Elizabeth Jane P.

Elizabeth Jane P.

Day 42- Taming the Bellz ;-) 

And finally, the deed is done. Kenzai Kettlebells is now Complete! To be very honest, I was a surprisingly underwhelmed on the final day today. Think, I was building up the last day to be really tough, and was caught by surprise to find the workout over in a fraction of the time it takes on usual days. I loved the Kettlebell Program, and will be incorporating it into my maintenance plan to follow, just as exercises from Reach, are now part of the drill for me. Glad to feel stronger, fitter and a bit faster, if not lighter, this time around. Didn’t really manage to lose weight this time, but I think I’ve reached a static point with that, since KB 1 last year, and managed to not increase my weight over time. That’s a win in itself.

I started K-bells from a point of weakness. You don’t realise how hormonal you are as a woman, until you’re on the other side of 40! In my case, involuntary changes appear to be triggering processes in my body, beyond my control. Over the past few months, I’ve been finding it harder to make a fist with my hands, and have had an unexplained pain in my elbow. I guess this is the start of osteoarthritis, and one of the ways to treat it, is regular exercise to strengthen and improve musculoskeletal health. Clean eating, Kenzai-style, combined with stretching, cardio and strength training with the bells, has certainly helped me. The challenge now, is to keep on going. I hope to scare off my bones from going brittle in a hurry, and my muscles from slacking just for fun :-)

My son has always maintained that I have the “biggest biceps” of all the mommies he knows! Sometimes, it’s embarrassing when he insists on me flexing and letting him feel my muscles, especially in public spaces. But on the flip side, when I went out with him last evening, I noticed lots of young men and women likely in their 20s with paunches hanging and seriously flabby arms. Couldn’t help thinking I had quite a lot to feel good about myself, in comparison.

Incidentally, one of the side-effects of continuing to do Kenzai Programs is that I’ve really improved greatly on doing the Sitting Rising Test (SRT)- a simple life-expectancy test developed by Brazilian physician Claudio Gil Araujo and his colleagues (https://youtu.be/LWyRUYMQ7ws)
I mentioned this while doing the Reach Prog as well. But after K-bells, my performance has improved further. I can sit and get back up, unaided, repeatedly, with greater ease now. Those of you who don’t know about this test, really should check out the BBC video link.

Thanks to today’s lesson, great to realise that swinging around an 8 kg iron ball 100 times today, was the equivalent of swinging 800 kgs up against the gravity well of the planet I’m standing on! Wow. That’s pretty awesome:-) And for perspective, to become aware that I lifted the total mass of an adult moose, Kodiak bear or bison, is way cooler!! Makes me feel pretty badass ;-)

Incidentally, for this week’s challenge, I couldn’t scale a mountain or peak. The closest I could get, to the experience was to clamber up my rooftop, to get to “high ground” to appreciate the scenic vista, getting to feel “on top”. It was windy & drizzling, but the looming dark clouds in the distance, only seem to be there for effect. Tried to carry my 8 kg and 6 kg bells in a back pack, but didn’t quite manage! Surprised how heavy the bells seem as deadweight, when you try to lug them without holding the handles.
Also sharing a picture of me taken exactly 8 yrs ago on this day- 22nd July 2010 in Naples, Italy, when my son was less than 2 yrs old. Think my legs are slimmer and stronger now, than back then!
Sharing some data recorded on the Samsung Health App for the past week too. My activity levels have been consistently high, and interesting to see how my heart rate climbed to 150 bpm during the intense cycle workouts.

Thanks for another great Program, Team Kenzai! Always love the daily lessons. They’re so well-researched and beautifully written, I quite look forward to them. Was fun to get to know some of you on the Team Firedrake. Very inspiring to catch up with so many of you with busy work and travel schedules still making time for daily workouts and giving it their best shot. Thanks Thomas for hovering around, pushing and pulling while needed. Thanks also to Patrick, for the occasional look-in. You guys rock!


