Whew! Crossfit has definitely permeated life at Casa K and occupied quite a bit of time this past weekend.

First off, the CrossFit Games took place in CA. Erin was gracious enough to let me connect a computer to the TV and stream the live coverage all weekend long. While I enjoyed watching the competition as we went about our business around the house. Erin got engrossed in the competition. I offered on more than once to turn off the stream or change the channel when I wasn’t going to be in the room but Erin wouldn’t have it. She even spent Saturday night watching the games without me while I went out with a couple of buddies. This tickles me greatly.

Second, I had the good fortune to spend a few hours at CFD on Sunday taking part in a Gymnastics Seminar designed to help athletes improve some of the skills most common in CrossFit. Coach Allison lead a group of 4 of us through handstand work, kipping work and muscle up drills. The small group environment was fantastic. It meant Allison could really examine each of our individual techniques and abilities and customize her guidance based on our unique needs. What did I learn? Press those shoulders all the way out and tighten the core on the handstands. My kip needs a major retooling and it’s going to take a lot of practice to relearn it. Muscle ups are TOUGH and I’ve got a LONG way to go before I ever stick one. BUT I’ve got some great new drills on how to practice them. Also learned some great new shoulder mobility stretches that I think I’m going to have to incorporate into my daily warm ups. Allison punished some muscles that I didn’t even know were in my shoulders! Ha!

Then there was today’s workout.
WOD for Monday 071612
Bench Press (50% 1RM)
9 sets of 3 reps (3 grips)

Got to work with a relative newcomer to the CFD 6:15 crew, Brian. Right now, our 1RM Bench Press are very close. So it was an easy match and very convenient for us to work together. Although based on what I observed today, with just a bit more practice Brian will outpace me on that 1RM very quickly.

We did all reps today at 105# and banded with orange bands. That’s just shade under 50% of my 1RM, but that was fine. It meant I could really focus on the speed as well as controlling the weight. We did 3 sets each of narrow, medium and wide grip and rotated through very quickly.

One note for the next time we do banded bench press. When ever possible use the squat safety bars to anchor the bands. We used relatively short 8, maybe 9 inch pins that went through the pull up rig post. It took some tinkering to get them to a place where we were satisfied with the alignment. Initially, we stuck the pins thorough the rack perpendicular to the direction of the bench and hooked the bands on them. The bands were secure, but when you lifted the bar out of the rack over your chest the band was angled and pulling not just down vertically but back towards our faces. We both found that distracting. Being novices we weren’t sure if that was the intended effect or not. But we didn’t stop to ask either.

We reset the pins inserting them front to back, prallel to the bench. We also and left them sticking out slightly to align the band as vertical as possible. That seemed better, but with the short pins, it was impossible to get truly vertical. Not a big deal at this weight and with the very thin orange bands, but I could envision it being a real challenge at heavier weights or with thicker bands that provide more tension.

But that leaves the question that we failed to ask Jack at the time. Should the bands be angled so they are pulling down and back? Or is the intent that they be as close to vertical as possible? Gotta try to remeber to ask tomorrow.

3 sets of 8 reps

Like I mentioned before, I’m pretty much relearning my kip. Trying to reduce and practically eliminate the dependency on my hips for my kip and turn it into a more gymnastic kip that’s dependent on my lats and shoulders. As a result, the pull ups were harder today than they’ve been in past workouts. The first set went unbroken, but I’m pretty sure Allison would not have approved of the kipping. The other two sets were broken in to 4 and 4. The kip kind of came and went. That’s to be expected, I guess.

3 Rounds For Time:
25 KB High Pulls (70/52)
15 Burpees
5 Muscle Ups

This was a wild way to kick off the week! Very cool WOD. High Pulls were done Rx at 70# Muscle Ups were seated in the rings with a blue band.

First set of high pulls went unbroken. Next two sets were broken into 15 and 10. That was a bit disappointing, but necessary. My goal at the start was to do these unbroken. It was an ambitious plan.

Burpees were burpees, kind of grueling. First set felt good. I got real loose in the other two sets and the reps got sloppy and I kind of slogged through them.

The muscle ups were ok. I tried to pay attention to what Allison pointed out in drills on Sunday. I was trying to keep my eyes forward and not throw my head down at the floor during the transition. Most reps I was successful. A few I wasn’t.

Finished the WOD in 9:17 and was one of the first ones done. Late in the WOD, I was scanning the room and thinking I might be the first to finish this morning. That’s pretty rare for me, so I was getting kind of excited about it. I was finished with the last round of burpees and headed to the rings believing that I was out in front of everyone else. Then I scanned the room and spotted Meghan in the corner of the box on the rig. She was already in the rings doing her transitions. I hadn’t seen her there earlier. I thought, “Damn it. I KNOW she doesn’t have another full round ahead of her.” I was right. She smoked me! All in good fun.

I’m getting very curious about the future and what Crossfit’s role will be in our family life. I’ve said it before. I think it would be interesting to coach as part of a Crossfit Kids program in a couple of years when I have a better foundation and broader skill set. Plus, As I was watching the games I thought, “you know, in 2016, I would qualify for the Master’s division. That might be something to shoot for down the line.” Of course, the very next thought in my head was, “Hmmm. Do I have a second beer in the fridge?” So take that for what it’s worth. 😉

Beyond my individual aspirations, I also wonder if the kids will want to get involved. A prime example: Lil Bit LOVED watching the various competitions that included bar muscle ups! The three year old showed us her muscle ups for the remainder of the weekend by executing them on the bathroom counter, the deck railing,  just about any horizontal surface she could place her hands on. Then she figured out that a platform muscle up on the kitchen counter gives her access to the previously unattainable kitchen sink and faucets! Thanks, CrossFit….I think.

Seriously though. I’m curious to see if some day one or both of the kids starts coming to CFD with me the way the Whirlwind does karate with Mama right now. Some days it’s just fun to wonder.