Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Anabolic Diet Induction


Run 2 miles

No-Pull-Up "Angie"

100 Push-up
100 Sit-Up
100 Squat


Calories: 1800
Protein: 155 g
Carb 35 g
Fat 115 g

Negative calorie balance = 1000

This was surprisingly easy. Unlike Atkins (10 g carb) this allows you to eat a pound of vegetables, and, therefore, is non-gross.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Accidental Progress

I made a 10-pound jump on the OHS today instead of the 5 I had planned. Sweet!

Overhead Squat 15-5-5-5


Bench Press


All fairly solid. Also, while I ate and drank too much (holidays) and gained weight, most of it seems to be muscle: I'm at 194 pounds at 18% bodyfat according to my scale, which would put me at nearly 160 pounds of muscle mass, which was my one-year goal. This means I still have a chance to be 11% bodyfat at the games with a lean mass of 160 and a bodyweight of 177. I got a different reading (24%!!) later in the day, so let's say 21% with lean mass of 153. Not so awesome. Feh.

I picked up Mario DiPasquale's Metabolic Diet (312 pages!)

Also a CFT of 1000 looks not too far off, maybe 6-8 weeks.

the 225 squat clean looks far away and 3-4 minute Fran seems almost unimaginable, but If I can manage to keep the strength gains and lean out who knows?

I have wanted to try this for a while, it looks promising.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Theoretical 1RM

This is the first time I have put my "Simple 3x5 for CrossFitters" to a personal test. It is working even better than expected.

Back Squat 5-5-5


Deadlift 1x5

365: this just flew up, it was so much easier than last week.

Deadlift from bottom pin of high-pin rack 1x5

495 (very hard)

Hang Power Clean 3-3-3


These lifts are predictive of a 1RM of:

Back Squat 295#

Deadlift 411#

I tried 400# at the end and it did seem like I could have pulled it fairly easily if I was fresh (I gave up on it, it did not seem safe).

Oh, and, funny story?

I have been pissed for a year and a half that I never got 400# on my last serious strength cycle. I was talking to Tom about it and pointed to the weight (8 plates) and said that is the most I have ever pulled, I was pissed I never got 400#. And Tom is like, um, Dude, that's 405#! DOH! So I did get it, and then I hurt my back trying to pull 410# (which I thought was 400. Double Duh, but I'm pleased that I have, in fact, pulled a 400 DL.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Paleokit 2

I contacted the maker of the awesome Paleokit. It turns out it is Steve Liberati the owner of Steve's Club. If you don't know what this is, check it out here. He is setting up an affiliate program and I plan on joining.


5 Rounds For Time:

Back Squat 135#, 15 reps
Deadlift 185#, 15 reps

Time: 18:14

I created this one, and it is only OK, very hard on the low back which makes it hard to really get roaring. I'm going to play around with this one, it has potential.

Protein: 170 g
Carb: 65 g

Negative Calorie Balance = 600

Tuesday, December 23, 2008


Great Idea! I'm going to find out if I can be a distributor, but from their website it seems like they cannot keep up with demand. Anyone out there want to collaborate on creating a similar product?



None(planned rest)

Negative Calorie Balance = +200 (fail)



Overhead Squat 15-5-5-5

Bench Press 5-5-5

Max Rep Dead Hang Pull-Up

Protein: 190 G

Carb: 60 G

Negative Calorie Balance = 300

Bailed on C2B kip attempt, my elbow told me not to.

Yesterday I saw an MD for the first time since I was T-Boned on CBR1100XX in 2000. Since I have no medical insurance I went to Quickhealth Medical for treatment of a nasty thumb infection. I have to say I was 1000% satisfied with this cash-only clinic serving mostly a Spanish-Speaking clientele (It's in the Oakland Barrio). I had to wait for an hour, but that is normal even if you have an appointment with a more mainstream Doc I suppose. Dr. Carlos Ramirez was the most pleasant MD I have ever seen and I was OTD with a tetanus shot and antibiotics for 139.00. Dr. Ramirez (who goes by Carlos)also said if my Naproxin Mega-Dose does not work for my elbow they can do a steroid shot for 99.00 OTD. I love it.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Jump-Start: Not Fail!

