Thursday, November 28, 2013

CrossFit Training Week 3

Snatch, Clean & Jerk, Pull-ups

I've seen definite improvement in my snatch.  I've given this the most extra time, and I'm starting to get more comfortable with the positions.  I'm getting better at identifying my weak points (hips, catch).  This should help me spend my time more effectively.

The clean is a bit better.  The pain in my right elbow area has gone away; so, I think I'm keeping my arm position more consistently.  I got to spend the whole olympic skills class on jerk, which was really great.  I haven't given it that much focus for a long time.  I need to improve my overhead mobility, but I'm starting to realize that I need to stop using that as an excuse for getting overextended.  I just need to keep everything tight.

I haven't gotten anywhere with pull-ups.  I have decided that I'm going to do them every day instead of 3 times a week.  Hopefully that extra work coupled with losing some body fat will accelerate progress here.

Mobility Rx

I've been monkeying around with the mobility rx Roop gave me.  Everything he said made sense, but I'm not seeing any immediate improvements.  I think I just need to dedicate a little more time each day and another week or two.  The thing that is definitely not working for me is the hamstring mobility.  The only one of the 1000 exercises that doesn't make it feel worse is smashing.  It's likely nervous system related; so, I just need to relax more.

Do Work

Up until last weekend, I've been hitting crossfit everyday with additional before and after work.  I was going hard at a Startup Weekend EDU event.  Because of the time constraints, I didn't workout Saturday or Sunday, and then I wanted to get extra sleep on Monday.  One day would have been fine, but I can't really afford missing that many days again.  I did have the benefit of no soreness for once, but I'm still sleep deprived.


A quick overview of my current diet.  I'm shooting for Paleo at around a 500 calorie deficit each day.  Additionally, I'm shooting for less than 20% calories from carbs; which works out to no fruit (except avocado) and no starches.  My body fat is not low; so, any fat I can lose will allow me to perform better.  Again last weekend was an unfortunate departure, and diet continues to be a key factor in my success/failure.

I started my supplements this week:
  • 5g BCAA + 5g Creatine + 1 AlphaBrain when I wake up (I'm currently not eating before my morning workout)
  • 30g Protein + 15g L-Glutamine shake immediately after workout
  • 5g Creatine before bed
  • My normal assortment of vitamin supplements at breakfast and dinner: Multi, C, E, Fish Oil, Potassium, Calcium/Magnesium/Zink


Since I declared my goals, I've gotten some really positive feedback.  I've been getting some extra support from a few of the coaches too, which is awesome and intimidating.  Angela has been fantastic.  She's really helping me in all the ways she can.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Writing Take 2 Week 3

More of the same.  Writing about every other day.  I did write a pretty beefy post about crossfit - which took forever, because I was worried about what people would think, and I kept getting distracted by Heroes (I'm glad Sylar's a bad guy again).  

Most of the time, I've been using a 15 minute timer when I started writing (like during this post), but I found I didn't while doing a lot of the crossfit writing.  That writing was more about wanting to get it out there and less about me developing a writing habit.

Not so great on food this week.  Next week I'll kill it though.

Didn't really do most of my habits.  I need to sleep more.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

San Francisco CrossFit Regionals

I want to make the San Francisco CrossFit Regionals Team in 2014.  I am not trying to make it to Regionals as an individual competitor.  I've made this goal to see how far I can push myself physically.  It's an aggressive and slightly arrogant goal.  Very few that understand this level of performance have been overly supportive.  Although this was initially discouraging, it's now made achieving this goal even more exciting.  This goal can loosely be thought of as being one of the top four competitors in the CrossFit Open at San Francisco CrossFit.  This alternate goal is what I'm specifically targeting.  Open performance is not the only criteria, but it should be a decent proxy for all other criteria.

I did some number crunching, comparing my performance in the CrossFit Open 2013 to the SFCF Regionals Team.  Although the math is crude and inaccurate for a number of reasons, the numbers are useful as a gauge of improvement needed and as a guide towards specific movements that need to be prioritized in training.  Generally, I need to improve 10-40% on my 2013 performance to be at the same level as the worst team member from 2013.  I'd likely perform better now, but not 10-40% better.

