Trying some new Advocare today

So just as a follow-up to today’s workout, we got some samples of the new Advocare FIT Line the other day from our friend Amy (a local Advocare Rep). We enjoy quite a few Advocare products (mostly Spark and Rehydrate, with a few other things like Biotune). So why not give FIT a try?

Essentially the FIT line gives you a pre-workout drink, a during-workout drink, and a post-workout drink. Plus some protein you can do any day. More of a complete regimen for your supplementation needs if you want to look at it that way.

 

timeline.82122416ae4a5ad63abedbf3b6f68b9c
From the Advocare Website

 

One of the things we’ve not really enjoyed is the flavor of some of the post-workout protein supplements from Advocare. After using Progenex RecoveryΒ for a long time (we like Loco Mocha and Chocolate Covered Banana), the flavor of the Advocare stuff is underwhelming. Nothing against it’s effectiveness, but if I’m going to use a product it either has to have zero taste and great effects or great taste and great effects.

So… for my FIT test today… Um, not a fan.

The PRE stuff tastes a bit like an expired Life Saver. The INTRA stuff tasted like watered down Limeade Spark (REALLY watered down). And the POST stuff tasted a bit like chocolate flavored chalk.

To say the least, it’s not my thing. Maybe other people can deal with the flavors, but I won’t be subjecting myself to them again.

I haven’t tried the PROTEIN shake yet, which Amy said tasted really good. But after three swings and misses with the other three products, I’m not holding my breath.

As for the effectiveness of the FIT line… I don’t know. I feel pretty good after a decent workout. But it wasn’t one of those 45 minute workouts that we sometimes get on Saturdays, so that might have been a better test.

In another post I’ll try and pull together my whole supplementation mix, which now includes some stuff from Red H Nutrition, Advocare, Ascent Protein, and Progenex.Β And in my 40s, I’m not looking to add more to my mix unless it fills a need. The latest two things are Super Flexy and Hibernate from Red H, which have helped me recover faster from knee pain and sleep a little better.

So to anyone who uses FIT and doesn’t mind the taste, more power to you. πŸ™‚

Barbells FTW!

Though the rest of my family decided to go play with dogs and cats at the animal hospital, I headed into CrossFit Continuum for a Team WOD this morning. And there were only a few of us who made it… Shaun & Stacy, Margaret (and her Black Lab Tiberius), Brent, Lisa, and another gal whose name I haven’t caught yet. Shaun was coaching this morning so the rest of us paired up for the workout.

We started with a light 400m jog and came back in for a bit of movement — arm circles, air squats, squat jumps, PVC pipe pass-thrus, leg swings, and the like.

mh-carry-load-zercher-520
My Barbell Carry Looked Nothing Like This

And then we warmed up a barbell to our working weight. It was supposed to be 115# for Brent & I, but I have to admit that snatches felt really rough at 115# — so I dropped back to 95# and stayed there. Brent used 115# for some and 95# for some, so it was good we had a couple of bars to play with.

  • Teams of 2 (M/M 115 lb, F/F 65 lb)
  • *if the bar touches the ground at any point, each person does 2 burpees*
  • 50 power snatch
  • 40 front squats
    30 power cleans
  • 20 thrusters
  • 10 push press
  • Between each movement, complete a 200m partner barbell carry – both partners have a hand on the bar at all time during the carry.

Apparently Coach Clare wrote this one, which should have been called “smoke your grip” I think. πŸ™‚

1swt1tBrent and I may have skipped a few burpees, but only maybe 2 or 4 total. We never really dropped the bar except once or twice. Mostly outside.

My grip was fried, so hanging onto the barbell for that 200m carry was a challenge. And by the time we got to the last lap, Brent decided he’d just do all 10 push press at 115# to finish us off. I was thankful for his sacrifice. πŸ™‚

Shaun did 1/2 the workout by himself. And he and the other two teams added one more 200m lap at the end, though Brent and I interpreted it as being just between the movements so we chose not to. As Shaun said, it was “extra credit. ” πŸ™‚

Brent and I finished in about 22 minutes, so it was a short and sweet partner WOD. I didn’t think it was going to smoke my shoulders as badly as it did, but it was my grip that was really the problem.

When everybody was done, we did a bit of mobility work and everybody went their separate ways for the rest of the weekend.

