Nate Belle Isle

Nate Belle Isle

Kenzai Kettlebell 2 | Day 21 (Member)
Kenzai Kettlebell 2
Day 21
Program progress:
Back from Camping!

Camping was great! It was awesome to unplug, and to get some nature time.

Ultimately the workouts took a hit for hiking instead, and the diet was not ideal. Having planned for this absence though, I'm not too upset! It's all 100% from here, diet getting cleaned up, and bells being smashed.

Here's some pics from our trip! Hope everyone is having a killer week 2!

The time has come!

Alright. I'm no stranger to Kettlebells, but it's time I do the program I authored! Haha.

This has been along time coming, but I'm excited to go through these structured 6 weeks in their final form, from start to finish, as a trainee!

Off to a good start, my first 5 minutes of skipping went without a single trip! Which really thrilled me as I haven't touched the rope since before I did my KRun 2.0 program where I just stuck to the running! Got ~850 skips in that window.

Great to be training with such a lovely group! Can't wait to swing some lead with you guys.

I'll be camping 6/15-6/19, so I won't actually be bringing the bell with me. However I'm going to stick do a daily workout regimen and doing plenty of hiking! And I can do the workout at home before and after the trip on the 15th and 19th, so it's only 3 days without the bell.

Here's to a great program everyone!

gif from HBO's A Game of Thrones

KRun 2.0 - SUCCESS 

So here we are! The finish line.

I won't toss a bunch of number crunching up for my grad post, I'll do that later, but for now I just want to celebrate!

Still have the 13k to run, it got pushed back by an extra 5k Color Run, Miranda and I did together yesterday. I couldn't have asked for a better finale to my second "run" through (heh) of this program. We had a blast, and it really opened up a new window of active "dates" we can tackle together. Who knows, maybe a Tough Mudder or Spartan lies in our future!?

I'm going to keep pressing for a sub 23 minute 5k, and I think I want to try to run in a more serious race too. I know I wouldn't even be close to the front of the pack, but it would be fun! And while I have to be honest, distance past 10k are NOT my thing, I do want to get faster.

Legs are strong, runs were made, records broken, diet kept pretty tight, cardio vascular strength way up, and an awesome finale with the most awesome girl I know!

Success indeed! 😁

And yes, that's a T-Rex in a tutu. I really gotta up my game next year. Ideas?!

I wanted to make a separate posts for my run comparisons. It's long, boring, and mainly just for my benefit. I'll try to put together a spreadsheet or something more enjoyable for day 42!

Here we go!

Run 10 - Fartlek
First time - 10/01/15 - 6:22 min/km
Second time - 04/29/17 - 5:51 min/km

Run 11 - Technical
First time - 10/03/15 - 5:42 min/km
Second time - MISSED :(

Note: Bummer! My first miss of Run 2.0. I had some ankle issues, and wound up needing to take a couple runs off, METH (the new and improved RICE!), and get new shoes. I think the shoes made the biggest difference, and no problems since switching!

Run 12 - Distance 8km
First time - 10/05/15 - 6:48 min/km
Second time - MISSED :(

Run 13 - Free
First time - MISSED
Second time - MISSED :(

Note: So, a total of 3 misses. One being missed on both programs. Good news is there hasn't been a miss since!

Run 14 - Fartlek
First time - 10/08/15 - 5:57 min/km
Second time - 05/03/17 - 5:50 min/km

Run 15 - Technical
First time - 10/10/15 - 5:48 min/km
Second time - 05/05/17 - 5:39 min/km

Note: Got back into it with decent numbers, staying ahead of Run 1.0.

Run 16 - Distance 9.5km
First time - 10/11/15 - 5:55 min/km
Second time - 05/06/17 - 5:42 min/km

Run 17 - Free
First time - MISSED
Second time - 05/08/17 - 5:29 min/km

Note: I thought I would've been more wiped from the 9.5km. Very surprised to see such a jump up in average pace, especially for such a long free run at 40 minutes.

Run 18 - Strong Finish
First time - 10/15/15 - 5:46 min/km
Second time - 05/10/17 - 5:06 min/km

Note: I couldn't believe it! So close! And I kept things at a good effort level until the strong finish and had enough in the tank to bring it to a 7-8 for the last 5 minutes.

Run 19 - Technical
First time - MISSED
Second time - 05/12/17 - 4:58 min/km

Note: Success! Goal achieved!

My next goal is to nail the last 2 distance runs with a sub 6 min/km pace. I missed both of the longest distance runs in Run 1.0, so it will be a whole new distance record for me, and realm of experience pushing past 10km. Bring it on!

From here, I think that an annual Run program is in my future, and I really want to get to a sub 23 minute 5km next.

