CrossFit – Practice!

Hi all,

Time for Tuesday’s 2 in 1 CrossFit recap!

CROSSFIT

Monday Morning (24th)

It was so cold this morning! I mean below freezing –so a block run as a warm up was not fun! But hey, it made us run faster, never a bad thing!

We then continued our warm up with 3 rounds of 10 jumping jacks, 10 mountain climbers and 10 tuck jumps. Jeez, these seemingly innocent warm ups are such killers! Especially when they involve tuck jumps…!

The first part of the workout today was focussing on more gymnastic moves on the bar. Something I know that coach wants us to improve on and make our strengths. To be fair, he is right, I don’t really enjoy working on the bar, however is this just because I haven’t gained any strengths on it? We tend to only like what we are good at (a general observation of society) but we can only become great at something through practice! So I intend to give my all, and hopefully, due to this, will see gains in the future.

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The workout was

5 pull ups

5 dips

5 wide grip pull ups

5 dips

5 narrow grip pull ups

5 dips

5 reverse grip pull ups

5 dips

5 mountain climber pull ups

5 dips

5 mountain climber pull ups (the other way)

5 dips

I did my dips using 2 kettle bells either side. Definite progress with this one as a few months back I couldn’t even manage one dip. The pull ups were to be strict and as I am not able to do that yet (not many of us could) you either worked on doing negative pull ups (jumping up and slowly lowering down) or  15 jumping pull ups (jumping from a raised box and trying to slow on the way down – going from full extension). I definitely see small increased with these – coming down I am a lot slower, not much but still something. Also I am jumping higher to get my chin over the bar. I surprisingly found the narrow grip pull ups to work best… odd but interesting!

The final part of the WOD

17 minute AMRAP

6 shoulder to overhead

9 toes to bar (high leg raises scaled)

12 burpees

burpees-enjoyable-not(source)

I went with a 20kg weight, which I was pleased about as my 1 RM for push jerk is 20kg!

My arms and shoulders were killing me after the work on the bar but I managed 3 rounds plus 7 burpees in the 17 minutes. Then wanted to crawl into a corner and sleep!

Tuesday Morning (25th)

Still pretty sore from yesterday but I woke up with a smile and ready to rock!

We began with a block run and then some much needed foam rolling. It definitely felt good to get the rumble roller into my back and shoulders. #StrangeThingsCrossfittersSay

Then we spent 15 minutes working on our 1 RM for Hang Power Snatch. This is such a new move for me and one that is difficult for a lot to master. The technique (and the feel of using the technique as power) is so hard achieve, never mind perfect. We broke down the move into stages before looking at weight. I find the speed the hardest part to master so Coach wanted me to go down to a lower weight and work on that before trying to gain a 1RM.

(Great video on how to do a hang power snatch)

I definitely feel more confident on the move now than I did before and have learned so much. Just need to practice and it will come. Speed and locking out fully overhead in one move is my issue but I will continue to try my best to succeed. Oh I finished on a weight of 12.5kg, not heavy but I definitely feel I gained much needed knowledge from this session.

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The main WOD was a recap of one we had done 3 months ago. We were to revisit it to see our gains!

Dead Bear Overhead

bear deadlifts(Ok that bear is definitely alive but who wants to see a dead bear!?)

6 rounds for time

6 deadlifts

5 bear complexes (power snatch – front squat – overhead – back squat – overhead)

4 overhead squats

Last time I did this at a weight of 7.5kg – very light for deadlifts and the complexes but it’s those pesky overhead squats!

So I upped my weight to 10kg – still not heavy but the max I could do for overhead squats for this many rounds. I decided to challenge myself with the other aspects by focusing on getting technique spot on and really powering through the WOD. I made sure every squat was below parallel (something I know it wasn’t last time I did it – especially for the overheads) and tried to perfect the overhead squat – taking my time with them but getting it right.

I finished in 17 minutes 20 seconds and was really pleased with my result. I upped my weight by 25% from last time and used my mental as well as physical strength to power through the WOD. As for the overhead squats – I definitely have gotten ‘comfortable feeling uncomfortable’ with them!

