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13 May 2014

Don’t Tear!

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We have addressed this topic in the past but now may be a great time to address it again.

In CrossFit we perform a great deal of volume with barbells, pull up bars, rings, and kettlebells. It is important to establish a plan on how to prevent rips and tears as well as how to care for them if they do occur.

First, allow me to say this, a hand tear is an injury. It is not a badge of honor of how BAD ASS you are. If you tear your hand, you may be derailing your ability to train for the next few days. Oh, your significant other is not going to allow you to put your hands on him/her either so now you are really out of luck!

pic courtesy of crossfitavon

pic courtesy of crossfitavon

Prevention is Key

First, go to your local pharmacy and pick up either a pumice stone or a callus shaver in the foot care section. I personally prefer the callus shaver as it slices those babies down really quick and easy. You may prefer both to smooth over any edges left by the callus shaver. Take the shaver or stone and cut down any built up calluses as needed. Once per week does the trick for me. Others need heavier maintenance.

Beyond, keeping the calluses down you can also be sure to apply lotion to your hands to ensure that your skin does not become too dry with cracks. This will lead to rips and tears as well. I am not a big lotion guy. In fact the only time I use lotion is when I am rubbing some on my wife’s feet and legs. But hey, maybe you like the stuff!

Friction is The Enemy

The reason the calluses build up and ultimately tear is due to friction. If your skin is constantly being rubbed along a surface it is going to be build to protect itself until it finally tears because it is too big. How can we minimize this? The first is obvious with using chalk.

There is such a thing as TOO MUCH CHALK. The substance is not supposed to be caked on your hands. If you are an excessive sweater then you need to have a towel to dry off your hands and forearms before applying additional small dosages of chalk to your hands. Don’t be a chalk whore. I have also heard of applying body glide to your hands and then a little chalk on your hands before hitting the pull up bar or barbell. I have not personally tried this yet but it makes sense. Marathoners and distance events use body glide all the time to prevent chafing brought on by friction.

Gloves are another option. Wait, gloves? That is being a sissy right? Set aside your macho ego. If you tear and tear regularly, get a pair of gloves. Buy the smallest size of batting gloves you fit into, they will stretch, and practice your grip. It will be different and you may have to make some small adjustments.

Build up your grip strength. This is a huge reason for rips and tears. Though we don’t want to have a death grip on the pull up bar when we need to finish 100 pull ups, we also don’t want our forearms and grip to crap the bed after 15-20 reps. Look for another post coming soon to address grip strength and programs to follow that can easily be applied 2-3 times per week at the end of your workouts.

In the Heat of the Battle

While you begin following the guidance written above, what about today? Tomorrow? Here is one basic rule I follow. Don’t go to failure on any set of pull ups, high volume snatches, or cleans. Once your grip begins to fail, you WILL rip your hand. Work smaller doses of sub maximal effort. Though it may seem counter intuitive, you will actually be able to finish your WOD faster due to less no reps and needing to take extra time for the muscles to recover. As you apply the grip strength work and continue training the number of reps you can complete will increase.

One last thing. If the WOD calls for 100 pull-ups and you know that the volume is too much for you, don’t “suck it up” and go after it. Build up your capacity over time. Scale it down. Know your limits, work to the very fringe of them to keep pushing further, but be smart. Then you will be able to continue training and improving your fitness instead of sitting on the sideline and having to go to sleep with latex gloves and moisturizer.

12 May 2014

Tuesday 051314

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1. Wall-Ball – 20#/14# to a 10’/9′ target 
30 seconds – max reps 
Rest 30 seconds 
60 seconds – max reps 
Rest 60 seconds 
90 seconds – max reps 
Rest 90 seconds 
120 seconds – max reps 
Rest 120 seconds

Beat 15 throws in 30s, 30 in 60s, 40 in 90s, and 50 in 120s Total exercise 
8 minutes. 
Submit total throws for all efforts and bodyweight.

2. AMRAP 20 
15 Pull-ups 
Lunge ten steps each leg, alternating 
Clean & Jerk, 50% bodyweight X 10 reps

12 May 2014

When should you mobilize?

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‘Sup peeps! I just wanted to get something off my chest.

 

While I love that you all come in an make mobility a part of your normal everyday routine, I would like to try to help you make the most of the time you spend mobilizing. Many of you roll in, change, and roll-out before class. Don’t roll in and roll out! Your body needs to be warm… and I mean WARM before you start. And don’t think that foam rolling is the cure for your tight hamstrings. 

 

You should be getting hot & sweaty before your workout, then opening up joint capsules (banded distractions) then if you have a very sticky/tight spot, try spending 2 minutes doing some trigger point work on that spot, only if you’ve already gotten nice and warm and gone through some dynamic warm-up (yes, you can do this on your own before class too guys/girls). 

