Tag Archives: overhead squats

Sleepy Shoulders

Yes, I’ll explain the title of this post eventually. πŸ™‚

Today was a rare occurrence. The entire Fitzpatrick clan made it into CrossFit Continuum for a workout– gasp! We were joined by Todd & Melissa, Caleb & Andy, Elyse, and Brent. Coach Drea had her hands full. πŸ™‚

gymnastics-handstand-silhouette-body-silhouette-man-in-handstand-front-1We started with 3 minutes on the rower or the bike and some mobility, then moved to three rounds of:

  • 10 PVC pass-throughs
  • 10 PVC overhead squats (pizza box style)
  • 15 second handstand hold on the wall

Then the double-under flogging began. We did a lot of practice. I didn’t get a single double-under in practice. But I did a lot of flogging. πŸ™‚

From there we grabbed empty barbells and went through a good number of overhead squats for practice. Added some weight and I did 75# and 95# OHS to warm-up. I’m glad I can’t do double-unders because I think 135# might have killed me for OHS.

The workout was interesting we had 7 minutes to get as many rounds and reps as possible of:

  • 50 double-unders (or 30 single-unders plus double-under practice)
  • 10 overhead squats (135/95# Rx, 95/65# L2, 55/35# L1)

Essentially we did a couple of double-under practice jumps, 30 single-unders, and then the overhead squats.

t-rex-double-undersI’m happy to say (and surprised) that I actually achieved three actual double-unders during that part of the workout. I still need to swap out the slightly longer cable I have for my jump rope, but I was happy with that today.

As far as the OHS… I can say that I did them. But here’s where the sleepy shoulders come in.

I actually had my right shoulder and arm go to sleep during the middle of the second round and all of the third round. It was a challenge to keep it locked out. And afterwards it was definitely tingly all the way down to the hand and took a bit to get circulation going again.

But still… I survived and apparently I wasn’t far off of the majority of folks. Drea wanted us to push for 7 rounds. I got half that:

  • I got 3 rounds + 30 reps with 95# overhead squats, double-under practice, and 30 single-unders (plus 3 doubles! woot!)
  • Ev got 3 plus 32 with 65# OHS the first round and 55# the next three, plus dbl under practice and 30+ singles
  • Mickey got 6 rounds of 15# OHS plus 30 singles. It was a good test for her ankle.
  • And AJ got 5 plus 39 with 15# OHS, double-under practice and 30 singles

I had little Andy behind me and he did awesome with his PVC pipe OHS and a ton of single-unders.

So all in all I think it was a success. πŸ™‚

Thanks Drea!

Next up… I’m looking forward to team workout on Saturday. Woot!

Definitely not Diddly Squats

Strength day! After yesterday’s running WOD, I was ready to lift something heavy.

I arrived early for the 9:30 class with AJ and the two of us hung out and chatted with folks while they finished up. It was good to see Jonathan & Sarah, Brianne, Caleb, Nic, Todd, and Jake! Plus there were a few others at 9:30 with Coach Drea — Lyle & Elyse, Brent, Karen, and Mia joined us.

kettlebell-swingWe started with a little three round warm-up:

  • 15 kettle bell swings (was supposed to be light, but I decided to use a 53#)
  • 100m run
  • Walking lunges

And after a brief refresher with an empty barbell, we were off to find a rack, warm up a bit, and get started. There were three parts of today:

  • 5×1 Overhead Squats
  • 5×1 Front Squats
  • 5×1 Back squats

I am always a little gun shy on these days with mixed movements, but gave it a shot. πŸ™‚

Overhead-squat-1First was the OHS. My old 1RM was 135#. This has traditionally been one of those movements that I struggle with. When I started 4 years ago I was barely able to use a PVC pipe because my shoulders were so out of shape. And I’ve been stuck at 135# since Fall 2015. So I was hopeful I might be able to improve slightly.

  • 95# warm-up (x2)
  • 105# x1
  • 115# x1
  • 125# x1
  • 135# x1 (old 1RM)
  • 145# x1 (new 1RM)

I’ll take a 10# PR. πŸ™‚

Meanwhile my 12 year old daughter AJ managed to hit 55#, which was awesome. She was working with Mia and the two of them did amazing.

front_squatSecond we did Front Squats. I’ve been stuck at 245# here for a while and wasn’t sure I was going to move beyond that. (Spoiler: I didn’t.)

  • 225# x1
  • 235# x1
  • 245# x1
  • 255# BAIL
  • No 5th

Matching my old 1RM of 245# is nothing to sneeze at, so I’ll happily stay there.

AJ managed to hit 125#, which is pretty much body weight for her.

