Monday, August 2, 2010

10-08-02: Squat-clean thrusters and Pull-Ups

CrossFit WoD for August 1st, 2010

Five rounds for time of:
James Hobart 3:57, Rob Orlando 3:58, Dave Lipson 3:59, Josh Everett 4:15, Ben Bergeron 4:45, Eric Magee 4:54, Graham Holmberg 5:24, Myles Lewis 5:45, Pat Sherwood 5:50, Stacey Kroon 6:10 (95lbs), Heather Bergeron 6:38 (95lbs), Karianne Dickson 7:33 (95lbs), Kim Malz 8:33 (95lbs).

First things first, today was an exercise in my occasional complete and total inability to correctly scale a workout.  In this case, though the weight itself wasn't *that* much of an issue, the movement itself was. though I think my form on the squat clean thrusters was pretty good, it was a new movement pattern, especially the squat clean, which meant that instead of just focusing on moving weight, I was more concerned with figuring out the moves.  Not a smart plan under fairly heavy weights.  In a more relaxed scenario (ie, not on my lunch break) I would have hopefully warmed up the movement a lot, first with an empty bar, then slowly adding weight up to the work sets.  Nope.

Even worse, just this weekend i was congratulating myself for not needing to visit the  CrossFit Brand X forums lately to find out the 'official scaling' for the WoDs. I could have probably saved myself a lot of time and effort.  Look again at the posted times above. Firebreathers coming in at sub-4 minute times, up through about 10 minutes.  With some decent scaling, I should have been targeting at least the slower end of that range.  My time?

Total Time: 27 minutes

And it was even a little bit scaled down.  Here's the breakdown of what I *actually* did.  First of all, starting weight was only 125#. Since our bar is 10# shy, instead of just needing two 45# plates on a 45# bar to equal the Rx'ed 135#, I should have had two 5# plates, one per side, to get me up to proper weight.  I was *just* smart enough to know that the final 10# were not going to be the problem.  I gutted it out for the first round, doing pull-ups on the frame of the Smith Machine (still the only known use for that pile of crap.)  Started the second round knowing that I was in trouble at 125#.  I could do the thruster portion ok, at least for 5 reps, but the squat clean to start things off was dicey.  Decided to try to keep the 125# on the bar, and made it through the five reps.  Pull-ups took a LOT longer for the second round.

After spending a good amount of time convincing myself to not quit right then and there, I swapped the 45# plates for 35#s, bringing the total down to 105#.  This was where I should have started, if not even further down at 95#.  The squat cleans started coming together, and my depth heading into the thruster was awesome...with the help of the weight, I was actually getting all the way down into the hole, rather than having my thighs end up just above parallel.  The thrusters coming out of the bottom were therefor full range, which felt pretty between greying out between reps. :D

Even slower pull-ups for the 3rd round.

I decided I was maybe going to shave off the pull-ups from the final two rounds, and just do the weight work.  Did a set of 5, caught my breath, and did the final set of 5 squat clean thrusters. At this point, I could have quit, with a fairly clean conscience.  The time was already 20 minutes, I had already screwed up the point of what should have been a fairly short, VERY intense met-con workout (metabolic conditioning, which more or less equals cardio turned up to 11), and I was freaking exhausted.  However, with the help of our gravitron knock-off, I made up the 4th round's worth of pull-ups with 50# weight assist, and the final round of 10 with 70# of weight assist.

Oh yeah, I don't think my chest hit a bar even once today.  Certainly not on the pull-ups...

So overall, though I'm proud of the amount of work I did, and more or less learning a new movement for throwing weights around, I think I pretty much jumped the shark as far as performing this workout as intended, much less as prescribed.  But, this just makes me more eager to get it right next time, and has taught me a lesson about not being so damn sure that i don't need any help or direction.  Of course I do...we all do, from time to time!

Plus, I had the wrong playlist on.  Yeah, it was cool to hear the occasional cool flashback from the late 90s (Royal Crown Revue, Blind Man's Sun, etc, the random live Ani DiFranco and Sarah McLachlan tracks were NOT what I needed to get my inspiration on. There's a reason my workout playlist is filled with metal, death metal, and viking metal.  And that reason may have something to do with the metal. Who can say?

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