The past two days have been filled with some awesome workouts! Let's go ahead and start with yesterday. I worked off the scheduled workout for my powerlifting class, establish a 3RM for the strict press, then there was a little unilateral work and some core work on the TRX. I was able to get a solid 160# for 3 on the press, then failed to get all three reps at 165# on to attempts. Felt pretty good with that mostly because I felt my form stayed very solid. The unilateral work included a lunge to a 1-arm overhead press, and a 1-leg RDL while reaching to a target. Basic work but the type I think is very important to work on every now and then. The TRX circuit was tough as always, but felt so good to get all those core muscles engaged.
Later in the day I hit 5 rounds of 2 muscle ups to a modified planche hold for 5 seconds, just working on controlling the body a bit more. After that I messed around with handstands for a good ten minutes or so. It's really fun messing around with this stuff, but I think I enjoy it more when I have a training partner or a group of people. There's nothing like hanging around the gym with a group of people trying out new things and challenging each other to different body-weight feats. It's fun and very beneficial to work on this stuff, but I always feel like I get so much more out of it when I'm with a group.
Finally, in the evening, I joined up with the CrossFit San Mateo crew at the track and we all hit a 2-mile indian run. Following that we all get 5x100 meters. Brutal little burn-out, but really invigorating. I got :12.6, ?, :13.1, :13.4, :13.0. I am enjoying this added track work and I think it's been helping me out a good deal in all aspects of my training.
Today I had the gym to myself, the weather was great, I cranked up the music and went after a 1RM clean and 1RM jerk. I comfortably got 265#, like super solid, smooth and clean. I moved up to 275# and my damn wrist kept slipping out as I tried to stand with the weight. I was so easy under the bar, just need to clean up the technique in the rack position. With the jerks I got 255# no problem and then missed three attempts at 265# thanks to technique yet again. I locked it out with ease, just couldn't keep it up there as I began to settle with it. Very happy with the progress, but am very aware of my need of some good coaching.
A couple hours after that I hit the main site workout from yesterday. 12 minute AMRAP of 3 bench press at 185# and 5 back squat at 225#. Now this is my sort of workout! I had a goal in mind of 15+ and just found a rhythm and tried to stick with it. I think I could have cut my transition time a little, but in the end I felt good with my 16+4 score. Thanks to the cleans, with those 91 squats, my back tightened up like crazy. So, a good recovery day is in order for tomorrow!! Looking forward to it.
Never Stop, GET FIT.
Today marks the one-week-from-the-official--start-of-the-CrossFit-Games-season (yeah, a bit of a mouthful there) and it looks awesome. It's pretty clear that the excitement is brewing, not only in the little community I am involved with, but on a damn global scale! In well under 24 hours, the CrossFit Games Facebook page announced that over 1300 athletes and 400 affiliates were registered. That's insane! I am predicting over 100,000 total registrants by the time the first workout is announced next week. We'll see what happens!
Now how about this crazy new format they are trying out this year? Well, if you take an hour or so and search back to when they first announced the concept, it looked like they had just confessed to killing a big group of kittens or something. The vocal community let loose a whole landslide of complaints, it was actually pretty entertaining to read through (I highly recommended it if you have some spare time and enjoy reading people banter like crazy).
As more and more information began to SLOWLY leak out, it seemed like the negative comments got fewer and fewer. And as of today, with the unavailing of the new website and the crazy "step-up'ing" of CrossFit affiliates to host these things, people attitudes have taken a huge change for the better. Here's what I have to say on all this:
CrossFit was started as an open-forum business, meant to allow people the freedom to approach the community however they see fit as long as they don't tarnish the name. Yes they can be a little unconventional at times, sure they can even be controversial (those recent partially nude photos they've been posting up on the main site). Their leadership tends to be abrasive, profane, unprofessional and seemingly unorganized but in the end, they get the job done, very well. They have put together a company that does exactly what they had in mind: allow people to get more fit and healthy then ever before, and allow the freedom for people to use their ideas and theories as a base and the form their own, individual companies however they see fit. They have done all this while not straying one inch from their ideals and I can do nothing but respect the hell out of that.
