST for a yogi friend.

Started with cossack squats including the new version with raised heel of bent leg, as well as kneeling hip flexor and glute limbers.

Really focussed on trying to feel and take note of the tight lines. Based on this did limber versions of floor piriformis, QL, tailor pose (this is currently a breaking-through area for me), hamstring stretch. Retest regular cossack squats with satisfactory results.

Standing pancake progressions, working on bent to straight legs elephant walk style then working on the forward bend, using progressively lower yoga blocks as a reference for my forehead. Felt calves so did some straight leg calf limbering. Retested the standing pancake.

Happy with that as a structure for my buddy's intro... but he's more advanced so will trial a partner version of seated pancake progressions.

PS Waiting for my wife to finish her workout, trialled the "barbell of correction" for calves and hamstrings. They make a great heavy 2 inch rod... prop up the other end with some fractionals.

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Thursday

One hour session "coaching and doing" with a tennis player friend who recently had some lower back QL problems. We focussed on lower half, using Cossack squats as the exploration, limbering and test/retest proxy for sliding out to get the ball. Used an abbreviated foot sequence to talk a bit about ST approach. Limbered using Cossack squat and lunge position. Hip flexors, tailor pose, kneeling hamstring, seated piriformis, seated QL+lats, standing bent knee calf with distraction. Retest Cossack squat. Short jaw and neck sequence to close.

Was very happy the amount we got through in just over an hour with a complete newbie. Got him to mirror me. Only assisted with the QL diamond stretch. I think I could led a small group of upto maybe 2-3 this way and get a decent limbering/moderate stretch session in for myself too. He went away feeling "lighter on his feet" and volunteering to be a guinea pig again.

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Friday

One hour session coaching my pancake class for my yogi friend and my wife. Was selfish and started off again with a 10 min foot sequence, but the both loved it. Hip flexors, tailor pose, kneeling hamstring, seated piriformis, elephant walks, gracilis release, partner pancake onto bolster. Sitted shoulder depression as a closer.

Just moving from from one to two person group slows things down a lot. Plus flow, available wall space, equipment already start to need managing more. But this is useful ahead of a class of 8 in 10 days. Anyway two more happy campers, my yogi friend concluded "yes, you definitely seem to be onto something that works" and spent this morning showing off his palms on floor straight legged forward bend.

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Saturday

Untimed personal session which ended up being about 90 minutes, with an eye to my "Crossfitters" (hips and shoulders) class. First time since Stretch Teacher last weekend I've done a real stretching session, and used as reinforcement learning of all the major solo stretches and spent best part of 5 minutes on the bilateral stretches and 5 mins a side too for the "biggies". I have two travel enforced rest days coming up so decided to turn up the dial a notch and see how that feels afterwards.

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First time of really getting some stretch in after a tiring workout. Cleans, Split Jerk, C&J, Rowing intervals.

Decided to go for really strong contractions and a fairly aggressive stretch.

Tailor, hip flexors, hamstrings, bent leg calf, piriformis, lying pec and biceps, tailor #2 and a bit of time benchmarking my "wedge".

Standing hip flexors with support was good, will use that in next Monday's class.

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Used "The Wedge" to test retest the effect of various lower body limber/light stretches. Best effort was toe tips 47cm from wall, with feet inside a 50cm (which corresponds to marginally wider than hip width for me).

Big difference on right side, especially ankle flexion where right knee is about 5cm beyond big toe vs 8cm on left. Both were tight because I did a big calf stretch last night and didnt want to do more than limber.

Tried the "Wedge of Correction"... that give a very powerful lower calf/achilles massage, compared to regular squat version have a bit more control on the pressure.

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Dark and grey afternoon here and dark so soon.

Was quite tight after some Olympic lifting and sprints this morning, especially in the legs.

Decided to start off with elephant walk and see where that took me over the next 90 minutes or so, which was fun.

The difference in tension in the muscles that have worked out vs more sedate incredible. I find them harder to stretch, or maybe I havent discovered the key yet.

Can Stretch Therapy do anything for my chronic early pull though?

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Mon 1st Taught ST class, so some moderate stretching, lets say limber version demos.

Tue 2nd. Legs weekly intense stretch. After workout, find it hard to stretch these muscles that are tired but still "wired"...

Wed 3rd. Arms weekly stretch exploration. Testing out next weeks class.