Thanks for being my partner today Brent! Thanks for keeping us all moving Shaun. And great work everybody!

Pressing My Luck

Though my wife and youngest made it in this morning, work got in my way of an earlier class. So I made it in for a Noon class… Coach Drea had me, Patti, and Carmen.

We started with a 4 round warm-up:

  • 10 calorie row/bike (I rowed)
  • 10 push press with an empty barbell
  • 10 good mornings with an empty barbell

It was a good chance to work on my form, trying to keep my elbows tucked when I pull all the way back to below my chest. I think I managed 10 calories in 28-35 seconds across the 4 rounds.

From there we warmed up for the strength part of the day: bench press. This is a movement we don’t do a whole heck of a lot, but can be fun. We were supposed to start with 80% of our 1RM. With some quick math, 80% of 230# was 184# so I shot to start at 185#.

20170720_131552The warm-up was good:

  • 45# (empty bar) x10
  • 95# x8
  • 135# x5
  • 155# x5
  • 165# x4

And then the actual 5 rounds of 3 reps each:

  • 185# x3
  • 195# x3
  • 205# x3
  • 215# x1 (uuuugly) (93% of 1RM)
  • 210# x3 (first 2 were ok, last one was ugly) (91% of 1RM)

I didn’t even get close to my 1RM. But I was curious when I got home to see how much it all added up to. 5920#. Nearly 6,000 pounds in the first half of the workout. I think I’ll take that. πŸ™‚

And a big thanks to Drea who spotted me. 215# was ugly and I was glad she helped me get it back on the rack!

When all of that was done, we moved over to the GHD machine.

new-ghd-header2

This thing and I have never really been on the best of terms. πŸ™‚

Today we worked on a new movement which proved just how little mobility I have in my lower back. Hip-Back Extensions. Essentially it’s like a Back Extension, but there’s less Hip involved and you try to roll your neck and back over and then roll your back and neck back up.

We were supposed to do 50 of these and then 15 wall balls any time we got off the machine. I think I did 20 and 45 wall balls with a 20# ball. I did do one set of 15 wall balls unbroken, so that was good. But the actual extensions were rough. It’s as though Scorpion pose from Yoga and a Back Extension had a mutant baby. πŸ™‚

And we were definitely running out of time when we started these things. Carmen had to head off to class and it was just me and Patti going back and forth. She made the extensions look much better than I did, but even she quit after 25. πŸ™‚

That was it for the day. πŸ™‚ Looks like I’ll make it in for the Saturday workout — and then will miss the next couple of Saturdays due to soccer tournaments. But we’ll still get in for our regular few days a week!

Hope everybody has a great day!

Ring the Dumbbells!

This week is a mess, but again I knew if I didn’t at least try to get into the box I might go a little crazier than normal. So AJ and I headed into the box for a Noon class with Coach Drea. And… funny enough… it was just the two of us in the class!

20-lbs-dumbbell1We started with some partner warm-ups…

  • 5 light dumbbell deadlifts, each side
  • while partner does 10 ring rows

Then…

  • 100 ft dumbbell farmer’s carry
  • while partner does 10 hip extensions on the GHD

I grabbed 30# dumbbells for all of that and I stayed there for the rest of the day. πŸ™‚

The workout itself was a 12 minute AMRAP:

  • dumbbell deadlifts, 9 reps
  • 6 burpees
  • dumbbell power cleans, 3 reps
  • weights: 60/40# Rx, 45/30# level II, 30/20# level I

I knew the burpees were going to be the worst part of the workout, but didn’t realize what a challenge the dumbbell deadlifts would be. I felt like I was the Hunchback of Notre Dame every time I touched the floor.

20170718_125800For the most part I did the cleans & deadlifts unbroken. I paused here or there with the deadlifts but never set down the dumbbells. Unfortunately the burpees weren’t the same. As feared, that was the challenge for this one. I struggled to stay consistent doing 3 and 3. Β The cleans were fun – it was light enough I could just swing the weights to my shoulder. πŸ™‚

I managed to get through 8 rounds plus 12 reps.

Meanwhile, AJ did the workout with with 15# dumbbells and got through 10 rounds + 16 reps. She did awesome.

