Thursday, December 30, 2010


Back to single day workouts this week which feels like nothing compared to the last couple weeks where I was extremely busy with a double day almost every day.  I feel my body recovering which feels great.   Plus I started doing ice baths for 10 min every other day.  While this is one of the more painful things I have to do (feels like Fran), it only lasts a few minutes then you go numb.  I used to do these in college football and they truly help.  I feel so much better afterward.  I think it is my favorite thing to help recovery, better than anything else I have ever used.  If you have not done it, try it!

Here have been my workouts this week so far.  All have felt good, and feeling very recovered!

Airdyne sprints:
30 sec @ 90% effort
30 sec 50% effort x 10
rest 3 min off bike
repeat x 3
Heart rate was between 165 and 179 after the 30 sec sprints for the last two sets of ten.

5 sets:
10 split jerk - 135#
15 KBS - 2pd
30 double unders
20 sit ups anchored
rest 4 min 

A. Squat Clean - build to a tough 3 but NOT a 3RM
B. FS @ 30X1; 4 sets of 2 - tough but perfect form; rest 2 min
C1. Squat CLean Thruster - 5 sets of 5 unbroken heavy - work on speed and form; rest 20 sec
C2. 25 chin ups unbroken x 5; rest 5 min

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Post Christmas program

After a little testing day I took two days off over Christmas.  It was good to relax some, hang out with family, and eat some good food.  I ate some bad things, mixed in some good healthy foods, and had a couple desserts.  For the most part I stayed away from desserts but I did have a quite a few beers.  It tasted good and I needed it as I was a little broken down.  This next week will be tough right before New Years as I have a lot of dinner parties to go to.  I plan I continuing to work hard and relaxing here and there this next week.

This next cycle of workouts mixes in a lot of squats with speed work.  Just planning on plain and simple work slowly adding some volume  with no surprises.  There are also a lot of power endurance and endurance workouts mixed in as well.  Some of these involve swimming, hiking, and biking.  These will add some diversity to my workouts and should be fun.  Todays wod involved this:

A. Back Squat with light bands @ 20X1; 10 sets of 3; rest 45 sec b/t sets - 135# barbell plus bands per side
B. Back Squat - build to a tough triple on the 2 minute timer 
C1. DB High bench step ups @ 3121; - 24" box - 12/leg x 3; rest 1 min
C2. 15 CTB chin ups x 3; rest 1 min

Here is a video of a couple sets of band squats and step ups.  The band squats felt good and should be a way to add more speed and strength to my squats.  Step ups were hard to hold tempo but felt them right in the hammies so I know they were working.  Looking forward to this next cycle and the New Year!

OPT wod 12/26/10 from Joseph Warren on Vimeo.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Testing Day

I did a triple day yesterday testing some areas.  I have felt really good the last few weeks and then this week caught up with me.  A lot of volume has caused some aches and pains going into this triple day, so didn't feel great going into it.  But I guess it's like the last day of any competition, you are going to be sore and not feeling great but have to find a way to push through.  Not completely happy with my numbers but all in all I felt pretty good throughout the day.

Wod #1:
run 1 mile for time
t= 5:25
felt pretty good doing this on track, maybe a little more in me right now and I would like to get that a little faster through the next year.

Wod #2
3 rounds for time of:
12 Squat Cleans 155lb
20 Box Jumps 24"

OPT triple day wod #2 from Joseph Warren on Vimeo.

This killed my hammies and didn't feel much pop in the legs.  The funny thing was that all the leg burn took out my HSPU, those never felt so hard.

Wod #3:



OPT triple day wod #3 "Jackie" from Joseph Warren on Vimeo.

First time ever doing this and I definitely had more in me, felt too easy at the end.  Need to make up time on rower and maybe a little quicker on thrusters.  I just didn't want to lose time by breaking.  Now I know to push harder on rower.

These testing day always are a good learning experience.  I will take a lot with me from this one.  Now off to relax, ice a little, and eat some good food over Christmas weekend.

Happy Holidays!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Keep Working

Here is my workout from last night.  Everything felt fine but wanted to do the ring dips unbroken but I knew that would be a struggle trying to keep up a good pace.  The last round they really broke down.  Need to keep working hard to get stronger!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

A Big Storm

I did hill sprints 45 sec up/ 2:15 down x 12.  It was a glute/hammie burner, but felt good and consistent especially considering the awful conditions.  It is storming pretty good today.  After the first couple sprints my legs started feeling heavy and I got drenched making my shoes and shorts weighing about 3lb each.  

This 3 day cycle has been a lot of power endurance and shoulders/scapular strength.  A couple days ago I did a 30 min jog and then max strict pullups mixed with back squat for 6 sets.  Highest rep strict pullups was 27 and lowest was 16.  Squats felt a lot better than last week.

Yesterday I did airdyne sprints 1 min 90%/1 min 50% for 20 sets.   4 hours later I did 60 muscle ups in 16min plus some ring stability work of L-sits and front leaning rest or plank on rings.  My core is pretty sore.  

Hill sprints this morning was a production in the rain and later Im going back to the gym to do another burner.  I will film it and post later...

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Light week

Only have done two workouts so far this week, a little bit of a lighter week before I do some testers next week right before Christmas!  One of the tests is "Jackie", so I'm looking forward to that.

Here are the wods for this week.

A1. Front Squat @ 30X1; 3,3,3,3; rest 2 min
A2. CTB Chin Ups - 25 x 4; rest 2 min
B. BB forward lunges - 10 total steps x 4 sets; rest 90 sec
C. gh raises - 15 x 3; rest 90 sec
Front Squat felt ok, still losing my glute activation where it starts to roll underneath with heavier loads.  Pullups were easy and lunges are to work on my glutes around 170lb for each set.

