Posts tagged exercise

Double Unders


I realized on my way to a Girl Scout bridging ceremony how freakin tired I was yesterday. Little miss ‘Kelly’ took all the energy I had so by the end of the day, all i wanted to do is go to bed. But as fellow parents know – when you work full time during the day at your ‘professional’ job, coming home is really starting your other job. Granted, its rewarding, loving, etc — but you can’t ignore that it’s another job – and in many ways, even harder. With that in mind, there are days when all I want to do after work is get under some covers and go to sleep.  But family time is next, then dinner, activities – baths, prepping for tomorrow. Sleep comes many many hours later.  I am positive I am not alone in this — and on most days, I’m cool with it. It’s my life and totally worth it. Last night was just an ‘off’ night —

Well that off night also caused an off morning and for a brief moment I thought to myself — stay in bed. But I am glad I didn’t listen to the sleep monster and I got up and headed out. Coach Jerry has been one of my biggest supporters and I love his training mixed with gymnastics, so if I am wanting to take a rest day — not on one of his coaching days.

25 Jumping Jacks
5 Head Rotations
5 Trunk Rotations
5 Cherry Pickers
5 Hip Rotations
5 Shoulder Rotations

Ring Work

10 Push Ups
10 Ring Dips
25 Double Unders

Guess what? I did Rx’d and finished in 18:26. My DU’s weren’t perfect but they are getting better!!

CrossFit Girl: Kelly


Those girls of CrossFit are Nasty.  The last time I met Kelly was in February — and for some reason today’s meeting did not go as well as our last – by 40seconds. That’s not acceptable! But holy hotdog – this WOD was tough. 5 rounds – keep moving – don’t stop – go go go. If I had not mentioned this before – the longer workouts give you a mental workout as well as a hard body beating.  At the end, we were all drenched in sweat, lying on the floor. My arms were screaming during the last round of wall ball shots — you know what? It was GREAT!

10 Pass Thrus
10 Push Ups
10 Sit ups
10 OH Squats
5 Pull Ups

Goblet Squat (Kettlebell held like a goblet, squat)


Five rounds for time of:
Run 400 meters
30 Box jump – 20 inch box
30 Wall ball shots 10lb
Time: 32:23

Thrusters make the heart grow fonder


Scott & I had an unexpected date night last night when our neighbor babysitter said Hey I can sit tonite if you want — so we went out to a steakhouse. I had grilled chicken and a sweet potato and —   I also had some of their fresh baked bread. Not sure what the heck is up with me. Seems every time I take a step forward – I take a step back. I know it’s only bread — but I know that it is going to make me feel like crap. Why do  something if you know it will make you feel crappy? Who knows how the mind works — it seemed worth it at the time.  And sure enough – I didn’t sleep well at all, I had some odd dreams and my stomach was a bit upset when I woke up this morning.  Let’s see how the rest of the day goes —

My hands still hurt — from Saturday’s pull up practice. In a way I am proud of them- it’s a sign of hard work. I will conquer these kipping pull ups. The swing is down pat – now it’s timing. And Timing is something that has had the upper hand on me for a very long time — so practice makes better!

50 single jump rope
10 Pass Thrus
10 Good Mornings
10 Head Rotations
10 Hip Rotations
10 Cherry Pickers

Front Squat
Push Press

7 65lb Thrusters
15 L Sit Pull ups

total: 7+ (i was halfway into the pull ups)

Notice the warm up — lots of hip and shoulder/head stretching. Those all are to prep for the WOD. There was only 1 guy today who could do the L Sit Pull up. It’s basically a dead hang p/up but you pike your lower half. Let’s make a dead hang even harder. I used a blue assistance band and was able to do them with the chin up grip. This was a super long WOD today — halfway through I was like man, we still have 10 mins!!!

As Coach Conan said to me one day – I know you love it when I hear you complain! I love that he ‘gets’ me!

The this ‘looks’ easy WOD


CrossFit has these workouts named after girls — yesterday’s workout at CFI was ‘Angie’. 100 pullups, 100 push ups, 100 squats, 100 situps — no scaling, no splitting them up. Just get through it — I was bummed that yesterday was a rest day. You know you are hooked when you are sad you missed a workout like that. For a moment, I thought about going — but since my husband was out of town, the kids would have to come with me and that wasn’t very appealing after the last 2 times they came.

