CrossFit Over 40

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

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Murph - 43:20

Murph is important to me. But not for the proper reasons. The workout "Murph" was named to honor someone who bravely died in service to our country. I respect that and everything it represents.

But when I say Murph - the workout - is important to me, I am being strictly selfish. Last spring and summer I was out of shape and depressed about my situation. Middle age, parenthood, a desk job, etc had taken its toll on me and I had just about thrown in the towel. Finding CF and Jerry Hill's CF Old Town was the 1-2 punch I needed, and it was starting to work. And nothing seemed to help me shed pounds like Murph did. In April, May, June, July & August I did Murph on my own in addition to regular CF. And over that time I lost 20+ pounds. Of course a better diet, and the whole CF regime did this. But I truly believed that the suffering incurred while doing Murph deserved the credit. Whatever floats your boat.

So from that very first Murph (76 minutes/no vest) to my 40th birthday (71 minutes with 20# vest) to the July 4th beach playground Murph (60 minutes no vest) to today (43:20 / no vest) they have all been memorable.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Friday Rest Day...

I originally planned to go every day this week, and I am glad that I did. Because it reminded me of how important a rest days is once in a while. 3 days on 1 day off is the schedule, and there must be something to it. Today is day 4 and a row (5 separate visits including Wed am bench club) and I am beat to hell.

I did not have speed or power this morning for cleans, and tonight my legs are tired, knees sore, hammies tight, and I am walking around in a daze.

I did not do myself any favors going in today, and ruined myself for tomorrow. I'm even too tired to drink - really.

See ya Sat.

Cleans x1

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Pullup and HSPU craziness

Partner workout. 3 alternating rounds each of

Both Run 400m together, then in remaining time do max pullups / HSPU 1 person working at a time.

Chad and I teamed up and n theory it was a perfect match. He is great at pullups and I am great at HSPU. But the realities are that he is coming down with a nasty cold and his energy was low to start and none at the end. And I did Bench club this a.m., and was also a little low on energy. Enough excuses.

The first 4 passes (2 each of runs / pullup and 2 of run / hspu) were really fun. Kind of felt like a kid running around the playground. Got a consecutive pullup PR of 15 in round 1 and then did 20 in round 2. My kip is finally legit. Chad put on a show and did 27 in round 1. Took him over a minute and I was getting a little impatient!

HSPU were good as well. I did sets of 15, 10, 8 and then some of 5. In total I did 99 in the 3 rounds. I think it was 37,32,30. I really wanted 100 - but time ran out as I was on #99 and that was a monumental struggle as it was.

In general the last 2 times through were tough. The temp was near 90 and humid, and the runs sapped energy. Although I finished near the front on the last run which U think just means that I sucked a little less than some others. We were all slow.

Overall a fun WOD. I think Melissa got some good pictures. I will add them later.

What's your Bench?

Week 2 of "Bench Club"

Stuart has a competition coming up, and we aim to push him. I have no real role in it, other than bench press is fun for me. And if my presence helps Stu - then great. Stuart is one of the nicest guys you will ever meet, and I love that he is channeling his fitness towards an actual goal. In contrast, I love fitness, but only have a general undefined goal of "getting better" guiding me. So his dedication and goals are of interest to me. Maybe I will come around and compete in some way down the road?

Anyway, from the time I was 16, bench press was a central point of my fitness. A bunch of high schoolers at the gym, and we would absolutely challenge each other. College - same thing. What's your bench? And if it is not 225# you are not cool.
At my peak, I was able to get 295 when I weighted 145. So 2x body weight. That was when I was 20. My form was a mess, and I am sure it contributed to my shoulder issues. Those days are over. But in addition to pushing Stu, I would love to see if that is possible to safely get that weight again.

Over the past 2 weeks, I have been conservative. I believe I did 165 plus double bands last week and today I did 175 plus 2x chains.

Also, this is another window for me to see Jerry in his coaching glory. He is creative, dedicated and obsessed with helping others reach goals - whether pinpoint like Stuarts or fuzzy like my own.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Back Squat x5

Working with Vinnie and Jerry. Jerry & Vinnie each wearing the green CFOT Kool-Aid man shirt and super strong. Me, grey t-shirt and not so much. I was in a bit over my head.

