imPRESSive

Even though this blog should not have the intention to solely notify about new uploads to my Vimeo On Demand channel where one could buy real time workouts – it is a queit cool project that we got going there, and then I am simply setting my priorities currently in a way that doesnt allow me to post much other things here. Sorry about that, so this post is just another advertisement for our latest upload 🙂

The next round of TRX Training and Kettlebell Training – Fusion Workout is online: 50 Minutes of intense fun! 

Should you be interested, check the link to see more infos! 

This weeks workout has certainly a focus on “pressing patterns”… so be prepared for some burning boulder shoulders 😉

Workout On Demand #2

I am very much stoked on our second shooting and production of our “Workout On Demand” workouts! 

If you are a fan of TRX Training & Kettlebell Training then this is possibily some great inspiration either for your own training or for your classes / clients. 

Its a full 59 minutes real time workout showing many regressions and variations. 

For Lennart and myself this is certainly a work in progress and learning process, figuring out how to do this best, and we can already say there is quiet a difference to the first one we filmed.

Enjoy! 

Workout On Demand

A nice little side project that just recently grew as an offspring of some other work I did for my personal tarining studio MT Fitness in Amsterdam.

Like the name suggests, we are all about personal training, 1 on 1 training. At two evenings during the week we still host some group trainings: TRX & Kettlebell Fusion, and Functional Training Circuit. 

Even though the focus is nit really on these classes, it turns out that we receive a ton of great feedback about these classes, which are never the same, no standard Zumba or Les Mills shit that wr are doing there.

Because the feedback is so great we felt inspired to reach out to a bigger audience with these exact workouts. 

So as of this week we (Lennart & Zosch) will try to record each weeks TRX & Kettlebell class. For those that ate visiting our trainings in Amsterdam, this is a great chance to re-visit these workouts and have them for a later time, and hopefuly there are plenty of other people as enthusiastic about these kind of training programs as we are!

I am looking forward to hear everyones comments and to do more of these!

Moving around

Ever since I can remember –  movement, sports and fitness had a big role in my life!

When I turned towards the fitness scene I guess I can call myself lucky that this was at a time when “functional training” just arrived in european gyms and in that way provided me an opportunity to workout without actually jacking up and being all about them “gainz”…

Who knows what would have happened if my change of profession would have been 20 years earlier… me ending up running after more gainz in the gym on a daily base, being hardly able to move in more then one direction at a time and in pain half the time because my joints can´t handle it… please not!

Even though this might sound like a general statement contra a classic gym set up and classic exercise/fitness regim, its not. I just found what works and feels best for me (which is different for everyone), and in my case moving around with a little portion of “classic sets” and some iron has the biggest “time investemt to feel good ratio”.  But again, just like nutrition, or your sleeping cycles, every each individual ticks differently, and I believe that the true quality in a good coach lies in finding out what suits each client best.

Having found tools such as the TRX Suspension Trainer, and programs such as Animal Flow has opened so many doors to a variety of movement apporoaches and opportunities to workout in a sustainable and creative way, I couldnt have asked for more! I am truely thankful for the creative minds behind the modalities and programs that drive me and allow me to feel the way I feel these days!
I got 38 years under my belt with two and a half decades of thrashing my body during my time as a skateboarder.

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But still I am feeling physicaly better right now then I have ever before – which I attribute to the versatility of training and movement programs I have learned to love over the last years.

Here are two examples of what drives me these days in terms of fitness and movement. This first clip is just me moving around within movement patterns of the Animal Flow program without a plan in mind, this was completely freestyle while going along to the feeling of the song:

This second clip is myself and Mike Fitch who just recently spent a few days in Amsterdam with me after teaching an Animal Flow Level 2 workshop at my gym MT Fitness. We were both kind of just doing our own thing and started of with some hand balancing practice – later then I got stuck in trying one specific combo which I had tried few times before but never nailed it:

This scene with Mike very much reminded me of being in the US (Encinitas) back in 1998 for my first Skateboarding trip to the famous San Diego area, so here is a little throwback.

