I’m Actually Quite Nice

Lots of catching up to do…

Tuesday, May 26

Metcon (Time)
1, 2, 3…9, 10, 11 forward rolls
11, 10, 9…3, 2, 1 toes to bar
Complete 2 twisting burpees after each round, i.e., after T2B

I like forward rolls as much as I used to like Tootsie Rolls. I also like AFAPs, and I particularly enjoyed this one. For an added challenge, I completed each forward roll with a deck squat, i.e., I stood up and turned around before completing next forward roll. Jennifer G. and I had decided to share the BAM (Big Ass Mat) but Luke decided to sleep upon 2/3 of it. Good dog! Zac is a bad kitty. There were a few times when I had to wait my turn at the mat, and, you know, that’s okay.

I completed in 9:26. Whilst others posted faster times, they did not complete forward roll + deck squat.

Wednesday, May 27

As part of Lurong Summertime Challenge, we completed mini WOD. I decided to start Level II and, if I felt okay, to finish and complete Level III at some other time. (It’s Saturday and I still haven’t completed. I may be that I don’t do so.)

Metcon (Time)
50 Kettlebell Swings
50 Box Jumps

10-minute time cap
You may partition the reps however you want
Level II – 53# American & 24″

I can rebound very quickly and thus complete box jumps blazingly fast. In order, I completed 20 KB swings, 30 box jumps, 20 swings, 20 jumps, and 10 swings in a time of 3:26.

Tabata Row for Calories (Calories)
Score = total number of calories

Given my height and weight, I’m always at a disadvantage when it comes to rowing for calories or distance. But not for bodyweight wattage. I rowed 7 calories all but the 2nd round (8 calories) for a total of 57. I was pleased with performance yet disappointed that I wasn’t able to row 8 calories each interval. I blame Steve Dodge.

Thursday, May 28

Native American, AKA “Indian” run

The only way I can coach this workout is by running with the athletes, so that’s precisely what I did. And what a fun time we all had! For the first 19-minute run Anthony, Pauline, Jaclyn, and Bonnie were, from last to first to drop off, the finishers. We completed an additional, albeit shorter, run, and Anthony was once again the last person standing.

Uhm, other than me. I have yet to “lose” a Native American run.

Friday, May 29

Skill Building
Handstand Push-ups (Practice HSPUs, including scaling)
‘Easy’ Mary (AMRAP – Rounds and Reps)
Complete as many rounds in 20 minutes as you can of:
5 Handstand Push-ups
10 Pull-ups
25 Squats

You may complete solo or with a partner.
Scale HSPUs as necessary, including DB presses, Abmat(s), and box.
J.T. (Time)
Handstand Push-ups
Ring Dips

In honor of Petty Officer 1st Class Jeff Taylor, 30, of Little Creek, VA, who was killed in Afghanistan June 2005
To learn more about J.T. click here

I coached all but the afternoon session and even then I demonstrated handstands and HSPUs. That’s a shitload of HSPUs.

I last completed J.T. September of last year, and remember how gruesome a workout it was. I am able to complete HSPUs very quickly. Ring dips and pushups, however, were much more challenging. Uhm, Murph. That is all. I was nonetheless able to shave more than a minute off of my time, finishing in 10:05. That’s half of the time it took me  to complete when I first attempted.

Saturday, May 39

RWHRMA 5K Fun Run and Walk

I haven’t run a 5K in a very, very long time. For the first time in as long as I can remember, I was a little anxious about racing today, perhaps because so many of the folks I coach were also going to be racing. I was wide awake at 5, as I promised to help Jeff set up. I’m glad that I’m in shape because we had to carry some heavy shit from the locked gate (the park didn’t open until 7, 30 minutes past our arrival) to the starting area.

Dianne, Kelli, Karen, Kevin, Evelyn, Mike, Gina, Angelina, and  Jaclyn (pushing 2 children and carrying another in her womb) ran and Janet and Steve (with Cora) walked.

