32kg (70lb) kettlebell

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Time to get back to work.



Food Desert


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Big Push and a Big Pull: Fitness made simple

Fitness programs should be simple and goal oriented.  Even if the goal is general fitness.  My goal is heavy presses, heavy deadlift, heavy getup and a high level of cardio.  I will achieve this goal through a big push and a big pull day.

A big push and a big pull works the entire body.  Heavy presses, coupled with a heavy deadlift will work your body quickly and efficiently.  Add in some turkish getups as well as some swings and snatches and you can have an entire workout in short order.  Modern day fitness programs rely on constantly changing the workout.  Some modern day fitness instructors rely on the ignorance of their client in order to fleece their gold from their clients.  Our “modern” age would have us believe that we require an expert for everything.  Fitness is not this way.  

If you want to get stronger, lift heavier things more often.

If you want to lose fat, eat healthy and real food, less of it, once a day if possible, lift heavy and perform high intensity cardio…and prioritize sleep.

The human body moves in two major ways.  Through a big push and a big pull.  As individuals we either pick things up from the ground or put things overhead.  Two movements cover the basis of movement for human strength.  The deadlift works the entire posterior chain as well as the core in particular.  The press covers the rest of the body.  In addition to these two movements I suggest adding in swings/snatches for high rep high intensity cardio as well as the turkish getup as a great movement to teach the interconnectedness of the human body.

Due to the fact that individuals can only do a few things well at any given time, my workout program has been broken down into two routines covering only 4 days a week.  A big push and a big pull day.

Big Push Day

Kettlebell Turkish Getups x 3 minutes with a focus on irradiation, tension, and form.  More for tension practice and time under the bell.  Only three minutes in order to allow me the full use of my faculties while pressing.

After the getup my focus turns to ladders of kettlebell clean and presses.  Heavy ladders of kettlebell clean and presses in a heavy, light, medium format as described by Pavel Tsatsouline in ‘Enter the Kettlebell’.  Increasing the weight as you become comfortable with the full heavy day of presses.

It sounds simple but remaining focussed during the presses can be tough.  It is important to focus on the correct movement throughout.  

Odd as it may seem, the final presses that I do often feel like my strongest.  This is because the fatigue that begins to set in forces me to use my entire body to press the bell.  By using the entire body I mean that I tense my entire body more thoroughly.  Not kipping or cheating the bell up.

Big Pull Day

Big pull day starts with the deadlift.  There’s a multitude of ways to focus on the deadlift.  I perform sets of 5 in the standard prescribed by Pavel Tsatsouline in ‘Power to the People’.  I will have increase the weight with each workout while cycling the weight overall.  This will allow continuous progress.  Furthermore, I will have a heavy day and a lighter day.  The heavy deadlift day will start with the workout weight for 5.  drop 10% for another 5, then drop another 10% for the duration of sets of 5 until form breaks or most likely to a total of 5 sets.  The light day will consist of the same, but with the last sets not going over 4 sets.  The amount of reps/sets will decrease as the weight increases, peaking with a new PR of 1-3 reps.  At this time I will cycle the workout weights down and then increase once again to progressively heavier lifts.

After this is completed I perform swings or snatches to finish out the day.

The Goal

The goal of my program is to be able to deadlift 400 pounds, press the 106 pound kettlebell with each arm, do a getup with the 106 pound kettlebell, and snatch the 53 pound kettlebell 200 times in 10 minutes. I currently weigh 165 pounds at 5’10.

The Plan

For the next few months It is my intention to bring my deadlift up to a 300 pound range for sets of 5 as well as to become comfortable with the 70 pound kettlebell.  At that point I will increase the press to the 88 pound kettlebell and work on the 106 pound kettlebell until next December while bringing the deadlift to the 400 pound range.  

While I work on the 70 pound press and until I get the deadlift up to the 300 pound range I am going to have a 5 day workout program.  Monday, Wednesday, and Friday will be dedicated to pushes.  Tuesday and Thursday’s are dedicated to the pull.

My 4 day program is as follows.

Monday – getup and “heavy” presses (upward of 5 sets of russian ladders to 5, 75 total presses/side)

Tuesday – “light” deadlift and swings

Wednesday – off day

Thursday – getup and “medium or light” presses (5 sets of russian ladders to 3 or 4, 30 or 50 presses/side depending on how I feel)  Will lean towards medium presses.

Friday – “heavy” deadlift and snatches

It is my belief that this program will allow me to reach a high level of strength and general fitness over the next year by applying everything that I have learned in terms of fitness and nutrition.  

Check out the top of the page in order to find quick links to previous articles.  There is lots of information about cycling of your workout and nutrition.


Congratulations Ohio State Buckeyes – See you on January 12th

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2014 in review

Thank you all for your support.

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 6,100 times in 2014. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 5 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Community Agriculture Done Well

This is a great post to show how quickly individuals can produce quality food for many people.



Steady Presses – a kettle bell workout update

I have performed an experiment in simple fitness over the last several months.  This experiment determined what kind of results I would have by doing a very simple, stripped down, workout.  The workout that was performed was kettlebell clean and presses and swings or snatches.  That is it.

This workout was performed using the Russian ladder style workout presented in Enter the Kettlebell.  I did not perform any extra back movements such as pull-ups as suggested by Pavel.  

I began this workout using the smallest kettlebell I had to ensure that I put in the proper work and did not start off with a weight that was too heavy.  My intention was to work up to a full workout (5 ladders of 5 reps) on the heavy day. Then the appropriate amounts on the light and medium days.  I tracked these workouts and they can be found here.  

This workout allowed me to progress from a 44lb kettlebell to a 62lb kettlebell in a mere four months.  I am currently ready to move up to the 70lb kettlebell and I will be placing my order soon.  My press and general fitness has increased dramatically with this workout.

What did I learn from this simple experiment?  

On the positive side I learned that you can maintain a high level of fitness through a very simple workout.  This workout also allowed me to remain awake and alert, without any significant pain or soreness from the workouts.  As an example of a high level of fitness I was able to perform 94 snatches in 5 min with a 53 lb kettlebell.  I did this on a day when I was tired and did not feel like working out.  I was unmotivated at the time and I did this out of curiosity without any specific training for the snatch test other than my Wednesday snatch day.

As a negative I felt as though my back and legs/buttocks were lacking in progress.  This makes sense when looking at the workout.  In order to supplement these areas my intent is to continue the workout as above while adding in getups and deadlifts on Tuesday and Thursday.  I will perform getups in a 3-5 min window focusing on the movement and I will do deadlifts in a power to the people style workout for strength building.  This will include 2 sets of 5 lifts.  I am doing this in order to add strength to these areas.  I believe this workout will allow me the opportunity to workout 5 days a week without wearing me down to much.  

What are my goals in my future and how do I intend to get there?

I intend to use a 5 day template.  5 day a week strength workout that focuses on heavy pressing and heavy deadlifting.


Heavy kettlebell presses



Turkish Getup – Kettlebell



Light Kettlebell presses



Turkish Getup – Kettlebell



Medium Kettlebell Presses



My goal is to be able to press the 88lb kettlebell for 5 sets of 5 russian ladders and to deadlift 400 pounds in a year.  I would also like to be able to perform a Kettlebell Getup with the 106 pound kettlebell.  I maintain a weight of 165 and intend to stay near that weight throughout this year.  Therefore after this year I believe that I will be able to press a kettlebell that is approximately half of my body weight for multiple sets and a greater than double body weight deadlift.

In terms of diet I generally focus on intermittent fasting, and natural foods (mostly meats and vegetables).