I think what people should take the time to do is think about the amount of times CrossFit has actually let the community down. With the insanely rapid level of growth the community has seen over the past couple years, they have successfully shifted just enough to allow things to stay smooth. And this years CrossFit Games changes are no different. From the looks of it, they have predicted the communities ability to band together and offer a competitive forum for athletes, and there is still the opportunity for anyone in the world with a camera, computer and little time to submit their scores. Sure there are a few things that aren't perfect, but geeze, with so many people involved, you have to admit that they are doing a damn good job. SO, mad props to the CrossFit powers that may be for yet again stepping up to the challenge and offering the world something groundbreakingly awesome. I personally am so excited to get these workouts, work my ass off, compare myself to the world, and, to host the weekly Sectionals as well! To all you out there competing, good luck, have fun, and tear it up. And oh yeah, even if you have negative views on the creators of the community we are all a part of, take a second to thank them for getting all this craziness started.
Be sure to check the Courage Performance and CrossFit San Mateo hosting of the Open Sectionals!
Never Stop, GET FIT.
Well, my frustration hit a tipping point when I failed to put enough thought into my last post and wrote it directy into the blog page rather than Word. Yep, as you can figure, the one time I do that in the last two months the whole damn thing gets lost. Bummer.
So, now that that's lost, I'll postpone my next insightful post till tomorrow when I am a bit more chill towards writing. This post will be a bit about my workouts this week. Today I had some solid barbell work with power snatches and deadlifts. I pulled up 160# with relative ease, then just got stuck with 185#. I wanted so badly to just squat under it but I needed to struggle through the mechanics of this move and allow my legs to learn how to take control. In the end, I missed 6 attempts despite getting the weight well over my head. I finished with 5 smooth reps at 135#. I then moved on to deadlifts and was able to get 425# for 3 pretty comfortably. I am sure I would have broken my form unnecessarily if I went heavier. I then stretched a little and prepared for my group coming in.
I opted out of a metcon in the evening as my energy levels were real low and I am planning on a fun day tomorrow. Some gymnastics work in the morning for a solid 30 minutes along with some unilateral, core stabilization. Then, after a baseball game in Half Moon Bay I will be at the track!
The rest of the week has me cleaning, jerking, front squatting and conditioning on Wednesday; swim workout on Thursday; snatch balance, max verticals and a super heavy metcon Friday. Looking forward to it all!
Never Stop, GET FIT.
This years CrossFit Games season is officially upon us with the start of the new format Sectionals a week and a day away! Affiliates around the globe are preparing to open up their doors to allow competitors the ability to compete with fellow athletes as they try their hand at the weekly workouts given by CrossFit HQ.
Courage Performance once again has partnered with CrossFit San Mateo to offer an official location for athletes to compete. Below you will find the details of this unique and exciting six-week event!
CrossFit San Mateo
Every Saturday at 10:30am heats will begin. Depending on the amount of registered athletes, heats will run up to five at a time, and will continue to run until all athletes have completed the WOD.
Event 1 - March 19
Event 2 - March 26
Event 3 - April 2
Event 4 - April 9
Event 5 - April 16
Event 6 - April 23
Anyone who wants to come out and compete against fellow athletes for their chance to make Regionals. Also, anyone who wants to come out and just compete! Even if you've already done the WOD, come out and give it a second try!
To register yourself for event you MUST submit your first AND last name to the comments section of this blog by Friday night. If your name is not posted you will not be allowed to compete Saturday morning. If you and a group of people want to register, feel free to post up all the names of the people coming in, just make sure to post first AND last names.
You will be required to pay $20 at the door, either cash or check each Saturday. We will be donating 50% of that fee to a soon-to-be-announced charity.
