Tag Archives: handstand walks

What day is it?

Yeah, it’s going to be one of THOSE weeks. Today already feels like Monday #2. Darn those weekday cloning practices. And Ctrl-Z doesn’t seem to work in my week.

Thursday last week was the last workout I made it in for, though I did an AMLAP (As Much Lawn As Possible) at my house on Saturday that took a few hours. So it felt good to at least get through the door of the gym on Monday and Tuesday mornings.

Monday – Shoulder Killer

Monday morning I made it for an 8:30 workout with Coach Drea. Bill, Melissa S, and Dave.

kettlebellsAnyway… we did a little 2 round warm-up:

  • 200m run
  • Turkish get-ups, 3 per side (I used a 15# dumbbell)
  • 10 goblet squats (I grabbed a 45# kettlebell)
  • 3 reps: 10 second hollow body hold + roll to stomach, 10 second arch hold + roll to back (or as I like to call them, the dead fish flops)
  • 30 ft straight leg (high hip) bear crawls

When that was done, we slipped into a good squat clean refresher before working on wall walks. The focus on the wall walks was all about our body position moving up and down the wall – less Superman hold, more hollow body. So keeping the butt up and focusing on good position on the way back down to avoid killing your back — that was the goal. And when that fails, shift to bear crawls.

clean2
Mine didn’t quite look this good

As for weights for the squat cleans, it was supposed to be 155#. And sure, I could maybe do that for one, but not for a ton of reps. I warmed up to 135# to start and after 4 reps, dropped to 115#.

  • For time (20 minute time cap)
  • 100-ft. handstand walk (or 8 wall walks or a 100-ft bear crawl)
  • 9 squat cleans
  • 75-ft. handstand walk (6 wall walks or same distance for bear crawl)
  • 12 squat cleans
  • 50-ft. handstand walk (4 wall walks)
  • 15 squat cleans
  • 25-ft. handstand walk (2 wall walks)

Bill was the only one in our class who did handstand walks. Dave focused on bear crawls. Melissa and I worked on wall walks.

gymnastics-handstand-silhouette-body-silhouette-man-in-handstand-front-1My workout became:

  • 8 wall walks
  • 9 squat cleans – 4 @ 135#, 5 @ 115#
  • 2 wall walks, 50 ft bear crawl
  • 12 squat cleans @ 115#
  • 50 ft bear crawl
  • 15 squat cleans @ 115#
  • 25 ft bear crawl
  • time: 21:10

Wall walks did not make my left shoulder happy and they were slow as molasses. I scaled throughout just to keep moving. And I was close enough to the time cap at the end, I just finished it out.

Everybody kicked ass. I was especially impressed with Dave – his squat cleans got better and better throughout the workout!

Tuesday – 7 Minute Flogging

Today we had Coach Lara for a little 7 minute WOD. We had Logan, Dave, and Nick at 8:30.

rogue-black-med-ball-web6_1Slightly different warm-up, but two rounds of:

  • 200m run
  • 10 mountain climbers
  • 10 overhead squats with PVC
  • :30 sec reverse-grip hang from rig
  • 10 light dumbbell windmills per side (tried a 5# plate and gave up after 5 reps on each side)
  • :30 sec thoracic spine stretch over med ball (hug the ball in a bent-over position and try to stretch out the middle of the shoulders)
  • 10 ring rows

After that we did some overhead squat warm-ups with an empty barbell before working up to our working weight. It was supposed to be 135# or 115# today, but I put 75# on the bar (with the intent of going up to 95#) and didn’t budge from there.

And then we worked on my current goat – double-unders. I didn’t achieve any, but I tried. Multiple times. I just need to beat myself more apparently.

jumpropeThe workout today? A 7 minute AMRAP:

  • Competitor
    • 50 double-unders
    • 10 overhead squats, 135/95#
  • Performance
    • 25 double-unders
    • 10 overhead squats, 115/75#
  • Fitness
    • 25 single-unders
    • 10 overhead squats, 65/45#

Lara said that Drea wanted us to do 50 singles if we did singles, so my workout became:

  • 7 minute AMRAP
    • 30 seconds of double-under practice
    • 50 single-unders
    • 10 overhead squats @ 75#
  • Result: 5 rounds — finished last OHS of round 5 as time ran out

My singles were fast and consistent. My doubles were awful. And every OHS felt rough, but I was able to bang out 10 reps unbroken each round.