Oh and just to mention David’s progress with this WOD – he increased his weight by 71%! Crazy! For him it was nailing those overhead squats by working on them for 14.2 that led to the increased ability. Well done! Proving that practice really does equal gains!

Last Open WOD on Friday – totally predicting thrusters and burpees, leaving the ‘best’ until last…urgh!

CrossFit – Open 14.2

Hi all,

Hope you are well and full of beans seen as its FRIDAY!

And in the merry world of CrossFit, that means only one thing, week 2 of the Open!

crossfit

We arrived and immediately discussed the WOD – did anyone else see it and automatically go ‘ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh??!!’. The reason? The weight! A seated protest followed (while stretching of course)!

14.2 (2)

So once we realised, yep we are actually going to have to do this, we got warmed up with a block run. In order to prepare we worked on various mobility and pvc pipe work, depending on where you were tender/ needed stretching. Main focus- shoulders, lats and ankle. Being in a below parallel squat with a bar resting on your knees, effective but dam right painful!

And then came the WOD – I was in the first wave along with a few of the others that were doing the WOD scaled. Here we go!

3 minutes to do 2 rounds of

10 Overhead Squats  

10 Chest to Bar pull ups

Then if this is achieved within the 3 minutes…

3 minutes for 2 rounds of

12 Overhead Squats

12 Chest to Bar pull ups

Then if this is achieved within the 6 minutes… etc. Going up in 3 minute intervals and 2 extra reps per movement.

Overhead Squats are my mobility nemesis! I have only ever done the OHS with a 7.5kg bar before and they were tough. I tried a 15kg bar but my arms weren’t strong enough to keep locked out while going down. So I went with 10kg and am happy to have made progress!

The scale for the chest to bar were jumping box chest to bars and they were ok – but still strange to tell your head to basically bash your chest into the bar!

My David was there beside me to cheer me on though and that really helped. I managed 23 reps (so one round of OHS, jumping chest to bars plus 3 more OHS) within the 3 minutes. Pleased with that as it was so tough.

14.2 (3)

And then it was time to judge! Great to put all that training to practice and I really enjoyed it! I judged 2 of my fellow CrossFitters and they were great – the mens weight for the OHS was 42.5kg – seriously heavy! Getting below parallel was difficult.

14.2 (5)14.2 (6)

David was very nervous about this workout, his 1RM for OHS was 20kg. But you know what, in training he DOUBLED that to 40kg! How unbelievably awesome is that to double your PB! He has so much more strength in him than he sometimes thinks!

He did attempt 42.5kg in the WOD but was unable to get a full squat. Going back on Sunday though to try again and I know he will nail it! He is strong, just need to get into beast mode and ROAR!

14.2 (1)The 6.30am Zombie Crew after the WOD!

Enjoy your weekend!

CrossFit – Happy Valentines!

Hi all,

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Hope you all have a fun day/ evening planned with someone you love – whether that be your partner, friends or family – today really is a day to celebrate love!

I also have to say ‘Happy Birthday’ to my wonderful Dad – I hope he has a nice day and weekend to follow.

And now time for my 2 in 1 CrossFit post!

wods and all

Thursday Morning

We began with a warm up of a block run and some stretches. Gosh the block run was tough, just shows you how tough something simple like that can be when you have 6 days out of CrossFit. Or it could have been because it was freezing cold!

Then we went on to something new ‘Westside’ style belt squats. This is a way of practicing weighted squats that was devised by Westside CrossFit in the states. The YouTube video link below shows exactly how it is done. We didn’t have the equipment – but improvised, standing in between two boxes and being chained from the belt to a kettle bell – going up in weight.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TRM7g8uXuj8

Do I think it helped my squats? Maybe but it seemed to pull me on my toes (something that has never been a problem before) so I  wouldn’t be desperate to try it again.

The main WOD was in two parts – one the 11.6 Open WOD and the other the 11.4 Open WOD. Yep we were doing both!

