Tag Archives: knees to elbows

Catching up, 10-FEB-2019

Since these catch-up posts have become more the norm than the exception, I figured it was time to give them their own header. πŸ™‚

Do we really need our minds anyway? HA!

Anyway, this was a hell of a week. We had things happening damn near every night and I have to say I may have lost my mind (briefly) at one point. Who needs their mind, anyway?

Tuesday was the last workout I made it to early in the week. Then I missed Wednesday and didn’t get much sleep that night. Thursday I decided to skip the workout due to the fact that I was so out of it, plus it was my youngest’s birthday. And that leaves the weekend — Friday, Saturday, and Sunday! Yes, even Sunday got involved. πŸ™‚


I don’t often make Friday morning classes, usually choosing to take those days as a rest day before catching Saturday’s team WOD. But missing the middle of the week, I felt I needed to get my arse back in the box.

Coach Drea had an entertaining group, though there’s been enough madness since then I only remember Melissa and Dave. Apparently getting older means needing to write EVERYTHING down. πŸ™‚

It was another workout involving strict pull-ups, which was a challenge. And I was a little sore from earlier in the week, so I went lighter than I originally wanted to. It was dumbbell clean & jerks, strict pull-ups, and GHD sit-ups.

  • 21-15-9
  • dumbbell clean & jerks (a pair), 35/25#
  • strict pull-ups
  • GHD sit-ups

As you might imagine, I scaled a little:

  • 20# dumbbells for the DB clean & jerks
  • a mix of strict pull-ups, banded pull-ups, and ring rows
  • and GHD sit-ups to parallel

Strict pull-ups were the worst. The band, even a black band, didn’t work with me the way I wanted, so I ended up dropping to ring rows when the strict pull-ups gave up. But I think I managed 15 in the first round, 10 in the second, and 5 in the last round before dropping to ring rows.

I think the time domain was 10-15 minutes, but I finished in 17:18. That said, I was happy to finish at all. My grip was gone on the left side by mid-way through the round of 15. And I was doing shorter and shorter sets of everything as I chugged through.

Saturday – Team WOD

The Team WOD on Saturday was designed by Larry. And it was a doozy. AJ and I went in as a team together but we were far from alone. I think there were 10 or 11 of us. He had a pair of AMRAPs in store for us…

  • 2 Person Teams (Each person completes all movements)
  • AMRAP 1 – 15 Min (3 Burpees on the minute)
    • 12 Push Press (135/95)
    • 12 Box Jumps
    • 12 HSPU
    • 12 Wall Balls
  • 5 Minute Break
  • AMRAP 2 – 15 Min (200M Run at 5 and 10 minutes)
    • 12 Hang Power Clean (135/95)
    • 12 Goblet Squats (53/35)
    • 12 KBS (53/35)
    • 12 Knees to Elbows

AJ and I scaled a little:

  • 95# bar for me and 35# for her
  • 20″ box jumps or step-ups
  • Pike push-ups for HSPUs

It was the burpees in the first AMRAP that really killed us I think. My arms were sore by the middle of the second full round of the first AMRAP and we were breaking up barbell movements into sets of 3 instead of sets of 6.

But we finished about 2 and a half rounds of the first one and nearly 3 rounds of the second when all was said and done. AJ did awesome and I think we wiped her out – she took a long nap that afternoon. πŸ™‚

Sunday – Yoga with V

And today Ev and I headed in for the afternoon yoga class with our Yogi, Vanessa. We always have a fun time in her class and today was no exception. We laughed A LOT as we stumbled through (in my case literally) some of the movements!

Definitely an “active recovery” kind of day, but it was good to keep moving. We’ll see if I feel that way tomorrow. πŸ™‚

We focused on a ton of balance moves, which was interesting. My chair pose felt pretty good, and I was able to balance for a while in warrior 3, but other than that it was a fun mix. I fell trying to do a handstand on my forearms while at the wall and nearly clobbered KB (SORRY KB!) but otherwise I think we were all unscathed. πŸ™‚

Thanks V!!



Yes, it’s Monday. And yes, CrossFit is here to keep things interesting. Made it in for an 8:30 class today with Coach Drea. We had a good crew – Alicia, Chris, Dave, and Melissa. And the sarcasm was out before we even got through the door!

