Tag Archives: Thrusters

“Mini Fran.” PUC Postponed.

Lousy sleep, only from 1:00 am to 6:30 am. I went to bed before 11:00 pm, but couldn’t fall asleep. Thinking about so many things. But I felt ok in the morning and I jetted off to the 7:00 am workout at CFA. No coffee. No breakfast. Only about 8 oz. of water. So I knew I was asking for trouble. But it was alright.

When I got there I saw that the workout was “Fran.” Ouch. And bad timing for me. My first experience with “Fran” was when I was a CrossFit Newbie (see Feb. 16, 2009), and today, as luck would have it, I encountered her again when I was recovering from an acute back injury.

Never mind, I decided to do a mini-Fran, and let’s just say this: “it is what it is.”

Warm Up

Agility drills (footwork, arms, crawling, etc.), Shoulder Dislocates, Sampson, Hip Mobility, Hamstrings and Calf stretches, Squats (10), Push-Ups (15), Knees to Elbows (12), Pull-Ups (medium band assist, 10).

I was happy and surprised at how easily I knocked out the K2Es. I did 12 in a row with just a tiny little kip to get me up. Knees touched the elbows every time.

Strength and Skill

Rx’d was work on Kipping Pull-Ups or Muscle Ups. I worked a bit on the Kipping Pull Up. Nothing major. I just took it easy.

WOD: “Mini-Fran”

For me, Mini-Fran today was:
15, 12, 9 of Thrusters (65 lbs), and Pull-Ups (medium band assist)
for time.

Results: 6:54.

This felt ok. I felt a little wimpy for not going all-out, especially knowing that both Tom and Rustan had pushed themselves as hard as they could go during the 6:00 am workout, using no resistance bands, and prescribed weights.

My back is recovering and I did not aggravate it further with the thrusters or the pull-ups. That was the goal. I also got the metabolic rush which told me at least that I was not sandbagging it through my Mini-Fran, even if she was light on the weight, easy on the pull-ups, and smaller on the reps.

It’s hard to compare this case of “Fran” with the previous one in February. I did 9 fewer reps, and I did 10 fewer pounds, but I used less resistance on the pull-ups. And I personally weigh a lot less; I weighed in at 179.5 yesterday, and I weighed in at 211 on Feb 15th. But the fact is that I did this one almost 9 minutes faster than the last one. I am clearly stronger, faster, and more capable of putting out the power now. But the results are not comparable, strictly speaking.

Pull-Up Challenge Postponed

It’s my challenge, so I make the rules. I know I have been poking through the end of this first third of the challenge, having stretched one week’s worth out into about 3 weeks worth of time so far. But until I am sure that my back is going to recover without getting further tweaked, I am going to hold off on the extra pull-up training.

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“Partners in Crime.” PUC Day 30.

Woke up rough, after only 5 1/2 hours of sleep. No more. Goal for this upcoming week: eat right, sleep right. Still made it to the 9:00 am CrossFit Asheville class for the great skill work and Saturday partner WOD.

Warm Up

Agility Runs. Shoulder dislocates. Sampson stretches, hip openers. Push ups (15). Overhead Squats (15). Pull-Ups (10, dead hang). Side Plank Rolls (10).

Skill work:

Rope Climb intermixed with cartwheel/round-off practice for 10 minutes.

I almost got my cartwheel today! By the end of practice I was doing them in series.

I also discovered that I can kick up into a freestanding handstand, but I have trouble finding balance, and will almost every time fall all the way over onto my back. Thank goodness for the springy gymnastics floor!

I did three rope ascents, foot assisted of course. Others were practicing using only their arms, but I’m not there yet. Nevertheless, I feel like a million bucks, because only a few months ago, when confronted by the rope, I was very intimidated, and couldn’t even ascend past about 1/3 of the distance. The pull-ups must be helping. The weight loss has certainly helped. I am 40 years old and have finally conquered an exercise that was always beyond reach for me, when growing up.

WOD: “Partners in Crime”

Work as a team to complete as many rounds as possible in 20 minutes of:
One person runs 400m while the other partner completes as many rounds as possible of the following:
7 dumbbell thrusters (M-30lbs, W-20lbs)
8 sand/heavy bag cleans
10 ball slams
Example: If partner A starts on the run partner B performs as many rounds of the 3 exercises as possible until partner A returns from the run. Immediately note rounds andtotal reps of uncompleted round of partner B before B heads out on the run and A begins the exercises. Repeat for 20 minutes. Total combined completion of rounds at the end of 20 minutes.

My partner was one of the newer members, Seth. He’s a mechanic, so I suggested we call our team “Team Machine.” I used 25 lb dumbbells (for a 50 lb total on the Thrusters) and we used the 50 lb sandbag and a 12 lb medicine ball.