I did a hybrid CF Main Page WOD. I did do the 800 meter runs x 4, but per Gita D I worked on pacing trying to turn over 180 strides per minute. What a weird feeling! I did manage to get 180 in 4 of the minutes and I got 189 in the final minute. This slowed me down a lot, my splits were slightly over 4 minutes (although there were some big hills in this so I would not have gotten 3:00 splits even if I had just run all-out anyway.

I got a very ugly bar muscle-up! My first in many months, although my elbow warned me not to do it again. I could probably get a few ring M-U, but I think I will let my elbow heal more. Anyway, my elbow is healing, my weight is dropping and my strength is increasing. good things.

I also got the Rolling Thunder off the floor loaded up with 125#! I absolutely could not do this before, pretty exciting!

Finally I got a 75# 1-arm snatch. A very satisfying day.

Protein: 170

Carbs: 130

Negative Calorie Balance = 700

Friday, December 19, 2008

Terrible Thirty

Per my plan to cherry-pick the metcons off of the main site, since today is the Filthy Fifty and it just does not seem "strengthy" engough, I have come up with this bit of torture I'm calling the "Terrible Thirty". I'm actually not sure I can do it RX.

30 Box Jump, 30 inch box
30 Chest-To-Bar Pull-Ups
30 Dumbbell Swing 70 pounds
30 Walking Lunges with a 45# Plate held overhead
30 Ankles-To-Bar
30 Good Mornings, 95 pounds
30 Push-Press, 95 Pounds
30 Wall-Ball Shots, 20 pound ball, 12 foot target
30 GI Janes
30 Triple-Unders

I'm fairly certain I can do all of this except the triple-unders. I'll sub 100 double-unders if I can't do it.

If this turns out to be compelling, I think I will have my athletes do this tomorrow and then the straight FF the next Saturday.

This turned out not to be a good WOD, I tinkered with it and did this:

20 Box Jump, 30 inch box
20 Chest-To-Bar Pull-Ups
20 Dumbbell Swing 70 pounds
20 Walking Lunges with a 45# Plate held overhead
20 Ankles-To-Bar
20 Good Mornings, 95 pounds
20 Push-Press, 95 Pounds
20 Double-Squat Wall-Ball
5 GI Janes
100 Double-Unders


Still not a great one. I'm having my athletes do THIS today:

20 GI Janes
Run 200 Meters
20 Box Jump 30" box
Run 200 Meters
20 KB swing 2.0P/1.5P
Run 200 Meters
20 C2B Pull-ups
Run 200 Meters
20 Weight Overhead Lunge 45#/25#
Run 200 Meters
20 Ankles-to-bar
Run 200 Meters
40 Supermans
Run 200 Meters
20 clap push-up
Run 200 Meters
20 Double-Squat Wall-Ball
Run 200 Meters
100 Double-Unders

Protein: 230

Carbs: 130

Negative Calorie Balance = 300

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Max Effort

I have been watching "the boys" over at Ironworks lift a lot lately. All of them have over 500# Squat and Deadlift, and are working on, or can do better than 600# on both.

I gave a shot at stubborn dont-give-up lifting just like they do today. Reasonably pleased with this, my first heavy day in a while.


500 M Row

Back Squat 5-5-5

Deadlift 5
365 (fail 3 reps)

Deadlift rack pull 5

Hang Clean 3-3-3-3-3

Max Effort C2B Pull-Up
14 reps

Max Effort Close Grip Dead-Hang Pull-up
7 Reps


Protein: 190

Carb: 110

Negative Calorie Balance = 700

Very satisfied with today.

My Homie Pavel

Possibly the greatest video ever, which I found over at River City Physical Culture.

Yesterday was a wash. Neither good nor bad.

Protein: 210

Carbs: 150 (fail)

Negative calorie balance = 50 (fail)

One thing I have forgotten over the years of CF/Zoneing: for heavy weight workouts, the Zone prescription is NOT ENOUGH! After 3 days of high protein eating/ heavy weight training, I am clearly stronger and more muscular, also I have hardly gotten sore! While it to early to say, I feel a bit less fat as well. I'm sure this is psychological. I have also been taking fish oil, 1G per day.

Finally the Naproxin (Alleve) seems to be helping with my elbow: This is day 3 of the quadruple dose Frank Moreno RN recommended for me to help with my climbers elbow. If I could start climbing hard again I would be ecstatic!