A1. Power Snatch - 3,3,2,2,1,1; rest 3 min
A2. Ring Dips + 20# vest - amrap x 6; rest 3 min
B. KBS - 1-13 breathing KBS ladder - 2 pd - breathe 5 breaths b/t reps

Power snatch I started at 165lb and then did a couple ring dip sets at 24 each set.  When I went up to 175lb I failed, had no tri's left.  I dug in a little deeper and got 175lb but a little sloppy form.  I finished at 180lb x 1.  Rind dips dropped to around 15.  The KBS ladder was fun, interesting to concentrate on breath, especially in later sets when it got harder which made the rest shorter.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Why give 100%

I have written a little on here about how to give 100% (check it out here)
The benefits of giving 100% are remarkable, a huge difference compared to 99%. Giving 100% comes from every aspect of life, not just during a workout. Being 100% in all aspects of life take commitment and will help to take your fitness to the next level. These are things like eating perfect, sleeping, recovery techniques, and stress management whatever that may be for you. These things all go hand in hand. I had a bad night of eating recently and thought it didn't affect my workout, but during the workout I didn't really achieve 100% and I probably did not recover like I should have. I just got through the workout. I noticed the night I ate bad that I slept terribly, making me more tired and stressed the next day. You see how they all are connected? People always try to get better by doing more, but why not try doing better? Ever heard of quality, not quantity? I truly believe in this and it is something I have learned over the last year or two. Try making every aspect of your life 100% and getting the absolutely most out of your workouts. What's the difference between taking 1 sec off of your wod time? Well at the elite level it can be huge, it can make all the difference in the world. So every workout that I do, I start with that mindset; it's the Crossfit motto of "every second counts!"

Here is an excerpt from a very good coach pushing Olympic athletes to reach their limits. It comes from OPT's blog back in February 2010.
Q: If an athlete hits a personal best, you usually stop the workout, regardless of what's left on the paper. Why is that?

CF: Well, it's dangerous. The time people get hurt is the next session after they've had a tremendous performance.

Q: Because they're trying to top themselves?

CF: Not just because they're psyched up and trying to beat their PR, but because their bodies haven't recovered from it. With very heavy weights it can take ten to twelve days to get over a maximal lift, same thing in sprinting. There's a huge difference between 95 and 100% performance. So instead of the 100 meters in 10 flat, it becomes 10.45 or 10.50. The difference in output and effort is unbelievable. Even though it's in the 95th percentile and qualifies as high intensity work, it's a joke. Keep in mind this only applies at the highest levels. If a kid gets a personal best, so what? We're talking about world record levels.
Q: In your book, The Charlie Francis Training System, there's a picture of Mark McKoy benching 315. The caption reads, "This is an indication of the upper body strength required to be a 10.19 second 100-meter sprinter and the number three hurdler in the world in 1987." Can you clarify that? Does a person need to bench a certain amount to be a contender?

CF: It's not a formula that says, you've got to be able to bench this and squat that. What it means is that high-quality performances are the result of high-quality training. There's nobody who can go out there, for example and say, "Oh, I want to beat Michael Johnson in the 400, well, I'll just go do what he does." Look, if you can't beat him in the race, you can't do his workouts! It would take years to build up to those things, so who cares what he does in his workout? You can't do it, so don't worry about it!
love it...

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Saturday Double Day

Saturday and Sunday double days are always a little tough for me, it seems that the workouts consume my entire weekend and then I feel like I don't have much weekend at all.  Well last night I had a couple beers at a social networking event and ate pretty bad.  I woke up regretting that as I did not feel very good at all, salt and alcohol did not sit well with me.  But my workouts didnt seem to suffer, I just had a little bit of a headache and my stomach was sensitive.  Not gonna do that again for a while, it really sucked.  Well here are my workouts, tomorrow is rest day, and I'm gonna take it easy and eat healthy.

hill runs - 45 sec up @ 80% grinder pace
run downeasy 2:15 x 5
walk rest 10 min
repeat 5 more times 
alll felt good, got a little hammie burn but not too much at 80%

7 sets; 
Power Clean - 90 kg x 5
Row sprint 200 m @ 95%
rest 3 min
cleans @ 200lb - all unbroken tap n go
rows all at 1:30 pace or slightly below

Friday, December 10, 2010


Yesterday AM:
row for 20 min z1 - almost got 5k meters, started off feeling great slowed a lot and then held a consistent pace around 2:05.  I was going to try to keep my HR at 145BPM but the damn thing didnt work on the rower.  When I stopped after 20 min and looked at my HR it was between 130-135

Yesterday PM
Back Squat 5,3,5,3,5,3 - worked up to 275lb - felt like crap, back was tight
Strict Pullups- 23 /21/19/ 16/ 14/ 13
GHD situps - 25 x 4

Today AM:
Airdyne sprints - 1 min @ 90%/ 1 min @ 50% for 30 min

10 min of Ring HSPU - all triples - 13 sets - 39 total
100 Turkish Getups 53lb - this sucked and took 35:33

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Primal philosophy

Rest Day for me today

I read a lot of stuff on primal living, Paleo eating, and how to be as healthy as we were designed to be. I really like Mark's Daily Apple because it is all about primal living in modern society which is very practical. Here is another excerpt taken from Erwan Le Corre found on the blog Conditioning Research. I really like it because it is a very practical approach:

Let me be a bit provocative here, purposely: I do not care about my ancestors. They’re all dead!

An evolutionary approach is only interesting if it helps us, people of today, people that are still alive. In that sense, I am not interested in a so called “truth”, but in what we can experience today, and how understanding our past may help us improve our present lives. I am not living a caveman lifestyle, I’m sorry. I am a man of today, I’m in the here and now. I am not “sprinting and lifting heavy things” thinking that I am mimicking a caveman lifestyle. That is BULLSHIT. I am sprinting and lifting heavy things (among many other things I train) in order to be ready to do so in today’s world when the need arises. It’s about real-life preparedness and not role playing. MovNat is about connecting to reality, not to a reality that does not exist anymore.