Anders Larson put together another excellent post breaking down all the movements from past CrossFit Opens.  Jim Kean also wrote a great post on his training.  Based on that information, my CrossFit Open 2013 performance, and my own knowledge of my skills, I will be focusing on improving these movements in this order:
t = Technique
e = Metabolic Conditioning
s = Strength
  1. Pull-up - st
  2. Snatch - ts
  3. Clean - ts
  4. Jerk - ts
  5. Burpee - te
  6. Thruster - e
  7. Toes-to-bar - st
  8. Double Unders - t
Along with daily crossfit classes and 20-40 minutes of mobility, I will add this additional skill/strength work:
Mon/Wed/Fri - Pull-ups
Tue/Sat - Clean & Jerk
Thu/Sun - Snatch

I have a lot more to write about the specifics of what I'm planning for workouts, mobility, recovery, diet, supplements, mental preparation, etc. I'll write more about those as well as my progress in future posts.

Ultimately, I want to achieve my goal, but the experiment is really about how much I can improve.  How good can I get if I put all of my attention towards this one goal?  I worry about failing.  There are two ways I can fail: I can miss my goal, or I can fail to execute my plans.  The first is acceptable, and I'm not worried about that.  The second is the part I'm worried about.  I've rationalized my way out of self-imposed challenges before, but I'm hoping that being publicly accountable about my goals, plans, and progress will help me accomplish what might not be otherwise possible.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Writing Take 2 Week 2

Generally, I've been writing a good chunk this week.  It helps that I have something to write about (CrossFit Games Training), but this has sort of eliminated the need for creativity, as I'm just writing about planning and stuff.  I think that's fine, I'm just not sure how much of a habit it's forming.  I'm going to keep doing it though, because I'm actually going to start posting stuff about training now that I have a goal and a plan.

I've really got my eating, crossfit, sleep, water, mobility stuff together this week.  I think all of those will be key focus points going forward.  The only thing I haven't straightened out is soda/tea.  I found that if I stay caffeinated enough with soda, that I don't make any diet mistakes, and the time to sleep effect isn't terrible.  Next week, I'm going to start weaning off of soda with no attempt at caffeine reduction.

I haven't really been doing the gratitude habit much.  I've done it a few times, but I usually think about something else or just fall asleep.

Again, I haven't really done any debt reduction stuff, because I'm focused on getting these real estate turnovers out the door.  The first one will be "done" this weekend, but that's usually just a step in the whole process; so, I'm thinking it'll be another couple weeks before I dedicate any time to it.

Solid week overall.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Writing Take 2 Week 1

This was a short week of actually trying to write; so, I guess I did pretty well.  I'm shooting for 15 minutes or more per day.  The suggestion was for 5-10, but when I did it before, I found that I never got anywhere with that little amount of time.  I could have gone longer, but that's not really how my brain works.

I've gotten to write some things out that I've been thinking about, and that's been nice, but I really want to get some in-depth stuff out.  I'll just keep sticking to the 15 minutes this next week and see what happens.

I haven't done much for the financial stuff.  I'm mostly dealing with real estate from that perspective.

I still try to do the gratitude thing at night as I'm going to sleep, but my mind wonders so quickly, I often fall asleep before I've gotten 3.  No big deal though.

Food and procrastination are going ok, but I need to focus more on efficiency overall.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Reduce/Eliminate Debt Week 5

Along with Eating Healthy, this is sad been my most successful Sea Change month so far.  I had two focuses: killing monthly recurring payments and making better impulsive financial decisions.  

I was hugely successful with the first.  I tried to tackle these by identifying, prioritizing, and systematically killing each payment.  By the end of the month, I was able to reduce payments by $196/month!  I have a few that I wasn't able to finish, and I will continue to work on those, but I'm extremely satisfied.

The second goal was mostly unsuccessful and really just made me feel guilty.  I said the Financial Intention every day, but it didn't really help.  I have a thought that I could really help reduce that bad behavior by just making a rule that I can't go to convenience stores.  It's stupid and small, but I think it would save me from impulsive little purchases as well as buying things that aren't healthy (basically the only thing healthy in a convenience store is water).


Leo wants me to Read More this month, but I'm not really interested in that.  I read already, and I don't need to put pressure on that.

Instead, I've decided to do the Writing month again.  I really think I could benefit from it, and I don't think I gave it a fair shake last time.