This is the second and final post about the incredible vacation with Destino Retreats to Cabo, Mexico. I am excited and honored to be a coach for this awesome company and am eagerly awaiting the next trip to Cabo coming up November 14th-18th, go sign up now before all the spots run out!!
On to what was unanimously the best day, Saturday had us waking up and wolfing down yet another spectacular, Paleo breakfast at Bar Esquina at the Hotel Bahia before heading down to the beach and meeting up with Cabo SUP. Yep, we had a full morning of stand up paddleboarding and beach workouts down at Lovers Beach at the very tip of the Baja Peninsula! Our two guides ran through the basics and we hit the water like a bunch of excited children learning a new playground game. This. Was. Awesome! For most it was a true first-time experience, then we had Lindsey who at this point is a pretty damn experienced SUP-er and showed off some burpees on her board and even tried a few pistol squats! We paddled for about 45ish minutes to the beautiful beach where Ty and I ran everyone through a fun workout that included some rock throwing and handstand push ups along the rock-faces lining the beach. We goofed off for a bit around the beach before jumping back into the water and paddleboarding to the massive stone arches that separate the Pacific Ocean and the Gulf of California. Then it was a tiresome and wave-filled trip back to home base!
We gobbled up a quick snack and it was off to CrossFit 10 Los Cabos for some more instruction and CrossFitting (by the way, I messed up the order of the training days a little. Today's gym visit was the handstand progressions and clean and jerks. Either way, you get the idea that we had a couple distinctly different workouts each day!)! All the athletes were feeling good and worked after such an active day that it was a pleasant treat post-lunch for most of them to get into the spa for messages and whatnot. Ty and I chilled by the pool and just relaxed. It was so much fun to watch each person stroll happily out to the pool from their recovery time, grab a drink and just completely relax. It was a pretty chill afternoon from there on out. And to make the end of the day even better, we had a private margarita happy hour at the pool The bartenders taught us how to make fresh fruit margaritas and I must admit, they were fabulous.
The fourth day we woke up to some pretty severe wind and rain. But it could not have been more perfectly timed: it was Throwdown day! We drove on over to the gym where we met an excited collection of local athletes for a fun, 4-hour, 4-workout throwdown. We had 12 teams of 2 athletes, one Destino athletes paired up with a CrossFit 10 athlete, and the fun began!
Hands down the best meals and most chill afternoon followed. We had a family style feast waiting for us upon our triumphant return from the gym and we all headed to our rooms and pool for some well deserved relaxation, reading, and napping. There was talk about headed out to town to see what it had to offer once the sun began to go down, but after all the fun we'd all been having it seemed that a tasty dinner and sleep was what everyone wanted most. The energy at dinner was priceless. Everyone talked about all the fun they'd been having, the new friends they all made at the throwdown, and all the new stuff they learned in the short but action-packed few days we'd all shared.
Monday came just a little too fast but there was still yet another tasty Paleo breakfast and a chill trip to the gym. Most of the athletes hit a flush-out run and row, while Ty and I decided to get a little barbell work in. I was damn stoked to stroll up to the bar with my normal shoes, no raps or anything and bang out an easy 225# snatch. Something about the crazy warm weather that just let my joints move smoothly. Either way, that made me in even better spirits than I already was!
After that final workout it was back to the hotel, a wonderful final lunch, and then most of us packed up to check out and bid Cabo farewell.
On the flight back to San Francisco Ty and I talked about the trip and shared our thoughts. And I must admit, this was one of the coolest trips I have ever been on. I described it like this: in the 5 days in Cabo I actually lived the exact life I would love to live for the rest of my life. I slept in a comfy bed, ate incredibly healthy food, I worked out multiple times per day (both inside and outside), got to go on a couple adventures, and I got to coach excited and eager athletes. And all of this was in an exotic location. I can not stress enough how wonderful it feels to be able to hang around a group of awesome people, eat perfectly prepared food, and workout all the time. And if this is something you are interested in, any Destino Retreat trip would be so perfect for you. We also had a pretty successful blogger, Tina from Carrots N Cake along for the trip, and she has a collection of great posts from as well. Her final post talks about the worth of the trip and I really suggest you all go check that out if you are interested in something like this in the near future.
I am counting down the days until November when I can come back to Cabo with a new group of people to share in all of this excitement again. It was incredible.
Never Stop, GET FIT.
I was excited about the invite I received from Ty, the founder of Destino Retreats to help coach at their Cabo trip. But now, after having experienced the entire thing, I can honestly say: that was one of the coolest experiences of my entire life. Let me share.
