Saturday, May 29, 2010

In Albany, NY

I'm writing from my girls place in Albany, NY, which also just so happens to be my best friend from college's place as well, good ol' Kenny!  Today, he's getting married to his long time girlfriend, and a whole slew of people are around to celebrate.  A huge congratulations to both of them!

I got some light activity in yesterday, today is busy busy, an tomorrow I plan on showing my respect for the soldiers who died, and the ones who fought and survived (my father included!), and the ones who are still fighting by doing the wonderfully painful WOD "Murph".  I was able to pick up a great weight vest yesterday from Dick's Sporting Goods, and I will be wearing that.  This will be the third time doing the workout, but the first with the vest, should be fun.

I'll also be putting some time into a post on monday.  It will be the two year anniversary of my mom's death, and with this time, it brings out a lot of inner reflection for myself and my life.  I have a ton going on, so much I want to do, and my mother was always such a huge supporter of everything.  I'll tell you all a few stories soon.

Until then, enjoy the great long weekend, get out a workout a few times, and take a moment to show your support for all those who sacrificed for our freedoms.

Never Stop, GET FIT.

Josh Courage

Thursday, May 27, 2010

A Hot Day

Today was damn hot.  I know it was in the upper 80's, but with the humidity, it felt more like 100.  I didn't really work out per say, but i spent all day outside training clients and cleaning up The Garage.  Also, I took a little stroll over to the Washington Waldorf School grounds to test out a couple things for the quickly approaching CrossFit Courage Games 2010.  And I'll tell you what, WOD #2 is going to be AWESOME!

So we all have a long weekend coming up and I think this would be a great time, if you haven't done so already, to get yourself on some sort of program, working towards a small collection of goals for the summer.  My personal fitness goals for the once I have settled into my new home in the West Coast are:

Deadlift 500#
Squat 405#
Strict press #185
100 unbroken Push Ups
60 unbroken kipping/butterfly Pull Ups
5 unbroken Handstand Push Ups
Sub 5:30 mile
Sub 20-minute 5k

I know with my pretty strict programming, and new, dedicated approach to my nutrition, I can achieve all of these.  Even though I feel pretty weak right now.  And while I attack some fun things for myself, I give all my clients/athletes the chance to get some goals for themselves for the summer.  Then, I plan to sit down with them and work with them on a plan to get there.  I say, find a few things, lifts, races, weight, body fat%, etc., sit down and dedicate yourself mentally to the achievement of these things.  Then if you're not sure how to go about pushing yourself towards them, give me a shout, I will be more than happy to help!

Next week welcomes the first week of June.  The first week to your new and improved training programs, nutrition programs, exciting adventures, lives and so on.  It also marks the week I will be sending out the recommended equipment list for the Courage Games.  So, keep following along, some great stuff will be coming out soon!

Never Stop, GET FIT.

Josh Courage

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

A New Little Change

So, since I have taken a new step in my computer wizz-ness (as in, I know how to create static pages on my blog!).  I have formed a page specifically for the CrossFit Courage Workout Of The Day.  To follow along the programming, just click on the button above and check it out.  I will have todays WOD, along with the past 6 days on there; and, f you are interested in looking back through the WOD archives, there will be a "WOD Archive" widget on the side of the site in the next couple days.  Easy as that folks!

So, this main page here will be returning to my everyday blogging.  My workouts, my thoughts, my adventures and information on things coming up, you know, like the CrossFit Courage Games 2010!

Today it was hot.  And I tried to stay outside as much as possible!  First, I ran with a client training for the DC Triathlon.  Then I went after some jerks.  This was my low-point of the day.  I felt so uncomfortable with the lift, I felt unstable and slow.  I got 205#, after a few fails that is.  But with an extra little breath, it shot up so easily.  Then, I failed 3 times at 225#.  This is a weight I really should have no problem with, and  felt plenty strong enough to actually get the weight over my head; but, I just did not have the technique at all.  Something to work on.  A lot!

I then went out for a nice 4-mile run with Ori, and we really got after the second half of it.  Felt real good to sweat that much, and to just feel so exhausted!  Then, in not-so-smart programming mode, I went after a very short metcon of:

3 rounds of:
50 meter prowler push 90#
20 pull ups.