...are there any particular guidelines you follow or approaches you endorse.

Paleo, 100%. Well, 70-80% is probably best and more practical though. I know some people argue that humans can be okay with a variety of diets, and that diet is only one component of health. I still believe that an evolutionary approach to nutrition is essential. Without intending to hurt anybody’s feelings, to me natural does not mean yoga and tofu. Talking about what’s “natural” to us means understanding biology. Well, nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution.

What are the movement and nutrition patterns that we have collectively inherited from millions of years of life in the wild, and that are not social or cultural patterns? That is the answer to what “natural” is to a human animal.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Getting stronger... and sore

A couple days ago I felt really good after a day off from FGB. I did 3 sets of 3 reps front squats @ 225/235/235. I mixed in 3 sets of 25 unbroken chest to bar pullups with the last set going to 28. This all felt fine but I was sore from it.

Yesterday morning I jogged for 25 min, longest I've gone in a while. The only thing that got hard was my calves tightened up, just think its been a while. In the PM I did:

5 x DL 315lb
10 ring dips
15 DUs
rest 2:30

This felt very easy but again I was sore, especially my back, hmmm, weird easy but sore.

Today I did:
5x3 bench press
3x3 split jerk 80%
3x3 push press

Last 3 sets of bench were at 275lb but needed a spot. Split jerk I worked up to 205lb and push press worked up to 210lb which was just about my max. Good last few days. Everything felt easy but Im really sore! Day off tomorrow, Ill get fully recovered and get back on it through the weekend.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Paleo Challenge foods!

My gym just did a Paleo diet challenge through Thanksgiving that just ended today. It entailed adding up points for everything eaten in the last month. Small splurges equated to 1 point while worse foods were 2 points. Alcohol was 3 points and an entire cheat meal was 4 points. The most points you could get in a day was capped at 12 points and considered a cheat day. We also subtracted a point for every workout that was completed.

My total was 38 points. Not great, but felt pretty good. The majority of points came Thanksgiving week and the rest of the points came from dairy, protein bars, and paleo desserts. So I feel it is not as bad as it looks especially considering it was Thanksgiving. I think the most important part of eating healthy is how you feel and perform. I know when I eat unhealthy as my body will tell me, I sleep worse and my stomach gets upset from not being used to "bad" foods. The last month I felt good and I topped it off with a PR in Fight Gone Bad a couple days ago. So I guess I need to learn from this that I dont have to be absolutely perfect. I want to strive to eat as healthy as possible but have an occasional worse food to keep me sane. I just want to keep those worse foods to foods that are not that bad. I feel when I try to eat absolutely perfect, the stress that comes with it is not worth the effort.

I want to include my food and workout log of the last month so you can see what are some splurges to me. In between all of these cheats were typically a perfect Paleo/Zone meal consisting of lean meat, veggies, fruit, and healthy fat. The healthier I eat the more that some simple every day foods for most people are big splurges to me such as dairy or dark chocolate, and that is how I want it to be. Raising the Bar!!!

Month Paleo Challenge

Day 1 11/8

dinner = homemade pork chile from client (delicious) = (+ 1) point

Day 2 11/9

workout x 2 = (- 2) point

Day 3 11/10

workout = (-1) point

Day 4 11/11

homemade marinara sauce w italian sausage from same client (even more delicious) - (+1) point

Day 5 11/12

workout x 2 AM & PM = (-2) point

dinner = (one of my birthday meals) Gardinos cheat meal (fried calamari, beer, scallops battered, chocolate covered almonds) = (+4) points

Day 6 11/13

workout = (-1)

Day 7 11/14

cheat meal (day spent in San Fran, a planned cheat day) = wine taste, chips & guacamole, crap chalupa, hot fudge sunday = (+4) points

Day 8 11/15

0 points (YES!!!) - back on track

Day 9 11/16

workout x 2 = (-2)

butter on cauliflower (lots of it) = (+1)

Day 9 11/17

workout x 2 = (-2)

Day 10 11/18

half n half in coffee = (+1)

candied walnuts in very healthy salad with tons of veggies = (+1)

Day 11 11/19

2 x wods = (-2)

1/2 think thin protein bar = (+1)

Day 12 11/20

2 x wods = (-2)

think thin protein bar = (+1)

cheat meal = thanksgiving party with friends = sweet potatoes, gravy, stuffing, 2 x beers = (+4)

Day 13 11/21

cheat meal (not ready to start the week) = Willow Street restaurant - chicken pesto 1.5 beers, cookie, fudge, paleo pumkin ice cream = (+4)

Day 14 11/22

think thin protein bar = (+1)

yougurt w berries = (+1)

Day 15 11/23

workout x 1 = (-1) (back on track the next couple days before the big Turkey Day)

Day 16 11/24

workout x 3 = (-3)

Day 17 11/25

workout x 2 (-2)

cheat meal - thanksgiving - mashed potatoes, 1 glass wine, stuffing (+4)

Paleo Ice cream, (+1)

side note - today was not too bad, considering the Thanksgiving the year before I ate so much I threw up - read about it here

Day 18 11/26

ommellete with cheese = (+1)

Vallerianos dinner of asparagus salad, pork, veggies with mashes potatoes = (+1)

yumi yogurt = (+1)

Day 19 11/27

cafe latte = +1

milkshake from Great Bear coffee (AWESOME) = (+2)

cheat meal 1 slize pizza and 2 beers (+4) playing poker (not very good)

Day 20 11/28

lunch = (+2) gluten free sandwich

dinner = (+1) some paleo ice cream + 1/2 paleo brownie

Day 21 11/29

3 x wods = (-3)

Day 22 11/30

2 x wods = (-2)

lunch = feta cheese in salad = (+1)

dessert = few bites of greek yogurt plus 3/4 think thin = (+1)

