I sort of fell off the table a little this past week; while the new workout program has been going really well, I have been getting way too little sleep, and my nutrition ha seen better days (can anyone say cookies and coconut ice cream?!!). Anyway, I decided that it was about time to kick it into high gear this summer with a few experiments and what better time to start then now? Today marked the day of a month-long trial of a nutrition program introduced to me by a client/friend who tried it out with great success. It caught my eye because of it’s simplicity and because its similarity to the program I was just about to start: Tim Ferriss’s “4-Hour Body” plan. I still plan to try that one out, and really break it down as best I can, but I’ll just wait at least a month until after I give this one a try.
The only differences between what I’ve been doing (up until this past week) and this program is the timing of my meals and the specific distribution of macro-nutrients. I’m eating eggs, chicken, turkey, fish, lots of veggies, sweet potatoes, nuts, whey protein and oats (oats are the only addition to my plan), it’s pretty great. I’m taking out any sort of oil, no condiments at all, no sweetener of any kind, and while tea and coffee are a little questionable on this I will probably cut back to about 3 or so cups of tea a week. The main aspect of this is that I am eating at the same times every day: 8:15, 11:30, 2:45, 5:15, 7:15 and 10pm. In fact, I have even set an alarm on my phone to go off at these times to make sure I don’t miss a meal (something I tend to do all the time). Also, this will just help me keep my portions a bit more under control (I do have a tendency to grab a bit “extra” here and there, and I think for my body type, that has been a very limiting factor in me getting to where I want to be).
So, that’s my food; I’ll be sure to give updates as I go along, as this is purely experimental. I always talk about trial and error in the journey of finding what works best for you, so here I am doing just that! Now, on to the workouts for the past week.
Afternoon – 5x5 floor press
3x10 skull crushers
3x10 barbell curls
3x8 each prone I, T, Y
2x8 external rotation
3x15 sec. Pallof press hold
Evening – outdoors - 3 rounds of:
25 box jumps (Regionals standard)
30 push ups (games standard)
35 OH squats w/ 52# sandbag
Fun all around, and yes, you saw that correctly, I did bi’s and tri’s!! So much fun to get a little isolation work in, I’m excited to work a little vanity and all joking aside, I expect it to help my other lifts and movements later on (isolation DOES help, but there’s no need to do it all the time!). The evening workout was brought over by big Dan from Outlaw CrossFit and we headed over to the school to get it done. I finished in 17:01 and really felt the main difficulty was the OH squats with a sandbag.
This day was pretty brutal. I rode my bike into DC, did an easy 2-mile trail run, rode further into DC, did 5x5 back squats at 295# (along with a whole slew of other exercises), rode the bike to a park and did a 10-1 ladder of KB swings, toes to bar and a 120 meter hill shuttle run; then, rode my bike the 8 or so miles back home. Yeah, this is why I was feeling so beat up on Thursday!
Just did my strength program, getting 5x5 strict press at 135#, pretty light but felt very stable. My supplemental work felt very good as well. My legs were starting to feel a bit fatigued and my energy levels about hit rock bottom by around 3pm. I had to get to a baseball game then and it was one of the toughest things to sit through with such low energy. This is when the nutrition fell off a little, I guess my craving for sugar and complete fatigue did not mix well and I just gave in. Oh well! It all tasted so good! And, I didn’t really feel bad or anything after, I just enjoyed it.
Rest day. Sore as hell!!
Officially started the meal plan and get some great deadlift work in, 5 solid sets of 3 at 375#. I know my strength numbers are not where they were a few weeks ago but I am not worried at all, they will get up there so soon, I can feel it! I am really looking forward to tomorrows workouts; we have a baseball tournament up in Harrisburg, PA and I’ll get my isolation work in at some gym out there, then, its off to the explore the town looking for an awesome place to get a crazy workout in!
Well, that the wrap for the week. I’ll be posting more regularly stating this weekend!
Never Stop, GET FIT.
With the announcement of the Open Sectionals workout #1 I have been faced with the first set of challenges. My concern was keeping my programing in order around these workouts and I feel as though I was able to do that this week. The only speed bump is my travel schedule and how I am going to feel tomorrow when I attempt the workout. But that aside, here is what I was able to do the rest of the week after Monday’s visit to CrossFit NYC and Tuesday’s run and playground fun:
Wednesday I hit a ghetto, Brooklyn YMCA with my brother and focused on preparing myself as much as possible for the Open WOD. I warmed up with 4 rounds of 50 double unders, messing up only once in all attempts. I then hit front squats in the packed, hot as hell weight room. There’s something about YMCA’s that get me lifting heavy weights, perhaps it’s the grungy-ness, perhaps it’s the people in there, not sure; but, either way I was able to get 310# with relative ease. I then grabbed a round of 10 strict pull ups and a few RDL’s and bent rows before joining my brother up in the crazy beat up rubber track to grab a metcon. I programmed out 4 rounds of 50 double unders, 20 push ups and 15 sit ups. The goal was to focus on stringing double unders together while my shoulders got more and more fatigued. I got this in 6:08 and was able to get all double unders easily unbroken. My confidence is WAY up with this movement, and I am very excited to attack this first workout tomorrow. I finished with a 1 minute AMRAP double unders and got 115 unbroken. Yup, ready to go! I then went to an absolutely incredible dinner with my brother (the picture on this post is of the ribs and kale I had!)
On Thursday I hopped n a bus down to DC to check out a location for a gym. It was a bit of a leap for me to choose to travel so much just to see a location, but in the end, the trip was well worth it (more on the location at some other time folks…). I felt the desire to try out the Open WOD and contacted Ori and my olf training partner big Dan to see if they wanted to give it a shot. In the end, I didn’t do it and I think that was the best choice. I felt sick, tired and a little beat up and I am sure that if I had tried a 10 minute AMRAP at that point I would have lost my Whole Foods late lunch on the gym floor! Instead I did this:
7 rounds of:
10 wall ball
10 pull ups
I got this in a solid 4:25 and besides the nausea it felt very good to get that burst of max-effort in. I then went out to a brutal dinner with Ori (took an hour and a half to finally get our food…good lord!). Woke up bright and early this morning, jumped on a bus to the metro station, a good breakfast and caught my bus out to NYC to grab lunch and then get on my flight back home to California. Oh boy!
On a different note, with the first reader’s poll up for a couple weeks I was extremely surprised to find that over half of you voted that you don’t really feel the need to have a spotter for squatting. While I don’t have one around me all the time, I find it so helpful to either have one, or to have a good cage to squat in. The support of knowing that you can fail at the bottom allows you to put so much more effort into each rep and when you do that, well, you get stronger! I think that there is still a hugely independent approach to lifting heavy weights out there and I hope these changes. People, if you don’t have secure pins when your squat or bench, find someone to spot you, it will be better. More on this next week! I’ll post up a new question today!
Finally, I want to start something on the blog to get a little more interaction with all my readers. Along with the poll, I will be posting up a follow-up question on the blog. Depending on the question I will be asking for specific submissions from readers and will be offering prizes out to winners. Look for that today or tomorrow!
Never Stop, GET FIT.
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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