Did it in 4:58, felt good, very, very tired, but good.  The best part was that this prowler worked!  I built it this morning, and it ran so smoothly.

Tomorrow is a down day for lifting, I'll be doing my "Insanity" workout and stretching a lot.  And, I'll be riding my commuter bike all about as I run a ton of errands.  Looking forward to a chill day physically, but so amped up to hit the heavy weights again on Friday!

In Courage Games news: we are getting closer and closer now!  The WODs are officially ready to go, sponsors in line (lululemon has signed on in a BIG way folks!), and I will be working on the fuel options  while there, I'll be emailing all registered athletes in a few days about that.  In the meantime, let me know if you have any questions, comments or concerns.

Never Stop, GET FIT.

Josh Courage

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Wednesday - 5/26/10

"Chain Up The Posterior"
4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4 Rack Pulls (60 seconds rest between sets)

rest 3 minutes

3 sets of 3-6 reps of (30 seconds between supersets):
Self-loaded barbell Split Squats (no rack or cage, get bar to your shoulders from ground)
Glute/Ham Raises

rest 3 minutes

For Time:
800 meter sandbag run
800 meter unweighted run

No Gym WOD:
For time:
50 walking lunges
50 jumping lunges
50 squats
50 jumping squats
20 walking lunges
20 jumping lunges
20 squats
20 jumping squats
run a mile

Well, upon further testing, and further deliberation, I have decided to "chop" out the original 2nd workout.  The plan was to utilize an axe, and because of safety concerns and a few other reasons (feel free to ask any questions AFTER the event as I will just give you an annoyed look before that; I really wanted to do this workout!) I had to get rid of it.  BUT...

I came up with something that I am legitimately as excited about.  Tomorrow and the rest of the week is testing of these WOD's, not to judge weather or not we can do them, but rsther to get an idea of scores.  At this point I am 100% on what we will actually be doing on June 19th, so again, get to work!  And expect to have a fraking blast out there.  This is going to be challengeing, but so damn fun!

Sign up now!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Tuesday - 5/25/10

"Quick First Step"
10 x 10 yard sprint
rest 30 seconds between sprints.  Be quick!

8 x 100 meters
rest on your walk back to start

4-corner drills

No Gym WOD:
Same thing

Following this years build-up to the CrossFit Games, I have been so excited to see the innovative workouts that are being implemented.  Logs, weight vests, tires, sleds, double unders on the grass, trail runs, sand bags, and so on.  It's been a nice couple months of seeing really well-thought-out exercises and workouts, and it has been inspiring.  The great thing is: while I have always been partial to these awesome tools to train with, I have so rarely seen them being used on such a large stage.  It pumps me up to no end to see that these are the types of things CrossFit might be leaning towards, and as CrossFit grows, it can only mean that more and more people will be seen flipping tires down the street and running around the neighborhoods with sandbags draped over their shoulders.  What else can people come up with in terms of workout tools?  Just walk into the woods, a lumber yard, a junk yard, a garage; I can guarantee it, you will find something perfect for a great workout.

The competitive field for this, the first ever CrossFit Courage Games (or, Courage Games as seems to be catching on...) seems to be a perfect mixed bag.  As of now, with over a third of the total number already signed up, we are actually just about 50/50 men and women!  This is exciting to me to think we might get 30 men and 30 women out there to battle it out in the great outdoors.  A greater step in CrossFit too, something I am seeing more and more in fact, that women are coming out in much greater numbers to try out the impressive effects of working out hard.

Here at Courage Performance, we just got two new people on board to help out through the summer, and that can only mean one thing: more info for you!  Pictures, videos, some cool product coming up, more programs, fun stories and interesting adventures throughout the summer.  This week is going to be a big one towards the Courage Games prep, so get signed up, hit the gym a little harder, drag your weights outside in fact, and feel just how much harder you will work when in nature.  Let me know thoughts on workouts, ideas for food for the after-party, anything and everything.

So much excitement I can barely handle it!!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Monday - 5/24/10

"Dinosaur To CrossFit"
3, 3, 3, 3, 3 Zercher Squats

Thursters 95/65
Pull Ups

No Gym WOD:
Find something heavy, hug it and do this:
20, 17, 14, 11, 8, 5

The Zercher squat is one of those completely under-utilized lifts.  It loads the front of the body in an even greater way than the front squat, and forces an incredible amount of core strength.   Big fan of mixing this lift in every now and again, especially heavy.

