CrossFit – Aint Nobody got time for that!

Hi all,

Yay it’s finally Friday! Ok so this week has gone a bit faster than normal with having Monday off but still always pleased for the weekend to arrive – especially seen as David and I are off on a ‘seeing a bit more of what is on our doorstep’ day on Saturday – see my Thinking Out Loud post yesterday for more info!

But for now, it’s time for my 2 in 1 CrossFit recap!

Thursday Morning (24th)

We began with a double block run, always a favourite…not! And then came in to do some more squat style stretches and movements.

After that came some squat clean tekkers, first using the Burgener warm up and then applying that to the squat clean movement. Here is a video for those who are new to these moves and would like to actually know what a squat clean is!

Then we had 15 minutes to work up to our max squat clean. I am still working on technique with this one, I tell you the concept of going down and under a barbell while it is travelling up is a strange experience and quite a feat to master. I know the principal steps and understand them, it’s just the speed I need to work on and I am getting there – definite improvements. I managed 17.5kg in the end. Yes I have done 21kg before but the technique just wasn’t there. At least I know that every rep done at this weight was done with speed and precision – and I definitely prefer that, weight will come.

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The main WOD

In front of a 12 minute clock

1 minute box jumps

1 minute sumo deadlift high pull

2 minute box jump

2 minute sumo deadlift high pull

3 minute box jump

3 minute sumo deadlift high pull

I went with a weight of 15kg on my ball and a 19 inch box.

Well if you read my post yesterday you will know that I froze when it came to the box jumps. I just couldn’t do it – my mind just wouldn’t let me. Blame fatigue, my crash a few weeks earlier, the fact that my side still hurts but whatever the reason, my mind just wasn’t there. I used the first minute of box jumps to try and with no luck, moved on to step ups – would rather go to the max with them rather than stand around trying to find the courage to jump.

Barney Stinson Quote Meme(source)

Good to do sumo’s again in a WOD though!

Friday Morning (25th)

Today’s WOD was insane. Our warm up consisted of 200m sprints and jumping jacks – we were super puffed out by the end! Then we moved on to some hamstring stretches which were fab actually, just what I needed to limber up.

deadlifts

The strength WOD was 15 minutes to gain a new 1RM deadlift. Again I wanted to focus on technique, as my back tends to round just as I am away to put the bar on the ground. I worked with high weights, slowly upping them and trying to make sure the technique followed through. I finished the 15 minutes equalling my PB of 60kg. Coach was not going to stand for this! He ordered me to put another 5kg on the bar and go for 65kg – and I did it! Yay – new dead lift PB.

bear deadlifts(A bear, my CrossFit animal! Grrr!)

We had to take 80% of this new deadlift PB (50kg for me) for the next part of the WOD…

For time

400m run

21 deadlifts

800m run

15 deadlifts

1200m run

9 deadlifts

Even thinking about it now makes me want to cry!

The deadlifts were heavy but for me they were the ‘relief’ of the WOD. The running was killer and every second was so tough, mentally and physically. But I kept running, didn’t stop, kept focused, stayed positive (or tried to) and even sang songs in my head to keep the running beat – crazy I know but it worked!

I finished in 24.40 and I am super happy about this!

Nobody-got-time-Meme(source)

Ok so it was the WOD from hell and I hated every minute of it. But will I be back for more on Monday? You bet I will!

Have a fab weekend folks!

CrossFit – Mental Strength!

Hi all!

Can you believe it is finally Friday! Yay!

Hope you all have something great planned for the weekend – I do, chilling out with my David! Aren’t some of the best weekends the ones where you have nothing planned at all? I think we all need some time to just rest and recover, something that is a lot easier said than done most of the time!

Biggest plan for the weekend, making Kalua Pig in the slow cooker… oh holy guacamole! #isitwrongtobesoexcitedaboutmeat

Anyhoo, time for a 2 in 1 recap of Tuesday and yesterdays CrossFit!

CROSSFIT

Tuesday Morning

We began with a block run and some mobility stretches. Oh yes and a 5 minute squat hold… I did it… it was not fun!

