I’ve been super busy with freelance lately and haven’t had much chance to blog. I am happy to report that I just launched a website for my friend’s gym, CrossFit Iron Legion, the newest CrossFit facility in Ocala, Florida. Please stop by and let me know what you think. The logos and graphic work were done by a fellow Firebaser, Patrick Randle, and I think he did a fantastic job.
I was able to implement a low cost solution for gym owner Ted Dreaver. I installed WordPress on his Hostgator account and loaded the premium theme Reaction by Brandon Jones. I tweaked the CSS and loaded some custom graphics and Ted was rolling within two weeks. Ted was looking for a dark, “gritty” theme so Reaction with it’s dark version worked really well here.
In its second year, Beast Mode Battle (BMB) is hosted by CrossFit Militia of Lauderhill, Florida. BMB boasted 334 competitors, making it one of the biggest regional events of the year. As usual, the men’s side of the house was well represented, with 199 male competitors between the Rx, Masters, and Scaled divisions.
The BMB claim-to-fame is a unique format where all events are back-to-back and completed in exactly 60’. I’ll explain below.
The setting was the Bergeron Rodeo Grounds. I’ve never competed in a rodeo stadium…scratch that, I’ve never been in a rodeo stadium, so this was a cool experience. There was ample space for spectating and the roof with huge fans made it reasonably cool. The competition floor was packed dirt. The dirt made the shuttle runs, walking lunges and burpees a little more challenging.
If you’re a GoRuck fan (aka “Rucktard”) and you haven’t heard about it, the Ruck Across America unofficially kicks off tonight in Coronado, California. I say unofficially because there is absolutely nothing official about this grassroots epic.
What is it? The GoRuck Challenge, which I’ve blogged about extensively, is a military-style multi-hour team challenge where participants run/hike with a backpack full of bricks. There are 2000+ GRC alumni as of today, with more getting added every weekend. I’ve participated in three GRCs myself and I’m a big fan.
The Ruck Across America is a relay by GRC alumni where a single GoRuck GR1 will make it’s way across the United States. On foot. With bricks. It’s estimated to be about a
10 8 month odyssey (end point is Fort Carson, Colorado in February 2013) and the participants are communicating via Facebook and cell phone to coordinate this human centipede of a relay. There is NO website. There is NO organizing body. There are NO entry fees. There are NO requirements. The whole thing started as a Facebook meme and exploded into an actual event that is happening now. You simply have to have a desire to carry a backpack full of bricks, on foot, for around 30 miles, somewhere in the United States.
For a hearty stretch of my life I was a professional rowing coach, from 1999 to 2009, and I coached at places like Duke, Florida Tech, and Louisville. I thought that was going to be my career. I was and am passionate about the sport and passionate about coaching.
My last major stop was the University of Louisville for a single year, where I was an assistant. It was during that season I realized what a bitch of a lifestyle I had. Without burdening the reader with too many details, let’s just say I worked from five in the morning until eight at night (and sometimes later), all week, and for a half day on Saturday. And when I was out recruiting, I also worked on Sundays. I remember once making recruiting calls at 3:00 am. To New Zealand. That might be sort of okay for a) the President of the United States or b) the head football coach of Alabama, but it’s not okay for a scrubby crew coach making $40K a year. I calculated my hourly take once and I think it was fairly close to minimum wage. At least it felt that way.
I did my third GoRuck Challenge over the weekend, Class 172 in Orlando. Originally I wasn’t going to participate because my left achilles is still jacked up, but I had a handful of friends register and they inspired me to jump in.
The starting point was the amphitheater at Lake Eola, a short walk from my house. One of my favorite parts of the whole deal was limping back home with my pals after it was done and soaking in the glory of the day and bitching about the experience.
I’ve noticed an interesting phenomenon about GoRuck. While they’re happening, they completely suck and I swear I’ll never do another one. Shortly afterwards, I remember the event with extreme fondness and the memory of the experience grows and grows. Just a few days later, I’m thinking about when to do the next one. It’s like Inception where you can’t tell reality from the dream. By Thursday, I was telling everyone what a blast it was and everyone should sign up.
I am rapidly approaching the three year anniversary of my relationship with CrossFit. Admittedly, CrossFit has been one of my best girlfriends, except for the part where I don’t get laid and it makes me pass out occasionally. Like with any girlfriend, it has its up and downs. Here are some insights and observations from three years.
* I approach CrossFit as a sport rather than a fitness tool. That’s another way of saying I want to dominate WODs.
* I don’t usually dominate WODs. That’s not an insight, just an observation.
* For the first two years I used CrossFit as a training tool to supplement rowing, my primary sport at the time. CrossFit is superior to all other cross training I’ve done in rowing, including some sophisticated programs at Division I colleges. If I was coaching a crew team right now, I’d replace our land training with CrossFit and a strength training plan wholesale.
It’s been well over a month since I last blogged and this pisses me off. Admittedly, I haven’t had the inclination to write because I recently changed jobs and the new joint has been siphoning away my creative juices.
To get back into it, I decided to try my hand at a sweet social media platform I discovered today, Storify. The brainchild of Pete Cashmore, Storify easily allows you to put together a “story” built from various social media channels and links to sites of your choice. It’s surprisingly addictive. Here’s my ode to Chris Spealler, who did nothing to dispel my man-crush over the weekend at Southwest Regionals.
See the embedded Storify story after the jump…
I picked up the Reebok Oly Lifters about three weeks ago and have been using them on a daily basis since purchase. I’ve probably clocked 20 workouts in the them, including several of the CrossFit Open WOD’s. These things kick ass. Here’s my review.
The Oly Lifters weigh 13.4 ounces per shoe, which is less than the hiking shoes I own. Yes, they are heavier than a typical pair of Inov-8′s, but they weigh less than every weightlifting shoe on the market. Heel-to-toe drop is a solid 3/4 of an inch. The heel is constructed of TPU (Thermoplastic Polyurethane) that feels solid as a rock and completely stable. The shoe from mid-foot through the toebox is flexible and light, which gives you a lot of flexibility for most movements during a WOD. I can comfortably do things like box jumps at any height and drop down from a bar without any problem. No, I wouldn’t run a mile in them, but I can dash from one station to the next without any problems. Rope climbing also works great.
I recently had the pleasure of interviewing via email and phone Steve Anderson, the CrossFit Games champ in the masters men 55-59 division. Steve is a TOTALLY AWESOME dude, one of the nicest guys I’ve talked to in the CrossFit community, which is saying a lot because the community is filled with really cool people. So, it’s a shame that he won’t be able to defend his title at the 2012 Games due to injury. Read my complete article on the CrossFit Games site. Steve has surgery schedule in April for a torn labrum and will be in rehab for many months after that.
If you haven’t heard Anderson’s story, it’s a remarkable one. He worked out purely at LA Fitness and was convinced by a friend to try some CrossFit WODs. (more…)
The first time I tried it I got 97 reps. That was at seven in the morning when I felt like ass. My knees, quads, and hips were smoked.
Pissed, I gave it another go on Saturday morning. Here’s what I did in a bulleted list:
- Ate two eggs and two pieces of bacon two hours prior.
- Popped a Claritin-D.
- Popped two Tylenol (extra strength)
- Jogged a 400.
- Did all of the mobility from the K-Starr video.
- Extensive hip and hamstring stretching