Saturday, December 31, 2011

Training: 12/31/2011

AM Training:
KBS (2pd)
Box Jumps (24")
Time: 6:20

Notes: This was a brutal workout.  I stayed in the suck for a good portion of this workout.  I starting hurting at the set of 15 and it didn't stop until 3 min after I finished.  I am pleased with the KB swings, going unbroken with the games standard.  The box jumps were a little off since I am still kind of relearning how to do them.
AM Training

PM Training:
A1. Fat Bar Bench Press: 4x4-6 @ 40x0; rest 10sec (155,160,165,170)
A2. Dips: 4x12 @ 30x0; rest 10sec (UB,UB,8/4,8/4)
A3. Push Press: 4x25 @ 20x0; rest 2min (10/10/5)
B. DB Ext. Rotation: 3x4-6 @ 5010; rest 60sec b/t sides (20,20,25)

Notes: My right biceps tendon started aggravating me after yesterday's overhead work so I was cautious to not get too ballistic on my left shoulder.  Push presses were tough on the triceps.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Training: 12/30/2011

A. Power Snatch + OHS: 4x1+2 @ 70%; rest 1min
B. OHS: 5,3,1 @ 32x1;rest 4min
C. 7min: Zercher Carry (165lbs.), Stone Carry(115lbs.), Farmer's Carry (70lbs./hand)

Notes: Felt fired up tonight.  Always fun to throw some weight around.  I have been wondering what my 1RM OHS might be.  The most weight I have ever done was 205lbs. x 5.  Hitting 250lbs.  is a pretty cool thing, especially at this point of the year.  It really is a culmination of what the last 12 months has been about: improving strength and increasing ankle mobility. If this is a preview for what's to come in 2012, I am pretty excited. 

With that said, I feel like I am at  camp III on Everest.  I look down and see my old self down at base camp, weak and still wet behind the ears.  I look up at camp number IV and I see AJ, a baby gorilla with twice the strength and work capacity than me, hundreds of feet above me.  Far off in the distance however is the summit, and I can barely see a figure there.  The snow is too dense and the fog too thick to really make out who is there.  I lace up my shoes and prepare to climb.  I am excited to continue on my journey.  I am excited to train.  I am excited to suffer.  I am excited to feel good.  I am excited to sleep.  I am excited to attempt things that I may or may not be able to do.  Year ends tomorrow, let's end on a high note. 

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Training: 12/28/2011

9 sets:
10 Burpees AFAP
20sec Airdyne 100%
 rest 2:30
Results (avg. watts):
1. 560
2. 636
3. 635
4. 597*
5. 690
6. 616
7. 660
8. 566*
9. 675

Notes: My quads were killing me from the workout the day before.  Warmed up and got it going, feeling that I would get more limber as the workout progressed.  Burpees were all done fast, jumping on the bike and hitting some pretty good wattage from set to set.  Tried to maintain a consistent wattage throughout, and not hit a critical drop-off.

Threw in 50 sandbag pickups to 30" box for some extra grip work. Time: 3:14

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Training: 12/27/2011

A1. Back Squat: 4x4-6 @ 40x0; rest 10sec (230,232,235,237)
A2. DB Walking Lunges: 4x12steps @ 1010; rest 10sec (50lbs.)
A3. Jumping Squat w/ empty bar: 4x25; rest 3min
B1. Wtd. Chin Ups: 4x4 @ 31x1; rest 10sec (15lbs.)
B2. CTB Pullups: 4x9; rest 10sec
B3. Kipping Pullups: 4x14; rest 3min

Notes: Brutal, just brutal.  This is just metabolic torture to the muscles.  Didn't use the belt today because I want to try and work on mid-line stability.  I also really focused on not overextending during the lunges, coming straight up after each rep.  Did the jump squat 5 at a time because my quads were on fire.

Increase of the amount of pullups from last week.  I chose to use a different bar today with a bit better grip.  It definitely helped.  Also went with a supinated grip on the wtd. pullups, they felt pretty strong and was able to keep tempo.  Butterflied all pullups and it felt good.  My head was swimming with fatigue and lactate by the end of the second set.

Afterward, I did some ext. rotation work with a band and also tested out some grip work by picking up and putting down some heavy sandbags.  Definitely going to incorporate some of this into my routine for some supplemental grip work.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Training: 12/26/2011

A. Snatch: 6x1.1; rest 4min (2waves-155,165,175,165,175,185(1))
B. Split Jerk: 4x1.1.1; rest 4min (225,245(2),245,265(1))
C. Hang Clean: 5x3; rest 90sec (185,205,215,225,235)

Notes: I was looking forward to today when I saw it on my schedule.  Snatches, jerks, and cleans.....sounds like my kind of party.  I have been working on my technique in the snatch and I felt a few times it really hit smoothly, while a few other times I was caught of position.  One of the biggest problems I am still noticing is the excessive jump back that sometimes leaves the bar out in front.  If a problem doesn't show up in training, then you have nothing to work on, that's the way I see it.  I can address it here, and clean it up before competition time.  