Thu 4th. Active recovery day from other training. Ad lib "daily 5" except substituted stall bar hang for side bend and added some elephant walks. Played with a solo version of the seated partner shoulder depression, but standing and using a 16kg KB in hand instead of the partner. Worked well on my tight dominant side. Did one of the guided relaxations, then followed up on waking with a jaw sequence, still lying... incredible.

This all might look like a lot, but am not finding much in the way of DoMs, even though I am increasing the stretch intensity gradually.

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Im discovering one of the fun things with ST are the haphazard break through moments... here is today's:

...playing around post workout, tried a hanging L sit, realized that I had about 30-40 degrees more extension in my legs than I could get last time I tried.

... so tried an L sit pull up (bear in mind this must be the 50th pull up of the day or so)... no perfect at all, but radically better.

https://www.coachseye.com/v/L9PH

PS Think need to cut back on the mince pies for a few days...

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Plenty of stretching going on since last log, and a couple of more focussed sessions. But they are becoming increasingly unplanned so dont seem to make sense logging. Ramped it up another notch in terms of how hard I go, and decided I've worked out a level, to be adapted on the day.

Another random Wow! breakthrough moment:

... KB Windmills. Basically a sort of narrow triangle pose holding a KB over head

... all the way down, legs straight and fun to boot. Hand to knee used to be the unpleasant limit.

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14 and 15th December, trialled and taught a "toe to top" stretch class.

Saturday and Monday worked overhead squats and power snatch, plus some heavy high-bar backsquats. I hit new PR's in both, which is most satisfying, but what is EVEN better is that the execution of these movements is feeling materially different.

I think these differences relate to:

- feeling I can keep my torso so much more vertical in a deep squat

- less and less compromised overhead position

- ability to use glutes more effectively.

Happy days!

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Way less structured these last two weeks family visit, Crimbo etc. One or two formal solo stretching sessions and couple of informal sessions for friends including our new "box" manager, who enjoyed it a lot, as well as my own daily five (same targets, different limbers)

Have started working on SLDP progressions, walking hands down ladder bar to last or second last rung, and working to raise other leg.

Had a great yoga session, and continue to notice some marked improvements in most positions.

In the box, some very satisfactory PRs on the rower and backsquat, which Im sure is about being able to use my glutes more effectively and hamstring flexibility.

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Haven't posted for a whole month I see, but I was not totally idle.

Mostly worked my "go to" stretches. These are currently a pretty classical general selection from toe to crown: foot sequence including point and quads, bent and straight leg calf, elephant walk, tailor pose, sliding hamstring, solo quad/hip flexors, piriformis, bench backbends/counter pose, hanging side bends, yuri band sequence and distraction, hand and wrist sequence, lying pec/biceps, jaw and neck.

Two eleven hour flights to South Africa really made me stiff for upto a week afterwards, but I was prompted to update this log, as a couple of lazy sessions over this last snowy weekend definitely achieved if not any breakthroughs in RoM some new feelings. I must find a suitable partner for partner work; so far I felt solo versions gave me enough intensity, but this weekend I was craving more...

Teaching has continued about once a fortnight. I am working on building a coherent flow both in the lessons as well as in my own practise. Because the class is occasional and attendance is "drop in" rather than term wise its a bit difficult to get on to the more complex/intense partner stretches.

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For planning system balls up reasons (aka class not visible to members...) only one PAX at last night for class, but it was Joe who's been to each class so far. So we did a load of partner stretches, in what felt like a great full body "flow". It was great fun working through these with someone who knew the ropes.

  • Shoulder Limber
  • Elephant Walk
  • Standing Hip Flexor
  • Seated Piriformis
  • Partner Stick Pecs
  • Partner QL
  • Partner Stick Back Bend
  • Partner Hip Flexor
  • Single Leg Dog Pose
  • Shoulder Depression

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Where is this month going?... been quietly making progress.

I guess with hindsight February will have been SLDP month, have made solid progress in that it no longer feels like some bizarre medieval torture.

Lumbar spine and shoulders are improving too. Mostly using band sequences, lying pec and biceps, stick work for the shoulders. Sphynx and passive bends for the spine.

Been having trouble with some ulnar nerve irritation (due to the Crossfit Im sure), and have added more scalene, head and neck stretches. A friend training as a "rolfer" did some work on my elbows, forearms and triceps that helped I think. But I need to find more sequences to work these (the hand sequence is a staple, but dont feel it's reaching the parts...)

