Tag Archives: push-ups

A New Approach at the Box – Plus Strict Pull-ups

Today marks a new day at CrossFit Continuum as we work towards the new approach to WODs at CrossFit’s main site. What is that new approach? Quality of strict movements over speed. At least that was what today was all about.

Now, I have to admit I wasn’t sure I was going to be moving at all today after yesterday’s Filthy Fifty. It was brutal and I nearly didn’t finish – thankfully I was pulled back in by Lara and I managed to get through it in the end. It effectively ended my day yesterday, causing my body to seriously crash hard. And I was feeling it last night.

Definitely needed some WD-40 to get out of bed this morning… (Source)

However, today was one of three PTO days I needed to burn or I’d lose them, so… I found myself back in the box this morning. In fact, I was there 30 minutes early and stopped for a coffee at the coffee shop around the corner from the box and worked on some writing in the car while I waited.

It was just me and Janiese this morning for Coach Drea, and I was not moving quickly by any stretch. During the warm-up it was like chipping off rust from an old hinge. I definitely needed a bit more WD-40.

Once we were done with that, we looked at each of the three movements — solid strict pull-ups (not chin-ups), solid push-ups, and quality air squats. Simple enough on the surface, but I was going to go slow and steady. The pull-ups really slowed me down.

The workout?

  • Complete as many reps as possible in 12 minutes of:
    • 1 strict pull-up, 2 push-ups, 3 squats
    • 2 strict pull-ups, 4 push-ups, 6 squats
    • 3 strict pull-ups, 6 push-ups, 9 squats
    • Etc.

See? Simple, right?

Well, I was shooting for getting through 5 rounds at least and that took me about 6 minutes. The remainder of the time was spent on completing round 6 and getting into round 7. Told you those strict pull-ups slowed me down!

I did pretty well with push-ups, which have given me trouble in the past. Made it through the 5-10-15 round with 10 in a row, then split up the round of 12 with sets of 6-3-3.

Air squats weren’t bad once I focused on making sure I stood all the way up each time.

However, the strict pull-ups with an overhand grip instead of an underhand, chin-up style grip, forced me to slow way down and sometimes take them one at a time. (Who am I kidding, most of them were singles!?) I barely got through the 7 strict pull-ups before time ran out.

We’re supposed to note where we started and where we stopped:

  • Start – Round of 1-2-3
  • End – Round of 7-14-21 (made it through 7 ugly strict pull-ups one at a time)

So there you have it. πŸ™‚ Now I’m done for a couple of days and will be back to it on Monday. We’ll see what’s next on the WOD agenda then.

Great work Janiese! And thanks for the tips/encouragement today Drea!


Playing Catch-up

Sometimes time just gets away from me like the last few days… Geez. The last throes of my holiday break before heading back to work to face reality again. Funny how the real world smacks you in the face from time to time. πŸ™‚

But I managed to get through a few workouts in the last handful of days…

  • Saturday Team WOD (5-JAN-2019)
  • Monday 9:30 WOD (7-JAN-2019)
  • Tuesday 8:30 WOD (8-JAN-2019)

Saturday Team WOD

Saturday we had a good crew for Coach Jimmy — Caleb & Megan, Jordan & Lara, Lisa & her sister, and Drew.

We did:

  • Teams of 2 –
  • 5 rounds for time
    • 50 calorie row or bike
    • 40 toes to bar
    • 20 Double DB Burpee box step ups

I worked with Caleb and we scaled it slightly. Toes to bar became knees to elbows (or at least knee raises – I won’t say my knees actually touched my elbows) and I think we had 20# or 25# dumbbells and a 20″ box for the double dumbbell burpee box step-ups. We split the row 25/25 and did everything else in sets of 5. And I definitely felt pushed. πŸ™‚

We finished first in 37:11, but everybody else was right behind us. And I won’t lie – I was pretty wiped out after this one. Very hip intensive as I found out today. πŸ™‚

This was one of those subtle workouts that I knew was going to kick our butts. Jimmy put together a doozy.

