February 26, 2018

CrossFit Open 18.1

I've been working out at CrossFit for 3 months now. I've lost 70lbs and have built a lot more speed and endurance. I out sprinted all three of my kids playing football the other day with them. That hasn't happened in years. I decided to try the Rebok crossfit open. The first workout, called 18.1 was as many rounds as possible in 20 minutes of 8 toes to bars, then 10 one arm dumbbell hang clean and jerks, then 14 calorie row. The most toes to bars I'd ever been able to do was 4 in a row. So I assumed I'd only be able to get 2 or 3 rounds completed. But I did much better than I even dreamed I could. I completed 6 rounds and another 4 reps. 196 reps total. I can't believe the progress I've made in only three months.

February 25, 2018

Squat struggles

The last month I've been struggling something horrible with my squats. On Friday I was scheduled to do a set of 3 at 395 pounds. I could only get 2 reps at 375. All of my lifts have increased except my squat. Squat. This is kind of shocking for me.  Squats always been my strength. I've never struggled with squats before. But at least everything else is still gaining.

February 24, 2018

Pulled pectoral update

I had pulled my pectoral muscle a little less than a month ago. My powerlifting coach Vernon Smith has been helping me to build up the weights on bench again while avoiding injury. Yesterday I built up to a set of 3 reps at 225lbs. It felt great. No pain and the weight felt easy.

Have I mentioned how much I love my powerlifting coach? Out of all the coaches I've ever had he's by far my favorite. And I've had a grip of coaches. Coaches in Football, track, jui-jitsue, triathlon, weightlifting, Powerlifting, and more. There has probably never been a more unlikely duo. I'm a hard core libertarian, he's a devout socialist. But he's accepting of our differences, is able to figure out the best plan for just about anything in regards to training. I've got a hell of a coach, I'm happy to have him.

February 22, 2018

New Mexico USAPL

My son and I were contemplating competing in the 2018 USAPL New Mexico Powerlifting state championships in March. I couldn't find the state records for the youth division which my son would be competing in. I'd found the state records for every other group, but not youth. I also needed to know if I had to pay an entry fee for all my young children. I emailed the meet director, at massliftusapl@gmail.com and
asked these 2 questions. He sent me a response saying he gets to many questions to answer. And connected to the email was a link with frequently asked questions. The answers to my questions weren't on the FAQ's page linked in the email. I'm asking myself, why the hell am I going to pay $230 for membership fees & meet fees for a single competition if this is the type of treatment we can expect from this organization?

February 20, 2018

Diet focus and goals

I've been struggling with my diet the last few weeks. I've been dieting for 5 months straight. I still have almost 6 months left before I get to my goal weight. It was beginning to feel overwhelming. But a couple days ago I recieved an email from Joaquin Chaves, the president of The New Mexico Local weightlifting Club. He's set the dates for the two NMLWC meets. The NMLWC Youth and Master's championships on May 12th and the NMLWC weightlifting championships on June 30th. That helped motivate me again. Helped me refocus. If I can lose 40 more pounds in the next 4.5 months then I'll show up to the state games weighting 100lbs less than I did at last year's weightlifiting state championships.

February 19, 2018

New Mexico Local weightlifting club series announcement

I recieved confirmation last night that the New Mexico Games will no longer be the weightlifiting state championships. From now on the weightlifting New Mexico state championships will be held and put on by the New Mexico Local weightlifiting club (NMLWC). The NMLWC weightlifting state championships will be held on the weekend of June 30th and July 1st. They will also be hosting the NMLWC youth and master's weightlifting championships on May 12th. That meet will be my 10 year old sons first meet. He and I will be competing together.

February 18, 2018

New Mexico local weightlifiting club series and The New Mexico Games

I received an email from the president of New Mexico weightlifiting, Joaquin Chaves. Looks like there's some major changes going on for the New Mexico Local Weightlifting Club (NMLWC). I received an email stating the president of NMLWC won't be hosting the New Mexico games and will be starting his own local weightlifiting series. The first will be the the NMLWC youth and master's championships on May 12th, 2018. The next will be a big two day weightlifiting meet. It's going to be the NMLWC state championships June 30th and July 1st. The New Mexico games used to be called the state championships. But looks like it's officially not going to be anymore. Which is big news.

