This place was pretty well hidden. But it was just off the 101 and in the dark of the evening, driving through the warehouses; it was pretty easy to spot it. The single light shining out along the parking lights, music creeping out over the neighborhood, and the distant sight of rings hanging inside the roll-up door. I made my way on over and strolled in. Saul the owner, along with coaches Jason and Brandon welcomed me immediately and it was not hard to feel at home in their space. And speaking of that space, wow.
The main floor was a bit larger than average CrossFit style warehouse, with bars, plates, DB’s, KB’s, Rowers and more organized very well throughout. I think the two things that stood out to me most was how much stuff they had yet how in-order everything was, and the massive open space right when you walk in with all the rings dangling down. So let me explain this a little better. They have two floors here, and the top floor overlooks the bottom creating this squared off balcony. Upstairs looks like a good studio space, some more equipment, low ceilings, a heavy bag, bathrooms and storage. But with that empty area that looks down to the man floor, you get these incredibly high ceilings. They have about 10 or so pairs of rings hanging from there and it has such an awesome effect when you walk in. They also have a pull ups bar wrapped completely around the open space as well, and well, I love cool pull ups bars/rigs.
I wandered around for a little and was getting prepared to jump into the 7pm class with a few people, but Jason (not only a coach, but a Games competitor hopeful like myself) asked if I wanted to join him with his. He, along with a decent group of people have been getting their programming from the well-known Freddy Comacho over at One World Self Defense and it has been gearing them up for the competition season. Todays workout was an interesting one, but in the end I was able to see the purpose of it and really liked it a lot (even though I DNF’d the metcon…)
Power cleans at 50%, 55%, 60% of 1 rep max
12x2, 12x2, 10x2
10 minute row:
:45 below 20 strokes/minute, :15 hard as hell!
Rest 10 minutes
6 rounds for time of:
5 muscle ups
5 handstand push ups
200 meter run
So a couple things here: that’s 68 power cleans. That’s a lot of reps. But it was very light weight, I was doing 60, 65 and 70 kilos and just focusing on getting perfect form each rep, staying quick and getting my elbows out as fast as possible. Not to get into programming like crazy here, but you can see how a combination of 10-minute intervals on the rower and 68 power cleans, the arms would be relatively fatigued. Not beat up, just tired from so much volume. The metcon I knew would be hard. I suck at both movements, and given the upper body fatigue, I knew I would hit a wall fast. And I did. I got two full rounds in as Jason was getting into his 5th round and I was not able to get all HSPU’s on my third round. I ended up switching to negatives on that movement and just doing 3 muscle ups. Then, I finished after 5 rounds because I had been “banging my head against the wall” for around 20 minutes and it just became pointless. I really want to go into this, but I’ll save that for after this month.
Mad Dawg Fitness seems like it would be a pretty hardcore place at first glance. The name starts it off, and then the impressive collection of equipment and size of the space add to it a good deal. But Saul has a very different perspective on how things are run there and you can do nothing but respect is approach. His focus is not on becoming the fittest person you can be; it is on becoming the healthiest. So often you see a focus of CrossFitters and coaches aspiring to be the fittest on earth (or at least the fittest they have ever been…!) and sometimes, this almost one-track-mind drive leads to a creation of imbalances. Saul understands that proper mobility and weakness work will inevitably lead to a better life, and really makes a point to focus on this side of the training. This is something I feel can be neglected in the excitement of exciting and overly intense “CrossFit WOD’s”. Mad Dawg has a very healthy approach, a very simple approach, and clearly, a very effective approach.
335 Convention Way, Suite D 1/2
Redwood City, CA 94063
Got a pretty busy couple weeks coming up, and new programs are starting up with me finally getting to coach and train people!
Oh, and please continue to spread the word on this awesome competition coming up on Saturday, February 19th! It’s going to be an epic day!
Never Stop, GET FIT.