Fran, well, Fran is just brutal.  On paper she looks like a not-so-bad workout, but when you get midway into that first round, you realize just want you got yourself in to.  Best time out there is sub-2, that is fast.  Good luck with this one!!

Detail number one for the CrossFit Courage Games 2010:  expect to be moving fast!  The idea behind this competition is to get away from what it seems to me CrossFit has settled into. Mind you, there are tons and tons of places out there who use pretty unconventional styles for training in their programming; but, it's still dominated by box jumps, wall balls, deadlifts, pull ups and so on.  I have always been a fan of getting people outside and utilizing the great outdoors as the gym.  So, that is where we are headed on June 19th; outside and unconventional!

Sunday - 5/23/10

Rest Day

Go for a hike, play some sports, have an adventure...!

We have officially run our first test of some of the fun expected at the CrossFit Courage Games 2010.  And after a while of fun, with a great collection of people, we have decided that this event, the one I had been a little worried about for a bit now, is most likely going to happen!

Because of the unique qualities of this specific WOD, there are still a couple things I want to try out before dropping anything hints on all of you.  But I can assure you, if this gets the go-ahead, we will be throwing out a training tool first thing on Monday so everyone can get to work.  There will be absolutely no information given on what the WOD actually is, just a little hint on what we will be doing within the WOD...

Hell yeah man, this is going to be good.

In other news; I am working on getting a healthy, paleo-friendly meal available for purchase during the event, and will be sending out information on interest for that.  If any of you have any thoguhts on what you might want to eat for a good lunch out there, post to comments.

Also, feel free to throw out thoughts on WODs and such.  Let's get a little dialogue going!  I am curious what people are thinking...

Friday, May 21, 2010

Saturday - 5/22/10

"Going Sledding"
6, 6, 4, 4, 2, 2 Push Press (90-120 seconds rest between sets)

rest 10 minutes

10 x 100 meter Sled Sprint (75/45)
(rest is walk back 100 meters)

No Gym WOD:
5 rounds of:
Pike Push Ups/Hand Stand Push Ups
100 meter Sprint
(1 round = max rep presses, rest 30 seconds and repeat.  Sprint 100 meters and walk back as recovery)

Sled/prowler work is something I have always thought very highly of, but have never really been able to do with people.  When I was at Balance Gym, we used to pull sandbags across the floor, but since the opening of The Garage, we have not had the ability to do this.  Until now!

I have been testing out different ways to throw together your typical items from a great day at Home Depot to create the perfect sled.  And I have come up with two.  Tested one out the other day and it was perfect.  The other will have pushing capabilities, and I plan to program that in early next week.  I will post up pics and vids on this stuff next week.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Friday - 5/21/10

"Filthy Fifity"
50 Box jump, 24 inch box
50 Jumping pull-ups
50 Kettlebell swings, 1 pood
50 steps Walking Lunge,
50 Knees to elbows
50 Push press, 45 pounds
50 Back extensions
50 Wall ball shots, 20 pound ball
50 Burpees
50 Double Unders

No Gym WOD:
50 Tuck Jumps
50 Pulls (pull ups on something, inverted rows)
50 Swings (put a few water bottles in a bag, improvidse for weights)
50 steps Walking Lunge
50 Leg Raises
50 Push Press (use improvised weight, or do push ups)
50 Supermans
50 Squat Jumps (or improvise wall ball with weights)
50 Burpees
100 Jumping Jacks

This is the first of the "staple" CrossFit workouts I have put into the programming.  A perfect example of a chipper.  It's a fun one!!  If you do not have the proper equipment, this is a great time to begin to learn about finding ways to use your daily surroundings as tools for increasing fitness.  Water bottles, rocks, logs, etc.  One of the best ideas for when in a hotel room or something like that, double or triple up on a plastic shopping bag, fill it with water bottles or rocks and there you go.  For a good barbell (and for added stability work) hang evenly weighted bags on the end of a broom stick or shower rod.  for pull ups, use the top of a door, sure you'll bump your head a little, but it still works.  Use the edge of a table for inverted rows, chairs for dips and box jumps.  The second you think of one thing, you'll realize that the world really can be a gym!  