Day 23 12/1

lunch = feta cheese in sald = (+1)

butternut squash sauce w butter ingredient on spaghetti squash = (+1)

paleo ice cream - (+1)

Day 24 12/2

(lots of dairy today hmmm)

wod = (-1)

breakfast = paleo coffee cake = (+1)

lunch = goat cheese in salad = (+1)

coffee w milk = (+1)

dinner = gorgonzola in salad = (+1)

yumi yogurt= (+1)

Day 25 12/3

wod x 1 = (-1)

truffle fudge 1 bite = (+1)

Day 26 12/4

AM = yogurt = (+1)

noon = bloody mary + clam chowder during town parade= (+4)

pinkberry yogurt= (+1)

Day 27 12/5

WOD X 1 = (-1)

think thin protein bar - (+1)

cheese + gluten free tortilla = (+2)

TOTAL = (+37)

Friday, December 3, 2010

Fight Gone Bad

There are times when I hate Crossfit.  Sometimes I feel beat up, stressed for my workout, and it becomes a job making me tired all the time not permitting any kind of social life.  But every once in a while I'm reminded why I love it.  It's like golf, the most frustrating game ever, but it just takes one great shot to keep you coming back.  Today I had one of those great shots.  I was very nervous going into FGB.  I took a few days off the prior weekend due to a small injury and I did not feel like I was prepared.  I thought there was no way I could even come close to my previous best score and started making excuses for myself to not go hard in the workout.  I finally got over my fear somewhat and made a lofty goal for myself of 435.  I went into the workout trying to stick to that pace.  I came out with a score of 440.  That wasn't all that surprised me, I didn't even feel that bad, I think I had more in me.  I felt great!  The previous times I did this I was rolling on the ground for ten min afterward.  I needed this workout to boost my confidence.  I was struggling the past week with an injury, lack of energy, eating poorly through the holidays and all this made me lack motivation and most of all confidence.  This workout was a confidence booster.

  I always say there is a moral to every workout.  Here is the lesson I take from this; there are going to be times when things get tough.  It is inevitable that things will not always go your way, but it is how well you can claw and scratch to get back.  I feel confidence and motivation go hand in hand.  Both were down for me this past week.  I really did not want to do this workout for a million excuses I could have made up.  I told myself to just do it.  I didn't want to give myself a big goal to shoot for because I thought it would be too painful.  But I told myself just stick with the plan and see how long I can hold on, don't let fear hold me back.  I didn't just give up or make excuses of why I couldn't go hard.   It got my confidence up and now Im motivated to keep on going.  It kind of got me out of my slump.  I talked with OPT afterward and he said "learn from this, it has just begun!" Here we go...

I feel you can apply this to any aspect of life.  Don't let fear hold you back, just try it and you may just surprise yourself.  This will increase your confidence and in turn motivation.  Coincidentally on OPT's blog he just put a quote that applies perfectly.
  • No one thought it was possible to run a mile in 4 minutes; Bannister does it, then 4 people do it in 1 year, now high school kids do it regularily; how much are we limiting ourselves based upon what we know?
    The athlete I want does not know why they are doing what they are doing; they are just doing!

Even more coincidental is on the crossfit mainsite for today, they also have a quote on motivation that applies.  You think that motivation is a big part in achieving your goals?

  • "People often say that motivation doesn't last. Well, neither does bathing - that's why we recommend it daily."
    - Zig Ziglar

Here's the FGB video!

Fight Gone Bad from Joseph Warren on Vimeo.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

KBS / Burpee

Did a very similar wod to the other day and felt good again.  Watching the video I wish I moved a little quicker with more pop, but I always say that after watching it.  I'm happy that I stayed moving at a consistent pace the entire time and felt good afterward.  The wod was:

3 rounds:
25 KBS 70lb
25 burpees

FGB tomorrow!!!

KBS/ Burpee from Joseph Warren on Vimeo.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Feeling Good... again

After I took the weekend off from a little hamstring strain, I played around with some wods the last couple days.  Yesterday AM i did a light jog and it felt fine.  So in the afternoon I did some upperbody:

5 sets:
push press x 3  rest 20 sec @ 185/195/205/210/215
25 unbroken pullups rest 4 min

This all felt fine.  In the PM i wanted to test my hammie some.  I warmed up on the rower and it felt good so I rowed harder and it still felt fine.  I started with:

3 sets of amrap ring handstand pushups rest 4 min - 13/12/12

This is the best I felt with these.  Afterward I did a 2k row and pushed it just about 100%.  I PR'ed with a 6:50 and laid on the floor for about 10 min, I haven't felt that much burn in a long time.  My hamstring felt great and actually even felt better.  I think this shows I just needed to work some junk out of there.  I've been mysofascial massaging and icing non stop and I think this is all I needed to do to get it feeling good.  It just needed some love.  

Today I tested it even more with SDHP.  I did

5 rounds at 95% of:
15 SDHP 75lb 
15 burpees - only push last 15 burpees

See video of this is below.  It felt great.  In the PM I did some light deads, some squat cleans and split jerks.  I finished with a mile run at 90% and finished in 6 min flat.  Felt kind of slow here but it was late and still testing the hammie.

I think the hamstring is good to go now, now its time to pick up the intensity and make up for the time I missed.  Moral of this is give some love to my hamstrings.  I need to spend more time stretching, warming up, and doing some mysofascial release.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Ben Shanker Meets OPT at Cadence!!!

Well I have a slight hamstring strain that has been bugging me for the last couple days, not horribly, but enough for me to sit today out.  I was supposed to do 3 workouts but all were demanding on the hamstring including Sumo Deadlift Highpulls, hang power cleans, and running.  

So I had my friend, Ben Shanker, substitute in for me.  He did my workout that I was supposed to do in the morning.  I always believed in improvement from visualization, and he gave me some good positive visualization while I took the day off.  Here he is grunting and pushing through the workout with everything he has.  This is how you push hard.  So while he makes me unhealthier when he in town by making me drink beer and be his wingman, today he made me healthier while I was sitting out by "killing" this workout.  Thanks Ben!

