A little bit of this, a little bit of that.


I coached the 9:45 & 11 am sessions and then led the Running Clinic from 1 to 4. Jeff and I took Luke for a long walk and then I returned to the box.

I just felt like I needed to work out. Yup, I have OCD — Obsessive CrossFit Disorder.

And I’ve fallen in love with the barbell.

I began with the bear complex, completing rounds EMOTM for 15 minutes. I completed the first 5 rounds @ 95#, focusing on form, particularly with the power cleans. It’s always been a challenge to properly position my fingers by bouncing the bar off of my shoulders. While still challenging, I’ve learned to keep all fingers in contact with the bar, and to not use 3 or even just 2 fingers, i.e., what I typically use for front squats. I increased the weight to 105 & 115# for 3 rounds and then 125 & 135# for 2 rounds.

I didn’t jump once. Not once. What a huge difference with power cleans!

I next practiced power cleans, once again incorporating what I’ve learned from GF. I focused on keeping my feet planted. I began with 115, then completed power cleans @ 125, 135, & 145# — a new PR! I yelled “Wow” to no one when I easily power cleaned 145# on the first attempt.

I didn’t jump once. Not once.

30 clean & jerks, 95#

Yes, 95# is well below the prescribed weight of 135# for “Grace”, thus the name “Gracie”. As we’ll be completing “Grace” for Barbells for Boobs fundraiser, I wanted to practice C & J — focusing on form (form, form).

I also wanted to challenge myself to finish each rep by bringing bar back to shoulders, mid-thigh, and then floor. I completed 13 unbroken reps. I didn’t jump once. I did drop the bar after the 13th rep. I completed 2 more reps, and did indeed drop the bar after the 15th rep for no other reason than I lost my focus. Two more reps and I dropped the bar after the 17th for no other reason than I was getting pretty damned tired. Four more reps and I dropped the bar after the 21st rep. I kept thinking, “Just keep going. Don’t rest too long.” And I didn’t rest very long, maybe 4 or 5 seconds at the most. Four more reps. Twenty-five down, 5 to go. I quickly picked up the bar and completed the last 5 reps.

Time = 3:24.

But why stop there?

10-min AMRAP
10 reps of the following
— 75# power snatches
— Lateral bar hops
— 24″ box jumps

My goals were to complete all rounds of power snatches unbroken, i.e., hands didn’t leave the bar. I haven’t been able to do so in the past, even with a mere 75#.

Completing unbroken lateral bar hops and box jumps unbroken isn’t a challenge, so it wasn’t a goal.

I didn’t jump once. Not during power snatches. I did jump, however, during lateral bar hops and box jumps. I did complete all rounds of all activities unbroken.

I am still bending my arms a little bit for power snatches, but I’ve certainly slowed down the first pull, am extending hips, and am dropping under the bar. What a huge difference.

I completed 6 rounds + 10 power snatches, 10 lateral bar hops, & 4 box jumps.

That’s 70 power snatches and lateral bar hops and 64 box jumps. In ten minutes.

I was justifiably quite exhausted by the end of my workout. You would be too, yo.

A lot of cleaning. (A little bit of jerking.)

What an exhausting, yet wonderful, day.

Coached all sessions today. And it was good.

I worked out at 9:30 and again at 1. Here goes.

Establish 1RM

I was anxious to practice what GF had taught me, particularly not jumping and instead extending. What a difference! I successfully cleaned 115, 125, & 135#. Even though I never suggest matching 1RM I did just that, and successfully cleaned 145#.

And. It. Felt Light.

Again, what a difference! I thought, “My all time best 1RM is 160. Why not just go for 165? I have 3 attempts.”

I cleaned 165#, but it was ugly. I cleaned it again — and it was pretty. Yeah!

Complete 1 clean every 30 seconds for 15 minutes

The focus was on form. I cleaned 95 and 115# for the first last 15 reps, respectively. I recorded the entire set, and upon reviewing saw significant improvement as I progressed.

Feet planted, active shoulders, weight in forefeet, shoulders in front of hips, slow first pull, zero to 60, up on toes, extend hips, look at one spot, drop under the bar, release bar when weightless and “catch” on shoulders, elbows high, etc., etc., etc.

