424

Workout of the Day 24 April 2014

Photo: Dave Counts

It’s finally nice out, tire flips here we come!

The CrossFit Warm-up

3 rounds of 10-15 reps of:
Samson Stretch (15-30 seconds)
Overhead Squat with PVC
Sit-ups
Back-extensions
Pull-ups
Dips

Strength/Skill Fitness

A1) Turkish Get Up
4 Sets, 5 Reps Each Arm

A2) Pistol Progressions
4 Sets, 5 Reps Each Leg

Work to a level you are comfortable with. Pistol to a Jump Box, hold a DB or weight for counter balance, use small metal plates under heel, stand on Jump Box, etc.

Strength/Skill Sport

A1) Turkish Get Up
4 Sets, 5 Reps Each Arm

Use a Barbell for TGUs

A2) Pistols
4 Sets, 5 Reps Each Leg

MetCon Fitness

500M Run Buy In.
5 Rounds:
10 x Renegade Rows (alternating, 5 each arm)
10 x Box Jumps
10 x Split Jumps (total)

MetCon Sport

500M Run Buy In.
5 Rounds:
10 x Renegade Rows (alternating, 5 each arm)
10 x Box Jumps
10 x Weighted Walking Lunges (DBs held down by the side)


1-IMG_0049-001

Recovering To Good Health

Photo: Joshua Bird

CrossFit is known by many as the most effective way to achieve an “elite level of fitness”, and rightfully so.  Walk into any CrossFit gym, and you will see men and women at the peak of their physical well-being.  For many of us though, the story is slightly different.  What about when your workout just helps you make it through your day without falling apart?

Nearly 1 out of 5 Americans suffer from some sort of mental illness, 120 million worldwide.  As for men, we are diagnosed with anxiety and depression at a much lower rate than our female counterparts.  There is a cultural stigma attached to anxiety, depression, and other mental illnesses, particularly for men.  For us men, we are likely to hide it somewhere deep inside and find ways to cope,  rather than deal. Often this is done using mechanisms like alcohol and drugs. We may not be ready or able to let go of pride, and it inhibits our ability of seeking out help and taking positive steps.

I’ve known Tony DaPonte for close to five years now.  I see him almost daily at our town’s coffee shop, and over the years have come to know him as a masters division middle distance runner (400m, 800m). He loves to head out to the track and let it fly.  Tony is also someone who is up for an intelligent, engaging conversation full of learned lessons at the drop of a hat.  I invited Tony to come out and join us for the boot-camp sessions that CrossFit Providence ran last year in Warren, RI.  Little did I know that Tony was struggling at the time, and just how much the camaraderie of our group and the physical activity would help him pull through.

Here’s the story in Tony’s own words:

Last summer I suffered from a mental health issue which made me tired and anxious.  Josh introduced me to CrossFit, even though I lacked energy and focus.  I am 78 so it was challenging to keep up with others, but I felt always welcome by the coaches and participants.  I did the drills to the best of my ability (I never could master the jump rope!)  I am well now due to my perseverance  and the encouragement the participants and coaches – keep moving!

Tony DaPonte

p.s. thanks, Josh

Since this summer, Tony and I have had many conversations on this subject, and I was able to express to him how CrossFit, and focusing on moving everyday in general had helped me with with my own issues of anxiety and depression.  Even though our internal issues are not always easily spotted from the outside, they are real and can have devastating effects on individuals and families.   Dr. Robert Sapolsky, a leading researcher on psychology and depression puts it in these terms:

“When it comes to human diseases, there are few diseases out there that are bad as depression.  It is crippling.  It is pervasive.  It wipes out any capacity for joy, hope or pleasure.  Cancer victims will often express gratitude for their disease. It woke them up, gave them a new perspective, helped them rebuild important relationships and get to the meaning of life.

This is not depression.

Depression destroys perspective, undermines relationships, steals joy. Depression isn’t a disease that you are grateful for having. It doesn’t open doors; it closes them.”