Ben Shanker Meets OPT from Joseph Warren on Vimeo.

Friday, November 26, 2010

A short Oly-lifting sesion

I felt slow today.  It was the end of the day and I haven't done any Olympic lifting in a month.  Definitely felt slow and NOT strong.... Here we go!!!

Oly Lifting session from Joseph Warren on Vimeo.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Triple Day #1

50 Muscle Ups 

Broken up into all singles
I had more push in me...

50 Muscle Ups from Joseph Warren on Vimeo.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Tough Thanksgiving

Instead of over indulging this Thanksgiving, I will be getting down to business with some tough workouts.  I have a lot of parties planned to go to but having my weeks wods planned ahead of me which will keep me in check with the over-eating and desserts.  I will probably dig into a couple but will not be too bad.  I have 3 triple days and a couple double days the next 9 days and it culminates with good old "Fight Gone Bad."  

I will post some vids plus updates with some fun wods over the holidays!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

New Toy!!!

Here is a new piece of equipment I got over the weekend.  Yes, it was only $30, and yes, it is from the 70's.  But it is just a new way to destroy me.  I always say that anything is only as hard as you make it.  Go 100% on this thing and you will be laying on the floor, or even mix in some burpees, it doesn't matter just go hard.  I like it because its not as demanding on your back like rowing and doesnt quite destroy you hammies like hill sprints. 

It is humorous because I can just see old ladies just cruising on it.  And when Im pushing it, I'm over the reading of the speedometer, it max's out pretty easily.  Pretty crummy engineering!  But it does not matter what exercise form you choose, you just need to go hard.  Thats why I find this ironic, everyone laughs at me as I look pretty silly... until they get a go at it. 

People always are looking for the easy way out.  There is no easy way to get fit, you have to put in the hard work.  It reminds me of a quote I read form Mark's Daily Apple, and it applies to fitness when you should stick to the basics and just get work done!  Here is the quote:

Don't dig a ditch, to install a ladder, to wash the basement windows!

New toy - 1970's airdyne from Joseph Warren on Vimeo.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

New Program

Im following a new program temporarily designed by OPT specifically for my needs.  We will see how it goes the next month and go from there.  I'll have a little more time to post on here so will try to write more often!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Comfortable with the uncomfortable

How do you push through the pain? How do you get mental toughness? How do you get better, stronger, faster?

I have been receiving a few emails on how to become competitive in Crossfit, what is the right formula, how do I take it to the next level. There is no right answer to that question, especially in a sport like Crossfit, and especially since the sport is so new. It is finding what works for you, and maybe that comes from trying what has worked for others. What I do know is to be the best that you can be, you have to give it 100% and get comfortable with the uncomfortable. So how do you do this. Below are some things that I learned this past year and some strategies I use that I would suggest to anyone wanting to be competitive, really for any sport.

Find something that gets you excited to train. If that means take some time off, then do that. Thats the hardest thing to do, and I can't do it too well, but I definitely learned to listen to my body. I see too many people that dont do this and end up injured or continually workout at 90% or less, never really achieving 100%. The times I have hit my workouts the hardest have always been after an injury when I can't wait to get back at it. So take a lesson from me and prevent the injuries from happening and take some time off to relax until you cannot stand it anymore. You can also take this time to do workouts you enjoy from a strength program to yoga. But just find a way that gets you excited to train and hit it 100%. I always imagine that i am lucky to just be able to move around the way I can, so I take advantage of it.

Pushing 100% and taking yourself to a place beyond what you thought was possible takes practice and Im not sure if you ever truly get comfortable with it, maybe just more confident. That confidence comes from just doing it. That is what I am focusing on right now, it is the only way to get better, to keep pushing through. Its what prevented me from winning the games. Here are some strategies that I use to push through. My sole focus during the workouts right now is pushing as hard as I can, no thinking abut the time, and no thinking about failing, just trying. I actually want to fail right now. That means I pushed hard, very hard! Its challenging to go to failure, its a mental test. Right now I sprint the first round of any wod as fast as I can go and just struggle through the rest of the wod, no pacing, that makes it a lot tougher. I have side bets with the guys I workout with; who can win the first round, and who can win the rest of the workout. I did this strategy recently in a 20 min amrap, it made the rest of the wod very interesting. It almost helps me push harder. There are always those wods where you think they will be easy then get surprised by how difficult it is. Its hard to push through there because you werent expecting that and all that goes through my mind is why is it so difficult. When I push hard early it gets me in the right mindset that this is going to be hard, but I know I can push through. This helps me get comfortable with the very uncomfortable.

Lastly positive self talk is crucial, listen to what goes on inside your head during workouts, try to make it positive as if you were coaching someone else. This is not easy! Try to even smile during the wods, and tell yourself it is fun and you like it! You may look crazy but realize it is fun, at least afterward is fun knowing youre done and you achieved going 100%. I have surprised myself the last couple weeks when the voice inside my head says you can't do it, slow down, and I just try to ignore it expecting to fail (which is what Im shooting for) but to my surprise I have been achieving. It shows I have more potential than I even think.  I need to work on that voice inside my head a little bit. But doing it and surprising myself builds confidence which in turn helps to get comfortable with the uncomfortable. Try it!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


Trying to get back into some healthy eating, it has been nice eating some bad foods that I have been craviing for a long time, I have to say the stress levels are a lot lower.  Some of my favorites have been Mexican food with a Modelo Especial and ice cream.  But been trying hard now to get back on the wagon.  Almost there, except I cooked this healthy meal and my girlfriend made cous cous to along with it, not paleo but it went with the meal well.  It was a recipe from the blog "What I feed Rory," and it turned out good.  It was sauted garlic, onion, cherries, kale, and chicken with balsamic vinegar and dijon mustard.  Pretty good!

