Thursday, December 31, 2009

a new year!

Here's hoping everybody finds a little trouble 'round midnight!

Have a safe and fun new years everybody!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

call me Al

Just heard this on the radio at work. This song always makes me smile. Even at the office... even at 9pm...

higher orders of thinking

"I never once took my eye off what exactly I wanted to do.... You can see it in individuals who have that passion... they have this... insatiable desire to make things happen."
- James OPT Fitzgerald, from his presentation at the Black Box Summit.

Check out part 1 of his lecture in video below. Outstanding stuff!

Visit for more Videos

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

the pursuit

"Find your passion and pursue it relentlessly."
- Ross Enamait

Lots of good stuff over at

The Power of Patience is an example. So is Pick Your Passion. Check 'em out.

Monday, December 28, 2009

28 December 2009

"The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack of will."
- Vince Lombardi

Took a rest day today, but I will see y'all at the noon free workout at CrossFit Central tomorrow!

Go read this link from Matthew over at Straight Forward in a Crooked World. Think of it as a "heads up!" on a recent executive order signed into law by the President.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Thursday, December 24, 2009

24 December 2009

WOD: with Austin Unscared
with a continuously running clock complete
1 parallel bar dip the first minute
2 bar dips the second minute
3 bar dips the third minute
4 bar dips the fourth minute...
continue until failure
*only unbroken sets count

I completed 13 rounds + 4 dips of the 14 round for a total of 95 dips. This one crushed me today. When I got home and checked my log, I found that I was one rep short of the last time I did this WOD. Which means I cup-caked...

cup⋅cake [khup-keyk] adjective 1) to wimp out 2) giving in to the pain

I will be back for this one - and I will complete at least 15 rounds!

After that mess- Mike, Jassin and I were feeling like getting more work in, so we decided to go for a bonus WOD!

"bonus" WOD:
400 meters walking lunges
*back knee must touch the ground every rep

My time was 13:45. Felt lousy throughout, but I kept telling myself to accept the pain and keep moving. When I checked my log on this one, I discovered that I had PR'd by 39 seconds! Feels good to end on a high note. Now I'm off to visit my TriggerPoint set!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

23 December 2009

"A man with outward courage dares to die,
A man with inward courage dares to live;
But either of these men
Has a better and worse side than the other.
And who can tell exactly to which qualities heaven objects?
Heaven does nothing to win the day,
Says nothing-
Is echoed,
Orders nothing-
Is obeyed,
Advises nothing-
Is right;
And which of us, seeing that nothing is outside the vast
Wide-meshed net of heaven, knows just how it is cast?"
- Lao Tzu, from The Way of Life

WOD: Rest day!

Spread some holiday cheer with "nut nog!" Funny name, serious nog.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

22 December 2009

For this morning's WOD I did another posted by Jen-

3 rounds for time:
200 meter run
30 burpees
20 pushups
10 squats

My time was 15:02. Crushed me... I was gassed halfway through round 2. But, today makes three days on, so rest day maƱana!

Monday, December 21, 2009

21 December 2009

After fun all day Christmas party at my office, I needed to get outside and move! I met up with my friend Mike and went down to the Austin High track to knock out a WOD posted by coach Jen Cardella. When we got there, we noticed that someone had left out the (usually locked up) tractor tires! So with a modification to Jen's post, today was...

10 burpees, 10 squats
2 tractor tire flips
9 burpees, 9 squats
2 tractor tire flips
8 burpees, 8 squats
2 tractor tire flips
7 burpees, 7 squats
2 tire flips.... down to...
1 burpee
1 squat
2 tire flips

My time was 12:16. Good one!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

damn dirty grains...

I recently found "Damn dirty grains: this time it's personal" by Robb Wolf posted on CrossFit Flood's page. Pssst- it's a $2.75 download over at Performance Menu.... Go read it for free!

running at daybreak

I took a rest day yesterday, so I got up this morning and drove to town lake for a run. According to my Jeep's thermometer it was 33 degrees out. Still, with no clouds in the sky and steam rising up off the water, running at sunrise today was an experience!

I ran the 3+ mile loop (from the Mopac bridge to Lamar pedestrian bridge and back) in 23:33. I kept what felt like an easy pace, and just enjoyed my morning run. Great way to start the day!

Friday, December 18, 2009

18 December 2009

On my drive to the gym this morning I realized how anxious I was to get back at it, and see what I could do after a lesson learned the hard way on Wednesday...