We started with 2 minutes on the bike or rower and then did two warm-up sequences:

  • 2 rounds
    • 40 jumping jacks (with one of us counting out loud for the group – I was picked first and Melissa was picked next — I was glad we didn’t have to count in a foreign language!)
    • 8 goblet squats (35# kb)
    • 8 Cossack squats
    • 8 groin stretches, each side
  • 2 rounds
    • 20 seconds of a partner hanging shoulder stretch (hang from the bar and your partner pushes you from behind, around the shoulder blades)
    • 3 strict pull-ups
    • 3 kip swings

From there we warmed up our power snatches and thrusters with an empty barbell before adding some weight. The workout specified a light weight today, which meant we were supposed to go FAST…

After that we talked about scaling options for toes to bar. I can hit t2b but I’m not efficient at them, so I did knees-to-elbows or hanging knee raises today instead. I hit a few t2b during the warm-up, but that was about it.

The workout?

I had a plan. Break up the first three rounds and then try and do the single digit rounds unbroken. And I think I followed the plan pretty well, finishing in 18:05. We were shooting for 15-20 minutes, so I was right in there.

  • 18-15-12-9-6–3
    • Thrusters
    • Power snatches
    • Toes-to-bar (hanging leg raises for Performance)
    • Competitor: 75/55#, Performance 55/45#

Thing is I’m super tired now. πŸ™‚ Time for a nap?!

Good work 8:30 class!

Two workouts plus some stuff

Often when I head in for a later workout, I don’t have a good opportunity to write it up. That’s what happened last night. I worked out with Coach Nicole at 4:45, went home and fixed dinner, and then the night got away from me. Today I worked out at 8:30 with Coach Lara. And now I have an opportunity to reflect on those workouts, plus offer a gamification update, and show a quick recipe for one of my favorite breakfasts.

It’s gonna be a long post, folks. πŸ™‚

K2E and Wall Walks

Most Wednesdays I have a standing 9am meeting that prevents me from hitting a morning workout at Continuum. Thankfully we have 4:45 and 5:45 classes to keep me sane on those days. πŸ™‚

crab-walkMade it in for the 4:45 with Coach Nicole. We had a big group – Keith, Mikel, Karen, Drea, Ryan, and Nancy. I feel l am missing someone and I should have written it down to remember. Bah!

We started with an entertaining warm-up to try and workout some kinks from earlier in the week. I have to say my shoulders and sides were sore and my quads and knees were a little fired up as well from Monday and Tuesday’s workouts. So to warm-up we did a couple of rounds of:

  • 50 foot straight leg bear crawl
  • 50 foot crab walk
  • shoulder rotations forward and back
  • banded Good Mornings
  • 10 push-ups to side plank (alternating sides)
  • 10 hollow body rocks

knees-to-elbows2And when all that was done we started talking about the various scaling options for the movements of the day. Nicole went through a bunch for knees to elbows as well as wall walks and everybody was able to try them out and pick what worked best.

For me, I settled on a mix of strict hanging knee raises and then laying on the floor while holding onto the rig above my head and trying to tuck my knees (from a hollow hold at the bottom) to my elbows. I mixed and matched those a bit throughout the workout.

  • Rounds and reps, 20 minute AMRAP
  • 7 strict knees-to-elbows (or 10 hanging knee raises)
  • 2 wall walks

I wasn’t quite sure how many rounds I was going to get through in 20 minutes, but I managed to get through 10 rounds as time expired. I did a little variation:

  • 7 strict hanging knee raises or 10 knee tucks on the floor
  • 2 wall walks, really trying to stay in that hollow body hold when we went up the wall and came back down

10 rounds in 20 minutes was pretty good for me and I even built in pauses, doing some of the strict hanging knee raises one at a time or in sets of 2 or 3 and my knee tucks on the floor in sets of 5 or 10.

The Power Monkey Fitness Folks Have this Down to a Science

When we were done, we did 3 sets of 30 seconds of seated pike raises. Essentially we sat on the floor and tried to just raise our feet off the floor, either together or one at a time. I managed 20 each round and called it good. πŸ™‚

It was a good push for sure and we had a fun time as always. Thank you Nicole! πŸ™‚

Team Series 1 – Synchronized Bar-facing Burpees

Today is the only day so far I’ve had a chance to work out with my wife, so we made the best of it with Coach Lara. We were joined by Drea, Carrie, Jed, and Melissa.

We started with some mobility, using a foam roller and a lacrosse ball to work on our lats and our quads a bit, and then did the same warm-up as last night with bear crawls, crab walks, and the like. We also added in 5 slow burpees to get warmed up to the idea of doing a lot more during the workout.

cf-team-logo-whiteI partnered up with Ev and we had “his” and “hers” barbells (just to avoid colliding in the middle). The work out was the same as the first 2018 Team Series workout:

  • 2018 Team Series 1
    • Complete as many synchronized bar-facing burpees as possible in seven minutes.