The idea is a fully CrossFit-afied retreat to an awesome location. You get true Paleo meals, two workouts per day, special outings, and everything finishes with an awesome throwdown with the locals at a CrossFit gym. That’s the concept of this company that I am so honored to coach for. Now, let me get into the details of this trip. Perhaps inspire you to come join us on the next one in November?!
We rolled into Cabo and it was right to a 40 minute, yet interestingly scenic dive from the airport to the water. It’s always fun to soak in how a place I’ve never been feels. The main thing that I noticed was the incredibly defined peaks in the mountains. I absolutely love mountains and when you can see the peaks, like the way kids would draw them in grade school, it’s so damn awesome!
The resort, The Bahia Hotel, was straight up perfect for what we were doing. It was simple, yet perfectly beach-like and comfortable. The pool was gorgeous, and the rooms were exactly what one needed after a long day of working out. OK, OK, I’ll run through the formalities before getting to the real juicy stuff. To top of the comfort of the resort, we were a short walk to the beach where there was a view of the southern-most point of the Baja Peninsula, it was beautiful. And then a short walk in the other direction and bam, downtown Cabo.
The fun started with a flush-out workout on that beach-with-a-view. The crew moseyed on down and we warmed up along the hot sand before hitting working though a collection of balancing pistols, rope hurdles, squat jumps, suicide sprints, burpees at the edge of the water and some buoy hurdles to cool off! After toweling off we had out first dinner at Bar Esquina, a well-known restaurant in town. So, um, let me tell you a little about the food on this trip. The Bahia supplied an entirely Paleo menu for us, one for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. There were multiple options, check out the pics.
I seriously can not say enough about the food, it was incredible!! It was top of the line in quality, cooked perfectly, portions were generous, and the choices were exciting and filled with flavor! And to top it off, they had a cafe of sorts with fresh juices and smoothies that, uh, in all honesty I actually looked forward to consuming each day. And while I'm not much of a drinker (seems like something I caught a little flack for while being in the blazing heat of Mexico) their drink menu was impressive. We actually had a margarita night where the pool-side bar tender showed us how they made their fresh fruit margaritas. They were really good.
We gathered pool-side for a sports medicine session after breakfast on the second day. Ty and I went over a lot of great mobility and seemed like the athletes really soaked up a ton of good info. Then it was off to the CrossFit 10 Los Cabos for the first gym session. This place was great. Welcoming coaches and athletes, generous guest policy (and some pretty beast guests were there by the way), and one of the most excited and eager group of members I have seen in my 80+ gyms visited over the years. It was small, but incredibly well=maintained, clean, and filled with just the right amount of equipment.
Our first session had the athletes working on pull up progressions, snatches and an awesome workout with rowing, pull ups and power snatches. Everyone gave it their all.
The second full day had us traveling to a beach a bit past the gym. Here we were able to get some tough and scenic hill sprints as a warm up. We then followed that up with a doosy of workout of four rounds of about 30 meters of partner resisted band sprints, and then a 100 m swim. This turned out to be a damn hard one that i was lucky enough to join in on because the only dude in the group needed a partner. While the swim kicked all our butts, check out the video for one of the more entertaining parts of the trip!
After lunch it was back to CrossFit 10 Los Cabos for handstand progressions, clean and jerk work, and an awesome workout of front squats, handstand push ups, power clean and presses and double unders. Again, tons of awesome work coming form everyone. Then it was back to the resort to hang by the pool for a while before dinner.
I'll write about the second half of the trip tomorrow. Now you all can hang tight with all this incredible suspense I'm leaving you with!!
Never Stop, GET FIT.
Been a bit since I last ran through what I've been up to, so, here you go! The lull in posts over the past 4-5 days has been because I was out on a cruise down to Mexico and internets was insanely expensive, so, opted to just lay low for a while. Let's start off with The Open. As I write this, we are only hours away from the announcement of the 4th workout (out of 5), and the exciting thing for me with all this has been my rapid comeback. After a debacle of a first workout, finishing 375th in the region, I had a respectable 2nd one, pushing me to 103rd. Then, I good score in my eyes brought me down to 82nd overall after 3 weeks. I'm fired up becuase there are a limited amount of exercises they can bring out for us on the last two workouts, and I am very confident I'll do pretty well. My goal is to not only finish in the top 60, but to hopefully get myself down to a better finish than last year (I finished 30th last year). I haven't really made an official announcement yet, but because the chances of me actually making the Games are pretty slim, I'll be joining the Outlaw CrossFit team and competing with them to hopefully get to the Games that way! I am exited to do this as I've never done a team competition and I feel strongly that team Outlaw will tear it up (as of now, we are at 10th in the region, and am pretty sure we'll finish top 5 or so when all is said and done).
