CrossFit Over 40

WODs, Diet, Crossfit OldTown Gossip and Lifestyle Ramblings by MarkyD

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Trick or treat

My first time through the CFOT Halloween tradition. Roll the dice for 5 rounds of two of the following plus a 400m run:

1- 15 toes to bar
2-15 thrusters 95#
3-20 hang power clean 95#
4- 20 burpees
5- 25 wall ball
6-25 box jumps

I escaped any seriously bad rolls: such as double 2's or double 6's. But I ended up with 4 rounds in a row of hang power cleans. I love them and all, but 80 reps was more than enough. I was hoping for burpees - and was rewarded in round 5 with burpees, and hang power cleans.

Happy Halloween. Lay off the treats.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Friday Rest Day...

And another video! Stop the madness.
But I do think you will like episode 8.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Push Press - Behind the neck, snatch grip edition

I did not have it today. I did not have the leg drive (wonder why - oh, it was the combined beat down from CFOT handed out this Mon-Wed) , I did not have pain free or loose shoulders and I did not have the killer instinct.

I worked up to 205 with a small press-out and then packed up without attempting to dethrone Soni and his earlier 225# lift.

I am sure I got some work in, but I went less than all out. Not sure why I bothered.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Deadlifts, Pull ups, Double Unders


WOD: 5 Rounds
3 Deadlifts x 315#
10 Pullups
30 Double unders

Note to self, I have got to master these double unders ASAP. This workout was hard enough without the crutch of doing 1, 2 or 3 of these at a time.

But let's get one thing straight. I did 15 reps of deadlift at 315#. That is freaking awesome. 315# is 7 pounds less than twice my body weight. And my archives tell me that prior to October 2009, I had never, ever even gotten 1 rep more of than 290# off the ground. I walked in determined to go elite - and by the way, Coach we do notice that the elite and other weights are nudging up every time we walk in the door.

Has this happened to anyone else? On my last deadlift pull. I yanked so hard, that I honestly thought the music slowed down for a second, and maybe it went dark. Maybe it was just me?

Today, I was not looking at the clock at all. I just wanted to accomplish this, and safely. I have a silent rule that heavy deadlifts and racing the clock are a no no - so I dropped the bar and reset slowly and carefully for each rep. My time of 16:44 was good enough, especially considering that the double unders took me forever at my pace. My best effort was 5 in a row, and that was once.

Forgive me everyone in team 12:30 who had to suffer through my primal grunting, the LeBron James clouds of chalk, and all of the old school Ric Flair "Whooos." I had to psych myself in order to rip that bar off the ground. And I did it. After the last deadlift, I was satisfied enough that I almost walked out the box without finishing the rest of the WOD. Oops.

Tomorrow is a rest day. Unless Jerry posts a MarkyD Fave-5. I am allowed to revoke a rest day for a Fave-5, which are - 1 to 3 rep max weight of either: strict press, push press, jerk press, power clean, or, a night of drinking and carousing. I will drop everything for those. Don't believe me. I just booked plane tickets to Boca Raton for a college friend's birthday party because the theme is "A legendary night of food and port pairings." I don't even know what port is. But it is in my Fave 5, so I am in.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

WOD 10/27: Bite Me!


250m Row
20 Box Jumps
15 Ring Pushups
100-ft. Walking Lunge (2 x 25-lb. DBs)
Time: 22:02 (rough)

I know in the past I have read other people's blogs where they had some negative things to say about the WOD. And I thought, oh, just suck it up and do the work. Quit your complaining. Well. I take it back. I did not like this WOD. I am sure it was good for me, and it completely sucked the life and sweat out of me. But I have not felt this badly since FGB.

2 hours later and I am still afraid to eat anything more than my precious primal dry roasted, unsalted almonds and some water.

Monday, October 26, 2009

CFOT Hopper Challenge

I am in!

Per usual, my enthusiasm exceeds my abilities. But I am in anyway.

I am sure that the first balls out of the hopper will be some sort of muscle-up, double under, overhead squat triplet causing me to walk back home in tears with a DNF. But for now, I can dream of a WOD that is all about 200# push presses and 12 pullups. That would be like Xmas for me. And for the record, if that is the WOD, I will win.

You heard it here first.

Snatch & Go

You could tell that we would be doing a lot of snatches in the near future - as coach said so both last week and on Saturday. And as frustrated as he seemed with our collective ability last week, he seemed much happier today.