Whew, that’s a lot to think about. I’m elated with my progress. It might take some convincing, however, to get most everyone else to stop jumping when they clean. Those who successfully did so were also surprised by how much easier the lifts felt — and how much lighter the weights felt.

I then completed 20 clean & jerks at a mere 75#. It felt like 15#.

Hero WOD “Brenton”
100′ bear crawl
100′ standing broad jump + 3 burpees after every 5 broad jumps

Wow, this was much more difficult than I thought it was going to be. My goal was to complete all bear crawls without stopping and to complete workout in fewer than 10 minute, estimating that it’d take me 2 minutes a round.

Uhm, standing broad jumps are challenging, and it took me a while to even begin to master. For the first 3 rounds I completed 5 sets of 3 burpees and for the last 2 rounds 4 sets of 3 burpees for a total of 69 burpees.

This white man really can’t jump.

As much as I wanted to, I nonetheless did not stop when crawling like a bear.

I did not start up where I left off for broad jumps, i.e., I started each round with a count of “1”. It’s a hero WOD. Enough said.

Time = 9:32.

GF Training

I “rested” yesterday in that I only practiced snatches. Yup, I practiced snatches. Yup, I like snatches. Nope, I never thought I’d ever say that phrase. 

I had blood drawn for  health insurance, so I had to fast until noon. I never feel altogether present when hungy. As there was an odd-number of athletes at the 6am Boot Camp, I was P.’s partner. She’s a strong athlete, so it was a pleasure to work out with her. 

Partner WOD
3, 6-min AMRAPs; 2-min rest between activities
1, 2, 3…
Wall ball (14)
Box jumps (20)
Slam balls (20)

I’m glad the box was low and the weights were light. P and I both did all reps unbroken. What fun! 

Today I once again met with GF for one-one-one Olympic weightlifting coaching. Today’s focus was the clean. And it was good. I’ve learned an incredible amount in a very short amount of time, and will continue training for, well, as long as needed. 

That might be for the rest of my life. 

After 1-hour session I completed metcon and strength. 

6-min AMRAP
3 strict chest to bar pull-ups
3 negative handstand pushups (4″)

I focused, of course, on form. This was tough. I completed 7 rounds + 3 pull-ups and 1 pushup. I had 2 failed attempts at HSPUs with 20 seconds remaining. Oh, well. 

High bar back squat
1 rep EMOTM for as long as possible
Begin at bodyweight and increase weight by 5# every round

This was challenging. And enjoyable! My goal was to complete HBBS at 225#, just 5# shy of 1RM. I did attempt rep at 230# but got caught in the hole. Eighteen minutes. 


No more scarecrow arms.

I forgot to blog yesterday. Can you believe it? I hardly can.

I worked out yesterday afternoon at 1, completing today’s programmed WOD.

— 5 presses (65 of 1RM)
— 10 wall balls (20/14)
— 15 double unders
— 30-second (accummulated time) plank hold with 1 hand on slam ball
Rest exactly 3 minutes
Not for time
30 unbroken reps high bar or low bar back squat (65/55% of bodyweight)

I thought this was going to be fun, and I wasn’t disappointed. I completed strict presses at 80# as well as unbroken double unders. Time – 11:37 (if I recall correctly, as I didn’t take picture of whiteboard and I’ve since deleted recording).

I rounded 91.65 up to 95#. Uhm, 30 HBBS at the weight got heavy very fast. Good time. Good times.

I completed tomorrow’s programmed endurance WOD this morning at 10.


Run 1 mile
(At the top of each even-numbered minute (when in the box ONLY) complete 3 burpees)
11 KB swings (52/35)
11 weighted air squats (45/33)
11 toes to bar
11 dead-lifts (185/135)
Run 200m

Wow, this was tough. Running after dead-lifting is never easy. I ran a mile in a slow 7:03, and I chalk that up to still-sore quads. Stupid walking lunges.

I completed all rounds of KB swings and air squats unbroken (as I didn’t have to stop and complete burpees), rounds 2, 3, & 5 of toes to bar unbroken (and round 4 in reps of 7 unbroken and then singles), and only the first round of dead-lifts unbroken, as I had to stop and complete 3 burpees during round of dead-lifts for remaining rounds. For first round of toes to bar I missed the first rep (toes didn’t touch bar) and had to stop after 8 reps to do 3 burpees. I also had to stop and complete 3 burpees immediately upon entering the box for the third round. That hurt. I said, “That sucked.” In fact every time I stopped to complete 3 burpees it hurt, and it was difficult beginning any activity, particularly dead-lifts.

