November 2, 2011
November 7, 2011
3-2-1 CONTACT!

Where as Tuesday’s class was heavy on the technique and skill, Thursday’s class was relatively simple: as many reps, as many rounds, and as many minutes. How hard could that be?

3 x Strict Pull Ups

Everyone had 3 shots to get as many strict pull-ups as possible, limiting their rest to roughly 3 minutes between sets. Scaling for those with fewer than 4 pull-ups was 2 sets of 4 strict pull-ups, completing the set of 4 with as many negatives as were needed, and 1 set of box assisted pull-ups (the 6pm went with a recently recommended floor assisted rack pull-up which, I’m sad to say, didn’t seem to work out so well).

2 x 5min AMRAP of
8 Wall Balls,
10 KB SDHP, &
12 Burpees
A double dose of Met-Con fun. Perform the 8-10-12 triplet as many times as possible in 5 minutes. Rest for 3 minutes, then perform the triplet again for another 5 minutes starting where you left in the first round (so, if you stopped at 8 burpees in the first 5min round, you would begin on burpee #9 in the second 5min round). Score was total rounds and reps.

A quick note on the standards for wall balls: while the focus is usually on getting the ball high enough (i.e. to the 10ft line), the depth of the squat is just as important. Although the following language is from the Open Qualifiers Workout #5 this past year, it’s pretty much the universal standard for judging (or even teaching) the movement:

In the Wall ball, the medicine ball must be taken from the bottom of a squat, hip crease below knee, and thrown to hit the specified target…The center of the ball must hit the target at or above the specified target height. If the ball hits low or does not hit the wall it is no rep.

So if all 8 of your wall balls are at or above the 10ft line in Thursday’s workout, but they were all done from a 1/4 squat position, then not a single one of them would count (If you’re not sure that your getting down deep enough, you can always grab another med ball and stick it underneath you for a depth gauge).

1 x Plank Hold for Time
One shot to give it all you’ve got on the plank hold. Andraea led the way, clocking in a full 4 minutes of legit plank-hold, and by legit, I mean that she never even changed position – no butt in the air, no sagging, just flat-out plank hold. Awesome.

Extra time was used to take class through some much needed stretching and mobility. Half the time was devoted to some couch stretches (AKA the death stretch) and elbow-to-ankle hip stretches while the other half focused on loosening up the hamstrings with some flexion-extension work against resistance bands.
See you all on Sunday. And don’t forget, Daylight Savings Time ends at 2AM on Sunday morning, so be sure to re-set your clocks back an hour Saturday night before you go to bed!


  1. Sara says:

    Fun workout. I did some pre-class oly drills. Snatch balance and jerks at very light drilling weight.

    I did max rep pullups and got 4-4-3. Then I did a couple negatives.

    I got 5 or 6 total rounds in the metcon using the 16lb med ball and 20k kettlebell.

  2. Andraea says:

    My legs and back are sore! The weeks of not working out in Guadalajara definitely came back to haunt me last night. But it was a great workout and one that I needed badly. Pull-ups are always a struggle, I managed to do one on my own and then did negatives. The back is feeling it so the negatives are no joke either.

    Sumo deadlifts were causing me issues last night. It’s been a while since I’ve done them but I had problems keeping my shoulder blades pinched back and not rounding over and sitting back into it. Definitely need more work on those. I had to drop weight with the medicine ball by the 2nd round since I wasn’t quite hitting the target. Hopefully the next time we do wall balls I’ll be able to use the heavier one.

    Thanks for the shout out on my plank hold Chris! I was shocked I got to 4 minutes. Now if I can just get to where I was on the other exercises…

  3. Julia says:

    Nice work, Andraea!!!

    Metcon – 8-10-12? 5-3-5? Say again? Or just… 3-2-1 go. Ok. Not sure exactly what my final count was, but came away feeling good about the pacing, control, and effort. Filing this one away as a reminder for the next time that wallballs come up in a workout: they might not be where I get ahead, but they don’t have to mean panicking or giving up, either.

  4. SBV says:

    The burpees crushed me. It was like the lyrics from the old R. Kelly song: “My mind’s telling me no! But my body, my body’s telling me yes!” Except the opposite. I wanted to keep pushing, but my body just wouldn’t do it. Great workout, though.

  5. Erica says:

    I was happy to get two consecutive pullups on tge first round, but after that, could only get one on the second round (and maybe zero on the third, boo).

    The met-con went okay, I felt strong the first five minutes and thought my burpees were going by quickly, but quickly tired. I went with the 14# ball and think I got deep enough, but struggled to get over the silver line every one. Since some of them did go over, I know I CAN do it, but in terms of making a good decision next time, is it better to drop or better to push…I am not interested in substituting quantity for quality at all, I promise.

