Monday, May 30, 2022

Calisthenics - Week 15

Another week of Micro Workout Complexes:

Monday - Push Chain Complex, 2 rounds. Flexion Chain Complex, 2 rounds. Shoulder still feeling sore, so did only 2 rounds of Push Chain. Was able to do 6 reps of Body Saw by working a very sort range of motion. I did not have much left in the tank for knee tucks or mountain climbers.
Tuesday - Pull Chain Complex, 2 rounds. Extension Chain Complex, 3 rounds. Tried regular bicep curl but that movement did not feel better than the clutch style. Was able to do 5 hamstring curls during one of the rounds.
Wednesday - Off.
Thursday - Squat Chain Complex, 3 rounds. Lateral Chain Complex (minus dynamic side plank), 3 rounds.
Friday - Push Chain Complex, 3 rounds. Flexion Chain Complex, 2 rounds

Tuesday, May 24, 2022

Calisthenics Week 14

Continuing Suspension Micro Workout Complexes, as shown in this video:

Monday - Pull Chain Complex, 3 rounds. Extension Chain Complex, 3 rounds.
Tuesday - Squat Chain Complex, 3 rounds. Lateral Chain Complex, 3 rounds. Did not have any energy left for dynamic side plank, so I left that out.
Wednesday - Off.
Thursday - Push Chain Complex, 3 rounds. Flexion Chain Complex, 2 rounds. Worked at too intense a level with body saws, which left me little energy for the knee tucks and mountain climbers.
Friday - Squat Chain Complex, 3 rounds. Lateral Chain Complex (minus dynamic side plank), 3 rounds

I neglected to rest at least 30 seconds between rounds. Hopefully I'll remember next week.

Interesting articles:
Unilateral vs Bilateral Training for Vertical movement
These Researchers Reveal The Right Way To Train For More Muscle Mass

Friday, May 20, 2022

Calisthenics: Week 13

According to Dan John:
A complex is doing an exercise for a given number of reps, then moving on to another exercise without ever putting the bar or bell down.
The "bell" of course is a kettlebell. Dan John has a long history as a kettlebell coach.

Anyway, Red Delta Project put up a video of calisthenic micro workouts applying this complex concept, using a suspension trainer. Interestingly, both RDP and Dan John mention the problem of complex training with a fixed load - it might be a good load for one exercise in the complex, but too light or too heavy for another. John came up with a solution particular to using double kettlebells as the exercise implement. RDP's solution is of course specific to suspension training - adjust your body angle and the strap angle to dial in the appropriate load for the suggested reps for each exercise.

For Monday, I tried the push chain micro workout. I had the suspension trainer handles set to about waist height, because the space where I set it up imposed a limit on the length of the straps for the chest fly. There was some tightness in the Golfers Elbow area of my forearm during the chest fly sets, but I think that can be fixed by paying extra attention to pulling the scapula together first, to initiate the eccentric, so that at the bottom of the movement, the scapula should be squeezed together. I had better luck with the tricep press, because I've gotten better at maintaining enough upper back tension to prevent too much load from going to the elbows. I did 3 rounds of the complex. Overall, the workout felt pretty good. As I continue to practice these complexes I'm sure I'll get at dialing in just the right amount of load for each exercise.

I took the rest of the week off because I visited family. I could have squeezed in a micro workout here or there but my body welcomed the rest.

Monday, May 09, 2022

Calisthenics: Week 12

Monday session: 5 sets of 3-4 Assisted Pistol Squats

Tuesday session: Warmup with 2 Planche Lean holds for about 3 seconds per hold, with knees tucked and toes pointed back so I could test for my Tuck Planche readiness by attempting to pull my toes off the floor. Then one set of floor pushups, and at least 4 sets of 7-9 RTO pushups on NOSSK suspension trainer. I set the angles of my body and the NOSSK straps to reduce the intensity of the movement. I focused on allowing the shoulders to be pulled back and the chest to get a decent stretch at the bottom of the movement, then using the chest muscles to pull the elbows away from the ribs - so that most of the work in the push up is done by the chest. For the finisher I did a drop set of suspension tricep extensions, to try to stimulate tricep hypertrophy.

Thursday session: Antagonist Pair Day

4 sets of Accommodating Resistance Archer Pull Ups
4 sets of 11-12 RTO pushups
Finishers: Suspension bicep curls and tricep extensions

I attempted an AR Mixed Grip Chinup and the Golfers Elbow threatened to flare up, so I decided to do AR Archer Pullups instead. I cannot find any reason to favor the One-Arm Chinup over the One-Arm Pullup. The only difference seems to be in the grip at the top of the movement. The grip is supinated at the top of the movement in the One-Arm Chinup and the biceps might work a little more. What seems to feel more comfortable for me is a neutral grip. I added the suspension bicep curls as a finisher to work the biceps more.

