July 13, 2011
July 18, 2011

With the nice weather, and the recent spate of heavy workouts, Thursday saw the barbells take a backseat to Jump Ropes which would feature prominently in both the skill session (form running drills) and the met-con (Annie!). To make sure everyone was ready for the road ahead, a warm-up was prescribed specifically targeting the ankles, hip-flexors, hamstrings and calves.

Warm-Up #1:
2 x 10 Ankle Rotations Clockwise/side,
10 Ankle Rotations Counter-Clockwise/side,
& 20 Alternating External Hip Rotations/side

Warm-Up #2:
2 x 10 Alternating Straight-Leg Floor Touches into Straight-Leg High-Kicks/side
& 30 Mountain Climbers/side

Skill: Pose Running

The last time we covered Pose running in a blog post was back in the end of April. That post served to delineate the major differences between Pose running and traditional running forms (traditional, for lack of a better term at this point, is basically the practice of reaching out with your lead foot and connecting with the ground heel-first). The theory is sound, but without with which to implement it, it’s of little use. So Thursday’s session focused on getting the feel for the form, which centers around pulling the foot up under the body (as opposed to kicking it out behind).

Drill 1: Ball of Foot Hopping – This helps teach a runner where on the foot they should be landing, while also helping to emphasize a tight mid-line;

Drill 2: Forward Hop – This helps combine quick but soft landings on the ball of the foot with the key idea that forward momentum is gained not by pushing with the legs, but by leaning with the body, using momentum to simply pull the runner along;

Drill 3: Forward Hop into a Light Jog – This should help to transfer the idea of using the forward lean from the hop to an actual running movement. Remember, however, that the mid-line should stay tight, and that the body lean is created at the ankles, NOT the hips;

Drill 4: Skipping – Although not originally in the day’s progression, this drill was used to help get the feel for pulling the leg up under the body, rather than pushing it out behind;

Drill 5: Jump Rope Drill – To perform this drill, simply grab a rope and assume good running posture (midline tight, shoulders down, elbows in, with your weight centered on the ball of your feet) and begin jumping rope in place. Switch to jumping rope with alternating feet to simulate running in place. Now add a forward body lean to begin running forward while still jumping rope. After 6-10 steps drop the rope, but continue the exact same running pattern. This drill will really help drive home correct posture and technique by emphasizing the need to jump with and land on the balls of your feet, pulling your feet underneath your body, and using body lean to generate that forward momentum – excessive jumping, breaking at the hip, or pushing with the legs, will all make completing this exercise extremely difficult.
Expect to start seeing more of these drills in the near future as we are really going to try and hammer home good running posture. In the meantime, if you missed it, or want to go back and re-read to get some fresh perspective, be sure to check out Competitor Magazine’s article from June of this year featuring Brian McKenzie and the CrossFit Endurance program (which teaches Pose running):

(click on the pic to jump to a downloadable version of the article)

Besides, running drills are a fantastic excuse to get outside and enjoy great weather!

Met-Con: Annie

Since the ropes were in hand, why not use them for a quick benchmark WOD: 50-40-30-20-10 Double Unders and Sit-Ups. Single skips were an option for those still unable to put together DUs, while Dan decided to scale-up the workout by performing his sit-ups on the GHD. Results were as follows:

Finisher: 20 MORE Blourpees

Rana (above) and Tara got a less than genteel introduction to the CFDC “Blourpee” in only their second class. Considering our love for burpees, I’d say that’s not inappropriate. However, just for sake of a refresher, remember that the rule is as follows: If your picture is posted on the blog, and you don’t comment on the blog before your next attendance, it’s a communal 20 blog-burpees (“blourpees”) for that class.

There should be plenty to comment on after Thursday class, especially regarding the running drills. So let loose!



  1. SaltyHat says:

    Sorry for the late post – I had to dork-out and make an 8th (and final) visit to Hogwarts today.

  2. Erica says:

    Smarty pants Merson wore heels to work today after a day of calf-killing exercises. Am definitely earning my PhD today.

    I really appreciate the running drills, considering I am one of the people Salty Brose was talking about who do a lot of running. I struggled with the running with the rope but am definitely thinking of mechanics when running now.