I actually prefer burpees over the bar because I don’t have to stand all the way up at the end. And Ev managed to keep us moving pretty consistently. We did two sets of 5 and then adjusted to sets of 10, ending with a set of 16. We managed 56 bar-facing burpees in the end. I jumped over the bar for 30 of them and stepped over for the last 26. Ev stepped over for all of them to avoid tweaking her Achilles tendon, which she angered playing soccer on Tuesday.

And when that was done we talked about our favorite go-to breakfast recipe, which is what I did today when I got home.

Great work 8:30 class and it’s always fun teaming up with my wife!

Quick “Gamification” Update

check-list-hiThis week so far looks like this:

  • Monday: 4 points (3 good meals and 1 workout)
  • Tuesday: 1 point (1 workout, no good meals)
  • Wednesday: 3 points (4-1) (3 good meals, 1 workout, and some wine with dinner counting as the negative point)
  • Thursday: 2 points so far (1 good meal, 1 workout)
  • Total so far this week: 10 points

My goal is 20 points, but I have to start somewhere. πŸ™‚ AndΒ I think this is going to work – it’s a heck of a lot easier for me to track.

  • A “good meal” means I avoided breads or bad carbs and ate mostly lean protein, veggies, and fruits, with a bit of fat. Monday I had a great breakfast and then for lunch and dinner had varieties on a “burrito bowl” with rice, guacamole, sour cream, tomatoes, and either shredded pork or shredded chicken, plus salsa. Not measuring really, but watching what I put into the body.
  • A “bad meal” means I strayed from the path. No breakfast on Tuesday, but also Arby’s curly fries and a turkey bacon club and then a green chile chicken burrito (with tortilla instead of in a bowl with rice).
  • Other points come from:
    • working out (crossfit class = 1 point)
    • doing some crossover symmetry for my shoulders at home or the box (1 point)
    • working on double-unders (in class or at home) ( 1 point)

I may add other points for things like “mindfulness” training (meditation, gratitude journaling, etc.) in the future, but for now I’m just keeping it simple.

One of my Go-to Breakfast Scrambles

I always used to do a scramble with 2 eggs, a cut up chicken apple sausage, and some green onion, but I’ve beefed it up quite a bit:

  • 2 cups raw spinach
  • .5-1 cup chopped raw mushrooms
  • .25-.5 cup diced green onions
  • 1 Aidell’s Chicken & Apple Sausage or 1 Mulay’s Breakfast Sausage (both nitrate free and all natural ingredients)
  • 2 or 3 eggs
  • .25 cup of shredded cheddar
  • a bit of black pepper

In a 12″ frying pan, spray with some Pam or grease with a little olive oil and throw in the spinach. Cover it for a bit and let it wilt. Add the mushrooms, green onions, and the sausage and let it cook for a bit longer.

When it all looks “done” (takes longer for the Mulay’s sausage than with the Aidell’s), add in your eggs and scramble things. Add in some black pepper for taste.

When your eggs set up about the way you want them (some people like their scrambled eggs a bit more runny, I like mine a bit firmer), add in a bit of cheese and let it melt into the mix.

Toss it on a plate, eat, and be happy. I tend to top it with a bit of ketchup or salsa, but everybody has a different idea of how to eat eggs. πŸ™‚

Other variations on this theme include:

  • Shredded chicken and fajita veggies (peppers & onions)
  • Diced steak from the night before (Steak & Eggs! Yum!)

And there you have it. I’m usually either doing this or making a breakfast smoothie, which I’ll talk about another time. πŸ™‚

That’s it for today! Good too because this post went on FOREVER!

CrossFit Cough and 2018 Regionals Event 5

Ah yes, I always know I’ve pushed myself in a workout when I have the “CrossFit cough” at the end. Today was definitely one of those days.

I meant to go in for a workout last night, but my car had other plans. Dead battery. Today however I went in with Ev & AJ for the 8:30 class. Coach Drea had a bunch of us – the three of us, Todd, KB, Jonathan & Sarah, Karen, and another gal whose name I didn’t catch today.

always-warm-up-thoroughlyWe started with the warm-up from yesterday (that I missed):

  • 1:30 foam roll quads (I used a lacrosse ball on my quads)
  • 1:30 foam roll calves (more time with the lacrosse ball)
  • 100 single unders
  • 10 pvc passthroughs
  • 10 overhead squats
  • 3 Turkish get-ups, each arm (supposed to use a light dumbbell, but I opted to go without today – that said, they felt ok)

still-alive-memeFrom there we talked about today’s workout, which was another one from this year’s Regionals competition.

