Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Note to self

I should put up this poster in my room and office cube.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Apr 29 WOD: Nate

I'm experiencing another holiday hangover. I went to the beach again with some others at the box. We went to Smacky's place again and although there were a lot of people at the beach and by the pool, it was still good fun.

The view from our balcony

With Anton, Amie, Albright, Rhona, Gigay, Benjie, Maigirl,
Smacky, and Ken (I grabbed this photo from Rhona)

And now, back to regular programming.

It was benchmark day at the box and I had no idea because the WOD wasn't posted at the site. We did Nate again, which is:

20 minutes AMRAP

2 muscle ups
4 handstand push ups
8 kettlebell swings (32/24 kg)

I did sitting muscle ups, pike push ups with feet on the box, and used a 16 kg kettlebell.

My score: 11 rounds + 1 sitting muscle up

The last time we did Nate I scored 12 rounds, but that was an even more scaled version so I'm quite happy with today's workout.

Oh, and happy news: Coach Matt announced that "due to popular demand," there will now be a 10 am class every Tuesday and Thursday starting in May, and we couldn't be happier!

Friday, April 26, 2013

Apr 26 WOD: Front squats and clean and jerks

Strength: Front squat

5 x 1 climbing

I shared a bar with Tere, Tricia, and Helen, and we all started with 80 lbs. We were told to work up to a heavy single in 15 minutes, and our last set was 120 lbs. Front squat PR day!


EMOM (every minute on the minute) x 10 minutes: Clean and jerk x 1 rep

That means at the start of every minute, we were to do 1 rep clean and jerk. We had the option of starting light then adding weight every minute, but I chose to start with what I'd thought was 75 lbs. I say I'd thought it was 75 lbs because it was only after the WOD that I realized that I'd used a 35 lb bar instead of a 25 lb bar. And since I'd put 2 25 lb plates, the weight of my bar was actually 85 lbs... which later became 95 lbs after some prodding by Raul. Shortly after the metcon, I added 10 lbs to the bar and was able to clean and jerk 105 lbs. Another PR for the day!

I think that if I'd known that I was attempting to break the 100 lb C&J barrier, I'd have been more hesitant and unsure. So, thought for the day: What you don't know will get you a PR. :)


Thursday, April 25, 2013

Toes to bar tips

I hit YouTube yesterday for videos on tips for doing the toes to bar and this is the best I've come across so far.

In fact, Again Faster has the best and most detailed video tips.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Apr 24 WOD: The one where the WOD wins

Boo hoo. Another DNF. Today's workout:


400m run
15 burpees
20 toes to bar

My first time to attempt doing toes to bar as prescribed and I failed miserably. I got maybe 3 to 5 good ones, but the others were all over the place. My TTB is a hot mess and I need to work on them fast.

I was the only one who got a DNF (2 rounds + 12 or 13 TTB) in the entire 10 am class which, I might say, 18 people attended today. As the seconds were winding down and I found myself the only person left working, everyone started shouting at me to keep moving, make every rep count, to not give up and all that. And that is why I don't like joining throwdowns. If I'd said yes to replacing one of the female medium Rx competitors last Saturday, I'd probably have died of stress and nervousness.

Just look at the number of people who came to the 10 am class today... 18! I hope CFMNL decides to create a 10 am class on Tuesdays and Thursdays soon!

Monday, April 22, 2013

Apr 22 WOD: 2 AMRAPs and a run

Last Saturday's CFMNL Open Finals was fun! The heat was unforgiving and a lot of people ripped their hands doing toes to bar on the rig that was set up in the field, but it was an unforgettable first in the history of CrossFit in the Philippines. CrossFitters from as far away as Bacolod and Pampanga came to compete and it was just an awesome display of strength and skills... and abs. There were abs everywhere you looked. At the end of the day, you'd think that people who didn't have their abs on display were the exception and not the norm.

See what I mean?
(photo from Gigay G.'s instagram)

The only one from CFMNL who won in one of the categories was Michelle, who was in the female big Rx category. Another person I know who won was my co-parent and Ang Tibay coach Russell, who was in the male medium Rx category.

