Had a bit of an extreme weekend from every single angle. But, I'm pushing to be on a positive kick so I'll go ahead and stick with all the positive, because there's plenty of it. A little last minute, but I learned late Thursday night that there was a training camp going down at Outlaw for a handful of the stud Games Qualifiers. I just had to be in on that one so I shifted some of my plans and was ready to throw down with the crew! The plan for this camp was to get the "real exercisers" of the group some solid work on potential weaknesses (read: muscle ups to ring handstand push ups, weighted jumping squats, bench press in a metcon, strongman work, overhead pistols and on and on). Myself and a few other Outlaws were there for the ride and it was a pleasure as always to work alongside such an awesome group of fitness freaks.
Let's just go ahead and say it like this, the workouts were hard, duh. They were strange, which made me happy because I like non-conventional exercise. And even though I decided to take the final day off (I brought them all Courage Bars, so that was a hit!) I had some good confidence boosting by being able to hang with Brandon Phillips and Jason Hoggan for the most part (um, Oly lifting was just an embarrassment). So yeah, that was cool.
The rest of my weekend was spent trying to do things that make me happy. I grabbed lunch with my boy Ori in Old Town, browsed through the Life Is Good store for a while before deciding on a frisbee and heading over to a little park and throwing that around for an hour in the 98 degree weather. I then went and took a nap by the pool (see above picture) before grabbing dinner with my dad and catching up with him to talk about my future and the direction I want to move in. The process of re-learning how to see the good in all things is a very gratifying one, and if you go ahead and try it, you will instantly see how much life can change for the better.
Tomorrow I have a crap-ton of athletes coming in to train, I'll get a good workout in, and I have a world-record powerlifting friend of mine coming in to go over some technique drills to add some weight to my lifts! AND, he'll do some Poloquin testing on me to see how to better use food to control all the inner workings of my body! I cannot wait to do all that work.
Here's to the pontential of a good week.
Never Stop, GET FIT.
Yesterday at The Outlaw Training Camp we (around 40 of us I might add) headed over to a huge pool in Naples, Florida for a swim workout. While I'm sure some people hated it, and I openly admit to not being the best in the water, it felt like goofing off with a bunch of kids!
It just reminded me that no matter what you are doing, no matter how stressed your life is, how difficult things are, it's always worth having some fun on a somewhat regular basis. And the best part: it's not very hard to have fun! Make a game out of your workout! Get outside, jump around in a pool. After a few minutes your inner child, no matter how much you've suppressed that little dude, will start to creep out. As many of you know, I probably spend too much of my life living like a child (as in, I play around a ton. Well, maybe I act like one a little too much as well...) and yesterday that guy was having a blast! We jumped in the pool, did handstand push ups against a fence, broad jumps in the grass and pistol squats. No joke people, even though my heart rate was through the roof, my shoulders were dying, and I really would have been happy sleeping in the sun with a burger or something, I couldn't help but have a freaking blast!
If you take things too seriously, life every second of your life completely regimented, or under a timeline, how the hell do you expect to have any real fun? Oh, and by the way, I'm not talking about going out drinking, staying out way too late, eating crappy food and all that for fun. I am not opposed to doing that here and there; but, if that is your go-to diagnosis for getting some fun in your life, you're kind of missing something pretty important in my opinion. And if it totally sucks to go to the gym, to workout, to be active, to goof off with friends while getting your heart rate elevated, well shoot man, get off the plan and make a game out of it! Or, even better, go play a game!
Today we have some more learning to do, some more workouts to do, and this is such an awesome group of people to be around! I'll give a full recap tomorrow. Hope everyone is having an awesome weekend!
Never Stop, GET FIT.
__ This past weekends Training Camp was a pretty big change from the beatdown we received a couple weeks ago. But what we lacked in expended energy, we gained in exceptional instruction and mental preparation for competition. It was a little smaller group but as one might assume with the Outlaws, we all freaking had an absolute pleasure meeting each other and shooting the breeze all weekend. Before I get into this, my o ne regret for the whole weekend was not going out with everyone Saturday night. Seems as though some of the strangest yet, hilarious altercations occur during those outings. Anyway, on to the fun!
Friday night – Oly night was pretty successful for almost everyone, with something like 8 PR’s. I am sad to report I wasn’t able to pull more than 195 on the snatch, and yet again, missed 265 on the jerk. The best part (or worst part) was finding out that the thing holding me back from competing with Donny Shankle (no chance in a million years by the way) is my stupid right elbow. Thanks to baseball, I have some pretty serious issues with the shoulders and the right arm in general, so, I got that working against me. Time to get some accessory work done!
