Mix and match

Strength
5/3/1+ Bench Press 135# for 6 reps
5/3/1+ Deadlift 127kgs for 1 rep

Olympic Lifting
Snatch practice 60kgs

I almost decided to be a lazy bastard and sleep out the tremendous heat that is Manila (shameful for a local, I know) but I got a sudden burst of energy and decided to head out before laziness got the better of me. I’m looking at my numbers for the bench press and I may need to be a bit more consistent on what weight I lift. Last time I did it I went for bigger numbers and it felt ok. This time, when it should have gone up, I ended up lifting lower weights (following the correct calculations). That basically means it is all screwed up and I am not following the programming. I simply estimated my 1RM last time around and I think I was a bit off on that.

If you’ve noticed, my deadlift numbers are in kgs. That is because the only place I could do deadlifts was the Olympic lifting area. As they only had kg plates in 15s 20s and 25s, I had to use the lbs plates to make up the remaining poundage or kilos (whichever you prefer). I psyched myself to do 2-3 lifted it, thought it was a bit heavy and just pushed through. It was a ‘slow’ one and had a bit of wobbly knees moment. I gave it a bit more thought as to why it felt heavier than expected, and was even contemplating on doing it again as I should be able to lift it at least 2 times. Then it hit me, redid the math and ended up loading 127kgs on the bar instead of the intended 114kgs! Unintended PB!

It was then on to the Olympic lifting session and I screwed this one up as well. I didn’t warm-up properly despite sweating bullets at this point. I failed on every single attempt on the 60kgs. I think it was a combination of the heat, new shoes (I believe the dynamics of my movements changed a bit wearing the Oly shoes) and not going through the different components of the move properly (I think I was lacking the explosion from pockets and I wasn’t aggressive on the second pull). I will consider doing snatches again next time I come in, or do something else.

24 hour gym

Strength
5/3/1+ Press 105# @ 5 (pull ups in between)
5/3/1+ Squat 245# @ 3

Olympic Lifting
Clean and Jerk practice 60kgs

I decided to get a 5 visit pass to Eclipse 24/7 gym here in Shaw as it is the closest facility to where I’m staying which would suit my needs best. I wasn’t really sure what the vibe was of the place, for sure it wasn’t a normal ‘globo gym’ nor was it a ‘bakal gym’ or a Crossfit facility. But they did have loads of power cages, kettlebells and an area for Olympic lifting/metcon.

I loved the fact that were around 6 or more power racks that you could press, bench press or squat in and I think I would be using those a lot. I do think that their pins needed a bit more improvement as I wasn’t sure if I was in the hooks or not. Their lifting bars felt that the knurling has almost gone, maybe it was just the sweat beading off me (no air conditioning unit that I could see, although it didn’t feel stuffy at all).

I still managed to do more than expected on my lifts and managed to up my estimated 1RM numbers, even though I had to convert kilograms to pounds.

I decided to give the ‘Olympic lifting area’ a go. I got confused here as their bumper plates seemed to be in kgs, while their non Olymic plates were in pounds. It would have been better if things were consistent (I don’t mind lbs vs kgs, so long as they stick to one system). At first I was hesitant to drop the bar, as I felt I was already standing out being the only guy doing Olympic lifts (with my near new Reebok CrossFit Oly shoes). But as I got tired, I dumped the bars and nobody was alarmed or anything which is a good sign. One thing I wasn’t comfortable with was there were a couple of guys lounging around real close to me yapping about something or other while I was doing the lifts which is quite distracting. I’m still not sure how I can do metcons in the area with folks going about their business around me and not aware of what I’m doing, health and safety and all.

In any case it was a good first session and it is a huge bonus that they do operate 24/7 as I have a bit of leeway in terms of scheduling my gym session.

