Doors Are Opening

My friend Clinton Swaine recently moved to Poway and I spend a lot of time over with him as I on faculty for Frontier Trainings. I have a guest room set up over there when I am working late with him. I recently decided to join the LA Fitness in Poway so when I am with him I can train in the morning. I went over to see the gym and I went in and sat down with Jamison at the desk. We began talking and he looked at me, looked on the computer and saw my photo when I joined the San Carlos gym and he said your the famous Bobbie-Sue. I mentioned how did he know. He mentioned he had followed gymnastics for years and he remembers seeing  my picture that spread virally around LA Fitness when I joined.

I had a look around the gym with him and I mentioned that I am going to be training regularly, early in the morning and said I do a lot of back flexibility work and need quite a bit of space to do my work. He said that that are excited to have me training there and he will make sure it will work. The gym is much larger and more open than San Carlos. I used to train in the abs area that was a little isolated so I got to see all my regular friends there now it is is one big open space. It will be very interesting to see how it goes down.

I am frustrated that I only trained twice with coach this week and one of them was when I was exhausted and so was very ineffective. My back is getting stronger and I am back doing 5/5 on the Level 2 Upslinkies and I know it will not be long before I can go off the 3 Level panel mat as well.

I have been having a week off to let the rib fully heal and it is feeling very good. The separated rib which was playing up a little as well is much better as well. Overall getting ready for four more incredible sessions with coach and I know I am going to have some major breakthroughs. Go Heroes!!

Decisions Decisions.

I had a great morning stretching. My rib is doing Ok and I did 4/5 kickovers off the 2 panel mat and then did 5/5 FLKO (Front Limber Kickovers). My rib started hurting so I did not do Back Walkovers. I then went to focus on Handstands and while my normal handstands were he same as normal I am making a LOT of progress on Handstand Pirouettes. I really got to feel the difference of having a tight tusch in the ease of pirouetting. What a difference. I did my best ever pirouette and lots were so much more controlled. I also did many great beam handstands and they are looking better and tighter as well.

The exciting news for me is I am getting myself a balance beam so I can train on it at home and focus on getting dramatically better results. I am even contemplating getting a complete set of bars at home as well. There is a new park where I am going so I get to do a lot more sprinting drills there as well. I love sprinting. For a period of 12 months I could not run at all and it is was very frustrating not be able to take the brakes off and run and full speed.

I love being healthy and being able to do all four apparatus and having my minibeam at LA Fitness and Full beam at home means I should be able to make massive progress on beam.

I am very excited that I will be working with coach again on Tuesday and my plan is to be able to do Round Off-Back Spring-Back Tuck without coach spotting me and then start working on Round Off-Back Handspring-Layout. I also want to work on Standing Back Tucks and be doing them on the floor again without coach. I was doing them two years ago and then hurt myself which set myself back. The exciting thing is I am going to be doing that on the beam at some point this year and then it will be Front Handspring-Front Tuck.

Giants will be on their way again soon as well and I am getting closer to putting together the entire Level 6 Beam Routine. Level 6 Vault which is probably the first Level 6 trophy I will get is getting closer and closer and Back Walkovers on the beam continue to draw me to them. I do so much back work every morning and I was reviewing footage with Doc (Dr Michelle Binkowski) and we could see the massive improvement in five months of deliberate focused stretching. I also need to focus more on Sidesplits, Press and Pirouette Handstands.

What a journey it has been since I declared for the Olympics in January 2009!! I have made a decision that if for any reason I fail to make the London Olympics I am going to declare for Rio in 2016. I am focusing on Rio but it is great knowing that all the skills I build on will allow me to use it as the base to build on for Rio.

I am so blessed with what I get to do and cannot wait to see what comes next. Loving Life. Go Heroes!!

Anticipation Building

I have been spending a couple of days taking it easy to let my rib heal so that when I train with coach again in a couple of days we can go full out. The rib is coming along nicely. This morning I did my usual back stretching again and I could not feel anything from the rib which is great. I did my three kickovers followed by 6/10 Upslinkies (2) and then 5/5 FLKO and4/5 BWO.

