Quick post today, got back into the gym.  Took a rest day yesterday after the Ruckus.

Today was an 21 minute EMOM:

  • Every 1st minute 5 front squats
  • Every 2nd minute 10 kettle bell cleans (as Rx was snatches, but I can’t do those yet)
  • Every 3rd minute 5-10 toes to bar or a variation (I hung from the bar and did knee raises)

I decided to listen to my body since my lower back has been bothering me and didn’t go as heavy as I would have liked.  Sara McEvoy’s post yesterday was a good reminder as to why I shouldn’t go heavy just because.  It’s something I’m working on.  So I only did 105#.  The kettle bell cleans were at 24# and I was happy to do the knee raises, as it was my first workout hanging from the bar in a long, long time.  My shoulder didn’t bug me at all.  Nice to get back at it.

Went to PT and he did a lot of work on my low back and shoulder.  The session ended with ice on my shoulder and  the stim machine!  I LOVE IT.  Here’s a picture of me with my best friend, the stim machine.

photo (5)

Cleaning on a Saturday

Went in this morning to get a 1-1 session with John to work on lifting, specifically my clean.  He started evaluating my form and then we talked about what I thought I was doing wrong.

We did a couple sets at increasing weight 3x high hang cleans, 3x hang cleans, 3x power cleans.  And then we did some squat cleans, working on footwork.  My biggest problem is getting under the bar.  I don’t really have any issues with the strength part of it, it’s just getting under the bar.  We dissected that part and there were some things that really clicked today.  He gave me some good drills to work on so that the movements essentially become muscle memory.  Towards the end, he had me do 3x power cleans and built up to a heavy weight.  In between, he had me doing increasing weight of front squats.  My legs are toast from Jackie yesterday, but the squats felt pretty good.  I also need to work on my footwork, as I tend to “starfish” out a bit with my right leg.  Okay, a lot.  Especially when it gets heavy.  Getting my elbows through when it becomes heavy is also a problem, it almost seems like an after thought.  Like I lift the weight and then I’m like “fast elbows.”  And by that time it’s too late.

One thing that I know is true of myself is that I tend to over-think things – especially before I lift.  When I went into the set-up, I would tend to be down there and think about the lift too much.  He suggested that I think about the lift before I go into the set-up and just get down there, set-up and go.  It worked.  I ended up PR’ing my power clean today at 135# 🙂 and did two reps at that weight. I got two lifts at 135#, and then got in my head too much.

I’m excited that I had this session with John and hope to do some more sessions with him.  He had me do some dumb bell work and then I was done for this week.

Getting warmer and using the butt coolers in Niko's car after a workout

Getting warmer and using the butt coolers in Niko’s car after a workout

Getting some No Bread breakfast time from Salem Foods.  Yummy!

Getting some No Bread breakfast time from Salem Foods. Yummy!

Some New Craic – Testing Day 1

Took a rest day yesterday.  After the tabata and then sitting in a car for 7+ hours…my body was a mess.  Mostly lounged around the house after going to breakfast and catching a screening of Lincoln in the early afternoon.  I also knew that I’d be working out Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday of this week because it’s another testing week at Craic and I needed to get my tests / workouts in before I left for a business trip to Las Vegas.  So why more tests?  Craic is changing the way that they approach training.  This came after a trip John and Glen took to AZ for OPT Training.  Here’s Glen’s recent post on the new philosophy of training.  We’re going to spend three days testing this week and for each movement, it will put us into a group of which we will stay in while we train.  For some of the movements, we might be in BEG, for others, INT and for some Rx and that will be our swim lane (per movement) for the next two months.

I worked out with Kendyl and Lauren today.  Lauren and I were joking that if we morphed into one person, we would be the ultimate Crossfitter 🙂  She’s amazing at gymnastics and running and I’m pretty decent at strength and rowing.  Ha!  Today’s test was 1RM backsquat and max pull-ups (or scaled version).  The thresholds for what group you’re in were as follows:


RX= 1.5x Bodyweight or more
INT= 1-1.5x Bodyweight
BEG= Bodyweight or less


Men / Women 
RX=  7+
INT= 3-6
BEG = 0-2

Going in, I knew I’m be at BEG for the pull-ups, but surprisingly, until today, I’ve never tested my backsquat 1RM.  For the pull-ups we had the option of doing 3-second negatives or ring pulls.  Pull-ups make me nervous with my shoulder issue, so I talked to Jarrod about doing ring-pulls correctly.  I’ve been doing them a lot lately, but I knew I wasn’t doing them correctly, as they weren’t as challenging as I knew that they could be.  This time, Jarrod had me stand with my feet directly beneath the rings and it was definitely more challenging.  I squeaked out 11 ring pulls.  Officially in the BEG group.  By the way, Lauren got 11 strict pull-ups!

Working with Lauren and Kendyl was great on the backsquat.  Kendyl totally underestimated her own strength and was like “I think I’ll try for 105 today.”  She and Lauren both ended up getting 130#!  I checked what I did historically and did a 5×5 at 125# in September and prior to that, 5×3 at 145# in August.  Other than that, I never tested it.  I knew that likely I could do 165#, as that’s my front squat.  I did the following rep scheme: 75# x 2, 95# x 3 (warm up) and then 125#, 145#, 165#, 175#, 185#, and then I decided to try for 195#.  I rebounded off the bottom no problem, but when I got the middle of the lift my body just stopped.  It (as Jarrod also pointed out) was a very weird place for me to pause in the middle of my lift.  He thought I was going to fail, but somehow after the pause, I stood right up!  I’m really happy with 195#.  It put me in the INT group for that movement.  Can’t wait to get 200# at the end of this training regime!

Today also marked my half-year point of check-ins at Craic.  I’m still the mayor 🙂 I’ve been going to Craic for 8 months, but didn’t start doing the Foursquare thing until today.


Yesterday, I did my first private OLY lifting session with Coach Jarrod.  I went into it thinking that it was primarily mobility, form, and lifting heavy weights. Boy was I wrong.  In my session, it finally hit me that all the functional movements that we do are related.  And it’s the things that you least expect that affect your movements the most.  My workout with him was like this:

We started with the 500m row, 3 rounds.
The first round, Jarrod had me go as fast as I could and my stats were this:
Watts 204 / 1:59.8 / 38 strokes
The second round, Jarrod coached me the entire way through – concentrating on my form.  This was really hard, and I went significantly slower.  
Watts 160 / 2:09.8 / 27 strokes
The third round, Jarrod had me use the coaching he had just given me to see how I did.  As you can see, not only did I drop almost two seconds from my first round – but I also dropped the amount of rows that I had to use.
Watts 213 / 1:58 / 33 strokes
A significant thing about the times above is that when we did a benchmark 500m row during my intro classes (in February 2012), I thought I was really kicking ass at the row.  My time then? 2:17, and I guarantee you I was NOT as efficient as I was today.

Then we went into specific lifting work.  Our focus was the snatch.

Snatch Work 
Coach B warm up with PVC pipe (down-ups, down-ups-shoulders, down-up-pull, down-up-overhead)
Hang snatch
Power snatch with squat
Then, to end the lovely session, an 8 minute AMRAP
250m row 
10 KB 27# swings
10 knees to elbows
2+ 1 row, 5KB
This was hard and I was zonked.  I ate like crap the previous day and I think that this was a major factor to that.  The more crap I eat, the more I realize that it’s not worth the way it makes me feel.
The session kicked my ass and I’ve already scheduled the next one.