Ramakrishna "Cram" C.

Ramakrishna "Cram" C.

Kenzai Chisel | Graduating (Member)
Kenzai Chisel
Completed!
 
Program progress:
Iron Day 3

I'm writing the blog on the way home during the commute instead of waiting till the workout is done. Any comments on the workouts are from the previous day.

The lesson yesterday was about the bench press. I read it and mentally prepared to do the bench press. I looked at the equipment at the gym a couple times before and after the jump rope. I did the barbell row and dumbbell tricep stretch. I didn't find any bench press routine. I was a bit disappointed and relieved. Apparently just mentally imagining to do the workouts strengthens the muscles in a small way. Remember how Uma Thurman gets to wiggle her toe in Kill Bill. Today's lesson talked about various fallback options - weights with barbell, dumbbell and body weight/stretch-bands. In-the-mind workouts could be another option.

Note to self - at the end of the program check if the barbell row is blocked by the fat belly in the last one fourth of the stretch.

Three blogs done and 87 to go.


Iron Day 2

Couple of wins. I had just soda without vodka at a work gathering. I didn't have any peanuts in the last 44 hours.

Couple of challenges. Fitting the gym around the evening calls on Tues, Wed and Thu and writing the blog everyday. The calls are from 8:30. They go on till till 10:00 on Thursadays. The gym is ten minute drive from home But it's open till 11:00pm. I will go after the call is done. I will do the 30 minute cardio on Thursday instead of on Sunday.

To write the blog everyday and not get reminders from the trainers, I will not worry about keeping the blogs interesting or clever.

Two blogs done. 88 to go.


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Yet Another Loop on The Kenzai Belt 
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It would have been a great story to share in a pub, if I lost twelve kilos in KB3 like I did in Kenzai Body. At the end of KB3, my weight didn't change much. I was even considering not sharing the post on Facebook and let KB3 D90 pass quietly. It would be ungrateful of me not to recognize everything I gained from Kenzai Body 3 and by being in the Kenzai space for last four years.

The fact that I completed the 'ten set - hundred rep' final workout and didn't die is a good sign that my fitness level improved tremendously over the years. (I used to have a near-death experience after doing ten push-ups.) I feel the back and should muscles making me sit upright without drooping. Sometimes I feel that I'm looking at the world form a slightly elevated place. I am powered by a consistent level of energy throughout the day even with five hours of sleep.

A single weight loss number is a good way to package any fitness story. I was hoping to report an impressive weight-loss number. But I gained muscle instead. I wasn't expecting anything in Kenzai Body I (PCP) but I reached lowest fat percent in my grown life. Kenzai Body II was a miss - there was no significant fat loss or muscle gain but my good Kenzai eating habits were re-inforced. There are many dimensions to fitness. Each time I make an effort, I'm making progress in one or two dimensions, trending in the right direction overall.

Thank you Chinchillas. You kept me honest (almost). Most of the choices I made on food and workout were made because of you. I haven't met you in person (except Bill) but I didn't want to lie to you blatantly. Thank you for your support.

Thank you Scott and Malia for being the best coaches, always nudging me in the right direction.

Thank you Patrick Reynolds and Kenzai team for creating a temple of fitness on the cloud.

I am impressed with myself for staying off drinks for 90 days (except for the permitted indulgences - Yahoo! I don't have an alcohol dependency) and I gifted myself a fruit bowl (picture attached) to keep a few apples at my desk and avoid eating bananas. I will try to get seven hours of sleep and eat light dinners. I will come back to KettleBell in June.


I'm No Superman
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But I do have a kryptonite. My indulgence #2 brought it into the open.

It was getting a bit tricky for me to fix something with colleagues or family for my indulgence because they are getting used to me not being enthusiastic about drinks and dinners. I joined a curry lunch at work. When it rains it pours. Anya agreed to have a drink at home. So I picked up a small bottle of rose champagne and a small bottle of red wine in case my interest lasted longer than the bubbly. I opted in for the herb crested rack of lamb I made for Anya. At the end of the dinner and a couple of drinks I was in a perfect mood for a bit of Netflix. I still had my red wine untouched. Two of the three things needed for the kyrpotonite recipe were already in place - TV and alcohol. Then it was time to add the third one - sugar. I found a nice round hard outside, creamy inside Linder chocolate. I found two but I had only one. The three of them waltz together into the night. It's hard to say who is leading who. I had a jamun (Indian sweet made of milk solids and sugar). Then I started scavenging the refrigerator and went after the Hurshley chocolate chips that were left over from the last time I made cookies.

