Monday, January 31, 2011


Felt great today during snatches.  It has been a while since I did a heavy snatch so I was happy with this.  The workout was:

A. Back Squat with bands - 135# plus bands as before; 12 sets of 2 @ 20X1; rest 45 sec
B. Hang Squat Snatch - quickly build to a tough single
C. 1-5 hang squat snatch unbroken ladder in 10 min - 135#

The back squats felt very fast.  I got more depth and had more stability coming out of the hole than previously.  These are coming around so we will see how they carry over to heavier loads when I work up to some weight at the end of this week.

I worked up to 185lb on the hang snatch, which is a PR!  This felt solid.  Here is the video:

Part C, I did 1 squat snatch, 2 unbroken squat snatches, 3 unbroken, 4 unbroken, 5 unbroken, then repeated for as many rounds as possible in 10 min.  This got very tough as I did more rounds than anticipated.  I didn't know what to expect on this wod, so I just jumped in and finished strong.  Here is the video:

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Week in Review

I just saw on the Crossfit Games site that I have to compete in the Open Sectionals starting March 15. It's a 6 week long process. This got me pumped as it gave me a little extra push in my workouts this week.

It felt like a light week, probably because I took 2 full days off in the middle of it. This felt good though as I'm feeling very confident right now and it's like the calm before the storm. The only time I got to push really hard this week was with a barbell complex, then I did 45 sec all out Airdyne sprints.  This was a very fun workout as I truly got to go 100% and move as fast as possible. This happens rarely because there is normally some kind of pacing going on. Here was the workout:

Power Snatch 5 touch and go heavy
rest 0 sec
hang power clean same weight 5 touch and go
rest 0 sec
8 burpees AFAP
rest walk 5 min x 5 
these all took less than 40 sec, and felt quick. I worked up to 150lb
Airdyne sprint 45 sec max effort
walk rest 5 min x 5
These were a lot more challenging than expected. I guess anything for 45 sec at 100% is tough. My quads were almost cramping and I felt a little "pukie".

Here are some of the workouts I did beforehand this week:

15 KBS - 2pd
15 ring push ups
15 burpees
35 double unders
rest 3 min walking x 5 @ 95%
It was weird doing burpees after pushups, I had no drive off the ground with my chest. My chest was sore for like 3 days.

25th/26th off

A. Full Depth 1 1/4 Back Squat @ 3011; 6,6,4,4,2,2; rest 4 min - video below
stayed light and tried to feel my hammies touch my calves at full depth- only worked up to 225lb
B. DB Step Ups with 15lb- 10/leg @ 3121; rest 1 min b/t legs x 3
These are feeling better as I'm starting feel my ass activate
C. 20 CTB chin ups; walk rest 2 min x 5
this was tough last week for 4 sets, easier this week and with 5 total sets
D. Lying Hip Extensions - Ass activating better here - actually made it kind of sore

Monday, January 24, 2011

2010 Me vs 2011 Me

Here is another comparison of a workout I did a year ago.

"unbroken" from Joseph Warren on Vimeo.

It didn't break me the second time around!  

Unbroken 1.0 from Joseph Warren on Vimeo.

The first time I did this workout it took me close to 15 minutes, this time it took me 5:25.  I crushed my previous time.  It is a workout from the 2010 Orange Coast Throwdown, the top time was 5:29.  

Now this is a little bit of a different improvement than the physical strength I demonstrated from the previous post.  This is a strategy improvement.  This workout requires that the pullups be unbroken so if you drop from the bar during your set, you must repeat that set unbroken, which happened to me a year ago, it was not fun.  A year ago when I "broke," I went all out with no strategy and failed on the last rep.  Coincidentally, if I achieved that last rep it would have been exactly 5:25, the same time I did today.  It took me almost 10 minutes to be able to redo the last rep unbroken.  

The second time around I didn't break and got 5:25.  Does this make me stronger?  Not necessarily.  I knew how to pace myself better so I slowed the row a bit and took 3 extra breaths before attempting the last set of pullups to ensure unbroken.  I achieved it.  This doesn't prove that I'm stronger but simply I knew how to pace myself better.  It shows the importance of knowing your limits and the ability to pace. 

