Sunday, October 31, 2010

Monday WOD

Strength WOD
Back Squat 3 X 5

WOD
Tabata Squats
alternated with (1 min, then switch)
Tabata Lunges

MWOD
Badass Pigeon - 2 min/leg
Hamstring Stretch - 2 min/leg
Calf Stretch - 1 min/leg

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Thursday WOD - Form Matters...

Here is a great post from CrossFit Charlottesville that explains why form is so important. There is so much truth in this article, and I hope you will all read it.

Form Matters - Do It Right or Don't Do It At All

WOD
AMRAP in 8 min of:
10 Pushups
10 Russian Twists (25lb plate, 10 per side)
10 Ring Rows

MWOD
Hamstring Stretch - 2 min/side
Calf Stretch - 2 min/side
Overhead Shoulder Stretch - 2 min/side - Like this ---> MobilityWOD

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Wednesday WOD

Strength WOD
3 X 5 Deadlift
3 X 10 Strict Toes-to-Bars

WOD
Tabata Row (for calories)
30 sec rest (to get off of rower)
AMRAP Situps in 3:00

Score is total calories plus half the number of situps completed. Post scores to comments!

MWOD
Hip Capsule Work  - 2 min/side - On soft surface on hands and knees, place most of the weight onto one knee and try to stick your femur out through your butt. Free style with it a bit, moving your hips to both sides, finding where there is restriction and focusing there; don't let your pelvis rotate down though, keep it horizontal.
Hamstring Stretch - 4 min/side - Exploring the inside and outside, see what's tightest, and work there.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Tuesday WOD

Strength WOD
3 X 5 Press
3 X 80% Max Rep Pullups

WOD
6 X 200m Sprints
2:00 Rest between efforts

MWOD
Psoas MF Release - 1 min/side
Hamstring Stretch - 2 min/side
Couch Stretch - 2 min/side

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Monday WOD - Banana peels, plant defenses, and saponins...

How saponins destroy cell membranes.

So what do banana peels and saponins have to do with health or peformance? Well bananas are surely a delicious way to get some carbs after a tough workout, but there are surely better choices like yams, sweet potatoes, and other tubers, right? But why are we talking about their peels, and what the heck are saponins?

Banana peels offer a great example of how plants have evolved chemical protection mechanisms for lack of physical protection(plants can't run away from animals, and they can't fight back physically, except for thorns and such).

On ThePaleoDiet.com, a reader stumbled upon the nutrient content of banana peels, was amazed at the rich nutrient profile, and posed a question asking for more information about the nutrition of banana peels.

At first glance, it looks like banana peels are the holy grail of nutrient density, eating only 50g of banana peel would provide you with 3900mg of potassium(110% RDA), 1200mg of sodium, 30 mg of iron(200%), 960mg of calcium(80%), and 3800mg of manganese(78,000%).


Sounds great right? To paraphrase from Dr. Cordain's response, however: the devil is in the details. The banana peel serves to protect the fruit from physical damage, and more importantly, from predators (birds, mammals, insects, etc) and pathogens (fungi, bacteria, etc).

The banana inside contains the reproductive material, it's seeds, which have to eventually make it into the ground intact and unharmed, so that they can produce offspring of the original plant. If the seeds are destroyed, then the banana plant could not reproduce, and would become extinct. However, the banana plant, as all other plants, has developed an evolutionary strategy involving chemical defense that allows it to survive and reproduce.

Banana peels contain a number of toxic substances to ward off predation and infection by bacteria and fungi. These substances are called antinutrients, and we have touched on a few of them in particular in the past, such as phytate, and lectins. Here's a new one though that banana peels, as well as legumes, potatoes and other nightshades, and grains contain in high quantities: Saponins.

Saponins are a class of compounds that have a lipid-soluble side, and a water-soluble side, giving them unique characteristics. They derive their name from their tendency to produce soap-like foaming when mixed with water. They are often bitter, and act in many ways to deter plant predation. What gives banana peels the bitter taste is that they contain 8 times the safe concentration limit of saponins (24mg/g).

Saponins also have toxic effects on ALL cells. They cause the membranes of all living cells to breakdown, killing the cells. If saponins are consumed in large enough quantities, saponins rapidly breakdown the cells lining the intestine, and enter blood circulation where they can destroy the membranes of red blood cells, which can cause death.

This is not simple theory either, in experiments with animals, even low doses of banana peel extract added to their normal food caused damage to their red and white blood cells, severely impaired growth, and strongly inhibited the production of thyroid hormone, necessary for a healthy metabolic rate.

To sum it up: Don't eat your banana peels, and don't eat grains or legumes either.