That’s a great thing about CrossFit in general — if you look back at the workouts this week, they were all different. Mon was strength, Tues was endurance/running, Weds was sheer will & determination, and today, as you will see — was quickness/agility.  Each day helps develop different skills to make a well rounded athlete.

Hard but great workout today —

20 Single Jump Ropes
10 Pass Thrus
10 Good Mornings
10 Pull Ups
10 Cobras

Double Unders

15 Double Unders
15 Box Jumps
15 Burpees
total = 4 rounds

Coach Jerry decided we were not allowed to scale, so Double Unders or attempts were the only acceptable thing you could do during the workout. It’s good though because the only way to get good at DUs is to do DUs. I have really noticed a marked improvement in so many skills the past few weeks — my handstands are moving along. I can now hold them for more than a few seconds, my kip swing is in full glory and now i have to figure out how to move on to the actual pulling towards the bar, and I even can string up to 3 DUs together in one try. All huge gains for me!

Rainy Day Workout


Vacation can’t come too soon for me — I am running on empty. Work is busy, home life is busy — I am thankful that I have CrossFit though. It really helps me with stress management and it’s a super fun way to start my day. I highly recommend it. And it’s been raining the past 2 days — pouring rain too. Makes it harder to get up and start your day on the right foot.

20 DUs
10 OHS
10 Ring Rows
10 KTE

Front Squat
Shoulder Press

5×2 Shoulder Press (3 at 75lb, 2 at 65lb)
5×3 Front Squat (105lb)

Tabata Burpees = 45
4m total (20s of work, 10s of rest)

So – something interesting I found out with me and Double Unders. I can do a few in a row if I close my eyes!! How funny is that??!! There must be something to do with how I am visually processing the experience that messes me up! I have tried it over and over again with my eyes closed, and sure enough! I can do it! Anyone else out there have that same experience?

Definitions of ‘fit’ and ‘fitness’ vary from person to person


Definitions of ‘fit’ and ‘fitness’ vary from person to person

Think hitting a fastball or catching a touchdown pass is tough? Try settling on a definition for the term “fit.” Nowthere’s a moving target.

In truth, fitness is an exceedingly slippery concept, one whose meaning varies from person to person and doesn’t rest solely on firm, quantifiable standards. Some pin fitness to athletic ability, holding up the likes of Lance Armstrong, while others equate it to overall health.

Yet for all its vagueness, it’s also widely linked to appearance, in that many of us wrongly associate fitness with a certain look or physical trait.

“Many people look at [fitness] magazine covers and think that’s what they’re supposed to look like,” says Heather Nettle, an exercise physiologist at the Cleveland Clinic’s Sports Health Center.

“I think that’s a misrepresentation. Fitness doesn’t mean you’re excelling in performance. It means you’re doing what you’re supposed to be doing.”

Consider Lakewood resident Jillian Neimeister, 26, a fund development manager at the Visiting Nurse Association of Ohio.

At 5 feet 5 inches and 170 pounds, the former rugby player doesn’t have the lean, sculpted look of an athlete or a stereotypically “fit” physique. Her body mass index (BMI, a measurement of the relationship between weight and height) falls at the upper end of overweight, just a hairbreadth from obese.

But anyone who saw Neimeister in action would undoubtedly describe her as fit and athletic. At a recent CrossFit fitness competition, Neimeister blew away even the most ripped of competitors by dead-lifting 345 pounds and doing 27 pull-ups. Last year, she ably completed a half-marathon run with only minimal training.

“I don’t feel obese,” says Neimeister. “I feel fit. I do get jokes about having a big butt. I’m not a small girl. But I know I could probably beat anyone. I can go out and do whatever I need.”

Another athlete used to taking people by surprise is Craig Ihms, 37, of Rocky River, communications director at Enspace Inc.

At 5 feet 11 inches and 200 pounds, with substantial shoulders, Ihms more closely resembles the soccer player he used to be than the hard-core cyclist he is today. Like Neimeister, too, he’s “overweight” in BMI terms, and he admits to a fondness for beer.

