Monday, April 30, 2012

Wilder Seminar Review

This last weekend Sensei Nick and I had the chance to attend a Kris Wilder seminar in Columbia, MO.

If there is one thing Mr. Wilder knows, its how to hit with power! This seminar was AWESOME! I would venture to say that most Martial Artists/Martial Arts schools in America work based on rotational power. Round house kicks, rotating at the hip, etc. Wilder hits with structure aka vertical power. I swear, watching this guy hit people is like magic. Martial Arts Guru Magic. Thankfully I did not receive any of Mr. Wilder's punches, but I got to watch several of the larger participants get punched only to stumble several feet back. It doesn't look like much, but these people really got moved. I got a light kick on the thigh, and WOW.

The first day was all the learning and the second day was all the application. The first day was broken down like this
- The Fighter vs. the Warrior
- Summoning power lower body
- Summoning power upper body
- Deception of movement principles
- Deception of movement principles and practice
- Killing the Center

All in all this set up really flowed well. The logical progression through the material allowed Wilder to give us the basics and continually build on those basics.

Honestly, I think one of my favorite parts of the seminar was the introduction, The Fighter Vs. The Warrior. Wilder talked about how fighters play the game and warriors end it. I know that this is counter to what I am supposed to be thinking and that Miller would probably be ashamed of me, but I tend to romanticize the idea of being a warrior. I like the idea of living every day as if it were your last, of following the bushido code, and being capable of having to act as a warrior should.

I want to be clear, I am not advocating or trying to glorify violence in any way. I have read Miller's Meditations on Violence and I had to put it down for a few days about three quarters of the way through the book because it was so dark. Real violence is nothing like movie violence. Truth be told, I don't have any experience with real violence. I honestly hope to God I never do. But I have talked to people who do and tried to understand their position, or put myself in their shoes. Trying to visualize and empathize and understand what they went through. It's no substitute by any means, but I feel like it gives me just enough of an understanding to let me know that I don't want to know. I know just enough to know that I don't know know shit about real violence, I know just enough to know that I should be scared.

With that being said, I feel like that's what really separates the fighter from the warrior. To me, in my mind, A fighter wants to keep the fight going, wants to play the game, wants to monkey dance, wants to win for face and status and ego. A warrior seeks peace, they do not want to fight unless there is absolutely no other given choice, and if they are forced to fight, they want to end the conflict as quickly as possible. Based on those terms, I want to be a warrior.

Moving on, Wilder talked about how to build your structure from the ground up, how to use "Mud Foot" or "Gundam Foot", moving on to the "Chinese Doughnut" around the knee, and then aligning the hips/back/spine, and eventually the shoulders and arm movements necessary to really stand and strike with force. I don't want to actually go into detail in case anyone else has the opportunity to work with Wilder. I'd rather let the man himself explain it to you, but it all really makes sense and it WORKS.

Wilder also knows some really nifty ninja cheats to help you out. He went over some of these like twitching and using your peripheral vision in order to cheat your brain into being faster and to psych out your opponents brain. I was never really able to catch a telegraph or understand how to look for them before this weekend. I don't know why, but for some reason, something clicked and I now feel like I have a much better grasp on what to look for and how to telegraph, or false telegraph, or what to do to not telegraph at all.

Wilder makes some interesting points on human behavior, especially how we tend to pick up on and use each other's behavior. In his words, "Human beings are designed to infect one another." Once you understand this principle, you can really use it to manipulate people in a fight to your advantage.

The second day we looked at some kata applications. I don't know any of the Goju Ryu kata, but some of the movements are very similar to our shotokan kata. The same basic movements, just in a different order. I really like some of Wilder's applications/Bunkai over some of Abernethy's explanations. Not that I dislike Abernethy's Bunkai, just that I feel like Wilder's may be more effective for my body type. In addition, many of the Bunkai that Wilder suggest from the kata movements are identical to many of the techniques I learned in Aikijutsu. So for me, these felt much more natural then some of the ones learned from the Abernethy seminar. I am now very excited go through some of Nick's DVDs from Wilder. (Although I still need to read Teaching the Martial Arts.)