This was good progress and lets me know I can push even harder coming up on Friday. Then I went to handstands and made some great progress on Handstand Pirouettes and then on beam handstands I know there is a long way to meet my goals. The progress consists of lots of little steps. When I am in that handstand the form is looking solid which is great. I did my longest beam handstand ever today. I count through the alphabet and got to 2C (once I get to Z I start again!!)

I am training with coach in five days and am so looking forward to it. With the rib fully healed and the knee solid I am planning to be doing front tumbling on the floor as well as doing Round Off-Back Handspring-Back Tuck on the floor. I LOVE spending time with coach and these long stretches are just frustrating but they allow me to heal and come back stronger.

I recently received my cover for American Cheerleading after we won the National Championships for the third time in a row.

I am also taking a lot of great supplements for Muscle Growth and Muscle Recovery which is allowing me to train longer and have better performance throughout the entire training time. I can see me getting to a point where I will be able to hold much longer handstands soon as I keep learning more and more distinctions.

Life is fabulous and it just keeps getting better…..Go Heroes!!

Unexpected Progress

After yesterdays training I went to work with Doc who spent 90 minutes in deep tissue massage and working on my body. Later last night I also got to spend two hours with Hector my Muscleworker who does a lot of thai massage. I fell asleep mutiple times I was so exhausted from all the training and having this little downtime.

When I woke up this morning I was expecting some great results and went to LA Fitness. However I could still not get 100% of Level 2 Upslinkies. I ended up getting 50% and identified the problems a lot more. I now realize why it has been so tough. With my middle back so tight on the right side and the left side so flexible that when I push back the right cannot get over easily and so the body bends to the left and the arm is under pressure and starts to bend losing power of strength to kick over.

I did 5/5 front limber kickovers although some of them I doublekicked. I did some nice handstands before heading over to Elite Gymnastics to work with coach. We started off on vault and did some great work and made more progress on my current vault. Much tougher coming back to the springboard after being used to the mini tramp but getting back there with momentum again. Then went to bars and did lots of kips and casts and then squat ons to Long Hang Kips. Did not make them but is is a new combintion on already ripped hands and all three rips, reripped.

We then went to beam and I did five routines. They were ugly and I did not stick a handstand but coach was happier with the form and the time is still coming back. Very different doing techniques versus all of them in a routine. It is the integration which is the challenge.

Finally we went to do tumbling and did some work on Front Handsprings and Front Handspring Stepouts on Tumbl Trak but i just did not feel I could do it on the floor so we went to back tumbling. I started with Roundoff and then RO-Back Handspring and then RO- 2 BHS and finally for the RO-Back Handspring-Set which is getting ready for Back Tuck. We have been close before but coach did not feel they were strong enough. Today I was tumbling tighter and stronger so we decided to go for it and I ended up doing three good ones. And I will be doing it without a spotter soon and then we can start on Layouts which leads to Layout Fulls and then Double Tucks. So exciting and so great to be healthy and able to attack the routines  on each apparatus. Vault, Bars, Beam and Floor today. This will be episode #123 of GOLD on when it is edited.

So excited to train again with coach.  I will be stronger, faster and in even better shape by then. Go Heroes!!!

Inch by Inch

Was up at 4:30am this morning and down at LA Fitness. I worked for about an hour doing back flexibility training to prepare for coach. The kickovers were OK and then I went straight to Upslinkies (2). I missed the first onw but then got the next four in a row. I moved up to Upslinkies (3) and it was tough but I made the fourth out of five. It means I will be doing them again soon. I will probably get 3-5 of them tomorrow and within a week I will be surprises if I get less than four in a morning.

I then went to train with coach. We started on vault and I blew away coaches expectations in the first five vaults and met his goal. We then dropped the table to the fifth setting and back to the Springboard. So my goal now is to get great form and be able to vault off this setting with the springboard. Once that form is done we will be able to take away the mats and I will be moving to completing my Level 6 Vault. The vault is same as Level 5 only it needs to be off a higher setting and be even tighter form.

We then went to bars where I am currently working on Giants. This is where you swing entirely around the bar. After a couple of swings coach encouraged me to go for it. We went into action but I just could not get the swing high enough but at least I attemped it. We will get this soon and not long after that I will be doing them regularly on the strap bars and then off to the high bar. Very Exciting.