Then, after some practice with the pvc pipe, we moved on to having 15 minutes to achieve a new max squat clean.

I am not the biggest fan of cleans. I haven’t done them very often and find them very tricky – a combination of the movement itself and my shoulder mobility issues. But in doing this on Tuesday I realised that my biggest hold back when it comes to cleans is my mind. In order to do cleans you need to be aggressive, you need to throw power into your lift, you need physical and mental strength, you need to know you can do it. I lift with the mindset that I ‘should’ be able to do it, rather than ‘can’ do it. And there is my downfall.

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The main WOD included cleans and was as follows.

20 minute AMRAP

80% of 1RM clean

1 Deadlift

1 Clean

1 Front Squat

1 Jerk

My 1RM from the previous was 21kg so I rounded up and went for 17.5kg for the WOD. And I enjoyed it! I think it was because I knew I ‘could’ lift 17.5kg, it being a lot lighter than the 21kg I had just done and it meant both my mind and body were in check. In the 20 minutes I completed 22 rounds.

I really must learn from that. Feel confident, feel aggressive and know you CAN do it. Because if your mind isn’t on board, you never will.

Thursday Morning

Warm up for today… block run…yes. Fair enough. Block run backwards??!! What the?

I think it was the most unnatural thing I have ever done!

We then moved inside for some mobility and general exercises. More foam roller fun!

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The first part of the WOD was a weighted pull up. I can’t do a strict pull up yet but gave it my best shot. I then tried to do negative pull ups (where you jump up, grab the bar and slowly release yourself down), but my arms still can’t hold me up there. So instead I did some jumping pull ups – I have done these in a WOD before and they are still tough – I managed 36 in 2 minutes but probably could have done more if I hadn’t put all my energy into trying to do 1 strict pull up! I will get there with the bar, more arm strength will help and I’m definitely working on that!

We then moved on to floor press – like a bench press but you do it from lying on the floor. Total arm and core workout here! We had to start with 5 reps and then continue to up weight until we could only do 3 reps.

We practiced with the empty bar bell (which was heavy enough for me!) and then added some weights. We put 2.5 kg on either side of the bar and I gave it my best shot, but could only achieve 3 reps. How could I be at my 3 rep max already!?

Well as it turns out, the 15kg barbell we thought we had grabbed was actually a 20kg bar, so I had just done a 3 rep of 25kg! Score!

I went down to 22.5kg to try 5 reps, which I did and then upped to 23.5 to try 5 of them. But I couldn’t do it. My arms were just so tired, they managed 3 reps once and then struggled to do 3 in another 2 attempts. I was just pleased that I managed to lift 25kg when I still had the strength! So in a strange way thanks David for picking up the wrong bar!

The main WOD was as follows

3 rounds for time

In 3 minutes perform

1 block run

In remaining time max pull ups

Rest 20 seconds.

I wasn’t looking forward to the run but I was determined to get that run in 3 minutes. And I did every time. With time to spare for 3 pull ups in the first round and 2 pull ups in the second and third rounds! I was so pleased and so was coach. The last time we did a timed block run in a WOD I did it in 3.05 minutes. So this really is something!

But the real winner of the day, my hubby David, for the first time being able to do strings of unassisted kipping pull ups! Check him out in the photo below! So proud and I know I will get there one day too, with him as my inspiration and rock!

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Enjoy the weekend everybody!

Crossfit – Deadlifts and Burpees!

Hi all,

Yay it’s Friday!

I cannot wait for the weekend, firstly because it’s the weekend and secondly because David and I head off on a wee holiday on Sunday! Not going too far away – a nice wee cottage with a real fire, some quiet time, good company, wine and food! So excited!

But do not fear, I have been writing away to get some blog posts ready to rock for when I am away so will still have some content for you all!

wods and all

But now time to recap yesterdays Crossfit – another morning session – loving the early get up and go mornings! Seriously!

We began with a little tabata warm up of double unders and air squats. Good to get the heart pumping, still no luck on the unders!

wod 1411

Then we moved on to some front rack mobility – I honestly didn’t realise how tense and knotted I was around here! So good to stretch out these areas though as I can now see why I struggle to keep my elbows up during front rack moves, my muscles just aren’t flexible enough. Will get there though, more stretching!

