Tag Archives: ptdice

Training Randomness in Martial Arts

Over the years I’ve talked a deal about the importance of introducing randomness into martial arts training.  Although some things seem to mesh better with linear progression training, like lifting weights (for me at least), introducing some randomness into training has real benefits.

One of the benefits you get from introducing randomness in your martial arts training is the ability to deal with the unexpected.  Chaos is really annoying.  But its real and you to learn to handle it.

Here’s an overview of what is and is not random in my training regimen these days.


Solo martial arts practice (four days/week).  I select random martial arts focuses by pulling labeled Popsicle sticks out of a pile.  Why not roll dice?  I want some randomness, but I need to cover all bases.  This method insures that, assuming I get through all the sticks in two weeks, I never get rusty at anything.

Running (twice per week).  I roll dice using the following program.  I have no idea if I’m running 3 miles for pace, half a mile as fast as I can, shuttle runs with a weighted vest, or what-have-you.

Extra calisthenics (whenever I feel like it).  I use PTDICE.  I have a few sets left.  Email me and I’ll sell you a set for $15 postage paid.

Not Random

Group martial arts training.  We stick with one  martial concentration and one constitutional (a 7 exercise deep calisthenics routine) for a full month before switching.

Weights (twice per week).  Still, I rotate out all exercises every 6 weeks.  Here’s some info about LPs.

Grip training (5 days/week).  Heath/maintenance 3 days/week,  pushing limits 2 days/week.  I’ve written a lot about this over the years, but recently I’m getting better results more safely.  More to come soon.

Pot Luck: My Psychic Watch, Social Trees and WODs

Today’s post is a peculiar little potluck of nubbin ends.

Yesterday morning I got out my father’s watch and it gave me goosebumps.  Once a month or so I get out his watch and wear it when I want to look nice.  To my surprise, the watch had stopped at 5:05 AM.  This is the exact time that nurses went to check on my mother and found her to be deceased.   See photo set above.  You will see a photo of the watch and a screenshot of the bounced call where the nursing home tried to reach me a half hour later.  I don’t know what to say, so I’m moving on.

Tree Sketch '96

I sketched this tree on a lunch break back in 1996. Pentel Superball black ink on copy paper.

Also yesterday morning,  I read an article about Peter Wohlleben and his book The Hidden Life of Trees.  According the article,

“[T]rees in the forest are social beings. They can count, learn and remember; nurse sick neighbors; warn each other of danger by sending electrical signals across a fungal network known as the “Wood Wide Web”; and, for reasons unknown, keep the ancient stumps of long-felled companions alive for centuries by feeding them a sugar solution through their roots.”

 Amazing!  Said it before and I’ll say it again: trees are people too, treants are real, Druids had it right, and people who cut down trees because they don’t want to rake leaves should be pummeled about the head and shoulders with the handles of their axes.

Very very early yesterday morning I had a delightful workout.  Note:  Just because you don’t see a WOD post on this blog doesn’t mean I didn’t work out and/or that you can’t see what I’ve been doing.  My productivity log, which contains all my workouts, is a public Google Doc you can see here.


I use PTDICE for workout inspiration and I take a picture of my dice to help me remember what I did. Just in case I forget before I get a chance to update my log.

Yesterday’s Cabal Fang WOD:¹

  • PTDICE² w/ #20 chain.  AMSAYC in 10 mins of 8 Full Stop Push-ups and 16 Squats (I finished 8 sets) with a 20 lb chain draped around your neck. Calisthenics are the shit.³
  • All-in Heavy Bag Drill.  Place one heavy bag on floor about 2 meters or 6 feet from a second, standing or hanging heavy bag.  Set timer for 8 x 2:00/1:00.  Start timer.  AMSAYC  of 10 max power shots to standing bag, 10 shots to floor bag from mount, lock and roll to bottom position, 10 more shots. Repeat until timer beeps.  Rest 1:00.  Do that 7 more times for a 23-minute sweat extravaganza (24 minutes if you count the final 1:00 rest, but why would you, because the workout is over at the end of Round 8, now isn’t it?)


  1. Cabal Fang is the martial art I founded in 2009 (check it out!) and “WOD” stands for “workout of the day.”
  2. PTDICE are for sale here.  Go get yourself some.
  3. If you like calisthenics, you might enjoy my Calisthenics eBook, The Calisthenics Codex (download it here in any format you like).  By the way,  it’s the #2 calisthenics eBook on Barnes & Noble.

Today’s WOD, and What About Yesterday?

How do you put a million random workouts in the palm of your hand?  You buy these little beauties from PTDICE.com.

How do you put a million random workouts in the palm of your hand? You buy these little beauties from PTDICE.com.

I’m flummoxed as to why there hasn’t been one single read on yesterday’s post, which was pretty darned cool.   Seriously?  Go get some!

And now for today’s workout.  Pardon me, but I’m on kind of a kick right now.  A kick kick.  Enjoy.

Kicks: 7 x 3:00/1:00 of two-kick combos vs. heavy bag with perfect form. Here are some suggestions (make sure you add appropriate punches to keep your body mechanics honest, and keep your hands up):

  1. Lead leg mid-section Side Kick, lead leg high-section Stamping Kick
  2. Rear leg low Roundhouse, sidestep, lead leg low Roundhouse
  3. Lead leg low Stamp Kick, rear leg high-section Stamping Kick
  4. Lead leg mid-section Side Kick, rear leg spinning Wheel Kick
  5. Lead leg low Roundhouse, lead leg high Crescent Kick
  6. Lead leg high Roundhouse, rear leg Back Kick
  7. Rear leg high Roundhouse, step out, lead leg high Hook Kick

Physical Training (I used PTDICE to create this one): Full pyramid to 9 of Diamond Push-ups, Pikes, and Side Lunges.

