Saturday, January 3, 2009 by Daniel

Double your pain, double your fun

So Max has kicked off the new year with a new class: Firebreathers. It's "advanced" CrossFit: no scaling or whining allowed, and there's a competitive scoring system in place. I don't really care about the scoring (for me it's a significant achievement just to do the WOD as RX, and I'm never on the leaderboard), but I am interested in the focus on the more advanced skills. I need serious work on all of them. So the pros are:
  • Good for my coaching, I think, to take my training up a notch.
  • It's an opportunity to practice advanced skills.
  • By doing extra-hard work, other WODs should hopefully get easier.
  • I really like all the folks involved.
There are, however, some cons:
  • I am not advanced. I consider myself a solid intermediate CrossFitter, and not just in skills (although I'm lacking in that regard as well). Primarily, I'm just not very strong.
  • The time is very awkward: 3pm on Saturdays. That pretty much kills Saturday for anything else. It also means not doing the WOD fasted, which I prefer.
  • It's also awkward with Rebecca. We really like going to class together, but she knows she's not ready for the advanced stuff, so it means either going with her to the morning class and then coming back again by myself in the afternoon (I did this today, and have doubts about its sustainability), or letting her go to the Saturday class alone and taking my turn later. She feels left out, I feel bad about leaving her's not ideal.
So today was an experiment. I don't know what will happen next week. At the moment, I'm viewing it as an "I'll do it when I can, but I probably won't make every class" thing. And as the weather gets nicer and we're more inclined to take daytrips out to the coast or go climbing, it will get tougher.

Anyway, today I went to both the morning and the afternoon class. This was difficult. I'm not certain, but I don't think I've done two CrossFit WODs in a day before (maybe if one of them was a 5x5 or something, which isn't the same). It definitely pushed my body to its limits.


"Tabata Something Else"
Complete 32 intervals of 20 seconds of work followed by ten seconds of rest where the first 8 intervals are pull-ups, the second 8 are push-ups, the third 8 intervals are sit-ups, and finally, the last 8 intervals are squats. There is no rest between exercises.

Final score: 29 RX


This score is considerably worse than last time. However, last time Shira (guest trainer) let us have a minute of rest between rounds, and Max did not. I suspect this made a difference. That said, I clearly picked a number too low for the squats, and maybe for the sit-ups....though the last round of sit-ups was a pretty close call.


There was a TON of stuff in the warm-up and skills workout - enough that it took an hour, and we were pretty tired by the time the actual WOD rolled around. Skills worked were double-unders (I still suck), HSPUs (I can't even reliably get upside-down), and C2B Pull-ups (at least I can actually do these). The final WOD was:

For Time:
100 Reps Kettlebell Swing (2 pood)

12:41 RX

Jesus, Mary and Joseph this was hard. My throat is hoarse from all the grunting/yelling I was doing trying to get that damn orange ball over my head. I ripped open another callous on my hands, though the bike gloves I was wearing definitely helped. Despite the pain, however, I was glad to do this: I think 2 pood KB swings should make my KB snatches stronger, and I really want that 30 1.5 pood snatch skill checked off. I also get more all-over-body sore from KB swings than anything else, so I think they're an excellent functional exercise. I still have a healthy phobia of that 2 pood bastard, though.

On a final note: Rebecca and I cleaned out our closets today (in order to make room for all the new clothes we picked up at the outlets in Virginia). I'm donating a LOT of clothes. Stuffed in the back of a drawer I found a really old pair of jeans - from back before I made the commitment to be fit. They're size 36 waist - 4-6 inches larger than what I buy now. I tried them on and Rebecca took one of those classic "look at how much weight I lost" pants pictures:

This makes me pretty happy.


Maximus Lewin said...

Damn Dude, that picture is amazing! Maybe I'll have one like it again someday. Sigh.

Anyway, you solution is simple if you want to come to class with Bekka. Either do the WOD @ .5 volume, or just do the warm-up and then help me out with stuff.

Sometimes (always) taking it to a higher level takes sacrifice, discomfort and pain. And sometimes (not always) it is worth it.

Maximus Lewin said...

From main site:

"Tabata Something Else"

Complete 32 intervals of 20 seconds of work followed by ten seconds of rest where the first 8 intervals are pull-ups, the second 8 are push-ups, the third 8 intervals are sit-ups, and finally, the last 8 intervals are squats. There is no rest between exercises.

Post total reps from all 32 intervals to comments.

Evelyn Rodas said...

Whoa! That's crazy. Are you sure you didn't borrow those pants from someone?
Re: time sacrifices and reservations, I totally hear you. If there's a better time that would work for you, I'd be happy to join. I'd reccommend Monday nights but that eats into climbing. Maybe Tuesday nights? Just a thought.

Rebecca said...

A couple things:

I love the too big pants picture :) I think I've already gotten rid of most of my too big stuff, and even if I hadn't it wouldn't be nearly as dramatic.

Last time we did Tabata it was "Tabata That" instead of "Tabata Something Else" maybe there are rests in one and not the other, or Shira just decided to be nice and let us take extra rest. In any case, I think that Daniel was only pointing it out as a possible cause of getting worse scores this time than several months ago.

And lastly, doing .5 volume or only the warm up in the early class only addresses the issue of insane volume, and doesn't address the issue of essentially spending the whole day at the gym, and giving up all of Saturday to nothing but working out. I don't know what's possible in the scope of available time slots at BIW or your time Max, but it would be helpful if the class were either right afterward, or somewhat later in the day to allow time to do something (anything) in between classes.

Jenn said...

Holy cow, that's a pretty significant size difference. Looking good, Daniel!

Boy, I really need to get my hubby started on CF...

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