  • 2018 Regionals Event 5
    Score Type:: Total Time (17 minute time cap)
  • Performance:
    • 35 handstand push-ups
    • 35 toes-to-bars
    • 50-cal. bike
    • 35 dumbbell box step-overs
    • 50-ft. right-arm dumbbell overhead lunge
    • 50-ft. left-arm dumbbell overhead lunge
    • Men: 50-lb. dumbbells, 20-in. box
    • Women: 35-lb. dumbbells, 20-in. box
  • Fitness:
    • 30 knee push-ups
    • 30 sit-ups
    • 30-cal. bike
    • 30 box step-overs
    • 100-ft. walking lunge

We watched this event a few times over the course of the Regionals this year and cringed every time it came on. The mix of assault bike, bar work, handstand work, and dumbbell work looked brutal. Today, I quickly decided to scale a few things:

  • 35 handstand push-ups (I did strict to two abmats)
  • 35 knees to elbows/hanging knee raises
  • 50 calories on the assault bike
  • 35 dumbbell box step-overs quickly became just box step-overs
  • 50 foot right-arm dumbbell overhead lunge (20# dumbbells)
  • 50 foot left-arm dumbbell overhead lunge (20# dumbbells)

Crazy-Job-2015020406My big stumble areas were with the assault bike and the box step-overs. I broke the 50 calories into 5 sets of 10 calories, which took a while. And I just couldn’t figure out how to convince my torso not to completely fold over with dumbbells on my shoulders – I did two reps, took a break, and then did one more before dropping the weights all together. If I had continued with the weights I was worried I might still be there 5 minutes later.

And I made it about 35 feet with my right arm in the air and my left arm in a front rack with the other dumbbell — then time ran out. So I didn’t quite finish this one, even scaled.

We got done and breathing was a challenge. That CrossFit cough? Yeah, that was there and it was exacerbated by the fact that I think my allergies (even on antihistamines) are cranked up to 11 today. But we’ll get over it. πŸ™‚

Everybody really did well today – I think Todd was the only one in our group who finished under the time cap. AJ finished a bit over the time cap and did awesome. Everyone else was somewhere in-between.

Definitely a challenging workout! Thanks Drea!

And it was awesome to see Jonathan AND Sarah with the twins and Aaron today. Great work everybody!!

Head Not in the Game Today

Most days, something is out of whack. Mind. Body. Spirit. Usually I count myself lucky and say that 2 out of 3 ain’t bad. But today, two out of three were out of whack – maybe all three. That made it a bit tougher.

single-unders-foreverArrived for an 8:30 class with Coach Drea. We had Bill & Brent today. And even during the warm-up I could tell I was just off. The warm-up was:

  • 2 rounds
    • a minute of single unders and then a minute of double unders
    • 10 PVC pass-thrus (just first round)
    • 10 OHS with PVC
    • 10 hollow-body rocks
    • 10 push-ps
    • 10 v-ups or knee tucks
    • 30 second banded shoulder abstraction, each side

I did attempt a few double unders, but whacked myself in the head for about 30 seconds and decided I should just do singles.

From there we moved to some OHS skill work, first with an empty barbell and then with 10# or 15# plates. I grabbed 15# plates. Empty, my right shoulder started talking back. With 75# on the bar, I got through three reps, dropped it and said that was not going to happen today.

Drea suggested shifting to front squats, so I did that with the intention of pushing on those since I knew toes to bar would be rough. We did some active shoulder and kipping work, then shifted to knee tucks, knees to elbows, and finally toes to bars…

still-alive-memeI am happy to say I have a few toes to bars. But they are not pretty. Today was no different.

The workout was:

  • 21-15-9 (competitor), 15-12-9 (Performance/fitness)
  • OHS (115/80# competitor, 95/65# performance, 45/35# fitness)
  • Toes to bars (sit-ups for fitness)
  • Time domain – 5-7 minutes

My workout was:

  • 21-15-9
  • 75# front squats
  • toes to bars until I couldn’t any more and then knee raises

I never dropped the bar for the front squats on any set (I did pause, but didn’t drop) and I did t2b through the round of 21, then shifted part-way through the round of 15 to knee raises.

Finished in 6:03. Ugh. At no point today did I feel like I was moving well or mentally clear, but I did finish.

Probably didn’t help that I only got a handful of hours of sleep last night and probably need a nap.