WOD at CrossFit Central
AMRAP in 20 minutes:
3 handstand push-ups
6 dumbbell cleans @ 45lbs DB
9 pull-ups

I completed 9 rounds scaled to 35lbs DBs. I felt great out the outset and ripped through 4 rounds in the first 5 minutes! Then I was gassed and huffed and puffed my way through the rest. Not a stellar performance overall, but I corrected my errors from Wednesday. I was fully warmed up by the time we started the workout, I scaled the DBs to 35#, and was prepared to scale further if my back started bothering me. It didn't! Rolling out with my Trigger Point set 4 times Wednesday, and 3 times yesterday had a lot to do with that. I also ate clean (save one muscle-milk shake) and got plenty of sleep.

It's amazing how quickly your body can recover, if you give it what it needs! It really is all about keeping good habits. I've let my discipline slip over the last several weeks, and I've paid for it. No more. The "holidays" for me will be training days. My dumbbells and kettlebell will go where I go this Christmas.

Aristotle said: "We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit."

I'm going to spend the Christmas holiday reacquiring positive habits.

One habit I will be focused on is using my Trigger Point set every day. BTW, I recently stumbled on the Trigger Point blog. You will recognize a CrossFit Central coach in a recent post over there. Good stuff. Go check it out.

It's Friday y'all! Have a safe and fun one!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

17 December 2009

"Sometimes, lying on the floor is it's own reward."
- Jon Gilson, from his article "Dedication"

WOD: Rest day.

Here's a good read from Freddy C. at CrossFit One World:

"Ten Ways to Blunt Your Athletic Potential"

What are you doing right? What could you do better? What are you doing wrong/not doing? Figure it out and change it!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

16 December 2009

It's always a series of little bad decisions that gets me in trouble - never one big glaring moment of stupidity - and this morning was no exception. I rolled up to the gym this morning on about 6 hours of sleep (bad call number one) in balmy 37 degree weather, and by end of our warm-up I felt chilled and my toes were in "pins and needles" mode. My heart rate was up from an extended run followed by burpees, but I didn't feel warm and wasn't particularly keen on doing anything else the Mikes may of had in store warm-up wise, so I said yes when Big Mike asked if we were feeling warmed-up (bad call part duex). It was at this moment where those two bad calls ganged up on me... In the time it took the Mike's to demo and explain the movements involved in cleaning and jerking a barbell from the ground to overhead, my heart rate dropped and - you guessed it - I stayed cold. I spent that 3 to 5 minutes bouncing around, windmilling my shoulders, running in place, but all I managed to accomplish was not get colder. Then I set up a barbell with 135lbs (incidentally, bad call numero tres) without considering scaling or that pesky over-a-month-off lower-back injury thing... and then, it was game time.

WOD: at CrossFit Central
30 clean and jerk (ground to overhead) for time @ 135lbs

I finished in 9:22 rx'd. That is over two minutes slower than my previous "Grace" time. That is - and felt like - an enternity. I did not feel warm until sometime during the last 10 reps. My mind was not focused (see bad calls 1-3) until "go." At which point it was already too late. Despite my stupidity, and two missed reps on the power-clean, my technique felt pretty solid. My back actually felt fine at the end of "Grace" today, so in that respect I managed to not pay too much for my stupidity. Oh if I had only stopped there...

There was "bonus work" today.
200 meter run
21 deadlifts (with your "Grace" barbell)
200 meter run
15 deadlifts
200 meter run
9 deadlifts

I was still huffing and puffing from Grace, when the Mikes lined everybody up for the bonus work. I was starting to get cold again and as that happened I could feel my back start to tighten up, but when they said "go" I jumped up and took off on the run (chimata numero stupida quattro). After a painfully slow 21 round and the second 200 meter run, I just had to stop. My back was letting me know in no uncertain terms that I was a dumbass.

Seriously though folks, there's a time to listen to your body and a time to push it, and while I can't say I've learned to recognize the difference between the two, I'm working on it. Please don't follow my example on this...

I'm going to rest tomorrow, triggerpoint 2-3 times a day, and be at the gym on Friday. And yes, I will be scaling the WOD.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

failure as a catalyst

"Failure is only the opportunity to begin again more intelligently."
- Henry Ford

"My imperfections and failures are as much a blessing from God as my successes and my talents."
- Gandhi

Monday, December 14, 2009

a traveling class act

Here are some photos of Chris Spealler's recent trip to India. There are more at CrossFit Sri Ram Ashram (where I got these). CrossFit Sri Ram Ashram is an affiliate in an orphanage outside Hardiwar, India.

