Luke and the gym mat…


SPOILER ALERT: The following workout, modified slightly, will be completed at CFS this Sunday. If you don’t want to know what it is, don’t read any further.

Remember, use “farther” for physical distance and “further” for metaphorical, or figurative, distance.

Good. Going on.

I coached the 6, 8:30, & 11:45 WODs this morning. Sadly, there was no Alexus sighting. She’s my favorite.  I also coached the 5, 5:15, & 6:30 WODs this evening. There were so many athletes at the 6:30 WOD that we almost ran out of plates. Good thing Ashlee, Angie, and Glenda attended the session at 4!

I miss Lauren.

Today was very enjoyable day, as the programming allowed time for skill building as well as a challenging — yet doable — metcon.

I love programming. I truly do.

32-min total; 26 min of work
For each round, complete the following activities:
— Power C&Js (65/75/85#); hands must remain on bar from floor to floor
— Box jumps (30′)
— Forward rolls
— Toes to bar
— Handstand pushups

Min 0-12 complete 9 reps (12 min total)
Min 15-23 complete 6 reps (8 min total)
Min 26-32 complete 3 reps (6 min total)
Rest 3 min between rounds

The weight for power C&Js increases by 10# each round. 

My goal was to complete all rounds of reps unbroken, and if it hadn’t been for a missed (painfully so) box jump during the first round I would’ve done so. Stupid box jumps.

I was thinking, “Thirty inches may be too high to prescribe. I think I’ll change it to 24 inches for Sunday.” It was right then that I missed the box with, as always, my left leg. I knew my leg was going to bleed, and bleed it did, so much so that I had to pause to get an antibacterial wipe so as to not bleed on the gym mat. I used athletic tape to wrap a paper towel around the wound during the rest between rounds, you know, just like Melinda would do.

Luke slept on the gym mat for most of the workout, occasionally barking at someone but nonetheless returning to the mat to sleep. I love that dog, I truly do.

Some observations:

  • C&Js with hands remaining on bar were kinda sorta fun. Given that the weight was light, although the weight did increase each round, it allowed me to focus on explosive movements. Surprisingly, C&Js were the second easiest activity.
  • Damn box jumps.
  • Nine forward rolls are more difficult than 6 forward rolls. Three forward rolls are still difficult. There were quite a few times when I had a difficult time standing up after the last rep.
  • Unbroken rounds of kipping toes to bar presented little challenge. Nonetheless, they were not the easiest activity.
  • You’ve probably figured it out by now: handstand pushups, of all things, presented the least challenge. Huh? I completed all rounds unbroken. During the first rep of the round of 6 reps I thought, “Your goal is to increase speed. Try completing faster even if you can’t complete unbroken.” Completing HSPUs faster was a hell of a lot easier than pausing between each rep. Uhm, maybe it’s that gravity thing.
  • In retrospect, maybe it wasn’t that the HSPUs were easier — it was that HSPUs were so enjoyable.

Round 1 | 3 rounds + 4 box jumps = 148 reps
Round 2 | 3 rounds + 2 box jumps = 98 reps
Round 3 | 4 rounds + 3 box jumps = 66
Total score = 312 reps

57 HSPUs, yo.

Jeff and I joined Coach Chris and Robin for dinner at Daniel’s. ‘Twas delicious and the company was delightful! Thanks, Chris and Robin!

I like beer.


So very tired…


Yup, I rested yesterday. I prolly coulda shoulda rested today as well.

I worked out in the heat of the afternoon. And it was hot. Like really hot, yo.

— 100 double unders
— 20 dead-lifts (65% of 1RM; 225#)
— 20 GHD sit-ups
— 75 double unders 
— 15 dead-lifts
— 15 GHD sit-ups
— 50 double unders
— 10 dead-lifts
— 10 GHD sit-ups
— 25 double unders
— 5 dead-lifts
— GHD sit-ups

Wow, this was much more difficult than I thought it would be. The first round of 100 double unders was a big, hot mess. The most I was able to string together was 35. Gah! I completed the round of 75 in reps of 67 & 8, the round of 50 in reps of 49 & 1, and the round of 25 in 24 & 1. Notice a pattern?

Dead-lifts felt very heavy today. I completed the round of 20 in reps of 5, the round of 15 in reps of 5, 6, & 4, the round of 10 in reps of 6 & 4, and the last round of 5 unbroken. I can usually complete 15 or more unbroken reps. For whatever reason my right pinky seized and hurt. Huh? It still a little “swolt”.

All rounds of GHD sit-ups were done unbroken, although even that was a challenge.

