Thursday, September 28, 2017

Crawling Progress!!

Crawling Progress!!
Image result for progress
For me over the past two years, my life has been about juggling work and training.  I'm traveling less which has made me more consistent.  My main goal is to continue showing up every day and make cumulative progress.  

You learn things along the way.  I keep pointing out that at Reno last year I was at 6 lefts/12 steps with an 11'10" grip.  At Auckland, same pole one stride closer and a 12' grip.  Then at Grand Haven, same pole and now I'm blowing through at 4 lefts/8 steps gripping 12'2".  This is cumulative progress.

Just before Auckland I did a strength test and benched 205 at 165 in body weight.  That same day on a heavy lat pull at 180 I felt a pop in my shoulder.  It didn't affect my vaulting at Auckland but suddenly even 95 lbs. felt heavy on bench, and 80 lbs, on the lat pull really hurt.  I couldn't do my bars at all.  I'm back to normal or ahead everyplace but bench which I've intentionally been overcautious.

So Auckland I'm benching 205 and at Grand Haven I could only do 135 X 6, yet blew through bigger poles with a higher grip from a shorter run.  This has made me re-think how far I need to push in certain areas.

For six weeks before Grand Haven I did a twice a week running program of shorter "sprints" for rhythm.  It's a 14 week program.  I felt good on the runway and it clearly helped me get through the pole easier.

Leading up to the Gill Masters PV Symposium, I started that program again and got through week 5.  I was on a bigger pole there, and yesterday I finished week 8 of 14.  I expect to get through this entire 14 week running program two more times before Malaga next September.  The next 14 weeks will be with 1.5 lb. ankle weights and the next will be with 2.5 lbs. which I have used for the last three years.

Long story short, running, vaulting more on the Pacer Carbons, and a slow raise of my bench (all other lifts are at Auckland strength test levels), and count on this continued cumulative result.

Pole vaulting is about speed and I'm getting much better there.  I think I can dial in my technique since I have a perfect series of manageable poles.  I'll continue to lift heavier weights slowly rather than do the higher reps since my shoulder is greatly improved.  I really think this will be a winning formula.  Thanks so much for hanging in there with me.

Tubthumbing (I Get Knocked Down, But I Get Up Again) -

Monday, September 25, 2017

Good Gym Day/New Plan!

Good Gym Day/New Plan!

Image result for roller
Felt good to get my regular long Monday.  I'm thinking I may try to jump every Sunday instead of every other Sunday.  I've got a masters friend that could jump with me most days which could help.  I'm tron because I have less lifting but the reality is, I'm strong enough.  My shoulder ding right before Auckland dropped my bench press by 40 lbs. yet I still had no problem moving the same poles and grips.  We will see how it goes but it's worth a test.  Have a great day!  Bubba

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Catching Up!!

I'm behind on this blog because the time I normally do it, right after my workout, has been interrupted because of pressing work matters.  I think I've figured out a better time to get it done that's pretty consistent each day.

Training is going well.  I've not jumped since the Masters PV Symposium, but I will next weekend.  I wanted to today but the pit was covered with some heavy fencing because they had a big cross country meet there yesterday.  Key for me is to stay on track on my running and I've done that.  Thanks for checking in!  Bubba

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Lost Week!

Lost Week!

I wasn't happy with my nh in Illinois but it's not such a big deal.  Kris and I figured that the box collar was restricting the pole from rolling forward.  Four good vaulters nhd on that pit.  I felt great so I couldn't figure it out.

Long story short I could get on on the first new pole from 3 lefts/6 steps/32' run.  I turned up from 4/8/42' but came up much shorter in the pit than my senses told me I was.  I thought I would be easy going at 5/10/52' but was shocked to come down on every bungee, so I jumped in the meet from 6/12/62', a run I hadn't used since Reno.

The math is simple, one pole smaller in Grand Haven gripping 12'2 was too small from 4/8/42', but the next pole up was still making me come up short from 6/12/62' gripping 12'.  Box collar.

I typically don't train the Monday or Thursday after a meet but I lifted Monday, not Tuesday, and ran Wednesday as planned.  Wednesday night I had body aches and a low fever so I took off Thursday and Friday.  I resumed running today and felt very good.

I'm on week 6 of my 14 week running program.  My plan now is to jump every other Sunday.  In week 7  I'll go to 1.5 lb. ankle weights, and then on week 11 I'll go the normal 2.5 lbs.

I hate missing any part of training but sometime my body or my work schedule demands it.  Hey, it's better than weekly travel I used to do.  Thanks for hanging out and waiting for me.  Should be a better week.  Bubba

Drowning Pool - "Let the Bodies Hit the Floor" -

Wednesday, September 13, 2017


I had an nh at 10'6/3.20m at the Masters PV Symposium.  Not happy about it.  I've had three nhs in my career but this one was no fun.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

New Poles Again!