 

In the cool down period following the workout you would effectively be doing an “active-cooldown.” Instead of laying on the ground, towelling off and heading out the door, spend some quality time moving and mobilizing as your body temperature returns to normal. This is where you will be addressing areas that us coaches have been telling you that you need to work on to increase you ROM. Some of that may be more trigger point or for those of you who can’t get enough of it, foam rolling work, to “unlock” areas that have knotted up during the workout. This will also assist in pushing blood through what you’ve just worked aiding in your recovery.

 

You can look at your mobility work as a planned session that is separate from group classes. Whatever you do, please… PLEASE don’t roll in to roll out. 

 

Thinking of your future,

G2

11 May 2014

Monday 051214

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1. Powerclean 10-10-10

Rest 5-10 minutes

2. AMRAP 20 
Rope climb 
15 Sit-ups 
10 Thrusters off 10″ box with dumbbells totaling 30% of your weight 
15 Back extensions

10 May 2014

Sunday 051114

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1. Pull-ups – 5 x max. Strict-Kipping-Strict-Kipping-Strict.

2. Complete the following circuit 5 times. It contains three elements and 
is a powerful whole body workout. Each element is 45 seconds with a 15 
second rotation (not one second more or you start over).

Wall Ball, 20#/14# to a 10’/9′ target (reps) 
Hollow Rock (reps) 
Sumo Deadlift High Pull, 75#/55# (reps)

09 May 2014

FIRE IT UP! PR FRIDAY

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Yeah! It’s Friday baby and that means it’s time to FIRE IT UP! FIRE IT UP! The week has been fun and different. All week has been training for todays testing day. Yesterday was a bit of a sampler with the 1k row and many crushed it! I have enjoyed seeing you all respond to the slightly different programming and being open to going after it. 

What has been your favorite part of the week? What did you enjoy the least? Please give your feedback in comments. In fact, as a challenge, I would appreciate if you began commenting daily on your results in the comments section of the blog. We will be looking each day for your results and feedback on the WOD. Your participation will provide great insight.

ODDS & ENDS

  1. No 8am Track Practice this week – Coach Voci is away this weekend and there is quite a bit going on inside the gym. It will resume next weekend weather permitting.

  2. The Strength Challenge begins and Hydrostatic Weighing is this weekend. The CrossFit Total is being programmed for the entire gym whether you are participating in the challenge or not. Expect to be in the gym for 1.25 to 1.5 hours as the Total always is a bit longer. Classes will start on the hour. The back squat and press will be completed within the hour and then members will move to the platforms to complete the deadlift.
  3. CustomFit Meals – I would like some feedback from those that have ordered. Either drop me a line or just post to comments.
  4. If you signed up for the Challenge or for Hydrostatic Weighing. You will receive and email to remind you of your scheduled time. Please be on time.

WHAT’S ON TAP

This week we are continuing with classic CrossFit programming. Monday and Tuesday are particularly challenging in that they are back to back. Be sure that you are doing what is necessary to recover from Monday to Tuesday if you are training back to back days. 

Sunday 5/11

1. Pull-ups – 5 x max. Strict-Kipping-Strict-Kipping-Strict.

2. Complete the following circuit 5 times. It contains three elements and is a powerful whole body workout. Each element is 45 seconds with a 15 second rotation (not one second more or you start over).

Wall Ball, 20#/14# to a 10’/9′ target (reps)
Hollow Rock (reps)
Sumo Deadlift High Pull, 75#/55# (reps)

Monday 5/12

1. Powerclean 10-10-10

Rest 5-10 minutes

2. AMRAP 20
Rope climb
15 Sit-ups
10 Thrusters off 10″ box with dumbbells totaling 30% of your weight
15 Back extensions

Tuesday 5/13

1. Wall-Ball – 20#/14# to a 10’/9′ target
30 seconds – max reps
Rest 30 seconds
60 seconds – max reps
Rest 60 seconds
90 seconds – max reps
Rest 90 seconds
120 seconds – max reps
Rest 120 seconds

Beat 15 throws in 30s, 30 in 60s, 40 in 90s, and 50 in 120s Total exercise 8 minutes.
Submit total throws for all efforts and bodyweight.

2. AMRAP 20
15 Pull-ups
Lunge ten steps each leg, alternating
Clean & Jerk, 50% bodyweight X 10 reps

Wednesday 5/14

1. Bike/Row – 3 x 2 minute max effort (calories)
Rest 5 minutes between efforts.

2. 4 rounds for time of:

15 GHD sit ups
5 Handstand push-ups
10 Back Squats @ 2/3 of bodyweight

Bar for Back squats must be taken from the ground each rep.

Thursday 5/15

1. Push Press – 8-6-4

2. AMRAP 15
3 L-sit pull-ups
1 minute max double unders

Post rounds completed and total double unders completed.