And lastly we did Back Squats. This is another movement I’ve been stuck for a while but hit 315# back in January.

  • 225# x1
  • 245# x1
  • 275# x1
  • 295# BAIL (left knee felt funny)
  • No 5th

Didn’t even get close to my 1RM. But as the knee wobbled I didn’t want to push.

get-out-of-my-brainMeanwhile, AJ hit 155#, which is a 25# PR over the 130# she set TWO WEEKS AGO… Have I mentioned that my girls are just like their mom and beasts? πŸ™‚

So I really need to figure out how to get past this problem I’ve developed with bailing or failing and stopping cold. Success isn’t going to happen overnight and not without toil and work.

If anybody has any ideas on how to shake loose that little mental quirk, I’m open to suggestions. πŸ™‚

Great work 9:30 (and 8:30) classes. Thanks Drea!

Let’s See Those Elbow Pits!

If you’re wondering about the subject line, don’t worry — I’ll explain it in a while.

First, let’s get a couple of things out of the way.

  1. lurong-challenge-2017Today begins the Summertime Lurong Challenge. It’s a combination nutrition and workout competition that they do every year. This year they have both a Paleo and a Macro option for nutrition tracking, so we’re doing it again. I tried Macros a while back and I think it can be effective, but it requires a lot of preparation, which is something we kind of fall down on…
  2. Today is my birthday, so I’m a bit more lenient than I should be on some of the tracking. That said, so Β far I have to admit I’ve kept to the program pretty well. The only slight slip was going with a gluten-free brownie with my tasty, tasty lunch at Progressive Paleo. But I’ll still count myself as on track. πŸ™‚

Evie took the day off to spend it with me, which was awesome. And we started the day by heading into CrossFit Continuum for the first workout of the Lurong Challenge.

Coach Jimmy had Ev & I, Sarah, Joe, Jenny, Carrie, and Nic to contend with. We started with a bit of mobility as everybody arrived, then had an episode of “Jimmy’s Torture time”…

  • 3 rounds
  • 1 minute jump rope (single or double)
  • 10 PVC pass-thrus
  • 10 PVC overhead squats

When that was done, we did some work on overhead squats with a PVC pipe before shifting to an unloaded barbell. And that was over, we grabbed a foam roller and the torture really began… Lay on the floor, put the barbell over your head and the foam roller under your shoulder/upper back… Then let the torture begin.

Honestly though I’ve done that particular stretch before I’ve never felt it like I did today. Definitely shifted some muscles in different directions than normal.

And we also did some runner’s lunges with some pushing and pulling of knees. That was a challenge as well. I think I was already sweating pretty good when we got through the warm-up.

Once all that was done, we started warming up our power snatches and overhead squats with weight and then it was off to the races.

  • 1p3cnx12 minute double AMRAP
  • 95/65# barbell
  • 5 minute AMRAP of
    • 10 power snatches
    • 10 box jumps @ 24″
  • 2 minute rest
  • 5 minute AMRAP of
    • 10 Overhead squats
    • 10 box jumps @ 24″

So a couple of things off the bat.

  1. Overhead squats are not my favorite. Though I’ve improved a ton with them over the last four years, it’s still uncomfortable in a workout. (Yeah, I know – I’m supposed to get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Still working on that.)
  2. I forgot my knee sleeves. Didn’t think about taping my knees. And my knees didn’t like step-ups. But I did 20″ step-ups anyway.

It was a good push. Breathing was a challenge, but we pushed through the first chunk ok. The second chunk wasn’t as good however. I struggled with the overhead squats and my knees were starting to complain about the step-ups.

20170515_093127So how’d we do?

  • I got into the 3rd round of step-ups (53 reps)
  • I got into a 3rd round of overhead squats (43 reps)
  • Total: 96 reps

Ev did better than I did with 55# on the barbell and 20″ step-ups:

  • 3 rounds + 2 reps (power snatches) (62 reps)
  • 3 rounds + 2 reps (overhead squats) (62 reps)
  • Total: 124 reps

She did awesome. I did ok. Been a while since we’ve done overhead squats. And I honestly think that sometimes the warm-ups do a great job of wearing me out before I actually get to the workout itself.

That said, I have a couple of fun things:

  • Jimmy really likes the idea of “elbow pits” — I think he said that particular phrase so much that Jenny even looked at me at one point and said that “Elbow Pits” had to make its way into my write-up. Here it is. πŸ™‚ We had to focus on turning our Elbow Pits out quite a bit, that’s all I’m saying. πŸ™‚
  • And one thing that may have finally stuck is how we’ve been dropping the bar from overhead during workouts where we’re doing multiple reps in a set. Instead of lowering both arms slowly, stressing the joints and muscles as you take the loaded barbell back down the bar path — roll the wrists forward and just let gravity get it. That saved me quite a bit of wear and tear today even though I was slow as molasses.