There is never any excuse to not work out.  There is always something to use.

Even more spots have been filled for this summers CrossFit Courage Games 2010!  Claim your spot soon!  Just confirmed some pretty cool items and support form lululemon, so everyone should be expecting prizes and raffles galore!!  Updates will be posted here and on the Courage Performance site, but the most immediate updates will be on the Courage Performance Facebook page.  If you are not a fan, go do it now!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Thursday - 5/20/10

"Hard Mile"
3 x 1-mile (1600 meters) run

No Gym WOD:
Yup, same thing.

Run 1 mile for time, hard.  Rest 1-5 minutes with easy walking or jogging.  Then repeat, trying to beat that last time.

New announcements will begin on the CrossFit Courage Games 2010 next Monday.  I have been consulting with outsiders, judges and friends (all whom are NOT competing of course) about the workouts and have been able to sift out any major issues that may have been hiding in there.  As of now, we have a good selection of people signed up, and are expecting that registration will be open for a good deal of time (60 competitors IS quite a bit).  But, to be safe, if you are on the fence at all...sign up!  The workouts will be scalable, they will be fun, and challenging. 

I know that while there will be a handful of people out there who will most likely be beasts, there will mostly be your average CrossFitter looking for an awesome experience.  So if that's something your interested in, competition, good food, incredible support and something you will remember for a long time, either sign up, or mark it on your calanders as something to check out on June, 19th!

Get to training folks, we are a month away!!

CrossFit Courage Games 2010

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Wednesday - 5/19/10

"Clean Up The Mess"
4, 4, 2, 2, 2 Cleans

AMRAP in 10 minutes of:
20 Hammer Strikes
10 Pull Ups
10 Burpees

No Gym WOD:
AMRAP in 15 minutes of:
20 Prone wipers (on stomach, raise legs and chest, do a jumping jack motion)
12 Touch star jumps (touch the ground in a squat, jump and spread all limbs)
12 Sit ups
6 Clapping push ups

New shirts!  New Toys!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Tuesday - 5/18

"Be A  Bear"
[Taken from WOD 1 at the CrossFit Games East Central Regional Qualifiers]
5, 4, 3, 2, 1 of
Muscle Ups
Bear Complex 115/75
Clean, front squat, press, back squat press

Perform 5 muscle ups, then 5 rounds of the complex.  That means, go through one rep at each movement 5 times.  Then 4 muscle ups and 4 times of the complex.  So on so forth until 1 each.

No Gym WOD:
50 bupees
run 400 meters
40 burpees
run 300 meters
30 burpees
run 200 meters
20 burpees
run 100 burpees
10 burpees

Every day we're getting a few more registrants for the CrossFit Courage Games 2010.  Register now!!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Monday - 5/17/10

"Sumo Beast"
10, 10, 10, 10, 10 Sumo Deadlifts (90 seconds rest between sets)

no more than 5 minutes rest

4 rounds of:
25 meter weighted rope pull
30 wall balls
30 toes to bar

No Gym WOD:
3 rounds of:
100 meter duck walk
100 meter bear crawl
50 tuck jumps
50 pike sit ups

Just came back from a Home Dept run where I was able to get a car towing rope that will be perfect to climb.  For the WOD today though, we will be using a normal rock climbing support rope (any rope will do for this).  I have decided that rope usage in working out is such a great tool.  You can climb, swing, pull, drag, it is so versatile and functional that I am convinced anyone looking to become truly fit needs to have a good collection of it around.

We also got a few other tools at The Garage, I will post a couple pictures up for tomorrow to show everyone what I got!  And I know plenty of you will be analyzing each picture and word that I put up here to try to figure out what the workouts might be for the CrossFit Courage Games, but I can assure you, nothing will slip unless I want it to!

Speaking of the competition though, we have agreed to donate a portion of every single registration fee to Steve's Club.  Steve was generous enough to help out in supplying some great Paleo Kits for my ride across the country, and since then, I have been talking with them about ways to spread the word of fitness to those who need it but can not afford it.  I personally have a couple programs that are being organized as we speak for the DC area and I know Steve's Club will be a part of them.  And when CrossFit Courage and Courage Performance hit the West Coast, we will continue our passion to get children and families active and healthy!