I led the runners through a warm up, we listened to announcements, and we were off. The cross-country course at WakeMed park is just as hilly as I recalled. A young boy, probably 14 or 15 years old, took an early lead. I kept him in my sights the entire course, planning when I’d put in my finishing kick and pass him on my way to the finish.

With just 50m remaining that’s exactly what I began to do. He was well within my sights when this thought entered my mind: Don’t be a dick. 

My thoughts continued: You’ve allowed him to lead the entire race. Think how embarrassing it would be for him if you were to pass him at the very finish. Is finishing first that important to you, Paul? It’s likely to be much more important to him.

So I eased up and let him win by a couple of seconds. I don’t, however, recall my finishing time. I did confirm with Jeff that the course is longer than 5K.

I grabbed a bottle of water and began running in folks, beginning with Kelli and ending with Angelina (with Gina and Dianne running in right behind her). I was exceedingly proud of Surmounties. The person I’m most proud of, however, is Angelina, as she has expressed her disdain for running on numerous occasions, yet she ran strong.

Janet captured this picture of me whilst I was running.

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Murph and Drunk Murph

Jeff was kind enough to lead the 8:30 session so that I could work out. I set a goal to achieve new PR for Hero WOD Murph, having completed in 55:04 last year. I knew that I’d have to have a game (the “m” isn’t silent) plan. And that I’d have to keep focused.

Murph (Time)

For Time:
1-Mile Run
100 Pull-ups
200 Push-ups
300 Air Squats
1-Mile Run

If you have a 20# vest or body armor, wear it.
In honor of Navy Lieutenant Michael Murphy, 29, of Patchogue, NY, who was killed in Afghanistan June 28th, 2005.
To learn more about Murph click here

As with previous years, I didn’t partition and I did wear a 20# weight vest. I also completed strict push-ups, i.e., feet together as well as chest and thighs touching the floor.

Jim joined me for first run and we clocked a mile in about 6:40. That was a very good start. I didn’t feel winded so I quickly began pull-ups. I stuck with my plan and completed 20 rounds of 5 reps, never going to failure and never missing a rep. I recall completing in 16 minutes and change.

Two hundred pushups are a challenge. I managed to stick with plan once again and completed 5 reps at a time through 100. I then began completing in rounds of 4, 3, and sometimes even 2 reps. I completed the very last 3 reps as singles. Pushups took me twice as long to complete as pull-ups.

I completed air squats in sets of 10 reps through 250 and completed the last 50 in sets of 5 reps. I did, however, rest very little between sets for the last 50 reps. I glanced at the clock before the mile run and it read 44 minutes and change. I had 10 or so minutes to run the last mile. This gave me a boost of confidence, as I knew it was likely that I’d achieve a PR.

That last mile was gruesome, and there were numerous times when I had to will myself to continue running. I very much wanted to walk, particularly up the hills. I feared that if I did begin walking that I wouldn’t be able to run. I sprinted to the finish. Estimated time of an 8-minute mile.

Time = 52:22. That’s a 2:42 PR. I’ll take it!

i now admit that I didn’t think that I was going to able to achieve goal of new PR. There were quite a few times when I told myself that It’d be okay to complete as prescribed and not achieve a new PR. Sometimes I’m glad that I don’t listen to myself.

Coach James had mentioned completing “Drunk Murph” and I thought for sure that he’d join me today. Sadly, he did not. Heflin brought a 12-pack of Miller 64. Shit tastes like beer-flavored water. i joined Helfin, James, Mike, and a few others for a beer. I then thought, “Why the hell not at least give it a try?” And that’s what I did. I didn’t, however, complete for time, as I merely wanted to see how far I’d make it. Through the push-ups, perhaps? Maybe through the air squats?