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I dont normally post about CrossFit workouts in the log, but this one is relevant. We are in Open season with weekly workouts done around the world, judged and ranked (250,000 athletes). Todays effort was a repeat from last year:

3 minutes to complete 2 rounds of 10 barbell overhead squats 42.5kg 10 chest to bar pull ups. If you complete that you get a further 3 minutes in which to complete 2x12 etc.

Last year I managed 20 reps, ie half the first round, struggling for each single overhead squat. Today I got 64 reps, ie half way through the second round, did the first set of overhead squat unbroken.

I am totally certain the single biggest contributor to this 240% improvement has been the mobility I have gained in the last few months. Ankles, hips, spine, shoulders, wrists. Im now able to get the bar "stacked" over my centre of gravity through the whole movement without fighting my own body the whole time. I know this pretty accurately, since I track pretty much every workout and my metabolic capacity in a six minute timeframe is up maybe 10% and strength 10% or so on the main lifts (Ive been doing this a couple of years now).

Those on the ITS and ST courses will know this was a specific goal of mine. So just wanted to share another ST "breakthrough" moment!

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Time flies... been busy on a work project.

Still trained plenty. And maintained a stretching focus... I dont have a routine as such, but goto stretches are:

- daily 5 variants

- elephant walk

- sldp

- solo hip flexor

- lying shoulder

- shoulder band.

These are yielding changes. I think the three rolfing sessions I have had have also been valuable.

Interesting times as my home Crossfit gym for the last 3 years is going to fold, and I have little appetite to join one of the other local gyms.

So this is an inflection point... got to decide which direction to go.

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My gym has dropped its Crossfit affiliation, but will continue for functional training classes and "open gym" access, Im going to use a strength and conditioning program called "Field Strong" as a basis, it seems to include a solid amount of "prehab" work, as well as time for fun stuff built in.

Monster stretch session today, Dave's posts on the physical alchemy protocols has encouraged me to try and spend more time in the zone. Have also now completed 4 rolfing sessions, the guy really seems to know his stuff. I think the combination of these might be catalysing a new phase of progress.

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Last post May 2... almost five month ago eek!  However, I have not been lazy by any stretch of the imagination.

 

The Field Strong program was just too "bitty" and time-consuming especially as I was doing it solo and in an otherwise empty facility. I went back to the drawing board and got our very own Emmet to write me a specific program to address certain poor or lacking skills (handstand, muscleup, pistols, overhead squat) and more generally enhance my posterior chain recruitment and hip and shoulder mobility (the skills were chosen since they are all quite heavily dependent on those movement abilities).

 

I'm now working on cycle 4 of my program.  In parallel, a shiny and new CF box opened locally, so I have been re-integrating 2-3x per week regular CF for the last 6 weeks or so.  It seems time to reactivate my training log and report back on some of the progress made in the last five months... watch this space.

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Here goes:

 

Monday - Program

Equilibre.  c.45 mins incl activation warm up. Assorted wall supported HS drills; holds, toe and heel pulls etc.  I still feel like the guy on youtube learning to ride the bike with reversed handlebars. But I crash more elegantly than a while ago.

Lower mobility.  Straddle hangs, cumulate 2.5mins, second time only these give me bad quad DoMs.  Jefferson curls 4x20kgx10. Weighted lunge bottom holds 4x40kgx30s per side. Done properly these really can be quite profound sessions. Take as much time as needed c.45mins

 

Tuesday - CF

FGrip Ring Row 3xMaxReps EMOM2

FSquat 3x3 EMOM2 90kg... havent done 1RM for a while but this would be 90%. Happy with that as my "masters" pre-mob didnt happen *

PushP 3x3 EMOM 70kg... ditto, 90%

AMRAP 5'.  5 Strict Pullup, 15 Wall Ball.  4rounds+5reps. Pull Ups UB, WB 8/7.

Rest 4'

AMRAP 4'.  40kg.  4 FSquat, 4 PushP, 4 Thruster.  3rounds+5 reps.  Went out waaay too fast even with breaks. After all the HS pressing yesterday plus build up was tough.

 

* I would normally spend 15' on magic ST-based sauce of wrist mobs, front rack lat release, t-spine opener, ankle and hips.  My training is transformed by opening up some RoM this way on movements that are a mobility challenge for me (eg FSquat, OHSquat) 

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The handstand drills will get better, trust me. Are you doing handstand work at all?

 

Not in the middle of the room, but yes for back to wall stuff I try and kick up to HS then feet to wall, and do long hovers at the end of the pulls.  I could do with a good spotter (a bad one is less than pointless).

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