And One for Good Measure

Friday, August 4 | Unbreakable

Luke and I went for a 5-mile walk at the Biltmore. ‘Twas another unseasonably cool morning. I listened to Ricky Martin Unplugged and contemplated taking Spanish courses at AB Tech. Seriously.

Front Squat
Establish 1RM 

I’m challenging myself in a variety of ways, including strengthening wrists. From today forward I will only complete front squats with all fingers on the barbell, i.e., no floating pinkies. I have intentionally not been wearing wrist wraps but did wear them today.

Given that I haven’t done heavy front squats since surgery, and this would be a new baseline, I set a goal to lift 200#. I warmed up with sets of 5 until I hit 165# and then began singles, completing reps @ 175, 185, & 195#. I thought, “Lifts feel good. I should just go for 205.” and that’s what I did. And then I lifted 210#. Yay! It’s challenging to do front squats with present set up as when there’s the potential that I might fail and need to bail I need to take a few steps away from the rack. I did fail @ 215. Luckily I was paying attention for the plates bounced and rolled toward me. Yup, I jumped over the barbell.

Take a look at pics. Should be no doubt that squat was below parallel and that elbows were high. K? K.



50 reps
Burpee + 3-second handstand hold + burpee + 30″ box jump + squat (on top of box)

I set up the workspace so that box was near opposite wall used for handstand holds. I completed in sets of 5, often counting out loud. Why? Because somewhere between 5 and 10 I lost count and likely completed 6 reps that round. The abacuses a godsend.

Uhm, yeah, so that’s 100 burpees in addition to 50 handstand holds, box jumps, and squats. I worked at a steady pace, but did need to slow down somewhat at about 35 reps, you know, so I could rest my shoulders.

There were many times when just a heel lightly grazed the wall. There were quite a few times when I was able to achieve 3 or more seconds of freestanding handstand hold. I focused on activating shoulders and looking at opposite wall (in this case box). I didn’t miss a single box jump.

Time = 24:38

I still haven’t watched a single moment of the CFG. I am, however, truly enjoying Ozark.

Saturday, August 5 | Libertango

I finished Ozark. Well done, Netflix!

Luke and I began our day with a 5-mile walk at Biltmore. I can’t believe how cool the mornings have been!

Both upper and lower body were a wee bit sore, so I programmed an “active recovery” workout. And it was just what the doctor ordered.

25-min AMRAP
– 3 pull-ups
– 4 knees to elbows
– 5 hand release pushups
– 6/leg mountain climbers
– 18 double unders*

* Complete an additional rep for each missed rep

I raised the yoke on the squat rack to allow for kipping, and what a difference it made. My goal was to complete all rounds of pull-ups, K2E, pushups, and mountain climbers in unbroken reps. In addition, my secondary goal was to transition from pull-ups to K2E without dropping from the bar and from pushups to mountain climbers without resting. I achieved goal for pushups to mountain climbers but not pull-ups to K2E.

I was able to complete all rounds of pull-ups and K2E unbroken and with no rest as transitioning until round 16. Alas, no matter how many times I wiped off yoke and/or attempted to dry hands, I began to slip off the bar. I was sweating so profusely that by the last round I completed pull-ups and K2E as single reps, with my hands sliding off the yoke after each rep. It wasn’t muscle failure, ’twas sweat. Dammit.

I completed many rounds of dus in unbroken reps and, as prescribed, completed additional rep(s) each time I failed a du. As always, I completed an additional rep each round, e.g., completed 19 reps for round of 18 unbroken. Yup, one for good measure.

Score = 17 rounds + 3 pull-ups, 4 K2E, 5 pushups, 6 mountain climbers, & 6 double unders; 54 pull-ups, 72 K2E, 90 pushups, 108, 132 (plus probably another dozen or so plus 17) double unders

Sunday, August 6 | You Bike, I’ll Run!

Luke and I started our day with a 4-mile hike at Pisgah. We would’ve gone longer, but he let me know he’d rather not. Jeff and I enjoyed breakfast at Biscuit Head, where I had a brisket biscuit and a grapefruit mimosa. I was feeling a bit tipsy (I’m such a lightweight), so I “rested” on the deck. Jeff is now allowed to bike on flat surfaces, so we headed to Carrier Park at around 12:30.

Uhm, I can’t recall the last time I went for a run. Maybe Ragnar? It’s been months, then. It’s not that I don’t love running, it’s just, well, I’ve been biking and working out and, well, not running.

As he didn’t know how long he’d be able to ride pain-free, I set a goal to run between 3 and 4 miles. We began, with me running a bit ahead. I ran the first mile in 7:56, certainly not blazingly fast. The next mile I ran in 7:32, slightly faster. I set a goal to stop at 5K, and ran the last mile in 7:08. Although it took me a few seconds to stop watch, TomTom recorded 23:23 with a pace of 7:32 mpm. Again, not blazingly fast, but as I was running on a somewhat full stomach that also contained alcohol I’m nonetheless pleased.

I took a breath every third step, and my average heart rate was 188, with highest recorded at 201. According to TomTom I spent all but about the first 90 seconds in “peak” heart rate zone. Maybe I can shed a few pounds if I keep running. There’s that.

It was much fun running as Jeff biked. I can unequivocally state that Jeff didn’t set my pace. I did talk with him along the course, although always briefly. “Are you okay?” “How does the knee feel?” “You up for another mile?”