Drunk Murph1-Mile Run
Drink a Beer
1-Mile Run
Drink a Beer
50 Pull-ups
Drink a Beer
100 Push-ups
Drink a Beer
150 Air Squats
Drink a Beer
1-Mile Run

Anthony and Luke joined me for the first mile run and I completed the remainder of the workout solo, albeit with an audience that also included Tijuana, Julie, Janet, and Jeff. This wasn’t nearly as difficult as I thought it was going to be. I was never truly drunk and I most certainly did not get sick.

I completed the pull-ups in reps of 3 sets of 10 and 4 sets of 5, the push-ups in sets of 5, and the air squats in sets of 75 reps. Whilst the air squats were slow, I nonetheless kept a good pace. The last mile of Drunk Murph was far easier than the last mile of Sober Murph.

I’d estimate that Drunk Murph took between 75 and 90 minutes, as I didn’t begin until after 11 (I can’t recall how many minutes after the hour) and finished before 12:30.

You do that math. That’s a lot of running, pull-ups, push-ups, and air squats either whilst wearing a weight vest or whilst somewhat inebriated.

Maybe next year I’ll do Drunk Murph whilst wearing a weight vest. That’d be fun!

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Scorcher Indeed!

Wednesday, May 20

IMG_3714Oh, how I wished I had been able to complete this workout with the 6am crew! I covered Nick’s 6am session as he (and Meredith!) are on vacation and worked out at lunchtime. I would’ve been there anyhow, as it was a playdate for Luke and Stevie.

Metcon (Time)

– 20 double unders
– 20 burpees

This is a Lurong Summertime Challenge mini WOD, and it was indeed a scorcher. As their were quite a few at the session, I attempted (somewhat successfully) to find a spot where I could not only have enough room to work out but to also not be distracted by others. I completed in 4:09, a rather slow time. Yup, I’d like to attempt again.

Metcon (Time)

– 50 box jumps (36)
– 50 mountain climbers (25)
– 10 muscle ups

Rest 2 minutes between rounds

One hundred box jumps and mountain climbers and 20 muscle ups? Well, okay then! Luke and Stevie were almost always by my side, often right in front of my box.

I missed 4 and 2 box jumps the first and second rounds, respectively. I did, however, land my feet on the box beside the plates, i.e., no injuries. Yay! I completed both rounds of mountain climbers unbroken and rounds of muscle ups in reps of 5, 3, & 2. Coach Marni captured muscle ups in slo-mo-ho-mo.

I completed first round in 7:27 and and the workout in 17:22. Yup, the second round was slower than the first round. Yup, 36″ box jumps slowed me down. Slo-mo-ho-mo.

Thursday, May 21

Luke and I ran with the endurance athletes, and it was fun! Whilst the two of us didn’t complete as prescribed, as I made sure to run with all of the athletes, we did complete many high intensity sprints. Luke, like me, is a front runner.

Metcon (No Measure)

IMG_3781Run, resting 1 minute between rounds (25 min total)
4 min @ 75% effort
3 min @ 80%
2 min @ 90%
1 min @ 95%
2 min @ 80%
3 min @ 90%
4 min @ 95%

The 1-minute interval at 95% was intense! Luke was exhausted by the end of the workout and, upon arriving home, immediately went to bed. Good dog!

Friday, May 22

I coached the 6, 7, & 8:30 am sessions and worked out with the 9:30 athletes. It was a full house, with lots of visitors during “Bring a Friend to CrossFit Surmount” day.

A: Metcon (No Measure)

EMOTM for 7 minutes
3-5 BS (100% bodyweight)
Commit to completing 3, 4, or 5 reps each round.

I committed to completing 5 reps per round at 145# and easily did so. I focused on speed and explosiveness. It was nice to hear the rattling of the barbell collars.

Partner Metcon (4 Rounds for reps)

4 RNDS; work for 1 minute for each activity (4, 5-min rounds with 1 min rest between rounds)

– Dead-lifts (115/83)
– Wall ball shots (20/14 & 10/9)
– Knees to elbows
– Back extensions
– KB swings (53/35)
Rest 1 minute between rounds

Dr. Heather and I partnered, and we had a tremendous amount of fun! Heather began with deadlifts. I set a goal to match number of reps each round and was somewhat successful in doing so.