Time 25:30 including 15 burpees.

I met with GF for my first of what I hope to be many 1-on-1 Olympic weightlifting sessions.


I learned an incredible amount in a very short amount of time. I have to unlearn many things, in particular foot positioning. I practiced snatches for 45 minutes and OHS for remaining time.

I already feel much more confident in both lifts, and can’t wait to share what I’ve learned with Surmounties.

Why am I doing this? If I want to become a better coach I have to become a better lifter.



It concerns me that “bootylicious” didn’t appear as a misspelled word. Going on.

Lunging 500m and completing close to 500 Abmat sit-ups made me, well, quite sore. I nonetheless coached the 2 sessions at CFS this morning, and a good time was had by, well, some.

I worked out at 3:30 this afternoon and completed tomorrow’s WOD. I very much like it, as the focus is on the upper body. No legs, well, other than power snatches.

EMOTM for 24 and up to 32 minutes complete 3 reps of the following 4 activities, cycling through the activities:
A. Power snatches 
— 75/53 men less than 200# and women less than 160#
— 85/63 men 200# or greater and women 160# or greater
B. Negative pushups (5″/3″)
C. Chin-ups
D. Ring dips or box jumps (24/20)

On the first minute complete 3 power snatches, negative pushups, and chin-ups. On the second minute complete 3 negative pushups, chin-ups, and ring dips (or box jumps for those of you who did not complete yesterday’s WOD). On the third minute complete 3 chin-ups, ring dips or box jumps, and power snatches.

I power snatched 75#, used 45 & 25# plates for negative pushups, completed kipping chin-ups, and completed dead-hang ring dips (for an added challenge).

I wore pink Lululemon shorts and a grey V-neck tee shirt. I looked abulous.

I love power snatches. Huh? When the hell did that happen?

It wasn’t until after the 4th round that I thought, “Keep track of time.” It wasn’t until the 5th round that I began to pick up the pace. For example, it took me 28, 26, & 24 seconds the first time I completed 3 power snatches, negative pushups, and chin-ups the 1st, 2nd, & 3rd times, respectively.

I completed all rounds of 3 reps unbroken, as well I should. I brought bar to mid-thigh and then floor between reps of and after last power snatch(es), as well I should.

Total rounds = 32
Total work time = 11:47
Total reps = 72 of each activity; 288 total

Rounds of pushups, chin-ups, and ring dips went much faster than any round that included power snatches. Yup.


Jelly legs and bruised butt

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A fun day at CFS! I coached the 8:30 and most of the 9:45 session, and completed the metcon during the 9:45 session — led by Coach Jeff! This was the final event from the Throwdown in the Triangle.

10-min AMRAP

60 KB swings (53)

45 box jumps (24)
30 HSPU 
15 snatch (95)
5 muscle ups

I didn’t even make it to the muscle ups. I completed KB swings in reps of 30, 15, & 15. I really don’t recall how many sets of box jumps I completed, but box jumps did go reasonably well.

I had hoped to complete HSPUs in reps of 5, but was only able to do so for the first 15. I missed 1 rep, and did complete the last 3 reps as singles. Ugh. My shoulders were smoked!

More than 9 minutes had passed when I finally began snatches. I didn’t lift the masters weight of 115, and that’s okay. I struggled with 95 and missed 2 reps. And that’s less than okay.

I was less than happy with my performance.

Jeff and I had drinks with Glenda and Ashlee, I took a nap, and returned to the box to complete tomorrow’s programmed WOD.

400m walking lunges
Rest exactly 2 minutes

3 rounds not for time
Max reps Abmat unbroken sit-ups; rest exactly 1 minute between rounds

I taped gauze to my knees, marked a new 100m course (200m out and back), grabbed a stopwatch, and lunged 200m in exactly 90 steps. Unbroken, too. I glanced at the stopwatch only to discover that I hadn’t even started it. I thought, “This is a sign. Don’t do this. Just go home.”