We then went to the floor for tumbling and I did OK although it was always Tighter Bobbie! or Faster Bobbie! It is great to be doing it on the floor again though and I know we will be doing Round Off-Back Handspring-Back Tuck on the floor shortly as well. I ended on an ugly pass as I went to think mid-pass. VERY DANGEROUS!! It is drill the skill and let your body take over.

I finished with handstands on the beam and got my best handstand on the beam with coach. He was very excited and this is where the training on the minibeam is really beginning to show. Give me another 30 a morning for six months and see how good those handstands are going to be.

I then went back to LA Fitness but when I went to stretch my back I was so exhausted from four hours of training that my body did not want to play. Instead I went to handstands and huge distinction. I started being able to walk on my hands. Instead of simply coming down from a handstand I was able to walk back and stay in the handstand.  I then was able to do pirouette handstands and get a much greater understanding of this technique and beat my personal best by a LOOONG way. I love it and am so looking forward to doing more handstands with this new distinction.

Tomorrow is another big day with lots of possibilities. Can’t Wait. Go Heroes!!!!

Small Steps….Big Gains

I remember when I was studying History about Neil Armstrong and the quote ‘One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind’. For me I make lots of little stepsevery day and the more I train at the gym the more I improve. I may not have a breakthrough or even may be less than personal best, but every back bend assists in conditioning my body so that the big breakthrough days can happen. For the last couple of days I have had more challenges doing Upslinkies and have not done one off the three panel mat since I hit 5/5. I also realize how much the chiropractor makes in having my body in peak form.

I have also been working on the sidesplits and I had no idea it was going to take me this long to get them. The body is SLOWLY complying with all the stretching and I have to realize that this is going to allow me to get there and stay there with this technique. Every day that I stretch I am reminding the muscles that they will be needing to do that on a regular basis. I so look forward getting the point I can sit in front of the television for fifteen minutes (watching a biography video) in the sidesplits. It is a vision I have and commitment will get me there.

Here is todays result

Most people do not realize what they can achieve in the long term with consistent, planned training. I have also put out that I will be able to do a handstand for five minutes. I will also be able to walk around on my hands like I do on my feet with complete control.

I also want to rebuild vertical leap for my leaps and jumps. So much conditioning to do but the results keep showing up in what I am doing.

It is amazing with the principle What I Focus On Expands. When I drill a skill down at LA Fitness within a short number of weeks I start getting such better results. My challenge is hours in the day to train and wear and tear on the body. My handstands are looking good already and getting more consistent now is the time to take that rigor to the beam which is what I am doing with my mini beam.

Look forward to training with coach for the next three days. I am sure there will be more to report….Go Heroes!!

A Breach is not Conquered

I have doing a study of George S. Patton, Jr and one of his biggest philosophies is that we will never take the same ground twice and we will keep advancing. How does that relate to what I am doing. I have my big objective. Liberate the GOLD medal. I have lots of enemy in between where I am and my goal. I have skills that I must conquer which leads me to this topic. Just because you can do a technique does not mean you own that technique.

I went to the gym this morning and almost kicked over on my first bridge. That means with very little pre-stretch I can almost kick over straight away. That says a lot about the quality of the conditioning of the body. I did my three kickovers and then went to Upslinkies. I got all five on the two panel mat but they were tough and some involved double kicks to get over. I then made zero on the three panel mat. Yesterday I got 5/5 on this previous;y impossible skills and today 0/5. Part of me was disappointed but part of me also knows that I need to keep doing it so that it becomes automatic. Part of the challenge of big breakthroughs is that the weight of expectation is suddenly on you to do it again. You have pre conceived ideas and add more pressure on yourself. I know that in time this will become consistent.

Also by doing the Upslinkies it is making all my other back work so much easier. I now do 5/5 Back Limber Kickoves every morning. The back is so much more open after the Upslinkies that these are getting effortless. I then did my Tumbleweeds (Front Limber Standups). I need to these so it becomes consistent and in better form. This is important for Front Handsprings which is one of the few remaining challenges for Level 5 Floor.