We were supposed to shoot for 3-5 rounds, so I felt like I achieved that.

There were a whole lot of double-unders going on though, let me tell you. Great work everybody!

I’m out tomorrow, but will be back on Thursday I hope.

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Bears Don’t Crawl Like That…

First day of the week and I took some time off for work, so what else do I start my day with but working out at CrossFit Continuum? It’s the most obvious choice!

gymnastics-handstand-silhouette-body-silhouette-man-in-handstand-front-1Made it to the 8:30 class with Lara & Logan for Coach Drea, who was feeling a bit under the weather today. We started with a 400m jog and then did a couple of rounds of:

  • 10 air squats
  • 10 PVC passthrus
  • 30 second handstand hold
  • 30 seconds each side with a banded lunge
  • 30 seconds each side with some banded shoulder work

I will admit that I started out a bit rough, but got better as we warmed up.

From there we talked a bit about modifications for the workout. None of us had handstand walks, so we were all doing some variation. And I think we all ended up doing the same variation – starting a bit further away from the wall and then walking our hands closer to the wall from that position. It was going to be a challenge. But we talked about that and did some bear crawl work before getting ready to start the workout itself.

  • 15 minute AMRAP
  • 3 attempts on the wall for handstand walks
  • 50 foot bear crawl
  • 100 foot walking lunge

Bear-Grouping-2016011955-800pxI think it was the very first round where I hit the only issue I had with the workout. We were supposed to start out further away from the wall than usual, but on my second attempt, I moved WAY out and landed at a steep angle with my feet flat on the wall. And then I couldn’t figure out how to get out of the position. I didn’t have the leverage I needed to move closer to the wall on my hands and I tried to kick off of the wall and I was too far over. It was entertaining. I ended up bailing to my right shoulder (comparing it to one of Bill’s “bear rolls” from a few weeks ago). I didn’t hurt anything, but it was a weird situation.

By the end of the 15 minutes, I managed to get through 4 full rounds, plus 3 attempts and about 20 feet of a bear crawl. So I called it 4+4.

Here’s my fun observation. That weird rocking bear crawl where it’s left/left right/right instead of left/right left/right really does establish a bit of a feel for the side to side rocking motion we need to get familiar with for handstand walking. Considering how much I hated that particular movement when we started it, I was surprised to find that it actually HELPED. Damn coaches know what they’re talking about!! 🙂

Anyway, I finished with a bit of foam rolling and then headed out. Lara kicked butt today and was beating both Logan and myself pretty soundly. I knew when she lapped me I was in serious trouble. 🙂 (Just kidding)

Great work folks! Feel better Drea!

You’re walking on your hands down a tunnel…

Yesterday was not a great day and it led to a not great night of sleep, so today has been a struggle. Momentum has been difficult to come by. Thus the desperate need for a workout to fire me up a little.

Made it in for an 8:30 class with Coach Drea, Melissa, Logan, and Brent. Nice small class to work through the interesting assortment of movements for the day.

gymnastics-handstand-silhouette-body-silhouette-man-in-handstand-front-1Started with the same warm-up as yesterday and then talked about the workout.

  • Score Type:: Rounds and Reps, Complete as many rounds as possible in 15 minutes
  • Performance:
    • 3 attempts max distance handstand walk or 50-ft.
    • 15 burpees
    • 20 single-leg squats, alternating
  • Fitness:
    • 5 arounds-the-worlds
    • 12 burpees
    • 20 single-leg squats, alternating

Two movements I struggle with mightily and burpees, which don’t like me either.

But we went through a whole range of options for the handstand walk and pistols. With pistols, we did a almost a Russian dance on a stack of plates at one point. It was interesting to compare our figure four warm-up pistols, which seem to give me additional stability with the crossed leg, with the other variations we tried.

zack_the_tourist_cossack_dance_by_petro_hawczak-d6w03b1

And for handstand walks, it was even more interesting. We did “around the world” on a stack of weights, with toes on the plates and using arms to move us around the stack in a pike position. We did shoulder and hip touches on the wall, but walking ourselves up backwards from a plank. And then we did the most interesting variation of all… the box tunnel.

20180109_093716

This lovely contraption had us in a pike position, head and hands down between the boxes, with our feet up on the boxes. And then we moved down it, rocking slightly side to side. Inevitably my feet would work their way backwards as my arms would pull me forward and my pike position was more like laying my thighs on the box and trying to do a very awkward bear crawl — but it was entertaining nonetheless.

i-survivedSo we had 15 minutes to get as many rounds in as we could..