Today is the third last day of the Kettlebell Program, and the countdown to the curtain call has officially begun! Just realised that I haven't blogged at all this week. July is a difficult month in India- it's the deadline to file tax returns and I've been busy with that and other stuff to make time for the Kenzai blog. Otherwise, everything's on track with me- all workouts are in so far and diet is ok.
Felt this week's cycle training routine started to get really tough on Tuesday, probably to justify the unexpected rest day, mid-week.
I recall thinking, the workout just wouldn't end that day, and sweating big time!
Have to admit, the rest day wasn't what it was intended to be. I really missed not exercising, spent too much time in front of the computer, and got into things I should've left for later. Sleep was unusually interrupted and Thursday did not start well. Things were better today, but stopped my workout mid-way through the 2nd cycle after noticing a never-before seen wave of big birds pass overhead. Had to film the weird bird conference in the sky. Got back to work after that and so far, my best speed with speed jumping (without a speed rope) is about 182 jumps. I mostly average 160-170 jumps, but if I'm really tired, it drops to about 130 jumps a minute.
I've enjoyed this Prog despite things really ramping up towards the end. I do feel stronger, and more in control of my body. My elbow pain has actually become more manageable, rather than not, over the past few weeks.
The chest passes still remain the hardest for me next to the dynamo. The swings are always fun.
Sharing images of the birds, a mango-milkshake I made for my evening snack yesterday, including the fruit and milk grams (too filling!) This was somewhat inspired by George's mango-peanut sauce in Thailand 😄
Also, a new pepper I saw today- orange in colour!
There's too much orange everywhere these days. Probably has something to do with an infamous orange-faced person, who's been hogging world headlines lately 😆


July 11th was mum's 69th birthday- an obvious reason to celebrate. Been a while since we had any decadent desserts, including cakes with icing. We've practically done away with the ritual of cutting layered birthday cakes, an indulgence reserved only for the youngest member of the family, my son, if he wants it.
So, we picked up simple sponge cakes with natural flavours- honey/lemon and banana, and hoped those would do.
The menu for home-cooked fare included a mixed vegetable rice, spicy Kerala-style crab curry, a cucumber raita with plenty of curd and some baked egg-plant.
While the lunch (made by mum and me) was great taste-wise, I may have overdone my carbs coz the rice and veggies couldn't be weighed separately. When we finally cut the cake, nobody really liked it. The flavours were synthetic and the overall taste just about average. So, I quickly baked a small batch of carrot cakes instead. All it took were some grated carrots, a mix of almond-meal & flour, a few eggs, some maple syrup and organic jaggery as sweetners and olive oil instead of butter for the fat. Some vanilla and orange zest added flavour and fragrance. I didn't really measure it all, but even my modest quantity gave me a decent yield of 4 mini loaves. I gave it a faint dusting of icing sugar, to make it a bit more appetizing.
Mum liked my cake more than the store-bought one. In all, my indulgence was certainly complete in terms of calories, I think, coz I had a bit of each cake! I have to also confess that since the bad cake is still in the fridge, I had a sliver of it again today 🤦‍♀️ I must have a death-wish!
No point trying to torpedo my training at this late stage by self-destructing. Will do better here on. All workouts are in so far, and I find this week's routine fairly punishing. By the evening my back starts to hurt and I have to get some rest.
The double-under today, was a non-starter I'm afraid! Will try again later.


Guess, the speed jumping today, proved to be the proverbial final straw that broke the camel's back, for my Kenzai skipping rope, that's served me so well for more than a year, now!
It's been thinning in the area that strikes the ground through regular wear and tear, so I was expecting it to give any time. Just had to be today 🙄
Got past the first 1 min of speed jumping with a decent high of 170 jumps, but my rope snapped half way through the next 60 secs and I had to substitute star jumps for the remainder of the time.
Tried tying a knot to continue for subsequent sets, but had to keep adjusting arm height etc, coz the rope had become shorter by then 🤦‍♀️ The knot held only for a while, so had to switch to star jumps more than once and my low averaged 120- 130 jumps.
In all, my workout was a bit dramatic today. Glad, I have two extra ropes on standby from the Kenzai Blue Boxes ordered for my brothers last year. Since they didn't really use their ropes much, I intend to put them to work now 😃 New shiny rope awaits me tomorrow...