15 C2B pullups, 9 snatch, 400m run
12 C2B pullups, 12 snatch, 400m run
9 C2B pullups, 15 snatch, 400m run

Time 15:59

My PR in snatch is 125 (last week) and it was not perfect. So today, I scaled down from the Rx of 115# to 100#s to work the form. I also have flexibility issues which make overhead squats not really a part of my arsenal.

More than anything today, I focused on the explosive jump. Of course, the final part of the move is to get low and under the bar - quickly - but that is for another time. I find that personally, I can really improve on one facet of a move at a time, and that once that is routine, then move on to the next. By the end of the WOD, I felt very warmed up, and the range of motion was getting better and better. Next time we try a max snatch, I am going to nail a ton of light and mid weight reps to really warm it up. (Hello - I'm 40)

I was happy with the day. As happy as I could be when scaling. C2B pullups were good, although I had to partition after 5 reps, but I absolutely smacked mid chest to bar.

More videos to come by the way. Hope you like. But even though I like to have a good laugh, first and foremost, I love getting the work in.

p.s. The secret of the 12:30 class is out. 10 or 12 people today just killing it.
p.p.s Newbie Jen is a natural. I am jealous of her natural ability and I foresee her beating me in WODs any day now.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Saturday WOD.

Once through for time

30 burpees (due to people not signing in)
600m run
30 pull up
30 thrusters @ 75#
30 wall balls
30 KB swings @ 53#
30 box jumps
30 burpees
600m run

Time 24:05.

Feeling tired, sick or something. Coming off 4 days of Vegas I came to CF 4 straight days and now the Sat WOD. Maybe it was the back squat, sprint air squats from yesterday. Considering the weight I was toting (245#) and the depth, it is a lot for the legs to handle. Plus, 5 days without a rest breaks my own rule. Later in the day I fell asleep on the floor while playing a game with my daughter. Guess I am tired?

Anyway. Unremarkable day for me. I just did the WOD in a workmanlike manner and went home. I liked it, but I did not attack it. Thrusters with 75# felt easy and I only had to drop twice – and only briefly. I tired, but not terribly so. 60 burpees is one way to start your weekend.

Friday, October 23, 2009

CFOT = Complete Failure Of The...Legs

Back Squat x 5, then 4 rounds of 200m sprints (sort of) and 30 air squats. Started to feel the love (tight quads, butt, etc) on the way back to the car. Good thing I live in a 4 level townhouse.

My rack position still suffers from shoulder pain, which throws off my depth and whole mojo. So I had more of a high or mid-back squat. Not ideal. But the effort was there and I moved 245 x5 - which is 30# more than last time through and equal to my prior 3 rep max.

My post-Vegas cobwebs are fully gone and I am back to full 100% awesomeness. Time to go back? Next week I have a trip home to CT to help my mom for a day. I may just have to drop in to Crossfit Fairfield County/Stamford and show the locals how its done.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Snatch it

I just checked and see that my prior snatch PR was 115. I remember that day, and I also remember how ugly that lift was and how bad I felt afterwards. And not a good sore muscle kind of bad - a bad form, bad technique kind of tweak my back kind of bad. Melissa took video of that, and you can see the horribleness. Kill me now, that looked ugly.

Today was a little better. I worked up to 125, and could possibly have moved up a little more. But instead, and more importantly, I worked a drop set or two with Melissa to really dial in the form. It is a catch 22. It is easier to have perfect form with less weight, and it is easier to get more weight with perfect form. Is that deep, or what?

The finisher was good. 3 rounds of 1 min row, 1 min of pushups and 1 min of KB swings. Chad C and I half-joked that we would get 40 pushups in round 1. I came close and got 36 and never had to rest in round 1. Nice. I like working out with Chad C because he is clearly more fit, stronger, younger, etc in all areas of crossfit. But I am close, and I always strive to match his effort. I have set a lot of PRs sharing a bar with him, including my 20# DL PR last week. I plan to keep that up. More often, I work out with Chad N. But our strengths are opposite. It is rare that we don't know which of us will do better in a WOD before we walk in the door. But even with that, he is getting stronger and I am getting faster, so soon it may get real interesting.

Overall, today had a couple of moments to get aggressive and start the day out with a clear head. Nice.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

5 round metcon

It is the week after the Mid-Atlantic Hopper and I am still easing my way back into Crossfit.

Wait a minute - I did not participate in the Hopper. I did not even spectate. I was in Vegas drinking, carousing and not sleeping for 4 days. Either way, I am still working back into Crossfit slowly.

Today was 5 rounds of 400m runs, 30 double unders and 10 kipping toes to bar. 30 double unders is about 29 more in a row than I can do. So this took a long time. I worked through 4 rounds and then subbed out 20 box jumps in the last round. A beautiful day for a run, but that did not make me much faster.

