Tagged: PR

GI Jane

Today was a good day. When I saw the WOD, I was dreading it, but no, it was pretty ok.

The skill tonight was clean and jerk, 1RM. I had 15min to do my 1 rep max. I started with a weight I knew I could get up, 135lbs. I’ve done 135lbs thrusters, I can clean and jerk it. My goal was to double my last recorded PR: 85lbs. Ok, it’s been a while since when did a 1 max rep…  I got progressively up to 175lbs, which I couldn’t get up. Came close, but the elbows wouldn’t lock. SO I retreated a little bit, went for 165 – success! Move on for my last try to 170lbs, double my last PR, and I managed to lift it. Pretty happy.

And now, the WOD: G.I. Jane. 100 burpee pullups for time. That’s it. You do your burpee, then jump to do your pullup. 20min cap. I took a strategic approach to it: sets of 10 with 15 second breaks in-between. That way I kept a good rhythm and would kill myself/cardio along the way. It took me 12:50Rx, so I averaged around 10 burpees per minute. It also helps to have a good impulsion – I didn’t have to burn extra energy to do the pullup.

Oh, there was an option B, should you not want to try G.I Jane: 12.1. Yep, 7 minutes to do as many burpees as possible. Sucks both way…

So I entered dreading what was lying ahead, and came out with a PR and a decent time for a (in the end) good workout.


End benchmark 2

Poison Friday, but I had to do my second paleo challenge benchmark. Had to if I want to win.

My second benchmark was the classic dirty girl, Fran. After doing the Super Fran in the Open, I wasn’t really scared of it. Again, because of the healing shoulder in January, I did the WOD scaled, at 65lbs. Super Fran was 105lbs…

In January, I did it in 6:34. This time around, I crushed it, at 4:45. I shaved almost two minutes off my time!

Next time will be Rx, but will most likely take more time.

And even though it rains outside, I’m also very happy, and proud to say that I’m slowly getting my head wrapped around the mechanics behind the butterfly pullup. I can do two in a row, but not 3. I tried, and tried, and tried – before and after Fran, so muscle fatigue doesn’t quite play a big role in there – but I just can’t seem to string a third one in there. I’ll practice on my birthday resent from the Mrs, a pullup bar. 🙂


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

Snatch PR

Tonight was Skillz night. It’s been a while since I went to one… On the menu, snatches.


We had 3 types of snatches: balance snatch (5-5-5), hang power snatch (4-4-4) and full snatch (4-2-1-1-1-1). After warm up and prep, we got to our first movement, the balance snatch. You basically start on the tip of your toes, with the bar resting on your shoulders, and you drop into a squat position for the squat/lift part of the full snatch. This was with lighter loads, and I went up to 55lbs.

For the hang power snatch, the bar is an mid-thighs (power position). You bring it up over the head and squat. Going heavier I finished at 85lbs, my max 1 rep from a previous workout.

Last came the full snatch: bar on the floor, straight to overhead and squat. We were supposed to start at about 85% of our max, and go up to get our max 1 rep. In my case, that meant a PR at every lift, as I was starting form my max. Now, I know from WOD 13.1 that I can power snatch 95lbs, though without the squat part, and that I can’t power/split snatch 135lbs. So I knew my range, more or less. The only variable being my shoulder strength, as my issues with the OH Squat have underlined. I did my first 4 at 85lbs, no problem, it went up “smoothly”. My set of 2, I did at 95lbs. Not as smooth, but went up pretty well. I was pushing it, as I wanted to break the 100lbs mark tonight. It took my 6-7 tries, and almost that many bails, but on my last one, I managed to do a 105lbs snatch. It was horrible, almost uncontrolled at the top, but it was good! I am happy about breaking that mark, but my shoulders aren’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


Burpee Pullups

That’s right, because burpees are no longer fun enough.

Last week of the paleo challenge, and I’m feeling pretty good. We started out with shoulder mobility exercises, to loosen everything up after the 5 weeks of Open. There was a lot of groaning and pain as we rolled and stretched the knots out of there – even us folks who roll (almost) every night.

Once that was done, we setup for the WOD. 5 rounds for time, 20min cap: 3 thrusters 165lbs and 10 burpee pullups. Yes, you read correctly, 165lbs… which is waaaaay above what I dream of lifting. During the Open, I cleaned and I overhead pressed 135lbs, and I know I can also front squat that weight, so I figured that would be a good yet challenging weight. And it was. Most reps weren’t pretty and I was not a happy camper lifting, but they got done. Now, the burpee pullups. It’s exactly what you think they are. You do your burpee, and with the jump at the end you grab the bar overhead and do a pullup. Most people have to jump 3-4 inches, maybe. But because of my height, my arm length and the bar height, I’m stuck at the highest bar, and have to jump close to a foot.  Fun.

