Tagged: muscle-up

Rope Burn

Today was a nice training day. Still hurt, mind you, but still good – the mind was in a good place.

The skill was double unders and rope climb. My DU haven’t changed – I still suck at them, but I decided a while back that they would not get the better of me, and they haven’t. I still frown when I whip myself, but it’s form trying to understand what I’m doing wrong. The rope climb is ok… not great, but I don’t suck at it either. I’ve yet to master a controlled descent – one where I won’t burn my ankle. And yes, saying I’ve got rope burn on an ankle sounds terribly wrong out of context. 🙂

The WOD was… partially unpleasant. 12 min AMRAP: 30 squats, 15 burpees, 30 sit-ups  I did 3 rounds and 5 burpees. I paced myself throughout and keep my mind quiet. Didn’t look too much at the clock or at the people around me. I was was in a good zone… not beast mode, but one where I stand strong. I most likely would’ve done better, but the sit-ups got the best of me. It’s been a while since I got in that zone. Felt good.

On the butterfly pull-up front, I had a smallish break through. I got advice on my legs – keeping them together instead of apart while doing the butterfly kip. It generate more energy and I finally got 3 in a row, and quite easily, too! 🙂

On the muscle up front: still can’t 🙂


1 scoop (10g) Beyond Yourself AMRAP (BCAA) with 12oz water – during training, 1 scoop (30g) Beyond Yourself Whey ISO in 500ml water – after training


F*** wallballs

I had started this blog saying I’d write the good, the bad and the ugly. Well, today was WOD 13.3, and the ugly.

Fuck Wallballs. The WOD went so bad that I actually left the gym straight for outside after timing out, not even caring about my score. At the moment, I still don’t know my score.

It went bad, it sucked like you wouldn’t believe. I’m angry and frustrated at myself, the universe and my performance. I can do better, I have done better. I’m not sure if I want to yell, hit something or cry. I’m in a dark place in my head right now, one that I hate visiting, and it’s not fun.

Today, the WOD got to me – fuck you, WOD.

Oh, and today is also my 100th post. Thanks to all who’ve read about the road I travel to the Spartan Race.


1 scoop (10g) Beyond Yourself AMRAP (BCAA) with 12oz water – during training, 1 scoop (30g) Beyond Yourself Whey ISO in 500ml water – after training

This week at the Open

Well, 13.3 is out. Not what I expected, or wanted, at all. At least there are no burpees. So:

WOD 13.3
12 minute AMRAP of:
150 Wall balls
90 Double-unders
30 Muscle-ups

This is a repeat of last year’s 12.4. I did Karen last Friday, so I know it’ll suck. I won’t even be scared about the muscle ups, I’m not going to get there – 90 DU separate us.

I might do it tomorrow… I’ll see.

Weakness week

Man tonight’s WOD was draining! It caught me by surprise; I thought it would be more of a muscular demand than a cardio one.

Simple warmup consisting of mountain climbers, pullups, pushups, situps and double unders. The skill part was a hip and leg mobility set. It did help.

Today’s WOD: For time – 10 Squat Cleans 135lbs, 20 Toes To Bar, 20 Box Jumps 24in, 10 Muscle Ups, 20 Push Press 135lbs, 20 Double Unders, 10 Thrusters 135lbs, 20 Pull Ups, 20 Burpees, 200 feet OH Walking Lunges 45lbs.

Did you notice in the middle of this the muscle ups? That’s right, no kids glove tonight; Rx will have to be earned the hard way.  And it’s RING muscle ups, too. Obviously, this was outside my skill and strength levels – I scaled. I had an 85lbs bar for all the lifts. I worked hard for the reps, too. The muscle ups could be scaled: you could do 10 bar muscle ups, or 10 ring muscles ups from the ground on the knees (which I did), or 20 chest to bar PLUS 20 ring dips. I can do the rings from floor pretty ok. I’m missing explosive movement for the real deal. It took me 17:37 to finish this nightmarish WOD. The 200 feet OH lunges were simply murder at every step. Finished gasping and soaked. A good workout. 🙂

I also noticed that this week’s WODs all happened to take aim at what I’m weak at: OH squats, thrusters, double unders, muscle ups. So, it’s been a crap week, but a good one, too. Slowly chipping away at the weak spots, all the while trying to get a positive(r) training mindset. I’m slowly pushing the negative voice out, one mental decibel at a time.


1 scoop (10g) Beyond Yourself AMRAP (BCAA) with 12oz water – during training, 1 scoop (30g) Beyond Yourself Whey ISO in 500ml water – after training.

Reality Check

Every now and then, you get a reality check. It’s not always a bad thing; I get some that tell me that I’m at a certain point in my journey – possibly ahead or behind where I thought I was. Today was more of the latter than the former.

Fairly straightforward WOD today consisting mostly of my weaknesses: 10min AMRAP – 3 Thrusters, 5 Cleans, 7 OH Squats, all at 115lbs. I struggle with the thrusters and, as some of you know, the OH Squats (no hate, now, though!). My approach to deciding how much weight to put on is logical. I check my log book, see where I stood last time, the date, whether or not it was a skill/1 max rep/WOD. From there, I usually add weight if under the WOD Rx. So, enough to struggle/work for it without it being impossible or getting injured. I also want it to be heavy enough that I don’t breeze through it all, which would defeat the purpose.

