James D.

James D.

Kenzai Chisel | Day 12 (Member)
Kenzai Chisel
Day 12
Program progress:
Daily mantra

Sleep as important as exercise and diet
Sleep as important as exercise and diet
Sleep as important as exercise and diet
Sleep as important as exercise and diet


Naturally ramping up the intensity as body gets more used to exercises and feeling fitter.

Did the exercises 100% intensity today and no breaks - even for a second between exercises.

For extra mind **** added ‘just one more’ rep at the end of second set. Just to push it a little bit more than was already very uncomfortable.

But wow! Lactic acid build up. Dry cotton mouth. Gasping for breath.


Had a slow and easy start to Chisel Part 2. First week eat very clean and portion sizes okay. No booze.

First weekend managed to attend two days of a music festival with free flowing alcohol and colleagues in town (always dangerous) and didn’t even come close to a drop.

Exercises were okay last week. I was pretty sore so relaxed into it.

Find myself in good spirits and growing into the programme and the tough days that lie in wait.

Up at 5am to Shanghai. Managed a healthy breakfast, salad for lunch and salad for dinner (Maybe too much protein - see pic). Exercises done and was much better intensity.

2kg down from last week - not that weight matters.

One day at a time.

My first attempt at Chisel ended very prematurely - day 4 I think. I strained my calf and that was that. First time I have had to stop a programme.

This time around I'm off to a slow start. Eating well but leaving exercises to the evening is a grind. Got to get back into habit of an early rise and get them crushed.

I am expecting this to be extremely hard. This year I've been 75% at best in the programmes havent really seen them through with usual commitment.

Its all between the ears just need to get on and do it.

Got a lot of flubber to shift from the mid-drift.

Day 4 - Tough

Strained my left calf day 2 right at end of the last skipping cycle. Gutted but managing through it, did the exercises yesterday and eating is clean.

In answer to Patricks questions.

1. What's the toughest physical challenge you've ever faced?
Toss up between doing the '95 Marathon with a 6-week training period at Uni (I hate running), but it was for a great cause. And last year decided to skin up from Argentiere car park to the top of Les Grand Montets for some unknown reason. It's the only thing I can remember giving up on - after about 5 hours it got a little dangerous and I was a little unprepared. So I turned around and skied down.
2. What aspect of your personality makes the world a better place?
Not sure it makes the world a better place...but I am an eternal optimist. I think that helps my family and friends occasionally.

Glad to get Day 1 done and dusted.

Got back from a month of splurging over the weekend and only signed up yesterday. So today was a bit of a shock to the system. Exercises done and clean eating on track. Although I didn’t read no carbs after sunset - just about managed that...just.

The last few programmes I’ve started well to tail off at the end of the programme due to work travel and other excuses.

This time around looking at staying committed the entire 6 weeks.

Love Running! 

Well that's maybe stretching the truth a little...but really enjoyed the programme and everything it taught me about running. Definitely makes pounding the streets a little easier and more enjoyable.

My only regret is I really need to commit to 100% of the programme. Ski training took priority over running mid-way through and I never really recovered as the distances crept up. Diet also suffered. However, I'll take the wins and the fact I enjoy running more than when I started the course is good enough progress for me.

Done & Dusted

Forgive me for I have not blogged or run for two weeks!

I fell off the programme. Not in a massive way as I've still been exercising - diet has slipped last two weeks - but doing my ski training mid-way for 2 weeks (and not running) meant the increasing distances scared me off, and it was difficult to get back on the wagon. I'm certainly not in a place where I want to bang off a 10 km run...I just haven't built up to it.

The good news is that having done the first 36'ish odd days of the programme 100% it's been a very positive experience. One I would do again. but make the finish line next time.

Yesterday, after a flight to UK and probably still suffering jet lag and not having run for three weeks I decided to go for a 10 mins run in this blissful UK heat.

I took all the learnings from the programme - just get started on your run, breathing from the diaphragm, lean in, leg pick up, arms, look ahead...and try and enjoy.

WELL. I loved the run. I only did 22 mins (felt like 30 mins) so it wasn't the longest run...but I thought my form was strong. My breathing made a massive difference. I had a lovely run through woods and around a lake. I had no fixed time or distance.

I ran like the wind - well that's an over exaggeration - but I definitely felt I ran a pretty good clip for the run. Maintained a good pace, didn't go out too strong and then kicked on for end of the run.

