My Week As Rx (Probably Scaled): April 17 – April 23

The Open is over and I just returned from a trip to Osaka, Japan. I wasn’t able to drop into a gym while there but I did get a shirt. I’m back to going to the gym regularly and this past week was a lot of fun.

Strength

Back Squat – 7×5 at 70% (275 lb.)

We went up in weight for the back squat. Previous weight percentage was 60% (255 lb.) which I was able to finish. This squat session was heavier but with less reps. I wasn’t able to finish all the reps within the allotted time. I completed four sets at 275 lb. The weight felt okay on the third set but it was challenging. I tried to focus on my breathing and bracing my core. If I had more time, I could have finished all the reps.

WOD

FGB Style – 2 Rounds, 2 Minutes Per Station

Box jump overs (24 in.)
Russian kettle bell swings (54 lb.)
Rope climbs (15 ft.)
Rest 1 minute

This was my favorite workout of the week. It had fun movements, it wasn’t too long and we had a short rest period. I decided on a pacing before the start of the workout. I would try to complete 30 reps of box jumps and kettle bell swing and at least two rope climbs.

Since the class was a bit large, we started on different stations. I decided to start with the rope climbs. My forearms and wrist have been giving me issues and I didn’t want to push it. I tried one rep on the rope and I felt great. My feet were the biggest issue surprisingly. After two or three reps my grip would be weak and I would then wait for the next movement. The box jumps started off great. I decided to do half turns in the air to make the transitions easier. I would do the reps in sets of 10 – 15 and finished with 30 reps. The kettle bells were good but I was winded by the time I got to this movement. My grip was weak and I ended up doing around 10 reps at a time. I finished this movement with 30 reps as well.

Round two was more difficult but I tired to push through it. I was able to get two reps on the rope, about 20 reps on the box jumps and 30 reps on the kettle bell swings. I wanted to do more reps on the box jumps but my legs were not having it. If I didn’t squat heavy that day I could have done more, maybe. Overall, this was a fun workout. I like the FGB format and I hope to retest this soon.

Lift Heavy and Level Up!

Euro Trip 2016: Rome

Rome 2016

Rome was the third stop on our European honeymoon. My last visit to Rome was 25-26 years ago. I was around four and do not remember much. My return to Rome was with my wife and I couldn’t have asked for a better travel partner. Main points of interest on this trip was the Vatican, the Colosseum and the Pantheon.

Cell Phones

We picked up a new set of SIM cards from TIM. It came with a few gigs of data and costs about $30.00. The coverage was great and data speeds were fast. We would switch to WiFi once we got home which made the data last about five days.

Transportation

From the airport, we used an airport shuttle that was offered at the airport. It was about €10.00 per person. We used the same service to transport us back to the airport for our flight to Amsterdam. The subway system in Rome is small compared to Paris and London. It contains only two lines that run near the center of the city. The bus system is your go to for public transportation. We picked up the three day pass and a two day pass from a local convenience store. They also sell passes at kiosks around Termini station.

Accommodations

We stayed in an AirBnB on Corso Vittorio Emanuele II. Aside from the awesome name (my first name is Emmanuel), it’s within walking distance of many tourists spots. We walked to the Vatican, Pantheon and Trevi fountain. Unlike Paris, we booked a room but it had a bathroom which was a plus. The person checking us in was very helpful and gave us directions to laundromats, popular eatery’s and tourist spots.

The Fun Stuff

The Colosseum

The Colosseum is an iconic Roman structure. It’s featured in most if not all films that portray ancient Rome. It’s also the setting for one of my favorite films depicting ancient Rome, Gladiator. The structure is large but not as large as I imagined. If naval battles were fought in the arena, the ships would have to be really small. We walked around the ancient arena and then headed towards the Forum.
Roman Forum

The Forum was a short walk from the Colosseum. The Forum contained ruins, churches and other buildings. Some of the churches were old temples that were converted when Christianity became the national religion of the empire.

The Vatican

My wife and I are both Catholic and the Vatican was at the top of our must visit places. We visited St. Peters Basilica, the Sistine Chapel  and the Vatican museum. Like Paris, we were able to attend mass in St. Peters. While there Pope Francis give his weekly address in St. Peters square. We were able to view great works of art such as the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel as well as the Pieta. Some of the papal tombs were open and we were able to walk through them. Unfortunately we were not able to see the tomb of John Paul II, but we were able to view St. Peters tomb.

The Pantheon

The Pantheon is one of the more famous churches in Rome. It was a former temple that was converted into a church. Two famous tombs can be found in the Pantheon. The tomb of King Victor Emmanuel II (pictured above) and the tomb of the famous artist Raphael.

CrossFit Villa Albani

A trip to Rome wouldn’t be complete without visiting a CrossFit gym. Simonetta, the owner, was very welcoming and asked us to sign her wall in the lobby. We picked up a few shirts after taking a tour. We didn’t get to workout but hopefully we will the next time we visit Rome.

Our trip to Rome was amazing and we were sad to leave. We had a great time wandering streets and eating amazing Italian food. I’m going to miss the pizza and I’m sure my wife will miss the gelato. This will not be our last trip to Rome.

Lift Heavy and Level Up!

The 2017 CrossFit Open: #OpenReflections

The 2017 CrossFit Open: #OpenReflections

The last few weeks were a blast. The workouts were fun and challenging making this years Open memorable. We used a new piece of equipment (dumbbells) and a new movement (burpee box jump overs). I set out to achieve a goal this Open and unfortunately, I didn’t reach it. After a few days of self reflection, I’m more motivated to workout this year.My goal for this Open was to place in the 30’s on Guam. Last year, I finished the Open in the 46th spot but this year I placed in the 51st spot. I’ve come up with two reasons why I placed a lot lower this year and didn’t reach my goal.

Pay the Man

“Success isn’t owned. It’s leased, and rent is due everyday” – J.J Watt

Sorry J.J, I’m a few months behind on rent. This sentiment sums up my year since the 2016 Open. Early last year I focused on Oly programming and stopped doing metcons. The Oly programming was long and heavy on most days leaving me with no energy to do a class WOD. I also got married and did not workout or eat healthy for about two months. It adds up. My lack of conditioning showed in 17.4 with me finishing short of my score from last year. I did not put in the work this year.

Everyone is More Fit

I hit PR’s on workouts and increased my fitness but it wasn’t enough. The guys I used to beat in workouts are now beating me. This past year, the guys put in the work. It was a lot more than me and it showed in the workouts and the leaderboard.

Goals for 2018

“You don’t need harder workouts. You need to go harder in your workouts.” – Tommy Hackenbruck

I did not put in the work this year so I’m not surprised I didn’t hit my goal. I’m now more motivated. I want to at least make it into the 30’s on the leaderboard next year. I want to work on Oly lifts but I also want to work on conditioning. It’s going to be a balance but I’m sure I’ll manage. I also want to work on my gymnastics skills, especially muscle ups. It’s going to take a lot of hard work and I’m looking forward to it.

Lift Heavy and Level Up!

Miniature Mondays: The Blood of Martyrs

The Blood of Martyrs

During MKII, I wanted to run a fun Thyra list but didn’t have any of the models. I was playing a lot of Kreoss1 and Severius1 lists which had mostly Zealots and Exemplars. I finally found this model for a great price on Ebay. It was a used model that had been primed white but after a bath in some purple stuff, it’s as good as new. The tassels on the blades have broken off and I’m probably not going to replace it. The back fabric panels were not attached, I like the way it looks without it. One of the blades is also chipped on the tip but hopefully I can make it look like battle damage.

Lift Heavy and Level Up!