Time 12:40

Alexus is my…

Abs, yo.
Abs, yo.
Alexus IS my favorite. If I had favorites. Which I do.
Alexus IS my favorite. If I had favorites. Which I do.


I worked out with the 6 am crew this morning. Another “fun” workout…


Work up to the heaviest set of 3 strict shoulder presses that you can effectively complete. 

For whatever reason, I felt particularly strong this morning. My goal was to press at least 85% of current 1RM of 125#. I completed sets @ 65, 85, 95, 105, & 115# — 90% of 1RM. I could’ve even possibly gone heavier today. I’m glad that I did not, if for no other reason than the weight would’ve been heavier for the metcon.

10-min AMRAP
1 Push press, front squat, & thruster
2 Push presses, front squats, & thrusters
3 Push presses, front squats, & thrusters
Complete 5 knees to elbows between each round
Use 65 to 75% of 3RM press

There was much confusion regarding rep scheme. I helped to clarify.

Always read the WOD blog, CFSers.

Push press, front squat, and thruster. Not push press, front squat, another front squat, and another push press. One push press, 1 front squat, 1 thruster, and 5 toes to bar. Then 2 push presses, 2 front squats, 2 thrusters, and 5 toes to bar. Not 1 push press, 1 front squat, and 1 thruster and then another push press, front squat, and thruster. That’s an altogether different workout.

Going on.

I knew this was going to be tough, and it was. I am honestly not sure how many rounds or reps I completed, as Emily said she completed 8 rounds and I was a round behind her. If that’s the case, I completed 7 rounds + 19 reps. If not, I completed 6 rounds + 17 reps. Let’s got with that.

The only thing that’s certain is that I completed 3 thrusters the last round and that I completed all rounds of T2B unbroken. Other than that, it’s a miserable blur.

That’s 28 push press, 28 front squats, 24 thrusters, and 30 toes to bar at almost 68% of body weight, yo.

I worked out again (I know, right?) at 1 pm to complete tomorrow’s programmed WOD so as to know what to expect.


1 Clean & Jerk (75% of body weight)
2 Turkish get-ups (1/arm)
3 Sumo dead-lift high pulls
4 Shoulder to overhead (press, push press, and/or push jerk)
5 Lateral box jumps (24)
6 Chest to bar pull-ups
7 Plyometric pushups
8 Kettle bell swings (52)
9 Toes to bar
10 Wall balls (20)
800m run

Begin by completing 1 C & J. Next, complete 2 TGUs (1/arm) and 1 C & J. Then complete 3 SDHPs, 2 TGUs, and 1 C & J. Continue.

Uhm, 105# is 75% of bodyweight. Uhm, I had already completed quite a few presses, push presses, and thrusters @ 95# just a few hours earlier. SEE ABOVE, FOOLS.

For Turkish get-ups I used a 15# barbell and put 2, 10# & 2.5# plates on the ends of the bar for a total of 40#. That was plenty heavy enough.

Nothing was easy today. Not a thing. Nothing. Not. A. Thing.

My goal was to complete all rounds of reps unbroken. I was a slippery mess, so much so that the wall ball slipped out of my hands after the 8th rep of the 10th round. Dammit. Damn it. Damn. It.

Let me go on record as saying that barbell Turkish get-ups are exceedingly challenging when completed in a metcon. To add insult to injury, I had taken off my shirt midway through the workout. Upon completing each and every Turkish get-up, there would be a pool of tears sweat on the floor. My foot slid on more than one occasion — but I didn’t miss a single rep.

Time = 36:57

A few things to note:

  • I’d much rather split jerk than push jerk.
  • It was easier to do Turkish get-ups with left arm; thus I began each set with right arm.
  • Barbell Turkish get-ups are much, much more difficult than kettle bell and/or dumbbell TGUs.
  • Lateral box jumps are difficult, but were a welcome relief.
  • Sumo dead-lifts high pulls at a mere 10# heavier than what I normally use for a metcon felt, well, 50# heavier.
  • It was very difficult completing this metcon solo. I would’ve like some company.
  • I reviewed recording, and every damn rep counted.
  • I have defined abs.
  • In order from least to most difficult: running, lateral box jumps, KB swings, C2B pull-ups, plyo pushups, toes to bar, C & J, wall balls, SDHP, TGUs, & S2O.



photoI never know how many folks are going to show up for a WOD on any given day and/or at any given time. Many CFSers at 6 am. Just Kelly at 8:30 am.

And what a fun time Kelly and I had!

As is my policy, if one person attends a session I work out with them.