Monday WOD

Sunday I felt pretty good until Saturday’s workout caught up with me. Of course, that might also have had something to do with the fact that I really only had one meal that day, but hey.

Made it in for a 9:30 workout with Coach Drea. Lara, Alicia, Deana, and a few other folks joined us. And though it was more of a skill day, I won’t deny that it also kicked my butt.

I ended up doing the Fitness level:

  • 15 minute AMRAP
    • 5 strict ring pull-ups, false grip to collarbone
    • 5 strict ring dips
    • 4 squat snatches, 75#

I tried warming up to 95# or higher, but I couldn’t drop under the snatch with the heavier weight. My hips were tight enough I kept leaning forward under the weight. 75# felt ok and even that got a little hairy in spots.

Strict ring dips went really well, though my ring pull-ups were slow as snot.

I finished 4 full rounds plus 11 reps (one squat snatch in round 5) and called it good. πŸ™‚

Today’s WOD

Today AJ and I headed back in for the 8:30 class with Coach Lara. We were joined by Maria, Chris, and Deana.

This one, though I knew it was going to be a bit rough, went better than I expected. I really expected push-ups to fall apart more quickly than they did. πŸ™‚

  • 15 minute AMRAP
    • 20 push-ups
    • 50 squats

I started out by doing 10 push-ups in a row, which was silly in hindsight. Should have broken them into sets of 5 from the start, instead of doing that after the first set of 10. πŸ™‚

But I think it was the squats that really got to me — I managed to get through 4 rounds plus 20 push-ups and got through 4 air squats. (4+24)

Now that I’ve seen that tomorrow’s workout is running. Lots and lots of it. I will be dreading that for a while. πŸ™‚

Good work everybody!

12 Days of Xmas 2018

For the last few years, we’ve done the 12 Days of Christmas workout at CrossFit Continuum in the days before Xmas. Sometimes it’s on Christmas Eve. Sometimes it’s a day or two before that. But since at least 2015 it’s been part of the tradition.

This year it was just me from our clan heading to the box to do the deed a few days before Xmas, but I went in — just like we did in 2015, 2016, and 2017… My girls were sleeping in to recover from crazy weeks at the end of their respective semesters. My wife was working. And I was definitely not alone in the madness. Much of our CrossFit family was there with me. πŸ™‚

Drea & Jimmy, Nick & Lisa, Lara & Jordan, Larry, Caleb & Megan, Megan F, Clara, Heather, John, Marino, Aileen, Emily, Shaun & Stacy, and more… we had people all over the place. πŸ™‚ As Jimmy put it, it was a bit of “controlled chaos” — emphasis on the chaos! Plus — we started with sunshine and ended with a snowstorm. It was definitely one of the first days of winter!

We did a little warm-up and divvied up into halves… one half of the gym was mostly the “Naughty” workout and the other was “Nice.” We both got our butts kicked. πŸ™‚

Caleb and I sort of shared an area. This wasn’t a team workout, but we shared equipment and space due to the crazy number of bodies. We had some space on the wall for wall balls, two bars (one 135# and one 95#), and just kind of went for it.

My version of the Naughty workout (scaled) went like this:

  • 12 Days of Christmas
    • 1 Deadlift 135#
    • 2 Pike Push-ups
    • 3 Front Squats 95#
    • 4 Pull-ups (kipping)
    • 5 Shoulder-to-overhead 95#
    • 6 Wall Balls 20#
    • 7 Back Squats 95#
    • 8 Sit-ups
    • 9 Sumo Deadlift High Pulls 95#
    • 10 Push-ups
    • 11 Thrusters 95# (I dropped to 11 Front Squats during “Day 12” because I couldn’t get my arms over my head at this point)
    • 12 1200m “run” (really I walked all but about 200m of the whole thing)

It took me 49 minutes to complete this year. And I really debated just giving up after the run (in the snow that was just starting to fall at that point) — I was struggling with both shoulders by then. But after I did the front squats, things started to loosen up again and I was able to get my shoulders moving again.