 The sport of Crossfit is very difficult to determine how to pace, you have to go by feeling.  You never know how to pace during a workout or where to push.  It's not like running a mile where you have done it hundreds of times and know exactly your split time.  You wouldn't sprint the first lap of a mile to achieve the best time would you?  Not a knock on Khalipa (winner of 2008 Games) at all, but it is something he doesn't do well.  He is a tough guy and goes all out which sometimes proves to be detrimental.  Could I have gone faster?  Sure, but I was gaming it rather than going all in, and it was the best time from the Orange Coast competition so I will take it!  The post previous to this showed that I am stronger than last year, this one showed that I am smarter.  The 2011 Joey would really kick Joey's ass from 1 year ago!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

2009 Me vs 2011 Me

Here is a video back before the 2009 Crossfit Games.

Here is a video of me doing the same workout 18 months later (and 30lbs more on bar).
Which one looks better?

There is 30lb more on the bar for more reps and much better back stability in the second video. 

I would kick my ass if I met myself 18 months earlier.  

Sometimes I get frustrated with the workouts but seeing the difference here in that short amount of time is amazing.  There has been so much improvement over the last couple years.  I think it's amazing how every Crossfit athlete has seen a ton of improvement.  The caliber of athletes in the Crossfit competitions are so much higher.  Where is the ceiling for human potential in the sport of fitness?

Here are my workouts from the past couple of days.

A. Full Depth 1 1/4 Back Squat @ 3011; 6,6,4,4,2; rest 4 min
B. DB Step Ups - 12/leg @ 3121; rest 1 min b/t legs x 3
C. 20 CTB chin ups; walk rest 2 min x 4
D. Lying Hip Extensions  5/leg/set; hold 5 sec each leg - rest 90 sec x 3

Swim 30 min @ z1

Dead Lift - 6 heavy touch and go - 325lb
rest 0 sec
Run 200 m @ 95%
walk rest 5 min x 3
Hang power clean - 3 x 195
rest 0 sec
15 burpees AFAP
rest walk 5 min x 3
GH Raises - 15 x 5; rest 90 sec - 

Sunday, January 16, 2011

A good Week

Had a good week this week and finished up this cycle of training.  I swam twice this week and did some longer rows and rides on the bike/airdyne.  My endurance and power endurance is feeling great.

Here are a couple of the wods I did this week.  There were a lot of endurance and power endurance wods mixed in this week on top of these. Then a video of yesterdays bright and early workout:

A. back squat with light bands @ 20X1; 8 sets of 3 with 145# barbell plsu bands; rest 45 sec
B. back squat - build to 315lb
C1. barbell forward lunges onto 6" elevated box @ 20X1; 6/leg alt'ing per rep; rest 90 sec -  155lb
C2. CTB chin ups x 20 unbroken x 3; rest 90 sec

7 sets:
Power clean 3 heavy
5 burpees AFAP
Sprint 30 m @ 95%
rest walk 4 min - built to 215lb tap n go

Track work:
Run 400 m
walk 1 min x 5
sec = 74 / 75 / 74 / 73 / 74
Run 800 m @ 100% x 1
10 min jog cool down

A. Squat Clean x 1/Splsit Jerk x 1 - 90% effort; rest 3 min x 5 - built to 215lb
B. Front Squat - 3 x 3 @80%; rest 3 min - 205lb
3 rds for time:
10 front squat - 135#
10 burpees
10 CTB chin ups

Here is the vid of this:

OPT WOD 1/16/11 from Joseph Warren on Vimeo.

Saturday, January 15, 2011


I attended a 3 hour self-talk seminar today at Crossfit Santa Clara with the original "firebreather," Greg Amundson.  It was very motivating and inspiring as he is extremely knowledgeable and passionate.  He told stories of how positive self talk can make you achieve anything from his many years in crossfit, military, and law enforecement. 