My totals: 30 & 30 wb; 38 & 44 be; 39 & 37 dl, 28 & 26 T2B (15 unbroken reps both rounds); and 27 & 27 KB swings. The only activity I completed unbroken was wall ball shots.

Our scores per round were 125, 155, 124, & 151 for a total of 555 reps. That’s solid work from both of us!

As Janet completed solo, I asked her to capture pics during our last round. Uhm, I like to photobomb. And to show a little leg.

It was very nice working out with Dr. Heather, and she listens well to coaching cues. And her back extensions are beautiful! Must be all of that Pilates. I later visited Dr. Heather for an adjustment. Uhm, Luke was once again by my side the entire time. Good dog!

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Hero WODs

I’ve been kinda sorta slack and haven’t posted in a few days. No reason other than laziness, I suppose. Let’s get started, shall we?

Thursday was a rest day but Luke and I ran with the Endurance athletes in the morning and evening sessions. That’d be about 7 to 8 miles of running total.

Friday, May 15

Jenny (AMRAP – Rounds and Reps)
20-Minute AMRAP of:
20 Overhead Squats, 45#
20 Back Squats, 45#
400m Run

In honor of U.S. Army Capt. Jennifer M. Moreno, of San Diego, California, died Oct. 6, 2013, in Zhari District, Afghanistan
To learn more about Jenny click here

I thought that we hadn’t completed this Hero WOD. I had entered into Wodify and put quotes around Jenny; thus, when I searched I didn’t find. Dammit. Had I known what my previous score was I’m certain that I would’ve had a PR as know that I could’ve willed myself to complete 3 more reps. My previous score and PR is 6 rounds + 23 reps and I was 2 reps shy of matching that record. It was nonetheless a good workout, and I worked at a steady pace. Laurie and Jaclyn worked out with me as well, and that always makes for a more competitive workout. I had one failed rep in that I didn’t squat below parallel for first rep of set of OHS. I completed 140 OHS, 121 BS, and ran a 1.5 miles. I also wore my Nike Metcons.

Weighted Plank Hold (Weight)

I suck at math. I thought I had 221# on my back but had 239#. I was able to hold plank for 45 seconds and then had to put down a knee. I was quite disappointed — until I did the math. I rested a couple of minutes and held plank with 221# for a minute. That’s a PR, bitches.

Saturday, May 16 (Jeff’s Birthday)

I worked out with the 11 am athletes, and Jeff was kind enough to lead the metcon so that Coach Nick could complete the workout.

Uhm, I had seen many athletes struggle with this workout and was certain that I would have a very good score. Uhm, some folks still inflate scores by counting bad reps and/or recording more reps than actually completed. I shall say no more.

2-min Rope Climbs (AMRAP – Reps)
Max rope climbs in 2 minutes

I almost got the illusive 5th legless rope climb but cinched the rope with my legs without realizing it. As it would’ve have been a good rep I didn’t fight to touch the beam. Next time. Next time…

Metcon (5 Rounds for reps)
5, 3-min rounds; rest 1 min between rounds
1. Burpee + handstand pushup
2. Wall ball burpees (20/14 & 10/9)
3. Burpee + 10m shuttle sprint
4. Box jump burpees (24/20)
5. Burpee spin around pull-up bar

It was nice to work out with Nick, and we were often side-by-side. I completed either 17 or 27 burpee HSPUs. My handwriting is shitty and I can’t tell if it’s a 1 or a 2. Worse still is that I can’t honestly recall how many reps I completed.

Nick and I started out neck and neck with wall ball burpess. As is often the case I intervened to catch, encouraging him to let the wall ball fall to the floor after each rep. I completed 26 wall ball burpee shots, and each with a tricep (i.e., triangle) pushup. As prescribed. Triangle pushup as prescribed. Going on.