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7 minute AMRAP

3 thruster

3 chest to bar

6 thruster

6 chest to bar

9 thruster

9 chest to bar

12 thruster

12 chest to bar…. and so on

3 minute rest… then

10 minute AMRAP

60 bar facing burpees

30 Overhead Squats

10 bar muscle ups

Geez what a workout! I went with 15kg for the thrusters and used a green band for the chest to bars. It was tiring but I got 39 reps in total. The 3 minute rest flew by and then it was on to the burpees. 60! And bar facing (so jumping over the bar, two feet together otherwise no rep). But I managed the 60 burpees and 3 overhead squats (7.5kg) in the 10 minutes which I was pretty pleased about. And it was 60 burpees towards my challenge so always good!

Friday morning (today’s WOD!)

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We began with a block run and the 3 rounds of 10 jumping split jerks, 10 jumping jacks, 10 mountain climbers and then holding a squat until everyone was finished each round.

After that came some toes to bar tekkers followed by a 5 minute AMRAP of toes to bar. I put so much effort into my tekkers though that by the time it came to the AMRAP I was so tired and my arms just weren’t playing ball! Not there yet with toes to bar but focused on my taps and trying to get my knees up as high as possible. I can see improvements, just need to build more strength and have more practice!

We then moved on to having 3 attempts for our fastest 200m sprint. As you know I am still such a novice when it comes to running and still have so much to learn in terms of my own technique, but I had to give it a go and I put my all into it. Round 1 – 1.06, round 2 – 1.00, round 3 – 0.57! I cannot believe it! I was pleased with my first round but to shave 6 seconds off in round 2 and the 9 seconds in round 3 was insane! I was, and still am, over the moon!

The final WOD was another Open WOD – 11.3.

5 minute AMRAP

Squat clean

Jerk

Coach wanted us to go heavy. My max was 20kg but Coach was keen for me to try 22.5kg, which I did but I couldn’t clean it. Maybe if my arms hadn’t been sore after the toes to bar tekkers… I don’t know… but it just wasn’t playing ball. I went down to 20kg and even that was very tough! I was having some problems cleaning it for the first few minutes but Coach came over and had a talk with me (basically told me to get my act in gear as if I didn’t I would hurt myself!) and it was all I needed to push my strength and aggression into my lift. I couldn’t clean and squat at the same time (more practice) but cleaned, then squatted then jerked (push jerk). I managed 9 in the 5 minutes and I was pleased with that, especially considering I spent the first few minutes not utilising all my strength. Silly sausage! But when your 1 RM for a spilt jerk/ push jerk is 20kg, managing to do 9 of them, plus a squat clean is pretty darn good!

Hope you all have a good weekend!

Crossfit – Dead Bear Overhead!

Hi all,

Happy Wednesday!

Hope you are all well and for those over in the states currently battling with the weather I send you lots of warm thoughts and wishes. Stay safe!

A bit belated on the Crossfit recap due to my 100th post yesterday but here we have the info from my morning session on Monday.

wods and all

The warm up was a block run. Normally I would go and row while everyone else went to do that but as I have mentioned in previous posts, I really wanted to try and start running on my knee. I have spent the past few years building the muscle up and it feels stronger than it ever has. Only one way to find out if it is strong enough and that is to test it! I did run as part of a WOD before Christmas and also tried some sprinting with David on Sunday, all of which were a success and didn’t result in any pain on my knee. So I gave it a go and did the block run and I am happy to report no pain during and no aches after! Result! Will continue to take it slow and not push it too far but like what I am seeing!

We then moved on to some muscle up tekkers. Muscle ups are hard; there is no doubt about that! It is a key gymnastic move that requires major upper body strength. Please google for more info/ videos on it being done; I really couldn’t describe it in a way that would do it justice, however this picture below shows the basics (except we start from kneeling on the ground).

muscle-up-2801

 

(source)

Ok, so I don’t have a massive amount of upper body strength and am nowhere near perfecting the move, however I have progressed massively since the last time we did these tekkers!  I actually have the strength to lift myself up on to my tip toes, using only my arms and core. Previously I couldn’t even lift myself up! Gosh I love it when I see how much strength I have gained! I was pretty pumped after that and can only go onwards and upwards with more practice.