Strength WOD
3 X 5 Front Squat

WOD
15-12-9 of:
DB Clean & Jerk (50lb DB's)
Burpees

MWOD
Wide Squat Stretch - 2 min
Calf Stretch - 2 min/leg
Hamstring Stretch - 2 min/leg

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Wednesday WOD

Strength WOD
Deadlift 3 X 5
3 X Max L-Sit

WOD
AMRAP in 3 min of:
10 Hollow Rocks or V-Ups
10 Pushups
Rest 2 min
Row as far as possible in 3:00.

MWOD
Keg Drill w/foam roller - 2 min
Wide Squat Drill - 2 min
Hip Myofascial Release w/lacrosse ball - 2 min/side
Calf Myofascial Release w/lacrosse ball or partner - 1min/side

Monday, October 18, 2010

Tuesday WOD - Why Squat?

Why we squat...


Strength WOD
3 X 5 Push Jerk
3 X 80% Max Rep Pullups

WOD
3 rounds for time of:
10 Broad Jumps
20 Walking Lunges
30 Squats

MWOD
Couch Stretch - 2 min/leg
External Hip Rotation 1 min/leg
Paleo Chair - 4 min

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Monday WOD

Strength WOD
3 X 5 Back Squat

WOD

3 rounds for reps of:
AMRAP in 2 minutes of:
10 Situps
10 Squats
10 Pushups
Rest 1 min

MWOD
Hamstring Stretch - 2min/leg Contract-Relax
External Hip Rotation - 3 min/leg Contract-Relax

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Thursday WOD

Today, we'll be skipping the Strength WOD so we can work on mobility work longer after the WOD.

WOD
We'll be running on the track above the IMA today. We will run from one corner, to the next, doing 10-1 descending Burpees at each corner.
Example:
Run
10 Burpees
Run
9 Burpees
Run....

MWOD
Test: Squat with hands together overhead, as high as possible

Stretch Hip flexion and knee extension (hamstrings) 2 min / leg
Wide Squat Hip Mobility 2 min
Psoas MF Release 1 min/side
Stretch Foot Dorsiflexion (calf) 2 min/ leg
Couch Stretch - 2 min/leg

Retest: Squat with overhead hand reach

Wednesday WOD

Strength WOD
3 X 5 Deadlift

WOD
Hang Power Clean to Front Squat Ladder
Pick a weight that is around 2/3 your one rep max (or estimated max). Perform 1 rep the first minute, 2 reps the second, and on until failure to complete required reps within one minute.

MWOD
Couch Stretch -2 min per side
Paleo Chair - 6 min.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Tuesday WOD

Strength WOD
3 X 5 Push Press

WOD
6 X 200m Sprints

MWOD
4 Minutes in Paleo Chair
2 min Thoracic Spine Mobilization with Lacrosse ball per side
1 min Psoas mobilizing each side

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Monday WOD - Thruster Heaven

Strength WOD
3 X 5 Front Squat

WOD
AMRAP in 7 minutes of:
DB Thrusters (35lb DBs)

MWOD
2 min Front Rack Stretch/side
1 minute Freestyling hip mobility (ala pigeon pose on box/bench), then 2 minutes contract-relax bellybutton over foot, each hip (3 min/hip).

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Get comfortable with uncomfortable...



Greg Glassman, founder of CrossFit, once said that "The greatest adaptation to CrossFit takes place between the ears."

Intensity has been shown as the single independent variable most associated with positive adaptations to training, and CrossFit supplies plenty of it. Or does it?

CrossFit provides the opportunity for you to push yourself to your own limits and past. The work however, is in your hands, to continually push harder, endure more pain, and push past the urge to quit, to slow down, to set that bar down and take a breather.

Intensity hurts, even a newbie to CrossFit can tell you that. But it is in the most painful moments of a workout, when your lungs are burning, when your muscles are on fire, and you feel like you're suffocating, that the greatest benefit of CrossFit training is borne.

The pain of intensity is unlike any other pain. It's not like a headache from which you cannot escape, it's not the pain of a broken bone, it is one the athlete themselves have created, and are sustaining themselves. It's a pain that you could easily end by quitting, by giving up and laying down. However, it is this unique quality that builds the resolution, determinedness, and mental strength in those individuals that make up their minds to keep pushing.

CrossFit training develops the ability to get comfortable with pain, with the uncomfortable.

So the next time you are in the darkest part of your workout, when you feel like you're suffocating, like your entire body is on fire, and everything in the world says you should stop, remember, and tell yourself:

"This is the moment I become stronger."


Then pick up that weight again and refuse to quit! This is CrossFit at it's best, and it is a truly awe-inspiring moment, whether it occurs during a two minute Fran, or a fifteen minute one.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Thursday WOD - Money in the bank...

I'd like to compare training and performance to buying a car. Stay with me here for a sec, alright, this actually makes some sense.

I like to think of everything we do outside of the training itself as deposits in a bank. You do some foam rolling, there's some cash, eat right, big deposit in your account, make sure you get plenty of sleep and avoid stress, big bonus check from the boss.