The other big news is that the email showed Joaquin Chaves is no longer signing as High Dessert Athletic Club. He's signing under Black Box CrossFit. I wonder if that means Joaquin, who I love dearly as a friend and weightlifiting coach, closed up his club completely? Is he now a coach for Black Box or a partner? Interesting stuff. Big stuff.

February 15, 2018

Duration of diet causing injuries?

On Tuesday I was playing basketball with my two sons and when I went to drive to the basket I pulled my left calf. It wasn't a bad pull. It hurt, but not bad enough to limp when I walked. Today I completed a CrossFit workout at Bear Canyon CrossFit without any problems. A little less than a month ago I pulled my left pectoral muscle while benching. That's two muscle pulls in less than a month. I'm not sure what's going on with my body. I'm wondering if perhaps it's from being on a calorie defacit and loosing weight for so long or if it's just that I'm 42 years old now. I've lost 68lbs in the last 5 months. If it is from the weight loss and I continue to get injured I don't think I'd be willing to stop. I want to get down to 220lbs so bad I'd rather be chronically injured than continue to be obese. I don't think that's a healthy way to look at diet and working out. If I continue to drop weight at my current rate I'll be down to 220lbs by July. Hopefully once I get to my goal weight I'll be able to train without the injuries and make taking care of my body a priority

February 14, 2018

Better days

After years and years of working 80-90 hours work weeks I'm finally to the point that I'm working less. I particularly love Tuesdays and Thursdays. I don't work until later in the day on those two days. So I wake up very early and workout before the sun comes up so that I can get back in time to hang out with my kids before school. Then I drive my daughter to school. It's just her and I. She really seems to enjoy that special alone time. So do I. After I get back from dropping off my daughter I take my two sons to school early and we play basketball or football until the school bell rings. I'm creating a lot of wonderful memories with them. This is probably the happiest I've ever been. That's a big difference from the 10.5 years my wife continually put us in bad financial positions that forced me to work ungodly amounts of hours that caused me to be miserable and depressed to the point of contemplating suicide. Since working less I've grown closer with my children, and have started working on me. I'm working out, getting stronger, losing weight, and am happier. These are good times.

February 11, 2018

Logging when falling off the diet wagon.

Every couple weeks I end up falling off the diet wagon. For a day or so I'll end up eating all the things I miss so bad. Corn dogs, ice cream, Chinese food, etc. I'd loose weight quicker if I didn't do that. But I doubt I'd be able to stick to a diet if I didn't occasionally eat the things I miss. When I log what I'm eating it makes it easier for me to keep control of how much I'm eating. And on the days I fall off the diet wagon I don't log. I'm going to try and log everything I eat the days I fall off the diet wagon. I think that would help me not eat so dang much on those days.

February 10, 2018

Chest injury

A couple weeks ago. I pulled a pectoral muscle. It wasn't a bad pull. But the last two weeks I've been having to lift with significantly lower weight and volume on bench. I'm talking 3X5 of 155lbs. Almost half of my max. Friday was the first day I was able to do dips since the injury occurred. I'm recovering quickly. Hopefully it won't be much longer until I can resume heavy bench training.

February 08, 2018

Speed, endurance, and cardio for CrossFit

Today's CrossFit workout was a lot of fun. The strength session was 3 rounds of max squat cleans with 2 minutes of recovery. The WOD was
40 calories assault bike, then 4 rounds of
15 DB push press
12 DB front rack lunges
9 devil press

I lowered the weight from 50lb DB's to 35 and I was still the slowest one in the class. My cardio and muscular endurance is really bad. I've decided I'm going to start scaling the weight even lower than I used to. That way I can increase my speed and intensity. If I practice going faster with less rest then in theory I should build more speed, endurance, and cardio.

February 06, 2018

Test day snatch and Fran

Today Bear Canyon CrossFit was testing max Snatch and Fran. Fran is 21, 15, 9 of thrusters and pull-ups. I wasn't looking forward to those. I gave up weightlifiting because I sucked at the speed exercises like the snatch. My biggest weakness in CrossFit is thrusters. And I'm still to big to do pull-ups.

When maxing the snatch I started out by missing 155lbs. That is much to light of a weight to miss. That didn't bode well for the day. I missed 155 again. Coach Rob Tapia came over and gave me some pointers. Boom. Nailed it. Went up to 185 and made the lift. From there I went up by 5-10lbs each lift. I had to take three attempts at 205. After some form correction by coach Rob again I made 205. Then somehow I pulled off a 215lb snatch! That's only 5 pounds from matching by lifetime best! But when I made that lifetime best I weighed 60lbs more than now.