Updates will be coming out this week, and I expect a great deal of spots to fill up as well, so register soon to secure your spot!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Saturday/Sunday - 5/15 & 5/16/10


Given the unique nature of the workouts being performed at the first ever CrossFit Courage Games 2010, I know there is going to be a little concern and excited anticipation for what people are getting themselves into.  So I have decided to drop the first hint on what is to come in just over a month by actually designing the CrossFit Courage programming around preparing for the competition.

For today and tomorrow, go out and be active, strength train if you'd like, run, bike, swim, play some sports, it's your call.  Just know that on Monday we start heavy.

Registration has been up for a few days now and there are plenty of spots open still, but I will give the heads up that it has been sent to all the local affiliates.  I know that ones the coaches send the info out to their athletes, the spots will rapidly disappear, so get on it and sign up now!

I also wanted to touch on what the event will hold for spectators.  There will be food and drink for sale throughout, plenty of shaded areas to get out of the sun (assuming it will get pretty hot out there in mid-June) and if you have kids around, there are more than enough entertaining jungle gyms and areas for people of all ages around. 

After the event is over though, I hope that people can join us as we move from the Washington Waldorf School grounds, about 200 yards through a wooded path to The Garage.  We will be having a post-competition potluck-style cookout and pool party, with plenty of meat on the grill, fruit, veggies, drinks and probably a great deal of other choices as well.  Everyone is more then welcome to stay for however long they'd like; just bring over something to add to the table, and enjoy yourself!

This next week is going to be filled with new information and great workouts as we get closer and closer to the event, so get to working, and mark your calenders!


Josh Courage

Friday, May 14, 2010

Firday - 5/14/10

"Go Run"
5k (3.1 miles)

No Gym WOD:
Same thing

If you do not already do the whole barefoot thing, take your shoes off after your run and do some light jogging around a grassy area.  If you are serious about getting in the best shape of your life, then it's time you start the transition to being barefoot as often as possible.  I will always be supplying more information on this.

The CrossFit Courage Games 2010 is generating some buzz now, registration emails are coming in and I am excited to tell everyone that there will be a few hints dropped next week.  So keep checking in and get to training!

Register Here 

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Thursday - 5/13/10

"Meat Head"
5, 5, 5, 5, 5 Bench Press
Super-set with 3 eccentric Pull Ups (jump up, 8-10 seconds down)

6, 6, 6, 6 Bent Row
Super-set 5 eccentric Push Ups

10 minute rest

3 rounds for time of:
400 Meter Run
21 KB Swings (1.5 pood/55lbs)
12 Pull Ups

No Gym WOD:
2 rounds:
20 push ups
20 wide push ups
20 close-grip push ups

2 rounds:
20 sit ups
20 leg raises
20 sit up to jumps

3 rounds:
Max rep pull ups/inverted rows

The CrossFit Courage 2010 is getting great feedback.  Spots are filling up, people are talking and we are expecting some great things!  The guys at Rogue Fitness have donated some great things for our winners, and we are seeing some really cool prizes, enough to have a little raffle going on throughout the day as well!

Remember to register asap, as the spots are filling up and we are only taking 60 competitors for this one!

Wednesday - 5/12/10

 "Pick It Up"
10 minutes to establish a 1 Rep Max deadlift (as many attempts as needed)

5 minute active rest (walk, jog, move)

21-15-9 of:
GHD Sit Ups

2 minute rest

4 rounds of:
100 meter weighted run
50 double unders

No Gym WOD
Sit ups

2 minute rest

4 rounds of:
100 meter weighted run / 200 meter run
50 tuck jumps

Something I learned over the past couple years is the genious concept of active rest between exercises or workouts.  What this means is that you will be recovering from any sort of real intensity while still doing something productive for your fitness.  This sort of rest can consist of just moving around a little more than swaying your body, like jogging, jumping jacks or speed walking and easy biking, to working specific corrdination drills.  One of my favorites is standing in an athletic position and having playing cards thrown at you; the goal is to catch the cards with one hand.  This will automatically keep the heart rate up a little bit, but will keep you sharp and ready for pretty much any demand and load.  It will also help to increase hand-eye coordination, something I feel is under-practiced by most CrossFitters and athletes.

In other news, the official announcement for the CrossFit Courage Games 2010 CrossFit competition his happened!  If you want to sign up, just click the link on the left of this site and you can register there.  More details are up at and on the FaceBook page (if your not a friend on FaceBook, go ahead and be one!).