Time: 24:50 - slowest in the class?

Still a little dry and tired from Vegas. Slept 11 hours last night, so I should be good after one more regular night of sleep. I must come up with the exact Vegas recovery formula. I believe it is Days to recovery = Days in Vegas * (Age-29)/10.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Back in the saddle

I'm back. The guys Vegas long weekend was great fun. I contrast all the hard work and drive that our Hopper participants put on display this past weekend, and I was the exact opposite. My diet was bad, sleep was non-existent and my drinking was obscene.

Today's WOD was a quick 3 round met-con with 21-25-9 pullups, hang power clean and jerks (95#) and 400 m sprints. The first two exercises were actually 21-15-9 / 9-15-21 just to keep us on our toes.

My time was 14:56 which was OK. I should have easily been a minute faster. The clean and jerks felt very light, but I had no stamina. I was sucking wind and I absolutely am wheezing and tasting some crappy stuff in my lungs.

My body is laughing at me right now.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

UPDATE: Deadlifts - 1 Rep Max

I could not be more excited about hitting this WOD. Things have been clicking, and I foresee good things.

Plus it is my last WOD before Vegas.

Prior max was 315 which I did for 3. I plan to get me some.


12:30 class was me, Chad C and Chad N. Sean Soni was there to re-engage after vacation and before the hopper. No deadlifts for him.

With 3 of us, we all shared a bar and Jerry was right there with cues, tips and video. Very helpful.

I got 225, 275, 315 and then 335 - a 20# PR. Failed at 350 and 340, I was done.

A nice 10 minute finisher that took me 11 minutes.

And I'm out.

Vegas Baby!

It is that happy time for me when the guys from work go to Vegas. Before I found the solid community at CFOT, the guys at work did a lot of stuff together. Including a once a year trip to Las Vegas. Now in our 7th year, I am proud to say that only Chad N and I have made every trip.

Actually, since 2000, I have been to Vegas at least 15 times, if not 20.

Drinking to excess, getting little sleep and doing it again for 3 more days is a mental break but also true physical test. Doing it without 25 lbs of fat to buffer all that alcohol is going to be very interesting.

Carry on without us.

And for all those participating in and supporting the Mid Atlantic Hopper - go kick some ass and represent.

UPDATE: Fran - 5:30

I am so impressed with all the low times from this morning's Fran. To get a top 5 men's time, you basically have to go under 4 minutes. Way back on June 22: my prior best was 6:33

I have been feeling really strong this lately. My shoulder is recovering and I have been taking a few more rest days. I think it all clicked when we did the deadlifts last week and got 315 x 3. It is like: wait - I am actually getting very strong. I know that conditioning is my weak link, but I am glad to be making progress. Fran is better for me because it is shorter than some other benchmarks.

Andrea gave some solid advice - which was A: really jump the bar, B: don't drop the bar and C: don't bother to rest. Easier said than done, but she is right on all counts. You are not going to recover, and resting the bar on your shoulders is good enough. Still, I dropped once each round. Next time, I will do better.

In June I did not have a solid pull up. I only came of the bar once each round today, vs many many times in the past.

1 more WOD before Vegas and a little mental break. I am sooooo ready.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Strict (PR)ess

As in PR!

Looking way back to July 27 - I had a PR strict press that day of 170 when I weighed 168. Clearly Strict Press is one of the few things I excel at, but I want more. I want to keep increasing how much more than my body weight I can put over my head. Today I weigh 161, so let's roll.

I decided to knock this WOD out before work because I was too amped up to put it off for a few more hours. We got started with a nice 6 minute AMRAP of 15 box jumps, 15 Russian swings and a 9 cal row. I was late, and literally had to jump right into it. I could tell I had some energy because my box jumping was Soni-like spring jumps.

Time to lift. We had 4 guys and we shared a bar. I am pretty sure that I was pacing like an expectant puma in between lifts.

95,115, 135, and 155 all felt good. Then 165 felt pretty good too. I had planned to try some small increment like 171, but Mike Mann put 175 on the bar. And here it is - (the second clip)

Got it, but it was tough. I did not throw the bar down in my signature style. Throwing it down and then having to clean that much weight the day after a 36 heavy squat clean WOD is obnoxious. Mike did a drop set after his big lift, and others did Annie - but I had to get to work. I plan to ab mat later. Really!

A nice way to start the day.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Squat Cleans and some other stuff

I cannot do a muscle up. I might be close, or maybe not really. It is not stressing me out. The dips were hard on my shoulder, but 9 pullups were light speed (hell yeah - something I am good at). Runs were OK. But Squat Cleans really brought the pain.