Nonetheless, I finished in 14:56. It ain’t Rx, but it’s another PR in lifts.


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


At last, the long-awaited fifth Open WOD came out. And once again, Dave Castro, the cruel insane genius behind the WODs, didn’t disappoint.

Last year’s 12.5 was a Fran ladder. This year, we got a Super Fran, or Frankenstein. It’s a 4 min AMRAP of 15 thrusters 100lbs and 15 chest to bar pull-ups – chest MUST touch the bar. You’re probably thinking “huh, fast paced, but not too bad”.

But wait! There’s more! If you managed to do 90 reps in the 4 minutes (so 3 full rounds), you earn an extra 4 minutes of time! That’s right, you’ve now 8 minutes to get AMRAP. Now you thinking “ok, it’s nasty, because endurance kicks in now”.

But wait! We’re not done! If you manage to do ANOTHER 90 reps in the now 8 minutes, you earn another 4 minutes to do more reps. And it goes on and on until time runs out or your body gives out. That’s where the mental games kicks in. How much will you push, knowing you’ll have more pain coming as you perform.

Granted, I’m not at that stage at all. Keeping with my new-found state of mind, I went in with an achievable goal. My thrusters are not the best in the world – heck, I haven’t done Fran Rx – though this will change in two weeks. Chest to bars, weeeeelllll, I sort of could do some, that is get the required height. But they have to touch the bar, which makes things complicated. My goal was to get to the first set of 15 C2B, and get a few reps in. An awesome achievement would be for me to complete an entire round. Remember, you only have 4 minutes.

I ended up doing 37 reps, surpassing my awesome achievement by 7 reps. 🙂

I’m happy with what I did. I gave it my all, and left it all on there. No shame, just sweat and PRs. The Open pulled me in, chewed me and spat me out in the deepest corners of my mental hell, but I managed to regroup, refocus and push through to finish a better athlete than when I started. The 5 WODs have exposed big flaws – mental and physical alike – and that what I think it’s for. I know I will not win the Open, or get to the Regionals, but I still consider myself a victor after those 5 weeks – it’s the journey that matters most, not the destination or goal.

On my road to the Spartan race, I took this side path and followed it to the end. I’m now back on the main road a better man.


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


New Open WOD, new mindset.

I took a more zen approach to 13.4. As I mentionned yesterday, I’d never lifted 135lbs, ever. If I could do 1 rep in the WOD, I’d be happy. Completing the round of 3 would be a personal achievement. Getting in the round of 6, it’d simply be awesome. Like I said, every lift done in this WOD is a PR for me.

Btw, 13.4 is the following: 7 minute AMRAP: 3 Clean and jerk (135lbs), 3 Toes-to-bar, 6 Clean and jerk, 6 Toes-to-bar, 9 Clean and jerk, 9 Toes-to-bar, etc.

I also took a smarter approach to the lift, and my expectations. I got at the box about an hour before the WOD, warmed up and started lifting, getting gradually heavier. Plastic to 45 to 95 to 115 to 135lbs, taking rests in between so not to smoke my shoulders and legs. A split-jerked all of them to make sure I was comfortable with the movement. At the end, I was happy. I lifted 135lbs TWICE! That meant I could at least do 1 clean and jerk at 135lbs during 13.4 – my honor was safe. 😉

The toes to bar were never an issue for me – I like knees to elbows, and all I have to do is extend the legs more. 🙂

In 7 minutes, I ended up doing 41 reps – 41 PRs! That’s getting in the round of 12, wouldn’t you know. It was surprisingly demanding on the cardio, too.


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

Unknown country

So, 13.4 came out, and it gave me pause…

7 minute AMRAP of:
3 Clean and jerk (135lbs)
3 Toes-to-bar
… 6 Clean and jerk
6 Toes-to-bar
9 Clean and jerk
9 Toes-to-bar
12 Clean and jerk
12 Toes-to-bar
15 Clean and jerk
15 Toes-to-bar
18 Clean and jerk
18 Toes-to-bar…
Here’s why I took pause. I checked my log, and every clean and jerk at 135lbs will constitute a PR. That’s right, I’ve never C&J that heavy before…