Friday, June 10, 2011

11-06-10: Death by Deadlifts and 10m runs

Elm City Crossfit WoD for June 10th, 2011
Deadlift starting postion. Shoulders above the hips, hips above the knees. Alternate grip is optional (I prefer to save it until the weights get really heavy, to actually work my grip as much as possible.) (

Death By:
  • Odd # Rounds - Deadlift @ BW% 185#
  • Even # Rounds - 10 Meter Run
(1st minute, 1 deadlift, 2nd minute = 2 10m runs, 3rd round = 3 deadlifts, 4th minute = 4 10m runs, etc...)

With a nice case of system-wide soreness (presses, kettlebell swings and front squats, plus some new warm-up motions), I showed up for my 3rd day at Elm City Crossfit. Deadlifts and some running. In a ladder, which means it starts off pretty easy, cruises along for a few rounds, then suddenly starts sucking. Hard. Today would be no different.

After nice thorough roll-out and warm-up, we reviewed and warmed-up our deadlifts. I jumped from 95# to 135# easily, and opted to do the workout at 185#, as we were encouraged to scale for the hellishness of the ladder. Its arguable that I should have gone a little lighter, perhaps 155#, but in the grand scheme of things, it wasn't the weight that caught up to me, it was my complete and utter lack of lungs.

Warmed-up and ready to go, we rolled our barbells out the door, and lined up in the parking lot. With Coach Vin shouting out the minutes and rounds, we started out. As always, the first 5-6 rounds were stupid easy. This is where globo-gym guys start laughing, not realizing what's really happening: as the minutes climb, the number of reps goes up while the time to recover effectively gets shorter. If you're me, and your initial wind capacity sucks and your recovery time is long, this kicks in much faster than for anyone else. ;)

Rounds 9 and 10 were starting to get hard, and I was already garnering some extra coaching for my ever more craptastic back position in the deadlift. As I fatigued, I started to make (at least) two glaring mistakes: 1) I would set-up with a rounded back, unable/unwilling/unaware to get my butt low enough to allow for a well-arched lumbar curve, or 2) Pull the weight off the ground in the wrong order, opening my hips first, rather than after the legs had straightened. Basically, your hopefully rock-solid back position and angle should stay immobile during the first stages of the lift, only straightening up after the weight has cleared your knees. I was firing up way earlier as I started fighting more for air than for mechanics.

Part of the problem was definitely my legs, my quads especially. As I would try to settle into the correct position, my quads were just screaming at me (good, I can fight through it) or oddly numb (bad, because that's terrifying), probably depending on my technique during the running. I'm not entirely sure. All I know is that when they hurt, I could just sink into the position, and use it as a stretch for a moment. When they were feeling numb, I had NO feedback from my body, leaving me guessing (apparently poorly) as to where and how I was setting myself up.

I finished the 12th minute (120m of running) really sucking wind, and was barely able to string together 3-4 deadlifts at a time.  I had just completed my 10th when the timer sounded to start the 14th minute, effectively ending my workout.  I was the first one out, but only by a minute or two. I don't remember if anyone failed the 140m running, but 3-4 people didn't make it through the set of 15 deadlifts. So, I had that to be thankful for, as comparisons go!

Death By Deadlifts and 10m Runs: 12 rounds & 10 deadlifts.

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