After that was 6 rounds of 6 rep front squats, at 70% of our 1 RM. My 1RM, was 30kg so I went for 20kg. It was tough but good fun! Keeping those elbows up is my main problem but as we went through the reps my technique definitely improved. Often it was only my last rep that I let my elbows slip (getting tired) but I just need to focus so I don’t let them drop. Also I need to remember to get my feet in the correct position. I have been bringing them a bit too close together recently. Glad to have David watching over me while I was doing them so he noticed, really helped me out.

The main WOD was really good but tough for all as coach really wanted us to look at upping our weights. It was a ladder WOD

10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1

Deadlifts

Bar hopping burpees

I began with 30kg on my bar but had to go down to 25kg after 9 reps as my technique was suffering on my deadlifts. I wasn’t able to keep my spinal curvature in the correct position while lifting at that heavier weight and the last thing coach wanted was for me to have an injury. 25kg was a better weight for now.

And just when you thought burpees couldn’t get worse, here comes bar hopping burpees! A killer on the arms after front squats but I did them. Still on the hope that one day I will fall in love with them…!

Then we all finished with some foam rolling on the back – a lot of cracking and popping going on but it felt so good releasing it all!

 

Crossfit – And the weights go up!

wods and all

Hi all,

Hope your Tuesday is going well. I am currently watching as deep dark clouds surround the centre of Glasgow – think we are in for a rain storm! Had one last night, it was crazy rain!

Here is my recap from Crossfit last night. Time for me to join the big boys and girls…

wod 18

We began with an extended tabata warm up which I think we were all grateful for – it was cold wet and miserable outside!

So we had 20 seconds of work, followed by 10 seconds of rest, times 5 for each station. The stations were wall balls, kettle bell swings and box jumps (step ups for me). It wasn’t too bad, the step ups and kettle bells swings were fun and even the wall balls were ok. I think because it wasn’t about doing a ‘certain amount of reps’ I was able to focus a bit more on technique and take things slowly. Good practice. We were all certainly warmed up after that!

After doing some stretches on the floor (sore but felt so good!), we moved on to toe to bar swing tekkers. After doing the toe to bar swings during a WOD last week it was good to revisit them again and try some more. As I mentioned last week, I understand the technique behind it and what I have to do, just need more strength to do it. I was able to swing a lot more and get my legs up further which I was pleased about.

David and I then paired up for 8 rounds of 4 rep back squats at 80% of your 1 RM. My last 5 RM was 25kg but that was really tough. I managed 25kg in the end – I could have gone higher but we ran out of time. I also wanted to make sure I was doing it correctly at 25kg as last night my chest was coming forward ever so slightly when I bent down to squat. No good! By the end however, I think I had rectified it.

We then moved on to the main WOD of the day and coach was keen for us to focus on upping our weights – rather than focusing on reps.  A 12 minute AMRAP barbell complex consisting of – deadlift, power clean, front squat then split jerk (separate but one move leading on to the other).

Oh boy was this tough. I began with a 7.5kg bar and 17.5kg of weight on it = 25kg. This was far too much. I could deadlift but that was it. So I dropped it down to the bar plus 10kg = 17.5kg. This was still really heavy. The deadlifts were no problem but to go from that to a power clean was so incredibly difficult – I had to use everything; I mean everything in my body to get the bar up there. The front squats and split jerk were also difficult but compared to the power clean I was glad of the change. Those 12 minutes were the most difficult and testing minutes I have ever had at Crossfit. It required 110% of everything I am to do it. I was however, determined to do it. I know my techniques now, I know how to do the moves properly so the next step is adding the weight. Previously I would have dropped the weight down further but I knew in order to succeed I needed to really push and do this. (I must add that I never would go as far as to hurt myself, I wouldn’t do it and coach would never let me do anything that would damage my body – just wanted to make that clear!).

It was tough, so very very tough. I was so drained afterwards, even to the point of emotional (not like me!) but it showed me what I can do. My hardwork is paying off, my practice is paying off, I never could have dreamed of lifting those weights for a power clean to front squat to split jerk, even if you had asked me last week!

