Posts Tagged ‘workout’

Believe it or not, sometimes I just don’t feel like working out. I typically spend all day trying to motivate others to improve their lives through fitness, so when the gym clears out and it’s my turn, I can struggle to get inspired to do it myself. Today was one of those days. I was sore, I convinced myself there were too many other things I needed to do instead, and I was a few minutes away from throwing in the towel.

At that moment I stopped and asked myself what I would tell one of my athletes if they told me they didn’t feel like working out. The first thing that popped into my head was, “the only bad workout is the one that didn’t happen.” While that’s SO cheesy, and definitely in line with things I say every day, I also think it’s true!

As long as you’re not injured and your body isn’t begging for a rest day because of over-training, I feel that we can almost always be productive with our time in the gym. Scale back weight or reps! Focus on technique if the assigned percentages feel too heavy! Spend that hour stretching and mobilizing if you’re too wrecked!

But if you have the time to go to the gym, and it doesn’t get in the way of anything else…. Go! Go and be productive, have some fun, say hi to some friends, and realize that you’re likely better off for having gone.

Should you still go to the gym if motivation is low or if you’re sore? Most of the time, yes.

Yes, you should.

What do you think about that advice? Do you agree or not? Let’s talk!

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The next week of Smashby’s Tip of the Week is live, and it’s the final of my four week handstand push-up progression!

Although the video is a bit long, I cover a lot of information.

The first three weeks focused on my process for teaching athletes how to safely get upside down and support their own body weight. This final week moves through progressions I use to continue to build confidence in athletes, along with timelines for when I think the next step should be t

Here’s a snapshot summarizing my 4-week series:

  • Learn and progress through the steps to safely learn Wall Climbs/Wall Walks
  • Learn and progress through the steps to safely learn a Headstand
  • Learn and progress through the steps to safely learn a Handstand
  • Build strength and control through the use of Negatives
  • Learn and progress through steps to safely apply Kipping to Handstand Push-Ups

What did you think of this series? Did you find it helpful? If not for yourself, do you think it’s a good way to teach other athletes?

Let me know in the comments, and let’s talk about this. If it’s good, I would love to share it with others. If it sucks, help me improve my content so it can help others.

Thanks in advance!

The first few weeks of my Weekly Throwdown is in the books, so it’s time for challenge number two! We’re still working to practice different pacing strategies for “Murph” at the end of next month, so keep that in mind.

Last week we worked on the 3/6/9 pacing breakdown. This week, we’re going to do what I view as the most common way of breaking down reps; 5 pull-ups, 10 push-ups, 15 air squats.

Throwdown #2

4 Rounds

200m Run

5 Pull-Ups

10 Push-Ups

15 Air Squats

Focus/Modifications/Progressions:

Overall Strategy- In Murph, there is only a mile run at the beginning of the workout, and another one at the end. For today’s workout, your goal is to try and get a little bit faster for each one of your four rounds. Too often during Murph, athletes run a blazing fast first mile and then a significantly slower second one. By pacing today’s short workout, the goal is to focus on being able to control your speed and effort in hopes to still have some gas left in the tank for the end!

Runs– The distance is short, so there will be some effective pacing required to not go too hard on round one! Try to get faster each round!It doesn’t end with run, so feel free to really push that final 200m run!

Pull-Ups– Kipping and butterfly pull-ups may be performed today, but remember, we want to get faster each round.

Push-Ups– No hand-release push-ups required this week, but make sure your chest, hips, and quads STILL touch the ground, AND that you lock out all the way. Since most people can’t do sets of 10 throughout the entire Murph workout, my advice is to break up these reps how you’d plan to do it on game day. Most people try 4/3/3 or 3/3/2/2, with really short rests between each small set.

Air Squats– Chest up, crease of your hip below the top of your knee! We all know how to squat, just because we’re not holding a weight in our hand today doesn’t mean we don’t need to start practicing actual full range of motion.

I will be very impressed if athletes can actually get faster each round. My main advice for getting after it is to intentionally hold back on both the run AND reps for the first round. On the last round, get after it and push both. Last round should feel like a sprint from start to finish.

Let me know how it goes!!

NEW SEGMENT ALERT!

To strengthen our community of readers, I’m going to try and post a challenge or workout that we can do together most weeks. They’ll be fairly fast and shouldn’t negatively impact any specific program you’re following!

Each week will have a different focus and “WHY are we doing this” aspect, and can be done any time from Monday through Sunday of that week. All I ask, is that you share your results here and comment on how it went!