Two magic letters

01 Feb
Warm Up

Hip mobility work

Strength
6×3 Power Cleans @70% 1RM (A:52.5kgs, S:30kgs)
Kipping ring dips or 1RM weighted

WOD
50 Thrusters (A:42.5kgs, S:25kgs)
40 Hang power cleans
30 Box jumps
20 Ring dips

When I first saw the WOD on the board I wasn’t particularly chuffed about it. The sheer numbers and weight involved was mind-boggling. But then I just reminded myself that the only way to improve was to get down to it and do the work. So I loaded the bar with the Rx weight of 42.5kgs and went for it. It was a suck fest and felt the dumplings we had for lunch trying to make a comeback around the 40th thrusters. But I soldiered on and chipped away straight on to the hang power cleans. Then I realized everyone was miles ahead and were either on the box jumps, or ring dips or finished. I didn’t let that get me down and just kept a decent pace of work, never stopped more than I should on the box jumps and broke down the ring dips into 5s then 3s and 2s. I finished in 15m13s which was surprisingly good! I was happy about that! Socs did better at 12m42s.

02 Feb
Strength Session

3×3 Press
3×3 Squat

Accessories:
Weighted pull ups
Ring dips/dumbell reverse flyes
Barbell roll outs/single leg deadlifts

This time I did not mess up the numbers and was successfully able to press 45kgs for 5 reps on the last set as well as 100kgs for 5 reps on the squat. Happy days. As usual there were all the accessory workouts to get our strength up. Looking forward to getting bigger numbers up soon.

Fucking up the numbers

Strength Session (Allan)
Upper Body
3×5 Bench Press (45.5kgs, 60kgs, 60kgs)

Accessories
Bench: Rest/pause narrow grip bench at 50% of working weight (33,15,15 at 30kgs)

Lower Body
3×5 Deadlift 100kgs

Accessories
3×15 Glute bridges 40kgs
3×20 Woodchoopers with 12kg kettlebell

We started off late as the Olympic barbell class was doing a weightlifting competition of sorts which was fun to watch. I do hope we do that sort of thing once in a while, on both Olympic lifts and powerlifting lifts.

I should probably get my head around the whole 5/3/1 program more as I ended up deviating on the bench press and completely screwing up the weight on the deadlifts. I thought I was lifting 80kgs on the first set but in reality did 100kgs. No wonder that felt heavy! At least I was able to do the reps, which is good.

I don’t remember the details of Socs’ workout but it was an AMRAP which included 3 handstand push-ups (she did kip from a tripod position) and finished 6 rounds if I’m not mistaken. A pull-up and now 3 handstand push ups, she is going to destrominate L3 WODs soon!

Seemed a bit light

I’ve decided to dedicate my Saturday noon for a bit of strength session at CrossFit London UK and I’ve decided to use Wendler’s 5-3-1 programming as it fits nicely with the program and timing of the Saturday class.

The session looked like this:
Upper body
Press (5-5-5+ increasing weight)
Pull-ups between all sets

Assistance movements
50x diamond grip push-ups
50x Meadow’s row (per arm)

Lower Body
Squat (5-5-5+ increasing weight)

Assistance movements
50x Med ball sit-up/throws (partner assisted)
25x Razor curls from kneeling (partner assisted)

Pretty straightforward right? I sorted out all my prescribed weight for all movements (press, squat, bench press and deadlift) based on my 1RM. I managed to go through the press sessions well enough doing 32.5kgs, 37.5kgs then 42.5 kgs (for 8 reps). But then somehow things got confusing for the squat. I knew I had to do 93.5kgs on my last set for a minimum of 5 reps and I was a bit anxious on that as my 1RM is only 110kgs.

For some reason, when I loaded 45.5kgs on the first and 52.5kgs on the second set it did not occur to me that the numbers didn’t add up. They felt a bit light! I realized then that I was looking at my bench press numbers and wasted the 2 sets. I just decided to put 90kgs on the bar and see where that went. I managed to do 6 reps. I am now considering redoing the entire phase for squats or moving on to the next round (3×3 but heavier). I don’t want to complicate things more (I can’t even read my own programming correctly!) but I don’t want to waste my time either, so we’ll see on the next couple of weeks.