I was a bit pressed for time so I jumped up quickly in the jerk.  This was not a good idea, since I think the last jerk I did was about two months ago.  It felt very heavy and my footwork was a bit off.  Hit 245 for a triple which I was pleased with, but the last set was sloppy.  Here, I feel that my feet are catching before I am fully locked out.  Once again, something that I can address with some light tech work.

Hang squat cleans were cheesecake today.  I felt the bar falling into the perfect position every time.  This is a big confidence booster for me.  The only time I had trouble was regripping the bar a few times.  I think I could have hit something even heavier today but I will have to wait until next time.

To all of my friends, fans, and clients who support me, belated merry christmas to all.  As the year winds down, I have to remain focused on the task at hand, but once the new year hits, it's countdown to carnage....2.0!

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Training: 12/24/2011

A1. Fat Bar Bench Press: 4x4-6 @ 40X0; rest 10sec (150,152,155,157)
A2. Dips: 4x12 @ 30x0; rest 10sec (BW)
A3. Hand Release Pushups: 4x25 @ 20X0; rest 2min (all sets broken)

rest 5min

B1. RDL: 4x4-6 @ 31X0; rest 10sec (165,175,185,195)
B2. GH Raises: 4x12 @ 30x0; rest 10sec (BW,BW, 10,10)
B3. Russian KB Swings: 4x25; rest 3min (unbroken)

Notes: felt better with both of these workouts today.  Used more appropriate weights for the upper body movements. 

Friday, December 23, 2011

Training: 12/23/2011

Build to Heavy Bar Turkish Get-up (95lbs. both left/right)
10 Rounds @ 80%:
3 Muscle Ups
6 HSPU (abmat + 35lb. plates)
9 Box Jumps (30")
15sec L-sit
3 Triple Unders

Time: 28:57

Notes:  Wanted to get some fresh skill work in to warm-up today.  Decided to work up to a heavy TGU on each arm using a barbell.  Definitely tough, but it got my whole body warm and I need some touches on new things just in case they pop up in competition.  

Went unbroken in the workout on all movements but the triple unders.  Fortunately, I got used to them by the 5th round and I was able to them consecutively.  L-sits were tough but I was able to hit every 15 second mark (though it was extremely difficult).  

Thursday, December 22, 2011


Yesterday's 285 Front Squat.....Cheesecake

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Training: 12/21/2011

A. Build to Heavy Single Front Squat Quickly (285lbs.)
B1. Back Squat: 4x4-6 @ 40x0; rest 10sec (225,230,230,230)
B2. DB Walking Lunges: 4x12steps @ 1010; rest 10sec (50lbs/hand)
B3. Wall Balls: 4x25 to 11'; rest 3min
C. DB Fat Gripz Farmer's Carry: 4x30sec; rest 60sec (25,25,30,30)

Notes:  Felt better today.  Extra motivation after getting the new dew.  285 felt like cheesecake, but rather than go down that road, I moved on to the terror that lie in wait.  This workout was brutal.  First set went by okay, but after the second set, the volume of wall balls started to eat away at my lower back and quads.  Butt was seizing up too.  All wall balls unbroken and the rest of the movements were done at tempo.  Collapsed afterward in pain and simultaneous elation knowing that it was over.

Donny Shankle....USA 105KG

Training: 12/20/2011

5 Rounds:
500m Row
15 Burpees
Time: 14:13

Notes: I did this workout back in September in exactly 15minutes.  It was after another workout, but still it's a big PR, and also a big confidence booster because I have felt like crap since the COF.  Kept the row at 1:51 the entire time and cruised on the burpees.

Time to get back to business! MRMRRFW!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Training: 12/19/2011

A1. Wtd. Pullups: 4x4 @ 31x1; rest 10sec (10,15,20,20)
A2. Chest to Bar Pullups: 4x8; rest 10sec (all ub)
A3. Kipping Pullups; rest 3min (ub,ub,ub, 7,5)
10min AMRAP:
10 Unbroken HSPU
10 GHD Situps
6 rounds + 10 HSPU

Notes: Got about 7.5 hours sleep last night and then get up around 5:30am for personal training.  Had decent energy this morning, but I was still sore in my chest and tris from last Thursday's workout.  Wised up this time around on the weights.  Built as I went.  I used our new pullup bars to try and make the grip as difficult as possible, and boy did it.  My forearms and biceps were absolutely roasted by the fourth round.  Felt good on the HSPU, back wasn't too bad on the GHD situps.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Training: 12/17/2011