 "Self talk is the nutrition of your destiny," Greg explained.  Just like you would start an athlete with nutrition in his/her journey to improving a sport, you start an athlete in improving their character/destiny through positive self talk.  There is a progression pyramid that he detailed on improving the physical skills of an athlete and demonstrated how that mirrored the mental aspect.  He showed that after nutrition, you would take an athlete through some metcons (metabolic conditioning or "cardio"), then work on gymnastics, then weightlifting, and finally combining it all in sport, even if the sport is crossfit.  This progression parallels the pyramid of your destiny.  Your thoughts and words determine your actions, which turn into habits, this forms your character, which is your destiny in any activity you pursue.  

He backs up the power of positive self talk with many stories of how it takes belief to achieve anything you want.  This belief often starts with telling yourself you can, once that doubt enters, it will manifest itself.  One story sticks out.  To become a master trapezist you have to pass a test.  The test is to swing on a bar from one platform to another hurling your body through the air.  This is something that all elite trapezist do all the time, the only difference is in this test there is no safety net.  You can imagine how much more intense this makes it as if they fall it would most likely mean death.  One man got up there started to shake and froze up.  The trapeze master came up there to talk to him and said "don't worry, this happens all the time, you must believe.  Simply throw your heart over the bar, and the body will follow!"  This is great and I will take this thought with me when I want to let go of the bar.  This was a very motivating way to finish up my week.  "Simply throw your heart over the bar!"

*** I will post a recap of my weeks workouts and a video tomorrow... it was a good week.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Tough Week

I had a pretty frustrating week.  I tweaked my back on deadlifts in the middle of the week and I iced and rested to ease back into it.  The workout was:

7 sets:
315lb deadlift x 10 unbroken
10 Box Jumps 24" unbroken
10 burpees AFAP
20 Double Unders AFAP
rest 4 min

I almost got through 4 rounds when the back just slightly felt weird.  It was the same feeling when I hurt it on deads right before the Crossfit Games that put me out for 2 weeks.  I shut it down there and think I caught it in time because it was not nearly as bad and I was back at it a couple days later.  My back got pretty rounded on the deads so lesson learned, no more pushing through ugly form on deads.

My next workout I did light squat cleans and front squat didn't feel too good.  Afterward I did:

4 rounds:
10 muscle ups unbroken
20 GHD situps
rest 3 min

I only got the first round unbroken then I failed on the 10th rep of the second set, and the last 2 sets were 6 unbroken.  So another failed workout, pretty frustrating.  

Yesterday my workout was a 2 hour hike.  This was relaxing but felt pretty weird to go so long at such a slow pace.  Though my long distance endurance has been improving drastically.  I've been in the pool twice this week and had a long row workout plus a long cycling workout.  All felt good and it's been fun to do different activities.  It almost feels like I'm training for a triathlon.

Today I had a good workout, I was able to push it a little bit which I really needed.  I started with:

5 sets:
1 power snatch + 3 snatch balances + 3 hang squat snatch
rest 3 min

My last 2 sets were with 135lb and felt really good and easy.

Here is a video of the fun wod I did afterward.

OPT WOD 1/9/11 from Joseph Warren on Vimeo.

Monday, January 3, 2011

2011 Goals!

I have a lot of goals for 2011 that I have been thinking about a lot lately.  I have a great girlfriend, my health is superb, and I love my job.  All those I want to continue to grow, but I won't go into those too much on here, this post is already going to be long.  I want to talk about my fitness goals for 2011.

I like to make goals simple, and I have learned that I need to make goals measurable but also applicable.  Crossfit is a funny sport, it is hard to make specific goals because there are so many different areas to work on.  Now if all I wanted to do was deadlift 500lb, I could achieve that in a year, but every other area of my fitness would most likely suffer if that was my only goal.  This is just like if my only goal was to work more, I could do that very well in one year, but I might not have a girlfriend at the end of that year.  Other aspects of my life would suffer, so goal setting takes balance and prioritization, just like in Crossfit.  

