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Archive for June, 2007

*** NOTE *** I made a mistake. The date of the tournament is July, 21, not June… DOH!!! 

FYI,

the NAGA (North American Grappling Association) is having its 8th Anual Florida Grappling Championship this Saturday, 6/21 in Parkland (north Broward), FL (full PDF brochure here.)

Among new things are a doubling of children division, separated by weight category, boys and girls separated.  If you believe/support children competing in sports in general, and martial arts in particular, this is a great event to check.

Location:
Marjory Stoneman Douglas HS.
5901 Pine Island Rd, Parkland FL 33076

Schedule:
8:00AM EST – Open Doors and Weight ins
10:30AM EST – All kids and teen divisions
12 noon – Adult novice and beginner, adult advanced and intermediate (no-gi divisions)
Mid-Late afternoon – Adult white, blue, purple, brown and black belts, gi.

Just to peek your curiosity and interest, these are two videos I took at he last NAGA 2006 (You can see all of them here.)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DOHLIIRXD3g 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AK8wMH50l2I 

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God, I hate making appointments with doctors. I’m trying to make an appo with my PCP to check my elbows, and the earliest time possible is next Friday, more than a week from now. I hate that crap – I may as well walk-in and bite the bullet that is to wait for several hours. Oh well.

Speaking of elbows, or more precise, articulations in general, the devil is in the details. It is amazing how much of a difference it makes when you make adjustments to a workout (or choose a different variation.) More precisely, I’m talking about bench presses.

For the longest time I’ve been doing the standard bodybuilder-type bench press (elbows flaring, wide grip), and for the longest time I’ve been (unknowingly until recently) massacring my poor shoulders.

It sucks to have no formal PT education and rely strictly on craptacular articles from Iron Man magazines.

Anyways, I never had a problem until about 4-5 years ago. I hit a plateau. Couldn’t push anything heavier anymore. And then… kaput.  Shoulder pain. The pain, man, the pain. I would stop bench pressing for a while, then resume and then be forced to give up.

Little by little, my max lift was getting smaller and smaller. Once more I tried to build up my bench press (about 2 months I tried a 5×5 program), but my shoulders wouldn’t have any of it. And that made me go like :-< 

I did take this setback as an opportunity to explore other exercises, mostly dips and variations of push ups, but still, I craved for the bench press, just like one craves a greasy, fat breakfast at IHOP after a night of dancing.

Very recently, while grassing posts on www.bullshido.net, I became acquainted with what’s called the powerlifters version of bench pressing. Elbows tucked in, shoulder-width grip, bar lowered to the lower chest. I did them… and I saw the light.

That small variation in arm/shoulder placement (and the ability to recruit the Erector Spinae and Gluteus Maximus as stabilizers) have been a bliss to my shoulders. After four weeks of doing them, my shoulders are free of pain, healthier than ever. And what’s more important, my 1RM has increased by 11%.

First time in more than 5 years that I’m able to break my plateau. First time in more than 5 years that my shoulders don’t bitch. Too bad that it’s until now, after so many years, that I’m getting acquainted with subtle differences between the run-of-the-mill lifts you see advocated in bodybuilding magazines and what constitutes proper lifting technique.

Oh well, better late than never.

As for my elbows, I’m not gonna wait for the #@! appointment. I’ll just walk in, even if it takes me half a day to get this crap checked. One week and a half left before I go back to train jits, and I don’t want to go back without knowing well what’s causing this chronic elbow pain.

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What the fuck? What the fuck? What the fuck?

Fuck, fuck, fuck!!!!! Sorry for my vernacular, but man!!!!

It’s been almost three months, two days short of three fucking months since the doc pulled the gauze from the drained staph pit, and I thought it would be fully healed by now. But this last Sunday my g/f noticed it was still pretty visible. I dismissed her remarks thinking it looked like that because of the scarification process. But on Tuesday night, I noticed it felt a bit painful to the touch, and a bit bulky.

On Wednesday morning, as I’m taking my shower and scrubbing the area, I noticed blood coming out. So I come out of the shower, dry myself and looked at the thing. The scrubbing made it pop. And clear liquid was coming out, lymphatic liquid and blood to be precise.

So I soaked the area with iodine, squeezed it to get the liquid out, let it dry, add more iodine and put a bandage on it. This morning it’s very flat, but I squeezed it once again just to be sure. Very little liquid came, but something came out, don’t know if it was pus or sebum. I applied more iodine and I changed the bandage.

I’m not concerned for any infections. I’m over this shit around the clock with iodine. But it pisses me off that this fucking wound is still not fully closed. I mean, how long is this shit gonna take to fully heal??????

The hole is much, much smaller than the original cut, but it’s bigger than the hole produced by a syringue. Pics are below.

I’m so fucking pissed.

This is the stupid hole, still oozing a bit.

Once the oozing stopped, and before I applied more iodine, you could see the hole better.

This gives me a new respect to staph. Apparently it damages a lot of tissue, unlike a cut. I’ve had work-related gashing wounds, bigger than this. And none of them took more than a month to fully heal.

I have four more weeks before I go back to training. That’s the deadline I put on myself. If I have to put a roll of duct tape on my leg so that I can train, that’s what I will do.

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