Summer is Over…..

Goodbye Summer

 

Seems like the Summer flew by faster than usual. Actually, the past year has flown by faster than usual. Fall is here which means football, bonfires, pumpkins, and cooler weather. We just finished our summer vacation, which was a little later than normal, however it was a blast. There were several boxes close by, however we decided to take the whole week off and rest up. Definitely looking forward to getting back to the grind and getting back in a routine. For those who are interested, Charleston South Carolina is a great area to visit. The foodie scene blows Baltimore out of the water. Beach is 20 minutes away. Golf courses galore. And of course there is a plethora of historical stuff if you are into that as well. All of the Westbrook brews were excellent.

Charleston Food

Beer

 

August was a great month with four PR’s. Clean, Front Squat, Back Squat, and Dead Lift.  I’ll take those any day of the week. So what did I learn over the past few months? Still having issues doing the WOD’s Rx, and the reason is because of the inability to complete the BW exercises like Pull UPs, HSPU, DU’s, etc. Really thought my recent purchases of Nano 4.0’s, Junk headbands, and Progenex would have changed all that. I was wrong. Obviously, I’m joking. I don’t like those movements, I don’t practice those movements, and have gotten very good at scaling those movements. I can rip off 100 singles without missing a beat. Ring rows are no problem. I scaled and got great at scaling. Whoops. So how do we combat this issue? Easy, buy more gear. No, of course not.

Yep. Time for a detox. the past six to eight months have been filled with great food and craft brews. These do not match well with performing well however it is what it is and that’s that. We signed up for the Whole Life Challenge which is always a good way to recharge and get back on track. It’s also about personal accountability, planning, dedication, and not bargaining with yourself. So much easier to put in a blog than to actually practice. If it was easy there wouldn’t be a billion dollar quick fix weight loss industry. Write that down. Watching the Steelers now, and if they keep this up, sobriety will be a pipe dream.

Dead Lift

Practice makes perfect. Or in the world of CrossFit, bloody shins, whip marked legs, torn hands, and bruised egos. Remember, we pay good money for this stuff! You can’t dead lift your way out of a poor diet. Trust me, I’ve tried. Cardio is simply dead lifting faster so that is automatically ruled out. Just need to practice more, focus on the nutrition and mobility. Looking forward to a great September.

 

 

The Day Of….

Great googley moogley. That was fun! 12Labours WOD is as follows:

  • 400 meter med ball run 20/14
  • 9 stone to shoulder 145/115
  • 400 meter sand bag run
  • 24 power cleans 135/95
  • 400 meter run
  • 5 rope climbs (15 ring rows)
  • 30 yard prowler push 255/155
  • 12 stone squats 115/95
  • 500 meter row
  • three sets 3 muscle ups, 3 hspu or three sets 3 ring rows/pull ups, 3 hand release push ups, 3 dips
  • 40 cal assault bike
  • 3 tire flips 450/350

All for joyous time. It was announced it shouldn’t really take more than thirty minutes. I beat that by thirty seconds, scaled. Subbed out KB squats for stone squats. Bad timing. Lots of running and everyone who reads this blog knows how much I LOVE running, and by love i mean hate however it is a necessary evil. Surprisingly the cleans were tougher than I thought they would be. Wound up doing four sets of six. Probably should have gone heavier on the Stone to shoulder. Did 115 for some reason. First rep was a ball slam. Basically caught it about two inches off the ground after the bounce and hauled it up.

Definitely a challenging WOD and a well run event. The cherry on top was it raised about two k, cha ching, for the coaches. Nice work everyone. Thank you Rusty for putting it together and for 12Labours BWI to host the event. It was awesome to see everyone giving 110 percent and having a good time.

Off to Jailbreak who I hear brews beer, and serves beer…which is handy, because I like to drink beer, in particular after that wonderful morning WOD.

 

Filthy Fifty; The Day After

filthy_fifty

 

All I can say is wow…. I had never done the WOD before. Only heard the rumors. Hands down, toughest WOD ever. Even tougher than 14.5 which I am sure all of you remember. Squat cleans and burpees for days….Yes, that’s the one.

What is it, dare you ask?

CrossFit_Filthy_50

Everything was fine until i got to wall balls and burpees. That is where the train left the tracks and i wondered why i pay money to do this stuff. I subbed step ups for box jumps and did ab-mat sit-ups instead, singles instead of DU’s, 150 of them.  All in all i was happy with the time of 40 minutes. I did much better at the lunges than I have in the past. Wall Balls and Burpees sucked the life from me and there wasn’t enough Kill Cliff to bring it back. No joke, those two probably took me fifteen minutes to complete.

