Monday, July 27, 2009

Rannoch's 100s (R100s): the unWorkout that Refreshes, repairs and prepares the embodied soul for work

Rannoch Donald of Simple Strength, RKC extra-ordinaire of Scotland, and one of the top most rated RKC instructors has a simple philosophy about basic training. Well, really he's got a lot of philosophies, but i like this one in particular.

300 is so 2007. 100 is where it's at.
Awhile ago Rannoch was telling me about his philosophy of getting 100 reps in a day of something. Doesn't matter what. Just get 'em in.

Now at the time i thought that was way cool, and as i have a variety of kettlebells around me at work and home, i started doing 100's of light snatches. That sorta faded from my view for awhile traveling, but in terms of coming back to some serious preparatory training, and feeling kinda down on myself for being deconditioned, i thought about Rannoch's 100's and thought well at least i can start there.

This was a new way of thinking about using the 100's as pump priming.
So i got a 100 out of the way with one weight.
And i felt better.
That was something when i didn't think i was going to have time then for anything.
That's a start; that's a foundation.
That's a few minutes of work i wouldn't have had before a morning shower.

So after a cup of tea, i did another 100. heavier. harder. stinkier

Aside: The pause that refreshes (when the unpause is stupid). When my hand was feeling a little raw on the bell i did something i usually don't let myself do: i put the bell down for a sec and did not feel like a failure or loser for taking a break 25 reps in to go find the chalk. I chalked. And continued. Who said it had to be non-stop every time? Maybe tomorrow it will be. Today i needed chalk - and am i glad i did or there would not be a tomorrow. (I put the ability to take a break down to intense work on getting rid of crap around goals -but that's another story)

So i got in two blocks of non-threatening-to-my-cns-first-thing-in-the-am, happy R100's before the morning shower. First one, gentle reminder with some effort in endurance; the second one more work overall. Good.

Threat Modulation value of 100's
One might say well hell that's not working out, that's not serious. that's nothing.

Well it sure as heck is greasing the neurological groove. Reminding my body about the time it takes to get in 100 consecutive perfect snatches; looking to keep that under 5 mins. Letting my body know what it feels like to find the flow of that movement. Then taking it up a notch. Still feeling safe. Letting myself get chalk to protect my hands - and so feeling safe and those reps were better. And getting in volume on a move. The perfect rep is still the perfect rep.

Those 100s then have great psychological benefit, and what's really cool, considerable neurological benefit, to let my brain, the body and their connective cns tissue work together well and get ready for the Great Work to Come.

Preparation vs A Plan of Action: 100's as the unpsych psych
As said, i'm getting ready to do some serious training. Talking about "getting ready to do some serious training" is a rather newish concept for me anything outside seasonal macro cycles for Strength and Conditioning athletes for pre during and post season training.

What i'm talking about with Preparation is the prep to get into the training i know i need to do for a particular training goal that has a specific date attached to it. What i've learned in the nutrition context and work in the habit-changing context is that when we're introducing a new behaviour (and new can be relative) we often fail because we leap into action without having a plan of how we'll deal with stuff around the action.

For me right now i know that if i try to leap into a heavy training regime some part of me will balk: i need to revise my wake up times and all the rest of it.

So Rannoch's 100's around all the moves i'll need to practice are great ways for me to prepare for the work to come; to get the conversation with my brain and body happening to make the coming 6 months effective, injury free and why not fun?

Non Excercise Physical Activity is Good Too. If you don't need R100's for your prep, that's cool. You may want to consider them as a little extra daily grit like the value of NEPA's. They're great for that too. just super in fact.

What are R100's then?
Rannoch's exact definition may be different, but my sense of them is as something pretty low threat, easy to focus on form, with some at least NEPA value to them.

Likely 100 consecutive whatevers is the goal.

If it's so intense as to require (a) breaks for recovery mid 100's or (b) a do or die requirement for a shower after said 100 cuz you stink beyond what's fit for polite company - it may just be too intense for what we're describing.

Now my second set of 100's today did not pass that later shower requirement test. Do i care? no. i wanted to get some effortfulness in. And the first R100 made that happen. ya hoo.

Hope you'll give some r100's a go - especially if you're a little freaked out about getting into an intense workout regime or if you can't think of where you'll get your workout in today. What's 100 of something you know you can do?

1 comment:

Rannoch Donald said...

Cheers for that MC. I think the shower requirement is probably a good barometer. 100 should be doable, every day, no excuse. It can be light, it can even be hard enough to form your actual training(5x5 for for lifts for example).

Ideally it's a way to make sure you get some activity in and as you point out you can bang out 100 even when you don't think you have time to do anything. It should become habitual and it cna become quite addictive.

On the same note, it's 100 but that doesn't have to be in a row. Pull ups are great for this.

Anyway, thank for flagging this up, 100 reps should be part of the day, like brushing your teeth or taking your vit D. Think of it as the training equivalant of a power nap!


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