Monday, May 10, 2010

Tuesday - 5/11/10

"Push It Up"
4, 4, 4, 4 Dumbbell Overhead Press (1-arm)

4, 4, 4, 4 KB Clean and press (each arm, alternating each rep)
20 figure eight passes immediately following each set

"Broken Jackie"
4 rounds for time of:
250 Meter Row
25 Thursters 45/25
10 Pull Ups

No Gym WOD:
30 HandStand Push Ups / 20 Negatives
(no time, just get it done)

4 rounds for time of:
50 meter bear crawl
10 Sit Ups
10 Burpees
10 Sit ups

If you don't know something, it's always as easy as just "googling" it.  Information is out there for the taking and these days, when it comes to details on lifts, workouts, programming and nutrition, there is  an endless supply.  Check out the CrossFit Journal.  Check out T-Muscle, check out other athletes blogs and ideas.  If you feel lost when it come to how to go about doing this whole fit life thing, remember, it's all about finding your own way.  Use other peoples advice and help, but you'll have to find the way yourself if you want to truly be fit, healthy and happy.

Monday - 5/10/10

"Strong Legs"

5, 5, 5, 5, 5 Front Squats (unlimited rest)

rest 2 minutes

6, 6, 6, 6 Dumbbell Step Ups (each leg) (90 sec. max rest)

rest 2 minutes

100 Push ups
(Every break, run 50 meters out and back)
(A break means any sort of rest.  Any)

No Gym WOD:

200 squats
(Every break, run 50 meters out and back)
(A break means any sort of rest.  Any)

rest 2 minutes

100 Push Ups
(Every break, run 50 meters out and back)
(A break means any sort of rest.  Any)

Front squatting is one of those exercises that I think gets under-used by most serious CrossFitters.  While is has almost identical effect as a good back squat (the different weight load obviously effects a different sequence of muscle activation and use), it also is a major core stabilizing move, more so then the back squat.  This is so because of where the load is placed.  Load something to your back, and you will naturally stand a little more upright.  Load something to your front, and it will pull your forward like crazy, forcing you to activate all core muscles to make sure you can just stand there.  Then, perform a squat with that load, and you have to fight like crazy to keep proper posture.  It is an extremely difficult and effective exercise.

The toughest part of this move is the hand position.  Many people struggle with the racked position of the bar because of shoulder and wrist tightness (see first picture).  The arms crossed grip generally works fine, and I have used this with a good deal of people but only as a transition.  If one hopes to be able to comfortable perform any barbell pressing exercise, cleans, handstand push ups and dip (to name a few), one will need mobile shoulders and wrists.  So, the goal is to move away from the arms crossed grip, with the hopes of increasing range of motion in the arm joints.  This is an argument I have had with many trainers, and I just lay down a couple points here.  There is plenty more info out there on both grips if you are curious.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Sunday - 5/9/10

Rest Day

Go Play some sports!

It should be a very rare occasion that we as humans do no activity in a day.  And those times should only be when/if we are really, really sick.  If your day calls for no workouts, go for a walk, play some ball or frisbee, hang outside with friends and family and just be active.  Your body wants to move, so turn the TV and computer off, get off the couch, get outside and do something!

Some Inspiration:
Arizona WOD
Jungle Gym Workout
California Coast WOD

Friday, May 7, 2010

Saturday - 5/8/10


Interval run, swim, bike, row

5 minutes easy
20 minutes of:
1 minute hard, 2 minutes soft
5 minutes easy

No Gym WOD:

The Same

Interval training has been shown to be the all time best way to cut fat.  What ends up happening is that you force your heart rate to spike, then drop, spike, then drop, and this forces your body to work extra hard, boosting metabolism and burning up calories like crazy.  The biggest difference between interval training and say, the WOD on Thursday, is that with sprint work, one is meant to go 100%, all out each sprint.  Intervals calls for a greater exertion than just moving, but not a complete max effort each "hard" section.  The idea is that when going hard, you get yourself to about 80-90% of your anaerobic threshold, then drop down to the max aerobic threshold rate during the recovery portion.

