Before we get started, you should know that, when it comes to training, I’m a beast. Unfortunately, on most days that beast happens to be a deer in the headlights. I once shared a timed Crossfit workout with 6 women, one of whom was pregnant. I came in 8th.
Which is to say, you don’t win anything if you’re able to beat me at these workouts. The purpose of these posts is to give you an idea of what I do to keep my blood panels in order, stay out of the drug trade (legal or illegal), fit into my skinny jeans and still be able to enjoy the occasional Old Fashioned or Margherita pizza.
So here goes:
Started the week with a fartlek run at this beautiful place in Claremont, California. Fartlek is a Swedish word which means “speed play.” It involves brief intervals of fast running interspersed with longer periods of slow running or walking. It’s actually High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), which has been touted by several scientific studies as well as the New York Times as highly effective at preventing or reversing the effects of many chronic ailments, including heart disease, diabetes, stroke and arthritis. Other benefits:
- It’s way more fun. When we were kids, we never jogged slowly for an hour. We would run as fast as our little legs would carry us for a few seconds, stop breathlessly, and repeat. There’s something about this form of exercise that’s more natural, more interesting, than just plodding away for long periods of time.
- There are several studies which show you can get a lot more done in a shorter time. Remember, our objective here is to be a healthy, fit person while still leaving time for more important things, like our families and friends.
There are infinite ways to do a fartlek run, but here was mine on Sunday.
- 2 laps of slow jogging
- 100 meter sprint, followed by 50 meters of walking and 50 meters of slow jogging x 8 (repeat 8 times)
- 2 laps of slow jogging
Total time of workout, including warm up and cool down–45 minutes.
Went to the gym at Dalton’s Crossfit. Crossfit is actually another form of HIIT. That is, you generally work your butt off for a few minutes, rest, work your butt off, rest, repeat. It’s more fun than it sounds.
On Tuesday the Workout Of the Day (WOD) was:
5 rounds of–
- 1 minute jump rope
- 1 minute sumo deadlift high pull
- 1 minute of sit ups
- 1 minute of pushups
- 1:30 rest
Weight used for the SDHP was 35 pounds.
I was able to complete 844 reps during the five rounds.
It was crazy, stupid hot. I was off work, and I didn’t start the run until 10:15, which is way too late on a crazy, stupid hot day. The only thing that saved me from heatstroke was that I ran on this beautiful, shaded trail in Laverne:
The trail crisscrosses a narrow creek, and is populated by deer, people on horseback and sometimes even mountain lions. However, all of God’s creatures, with the exception of yours truly, had the good sense to stay out of the sun that day. Somehow I survived.
Total distance run: 2.3 miles.
Total time of workout, including warmup and cool down: 50 minutes.
Friday’s Crossfit training consisted of two parts–a strength portion and conditioning portion.
Friday’s strength training movement was a push press, pictured below. It’s basically getting a weight off your shoulders until your arms are fully extended overheard, using your legs and hips for momentum.
I’m recovering from a shoulder injury, so I went kinda light. I did:
- 2 sets of 6 reps @85 lbs.
- 2 sets of 3 reps @105 lbs.
- 1 set of 3 reps @115 lbs
The conditioning session consisted of 75 thrusters. Thrusters can be best described as push presses, with a full squat when the weight is lowered to the shoulders. They are diabolically taxing and despicable because they work every muscle of your body in one movement. Of course, that’s what makes them so amazingly efficient and effective. Here’s how it should look:
The wicked twist to this workout was that every minute, on the minute, you were to interrupt the thrusters with 10 situps. Ouch! I chose a light weight because 1) I’m recovering, 2) I had to do 75 of them and, 3) I’m a wuss. Anyway, here’s how I did:
75 thrusters @ 55 lbs.+ 90 situps in 8:55.
Total training time, including warmup and cool down: 60 minutes.
So that’s it, folks. I’m kinda proud of my work this week, considering the blast furnace heat we endured. I’m even more proud that I wrote this post without making one fartlek joke.