Had a chance to take another swing at a Crossfit Open WOD from two years ago. It was a pretty good at bat.

Back Squat
1-1-1 @95% 1RM

So my all time best back squat is 315. So 95% of that would be 300#.

I got to 275# (87%) and realized that was going to be the most that I was willing to lift today. There was something odd going on when I took the bar off the rack. Somewhere in between standing straight up to free the bar from the support hooks and taking that first step backwards, a twinge would occur roughly midway up my back, but off to the right side. It didn’t hurt bad and as soon as I set my feet and tightened up my body for the lift the feeling went away. Still, it was a bit disturbing to load close to 300# on your back and have your body say, “Sure you don’t want to rethink this?” So I elected not to go any higher.

Complete as many reps as possible in 7 minutes following the rep scheme below:
135 pound Clean and jerk, 3 reps
3 Toes-to-bar
135 pound Clean and jerk, 6 reps
6 Toes-to-bar
135 pound Clean and jerk, 9 reps
9 Toes-to-bar
135 pound Clean and jerk, 12 reps
12 Toes-to-bar
135 pound Clean and jerk, 15 reps
15 Toes-to-bar

I LIKE this METCON! I was about as efficient as I could be today.

I was push jerking the bar straight from the power clean catch rather than standing the clean up, pausing, resetting then jerking it. I’ve never been able to do that before. That felt pretty cool. First two rounds were unbroken. The next two were broken 5 and 4 and 6 and 6 respectively.

All toes to bar were done in sets of three with a three steps out, three steps back breather. That seemed to work really well again today.

I completed the round of 12, so 60 full reps. I had about 5 seconds left coming off the rig. I hustled to my bar with the intent of getting one more clean and jerk in, but when I bent forward to grip the bar the gym started to spin. I almost tumbled over the bar. I just took a knee until things stopped spinning. Ah well.

That last rep cost me too! I was leading the 6:15 session, or at least staying out in front of the two friends that were in my direct line of sight. My good friend and frequent lifting partner, Einar and I were keeping an eye on one another over the entire 7 minutes. I think I snuck out in front of him during the round of nine. I got through the round of 12 Clean and Jerks faster, but where I had to break the toes to bars up into four sets of three, Einar was a bit more efficient. He completed those ahead of me and did complete one clean and jerk!

How do I know Einar was monitoring me as I was watching him? His first words to me after Coach Lindsay called time were, “I got one rep. Did you?” I laughed and told him, “No. You got me. Great job.” Of course the purists are going to say, “you shouldn’t compete with anyone but yourself,” and I respect that. However, this is a healthy competition between two friends that fuels both of us to push just a bit harder. It’s all for the best and it makes both of us smile when it’s all said and done. So in this case, I say it’s all to the good.

Random Ramblings

-) I was surprised to discover that my 60 was only a 6 rep improvement over my initial test. Not upset or anything, just surprised. I couldn’t have done much differently or better today, so I’m good with the effort and the results. Besides, when you look at it from another perspective, that’s a 10% gain. So I’m pleased with it.

-) Only a few days left in this Whole 30 challenge. I’m ready to be done. It’s been a good experience. This was the most efficient way I know to retool my eating habits to get over the holiday indulgence mode. It’s also the best way I know to shed those pounds. I’ve dropped about 10 and am back down to what I consider my personal ‘best’ weight. So I’m pleased with that too. I appreciate that my friend John organized this and allowed me to participate. Still, I’m really looking forward to drinking something other than water or chai tea once Tuesday comes and goes.

-) Revisiting all of these Open WODs has been a very cool experience. Nice to have the positive reinforcement week after week that I am indeed at least a bit better than I was last year or the year before. It creates a really good mindset going into this year’s Open season.