Uhm, I didn’t watch a single moment of the 2017 CrossFit Games. Yup, I know who won. Nope, I really don’t care.





Tuesday, August 1

It’s hard to believe that we’ve only lived in Asheville six months! I don’t miss Apex one iota.

As I have been unable to take Luke for a long walk in the forest for quite a few days, that’s where we headed this morning. We hiked/ran/walked a 7-mile loop, the farthest distance we’ve traversed, well, maybe ever. He’s been asleep on the couch or outside the rest of the day. A tired dog is a happy dog.

I got on the scale this morning and discovered that I weigh a whopping 147 pounds, 4 pounds heavier than my typical weight. Dammit. When Jeff or company is in town we eat out far too much. That shit is gonna have to stop. The drinking of beer, however, will not stop anytime soon. Because beer.

Establish 1RM

My post-surgery 1RM established six weeks ago was 340, so I set a goal to lift 345#. I lifted 350#, so I’m pleased. Yup, I recorded all lifts. Yup, even deadlifts.

11-min AMURAP
11 150# (bodyweight) deadlifts
5 ring pushups
1 strict handstand pushup
10 DL
6 ring pushups
2 strict HSPUs
9 DL
7 ring pushups
3 strict HSPUs

Like that acronym? As Many Unbroken Rounds (and Reps) As Possible. Again, this isn’t something I’d ever program for others as it’d take too long to explain. And some folks still wouldn’t get it. Do you? See what happens to the reps of deadlifts, ring pushups, and handstand pushups? The abacus is a godsend.

Even though the DLs were relatively light, i.e., my bodyweight, after completing so many reps at heavy weights just moments before shit felt heavy right out of the gate.

Deadlifts, in addition to be in unbroken sets, were from floor to floor, including last rep of each set. I was most concerned with possibly being unable to complete 3 unbroken HSPUs when I began to get tired, but all rounds went well with no missed reps.

Score = 3 rounds + 12 (11 DL & 1 ring pushup) reps; total 101 DL, 55 ring pushups, & 18 strict HSPUs


Wednesday, August 2 | Seventeen Miles

First, a heartfelt thank you to my BBF for demonstrating patience as I have been developing my sea, aka “bike,” legs. I finally adjusted the clips, and what a difference it makes. I can easily step off of bike. Yay!

Whilst I didn’t know at the outset, Brian led the way for a 17-mile and almost 2-hour ride. We stopped just two or three times, and then only for brief moments.

Screen Shot 2017-08-03 at 8.21.29 PM

I had heart rate monitor turned on (red line), and you can see that there was some rather heart pounding riding. Whilst I didn’t always keep up with Brian on the downhills, I most certainly did so on the uphills. My forte.

This was perhaps the most fun I’ve had riding as well as the most confident that I’ve felt. I can hardly wait to ride with Brian again!

(Brian, I’m still giggling like a school girl about “tuck and cover.”)

I was notified by AB Tech that I passed my background check and that I am officially hired. Yay!

Thursday, July 3 | Grasshoppers

My good friend Evelyn has been letting me know about her workouts, and yesterday she informed me that her metcon included mountain climbers. Uhm, WTF haven’t I included mountain climbers in my workouts? I love mountain climbers! I both love and hate grasshoppers even more.

My day began with an 8-mile hike/walk/run with Luke. We began at 8 at the Arboretum whilst the temperature was still a cool 57. My hands were actually cold. As Luke feels more energetic when it’s cooler, I decided to go a different route that included terrain in both the Arboretum and Pisgah National Forest. We even hiked a trail between Hard Times Hill and the Blue Ridge Parkway that up until today I didn’t even know existed. Maybe my observational skills aren’t as good as I think they are. Ha!

I ate a quick breakfast and then Luke and I headed to the garage. I still felt quite warmed up, you know, from the 8-mile hike/walk/run, so I almost immediately began press series.


Establish 1RM

I warmed up by completing 5 reps at 65, 75, 85, & 95# and then began singles, completing reps @ 105, 115, 125, 130 (post-surgery PR), and 135#. I’m calling that a new PR! Lifts felt wonderful today, and I was very pleased with performance. Yup, I recorded all presses and ensured that knees were locked at butt was squeezed.

2-4-6-8-6-4-2 tricep pushup on 70# KB + KB SDHP
8-12-16-20-16-12-8 grasshoppers/leg

I had forgotten just what an ab workout grasshoppers can be. For pushup + SDHP, hands began on KB, followed up kick back to plank, pushups, jump to starting position for SDHP, i.e., legs spread wide (that’s what he said), high pull, and finally KB placed on floor.

Time = 8:21

BTW, you may have noticed that my workouts haven’t included overhead squats or snatches, for when I attempt to do so I experience pain in my right shoulder. And it’s just not worth it. I can complete back and front squats as well as cleans and power snatches with no pain. So that’s what I’m going to do.

Yeah, so the CrossFit Games have begun, and I have zero interest in watching. You read that correctly, zero interest. I don’t at all enjoy the team competition, so there’s that. Am I a CrossFitter? Not really. I work out in my garage, and I complete strength and conditioning. Is that CrossFit? Perhaps.

I also have zero interest in ever again participating in any type of competition.