We had a fun time as always and my time was about the same as always for this workout (though it changes every year):

  • 2018 – 49:00 (scaled to 95#)
  • 2017 – 44:00 (scaled to 95#)
  • 2016 – 58:34 (went heavier with 115#)
  • 2015 – DNF (over an hour)

I think figuring out I should scale in 2017 made this workout much more fun in the long run. And I kept moving much better this year than I have some years — so maybe this old Grinch is learning something. πŸ™‚

Great work everybody! Y’all “sleighed” it. πŸ˜€

Who needs knees, anyway?

So yesterday I planned on going into the box to do some deadlifts. Life had other plans. Life 1, Me 0.Β 

Today even after seeing the workout, I was going to make it in come hell or high water. I was 5 minutes later than I wanted to be, but I made it. Life 1, Me 1. πŸ™‚

I was joined by a few folks in Coach Lara’s 8:30 class… Dave & Star, Valerie, and Carmen. They were already warming up when I got there, so I missed most of it — though I did some push-up, squat, and burpee warm-up with them at the end.Β 

Today’s workout was the Hero WOD known as “Bert” — named for US Marine Cpl. Albert Gettings, who died in 2009 while serving his country in Iraq. You can read a bit about him at the CrossFit mainsite.Β The workout is a bit brutal, but you come to expect that during a hero WOD.Β 

  • For time:
    • 50 burpees
    • 400-m run
    • 100 push-ups
    • 400-m run
    • 150 walking lunges
    • 400-m run
    • 200 squats
    • 400-m run
    • 150 walking lunges
    • 400-m run
    • 100 push-ups
    • 400-m run
    • 50 burpees

There were some options. The Performance level lowered the reps to 40-80-120-160-120-80-40. Fitness level dropped it to 20-30-40-50 with 200m runs between.Β 

Our goal was to finish in under 60 minutes. And the conditions outside were chilly, with some snow and slush along our usual 400m route. So as you might imagine, I scaled. πŸ™‚

The Devil’s Tricycle was there for me today…

My workout became something between Fitness & Performance…

  • 20 burpees
  • 2:30 on the assault bike
  • 40 push-ups (25 regular, 15 from knees)
  • 2:30 on the assault bike
  • 60 walking lunges
  • 2:30 on the assault bike
  • 80 squats
  • 500m row (2:10 time)
  • 60 walking lunges
  • 2:30 on assault bike
  • 40 push-ups (20 regular, 20 from knees)
  • 2:30 on assault bike
  • 20 burpees
  • Time: 41:50

Burpees were consistent for the most part. Push-ups were a problem, as always. Walking lunges were a challenge, but I did them in sets of 20/15/10 or 5 to get through them. Squats were ok — sets of 10 or 20 for those. The assault bike was a good choice today and felt better than the rower because I had a set time domain and didn’t overthink it.Β 

Me too, little dude.

But let me just say that my knees were ticked off by the time I got to the push-ups and that trend just continued on to the end. I’m sure I’m going to be sore over the next few days and need to roll out my quads.Β 

Walking may be optional — and stairs are going to be a challenge over the next couple of days. πŸ™‚

Everybody did awesome — Dave rocked out the push-ups, Carmen was the only one of us brave enough to run outside, and Star & Val just kept chugging. And of course Lara was there to cheer us on.Β 

Great work everybody!Β 

4x Tabata

Let’s start with a story of the last few days. Sure, I made it in for the Thanksgiving WOD — but I have done nothing since. I was going to go to the Team WOD on Saturday, got as far as the edge of my neighborhood, and turned around to go home – I wasn’t feeling it. We even talked about doing strong man or yoga yesterday — that didn’t happen either.Β 

Ate like crap. Slept like crap. Behaved like sloths. Yeah, not the best few days.Β Even today, though I was signed up, I debated whether I wanted to go or not. Motivation is lacking… big time.Β 

That said, I went anyway. Made it for the 8:30 class with Coach Drea. We had Melissa S, Melissa, Dave, Nick & Lisa, and Alicia. And I did my best to shake off whatever holiday malaise has set over me like a warm blanket.