So thanks Jimmy! Between torture time, elbow pits, and learning how to drop the bar more effectively, I think I learned something even if I didn’t do all that hot during the workout itself. πŸ™‚

Great work everybody else! Y’all killed it!

Sneaky Team WODs…

Though soccer season is in full swing for both girls and our eldest was performing in the high school production of Emma this weekend, somehow the stars aligned and we made it into Crossfit Continuum to do a team workout this morning. Crazy!

There were probably 20 of us or so today attempting to get through Coach Clare’s innocent looking workout. Innocent and it kicked our butts!


Ev and I teamed up with Robert, who was back after a few months of rehab on his shoulder which was repaired. And AJ teamed up with the boys for a team of 4. And we all completed the madness.

Started with a fun warm-up where everybody was giving everybody else a bit of good-natured grief. Knee hugs. High kicks. Spider-man lunges. Arm rotations. Broad jumps. It was a good mix of movements to start us off in the right direction.

And then we faced Clare’s workout.

  • baby-raised-eyebrows-hmmm-why-do-i-feel-like-this-is-going-to-kick-my-butt-laterTeams of 3, for time
  • For each round, athlete 1 completes 75 DU, while athletes 2 & 3 each complete one of the other movements. When athlete 1 is finished with the DU’s, rotate through the movements until each athlete has completed each movement.
  • Buy in: 50 synchronized lunges
  • Round 1 – 75 DU, OHS 95/65#, KBS 53/35#
  • Round 2 – 75 DU, SDHP 95/65#, med ball sit ups 20/14#
  • Round 3 – 75 DU, front squat 95/65#, C2B
  • Round 4 – 75 DU, push press 95/65#, wall balls 20/14#
  • Cash out – 1500m row or 7 min assault bike

This shouldn’t have been bad, right? I mean… light weights. Only doing a movement as long as someone was jumping rope. Simple!


We adjusted things slightly. Though Robert did DU’s, Ev and I did single-unders and we all stuck with the 65# bar (ostensibly to protect Robert’s shoulder, but honestly it was because 95# didn’t sound all that fun).


We were done in about 29 or so minutes. Others were done much faster. And a few were slower than us. So honestly I think we did ok.

A few things:

  • lunges suck for me, regardless of weight or not.
  • OHS were awkward, but other than them and C2B, I got at least 10-20 of each movement done in the time given.
  • I may have accomplished 10 OHS, but they weren’t good ones.
  • I hit 3 jumping C2B pull-ups from the floor and was happy about it.

And then we turned around and drove north to a soccer game for AJ. I’m ready for a nap now, so I can only imagine that she is as well. πŸ™‚

Thanks Clare for a fun one. And thanks Robert for joining Ev & I for the workout!

Overhead Squats x3

Yesterday combined two of the body weight exercises I’m not the best at — pull-ups and push-ups. Yes, I’ve improved markedly over the last few years, but still. I get fried quickly.

Today featured another one of those movements that I am not all that confident with — overhead squats.


It was a smaller class at 8:30 for Coach Drea… Me and Ev, Jonathan & Sarah, and Adrienne (with Jayda). We started with a 500m row or 2 minutes on the bike and then did a mix of challenging mobility work with a PVC pipe, a stretch band, and the rig. But it was good — the stretching was meant to open up our shoulders and get things moving in the right direction for overhead squats.

From there it was OHS with PVC pipes, then with unloaded barbells, and loaded barbells.

The warm-up sets for me were:

  • 45# (x5)
  • 55# (x5)
  • 65# (x4)
  • 75# (x4)
  • 85# (x3)

And then we started doing our five sets of 3 reps:

  • 95# x3
  • 105# x3
  • 115# x3
  • 125# x3
  • 125# x3

I’ll take it. I felt pretty stable up through 115# and then had to fight to keep everything locked out overhead. But it was definitely a good struggle.

Not too shabby.Β Great work folks!

More overhead dumbbells!

Continuing the trend of working out as often as I can during my vacation, we were back to the box today. It was me and AJ joining the 8:30 class with Coach Bill and a mess of other folks — Larry & his granddaughter, Jonathan and Sarah, Maria, Hillary, Carrie, Adrienne & Jayda, Valerie, and Connie. And another new gal who was very nice.

Overhead-squat-1We started with a 500m row and then did some shoulder mobility work with a PVC pipe, plus another little 3 round warm-up of:

  • 20 seconds – PVC overhead squats
  • 20 seconds – push-ups
  • 20 seconds – jump rope

But with as big a class as we had, Bill did a bit of demonstration and we were off and running pretty quickly.