I had a quick thought of the Elite level at 155#, but did 135#. They were tough, but my time was under 24 minutes, so maybe I should have done 145 or 155 instead. But, after 5 days away, this was a solid welcome back.

Once again, I wonder what the hell I have been doing for 20 years, because THIS is some kick ass fitness.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Rest then mini-vacation

When you can hardly open the child safety top on the Advil, it is time for a rest day. I honestly needed three takes to get that done last night.

Our daughter's school has conveniently closed for a teacher work day tomorrow before the Monday holiday, so we are bugging out of here and going to the beach for 4 days. I may hit 915 Friday on the way out of town.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Anyone catch the license plate of the bus that ran me over?

The day after..... After the dog fight to remember.

I miss my 20s. When I could do a workout like yesterday's brutal effort and wake up feeling OK. But after 40, my legs, arms and traps feel every one of the 50+ cleans I attempted yesterday (30 successes and at least 20 misses)

Today was max 1 rep jerk. I should have been excited and I should have PRd. But my sore legs did not want to dive under the bar, and I didn't really either. I believe I basically push pressed up to 185 and called it a day. Worked back down and tried to do proper form at 135 and then the bar. Did a drill with the PVC with coaches.

Then I shuffled off to work looking like Fred Sanford.

I am wondering if even coming in today was worth it, or should I have rested. Thoughts?

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Ear Muffs

Holy Shit! I don't curse on a frequent basis, but ..... Holy Shit!!! This WOD just bitch-slapped me.

Today's WOD: 10 rounds of-
3 Power Cleans (Elite: 185#s, SONI: 165#s)
5 L-Sit Chins
7 dips (w 20 # vest)

If I ever thought I was Elite, this WOD kindly rejected that notion. Granted my prior Max 1-rep Power Clean was 187#. So attempting 30 reps at 185 is insane. But I really tried.

And here is how it went:
Round 1 @ 185 - 5 reps: 3 good, 2 fail
Round 2 @ 185 - 4 reps: 3 good, 1 fail
Round 3 @185 - 6 reps: 3 good, 3 fail
Round 4 @185 - 3 reps, 3 fail.

So I stripped off 20#s. Jerry was not really happy to see me
strip the weight, I could tell. Shockingly I failed some more at 165 . But after a me
ntal reset, I
got back on track. I don't think I got any round without at least 1 fail. I was knocked on my ass after one particular miss. Yeah, this was a dog fight. 50 L-sit chins and 70 reps of 20#
weighted dips were a relative breeze if that tells you anything.

The board said there was a 30 minute time limit, but although I was just done with round 7, I knew Jerry would not let me quit, and I was glad. 43:43 later I finished. Other than Murph, this was my longest WOD, and it was pure struggle. Jerry was there for me, and correctly pointed out my slow elbows and need for more speed getting under the bar. I agree that the power is there to get 185 more consistently, but the form is not. It is just hard to correct under extreme duress, mid-WOD.

This WOD was epic. I feel like a little bit more of a man just for finishing.

Rough day ahead.

Today's WOD of 3 heavy clean, 5 L Sit pullups (like above) and 7 dips for 10 rounds, looks rough. The Elite weight of 185# cleans, and an extra 20 pounds for the dips sounds brutal. Like I may not make it back to work after lunch.

Monday, October 05, 2009

Back squat 3 rep max

I previously got 245 #s for 3 reps, but that was months ago. In theory I should be stronger now and should have PR'd today. But I worked slowly up to 245 again, and that is all I had. I was pretty focused on getting deep, full squats, and I was told that I did.

The limiting factor was my rack position and my inflexible, sore left rotator cuff. My legs are sore, but my shoulder hurts.

I feel like power from a full, deep squat is the #1 basic movement in the majority of Crossfit exercises. So building strength and having perfect form are both very important. It is easy to get caught up in posting a big # on the board, but the dividends from this workout are not simply having a huge back squat total, but rather, being better at almost every movement that we do.

And then, after squats - A sprint to Montgomery, 12 KB swings (45), 12 box jumps, 12 slamballs - repeat 3 times. Not that our legs were tired or anything.

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Why I Crossfit

Fall soccer is here and my daughter Stella is really starting to like team sports. Looking around, I notice that there are three types of dad's at these games: the absent, the idle and the active dad.

The absent ones simply are not there. I guess that is why you here the term soccer mom so much. Why a dad would miss his kids entire soccer season is beyond me. Girls playing sports is important and no one should be more excited to see their little girl hustling, competing and being tough than her dad.

