Sunday, February 8, 2009 by Daniel

Bad Mornings

Woke up with a sore throat this morning: bad sign. Rebecca's just getting over a cold that knocked her out for a week, and I was thinking I was fortunate to dodge that bullet, but perhaps I didn't. So I'm throwing back the Wellness Formula, and, after today, am taking a recovery week. Until next Sunday, I'm doing half-volume workouts. I'm telling this to everyone I know and asking them to help me enforce it, because I'm not very good about being disciplined in this regard.

This morning:

Complete as many rounds in 20 minutes as you can of:
  • Run 250 meters
  • Kettlebell Sumo deadlift high-pull 2P/1.5P, 28 reps
  • Pull-ups 15 reps (Men C2B)

4 rounds
Not all my pullups were successfully C2B.

This was a good WOD, but the length of the rounds makes for a fairly small window of options. 4 rounds seems solid. Gita got 5 rounds, but nearly killed himself doing it. Most people got 3 and change. The runs were a nice rest, and I didn't find the SDHP to be terribly difficult. The real killer for me was the pull-ups.

With the help of some classmates, I've discovered why my pullups suck so much at Ironworks: the bar is too low! I can stand solidly on my heels and grab the bar, which means that when I kip I have to bend my knees to avoid hitting the floor, and this kills my momentum. If I take off my shoes and use the (slightly) higher part of the bar (by the whiteboard), I can kip much more easily. I hope this knowledge will come in handy in the future.


The firebreather workouts this month are all one-rep max lifts. Today was back squats. We were all sharing one cage, which made it SLOW, but I was grateful for the opportunity to get feedback on my form. Max and Eric agree: it's cringeworthy. Apparently I'm pitching forward at the bottom of the squat, and then basically good-morninging the weight up. This puts insane amounts of strain on my lower back, obviously, and if it doesn't injure me, it will ensure that I will never get much heavier than I got today.

Back Squat 1RM - best of 5 attempts (Back Squat 1-1-1-1-1)


So my new PR is 190, or 109% bodyweight. Pretty weak sauce. I brought the camera, so here's some video of 175, 190 and the failed 195 - you can see what I'm talking about with the poor form coming out of the hole.

Polly pointed out that one of the Squat Rx videos deals specifically with this problem - in fact, it's common enough that they address it in video #2. There are a number of good stretches and assistance exercises in this video, which I intend to incorporate into my 5x5 nights (with lighter weights):
  • Goblet squats
  • Wide-stance Squats
  • Good-morning Squats
  • Box Squats

Hopefully, once I can correct this fault in the form, I'll be able to knock out some higher numbers.

1 comment:

Melissa Byers said...

Hi Daniel and Rebecca! I'm behind in my blog-rolls, but I had to comment on your pull-up bar height observation. ME TOO. I couldn't figure out why every time I hit a real CF box, I kip beautifully, but at my local gym, I struggle. Bar height is key - a good gymnastics kip can't include a bent knee.

Nice squat PR!

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