We will attempt to put same-level athletes in the same heats so that they can push each other. If you are a serious competitor hoping to break into Regionals, be prepared to go in the first group of heats starting around 10:30 am.
If you have any questions at all, please do not hesitae to call or email me!
Never Stop, GET FIT.
This past week has been filled with a whole slew of different things, some good, some bad, just like any week. But for some reason today, I was hit with this overwhelming feeling of happiness. I get this here and there with pretty much any emotion you can think of and it hits me so hard. I tend to spend an hour or so, usually hanging in the gym, or finding some remote, natural piece of land to just sit there and soak in the feeling as to understand it a little better.
This weeks happiness can be broken down into three distinct occurrences (although, there were ton of other things that I remember as making me so damn good as well).
Brendon Mahony's little girl, Josselyn (sorry B-man if I misspelled that). She is one of the cutest things you will ever see, and during yesterdays workout, she was all over the gym doing her thing. I kid you not, every time her little voice popped up you just couldn't help but smile. And when she ran into the room, or was fascinated by my camera (saying "cheese" every time I turned it on!), bouncing around like crazy on the big mats or throwing a little football around, her energy and sheer happiness was contagious. Kids rule man, absolutely rule!
At today's baseball game (I am helping out at a High School in Pacifica, CA during the start of their baseball season). We played a team that was worse then I think I have ever seen. So bad in fact, that one of their pitchers needed to literally be taught how to pitch, while on the mound during the game! But, despite their absolute inability to compete with a somewhat decent team, they all were completely in the game at all times. They cheered each other on, they supported each other, hell, when one of them hit a foul ball they would all cheer. When a group of people can rally together and support each other unconditionally like that, I am moved and inspired. I was envious of them, even though we won, by a TON of runs, I kind of wanted to be in their dugout, at least for an inning. There is something to be said for positive reinforcement people, it's a great thing.
My girlfriend, Lindsey. She overwhelms me with happiness man. This blog really isn't the place for me to go on a romantic rant, so I'll just leave it at that and leave the lovey-dovey stuff for between her and me. But all I know is that nothing in the world could ever replace sharing your life with a person you truly love.
I am sitting on the floor in my living room right now, Lindsey, sick as a dog, sleeping on the couch behind me, TV on and a huge bottle of water at hand. I feel at peace. I feel ready for tomorrow. I feel ready for my life to begin, again.
Yeah, pretty different type of post today, just 'feeling' a lot and this blog (for those of you who follow regularly) is a bit of an outlet for me from time to time. Let me change the tone a bit and talk about my weeks training.
I started the day off with 30 total muscle ups, taking my time and just working on the technique of it all. I then did a little push press work that finished with a 1-5 ladder at 145# as an 8 minute AMRAP (for 8 minutes I did one rep, racked it, two reps, racked it so on until five reps; then started again at one). I then met up with the CrossFit San Mateo crew at the track for some 200's. Ugh. Best time of 27 seconds, worst of 33. Totally spent after that, it WAS only two days following a competition and then a cross-country flight. Double ugh.
Feeling pretty beat down, I joined Brendon for an easy 20 minute on the rower. I got 4978 meters and actually felt really good after that.
Still really sore I worked 3 sets of 3 of overhead squats, box squats and weighted pull ups. OH squats felt very off balance and I was only able to get 2 reps at 235#; not for lack of strength, but really because I was fighting so hard to stay stable. The box squats felt real good and I pulled off a very clean and comfortable set at 335#. The pull ups were pretty good, strong but I was feeling tired. Each of these strength moves had about an hour or so between them, so I was a little low on energy by those pulls. But I was able to get 70# for a solid 3 count. I finished off the day with an awesome metcon:
5 rounds of 30 total reps each round. Do pull ups for as many reps as possible each round, then do 6' broad jumps until you total 30 reps. My pull up numbers looked like this: 22, 20, 20, 17, 15 (making my broad jumps 8, 10, 10, 13 and 15). I finished in 6:27 and was completely DONE! (video of this day coming soon!)