One of the nicest things about doing weights is the feeling of extra-lightness you get when you pick up anything lighter than the weight immediately after 🏋️‍♀️🤸‍♀️

So far, so good with da bellz. Even before the lessons suggested it, I had got myself a new Kettlebell weighing 8 kg, which is almost exactly 15% of my (starting) body weight, and 2 kg more than my old Kbell. That makes it my heaviest weight so far. I guess, I could do better than this and lift a 10 Kg bell, going by the logic that I used to find 6 kg rather heavy at first, but am comfortable with 8 Kg now. But, maybe I should focus on improving my form with this weight for now. Thought I’d list out the exercises that aren’t easy for me:

1. The Kbell- Rotation Chest Pass (arms not as straight as I’d like)

2. Kbell Dynamo Twist (legs not always locked straight at an angle. They separate and sway at times)

3. One Arm Lunge Press (movement needs to be better coordinated, and forward leg not as steady as ideal). The Marvin-poise, is a while away.

Incidentally, this the first time that I’ve gained weight during the course of a Kenzai Program. I’m hovering at about half a kilo over my starting weight of 53 kg. Haven’t really cheated on my diet. My only excesses have been a few extra grams of fresh fruit or veggies. So, am I gaining muscle mass? Don’t know. Not that thrilled about the “mandatory” indulgence earned! Mom’s birthday coming up on 11th, so that sounds like the likely occasion…

Also, I have an elderly aunt (a nun) visiting. She has a really early breakfast, that I fix, which means I end up eating alongside her, now. So, for a change, today’s workout followed a meal of carbs & veggies, and it seemed easier, faster, more energetic overall. Had my milk and egg after the workout. Could be like this for a few more days.

Nice to check in on the progress others are making on the group. Sad to see some drop out for various reasons. Let’s do this, team 💪👍
Sharing pictures of my veggies and egg white dinners. Includes spinach, avocado & tomato, fennel salad, egg plant and raw banana curry. Carrots, peppers, cauliflower and purple cabbage, in the next plate.
Also seen, my avocado saplings growing taller each day. I have several kinds of saplings of seasonal fruits growing all over the place. Was interesting to read about growing one’s own food, in the lessons. Happy to say, we’ve been doing this as a family for years, with some success.


Hey Team!
A lot of us seem to be slipping on the blogging aspect of this program and I realised that it's better done in the first half of the day, soon after the workout, than left to be penned later on, coz it turns into a chore pushed father away, and often undone.
First off, think I hit my #oneperfectset on Monday. Waited, to see if I could do better, but at this point, I think set 3 of Day 22, was one of my best sets on this Program. Here's why:
1. Think it was my fastest, tightest set in this week's 4 cycle schedule.
2. I've noticed that by the third set, you already know the sequence of exercises pretty well, and don't need to refer to the list on your gadget. This limits scope for time-wastage and you're able to transition fairly fast to the next step. I also set the timer on standby for the mat exercise far down the list, as soon as I finished the 4 min jump rope session on top of the workout.
3. Being deliberate, and looking to nail a perfect set, helps you get there.
4. By the third set, despite the sweat and fatigue, your muscles are pretty well oiled, and your momentum helps you outperform expectation. I get a better timing on my jump rope invariably during set 2 or 3. By set 4, you're too pooped to nail everything.
All this said, can't say that I'm always nailing my form! Was a bit wobbly today during the one-arm press lunge exercise, and the knee-capper just wasn't what it was meant to be! Knees did not reach chest-high even once 😐 (I tried!)
On the upside, the leg circles are so much better now than during KB1. I actually manage to keep each leg high and make real circles in the air now. Earlier, they'd be slanted and drawing vague elipses at best.
Attaching pics of my modest workout area on the terrace, my hugely distracting canine company, some breakfast plates, including baguette slices topped with cabbage, zucchni sotto olio, pumpkin/ raw mango puree, sandwich with okra, zucchni, pumpkin filling, lunch and dinner (my rainbow meals 😁 with fish/ chicken) I also discovered a cool new recipe for egg plant- just slice them thick, score them, and put a mix of olive oil, minced garlic, salt and zatar spice mix, cook in oven for about half an hour, or until done. This is great for lunch/ dinner or as a sandwich filling with other stuff.