Here is a workout I did over the weekend with a couple friends, it's always nice to have some people there to push me, especially on the weekends when nobody is around.  My strategy of going all out in these workout has been going great as you can see the first round was fast and unbroken, obviously I slow down some, but this is helping me get comfortable with the uncomfortable.  I had a bet with Matt in the video to see who could win the first round, then who could continue on and win the rest of the workout.  Its like a little side bet in golf, who can get closest to the hole off the tee shot, then who can be first one in the hole, it helps to have a little something on the line, maybe I will start betting money haha.  It's a little more painful and probably not a good idea to do in competition because usually in a 20min amrap I would pace a little and try to get a god score, but it is a good practice to struggle through an entire workout.  And if you read my previous post, the top guys in Crossfit definitely fail a lot.  You spike your heart rate early and see how long you can hold it there, a good way to get comfortable with the uncomfortable.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Post Crossfit Games

I wont go into too much detail on my thoughts of the Games, but I want to say that they were fun, inspiring, and a great learning experience.  I thought the workouts at the Games were perfctly designed exposing many weakness and representing true athletes.  It was inspiring to see all the great athletes pushing their limits which has motivated me to push harder and try to find more potential within.  My greatest weakness I saw in myself was my mental toughness and fear of failing.  I saw the best times in most events were from athletes who pushed the limits and failed one or two reps.  That will be my focus for the next couple weeks or so, to push myself to failure.  I want t fail more often.  As I approach competition I can then work on more strategy and pacing, but for now Im gonna go hard, dig deep, and see how much more I got.  If I fail, I know I will learn and grow.  

Here is a video of a workout where I failed a few reps, it was good because I pushed hard and learned that not having a false grip muscle up makes it much more difficult.  I still want to push harder on squat cleans, i have to get rid of that fear of getting tired and failing.

Todays workout I may not have pushed hard enough. It was unbroken sets which made me think to pace a little, but at the end it may have been easier than I expected. I need to push failure. I need to test my mental toughness!

5 Rounds:
25 x unbroken wall ball toss
10 unbroken chest to bar pullups

t= 6:29

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Snatch, Overhead Squat, Run

Snatch & Overhead Squat from Joseph Warren on Vimeo.

Worked up to a 1 rep snatch - 175/185/195/failed x 2 @ 205
I think I can get 205 on a better day, evrything seemed to hurt today but pushed through, not advised, and eventually felt pretty good. Gained some confidence in the snatch because Its been a while since I went heavy. Need to pull that sucker back over my head, falling short out in front probably due to lack of confidence and I ddint feel too explosive.

Afterward I worked up to a heavy Overhead squat. I got 185/205/215/225/235. This surprised me as I have never gone for a heavy OHS. Later that night I ran 3 x 400m sprints. My times were 56s/62s/66s. This was another PR as my first sprint felt great, it fell off a little bit the last 2 sprints but I went close to 100% on the first one.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Back is Back to Normal

OPT games prep wod 7/3/10 from Joseph Warren on Vimeo.

5 clean and jerks 185lb
10 pullups
10 clean and jerks 135lb
20 pullups
15 clean and jerks 95lb
30 pullups


Sunday, June 27, 2010

Back recovery Wod # 6 (Last one)

Think Im ready to jump back into the 2010 games prep wods, my back is feeling great, I will just ease back into the heavy lifting.

My back recovery wod (last one) :
5 rounds:
30 x box hops @ 20"
15 x burpees
75 x DUs
3 min rest
video of this at track:

Untitled from joeywarren on Vimeo.

rest 4 hours

part 2
OHS x 8 @30x0 - 75/95/115/135
weighted chins @3010 x 4 - BW/25/40/55
4 sets:
40 unbroken ball walls- rest 3 min
30 unbroken chins COVP - rest 3 min
all unbroken (very tough)

Stronger than you Know!

Another great post that comes at a perfect time to speak to me from

We are almost always stronger and more capable than we believe ourselves to be.

Our capacity to cope successfully with life's challenges far outstrips our capacity to feel nervousness. Yet in the weeks, days, and hours leading up to an event that we believe will test our limits, we can become nervous. While we may have previously regarded ourselves as equal to the trials that lie ahead, we reach a point at which they near and our anxiety begins to mount. We then become increasingly worked up, until the moment of truth arrives and we discover that our worry was all for nothing. We are almost always stronger and more capable than we believe ourselves to be. But anxiety is not rational in nature, which means that in most cases we cannot work through it using logic as our only tool. Reason can help us recognize the relative futility of unwarranted worry but, more often than not, we will find more comfort in patterns of thought and activity that redirect our attention to practical or engaging matters.

Most of us find it remarkably difficult to focus on two distinct thoughts or emotions at once, and we can use this natural human limitation to our advantage when trying to stay centered in the period leading up to a potentially tricky experience. When we concentrate on something unrelated to our worry—such as deep breathing, visualizations of success, pleasurable pursuits, or exercise—anxiety dissipates naturally. Meditation is also a useful coping mechanism as it provides us with a means to ground ourselves in the moment. Our guides can aid us by providing us with a focal point wholly outside of our own sphere.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Back recover WOD #5

part 1
A1. close grip bench x 2-3 @ 30x0 x 5 2 min
A2. power clean x 5
B. pushpress x 8 @ 22x2 x 4sets
C1. split squat x 12 @ 3010 x 3 sets
C2. amrap ring dips
D1. GHD raises x 15 @2020 x 3 sets
D2. toes to bar x 15 @ 2020

rest 4hours

part 2
row 5 min @ 50%
3 x (4 min @ 85%/2 min @ 50%)
row 2 min @ 50%

A1. 225/235/245/255x2/255x2
A2. 95 lb for all sets
B1. 75/95/115/115
C1. 25/45/60
C2. 33/30/21
D1. UB
D2. UB

felt great on everything today, back is coming around, ready to try heavier weights.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

2 Days of Recovery and growth

Yesterday: 1 hour massage- this was so needed as I felt so tight. I feel way better today as my recovery has been going quicker than expected.

