Thursday, January 10, 2013

1/9 - The Comfort Zone?

Found out the WOD about 20 minutes or so before leaving to get to the box last night and honestly, if there were any other day this week that I could have got there to workout I would have skipped this one.  I wasn’t really impressed with it, moreso it’s the regularity of the body weight WODs that we are getting that are beginning to wear.  More of a vent below (note that they are merely my opinions and I also know that it’s my decision on where I train).

I need to stress that this is *my* opinion and this programming might be working perfectly fine for the majority and if so then that’s great.  Like I said, this is my opinion.  

I’m not sure where to start on this – all I know is seeing a(nother) 10 minute WOD with only body weight movements annoyed me.  I choose crossfit and I love crossfit because I get to lift heavy things, I get variety and I get to do things I can’t otherwise do on my own.  Burpees and sit-ups? Can (and do) do these things on my own.  I know the theory is that yes, people *can* do these things on their own but how many actually *do* do them on their own – I think that’s pretty bad logic – those who are striving for more *do*.  I know I’m not the only person who has actually chosen to do 100 burpees for time on my own.  Those that want to reach the next level do these things in their own time.  But I digress.

I think that there are a few main things that brought out my negative reaction when I saw this specific WOD:

-first off, we did this WOD last week only the time domain was a three minute AMRAP and the sit-ups were squats

-it feels like more often than not we are doing body weight stuff at the box, further indicated by the fact that many are seeking strength stuff outside of our normal crossfit environment (or looking for their own equipment to do so)

-I can recall only 1 wod in the past month or so that was longer than 15 minutes – this was ‘Angie’ (which to note, I also chose to do on my own again outside of the box) – I know I’m not there every single day however my schedule is a fairly consistent Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, I’m there more often than not.

It seems that with class sizes getting bigger and class times shorter that concessions are being made for what we do rather than coming up with creative solutions to how things are done.  Focus should be on what needs to be done rather than one can be done – the can attitude is limiting, when you stress needs then you work harder for the solutions and you get somewhere.  

The Crossfit Open starts exactly 8 weeks from today.  If last year’s WODs are any indication, there will be a WOD over 15 minutes long which will also likely include lifting something (moderately) heavy.  I want WODs (sometimes) that make you finish the work rather than there being a cut-off.  This is where the mental gains come from – from staring down a heavy bar, forcing yourself to do another rep – knowing that you have to keep going before you can stop rather than just looking at a clock and knowing that no matter how many more you do there is only a finite amount of time left – even our non-AMRAP WODs actually are given the cut-off most days.  

I know that in Crossfit we need to push ourselves whatever we are doing but the beauty of Crossfit (and what got me into it in the first place) is the constantly varied aspect.  When you’re training three times a week and the workouts are starting to seem boring or stale then something isn’t working any more.  When you look at the board and think ‘hey, we just did something like this’ the variation aspect seems a bit suspect. 

Lisbeth Darsh from Crossfit Inc. recently had an article titled “Boredom? Not Possible” citing how crossfit can’t ever be boring because “there are so many different exercises, different combos, different levels, different scaling that I don’t think I could ever exhaust the list, or master all the movements” but lately it seems to be repetitive and stale, my true excitement on the sport coming outside the box where I can ‘spice’ things up – work on movements that tend to get neglected otherwise.  It’s why I’m setting so many PR’s at Albert Street – I’m getting to do things that I haven’t done in ages – next up for me? Overhead squats – the last time I was in that they were programmed was mid-November.  I realize that I might miss some stuff depending on the day of the week it gets worked in but going back through the archives the last time they were actually programmed was in fact mid-November.  Almost 45 class days ago.  That’s just one movement off the top of my head.  

To me, as of late, it seems that many people who are striving to reach the next level are doing so outside the box and that makes our daily crossfit training seem limiting.  The way to get better is to move beyond your comfort zone – that’s where the gains are truly made but I feel (personally) that my training at the box (currently) is keeping me in a ‘safe’ place and my true gains are coming where I can seek them out elsewhere.  Something has to change for me (personally) and I’m starting to look at bit further into what this is.  With so many options out there I need to reassess what I’m looking to gain and how best to achieve this – solely for me.

Warm-up (best part of tonight’s workout)
In partners
300m row/ plank hold
Hang from bar/ walking lunges
Air squats/ empty bar good mornings (20/10)

I partnered up with Anton who is visiting from the East Coast.  It was a fun start to the workout.   We both did all the movements switching it up for each pair so I rowed while he held plank – and incidentally made me push harder knowing he was waiting on me (I managed to hold 1:45ish for the whole distance).  I was (slightly) better off on this one as he had a 1:30ish/500m split going for the distance.  It’s funny how quick you can lunge across the room and back knowing that your partner is hanging from the bar with semi-torn hands.  The squats/ good mornings were quick and straight forward but again, fun to work with someone.

3-3-3-3 deadlifts


Partnered up with Kayla on these and had fun working alongside her.  On one of the earlier sets both Kayla and Jaimie were watching me – I could sense it and I knew Jaimie would be watching to see if my knees collapsed in.  I’m happy to say that he saw big improvements (which I’ve been working on) so I’m quite happy with this.  Also, PR.  Has been a while since the last time I deadlifted.

10 min AMRAP
Sit-ups Box Jumps (24”) Burpees Reverse Burpees (Situpees?)
12/4 (iWOD)

I decided to do the iWOD today because my shoulder isn’t feeling 100% and with the large number of reps (80-100) burpees I knew it wouldn’t be good – the 3 minute AMRAP (in this format) with burpees last week didn’t go so well for a start.  The iWOD was horrid.  Probably more so than the true WOD as it was all about quads  - using them to get up from the reverse burpees and then with the high box jumps.

TMI Alert – I do not recommend attempting box jumps in a WOD when you have to go pee.  Plain and simple ladies, don’t do it.  It is ridiculously hard to maintain bladder control and jump/ rebound.  I managed to not wet my shorts but it was close.  Bathroom break then WOD.  Trust me.

Quad rolling

Spent another good chunk of time rolling out my quads after the WOD – this makes me swear, a lot.  I also need a little break between each leg as the pain has to subside.  I know it’ll get better with consistency but right now it’s agony – all the more reason to do it, I know.

Bonnie so sweetly brought me in some of her paleo "granola" because I lent her my hand grips last week.  I just have to say, it was AWESOME (all caps really necessary).  I can't recall all that was in it (she gave me the run down last night) but it was something like - walnuts, macadamia nuts, shredded coconut, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds - all toasted in coconut oil.  I added some almond milk to it and it was like eating cereal again (I can't remember the last time I had cereal).  I'm going to have to get the recipe (I'll post it for you guys) but for now some photos for you.  I think the extra sweetness from some berries (or dried cranberries even) would put it over the top.

Dry "Granola"

With Almond Milk

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