Sunday, May 08, 2022

M8 Tracker Beginner Tips

The following are notes from this video
  • When starting a new project, set up an FE Chain of four FE Phrases.  You can then use this Chain as a placeholder/spacer.
  • Also set up an FD Chain, as shown.  The FD Chain can be used to stop any holdover from a previous Track or reset any commands that might have been incrementing.  This will be your kill/reset Chain.
  • Number your Chains by Track, as shown
  • Phrases within a Chain can be thought of as variations of a musical phrase.  In the video, Read Means Recording says they tend to work with 8-bar patterns but instead of putting 8 Phrases in one Chain, they prefer 4-Phrase Chains because they feel this organization gives them more control.
  • Phrases are not numbered by Chain or Track.  It's just quicker to use Edit-Edit to number a new Phrase, based on next available number.
  • Clone can be used to copy a Phrase so that you can edit the copy to make a variation.  The procedure is a little tricky, however.  The exact steps:

    1. Hold the SHIFT button by itself
    2. Continuing to hold SHIFT, press OPTION then release OPTION
    3. Still holding SHIFT, press EDIT, then release EDIT

  • Deep Clone is for cloning not only a Chain, but also all the Phrases in the Chain. The exact steps:

    1. Hold the SHIFT button by itself
    2. Continuing to hold SHIFT, press OPTION then release OPTION
    3. Still holding SHIFT, double-tap EDIT, then release EDIT

  • Use the DRY and effects send settings on the right side of the Instrument for most of the level settings for an Instrument.
  • One way to use the Instrument Table is as an arpeggiator.  Just enter notes under the N column - these will be offsets in relation to the note in the Phrase triggering the Instrument.  
  • He shows HOP, which is one of the commands you can select in the FX slots.  HOP tells the sequencer to jump to the specified row number, and loop from it to the end a certain number of times.  The built-in help system explains it pretty well.
  • The Table can be used to introduce a polyrhythm, since it can run independently of the sequencer tempo.
  • Interpolation shortcut:

    1. Hold the SHIFT button, tap OPTION to activate Selection.
    2. Use up/down arrow buttons to Select the column values
    3. Press and hold SHIFT, tap EDIT - the selected values will be interpolated between the first and last values of the selected area.
    4. Tap and release EDIT

  • Table can be used for side-chaining.  The example in the video has a bass line on Track 1, and Track 8 playing kick drum.  Go to the Table for the kick drum, and enter the VT1 command in the FX1 slot for all the lines in the Table.  VT1 controls volume for Track 1.  Set the first line to the lowest volume you want, and the highest value to E0, which is the max speaker volume.  Then use the Interpolation shortcut above to automatically fill in the values between the lowest and highest.
  • REP command can be used for ramping up Snare timbre and color over time.
  • He duplicated a kick pattern to introduce variety. An alternative approach is put a CHAnce or NTH operator on that last kick<
  • Other topics covered that I won't study much at this time:  Sample slicing, making up for lack of onboard compressor, using instrument filter modes for mixing
More tips not covered in the video:

  • For automating filter cutoff, in Phrase view, use CUT command followed by a REP to have cutoff repeat
  • At the bottom of the Project screen, there is a Clean/Pack command which is useful for deleting duplicate Phrases and stuff if you run out of slots.
  • Cut/Delete function on the Tempo in the project screen resest Tempo to 120. Useful if you load an instrument that messes with the tempo.
  • Chord Tutorial Check out THO command when using Tables too
  • Tap over to the blank Input column in the Mixer page, hold Edit and tap up, you will activate dual mono mode. When recording you can change the input to be left or right
  • For somewhat random melodies, you can use a table, where you write the notes of the scale that can be triggered,. Use the RAN command in all the steps, but the first one where you have to write the HOP00 command. This way everytime the note is triggered a different note of the scale will be choosen.
  • M8 Meetup Video Timestamp List

Saturday, May 07, 2022

Calisthenics: Week 11

Monday Session:  Assisted Pistol Squats: 4 4 4 3 3

This week, I decided to drop the Hamstring Curls, so that I can replace the time I was spending on that exercise with more sets of Assisted Pistol Squats. After I get strong in the Pistol Squat movement, I will resume hamstring-specific work.

I waited until Wednesday morning to decide whether or not to continue practicing Accommodating Resistance Pseudo-Planche Pushups. My shoulders were still sore, with the right shoulder being sensitive to reaching out to the side. I decided to drop that exercise and replace it with a less intense pushup variation. For this session, I did GSC-style RTO pushups. When RTO pushups are done properly, more of the load is on the chest, and less of the load is on the shoulders and triceps.

I was shocked how hard my abs were being worked during the Accommodating Resistance Archer Pull Ups. It's as if the abs had not recovered from last week's training.

For the Thursday session, I decided to try Assisted Pistol Squats using one arm, instead of two, for assistance. I just wanted to get used to single-arm assistance so if I travel, I can just use a table top for assistance.

For the Friday session, I did several sets of RTO pushups.

This video has great tips for hanging as an exercise