Click Click Click

I went down to train at LA Fitness this morning and got to train for 3.5 hours. My back has just not been feeling in top form for the last ten days because I have not got to use my mini beam which really opens my back up. I took it down this morning and after some other warm up techniques I set up the mini beam and did my first beam back bend and suddenly click-click-click. Ahhh my back jsut fully opened. Now I realize why some of the other skills were not going as well as normal because the back was partially closed. I will be interested to see the next week and it also tells me the difference between my back fully open and partially open.

I did my best set on the mini beam and held all ten for a count of 70 each. My shoulder was a little tender from all the back bending work but oh it felt good. I then worked on handstands. I am now moving to a double stag switch. This is where I do a handstand go into stag position, switch leg into the other stag position and then go back to the first leg and then the other again. I did not make any ie 0/10 but was close on two. It will not be long before this is my new normal. I love it.

My split leaps are coming nicely as well. Now I training them each morning I do 10 sets of 2 leaps. I am thinking of increasing it to three or four leaps to push my body as well. I have plenty of space on the floor so might take advantage of it.

Another four breakthroughs today after 3.5 hours of training. It is hard work but I love seeing the small incremental improvements. I get to train with coach for eight more times before I leave including tomorrow so it will be interesting to see what I can achieve. Loving progress. Loving Life. Go Heroes!!

Success is Inevitable

I went and trained today down at LA Fitness and I had one goal. TO achieve a Quad Beam Slinky. My best until now has been a Triple Beam Slinky and that was tough. I have done slinkies before (Back Bend Kickover) and my longest series was 14 in a row. It makes a big difference when you move your hands into the position. I would almost say three to five times as hard.

I started warming my back and it felt good. I did a series of Back Walkover Leans in the beam position. This was my best set ever. I then did some Back Walkovers with the foot raised. It was a good set but nowhere near my best. I then went to do Beam Slinkies. I failed on the first. The second. The third. I was almost in tears. It just was not walking. I then did a Double Beam Slinky and then a Quad and then to prove it was not a fluke another Quad and then almost made another but just fell short on the last one.

I then did some Timed handstands and did a great set (not a record) and then did Handstand into Stag Position back into Handstand then into Stag with other foot and then Handstand and then down. I call this Switch Stage and did my best ever 7/10.

There are some other things I am working on as well and ended up with 5 breakthroughs. What I realized is that as long as I am pushing my boundaries and getting 4-10 breakthroughs a day I will achieve my goals. It will be slower than I wanted but what I do today was a dream six months ago and impossible a year ago.

As long as I train and persevere I will end up doing Back Handspring-Back Tucks on the beam. It may be three years ago but while I keep my body in great shape it will happen. Oksana Chusovitina just won Silver at worlds in vault at 37. 37!!! She was winning medals as a gymnast before the other gymnasts were even born!!

Rio is the real possibility. 5 more years from now. Intense training. My body is in the best shape it has even been. While I look after myself and keep making incremental improvements I will be able to do all the techniques I want; Amanar on vault, Katchev on bars, Back Handspring-Back Tuck on beam and Quad Twist on floor. There is so much more to learn and and it is going to be an amazing journey.

Weather Effects

IN the US we have our Football players who play in all weather conditions. It is a key part of the sport and something which the players need to be able to be conditioned for. In Gymnastics we train in an large open building. It does not have heating. Air conditioning consists of opening a the doors and turning on a fan. I woke up this morning and it was a drizzly. I had planned to go and kick some butt today and do my first ever Quad Beam Slinky.

I got down to LA Fitness and started warming up my back and it was just horrible. I was operating at about 80% of my flexibility and when you are doing Elevated Back Walkovers that translates to leaning back and crashing on the ground. NOT a happy experience. I really had my heart set on a particular breakthrough instead I got five other breakthroughs. Fortunately I was not attached to my goal and still had a solid day.