New Poles Again!
As you know, I blew through all four of my new Pacer Carbons at the Grand Haven Beach Vault from my 4 left/8 step run.  In Champaign, I'll get four new poles again, starting with one size bigger than my last series.  I'll start on these from 5 lefts/10 , and hope I have the same problem.

I loved the way the poles felt, and my grip was higher than it's been in a long time because of how well they rolled.  I won the World Masters Games gripping 11' 11" from 5/10 whereas I was gripping 12' 2" from 4/8 at Grand Haven.

The grips on the new poles will be taped at 12' 4, 6, 8 and 10".  I haven't gripped that high in four years.  The last time I gripped 12' 10" I jumped 13' 1".  Obviously I'm cautiously optimistic, but there's a lot of work to do after this benchmark.  Have a great day!  Bubba

Them Changes - Buddy Miles -

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Ready to Vault!

Ready to Vault!
Image result for hamstring muscle anatomy
Yeah, I know how weird this sounds after Wednesday's post, but I've been busy looking for solutions.  I've done a lot of research about this "catch" in my hamstring.  First, it's in my right hamstring and vaulters only ever hurt their left, or take off leg for right handers.  So what was the cause?

I went bodysurfing for the first time in years, and when taking off to catch a wave, it requires a very explosive set of kicks led by my right leg with a fin on it.  I immediately felt the quickness of the reaction was new to the hamstring.  It didn't hurt but it sure woke it up.

Over the next few days I had soreness in the area but didn't think anything of it.  When I went to run the next time, I felt some tightness, but again I didn't think much of it.  As I came back to running on subsequent days, it seemed the soreness for the most part was gone, but there seemed to be a "catch" in the range of motion.  To me this meant an adhesion or bit of scar tissue in the fascia.

Of course stretching is the common action and I already do a lot of that.  On two cases I felt my hamstring sore like I had strained it. My guess was that it really wasn't hurt, but rather this was the inflamed reaction of the adhesion breaking loose.  Of course it's going to heal back and stick again.

I belong to a massage "club" but I just don't have the time to block out 2 hours for the massage and the commute.  I canceled my membership and got online with some friends and some videos.

Long story short, too late, I found a few ways I can  directly impact the area to keep my hamstrings free of adhesions.  I had done one of these techniques and had a big breakthrough, but when I didn't use this technique between that running session and the next one, I had another faux strain caused by the adhesion breaking loose.

Since Wednesday I have used the knobbed hard rubber roller, used the "Fascia Stick" we got from Ashley Black, and set up to include running my fingers deep in between the muscles both while relaxed and stretching.  The result?  Wednesday I posted that I was out of the meet next week.  Today, four days later, I'm good as new with a six day leg break in between.

Now I have, and have had a similar catch on my right hip flexor, but its more of an annoyance than an injury.  It too goes away overnight with the Fascia Stick.  My guess is that this hamstring issue will recur if not watched, so I have incorporated this full treatment into my day.

So back to the original game plan for the meet, which I will discuss in the next post.  Thanks so much for checking in on me!  Bubba

Motley Crue - "Wild Side" -

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Changing Dynamics!

Changing Dynamics!
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Over the past few years I've dealt with timing issues on my vault as I have lost weight, 10 lbs/4.5 kg.  This last year I put on about 5 lbs/2.2 kg from heavier lifting and more protein.  Now, I find myself about 3 lbs. lighter (on purpose) yet my timing is better and I'm getting stronger.  In fact I'm about the same strength as I was when I was heavier, and that's always a challenge.

The biggest thing I noticed at the Grand Haven Beach Vault, was that the Pacer Carbons rolled easily, allowing me to grip higher, and they had a strong return.  My past series of Essx, frankly were design mistakes.  They were too quick and compressed rather than rolled.  I won't go into why but basically they were worthless which is why I left.  I'm very excited to see where I end up on the carbons, but right now my grip is up and the poles feel great.

So I seem to be thinking more like I'll be able to jump next Saturday at the Gill plant.  I've had real breakthroughs in the "catches" I have been feeling in my right hamstring, but tomorrow's running will give me a better perspective.  WHEN I can jump, my new poles should allow me to grip 12' 10"/3.92m.  If that's Saturday I'll be pumped.  Have a great day and thanks for being here!  Bubba

Van Halen - "Atomic Punk" -

Friday, September 1, 2017

I Know Nothing!

I Know Nothing!
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After confidently deciding not to jump in Illinois, I go to the gym today and do not feel my hamstring on hamstring curls.  I've been rolling the hamstring with a stiff knobby roller, so I did a couple of strides in the gym and had no issue.  Stretches that have bothered me in the past are far less bothersome.  At this point I'll go though the motions, and make a decision after my Sunday running if I think I can jump.  Crazy!   The more I know the less I know.

I really don't care one way or the other.  Of course I would like to jump, but not at the risk of an unnecessary injury.  I'm pretty good about this stuff.  I've warmed up and stopped before, so I will do whatever it takes not to be at risk. I just hate the not knowing.  Have a great day and thanks for checking in.  Bubba

Megadeth - In My Darkest Hour -