So, this past weekend. This was an interesting trip all around, and it solidified that I really do know what I like and don't like. So, I met Lindsey down in Ft. Lauderdale on Wednesday, grabbed dinner on Las Olas Blvd and then went to get some recovery sleep before doing the 3rd Open workout. After a hearty breakfast we went to The Playground Gym to join their 10am class for the workout. This place was awesome! A HUGE warehouse, just north of downtown and filled with every bit of equipment one would need and more. They had full powerlifting gear, tons of racks and platforms, a great space out back with tires and sleds, and tons of really welcoming and enjoyable athletes, and of course, some great coaches. After getting my 10 rounds plus 27 reps in the crazy humidity of Florida, I hung around for a bit with the coaches to get some light Oly work before headed back to prepare fro the cruise. Had a great time at The Playground Gym (owners of CrossFit Affliction as well) and was excited to head back there on Monday after we got back from the cruise. I was able to get my back squat work, then joined the 7pm class for their conditioning: 5 rounds of 400 meter run and 15 overhead squats at 95#. This was the perfect workout post-crusie bender and I was happy to move through this with a time of 13:41. I would assume that a 12-ish minute time would be doable at full capacity, but it felt so good to just go all out. After that, I hung with the coaches and did a bit more accessory work. So, if you are ever in Ft. Lauderdale, make sure to get in touch with these guys and join in for a class, they are a bunch of damn good people.
On to the cruise! Ok, I totally get how some people can really like these things. Everything is right there for you, food, sun, games and such f you want, and plenty of people to keep the energy levels up. We had some fun on the flow-rider, had a really good people-watching time, got TONS of sun, drank and ate too much, and had a absolute blast on our day out on Cozumel, Mexico. The negatives from my perspective (and mind you, these are merely MY opinions! I have a pretty distinct personality, so take these comments accordingly): you are stuck in a limited space. To me, it is scary as all hell to not be able to go anywhere at any time. While the ship was impressively big, you are still completely limited to what's on it, and I could start to feel myself becoming a tad bit claustrophobic. The next is the food. While it was actually pretty decent, it was insanely processed. I could tell that right off the bat becuase no matter how much or little you ate, you felt crazy bloated after, no matter what! When I had fish tacos in Mexico with fried fish and cheese on them and felt awesome, I knew there was something strange going on. And while there was plenty to do (flow rider, climbing wall, basketball court, game room, freaking skating rink and so on) it was just not the same as say, surfing, actual rock climbing, running around in the woods and swimming in the ocean. I found that my snootiness on relaxation is pretty strong and I can't get myself to be totally chill unless I'm in nature. Oh, right, and I'm also NOT an extrovert; as in, I really don't get any energy at all from being around other people. I get my energy from being alone and in nature. Some people are just different, what can I say. So, if you like being around people, if you like having tons of different foods and and drinks and having everything right there for you, then a cruise is perfect for you. And I know tons of people who love cruises, so, makes sense. But for me, just ain't the thing for me!
Allrighty, there's the update show for today. I got a few things planned out for posts to come, so look for those through the week!
Never Stop, GET FIT.
I got back from a pretty all-over-the-place vacation at around 1:30am and was up and out the door at 7am for a nice 4-mile run to kick off the week. Somehow, through surviving an absolutely insane car crash that still has me wondering how the hell I made it out alive, then getting from Albany to NH to hang on the beach for a couple days, then to Boston, spent time with two aunts, an uncle, three cousins, a grandmother, saw my sister, visited my Moms grave, then back out to Norwich, NY to see all of Lindsey huge family, and we still ate extremely well and got all our workouts in!
So, it's another one of those "we need a vacation after our vacation" situations. But, I was able to wake up this morning with some real good energy and felt awesome getting an evening workout in with Big Dan while the crazy rain began to come down in DC. I hit 4 sets of 3 at 325# on the back squat and really felt like I cheated myself there (should have gone up to 345#...oh well) and then was able to bang out some solid work with completely unassisted glute/ham raises and roll outs with a 52# sandbag on my back. Weakness is NOT the lower half, it's the core (mostly the low back), so that is going to be a focus of my supplementary work over the next month.