SO SORE! But I wanted to get something tough in. With my good buddy Jon, I hit a monster one:
25 minute AMRAP of:
200 meter sandbag run 52#
20 wall balls 20#
20 KB swings 62#
20 box jumps 24"
2 muscle ups
2 handstand push ups
Finished 5 rounds on the button (Jon got 3 and change) and I needed desperately to replenish my glycogen. And while I feel like I just ran a 50-miler with a 100# weight vest on, I somehow feel good! Tomorrow is an easy day of messing around with various skills and strongman things during CrossFit San Mateo's 1-year Anniversary! And Sunday I am off. Cool news and posts to come!! Thanks for those of you who read this whole thing!!
Never STOP, GET FIT.
With the CrossFit Open Sectionals coming up in just about two weeks, I am doing what I can to be prepared for anything. Given the nature of the new format, I know that things are going to be very, very basic. Classic CrossFit: barbells, kettlebells, box jumps, wall balls, push ups, pull ups and that sort of thing. We can easily make the assumption that there is going to be nothing tricky, and how will they be able to program running and that sort of thing? So, I need to be ready to perform the classics. Because of this, I have a handful of weaknesses to focus on over this short amount of time. Muscle ups, handstand push ups, Oly lifting, yeah, gotta work a little more on those. But in the end, I feel pretty damn confident in performing well. So, I'll just take the workouts, work my ass off, and hope for the best.
The cool thing with the way these Sectionals are working is that I'll be able to just continue on with my training throughout. Once the weeks workout is announced on Tuesday, I can tweak my programming accordingly and just keep getting stronger. The annoying thing about it is that I am not going to be in the ame place for the six weeks. The first one I'll be in NYC doing a media event for 2XU. The second, third and possibly fourth weeks I'll be in San Mateo, doing the workouts at both Lalanne Fitness and at my spot at CrossFit San Mateo. And the final two weeks I'll most likely be back in the DC area and will have to find a spot there. I just really don't want to do the video thing, I feel like my performance will inevitably be a bit better when surrounded by a bunch of CrossFitters! I'll just have a good deal of planning to figure out how to go about it.
So what have I been doing specifically? Well, I have been working gymnastics moves about 4 days per week (rolling, tumbling, ring work, HSPU's, pistols, etc.). Heavy lifting 3 times per week with Oly focus twice a week. Track work once a week, and a combination of heavy/short metcons and running-based metcons. I am getting a good deal of sleep and I have really dialed in my nutrition (except for the random handful of chocolate covered cranberries or blueberries when i head to the market!). I think all in all I am relatively prepared. All I can do at this point is keep focusing on my weaknesses and just get after it!
That's my quick update for the day, I have a handful of detailed posts coming up this week and next, so look for those.
Never Stop, GET FT.
Along with Lindsey and my ‘splorin the neighborhoods for our new lives in the greater Washington DC area, I had an additional positive for being in DC this past weekend. The great folks at the CrossFit and Parkour gym Primal Fitness were putting on their second DC’s Most Primal CrossFit competition. Last years event was a huge hit and I finished with a come-from-behind sprint on the final WOD to win 2nd place (I was apparently about 10 seconds away from tying for 1rst…). This time around I guess I just lucked out with the competition being on the same weekend we’d be in town!
Things started off with two attempts at a 1 rep max deadlift. I decided to declare my first attempt at 465# and then, depending on what the competitive field was like, I’d jack it up or stay conservative. That first lift felt real good, fast, smooth and such, and seeing how there were a couple people working with weights around 500#, I decided to go for it. If I could pull 500# (technically a 15# PR from the PR I set almost two years ago! I would really say my PR at that point would be the 465# I pulled about a month back) I would get a 4th place spot on the first event.
I had a great feeling approaching the bar, felt confident and strong. The crowd added a whole level of motivation and I fed off that energy right from the get-go. Pulling that weight up felt awesome! I rounded only a little in my thoracic spine (upper back) , and I had a small little dip past the knees, but besides that, so strong! And yes, I am proud to say I am officially part of the 500# club! Sweetness!