We started with a little 3 round warm-up:

  • 30 seconds of jumping jacks
  • 10 seconds of rest
  • 20 seconds of butt kickers
  • 10 seconds of rest

From there we did a ton of skill work on the push jerk (first with no bar, then with an empty bar) and hang snatches (empty bar). None of it felt particularly easy. When we were done, we added some weight — first a few reps at 75# and then at 95#. I decided push jerks would be ok at 95#, but snatches would be better at 75# and I am glad I did.Β We also did a little work at the rig on pull-ups (including some chest-to-bar) and push ups.

From there we just kind of… started.

  • Tabata Push Jerk (Competitor 95/65#, Performance 75/55#, Fitness 45/35#)
  • 3 minute rest
  • Tabata chest-to-bar pull-ups (competitor), pull-ups (performance), jumping pull-ups (fitness)
  • 3 minute rest
  • Tabata push-ups
  • 3 minutes of rest
  • Tabata hang power snatch (same weights as push jerk)
  • Tabata is 20 seconds of work followed by 10 seconds of rest for 8Β  rounds

We were shooting for 150-200 reps for the workout. Ha.

  • Tabata Push Jerk (95#) – 46 reps
  • Tabata pull-ups – 3 chest-to-bar, 28 normal pull-ups, 31 reps (I knew after the first round there were no more c2b in the tank today)
  • Tabata push-ups – 46 reps
  • Tabata power snatch (75#) – 37 reps
  • Total: 160 (I mistakenly calculated it to 139 earlier)

So I guess I wasn’t as far off as I thought. Nick blew through a ton of push-ups and was up over 200 reps for the workout. Most folks were in the 130-180 range, so I was right in the hunt there.Β 

I’ll take it. I’m still in a foul unmotivated mood, but we’ll just blame that on Monday. πŸ™‚ Great work 8:30 class!Β 

My Left Cheek!

Yes, I said it. “My left cheek!” Apparently when you do a lot of pistols and GHD work, your ass muscles get a workout. Go figure. My wife tells me I don’t have a butt, so perhaps this will help me remedy that situation — once it stops hurting. πŸ™‚

sore not deadSpeaking of my wife, today was the first time in a while I had a chance to work out with her. She’s been gone for a bit and is just coming back to the box after about a week and a half away (since doing Girls Gone Rx Denver she went on a road trip for a week). But we made it in for the 8:30 class with Coach Lara — and had Marino, Caleb, Melissa, KB, and Bri with us.

Started with a 400m jog in the nice fall morning (breezy and overcast, but pleasant about 50 degrees). From there we did some running drills, some PVC overhead squats, PVC pass-thrus, and some squat therapy on the wall. I think most of us were a little sore from yesterday’s workout. πŸ™‚

Once that was finished, it was time for some squat snatches — shrugs, high pulls, fast drops, muscle snatches, high pulls from the floor… we did a good cross-section of movements to get ready for the day’s workout:

  • snatch5Score: Total Time
  • Competitor & Performance (75/55# bar)
    • 21 squat snatches
    • 42 push-ups
    • 15 squat snatches
    • 30 push-ups
    • 9 squat snatches
    • 18 push-ups
  • Fitness (45/35# bar)
    • 15 squat snatches
    • 30 knee push-ups
    • 12 squat snatches
    • 24 knee push-ups
    • 9 squat snatches
    • 18 knee push-ups

Um yeah. We were supposed to shoot for between 6 and 15 minutes. HA!

I went Rx today, like a crazy person. But the weight was light enough I thought I could probably finish. And broke everything up into manageable sets – sets of 7 as long as I could, then sets of 5 as long as I could, then sets of 3-5.

It took me 14:37. Just under the line. πŸ™‚

Caleb was the fastest of us, just under 7 minutes. Ev did it at Fitness level at about 8 minutes flat. Marino was under 12. Bri was about 12:30. Not sure what KB got done in, but somewhere under 10 minutes I think. Everybody did awesome.