When we were done, we did a bit of skill work with ring dips. I got through a little more than 1 round and I think AJ did too before she bailed to practice kicking up on the wall. πŸ™‚ The skill work was 3 rounds of:

  • 30 second hold at the locked out top of a ring dip
  • 15 second hold at the bottom of the ring dip
  • 10 strict ring dips

That first locked out hold on the rings made my arms get cranky, but by the end of one round my whole body was vibrating. The second hold I did for 25 seconds and that was all I could muster. At that point I bailed and decided it was time to get my stuff together.

So it was a good workout. Tomorrow is a rest day and then it sounds like Thursday will be a strength day — so I’m looking forward to that!

Thanks Drea! Hope you and the boys have a great day!

Oh “L” – Strict Pull-ups

First workout of the week and it’s a crazy week with the kids, so I knew I needed to make every effort to get into the box or I might lose my mind. Made it today.

1sn13rAJ and I arrived for a full 9:30 class with Coach Drea. Mickey had her first 8a soccer practice today and chose to do some yoga while we warmed up and did the workout, which was understandable. We had lots of folks to play with – Sara, Elyse, Brent, Nick and Lisa, Austen, Mia, Evie, and a few others.

Started with 5 minutes of cardio – row, bike, or run at a warm-up pace. I chose to *gasp* row (shocking, I know) and made it through 1100m in the 5 mins, so not bad. Still working on the mechanics of tucking elbows in more like a push-up when I pull back, so it was a good opportunity to feel that out for a bit.

Once that was done, we did some banded shoulder abstraction on the rig. Lots of bands going every direction when we got the whole class going.

L-sit-pull-up
Um. Why are these folks smiling? These things are tough!!!

And then we talked about the movements for the workout:

  • L pull-ups or strict pull-ups (Rx/Level II), or leg-assisted ring pull-ups (Level I)
  • Handstand push-ups (Rx) or seated dumbbell presses (Level I) or something in-between
  • Hip extensions on the GHD (Rx/Level II) or Good mornings with a barbell or PVC pipe (Level I)

Essentially the workout was a 20 minute AMRAP of:

  • 10 L pull-ups
  • 10 HSPUs
  • 20 hip extensions

Like always, I did a bit of scaling:

  • 10 strict pull-ups, attempting to tuck knees or hold one leg up when possible
  • 10 HSPUs – half kipping and half strict
  • 20 Good Mornings with a PVC pipe

Strict pull-ups are SLOOOOOOOW. HSPUs are inconsistent. When I get my hand position right, I can kip for about 5 and then have to kick off the wall.

I made it through 3 rounds plus 6 with my variations. Not too awful.

1sn1bh

AJ worked on kicking up to the wall and was able to kick up to touch with one foot by the end, which was awesome. She did hip extensions on the GHD and did the ring pull-ups. She got through 4 rounds plus 17. I heard Sarah got through 5 rounds. Looks like Austin did too.

Because this was mostly skill work that I’m not good at yet, it was slow. And that’s all fine. I was cheering on Mia and one of the other gals who were getting frustrated I think — gravity makes it hard. Just focus on one. Then the next one. And the next one. It’ll come. And they did awesome. Really everybody was moving right along.

So great work 9:30 class! And thanks Drea!

 

Team WOD Saturday

Today’s Saturday, so it must be time for a team WOD!

My wife was working this morning and the girls were off housesitting, so it was just me representing the Fitzpatrick clan at CrossFit Continuum. But I wasn’t alone. πŸ™‚ Our good friend Robert pinged me this morning to see if I was going and the two of us took on today’s challenge together.Β It was a good mix of folks new and old led by Coach Alex. Stacy, Deana, Monica, Bri, Brent, and a bunch of other folks.

7TaonKRbcWe started with a little 4 round warm-up:

  • 10 2 sec. Pause Air Squats
  • 10 Sit Ups
  • 10 PVC Push Jerk
  • 200m Run

Robert and I caught up a bit while we worked through the warm-up, so it must not have been too bad. πŸ™‚ I only get to work out with him every now and then, so it was a good chance to touch base.

