Thursday, January 1, 2009 by Daniel

Life is like a bowl of pennies

Today marks a milestone for me - more than just the first of the year. Today was my first experience leading the WOD!

Max knows that I am pursuing my ISSA and, eventually, CrossFit L1 certification, and hopefully with the growth in interest in the classes at Ironworks and GWPC, there will be room for me to join CrossFit Eastbay as a trainer once my certifications are complete. Today, however, with the Touchstone gyms closed and no worries of liability, Max asked if I would be interested in coming up with and leading the WOD offsite at Gita's house in Oakland. Of course I jumped at the chance.

It being the first of the year, I wanted to come up with something that commemorated the occasion, and also felt drawn to the idea of a group-based workout. After some tweaking, the final workout looked like this:

1 200m Run up the hill
1 200m Run down the hill
20 Sit-Ups
10 Push-ups
9 Burpees

There will be 49 tokens in a bowl 200m up the hill. Each round will consist of running to the bowl, collecting a token, running back down, doing the reps, and then putting the token by your name chalked on the ground. Once all the tokens are collected, the athletes will have performed a total of 2,009 reps (each run = 1 rep). Your score is how many tokens you've collected.

This is similar to the original workout I had conceived, but we made some last-minute changes. Originally the runs were 400m all the way to the top of the hill, but that fucker is STEEP. I did a test run to the top and back, and it was brutal. Since the WOD gets easier the more people show up, I decided I wouldn't set the distance that far unless more than 15 people showed. 11 came, and there was MUCH apprehension about the steepness of the hill, so I relented and put the bowl halfway up. This turned out to be a good thing. The original workout was also supposed to be 20 pushups and 10 pullups (instead of situps and pushups), but we nixed the pullups after it became clear the wall we'd slung the rings over was structurally unsound - and not really good for pullups anyway (too low).

The final token (I used pennies) was delivered at 19:50, which put the WOD right in the sweet-spot of metcon time domains. 11 athletes completed between 3 and 6 rounds (Matthew won with 6 tokens - no surprise - and Rebecca H. edged out Evelyn on delivering her fourth token), and they definitely looked like they were working.

I'm very satisfied with the way this turned out, but I was pretty nervous leading up to it. Since the WOD was not an absolute, but depended on the number of people who showed up, I wasn't completely sure of the scaling until everyone was there, and even then I wasn't sure how far up the hill to place the bowl. I think folks sensed my indecision, and took the opportunity to apply some vocal pressure to make it easier (except lunatic Gita, who was disappointed the bowl wasn't at the top of the hill). As for the actual "training" during the WOD, I was really more of a photographer than anything. Everyone who showed up was a regular at CFEB, and was plenty familiar with the movements, so I didn't need to coach anyone. I could definitely have been better at the exhortation - I'll need to work on that. It was a tremendous learning experience all-told, though, and has given me a lot to think about for the future.


Evelyn Rodas said...

This was a well designed, organized and implemented wod. Great work, Daniel! And I love the photos--particularly the three very different expressions in the Max, Ollie, Daniel photo (listed from right to left, not in any order of importance--LOL).

Maximus Lewin said...

Good Work Daniel.

"Poor performance in the gym is caused by lack of yelling by the Coach"

- Rippetoe

Jenn said...

Very creative, Daniel! Sounds like a fun WOD. Or at least fun in that sick CF way. :p

Post a Comment