Before the second event was announced, I had a great time catching up with all my friends. Being able to hang with all of them and just talk about this and that really helped to fuel the excitement building up inside of me for our big move back to the area. It was really nice. It also seemed to make the day just fly by, the second workout was set up and ready to go!
15 or so meter prowler push, down and back with 90# added
100# sandbag under rope, over 46” hurdle, under rope, over 36” hurdle, placed on top of 56” platform.
Return back over and under hurdles and ropes.
80# sandbag through same course.
Repeat prowler push
This was sneaky hard! What was so cool about this one was that you were so focused on maneuvering around the obstacles you never really noticed how tiring it actually was until you got back to the prowler. That second prowler push felt like trying to move a mac truck, not easy at all. My focus through this one was to just keep moving no matter what. I noticed that people were getting stuck on the last length with the prowler and that was eating up all the time; so, I decided to go at around 90% through the sandbag course so that I could go all out on the prowler. I feel as though I could have given a tad more on the obstacle course portion and still had about the same energy for that last push. I crossed the line at 1:56, enough for 5th overall on that event and placing me 4th overall going into the final workout. At this point I was happy to have a bit of a break because my lungs and legs were on fire! I love the prowler so much; it has got to be one of the most humbling and effective tools I can think of. So fun!
The final workout was announced and the air was a mix of moans, groans and excitement.
For Time do:
800 meter run
50 overhead lunges w/ 45#
800 meter run
The run was a loop around the neighborhoods in the rough terrain that is the Washington DC sidewalks. I was excited. This type of workout, while hard as hell, I tend to do pretty well with; just a “put you head down and GO” type of thing. The only negative was that it had a 15-minute cap and there were 7 heats going...I was in the 7th heat.
I started off at a comfortable pace, just ahead of the rest of the group. I felt very good, short, light steps, agile, relaxed. Entering into the gym I knew I was about 10 steps ahead of the guy behind me, so I just ran up to my station and began the burpees. Again, stayed at a good pace, tried staying light and rhythmical. After getting all 50 burpees unbroken, I grabbed my plate and hoisted it up for the lunges. I chose to do reverse lunges instead as to decrease the impact I would have to take; and while this helped out my legs, it was my shoulders that really failed me. I was able to get 10 right off the bat, but from there on through 50 I was only able to get 5 at a time. The thing that helped me however, was the fact that I never let go of the plate. Even when I rested it on the ground, I kept my hands on it as to not break momentum. I finished that up in a fatiguing mess and just took off for the run. Oh lord was the first half of that second run brutal. Slightly nauseous I just kept moving, and when I rounded the second to last turn I glanced back. The red shoes of Jason Gerrard (last years winner and the man to beat this year) caught my eye; I switched gears and took off. The last bit of motivation was seeing my good ol’ dad all the way around that last turn just pumping motivation at me! I got a final burst of energy and crossed the line at 11:29, good enough for a solid 3rd place in the event.
When the scores were tallied, just like last year I was able to push myself up to a 2nd place finish. Not enough to de-thrown Jason (an absolute beast of an athlete and an awesome guy), but still, very happy with how things turned out. Having not competed since last years Sectionals, I was in some serious need of one, and finishing 2nd after a red-eye flight and two days of driving around searching for housing and gyms boosted my confidence quite a bit! Big Dan (a great friend and training partner) gathered up the 3rd place spot!
A HUGE amount of respect to Jesse and Mark at Primal for putting on such an awesome event, and to their whole crew for helping out and being such warm-hearted people. And then, to all the competitors, impressive work all around! It was a blast to be able to be around all my old friends (AND to have my dad and Penda out there to cheer me on!). I am feeling that excitement of being around all those people soon!
A day off yesterday and I am back at it. Open Sectionals begin in two weeks exactly!
Never Stop, GET FIT.
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