3/2/10; A Unilateral Combo and, A Couple of Questions Beg a Couple of (Vague) Answers

“Human beings, by changing the inner attitudes of their minds, can change the outer aspects of their lives.”

William James

Up and at ’em early again this morning.  Pulled-off a quick crock pot shuffle soon after getting up and before I headed out to the gym.  Who says a caveman can’t think ahead?  A whole chicken (free range, of course) from my favorite supplier, Rainbow Meadow Farms, fat back, and a couple of heads of cauliflower.  It’ll wind-up having been “crocking” for approximately 12 hours by the time I get back home in the evening.  And let me tell you, not only is a chicken done in this fashion to die for, but the resultant chicken-drippin’s, fat back and cauliflower “soup” is slap yo’ mama good in its own right.  Which leads to my first question, a compilation of sorts, the essentials of which I’ve taken the liberty to summarize thusly:

“Dude, whassup?  No Sous-vide for you?   What gives?

First off, you can’t begin to imagine how many variations on the spelling of sous-vide I’ve received over the weeks.  My far-and-away favorite was Suess-vide (as in Dr., I suppose??  Cat-in-the-hat?).  It’s all good though, as I side with President Andrew Jackson’s contention that it’s a dull-witted man who can’t think of more than one way to spell a word.

So I’ll cut to the chase, here; I’m worried about plastic leaching into my food.  Now, I know that the food-grade vacuum-seal bags are supposed to be safe/non-leaching — but…hey, what can I say?  I’m just generally a questioning, disbelieving, you-gotta-prove-it-to-me sort.   I also steer clear of Teflon for the same reason; I’m a grill, crock pot and cast iron kind of guy.  But hey, should I really worry about a little (possible) plastic leaching when I suck-down God-only-knows-what in the exhaust fumes I inhale while huckin’ the ol’ fix about town?  Not to mention the possibility of getting flat-out clocked? Well, we all have to manage possible risk in a way that each of us feels comfortable with.   But hey, I’ve heard that food prepared in the sous-vide method is absolutely wonderful, and I have no reason to doubt that it is.  I say that if you’re cool with the possibility (again, this is nothing substantiated) of plastic leaching, then rock on.  Just my opinion, but I’ll stick with the ol’ crock pot.

And then we have a question from TTP reader Guen, who wants to know what he can do to gain some flexibility in his hips.  I feel Guen’s pain — since I’ve become more of a desk jockey at work, I’ve been forced to pay more attention to hip health.  Damn if sitting all day isn’t a God-awful, unnatural act.  Anyway, my go-to movement for hip flexibility is the good ol’ Dan John brainchild, ass-to-grass goblet squat.  I also recommend plenty of overhead squat variations — again, working toward achieving a full, as-to-grass, range of motion.

Which is a nice segue into today’s workout.  Once again, I used whip-snatch-to-OHSs as a warm-up to “meat” of the workout bridge.  3 sets of 3 at 95 lbs, and I “cycled” each rep x 3 in the ATG-to-3/4 position.  Remember, when using lighter weights in the snatch motion, not to get lazy and allow the bar to travel in an outward arc.  We want to concentrate on maintaining a straight bar path from the crook of the hip to the overhead lockout position.  Also remember to maintain the weight directly over the center of gravity for the entire rep.  It’s easy, especially when “cycling” the OHS portion of the movement (and especially with light weights), to “shoulder” the weight in a position forward of center-line. We don’t want to foster any bad habits, or allow bad habits to creep in, when using lighter weights.

Then it was on to this combo:

Feet Elevated Ring Flyes x 10
Straight Bar Muscle-ups x 2
Pistol Squats (ATG) x 6 each leg @ 20 lb DBs
Feet Elevated Ring Flyes x 10
Straight Bar Muscle-ups x 2
Single-Leg Deadlift (Barbell) x 6 each leg @ 115

So three rounds of that.  Notice that this equated to 6 sets of ring flyes and muscle-ups, to 3 sets of Pistols and Deadlifts.  I used small diameter weights (i.e., non-Oly plates) when doing single leg DL or SLDL work with a barbell so as to maximize the range of motion.  Of course you could always stand on a platform.  To each his own.  Also, I completed the full shrug/triple-extension motion at the top of the movement on each rep.  Same cues as in a normal clean — push the floor away with the heels, then transfer late through the toes at the apex of the triple extension.

In health,

Tonight’s Dinner – Bison Roast

“If you have integrity, nothing else matters. If you don’t have integrity, nothing else matters.”

Alan Simpson

Even better the second time around...

A gourmet I’m not; far from it, in fact.  My meals mirror my workouts in that they’re simple in design, but elegantly (or in the case of my workouts, brutally) effective.  No wasted motion, no wasted time – no muss and little fuss.  Now don’t get me wrong – I certainly appreciate a more elaborately prepared meal – my own personal time constraints, though, won’t allow for the preparation of such.  Enter the beloved crock-pot.

What you see above is actually left-overs from a meal I “made” Monday while I was busy at work.  Maybe 5 minutes of prep was involved with this meal, and that’s a stretch.  I simply cut up a whole bunch of carrots, parsnips and celery and threw it in the crock with an approximate 3-lb cut of grass-fed bison roast that had been nicely peppered and rubbed with brisket seasoning.  Added a little H2O, set the crock on low and headed on out to the gym and then on to the work-a-day grind.  Made it home 14-hours later to a wonderful meal – and plenty of left-overs for the following day.  I ate this with a big hunk of raw, unpasteurized on the side.

What’s the macronutrient breakdown?  Hell if I know, this is real life folks – no weighing, no measuring – just some of this and a little bit of that, making sure to get plenty of good fats first and foremost.  I ate slowly, savoring every bite.  At satiation I pulled the plug and gave what was left to the dogs.  Made their night, and mine too.  Chased it all with a healthy swig of Carlson’s fish oil and let the dogs like the butter from the knife.

Life is sweet when you roll in an uncomplicated groove.

In health – and bon appetit, y’all!