(Deep thoughts:)
I am finally starting to be able to manage my workout without worrying about everyone around me. I find that on a strength day, it is key to have a good records on what you have done before and any notes. So for example - I knew that I had done back squat x3 with 1 set of chains with 225#. 5 reps and now 2 sets of chains are two variables to deal with, but I had some boundaries. So when Vinnie and Jerry quickly jumped to 225, I knew to back off. I did 185 and then 205. I struggled mightily at 205 so I am damn sure that 225 was a no go today.

As for met con work. I am also starting to learn the benefits of moderation. Depending on the relative length of the workout, I have to remember to pace differently. Cindy or Murph - just do the work in a steady pace and limit any breaks. 10-20 minutes, I try to hold back initially as I get warmed up on the range of motion, and then increase output. And shorter (say a 500m row) just go all out.

Yesterday we had the sntach/burpee workout. For most, it was 8-12 minutes. So I planned to do the first round at a moderate and steady pace, and then go all out. After 12 of each exercise, then the rounds were shorter and I was fully warmed up. My burpees went from a 4 step movement - crouch, extend legs, pushup, jump - to faster suicide dive into a collapsed pushup, pop up and jump. Personally, if my first burpee looks like that, then I am going to crash soon, and be in some pain too. But as I warm up, I can do it.

Doesn't mean that I still did not break and gasp for air. But I think that is a good sign. I am trying to push in excess of my capacity. Briefly gasping and pausing is a good sign that I did.

Deep thought topic for tomorrow: Zombie time thief

Monday, May 24, 2010

Snatch, burpee, chin up

A long weekend away and I was indeed ready to get back to CF. I actually got a ride from the airport right to CFOT. Hit the snatches and worked out my laziness. I'm back.

Friday, May 21, 2010


My nephew is graduating from San Diego State tomorrow and we are flying out at noon today for a long weekend. My travels take me to SD and then NY before coming home. Anyway, I woke up and felt lazy and not particularly motivated.

My best solution - take the weekend off, and by the time I get back to town Mon night I will be raring to go.

MarkyD says: Don't Crossfit when you are not motivated.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Rest Day

Cause I deserve it. And because 3 on, 1 off says so.

Frankly I deserve to destroy myself with today's Filthy Fifty WOD. When given a choice to work on strength or met con, I always choose strength. I shouldn't. On a scale of 1-10 I would say my strength is an 8. Of course it has improved a lot, but it was good when I walked in the door. I digress, and of course in the CF world there are plenty of people stronger than me, but in the regular world not too many 5'7" 161# people who are. Whereas my technique and met conditioning are both closer to 5. I am the John Stamos of CF. (30 years in the business and while he is still good looking, he still can't act for crap)

Enough of that. If anything, I should have taken the option of doing the deadlift metcon yesterday with runs and box jumps. But lifting 300#+ multiple times is fun.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Monday, May 17, 2010

OH Squat = Row + intervals

Too tired for a video entry.

OH Squats:
Form was poor on the OH. However, each set seemed to improve whether I added weight or not.

Next time - warm up longer and with the bar before getting going. It just takes me a while to be ready for that. I cannot change clothes and OH squat.

Row 1 min then immediately either C&J with dumbbells or do burpees for 2 minutes.

I did 2 rounds of each. Sucks the life out of you. But in a good way.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Pictures from the Birthday WOD

The 20# vest was on a little tight. Looked like a corset, but felt like an anchor. And after half an hour of various pullups, runs, pushups and lunges, I was done. But I have come a long way in a little over a year.

Thanks to the Jerry, and the coaches, I look forward to pushing it to another level this year.

And thanks to my boy ChaddyD for pushing me to go when I did not want to and a constant sounding board on all things CF. Cause my wife dont wanna hear it.

See the rest of the FB pics here:

Friday, May 14, 2010

Happy Birthday / Painful Birthday

Jerry brought the pain. I was feeling the love and some agony too. Another year younger.

Some thoughts:

Birthday Weigh in

As promised. I am shocked that the weight is stable still in range of 162-166. Today is more shocking considering a large intake of beer last night, a rarity now. My eating is ok, but I am not super diligent or really that knowledgeable. So I just do my best and mostly try to limit/block certain foods.

Bread, sugar, rice, pasta, oatmeal are all off my menu. Otherwise, I really am not that smart regarding nutrition. I could use more veggies, etc. But my body seems to be running well (energy wise) and keeping lean with this simple method.

I should right a book. Paleo eating for dummies. Cause I feel like that is how I approach it. Just block out certain things and do your best. (And workout out hard too.)