I did horrible at Fran. I lowered the weight from the RX 95 to 75 pounds. I also had to do ring rows instead of pull-ups. Even with all the lowering of weights and scaling of exercises I still only was able to do an 8:10. One minute fifty seconds from the cut off time.

February 01, 2018

RX'd Burpees and 15th wedding anniversary

This morning I was able to do an entire workout doing burpees the way CrossFit says is proper and legal. Before today I couldn't do them because my stomach was to big and got in the way. In the last week I've had a few firsts. First time I was able to do box jumps, double unders, and burpees. I'm much more prepared for the CrossFit open now. And I'm very excited about competing this year.

Today is the 15th anniversary for my wife and I. From the way things have been the last few months I'd say this next year has the potential of being the best of our entire marriage.

January 31, 2018

Pictures online

Because of how fat i got I refused to let any of my friends or family take pictures of me. And when they did I made them promise not to post it online. I was so humiliated by how obese I had become. Since September I've lost 60 pounds. And last night I posted a picture of my son and I with our coach at the gym. This was the first time in almost a decade I posted a picture of myself on Facebook. 60 down. 48 more to go. This was me September of 2017.

This is me last night.

I'm finally not ashamed of how I look. I'm not humiliated of who I am. I'm starting to feel confident and happy again.

January 30, 2018

Benchmark Jackie and power snatches

This morning we tested power snatch and Jackie, which is 1000m row, 50 thrusters 44#, and 30 pull ups. I was able to do a 210lb power snatch and an 11:55 Jackie. Although I had to do ring pull-ups so it wasn't RX.

January 27, 2018

My first double unders and box jumps

A few days ago I signed up for the Crossfit open. Since then I purchased a good jump rope and have been practicing double unders. I can string together 10 at a time now. I couldn't do any double unders a week ago. I decided to practice them because The Open always has double unders. I'm ok with having to compete in the scaled division for things like handstand push-ups, pull-ups, and muscle ups. But having to compete in the scaled division for jump ropes or box jumps would have hurt my pride. Speaking of box jumps. I did my first box jumps today! 5 in a row. I couldn't do them before this. I was just to overweight. This morning I weighed in at 286lbs. I've lost 60lbs so far. I'm over half way to my goal! If I keep it up, at this rate I'll be at my goal by mid to late summer. I'm really excited to go to the New Mexico games this June weighing 100lbs less. None of my weightlifiting buddies have seen me since I've started loosing weight. I wonder, at 100lbs lighter if anyone will recognize me?

January 23, 2018

Bench, 500m row, and Annie

Today for testers Tuesday we tested Bench Press, 500 meter row, and Annie. Annie is 50, 40, 30, 20, 10 of double unders and ab mat sit ups.

On the bench I broke my lifetime best of 310lbs set in 2014 while weighing 330lbs. Today I weighed in at 288lbs and benched 330lbs.

I completed the 500m row in 1:42.

And I did Annie in 10:54. I can't do double unders yet so I did twice as many singles of 100, 80, 60, 40, & 20.

January 22, 2018

Supplemental training at Bear Canyon CrossFit

Today I was scheduled to do heavy back squats and some light recovery bench press. I wasn't able to train at my Powerlifting gym so I went Bear Canyon Crossfit. I was nervous about training Powerlifting there. I didn't want to get in the way, annoy any of the athletes training there, or piss off the owners and get banished. I got particularly antsy when I saw how many CrossFit'ers there were training. Apparently 3:30 and 4:30pm are peak times. There had to have been close to 30 athletes in there doing the WOD. The place was packed wall to wall. I guess Mark, one of the owners, saw how uncomfortable I was. So he helped me set up my squats on some blocks in a corner as far away from everyone else as possible. He went out of his way to let me know I was always welcome and should feel comfortable training anytime they're open. I think the owners, coaches, and fellow athletes see how out of my comfort zone I feel doing Crossfit and how different my body type is from the average CrossFit'er. And instead of judging me or excluding me they seem to really go out of their way to make me feel comfortable and welcome.

I ended up squatting 4x5 @ 340lbs relatively easily. I'd never felt that strong or confident squating that heavy before. I'm feeling great. Strong, fast, and light.