    Plank hold was pretty pathetic, pretty much the first one to drop, but no real surprise there.
    See you Sunday!

  6. Amelia says:

    Arms and back are feeling the negatives for sure.

    The met-con was tough for me. Ben – I felt the same way, I kept willing myself to do the burpees faster but I just couldn’t do it.

  7. Katie says:

    Last night was rough for me, I was feeling kinda crappy and my body just wasn’t doing what I wanted it to…exactly what Ben and Amelia said! I’m hoping pull-ups (scaled options) will be easier when I have calluses on my hands, right now it’s primarily a matter of how long I can hold on. First time doing SDHPs, I used the green ball (not sure of the weight). As I was getting tired I kept using my arms and rounding my back, so I need to work on that. I also tend to not do a full squat for the wall balls as I get tired, next time I think I’ll try putting another medicine ball under my butt as suggested. I had to fight for every burpee (even in their scaled version, they kill me), so that really slowed me down. I was 10 burpees short of finishing 4 rounds — not what I would want, but not horrible considering how I was feeling. I’m going to rest, eat well, and hydrate so I can come back strong on Sunday.

  8. Steph says:

    Well done Andraea for completing 4 minutes of legit plank. You were truly inspring! I wish I had strong abs like yours!

    For the pull ups I did 2 rounds on the pull-up bar and 1 round on the squat rack bar. I got 2 chin-ups in each of the rounds I did on the pull-up bar, tried for a 3rd each time but it just wouldn’t go up. For the round on the squat rack bar, I did 7. On the 7th I noticed that I was pushing entirely with my arms, thus defeating the purpose of the exercise and Chris said that was a good place to stop.

    Another good metcon and I liked that it was also a different format. The 5 minutes on, 3 minutes off and 5 minutes on again was definitely not something we see often in class and I liked that we mixed things up. I think I was 9 reps from 6 full rounds. Subbed med ball cleans for the wall balls and used 16kg for the high pulls. Felt better than Tuesday as I didn’t come to class after having just eaten 2 huge bars of chocolate.

    I think I did about 1 minute and 20 seconds of plank hold before I dropped. Need to get back to doing more of those.

    Just ate my face off at Hill Country bbq, looking forward to a tough workout on Sunday!!!!!

  9. Steph says:

    Oops, I meant I was pushing with my legs, not my arms, in the squat rack pull-ups.

  10. SaltyHat says:

    9 comments so far: 7 girls and just one 1 guy. The ladies really seem to be carrying the banner here.

    Erica, you bring up a good point. As always, Tom and I value quality over quantity. But this wasn’t totally an issue of quality, for either you or Amelia (who I think was in a similar boat). Both of you were fairly consistent in squat depth, and, as you said, you were getting to the line at least half the time. So should you have dropped down in weight? I don’t think so – or at least, not this time. I think this was more a product of just getting comfortable with the movement. For the workouts with smaller numbers, I believe you can take on a slightly heavier weight and then work on really recruiting as much explosion as you can coming out of the squat. Now, if we were to do Karen (150 wallballs), then yes, you would need to drop down.

    Katie, the calluses will come, as will the strength and comfort the movements. Until then, just keep supplying all that awesome enthusiasm and willingness to learn.

    Lastly, guys and girls, while there are lots of reasons for a lack of energy (lack of sleep, poor diet, stress, over-exercising), it’s important to note that we are also entering prime cold and flu season. So please pay attention to what’s ailing you, as pushing through could make things worse for you, and that’s one thing we’d rather you avoid sharing with your fellow CFDCers.

  11. edgy reggie says:

    Due to getting pulled over by the “five-oh,” I arrived at the 7:00 class late, but I managed to do most of the warm-up.

    I was able to do only one set of six (or was it seven?) pull-ups before the met-con started.

    For the met-con, I used the 20# medicine ball and the 32 kg kettlebell. Wall ball and the sumo-deadlift high pulls were…okay, but burpees killed me that night. I completed four full rounds plus six burpees.

    Had I used a towel for the plank hold, I believe that I could have maintained the hold a bit longer; then again, maybe not. 🙂 I won’t complain too much about being able to perform a plank hold for three minutes and some change; nevertheless, I will work on maintaining better form in future plank holds.

    @SBV: I don’t see nuttin’ wrong wit’ a lil’ bump-and-grind. 🙂

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

  12. edgy reggie says:

    …but that workout was more grind and less bump. 🙂