While I really don't think I have the constitution, or patience, for Run Half, I am considering doing it in the future, but maybe taking the distance down a couple notches. Just to keep improving my speed and form, while learning some new training methods and runs.

Last note: For this program alone, my average pace from last month was 6:08, and this month is 5:29. Yay!

Achievement Unlocked!

So, about a year and a half after my first encounter with Kenzai Run 10k, I set out to give it another go, and ultimately get below 25 minutes for a 5k.

Not a pace that many serious runners would brag about, but for myself, originally a self-proclaimed "hater" when it comes to running, it seemed like a big milestone. And actually, beginning this second round, I had my doubts I would get there, unless I did a run at the end of the program where I really pushed it.

Well, drum roll please! Brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr . . .

I did it!

After running the strong finish run, and finishing at just over 25 minutes, I realized this was totally possible. I set out to nail it on the Technical run, and succeeded! It felt really good. I did keep my effort level more around a 7, but it was worth it. Now I hope I can settle in to 5min/km as my 4-6 effort level pace.

Feeling good!

New kicks!

Got some new shoes, I needed to find a better fit. So far so good! I really like them.

Went out with some friends too and kept it to a Kenzai friendly Cortado, and iced coffee. Plugging along!

Short one for me, just been bogged down with work and house projects. Will update on the runs soon


Running along!

So far so good! Haven't missed a run, keeping the diet dialed, and still feeling fine with the distances run.

I am starting to feel the general wear and tear of running so much, lower legs especially pretty sore and in need of some extra stretching! I foresee some yoga today.

Pretty happy with my results so far too. Having not missed a single run, I'm doing really well compared to my last go of KRun 10k. And I've had my best month so far collectively in distance, with a whole week left still to go! So that's pretty cool.

I'm having a hard time breaking too far below the 6min/km pace while keeping it at a 4-6, but I'm generally feeling pretty solid and good at the end of the runs. I'm trying to focus on breath work, and pushing myself towards the end of the run to make up some more ground. Mantra is the same as last time, "The pain is a lie!"

Attached some snaps of my 6.5km distance run, I felt pretty good with it and maybe my got my first ever glimpse at the elusive "Runner's High" around the 5km mark. It was my fastest 6-8km run, although is it also my ONLY 6-8km run logged haha! However, it quickly faded and the last 0.5km was probably the hardest of the whole run. Kept a pretty consistent pace the whole way, and really tried ot just give it a little extra at the end.

Now some comparisons:

Run 6 - Fartlek
First time - 9/22/15 - 6:17 min/km
Second time 4/19/17 - 6:38 min/km

(The Fartlek was run on a treadmill, the first time I've ever run indoors on program. I chalk up the poor pacing to getting used to the equipment, and not being able to really find a sweet spot for the speed of my surges. My excuse and I'm sticking to it!)

Run 7 - Technical
First time - MISSED
Second time 4/21/17 - 5:53 min/km (Yay!)

Run 8 - Distance
First time - MISSED
Second time 4/23/17 - 5:55 min/km (Solid!)

Run 9 - Free
First time - 9/29/15 - 6:26 min/km
Second time 4/24/17 - 6:01 min/km (OK, good improvement from first time)

That's it guys! Awesome to see everyone kicking butt! Run on wolf pack!


What a week!

So one of my major goals this program, beyond increasing my speed and running a sub 25 minute 5km, is to hit every run!

I had to do the distance run on Sunday this weekend, but I still got the strength training in too! Over all the week felt really good. I still had a couple of diet transgressions that fell under the "clean-up" phase, but on track this week.

This Monday run already checked a box I missed on my first go around. So that felt nice! And I'm really enjoying my month off here at Kenzai, and feel like I have more time on my hands to focus on my own health, something that for the past 6 months I did not do very well.

I've put on quite the winter layer, and I'm ready to see it go. Run, and I think Kettlebell after, will lay the groundwork for my quest to be my fittest I've ever been by 30. They both should wrap p right around the time I turn 29, then I have one year to do my own intensive "Fatpocalypse!" (Patrick, I'm stealing that)


Run 3
First time 9/19/15 - 5:50 min/km
Second time 4/14/17 - 5:50min/km

Run 4
First time 9/20/15 - 6:16min/km
Second time 4/16/17 - 6:20 min/km

Run 5
First time - MISSED
Second time 4/17/17 - 6:05 min/km

Observations: Tied my pacing, and actually was a little slower for the 5km. I will chalk this up to actually keeping things in the 4-6 range this time, but pushing myself a little to hard the first time I did the program. Also, Even though I did a 5km on Sunday and Monday (well 4.95 km in 30 minutes on Monday), the second one just felt way better, as evidenced by my time improvement.

So far so good! Looking forward to today's Fartlek!

Kicking it off!

