We’ve been talking a lot lately about the benefits of “crashing the car” in a workout. That is flying into the teeth of the thing, hard and fast, with no plan. Crashing and burning can help drive adaptation as we learn to push, hurt, and then push through the hurt. The flipside of this would be gaming a workout, or having a plan of attack in order to maximize our score. Remember, we’re looking for maximal power ((force*distance)/time) output. A slower time on an identical workout is less powerful.
A few weeks ago I took on the Hero workout JT, in honor of Petty Officer 1st Class Jeff Taylor, 30, of Little Creek, VA, who was killed in Afghanistan June 2005. The workout is 21-15-9 of handstand push-ups, ring dips, and push-ups. I did this workout almost exactly a year ago to the date of this recent attempt, and gamed the hell out of it. The reps and rest during my 2011 effort were carefully partitioned and timed, for a score of 13:32, that I was pretty happy with. This time I decided I’d just go for it. I did my first set of handstand push-ups unbroken, and that was it. The rest of the workout was a slog, with each rep being a slow grind to complete the range of motion, resulting in a final time of 19:02.
Am I 5 and a half minutes less fit in this particular domain than I was a year ago? I don’t think so. My max sets of handstand push-ups and ring dips have gone up, my jerk is 10kg higher than this time last year, I recently PR’d my 3RM press, and I weigh roughly the same. So what’s up? Simple, I crashed the car. The set of 21 handstand push-ups to begin the workout set me back to a point from which I could not recover.
My power output from a year ago is much higher, I did the same amount of work significantly faster. Although I’m disappointed with my recent score, it’s only training, not a competition, so it’s a learning opportunity. Sometimes the best plan is to just go as fast as possible, but there’s certainly also a time to pick your spots and strategize to maximize a workout.
Rope Ascents (begin flat footed, no jumping starts)
Box Jumps (30″/24″)
Clean & Jerks (90% best set of push presses)
Beantown Throwdown Mark your calendars for Sunday, August 12th, because we’re hosting our first competition here at CrossFit Fenway. If you’re interested in competing or judging/volunteering please e-mail Eric. Stay tuned for further details as the event gets closer.
Fenway Park Spartan Sprint on November 17th, 2012 the creators of the Spartan Race series are turning Fenway Park into a 1 mile Spartan Sprint obstacle course. It’s in our backyard, and rumor has it another local box is putting a team together, so let’s represent! Kevin Kittredge has agreed to lead the CrossFit Fenway team, so please contact him in the next week if you’re interested. More race details are available here.
Hyannis Hyball Invitational is a charity softball game being put together by CrossFit Fenway’s own Sean O’Connell to benefit the Big Brothers/Big Sisters organization. The event is July 28th at 10 AM in Hyannis, MA, and all of CFF is invited. Please check out HyannisHyball.com for more information.