Keep focused, keep strong and keep going!

Crossfit – Good Times!

wods and all

Hi all,

Hope your Tuesday is going well and you are all having a nice day!

Here is my recap of last night’s Crossfit session – good times!

wod 15

We began by doing an AMRAP warm up which was really cool. I do like when I row but it was nice to do a warm up with the rest of the group for once!

So the 5 minute AMRAP consisted of – 15 air squats, 15 kettle bell swings and coach switched from the original plan of double unders to wall balls.

Air squats and kettle bells, no problem but I am still struggling with those wall balls. I think my problem is, as David mentioned to me, that I can never perfect the technique as I am always struggling with the weight. I use a 5kg ball which is the lowest our box has so there isn’t really any other option. I guess I will just have to wait until I get stronger in my arms and then hopefully the ability to do wall balls will follow. Unless anyone else has any tips for practicing?

We moved on to some hip mobility stretches which were great as I really felt the benefit. Yes they were sore, I’m not going to lie, but it was good to give my hips a good stretch out and learn some new exercises that I can also do at the gym. They should really help improve our squats and flexibility in general.

David and I paired up for the next part of the WOD, 5 reps of back squats, 7 times at 75% our 1 RM. I checked my notebook and my 1 RM was 25kg, so decided to start with a 7.5kg bar with 5 kg each side = 17.5kg. I slowly increased the weight and by the time we had finished I managed to do 5 reps at 25kg! Result! I couldn’t believe my progress; to go from what was my 1RM to being able to do 5 reps of it gave me such a boost! Happy Jen!

Then we wrapped up with the main WOD, another AMRAP, this one for 8 minutes and comprising of 7 thrusters and 10 deadlifts.

It was a bit annoying; my arms were always going to be the problem for this one, having to go for a lower weight in order to do the thrusters. Therefore it meant when I came to the deadlifts they were probably easier than they should have been (although I am aware the deadlifts in this WOD were going to be the easier part for all). I started with 15kg but after the first round had to go down to 12.5kg – only marginally less but it meant that I could actually lift correctly! I managed 5 rounds plus 3 thrusters.

Good session though! Really enjoyed myself, I think (although I can’t lift a large amount) lifting really is my favourite part of Crossfit and I love a WOD that incorporates many lifting aspects. I also love the fact that it is through lifting that I can really see my progress. Let’s hope it continues!

Crossfit – And my arms are still sore…!

wods and all

Hi all,

Happy (and thank goodness it’s…) Friday!

Just a wee post to recap Wednesdays Crossfit  and put it this way, I am writing 2 days after said event and I am still sore!

So we arrived and did our usual warm up – a block run for the group and a 440m row for me. Loving the rows actually and with only doing a short distance, I can really go for it and get my heart rate pumping! Compared to when I am at the gym and am doing longer stints on the rower and have to steadily pace myself over a set period of time. Both different but fun!

We then worked on some stretches/ massages with the foam roller and the hard ball. Oh boy do we have some knots in our shoulders and back! It was a real killer doing this but I know these knots and pains shouldn’t be there and hopefully more work on this will ease them out. Not going to be a nice process but one that will benefit our bodies both in general and with our Crossfit technique.

wod 7

Moving on to something more energetic however, the first part of the WOD. It wasn’t too bad, 25 double unders (or 50 skips scaled), 5 burpees (urgh!) – 4 rounds for time.

So I sailed through the skips, I do love skipping and can do it well – just not double unders! But will get there eventually with that! And then the burpees slowed me down, still getting used to them, still hate them and weak arms means it’s trickier to pull yourself back up again quickly! I managed it in 4 minutes 15 seconds, not bad and the burpees will get faster as my arms and shoulders get stronger.

And then we had part two of the WOD. It looked alright on the board, I wasn’t dreading it too much, but the combination of a few different factors made it the toughest workout yet.

The push presses and back squats were fine. We were able to use our ‘dip drive’ force on the push presses so that always helps. And I really do feel like I have gotten the hang of a back squat. The power snatches however were brand new to me and getting to terms with the technique was proving difficult.