Who woulda thunk 2 years ago that CrossFit would get so big in the Philippines that there would be such an event like this? Of course, it wasn't a super big event, but it's a start.

Spectators baking under the sun
(photo from Gigay G.'s instagram)

Anyway... It's back to reality and back to the box today. The WOD had 3 parts:

4 minutes AMRAP

5 hang squat cleans as heavy as possible (not exceeding 165/115)
5 burpees

Rest 3 minutes, then 6 minutes AMRAP

4 overhead squats as heavy as possible (not exceeding 135/95)
8 ring dips

Rest 3 minutes, then maximum distance run in 8 minutes

For the first part, I used 75 lbs; my score: 3 rounds + 1 HSC. For the second part, I used 45 lbs and did jumping ring dips; my score: 4 + 1 OHS. For the run, I was able to run 1 mile -- my first time to run an 8-minute mile!

Friday, April 19, 2013

Date a girl who CrossFits

Date a girl who wakes up every morning excited and nervous about going to the box and taking on another WOD. She knows she isn't going to get a PR or the best score everyday, but you can be sure she's not afraid of hard work (and burpees).

Date a girl whose goal is to be strong. She's competitive and will want to beat you at every workout and you might be tempted to let her, but she'll know it and will not like you for it. Instead, go to the box with her, attend the same class, and help her reach her goals. Hand her the PVC pipe and warm up together. In between warm up sets, you'll see her face light up while talking about watching mobility tips on YouTube, or seeing Speal beat Holmberg on 13.4.

A girl who has calluses on her hands is not afraid of imperfection and a little pain. After all, she got those calluses from working on her pull ups and toes to bar. Don't be fooled, though. She may have rough hands but those rough hands still need to be held.

Date a girl who isn't afraid to sweat. She's glad there aren't any mirrors in the box. She's not looking to be complimented on her beauty but she will reward you with a beaming smile when you compliment her on her form. When she's on beast mode, she doesn't care about how she looks because she's focused on making every rep count. This is the moment when nothing else exists but herself and the bar. Don't be afraid if she roars like a lioness when she hits a new PR - just go over and give her a high five or a hug (if you dare).

A woman who does CrossFit loves her body. You will not hear her whining about her thick thighs. On the contrary, the bigger her quads, the better. Tell her she's got thunder thighs and she'll thank you.

Find a girl who can eat as much as, if not more than, you can. All the better if she loves meat and vegetables, and knows that fat doesn't make you fat. When you go on a date, she will order for herself. She will eat with lady-like gusto and you will realize that this is a girl who knows how to appreciate everything life has to offer - provided it's paleo, of course.

You will love that she idolizes women who can front squat, back squat, and snatch twice their body weight, women who never give up, women who have the mental tenacity to keep going when the road gets rough. She appreciates the years of hard work, blood, sweat, and tears that those athletes poured into their craft. She doesn't believe in quick fixes because she knows that success doesn't involve magic tricks - just a ton of hard work and dedication.

Date a girl who cheers on her competitors. One who isn't afraid that her boxmate will finish first or does more reps than her. One who actually wants her friends to do better than her. Her boxmates are her second family so you may have to go through them first if you want to get with her.

The only time you may yell at her is during WODs when you see her struggling to crank out another rep, when she's breathing so hard she feels like passing out, when she thinks she might have to bail because she cannot come up from her squat. She will loathe you intensely for it during that moment, but later on she will thank you and you'll both have a good laugh about it.

She knows it's okay to pause when WODs or life gets too difficult, but she also knows how to forge on. And this is what you will find most beautiful about her. CrossFit may be a big part of her life, but she can always make room for the right guy.


I wrote this when I remembered all the great things I read in The Bull Runner's Date a Girl Who Runs. And I thought, why not Date a Girl Who CrossFits too?

Apr 19 WOD: OTM Squat cleans

I'd forgotten to post last Friday's workout so here it is.

