This past weekend I was out in the Bay Area visiting old friends, training a few people, workout out like crazy and enjoying the absolutely incredible California wilderness! here is a little rundown of the 5 days I spent out there:Showed up mid morning on Wednesday, grabbed some food with CrossFit San Mateo's owner and head coach Brendon Mahony, then stocked up on some food, Courage Bar ingredients and soon enough hit the gym for a good workout. Thursday and Friday were much of the same, with Lindsey getting in Friday, and one of the toughest workouts I have ever done crushing me so badly that I am still feeling the effects of it as I write this post today! It was a descending ladder of rope climbs and DB squat clean to thrusters, and that damn rope climb beat me down like nobody's business! I took my time on the climbs as I knew my technique was not spotless and I wanted to conserve the grip strength. But, no matter what the approach, by the third round my grip was so far gone, I basically had to take almost a full minute to recover between each one to be able to get back up. The crazy part of this whole thing was that I never had the ability to cardiovascularly recover. i think I was so worked up by the whole thing that my heart rate just never came down. 19 and a half minutes later I finally finished, and it took me close to three hours ot actually feel like i was somewhat normal again! And to top it all off, I ripped my ankle up so much I was having a tough time walking! The one positive takeaway from the workout was my 345# back squat for 13 resp, AWESOME!Anyways, Saturday morning brought even more fun. Core Foods owner Corey and his girl met up with me and Lindsey and we all got workouts in at the gym. Mine was a 5-workouts-within-one-hour mes that left me craving 10 pounds of meat and a 6-hour nap! But, we all geared up and drove down the Peninsula for a few hours of trekking though the woods! this turned out to be such a a blast. We explored the different paths, talked about all sorts of different things, interacted with a buck within 15 yards or so (so much fun to see wildlife that close up!) and stayed out there as the fog and darkness began to cover us completely.We then wandered back to our cars and drove down to Half Moon Bay to see if we could find some camping at the beach. Seeing how it was the famous Pumpkin Festival weekend, the known camp-site was totally booked up; but, with a couple phone calls we were directed a couple miles south to Cameron's Pub. This was one of those placers that causes sensory overload with the amount of crummy, hoarded items they keep hanging on walls and tucked into corners. The place was like a haunted museum of beer cans and tin signs; and in the back, a huge field set aside for RV's and campers to hang out for a night or two (or weeks or months as it seemed some were doing). We found our way to the very far end of the field, just outside a spooky abandoned greenhouse and set up shop. Corey got a great fire going and we enjoyed flank steak, asparagus and grilled bananas before catching a few eukaryote songs at the pub and then crashing for the remainder of the night.After meeting up up another friend Lisa (check out here awesome blog here) for breakfast, we connected with Justin Gubser and his buddies to hit the Pacifica surf for a couple hours. This was an all around blast! And the best part: our last wave had Lindsey and myself riding all the way to the beach, literally side by side, pretty freaking sweet! The cold water and the entertaining crashes and here-and-there wave catches worked our appetites up enough to feast at Guerrilla BBQ and it was off on our separate ways after that. Lindsey and I hot up our favorite burger joint, Roam Burger, in the city before catching our red eye back East. Man what a trip!I must admit, it'd been a real long while since I've been able to just spend some good quality time with a small group of awesome people, and while I was a little bummed out that the Into The Wild weekend didn't take off like I had planned, and that a few people never showed up for the weekend that had said they would, it turned out to be a weekend I will never forget. Sharing that deep connection to the great outdoors with Lindsey and another couple;e that clearly appreciated being out there just as much as me was so energizing. It inspired the need to do this sort of thing WAY more often! Oh, and yet again, surfing is one of the most fun things to do in the world! Yet another reason to head back out to our second home-town on a regular basis!Miss all my West Coaster already, but I'm excited to get back to training in The Garage with all my awesome athletes and friends here in the DC area! This is going to be a crazy brutal week of training for everyone, so let's all keep up the support and get after it!!Never Stop, GET FIT.Josh Courage