    For the met-con, I’m starting to get frustrated with myself because I’m unable to do some of the more complicated movements (think real pull-ups, think DUs) which I think make the workouts “easier” for me. However, every time I can say that I did a “girl name” workout, I feel like I”m becoming more and more of a true CFer. Reggie, when you next do your DU clinics, sign me up.

  3. Erica says:

    And Scott, if you’re reading this I’m realllllllllly sorry that I punched you yesterday. But not as sorry as you’ll be if you forget to comment again 😉 JK

  4. Tom Brose says:

    Oh dear god, Chris and I have morphed in a collective coaching entity…

    Actually, it is great to have Chris as a “fulltime” coach and bringing you all some knowledge I don’t have. The running form is really going to help people with efficiency (less tiring when a run comes up in a wod), and injury prevention. Great tie in with the mechanics on the rope conveniently enough.

    Erica, we’ll work you on the DU if you show up early on Sunday.

    For people struggling with pullups, I can let you in on the secrets to pullup success:
    Practice as a skill (learn the correct pattern of movement).
    Get rid of any extra weight.
    Get stronger.

    I should write an e-book and sell that info, buts its FREE for you all.

  5. Julia says:

    Great drills, great explanation. And GREAT weather.

    (amazing what the combined powers of Salty Brose can do!)

  6. Sara says:

    As much as I loath running I love the running drills from Chris. I also hope they will help me to loath running less :).

    I got a 9 second PR on Annie and managed to get into the under 8 Minutes. Next goal get efficient enough in DUs to get sub 7.

  7. Rana says:

    Great class, I’ll be back for more on Sunday : ) ..but I gotta say my abs are still sore!

  8. Dian says:

    I have been really nervous about running since I had knee issues in the past. I love the running drills. I plan on slowly starting running again and I’m definitely going to use what I’ve learned from the drills .

    I did Annie once before with regular skips. I was so excited that I could do double-unders this time that I didn’t think too much about my time (I finished at (9:40). It was only after Tom B. mentioned that I was able to complete Annie in under 10 minutes I thought…oh heck, I did!

    Still struggling with pull-ups. I can only do about 1 un-assisted pull-up at a time. I can’t string multiple un-assisted pull-ups together. I’ll get there.

    Well, back to my blocked drain. See y’all tomorrow.

  9. Ethan says:

    I bet you guys thought I would forget to post before class

  10. SaltyHat says:

    I bet you would rather have done 20 burpees instead of that workout…

  11. TomandAmi says:

    I – surprisingly – liked the running drills as well and the technique made sense to me for the first time. I am still not sure though how it works for faster runs like sprints and 400s – you know I run so many of those.

  12. Stohlman says:

    Did Salty just say that he saw the new Harry Potter movie eight times in three days?

  13. edgy reggie says:

    I had to miss this class due to a late departure. But I bet that it was a fun one. I’m not much of a runner, but I do like the technique breakdowns (which may actually help me to dislike running a lot less).

    As a result of missing this class, I went to yoga instead.

    “Not too bad for an old man.” – CFDC’s own ODB

  14. tara.k foto says:

    can’t wait for the next class!

  15. Scott says:

    Unfortunately I won’t be able to come to class for a while. Erica’s punch has me out 4-6 weeks. Just kidding, sorry for the missed post last week guys. See you all Tuesday.

  16. Chrissy says:

    Hey guys- if Reggie is CFDC’s resident ODB, I have become CFDC’s MIA e-learner. Was out of town for awhile, had a death in the family, and now am in finals–so it’s been a really crazy summer. Excuses, excuses… but I really hope I see you guys soon!

    Some friends and I did these running drills together and found them really helpful. My thoughts almost exactly reflect Erica’s– I struggled to run with the rope and get more than 5 DU per set.

    I’ve suspected Tom’s theory of pull-up success for some time now, so I’ve been adding reps of pushups/box dips to most work outs.

    Probably more helpfully, I’ve finally embraced the fact that I can’t eat white flour, sugar, and other processed stuff for every meal and still be surprised that my arms can’t compensate for my bodyweight–so I’ve been phasing into Paleo for about a month now and can already see a difference in performance and energy. So hopefully all this will translate into some pullups (or at least more then 3 unassisted pull-ups!) sometime in the near future. Hope to see you guys before September- Chrissy.