Coin Flip

If we believe in something, we should express it, share it, and put it out into the universe.

Nothing may come of it or it might turn out to be the most glorious breakthrough ever.

We won’t know until we try.

Sometimes just knowing one way or another might be good enough motivation to get us started.

Coin Flip2022-06-28T19:31:49-04:00

Checkpoint Ahead

Seeing the mile marker in the distance as we crest over the hill can be just the motivation we need to give us the extra pep in our step to keep moving.

That’s why we should consider shorter-term goals to drive us forward instead of these large arduous massive ones years in the distance.

Goals become much more achievable when they are right there in front of us. Instead of “I am going to write a book”, maybe focus on “I’m going to put the outline together this week” or “I’m going to write 200 words tonight”. Those types of goals are much more manageable because they are realistic and time-sensitive.

It’s much easier starting out the race by focusing on getting to mile marker one versus thinking all the way through to mile marker twenty-six. There are a lot of things that will happen between the start and finish of a project so think about setting smaller “micro-goals” and giving yourself the chance to stay motivated throughout versus getting discouraged and stopping.

As we pass each checkpoint, the finish line will become closer and closer and we’ll remain committed to the ultimate goal when we started out; finishing the race.

Checkpoint Ahead2022-06-17T09:25:34-04:00

Ghostie On 1st

Growing up, when we’d have limited numbers of players for baseball, we’d put a “ghostie” on base to act as a runner.

That same mentality can be used when we are trying to push ourselves harder and farther than we ever have before. We are competing against ourselves. Against a person who we know really well. We know their weaknesses, their shortcomings, their fears.

We can visualize that “ghostie” just ahead of us. Pacing us in the race. Giving us the added motivation to kick it into another gear.

Sometimes the only motivation we need is the competition we conjure up in our heads.

When we are focusing on our projects needing to be completed and procrastination and distractions ensue, there might not be a better competitor on the planet to kick us into another gear than ourselves.

That motivation might be the difference between lagging behind our insecurities, fears, and self-doubts or pushing ourselves forward further than we ever thought possible.

Ghostie On 1st2021-11-29T15:49:26-04:00

Wave of Motivation

If you sit on a beach long enough you notice the water levels rise and fall, waves crash into the land, and the wind swirls around. It’s never the same but it’s always in unison.

It’s like motivation. 

When you are motivated everything flows together; your attitude, your words, even the spring in your step. 

When you are unmotivated it feels sluggish and stagnant. We feel stuck. 

But unlike the unpredictability of the ocean, we can be more predictable when we get into these ruts and get out of them quicker.

We just have to recognize the patterns. 

This is where journaling or other forms of documentation might be helpful. We need to understand the patterns and how we can create that spark again, and keep it going longer. 

As an example, I learned that I get a ton of motivation from feeding off critiques and feedback from trusted friends. When I start to feel unmotivated, I trigger myself to have a conversation with one of them. They give me that spark. It resets my brain and I can get unstuck much quicker.

Your spark could be anything so the first step is to recognize when you begin to feel motivated and analyze how you got there. What got you there? That’s a great place to start.

You want to recreate that feeling whenever you start to get into a low spot.

It’ll help you return there more often and get you out of a rut much sooner.

Wave of Motivation2021-10-19T20:42:07-04:00

Tomorrow Never Comes

The hardest time to start something is tomorrow. It appears easier to plan for it and then go full steam ahead but it doesn’t always work out that way. Something foils the well-laid plan and usually, it is ourselves.

Build momentum today in a very small dose and you’ll be better prepared for tomorrow. If you’ve already accomplished something small then doing something small again tomorrow will seem easy.

As an example, if you want to start working out there is no need to run a marathon. Do 10 pushups, walk around the block, go for a short jog, or pick your kid up and down a dozen times. You’ll feel a little energized and that will fuel the excitement for the next time.

The longer we wait to do something the harder it becomes. We build up more fear, anxiety, and worry in our heads. We sike ourselves out of it.

Start small today and you’ll thank yourself big tomorrow for getting the momentum moving, even if just an incremental amount.

Tomorrow Never Comes2021-07-07T16:58:46-04:00

Blogging Every Day In May

Month 5 of my Dozen Months of Discovery is finishing up today and my challenge for this month was to write one blog article a day for the entire month of May, 31 days to be exact. As I write this post, this will be my final one of the month and I thought to share a few things I’ve learned throughout the month.

