Troie: Are you going to do the met-con Rx, Paul?
Me: I’m thinking about it. I’m also thinking about doing a different met-con altogether.
Jack: Why? This would be a good workout for you.
Me: I’m tired of double unders. Did you see how many I did yesterday?
Jack: I can give you a substitution for double unders.
Me: It’s not the double unders that I’m worried about. It’s the very heavy dead-lifts.
Jack: You should go heavy for the dead-lifts. You should do as prescribed. This will be a different kind of workout for you, and you need it. You always crush the bodyweight met-cons.
Me: So, is this a strength workout?
Jack: No, it’s still a met-con, so I expect you to be breathing hard and working up a sweat.
Me: Jack, believe me, if I’m lifting 275 pounds 30 times, I’m going to be working up a sweat and breathing hard.
So, yeah, I woke up this morning dreading this met-con, as Saturday’s and Sunday’s workouts kicked my ass and I was feeling tired and weak. There, I said it. Weak, weak sauce, weakling, Michael Kelley.
I warmed up, used the foam roller and lacrosse ball, and attempted to ignore Max. He’s persistent, I’ll give him that. The answer is “No!”
Jack led us through an excellent warmup, using a 45 lb bar and completing straight-leg dead-lifts, good mornings, etc., eventually working on the snatch grip dead-lift.
Skill—snatch grip dead-lift
115, 205, 215, 225 lb
Yes, I started out light and then went heavy. Jack observed 205 lift and reminded me to position my feet like I would for a dead-lift. After lifting 205 lb 3 times I said to Jack, “That’s heavy.” He replied, “Then keep lifts at that weight or increase just a little.” And that’s what I did, adding just 10 lb for each of the next 2 rounds. Lifts felt heavy but solid. Jack complimented my form.
I was still contemplating bowing out of met-con. Jack thought he could motivate me with taunting.
Jack: Troie’s lifting 275 lb, too, Paul. Do you think you can keep up with him?
Me: No. I know that I cannot keep up with him.
And that’s the truth. I knew that if I were going to complete this met-con as prescribed that I’d have to focus on form and not speed. “Jack,” I said, “do I have to bring the bar back to the floor or may I drop it at the top of the lift?” Jack said, “You can drop it at the top of the lift. Even if you shouldn’t, I’d tell you to drop it at the top of the lift.” I gave him a quizzical look. He said, “Because 275 lb is going to feel heavy.” Uhm, yeah.
My heart was pounding and I was already sweating. My stomach was tied up in knots. I was still contemplating bowing out. I chalked my hands and stepped up to the bar.
3 rounds for time of the following:
10 dead-lifts, 275 lb
50 double unders
I completed the first round of dead-lifts one at a time, repositioning my feet and re-gripping the bar before each lift. I would think, “Your arms are just levers. Keep your back flat, keep your abs and ass tight. Take the tension out of the bar, take a deep breath, lift with your legs—and make sure you keep your chest up.” Whew, that’s much to think about! No wonder the dead-lifts took me so long to complete! Troie had already completed most of his 50 double unders before I finished my first round of dead-lifts. He crushed me. I’m much better looking, though. And smarter. Much, much, smarter.
Punky was also lifting 275, so I thought I’d at least try to keep up with him.
The first round of double unders went reasonably well, although my legs were on fire. I completed as few as 2 and as many as 40 unbroken. It was then back to the damn bar.
Again, I completed each dead-lift one at a time, and the weight felt like it kept getting heavier and heavier. Jack observed quite a few lifts, and provided much needed encouragement. He also constantly reminded me to keep my chest up, and this was indeed the key to successfully lifting the (did I mention?) very, very heavy bar. My legs began to shake as the round progressed, but I nonetheless ensured that I stood upright with hips extended and shoulders back at the top of each lift. The second round of double unders didn’t go nearly as well, as I was quite out of breath from dead-lifting, and my legs were still on fire. It was hard to even lift my legs, let alone jump. I completed as few as 2 and as many as 20 unbroken. I was beginning to fall apart.
Instead of walking to the bar, I found myself walking away from my bar, and was then suddenly by the bucket of chalk. I heard Jack say, “Good, chalk up your hands.” Little did he know that I had no—and I mean absolutely no—intention of doing even 1 more dead-lift. I nonetheless chalked my hands. Why not? There was nothing else better to do. And then it happened…
I walked to the damn bar. Now it became a battle between my brain and my body, as my body was sending very clear messages to my brain to just freaking stop. I thought, “Lift as many times as you can until failure, and then call it a day.” I looked at Punky, and we were both on the final round. I lifted once, dropped the bar, walked away from the bar, swore at the bar, and probably cried a little. I lifted a second time. I may be wrong, but I do believe that there were quite a few who were observing and providing support, including none-other-than Troie, Renee, Audrey, and Jack. My mind was only focusing on trying to get my body to cooperate. I lifted a third, fourth, and then a fifth time. Troie asked, “How many do you have left?” I replied, “I don’t want to think about it.” I struggled through the sixth and seventh lifts, finding that if I didn’t focus on keeping my chest up, the lifts were very difficult. I then had a thought that I have never had before, and it scared me. “No one is keeping track of how many reps you’ve completed. You could stop now and say it was 10. Who would ever know?” OMG! I detest cheaters, yet here I was contemplating it myself? I focused on keeping my chest up and lifted an eighth and ninth time. My heart was pounding wildly, I was dripping all over the bar and the floor, I wanted desperately to quit, and I still have one more lift. I glanced at Jack, held up my index finger and mouthed “One more”. And that’s what I did, I lifted 1 last time. And it was good.
The last round of double unders was feast and famine. I was only completing 2 or 3 at a time for the first 10, and then strung together 35 unbroken. The last 5, however, I completed 1 at a time! Ugh.
I called “Time!” at 10:44, and was the last person to do so. You read that correctly. Even Punky finished in a faster time!
I congratulated Punky, and it was then that these words came from his mouth: “I only did 8.” Whaaaaaaat? Punky informed me that he only did 8 dead-lifts each round, and when I asked him why he said, “I was only able to do 8 the first round, so I just kept it at 8.” Oh, Punky, how I hate you sometimes.
- This may have been the most challenging met-con to date. Yes, even more so than “Fran”.
- Jack and I discussed the met-con after I was finally done, and he thinks I need to do more workouts like this, focusing on strength and challenging my body (and mind?) in different ways. I tend to agree with him. Do you?
- I’m usually one of the first to complete a met-con, and I always make sure that I cheer for others. I kinda sorta possibly maybe perhaps enjoyed being the last to finish, and it was nice for people to cheer for and support me! Thanks in particular to the people I was aware of, namely Jack (of course!), Renee, Troie, Audrey, and Paul K.
- I need to work on switching my grip, as I only feel comfortable with r-h under and l-hand over.
- Uhm, this may have been one of my proudest CrossFit moments. I’m just saying…
- I hate Punky Michael Kelley.