Mixing in conditioning to your practice, intervals and just straight aerobic training, will aid recovery in a great way.  You will train your body to be able to lower the hear rate quickly; and ones ability to control ones heart rate has a direct correlation to ones overall athleticism.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Friday - 5/7/10

Friday Chipper
(Mostly taken from WOD #4 at the East Central Regional Qualifier)
400 Meter Run
50 Box Jumps 24"/20"
40 Kettlebell Overhead Swings 24/16kg
30 Burpees with jump over sand bag
20 Sand Bag Cleans from ground to front squat 50/30lbs
10 Dumbbell Shoulder to Overhead 65/40lbs
20 Sand Bag Cleans from ground to front squat 50/30lbs
30 Burpees with jump over sand bag
40 Kettlebell Overhead Swings 24/16kg
50 Box Jumps 24"/20"
400 Meter Run

For a little extra: do 15 air squats between each exercise.

No Gym WOD:
400 Meter Run
50 box/tuck jumps
40 Sit Up to Jumps
30 Burpees
20 Broad Jumps
20 Ice Skaters
30 Burpees
40 Sit Ups to Jumps
50 Box/Tuck Jumps
400 Meter Run

For a little extra, you got it, 15 air squats between exercises.

Chippers are a blast.  Basically, taking a well-thought-out collection f exercises, mostly at a high rep counts and just blasting through them.  CrossFit has popularized this like crazy and they truly are just a fun, fun way to get an awesome workout in.  For anyone new to CrossFit though, remember that there is a ton more to general fitness than just being able to do a ton of work really fast.  I see so often, people get excited about this sort of thing and begin programming them in every day.  That is a sure fire way to overtrain, and come down with some sort of overuse injury.

Scale it back a little, keep them as a special WOD for a cool group of people, or a vacation on the beach (workouts on the beach are up there in the est ever locations!).  I will probably program some form of chipper each Friday.  As I always say to my baseball guys: "Friday Fun-day!"

Total Inspiration To Run Around More

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Thursday - 5/6/10

Track Work
10 x 100
4 x 200
2 x 400 (50%)

Rest is distance back to start, plus 30 seconds.
Rest an extra 30 seconds between distance changes.

No Gym WOD
Same thing!

All out sprint!  Make sure to post your times.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Wednesday - 5/5/10

Be Strict
6, 6, 6, 3, 3, 3 Strict Press
(90 seconds rest between sets)
5 minute rest

12 minutes AMRAP of:
2 Handstand Push Ups
4 Strict Pull Ups
50 Meters Farmers Walk 75/45 (db)
50 Meters Bear Crawl

Plank Hold
2 attempts, as long as you can

No Gym WOD
20 Minutes AMRAP of:
2 Handstand Push Ups
4 Pull Ups / 8 Inverted Rows (strict)
6 Burees
8 Inverted Rows / 4 Pull Ups (strict)
10 Dive Bomber Push Ups
50 Meters Bear Crawl

Plank Hold
2 attempts, as long as you can

Working on strict movements is something I have begun to see more and more in the CrossFit community.  Generally speaking, one thinks of CrossFit as being wild and crazy, kipping, throwing, running and slamming.  But that is the uneducated, outside perspective.  If one truly wants to become more athletic, and as fit as possible, building strength and perfecting control of the body through a range of motion is extremely important.

So, once you learn the kipping pull up, do not neglect strict ones.  Like the mention of plank work yesterday, learn to focus a little more on the control and stabilization of the body.  Your dynamic movements will do nothing but improve.

 Josh Courage Max Pull Up

Monday, May 3, 2010

Tuesday - 5/4/10

Deadlift Support
8 Deadlifts at the top of each round (60-75% 1RM)
10,9,8,7,6,5,4,3,2,1 of:
Sandbag Thrusters 50/30
Seated Rotations 20/10 (100, 90,80,70,60, etc.)
Back Extensions

No Gym WOD
1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,9,8,7,6,5,4,3,2,1 of
Lunges (each leg)

I was talking with a couple people the other day about the effects of heavy deadlifting on the spine.  One of the first things that falls apart with me is that my shoulder and scap strength fails, allowing my upper back to round a little bit as I pull the weight off the ground.  And then, once the weight gets good and heavy, my lumbar (lower) spine tends to move a little.  Check out this video from my 1RM a while back, notice the not-so-good- spine position throughout.