OTM x 16 minutes

Odd: 5 squat cleans (135/95)
Even: 6-8 ring dips

I used 65 lbs for the squat cleans and did band-assisted ring dips. I felt dizzy after the WOD and it turns out I wasn't the only one. It must be the heat. Even with the air conditioning, the inside of the box felt so stuffy and made it difficult to breathe. I made it through the 16 minutes though, thank goodness.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Apr 17 WOD: PWOD

It was one of those partner WOD days again at CFMNL.

12 minutes AMRAP

12 wall balls (20/14)
12 burpees

Partners do alternate rounds, so one person does 1 round while the other rests. Then the other partner works while the other one rests. I got paired with Rae, who's really good with burpees. She credited that to all the burpees they'd had to do at bootcamp. Blechhh! Anyway, I used a 14 lb ball and together, Rae and I did 8 rounds and 10 wall balls.

In other news, the CFMNL Open Finals is going to be held this Saturday at the Army Soccer Field in Taguig. Anton and Jerwin from the midday/lunch crew qualified to compete in the Men's Medium Rx category so some of us are planning to go and cheer. Another friend who qualified is a co-parent who owns a garage gym. It's gonna be wild! Fun and wild!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

One of the things I cannot say out loud

I say don't knock it till you've tried it -- for at least 3 months. It's just too bad that the typos almost ruin the punchline on this too true ecard.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Apr 15 WOD: Baby McGhee

This means we had to do just a scaled version of the real benchmark, McGhee. In this case, it was:

15 minutes AMRAP

5 dead lifts (275/185)
13 push ups
9 box jumps (24/18")

And am I glad we didn't have to do the real thing, which is 30 minutes AMRAP. I used 125 for the DLs and did the push ups and box jumps as Rx'd (my push ups were a little worm-y though).

My score: 8 rounds + 4 dead lifts

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Taking a break

And this is why I missed the Friday WOD...

Dumaluan beach at low tide

Chocolate Hills

Philippine tarsier

Loboc River

Baclayon Church

Sunrise at the beach

Dauis Church
As my mother said, the more I travel around the Philippines, the more beautiful I find it.

Apr 10 WOD: Sprints and DUs + Wendler


I did the WOD first and did the Wendler while the bootcampers were working out.

For skill work, Trisha and I practiced the muscle up transition while on our feet. I think I'll need to have been doing CF for 5 years before I get this movement.

5 RFT:

200m run
35 double unders

The. Heat. Was. Almost. Unbearable. The temp is almost always around 34 degrees and it's always sunny so you can understand why I did my best to not stop while running. Thank goodness we only had to do 200m sprints (although 'sprints' is a relative word).

My time: 12-ish

Strength: Dead lift

75% x 5 = 5 x 135
85% x 3 = 3 x 150
95% x 1+ = 3 x 170

Dead lifts: the reason why I have perpetual bruises on my shins... and darn proud of them.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Apr 8 WOD: Diane

We did benchmark girl Diane today:

Dead lifts (225/155)
Handstand push ups

I used 115 lbs and did pike push ups on an 18" box.

My time: 9:24

Isabelle and Rachelle came to the 12:30 pm class -- the first time they'd both attended since Open season had begun. I'm sooo proud of them! They've both really improved a lot, and you can't help but respect the discipline they have -- that all athletes have, in fact. Now that the Open is over, they could probably have a little break before they start training for Regionals, which is from May 31 to June 2 in Korea (Korea! I know, right?). If I'm not mistaken, 3 CFMNL teams are qualified to move on to the Asia Regional. Sooo eggzoiting!

Speaking of respect, I saw this on Lisbeth Darsh's twitter timeline:

That is Julie Foucher, who placed 2nd in the 2012 CrossFit Games. She demonstrated the workout standards for each 2013 Open workout and on top of that, she filmed demo video submissions (which meant she had to do all 5 workouts on video). Can you believe she did all 5 workouts in 48 hours?! She's not competing in this year's Games because she's chosen to focus on studying medicine, but I hope she'll come back next year because she has a real chance of dethroning Annie T.!