So with this in mind, I knew 115lbs would be out of the question. I figured 95lbs would be a decent weight. It’s the Rx for Fran, too. My shoulder/push press is somewhat above that weight, and I know I can clean it. OH Squat at 95lbs… I wasn’t so sure. I know I’ve done 75lbs for a few reps, and I feel like my shoulders have regained a lot of strength. I tried doing 80lbs to gauge… no use – it was simply too much. Fortunately, there were few of us, and I was allowed to use two bars for the WOD. For cleans and thrusters, 95lbs, for OH Squat, 65lbs.

This is where I got a reality check. I did 4 rounds and 5 cleans in 10 minutes. Thrusters in rounds 3 and 4, I couldn’t string all 3 in a row.. it was that hard to squat then push upwards. Not so sure about doing Fran Rx at the end of the paleo challenge, now. OH Squats, I was expecting to struggle, but not that much. Man, it was hard! I thought I was stronger, but I was shown otherwise.

You know what, though? I’m okay with that. I got to spend a WOD not having fun, but working on my worst weaknesses. I also know now where I stand WRT my shoulder strength. So, still a good training session. 🙂

Muscle up(date): Still can’t do one, but small pieces are falling into place in my head, and I’m working on my kipping chest to bar pullups, which will help me do them muscle-ups.


1 scoop (10g) Beyond Yourself AMRAP (BCAA) with 12oz water – during training, 1 scoop (30g) Beyond Yourself Whey ISO in 500ml water – after training.


Continuing on the 2012 Open WODs, I decided to do 12.2 today – it’s pick your poison Friday.

12.2 is a snatch ladder. with a 10min cap. You start with 30 reps at 75lbs, then move on to 30 reps at 135lbs, to 30 reps at 165lbs, and then to 30 reps at 210lbs. You can do a full snatch, a power snatch, etc., as long as it’s a snatch – the bar goes from the ground straight to overhead, without stopping at shoulder level (i.e. clean).

I started out like a beast. By minute 3, I was done with the first set and had switched weights to tackle the 135lbs snatches… and that did not happen. I honestly spent the next 7 minutes trying to get the bar above my head. I wasn’t expecting miracles either, mind you. I’ve never managed lifting 135lbs above my head before, een with shoulder or push press. I had hoped to at least do one! No dice. The best I did was get the bar to the transition point where I’d have to push upwards, around shoulder level. There’s probably some fear in there as well, never having done this heavy, coupled with this very dynamic movement and thinking I might injure my shoulder again. Curse the demons that whisper such poison in my ear!

I figured after the WOD, as it only took 10 minutes, that I’d work on my bar muscle up. My goal is to do at least one before the Open. No such luck today. I’ve checked the videos, listened to my coach. But between what they show, what I do and what I see in my mind, there’s a missing link. I still can’t put my finger on it. It’s like the kipping pullups. It took me time to wrap my head around those same elements.

*Follow up on 12.1: I told a few people at the box about willingly doing the 7 minute burpee challenge yesterday, and I got a stare usually reserved for those heading to the loony bin. 🙂


1 scoop (10g) Beyond Yourself AMRAP (BCAA) with 12oz water – during training, 1 scoop (30g) Beyond Yourself Whey ISO in 500ml water – after training.


Even on the road, I’m keeping true to the challenge, and my training. Plus, it’s fun to see other boxes. This week, I’m working in Fredericton, and as luck would have it, there’s a crossfit gym right behind the hotel. Seriously, right behind it! I can see the roof from my room. The owners and awesome and generous folks, and let both me and the Mrs train with them.

One thing I got to give them from the get go, they run a tight ship. I was asked questions about our training background before even setting foot in the gym – a good way of gauging what we know and do and set things accordingly. Both owners and trainers come from an olympic/powerlifting background, all champions in their own rights. They see/teach crossfit as the backbone to your main sport – somewhat like the reason why I started crossfit, to give me an egde/improve in martial arts.

You do the warmup before starting the training session – no time “wasted”. Simple and efficient, 2 rounds – 10 burpees, 10 squats, 10 pullups, 20 lunges, 2 turkish GU and armstrong stretch 15s. We then started class. Today, for us, was deadlift. They have a lift schedule that varies on how many times you came in before in the week. They have a chart based on experience, a method whose name I’ve forgotten and minor tweaking to figure out the weight progression. Based on my previous 1rep max, and my last WOD weights, we figured my target final lifting weight: 275lbs. I started gradually from 140lbs and worked my way up in 6 sets to 275lbs for a set of 3. I was told I had a good form (hurray for my coach!). I was shown a few minor details to improve my form, and I think it makes a difference. Their strength program is interesting – they have small 4 week mini-programs to push back your limits when you’ve found your upper limits. We had 6 sets, and they are timed – they’re set 4 minutes apart. They’re low rep sets, so you’ve time to lift, add weight and rest a little. Heck, I was sharing my bar with another athlete who was using similar weights, and we had time enough.

After the sets, and clearing the bars – it’s a pretty decent size gym; I’d say about 2/3 of what we have in Ottawa – we moved on to the WOD. On today’s menu, a straightforward exercise: 30 muscle ups for time. That’s it. 🙂  Like most, I can’t even do one to save my own life. Obviously, you can scale. Their scale is split and double. That means 30 muscle ups become 60 pullups and 60 push-ups. That’s right, arms, arms and more arms. I PR’d on pull ups, managing to do 21 in a row! I’m pretty happy about keeping up with the guys and gals there, too, finishing in 7:42. Ripped a callus, but I’ll live. After doing 60 pull-ups, I’m starting to think the Murph will be “easier”…

Paleo challenge update: Honestly, tonight, it suck. I wanted some of the sweets offered this afternoon at work, and a desert tonight. I stay strong, didn’t cave in, but it still suck!