>Yoga. Oh, yoga. How I have come to love thee, yet you still taunt me. Mocking me from afar in the form of perky, fake-baked sorority girls and well maintained Cougars. How you, the missing link to my fitness quest, have beckoned me yet not welcomed me over the last few weeks. Do you know that I have not touched a kettlebell in 12 days? Do you know that I have dedicated the last three and upcoming four weeks to you? You sweaty, glistening beast.

What up y’all? I have been so, so busy these last few weeks. I have been lurking on the forum , late at night, after tons of good advice has been administered by forum experts, and wanted so badly to get back in the swing of things. And today, it begins.

January 31st, four weeks ago today was the last class I held in the adjacent studio of the Yogalife Institute in Devon, PA. The room I rented for kettlebell classes of 5-10 people was being painted and decorated, turned into a Hands-On Healing studio/meditation room, and Wednesday nights from 1730-1930 were no longer available. Consequently, students of the two classes I held were displaced. Inconveniently, that same week, I cancelled my only AM class I teach (held at Platoon Fitness in Bryn Mawr, PA) due to poor attendance, and things were bummin’. For multiple reasons kettlebells just never caught on at Platoon Fitness, or, at the least, I never caught on. So I have this group of displaced peoples (15 women) who’s week was thrown into upheaval because their midweek classes were taken away, calling and emailing me a few times a week asking me if I had another spot for Wed. KB Classes.

I was out pounding pavement trying to find a spot, none of which were appropriate/available, when a PT client and class regular recommended I try a large health facility owned and op’d by the U Penn Health System. After two phone calls and getting the right person on the phone, we were set. They have a conference room that the aforementioned client told me houses weekly Yoga classes (again with the yoga) and was usually empty in the evening. I inquired about this with the Conference room scheduler, and she was more than willing to let us use the room. And what’s more, it is FREE! It does not cost a dime to rent this space. I pay 35.00 USD/Hour at the Yogalife Institute and Elite Athletic Club to use their studios (not bad when the trainees pay me 15.00/head) and usually pay about 1000.00 USd/month in rent between PT and Kettlebell Classes (Why don’t I get my own gym? Cause my credit is all banged up). So to have replaced a class that was postponed, in a bigger room with better parking, for free, was quite a bonus. I am offering the employees of this U Penn helathcare facility one free class in return for thier kindness.

What else is going on? Glad you asked. The reason I have not been available to blog/forum post is because I have been workin’ it. I made it rain the last few weeks. Trip out:
All the groundwork I laid in 06 has begun to pay off. All of the free demonstrations, articles in various publications, brief TV clips, and Guerrilla Classes (taking my advanced swingers to random outdoor locations to get smoked and Be Seen) have given way to solid attendance in every class this year. A woman I met last year brought 4 people to an intro class, and forwarded my information to the owner of the gym she trains at. Last night the owner called me and left a voice mail saying that she wanted KB classes at her gym. Ditto another female trainer who set me up with the GM of the gym she is a member of. This week I meet with him to discuss the possibilities. Beginning in two weeks I will be teaching a class at the fitness center of the Willow Grove Joint Reserve Base (Naval Air Station) to Marines, Sailors and civilians. And one more thing, Rob Lawrence RKC contacted me about getting together for an SST and a UST. He asked if I was interested in counting/motivating and possibly testing with him. I said, of course, F Yeah, and took a reverse engineered training program from him. My PR in the SST is 202, and he says that I could smash it if I want. And yes, I want.

So things are good. hopefully I can blog more often this coming month and keep learning/teaching through the forum. If you don’t see my name up on the threads, it doesn’t mean I’m gone, it means that y’all have already done an outstanding job, and I’m simply observing.

Three Cheers for the ‘Ol Ball and Pain
William Williams

>. . .has become a part of my life in the last few months. A friend of mine named Jim, who is a client as well, just defeated cancer for the second time in two years. Christmas of 2005 he had testicular cancer (seminoma) and beat that with radiation. This Christmas he battled the same cancer that had spread to his lymph nodes, and he defeated that with Infusion Chemotherapy. This man and his wife have trudged through some serious shite in the last 16 months, and he smiles through it every day. he returned to kettlebell training last week, and has come back strong. Soon, he will be stronger.