The idle dads show up, plant a lawn chair and sit through the game, then go home. Is it so hard to stand up for an hour? Based on the demographic of the 40 year old white men I see at these games, I think it might be. A lot of lazy, round dads out there.

The active dad. I am glad to say this is me (at least it is now). Helping chase down the out of bounds balls, and playing a pickup game with Stella after the real game is over. I think Stella is a little sad that I can out run her this year. But she loves that we can run and play together. So do I.

Being an active dad is my #1 reason to be Crossfit.

Friday, October 02, 2009

First Friday - Helen

Today was my 2nd ever Helen. I finished in a PR of 12:44. Clearly I can do it better in the future.

Helen and I have some baggage. In July I did my 1st Helen, and totally bonked. I ran the first run in an all-out sprint of 1:29. Not good. My heart was ready to burst through my chest and I was barely able to crawl through it in 15:43. If I didn't think I was going to die, I would have been laughing along with Danny who watched me tank and declared "He blew his wad on that 1st run". Comparing that effort to today is interesting. After slowly pacing the first run today in 2:30 (hello granny!) I did the rest of the 8 parts of the WOD in 10:14 - vs last time where it took me 14:14 for the final 8 portions.

Today, in addition to the measured jogs, I held back on the first round to see what effect that would have. But I dialed it back too much, as I never got to the hurt locker. I am still learning about my abilities and how hard I can push to get right up my optimal performance without rendering myself useless. I have started out too hard and crashed many, many times including my last times through Helen, Grace, and this week's FGB. Unlike some CFOT firebreathers, I can not go 100% all-out and maintain it indefinitely. I wish I could, and I am getting better, but I am not there.

I got all 21 KB swings in rd 1 and partitioned once each in rounds 2 and 3. I hate these less than I used to. Pullups: I made it through the first 2 sets of 12, but had to break once in rd 3. Rd 2 may have been the best and fastest set of 12 pullups I have ever done. Frankly, I am putting it out there: that set of 12 pullups was faster than anyone else could do a set of 12. I was in the sweet spot of not pushing it in rd 1 and not yet being tired as I was in rd 3. Thanks also to Coach M for specifically calling me out right as I got on the bar in rd 2 - "lets see those frog kick pullups!" and I did not disappoint.

I am still winding down from a week where we did FGB (bonk) and then I set a big deadlift PR (huge breakthrough for me). Now that I have posted a more respectable Helen, I can cross that off my list of disappointments. I am going to take the weekend off and hit it more intensely next week. Other than the Deadlifts, I was on cruise control this week, but I did get 4 sessions in that than beats the alternative.

Shout out to:
Barett who crushed Helen in a very impressive 9:07. And Mike Hart who did Fran in 5:56. I know my "coaching" him through it was annoying, but I hope it helped. Those two guys were way into the hurt locker - respect!

Thursday, October 01, 2009

Strict Press 5-5-5-5-5 and a weigh in

I'm such a loser. I showed up at 9:25 for the 9:15 class, thinking class began at 9:30. Ahh, No. The only one who hated that more than Jerry, was me, because stretching for more than 3 seconds might have been good on a heavy overhead day with my troubled shoulder area.

Yesterday Doc told me that the shoulder was improving and said I could strict press, but not push press or jerks - which are more sudden and violent movements. Perfect timing Doc. CFOT WOD - Strict Press max x5. I was going to guess cleans, but my guessing is off lately.

I knocked out 75, 95, 115, and 135 x 5. The last reps at 135 were tough. I had a wild thought of attempting my new slim bodyweight for 5 (see below) and Jerry suggested that I split the gap and try 150 first. It was a struggle. Rep 3 was tough. 4 was bad and I arched my back like crazy, then dropped it. I was scared of what my form might do on rep 5. There are very few things that scare me, and we did them both this week: max deadlifts and max overhead press. If your form is off, you can get hurt. A bad pushup is embarrassing, but you will survive it. Form failure on heavy DL or overhead press - get in bed and call me in a few weeks. I love putting a big # on the board, but I also love coming in the next day. Brian and Health's form was much more solid than mine today. I knew it, and I shut it down and moved on to 3 rounds of metcon with Brian. He smoked me there too.

BTW-where the hell were the 09:15 regulars - Chad, Vinnie, Tony, Nicole, Kelly? Resting up for 1st Friday?

Bright spot - despite my dietary lapses of late - (Yesterday I ate: 2 full breakfasts, 2 ice coffees to wake up, burger and milkshake for lunch, and pizza for dinner!) - I weighed in at 159.5 on the CFOT scale. My official lowest weight that I can remember since college.