Tag Archives: gymnastics

PROGRESS

5 Sep

What a good week!!

Last week I was in Cornwall, and even though I made sure I kept up the fitness side of things with the gruelling workouts Jonny and Olu planned for me on the sandy beach, I would be lying if I said  that the holiday food didn’t find it’s way to me! I was not too hard on myself because a holiday is a holiday, but I did prepare myself to really work when I returned to London.

This week it was straight back to the program and there was definitely no mercy to be had!! Monday was a lifting session with Jonny at The Lomax. I did this entire session with no shoes on so I could feel the floor properly and concentrate on where my weight should be. We worked up from a 50kg back squat to 70kg, which was my previous PB. Just as I was feeling very smug and pleased with myself, Jonny decides to add on more weight taking the total bar weight up to 80kg! My heart was racing at the thought of it and if I am completely honest, I instantly lost my confidence and didn’t believe I could do it. Jonny assured me I could and he promised me he would be there 100% of the way to help me. He was, and I managed to get 4 reps done, an extremely shaky 4 reps but 4 reps nonetheless! So, even though I could barely put my shoes back on after this session because my legs were so weak, I left feeling very pleased that I had progressed my squat PB from 70kg to 80kg (just about!)

Wednesday was a rigorous cardio workout with Olu. He came up with some weird and wacky exercises such as combining reptile crawls with extreme bunny hops across the gym floor. Whatever we did, it racked up a whopping 700kcals in one single hour so it must have been worth it and hopefully helping to build up some stamina.

My 3rd olympic lifting session showed some progress as I started off prepping for my power cleans with the weight I had used initially and it practically flew to the ceiling. Very quickly Olu loaded up the bar to 40kg and this did feel really heavy to me. It took some getting used to, but by the end of the session I could do a few full cleans. I still need to be much more aggressive in using my hips and arms but I can definitely feel a difference in my strength and technique. See the picture below for a comparison in technique from 3 weeks ago to now. Notice the extra hip movements…

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Gymnastics this week is where I really started to notice my progress. My coach was very pleased with my new found power and he said it was clearly making a difference to my technique in my tumbles and vault which is exactly what I wanted. Clearly all this hard work in the gym with the lifting is paying off!

Still a lot of work to get done over the next two months but I am getting there and it’s always nice to see some progress and get a boost in motivation! Big thank you to all the people helping me along the way!

 

It is always nice finishing the week with a good session, leaving with confidence and satisfaction. Now for a weekend of stretching and lots of rest!

 

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10 Weeks til I Flip

22 Aug

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I have come to the end of my second full week of training and I’m loving it. I have experienced a few hurdles that have knocked my confidence this week, but I have managed to turn it around with the help of a few encouraging words here and there, and knowing I have the support of a fantastic team behind me helps a lot. Positive thinking and sheer determination is what is going to get me to the end, so head up and lets carry on!!

This week I have trained three times at The Lomax (www.lomaxpt.com), with three different trainers, each pushing me in a different way. I have had one core & endurance session, and two strength & power sessions. I did some very light cardio and stretching on my day off and finished the week with an exhausting gymnastics training session.

My strength session this week taught me a hell of a lot. I had the extremely talented Jordan Lue on my case and i thoroughly enjoyed our session. He is passionate about performance enhancement which is perfect for me. He watched my squat and discovered that due to my large range of motion, my hips and back were losing form as I reached the floor, and my glutes were disengaging therefore putting heaps of pressure on my already weak lower back. He assessed where my form was lost and had me do numerous sets to that point, making sure I pushed my knees out as far as possible both on the way down and up. Once he was happy that I was maintaining correct form, I was able to start squatting lower again and sure enough, if I did what he said and pushed my knees out and hips back, I was performing them with the correct form!

Sometimes it takes a new person to look at your posture and technique for them to pick up on something that no one else has. I think this will really help me as I go forward with training.

In gymnastics it is extremely important to be powerful in executing your skills to give you enough height to perform the entire movement correctly. I have been focusing on the power aspect of training in my olympic lifting sessions, focusing on a slow decent before coming up as fast as I can. Through engaging my core and glutes, and pressing my feet hard into the ground, I am able to do this without losing form which is important for injury prevention. It’s taking me a while to get the whole movement pattern correct but I am getting closer and closer with each session. With Olu Adepitan, olympic lifting legend, I have been working on getting the technique right for a ‘clean’ using a barbell starting at 20kg working my way up to 35kg so far. I am feeling more and more confident with this now as I progress through the stages. He is sure this is still too light for me and threatening to increase the weight next time, so I am sure this confidence will be short lived!!

Gymnastics training this week has involved plyometric work, with lots of jumping and quick explosive movements preparing for events such as vault and floor. I have been trying out some new skills to add to my routines, hoping to increase my difficulty score overall. We are still in the trial and error stage with choosing the skills to compete, with hopefully not too much error going on. It won’t be until closer to the competition that routines will start going together, for now it’s about learning and perfecting each individual skill in isolation, slowly building up the connections.

Next week I am taking an annual trip to cornwall for a week of surfing. I was initially looking forward to a week off but I soon realised that there is no point in taking a big step backwards when we only have 10 weeks to go. Johnny and Olu have put together a list of gruelling exercises to do whilst I am there so watch this space for sand sprints and other fun things I will be doing.