Now, training is where you spend the money. A great training program is like finding a great quality car at a decent price, a lot of bang for your buck, you'll get great results for the effort put in. A ill-prepared program is like finding a slightly used car at a new car price, not a lot of value there, and a lot of effort wasted.

Now, if you don't invest in your account, by doing the right stuff such as sleeping, stretching, mobility work, minimizing stress, and taking care of everything else outside of training, you won't be able to afford the great results even if you find the great deal/program.

So my challenge to you is: How much money can you put in the bank?




Alright, my rant's over, to la entraĆ®nement!


Strength WOD
3 X 5 Bench Press


WOD
AMRAP in 2 min of:
Burpees


Rest 2 min


AMRAP in 2 min of
10 Pushups Unbroken
10 KB Swings Unbroken


Rest 2 min


Row as far as possible in 2 min.


MWOD
Squat - 6 min
Couch Stretch - 4 min (2min/side)

Wednesday WOD

Strength WOD
Deadlift 3 X 5

WOD
5 rds for time of:
10 DB Push Press (35#/20#)
10 Windmills (35#/20#, 5/side)
10 Burpees

MWOD
6 min in Squat position
4 min Couch Stretch (2 min/leg, freestyling)

Monday, October 4, 2010

Tuesday WOD - Releasing your parking brake...

Let's talk about muscles and fascia. Each muscle in your body is encased in a sheath of fibrous tissue called fascia. In a perfect situation, the layers of fascia allow muscles to slide easily over each other without any restriction. The layers of fascia are interconnected throughout your body, uninterrupted from head to toe, so tightness in one area can show up in other places. 

However, nearly none of us live in this perfect condition. Every night, when you sleep, or even for periods of time in which you don't move for a long time (airplanes, car rides, etc), tiny fibers develop between your muscles and fascia, taking away that perfect gliding action. Hard training actually accelerates this process of this "fuzz" generation.


Gill Hedley provides a great visual to explain this phenomenon.

So why does this matter?

Well, the increased friction in your muscles means you have to work harder to get the same amount of work done. It also will hinder your flexibility, and therefore your ability to get into the proper positions and express your power effectively. After a while, it can also hurt! You know those knots you get in muscles? Those are adhesions in the myofascial tissue. Your body is a Corvette, and we need to take off these parking brakes!

So what's a brother to do?
Let me introduce you to the humble lacrosse ball. It may not look like much, but it can be a vicious enemy and admirable friend at the same time. It's like that brutally honest friend that gives you the kick in the pants you need to do what you know you should.

The lacrosse ball is a very useful tool in myofascial release, or working out the fuzz. There are many ways in which it can be used, but the generally principle is:
1. Find where you're tight
2. Stick the ball there
3. Roll around on it
4. Don't make a private face...you'll know what I mean.

By rolling around on the lacrosse ball, you are gradually breaking up adhesions in the myofascial tissues, and this will be painful, especially at first. Most people are much tighter than they know and should start slowly and somewhat gently. 

Another technique that is rather useful for working on a concentrated adhesion (knot) is:
1. With the ball on the knot, contract that muscle hard for 5 seconds
2. Relax for 10 seconds
3. Repeat 6 times, or until adhesion is broken up.



Strength WOD
Alternating:
Press 3 X 5
Rest 90 seconds
3 X 75% Max Rep Strict Pullups or 3 X 10 Ring Rows (Example: If your max is 20 pullups, you will attempt to do 15 for each set)
Rest 90 Seconds

WOD
3 rounds for time of:
20 Squat Jumps
20 seconds L-Sit or 30 Laying Leg Raises
10 Pullups or Ring Rows

MWOD
Thoracic Spine Mobilization w/lacrosse ball(4 min per side)
Psoas Myofascial Release w/lacrosse ball(1 min per side)

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Monday WOD - The beginning of a new era...

An overview of the squat, specifically the Front Squat, High-Bar Back Squat, and Low-Bar Back Squat


Welcome back performance junkies! It's the first WOD of the new school year! The workout below will be likely the new format for the foreseeable future. I understand that is may take some time to get used to, and the training sessions may run slightly longer at first, but you will reap the benefits from smarter training. My understanding and knowledge of training, nutrition, performance, etc is always evolving and expanding, as should yours.

To start off the new training year, at the bottom of this post is a clip with some advice that you would be smart to apply to not only your workouts, but to the rest of your life as well, anytime you are faced with a difficult situation. Try it out next time you want to quit during a tough workout, tell yourself that you're going to keep going, that you're gonna get this next rep. I think you'll be surprised at how much of your limitations are in your head.


Strength WOD
3 X 5 Back Squat

WOD
Tabata Squats
Tabata Pushups

MWOD
Couch Stretch (4 min each leg)

The Greatest Adaptation