I'm pretty excited to hit the weights today, and hopefully get 14+ C2B pull-Ups.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


Protein 200 g
Carbs 110 g

Negative Calorie Balance = 650


1000 meter row

13 C2B pull-ups

Monday 081215 National WOD

Five rounds for time of:
275 pound Deadlift, 5 reps
10 Burpees


I was originally going to scale this back, but 225 just seemed ridiculously light, so I went with the full weight and dialed back the intensity a bit. Somehow I did not write this down last time, but I'm nearly certain it was about 5:00, so this was just about right as I was looking for 80% intensity this week to ease back into working out without burnout or injury.


Yesterday (081215)

Protein 195 grams
Carbs 100 grams

Negative Calorie Balance = 900


400 meter run

Overhead Squat 15-5-5-5

105 (fail, 9 reps)

135 (fail)

at this point I re-evaluated my set-up with the help of Tom, who had just deadlifted 525 2x, so you gotta figure he knows a thing or two, right? I got properly set up

135 (easy)

135x6, could have done way more.

Bench Press 5-5-5


Monday, December 15, 2008


Former and, hopefully, future glory

My training and diet have been quite mediocre lately. No new PRs since my 309 Fight Gone Bad, which was months ago, although I did well on "The 42" on my birthday. My body comp (and strength to weight ratio) have really backslid. Combined with a nagging elbow injury, this has taken my muscle-up from 7 to 0.

Anyway, I have decided to make my New Year's resolution early and clean up my act.

I'm giving a variation of the Zone Diet that I have been thinking about for a while a shot:

30/25/45 F/C/P

Caloric deficit of 800 calories a day with about 200 grams of protein.

Workout Schedule (six week micro-cycle):

OHS 15-5-5-5
Bench Press 5-5-5

CF Metcon (Cherry Pick)


Back Squat
Hang Clean

CF Metcon (Cherry Pick)

CF Main WOD (rest if rest day)


One thing which has retarded my progress of late (besides being injured) is a seeming inability to hit the national WODs with anything less than blistering intensity, even though in my deconditioned state I have gotten overtrained multiple times by doing so, leading to a lack performance gain. This is a bit of an odd paradox and I wonder if other experienced CF'rs experience it: I have been at this long enough that even in a deconditioned state, I seem to have residual "crossfitness" that enables me to hit the WODs harder than I should.

I have experienced the above twice recently "Mr. Joshua" with a weighted vest (bad idea) and the recent

3 Rounds For time

50 Box Jump
21 185# Deadlifts
30 Pull-Up

I'm rather apprehensive about the Games WOD

Five rounds for time of:
275 pound Deadlift, 5 reps
10 Burpees

It seems these Deadlift ones are the real killers for me, not because I am weak in the DL, but rather because I'm strong enough to hurt myself with them, but not fit enough to recover?

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Byer's Gets Discipline

I'm cross-posting an interesting blog entry from Melissa Byers' blog "Byers Gets Diesel" which comes out of an online conversation between us.

Thursday, December 11, 2008
Confessions of a CrossFit hussy
First, let me just say that after killing myself in yesterday's WOD... things just HURT. It started to hit me last night, which did not bode well for today. Thank Oprah it's a rest day, because I'm pretty sure I'm not good for anything else right now.

Continuing from Tuesday’s post, where I discussed leaving “Noviceland” and all those regularly scheduled PRs behind…

Confession: In the past, I’ve been a bit of a PR slut. I would do anything to be able to tack those two letters on to the end of something. So at the end of my workout, despite being mentally and physically spent, I’d invariably load up the bar with a few extra pounds and try to pull one more rep, just to say I did. Even on days where I was supposed to be working straight sets across, I’d almost always finish off with a new 1RM attempt. It just felt GOOD to be able to say that I pulled a new PR. And it’s oh-so-tempting to toss just one more plate on the bar and give it a go.

I know I’m not the only one who feels this way, because I see other people stretching to put those letters on lots of different things. We’ve claimed “PR for reps” or “PR for sets”, for example. But where does it end? Is there a “PR for rest” – I moved the same weight, but I rested less between each set? Can I claim a PR for a brand new workout – I’ve never done it before, so it’s a “PR by default”? I recognized that my PR motivations were starting to get out of hand. And it wasn’t long before these cheap and dirty workout one-night-stands were actually weakening my form, jacking up my programming and steadily pushing me down the path to injury.