Alright everyone, The Courage Games returns for their third installment and this one is gearing up to be an absolute blast! Survival Fitness Challenge 2011Put your training to the test this coming August by joining CrossFitters (and other athletes alike) to get out of real-life emergency situations! While your typical CrossFit throwdown sees barbells, kettlebells, pull up bars, med balls and all that, The Courage Games keeps up it;s unique programming and goes even farther by putting all competitors into challenges that test their TRUE general physical preparedness.Cars, ropes, sandbags, hammers, trees, walls, buildings, rocks, hills, and so much more are all potential obstacles in this 4-workout competition. You can expect to move heavy things, prove your agility, coordination and overall cardiovascular and muscular endurance throughout the day. Then you can expect to feast on meat, veggies and drink to celebrate when all is over! So save the date and plan to meet us over at the Washington Waldorf School grounds, just across from The Courage Performance Garage to show that your training over the years is actually doing something for you!Here are all the details:When:Saturday, August 20th 2011. 9am start time. Be there at 8am to register PLEASE! Where:Washington Waldorf School4800 Sangamore Rd. Bethesda, MD 20816After Party at The Garage5000 Westpath Terrace, Bethesda, MD 20816 (right behind school)How Much:$25 for all competitorsWhat:Four workouts
. Base storylines for each workout will find their way out on the blog here around the end of July/early August, so those will offer some minimal hints, but, life isn't planned, so don't expect to know what's going to hit you until wham, it hits you:-)Notes:All competitors will get a little goodie bag, and awards will be given to 1st, 2nd and 3rd place finishers, male and female. There will be water and snacks and a few other things for sale there, but I highly recommend you bring your own stuff (food/drink/change of clothes etc). There is a shopping center about a quarter mile away with a CVS, Safeway, Starbucks and an awesome sandwich place. Heats and such will NOT be planned ahead, so if you end up leaving you'll run the risk of missing the start of a workout (again, it's pretty lenient, so we'll probably wait for you, but please try not to be "that guy" if you don;t bring enough stuff and have to go stock up...)Registration:This is the most informal of The Courage Games Series, so there is no official registration. If you want in, just email me HERE and/or head to our FACEBOOK PAGE and post that you are wanting to join in the fun! I am capping the whole thing at 50 competitors, so make sure you show up on time or a little early! After Party/Spectators:Please bring your friends! There is nothing like hanging out all day in the great outdoors being around people who are pushing their own physical and mental limits. And this particular even is going to be extra exciting (the workouts are going to be VERY unique)! Everyone will be invited to hang out afterwards at The Garage, to grill, eat, drink and chill by the pool. But, if you plan to join the party, you better bring something to share with everyone!Start getting amped up people!Never Stop, GET FIT.Josh Courage
Today I took a wonderful rest day. Got some Vitamin D by the pool while napping briefly and getting some good reading in, foam rolled like mad and analyzed the hell out of my nutrition program! I have so much I want to try out, I'll just have to start a nutrition To-Do list. The main thing Ive been doing more and more is charting everything. I mean EVERYTHING! It is an incredible experience to write down what's going on in your life in a very technical manner, it inspires so much more awareness of your lifestyle and I really believe it's a great way to take proper and logical steps to becoming a healthier person!
Tomorrow I'm back in The Garage for my second to last de-load workout, and I'll hit some light conditioning along with some skill work. Super excited for Sunday when I'll be headed up the greater North East to vacation with Lindsey! Lot's of relaxing, tanning, reading and working out; perfect.
Well, that's it for today, just a short little post. I have my second Courageous How-To coming up soon, so look for that tomorrow or Friday!
Never Stop, GET FIT.
Yesterday I rested. I stretched, I rolled, I cleaned up a good deal of the mess I made by moving back, AND, I set up my new bed! Ever since I've been back I've been having some seriously major issues with my low back. Very quickly I was able to find the cause of this, and it's my damn bed, it's too soft. So, I layered a comforter or two on the floor in the basement and that will be my bed from now until Lindsey moves to town and we can settle down! As strange as it may seem to some, the firmness of the floor is extremely comfortable to me, and I tend to sleep like a baby when I find my way down there. So, that took care of that issue.