If you haven’t done it, do it. If you have done it, do it again.  Definitely the toughest WOD, however very rewarding to complete as well!

Damn, hurt me so bad it affected my memory.  I thought I posted this already! Whoops. In any event, this has been my favorite WOD. It destroyed the 5k run that somebody posted for the previous week. Still not over that one….I will get over it soon I am sure.

 

 

WOD: Cindy…we all know her and love her….

thecindyworkout

 

It is April, which means May is right around the corner, which also means Murph is coming. What’s the best way to prepare for Murph? By doing Cindy of course! Twenty rounds of Cindy sandwiched between mile runs. Your friends will be at BBQ’s, opening pool parties, you know, enjoying themselves while you and the rest of the CrossFit addicted horde will be running pulling and pushing. Yay.

In my mind this is what “Cindy” looks like. She can’t hurt you. The highest rep count is 15 and it’s squats. You do this all day every day. How can this possibly be hard. She wouldn’t hurt you. She’s little and innocent. You are going to crush this…in twenty minutes there is no reason why you logically can’t get at least 20 rounds. At least. No way you get less. It’s Cindy.

I wouldn't hurt you...

 

Here is a picture of you before Cindy.

Bullet proof coffee, Kill Cliff, exuding confidence and pissing excellence. You are a mixture of Froning, Ricky Bobby, and the Hulk. Nothing will stop you from destroying Cindy. She stands no chance. She will run and cower in the corner.

Games08JeremyPostRun_th

 

Chalked, taped, stretched, rolled, rowed, and assault biked. You are warm, limber, caffeinated and fueled. 3,2,1 GO! Jump on the bar, get your grip right and…what the hell? How is that person already on push ups? shoot. I better get going. Knock out the first round in less than a minute. You own it. This feeling continues, until about five or six rounds in. Time to Suck it up Buttercup. Dig deep.

The rubber mat feels cool against your face as you have now resorted to hand release push ups. Don’t fall into that trap. Keep pushing. When squatting all you see is your sweat imprint on the floor from the push ups. That’s weakness leaving the body. It’s a good thing. Another pool has formed on the floor between your feet. Damn, should have invested in that Rogue headband!

Hands are starting to tear but it doesn’t matter because you are over halfway there and while 20 rounds may be out of reach you are however on pace to PR. No stopping you now. Damn, she is still doing unbroken push ups. How? Isn’t she tired!! WTF.

Three minutes left and you need two full rounds. No problem. Does that person not feel pain? Jeez…they have been doing two rounds to my one round. How the hell do they do that? Can’t focus on them. Finished the second round and started the third…you Pr’d but have to keep going. TIME! Because you are a bad ass you finish the round and this happens:

Mommy…?

Mommy…?

The walls are vibrating. Can’t really catch your breath. You’ve never sweated this much….of course you have. You are a CrossFitter. We sweat a lot. Heartbeat is finally slowing down. Need water. Vision is back to normal. Whew. Thankfully that is over. The average person would have quit halfway through. You have done more in the past twenty minutes than most people will accomplish all day. The hardest part of your day is over. Time to EAT!!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mommy…?

2014 CrossFit Open

Here we go Again!

Here we go Again!

Better late than never! i thought i had posted this last week!

It was here and then it was gone….The 2014 Open is over and thankfully we didn’t have 150 wall balls again!  Hard to believe the five weeks flew by so quickly. I thought this years’s WOD’s were great. The first two were challenging to say the least however they were scalable and doable for those who don’t have double unders or chest to bar pull ups. I didn’t get a chance to do 14.3 however a box jump is the quickest way to kill a dead lift WOD. Not all agree obviously, as folks from the box absolutely annihilated it. That’s you Luke Espe. We done. 14.4 was also great, I scaled it as well, however I completed all 200 reps and got a great workout. That is what it is all about. Don’t Rx if it will take an hour to complete it. Scale it so it is challenging and you wind up in the fetal position on the floor, looking for Mommy to give you an ice pop and make it all better. 14.5 was a great way to end the Open. No time cap. You. Had. To. Finish. It. Somebody scheduled burpees for Tuesday’s WOD. That wasn’t right.

Pretty sick that  much hat 209,000 people signed up for the Open this year. (http://games.crossfit.com/article/209585-rise-open) Multiply that by $20.00…and well somebody is happy. Cha Ching! Usual names in the top spots, no shock there. They are robots. Sick, sick robots who don’t stop. Great to see folks from CrossFit BWI and Syndicate excel and I know several people are headed to regionals, which means a lot of us will be going as well to cheer them on. It’s all about the community with CrossFit. It is a team sport and the home team always wins.

So, what did I learn from this year’s Open?