I like to break my technique down into sections so that I know I am doing all the key moves and correctly. That’s the only problem with the power snatch, it has to be done quite rapidly and with breaking it down and doing it slowly, I was never doing it properly. I also was having a problem with my arms, I know I had to keep them straight but somehow they were always bending at the elbow. Actually I think my biggest fault was that I was simply looking too much into the specifics rather than just ‘doing’. The perfectionist in me!

It was a long 15 minutes. Even though I can do the push press and back squat, that amount of reps meant I really couldn’t handle any weight on the bar and had to stick with the weight of the bar bell (7.5kg) and training wheels on the end. That in turn however affected my technique as having a bit more weight on the bar keeps my chest down when lifting, especially in the push press. Very frustrating.  The power snatches did improve over time though, the more I did them, the more I seemed to get nearer to the ideal. And my arms were bending less – great!

By the end I was shattered. When your arms are your weakest part, doing an ‘arm’ based workout is a killer and at times can bring me down a bit, especially when I am trying so hard but can’t seem to grasp a technique. I will however look on the positive side and focus on the fact I am still making progress. I am such a beginner to this Crossfit journey with so much to learn but I will persevere in order to give my body the strength it deserves!

Crossfit – My favourite WOD yet!

wods and all

Hi all,

Hope you are all well and ready to tackle Tuesday!

Just a wee post to recap my Crossfit session from last night – it was so much fun!

We began with a simple warm up, a 400m block run for most and a 400m row for me. We then stretched by doing some squats – 10 air squats followed by 30 second ‘hold’ squats, repeated 4 or 5 times to really get our muscles warmed up and prepared for the WOD ahead. This was followed by some stretches on the PVC pipe to get our arms and core also prepared.

Today’s WOD was part of our boxes October Crossfit Open – everyone can sign up to take part in 4 WOD’s, a different one each week, post their score and there are prizes for the winners! Sounds like fun! I decided not to take part – not quite there yet in terms of being able to compete with the other females at my box, but I am quite happy with just being a beginner and taking my time to learn and perfect! And cheer everyone else on of course!

Normally the open WOD’s won’t take place during the normal WOD times (you have to arrange a time to come down and be ‘judged’ by one of the coaches), but for the first WOD, coach decided to make it the workout for all – and I really pleased about this!

So here was Mondays WOD

WOD 5

David and I worked as partners and got our equipment together. We work well together as we are similar in height and not too distant in terms of weights.

The first part of the WOD was to determine our 1 RM strict press. This was a tricky one as you couldn’t use your legs or core to help you ‘dip drive’ the bar up. We began with doing 10 reps at a low weight, 5 with more weight on the bar and then 3 reps with a higher weight – meaning that when you began trying to your one rep max your body was prepared for it. I managed to get up to 18.5kg as my 1 RM – not very high but this move requires strength in your arms and this is my weakest area.

The second part of the WOD was to determine our 1 RM back squat. Once again we did the 10, 5 then 3 reps to get our muscles ready and then on to being judged for our 1 RM. I struggled to begin with for how low down my squat needed to be to qualify, but after some practice I was able to get the feel for how low I needed to go. My 1 RM got to 25kg, woop woop! (although my shoulders and back of my neck are definitely feeling it today!).

The last move was to determine our 1 RM deadlift. This really is where the weights get heavy. You try to focus on yourself at all times but occasionally, during a rest or when David was being judged, I would take a look around the room and see some of the weights others were lifting. In doing this though, it just inspired me – inspiration for the future on what can be achieved if you work hard and train safely. My deadlift RM? 45kg…! The heaviest I have ever lifted – almost my body weight!

Overall, this WOD was fab! Both David and I were able to finally gain our 1 RM for 3 moves, which we really needed to do to as it is so pivotal to many other workouts. We also were finally able to see just what our bodies really could do and this is what surprised me the most, I never imagined I would be able to lift so much weight and I am quite proud of this! I also look forward to looking at how this progresses over the next few months and how much I can improve as I get stronger.

I really was beaming after this WOD – my favourite so far, I loved it!