Week 3 of K-Bells is already past us, and after racking my brains about the superhero challenge, I didn't quite manage to get into costume for the fun-element of it all! Of the legion of female superheroes, mostly too unreal and super-sexualised for me to identify with, Elastigirl seems like someone I'd relate to. Wouldn't it be lovely to mould one's body into various shapes and sizes, stretch upto 30 ft, and contort, but still be in total control of each limb, be highly skilled in combat, and use of complex weaponry, and all this while also having an entire family of 'Supers', with powers hard to imagine! Well, despite my new and improved flexibility from doing Reach, The Incredibles, are indeed way too incredible to imagine. What has in fact been rather 'incredible' in may case, is actually my appetite, in past years. So, in real life, the 'superhero' I actually came closest to, was probably Pacman! I remember being quite a big eater earlier. Someone, did once call me 'Pacman' after seeing me eat. My husband used to be rather amused, because I almost ate as much as him, if not more. He was a hearty Italian, standing 6 ft. tall, with a healthy appetite, while I often ate like I was eating for two. Good thing, my metabolism has always come to my rescue and I've finally got a sense of the right portion size, before it's too late. Yet, it's often a case of too-much-of-a-good-thing, for me, coz I tend to overdo the veggies and fruit portions from time to time now. When you have organic produce from your own farm, like delicious mangoes, it is indeed hard to resist (pic included!).
Today, for my free-cardio, I attempted to run. I'm not a runner at all, so it was quite a big feat for me. Used the Samsung Health app to set me on a calorie-burner target of 315 Kcal, and tried to jog at a steady pace. It certainly got my heart beating fast and long, hitting a high of 135 bpm. Kenzai Run should probably be my next Prog, coz I really do suck at running, and need to get better.
Noticed the workout ramping up to add a fourth set in the coming week. Should be interesting to meet the new weekly challenge of getting #oneperfectset right! Good luck, team...


That K-bells are more about strong legs than arms, came as a surprise to me in the Kenzai lessons, but I have certainly been experiencing what that might mean, physically, into the third week of the program. Since Monday, new aches, pains and strains have lit up the muscles along the posterior chain. I feel this most, while climbing stairs.
Was very surprised this morning to find an improved efficiency with the jump rope. I usually average about 650 jumps in 5 minutes. But today, I hit 700 jumps in set 1, then reached 800 in the second set, even though I was quite tired. I was wondering if I'd forgotten to set the timer, when it finally went off past 800 jumps (yes, I still count!)
And in the third set, I reached 700 again. Think this might have to do with doing the new set of stretches introduced in this Prog and the K-bells plus associated exercises.
Was a sweaty mess by the end, and I discovered a stronger left shoulder/ arm in the side-plank, compared to my more dominant right!
I'm liking it this far. Also upgraded my K-bells. Picked up a new 8 kg bell and a smaller 4 kg in addition to the 6 kg bell I already had. My elbow pain hasn't aggravated, so I decided to challenge myself anyway.
Missed lunch yesterday, coz I was with my youngest doggie at the vet clinic to get him neutered. Had a cup of chai and some banana cake instead of a proper meal. Lots of mango, before and after missed lunch. Tried to fit missed protein portion into dinner. Back on track today. Feeling good and strong!