Todays Wod:
part 1
A1. front squat x 10 @ 3010 x 5 sets rest 3 min- 75lb, 95, 105, 115, 115 ( light and felt perfect)
A2. 25 x pullups unbroken x 5 sets- all unbroken ( felt better than expected)

rested 5 hours

part 2
approx 550m hill run; rest 10 min repeat 3 times

t= 2:40/3:01/3:16 (died on the last couple runs, these need some work)

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Back recovery WOD #3

back is feeling about 80% now after 1 week since injuring, I will start incorporated more intense movements this week- sprints, kips, ect...

part 1
A1. HSPU x 15 rest 90 sec x 4
A2. supine pullups rest 90 sec x 4
rest 5 min
4 rounds:
15 x ring dips
100 jump ropes

SPU- UB/UB/UB/12-3

ring dips- UB/UB/UB/8-3-2-2
jump ropes- DUs hurt back so stuck to singles, very broken, no rythym on singles

PM WOD later tongiht- jog

Monday, June 21, 2010

PM light swim & drills

Wanted to get a mock double day in to get used to the long days with multiple workouts, and today was a long day. I worked from 6am - 1230pm, then did first workout, then worked at 2pm, then squeezed in lunch, then chiropractor, then worked from 4-5pm. When I got off work I went to the store to grab dinner (shrimp and salad) then went home and went for a swim. Swam around a little and did some drills in the pool. It actually felt like it loosened up my back some. I don't know if Im determined to get well and kick some butt at the games or if Im just scared to get my butt kicked at the games, but either way I'm pushing along.

recovery workout #2

5 rounds:
3 min hill climb on bike
50 walking lunges

back got tight on last round cut it short on lunges! But still feeling a ton better every day.

Ice and chiro later...

Sunday, June 20, 2010

recovery workout #1

Went to tthe track this morning expecting to just walk/ light jog/ and stretch. I felt better than expected so did a light met con:

6 rounds:
amrap pullups at tempo 2010
400m run @ 60%
25x pushups

PUs- 15, 11, 9, 9, 8, 7
400 m slow but smooth
pushups- UB, UB, UB, 15-5-5, 15-6-4, 13-6-6

My back is coming around, more metcons like this for the next few days, then I will increase the intensity on running followed by light barbell stuff.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Below the Surface


Finding Deep Strength
A daily excerpt from, couldn't speak to me more right now!

We have all have times in our lives when we think we don’t have the strength to carry on. You do, and you can.

We have all faced moments in our lives when the pressure mounts beyond what we feel we can handle, and we find ourselves thinking that we do not have the strength to carry on. Sometimes we have just gotten through a major obstacle or illness only to find another one waiting for us the moment we finally catch our breath. Sometimes we endure one loss after another, wondering when we will get a break from life’s travails. It does not seem fair or right that life should demand more of us when we feel we have given all we can, but sometimes this is the way life works.

When we look back on our lives, we see that we have survived many trials and surmounted many obstacles, often to our own amazement. In each of those instances, we had to break through our ideas about how much we can handle and go deeper into our hidden reserves. The thought that we do not have the strength to handle what is before us can be likened to the hard surface of a frozen lake. It appears to be an impenetrable fact, but when we break through it, we find that a deep well of energy and inspiration was trapped beneath that icy barrier the whole time. Sometimes we break through by cutting a hole into our resistance with our willpower, and sometimes we melt the ice with compassion for our predicament and ourselves. Either way, each time we break through, we reach a new understanding of the strength we store within ourselves.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010


Well its the first time I have been hurt all year! I hurt my back yesterday during deadlifts and I can barely move, I can tell its bad. It could not have happened at a worse time as I was feeling great the last couple weeks! I will keep this site updated on my recovery and thoughts. As for now Im too frustrated to write anymore!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

OPT Games Prep WOD 6/13/10

part 1:
Run 4 min/walk 2 min x 5

all runs b/t 6:04-6:16/mile pace

rest 2 hours

part 2:
on the min for 10 min power clean x2 @ 215lb
rest 3 min
as many reps as possible in 12 min of :
5 unbroken handstand pushups
5 muscle ups
rest 3 min
as many double unders as possible in 5 min - I did 50, rest 30 sec- for a total of 342

HSPU/MU video

OPT WOD 6/13/10 part 2 HSPU/MU from Joseph Warren on Vimeo.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Games Prep WOD from 2007

The workout today was from the first Crossfit Games competition in 2007. It consisted of:

1000m row
then 5 rounds of:
25 pullups
7 push jerks 135lb

the winning time in 2007 was 13:07

OPT WOD 6/12/10: 2007 Games Row, Pullups, push jerk from Joseph Warren on Vimeo.

Paced myself to beat 13 min, beter than expected.

Friday, June 11, 2010


Ice shoulder, stretch, foam roll quads and piriformis, stayed active. Hammies very sore! Finding a way to push through when it gets tough!

Thursday, June 10, 2010


Forgot to film workout today, I need to get in the habit of doing so. Though it wasnt too much of an exciting workout, it was kind of a reserved workout, not going at it 100% yet, nevertheless sill tiring. WOD consisted of:

6 sets
1 min run
1 min box hops 20"
1 min double unders
8 min rest b/t rounds

My runs were just over 200m, box hops b/t 31-34, and DUs ranged from 71-87.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010


No video today, not a very exciting workout. Just sat on the rower for 40 min.

5 min warmup
3x(8min @75% effort/2 min @ 50% effort)
5 min cooldown

I kept all the rows below a 2:00/500m pace. I was sore form yesterdays double day and still sore form the deadlifts on Sunday. A lot of heavy lifting lately! Im starting to feel back on my game after taking a couple weeks off.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Day 2 6/5/10- 1st half of WOD

Untitled from joeywarren on Vimeo.