The burpee + 10m shuttle sprints were fun! Nick and I both started at the same end of the box, albeit on opposite sides of the room. Nick started off fast (too fast, perhaps?) and took an early lead. I noticed him glancing in my direction at the start of each rep. I eventually caught and then passed him, completed 28 reps. That’s 28 burpees and 280m in 3 minutes.

I worked steadily and completed 27 box jump burpees and finished with 14 burpee + spin around the bar reps. I had also demonstrated far too many burpees + spins around the bars throughout that morning. I also kept looking at Nick to provide encouragement and support.

Total score = 112 (or 122) reps.

Sunday (today), May 17

I worked out during Open Gym. It was a slow start as there were members present who needed guidance and coaching. I even began the workout, did a round, glanced at what was going on, and stopped working out to coach.

Bradshaw (Time)
10 rounds for time of: 
3 Handstand Push-ups
6 Deadlifts, 225 # 
12 Pull-ups  
24 Double-unders

In honor of U.S. Army First Lieutenant Brian Bradshaw, 24, of Steilacoom, Washington, died in Kheyl, Afghanistan, on June 25th, 2009
To learn more about Bradshaw click here

I last completed this Hero WOD April 30 of last year in a time of 23:09, not close to PR of 20:30 achieved November, 2013. Unlike on far too many occasions, I did indeed look up my time in order to attempt to establish PR. I set a goal to complete in 20 minutes, i.e., 2 minutes a round.

I completed 3 HSPUs in unbroken reps all but the first (I failed the very first rep!) and last (I failed the 2nd rep!) each round. HSPUs went swimmingly well today, and I focused on speed. I also ensure that each rep began and finished with locked out arms. (Cough, cough.)

I dropped each and every deadlift from the top. Once I began set I didn’t stop, however, and worked at a steady pace.

I completed first 5 rounds of pull-ups unbroken, rounds 6 through 9 in reps of 8 & 4, and last round in reps of 6, 3, & 3.

I only completed 2 or 3 rounds of double unders in unbroken reps, as my legs were still somewhat tired from “Jenny.” Thus, I believe that I may be able to complete the workout even faster than i did today!

I had begun 7 rounds when 10 minutes had passed and thus felt confident that I’d get a PR. Thus, i didn’t push myself too hard during the last rounds. I finished in 18:50, far exceeding goal and expectations. That was a great way to finish the week!

I wore my new Umbro socks to prevent scraping of legs whilst deadlifting. It worked!

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Lurong Summertime Challenge Benchmark WOD

Okay, I’ll admit it: I find it increasingly difficult to get excited about the Challenge knowing that I’ll begin as one of the leader’s in the Male Masters+ category only to see my ranking plummet as weight lose is factored into the calculation. I weight 143 =/- 2 pounds on any given day.

And I’m happy with that.

I am committed during this, my 3rd challenge, to eat Paleo for a minimum of 90% of meals and to not drink alcohol. Yup, you read that correctly. I won’t be drinking beer. Gah!

I completed the workout yesterday morning with the 6 am athletes.

Summertime Challenge Benchmark 

A. 5-min AMRAP (Level III)
– 5 Box jump overs (30)
– 10 Toes to bar 

Rest exactly 3 minutes before completing B
B. 3-min AMRAP (Level II)
Squat clean thrusters (95)

Uhm, I just didn’t put my all into it. There, I said it. I completed the first 2 rounds of T2B unbroken, the 3rd round in unbroken reps of 7 & 3, and the last 3 rounds in many, many singles. (As a quick aside, I saw many struggle much more than did I yet post higher scores. It’s funny how that happens.) I completed 3 T2B shy of 6 rounds for a total of 87 reps. Whilst not too shabby I’m quite confident that my score will improve when I re-test.

