Tuesday, November 1, 2011

11-11-01: Power Cleans, Runs, and Front Squats

Elm City CrossFit WoD for Tuesday, November 1st, 2011

 Casey Burgener cranking up what appears (at quick count) 205 kilos. Oops, plus 5 kilos or so... i.e. he's really freaking strong, and I'm sure completely efficient. Strong, efficient jerk.

WoD: 6 Rounds: On the Minute
  • 4 Power Cleans @ ¾ BW
  • Crack Dash

Sellout: ½ Tabata

  • Front Squat w/ Power Clean weight
After spending a LONG time on technique and cues, as well as working on sticking points in the power clean, we started warming up. I've found that one of my issues with the clean (of any type) is a reluctance to rebend at the hips for the catch. To try to ensure the bar lands on my shoulders, I stay leaning back a bit... which means that instead, I catch it on my freaking collar bone. My right one more often than not, for some reason. I tried like hell to work on that, trying to focus on hitting that "universal athletic position" so touted among people who don't have bruised clavicles....

Compare the picture to the picture of Casey Burgener up there. Pretty freaking close. You don't see anyone in either picture with their hips fully extended, pointing their chests to the sky. That's what I tend to do... and it hurts. A lot.

The prescripted weight was 3/4 body weight, which should have been 152# or so. However, in an attempt to not cripple myself, I scaled back to 135#. It would be a heavier weight than I've used in a while for an o-lift workout, but its a weight I could easily muscle-up, so it would still be a valid weight to struggle with form on. I was definitely right about that...

The second part of each round was the joy of the "crack dash." Though it sounds sketchy, it merely involves running out of the gym, hanging a hard right, running to the big crack towards the end of the driveway, then heading back. Sounds simple. However, I was the person the deepest in the gym, the furthest from the door. So, if someone else had 100m or so to run, I had 160m. Of course, that's my damn fault for picking the spot I did. Stupid stupid stupid. And all me. So someone make that rotten violins stop playing before I hurt someone... 

So, long story short, each round, I was lucky to make it back to my bar to begin the next one, but I never got back AFTER the round had started. I might have stared at the bar for a second after that buzzer, but I was standing right there, staring at it. Despite that, I tried to make each rep as smart as possible. If one of the big complaints about CrossFit is that we end up rewarding crappy technique by focusing too much on time, a workout like this, where there's pressure but NOT a do or die by the clock impetus, the smart thing to do is focus on the technique. Seriously, screw the buzzer if you need an extra second or two to get the form right. Hell, even in a time domain-based workout, there's just NO excuse for shitty form. Ever. Does it add a few seconds to your "Grace" or "Isabelle" time? Cry me a river (you can borrow my violins), and do it right with the proper form. Or screw up your back or something. No difference to me, champ.

The sell-out was particularly brutal after all of that. A clean to start the set of front squats, then 20 seconds of front squats, followed by 10 seconds rest. I got several in the first round, a few less in the second, then managed just 2-3 for each round after that. My total was 17 front squats. I truly felt like I earned each and every damn one of them. The rule was that we couldn't put the weight down until "Rest!" had been called, so the final two rounds ended with me sucking wind for the final 3-4 seconds, just waiting for that blessed word to come. My legs were shaking like jello, and the idea of cranking out that one final rep, while tempting, was just terrifying. I did manage it in the final round, since there's nothing left to save it for, but that was about it.

"I feel terrible!"

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