Alright so a little late for a first official post, but here it is! (Malia, starting photo incoming today!)

So I'm excited to give Kenzai Run 10km another go. After doing it the first time I learned 2 major things:

1. I actually enjoy running even though I thought I hated it and
2. I don't really ever care to run longer than 10km on purpose.

In the following year and half since doing the program, I learned a couple other important lessons:

1. I don't like running enough to keep doing it regularly if I'm not in a program and
2. Even though that's the case, if I pick it up again it seems I pick up where I left off

The conclusions I draw from this then is doing an annual KRun 10km is right up my alley. In those 6 weeks every year, I can focus on an aspect of my running, and then maintain the progress made throughout the year. This time around I want to work on speed! So, I will be comparing my previous program with this one, as I go through it, mainly looking at speed as an improvement.

For my first two runs I was able to run with my wife, and mother-in-law (Miranda and Angela, respectively, both doing KRun for the first time!). The first run I did pace myself to stick close to them, and make sure I was keeping it in the 4-6 effort range. For the second run, I set my own pace entirely, and Miranda and Angela stuck together.

The comparison:

Run 1
First time 9/15/15 - 7:29 min/km
Second time 4/10/17 - 7:17min/km

Run 2
First time 9/17/15 - 7:08min/km
Second time 4/12/17 - 6:08 min/km

I'm happy with this! I haven't run at all, all winter. So starting off like this is good for me. Looking forward to end this program getting a sub 25 min, 5km.

Here we go!

GIF from Parks and Recreation on NBC

Run 10km 2.0

One day until I give Run 10km another go!

Will I best all PRs?

Will I injure my foot again?

Will I finish the program leaner, faster, and stronger?

Well, the last one's a given.

Reach for the sky! 

Alright so Reach is over!

Had a crazy final week. Sick cat for yet ANOTHER vet appointment. Finally unraveling that ball of yarn. (heh, no cat-toy pun intended). And getting a temporary fix on the roof after we had a 80+ mph wind storm resulting in over 100k people in our area without power and internet (including us for a day, we were lucky) that ripped off shingles. Also lost some sections of fence and some cedar shingles from the house. Fun!!

So needless to say, I want to get this grad post up, but it won't be my last post on Reach. I need to finish a couple of missed sessions, and so the flexibility assessment. So that will follow in the next day or too! I'll post some pictures and my final Reach weekly photo.

Overall, I feel great! Definitely more limber and have a greater range of motion. I can't believe I can go into a forward fold cold, and touch all ten fingers on the ground, and after warming up nearly get my hands flat! It's crazy! I feel grounded, limber, and like I'm holding myself tall. I feel like a "leaf on the wind," to quote the wonderful Wash from Firefly! (Great show, maybe the best ever, fight me!)

Ultimately I also think that I've identified where I'm lacking flexibility, or have imbalances, and that's invaluable as I will target those going forward.

Overall, it was a great experience! And I will be certainly repeating Reach again, great stuff! Next is Run 10k with Miranda in April, followed by a program focused on muscle building, either Kettlebell (i have yet to be a trainee for the program I wrote! haha), or Iron, if it materializes.

I have about a year and 3 months left before I turn 30. It's time for business!

I had a blast with all of my fellow Garudasanas, it was a blast! Namaste folks!

Again. Man have I just struggled with this the past few programs! I don't know if it's because I'm getting older so time is going faster, but it does not feel like 10 days since my last post!

I can definitely see a major improvement in my flexibility, I can't wait to do that final flexibility assessment. Heels touching during down dog, hands almost flat in forward fold, all great stuff!

And definitely much improved when it comes to balance, and isometric muscle power too. Holding these poses, getting grounded through the breath, and connecting with the body during the sun salutations have definitely created a net proprioceptive gain for this human. Great stuff gang.

One week left, time to crush it and get geared up for the next program!

Be with the Pain

When I did Kenzai Run 10k, I delved into a world I was not only unfamiliar with, but thought I HATED. I've never been a runner for the sake of running. Of course, I graduated that course unveiling all new personal limits, and with a strange appreciation and joy for running I never thought I would have.

When doing that program I came up with (probably stole) the motto, "The pain is a lie." It helped me keep running when I wanted to give up, knowing that my body was merely lying to me to get me to stop. I had everything in the tank I needed to complete those runs, I just had to push past those boundaries.

With Reach (a program that is expounding on my already developed love for yoga and stretching), I'm definitely experiencing pain. These PNF stretches and the long evening stretches, are taking the practice to a whole new level! Phew! I'm definitely no yogi, but I felt pretty confident in my ability to do this program, but I found myself needing to return to "the pain is a lie" mantra to stick with those longer sessions.