But when he rides with guys who’d easily blend in at the Tour de France — with big legs, thin arms and small chests — he has no trouble keeping up. Sure, he’d be faster if he dropped a few pounds, but on flat roads, he’s almost unbeatable, and for him, covering 60 miles in under three hours is routine.

Are you fit?

Find out how you rate — by age and gender — in these fitness tests

“I’m more like a diesel locomotive,” Ihms says. “Some people hate the way I ride. But the place I really pay is on the climbing. I get harassed a lot.”

Partial blame for such apparent discrepancies between size and fitness belongs to the BMI equation. Nettle says she believes the measure is only marginally useful.

“It would misrepresent probably half my patients,” she says.

And forget looking to the dictionary for clarification. All you’ll find there under “fit” and “fitness” are relative benchmarks.

Several things factor in

That’s not to say it’s impossible to measure fitness. On the contrary, there are multiple standards for determining whether or not a person is fit, and an array of physiological tests, including body-fat percentage, resting heart-rate and aerobic capacity, can be especially revealing.

It helps to think of fitness as a composite of several factors. To be fit, in other words, you don’t need to be skinny or buff so much as healthy and able to perform a broad variety of tasks. You can also be more fit in one category than another.

Most professional football players, for instance, would fail the weight test instantly. No one questions their fitness, though, because they’re so obviously athletic and muscular. At the opposite end of the spectrum is the trim person who never exercises and whose body composition is in fact highly fatty.

FITNESS_2.JPGFew would look at Ed Jones, center, and immediately label him fit. But the 48-year-old Air Force reservist has never had trouble passing military fitness tests, and now hes thriving in a boot camp class at Euphoria Health and Fitness. On either side of him are Shearer and Neimeister.

“There is such a thing as a skinny fat person,” Nettle says. “Looks can be deceiving.”

Nettle says she prefers to define fitness in terms of functional ability. In her mind, a person is fit if they’re logging at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week, or three 30-minute sessions that are more vigorous.

Additionally, they’re doing some basic resistance training twice a week and taking steps to maintain flexibility and balance. This person would meet most of the benchmarks set by the American College of Sports Medicine.

“If they’ve got all those components, they’re doing pretty well,” Nettle says. “To have overall fitness, you need all those things.”

Some factor in emotional measures. Cortney Myer, a physical therapist at Akron Children’s Hospital, says she considers happiness and confidence part of the fitness equation, especially for older adults, for whom athletic performance typically matters less than overall wellness.

“Fitness to me is a good balance,” she says. “It’s about psychology as well as exercise.”

FITNESS_3.JPGMost high-level cyclists have small chests and thin arms. Not Craig Ihms. But if you doubt his fitness, try keeping up with him on the road.

Developing competence in several areas

But just as the fitness realm is broader than many people realize, it’s also full of room for error and mistaken beliefs.

Endurance athletes, for instance, are prone not only to dehydration and stress fractures, but also to high cholesterol and high blood pressure. Burning tons of calories keeps them skinny, but if they eat poorly, they’ll still suffer adverse consequences.

“They assume because they run so much they can get away with unhealthy food,” Myer says.

Others are deluded by physique. Myer says she regularly encounters athletes who appear fit but in fact haven’t developed what their activity truly requires. They may have large pectorals or biceps but weak abdominal muscles or rotator cuffs.

Bill Russell, co-owner of CrossFit Cleveland West in Lakewood, says many at his facility begin believing they’re in great shape but fail the second he introduces a movement they’re not used to.

That’s why CrossFit promotes “multimodal” fitness. Rather than working to excel at a single sport, CrossFit trainers aim to develop competence across the 10 so-called “fitness domains.” Their goal is to enable people to do everything from move a couch to defend themselves.

“People stay away from things they’re no good at,” Russell says. “And you can’t tell just by looking at someone what they don’t do well. It’s about life. We always say we train in the gym to be better outside the gym.”

It’s worth noting here the difference between fit and conditioned. Everyone should try to be fit, according to the measures outlined above, but only athletes striving for distinction have reason to aim higher.

Then there’s the issue of comparing fitness. Think of children debating which superhero or arch villain would win a battle: Is it possible to name the world’s fittest person?

