I think it’s only appropriate to sing songs from “Westside Story” during the first day of Westside Barbell training. Don’t you? I thought so.
It was a full house again today, with 14 in attendance. After static stretching and mobility on our own, Michael Kelley led us through dynamic stretching. I was surprised that Spiderman stretches were not included.
Maximum Effort Back Squat – Establish new 1RM
I was somewhat anxious this morning, but that feeling quickly abated. I once again partnered with Woody, who achieved four, count them, four PRs. Ah, to be a newbie…
Michael Kelley informed us that when we were done, we were done, i.e., that if we failed an attempt and/or achieved a PR we were done. I suppose I should’ve paid more attention to him. He tends to bore me, though, so I tend to tune him out rather quickly.
Back to the back squats. As we could choose high bar or low bar, I chose low bar. After warming up, I lifted singles of 165, 185, 205, & 225. My previous 1RM was 235. As I was getting ready to attempt 1RM Michael Kelley asked, “Are you going to attempt 240 or 245?” I replied, “Two forty.” I wasn’t quite sure why he was asking, and I should’ve asked for clarification.
I put 240# on the bar, and lifted it with very little struggle. Yes, I was quite pleased with myself. I then put another 5# on the bar, and Michael Kelley said, “Don’t get greedy.” I then realized what he meant: if you achieve a 1RM you’re done for the day. I said, “You’re right.” I took the weights off of the bar and began to get ready for the conditioning.
Yes, I’m disappointed that I didn’t attempt 245 or even 250, but pleased that 240# felt so easy.
As I was walking past Michael Kelley, he slapped my right ass cheek and said, “Good job.” Uhm, okay. He then slapped my left ass cheek. I asked, “Are we members of the women’s volleyball team?” By the way, my ass is the most firm it’s ever been, so much so that I find myself slapping my own ass. I don’t, however, yell “Good job!” Well, at least not every time.
8 rounds for time:
3 power cleans @ 75% of 1RM
My goal was to do the metcon unbroken, i.e., go all out from start to finish. Just before we began (after many stops and starts because people can’t seem to get their shit together) Michael Kelley said, “While there’s no time cap, everyone should be able to complete this in ten minutes.” I thought, “I should be able to do this in half that time.” I set an additional goal to complete the metcon in less than 5 minutes.
I cleaned 110#, a little more than 75%, and the weight was too light. I could’ve completed all reps unbroken with another 10 or even 15 pounds on the bar. I’m feeling much more confident with this lift. I still need to focus on throwing my hips back and faster elbows. I no longer have hair on my mid-thighs. That’s a good sign.
I enjoyed this metcon tremendously, and give it a rating of 9.5. Why not 10? Because 8 rounds just wasn’t enough! I was hardly winded when I finished in a time of 4:30.
4 x 15 glute bridge raises @ 95#
100 GHD sit-ups
As we did indeed have time for accessory work, I chose to do glute bridge raises. (I’m sorry you had to partner with Michael Kelley, Michelle!) When I went to retrieve an Abmat, there were none on the shelf. While I saw one placed by my bar, I thought it was Lauren’s. Uhm, she was doing Abmat sit-ups, so I should’ve figured out this it wasn’t hers. I always look forward to an opportunity to bitch, and bitch I did. Michael Kelley said, “Just do 100 GHD sit-ups instead.” I loves me some GHD sit-ups. And bitching.
I spent the day dreading sled pulls, but pushed (and pulled?) myself to the box this evening to do just that. Michael Kelley showed me some interesting things to do with a resistance band. I’ve seen many of the same moves in gay porn. We also talked about mixing up sled pulls, so that’s what I did.
2 rounds of 3 x 60m
I put 120# on the sled. A round consisted of 2 x 30m forward, backward, and dead-lift. As usual, this was grueling. I also did 20 paralette pass throughs after each round.
Next were 100 banded hamstring curls. Inez and Heather were observing, and asked what I was doing. I let them know I was exercising for my vagaygay. (I prefer spelling with a “g” instead of a “j”, for obvious reasons.)
As the 5:15ers were doing the metcon, I decided to do 5 x up to 10 unbroken toes to bar, i.e., as many unbroken toes to bar as I could complete up to 10 reps. I completed the first round unbroken and thought, “That was easy. Let’s see how the remaining rounds go.” I completed the second round unbroken. And then the third and fourth rounds. And then the fifth round. Wow, a breakthrough! Kristin was nice enough to compliment me — and smart enough to know how to spell compliment. I’ve focusing on efficiency, and I’m pleased with progress.
Overall, another great day at CFZ.
Please kindly allow a few asides, some related to CrossFit, others not so much so.
Again, I very much like partnering with Woody, as he listens well and quickly adjusts his form based upon feedback. Oh, and he’s strong – stronger than he thinks he is.
A certain someone who shall remain nameless needs to let me know when she or he is attempting a max effort lift, as I will ensure that she or he does not shake her or his head “no” during the lift. Positive self-talk.
We’re all responsible for time management. Thus, ensure that if you’re partnering with one or more people that you complete your lifts within the time provided. It pisses me off when all are ready but one or two stragglers.
Finally, I think I’ve thrown quite a few people for a loop when I’ve said, “I love you, Michael Kelley” during a session. This usually occurs during a witty/dull (me/Michael Kelley) exchange, after he’s provided effective coaching, or after I’ve said something that could be perceived as mean or hateful. It’s important to note that I mean it when I say it. Yes, sometimes I mean that I hate Michael Kelley when I say that as well.
I like that he and I are both comfortable enough with our friendship that we can express our emotions privately to each other and publicly in front of others. Allow me to continue.
While I had best friends as a child, I consider my high school best friend, George, my very first best friend. We shared similar interests and we had many a lengthy conversation about our hopes, fears, and aspirations. While not on a frequent basis, we would nonetheless say, “I love you.” I did then and I do now. He’s one of the most important people in my life, for it was during that time that I was coming out, and he kept me grounded in so many ways.
George was the first of many best friends, some male, some female – but all straight. Jay, Tracy, Caroline, Brian, and now Michael Kelley. Yes, Jeff is also a best friend, but that’s different. Don’t argue with me on this. You won’t win.
Of all of the best friends I’ve had, Michael Kelley and I are the most open about our emotions, both negative and positive. I admire him for being open-minded, as I know he gets questioned quite frequently as to why one of his best friends is a middle-aged, gay (exceedingly strong and attractive) man.
I encourage each and every one of you to let those of you that you love know that you love them. Hug them. Kiss them. Tell them you love them. Take a moment and so do now. I’ll be here waiting.
Back so soon? Perhaps you need more friends.
I guess what I’m trying to say, Michael Kelley, is that I don’t hate you.