There are many people who write blog posts daily and have for years, for them this achievement is fairly pedestrian. I was originally going to learn the keyboard for this month but after a conversation in April with a friend and talking about sharing more of my message online, it became clear that a challenge like this would be good for me. I haven’t been consistent sharing my voice online besides my Podcast, which is mostly geared toward guest interviews. The written word is still very important on the internet and since I hadn’t blogged consistently in the past couple of years (5-10 posts a year), I wanted to challenge myself to get into a headspace where I can articulate my ideas into text and have to think through things more slowly versus just spitting off thoughts in my head while recording an audio Podcast.

With that, here are a few things I took away from the month:

Consistency is still the most important

This word has continued to pop up every month of the Dozen Months of Discovery and is a constant message shared with guests on the Just Get Started Podcast. Doing something once or twice is nice but putting the time and energy in to continually accomplish something takes more than just momentum; it takes discipline, prioritization, and grit. Whether it is a week, month, or longer or a different interval of time (launching a Podcast episode weekly), being focused on never missing this helps build the foundation to future success. One of the most glaring differences between anyone who achieved anything is putting in the work over an extended period of time. That has to be part of the equation.

You get better by practicing

Different than consistency, simply putting time into practicing something you are not great at improves that overall skill but it might help build others as well. For instance, I am not a great writer by any stretch but making a point to write every day helped improve my sentence structure, grammar, messaging, and most importantly my creativity. My writing has improved, even if just incrementally, but my creativity and observations flying around in my head were able to be articulated in a different way by making myself have to go through this daily practice. So keep practicing areas you are weak at. You don’t need to practice all of your weaknesses but weaknesses that might be essential to your overall growth, like writing, was something important for me to focus on.

Prioritize & Strategize

I’ve discussed the importance of prioritization before and when you have a challenge like this or anything that is important at the given time you have to make sure you understand where it falls on the priority list. It doesn’t have to be #1 but if this goal, however long, is important then you need to make sure it’s a priority or it’ll fall off early on when other “cool” things pop up and you’ll lose steam. Secondly, once you’ve recognized your priorities and have them listed, you need to strategize how you are going to fit them in during the day. Some days, I wrote my blog articles first thing in the morning while others I wrote right before bed at night. There are always a lot of balls to juggle each day and if you can think through what you’d like to get accomplished and the time it might take then you can make a simple to-do list to get these things done and block out the right time to do them.

Just Finish It

Everything prior is all leading up to the big takeaway, sometimes you just have to muster up the intestinal fortitude to get through “it” and finish. Some days get away from you and you might be tired but keeping your mind focused that you must keep the streak going can be enough to push you to the finish line. Remember, we all have bad days and we all have days that feel subpar but one of the most rewarding things you can do is finish whatever you had planned even when your tank is on “E”. That energy can propel you for multiple days going forward and be just the thing to pull out of your memory bank the next time you come across a tough timeline or situation and remind yourself that you’ve been here before and you’ve finished the race.

I look back at the past 31 days and it’s cool to see the great content I’ve put together, especially an 8-part series on a sales topic I had thought about writing for a year. Using this month as a motivator, I was able to complete those articles and will now be putting those together along with other content for a new Sales eBook in the coming months.  These 31 blog posts may do nothing besides additional content sitting on my website but I take away the fact that I completed another challenge (5 out of 5!) in my Dozen Months of Discovery and can use those experiences for future personal and professional goals I have going forward. Sometimes putting a timeline and line in the sand can be helpful and if you struggle to achieve certain goals you’ve had in the past then maybe this is the time to put that time constraint around it.

Every opportunity is a chance to learn and grow and I hope you’ve continued to do that for yourself this year and will set a new bar for yourself next time with the aspirations of exceeding your expectations once again.

Thanks for reading!

Carpe Diem,

Brian

……..

If you’d like to listen to the One Mic Session on this topic check out the Podcast link here -> Apple Podcasts Audio Link

Blogging Every Day In May2021-03-19T10:42:23-04:00

Can Your Motivation Be Forced?

Motivation

You can read a lot of articles and listen to many videos touting that motivation only lasts for a period of time and you have to develop the right habits to sustain consistency long term through an obsession to continue to put in the hard work. I don’t disagree at all. However, sometimes and maybe most of the time you need to be motivated to begin, and by doing that it leads to the next step. Don’t discount motivation because that burst of energy to get started down a path is extremely important to not only those beginning days but as you keep the consistency up long term.

