Coming to terms with the fact that this is the current state of my back squat. Not clear why this is the case, but it is what it is and I’m ok with it.

Skill:
Snatch Work
2 reps EMOM for 8 minutes:
Full Snatch (35-40% 1RM)

Did this work at 65#, a shade heavier than the 40% prescribed. Even with doing the Burgener warm up independently and Rachel’s very thorough hip warm up, it took a couple rounds to get in motion and find a groove. By the third round it felt like I was hitting all the marks.

Strength:
Back Squat
5 reps @50% – (60%-185)
5 reps @65% – 190
3 reps @80% – 240
2 reps @90% – xxx
Establish 1RM (no more than 3 attempts)

So it seems I copied the percentages incorrectly from the website last night. For the first round, I wrote 5 reps at 60% rather than 50% and calculated accordingly. I didn’t check the white board closely enough either, so lifted 185# x 5 for the first round rather than 150. Whoops.

After the 3 reps at 240, I didn’t want to expend the energy at 90%. It was obvious after the 80% round that something around 90% was going to be my 1RM today.

I loaded the bar at 275# and had a good lift. I’m confident it was deep enough. Felt like I kept my posture upright and didn’t get folded forward. Got stuck a bit on the way up, but still it was good.

I made an attempt at 290# that wasn’t really close. It ended with a very awkward bail. I got folded forward at the bottom of the lift then got forced even deeper into the hole.  I was pinned and had to struggle to get upright enough to roll the bar off.

Strange the thoughts that occur to us in odd moments. I’ll explain. Some folks know that while I work out at the 6:15am session, my mother attends the 7:15 am bootcamp session and frequently arrives at the box early. There are times where she’ll observe what we’re doing in the main room until she needs to warm up for her class.

I laughed at myself because the first thought that occurred to me after escaping the bar was, “Sh*t! Mom didn’t see that, did she? That’ll scare the hell out of her!”

We tested 1RM back squats in the first week of March. That day I was unable to even lift 245#, so you could say I made progress. However, knowing that a year ago I squatted 300# and in October I back squatted 305, it’s difficult to embrace today’s results as progress.

I’ve talked to a few folks about it and I can accept that those 300+ lifts likely were not great examples to claim as 1 rep maxes. There are two things to consider. First, for whatever reason,the stars were aligned just perfectly on those days. Second, I suspect that my spotters who observed those lifts on those days were generous. I probably never broke parallel so perhaps those aren’t “true” 1RM’s.

If that’s the case, the question becomes, “now what?” I’m confident that today’s squat was true. No doubt in my mind it was deep enough, etc. I’m also confident that I could do it again.  I suspect that I could eek out a few more pounds somewhere between that 275 and the 290.

So do I throw out those 300# lifts? Pretend they never happened and use 275# as my new benchmark 1RM? That seems practical. But in some respects, it seems like settling for less when I should be expecting more from myself. Not sure how to balance that.

I’m also trying to everything in perspective and look at the larger picture. While this lift seems to have suffered there are so many other areas of my fitness that have improved so I’m not overly concerned. I’m finding running easier. I’m having better success with just about everything associated with the pull up bar. My balance is improving dramatically.

I had a blast this weekend practicing handstands and attempting pistols balanced on a 4″ x 4″ beam this weekend. I was even monkeying around on an improvised slackline in my back yard for the better part of an hour Saturday.  All of that suggests while this one lift is not what it used to be, perhaps my overall fitness is more well-rounded than it was a few months ago.

Crossfit uses 10 general physical  skills to define fitness. Where I may have had an edge in strength on some specific lifts, now it seems I’m seeing bigger gains and making more noticeable advances in other areas like balance, speed (it’s relative), coordination and balance. I’m pretty pleased with that honestly.

One could also make the case that I’m overthinking all of this and I wouldn’t argue too hard against it. But after all, the line between taking things seriously and obsessing unnecessarily is such a small step. 😉

Conditioning:
3 Rounds For Time:
6 Overhead Squats (135/95)
12 Box Jumps (30/24)
24 Russian KB Swings (70/52)

Time cap: 7 minutes

The additional guidance regarding the Overhead Squats was if the 135 was too heavy, then use something approaching 75% of 1RM. I was certain that 135 would slow me down more than was reasonable, so I set a bar at 125# which fit the additional guidance. I set up a 30 inch box and grabbed a 62# kettle bell.

The first round of squats was too difficult to be reasonable. Before beginning the second round, I pulled 10# off and did the remaining rounds at 115#. When the 7 minutes expired, I’d completed 2 full rounds, 6 squats and 3 more box jumps. 2 rounds + 9 reps? I’m good with that.

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