A. Snatch Pull: 5x1.; rest 3min (155, 185, 205, 225, 245)
B1. RDL: 4x4-6 @ 31x0; rest 10sec (155,165,175,185)
B2. GH Raises: 4x12; rest 10sec
B3. Russian KB Swings: 4x25; rest 3min
C. Box Jumps: 5x15; rest 30sec

Notes: Poor night's sleep. Still feeling fatigued from Sunday. Snatch pulls felt good today. Getting more extension through the second pull without pushing the bar out. 6-12-25, not bad metabolically, more taxing on the CNS. Need to land soft on the box jumps.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Training: 12/16/2011

10min Z1 Run
5 Rounds:
60sec Deck Squats
20sec Hollow Hold
40sec FLR
10min Row
5 rounds:
60sec Skipping Rope
30sec Side Plank L
30sec Side Plank R
10min Airdyne

Notes: Still shaking off the cold so energy was a bit low today. Still dealing with phloem etc. also. First 5 rounds were tough. Lots of sneaky core work there. Need it though. All good everywhere else. Did about 20min mobility afterward focusing on hips and ankles.

Training: 12/15/2011

A. Press: 3,2,1; rest 2min (145,165,185)
B1. Fat Bar Bench Press: 4x4-6 @ 40x0; rest 10sec (145,145,145,155)
B2. Wtd. Dips: 4x12 @ 30x0; rest 10sec (45(11), 25(6)/BW(6), BW, BW)
B3. Hand Release Pushups: 4x25; rest 2min (brokenx4)
10min AMRAP:
1 No ft. Rope climb
2 HSPU on Paralettes

Notes: First workout back since the competition. Didn't eat enough today. Not a lot of energy going into the workout. Press felt good. I went too heavy on the first set of dips and burned my triceps out for the rest of the workout. Oh well, I still felt the burn throughout the four sets. All good on rope climbs and paralettes.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Clash of the Fittest....Moving Forward

I sit here nursing a bit of a head cold. My back is a little tight, but other than that I feel pretty good. I just finished watching the season finale of one of my favorite shows, Boardwalk Empire. I can't help to compare a season finale to what this past weekend was all about. Were some questions answered? Yes. Are there a whole new mess of questions yet to be answered? Yes. Were you excited to see the outcome, while also sad that it was over? Yes. Do you want the next season to start right away? Of course, but there is a lot of work to be done between now and then. Time to work. Time to think. Time to struggle. Time to make gains. Time to look back on what you were. Time to look forward to what you want to become. And plenty of time to live in the now.

Obviously I can look back on the last 14 months and see the progress that I have made. From being a triathlete, to competing in the regionals, and now a podium finish at a Crossfit competition. Does it feel good....kinda. Does it feel good to beat others at a sport, and compete a high level? Yes, but not for the obvious reasons. What I really enjoy about competition is it allows me to see what I have to work on in training, and then get back to work. I am a sculptor, working in low light constantly breaking down and refining the product in my hands. Only once in a while do I bring the product out into the sunlight to see how far I have come. Once I see that there are some hard edges and spaces that need to be filled in, I am anxious to quickly get back to the workshop to continue my quest for a perfect product. This is where I am now.

The difficult part is picking out the pieces that need the most work and improving them, while not ruining any pieces that are fine as they are.

Lower back endurance- Needs to improve to ensure objects being lifted from the ground don't slow my performance. I want a lower back of iron.

Grip endurance-Have to be able to hold on to bars and kettlebells for longer.

Sleep-This is getting better, but pre-competition anxiety has to give way fully at some point if I want to compete at my highest possible level.

Recently, an athlete I admire had a poor performance in a national event. Someone tried picking him up by saying, "Definition of success: going from one failure to another without loss of enthusiasm." This weekend was a failure, but I keep a positive outlook and I am excited for the journey ahead. You can't change the past, the future isn't guaranteed, might as well live in the now. Forward........

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Training: 12/10/2011

30sec @ 90%
30sec @ 50%

Notes: Felt good here. I am feeling a bit of sniffle coming on this afternoon. Hopefully a good night's sleep will take care of that. Going to do some mobility tonight.

Training: 12/9/2011


A. Power Snatch: work quickly to a moderate single in few sets (185lbs.)

B. OH Squat: 3 x 5 @ 135lb; rest 60 sec

C. Toes to Bar: 2 x 15, rest as needed

D. KB Swing: 3 x 10 (32kg), rest 30 sec

Notes: Felt okay today. Still haven't caught a good night's sleep this week. Hit a solid snatch, then called it there. I felt good with all the movements and threw in some handstand walks and bar muscle ups to get a few more touches. I also hit a double under PR too. Good confidence under the belt for that.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Training: 12/7/2011

AM Workout:
A. Build to Heavy Power Clean (255lbs.)
3 sets:
30sec Wall Balls
30sec rest
30sec Pistols
30sec rest
30sec Double Unders
60sec rest

PM Workout
10/10 KB Snatches
40' Handstand Walk
Result: 4:18

Notes: Haven't been getting enough sleep and my body feels pretty beaten down. I have had to get up early after working late the last few days. I am not concerned, I have a day off tomorrow and I have a couple of days to recuperate before the competition. Hands are pretty sore, and my lats are tight. Need sleep......