A few months ago I received a telephone inquiry from a man who wanted to interview me for the position of Strength Trainer for his 12 year old son Sam. Sam contracted meningitis, which led to encephalitis, which then led to cerebral ataxia, a brain injury that left him, as his parents described, like a victim of a massive stroke. He was curled over, unable to speak or move, being spoon fed, all before puberty. Sam was left with no balance, and no stregnth in his body. To this day, he walks with a stumble and had a very hard time stabilizing his body in any given position. Snatches and Get Ups were out of the question. He got sick when he was ten years old. As far as the doctors can tell, Sam has made a remarkable recovery. From no motor skills at all to living the life of your every-kid, the physical and mental rehabilitation this boy went through was tougher than any workout I could cook up, any 10 minute snatch test, or any teen angst. Sam’s father hired me as his son’s trainer. The one who would take his baby boy into the arenas his physical therapists and doctors could not. I will admit, I was very nervous about this whole thing. I consulted with two M.D’s in regards to whether or not this kid needed me, or a more experienced individual. They both threw it back in my face and said that if the kid’s parents trusted me, and if PT just was not enough, was there any question that I was the one to get this kid strong and playing sports again? The Doctors hammered me with encouragement and off I went. Sam and I did nothing but practice the KB dead lift and military press for four weeks. After rapid improvement in his Kb lifting and in his day-to-day, we stepped it up slowly, and diligently. Yesterday, after only ten weeks of weight training, Sam performed his first set of kettlebell swings with an 8kg ‘bell. I was jumping all over his parent’s living room and high fiving him like he just scored a game winning goal. Because he did. He won. A bacterial infection that entered his body with the intent to kill him had lost. Sam is healthy, strong, and making quantum leaps in his life every time he moves his feet.

For those of you who may not know me very well, I have been manic-depressive my entire life. I will not trump up my personal struggles, because there are people like Sam, and my friend Jim, who have faced much more ferocious adversaries in their lives. My battle is within my head. When my body hurts, so does my brain, and, I think, vice versa. But it is a fight. I have an enemy who lives under my skin and tries to take my legs out every so often. My clients and friends and family tell me that I can beat it, and that if I ask for help I will get it, and that my career may be threatened if I do not. And most recently, I have listened to them. In no horn-tooting fashion do I say this, but I have gift. And it suffers every time I cocoon. Every time I go internal and hang out in dark places, I lose a bit of that gift. But I have been coming back strong and stronger each time. And with the examples given to me by Jim and Sam, I see that no malignancy, no bacterium is any match for the power of the human spirit. That sounds so terribly cliche, and I know that people die from cancer and infection, but for those who go down swinging, there is another who will fight on and show people like me what true strength really is.

Eric “Will” Williams

>Pavel is a fraud. Steve Cotter is a bitch for apologizing. What will the haters say next? That Will Williams is a teenage girl trapped in a man’s body? While that may be true, the Forum is no place for it. I come from the City of Haterly Hate. I know what it is like to Boo people. I haven’t watched more than 10 Flyers games this year out of sheer disgust. And now, I’m finding the DD Forum is place where the surly go to stir up trouble. Put the keyboard down, and slowly back away. And go lift weights, stretch, whatver.

Ok, I am psyched about Yoga. I took another class on wednesday eve, and I am way into it. During soem of the poses I could feel my body moving in directions that is has not in awhile. With ahistory of car accidents and neck problems, I NEED this type of stretching. I need to hold these poses for 60 seconds at a clip. I know that it will unwind my twisted and tight posterior chain and allow me to go where I have not gone in awhile. The windmill and bent press have been off limits for amost one full year now, and I can see them on the horizon. Most likely they are 3-6 months away, and I will have to start all over again with light weights and many days rest between, but that is OK. I have a lot of life left in my body and taking it slow is not a problem.

Thinking about putting a full on home gym in my garage. Treadmill, pin-selectorized machines, full cable station, lots of pretty equipment. yeah right. . .
What I want to do is rest my wrist, take soem yoga 2-3 times a week, and then have an O-Lift set in my garage by summer. Also, a flat bench would be nice. That is my new Pet Lift. Getting good at it too. Just widened out my grip by about 1.5 inches yesterday. I was pressing from a close grip, and started to creep my pinkies out towards the rings. Felt ok.

Alright, not the best post, but these thigns were on my mind. Oh yeah,if you are reading this and you have an Olympic Lifting set, let me know if I can get one for less than 1000.00 USD. I priced them online, and a bar/bumpers are not too expensive, but the platform is HUGE. I may just use the ol’ tires and plywood idea from BB.

Peace and Presses,