Up until that trip I was already very dedicated to skate vert and become  as good as possible. But it was that trip, when I surrounded myself with many of my childhood skateboard-heros going to the same ramps as they were on a daily base, that really changed the way I looked at skateboarding back then and the amount of effort I was able and wanted to put into something I wanted to achieve! It were scenes like Tony Hawk trying the 900 over and over again, same with Tas Pappas, Danny Way and Colin McCay doing their thing, Matthias Ringström being the absolut tech wizzard, Bucky Lasek, Rune Glifberg my absolut style hero, Bob Burnquist … Seeing them on a daliy base, pushing a sport, pushing beyond their limits, these were scenes that inspired me and activated my drive to this day to achieve whatever I set my mind to. And if you dont get to achieve the actual goal, well then there were at least 10 things you learned along the way which were a useful extension of my skill repertoire.

This very much translates into life in general and you will always gain from going after your goals in some way. So either way, you reach your goal or not, its a winning scenario.

So for me to workout / train / move with Mike in this case, its inspiring and certainly an extra motivation to go after something – thanx Mike and I hope to have you back in Amsterdam soon!

Ice Bath / Breathing Exposure

I believe a warm and summer like environment is the absolute best climate to surround myself with. I am convinced I am not made for winter, but somehow accept the fact that without winter there wouldnt be much summer. But still the thought of a nice summer day ideally at the ocean is still somewhat of a “perfect picture” for me.I dont like snow and dressing up with multiple layers of clothing, and therefore I dont even like wintersports that much, on the other hand Surfboard, yes I like!
So, I am a summer dude!

Why this intro?
Basically just to somewhat point out my dislike to low temperatures / cold.

Another “cold thing” that never got to me, cold showers. I never felt good about them or even just thinking about it. Actually no way and while one hand might turn the cold water on the other would just simultaneously turn warm on even more. Like a subconscious self protection program running on auto pilot.

Last weekend we (Mike and myself) got invited to an “Ice bath and breathing exposure”. On first thought I immediately confirmed and pretended to be happy to accept the invitation only to find myself thinking later “wtf did I get myself into… I am going to be sitting in a bath filled with ice cubes, near freezing point water, really?”.

Often enough it is the pure fact of doing something new as often as possible that gets me into these situations.

Leading up to the Ice Bath day we got told to end every shower cold – but still this was not getting any more “comfortable” or making me actually looking forward to sit in a bath full of ice!
In the days before I actually started to go through possible scenarios once I made contact with the almost freezing water, I guess feeling a bit nervous about this would describe it pretty well.

On the day itself we met up with Ronald (who just took the Animal Flow Level 2 Workshop with us the previous weekend) and Myung, who both have completed their 1 year instrcuctor training with “The Iceman” Wim Hof.
While having a cup of warm tea we were talked through the experience up front: preperation, the actual experience, possible reactions and not to forget the benefits for the immune system.

We continued with breathing exercises for about the next 30 minutes or so, hard to tell the actuall time here. A few cycles of breathing that all ended with a period of retention after the last exhale – and to say the least I was amazed when I heard the actual retention times that ended each breathing cycle:

Cycle 1: 20 seconds
Cycle 2: 1 min 7 seconds
Cycle 3: 1 min 35 seconds
Cycle 4: 2 min 10 seconds
Cycle 5: 2 min 24 seconds


These numbers were really surprising to me as I at no point was forcefully holding my breath. At no point in my life did I hold my breath for over 2 minutes, and this just happened in a complete state of relaxation without much effort!

After the breathing session it was time for the ice bath experience!
Mike was the first one to go in. And while I was filming his experience having the actual close up look through the camera to his reactions, this was not exactly providing much more comfort to me. This actually sounds worse then what it was like, but again its me (summer dude!) looking at someone stepping into a bath filled with freezing water and ice cubes.


At the same time the things he said when he stepped out made me really curious to now find out myself!
Next one up me:

As you can clearly see I was not able to put the experience into a propper set of words and sentences so short after stepping out of the bath.