Squat clean thrusters went much better than expected, and I completed all beginning with a full squat clean (i.e., not a power clean and a front squat). Something very strange happened in that I recall securing the left barbell clip on at least 2 occasions but I don’t recall ever securing the clip on the right. I suppose it’s not always a good thing to be so right-brained. (Don’t argue with me on this, as the right brain controls the left side of the body.) With about 15 seconds remaining I completed my 22nd rep, and as I did so I felt the right plate begin to slide off of the barbell. I didn’t have time to secure the plate and clip and complete another rep, although I could’ve easily completed another rep.

Dammitdammitdammitdammitdammit. I completed 22 reps.

I’m currently ranked #1 for Part A in my division, with the next individual 42 reps behind. This may change as athletes often redo the workouts. Rest assured that I’m not going to. I’m also currently ranked #1 in my division, but as the next individual is just 1 rep behind this ranking is very likely to change. IMG_2799

One pound, but I’ll take it

Monday, May 11

I worked out with the 6 am athletes, and the session was led by Coach Nick.

Press (Establish 1RM)
With a running clock, take no more than 20 minutes to establish press 1RM

Ah, the press, often my nemesis. I completed rep at 135, 96% of 1RM and 94% of my bodyweight but failed 3 attempts at 142. Dammit. No new 1RM for me.

Floor Press Ladder (Time)
Complete 1 floor press on the first minute, 2 on the second minute, 3 on the third minute, etc., until you are no longer able to complete required reps within the minute.

50% of 1RM

Whilst my current bench press 1RM is a mere 175 my floor press is 200#, thus I floor pressed 100#. I completed all sets unbroken through 14 and then, well, things started falling apart. I finished round 15 with just 10 seconds remaining and finished round 16 just as the clock sounded to start the next round. That’s 136 reps.

Upon completion of the ladder someone asked, “What happened to the back of your head?” I was pressing my body into the floor so hard that I bruised the back of my head.

Tuesday, May 12

Tuesday is double Endurance day for yours truly. That’d be a lot of running. I joined the 7 am athletes for the first Endurance session and worked out at 9:30, knowing that my legs might be a little tired.

Front Squat (Establish 1RM)
With a running clock, take no more than 25 minutes to establish 1RM

I’ve been stuck at 225# for a very, very long time, and desperately wanted a PR. Yup, even if it was a 1 pound PR. I squatted 205 and decided to go for a 1RM. I failed at 226#. Dammit. I did, however, feel confident that I could squat the weight so I rested, asked Marni to observe and tell me when I had passed parallel, and finally was able to front squat more than 225#! Yay! I had time for one more lift and failed at 230#. I was exhausted. I front squatted 158% of my bodyweight. Yes, many lifted heavier weights. Yes, many are heavier than am I.

I didn’t join the athletes for the metcon. I did, however, coach the 6:30 pm session Endurance session and completed the Barbell Club metcon.

7-min AMRAP
– 5 burpees
– 7 ring rows (negative for me)
– 9 negative pushups (6″ for me)
– Sprint 200m

While not the least bit challenging, it was nonetheless fun! I completed 200m shy of 5 reps. I crushed Thomasina. Like a tiny, squishy bug.

Luke was exhausted.


Loredo and more

I neglected to record Friday’s (May 8) workout in my haste to document Ninja Challenge. I shall do so in 3, 2, 1…

Metcon (Time)
– Deadlifts (225)
– Box jumps (24)

This was one of the Masters regional qualifying workouts, and it was much fun. I completed all deadlifts unbroken in that, whilst I did drop the bar from the top, I didn’t rest and/or re-set between reps. I missed one box jump during the round of 15. Dammit. HSPUs went much better than expected for all rounds. I didn’t push myself as I wanted to conserve energy for the Ninja Challenge. I completed the workout in 9:03. My fastest Diane (no box jumps) time is 7:53, so I’m pleased with performance.

For a change of pace I used a gym mat for HSPUs, i.e., no 25# plates and Abmat. Luke decided to rest his head upon one end of the mat and was thus by my side for all rounds of HSPUs. Good dog!