The first few weeks of my Weekly Throwdown will be in preparation for a workout thousands of CrossFit athletes do around the world each year on Memorial Day: “Murph

Too often at the end of May people realize they haven’t devoted enough time to improving their running or their strength for the pull-ups, push-ups, and air squats that make up the workout.

Since you’re allowed to partition your reps any way you’d like in that workout, today’s variation is going to include the 3/6/9 break down, and will focus on strict and slower movements.

Throwdown #1

400m Run

5 Rounds of 3 Strict Pull-Ups, 6 Hand-Release Push-Ups, 9 Goblet Squats

400m Run

Focus/Modifications/Progressions:

Runs– Push the runs. Today’s workout includes slower movements by design. Since you’ll be standing around a little more than on a typical Murph, you’ll have plenty of time to recover before the next run. Run your first 400m at about 85/90% effort (faster than Murph pace), then try to match or beat it the second time!

Strict Pull-Ups– Make these the most challenging version of “chin-over” pull-ups you can do. Unassisted reps? Great! Pause and the bottom and don’t swing. Need a little kip to get that chin over? Use it! Can’t quite get your chin over yet? Although it’s not my favorite substitution, you can also use a band. But only if it only gives you that “little extra” push to get your chin over. If you’re needing to attach multiple or really strong bands, I always prefer a good strict ring row to build strength. These reps do not need to be unbroken, so feel free to break them up!

Hand-Release Push-Ups– My favorite version of push-up to ensure that an athlete’s chest actually touches the ground! If you’re doing push-ups from your toes, tell yourself not to let your knees touch the ground at all during the rep. At the end of each rep, come to a complete pause before beginning the next rep.

Goblet Squats– Holding a kettlebell, perform a set of 9 unbroken goblet squats. The goal with these is to ensure the chest is kept high at the bottom of each rep, and that the athlete stands all the way up at the top of every rep. It’s really easy to “shorten” range of motion in a workout like Murph, try to avoid that today!

This workout isn’t designed to be incredibly challenging. View it as a cardio component, focused skill and strength work, then a cardio piece to finish up. If you decide to tackle it, leave your time and some notes in the comments section.

Some people prefer heavy barbells in workouts and others prefer more gymnastics style movements. Workout 18.4 has BOTH of those things!

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Men’s Rx Workout

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Women’s Rx Workout

The workout begins with the CrossFit Benchmark “Diane,” which is 21-15-9 of deadlifts (225/155) and handstand push-ups. Then, it gets turned up to “11” and the deadlifts go to 315/205, while the handstand push-ups turn into handstand walks (50 feet each round).

The main thing to note, is that since there is a tie break after EACH set of deadlifts, athletes should have a clue about where they hope to end, and base the entire workout on getting there as quickly and safely as possible.

Deadlifts

A 225lb. deadlift isn’t that heavy for a lot of male athletes, and a 155lb deadlift isn’t that heavy for a lot of women, but Diane isn’t the primary focus of this workout. Going unbroken because “you can” is not a good idea. Please be sure to keep your chest up and pace yourself during these reps. The handstand push-ups will take a lot longer than usual for most people, so utilizing an alternating grip and trying to relax your arms as much as you can while keeping the bar close will save your shoulders a bit.

I’d recommend most athletes break up the deadlifts into at least 3 sets with short rests for the first half of the workout. If and when you make it to the second half, it’ll need to be a judgement call for how to go about the heavier deads. If you can safely brace and go through quick singles, that might make more sense than trying to hang on for larger sets, but needing to take longer rests.

Handstand Push-Ups

Souls are going to get crushed here today. Assuming judging is done properly, thousands of athletes are going to no-repped for not hitting the movement standards. I recommend having someone video a few of your reps before the workout starts. Play around with staying locked out on the wall and flexing and extending your ankles, seeing how that places your feet in relation to the line, and making sure you know what a “good rep” feels like. Once you get tired, it’s going to be a lot more challenging to get all the way up and over. It’ll almost be a “scap push-up” at the top of the rep for most athletes.

When considering pacing, the only thing athletes should be thinking about is not to burn out. For “regular” Diane, people will often get through the round of 21 in only a few sets, struggle through the round of 15, and then completely crash and burn on that final round of 9 reps. Take that feeling and multiply it by 100 for the feeling most people will likely have here. Small sets, listen to your judge to minimize no-reps, and don’t get frustrated! It’s better to take long rests between good attempts, than to keep getting no-repped over and over again.