Not really, Nettle says, mostly because there’s no one standard applicable to all the world’s elite. “You have to make sure you’re comparing apples to apples.”

Still, for the rest of us, it’s possible to draw a few broad conclusions and piece together a working definition of fitness.

Weight is certainly a factor, but it’s not the only one, and it may not even be the most important. Don’t define yourself by your BMI. Neither is athleticism alone a fair measure.

No, being fit means being happy, widely capable and physiologically sound. It’s not a contest or a question of resembling models. Furthermore, it’s a goal without end. There’s almost always room to raise the bar.

“Appearance plays no role,” Myer says. “A little insulation isn’t necessarily bad. If people are wondering about their fitness, and reflecting on how they’re incorporating it in their lives, that’s a great thing.”

Exercise does your mind & body good!


“Physical fitness is not only one of the most important keys to a healthy body, it is the basis of dynamic and creative intellectual activity.”   by John F. Kennedy

CrossFit Games Workout


Man, I’m sore. It was almost enough to keep me in bed this morning and skip my workout — but nope, I got up and headed to CrossFit Impavidus. It was a tough workout. So many times, I will look at what the WOD is when I first walk in to the box, and say —‘oh, that seems doable‘. You think I would learn my lesson by now — but those are the ones you have to watch out for. Yeah it was a rough one —

20 DUs/60 SUs
10 Good Mornings
10 Sit Ups
10 Pass Thrus
10 Air Squats

Dead Lift

9 Deadlifts 100lbs
12 Push-ups
15 Box jumps

Total Rounds = 8

CrossFit: Keep an Open Mind


This morning was tough — less than 12 hours earlier I did a WOD and here I am again, working out.

20 DU/40 SU
10 OHS
10 Good Mornings
10 Hollow Rocks
10 Pull ups (2 min dead hang p/ups)

Handstand Walks
Med Ball Cleans

15 Med Ball Cleans (14lb)
15 Wall Balls (10lb)
time: 11:17(?)

A friend of mine recently started up at a CrossFit in Canada and has remarked about how he isn’t feeling like he is getting a good hard core workout because some of them last less than 10 mins. I asked some folks about this at my box– because it was definitely something I had to get used to. We are trained to believe that you have to work your ass off for a long time to see results — I am not disputing that you have to work our ass off at all. I am starting to realize that it doesn’t have to last an extra ordinary amount of time though.

Since I started at CrossFit Impavidus, I have seen myself get stronger and leaner. I would not have believed this was possible when I started after seeing some workouts lasting 10 mins or less! But coach Jerry told me his theory — think about a gymnast and how they train. The actual hard core, go at it routine doesn’t last that long and the rest is strength work. Being upside down, core, balance — They do their bar routine, then rest and wait while their team mates take a shot, then get back on it. So it’s not this long, drawn out series of exercises — and they do not do a concentrated ab workout at all. Everything you are doing should, in theory, engage your core so you are working it with every workout. It’s a completely different way to think about working out and for me — I have seen huge gains in strength since February – which was when I began to do CrossFit 100% of the time. I can do 3 dead hang pull ups with no assistance. I can do Double Unders. I am super close to doing a handstand solo….the list goes on.

I know there is no way to convince people that its what you do and how you workout, now how long you workout, that’s the key. And proper form and technique make all the difference. It also depends on what you are training for –All I ask, is that you keep an open mind when trying CrossFit out. It’s not like any workout you have probably ever tried, but it works.

Overhead Squats


I had pizza this weekend — and once again, I find out how much it’s not worth it. I mean when I am eating it — i think, totally worth it. But the after effects, not so much. But for some reason, I don’t seem to remember that when the time comes to make the decision.

This morning – it was hard to get up. But I headed to CrossFit Impavidus as usual.

20 double unders (got multiple ones this time!)
10 push ups
10 pistols (5 each leg)


Air Squats

OHS 1-1-1-1-1-1-1

It was a fun day too. Good group of athletes and a challenging strength day. One of the funny things in the morning is I have trouble counting the plates to figure out what weight I am lifting. Many times i have to ask someone to count it all out for me — it’s the morning, without coffee and I am tired. Enough said.

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