Establish 1RM

I haven’t focused on cleans in a very long time, and I was looking forward to doing so today. I cleaned 145#, 15# off of my all-time PR. However, my form has improved dramatically. Coach Jannicka, who was leading Boot Camp, said, “Your clean form looked very good, Paul.” “A clean clean,” I replied. I didn’t want Kelly-May to feel rushed, so I didn’t attempt a heavier weight. They’ll be plenty of time for that in the very near future!

Every 2 minutes (on the minute) for 20 minutes
— 3 muscle ups or 6 3 dips
— 6 full squat cleans (55-65% 50% of 1RM)
— 9 7 slam ball burpees (30/20)

The 6 am session struggled mightily with this metcon, so much so that I decreased number of ring dips and slam ball burpees during the session. I also decided right then and there to decrease percentage of squat clean to 50% of 1RM.

Constantly varied.

Wow, very challenging metcon. My goal was to complete all rounds unbroken, and I barely managed to do so. I truly feared that I would lose muscle ups. Fortunately, this did not happen. What I almost didn’t complete unbroken was slam ball burpees. Huh? Yup, slam ball burpees. It took every ounce of resolve to continue once I began.

I completed 75# cleans and 30# slam ball burpees.

I recorded my times:
1. 1:11
2. 1:12
3. 1:15
4. 1:16
5. 1:16
6. 1:16
7. 1:17
8. 1:16
9. 1:17
10. 1:17

So there was only a 6-second difference between fastest and slowest rounds. I’m okay with that. It’s always a challenge when I’m both working out and coaching (and that includes coaching myself) as I have to keep a constant eye on the clock. I’d love for someone to do so for me!

Thirty muscle ups in 10 rounds of 3 unbroken reps — no dropping from the rings.
Sixty full squat cleans in 10 rounds of 6 unbroken reps — no dropping bar to floor.
Seventy slam ball burpees in 10 rounds of 7 unbroken reps — even with ball covered in sweat.

That was, uhm, quite challenging. Thanks for working out with me, Kelly!

That. Was. Tough.


I coached the 9:45 session and attended the 11 session, led by Coach Jeff. And Coach Luke.

I was quite sore this morning, and I suspected that those athletes that completed “Barbara” yesterday were quite sore as well. We spent more than 20 painfully wonderful minutes on mobility. Thus, I did 2, 20-minute mobility sessions this morning. Bliss.

Complete 10 rounds; 2 rounds of each activity
2:00 work with :30 rest between rounds
— Row for calories
— Sumo dead-lift (50% of dead-lift 1RM; 175#)
— Burpee box jumps (30)
— Burpee wall balls (20)
— DB or KB shoulder to overhead (35)

You may complete in any order, but must complete in same order the second time around.

I completed burpee box jumps, SDL, burpee wall balls, row for calories, and S2O. In retrospect, this was a very good decision.

Burpee box jumps | 20 & 18
SDL | 33 & 30
Burpee wall balls |18 & 17
Row for calories | 32 & 30
S2O | 46 & 46

I completed all burpee box jumps and burpee wall balls unbroken. I slowed down somewhat between rounds. For burpee wall balls, I made sure chest was on wall ball and that I completed a med ball clean before throwing. Talk about exhausting!

I completed first round of SDL in reps of 10 and finished with 3. I completed second round in reps of 5 — yet still managed to complete 30. Hmmmm.

Uhm, I actually stopped during the second round of rowing, as I was beginning to feel nauseated. I did keep strokes per minute at exactly 19 and averaged 7 calories per 8 strokes.

Shoulder to overhead went much, much better than expected, and I should’ve perhaps used 40# dumbbells. I used 35# dumbbells because that’s what Jeff used. I completed both rounds in reps of 10 until the last 6. As an added challenge, I completed push press and not push jerk.

149 & 141 reps for a total of 290.

I had to step outside of the box immediately following the workout — something I haven’t had to do in quite some time. I did not, however, blow my cookies.

I don’t like cheaters.

Paul Sandwich


I attended the 8:30 WOD coached by Jeff. This was a tremendous amount of fun!

Benchmark WOD “Barbara”
5 rounds for time:
— 20 pull-ups
— 30 pushups
— 40 Abmat sit-ups
— 50 air squats
Rest 3 minutes between rounds. Subtract 12 minutes rest time from total time.

I last completed this benchmark WOD on October 2011 in a time of 20:22 (rounds in 3:58, 4:06, 4:10, 4:08, and 4:00). I made sure to record my time and splits so that I’d have a goal time to shoot for today.

I claimed “my” spot on the pull-up rig, with Lauren to my right and Ashlee (sharing the Speal bar) to my left.