And even now it leaves me thinking about so many different facets of this experience that it is is hard for me to pay justice to this experience in words… your body goes into shock mode (or at least wants to), through controlling your breath and focus you keep conscious overhand over your body’s instinctual subconscious reflexes, its ice cold, its hot, its both, you dont know anymore, at some point its awesome for a short moment, and so much more.
I really need to do this again. Not only for the temporary feelings and reactions but also to explore the well documented health- benefits.

A huge thank you to Ronald and Myung who gave us an incredible mini workshop on breathing and the ice bath experience!
Ronald is doing workshops of this kind on a regular base in the Rotterdam / Amsterdam area. So if you are interested to find out more visit this link, highly recommended!
http://www.ronaldaartsen.com

Getting things done

For quiet some time the topic of time management has been very present in my life due to my entepreneurial activities of running 2 companies, giving personal trainings, teaching all over europe, having a little daughter and the urge to experience live.

Often enough over the last few years I had the feeling the day just is’nt long enough to get all the things done that need to be done, to actually be ever done. A situation that doesnt allow for many satisfactory moments as you are always looking at an unfished, uncompleted status quo only to wonder when all this can possibly be done – there is not much positive about this scenario. 

As much as this situation requires optimizing the use of the available time at hand, this is at least as much a mindset issue. 
Its just too often that we are stuck in “rapid fire like email sending habits” in order to prove and show “productivity” and an all time availablity just to slowly but surely flatline all energy resources.  
There are some habits I have adapted over time in order to stay on top of things and manage my time efficiently. One of the most important things I have learned: Differenciate urgent from important and make decisions accordingly! 

With a busy schedule and being in contact with so many individuals connecting to my businesse’s activities it is crucial for the overall development and performance that the most important matters are being pushed forward. 
So if you feel like I did, I recommend that you start to identify each day over again what are the corner stones, the most important things, for the day of which you get the most in return from – and then go after these. 

Every day again I am using my little paper note book to write down my most important things and work at them at a designated time of the day. This might work differently for everyone, for you it might be an app that helps the best to stay organized. Keep it manageable, meaning leave yourself time to breathe and only the very most important things belong on that list, maybe 3 to 5 max – thats what I do.
Following this process and making it a habit has turned around the endings of each of my days from feeling overwhelmed to feeling satisfied. Certainly a big change I do not want to miss anymore!

A really great read I just recently finished about this, next to many other topics on how to structure yourself, is “Do Less, get More”, by Shaa Wasmund.

Sometimes it really is the most simple things that give you the greatest benefit and change when done consistently, its just too easy to forget about these simple things and too often our status quo is pulling on us like a magnet.

XPZ Mindset

Today we were shooting photos for a little side project within our XPZ Mindset project in my gym in Amsterdam.

In short, we were taking photos which will be basis for an A1 Wall Banner that will soon be available through http://www.actionville.de 

This poster, or banner, will then be available as a stand alone product, but will also be the foundation for a serious of all kinds of different digital workout which all referre back to exercises the poster. 

So, even though we are producing a series of awesome workout posters which are perfectly complementing the digital workout videos, both – the videos and the posters – are perfectly fine to use individually. Can can buy both, but you dont need to. 

 Watch the clip to see and hear the short explanation (in German) what this is about.

Rat Race vs Chill Time

 

 

Just like anything too much of one thing is never good. Let it be stress, which could be the positive kind of stress (eustress) or the negative kind of stress (distress), let it be sun light which is vital for almost all life forms but is also dangerous at high amounts, or let it be your nutrition that will also at some point let your body shut down certain functions when it has to keep up with too much garbage over an extended period of time (i.e. insuline resitance, lactose intolerance, depression, stroke, heart attack, etc)… and the list goes on -> all and everything has to be in balance in live!

Thats why I implement “forced breakes” to make sure I am not just “running” the whole time but also recharge and can handle more and be more productive!

Obviously a huge topic and one with thousands of books written about it! However the struggle always remains the same = put into action what you have learned!

So here I lay on my back with my eyes wandering throughout the endless tones of blue that this beautiful late summer in Amsterdam provides!