If we look at my goals for 2010 (you can view them here), they were not very specific in some areas and not applicable in others.  I said I want to train 100% every day and squat and deadlift a certain amount of weight.  The problem with these goals is I cannot measure if I went 100% in every workout and especially with nutrition and sleep.  These are not measurable.  Also I did not focus enough on squat and deadlift to achieve those goals.  I didn't focus on these goals because they were not a priority to me, I wanted to get stronger to be a more well rounded athlete, but it wasn't feasible to get that strong, at least not in 1 year with every other goal I had in mind.  This means I should have had goals that were a priority and then be able to measure those.  A better goal would be to get better at Crossfit while increase lower body strength.  This incorporates the balance needed in Crossfit plus works on my weaknesses.  To measure this I can try to increase strength by 5 - 10% over the next year.  That seems more gradual to me and I can fathom having a plan to achieve it.  Now I will have specific goals set for myself each month to track my progress such as extra glute work every month.

Now how do I measure getting better at Crossfit?  I can do that by keeping track of scores in workouts such as time in "Fran" or 1 mile run, or my score in "Fight Gone Bad."  The problem with this is a lot of what I do in Crossfit is based on how I am feeling.  These are things such as how I feel after I eat certain foods, or how "pukie" I feel during or after wods.  Im always assessing how I feel.  I need an assessment tool to measure how I feel, even if that is just recording it down on a scale of 1-10 on my workout journal.  So every day after my workout I will jot down how I feel.  At the end of the month I will look back and make sure at least once a week I am feeling great, and if not I will take a break or find a way to get back to feeling great.

This leads me to my last goal to have fun.  If you don't have fun and enjoy the journey, I don't think what you achieve is worth it.  For example if I make it to the games again this year, but do not have fun along the way, is it really worth it?  Plus I truly believe if you don't have fun, you most likely won't achieve your goals anyway.  Of course it takes hard work, but you have to enjoy the journey.  That is why my goal for fitness is have fun through hard work.  I think I can make that happen. 

 This also relates to nutrition.  I want to enjoy what I eat.  I have been able to eat very healthy and enjoy it, actually these are the times I most enjoy eating.  The times when I enjoy working out and eating the most, is when I am most consistent and disciplined.  So how can I measure my fitness and nutrition.  I need to give myself a plan to get me back to working hard and eating healthy.  I want to stay consistent following my workout program and be smart about it.  My goal is to not miss more than one workout every 3 months.  For my nutrition I want a home cooked meal at least 4 times per week.  My home cooked meals are always very nutritious and this is more than half the week, so that should do the trick. Of course when I go out I have to make good choices too.   If I can stay on track with these goals, this year of training will be fun, especially when I reap the benefits of my overall most important goal; to be top 5 at the 2011 Crossfit Games!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Years with Kettlebells + Situps

Last night my New Year's was pretty relaxed.  I had a beer and not too bad of food.  I celebrated the New Year on East Coast time, 9PM here.  It was perfect, I have celebrated this holiday plenty of times before and I hadn't seen the clock strike midnight all year, so I wasn't going to start the last day of the year.  I fell asleep on my couch 10 min before midnight, then my girlfriend woke me up with a kiss and I went straight to bed waking up refreshed and ready to start a great year of training.  I have a lot planned for 2011,  I think big things will happen.  I will go over some of my goals in a later post. 

Today I started with some clean and jerks at 80% effort with 195lb for sets of 3, plus deadlifts at 80% effort with 325lb for sets of 3.


5 Rounds for time of:
10 KB snatch R arm 53lb
10 KB snatch L arm 53lb
20 GHD situps
t= 8:17

Yesterday I did  20 min row @ 1:57 pace which felt great.  Then I practiced skills with the KB such as running and overhead work + muscle up practice + ring HSPU practice

A couple days ago I did squat cleans and front squats with a ton of pullups, total of 125 chin over vertical plane pullups.  This got me a little sore but not too bad.  Still working on squat strength and speed.

Tomorrow is a day off and I plan on sitting in my ice bath again.  I really think the 10 min I'm spending in ice has been absolutely crucial with my recovery right now!