Good work guys! Thanks Drea!

More squats!

Apparently this week was squat week. Air squats today. Squat cleans yesterday. Air squats Tuesday. Overhead squats Monday. I think I’m ready to do diddly squat for a little bit. πŸ™‚ But I couldn’t stay away. πŸ™‚

Made it in for an 8:30 class with Ev today. We were surprised to not only find Coach Bill, but Coach Jimmy! Plus Dave, Logan, Matt, and Abigail. Jimmy actually worked out with us and Bill coached, so that was fun. Haven’t been in a class with him in a while!

jumping-frog-clip-art-hopping-frogStarted with the weekly warm-up and added a few things:

  • Low and slow air squats with a dumbbell
  • Wall hip stretch (back on floor, butt on wall with knees bent above you)
  • Couch stretch
  • Bear crawl
  • Frog hop
  • Deep squats hanging onto the rig (at bottom, move to stretch ankles and hips)
  • Maybe another one or two things

We were all groaning, popping, and cracking as we went through the warm-ups. But we were also giving one another a fair amount of grief. You know — the usual madness. πŸ™‚

When we were done with that, we went over the movement standards for the workout. Good squat vs. bad squat. Ring push-up variations. And knees-to-elbows variations.

Air_SquatsThen it was off to the races…

  • 3 rounds for time of:
    • 60 squats
    • 30 knees-to-elbows
    • 30 ring push-ups

Let’s start by saying that my hips are still fried from this week. There are some spots in my left inner hip that really didn’t take too kindly to doing another nearly 200 squats to finish out the week. But eventually it warmed up enough to only cause a little grief.

I did start with every intention of doing two sets of 30, but that quickly fell to 20s, 15s, 10s, and even a few 5s. Had to slow them down to focus on getting all the way upright, since I was leaning forward quite a bit.

Then there’s the ring push-ups. I did a few. I did the first set of 30 — 10-5-5-4-4-2. After 10, I was on my knees. In the second round, I did two on the rings and shifted to regular push-ups on the floor. Even those I ended up dropping to my knees on. And pretty quickly it was sets of 2-5 on the floor just to get done.

look-at-scaling-featAnd then the knees-to-elbows. Honestly I don’t think I’ve ever actually touched my knees to my elbows in my life, unless it’s while I’m sitting in a chair. Hanging from the rig, it was a hot mess. Though I got high enough for many reps in that first 30, it very quickly fell to just doing knee raises.

Meanwhile, Abigail was FLYING through air squats. Dave was moving right along (he’s come a long way in a short amount of time). Jimmy was zooming through his knees to elbows. Ev was chugging along. Everybody was hopping.

Tired now. Definitely tired. But I’ll probably be back tomorrow for team WOD. πŸ˜‰

Great work everybody! Have a great weekend!

30 seconds on, 30 seconds off for how long?

Today has been a mess. Meetings. Doctor appts. And not a lot of progress on any front. But I didn’t want to start the week off without a workout.

Made it in for a 4:45 with Coach Larry with Katie and Stacy. We started with a 5 minute row or bike and then got right into some deadlift warm-ups. Then we talked about the various options… scaling toes to bar, ring dips, and handstand push-ups.

Why? Because we had a whole mess of reps to complete… in 40 minutes.

  • Perform 10 rounds of the following, completing as many reps of each exercise as possible:
    • 30 seconds of toes-to-bars
    • Rest 30 seconds
    • 30 seconds of dips
    • Rest 30 seconds
    • 30 seconds of deadlifts #155/105
    • Rest 30 seconds
    • 30 seconds of handstand push-ups
    • Rest 30 seconds
  • 10 rounds at 4 minutes each = 40 minutes

This was a bit of a challenge. Minor understatement.

  • Made it through 6 rounds of actual toes to bar and I was very happy with that. Dropped back to knees-to-elbows after that.
  • Ring dips were awful after a while and I had to put a foot on the ground a few times. Not sure some of my last couple of rounds actually ended up with locked out arms.
  • I could have done the 155# deadlifts, or gone with body weight deadlifts (220#). I split the difference and went with 185#.
  • And the handstand push-ups? Well, I started with strict handstand push-ups, moved to kipping handstand push-ups, and then fell to pike push-ups. Lots and lots of pike push-ups.

I didn’t get anywhere near the big numbers put up by others earlier in the day, but I was damn happy with my toes to bar, which are always hit and miss.

Thanks for the push Larry and great work Stacy & Katie! This was a doozy of a start to the week!