As I sat back and thought about this more it occurred to me that some of the times when I’ve been the most motivated I was being “forced” into it. Either a challenge, deadline or similar made me have to just get started even when I might not be fully motivated to do so.

One time, in particular, came to mind and it was Senior year of High School. In one of the most favorite classes for all seniors who took it, Public Speaking was a course about getting outside your comfort zone and being able to speak up and at an audience of your peers. It was fun but very daunting especially for a lot of us introverts. Larry Hynes was our teacher and he was widely regarded as one of the best teachers in the school and knew how to keep the kids engaged throughout the semester.  He knew about using a motivation to make the kids learn.

Enter Invictus.

You all have probably heard the poem or parts of it at some point in your life.

Invictus by William Ernest Henley

Out of the night that covers me, 

Black as the pit from pole to pole,

I thank whatever gods may be

For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance

I have not winced nor cried aloud.

Under the bludgeonings of chance

My head is bloody but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears 

Looms but the Horror of the shade,

And yet the menace of the years 

Finds and shall find me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,

How charged with punishments the scroll, 

I am the master of my fate,

I am the captain of my soul.

Well, Mr. Hynes used this poem as both an exercise in memorization and recalling that information when you were caught off guard and at your most vulnerable.  The kids didn’t take the task lightly either as this was a good chunk of your final grade to pass the class.

After handing out the assignment during the semester, Mr. Hynes would then catch the students in the weeks to follow and make them, right there, on the spot, recite the poem. He caught kids in football practice, on the bus, in the cafeteria.

He caught me in a Social Studies class. I remember being one of the last handful on his list he hadn’t gotten and the days prior I was nervous as all get out. But it made me motivated to practice as I did not want to mess up in front of whatever group I happened to be caught with.  I remember getting up and standing on my desk like a scene from Dead Poet’s Society and belting out Invictus confidently and articulately. At least that is what I told myself afterward as the embarrassment of the moment started to wear off.  Nonetheless, I memorized it and passed his test that day. 

But here’s something really funny, the lesson lasted a lot longer than I thought it would. Years after I’d randomly be thinking about that poem or the moment and was able to recite it without hesitation. 20 years later and it’s still ingrained in my soul.

Go ahead, ask me next time you see me. I’m confident I’ll ace the test again.

So that’s my point through this whole trip down memory lane. We all want to think that motivation has to come from within, and in a way, I guess it does when we are put to the test. However, that motivation sometimes comes from others around us and that’s okay too. You may not be remembering a poem years later but using the motivation to your advantage and seizing the opportunity can give you more confidence in your abilities short term and spark the path to new abilities, lessons, and experiences that help you continue your track of personal growth.

At the end of the day, remember, “You are the Master of Your Fate and The Captain of Your Soul”.

Thanks for reading!

Carpe Diem,

Brian

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Can Your Motivation Be Forced?2021-03-19T10:42:24-04:00

Find The “Chip On Your Shoulder” 

Motivation

I believe anyone that ever wants to accomplish great things has a “chip on their shoulder”. I don’t see how you can’t in such a competitive world we live in. We all get slighted or past over from time to time and that should motivate anyone I would think. It definitely motivates me.

I was thinking about this recently while watching the wonderful docuseries on ESPN called “The Last Dance” chronicling the Chicago Bulls Dynasty with a focus on Michael Jordan and their 6th and final championship in that historic run.

There are many instances where we see Michael Jordan use his surroundings to fuel him when needed whether a news story, a player from the other team or his own team. He found ways to keep motivating himself to push forward. I believe in a way we all do this and we may not readily admit it but I think it can be extremely beneficial to our future growth. As long as it not used in any malicious or hurtful way, I think having it inside us to pull out when needed is vital.

I was thinking about this personally as it relates to growing my Podcast or personal brand. Very few people know who I am and what my mission is in life and fewer than that actually care.  That’s fine with me now but there was a time when I was insecure and needed the attention.

That dates back to my childhood and many of the struggles I went through in my family life and upbringing with the feeling I was never good enough or could never feel included in almost anything. That took a long time to overcome (still working on it in some ways!) and it was important for me to get attention, any attention, in order to feel I had self-worth.

And that’s where I’ve used the “chip on the shoulder” mentality to help me. I use that fuel from all of the years of being slighted, or laughed at, or not thought of as worthy of anything. It drives me to want to produce a better Podcast, or write better books, or continue to share my story. 