I figure as long as I train almost every day, my goal of doing Back Walkovers and eventually Back Handsprings on the beam will come to fruition. Maybe it is another year away but there is no reason why it cannot happen. Doing back walkovers on the beam if the breaking point for most girls and where they quit. I have no problem with coach spotting me on Back Walkovers and now it is just getting the confidence for me to do it by myself and be consistent at it.
I feel so blessed to be an Elite Gymnast and will continue everyday in my pursuit of GOLD in the Olympics. With focus like this, nothing can stop me. Go Heroes!!

Loving the Little Steps

I went down to LA Fitness today because Coach is going in for a minor surgery and unable to train. I went in and warmed by back up for about eight minutes before working on my first major skill. I want to improve my Back Walkovers. A key part of a Back Walkover is what I call melting the back when you lean back straight away with no hesitation and put your hands on the ground and kick over.

I currently stand with one leg on a bench (so it cannot move to stablise me) and the lean back and go over. I did 10/10 for the first time which tells me I am getting more and more confident in my back. The key now is improving the speed of going back. I then did BWO leanbacks in the beam position which is much tougher and did 7/10 of those.

I then did Beam Slinkies which I have not done for a while as I have been focusing on sets of BWO or Beam Slinkies. While I fell on the first one I then did 9 correct including a double beam slinky and to triple beam slinkies (First ever).

I am now doing pullovers in the boys weight area and six of those in great form and am going to keep increasing that number and faster as well so I build up that strength. I also did 8 chin ups and am going to focus on increasing that and more bar work to improve my bars. I want giants and release moves and transition moves as soon as possible.

I did fantastic on my split leap-split leap sequence and then did some awesome Beam Routines including my Tuck Jump Turn – Split Jump. I was very aggressive and the jumps and it felt great.

I then went back on the traeadmill. I am gradually falling in love with the running and went to 12 minutes on speed 6.8. Tomorrow I intend to increase it to 14 minutes on 6.8. Eventually I want to get to half an hour at 6.8 or more to build my stamina for my floor routine.

Overall I am doing great and continue to get better every day in almost every way. Onwards to Rio. Go Heroes!!!

When Good Is Not Enough

I was unable to train yesterday as coach was sick and was so looking getting down to LA Fitness this morning and training for 4-5 hours. I did not take my beam down there and focused on Back Walkovers so I can do them cleanly for the beam. I just did not have a good morning. Now if most people could do what I did this morning they would be blown away. For me it was good and that is not enough. I want great. I want excellent. I want breakthroughs!!

I did quite a few back bend techniques but nothing breakthrough. My handstands felt strong but just not enough to break records. My beam handstands are improving but not breakthrough. My stag handstands are getting better but again in the breakthrough zone but not a breakthrough.

I found a bar I can use in the weights gym for long hand pullovers. First time I did them so I took it easy and did 5 of them. That was a breakthrough there and a solid benchmark as well. I then did pullups there as well which was a breakthrough that will be broken continuously going forward as I drill it.

I then went and ran. I wanted to go 16 minutes on the 6.8 speed setting. I moved it to 7 and was exhausted after 10 minutes and stopped. My pride hurt falling so short. I only got 4 breakthroughs today far sure of my average of 7 breakthroughs and my personal best of 16 breakthroughs.

I so want to reach higher levels that days like this are so disappointing. I know I will be training tomorrow and this is part of the journey but it still does not make it feel great.

Breathe Bobbie and focus on a brand new day tomorrow full of breakthroughs. Go Heroes!!

Insights and Distinctions

In Frontier Trainings there is a distinction that ‘Distinctions separate the masters from the masses’. This is based on the concept that the more you have done something the more you have understood the little things that make a difference.

On Tuesday I was training with coach and was doing horribly. My tumbling was just not strong enough and I fell on almost every beam skill I did. My balance was just no there and it was frustrating. I was dealing with some frustrating news as well.