Clearly, we are dealing with serious stuff.  Never lose hope, there are things that we can do in our daily lives to help keep this monster at bay.  Here are just a few idaeas that have merit:

  • Move – Tony had the right idea here, keep moving.  Movement and vigorous physical activity are well known to help battle the effects of depression.  I’ve got my own personal theory that engaging physically gets your mind out of the way, and allows you to be more present.
  • Sun – I know a lot of people who got really hammered by this recent long dark winter.  Sunlight is your body’s best way to rise Vitamin D levels; people who suffer from depression generally have lower levels of this vitamin.
  • Meditate – There is increasing evidence that practicing meditation can help keep depression away.  Have trouble sitting still for even a minute?  Then start there.  Set a 60 second timer, and focus on your breath for this amount of time.  With practice this becomes easier, and you can extend it longer.
  • Eat – Clean that is.  Eliminate processed foods and sugar.  Since a high Omega6 level is correlated with depression and anxiety, try to keep your meat consumption to animals fed a grain free diet, and use good sources of fat such as coconut oil, grassfed butter and ghee.  Local farms such as Pat’s Pastured, are making this much easier to do.
  • Talk – maybe to a friend, or a loved one, or to a medical professional.  Whatever you are ready for.  Get it out in the open and create a little distance from the problem,  then you can figure out what steps you need to take to address it.

Again, I’m no doctor or therapist.  I leave that up to people like Chris KresserBrittany Drozd, and David Stern, who do brilliant work.  I am however, along with Tony Daponte, a fellow human being.  This leaves us uniquely qualified to get subjects like this where they belong, out in the open.

p.s thanks, Tony

 


423

Workout of the Day 23 April 2014

Photo: Dave Counts

Come on Thursday May 1 for the first day and roll out of the 30 day bootin’ the gluten challenge with Coach Niki and Josh. 7pm.

Labor Position

Hold Labor Position against wall for 60 Seconds, apply PNF stretching to increase hip mobility

Strength/Skill Fitness and Sport

A1) Front Squat
5 Sets, 3 Reps, Rest 30 Seconds

A2) Shoulder Mobility

45-pound barbell internal rotation smash: Lying on your back, lie the end of a barbell on your anterior deltoid and find the lumps (pain point). Keep your elbow at a 90-degree angle, and retract your shoulder and scapula. (Think the high-pull position, but lying down.)

MetCon Fitness

AMRAP 15
5 Hang Power Cleans
10 Push Ups
15 Air Squat

MetCon Sport

AMRAP 15
5 Hang Power Cleans 135/95#
10 Push Ups
15 Air Squat
3 x Ring Pull Ups/3 x Ring Dips
*Rotate between movements each round

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Front squats

You want a better front squat. Don’t take it personally — everyone wants a better front squat, whether that means heavier, deeper, or more technically ideal. Front squats don’t seem to get as much love as back squats do among lifters, but a persuasive argument could be made that front squats are more versatile, more functional, better for overall strength and fitness, and more challenging than back squats. Front squats activate all the same muscles as back squats (specifically, almost everything from the abdomen down) but have the added challenge of requiring you to keep your torso as upright as possible, even more upright than a high-bar back squat — you’re forced to keep the bar right up close and your midsection locked up tight as you drive up from the bottom, or you’ll tilt forward and lose the bar. You can’t bluff your way through a good set of front squats.

Breaking Muscle has a great article with 25 tips on improving your front squat. Check it out.


422

Workout of the Day 22 April 2014

Photo: Dave Counts

 

Hangs

Hang from Pull Up Rig, switch between Active and Passive Hangs

Strength/Skill Fitness and Sport

A1) Pull Up Progression
4 Sets, 3 – 5 Reps, Rest 30 Seconds

4 Sets, 3 – 5 Reps (all Strict, w/3 sec descent)
Chin Up to Neck
Chin Up to Chest
Pull Up to Neck
Pull Up to Chest

Do Not go to the Next Level till you have completed all Sets at Max Reps

A2) Ankle/Calf Mobility
4 Sets, 30 Seconds

30 Seconds working on Ankle and Calf Mobility with Foam Roller or LAX Ball

MetCon Fitness

For Time:
15 KBS
3 Rope Climb
50 Double Unders
10 KBS
2 Rope Climb
50 Double Unders
5 KBS
1 Rope Climb
50 Double Unders