Burpee Bar Jump Overs:

Those are quite possibly worse then TGU’s. That was a huge achilles heel for me and why I didn’t do Rx. Need to work on those big time. So what did I talk about after our experience at The Capital Throwdown? Train like you are going to compete. Do everything to the standard. What this means is any time burps come up, do them over the bar. Might as well since they will come up again I am sure!

Double Unders:

I need to finally get these. Of course I have no idea why I don’t have them yet. I never practice them and always jump right to two to one or three to one anytime they come up. You know how that ends. I am really good and efficient at single unders and can rip off 100 unbroken without issue. Of course that also means I still don’t have double unders. This is the year!

Overhad Squats:

Need to work these more because they are hard….and they suck….a lot. Practice makes perfect.

Make the Reps Count:

Power Snatch doesn’t only mean snatch. it’s a good way saying shoulder to overhead as well. Saw a lot of people using this in the first WOD and I made them all snatches. That means I got less reps. Sometimes it’s not about the name, it’s about finding the best LEGAL way to get the most reps. Same here for step ups vs box jumps. Save the shins and step up on that puppy!

All in all it was a great open. I am happy I did it again this year and I’ll do it again next year!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Level One Certification Weekend

CrossFit

CrossFIt has been a part of my life for almost three years and I am still drinking the Kool-Aid full blast.  Lately I have been in a funk and have not been going to many classes, and not going all out when I did attend class, so it was definitely time for a jump-start. I decided it was time to obtain the $1,000 T-shirt! Level One Trainer Certification. Luckily CrossFit Federal Hill was hosting a seminar so I didn’t have to travel far. Surprisingly it took a few weeks to sell out, which I thought was odd, considering it was the first one in this area. I signed up early and got in the proper mode for studying! Procrastination.

Shortly after I paid the fee I received the Level One training guide. I read through it twice before the class. It is pretty basic and a lot of it is pictures which always helps the reading go faster. I saved it to ibooks which made it easier to read. A lot of the things I already knew, maybe I just didn’t practice. Some of us squat below parallel and some of us don’t. I definitely suggest you read through the guide a few times. 

I got there early Saturday morning and there were already several people there ahead of me. Everyone was still in their car in the parking lot, reading the training guide or just waiting. Anticipation was in the air, as was caffeine, beards, and black sports cars.  The trainers arrived in a minivan and all piled out…and it was game on.

The class was definitely organized. Everyone lined up, and filtered through the sign in table. Within twenty to thirty minutes, everyone was signed in and was seated and ready for class to begin. The trainers were very engaging, from the beginning they were quick to introduce themselves and let everyone know what would happen next. I would encourage any corporate trainers or event organizers to attend a Level One Cert. They trainers made sure to talk to people who were seated on the outside and it was clear it was to keep people seated, and keep anyone from wandering off. Really well done. 

The first day was a mix of one hour lectures and then small group work. Ten people to a trainer. The heaviest thing we lifted was a PVC pipe, however I was wiped out and sore as hell the next day. The trainers were all very passionate about correct form and made sure everyone got some one on one time, pointing out opportunities and ways to get better form and maximize efficiency. The lectures were all very informative and the format followed the training guide. My suggestion is to take notes on what the trainers write on the whiteboard, and what they repeat. If they say it twice, it will be on the test.

The WOD the first day was pretty tough. Thrusters and Burpees, nobody likes either of them, except sick people, and together they are even worse. But hey, we don’t pay the dues to lay up. I went in the third heat which was a mistake. Should have gotten it out of the way. I think was the last to finish, which was totally not what I wanted, but it happens. Definitely a lot of people cheering, which is nice. it is what it is. Move on. Everybody stuck around for a few beers afterwards. I have yet to attend a dry CrossFit event! 

20130902-082458.jpg

The second day was similar to the first. Lecture, group work, lecture…etc. The format followed the training guide. Sunday’s WOD was a little better. Med ball cleans, push ups, and sit ups. We covered nutrition and programming in the afternoon. I would have liked more time on the programming aspect of CrossFit. I’ll have to check and see if there is another seminar on that topic.

The test was challenging. Read your notes and read the manual. I would also suggest doing a quick Google search on CrossFit Level One Cert flash cards. There are several sites that offer flash cards. It would have been nice to have thirty minutes before the test to read through everything.

I would definitely suggest the course to anyone who needs a jump-start or is looking to expand their CrossFit knowledge and understanding. I don’t think you will find a better group of trainers. James, Joey, EC, Cameron, Dave, Melody, and Sarah were all very knowledgable, motivated, and engaging. Definitely looking forward to staying in touch with all of them. 

Tips; 

* Read the manual

* Write it down when the trainer repeats it or when they write it on the whiteboard

* Search for flash cards

* Read all of your notes Sunday morning and Sunday during the lunch break!