January 19, 2018

Bad reasons to quit CrossFit

I had almost quit CrossFit. There were a few reasons why. It wasn't until I ran and played with my kids this weekend that I realized quitting was a bad idea. I hadn't been able to run and play sports with my kids like that in years. I realize it's because CrossFit has gotten me in MUCH better shape incredibly quickly. After such a wonderful weekend with my kids I realized how stupid all my reasons to quit were. Here were my three big problems I had with CrossFit and the the honest answers to those problems.

1) I've never been as bad at a sport as I am at CrossFit.
Truth: I've found a weakness in my athletisism. The best athletes in the world don't avoid weaknesses. They fix them when they find them.

2) I want to be a great Powerlifter. I'm afraid CrossFit will prevent or limit that.
Truth: in moderation CrossFit won't inhibit my streangth gains at all. But CrossFit will absolutely prevent me from becoming an unathletic, fat, slow, and unhealthy Powerlifter.

3) CrossFit is expensive.
Truth: it's cheaper than massive health problems from not staying healthy and active. And more years alive in my kids life is priceless.

Now that I've come to these realizations I've decided not quit the CrossFit cult. And now I'm even thinking about getting my CrossFit level 1 coaching certificate. The CrossFit version of becoming a deacon at the local cult faction.

January 16, 2018

Max squat cleans and Karen

This morning in CrossFit we tested max squat cleans and the benchmark workout Karen.

I was able to max squat clean 265lbs. Which is only 10lbs less than my lifetime best. And I've lost 58lbs recently. So even though I'm a little weaker my Sinclair coefficient went up significantly. Up to a 221 now. I'm pleased about that.

Wall balls and thrusters are a huge weakness of mine. And Karen is 150 wall balls. The average time for Karen was 7-10 minutes. It took me 15:38. But I didn't mind. I was just excited to be able to get an RX time for one of the benchmark CrossFit workouts.

January 15, 2018

Running with my kids again

Today my kids and I were home all day together. It was wonderful. We finished building our rabbitry, played basketball, and played football. I was able to run out for passes, Chase them down on defense to prevent touchdowns, and be quick on my feet changing direction playing basketball. I couldn't do any of those things 3 months ago. Not only has the weight loss helped, but I've gotten in better shape. I didn't realize what a difference crossfit has made until today. The change was amazing. As bad as I wanted to quit CrossFit, after this weekend I won't. I'm so glad I can run and play with my kids again.

January 14, 2018

Competing when I suck

I'm at a pivital point with CrossFit. I'm trying to figure out if I'm going to quit or not. On one hand I know I need to do it because I'm in horrible shape. On the other hand I've never been this bad at a sport in my life. I've come in last place in the daily WODs all but a couple times. Not last in my heat, but last in the entire gym. Last out of all the times combined. I'm ok with being humbled. But I'm not so good at handling imbarrasment and humiliation. On Thursday I wasn't going to go unless the workout was a workout that had my strengths. It was. I didn't come in last place. 2nd to last. Doesn't sound that great. But to me, 2nd to last is huge. Last night I looked at today's workout. I wasn't going if it had a bunch of things I'm not good at. It was power snatches and pvc ab mat sit ups. I love sntaches. And I don't mind sit ups. I'm not great at them. But it's better than hand stand push-ups, ring dips, or pull-ups. So I showed up. And I didn't come in last today. I was 3rd from last. That's the best I've ever finished. Not dead last. I don't know if I'm doing better because I'm getting in better shape. If it's because I'm so much lighter. Or if others were milking it. I've lost 56 pounds so far. Moving faster is easier when you don't have to move as much weight. Well.... I guess if I'm making progress I should keep showing up. Tuesday is my next scheduled CrossFit day. And it's test Tuesday. I love test Tuesdays. I love a competition. Competition drives me. I don't like to loose. So on Tuesdays I usually do better than I usually could.

January 12, 2018

Avatar Nutrition and exsessive weight loss

After having not lost any weight for 3.5 weeks, I've lost 10 pounds in the last 10 days. I use a diet app called Avatar Nutrition. It adjusts my calories/macros to make sure I loose a set number of pounds each week. I was afraid that since I lost significantly more weight than I should have that the program was going to increase my calories an excessive amount. It didn't. It only raised it 100 calories. There seems to be some kind of fail safe on the program that prevents to large of increases or decreases of calories each week. The longer I'm using Avatar Nutrition the more I'm liking it. I've lost 54 pounds since September 5th. Another 50 pounds to go to reach my goal of the 242lb powerlifting weight class.