Training: 12/6/2011

A. Thruster: Build to Heavy Single (225lbs.)
4 Sets:
AMRAP Bar Muscle Ups (6,6,6,7)
15 Burpees AFAP
rest 5min

Notes: Legs were feeling a bit fatigued today. 225lbs. was tough but doable. I did the bar muscle ups, and they felt very good. No problems there, but they heated up my hands, and I felt blisters starting to form, so I capped the amount to keep my hands from ripping. Looking forward to this workout on Sunday.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Training: 12/4/2011

AM Training:
For time @ 80%:
15 KB Snatches (53lbs.)
10/10 Pistols
25 Toes to Bar
30 KB Swings (70 lbs.)
35 Box Jumps
70 Double Unders
Time: 6:53

PM Training:
8min Row @ Z1
2min HS Walking Practice
8min Airdyne @ Z1
2min HS Walking Practice
8min Run
2min HS Walking Practice

Notes: Hit the workout after breakfast this morning. Got a solid warm-up of my shoulders, hips, and ankles. Quads were pretty shot going in, most likely from the fatigue of the previous 2 days of training. I was able to keep the intensity down better during this workout as opposed to the workout Friday. The movements aren't as taxing and the skill is a bit higher. KB snatches went well, and my lead foot only hit twice on the pistols, reps that I did not count (turns out that the standard next weekend will allow for the lead foot to touch). I did the toes to bar on the smooth new bars that we have in the gym, much tougher to grip, but something that I have to be prepared for. Pretty taxing on the grip. Did the KB swings with the regional standard from last year, and it was very tough (turns out this also will be different this weekend. The KB must be between parallel and perpendicular to the floor). Box jumps were tough, especially since I stood up on the box each time. I will take advantage of the standard this weekend and jump off the box while opening my hips each rep. Tightened up the jump rope the other day, and the double unders felt almost effortless.

Afternoon recovery session felt great. After a few sets of handstand walks, I was able to fall into a solid groove. Hit some snatch technique work afterward because I still had a bitter taste in my mouth from Saturday. Turns out I was shifting my hips into the bar a bit prematurally sending me onto my toes and causing a jump back, leaving the bar forward. Once I got the bar higher onto the hip, the catch became much more effortless.

Biochem final on Tuesday, time to shift gears and get some studying done.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Training: 12/3/2011

A. Build quickly to Heavy Snatch (135,165,185,205(mx4)
B1. COVP Pullups: 3x15; rest 90sec
B2. Hand Release Pushups: 3xAMRAP(-3); rest 90sec (18,18,18)
C. Row Sprints: 3x60sec @ 90%,95%,100%; rest 2min (309m, 316m, 332m)

Notes: Still can't receive well in the bottom of my snatch. Power snatches seem to be fine, but there is something funky going on in my catch that doesn't allow me to cleanly receive the weight in my heels. Though I got under 205 all four attempts, realistically, none of them were clean lifts. All were forward when catching the bar. Tough to get a groove with it when you get a touch every couple weeks. But, we have bigger priorities than 1RM snatches.

COVP felt good, and are getting bettter. I paced the row sprints better than the run sprints last week. One reason is because of the instant feedback you get from the rower, the other reason is getting a feel for the higher power gears.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Training: 12/2/2011

For Time @ 80%:
5 Bar Facing Burpees After Each Movement (135lbs.):
12 Thrusters
12 Push Jerk
12 OHS
12 Front Squats

rest 3min

8min AMRAP:
5/5 KB Snatch (53lbs.)
10 Toes to Bar
100m Run
Rounds: 5 or 6

Notes: I knew this workout would be tough to keep at 80% because of the high power output on most of the movements. I think the intensity probably crept up to around 85-90%, but I definitely left a good amount in the tank. Did an extra burpee and an extra OHS (usually I do it the other way around, so no bummer there). I am expecting a 15 to 20 second faster time when I do this next Sunday. The front squats at the end were the hardest part. MY QUADS! were smoked. Burpees no problem, was overly pacing them to keep the heart rate down. I think I can go a little quicker on them next week. Was a bit concerned that my lower back was smoked after this workout. Made the second workout very tough, especially with the KB snatches. I am still suffering from the high rep deadlifts from the other day. Need to ice, ice, ice and SMRT to loosen that up. Toes to bar felt smooth.