Jonathan and I paired up on the first part:

  • Dumbbell overhead squat –Β 5-5-5-5-5

We started with 15# dumbbells and moved to 25# and 35# dumbbells over time.I did better than I expected. One set at 15#. Two at 25# and two at 35#. Tough, but doable.


After that I teamed up with Larry & Jonathan for the bench press.

  • Bench press 3-3-3-3-3

We did 135# to warm up, then jumped quickly…

  • 135# x3
  • 185# x3
  • 205# x2 (failed on #3)
  • 205# x2 (failed on #3)
  • 225# x1

jumpropeJonathan got to 230# or 240# and Larry pushed to 245#.

And when all that was done, we did a lot of double-under practice and called it good. It really was supposed to be:

  • 5 attempts at a max set of triple unders

But when you can’t do a double-under (like me) it gets to be a lot of double-under practice. πŸ™‚

Team WOD Saturday

The past week has been an odd one for me. Last weekend I skipped the team workout because I was not in a good frame of mind (zero to frustrated and angry in 60 minutes or less). I made it to workouts on Monday through Wednesday, had to skip Thursday due to logistical issues (work meetings, appliance delivery), and skipped Friday on principle (and for work issues). That meant 3 days on, 2 days off, it was time for another workout.


Made it in this morning with my lovely wife for the team workout at 10am. And we were definitely not alone. Coaches Drea and Clare ran the show and we probably had 30 people or so join in the fun. πŸ™‚

It’s been a while since I’ve seen Clare and she commented that it appeared that I’d lost some weight since the last time I’d seen her (I haven’t, but it was a nice compliment). She later even commented that my squats (for my thrusters) looked really good – much better depth than she’d seen from me. So apparently I’m doing something right. πŸ™‚ Thanks Clare! (I’ve never been good at receiving compliments, though I try to give them often. It’s a work in progress.)

We started with some movement review with a PVC pipe, then did some coordinated air squats, push-ups, and jumping jacks, before dividing up into teams of 2 or 3. Ev worked with Kelli & Megan. I worked with Adi. Clare and Drea wandered around keeping us all on track.


This was a workout in two parts for teams of 2 (or 3). First we did “Death by” burpees & thrusters (for a max of 20 minutes, though nobody got that far).

  • Min 1
    • 1 burpee
    • 1 thruster (95/65)
  • Min 2
    • 2 burpees
    • 2 thrusters
  • Min 3
    • 3 burpees
    • 3 thrusters
  • ETC….until you get caught by the clock

We could break up the reps however we wanted, but only one person could work at a time. Adi and I split it so he did the burpees and I did the thrusters. We made it into the 10th minute before I ran out of steam on the thrusters. Some teams made it to 11 or 12 minutes, which was awesome.


Then, still in our teams of 2 or 3, we did 3 rounds of:

  • 30 sit-ups
  • 30 hang cleans (95/65#)
  • 30 double-unders (or 60 singles)
  • 30 overhead squats (95/65#)
  • 30 pull-ups

While one person was doing a non-bar movements (i.e. sit-ups, jump rope, pull-ups), the other would hold onto the bar. Some teams of 3 would have 1 member hold the bar, 1 member do a plank, while the 3rd member would do the movement.

Overhead-squat-1Adi and I changed weights between the hang cleans and the OHS. For the cleans we did 95#. For the OHS we did 65#. I did a lot of single jumps. And I did one round of pull-ups and the other two rounds I did ring rows. We split reps up so we’d each do about 15 of each movement. And it worked fine.

We got done with the whole thing in 27 minutes. My left hand grip went away about halfway through the second round. The forearm just locks up to where hanging on to anything becomes a challenge after a while. During one round when I was supposed to hold the bar, I did a plank hold just to give my grip a break.

Adi does great with the body weight stuff. He really flies through burpees, sit-ups, jump ropes, and pull-ups. He did pretty well at the hang cleans (mine were definitely power cleans, not hang cleans btw). He struggled with the OHS a bit, which is fine. It’s not my best movement either.

But we made it through. That’s 450 reps in the second wave (275 each) and I got through 53 95# thrusters before that fell apart completely. So 325 or so reps in about 37 minutes isn’t bad. Averages out to about 9 reps a minute.

I’m definitely not the fastest guy out there, but I think we did just fine. And great work to everybody else who joined in – it was a fun workout. πŸ™‚

Sounds like we have a busy couple of months leading up to the CrossFit Open 2017 in February as well, so we’ll see how this all shapes up. πŸ™‚

Have a great day, folks!