Saturday brought one workout at Outlaw, then 2 more over at CrossFit Woodbridge, which was awesome!
#1 – 8 minute AMRAP of:
7 OH squats 135/95
14 toes to bar
21 KB swings 2/1.5 pood
Holy grip killer! I was able to blast through the first round, breaking up the T2B in two sets to save the grip. Then the Kb swings, which were strict as hell standards, I got in two sets as well (with 1 miss I think). Basically after that, T2B and KB swings became a challenge of focusing on keeping you fingers tight. Got something like 2 rounds and 33 total reps (almost though the third round). The whole group battled through in 3 heats and we had a blast.
Over at CrossFit Woodbridge (no offense Rudy, but their gym is WAY easier to hang out in for an extended period, but I know you know that!) we hit up workout #3 from last years Games.
#2 – 5-1 ladder of:
Shoulder to overhead 145, 165, 185, 205, 225/95, 105, 125, 145, 165
Was a little nervous going into this one seeing how I am hoisting 220# up a rope 15 times. But, after going through a fun handstand walking tutorial, then a rope-climbing tutorial, we were all ready to see how this one would go. It was tiring as hell, but I was able to finish in 8:26, a time I would like to shave at least a minute off of, but after the grip killer earlier, was pretty happy with. Another good talk on being prepared for everything and we were all ready for the final workout.
#3 – 1000-750-500 meter row with 20 box jumps and 10 HSPU’s each round
This one was a pretty interesting one. I paced the row (perhaps just a hair too much), got all the box jumps unbroken (except for one slip up) and almost all the HSPU’s faster than ever before. I was going into the final 10 HSPU’s probably about 20 seconds slower then THE Jay Rhodes, but then I hit my wall at 7 reps. It took me about 1:30 to get those final reps, and it pissed me off. But, that was kind of the point of this weekend, work on problems!
The final day brought in incredible talk on nutrition with David “Chef” Wallace. This dude knows his shit! If you can hang, I recommend getting in touch with him because he’ll blow your mind. Then make you strong and ripped (if that’s your goal of course). Our final workout of the weekend was another sneaky one.
#4 – 10 muscle ups buy in, then:
4 rounds of:
40 double unders
10 pistol squats
Rest 1 minute, then:
5 minute to establish a 2RM weighted pull up
Using the higher ring set up made it a little tougher on me, but I burned through the DU’s and pistols unbroken and then hit the pull ups a little over eager. Got only 70# (again, with the 220# body, made it a little tougher); would have loved to get 85 plus, but oh well. We hit a squat clinic after that and called it a weekend!
Yet again, an absolutely wonderful weekend where we learned a ton, had a blast and became a crap-ton better at exercising.
Looking forward to a couple weeks when we can do it all again in Florida!
Never Stop, GET FIT.
_ Couple things before I get started: Outlaw Training Camp is not a weekend filled with “how to rope a convenience store and get away with it”, or, “lets all learn to ride horses and hijack moving trains to steel a couple hundred in gold”. Nope, Outlaw Training Camp is where the folks who have been following elite exerciser programming genius Rudy Nielson’s program can gather for a weekend and torture themselves with barbells and kettlebells. The second camp he hosted took place at his home gym, Outlaw CrossFit, and I was super stoked to able to join the other 18 or so exercises specialists and throwdown and learn. That is exactly what we did: we learned a shit-ton, and threw down like there was no tomorrow. Also, I didn't take any pictures or video, so, to anyone who was part of this past weekend, please send anything you might have my way and I can post them up!
The weekend began Friday night. We all gathered in the grungy gym and got a couple hours of snatch and clean and jerk practice in. Being around so many beasts, and having not only Rudy, but so many other experienced and knowledgeable eyes on all of us was the perfect setting for a few PRs. I was able to snatch a very clean 205 (5# PR), then a pretty messy 215# (Rudy’s words: “I’m happy I didn’t get that on camera, that was ugly!”). I met everyone, chatted it up, joked around and just about got insanely pumped to see how the rest of the weekend would unfold.
Saturday had us meeting up to get things rolling around 9am. We chatted about the Outlaw Way, and different approaches to CrossFitting, then hit the first workout:
8 min. AMRAP of:
8 push jerks 155#
8 ring dips
8 KB snatches each arm
Immediately following, do a 2 min. AMRAP of Double Unders
The idea was to get as close to a competition setting as possible. We judged each other and stayed as strict as we possibly could. Being around this group lit that fire that I’ve been trying to become closer friends with recently and I was feeling really good. I got 4 rounds, plus 16 total reps on the first part, then got 140 double unders (I tried to move slowly and not mess up at all. In hindsight I should have just done what I always do and go all out with those). This was enough for the top score of the day and we were all ready for more!