It was a good job I was pumped after that. Here comes the main WOD…

‘Dead Bear Overhead’

6 rounds for time

6 deadlifts

6 bear complexes  (power snatch – front squat – push press – back squat)

4 overhead squats

Due to the overhead squats (which are a killer!) we all knew the weights would have to be quite low. So I went for a weight of 7.5kg (bar). I haven’t done this amount of reps before on the OHS with that weight so it was going to be a test. This along with the other moves, all being lifts, meant that your arms never had a break. Again, another test – stamina and strength!

But we all did it! Deadlifts were fine; we all knew they would be at such a low weight. The bear complexes to begin with were fine but by around half way they became tiring and the weight felt heavier as you went on. The overhead squats were indeed a challenge and very tough but I just tried to take them easy and slow, focusing on technique and depth of squat. Coach helped me through most of them, which I was grateful for as he knew it was a toughie for me, but all he had to do was let me know when I hut below parallel with my squat and spur me on!

Both David and I were glad to finish but pumped at our progress at the same time! I did it in a time of 14 minutes and 9 seconds.

Back tomorrow morning!

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Crossfit – Making me smile again!

wods and all

Hi all,

Happy Friday! Can’t believe that’s another week come and gone but if it means it’s the weekend then bring it on!

Time to recap last night’s Crossfit…

Unfortunately, David and I arrived late. It must have only been by 2 minutes maximum and traffic was a killer but rules are rules and if you are late then your warm up consists of 20 burpees. Urgh…

We also warmed up with some swings on the kettle bells, this was definitely more fun!

wod 12

From there we moved on to practicing some techniques – kipping pull up progressors. We started with taps and then moved on to swinging further out in order to get the momentum to eventually kip. My taps are coming along, although to get the momentum, I have to use a band (as do many). With having the band there I feel like you have to learn how to tap all over again, you are supposed to ‘push through’ the band but mine won’t budge! Also I am struggling with the concept of pushing myself further up without bending my arms- they just naturally want to bend – I’m sure it will come with time though. As will my pull ups in general, even with the band my arms still struggle. In time… in time.

We then grabbed a bar bell to work on push jerks and split jerks – something which I haven’t revisited since on- ramp. I was pleased that I remembered my technique and we spent the time (5 rounds of 2 sets), working on this technique. It wasn’t to be about the weight for this one, coach just wanted to make sure we were getting our stance and movements spot on. It was good fun being able to practice this more – and even better to know I was getting it right!

After this we moved on to overhead squats. I have done back squats before but not overhead ones which are quite a bit more tricky – or that was my impression anyway. I started using just a plain 7.5kg bar but my body wasn’t letting me hold this weight up while squatting down. So in order to get the technique right, I used one of the training PVC pipes. After I got the technique, we slid on very light 1.25 kg and then 2.5 kg weights on to the middle of the bar (minding my head when I squatted obviously), so that I could get used to the weight. This worked a treat and by my last set, I was able to go back, get the bar bell and do the squats with that – yay! It just shows that sometimes getting your body used to the weight and position first means that later you may be able to lift a weight you couldn’t do earlier on – all about getting those muscles warmed up.

Then came the main WOD – a 7 minute AMRAP of 5 deadlifts and 10 box jumps.

These are the kind of WOD’s I enjoy!

I went with a weight of 27.5 kg for my deadlifts and due to my knee did step ups rather than the jumps. I completed 7 rounds plus 5 deadlifts in the time and I was really pleased with that.

Overall, looking back on the WOD, I could have lifted heavier for my deadlifts. Think I might go up to 32.5 kg next time – not a big jump but I don’t want to go too far. I can feel myself getting stronger though and WOD’s like this prove it to me. I was a bit bummed out after the last two Crossfit sessions and this is exactly what I needed in order to prove to myself why I was doing this in the first place – enjoyment! It was good to leave the box smiling again.

Have a good weekend everybody!