Once that was done, we tackled the workout itself. It started with a 20 minute AMRAP:

  • 25 medicine ball sit-up & toss overs (partners on either side of a 24″ box. catch the ball. do a sit-up. toss the ball over the top. 5 tosses=1 rep, which meant 125 sit-ups total)
  • 20 partner-over burpees (partner holds a plank….no plank=no rep)
  • 15 partner medicine ball squats (med ball at your back….5 burpee penalty if ball falls)
  • 10 partner deadlifts @ 65% of total body weight

rogue-black-med-ball-web6_1We used a 20# ball and did 245# for the deadlifts. (230# + 165# = 295#, 65% of that is 256# so we were a little light, but hey). And I asked if it was ok to “step over” my partner instead of jumping over and Alex said that was ok, so we were off to the races.

We finished the first round in about 9:30, so we managed to get through two full rounds plus about 30+ med-ball sit-ups of the 3rd round. We’ll take it — and I expect I’ll feel my abs in the next couple of days.

jerks-3

When that was done, we had a 5 minute break and then started trying to find a 1 rep clean & jerk max. We did the following weights:

  • 95#
  • 115#
  • 135#
  • 155#
  • 175#
  • 185#
  • 195#

We both managed to do 185# and I managed to clean 195# but clocked myself in the chin with it and couldn’t push it over my head. Considering that my 1RM clean is 195# (and it was an UGLY clean with a capital UGH), I’ll take it. πŸ™‚

(Side note: Turns out 185# is a 10# increase in my Clean & Jerk PR, so I’ll take that too.)

So it was a a good workout. And fun working with Robert and the gang.

Thanks Alex! And hope everybody has a great weekend!

Front Squats to Failure

Today was an interesting strength day and maybe you’ll have some ideas on how I can work past the problem I hit the next time it happens — because it’s going to happen again.

1sgi63We had a strength day today. And though I didn’t get to go in this morning due to a few things, I was impressed by what the rest of my family managed to accomplish.

  • My 12-year-old daughter has a new 130# PR front squat.
  • My 16-year-old daughter made it to 120#
  • My wife made it to 150#, which was a 5# PR for her.

And our friend Caleb apparently did a lot of cleaning at the box (in addition to his own front squats) — picking up most of the bars that fell during bailed attempts for the three of them, plus Connie and Carrie. So Ev asked me to put a special shout out to Caleb for all the help. πŸ™‚

kettlebells

I went in for the noon class with Coach Drea, Bri, and Austen. We started with a 4 round warm-up:

  • 10 kettle bell goblet squats (I used a 35# kettlebell)
  • 10 ab-mat sit-ups
  • 15 calorie row (Bri & Austen only had to do 10)

Once that was done, we did a little refresher on front squats and got started pretty quickly thereafter.Β The warm-up was pretty simple… do a handful of reps at low weight and work up to 80% of your 1RM.

  • 45# bar (x8)
  • 95# x6
  • 135# x5
  • 155# x5
  • 185# x3

front_squat

And then we started 10 rounds of 1 rep each, with the intent of getting heavy quickly and beating our old PRs.

  • 195# x1
  • 205# x1
  • 215# x1
  • 225# x1
  • 235# x1
  • 245# x1 (my old 1RM)

And that’s where the trouble set in. My next few rounds were:

  • 255# x1 (bail)
  • 250# x1 (bail)
  • 245# x1 (couldn’t even convince my body to squat under it)
  • 245# x1 (same)

Then we were done.

Quite honestly once I bailed the first time, I was in my head. That’s been a pattern with me for a long time. Last week when we did the strict press/push press/push jerk strength day, I was done as soon as I bailed at 195#.

There’s something about that crazy little mental loop I hit after a fail where my brain simply starts shutting certain movements off like it did today.

1sgidyHere’s what I attempted to do after the first bail:

  • drop weight
  • walk it off
  • focus on breathing

None of that helped. πŸ™‚

So my question is this… how do you RESET after a bail/fail on a lift? Drea and I talked after the workout and she said she also fights that. But I don’t have any clear things to try next time.

Not looking for the Holy Grail here, but some ideas on what works for other people. πŸ™‚

Thanks Drea for the encouragement today. And great work to both Austen (who almost got 135#) and Bri (who hit 170#) — you both rocked it!

I am content to have matched my old 1RM from January 2016. It was a good lift then. It’s still a good lift. πŸ™‚

Have a great day!

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