I then worked on Back Walkover as part of the routine and did 5/5 although I did have to double kick on the last one which is unusual. I then did 5 beam slinkies on the floor and got two of them going over smoothly. I then did back bends onto the minibeam and stuck all five. This is a new and critical process for me of getting used to going back and knowing my hands will be on the beam and have a solid grip allowing me to go over.

It is SOOO much harder to do handstands and back walkovers in the beam position than in the normal floor position. I love my coach. This mini beam is going to make such a difference and speed up the skill acquisition. Coach and I are now going after this skill aggressively and a lot of it is getting comfortable trusting to be balanced and go backwards over the beam.

I then worked on handstands and made great progress. I was able to get 8/10 up to count of at least 1Z. I then did my best on pirouette handstands as well with much better form and then did 30 handstands on beam. I am beginning to fall in love with this and now I can do it on the minibeam I can be really aggressive and go for it and feel more comfortable.

I then did my two sets of 21 pushups as requested by coach and my goal is to increase it by one each time I do them until I can do two sets of 100. Finally I made more progress on Sidesplits.

There may not seem to be much progress but the body is slowly getting more comfortable getting there and the goal is to get the point where I can go straight into the splits and sit there for 15 minutes. It is an aggressive goal but I am going to keep working towards it. I also was thinking today that I want to be able to walk around the gym on my hands and come down when i want. I am talking five minutes on my hands and I am strong enough to do it. If I can get there it means my body is so strong and all the techniques on floor, beam and bars will be so much easier.

Another huge day or progress and am so looking forward to training again tomorrow and then three days with coach with week. Loving Life. Go Heroes!!!

I Love Breakthrough Days!!

After a great day with coach yesterday and seeing Doc (Dr Michelle Binkowski) I was sooo looking forward to training this morning. Doc did a lot of work unlocking muscle on my right side over my ribs and getting deep into the scar tissue. There is a lot of it and it has glued up my side and means I have all this crunching every morning and keeps my spine rotating.

I so wish I could film down at LA Fitness but they have issues. This morning I got down there at 6:30 and went to work. I almost kicked over on the first bridge but decided to wait until the second. What this tells me is the back is getting conditioned so it requires less stretching now to do basic kickovers. I think it might be another month o two and I should be able to do kickovers immediately ANYWHERE. Tehehe. Watch Out. Then it will be slinkies everywhere.

I then went straight to Level 2 Upslinkies. I decided after yesterday to bypass off the 1 panel mat and go straight to two. I did 5/5 and then did 5/5 on Level 3. OMG such massive progress. In a week I am going after Level 4 to see how it feels. This progress is amazing.

I then did 5 Front Limber Kickovers beautifully as part of the routine followed by 6 Tumbleweeds (Front Limber Stand Ups) Then I did five beautiful Back Walkovers as part of the routine as well. It is just amazing watching the progress and how effortless it is becoming. Just a while ago all these skills were dream like and on my wish list from Santa and now they truly are easy.

I then worked on Slinkies on the beam. I did backbends onto the beam but just did not have the confidence to kick over yet. Slinkies are off both feet. Back Walkovers are off one (more balance required). Soon. I should have done 5 on the floor first. When I did that I made huge progress and got 3/5 over. Soon this too will be become automatic and give me so much more confidence on the beam.

After that I worked on handstands and the beam handstands were mediocre but it is a starting point for me to get my hands on my mini beam and train. I know huge progess is inevitable with focused training and tracking all progress.

After I worked on the sidesplits. I did great progress and did my personal best there. It is really great to visualize myself getting down and then getting to a point where I can stay down and then go into the splits without a lot of warming up. It is inevitable and necessary or what I need to do for Level 6 where I need to do 180 degree splits in the air.

Working on SideSplits

I was sharing with some of my friends down the gym and my goal is to get better every day in every way. Bernie who is 77 said Bobbie I am just working at not sliding the other way. (He works out 6 days a week). I ended up the day with 8 Breakthroughs Before Breakfast. I love starting the day this way.

I feel so blessed and look forward to reflecting in a years time when everything I am doing is so effortless and obvious that I have difficulty fathoming I was challenged by it. Who knows what tomorow has in store. All I know is I am excited. Go Heroes!!!