Results:
Matt: 5 runs, and 5 full rounds plus extra reps equivalent to a total of 6 rounds + 11 reps.
Seth: 5 runs, and 5 full rounds plus 5 extra reps.
Giving us a total of 11 rounds and 16 reps.

A fun workout. Seth and I worked hard. The runs were outside in the sun. I was drenched in sweat at the end.

Stretching

We did the “full Randy” today. Someday I will describe this stretching routine. It’s pretty good, and I feel better for doing it.

Pull-Up Challenge Day 30

I did my first reps during the warm-up, but I forgot how many. Then I did three more reps after the workout. I know I did at least 12 reps total at the workout, so I’m going to reckon it as 12.

The rest of the reps will be much later today.

Results:
Reps #1-12: At CrossFit Asheville during the warm up and after the WOD.
Reps #13-17: Set of 5, failed on 6th rep. Front grip. 7:15 pm.
Reps #18-22: Set of 5. Wide reverse grip. 7:30 pm.
Reps #23-26: Set of 4. Wide front grip. 7:45 pm.
Reps #27-30: Set of 4. Wide reverse grip. 8:00 pm.

That’s it! Day 31 of the PUC comes on Monday.

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Thrusters and Burpees. Hiking and Swimming Big Creek.

I had a devil of a time falling asleep last night. I must have been awake, tossing and turning, from 10:30 to midnight. And then just when I’d finally fallen asleep, Lena woke up at 12:30. And then at 1:00. And then at 2:30. A brutal night of wakings and interrupted sleep.

Coffee. 2 block breakfast (salmon and a date). And off to CrossFit Asheville for the 6:00 am.

Warm Up

Agility drills. Sampson and Hip Mobility. Calves. Hamstrings. Pull-Ups and Push-Ups. Overhead Squats. Side Plank Rolls (all 10-15, I forget exactly).

Thrusters and Burpees.

Strength/skill work:
Thrusters: Find your 5 rep max

WOD:
50 Burpee Time Trial

With the Thrusters, I didn’t exclusively work towards my 5-rep max, but I worked to maximize weight at “work-out speed.” So the weights reported were executed at “full-speed.”

Results:
PVC warmups, 10 x 45 / 5 x 65 / 5 x 70 / 5 x 75 / 5 x 80 / 5 x 85 / 5 x 90 / 5 x 95 /

Then we did the burpees! There’s always time for more burpees.

Results:
4:00 exactly

Swimming Ground: Big Creek

We rode out to Waterville Road and the Big Creek Park, and hiked up the trail to a super water-hole. Totally beautiful. And cold. We did not hike all the way to the falls.

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“Fran” #1

“Fran” is number 6 of the original 6 CrossFit benchmark workouts called collectively “The Girls” (see CrossFit Journal September 2003), and it also happens to be the most revered of them all.

Today was my first encounter with her and I think I hate her or love her, I don’t know. I can’t do the “canonical” or “prescribed” weights and moves yet, but I hope to be closer or even there next time I meet her, and I plan to kick her ass anyway when I do even if I haven’t got the chops yet.

The workout:

For time:

21 “Thrusters” (95# RX’d, I did 75#)
21 Pullups (unassisted “kipping” pullups RX’d, I used the “heavy rubber band” assist)

15 Thrusters
15 Pullups

9 Thrusters
9 Pullups

I’ve seen an outstanding x-fit video where a woman named Christy does a sub 4 minute “Fran” with prescribed weights. She makes it look easy.

My time was 15:44.

I ache, I hurt. “Fran, you make me wanna be a better man.”

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Thrusters and other Olympic Lifts

So far I remain at novice level in Cross-Fit inspired workouts. But today I did some stuff that made me feel tough, and made me think about the virtues of Olympic Lifting.

The Olympic bar is used in regular gyms primarily on bench press set ups or, increasingly, in highly controlled smith-squat machines, where the bar is really a part of the machine. In other words, your standard gym doesn’t actually let you use the Olympic Bar as it is designed to be used: for “Olympic lifting.”

So far, by being in cross fit, I have trained with the free-floating 45# and 35# Olympic bar plus weights on the following exercises: deadlifts, front squats, hang power cleans, and thrusters (a combination of front squat and push-press). Today we did “thrusters.”

Thrusters can be totally outrageous or more controlled and even aerobic.

What I can’t believe, looking back on my morning, was that I was taking a 90# weight and pulling it off the ground, bringing it to my shoulders, front-squatting with it, and then “thrusting” it overhead.

Ninety pounds is a lot of weight man.

The virtue of so-called “Olympic” lifting is that it is about full range of motion and full body exercise. Every Olympic weight lifting movement combines major muscle groups from front and back, top and bottom, and involves the stabilizers and small muscles throughout the system. The result of training in these movements is “functional fitness” and a feeling of real body confidence. Not to mention you can get big.

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