A Important Note Concerning Cabal Fang WODs


This was one of the easy #CABALFANG #WOD workouts. Some of them are way harder.

I just want to make it clear that the Cabal Fang WODs (“workouts of the day”) are meant to balance and supplement — not replace — regular martial and/or fitness practice.*

The purpose of the Cabal Fang WODs is to provide martial artists with supplemental solo workouts that broaden martial horizons, promote functional fitness, and break up the monotony.

This is why Cabal Fang WODs contain meditation exercises, non self-defense oriented martial arts drills and exercises, running, biking, walking, hiking, eccentric weight exercises, traditional weightlifting routines, jumping rope, and so on.  This is also why they are sometimes really easy, other times really hard, and everything in between.

They’re also handy for:

  • folks who want to study Cabal Fang but aren’t near any other Cabal Fang clubs (we call them “Orders”)
  • people who would like to study martial arts but can’t afford to traditional classes
  • workout nuts who aren’t martial artists but want to spice things up and add some martial flavor
  • for martial arts instructors looking for class ideas
  • and so on.

You will also notice that many of these workouts feature PTDICE, which can purchase here.

I now return you to your regularly scheduled program already in progress…


*If you are a student of Cabal Fang (or any other martial art for that matter) you should be working out with your group 2 or 3 times per week for about 90 minutes, of which approximately 50 minutes should be spent on practical, self-defense-oriented martial training and another 20 on a intense calisthenics (a “Constitutional” in Cabal Fang terminology).  The other 20 are for warm-up, cool-down, and stretch.



If you like the workouts I post on this blog you'll probably like the products I sell at PTDICE.COM. Check out the site. It doesn't suck at all.

DUMBBELLS  (6 sets of 12, start at #5, work up to failure, of Bent Row, Two-Handed Squat Press, Rear Lunge, Curl-ups.)

The absolute coolest ever stocking-stuffer

How do you put a million random workouts in the palm of your hand?  You buy these little beauties from PTDICE.com.

How do you put a million random workouts in the palm of your hand? You buy these little beauties from PTDICE.com.

The absolute coolest ever #stockingstuffer for #fitness nuts. And it’s on sale! http://ow.ly/Gb4SL

ZINEFEST SALE — 25% off!


Books and stuff are on sale at PTDICE.com

In honor of RVA Zinefest — at which I’m tabling today — here’s a coupon for 25% off at my web shop over at PTDICE.com.  You’ll find all kinds of ‘zines (a.k.a. booklets), books, t-shirts, punk patches, and of course PTDICE (the most amazing and nerdy fitness tool on the market).

Enter coupon code BP88G at checkout for 25% off.


Zines for Sale!

spvol3The revamp of PTDICE.COM is finally done, and all of the new ‘zines are up for sale.  Now you don’t have to wait for RVA Zinefest to get copies of the Secret Pyramid Series:

Alive! 50 Ways to Avoid Danger and Defend Yourself
Secret Pyramid Series, Vol. 1.

Everybody should know that you can’t learn physical self-defense skills — actual fighting skills — by reading a book.  But everybody should also know that self-defense is 90% prevention, and that’s where this booklet really shines.  Learn specific skills, drills, and prevention strategies, including defense against dogs, how to navigate hostile crowds, and much more!  16 pages, 3,200 words.

Shake it Up! 50 Ways to Break Routines, Shake Things Up, and Foster Creativity
Secret Pyramid Series, Vol. 2:

Stagnation is everybody’s enemy, doesn’t matter if you are an artist, entrepreneur, anarchist, manual laborer, or cubicle monkey.  This little booklet, though short, gives you tons of bang for your buck — break the spine of stagnation and climb out of your rut!  10 pages, 2,000 words.

Lead! How to Motivate, Inspire, and Manage Groups
Secret Pyramid Series, Vol. 3

I’ve been managing, leading, and organizing groups for 30 years, and I’ve distilled everything I’ve learned — everything that really works! — into this little booklet.  Of all the non-fiction pieces I’ve written, this one is the best value for the price.  If you’re not a better leader by reading this booklet I’ll eat my hat (and not one of my tasty wool ones, one of my polyester trucker hats).  32 pages, 7,500 words.

CUT! How to Lose Weight and Get the Muscle Definition You Always Wanted
Secret Pyramid Series Vol. 4

Don’t let the kitschy cover fool you — this is a real program with proven results.  Take it from a guy who used to be 80 pounds overweight: you really can get the weight off, and sport the muscle definition you always wanted, without expensive gym memberships, pricey equipment, mail order food, or insane workouts!

Shameless Panhandler

If you like what you read here on this blog, you should maybe look at some of the books and other stuff that I sell.  Seems to me that you might like them.  Plus, my merch isn’t expensive, and the quality is good too.

  • You can check out my eBooks at Smashwords or Barnes & Noble.  I’ve got fiction and non-fiction.  The 14th Mansion is my best novel yet.  Kinda proud of it.
  • If you dig martial arts and you like actual paper books, dodge over here and get a Cabal Fang Bundle for just $6.99.
  • I have t-shirts for sale, featuring artwork by yours truly.
  • And for workout nuts, I sell PTDICE — the coolest ever tool for creating random workouts.

Also, I’m a nice guy.  So it’s okay to give me your money in exchange for my fine wares.

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How to use PTDICE to create HICT and HIIT Workouts

How to use PTDICE to create HICT and HIIT Workouts:  http://ow.ly/warBb