So there I was feeling all strong, lifting less than 15% of my body weight on a metal ball, and then this tiny ant comes along, carrying a hunk of grasshopper leg, up and down a steep wall! And I learn a fascinating ant-fact: ants can carry 10 - 50 times their body weight and they do so, routinely 😱
Right there, it felt like a reality check from the universe. A very humbling experience to place things in perspective. Creatures great and small, do the most amazing, mind-boggling things all around us, while we fret and sweat over a lot less.
Lesson learnt with gratitude 🙏
Meanwhile, the workouts are all on track. Attempted mountain-climbers for my free cardio for the first time today and Lord, was I a sweaty miserable mess 😥 Couldn't go beyond 15 mins, so did a brisk walk to complete the workout.
Diet was a bit off Friday night, coz I ran out of protein options and my bro could only find KFC chicken! While the rest of the family didn't mind it much, and my son had a party, I struggled a bit to get some clean meat on my plate. Likewise, Saturday was a bit of a disaster too. We went to catch the new Incredibles movie at the mall, where my son's pictures from a modelling assignment for Max Fashion were showing too! Was a bit taken aback to notice the sheer attack of the calories screaming at visitors from every nook and corner at the mall. At least 4 ice cream joints, any number of donut stores, cakes and bakes, fries and sauces... the works!! Family decided to have ice cream, and for the first time, I opted out. Guess I made the right choice coz everyone was complaining about the sweetness and richness later on and it made my mom so sick, she had to actually throw-up half-way through the film!
I ended up having a tuna sub at Subway for dinner, which was the healthiest option available. Back on track today. Mom is better too. Hope the group's doing great! Looking forward to Monday...
Pics include the ant and my sonny boy in front of his own advertisement for football-wear, at the mall.


Hey everyone!
Day 11 is past us already, and it's nice to also realise I've been on Kenzai for over a year now. Started this journey in June last year and it's been great so far. On Intl. Yoga Day, today, did a good Kettlebell workout instead of Yoga, and I'm not regretting it. Waiting for the actual 'swings', 'clean' and 'snatch' moves to get started.
Meanwhile, been busy in the kitchen 😊 The fruits are the best part! A summer program is great in the tropics with the fascinating variety of fruits flooding the markets in India. While we await our organic mangoes from my brother's farm to ripen, I'm really enjoying the lychees, mangosteen, rambutan, black jamuns and jackfruit.
Lunch today was rather different too. Had boiled cassava for my carbs with fish (a piece from curry in raw mango, coconut gravy) and a piece of fried mackerel (slightly indulgent), some prawn cooked with boiled jackfruit seeds (really yumm 😋), with stir fried bitter gourd, cooked raw mangoes and a salad of carrots and radish (doused in lots of fresh lemon juice & garnished with generous amounts if coriander/ cilantro, to remove the bite from the radish).
In all, workouts are good and diet is on track. No complaints. But I'd like to pick up on what George said in his blog about decreasing fruit portions and upping cardio for better results. I was wondering especially about the portion of fruits post dinner, in my current diet. I happen to have high cholesterol, and was advised to skip fruits past lunch time. Do you think I should cut out the last fruit snack from my diet?! Any thoughts...
Hope everyone else is rocking da bellz 🔔😁


Week 2, and in typical Kenzai fashion, things have already moved up a notch with the Bells. All was well today, except for that killer exercise called the Scoop Push-up! I've always found that one tough, and I really felt it today as well.
Diet on track today. No excesses or misses. Spent a lot of time in the kitchen putting together enough to last the next couple of days. Not sure that'll happen, coz when I'm on a Kenzai Prog, invariably the entire family ends up eating Kenzai meals like me.
In response to Thomas' suggestion, sharing pics of what was on my plate today, for b'fast, lunch and dinner. If I am what I eat, I should be a multi-coloured 🌈 soon 😉 How's everyone else in the group doing?


It's been a super Sunday so far! Nice long walk around the lake this morning, a traditional Keralite power breakfast- 'puttu', with a twist. Steamed ragi (finger millet) instead of the usual rice flour, with grated coconut from our tree at home, sweetened slightly with jaggery instead of sugar and flavoured lightly with ground cardamom. And, some super sightings today- lovely foliage along the walking path, an incredible pupa, that looked curiously like an alien pod, and a new winged creature poised for flight 😀
Sharing images of everything and hoping you guys are all having a great weekend too!
Looking forward to Monday...


