Tag Archives: cardio

Workout Update: My plan is working!

I told someone the other day, as you get older, you always have something going wrong with your body. One day its a shoulder, the next its a knee. You just never know. But I know some young folks who are the same way, so its not exclusive to aging.

Today, I have zero issues. I am so happy for that. Yeah, maybe I’m not admitting to a lingering thing here or there, but nothing comes to mind as far as injuries.

I attribute much to my current lifestyle. I am working out intuitively and “playing” a lot more. Here is what a common workout looks like for me:

CARDIO
I often start (sometimes finish) my workout with a Heartbreaker WOD (workout of the day). For me, its always 21-15-9 repetitions of a couplet or triplet. They usually have a bodyweight movement or cardio aspect included. Here is a list of common exercises:

Strictly cardio: run, row, ski-erg (all for calories)
Bodyweight stuff: box jump, jumprope double unders, burpees, pullups, pushups, situps
Other ideas: med ball slams, wall balls, thrusters, Romanian deadlifts

Example: 21 calorie ski-erg, 21 kettlebell swings, 15 ski, 15 swings, 9 ski, 9 swings

OLYMPIC WEIGHTLIFTING
I listened to a podcast the other day and it rocked my world. Instead of following the common template of snatch work then clean & jerk work in the same day, you split the movements alternating every day (or session). So every other day I do one or the other type of movement. Here are some examples:

Snatch day: snatch (singles, doubles, …), pauses, hangs, presses, pulls, angel drops, Sots press, snatch balance, snatch from blocks, overhead squat, muscle snatch,…

Clean & Jerk day: c&j (1x, 2x, 3x,…), pauses, hangs, jerks, complexes, blocks,…

This has helped me spend more time on a movement and lets me do other things too.

ACCESSORY
This could include a CrossFit WOD. Or it could be a CrossFit skill to work on, like muscle ups, handstand pushups, pistols, etc… I may do Strongman, like yoke squats, farmer carries, or Atlas stone shoulders. Or it could be straight up BodyBuilding, which is becoming a favorite. The interesting thing about Bodybuilding is that it is done strictly with quality. It is opening up tightness and weakness that my other work doesn’t cover. And lastly, I may do powerlifting. I bench press at least once a week. Trap bar deadlifts is a staple of mine and I do this nearly daily. And squats are central to Olympic lifting.

PLAYING
Its good to live life outside of work and “working-out”. One of the central points in CrossFit is to play sports. It is what makes all the hard work functional. I often Hula Hoop as a warmup or just for fun. Belly hooping gets the heart going and makes you move in ways that opens your body. But also playing and dancing with the hoop in many ways is fun. I have a Pole, so I do some pole work often, which is fun and adds lots of strength and flexibility to the routine. Stand-up Paddle Boarding, running, biking, kayaking, slack-lining, yoga aerial swings and silks, and many other activities. And actually working outside, like trimming trees, mowing the lawn, building something, all uses muscles in different ways. And of course, I play yoga all the time. I teach yoga, I participate in online challenges, and I take as many classes that I can. It is central to all that I do. Self care with self massage or getting massages from a professional rounds it all out.

Be healthy and find what works for you. Maybe you don’t devote an hour or two every day, but maybe its 15 minutes of something that makes you feel good. Take the time to enjoy life.

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Update: My current yoga practice

First, I’ll take you back to post-Rocket yoga training this past Spring when I was asked (er, required) to commit to a daily practice. It lasted through July when I was officially certified for Rocket Yoga teaching. I consider this a huge leap for me on top of my 200 hour teacher training. It was an awesome time of practicing my craft and setting an example (in my mind) for my students. When I would teach Rocket I could say to myself (and my class), “this is what I felt this morning when I did this practice.”

But now, I feel partially like a hypocrite. Its not that I’m not satisfied with my current practice, but I’m not setting a traditional example for my classes.

Since August, my practice has been a weight-loss journey. In the CrossFit world, where my life as a Venn Diagram overlaps, they would say weight means nothing. Its your body composition that matters. And for the most part, I believe this too. I would be perfectly happy carrying 200 pounds at 7% bodyfat on my short frame. But I’ve proven to myself, after losing 12 pounds, that I can do things now that I couldn’t do ever before. I’ve done transitions and binds that I’ve never done in yoga. I feel better about myself. And isn’t the feeling the most important part?

One main reason I bring this up is that I was 2 pounds from my goal. And instead of pushing for that 2 pounds, I let off and tried to let the last part happen naturally. Guess what? It didn’t work. I went 2 pounds the other way. So, like most men (military men especially), I sought to fix what’s broken. Here’s my plan:

5am – wake up – barefoot walk with dogs – run outside or on treadmill – heartbreaker cardio WOD (21-15-9 reps of couplet or triplet with row/ski for cals, double unders, box jumps, burpees, …)
6am – shower or Epsom salt bath, coffee, watch the news
7am – go to work
Noon – keep working, or go for a run if its nice, or maybe do some yoga
430pm – CrossFit WOD 5-15 mins, Olympic weightlifting, maybe bodybuilding and yoga
Evening – yoga wheel, restorative, or other prop; teach or go to yoga class

So, you notice that I don’t list “yoga practice” anywhere. I honestly don’t have a personal yoga practice. That’s not to say I don’t do things that are yoga related or contribute to my practice. Doing a load of dips or bench presses is like chaturanga, plank, or up dog. Toes to bar and sit-ups relate to navasana. And I feel strong in my yoga poses from all that I do. Handstands are nothing when I do numerous handstand pushups or clean & jerk well over 200 pounds. But some things suffer. Flexibility suffers. So I continue to work on that. I listen to my teachers when I take classes. And I try to demonstrate as much as I can in classes.

But I do need to commit more to my practice. It will start with dedicating at least one day a week to a full practice. Or at least going to an Ashtanga class. That’s what I’ll do. I promise.