Well, I am officially two weeks into my pretty insane training program and am feeling very confident with it all. I have stuck with it all very well (except for a couple missed jiu-jitsu sessions) and I am feeling very strong. The only glitch in the system is trying to figure out the whole fueling process for the amount of work I am doing. The latest note in my workout/nutrition journal says that I am feeling a strong disconnect between my training and my fueling and I need to figure that all out somehow. Also, I am still struggling with the overwhelming desire to have a large handful of chocolate covered almonds every day. Couple that feeling with Lindsey and my move to an apartment complex literally attached to the new Whole Food in Friendship Heights and it's a perfect potential storm of quick visits for "just a taste". I'll have to get all that under control. Who wants to go on an all-out fitness/nutrition challenge with me?! Accountability is our friend...!
As for training, I am feeling AWESOME! Rudy's programming is fun, well-planned, and very, very challenging. My body feels abused, but not over trained and I am liking it a lot. I need to figure out the nutritional timing a bit though as I know if I keep up the pattern I am following I will begin to feel over-trained. This will be the perfect setting for Catalyst Athletics owner Greg Everett's wonderful quote: "there's no such thing as over training, only under fueling". I know that as a competitive CrossFitter, I need to be pushing my limits intelligently in the gym (and in the woods as it would be for me!). But, if I don't fuel perfectly for the insane amounts of demand I am putting on my physical and mental body, I am destined to crash! So, gotta get those things working in sync, stat!
That aside, I thought I'd share with you a few of the fun things I've done over the past week, as well as a little insight into what my week actually looks like. First off, I weight train on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. I go to Ashtanga Yoga on Tuesday and Thursday, I hit the pool for 30-45 minutes of what I call "pool play" every Thursday (I get about 500 meters in over that time, but spend most of it just goofing off in the water, doing flips, messing around with different strokes and just using it as active recovery, fun, and recognition of how to function under water). I do a 3-4 mile run generally twice a week, on no particular day, I just throw it in when I'm feeling ready to run. And becuase of how my body reacts to running, I view it as an active recovery method as well. Then, I off-and-on head to 1.5-2 hours of jiu-jitsu practice on Monday and Wednesday nights. It's a pretty good workload all around, but I feel really strong with it all so far!
As for the actual weight training I am doing, well, this is where it's been getting really fun! You can check out exactly what I'm doing if you head to The Workout page on this website, I write out the workout under my gyms workout, then I also fill in my results. I've been doing a ton of Olympic work, with some rally intense strength work mixed in as well. One of the biggest jumps i saw was doing max effort back squats with 325#. Two weeks ago I got 8 reps, last week I banged out 12 with energy to spare! The MetCons have been pretty crazy for sure. Very well-planned for the work that is prescribed each day, and it has never failed, i have been crushed cardiovascularly each and every time So far I think doing 3 rounds of 20 pull ups, 20 30" box jumps and 20 burpees all with a 20# weight vest was the most exhausting. And this past Saturday I had one that crushed my central nervous system like nothing I have ever experienced. I literally blacked out 3 times while trying to do 25 snatches at 155#. And this was the last portion of an already insane MetCon that included 25 thursters at 155#, 50 chest to bar pull ups, 75 KB swings at 53#, 100 feet of handstand walking, 75 jumping lunges and 50 pull ups! Goodness! I would never ask that of my athletes as i am sure it would kill most people. But, as a competitor, I understand the need to be over-challenged every now and again. Sometimes it's all about testing your mental fortitude!.
Needless to say, training has been going pretty well all around, and this week looks to be just as fun! Now if only this gym space I've been trying to get can get rolling, things will become a whole lot better! I hope everyone else is having success with training!
Never Stop, GET FIT.
For everyone looking for the review post on this past weekends Courage Games, it is coming. I am gathering up and looking though pictures and videos and want to try to get something good up either tonight or tomorrow. So you can expect it soon!
I also have a small list of articles I want to put up inspired by the competition, so you can expect a few of those in the coming weeks. But, in the mean time, want to get back to some regular posts. Yesterday I was back in the gym to get into some serious training for the Sectionals that are approaching quickly! I had been so eager to throw some weights around after a full 4 days of "rest" thanks to planning this event. So, I wanted to get back after it in a big way.
5, 5, 3, 3, 3 front squats
4 rounds for time of (w/ 20# weight vest):
200 meter run
10 GHD sit ups
20 double unders
15 OH squats 95#
10 pull ups
The front squats felt great and I was bale to get a pretty good final round at 295#. I need to work on opening up my lats, shoulders and wrists if i want to get to where I think I should be. My strength feels like I could get up around the 350# range, but my lack of mobility leads to a less stable lift and I struggle at sub-max weight. I was happy with that 3RM though, it is a PR for me after all! The metcon was a blast. It felt like a sprint because you never really spend very much time at any of the exercises, but because it's a lot of them, and the weight vest had be going a tad slower, it ended up taking 12:53. I do think this is a sub-10 minute one though. My double unders were rusty and each piece of equipment was spread out around the gym making my transition a little slower. It was great to just go for an extended amount of time though, really felt good.
Today calls for some skills work and some good conditioning and then back to the weights tomorrow! I am so excited to gt back on a solid routine.
A couple other things to mention: I'll be in the DC area this coming weekend, scouting out neighborhoods with Lindsey for us to move to, looking around at gym locations and such. And, depending on how things pan out I am looking into getting into the DC's Most Primal Competition at Primal Fitness. If I have the ability to do so (allowed to register and can rearrange flights) I'll be looking to best my last years 2nd place finish! The following weekend is a competition out in Elk Grove I am considering. I really feel like I have missed out in terms of getting in some good competitions, so I want to find a couple of them before the Games season starts up in less than a month!