  • Round 1: 5 around the worlds on a three-plate stack, 15 burpees, and 15 Cossack pistol kicks on a three-plate stack
  • Round 2: Did the tunnel once, 15 burpees, and 15 Cossack pistol kicks
  • Round 3: 5 reps of angled shoulder-shoulder-hip-hip on the wall, 15 burpees, 15 Cossack pistol kicks
  • Round 4: 5 reps of angled shoulder-shoulder-hip-hip on the wall, 10 burpees
  • Total: 3 rounds plus 15 reps

This was hellish on shoulders, but also on quads. Surprisingly so. I was a sweaty mess at the end.

Brent did a few actual handstand walks, which was awesome. And Brent & Melissa did awesome with pistols. Logan and I were chugging through our pistols and variations as best we could. 🙂

Great work 8:30 class! Thanks Drea for a fun one! Back at it on Thursday morning!

Resisting Gravity

Today is another day. Amazing how that happens. Sun came up and everything! 🙂

And it’s a Tuesday, so it must be a day for CrossFit. Though it seems like most days are good for CF, sometimes things just don’t work out and life gets in the way. Tuesdays seem to continue to be good days for CF in my schedule.
Made it in for an 8:30 workout today with Coach Drea, Todd, Melissa, Jenny, Carrie, and Jonathan. We started with a 400m jog and then came in to continue the warm-up with some ankle & wrist mobility on the floor before tackling this fun little 3 round starter:

  • Candlestick5 pike holds (straight legs, weight shifted to shoulders and palms)
  • 5 handstand shifts from r to l on wall
  • 5 deep lunges per side (essentially a lunge to a stand)
  • 5 candlestick rolls

As you might expect, this was a bit awkward for yours truly. Certain movements just don’t work well for me yet. Sometimes I feel like I’m improving, but it’s definitely a struggle to get my head out of the way long enough to accomplish some movements or body positions. But I did my best. {Candlestick rolls are essentially butt bruisers for me, so awkward doesn’t even cut it.)

Once all that was done we started pulling together the equipment we needed for today’s skill work AMRAP, which was essentially just a lot of skill work for me.

gymnastics-handstand-silhouette-body-silhouette-man-in-handstand-front-1Today’s workout was:

  • 5 rounds for time
  • 100-ft handstand walk or 15 handstand walk-ups or 10 elevated inchworms
  • 30 one-legged squats, alternating (or 20 one-legged squats to a box, alternating)

I attempted the “handstand walk-ups” today onto a 15# weight plate and did my pistols to a stack including a 45# and 15# plate, plus a 20# medicine ball.

To describe a “handstand walk-up,” essentially you put a weight plate on the floor in front of the wall and kick into a handstand on the wall with your hands to either side of the plate. You move both hands onto the plate, then off again.

To me, this is akin to trying to convince my feet not to touch the ground when I walk and makes about as much sense. We’ve done similar skill work with “shoulder touches” while in a handstand on the wall. For those you lift your hand and tap the shoulder with it, put it down, then do the same with the other hand, back and forth.

Convincing my hands to come off the ground is exhausting. And to think that only a few years ago I was so geeked up just to be able to kick up into a handstand on the wall.

Today I did actually manage to rock back and forth a few times and get one or both hands onto the weight plate before falling down. Carrie was very good at demonstrating the smooth shoulder movement in a very goofy way while standing upright and it we all got a good laugh about it — but pretty much she had it right. The trick was to rock from side to side less than pick up one hand or the other, using that momentum to pick up the “up” hand and move it.

1ldzdt

Was it pretty? No. Effective? Definitely not. Consistent? Hell no. But I did manage a few of them, so I’ll take it.

And my pistols were equally ugly though I was eventually able to string a few of them together when I got comfortable sitting back on my little pile of stuff and rocking forward to stand up again.

I’m now tired and sweaty and don’t think I got all the way through 2 complete rounds. Close, but not quite. And that was in about 20 minutes.

Here’s the thing. I made some progress. Jerky, awkward, uncoordinated progress. But progress. I’ll take it. 🙂

Meanwhile Todd was over on the other side doing pistols and handstand walks and making it look easy. 🙂

Good work folks! Have a great day!