Friday 5/16

1. Deadlift 3-2-1-2-3

2. 3 Rounds for time
400m Run
15 Toe2Bar (strict and slow)
20 Med ball cleans, 20#/14#

That’s right, it’s finally warm and nice outside and we’re doing an all out 1k row in the gym!  So, what are you going to do in preparation and during the 1k to get through it and back outside?  Here is a solid warmup and 3 skills to get you ready and give you something to focus on when that voice inside your head tries to tell you to stop.

 

Renegade Rowing Club Warmup:

1min – 1/2 Legs Only

1min – Full Legs Only

1min – Legs and Body Only

1min – Full Strokes

1min – Pause @1/2 Slide Every Stroke

5min – 10 Strokes On/ 10 Strokes Off, 15 On/15 Off, 20 On/20 Off

 

Performing an appropriate warmup for the workout that is set out each day can make or break a performance.  Above is the warmup we use fairly consistently in classes at CrossFit Boston and at the Renegade Rowing Club.  It’s a good 10min warmup to focus on posture, control, and connection.  Checkout how slow the Renegade Rowing Club approaches the catch in the beginning.  Executing this drill with control will allow you to really focus on putting technique changes into effect and hitting that catch with good timing and connection.

 

Please share what you do for a warmup when rowing is involved in the workout.  What is your focus?

 

Posture, Control, Connection … Get Some!

 

  1. Posture – When dealing with posture we’re looking for the torso to be stacked and strong at all times, whether you’re in the lay back or swinging forward to prepare for the next catch.
  2. Control – When talking about control we are looking at the smoothness of the recovery and how the seat moves toward the catch.  Does it rush forward for the next stroke?  Is there control in the last few inches of the slide to change direction without pushing the boat backwards?  I like to think of control as an ability to stop at any point in time and be in a strong position.
  3. Connection – Last and most important, connection!  Is the seat and handle connected and moving together into and out of the catch as if connected by a strap?  If you can focus on keeping your hips and hands connected as you apply pressure to the footboards you’ll be able to find suspension and become weightless on your seat.  If you want to save some energy and be more efficient during your rowing wods, connection is where it’s at.
Coach Pat at the Newport Navy Base Rowing Workshop last month.

Coach Pat at the Newport Navy Base Rowing Workshop last month.

If you have any questions or are looking for some more tips checkout renegaderowing.com.

 

Also, be sure to sign up for the CFB Yoga Launch on Sunday, May 18th at 8:30am!  – Sign Up Here (link to CFB Google Form)

 

cauliflowerColorful plates are in these days, and  don’t just mean the cool red and mint ones you can get from Crate & Barrel (although those are awesome too). I mean the “eat the rainbow” slogan is starting to take hold in the healthy eating community, and we’re packing our plates full of green, red, blue, purple, orange, and red for maximal vitamins and nutrition. No white foods on our plates!

 

But wait, why no white foods? Well, probably because we’ve been so conditioned to view them as nutrient void, low quality foods. And many white and tan foods are just that – like fried chicken, french fries, white bread, rice, mayonnaise, etc. But some colorful foods are not so good for you either, like ketchup (in red, purple, and green) and green sprinkles from JP Licks. 

 

7329784478_54d0bc2663_mWhite vegetables are white because of flavenoids (a substance known to have antioxidant activity and thought to help prevent cardiovascular disease by decreasing inflammation and platelet aggregation (1)) called anthoxanthins. Some white fruits and vegetables like bananas and potatoes are also a good source of potassium, an important electrolyte in muscle and heart function. 

 

Some white fruits and vegetables have even been given the impressive label of “super food”. Some of these include:

  • Bananas – bananas are high in potassium and are a great pre or post workout snack due to their carbohydrate and potassium content.
  • Garlic – garlic, as well as onions and leeks, is high in allium, which has been associated with protection against colorectal and gastric cancers (2).
  • Ginger – often used as a flavoring, ginger has been associated with such benefits as reduced inflammation in the colon (a precursor to colon cancer), decreased muscle soreness after exercise, and nausea among others (3).
  • Cauliflower – in addition to all the antioxidants, cauliflower is also a cruciferous vegetable high in fiber, and as a bonus it’s super versatile (you can even make rice and “mashed potatoes” out of it). 

 

Also don’t forget about potatoes. They aren’t as bad as you might think (if prepped the right way).

03 May 2014

050414

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1. AMRAP 20

Run 800m
2 rope climbs
**Overhead Lockout with a plate – 45#/25#

This is done with a partner. Partner 1 performs the 800m run and rope climbs while partner 2 completes the OH lockout with a plate. When each person completes the run and 2 rope climbs, you have completed 1 round.

Rest 5-10 minutes

2. Bench Press – work up to a 10RM

03 May 2014

050314

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1. For TOTAL weight:
Deadlift 5-4-3-2-1 reps

Rest 5 minutes

2. For time:
Box jump (20″ box) 50 reps (step downs only)

Rest 5 minutes

3. For time:
Run 800m