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

HandStand Pushups / L Sits

9:17 as rx'ed

1 mile run with chad_n, jared, jerry, chris & me. I am the slowest of that bunch for sure.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Am I some sort of clown....

Am I here for your amusement?

Today we were doing front squats with chains. Two of the first comments I got when I walked into CFOT were concerning the whereabouts of my black hoodie and my recently published cartoon. And these were the coaches!

For a moment, I wondered if anyone knew that I actually exercise at CFOT too.

Random thought, thanks for listening.

Front Squats + 4x chains

New idea - a little video blog. I am going to record my thoughts and post them on the blog.

Todays WOD:
Front squats with 2 sets of heavy chains on each sides - or about 86 pounds.

Getting in and out of the rack was an adventure. Shared a bar with Jerry - now part of the 1230 lunch hour of power. I tried not to let it get in my head, but clearly it does. But bottom line, working out with him around is going to push me. I used to joke that I hated Tom - which I didn't. But of course I was jealous of his abilities. Same situation here. Anytime someone is better, stronger, faster than me, makes me want to improve.

I am going to improve a lot.

And now the video:

Monday, May 10, 2010

Olympic Cert - Part II

Awww... the group photo. We took this on Sunday when it was cooler. If we had done it on Sat - when it was hot - I would have pulled a Harold.

Anyway about the cert. Like I said, there were 2 paid instructors, plus 2 owners and 2 coaches from CF OC. And of the 22 attendees, there were at least 15 coaches and owners from other affiliates.

We alternated between the big group, 2 smaller groups, and then partnering up with alternating people. So, I had a lot of people checking out my snatch (and clean and jerk). It was all very helpful. I cannot wait to out it into action.

Instructor Erin was particularly helpful. She had been a lifter on the US team under Coach Burgener for years. So she knows his system, methods, and plus - she knows what it is like to be a student. Her perspective was great. A must do for anyone looking to lift some weight over their heads.

Olympic lifting cert - part 1

I attended the Olympic Lifting Cert at Crossfit Ocean City MD this past weekend. It was great. This is the same course that was taught last spring at CFOT with coach B. I was in maybe my 2nd week of CF at that point, and I had neither signed up or thought about it - and mostly, I was not ready.

Coach B did not make this one, but Erin Karshner - one of his assistants and lifters for many years was there. More on her later. Kirk Woolfolk was the other coach. He is the strength coach at the Naval Acadamy, and in addition, his daughter was Erin's roommate for many years as they worked with coach B, and recently married Casey Burgener. Small world.

Crossfit Ocean City, MD hosted this weekend. Last fall they moved into a new larger facility. It is kind of a warehouse with the big high ceiling and garage door - and it got hot on Sat. But we were there all day. For an hour I bet it is not ever too bad. It was big and a great facility. Steve and Kelly Rakow are the owners and they are great. They also had two of their coaches help out on Sat. Steve and Kelly were also very accomodating. They arranged a group dinner for us on Sat, and made sure were had everything we needed. Plus they are two great coaches and people. I like them. Kelly is a pure energy, by the way.

So there were 22 people attending. I was one of about 5 that was not a current CF coach or owner. There were several coaches/owners from CF Richmond, Frederick, Gathersburg, BWI, King of Prussia, Saratoga NY, Austin TX, Bethesda, Columbia, MD, Philly and more. So in addition to the 2 paid coaches, and the 4 local coaches there were lots of coaches watching my form.

More in part II ..... later

More "Fall" out

It has been 4 days since my fall from glory, I mean the pul l up bar. Things have not worked out like I expected. Mu initial thoughts and concerns were over the horrible hit my head took on the concrete. It swelled up, and I felt not quite right. But slowly, the lump has gotten better and I am comfortable that I never got a concussion or caused any permanent issue. I must hav a hard head.

My hand is another story. I noticed that my pinky and rind finger were bleeding. I am still not sure why. But in addition to landing on the back of my head, I did a backhand slap on the concrete. It is sore, a little numb and all sorts of fun swollen colors.

Today I am going for an X ray.

I saw a doctor at my Olympic Cert - and his quick assessment was that it was pretty bad. But that you have a week to treat it, so I am still in that window. And yes, I went through the whole Olympic lifting cert with taped fingers and a little pain. But the PVC did not bother it.

More later.