Besides training, which I feel is going very well as of now, I am having a grand ol' time testing out different things with the diet. Red meat is just not treating me as well as I had hoped and not only did it mess with my GI system last week, but it also aided in some serious grogginess when i woke up in the morning. So, I am taking that out completely for the next two weeks to see if it truly was the culprit. I am also taking out the extra protein pre-bedtime that i'd been taking in. My pre-bed meal will now consist of 2 tbsp almond butter and celery; I am curious if that will hep my sleep a little, but mostly curious to see how it effects my wake-up mood. The only other change I have made is to cut out not only the oatmeal, but also the sweet potatoes. I am not opposed to consuming complex carbs like the Paleo zealots in the CrossFit world, but I am curious to see how my body will respond to none at all for a week or two. And who knows, perhaps I'll feel awesome and stick to it! All I know is that i am having so much fun experimenting with all this food stuff. I am learning more than ever an i really feel an extremely close connection to food and my body. Case in point: Yesterday I let myself go a bit at Lindsey's family gathering, I indulged in plenty of your typical cook-out specialties including my fair share of desserts. Besides the expected boated feeling, and general lethargy and fatigue, I formed a splitting headache as well, something I am generally not used to getting very often. I have read recently of people getting headaches as a side effect to gluten consumption and I have been so far removed from gluten over the past 6 months that i am convinced that had something to do with it (I've been MOSTLY gluten free now for about 2 years). It was so intriguing to me to have such distinct and immediate reactions to what I consumed and I hope to keep up with these different experiments and believe me, I will be sharing all my experiences with all of you!
Well, that's it for today, just a little welcome back post. But now that I am back into the daily grind I will also be back into the regular posts! Hope everyone had an awesome 4th of July (with any near-death experiences!) and Hope everyone has some exciting plans for the rest of the summer!
Never Stop, GET FIT.
Alright, so, a lot of you are wondering what the hell my Facebook post was all about the other day, and I am sitting here right now with all sorts of things I want to write about. But I guess I'll have to start a to do list for most of them seeing how this week was meant to be spent mostly away from the computer for myself and Lindsey. But, I feel like I need to keep people informed with the crazy things that happen to me, and this last one was up there with one of the craziest/scariest things I have ever experienced.
Late Saturday night I was able to sneak out to start my drive up to Albany, NY where I was going to meet up with Lindsey to start our vacation. The excitement was that she wasn't expecting me until late Sunday night! Was going to be a HUGE surprise for her too wake up and find me there. Well the surprise ended up being a bit different when I called her at 4am from a diner in Kingston, NY and told her what had happened.
About 60 miles out from Albany, I was cruising along iced coffee by my side, singing along to some classic rock when out of the blew I felt a massive thump and the steering wheel began to go crazy in my hand. The car swerved to the left, then screeched to the right as I tried desperately to regain control. The car careened off the highway into the gravel along the side, and as I continued to try to control the wheel, I felt the car pop off the ground. From there I just went to protect-the-body mode. The car flipped to its side, then on to its roof and just skidded across the highway, slowly crunching closer and closer to my head. No joke, it was like one of those movies where the thing about to kill you stops just centimeters from you; the car came to a stop with my head literally touching the asphalt through the sunroof. I was curled up in the tightest ball I could possible get into.
I hoisted myself up, unbuckled my seat-belt and lowered myself t the ground before climbing out of the wreckage. After contemplating headed back in to fond my phone, I saw lights approaching from down the highway of other drivers, and opted to just walk away in case someone didn't see the portion sticking out into the road and clip it, causing even more damage. At that point I was able to take a good look at myself to see if I was ok. Somehow, and I am still a bit shocked by this, I was 100% fine, not a scratch anywhere. The car was crushed, I had stuff literally smash through the windows and fond their way about 50 yards off the highway, and I was totally fine. No matter what you believe in, something pretty special has to happen for a person to survive that sort of thing. And not just survive, but to not get injured at all. Writing this down write now is actually sending chills down my spine that I am just sitting here with nothing physically wrong with me. Crazy.
The rest of the morning was a bit crazy, but as of now, Lindsey and I are in Portsmouth, NH and the goal is to workout, eat well, and relax as much as humanly possible, so that is what we will do. While I may post up a little something sometime this week, expect to not have any serious post up until next week. Just know that despite the insanity of what I went through early Sunday morning, I am all good, so no worries there. I just feel so beyond badly that ruined such a good car and put any stress on my family. But, I feel lucky and blessed as hell to have been able to not only live through that, but to be completely fine.
Hope everyone had an awesome 4th, and please take the time to make sure you enjoy your week!
Never Stop, GET FIT.
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.
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