Sweated buckets when I finished was gasping.

3.26km's in 21:41. 5:44 for 2nd KM and 5:29 for the 3rd Km.

Reckon it was a strong 7 followed by 9 effort. 10 effort for the final downhill sprint.

The only downside is my right calf is TIGHT today - ooopps.

Day 38

Hanging on in there.

Diet going well. And no booze. Plenty of exercise but haven’t run in a while!!

Was soooo glad it was strength training today. Monday’s exercises crushed me...my legs and ass are hurting bad. Like to touch is agony. Strange considering the amount of skiing I’ve done recently.

But the grim reality is I haven’t done a run in two weeks SO need to get back on the horse starting tomorrow with the 30 mins Fartlek Run!!

Onwards upwards.

Cross Training

Today I did 4 hours of hard ski training.

Afternoon went downhill mountain biking. Epic.


Been very good on diet and no booze even living full board in hotel.

Back to HK tomorrow and back to the running :-)


I didn't follow the runs 11 & 12 & Cross Training!!

Reason being is that I've started a ski course and I reckon I might overstress knees, legs and joints if I add some running on top. It's on a glacier, a bit weird to be skiing in the amazing weather we are having.

The good news is that I am banging out 3.5 hrs of hard skiing a day, burning about 1500 calories. Followed by afternoon activities like luge, Devil Karting and for yesterdays cross training 1 hour of SUP down the river.

The other good news is that although I am on full board at the hotel and everyone else is eating Fondue, pizzas and pastas etc loading up after the skiing I am sticking to the diet 100%. It means I am ordering the same thing every day but C'est la vie. Lots of salad, baguette and the occasional steak. Lots of water and fruit. Breakfast I bring my own avocado.

I've been dry for a week. No booze. Tempted by the hot sun and hard days work but in a good place.

My clothes are definitely looser as well and starting to see some old definition under the chassis LOL

I finish up this Friday. So the plan is to just go back to the running once the exam is over and back in HK.


Had a bad night sleep and woke early this morning. Still not entirely confident about the knee so hit the cross trainer again. I tried to focus on arm swing and breathing again.

Got a proper 30 mins bead on and felt like I made the right choice again.

Still exercising and committed and starting to be much better on the food now I’m at home and not traveling.

Run 9 - CrossFit!!

Yesterday I started to feel a niggle in my right knee. Got me paranoid. It’s strange as I can walk on it fine and the knees now swollen. BUT it feels weak at times and I just get the hunch something is up.

As much as I wanted to do the 5km run today, erred on the side of caution and did 5km’s on the cross trainer machine with minimum impact in the knees. Got up a proper sweat and good workout.

Not sure where I go from here. I think the next day is gym work so I’ll see how I feel Tuesday.

Run 8 - Treadmill

Wow I’ve been running incorrectly for 44 years.

As it was a training run and weather was thunder storm and lightening decided to hit the treadmill.

Either running on the treadmill is super easy OR todays lesson was mind blowingly good! I think it’s probably a mixture of both.

I’ve definitely been guilty of running too upright and my pick up is non existent. A fear of going to hard, too fast and injuring myself. Never thought of efficiency.

The treadmill allowed me to set a consistent pace and I focused on 3 things: breathing, lean forward and pick up. Lean and pick up sort of go hand in hand.

Started 20mins @ 6.59 pace. Then 4 mins @ 5.59pace and 1 min @ 4.49 pace. Felt I could have continued on @ 4.49 pace quite easily.

Had a good stretch after and dare I say it looking forward to the distance run tomorrow. I’ll try it outside and see what difference it makes.

Run 7 - Proud

Managed to claw myself out of bed and commit to the run today.

Preparation wasn’t ideal - 4 hours sleep and a Cannes diet of Rose and fine food.

It also wasn’t the greatest run - more of a very slow jog. Reflected in my pace. I guess you could call it a solid ‘4’.

Proud because I wasn’t sure I’d manage the full 25 mins. But, I did and felt much better for it. Also focused on breathing again. That helps.

Starting Photo



Kenzai Chisel
Kenzai Chisel


Kenzai Body
Kenzai Body


Kenzai Body 2
Kenzai Body 2

Kenzai Body 3
Kenzai Body 3

Kenzai Kettlebell
Kenzai Kettlebell


Kenzai Iron
Kenzai Iron

Kenzai Run
Kenzai Run