I shook out my legs and started again.

This was painful, and I had to frequently pause to shake out my legs, catch my breath, and/or swear.

I took me 6 minutes to lunge 200m, so I set my goal to complete the workout in 12 minutes.

I took me 380 steps and I completed in 11:57. That was close! Keep in mind I actually lunged 500m for the day.

I hobbled 50m or so to the box. Yes, hobbled, as I could barely stand upright.

I had positioned the Abmat in front of the Big Ass Fan by the garage door. I started the timer in the box to keep track of rest time between rounds.

I set a goal to complete at least 100 sit-ups the first round and completed 110. I took me 3:30 to do so. I rested exactly 1 minute.

I set a goal to complete at least 75 sit-ups. I completely lost focus and, without intending to do so, stopped at the top of the 66th sit-up. I felt as if I had been punched in the gut. Just 66 sit-ups? I took me 2:19 to do so. I again rested exactly 1 minute.

I set a goal to complete 75 sit-ups. I quickly got into a very good rhythm and easily completed 75. I re-set my goal to 100. Then 125, then 150, then 175, then 200 — the highest number of unbroken Abmat sit-ups I have ever completed.

I kept going. And going. And going. I completed 314 sit-ups and only stopped because my ass checks were raw. There is no amount of BodyGlide that can prevent chafing when one completes that many sit-ups. It took me 12:19 to complete that many sit-ups. That’s over 12 minutes of unbroken sit-ups. I know you could’ve probably figured that out on your own, but I wanted to emphasize my accomplishments. You may bow to me the next time we greet.

That’s 490 sit-ups. If only I had completed just 10 more reps…

Friday the 13th

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Ms. Evelyn!
Ms. Evelyn!

Evelyn surprised me with a gift! The front of the tee shirt: If CrossFit were easy it would be called your mother, yo. Yup, I’ve said that. The back: Welcome to CrossFit. Have a nice day! I often say this at the end of a workout, you know, when folks are lying on the floor panting, drooling, and swearing. 

I worked out at 10:30. In celebration of Friday the 13th I programmed a “fun” WOD.

Complete 13 reps of the following as fast as possible:
1. Thrusters (95/65)
2. Bent over rows
3. Straight legged dead-lifts
4. SDHPs
5. Front squats
6. Hang cleans
7. Dead (since it’s Friday the 13th) hang pull-ups
8. 1-armed KB swings (52/35)
9. Box jumps (30/24)
10. Slam balls (30/20)
11. Slam ball jumping air squats
12. Slam ball pushups
13. Slam ball burpees

My goal was to complete as many activities unbroken as possible, knowing that I wouldn’t be able to do so for dead hang pull-ups. I did for all except pull-ups and hang cleans. Uhm, if it’s a hang clean it’s a full squat clean. Pay attention, please.

It’s not how you start, it’s how you finish.

Thrusters went remarkably well this morning, and 13 unbroken presented no challenge. And no time did I even contemplate dropping the bar. Thirteen unbroken bent over rows were completed very quickly, as were 13 unbroken straight legged dead-lifts. Fourteen, actually, as I bent my knees on the 4th rep and redid.

I wasn’t looking to SDHPs for no other reason than I had just completed 49 81 Wednesday.  Unbroken nonetheless.

I love front squats. For that matter, I love back squats and overhead squats. Thirteen unbroken. 

I was, however, getting winded. I completed hang cleans in reps of 5, 5, & 3. 

Dead hang pull-ups were miserable. I completed in sets of 3, 2, 2, 2, 1, 1, 1, & 1. Full range of motion, I assure you. 

One-armed alternating KB swings were also completed unbroken. As I feared that I would not get the 52# KB to eye level, I over compensated. Upon reviewing the recording I can report that KB swings were completed between Russian and American. Mexican? Brazilian? 

I wasn’t looking to box jumps for no other reason than I had just completed 49 81 Wednesday.  Unbroken nonetheless.

Slam balls? I love slamming balls. Slam ball jumping air squats? I don’t mind if I do. Slam ball pushups? I love tricep pushups. Slam ball burpees?

I usually wholeheartedly love but today only half-heartedly loved. I really wanted to stop during set of 13, but would not allow myself to do so. 

I called time to no one at 10:24