A bit earlier in the day I noticed that the CrossFit Games Regionals workouts were announced, and what jumped out at me immediately was the handstand push ups and muscle ups mixed into the six workouts (I'll break them down and how they effect my training some time next week). So, when I brought a couple of my athletes out for an outdoor workout, I strung up the rings to get a handful of reps in. Felt...pretty good. But tt was today's insanity that really took me in the right direction (everything i did was geared towards Regionals prep, and the.
I woke up a little after sunrise and hit the pavement for an easy 5-mile run. Then, a little after 12 I got ready for the barbell work:
1xmax deadlift 315#
3x30 hollow rocks
3x10 seated DB strict press
3x5 controlled roll outs
3x10 weighted hip thrusts
I programmed thrusters to feel out the movement and chose 3RM to work on profficiency. I felt very comfortable at 195#, then at 215# I got all messed up with breathing and was only able to get 2 reps out of 3 attempts. All good though, I felt pretty strong. The craziest part of the workout was the max out a 315# on the deadlifts. My goal was 20 and I got it, with an epic battle between me and the final three reps! It was awesome! Then, a couple hours later Big Dan came over and we got after a seemingly decent metcon:
3 rounds (timed separately):
50 m shuttle run with tire
30 pull ups
60 double unders
20 OH squats 115#
I went first, then rested while he went and so on. This. Was. HARD. The tire running was just enough to get you breathing hard enough to make the pull ups that much more challenging. The double unders were exhausting, and the overhead squats at the end were the beautiful combination of muscularly crushing, and mentally, well, brutal! I was able to get 3:05, 3:55 and 4:00 respectively, Dan got 3:40, 4:24 and very low 5's (he was hypoglycemic going into this metcon, so I'm sure he was suffering a bit more than me throughout. Either way, this combo of movements, at those reps were just about the sneakiest I have come across and it was so much fun to run ourselves into the ground! Having Dan to work out with is such a privilege, and I plan to take advantage of it a lot before Regionals hits us in a couple weeks.
Tomorrow I am going to an Oly lifting class at Balance Gym, then back to The Garage for the Grand RE-Opening and a fun chipper before firing up the grill and having a feast!
Never Stop, GET FIT.
After a nice little 3-mile run early in the morning before the rain, I watched the movers pull in with all my stuff from California. With help from my good buddy Ori who came in for a little workout, then later with George, I cleared out all the old stuff and re-filled the Garage with all the equipment it could hold. In the end: the perfect 200 square foot gym!
I christened it with some pretty solid barbell work. Worked up to a comfortable 195# on the power cleans, then stuck with the same weight on the squat cleans to really pin down the form. My big focus was getting a smooth upwards pull and then really getting under the bar without letting it get away from me. It's still a little long, and it feel a little sloppy, but it's definitely better than before! The toes to bar at the end were great, just focused on getting the hips engaged and I felt very, very strong with them.
After an awesomely energetic crew of 6 athletes came in to break in the "shiny" re-done Garage, my good buddy Big Dan came over to get a metcon in. The goal was something in the 12-15 minute time domain, and it would have been if I had measured out our 400 meter run properly. It had been way too long since I was last using the area for measured running and I just threw out a guess, totally missed my mark and I would put our run at around 250 or so meters. Either way, it was a good one: 3 rounds of 10 box jumps at 24", 15 KB snatches with the right arm with 35#, then 10 more box jumps, then 10 KB snatches with the left arm, then run. To add to the challenge, we both threw on a 20# vest! The shorter run made this a sprint and I went at it unbroken throughout. Dan was just a hair behind me and I was able to separate myself just that much more when he pauses (ever so briefly to catch his balance) on maybe three box jumps throughout. I crossed the finish line is a gasping 8:42, Dan came in right behind me at 8:54 I think. I would have like a longer one, but all in all, it was a great workout, and having Dan there to push me a little harder was perfect. We hit up Chicken Out for a bit of a feast and then it was back home to relax and get some good sleep in before tomorrow!
Never Stop, GET FIT.