Monday, July 6, 2009

CrossFit East Bay Games Prep

CrossFit East Bay Games Prep from Maximus Lewin on Vimeo.

Here is video from our CrossFit Games Affiliate Cup prep series.

We (Gita D. and I) realized early in our training that we did not have the time to equal bigger stronger teams in terms or pure strength or power. It simply takes too long (years) to get really, really strong. For sure we will be working on this going forward into 2011 and 2012.

Instead we chose a dark horse strategy based on interpretations of Coach G's statements over the past year that we we chose to regard as clues. When I spoke with Coach at last year's games he stated that in 2010 he wanted it to be ungameable. The phrase he used was "farm work for time". He also mentioned an obstacle course. I read into the article coach posted with the phrase "an army lives on it's legs" as suggesting work capacity would be paramount. Finally, there is a remark buried in one of the videos where coach says the Games is an opportunity for affiliates to show the superiority of their programming, perhaps hinting that main site WODs might not be the best prep for the games.

Taking into consideration the logistical set up of The Ranch we supposed that one way to try to make it ungameable was carry heavy objects up the hill, stage them and work out with them at the top and/or along the way. We guessed that sandbags would be one way to do this, and, in fact, there are now many sandbags on The Ranch equipment list.

So: we focused on building capacity, teamwork and being comfortable in a variety of hostile environments (in the above video it is 109F). We also did some urban forest obstacle work. Another staple of our training was hill run metcons along the lines of Cath-22 from the Norcal qualifier. We worked out hard twice on Sundays for six weeks to prepare for the games format.

Once we chose our team, we built on our capacity base and have tried to optimize team members as "Tank", "Ninja" and "Hybrid".

If the event(s) is long-ish (20 minutes+) and focused on pure work capacity we expect to do well. If is a heavy weight metcon (like some of the NorCal Throwdowns), we expect solid mediocrity.

We have taken a bit of gamble here, but we feel it was our best shot, and, no matter what happens, I am very proud of my team and happy with the work they put in.

We are looking forward to game day.

More on Polly's individual training to come.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

The "Tank" Series

I will be posting a series of articles about CrossFit East Bay's 2009 Games prep over the next few days.

We persued a "Dark Horse" strategy for the Affiliate Cup training. When we decided to seriously train for the Affilate Cup this year rather than next, as had originally been my plan, we realized a number of things:

- There was simply no way, given six weeks of training (plus a one-week taper) that we could match teams made up of D-1 football players in their 20s, etc. in pure strength or power. It simply takes too long to get seriously strong, and as a newer affiliate without any "ringers" we just don't have the muscle.

- It was possible to build serious work capacity in six weeks given our decent existing base.

- Less conventional methods would give us a long shot of doing very well and a fair chance of achieving mediocrity.

I will write more on the conditiong methods we used and why (hint: Coach G. made an offhand remark to me last year about "Farm Work For Time" and obstacle courses that I took seriously).

In the last few weeks we chose our team and tightened our focus. My job was to "face reality" as Torquemada put it, and get as strong as humanly possible in the last couple of weeks available along with increasing my capacity and eating tons of food. My dreams of being an underwear model have been defered.

Above is picured one of my "Tank" workouts:


Deadlift 315#
Thruster 135#

Time 7:44

There is no question that I am now as strong as I have ever been, my capacity is excellent and my running is decent. However due to my high bodyfat (19%) pull-ups and HSPUs are hard and muscle-ups are if not impossible, very, very hard.

Weights that once seemed heavy are now a joke. I could DL 225# for reps all day.