I am really looking forward to Brent Yamamoto Seminar in July because from what I understand he works to blend Karate and Aikido. Watching Wilder's bunkai and practicing both Karate and Aikijutsu really emphasizes the fact that all martial arts are intertwined and compliment each other very nicely. Sensei Nick and I are very eager to begin work on his book about that very subject, although I have a lot more research to do to catch up to where Nick is as far as knowledge and understanding.

Overall, it was a great weekend, and I am really looking forward to using what I learned in class and excited to practice 'standing' on my own while Nick is out of the country in May. There was some discussion afterwards about what could be improved upon in future seminars. A few people mentioned that perhaps a take-away might be good, but I am still on the fence on this matter. I think if people are interested they can take their own notes, and that a take-away may be a bit superfluous, but I can understand why some people would suggest it. I think everything went well and personally wouldn't have changed a thing.

I take that back, I have one minor concern, but it wasn't with the seminar itself as much as the attendees, but I will post that later this week.

On a scale of 1 to 5, I give it a 6.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Nutrition Challenge - Day SEVEN, EIGHT, NINE, TEN

I had a little bit of trouble with this weekend as I ended up traveling to visit my brother for the Easter weekend. I did not eat super great, but I did my best in spite of the situation. I tried to keep track of everything, but I'm not sure I can remember ever meal exactly. I have taken all my supplements as directed, and you guys get the jist of everything now. Also, no gluten and no dairy is KILLING ME. I have having to ween myself off of them, having a tiny bit on occasion. I know it isn't strictly Paleo, but it's about all I can manage without going crazy and swinging way to the other side and pigging out on all the bad stuff.

April 7th - Day Seven
Breakfast - Eggs, Bacon, Avocado, Salsa, Turkey

Lunch - Eskimo Joes. I had grilled chicken with satuted mushrooms and green beans on the side. That was about as good as I could get. I even stayed away from the bacon cheese fries.

Dinner - I had pizza. One piece. Cheese. I know. I told you it was bad. It was a frozen pizza. Well, it wasn't frozen when I ate it, but at least it wasn't delivery. I also had quite a bit of beef jerky and fresh fruit for dinner though, so it wasn't all bad.

April 8th - Day Eight! Happy Easter!
Breakfast - Eggs with salsa and avocado and fruit on the side. I may or may not have gotten a cream cheese chocolate muffin from the hotel breakfast bar, on account of it being a holiday and all.

Lunch - Red Lobster, I had grilled chicken and shrimp and a bit of rice. A garden salad on the side. No croutons or cheddar biscuits.

Dinner - Steak on the grill! With Teriyaki sauce. The rest of the fruit from the container I got and I'm pretty sure I had a veggie on the side...

April 9th - Day Nine
Breakfast -  Chick Fil A. I got a chicken, egg and cheese bagel. Got it home, ditched the bagel, and smothered it with avocado and salsa. <3 Fruit on the side. Yeah, I'm really not inventive. I ate cereal every day for like, 21 years or so.... yeah... But I like it! So it works. As long as I'm not bored. Although I am kind of sick of Pace Salsa. I need to get the stuff to make my own delicious salsa.

Lunch - Eggs with Salsa, Avocado and Turkey and with spinach. I'm just on an egg kick right now and that's about all I feel like eating.

Dinner - ground turkey seasoned with marinara, lemon pepper, garlic, and a few other seasonings. Gluten free pasta and Sugar Snap Peas on the side.

April 10th - Day Ten
 Breakfast - ...
 Lunch - ...
 Dinner - Panda Express... String Bean Chicken and Mushroom Chicken. Cream Cheese Wantons...

Ok, don't look at me like that. I explained that I have difficulty with sleep in my comments on the last post. I think I have got a dose of extreme fatigue going on. I went to bed about midnight yesterday, got up today and felt terrible, so after I took care of my morning stuff (taking a friend's kiddo to school) I promptly went home and went back to bed. I slept from about 9 until 2. I really did not feel great. I don't feel... sick per sey, just really REALLY exhausted and fatigued.