However, something doesn't quite sit right with me with that mantra, in this program. So the other day the following mantra came into my head, and it felt like a much better fit:


The pain might be a lie, but I feel like the whole point of this practice is to learn how to acknowledge the pain, follow the pain, and BE with the pain.

There's probably a life lesson buried in there too. Maybe I can wait for Kenzai Mind to delve deep into that one. ;)

Reach on fellow Eagles!


Traveling this weekend to visit some friends in Indianapolis! While I must confess switching over to the "relaxed" diet for the weekend I can boast some group Reach sessions, and a good bit of extra walking in this 70 degree sun!

Also, one of the side benefits to Reach I think I experienced was a much more comfortable car ride. 9 hours driving and I felt pretty lose, relaxed, and calm. Great stuff!

I'll post more when I'm home and catch up on my teammates blogs. Reach on people!!

#wealwaysmimicstatues #nailedit #noshameitwasinpublic

Reach Progress!

So this weekend was a but off course as Miranda posted, but all in all I think we struck a good work/life balance so to speak! Some drinks were had, some grams were out of place, but it was a mindful decision to celebrate and would've gone way worse if I wasn't in a program!

Thoughts on Reach so far:

I love it! I definitely am experience whole new things, especially with the long poses. This past year I explored yoga more than in years past, but with 20-50 minute vinyasa videos I followed along with. So a lot of breath work, and moving form pose to pose, but not a lot of long holds in a static pose. I really think it's working though and my weekly picture for this week (forth coming!) shows a bit of improvement.

I do have to say, that coming into the program the wide angle forward bend is what I wanted to improve them most, but it's also the pose I find the most frustrating! Isn't that the way it goes? I think it's that if I was already more flexible I would feel I could sit there and relax into the pose, but right now for me I have to keep fighting to have proper form, and maintain the stretch. A pillow under the bum has helped, but it's still a rough one!

But usually the path you find resistance down is the one you should travel, so I will forge on!

Ordered some yoga straps and blocks too, excited for those to come in the mail!

For the weekly questions, I have 2 I'm supposed to answer! So behind. Again, I aim to be better about the blogging, but honestly it's the last thing I want to do some nights. So I'm going to answer the questions below, and then I'll be caught up and try to do some smaller blogs more frequently!

1. What feels closed off?

This is a tough one. Not only do I think I have to sit with this one a little more to really identify a proper answer, all of the things I've thought of don't necessarily seem to really fit what's being asked.

The best I came up with is that I think my ability to self love and forgive is closed off. I'm somebody who has a really hard time disappointing others (well really FEELING like I disappointed others, important distinction), so I can be very hard on myself. It doesn't manifest in any sort of "type A," rigorous self flogging behavior haha, I'm a pretty laid back guy, but I think I often let my assumptions of what other people think and feel about me, dictate some of my actions. This comes from my own internal standards and demands, that I project on to other people, while in reality when I feel I let someone down, I probably didn't!

And if we want to get REAL therapy about the whole situation, this behavior comes from my childhood, it's something that's been kind of imprinted on me for my whole life. I think this kind of thought/behavior pattern closes off my ability to forgive myself, and really treat myself the way I try to treat other people.

I gotta say trying to type this stuff out seems to somehow make it make LESS sense! haha. I talked a bit about this in my KB3 grad post too, so that's all I got. I've made it a goal of mine to work on this for this year.

2. Trends?

I've seen a trend of attention splitting. I think I've slowly grown less able to focus my attention. I'll be cooking dinner, commenting on blogs, talking to my wife, and watching a show in the background. Or I'll be watching a show while browsing my phone or working out. That kind of thing. I catch myself doing it, and I don't like it. I want that to change and I want to be mindful of focusing my attention on one thing at a time.

For a positive trend however I want to say I'm doing better with listening to my body, and actually being mindful of my choices throughout the day. I've felt pretty present and in training mode for Reach, and while it hasn't been perfect it's definitely a step up from the funk I was in for KB3. So that's good! I think I've also been a bit better about breaking down my bigger goals into smaller steps, and in this way make more progress towards them.

Like we always say around here, progress, not perfection!

Alright guys, happy REACHING!!!

Final Photo



Kenzai Kettlebell 2
Kenzai Kettlebell 2


Kenzai Body
Kenzai Body


Kenzai Run 10k
Kenzai Run 10k

Kenzai Body 2
Kenzai Body 2

Kenzai Body 3
Kenzai Body 3

Kenzai Reach
Kenzai Reach

Kenzai Kettlebell
Kenzai Kettlebell

Kenzai Iron
Kenzai Iron

Kenzai Mind
Kenzai Mind

Kenzai Chisel
Kenzai Chisel

Kenzai Blast: Beach Ready
Kenzai Blast: Beach Ready