Coming off an extra day of rest because of a cold last weekend. It sort of helped. Heck, a rough day at the gym is still better than not working out. So I’ll take it.

WOD for Tuesday 121812
Front Squat
10 sets of 2 reps at 75% 1RM

Craig is back and we shared a rack/bar today for front squats. By the numbers, 75% of my 1RM is 185#. I worked my way up to that and worked through 5 sets at that weight. But by the end of the 5th set, I realized it was too much for today.

This cold that’s going through our house is tricky. I don’t feel unwell. No aches, no pains, no fever, no congestion….just feel totally flat. I napped twice on Saturday. That’s pretty unheard of for me. I thought I was better yesterday.

I only stayed away from the gym because my son still has this cold and he was tossing and turning all Sunday night/Monday morning. My wife and I were up with him on and off through out that night. After the second or third wake up call at 1am, I turned off Monday’s alarm just to get a bit more sleep. I discovered this morning that I’m not as well as I believed myself to be. So  be it.

For the remaining sets, I shed 10# off the bar and in the time remaining completed 3 more sets. Good enough given the circumstances.

For Time:
30 Overhead Squat (95/65)
7 Muscle Ups
20 Overhead Squat
5 Muscle Ups

I set a bar at 75# for the OHS and did 5 test squats and muttered aloud, “Yeah, that’s gonna be plenty.” Jack was in the vicinity, observed and commented, “those looked light. Those looked really light.” The implication being I should probably add more weight.

My response was, “Well sure, the first 5 look light. 50 is a ton of reps. It’s the last 5 I’m afraid of.” I also reminded him that I’d been ill this weekend and that I didn’t feel 100%. He conceded and said, “all right. I can get behind that.” Pretty sure, if we see something like this  again, I’m not going to get another hall pass.

In coaching the group, Jack was pretty adamant about not putting the bar down until all the squats were completed. He encouraged everyone to rest the rack on their shoulders, if necessary and avoid allowing the bar to go to the floor before completing a round. That became my A goal. Based on how early we set up for this one, I was anticipating a solid 10 minute WOD. That was the B goal, ‘get done in less than 10 minutes.’ As you’ll see, I’m a lousy judge of these things.

Ring Dips were the substitution for muscle ups. I used a purple band for those. Jack’s direction was double the muscle ups count, if doing ring dips. Okey-dokey.

Overhead squats went very well. First round was done in sets of 15, 10 and 5 and the bar did not hit the floor until the round was done. Second time around I did sets of 10, 5 and 5. I might have dropped the bar after the 15th rep. I don’t recall now.

Ring dips were split in half the first round 7 and 7. Second round went 5, 3, 2. Time to finish: 5:38.

Jack was right again. I probably should have done the OHS at 85#. Ah well. Plenty of other opportunities to punish myself later this week.

Free Time – There was time to spare after the WOD, so I elected to work on kipping pull ups with the vague idea that if the stars were aligned and all was good in the world I might go after a bar muscle up.

In the end, I really did 3 sets of 5 solid kipping pull ups, no chicken neck today, so that’s progress. If I the thought had occurred to me, I probably could have done some effective chest to bar pull ups. That’s also progress.

I’m still well short of a bar muscle up. By Jack’s estimation, I need at least an additional 6 inches of elevation. Something else to shoot for.

Front Squat Graph — For the next few weeks, I’m going to examine some of the main lifts we do. It’s the end of another year, so I figure it’s time to evaluate/assess and set new goals. The intent here is to examine progress on each lift and consider goals lift by lift for the upcoming year.

Next year around this time, hopefully, I can do it again and we’ll see what kind of progress has taken place. I promise I’ll bury these at the ends of the posts, so they’re easily avoidable, if no one else is interested.

Today’s graph is not perfect. It includes at least one 90% of 1RM day in there (that 200 dip in October). Going forward, I’m going to try and filter these more carefully so that they only include 1RM attempt dates. Overall, I’m very pleased with the progress on this lift. From 155 in Aug of 2011 to 215 a year later, then on to 245 as recently as a week ago. Yeah, it’s safe to say I like front squats.

Front Squat Progress Chart

The challenge now is establishing a realistic goal to improve this lift for 2013. Presuming the following factors: 1) I stick with my current work out program of 4 days a week 2) No customization/specialized training, just  adhering to the box programming. With those factors in mind, is 275 a challenging goal, or a pipe dream? Is it under achieving? Would love to hear folks’ thoughts.