So what to do?  Build up your core man.  Now what I have found, a lot of people actually have much stronger cores than they think; it's really a matter of learning or re-learning how to activate and fire those muscles before getting into each rep.  I personally have done countless amounts of core work over the years, especially back when I played baseball.  But as I got more and more into CrossFit, I found that my focus on the stabilization of my core became less noticeable in my programming.  I got plenty of core work, for sure, but not much in the way of focused activation.  So all of a sudden, I can bang out GHD sit ups and toes to bar till the cows come home, but when I rip out 50 plus push ups, my stomach hits the ground before my chest.  I forgot to activate my core, and ultimately began to pay the price by creating an imbalance in my bodies strength.

Planks.  Do planks.  All variations and styles.  They are the best core stabilization exercises one can do.  The other, TRX.  If you do not know what this is, stay tuned to this blog, as I will be posting up a lot of WOD's with this little tool involved.  In the mean time, check out the links:

TRX Suspention Trainer
Plank Exercises

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Monday - 5/3/10

Run/Lift/Run Some More
800 Meter Weighted Run
50 Push Presses 75/45
50 Sit Ups
800 meter run
50 Push Press
50 Sit Ups
800 Meter Weighted Run

Wight is with vest, sandbag, ball, stone, anything.  Post weights and time

No Gym WOD
800 meter run
100 push ups
100 sit ups
800 meter run
50push ups
50 sit ups
800 meter run

Running in WODs is something I have always programmed and will probably program even more.  Long runs, short runs, weighted runs and just all out max effort runs.  I am a believer in the very modern line of thinking that we as humans were built to run, and I continue to see more and more proof that the addition to all styles of running will drastically improve ones fitness in a very short amount of time.

If you have knee, hip or ankle problems when you run, it could be because of any number of issues.  A good friend of mine eventually hurt his knee very badly because of the way his foot struck the ground; and over time it just wore away at his IT band and ultimately the attachment at his knee just gave out.  While getting a good running coach to analyze your form and getting a great PT to break down any movement issues are both very important, there is one thing all of us can do to immediately see improvements in our running, and that is:

Run barefoot.

I have seen time and time again, people with your typical running problems switch over to barefoot running and just like that, no more issues.  This mainly occurs because we allow our muscles to absorb all the impact, building natural strength in our joints rather than relying on thick, cushioned soles to take all the impact for us.  There are so many other reasons why this is a good thing for you to do, so read the links below, ask me, try it out for yourself (just go to a grassy area and keep the run short for your first few times), you will be amazed at the difference it makes.  Go get some Vibrams man!

Oh, and don't expect to wear those bulky shoes very much when you train with me!,7120,s6-240-319--6728-0,00.html

Sunday - 5/2/10

 Dynamic Hips
4, 4, 4, 4 Box Squats (3 second pause on box)
6, 6, 6, 6 Barbell Jumping Squats

90 seconds rest between sets, 5 minute rest between squat work and Tabata

Tabata (20 seconds on, 10 seconds off.  60 seconds between exercises) (8 rounds of each):
Hip thrusts
Quick Jumps
Ice skaters

No Gym WOD
Tabata (8 rounds each):
Hip Thursts
Quick Jumps
Ice Skaters

Getting a great, active warm up before getting such a hip dominate workload is very important (it is always very important to be honest).  The hips tend to be the most commonly tight area of most people, and this stems from being seated for such long periods of time, and from not utilizing a good range of motion (ROM) while moving around and exercising.  Because of this, it s so important to focus on getting the greatest ROM during the movements, and if you find you struggle with getting deep enough on the squat, make sure you take the time to focus on correcting that issue.  Check ROM in your ankles, your knees as well as your hips, focus on spine mobility and core strength.

Check out the Functional Movement Screen (FMS) for a great way to check for imbalances and weknesses in your bodies ability to move.  If you would like to get screeened officially, cintact me and I can get you an appointment with a great PT joint that uses it.

Reember, it's nt just about doing lots of movement, with lots of weight as fast as you can (that is CrossFit OVER simplified), it's about doing all that CORRECTLY.  If you want to be in the best shape of your life, and you want that to last for a very long time, take the time now to make sure your body can perform tha basic movements well.  A 300# back squat means nothing if you perform wrong.

How did the Riding With Courage WOD go?