30 unbroken squat clean 95lb, 10 unbroken puulups, 20 UB squat cleans, 20 UB pullups, 10 UB squat cleans, 30 UB pullups

Day 1 6/3/10 - 6th round

OPT games prep WOD 6/3/10 from Joseph Warren on Vimeo.

repeat 7 times: 5 unbroken muscles ups, 20 sec rest, 10 hand stand pushups on Dumbells & plates, 20 sec rest, 15 GHD raises, 3 min rest

Training for the 2010 Games

I will start posting the videos of my workouts leading up to the 2010 Games!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Coffee... the good, the bad, and the unknown!

There is a lot of research on whether coffee is good or bad, and personally I think it gets a bad wrap.  But I do know that it is very addictive, and I try to live my life by not being addicted, obsessed, or overly relying on anything.  That is where I believe the unhealthiness arises.  Here is an article on everything you ever wanted to know on how coffee affects your body- How Coffee Affects your Hormones
No known studies demonstrate statistically significant correlations between coffee over-consumption and the unwinding of the neuroendocrineimmune system. However, certain theoretical pathways can be created, and have been observed clinically.
 A diet high in refined sugars and starches leads to more circulating glucose. More glucose means more insulin needed to dispose of it. More insulin means cells tune out, which means even more insulin dumped into the bloodstream (especially if people continue to eat this high-carbohydrate diet). More insulin means insulin resistance — possibly aggravated by high caffeine consumption. More insulin means more IL-6 and more inflammation and hypersensitivity. More IL-6 means more cortisol, which means more glucose… and here we are, back at the beginning of a very nasty cycle.
Consider this as you cradle your extra-large coffee and glazed donut this morning during your white-knuckle commute to work.
The elevated blood sugar and insulin don’t just stop at inflammation. They can create imbalances in the neurotransmitters serotonin, dopamine and GABA, which can lead to sub-clinical mood problems such as mild depression (aka “the blues”), low motivation, irritability, and impaired cognition. People with chronically high glucose, insulin resistance, systemic inflammation, and stress typically have “fuzzy brain”, memory loss, lethargy, and/or a short fuse.
Coupled with the potential iron and B-vitamin deficiencies created by coffee, which, again, cause impaired synthesis of key neurotransmitters, this may result in mood states where people feel the need for coffee to keep themselves functioning properly. Have you ever felt that you desperately needed coffee for a pick-me-up? Do you tell people, “I’m a grouch until I get my coffee?” If so, you may be experiencing this situation.
I don't want to scare all of you because caffeine in moderation is likely not an issue for most people. Indeed, it may actually have health benefits. (See the article on traditional Chinese medicine and coffee, in the Spezzatino Coffee issue) Problems occur when we drink coffee all day long and combine it with sedentary lifestyles, poor diets, and chronically elevated stress.  
Here is the final advice the article gives:
Follow the evidence that your body offers you. Pay attention to how you feel when you drink coffee. Do you feel good for a short period, then shaky and irritable? Do you notice more pain or other kinds of physical distress? If you’re experiencing any of the symptoms I’ve mentioned above, ranging from anxiety to inflammation, consider bringing a little decaf into your life.
So in conclusion, if you stick with a Paleo diet, you most likely are OK with a cup of coffee every morning.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Be Patient!

So I am still awaiting the results of the competition from last weekend.  In the meantime I started my last semester of my Master's program lastnight.  I have a research methods class where I have to write the beginning of a thesis.  While I am taking that class I will be completing my senior project which is an entire thesis.  Lastly I will be finishing up the paper from my internship I completed at the gym (by the way, I consider my internship a huge success since my main achievement was getting our gym a cover story on two local newspapers and we have been overflowing with new clients).

Anyway when I finish all my assignments on my plate for school, this would make me graduate mid May.  This is the same week that I will be traveling down to Orange County for the Crossfit competition I have been training for all year.  So needless to say, that will be a busy week, and an even busier next 4 months.  Luckily my horoscope recently said that the next 4 months will be big in terms of my career.  So wish me luck!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

OPT Championship Series #3

I did my 3rd competition this weekend from OPT's blog.  It was a good one and I felt really good on everything except a couple areas I would have liked to push harder.  Here are the workouts and my results, and I am still waiting to see the final results of how I compared to the rest of the field.

3 sets of 15 OHS

2K row and AMRAP Double Unders in 10 minutes

50 CTB chin ups
50 push up burpees

Here are the videos:

The OHS squat I felt really good and was surprised how easy my body weight (180lb) felt on this until the last rep.  I shortened it up just a tad.  It was close and I didn't know if it would count as my score but I was hoping until James emailed me and said it killed him, but he couldn't count that last rep.  I knew this might be the case so after I did the 180lb I did 155lb fairly easy and do not do my thrid attempt to conserve energy.  This might come back to haunt me becasue I think I could have done 165 or 175lb and would have been ahead of a lot of people in the competition.  I think my same mistake happened to a lot of other people, this was poor strategy, lesson learned...
The row and double unders- I felt awesome during the row but the thrid 500m I fell off a little and wish I pushed harder there to get closer to a 6:45.  I was just so nervous I would not be able to do any double unders afterward becasue I know how hard they get and they are not my best thing.  I still pushed hard and double unders went about how I expected.  My goal was 200 and looking at the rest of the field, it looks like that is a really good number, so I guess I paced  myself pretty well.
Pull up/burpees- I wanted to move a little quicker on pullups but still felt strong and fast.  Burpees were surprisingly slower and harder than I thought.  I knew they would be hard but I thought it wouldnt get hard until about 25 or 30 and I thought from there I would just be able to push through it.  It felt hard and slow the entire time.  I think 30-40 reps is my comfort range on each so need to up that number.  Still Im fairly happy with the result though.