Coach then asked how what do you want to do with the last 45 minutes. I asked if I can vault. I said I wanted to get some energy out. I sprinted and really got my feet up allowing me to get a much better position on the table. As a result I did one vault where I really felt the time off the table until I stuck the landing. The next vault I applied the new distinction. Bam. Brilliant Vault. Coach was like Wow!!. I shared the lesson and he said do it again. I then proceeded to do my best vaulting ever and cannot wait to do it again.

This morning I went down to LA Fitness to train and took my mini beam. I did my backbends and did my best set ever.

As you can see my hands are getting closer and closer towards my feet. Today I had my massage therapist work a lot on the thighs to lengthen this muscle so I can this without bending the legs. I will get to the point where I can grab my own ankles. I am determined and with careful incremental progress I will get there.

Coach has also got me running to improve my cardio so I am now running every training at LA Fitness. It will end up making a big difference but running is not my favorite activity. Now I listen to Laday Gaga, Ke$ha and Katy Perry when I run and I am actually starting to enjoy it.

I am training again tomorrow and looking forward to getting more exceptional results. Loving Life. Go Heroes!!

Ready To Run

I went to train at LA Fitness today as coach had a splitting headache. I started off warming up and then did some blind slinkies. I did a double, triple and a quad. It is amazing feeling the ability of going back and putting the hands on the ground and then kicking over relying only on touch.

I then did a series of back walkovers. I did 10 and then 12 and then failed at one and stopped. It is funny that it felt like a total failure even though four months ago I have never even done a series or 3 or more Back Walkovers.

I then worked on my back bends onto the beam. I did my usual ten and actually bent back more than ever before. I actually felt my spine at complete extension. I seem to have reached the maximum flexibility I can can in my back. My spine is now arched where the actually vertebrae was touching.

I then did handstands and while my times handstands were not so good I was able to do my first ever beam stag handstand in good form as well. I then worked on piroutte handstands and was able to do my first ever 770 degree handstand as well which is two full turns and a little. It took me 8 steps which is more than it should be. I need to get it down to 4 steps to do it correctly.

I spoke to coach recently and he said we can start working on my Level 6 floor routine as soon as I can show I have the stamina to do the Level 5. Well that was enough I started running today for Cardio. From this point forward I will be doing cardio every day and will keep increasing it until stamina is no longer an issue. I am excited about the work I am doing and look forward to seeing the results. Loving Life. Go Heroes!!

Blind Faith

I have been training hard and have not been posting every day. Today is my first day of rest in two weeks. I normally train 7 days a week and i felt I needed one day off before I do my last block with coach. I LOVE training. I can not think of what I would prefer to do other than train whether it is gymnastics or cheer or dance. Unless that is compete and win of course!!

I have got to the point now where when I warm my back up my first Slinky happens effortlessly. I thought how can I raise the bar. Is it possible to do them with my eyes closed. I have done a couple of back bends before blind so I knew I could do it safely. Technically if I reach back I am at a point now where I basically place my hands on the ground starting with my fingers so the risk is close to zero providing I reach back. I had never kicked over though blind. Sure enough was able to do that, then did two and then did a triple blind slinky. Opens up a whole new world of putting my skills to the test now. Without your sight you need to be so much more in touch with your body. I love it.

My back is doing great. Using my mini beam I keep pushing it hard and my shoulders, back and thighs keep opening up. I am fascinated to see where it will lead. I have also started pushing the hips forward at the end of the backbend in preparation for Standups which will happen at some point as well. Constant progress. It is slow but I keep getting better. What is even more exciting for me is I am doing it on a very healthy body. Knee is incredibly strong and ribs are taking all the back bending onto the beam. I only have the challenge now with Back Extension Roll to get through and I will do that as well.

I can see me doing Back Walkovers on the beam and it is getting clearer and easier each day for that vision to become reality. Back Walkovers on the beam is where most girls quit because it is too scary. To me it is just another challenge to get through. I am excited about the possiblity that I will be doing Back Walkover Back Handspring on the beam as well. Eventually Back Handspring, Back Tuck in my routine.