January 11, 2018

CrossFit revelation

I'd almost convinced myself to quit CrossFit. I was frustrated that i was slow and the workouts consistently had exercises I couldn't do. I blamed it on the exercises. I told myself the movements were only good for little guys. Today the WOD was perfect for me. 5 rounds of 15 calories on the bike and 15 sumo deadlift high pulls. Those are two of my strengths and I still struggled. I realized that the problem isn't what body types are best suited for CrossFit. The problem is CrossFit is hard cardio and I'm in bad shape. Quitting because the sport isn't best for a big guy like me makes sense. But quitting because I'm fat and out of shape doesn't.

January 09, 2018

maximum streangth block

On Monday I started a maximum streangth program, sets of 5 reps. No more hypertrophy, sets of 10 reps. In some ways I'll miss hypertrophy. I get pretty muscular during hypertrophy. And it's easy to loose weight too. But the big strength gains comes during the blocks of 5 reps. The next Powerlifting meet is in March. It's the USAPL Powerlifting state championships. My middle child will be competing with me also.

January 08, 2018

Weight loss jumps and plateaus

I loose weight oddly. On Friday I weighed 301lbs. Then  this morning I weighed 293 pounds. When loosing weight I'll plateau for weeks. And then in a two day period my body weight will drop 7-10 pounds. I've always done that. It's odd. But at least it's moving down.

I only have 18 more pounds to loose to get into the 275lb Powerlifting weight class. And I'm now over half way to  my ultimate goal of lifting in the 242 pound weight class. 53lbs lost, 51 more to go!!!!

I'd really like to show up to the New Mexico games at 242lbs. The last time my weightlifting buddies saw me I weighed in the 340's. It'd be great to show up having lost 100lbs. 

January 06, 2018

Start of a recovery week

Today was day 12 of my Powerlifting block. Tomorrow starts my first day of a recovery week. I'm looking forward to some rest and recovery . My body is tired. Today I had to use Spark to get through my workout. I haven't had to use Spark in almost two years. I've been training very hard the last 3 weeks. This is the first heavy hypertrophy program I've done in years. I'm not used to it yet. I'm getting great results though. After my recovery week I'll be starting a power building program of 5 reps.

January 05, 2018

The make up break up game

I quit CrossFit today. I didn't want to just disappear without saying goodbye to my favorite CrossFit coach. He sent me a message back that made me decide to stay with it. To keep trying even though I finish last every day. To keep attempting to loose all this damn fat, to get to a healthy body weight, and to get strong and fit instead of just strong. Coach Damion sent this message:

Brother, you work hard! Your numbers are fantastic and if you keep it up you'll be where you want. I know it's frustrating coming in at the bottom. I did it today. I messed my shoulder up again and I won't lie to you and say it's not depressing. Our bodies aren't young anymore and we have to work ten times harder than everyone else. Trust me, I want to quit every day. I joke that I'm the coach with the lowest self esteem. Tears of a clown I suppose, but I refuse to quit. I see you work your ass off brother. Believe it or not, it's members like you that keep me from quitting because you make me feel important. I'm here for anything you need brother. Keep coming!

January 04, 2018

Deadlift form and CrossFit technical exercises

I come from an Olympic weightlifting background. So I've always deadlift with a clean and jerk width on my feet and hands. Now that I'm exclusively a powerlifter I've decided to try moving my feet and hands significantly closer. So far it's working wonderfully. I'm lifting more weight and more reps. All aspects of Powerlifting training seems to be doing great right now. My body is definitely suited for this sport.

I played hooky from CrossFit again today. CrossFit is great cardio. I'm sure it'll help me loose weight and look better. But I'm frustrated with some of the CrossFit exercises. Only small people can do them fast or well. Things like handstand push-ups, muscle ups, etc. Even if I loose a ton of weight and get super lean I'll still be 235-255 pounds and I'll probably never be able to do a lot of the CrossFit gymnastics exercises well or efficiently. I'm not sure if I want to stick with a sport that I'll never be anything more than below average at. I'm torn weather to stick with CrossFit or go back to track sprinting for my cardio.