MetCon Sport

For Time:
15 Power Snatch 115/75#
3 Rope Climb
100 Double Unders
10 Power Snatch 115/75#
4 Rope Climb

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Rope climbs

There are many ways to tackle the rope. Different coaches have different preferences for how they like to stay clamped onto the rope, but the basics of actually getting from the floor to the rafters is generally the same: hold on tight with your grip and do a knees-to-elbows. Climbing (at least not legless climbing, anyway) is all about the legs — standing up on the rope, tucking your knees up as high as you can, pinching the rope between your feet to clamp down on it, and then standing up again. Below is a video of elite Crossfitter Jason Khalipa demonstrating some rope climbs, with a quick tip: Jump up high for that first pull, so you climb faster.


sonsof

Sons of Liberty Whiskey Tasting

This Saturday 5pm. 1425 Kingstown Road South Kingstown, RI 02879. If you want to carpool meet at CFP around 4:10PM. $25 for a tour and unlimited tasting! Email elizabeth@crossfitprovidence.com. You can pay them there.


420

Workout of the Day 21 April 2014

Photo: Dave Counts

Hip Openers

From a kneeling position, explode hips, and land on feet.

Strength/Skill Fitness and Sport

A1) Power Clean
5 Sets, 3 Reps, Rest 30 Seconds

A2) Trap 3
3 Sets, 12 – 15 Reps Each Arm

Use a very light weight, ensure you retract the scapula before each rep

MetCon Fitness

6 Rounds for time:
10 Ring Rows/Pull Ups
10 DB Strict Press
10 K2E, Knee Tucks
10 Burpees

MetCon Sport

6 Rounds for time:
10 Pull Ups
10 HSPU
10 T2B
10 Burpees

 


419

Workout of the Day 20 April 2014

Photo: Dave Counts

There will only be a 8AM and 9AM class today, due to the Holiday.
Happy Easter Sunday!

Strength/Skill Fitness and Sport

Muscle Up Progression Work
15 Mins to work on Progression

Spend time working on the foundation work of Muscle Ups – Pull Up to Chest on Rings, Ring DIps, False Grip Pull Ups, Transition Work with Bands, etc. Use “The Ring Thing” to build muscle memory for transition portion

MetCon Fitness and Sport

4 sets for Max Reps of:
30 seconds of Double-Unders
30 seconds of Rest
30 seconds of Dumbbell Ground to Overhead
30 seconds of Rest
30 seconds of Row Sprint
30 seconds of Rest


417

Workout of the Day 19 April 2014

Photo: Dave Counts

A normal day at the box.

Coach’s Choice

Strength/Skill Fitness and Sport

A1) Strict Press
5 Sets, 5 Reps, Tempo 3212, Rest 30 Seconds

Barbell or Dumbbell Shoulder to Overhead with no lower body movement

A2) Ankle/Calf Mobility
5 Sets, 30 Seconds

30 Seconds working on Ankle and Calf Mobility with Foam Roller or LAX Ball

MetCon Fitness

5 Rounds:
5 x OHS
5 x Wall Climbs (or highest Handstand hold with chest against wall)
5 x Power Cleans
15 x Air Squats
*use the same weight for OHS and Power Cleans

MetCon Sport

Modified Man Test
5-4-3-2-1
Squat Snatch 95/65#
HSPU
5-4-3-2-1
Clean and Jerk 155/115#
Pistols, then
Max Muscle Ups in 3 Mins

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Be impressive

Easy but hard. That’s the strict overhead press in a nutshell — it’s an easy movement, but it’s difficult to lift the weight and increase your max. Athletes with a little bit of training can add loads of weight to their max deadlift in a year, but increasing the press happens oh-so-slowly. Here’s a great article from Lift Big Eat Big with three tips for increasing the amount of weight you can push overhead. It may not add 20 pounds to your press overnight, but it can’t hurt.


kelly

Workout of the Day 18 April 2014

This Saturday is the first skills workshop with Felix, he will be working on double unders (10AM free to members). Kelly is also holding the women’s workshop from 1-3.