Trying and finishing last beats not trying every time!

Trying and finishing last beats not trying every time!

Thoughts Going Through the Mind of a CrossFitter

images

CrossFitters are goofy. Our gym dues are the equivalent of a car payment and we’ll tell you how Paleo we are while we are pounding our third beer and eyeing up a bottle for a shot. We’ll drop forty bucks on a T-shirt which is only meant to be worn working out, and we’ll rip it off eighteen seconds into a thirty minute AMRAP.

It would be nice to tell you that the only thing we think about during a WOD is being focused on proper form, doing the movements correctly, and listening ever intently to the wonderful tips and coaching provided by our trainers. That would be a lie. This is a list of thoughts that go through my mind, as well as additives from extensive interviews of other CrossFitters. Three actually. While we were having lunch at Five Guys after dropping some serious coin at the dollar over liquor store sale.

The WOD doesn’t look that bad:

They rarely do! That’s the trick. People wouldn’t come to class if the WOD looked ridiculous. Sure, some you know will straight up suck, like three rounds of 500M row, 21 burpees, and 400M run. I don’t know who came up with that one, you are evil. The 20 minute AMRAP of farmers carry, ring rows, GHD sit ups, and wall runs did not look bad. However it was. Damn. Fooled me again.

I am going to smoke this WOD:

Similar to the previous thought. Usually the response when it is what appears to be a short AMRAP. The truth is we come out of the gate like a thundercat and blow the doors off the first round and then wonder why we can’t breathe. Save a little in the tank for the remaining rounds. You can rest when it is over, however you have to get through it all for it to be over.

Get off my rower…or that’s my spot:

We are territorial and most of us are superstitious. We have the shorts that make us run faster, well maybe some people do. All of mine are like running through mashed potatoes in snow shoes. We all have a “spot” in the gym where we are stronger, faster, and perform our absolute best. Stay out of our spot….please.

WTF, What the….?:

Usually the response when the coach puts 800 meter med ball runs in the warm up. No logical reason for those to be included. Can also occur when somebody puts 5 rounds of 50 walking lunges in a WOD. You know who you are. Hang your head low…very low.

What the….?

Didn’t we just do this…?:

We all like to think those in charge of the programming spend hours meticulously going through past WOD’s and thinking up new ways of torturing us, however they are people with other obligations and once in a while we do repeat WOD’s, which aren’t the hero or the named girls. It happens. Get over it. Better have a better score than last time or it’s off to Jazzercise.

I can do this Rx (Prescribed for you non cult followers):

21-15-9 of 225lb. Dead lifts and pull ups and your max dead lift is 230lbs. Probably not a good idea. Go for it! Stud.

Those aren’t real…

Three pood Kettle bells, yes they are and they are awesome! Burpee box jump over pull ups! Yes, they are real and they are not awesome. What did you think I meant?

That is a nice Snatch:

Some people can catch it low and the rest of us rely on the tried and true reverse curl to the forehead followed up with a shoulder press. What? It’s overhead. Thinking about this lift will only make it worse. Lift the barbell, while keeping your back at the same angle, open your hips, while shrugging  and getting bar high enough for you to jump under the bar. How do you jump low? Don’t know. I stick with reverse curls and my max weight hasn’t moved in over a year. That sucks, time for a beer.

Somebody went to Lulu:

Decked out from head to toe, including the headbands. I hear their clothes are great. They don’t make it in my size. Maybe I could buy two and sew them together? I have only heard good things so have at it! They are a great company and have great messaging.

Holy crap, I want those shoes:

I am a shoe whore and proud of it. Currently I have enough shoes to fill a closet however I am eyeing up the Reebok Lifters because obviously they would make me stronger….and as it turns out I got them for Christmas. Time for some more shoes. Maybe a pair of the Nano Speed….yeah, that’s the ticket. Those will help.

What is that smell?…Shoot it’s me.

CrossFit = SWEAT. Lots and lots of sweat. Sweat = Stink. Yep, you stink. All the moisture wicking fabric in the world won’t do a damn thing. I make Under Armour a liar every damn day. It looks like I jumped in a pool with my clothes on. I have a beach towel in my Jeep to sit on during the ride home. I may have to change seat belts….it’s that bad.

Still some dry tank top….

When will this be over…

It will be over when you finish. NO REST! Get going already. You won’t die. Biologically proven you’ll pass out first. You can’t catch your breath so don’t stop. Just keep moving forward.

Doesn’t everybody want a piece of this action? Sounds like fun, right? Tell your friends. The cult always needs new members. It’s like a human ponzi scheme. You can’t leave until you bring forth your replacement!

Have a great weekend!

CrossFitRook