I realized that I’m not doing myself any favors by whoring myself out to these two little letters. For one, if I’m supposed to work a 5x5 and instead work a 4x5 and a single, I’m shorting myself four whole reps and a whole lot of weight. Two, I’m also not getting better at these exercises by sacrificing practice with good form in favor of hitting a sloppy 1RM attempt. And three, throwing in these haphazard PR attempts often resulted in failure, which only made me MORE determined when it came time for the next day’s (unscheduled and ill-advised) attempt. Can you say “overtraining” and “injury”?

And yet CrossFit expects – no, demands – 100% effort and intensity… which should translate to frequent PR attempts, right? I mean, “100%” IS “max effort”, which means in my overachieving, perfectionist little brain, CrossFit WANTS me to shoot for a PR every day. But that just sounds unrealistic, doesn’t it? Not to mention that pulling single reps day in and day out isn’t the most effective path to strength, skill, and balanced fitness. So given what I believe is a CrossFit paradox, how am I supposed to reconcile the “intensity” that is demanded of us (and is synonymous with setting PRs) with the “perfect practice” required to build strength, improve form and increase skill? I decided to ask Max Lewin of CrossFit East Bay for some advice. Here is an excerpt from our discussion.


BYERS: Okay, so am I really supposed to shoot for a PR EVERY time I hit a workout?

LEWIN: This is not really possible, or many of us would be superhuman by now. How often you can hit PRs depends on where you fall on the continuum of genetic potential versus genetic actualization. If you are a beginner, far, far away from your genetic potential, gains come easy and hitting PRs every time is not out of the question. The closer you get to your genetic potential, the harder it is to hit PRs. As solid intermediates, we should be trying to hit some PRs, perhaps one every few weeks, depending on how long we have been doing it. Of course one good way to hit new PRs is to try something new, and be back at the bottom of the food chain.

BYERS: Okay, so maybe I can’t hit a PR every day, but CrossFit says I’m supposed to go after every workout at 100%. If I’m going for high intensity in every workout, when do I get the chance to just PRACTICE these movements?

LEWIN: First, it is impossible to give 100% effort to every single workout. Second, one excellent scheme that allows practice in the context of CF is two or three weeks at full intensity and the third and/or fourth week at 1/2 volume. Using light weights, reduced volume, intentional reduced speed or all three allows for practice. Also, if you are not practicing the movements with light weight/speed/intensity before the workouts, you ought to be. Pretty much every time.

We should all keep in mind that it is no virtue to pound through a workout as fast as possible at any cost. That way lies injury, a lack of coordinational improvement, poor form, decreased efficiency, and, generally, less than full range of motion. This last point is important. A lack of full ROM automatically equals less work volume and makes no sense, if full ROM is possible. This is so often simply ego, or a desire to move as quickly as possible. If you deadlift 300# but can only stand up to 90% of full extension, you might as well have lifted 270# with perfect form and full extension. The amount of work is exactly the same, it is safer and those who understand will be much more impressed with a beautiful maximal lift than a heavy ugly one. My favorite quote of all time from Coach Glassman on full ROM: "I ran a three-minute mile, but it was only half a mile".


In summary:

* Perfect practice can live in harmony with high intensity
* Max efforts should be included, but in a structured fashion
* Check your ego at the door
* Follow the path of virtuosity

More on my conversation with Max later this week, as he had some more great advice about setting goals and structuring a strength-based program. And you can read his “virtuosity” post in its entirety here. It's worth clicking through.

So as of today, call me a good girl, because my PR promiscuity is a thing of the past. My new program will include a lot more 3x5 and 5x5 weight sessions, and far fewer 1RM attempts. In addition, I will incorporate “perfect practice” into my programming on a daily basis, in my work sets, as part of my warm-up AND in dedicated half or three-quarter intensity weeks without a time or weight component. And finally, my new rule is that a PR attempt is not allowed during perfect practice time. If I’m feeling strong, I’ll just do more reps, but I will not load the bar up past my previous 1RM.

A big thank you to Max for all of his help. Post thoughts to comments, and visit CrossFit East Bay for more great programming and WOD ideas.