Late start today. We woke at 4:30AM as planned and collectively decided to wait until after noon to try to work out. That put us in the base gym – the garage is WAY too hot in the afternoon to workout. The base gym is nice, but the “functional fitness room” is a converted racket ball court that has the worst lighting imaginable.
I was mentally out of it today (15th anniversary of my father’s passing), and my heart wasn’t in it. Tough to have a good day when your partner has his head up his ass. But, Gillian did. Continuing the protocol of lighter squats, Gillian moved to 215 from 205, and hit the bench at 180. Second and third sets were knocked down to 170 – 180 just hasn’t happened in over a week. Diet? Mental? Can’t seem to get into a routine?
Day two of “rehab”. The doctor and professionals ordered a slow progression in squats. 135 last time, 155 this time, 185 next time…
Dr. Gillian decided that she clearly knows more than all others and elected to squat 185 today. After all, rehab is for the mere mortals that roam the earth looking for droppings of those that are more capable!
Solid effort, missed the old PR of 180 for 5 on the bench…a little disappointed but keeping everything in perspective, things are pretty darn good…and let’s not forget, in 7 days, we’re off to see Rip!
Penalty squats and recovery. That’s what the professionals and the doctors ordered. I’ll get in trouble for saying this later – life is hard, but it’s harder when you are stubborn and make stupid decisions. Gillian believes she can rock every work out, PR every lift, crush world records, leap tall buildings in a single bound, and fly.
None of this is true.
Sacroiliitis is the diagnosis, light weight squats, press, bench, and abstinence from CrossFit style workouts along with the Oly lifts for the next two weeks is the prescription. In hockey, it’s called the penalty box! In our house it’s called recovery.
That being said, it’s good to know why the lifts were suffering, the pain was chronic, and the mental piece was getting tougher. Injury means an athlete can’t perform, soreness means its a little uncomfortable. Knowing the difference is key – accepting the difference and doing the protocols is priceless.
Proud of my wifey for doing the right thing today, she pushed back and informed me that she could do more, but in the end she acquiesced. Tomorrow she will do 3 sets of 20 squats with a 20Kg bar, and we’ll back at it on Friday with squat, bench, and deadlift depending on how she feels.
First day back after two weeks on the road. Routine is a friend when training. The changes in time zones, traveling in cars and planes, state to state, coast to coast, with an in ability to eat without buying it from someone…well that makes it pretty darn tough.
Humidity was an old friend we were re-introduced to this morning at 5:15AM – yikes!
Good first day back considering all the external factors, recovering nagging injuries, and other little issues. Looking forward to real coaching – from a real coach.
Short one today. We hit CrossFit SoCal yesterday for their afternoon class. Gillian wanted a break, a change in routine so elected to do the WOD. She squatted 12 sets of 2 on the minute at 215lbs, and then did the WOD. Let’s just say that all this training works.
As a result, she only pressed today. The base gym on NAS North Island does not have fractionals, so like last Tuesday, we made a big jump on the press. The result – instead of going from 120lbs to 123lbs, Gillian jumped to 125lbs. Tough.
Headed out to Prescott, AZ. Hoping to meet Lauren Jenai at her new affilliate Captain CrossFit.
We’ll do our best to train tomorrow and rest on Sunday, but we will adjust if necessary.
Winston Churchill was one of the greatest orators of modern history. A leader, a lover of cigars, and an ally of the United States during World War II.
A little known fact is that Winston Churchill had a speech impediment. Winston Churchill clearly overcame this impediment through practice, hard work, hours of rehearsal, and an unknown amount of personal self belief. I am certain there were times he thought he couldn’t do it.
Gillian is not Winston Churchill. Winston Churchill is an icon in history, but we can emulate his diligence. I do not mean to compare Gillian to the great Winston Churchill, however they do have something in common – the pursuit of excellence.
Gillian seeks perfection in her movement. She cherishes movement and enjoys all things involving movement. Dance, gymnastics, running, pulling, throwing, batting, the list goes on.
Today was difficult. Gillian is frustrated. These Oly movements are difficult. They are technical. They are challenging. They are hard. So, day after day Gillian hammers out Oly lift after Oly lift…all without REAL coaching, without REAL help. I’m a rookie. I’m a hack that has a few dollars and a little bit of time and bought a few weights for the garage. Gillian is the athlete. We record her movement, scrutinize her movement, listen to those around us that give well meant input. But in the end, it’s Gillian and a barbell, struggling in a variety of conditions (none of which are ideal) to learn to perfect a movement – essentially alone.
I’m proud of her.