Never Stop, GET FIT.
Mixed into an incredibly stressful day I was able to get a really great couple sessions in. The reality of this competition has set in full force and this being my third event that I've hosted in the past couple years I have come to the conclusion that I need way more people on board to help out. Lindsey does her fair share of work for sure, but on the whole, this entire competition has been organized by me alone. I have no clue why I put that much pressure on myself, but at this point I am pretty confident that it will go very smoothly! But I digress; let's talk about some workout!
Before my kids class came in I was able to get 4 rounds of 10 butterfly kips, 10 pistol squats and 10 shoulder taps. I really wanted to work on smoothing out my butterfly form to make a bit more efficient, and what I realized was that if I just took my time on the first round, the rest felt really good. The pistols felt slow out of the whole, but smoother as well. And the shoulder taps (it's where you get in a handstand and touch each shoulder) felt very strong for the first time in my life. So strong in fact that I was able to hold on one arm for a few seconds each tap without losing stability.
I messed around on the pull up bars a bit just doing some monkey climbs and pull overs and whatnot, it was fun. After the Kids class and another class I jumped in for a few rounds of 3 hang power cleans, weighted pull ups and 1-arm strict presses. I cleaned up 250# with relative ease and was very hapy with that. Then was able to get 5 reps on the pull up bar with a 60# DB pretty easily, and a solid round of 5 reps with 70# on the shoulder press. Feeling stronger all around. Then came the metcon!
3 rounds of:
300 meter row
30 GHD sit ups
5 front flips
3 handstand push ups
I finished this off in 13:17 and felt like it probably should have been more around 10. The GHD's got me real bad. I realized this morning that it's been a long while since I last got them and I wanted to program them in to something fun. So, adding a quick row, some sweet front flips and the HSPU's after a good deal of shoulder work was good. I felt like I had a great day in the gym, and that energy has spilled over in to getting things taken care of for this event! Time to get to work baby!
Never Stop, GET FIT.
Today ended up being a pretty chill day physically, but mentally it beat me to the ground. I just spent so much time worrying about all the crap I have to do in preparation for moving back East. Sure, sure, I just got myself caught up in a bit of a self-pity trap, but I'll tell you what, I got trapped in there real good!Back out of it now, and amped for a good couple workouts tomorrow!Yesterdays workouts began in the morning with a good 30 minutes of tumbling and other "body awareness" work. I put together a little course where I would do 5 back to back forward rolls, right to a box jump, then directly to the pull up bar where i would get a pull over. So much fun! And what was cool was after 5 rounds of that I could bang out an easy 6+ feet of handstand walking AND string together about 6 very slow and controlled cartwheels from both sides. So cool. Barbell work later on involved a frustrating bunch of jerk misses at 235# (yep, that 30# off what I normally jerk...), cleans felt pretty good at that weight. But in the end I was ok with the jerks as I know I have some work to make up for from last months craziness. I'll be back on my technique very quickly. I then hit 4 rounds of 3 front squats getting up to 275#. I struggled on rep two, just rushed it a little, but got a very solid and comfortable 3rd rep. I then hit this beast of a metcon:4 rounds of:3 jerks 185#50 double unders15 burpeesThis will hit you hard at the 3rd round. I got it unbroken until the final set here i didn't lock out quick enough and ad to dump the 3rd rep. That wasted a LOT of time and I rolled in at 7:28, a time I am pretty happy with. I ended up taking today off thanks to my super low energy, and I am on tomorrow with a bunch of ring work, planche work and lever work in the am. Later on I'll hit the barbells with snatches, split squats, weighted verticals and a very short metcon.Lot's of great things happening for the Courage Games coming up in about a week and a half! We have confirmed so much, yet there is so much still to do! If there is anybody interested in volunteering, we need help! Judges, event staff, so on, so forth, please email me asap if you are willing!Never Stop, GET FIT.Josh Courage
Had a good bit more progress today on the platform and am happy with how things are rolling along. With an insane week staring me in the face, I got myself prepped for some snatch work, snatch pulls, 5x5 back squats and a pretty tiring looking metcon. With the snatches, I was still struggling with my typical issues of spreading the feet wide on the catch, and having my knees shift forward at the bottom of the squat. But, I was getting under the bar quickly and sticking the weight over my head very well. I generally fall forward with the oly lifts, but today I was sitting back and was able to get 175# with hardly any issues at all. For my second session of serious snatching, I am very happy to know that I am WAY further along then I thought I would be. With my goal of 210# loomng all the way in March, I am feeling confident I can blow that number out of the water.
The snatch pulls felt strong, just tried to stay quick and solid throughout, worked up to 235#. Then, I went on an increasing set of 5x5 on the squats, working up to 305# and getting those last five with ease. Very happy with the depth and control of all those.
Finally, after a few minute break I hit the metcon (I noticed a typo of 4 rounds on "My Workout" over there to the right of the blog, that would have been brutal!). 3 rounds of: 400 meter sprint, 30 GHD sit ups, 20 KB swings (44#) and 12 pull ups. This was not overly demanding at all, and I was able to get everything unbroken. It was just tiring, the hips were pretty fatigued from the days session. I finished up at 11:23 and feel like that is a decent time. I am sure a sub-10 is possible with this one, just didn't have the amount of intensity in me I guess.
I realized that I sometimes struggle, without even noticing it as I train, with not having someone to compete against. Doing benchmark workouts is one way to go about making sure I am going at proper intensity, besides that, all I can do is go all out every time. I figure that at this point, I should know what a workout should feel like afterward, and if I don;t feel that way, I didn't go heavy or fast enough. Simple as that!
Check out the video from Saturday's Strong Man fun!
Have a double-whammy ready tomorrow, should be a good one!
Never Stop, GET FIT.