Workout two was:
10 rounds of “Cindy” (5 pull ups, 10 hand release push ups, 15 air squats), then 8 min. to establish a 1RM deadlifts, then 5 rounds of “Cindy”. This was a double workout where we were scored on our overall Cindy time (our overall time, minus the 8 minutes of deadlifting) and out deadlift number.
I am not historically good with body-weight stuff, seeing how I am a snugly 220# of rippling chest hair. So, I focused on the Cindy portion and chose to conserve my energy on the deads. In the end, I was able to get 10:31 on Cindy (the 3rd best time!) and a measly 475# on the deadlift (that is 65# off my PR from only a couple months ago…).
We then went through a squat clinic that led to some really good reminders on the proper way to squat. I am really excited to put my new cues to practice in the coming weeks, and I have very high expectations for my gains! That all came after lunch, and then we warmed up our aching bodies for the final workout of the day:
Ok, so, this workout is Rudy’s “greatest test of a beast CrossFitter”, and annoyingly enough, one that I have always been certain would destroy me. Not only that, but with the barbell work the night before, and the insanely shoulder dominant workouts leading up to this, we were all wondering if anyone would even finish the damn thing! My goal going into this was to get 9 muscle ups. That’s all I cared about. But, when I began, I popped right up so easily I was able to get all 9 in just barely over a minute (that is damn good for me by the way). I then proceeded to bang out the 9 snatches in two sets (after missing the first two reps) and was back on the rings. I stayed at this easy pace throughout and was able to finish it in 8:40 (I think), good enough for 2nd (I think only 4 people finished this out of the whole group!). I was so fired up to have been able to “blast” through that one. At this point I have a ton of thanks to give my “judge” for the weekend, Erik, he was awesome support on each and every workout (oh, and if you want to pass out laughing, and are ok with some pretty harsh language and opinions, check out his awesome blog at Beastmodaldomains.com).
Rolling into day three found us meeting up at T.C. Williams High School (remember the Titans…?) in the morning. To put it lightly, our bodies were crushed! So we were all REALLY looking forward to what Rudy had thought up for us today.
3 rounds of:
1 width field burpee broad jump
1 width field buddy carry
400 meter run
This was straight tiring! Luckily I had a damn good runner to chance in Tony Mayo and just tried to stick with him the whole time. He got the best score of the day, and I rolled in about 70 meters behind at 9:50. After about an hour of goofing off, holding a punting contest (eat your heart out fellow 2XU ambassador Steve Weatherford!), and just joking around, we headed back to Outlaw to finish the weekend off:
For time do:
10 cleans 225#
40 wall ball
10 front squats 185#
40 toes to bar
10 thrusters 155#
40 KB swings 70#
400 meter plate pinch carry
Good times on this one. After hearing Rudy preach to us about how we had to be strong. And how we had to be SO efficient like Brandon Phillips is with every god damn thing he does…. I was determined to tear the head off this workout with everything I had. I got the cleans one at a time, but without stepping away from the bar at all. Got the wall balls unbroken (because I bounced out of the bottom and was generally just bad ass, so there!), got the front squats unbroken, then hit a freaking brick wall on toes to bar. I battled through, then got the thrusters in two sets and the KB swings in 4 sets of 10 (these were INSANELY strict standards, so I stayed as deliberate as possible). I was out the door just over 11 minutes, and about 30 seconds in front ofGames competitor Elisabeth Akinwale. We played a fun game of leap-frog for about 300 meters before she just took off to finish. We ended up being the only two to complete to whole thing, and she got a minute on me (I finished in like 19:10 or something like that).
We finished up the weekend with a GREAT deadlift clinic, then brunch.
All I can say is that yes, Rudy knows his shit. Yes, training with other people (other beast people to be precise) helps more than anything in the world. And yes, making fun of the ridiculousness that CrossFit truly is, is one of the most enjoyable things to do in the world! To sum up the weekend in a sentence: (said while at the football field)
“Most people come here to play football. We actually DID something.” (if you don't get this joke, your not an obsessive CrossFitter who trolls the internet every second that you not "wod-ing". And )
You better believe the sport of fitness has arrived! Ha, hell yes!
This was an awesome weekend all around. I am taking this week off for total recovery. I cannot wait until the next training camp! Thanks Outlaws!
Never Stop, GET FIT.
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