Hey Team Firedrake!
This is the first Kenzai Prog, where I've done cycle workouts for so many days in a row, and am happy that it's going to stay this way for the rest of the Kettlebell training. I like having to put everything in place before starting the workout, so I can move seamlessly from one exercise to the next without a hitch, and get through the entire set in HIIT style. Prepping ahead has always been my bane, and I've often felt I couldn't sustain the long maintenance workouts coz it takes quite long, setting things up as I go, and it gets even worse when my flow is broken by having to respond to someone on social media, etc!
Instead, now I just go into do-not-disturb mode and do it all in one go. Seems like the answer to my problems.
So far so good. All workouts are in. Interesting to note days 4, 5 & 6 were repeats of days 1, 2 & 3. I can also see how some of the resistance band moves are building up to the k-bell exercises to come ahead. On the diet front, mostly on track, with the odd stray indulgence in the form of peanuts and green tea in the evening instead of only fruits, or a bit of honey on my french toast for breakfast yesterday. Will get rid of all that starting Monday. Noticed that my week 1 diet already has no carbs for dinner. It's what I need right now... getting a bit strict.
Sharing pics of my bfast yesterday and another of my 6 kg k-bell. When I get a perfect avocado, bright peppers with carrots, the rainbow is already on my plate!
I'm hoping my single k-bell is going to be enough, even though it weighs a little less than 15% of my body weight. I've had pain in my right elbow coming into this Prog, which is why I decided not to get a heavier one just yet. If things improve, I'll probably invest in a second, bigger k-bell.
Hope everyone else is doing good 💪👍


Hey Everyone!
It’s great to be back on another Kenzai Program formally, after a full three months off the grid. I finished Reach in March and hadn’t quite managed to make the time to fit in another Prog until now. With the summer holidays ending, and my son back in school, I can now get back to my routine too.
I’m already a bit late on my blogs, so will get straight to the point. To answer Thomas’ questions:

1. What do you want to get out of this training? 
Quite simply, I’d like to get back on track. It’s always better to have the discipline of following a set plan- in terms of workouts and diet, rather than follow the hit-and-miss approach of maintenance. I’d like to clean things up again and pull up my socks. Want to get leaner, fitter, stronger. I’ve used a Kettlebell before starting on the Kenzai journey, but without any formal training. I mostly watched YouTube tutorials and created my own workout schedules in the past. So, although I’m familiar with the basic moves and some of the terminology, I’m hoping Kenzai will teach me the right way to go about it, and make the most of it.

2. What do you need in order to make that happen? I’ll need to show up, first- both physically and on the blog. Although I’ve had a late start on the blog, I hope to be more regular going forward. Even though I’ve stayed mostly ‘Kompliant’ on the diet front and worked out at least 5 days a week in between programs, I’ve never blogged while on maintenance mode. One loses that community feeling while being on one’s own, and I think showing up here again, will help to get the K-bell swinging in a fun way.

I noticed some familiar faces in the group, including the Head Trainer :-) I look forward to getting to know the rest of you over the next few days…

Sharing pictures of my ‘Kenzai family’ working up a sweat at the park last weekend, and my somewhat lazy/ sleepy canine companions, who aren’t really rooting for me, when I pick up my K-bell ;-)
Day 4, done.

Reached, and Arrived💃🏁 

Reach wasn’t an easy Program, but I thoroughly enjoyed the 56 day challenge getting used to the process of stretching my limits, a little at a time, thrice a day. Although it ended yesterday, I found myself doing the dynamic stretches again this morning, followed by the Sun Salutations and the first maintenance flexibility workout. So, if this is my new normal, I’m happy to be here 😃

In Feb 2016, I fractured my right wrist after falling from a 6ft ladder. This put an abrupt stop to my Yoga practice, which was coming along fine until then. It took longer than I expected for my bones to heal, and I simply couldn’t find the strength or alignment to go back to doing most of the standard poses in the Surya Namaskara set or most other asanas, because it involved putting strain on the joints, especially the wrists. In fact when I began KB 1 in June, I struggled with the chest dips, tricep dips, pull-ups and push-ups mostly because of this old injury and had to opt for alternatives at times. I’m really relieved that with Reach, I have found my old self again. My wrist seems to have finally healed, letting me pull, push, lift my own weight, and finally form a 90º angle without wincing.

My biggest achievement over the past 2 months has been the relative success in getting my palms down flat in the Forward Bend position. What is still out of reach for me is the destination of the Wide Angle Forward Bend. I tried my best and the most I could do, was get my elbows to touch the floor. I’ve moved a fair distance from where I began on Jan 15th. The max distance between my fingertips and groin then was 17”, whereas, on day 56, it was over 27”. Also, my hips are a lot more flexible now, as the angle to which my legs can stretch is a lot wider than before.