Thursday, May 06, 2010

(Near) Death by Pullups

My pullups have never been great. Strong shoulders can sometimes mean inflexible shoulders. As a matter of fact, show me any short, strong crossfitter that can strict press their body weight, and I will show you someone that has poor range of motion in their shoulders. But I have been working on it.

So really, I have never had a great "kipping" pullup. For a time I did frog-kick chin ups, then for a time I did a couple of pullups. But could never really string them together.

Until now. All my shoulder stretching, my visit to Kelly Starrett, the lacrosse ball, the roller, etc - has helped. And you should have seen me today. Multiple rounds of 8+ kipping pullups in a row. I was stoked.

My prior PR was 15 full rounds and a little with this little workout. Today, I got through 15, then 16, then 17. Look at me. But then it all fell apart. I finished round 17 at 16:59 on the clock. I did not take time to chalk up, my tape was mangled, and my hands were sweaty. So after a burst of 4, then 54 more. I took a mighty jump at the bar and swung back - only to slip completely off and start heading down.down.down.

What saved me? For some odd reason I decided to put a med ball under me to use as a little step ladder because the bar I was on, was just a little high for me. So Amy, I am so glad that you wanted that lower bar, and I did that. Chad tells me that I landed ass on the med ball, and then, my head slammed back on the concrete. While I have a good sized knot, this could have been a lot worse.

A LOT worse.

But I did PR, and I am psyched that my pullups are coming along.

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Steck-Con Delta

A fitting tribute to what may be the fittest of the many very fit couples at CFOT. I could not make it today, and plus - I am sore as hell. This would have either helped, or killed me:

Farewell Jon, Leslie and Luke. We will all miss both your supersized abilities and personalities.

Steck-Con Delta:

1000 m Row
30 Wall Balls 20 lbs
20 Box Jump (24 in.)s
10 Burpees
30 Wall Balls 20 lbs
20 Box Jump (24 in.)s
10 Burpees
30 Wall Balls 20 lbs
20 Box Jump (24 in.)s
10 Burpees
30 Wall Balls 20 lbs
20 Box Jump (24 in.)s
10 Burpees
30 Wall Balls 20 lbs
20 Box Jump (24 in.)s
10 Burpees
990 m Run

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

3 wokout craziness

#1-run 800m and then for the rest of 7 minutes do as many pullups as possible. Got 42
#2-jump right in to Sn grip push press. 21 minutes for a max. Got 200. Felt good and maybe could have gotten 10 more.
#3- amrap of 11 kb/ 7 ring dips. I got 5 rounds.

Monday, May 03, 2010

A weighty post

It has been some time since I posted a picture of my scale readout, etc. But I just realized that for at least 6 months now, I have been in the tight range between 162-166. I am pretty Paleo/Primal most of the time. But even when I stray for a brief time - Vegas trips, Halloween candy, etc - I don't really add too much. And if I do go up 4 pounds, it seems that a solid week of stricter dieting and some hard met-con style workouts, and I lose it all. If I add a sprint repeat, I will lose it faster.

Lately, I have been trying to add some more fatty foods because I do not want to get too light. Today the scale said 161.5, and I got scared. I fear that I am going to lose power, and power is my friend.

I think I posted my body fat analysis data? Last July 18.5%, last week 9.5%. That is crazy stuff. But also a keen reminder that I cannot afford to lose any more. If I dip below 160 pounds, I will see you at Pizza Hut.

Chain Back Squats 8x2

10 days ago or so we did the same.

That day I started at 165 and worked up to 200. I have been feeling better, so today I tried to up it. Started at 185 and added 10 each time. At 225 I was max effort and started to feel that nagging injury. So I went down to 215 the rest of the way. Still - my avg of 209 is 19# more than last time, and 44# more than the first go round. That is pretty good.

Some more diligent stretching and a few less trips to Vegas and I should keep improving.

Saturday, May 01, 2010


My last CF workout was last Tues - max DL. I have taken a little break that included a trip to the IT convention in Vegas on Wed-Fri, and a Sat of sleeping in. Next weekend I have the Olympic lifting cert (my first cert) and I have been wanting to rest up. The last few weeks, I have felt extremely sore and have been battling a pulled or strained muscle. Especially pulling from the floor. My shoulders, back and traps have been crazy tight.

So a 6 day break seemed in order. I must have really needed it, because even missing pick your own workout Friday, and several other great looking wods, I am enjoying the time off. Usually, I get antsy. Then again, I was in Vegas - so I had some distractions.

Back at in on Mon.