IMG_2414I worked out with Heflin this morning at 8:30.

Weighted Ring Dip (Weight)
Complete 1 weighted ring dip.

With a running clock, take 10 minutes to establish 1RM

I wore 40# weight vest and completed last rep with 70# kettle bell around my waist. That’d be 110#. I like Wodify as I can quickly look up records. I have no idea if today was a PR. Dammit. Time ran out and I had enough energy for another attempt. But time had run out.

Weighted Strict Pull-up (Weight)
With a running clock, take 10 minutes to establish 1RM
Metcon (AMRAP – Reps)

I once again wore 40# weight vest and successfully completed rep @ 50#. I attempted 60 and failed, lowered weight to 55 and failed (even if others may have considered a successful pull-up).

10 rounds of:
Deadlift for 15 seconds (75% of 1RM)
Rest 45 seconds
Metcon (AMRAP – Reps)

This was tremendously fun and tremendously difficult. I completed 6, 7, 7, 8, 8, 8, 8, 7, 8, & 8 reps. the bar got in front of me the 8th round, thus 7 reps. Forty-five seconds felt like 10 seconds of rest by the 5th round. I completed a total of 74 reps. Whew!

I took Luke for a long walk on the ATT, coached the 11 am session, and then completed the Hero WOD “Loredo,” as I wanted to give it a try. I set goals to complete in fewer than 20 minutes and to not only complete all rounds of activities unbroken and to not rest between activities. Those are some challenging goals, folks.

Loredo (Time)
6 Rounds for time of: 
24 Squats 
24 Push-ups 
24 Walking Lunge Steps 
400m Run

In honor of U.S. Army Staff Sergeant Edwardo Loredo, 34, of Houston, TX, was killed on June 24, 2010
To learn more about Loredo click here.

Upon completing the 3rd round I glanced at the clock and it read 9:53. I thought, “I’m going to have to pick up the pace if I hope to finish in under 20 minutes. I need to do air squats, lunges, and run faster in case I need to rest during pushups.” I did indeed pick up the pace.

I was able to complete all rounds in unbroken reps, to not rest between activities, and to complete the workout in fewer than 20 minutes. How long did it take me, you ask? Nineteen minutes and one second.

Ninja Challenge

I had the honor and pleasure of joining Jeff, Kelsey, and Kathryn as Team CrossFit Surmount 1. Our number one goal was have fun, and, while I can’t speak for the others I can unequivocally state that I had a tremendous amount of fun!

The Ninja Challenge was a mere 5K with about a dozen obstacles, some of them far less challenging than others. See what I said there? I said “less” not “more” challenging, as none of the obstacles were all that challenging. Where’s a salmon ladder when you need one?

I honestly can’t recall the order of the obstacles other than the first (bear crawl) and last (vertical wall). Other obstacles included a rope climb, throwing a ball weighted with water over a bar, a wall “rock” climb,” a balance beam walk, jumping into a very cold pool of water, a rope net climb, and running over floating boards.

Speaking of running, that was by far the easiest part of the course. Uhm, I did see many people struggling whilst running, as the course was rather hilly. I love running uphill almost as much as I love running downhill.

I kept a promise I made to myself in that I left no woman or man behind. I would occasionally run ahead of the team but would always wait for all of us to rejoin. I also sang, ran backwards, skipped, held Kelsey’s hand and pulled her up a couple of hills, and rescue carried her across the finish. Ha!

My favorite obstacle was running across the floating boards. I felt as light as air! I also enjoyed the rope climb, as I climbed it legless. Yup, I did that.

We crossed the finish line in a time of 42:52. That’s a slow 5K.

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For Time:
Run 1 Mile with a 20# Medicine Ball
60 Burpee Pull-ups
Run 800m with a 20# Medicine Ball
30 Burpee Pull-ups
Run 400m with a 20# Medicine Ball
15 Burpee Pull-ups
In honor of U.S. Navy Petty Officer Second Class Taylor Gallant, 22, of Winchester, KY, died on January 26, 2012
To learn more about Gallant click here.