That said, I have to admit that everyday, I feel like I’m starting from scratch. The first few dynamic stretches feel harder and it isn’t until I’ve reached my fourth round of Sun Salutations, that my body starts to loosen up and get in the flow. I am still adjusting my heels in the transition to Downward Dog, and I don’t get my palms down flat naturally each time I have to Forward Bend. But overall, I’m quite pleased with my progress and to not have missed a single day’s workout. That I managed to stick with the diet plan for the most part, is also quite heartening. All the damage from Xmas and New Year indulgences has been taken care of. My weight is stable, I’m still off sugar and not craving treats. Got myself some stevia, in case I feel like a cup of chai (chai-tea), and I’m able to manage with a fraction of the quantity per sachet, also because I don’t quite like the aftertaste.

Think, post Reach, I’ll be sticking to a mix of Yoga and strength training for my maintenance workouts, as far as possible. Received Patrick’s article on ‘Abs’ via email last week, (https://www.kenzai.com/pulse/abs-abs-abs/?utm_source=Master+List&utm_campaign=9b6605a3b3-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2018_03_07&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_a69566740a-9b6605a3b3-119025153) and in hindsight, I think the Wide Angle Forward Bend is somewhat like the coveted, yet unnecessary hankering for the elusive six-packs! Of course, this could be a case of sour grapes 😉

Until later, thank you for the wisdom, the encouragement and the bonhomie, Kenzai. Thanks Kim and Kate, for always being around, and to a lovely team of fellow-grasshoppers! Cheers, Team Shalabhasana…

Sharing some before and after pics. Putting up so many pictures feels rather narcissistic, but I assure you, the purpose is fairly academic!

Am starting with the Forward Bend and Downward Dog comparisons, where change is very visible, followed by the Wide Angle Forward Bend. In the Wall Backbend, the curvature of my spine has improved greatly. The distance between my toes and wall has gone up from 32” to 36”. The Wall Twist feels easier, though I did not take measurements. Shoulder Raise on Wall, doesn’t seem to have changed much. The Rear Clasped Hand Raise has improved slightly. Back Scratch Test is good. This is one more posture where my broken wrist was bothering me earlier. Now I can clasp my fingers behind my back. The Broomstick Raise also seems to have improved slightly. In the Pyramid Forward bend, I’m now able to touch my head to the floor and get back up. The Calf Touch to the Wall varied on both legs for me in Jan I was able to bend my right knee more than the left, at a distance of 12", whereas my left foot trailed at 11.5". After Reach, both calves are more and equally strong with an increased distance from heel to wall measure of 13.5" for both legs. The Active Leg Raise- I seem to have missed this in Jan, but feels good now. My Jack-Knife posture in Jan was rather off, I think, but looks better now. The Squat Test is good. I’ve shared this before- I can go down all the way and get back up. The Cobbler Test was fine in Jan, and has stayed good all along. For me, it is part of the Butterfly Pose (Patangasana), where you flap your folded legs like the wings of a butterfly. This is the initial pose of that asana. There’s almost no gap between groin and heels for me. The Seated Forward Bend was also doable in Jan for me, but has become easier now. The Wide Angle Legs on Wall poses seem to show the improvement in flexibility over two months. Much better now. During the Floor Spine Twist, my hands were able to make good contact with the floor and the twist was quite complete. The Active Backbend is also fairly good. Not posting a picture here, as I’ve already shared pics of Chaturanga earlier. The last one is the Floor Shoulder Mobility Test. Here, my palms touching the floor stage looked kind of silly in Jan, but looks better now. Meanwhile, the Samsung Health app on my phone tells me, I’ve had a really active health streak for a while. Chuffed to be ranked amongst the top 2% of the most active females in my age group, using the app! Small joys 😄

And with that, it’s a wrap! It’s been great getting to know you guys. Thanks for indulging me and my 🐶🐕 doggies See you all, some place else, soon 🤞👋

Starting Photo





Kenzai Body
Kenzai Body


Kenzai Reach
Kenzai Reach

Kenzai Kettlebell
Kenzai Kettlebell