Banded Shoulder Mobility

Strength/Skill Fitness and Sport

Inverted Work
15 Mins

Spend 15 Mins working on your progression level of Inverted work.
1st Level – Behind the Neck Strict Press @ 50% Body Weight, for 3-5 Reps (4 Sets)
2nd Level – Hold Handstand against wall, with Chest facing wall. 4 Set of 60 Sec Holds with 60 Seconds Rest between Sets.
3rd Level – Strict / Kipping Handstand Push Ups against wall
4th Level – Free Standing Handstand work

Test

Hollow Hold Test
Max Effort – Score is Seconds of Hold

Hold a perfect Hollow Hold for as long as possible

MetCon Fitness

For Time:
Complete 50 Box Jumps (or Step Ups)
On the start of Each Minute, complete 5 Push Ups, begin with the 5 Push Ups.

MetCon Sport

For Time:
Complete 50 Burpees Box Jumps.
On the start of Each Minute, complete 5 Pull Ups, begin with the 5 Pull Ups.


418

Workout of the Day 17 April 2014

Photo: Dave Counts

Mid-Week Update…
Hope everyone’s training is going well, just wanted to touch base and give you a few key points for today.  We are still in the first session of the Max Effort Black Box Lifts/Movements.  With today being Back Squat day, we wanted to address using Tempo in your Strength portion today.  The Tempo is 3212, which means you will take 3 seconds to lower yourself into the bottom of the Squat, 2 seconds to hold at the bottom, 1 second to drive back up to a locked out standing position, and a 2 second pause between each rep.  We are encouraging all Athletes (Fitness & Sport track) to use this Tempo, but we also understand if you do NOT feel comfortable holding a heavy load on your back in the bottom of the squat.  It is understandable if you want to just complete 5 Reps at normal pace, but we ask you at least try a few warm up reps using the prescribed Tempo.  Also, if you have never “dumped” weight off your back, please execute a few dumps during your warm up sets, just check behind you prior to initiating you lift to make sure it is all clear.
Lastly, today’s MetCon has Rowing for Calories, remember that with this style of rowing, it is crucial you focus on big, strong, solid pulls with a long, slow recover stroke; rather than just trying to move as fast as possible back and forth on the rower.  Good Luck!

Labor Position

Hold Labor Position against wall for 60 Seconds, apply PNF stretching to increase hip mobility

Strength/Skill Fitness and Sport

A1) Back Squat
5 Sets, 5 Reps, Tempo 3212, Rest 30 Seconds

A2) Powell Raises
3 Sets, 12 – 15 Reps Each Arm

MetCon Fitness

3 Rounds:
10 x Calories on Rower
15 x Burpees
10 x K2E, Knee Tucks, or Kick Ups
10 x Walking Lunges holding KB or DB against Chest

MetCon Sport

3 Rounds:
10 x Calories on Rower
15 x Burpees to 6″ Target
10 x T2B
10 x Walking Lunges with Plate Overhead (45/25#)

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How to fail properly

You will fail at a back squat at some point. It happens to everyone — you’ll squat down with the bar on your back and not be able to stand back up. Dumping a squat safely takes some finesse and a little practice, but the main thing is, just let go and move forward away from the bar as fast as possible. Check out the video below for a typical demo. And whatever you do, don’t do this.


Upcoming Events

  • April 26, 2014Skills Saturdays: Pull-Ups
  • April 26, 2014 5:00 pmSons Of Liberty Whiskey Tasting
  • April 30, 2014 7:30 pmCFP Mixer: Nick A Nees
  • May 1, 2014 7:00 pmBootin\\\' the Gluten intro Seminar
  • May 31, 2014 11:00 amMARTY
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