That is a real problem. The three of them - wine, Netflix and chocolates are waiting for me to indulge.

I used to drink beer and eat pizza and/or curry rice all the time. Now I eat right 90% of the time. I will overcome this one too.


KB3 D43

Apologies for not writing all these days.

Kenzai is not big on weight watching. I got roughly 100gm reduction a day in weight for the 42 days. Usually the weight reduction is given roughly at the end of the week. May be due to the extra sleep over the weekend or the alternate exercise.

I was finding the lunch put me to sleep because of shorter sleep in the night from the workout+cooking. I was feeling hungry in the evening. Today I divided my lunch into two parts and ate them at 11:30 and 3:30pm. Any concerns about splitting the lunch into two?


Breakfast
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An open sandwich of three slices of whole wheat bread, one egg and one egg white, three slices of tomato and half an avocado has been my breakfast since I completed KB1 / PCP. The three slices weigh around 50gms. My breakfast for the last four weeks required 90gms of carbs. I had to add two more slices with a thin coat of avocado paste. For someone who is used three slices, eating five slices is hard. This week the carbs reduced to 70gms - roughly four slices. Looking forward to carbs for breakfast going down to 50gms.


Indulgence #1

I'm planning to have a couple of drinks with my colleagues on Thursday. I joined drinks with colleagues three times last week and managed to stick to soda water. I thought it's a good idea to use the indulgence pass for drinks next time. It's going to be two glasses of red wine. I did think about sugary snacks - cinnamon roll for example. Sugar leaves me craving for more. Surprisingly I'm weak with sugar than with alcohol.


KB3 D17

I did catchup with my lessons finally.

The body part that bothers me the most is my fat belly. I can't say I hate it. Because it's my water mark. It's the siren that goes off as soon as I put on a few pounds. My trousers become tight. Shirt buttons almost pop. I push my chair at work little backwards to make room for my growing tummy. It highlights my weight gain to my wife. It'll be nice to have flat tummy.


Back to rehab
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I'm excited. It's time for me to get back to working out, eating well and blogging the confessions.
Looking forward to the magic of Kenzai Body 3.


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Feeling Amazed the Second Time 
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I signed up for KB2 with a strong hope that I was going to get to 9% fat and weight back to 60kg range. For what ever reasons it did not happen. Weight plateaued at 65kg and Fat% at 18%. I’m happy that it did not happen. I’m happy that staying fit is not a simple linear equation of carbs, calories and pounds. Social scientists, psychiatrists and my family (who are on Facebook and who may read this post :-)) may postulate that I will take only a couple of business trips to go back to the old weight.

I’m unique like everyone else. I don’t know what triggers me to reach out for that chaco chip cookie and gobble it up in no time. I don’t know what makes me mess up my sleep schedule, feel groggy and crave for sugar the next day. I knew a lot less before I signed up for Kenzai Body (or PCP). My body (and the automatic mind) is the computer for which there is no manual. I’m the programmer trying to program it to stay fit. Only by taking my body through Kenzai programs and the outside life back and forth I can observe and figure out what works and what doesn’t. In KB1 everything was new - eating breakfast, three fruit snacks, stretch band workouts and jumprope. In KB2, I was doing half the things required on a daily basis already - regular breakfast with egg, tomato, avocado and whole wheat bread, three part meal with carbs, protein and vegetables. Jumprope was as easy and effortless as a brisk walk. Beer completely removed from the menu. After a week or so I’ll know what I learnt from KB2. Learning not as a piece of intellectual knowledge but something that becomes so part of me that it influences me even when I’m in coma.

I’m grateful that I am associated with Kenzai - Patrick Reynolds and the wonderful Kenzai team. It was a blessing to have the stream of workouts, personalised diet from the best nutrition team and the Sycamore members who shared their stories and read my blogs and commented. Special thanks to our lovely instructors Ward Willis and Cecilia Aiello for their round-the-clock support and encouragement.