14 December 2009

The last part of warming up this morning was a quick two minutes of tabata squats:
21, 19, 18, 15

10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1
kettlebell swing @ 2 pood
knees to elbows

I scaled this one to 1.5 pood and my time was 8:26. Still not feeling 100% but definitely better than last week.

We wrapped up with two 400 meter sprints. I don't know what the interval was, I had an abdominal cramp after the first one and was trying not to puke after the second one: 1:23, 1:28

It's Monday, and as I drove home this morning I remembered how much I enjoy starting my week at the gym! Have a great day y'all.

a weekend of "rest"

I spent a lot of Saturday on the couch (Maker's Mark had the last laugh), but seeing this interview at the end of the Army-Navy football game put my little hangover in perspective...

Navy head coach Nuimatalolo is one classy dude (starts at 1:05).

Friday, December 11, 2009

11 December 2009

WOD: @ CrossFit Central
5 rounds for time
100 foot overhead walking lunge w/45lbs plate
30 box jumps

I clocked in at 17:15 rx'd. Still feeling sluggish, legs were rubbery after one round! I know getting back where I was won't happen overnight, but when my brain is saying "I've done this before, and faster than this!" it's frustrating. Still though, it feels good to be back training!

Happy Friday y'all. See everybody at the Christmas party! Tis the season...

photo by Jay Janner/Austin American-Statesman

Thursday, December 10, 2009

10 December 2009

"Day by day what you choose, what you think, and what you do is who you become. Your integrity is your destiny. It is the light that guides your way."
- Heraclitus

WOD: Rest day.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009


For a short while now I've been following a blog about an American wounded in the service of his country. Dan Cnossen lost both his legs in a land mine explosion in Afghanistan on September 6, 2009. Yesterday morning he left the hospital and that afternoon....


How freaking cool is that? HOOYAH Dan!

09 December 2009

WOD: @ CrossFit Central
5 rounds for time
250 meter row
25 pull-ups

My time was 15:52 (scaled to 15 pull-ups in rounds 3 -5).

After watching me struggle through pull-ups in the 3rd round, Big Mike recommended I scale back the number the pull-ups remaining to 15 a round. I was hesitant at first but when he mentioned avoiding rhabdo, I agreed. It was a good thing too, because by the 5th round I couldn't even get three sets of 5 pull-ups! The body weight part of crossfit has always come pretty easy to me, but during round 5 this morning I had no "pull" left. Looking up at that ice-cold bar was about as daunting as seeing these after Monday's front squats...

Oh well. After a month off, the joys of being back at CrossFit outweigh all the pain. So I went home, took a shower, and doctored myself up with triggerpoint, coffee, eggs, an apple with almond butter, and... bacon! If you are ever unsure about having bacon in a meal - you need to have your head examined - and then you need to consult the bacon flow chart!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

08 December 2009

"You cannot move forward from some idealized point in the future that has not yet arrived. If you are to move forward, you must do it from where you are now. Though it may not be perfect, it is plenty to get you going. Wishing for more or feeling resentment because you don't have more, will only waste your precious time. Although there is no guarantee the your actions will be effective, one thing that is certain is that nothing will happen if you take no action at all."
- James OPT Fitzgerald

WOD: Rest day. Sore as... well I'll just say really sore.

Monday, December 7, 2009


"Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it."
- George Santayana

Let us not forget. Let us learn.

photos courtesy of the National Archives

07 December 2009

WOD: @ CrossFit Central:
AMRAP in twenty minutes of
5 barbell front-squats @ 165lbs
10 push-ups
15 abmat sit-ups

This workout felt like a welcome-back slap-in-the-face! I could really feel the month off today... I completed 8 rounds + 2 front-squats scaled. The first round I did at 135lbs, and had to go down to 115lbs for the rest. Felt like I had no strength or stamina today. I could do the push-ups and sit-ups unbroken though. Not pleased at all with today's performance, but I will get it back, and stronger than I was before. It's a good thing I like a challenge!

Coach Meg Parsons got her kettlebell certification last weekend! You gotta see the photos of Jeff Martone doing Turkish-Get-Ups with Meg as his kettlebell!

Thursday, December 3, 2009


Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever Gods may be
for my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll.
I am the master of my fate:
I am the Captain of my soul.

by William Ernest Henley

the flu sucks

I didn't come down with swine flu or anything crazy, just your regular old-fashioned flu. Still though, not a fun way to spend a few days...

The break from the cell phone and emails was kinda nice though... but I'm starting to feel human again, so vacation is over! I'll be training again on Monday!