I'm pretty sure its from stress and not enough sleep, which, I know that stress will kill you faster then anything. I know that not sleeping and being stressed out will counter-act every good thing I do for my body, good eating, working out, etc. I KNOW. The sleep thing I can't help. I'm just not tired. Even if I stay up and don't nap, even if I exercise a ton, even if I take an all natural sleep aid, even if I meditate, even if I take a hot bath. I'm not tired. I had trouble sleeping from the time I was little. I have tried pretty much everything. Doing a Sudoku before bed, drink warm milk, drinking chamomile tea, etc. Tonight I was going to have a glass of wine before bed, but I didn't have any. ,~.~ Sad Tiffani is sad.

The stress I can work on better. I can meditate, talk a walk, step away, etc. I know there are techniques to control/help with that and I just need to be better about doing them. Walking my giant Musashi doggie does help, and I love to walk him, I just need to work more on meditation and such. ANYWAY. THAT is why I only ate one meal today. And it wasn't a great one. I had some of it at dinner and some of it as a late snack.

At this point I am done with the cleanse phase. I move on to the burn phase! MEGA NUTRITION AND AWESOMENESS!!!

Closing thoughts from the cleanse phase:

  • DO NOT EAT OUT! YOU WILL BE SORRY! The only time I had any trouble with my gut was when I ate out. And even though I ate as Paleo as I could, it generally still did not agree with me. If I ate good home cooked food, then I had nothing to worry about. So if you, like me, are considering this and are worried that an herbal cleanse will give you raging diarrhea, do this one and avoid eating out, greasy or deep fried food, junk food. If you do, I'm pretty sure you will have nothing to worry about.
  • DRINK WAY MORE WATER THEN YOU NORMALLY DO. I'm pretty sure I didn't drink anywhere near as much as I was supposed to. A recommended amount is to take your body weight, divide it by 2. Drink that many ounces of water a day.
  • STICK TO IT AND EAT ALL YOUR MEALS AND HAVE SNACKS. Yeah, obviously, I did not set a great example. BUT, I really think that if you make sure you stick to having your supplements on time, eating three meals a day, and having healthy snacks between meals, you will see even better results then I did. In my opinion, to be brutally honest, I didn't do a very good job of it, and I still lost some weight. DON'T SKIP MEALS. If you do, it actually causes you to gain weight. Have good snacks. 
I think that about covers it. More to come as I start in on the burn phase. 

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Nutrition Challenge - Day FOUR, FIVE, SIX

April 4th - Day Four
Pre Breakfast - probiotic restore

Omegaplex - same as day one
Breakfast - Same, eggs and bacon. Without bread, I'm not very inventive for Breakfast. : / I miss toast with peanut butter on it. ,~.~   So I have for sure going to try some of these Paleo Recipes. I'm a pretty good cook, but I'm used to having access to a full scope of foods, mainly dairy and wheat used to be a big part of my daily intake. We we'll see how it turns out.

Lunch - left over turkey burger from last night. Yep, like I said, I'm gonna need some help with creativity in the kitchen. I need to make a trip to whole foods. I found online you can get seaweed noodles! I am so looking for those when I go.

Dinner - My brother came up for a visit. We went to Chilis. I got chicken crispers. Not strictly Paleo... but better than other things I could have eaten. I had a salad instead of fries and corn on the cob. I had a FEW corn tortilla chips. I ate all my salad, a few chips, and not even one piece of chicken. I came home and felt TERRIBLE. I was in the bathroom for a while.  Once you start eating well, you can't go back. I mean, you can, but... ick. My body was like, "NO! BAD TIFFANI! NO CRAP FOOD!!!" So that settles that.
Omegaplex - same as before

Herbal Cleanse - same as before

April 5th - Day Five
Pre-Breakfast - probiotic restore

Omegaplex - same
Breakfast - I'm bad at this whole diet thing. I didn't eat.

Lunch - also didn't eat. Which I know is 110% counter productive, but... I was sleeping all day.