Handstand Walks

If you make it to this part of the workout, congrats! That’s going to be a huge accomplishment for this workout. Shoulders will likely be pretty tired, so as long as the main focus is keeping your arms straight, locked out, and strong, athletes with handstand walks should at least be able to make the 5ft increments without too much difficulty. I don’t think it’s necessary to do all 25ft in a row if the likelihood of falling is high. Walk a bit, drop if you need to, shake out those arms, and get back up.

Scaled Version

The weight is lighter (135/95 for the first part, and 185/135 for the second) and the movements are less advanced. But that does not mean the workout is easy! Hand-release push-ups are the second movement in the first half, and bear crawls were introduced in the Open for the second part.

The name of the game for the Scaled version is to just keep moving! On the set of 21 deadlifts, quick sets of 7 should work for a lot of athletes. Remember, just because you can go unbroken on the set of 21, doesn’t mean you should. The weight gets quite a bit heavier for the second time through and you don’t want to blow up your lower back!

The short rest on the ground for hand-release push-ups should allow athletes to keep moving a little faster through those reps. Since the bear crawls will be less stress on the shoulders for the second half of the workout, I would recommend pushing a little bit faster than you might want to on the hand-release reps.

While only a few athletes will likely finish the Rx’d version of this workout, there will be a lot more who make it through the Scaled version. That means instead of viewing this as a “get as far as you can” workout, you should approach it with a “what’s the best way to pace this entire workout” mentality. Smaller sets, short rest, will be the way to control heart rate and relieve your lower back from being under tension for too long.

Just remember that this is supposed to be fun! Put a smile on your face, keep your core tight and chest up, and get after it. Only one more week to go!

Good luck, have fun, I believe in you!

This weekend we got out of town and came up to Breckenridge, Colorado for a few days! The sun is shining, people are smiling, and while it’s not even noon, we’ve already had breakfast, got in a workout at CrossFit Low Oxygen, and now we’re posted up at a local coffee shop to get a bit of work done! One thing that we always try to do on our trips is make time to workout. Why? Because Em is an active and fit human who takes care of her body, and I would just sit and day drink on patios around the world all day every day if she wasn’t there to help me reel it in. A healthy balance of the two makes us a pretty good team when we want to be!

I used to do a “Smashby Drops In” series on this blog, and while looking through my archives, I saw that it’s been nearly six years since my last post of this kind. What better time to bring it back, than right now, that “the blog is back” in full swing! I have been to one other gym in and around Breckenridge (and that gym is CrossFit Breckenridge), so today I decided to check out a new box. Since I have several friends who had been to Low Oxygen before, and one couple who considers this their “home gym away from home” when they’re up at their mountain house, choosing it was a no-brainer.

The options for Saturday workouts I saw were a Partner WOD at 9am, and then a regular class at 10am. Since Em and I never get to work out together, I thought it’d be nice to choose the Partner WOD. We got there a little early, since I tend to be a “late person” (as Em calls me), so we had a few minutes to just move around a little on our own before class. The gym is cool, has lots of toys, and was really clean! I also go to try out my BRAND NEW DSX FLYKNIT METCONS I bought at the Nike Outlet store last night!!

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What are thoooooose?!

Once 9:00 hit everyone came together to warm-up, coach let everyone know that we were drop-ins, and introduced us to the class. While some people don’t like being the center of attention, I am a firm believer in making guests feel welcome. Thanks for that!

 

The workout (above) had rowing in it, so after some general mobility work, we did partner Rowling. (Alternate every 100m, your partner does the meters you’re over or under!, and go to 1,000) Over the course of the next ten minutes or so, we were walked through a Power Clean warm-up, and were shown proper range of motion requirements for balls slams and knee tucks. Once people got all set up, the clock counted down and we were off.

 

Em and I alternated 250m distances on the rower while the other one planked, and I was holding in the mid-1:30’s as my pace. It’s less than a minute, so I thought I’d be good. For the Power Cleans, I chose 135lbs since coach wanted them to be unbroken. Slam balls we opted for a 30lber since we were sharing. She would have gone up if I let her! (“What? I grew up with 30’s, they’re not hard!”) About halfway through the middle part of the workout, it hit me. I haven’t worked out at 9,000+ feet in a LONG time, and the shortness of breath was rough! On the Cash Out, you switched rowers every time someone lowered their legs, and I was barely able to hold a knee tuck on the parallettes for 30 seconds. Poor Em probably thought, “Dude! Let me row!” Our final time was 19:24.

Over the course of the hour, we interacted with every other athlete in the class, and they were all super friendly. Thanks for making us feel like a part of the family this morning, CrossFit Low Oxygen!

 

Here’s last week’s recap and my goals for the upcoming week.