I was the last done, but I didn’t care because I finished. Wasn’t sure that was going to happen after the round of 15/30. πŸ™‚ But thank you Lara, Caleb, Ev, and KB for the encouragement in those last few reps!

Tomorrow (after 4 days of training in a row) is definitely a rest day — but I’ll be back on Saturday I think. πŸ™‚

Team WOD Saturday plus Monday

We get another twofer today. πŸ™‚ I worked out on Saturday morning at Team WOD with AJ because her game got moved to later in October — and then I started the week with a Monday workout. Can’t say I moved much in-between, but hey. πŸ™‚

Team WOD

We had a small but solid contingent at Team WOD on Saturday with Coach Isaac. AJ worked out with Carrie, Katie, and Carrie’s neighbor. And I worked with Brent & Nick. Caleb, Shaun, and Stacy worked together and there was another group as well.

dr-evil-air-quotes-yes-this-is-what-we-call-a-warm-upIsaac started with two “fun” warm-ups… The “circle up with PVC pipes and shift left or right” game. If a PVC pipe fell, we did 3 burpees. And then we did a partner warm-up where one partner sat on the floor and extended their arms while the other partner jumped over one arm, their legs, and the other arm, counting that as a rep.

I will admit — I stepped over AJ’s arms and jumped over her legs — and when it was my turn, I laid on the floor so she could just jump over me on the floor. I don’t trust my own jumping abilities and didn’t want to be responsible for breaking AJ. πŸ™‚

After that, we grouped up. Nick & Brent were kind enough to have me in their group and I don’t think I slowed them down too much all things being unequal.


run-thought-they-said-rumThe workout was:

  • Run 800m (entire team)
  • 150x Box jumps 30/24/20 inch
  • 75x Push press #135/#95
  • 125x Pushups
  • 125x Situps
  • 150x Overhead walking lunge steps #45 or #35 plate
  • Run 800m (entire team)

We did 24″ box jumps or step-ups and I only did a 95# bar for push press and a 25# plate for overhead walking lunges, but hung in for the most part.

We finished in 33:51.

  • They set a great pace for the first 800m jog, which meant I never actually stopped — that’s a first. Usually I stop somewhere. That wasn’t the case on the second 800m but I only walked a portion. πŸ™‚
  • Box jumps were all step-ups for me to the 24″ box and they felt ok in sets of 10 or 15
  • Push presses with 95# were good – two sets of 10 and one of 5
  • Push-ups, I did sets of 10 – they did longer sets, but I did what I could. πŸ™‚
  • Sit-ups, I banged out 25 reps two or three times
  • Overhead walking lunges, I did four sets of 15 steps with the 25# plate and they did the rest – not my favorite movement

Big thank you to Brent & Nick for slowing down a bit for me – they usually fly through this stuff. πŸ™‚ It was a good workout!

Monday, Knee Raises and Wall Walks

This morning we had a pretty good class for Coach Drea – Lara, Melissa, Melissa S, Carrie, and Dave.Β  We did a couple of rounds of:

  • 90 seconds of single-unders (double-under practice in the second round)
  • 30 second hollow body hold
  • 10 inchworms (was supposed to be a push-up at the bottom — oops, I didn’t push-up)
  • 5 v-ups (mine were more like knee tucks)
  • 10 PVC pass-throughs

toes-to-bar-big-shoesAnd then… Drea had Lara demonstrate some of the variations for handstand walks and toes to bar. We did a few of each modification along the way.

The workout was:

  • 10 minute AMRAP
  • Performance
    • 10 toes to bars
    • 25 foot handstand walk
  • Fitness
    • 10 hanging knee raises
    • 2 wall walks

Some days I can do T2B, but today wasn’t one of them. I did attempt a few and got my feet to the bar on a few of those, but mostly I decided that attempting knees to elbows was probably a better approach. Wall walks were harder than they should have been today, but I managed the 2 per round slowly. πŸ™‚

Ultimately I got through 5 rounds, so I’ll take that. Not a bad Monday workout. πŸ™‚

Now… back to work! Good work everybody!