Path to Impossibility

I love Gymnastics because it is a quest for the impossible. I remember when I began training again two years ago on my path to Olympics and my back was so out of shape I could not even do a backbend or a kickover. The ideas of it was can I ever climb that mountain again like when I was a junior. A year ago I could just do it. Now I do 40-60 a morning. Since then I have been working on making it harder by going uphill with what I call upslinkies. Recently I had been pushing the envelope doing Upslinkies onto the one panel mat and was getting good but had never gone up two panel mats. Ten days ago I was able to start going up two occassionally. A week ago I went to test one the three panel mat and it felt months away.

Well this morning I felt great and was nailing everything even with the rib and decided to go for the three. I nailed the first one on the first attempt. OMG!!! I then did 3/5 What a difference. Ten days ago I thought three might be a major challenge now I have my sights on four panel mats. I know it is still a long way away but then miracles happen. What Upslinkies do is they increase my kick strength and open my upper back further so that when I come to do my normal back work on the floor it becomes effortless. I LOVE it.

I was working with coach today on Back Walkovers on beam and have started the pieces coming together. Now with my minibeam there is a direct and realistic change that by the time I return to work with coach in March this technique will be working on the beam with coach barely spotting. Amazing. It takes so much discipline to go after these techniques and knowing that ‘Once Impossible, Now Easy’. Back Walkovers are the lead in to Back Handsprings on beam and that to me is where we start talking major skills. There is a big skill jump to being doing back handsprings on beam and this separates the pack and moves me into Level 7 which is Optional routines.

I also worked with coach on Back Tucks. This technique is one I was doing 2 years ago but hurt my knee REALLY badly and it slowed me down for 18 monts. I was back doing it with coach on the floor spotting but it will not be long before I am doing them again down at the gym without coach spotting. Eventually this skill will also go to the beam.

I also got to work on Front Handsprings this morning as well which has twisted my knee 7 times. Today we were doing them on the floor and getting closer and closer to not needing coach. It will be a while yet but the fear has gone and I am attacking the technique. Eventually I will be doing Front Handspring – Front Tuck on beam at higher levels. Talk about the need for precision.

Also worked on Front Tucks as well and am doing it off the springboard and it is coming together. Soon will be off the floor and then as part of the level 6 Floor routine. I was also doing Back Handsprings which are getting better and I will break through this as well. Little distinctions are coming together.

Overall it was an amazing day and it is under Episode #120 if you want to see the footage although it may be a couple of weeks before the footage is in BobbieSue.TV

I also went to work with Doc (Dr Michelle Binkowski) who is my incredible chiropractor and she was working very deep into the muscles, breaking up scar tissue which will allow me to do even better tomorrow. Now she has a much better feel for this area we are going in a with a lot more with elbows deep into the tissue. It hurts but I know the benefits on the othe side and am so looking forward to training tomorrow and am expecting even more breakthroughs. Loving Life. Go Heroes!!!

Stepping Forward

I was vey excited about getting down to the gym today. Coach had given me a list of new exercises to do as part of my strength conditioning. My back is getting so flexible that he has given me work to do on my core to stabilize it while I keep getting more and more flexible. I interspersed those with my back work this morning. I was excited when I did my first bridge because it felt really strong and open after Doc worked on me yesterday. I then did three kickovers in a row. The rest of my workout did not meet my expectation. I feel short on a lot as my rib caused a jabbing pain in my side.

I turned up to work with coach a little disheartened. We started on vault and I did five bad vaults and was very frustrated. Coach had a supportive word to me and I worked through it and finally hit my stride and did two of my best vaults to date. Progress amidst the rubble. I then spent the next two hours doing beam work. Cartwheels were just not happening but handstands are getting better and better which is very exciting for me.  We did turns and leaps and also some wok on Back Walkovers which is one of my next bis steps on beam. Even with the rub I was able to do a Back Walkover on floor and coach was ecstatic. We then did spotted back walkovers on beam and again coach was excited about the progress and now I have my mini beam I am going to be able to train that so the next block in March we will be doing that on the high beam.

Very excited to go and train tomorrow. I went down and got some more supplements and protein powder today to keep supporting my intensive workouts. Need to support my body as it takes me to Gold.  Off to rest and then off for an evening session. I love my life. Go Heoes!!!