Last week:

  • Fitness- The more time passes this year, the more appreciative I am of the little things that go well in my training. My expectation used to be that I had to hit big numbers in strength, and push hard on workouts. Both things had to be there, every day. Now, I look back on training and am excited to see that a few things go well every week. That’s been more than enough to keep me going lately.
    • Metcons:
      • 5 Rounds: 20/15 Calorie Row/Bike and 10 Thrusters (115/80) – 9:53rx
      • For Time:
        – 40/30 Cal Bike or Row
        – 100′ Front Rack Walking Lunge (DB 50/35)(KB 53/35)
        – 25/20 Cal Bike or Row
        – 100′ DB Walking Lunge
        – 15/10 Cal Bike or Row – 7:39rx
      • For Time:
        – 2k Row (or 1 mile run)
        – 200 Double Unders (300 singles)
        – 10 Rounds of Cindy (C2B Cindy) – 22:21c (chest to bar)
    • Barbell work:
    • Calorie Total:
      • The challenge this month was to accumulate 2,018 calories on a rower or bike. My goal last week was to complete an additional 1,000 calories, and I did it. I’m currently sitting at 2,300 for February.
  • Progress still continues slowly on my first book of the year (Discipline Equals Freedom: Field Manual by Jacko Willink). I knew that it would be hard to prioritize sitting down and making time to read instead of doing some sort of work, but not this tough! I’m always so convinced that there are other things I need to be doing until the second I close my eyes to go to sleep, but at least I’m plugging away.

This week:

  • Write one “The 2018 Open is Coming” post
  • More progress on the book (Discipline Equals Freedom: Field Manual by Jacko Willink)
  • Complete one thousand more calories on the bike and/or rower before next Sunday. Feeling good about the extra cardio I’m doing, I just need to MAKE time to get it in! Another 1,000 would put me at 3,300 by next weekend.
  • Swimming Post is basically done, just working on fine-tuning details on the graphic/poster! Booked another 2 new swim clients this week for later in the month, too.

Alright, your turn. What’s going on with all of you?

Have a great week!

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Happy Canadian Easter Monday!! No?….. ok, I tried.

This was a really fun workout today! I normally don’t particularly like Box Jumps OR Sumo Deadlift High Pulls, but I really enjoyed this WOD. The decreasing numbers per round, and the “relatively” light weight of the SDLHP made it easier for a lot more people to go “Prescribed” than usual and really push themselves!

As for the Strength Portion… people are starting to get STRONG! Watching the crew pull weight is getting more and more impressive. Hopefully you guys can feel the gains, and are as proud of yourselves as the coaches are of you!

Workout of the Day:
Strength
Dead Lift 3-3-3-3-3-3-3-3-3, @ 80% 1RM

WOD
21-18-15-12-9-6-3
Sumo DL High pull (75#/55#) / Box Jump (24″/20″)

Tonight’s workout was a good one, one that (depending on what the CrossFit Open workout is tonight) I might try myself this week!

First, we started off with some Squat Cleans for the strength portion on the day. For some people in the class, it was their first day ever performing this movement with weight. It was fun watching the gears click for them as they practiced more and more.

Since this took some time, we had very little rest between the Squat Cleans and the workout. Off we went!

Workout of the Day:
As Many Rounds As Possible in 10 Minutes
10 Dead Lifts / 10 Knees 2 Elbows
(A sub for the Knees to Elbows was either 20 Leg Lowers or 20 regular Sit-Ups)

Go, Class, Go!

You might recognize one of those faces as belonging to Kristin. She was back in town to run the Horsetooth Half Marathon (with Mel!) and stopped by for class tonight! It was her first time seeing the new space, too!

The strength portion of tonight’s session featured the movement Sumo Deadlift. Not only did I see some people pull weight off of the ground safely and hit some PR’s, I also go to see CC do his thing. Look at this man pull 465lbs off of the ground and make it look easy!

After that we got right into the workout, which include jumping for the first time in a while. I’m really hoping that the weather stays nice, because being able to run outside regularly again is such a nice change of pace! I love summertime.

Workout of the Day:
Strength
Sumo Deadlift – 85% of 1RM – 1 Rep every minute for 15 minutes

WOD
4 Rounds for Time
400m Run / 20 Broad Jumps / 15 Pull-Ups

Athlete Results:
Sumo Deadlift
Jamie- 235lbs? (was it more?)
Alon- 175lbs (was WAYYY too easy, but form looked perfect)

WOD
Jamie (1-Banded Pull-Ups)-
Alon (4-Banded Pull-Ups)-