Friday, April 5, 2013

Apr 5 WOD: Open 13.5

I tried my hand at the last Open workout and you might think it's *just* 4 minutes, but the Fran-ish misery it brings will make you think twice. You wanna do well but you don't know if you wanna do well enough to get a bonus time of 4 minutes and prolong the agony. Dave Castro is an evil genius.

For the CFMNL Open competitors, this was the scale:

I'm glad I looked at the standards for the jumping pull ups. Most important points: the distance from the bar and the head has to be at least 6", and the rep starts from a dead hang position with the arms locked out. Turns out, they're not so easy to do! I finally settled on a double underhand grip, which made it easier to make my chest touch the bar.

My score: 50

And that concludes the Open season for me. I'm sad that there aren't anymore live announcements to look forward to, or articles and videos giving tips on how to go about the workouts.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

There is no other community like the CrossFit community

More than reaching my goal of getting fitter and stronger, what keeps me coming back for more at the box is the community. Whenever I open the door to the box, it's like coming home. We all greet one another like old friends and I just love the camaraderie. You compete with everyone else, but at the same time you also support them. That sounds strange, but not when it comes to CrossFit.

There was a double header at the live announcement of 13.5: Camille LeBlanc-Bazinet vs. Sam Briggs, and Rich Froning vs. Jason Khalipa. The workout is:

How it works is, if the 90 reps is completed within the 4 minute time cap, the time cap will be extended to 8 minutes. If the 180 reps is reached within the 8 minute time cap, the athlete will now get a 12 minute cap, and so on.

Sam wasn't able to do 180 in 8 minutes and scored only 175 when time ran out. Camille, however, had to continue, and at the end of 12 minutes she scored 244. I can't imagine what must have been going on in her mind when she saw that her competitor was done and she had to continue working in front of thousands of people.

After catching her breath, Sam walked over to Camille and cheered her on, as you can see below. Where else will you see your competitor egging you on to get in more reps than her? I swear, if everybody did CrossFit, the world would be so much the better for it. After all, CrossFit is a microcosm of the real world (at least, for me it is).

Camille in the yellow top; Sam in the black top
Grabbed from the CrossFit Games twitter feed
 I read on twitter that Jason was hosting Rich and his wife in his house -- how cool is that? Anyway, for their head-to-head, Jason wasn't able to meet the 8 minute cap (he scored 169). And community spirit ruled again as he went over to Rich to talk him through the workout. Rich finished with 226 reps.

Jason in the CrossFit Mayhem shirt; Rich with his back to the camera
Grabbed from the CrossFit Games twitter feed
Now I can't wait for the Games!!!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Apr 3 WOD: Max reps + Wendler


3 RFT:

1 minute max reps push ups
1 minute max reps kettlebell swings (24/16 kg)
1 minute max reps burpees
1 minute max reps sit ups
1 minute max reps box jumps (24/18")
1 minute rest

I used the Rx'd kettlebell weight and box height, but to be totally honest about my movements, they were not all performed as Rx'd (oopsie -- sorry, Coach!).

I didn't count the reps for each movement. Instead, I kept a continuous count of all my reps until the end of the round.

My score: 275

Strength: Shoulder press

70% x 3 = 3 x 45
80% x 3 = 3 x 50
90% x 3+ = 3 x 60 (broken into 1 rep sets)

Assistance: Good mornings

1 x 10 x 45
1 x 10 x 55
2 x 10 x 65
1 x 10 x 75

In other news... the last workout of the CF Open, 13.5 is going to be announced tomorrow! That would be at 8 am, Manila time. I can't wait to see what Dave Castro will make Froning and Khalipa do. He said it's going to be a "bloodbath" so whatever it is, it must be really baadddd.

Monday, April 1, 2013

If I were depressed...

From my tumblog
... CrossFit would be my Prozac. But more than my Prozac, it would be my happy pill.