So much to work on but while I continue to push myself, commit and grow I will make those dreams a reality and those dreams are very, very GOLDEN. Loving life. Go Heroes!!

The Coming Twist

I went down to train with coach this morning after watching Jordyn Weiber win gold in the World Gymnastics All Around. It was a great session first down at LA Fitness where I opened my back up ready for the day and worked on the splits. I then went to coach. He insisted that before I go onto beam again that I get my front leg on the Walkover straight and not moving to the side at all. We did ten of those. My body can do it, it is still a mental process of the body looking for backup options. From this point forward only good form will count.

We then went onto vault where coach said. “Are you ready to vault onto the mat instead of the pit Bobbie?” Of course coach. I landed every vault and many of them I stuck perfectly. I have a lot more technique to work on before he lets me add a twist. I need to run faster, hit the board at near vertical, block harder AND land in pencil form rather than with an arch. That being said I am one step closer to doing the twist. In effect I landed the Level 6 vault today about 16 times with deductions for form so in effect we are really building a more solid foundation for the Level 7 vault. It will happen. I would love to start that coversation next week and maybe even twist my first vault into the pit before this block is out.

I then went onto back tumbling on the floor. Coach has again raised the bar. Looks like we are going to go back to doing Back Tucks on the floor but coach will not let me do it until the Round off, Front Handspring is stronger and more consistent. I did a god group of those and then 2 Back Handsprings they were stronger but need to be tighter.

I then went onto Back Handspring series which are getting tighter and then went to doing it on the floor. I made some adjustments and did my best work to date. Back Tucks were OK but not my best. We then went to bars where I turned in a solid performance working and refining all the skills. My Hands are good so I may be able to train bars tomorrow as well.

We then finished up doing the floor routine three times without the tumbling. A lot of this is conditioning and stamina where I have more work to do. Overall it was a great day. I felt strong and even though my knee was under pressure twice and previoulsy would have taken it badly it just shook it off and kept going with zero impact. I LOVE having a healthy body. Training again tomorrow and looking forward to getting more results. I am loving training four times a week. To tomorrow with a coming twist. Go Heroes!!

Super Flexibility

I was down stretching this morning at LA Fitness. For a while I have been working on oppening up my back more and I do a variety of stretches to help but the one that has made the biggest difference is called the beam back bends. This is where I have my minibeam placed on the ground and then put down some step platforms so my feet can be at the same level as the beam. I then lean back with the hands in beam position (thumbs side by side pointing towards me, hands spread ready to grab the beam as I go back. I then bend all the back through the arch until I can grab the beam.

I have doing this for a while and do no more than 10 in a day. 10 is exhausting and when I start it took me an hour. The fastest I have done a set is 28 minutes. Either way it pushes my back to the extreme. I am very conscious of opening up my back correctly so I never jerk, or move to quickly. I reach to full extension, squeeze and squeeze and then relax and push it a bit further. I am now at a point when I reach back, my hands are getting closer and closer to the end of the beam. Also today I straightened my legs and squuezed and I felt it even more. When I did this on the following go I actually felt a section of my back I have not been able to isolate before. I then squeezed hard and that is when it happened, suddenly that whole section opened and become flexible. It was amazing.

My back was heavily fatigued from all the stretching but then I could feel the new areas opening before that I have never been able to do. This stretching is about doing it every day (or least as often as possible) so that that level of flexibility becomes conditioned. I am a long way from that step at the moment but I also know that the more I do it,the more the body will get used to it. My goal is to make my peak stretch an everage and have another whole level of peak. I am thinking of going into that bridge and holding it for 2 or 3 minutes and seeing how the body likes being in that position for a period of time.

This is a journey so it is going to take time to get to where I want to safely but then looking what I have covered so far I have come a long way and th view from here is sweet. Very sweet. Look forward to sharing more as my back takes my flexibility to even new levels. Go Heroes!!