I look forward to the next Kenzai program. Meanwhile, I’ll start my own Kenzai Sleep and try to get 7 hours sleep a day.

All the best to Kebzai Body 2 members who are graduating today.


Blogging about Not Blogging

In KB1, I enjoyed writing. I apologised a lot. I wrote about the food I ate. Some of the blogs were very elaborate. It kind of gave me a good writing practice.

In KB2, I had to get a reminder to write the next one. Two reasons. There wasn't enough time. I slept very little. Four to five hours. I started using my commute time to do some actual writing of one of the ten books I wanted to write. It didn't occur to me that I could have always added one or two line blogs - like tweets.


Last But One

I completed the the workout for the 89th day. (I didn't 89th workout in the program. I skipped a few last two weeks because I was engaged in making tons of curry/tandoori chicken for a food fair to raise money for a school.) I really enjoyed the cycle workouts. I used to lunch frequently at the French restaurant Asterix in Akasaka. There was a line on the black board on the wall that read 'Variety is the best recipe'. The chef used to server five small pieces of tarts for dessert. Each of us used to get a different combination. The cycle workouts are similar. Difficult for the body but very easy for the mind.

Thanks to Patrick Reynolds for supplying us a continuous stream of exercises each very different from the other all of them part of a big plan to address a muscle group at different time in the program. Designing the exercise and performing to capture the images for the instructions and to create the instructions - it's a lot of work.

As they say in Japanese - 'Otsukaresama'.


Virtual Corset
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My bathroom scale did not get the mail. Not much change in the fat%. Weight is hovering around 65. Steady decline in the weight was my prime motivator in KB1. I'm sticking to the diet and doing the workouts ( except a few misses this and last week due to a big commitment to my daughter's school food fair) without getting frustrated about the stagnant weight graph.
My wedding band rotates freely on my finger, my watch moves freely over my wrist, I'm seeing my jaw line and the shaving swipes are firm, a razor rash I had developed a year ago is clearing up, there is room around my neck after I close the collar button, I'm able to use the fourth hole on my belt. You know you are making progress when baristas at Starbucks ask question about my diet program.

My back is upright, my arms stretching outwards and waist looks thin as if someone is tightening my corset slow and steady.


Tabehodai

I hoped for change in my dinner quota prior two weeks. To get off the apple yoghurt eggwhite. It didn't happen. I got busy with a charity curry sale over the silver week holidays in Japan. I didn't check my diet on Sunday and went
Ahead with my apple dinner. Yahoo I'm back on to a normal dinner with protein and veggies this week. All the fruit snacks show the five letter word AMAYW. (Japanese say Tabehodai for all-you-can-eat. Japanese Tabehodai option in restaurants has a cut-off time if two hours.) It's great. I can eat a lot of fruit.

I miss the yoghurt dinners. No decisions to make. Each bit is light enough so that you mix and match with the workout. Apple before the workout for example. It takes a very long time to eat 300 grams of yoghurt and chew a full apple especially if you are not string at a screen.

Either it means I made some progress in the fitness levels or time is up for winding it down. I have this doubt because there is no change in the weight. Though my waist tightened I'm able to use the next hole in my belt. I am tempted to say KB2 is all about the alchemy of converting fat to muscle without loosing any muscle. But the fat percent on the scale shows no change. What matters is that I'm looking better and feeling better.


Resistance Lunges

I hate them. I hate any full body workouts. The top of the list is the rotating dial. Second place goes to resistance lunges. I get really tired doing them. I don't get the moves. For example, in the resistance lunge, when I life my leg up while pushing the stretch band up, lot of things go wrong - I loose my balance, the raised leg invariable gets stuck the V shaped stretch band. 70% of me thinks that Patrick edited the video. Of course, I know for sure that he did those exercises with more grace than a ballet dancer.

I used to think about jumprope in a similar way in the beginning. Now I don't pay any conscious attention. Hopefully one day I'll be as good in full body exercises as my jumprope skills.


Final Photo

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Current

Kenzai Chisel
Kenzai Chisel

Completed

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 Kettlebell 2
Kenzai Kettlebell 2