July 2 we are getting on our Harley Davidson and riding to Texas to spend nearly two weeks with Mark Rippetoe of Wichita Falls Athletic Club and the author of Starting Strength as well as a few other titles. “Rip” – as he is called – is arguably one of the greatest coaches in our time. Rip has been helping us with lots of phone time, email time, video time, and general support. As Rip has stated, you can’t get good coaching over the internet. Gillian needs this personal time with a coach, and she deserves an opportunity to be coached by a coach with an ability to coach commensurate with her ability to move. At a different time in her life, Mike Burgener coached Gillian to amazing feats. Both of these men are leaders, coaches, and personal friends. Both of these men have generously donated their time and expertise to help make an athlete – my wife – better.
My point is this – Gillian needs and deserves a real coach capable of helping her move to her potential. Mike Burgener did it, Rip will do it – but I’m not that guy. I’m better at leading Marines and flying helicopters. I’m smart enough to know that, and I am looking forward to witnessing a professional coach do his thing.
As I said, today was a tough day at CrossFit SoCal. Gillian never really kept the bar close, never really was able to get that “scarecrow” high pull. To make matters worse, Gillian’s cervical injury is still a factor and limited her Front Squat to 195lbs – still more than she should have done given her injury. We worked off the blocks during the snatch to help work on form, staying light. I didn’t tape any of the Clean & Jerk portion, however Gillian did work up to 143lbs…again keeping it light because of that cervical spine issue.
I think she needs rest…a small break…she’s frustrated, but willing to try just the same.
It’s good to get back in the gym after a day of rest. We started incorporating some of the Mobility WOD work created by our friend Kelly Starett. I personally have noticed a difference in only two short days, and Gillian said today, “…it’s kind of weird to feel things moving around in a way they haven’t moved in a while…” It now seems foolish not to do it…
We’re at Naval Air Station North Island on Coronado, and the weather is beautiful, the temperature is awesome, and our room is literally 25 feet from the Pacific Ocean beach. We headed over to the “Main Fitness Center” today since we were only squatting and benching. It has been a while since either one of us has worked out in a “fitness center”. We were in two of the squat racks which are positioned all the way on the back side of the “fitness center” about 20 feet from “stretching and abdominals” sign (an area designated for stretching and abdominals one would assume). The squat racks faced a clear glass wall which looked into the “group exercise area” which had a class going on at the time we were squatting. Talk about a challenge to focus! You can hear the class instructor in the background of the video during Gillian’s squat sequence. There were a few ladies that stopped and gaped at Gillian as she did her set of 5 backsquats at 240lbs.
Lifting iron instead of rubber is fun…nothing like the sound of two 45lb metal plates when are put on the bar together. (Call me a geek, but I enjoy certain simple pleasures – whatever!)
No fractional plates, so Gillian had to make a larger than normal jump on the bench. Previously, all jumps were 2 or 3 pounds, this had to be a 5 pound jump…you may recall that she did 180lbs for a set of 5 on the bench last Tuesday, that put her at 185 vice 183 today…
Ever have one of those days where you just aren’t sure if you should, rest, workout, do something different, or go shopping? That was Gillian today. Today was the 7th day on a 6 day cycle. Life is in the way of our plan. Tomorrow we will rest, (should have been today). Gillian’s cervical spine injury is resurfacing a little bit, so we elected not to Front Squat over 135lbs for 3. Given the lack of rest, irritated nervous system, and indicators of possible problems, we also elected to work on the Snatch from the floor (first time since visiting Paulie at South Brooklyn Weightlifting Club) at a light weight – vice going heavy. We then transitioned to working on the split jerk from the blocks. The title of the screen indicates the plan…the video indicates reality.
Again – life is what happens when you are making all the plans. I’m proud of my wife, and enjoying every minute of this.
Good day, Gillian did very well with the Split Jerk, maxing out at 76 Kgs…
Lowered the blocks we have been training on by 6 inches, that takes the snatch and the clean and jerk to below the knee. Mr. Loop crept back in to a few of the snatches, preventing us from getting to a max lift (meaning, she can do more weight, but we elected to stay at a weight that allowed for good form, and no looping). This is mentally hard to do. Everyone wants to go into the gym and throw up big weight, but doing the work is where the real gains are made. I’m proud of Gillian for hammering it out.
You will see the weights bounce up and down in the snatch portion, and then we finally just let her throw one up at 50Kgs, still 7 Kgs off her best. The looping creeps back into the clean towards the end too. LONG day in the garage.
PR’d the deadlift…HUGE!
Big concert tonight, my bride bought me tickets to see Kenny Chesney, Zak Brown, Billy Currington, and Uncle Cracker tonight for my birthday last December.
Tomorrow should be a rest day, however we are traveling to San Diego on Monday, so we will go one more day. While in San Diego we will be working out at CrossFit Socal with Ahmik Jones and his crew. Can’t wait to see our old friends!