In addition to a time goal, I set a goal to complete all rounds of pull-ups, sit-ups, and air squats unbroken. I knew, however, that I wouldn’t be able to complete 30 pushups unbroken, so it wouldn’t have been a SMART goal.

I like working out with others, and Ashlee and Lauren were a pleasure to have my my side. Ashlee and I did occasionally bump elbows while doing pull-ups, but I’d quickly move a little to my right. She may have stolen some of my mojo.

I completed 20 unbroken pull-ups and was the first off of the bar. I completed pushups in reps of 20 & 10 and was the first to begin sit-ups. I completed unbroken sit-ups and air squats. I didn’t look at the clock until I completed the round. My time was 3:16, much faster than I expected. I knew then that I’d achieve a PR.

I rested 3 minutes between rounds as required. That’s a looooong time for me to rest. I began the second round alone, and I could sense folks watching me. And my awesomeness. Sorry for being so awesome.

I completed the second round in 3:23 with all unbroken activities except pushups, completing in reps of 10, 10, 5, & 5.

I completed the third round in 3:20. Why 3 seconds faster than the previous round? Because Lauren and Ashlee had begun air squats and were squatting on either side of me! Yup, I can be somewhat competitive. Again, sorry for being so awesome.

I completed the fourth round in 3:27, again with all activities unbroken except pushups. I completed in sets of 5 to 10.

The last round was the hardest. I nonetheless completed all activities unbroken except pushups, completing in sets of 3 to 10. I had slowed down considerably, and completed the round in 3:40.

Thus, there was a 23 second difference between my first and last round. I’m pleased.

I called time at 29:06.

Time = 17:06. That’s a PR by 3:31.

Goals achieved, yo.

As an aside, Coach Jeff was watching me like a hawk, particularly when I was doing air squats. Afterward I asked, “Were you making sure I broke parallel and extended my hips at the top of the squat?” He said, “Yes, as you were doing them so fast I wanted to make sure your form was correct.” I replied, “And I broke parallel and extended my hips on each and every rep, didn’t I?”

Jeff rolled his eyes and said, “Yes, you did.”

Practice what you preach.


Stay cool


Large groups at 6, 8:30, & 6:30 (17!) and small groups at 11:45 (just 2), 4, & 5:15. Quite a few recent Foundations graduates attended sessions today, and that’s always much fun!

I worked out at 9:45. I had planned on attempting 1RM HBBS, but my hip flexors are somewhat sore. Damn 90 snatches.

I instead completed the partner WOD, albeit with just me, myself, and I.

16-min AMRAP
Partner WOD
— 10 dead-lifts (150% body weight)
— 15 burpees
— 20 slam balls (30) 
Partners alternate activities. One partner holds plank while her/his partner completes all reps of activities. If plank is not held, reps do not count.
For example, Partner A completes 10 dead-lits as Partner B holds plank. Partner B then completes 15 burpees as Partner A holds plank.
Partner A completes 20 slam balls as Partner B holds plank. If Partner B is unable to hold plank, Partner A completes slam balls — but 20 reps do not count! 
Athlete may not begin activity until partner is holding plank.

Uhm, yeah, so I couldn’t very well alternate activities. What I did instead was hold a plank for the length of time it took me to complete reps, e.g., 20-second plank for 10 dead-lifts (on average), 40 to 45 seconds for burpees, and 40 to 45 seconds for slam balls.

It was quite humorous to review recording, as I talked out loud quite frequently. “That was 10 seconds. Start plank at 15. Hold plank until 25. Burpees begin at 30.”

I worked continuously, and began activity or plank hold on the 5 second mark.

I completed 4 rounds + 15 burpees (i.e., 10 dead-lifts, 20-second plank, and 15 burpees).

Thus, if 2 rounds included activities and plank holds, I completed 8 rounds + .5 burpees. Right? I love math!

I did, however, mistakenly only put 125% of bodyweight on dead-lift bar, and I was quite upset with myself for having done so. I hate math!

There was an odd number of people at the 6:30 WOD, so I partnered with Pam. Poor Pam. I truly do feel sorry for anyone who partners with me, as I can be somewhat difficult to keep up with. And I’m demanding. I know, right? That’s hard to believe.

I did put 150% of bodyweight on bar this time.

Pam was a trooper, and I encouraged her to rest when needed. I did not call a rest during plank hold or activities, nor did I rest during plank hold when she rested during activity. And that’s okay.

We completed 6 rounds + 5 dead-lifts. That’s pretty damn good.

Totals for the day:
80 dead-lifts
120 burpees
140 slam balls

Loooooong time holding plank, yo.