“We felt like we were kicked in our balls in our entire bodies.” – a statement that someone used to describe what it felt like when they first began following the Outlaw Way, a feeling I can definitely relate to.
Oh man, so many I have so many things to talk about tonight that I have no idea where to start. This blog may end up being as long-winded as my girlfriend’s blog, Daiquirki, so there’s your warning (You’re welcome for the plug).
I have just completed the Outlaw Way training camp. It was all I had expected and much, much more. It was definitely worth the money. I learned so much in 16 hours –ish we spent at the camp. All of the coaches were insightful, knew different cues to help different athletes, and were all friendly and easy to talk to. My entire experience was a pleasant one. I love the Outlaw Way’s doctrine. It is all about winning. Not about feeling happy that you set a new PR or that you lost 20 pounds by eating on grass-fed celery, none of that matters. It is only about winning. All of the people at the camp were great.There is nothing like hanging out with 70 people who are just as obsessed with the sport of competitive exercising as I am. The Outlaw Way is not for the average CrossFitter and it was awesome to see the passion for the sport that was in that place. Even when the coaches were unable to watch us we were able to cue and help each other. At one point Rudy (the beard, the man, the coach) asked who at the camp was a coach or a gym owner. No lie, I would say 95% at least raised their hand. I think I may have seen 3-4 without their hands up, including mine. This definitely solidifies my theory that it is tough to be a very good competitive exerciser with a “normal” career. I wonder how many of the upper level athletes have normal careers. I have never looked into that but I would be very interested to see. Like I have mentioned before, I would absolutely love to have been able to raise my hand, to help people better themselves and work in that environment would be awesome. Maybe one day…
There were 2 times this weekend I got called out in front of everyone. The first was on my attempt to clean and jerk 335#. They turned the music off and announced my weight and everyone watched the attempt. I felt a great adrenaline rush similar to the feeling of when I used to compete competitively. I cleaned the load up relatively easy then I was unable to get under the jerk. The second time all eyes were on me was because my hand stand push-ups were so bad he used me as an example of what not to do. That was a funny experience. I already knew I was not that great but once everyone was watching I turned from not that great to absolutely terrible. Oh well.
The gym we worked out at, Crossfit 504 in New Orleans, was awesome. It looked like it was an old meat factory or something. I guess I don’t really know what that even looks like but that’s what I imagine a meat factory may look like. I am a n00b ans cannot figure out how to rotate the pic.
3 points key points discussed
1) Everything is everything – Basically every exercise translates to another in the sport in some form or fashion. Ex. Olympics lifts – wallballs, thrusters, box jumps, I could name a hundred of these. In gymnastics, the hollow body is needed for everything!
2) Be prepared for doomsday – Train in the worst conditions possible. Rudy said he no-reps his athletes on good reps to prepare them. This allows his athletes to be ready for anything that may possibly come up.
3) Get stronger – Everything is based around strength. Getting stronger only makes you better and there is no way around it. Many of the elite athletes in CF can compete in national Oly lifting competitions.
The first night and first day we pretty much only drilled Oly lifts. Not even counting all the auxiliary benefits, the Olympic lifts make up for around 36% of competition. That is a crazy number. If you want to be any good in this sport you must be good at Olympic lifts.
- Snatch – I learn so much in the snatch. I learned how to properly execute many exercises TOW programs every day. I also learned about hamstring loading. I have heard about this but did not really understand until I could barely walk this morning. When you begin your second pull in the snatch and clean your hamstrings must be loaded to generate power necessary to move heavy weights. We drilled this so much Monday that it hurts to walk around right now. When you snatch you can think of your body as a catapult. Loaded hamstrings, explosive hips, shoulders over the bar for as long as possible to give your arms the longest leverage and the most explosion to get overhead. Then all you have to do is catch the bar (which I am terrible at). Another thing I need to drill is the bar hitting my pelvis on the way up. Hitting the pelvis ensures the bar path is correct and needs to happen every rep.
- Must be good at snatch, clean and jerk, muscle-ups, and handstand push-ups – This goes back to everything is everything . These 4 exercises translate greatly to everything else. If you are good at these you will be pretty good at everything else. These four exercises are absolutely essential to succeed. Hand stand push-ups are definitely something I need to work on. More specifically the kip. I got called out in front of the entire camp and used as a bad example, that’s how bad I was.
- Hollow body – we had a gymnast show us how the hollow body is supposed to look. Here moves were so flawless, I envy her body control. The hollow body is something I must practice and truly understand.
- Strength is essential – Several months of the program are dedicated mostly to strength. The theory is that anyone can build their motor when it comes time but strength is not something built overnight.
This year’s CF season and expectations
I am going to be honest. When I first started I did not realize how awesome these people are. The general public has no idea how good of shape, how well these people move their bodies, and how efficient the elite athletes are. This camp kind of solidified some ideas that have been floating around in my head for the last couple of weeks. The idea is this, I am not there yet. I am nowhere close! My snatches are terrible, my clean and jerks are not where they can be, I suck at handstand push-ups and double-unders, I am absolutely terrible at handstands and handstand walks. I am still way too raw. With that being said I hope I make regionals but if I don’t, I will be fine with it. I would not be surprised at all if I do not make it. I got smoked in the workout today. Handstand push-ups and double-unders killed me. There were some really good athletes and maybe a few elite athletes and in the HSPU, jump squat, DU workout I got killed. This time next year I will be so much better than I am now. I am going to dedicate everything to training. Some people may think this is stupid but I do not care. It is something I feel passionate about and to me CrossFit is more than just a 10 minute workout or a social gathering.
I feel like I understand everything so much more now than when I began a few months ago but I still have so much to learn and improve on. I am going to rededicate myself to training, both in intensity and dedication. Every rep will be perfect even if it means my times suck and I don’t get a good time or score.
On another note I still do not understand the obsession of Abita Strawberry, it’s an okay beer at best. I bought a 6 pack to try them out again but still not very impressed. Oh well.