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What’s Your Horsepower?

January 13, 2012

“Annie” and Couplets. Like the writer, remedy my favorite WODs for developing fitness are couplets: 2 exercises back to back. Usually, buy the classic CrossFit couplets are short (2-6 minutes), malady have a major push/pull or pull/push component, require HIGH power output, and require deep mental focus.

It takes some training and experience to “learn” how to maximize your effort, and make couplets become the best WODs for you. Nearly everyone will get sweaty and winded from today’s WOD.

As CFO grows, we will hit one benchmark couplet per week. The goal is to pack ALL your effort into these 2-6 minutes WODs. This requires so many things: developing the techniques and skills required, a thorough warmup, the mental focus to push through pain as lactic acid builds, an understanding of your limitations and how to push them, and more. This stuff takes time, and it’s a big part of what make CrossFit so interesting to me.

Recently, I had a major PR on the benchmark WOD, “Fran”. 21-15-9 of thruster 95#/pullups. In a given WOD, I may double, or even triple the number of reps performed in “Fran”. Not to mention the weight is so “light”. The last time I did “Fran”, well over a year ago, immediately on completion, I had to lay on the ground an recover my bearings for a good 15 minutes. I got nauseous, although I didn’t get sick. But I was close.

I re-did “Fran” last week, and hit a major PR of 2:36. I didn’t fall down to the ground after the effort, in fact, I felt great! I thought that, after nearly 6 years of CrossFit WODs, I was adapting. WRONG! About 20 hours later, a nasty soreness began setting in all over my body. Again, I’m used to moving heavy loads for both long and short durations, but the soreness I experienced was memorable. In my training book, I rate my soreness on a scale of 1-10 (1=no soreness, 10=can’t move). I have hit 10 on 1 occasion in the last year, and 9 twice. 24 hours after “Fran”, I was at a 9. Over the course of 4 or 5 hours, I could feel my body tightening up. This is because I did more work in less time.

Catalyst Athletics, an Olympic weightlifting gym in the bay area (and former CrossFit affiliate) has a simple work and power output calculator. You can’t put everything in, but try putting in some of you WODs and times. What produces the most horsepower?

Not an open bar in sight!

Workout of the Day

20 Wallball Shots 20/14
30 Pushups
40 Double Unders

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