Dinner - LETTUCE WRAPS! OM NOM NOM NOM! Lean chicken with carrots, green onions and almonds in a sauce that I found at the store for lettuce wraps with ice berg lettuce. I had some rice on the side. I had to. I am weak.
Omegaplex - same

Herbal Cleanse - same

*On a positive note, though I do not really feel/notice a difference, I had a friend ask me this evening if I was losing weight. I gave them one of these sort of "o.O how did you know?" type looks. They said my jeans looked much looser than normal, so this is fuel to make sure I am eating properly and regularly and stay on track! I did take before pictures on Sat. March 31st which I will post at the end with my after pictures.

April 6th - Day Six

Ok, time to buckle down and do this!

Pre-Breakfast - Probiotic restore

Breakfast - I am addicted to eating eggs with turkey and  salsa and avocado.

Lunch - Erm. Not sure what I had..

Dinner - Baked Salmon with lemon and dill with a side of steamed broccoli. I had decided buying broccoli from the store and steaming is now the only way to go. It's so much better than buying to frozen. I will never go back.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Nutrition Challenege - Day ONE, TWO, THREE

April 1st - Day One
Day one of Paleo and the AdvoCare nutrition challenge...

I had my weigh in on Saturday. My stats were as follows:
Hight: not quite 5'1"
Weight: 126.5 lbs
Body Fat: 23.7%

So today, Sunday, is the first day of the challenge. Here was my routine:

Fiber drink - Not so good. I am very much a texture eater. It's pretty think. I had to thin it out quite a bit to get through it. The taste isn't bad, its just the texture.
Omegaplex - went down easy, no fishy after taste or burbs at all.
Breakfast - Eggs with Turkey mixed in and raspberries on the side. Pretty good.

Lunch - Grilled lean round steak with wasabi teriyaki and grilled zucchini and mushrooms with seasame dressing and spicy mustard mixed together for a sauce to season the veggies with. AMAZING. Eating Paleo is going to be a cinch if I get to eat like this all the time.

Afternoon snack - V16 energy drink. I substituted this instead of the Spark because sometimes I have trouble with caffeine. I would say it doesn't get you QUITE as pumped as the Spark does, but it does help you feel alert and focused.

Dinner - chicken with potatoes, mushrooms, asparagus and onions steamed in a tinfoil packet, 'hobo stew' fashion. Om Nom Nom.
Omegaplex - Same results

Herbal Cleanse before bed.

So far so good. I feel pretty good, haven't felt tired or gross. No tummy trouble from the fiber... everything is a go for tomorrow.

April 2nd - Day Two 
Fiber drink - fiber powder + 1 or 2 tablespoons of water. I MUCH prefer the consistency of moist citrus flavor saw dust to that of citrus flavored slime. I just ate it with a spoon and then drank the recommended 16 oz. of water. (8 for with the drink and 8 after). I'm PROBABLY not supposed to take it like that, but oh well.
Breakfast - eggs with turkey, tomatoes, mushrooms, and chives mixed in, I had some turkey bacon on the side and avocado on top.
Omegaplex - same as above

Lunch - left overs from breakfast

Dinner - skillet cooked chicken with zucchini, mushrooms and chives in an light orange sauce. Sadly... no rice. :( I forgot to cook it.
Omegaplex - same as above

Still doing well. I only had part of my energy drink today. Feeling pretty good all around. I do notice that I do not quite have the munchies as much as I normally do. I am kind of craving sweet things, I think due to the lack of cabs, which makes your body have an insulin spike. But aside from really wanting some chocolate,  I feel good and not as hungry.

Otherwise, everything else feels good and normal.

April 3rd - Day Three
Fiber drink - downed.
Breakfast - Eggs and veggies with bacon on the side and pineapple.
Omegaplex - same as above

Lunch - Turkey, bacon, avocado with apples on the side

Dinner - Turkey burger patties grilled with a salad and sweet potato fries.
Omegaplex - same as above.

Feels... normal. I am definitely less hungry, and I can't say on the energy for certain, I got 3 hours of sleep last night... heh... but overall, feeling pretty good.