I worked out with the 6 am athletes, admirably led by Coach Nick. I was very much looking forward to this workout. The workout was, however, even more challenging than I imagined that it would be.

My goal was to run without stopping to rest and/or without putting down medicine ball and to complete all rounds of burpee pull-ups unbroken. I am pleased to say that I achieved both goals.

Laurie and Jaclyn also worked out at 6, and I’m very glad that they did as both are gifted runners and fierce competitors. The three of us led the charge and, although I took and maintained the lead, Laurie and Jaclyn were never too far behind.

Coach Nick often called out times. I completed the mile run in 7:56 and 400m run in about 4 minutes. I began 800m run at 15-minute mark; thus it took me about 7 minutes to completed 60 burpee pull-ups, averaging a rep every seven seconds. Spec. Tac. You. Lar.

I did occasionally torment Laurie (in particular) and Jaclyn, for example, letting them know when I had 10 reps remaining of round of 60. I recall Laurie saying, “I still have 16!” I also intentionally ran the first 800m at a slower pace and then picked up pace for remaining or mile. I like to get in my competitors’ heads. Yup, I did that.

The most memorable moment of the morning took place as I was approaching the 200m turnout of last run and Holly was approaching last 200m or 800m run. Whilst holding medicine ball on her shoulder with one arm she held up her hand, covered her eyes, and said, “I don’t want to see you right now. I’m so f@cking jealous.” Ha!

Time = 26:45

That’s 1.75 miles and 105 burpee pull-ups, folks.

Laurie, Luke, and I ran in Jaclyn during her last 400 meters. What a wonderful morning!

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The Farmer in the Box.

I worked out with the large group of athletes attending the 9:30 am session. Much fun ensued!

Bench Press (Complete 3 sets of 10 reps @ 50% of 1RM )

I completed 2 sets @ 95# and both sets took exactly 10 seconds to complete. The secret is already out of the bag… I completed the last set of 10 reps @ 75% of 1RM (140#) and it took about 18 seconds to complete. I was pleased with performance. It was also nice to partner with Brian!

2-min Rope Climbs (AMRAP – Reps)

I forgot Nike Metcons. Dammit. I completed legless rope climbs instead. Gah! Legless rope climbs work the biceps and forearms. Jaclyn and I completed rope climbs together. She said, “It’s hard to climb the rope with all of your heavy breathing.” Ha! Yup, just like with powerlifting, Oly lifting, running, well, just about everything, I focus on proper breathing.

My goal was to complete 3 legless rope climbs. I had completed 2 climbs when I asked coach Deborah how much time remained. She said, “Forty-five seconds.” I completed another rope climb and then she announced we had a minute remaining. I completed another climb. Whilst I could’ve possibly completed five instead of four rope climbs, I knew I had to leave something in the tank for the metcon. I’m very glad that I did.

Metcon (AMRAP – Rounds and Reps)

11:30 AMRAP
3/arm DB hang power cleans*
3/arm DB push presses
50m farmer’s carry
3 manmakers
50m farmer’s carry
Men = 40-45% of bw
Do NOT alternate arms, i.e., complete all reps on 1 arm and then switch to other arm.

I used 30# DBs. One goal was to make it through rounds without placing the DBs on the floor during the round, i.e., keep hold of DBs from HPCs through 2nd 50m farmer’s carry. Another goal was to complete 5 rounds.

This was quite a challenging workout. My forearms. Gah! I achieved both goals. The fourth round was the most difficult, and while I was able to complete both 50m farmer’s carries without putting down the DBs it was certainly difficult to do so.

With time running out, I picked up the pace of the fifth round. I completed the round and glanced at the clock: one minute remained. I willed myself to not put down the DBs. I completed HPCs, PPs, and 20m farmer’s carry.

Score = 5 rounds + 8 reps.

As is often the case, Luke stayed by my side for much of the workout.