I’m not sure what your past was like or the moments in time you felt less of a person or were treated as such but don’t let those moments die off into a distant memory. Although sometimes difficult, with the right mindset you can use those moments to refuel yourself and keep adding logs to the fire when you find your motivation wavering. I have certain memories cornered away in my mind to use when needed and it’s made a big difference. There was a lot of pain I had to overcome from earlier in life and proving myself over and over again is just something that drives me. 

We are often told to let go of the past and move on but unless you grew up with a silver spoon in your mouth and never had problems then I think those painful lessons you experienced should go to good use and become the “chip on the shoulder” material that you can use to reshape your mind and grow to new heights.

I’m not sure what you want to do in life but just know you can do great things, you truly can, with the right mindset and perspective on the world. Keep driving toward your mission and the impact you want to have on this world and I hope you continue to stay obsessed with changing the world in a more positive way.

Thanks for reading,

Brian

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Find The “Chip On Your Shoulder” 2021-03-19T10:42:25-04:00

The Writing On The Wall

Motivation

We all need an “Accountability Mirror” to look ourselves straight in the face and force us to deal with our shit, whatever that happens to be at the time.

That mirror for me happens to be my bathroom mirror. I get to glance in it many times a day and it offers up a lot of brutal honesty especially when I’m down on myself. 

But I’ve added a layer to it that has helped me get through the troubled times when my confidence is starting to lack and the “Imposter Syndrome” rears its ugly head.  I’ve added words in the form of questions.

I’ve written these two questions in dry erase marker that I have no choice but to look at every time I’m in there.

Question #1: Why can’t it be you?

I get down on myself a lot. Most of it stems from my childhood, but that story is for another day, and some of it is that I’m just a “late bloomer” and although I’ve had a ton of experiences and learning lessons along the way, I have to continue to kick myself to believe that I alone can make an impact in the world. Even though my mission is clear I still tend to question myself every once in a while.  

This question kicks me in the pants and “gets in my face” about why anyone else would be better suited to tackle the mission and change the world than I would. It pushes me away from the comfort zone and reassures me that although there are a lot of unknowns, on the other side of fear is the fulfillment I’ve been looking for. Keep moving forward

Question #2: Why am I here?

This question came from reading (listening to the audiobook) of “Can’t Hurt Me” by David Goggins. He was on the beach at the Naval Base in Coronado where they ran through the infamous “Hell Week” of Navy Seal Training. Goggins went through three of them.  As he faced physical exhaustion and his mental fatigue was on the edge as well he muttered this question to himself, “Why I am here?”. He recounts many times throughout his journey after that where he uses this question to check himself and remind himself how far he has come and why he made all the sacrifices to get to this point. He certainly puts in more eloquently.

I use this question to pull me back into reality when I start reverting back to old habits or old ways of old thinking. Just because you’ve accomplished certain things, physically or mentally, doesn’t mean the demons can’t come back. They will and you never know when they will show up. This question is a constant reminder of what I am trying to accomplish and all of the struggles I’ve gone through to get to this point.  There is a reason I am here and it’s because I’ve put in the time and effort and I can’t let a few moments of regression get me down.

These two questions have been a staple in my mirror for almost 12 months. I have no reason to take them down and I don’t want to. I want a reminder. I want the reflection looking back at me constantly. If motivation is on one level then regret is on a whole other tier above it. I certainly don’t want that so these questions check me at the door and help me stay focused on where I am going.

What do you use at motivation or the driving force to keep moving forward?

Please send me a note or message me on social and I’d love to hear!

Carpe Diem,

Brian

The Writing On The Wall2021-03-19T10:41:53-04:00
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Mary Frances

MARY FRANCES

EPISODE 47: Entrepreneur | Speaker @ManicuredMeatheads

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Episode 47 features Entrepreneur, Speaker, and Fitness Professional, Mary Frances…better known online as @Manicured Meatheads!

Had a wonderful chat with Mary where she walks us through some great insight on fitness and nutrition, some early adult-life troubles that helped guide her in the right direction, and her current endeavor to share her story and speak to audiences across the world about living their best life.

Find Mary Online:

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/manicuredmeatheads/

Website: https://www.manicuredmeatheads.com/

Mary is also a part of the great group called Powerhouse Women, started by Lindsey Schwartz, and you can check out more about their group and all of the cool things they are up to. – https://powerhousewomen.co/ 

……..

If you enjoyed this interview you may also like my Just Get Started Podcast Interview with Preslie Hirsch of the Hey Preslie Collective

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Mary Frances2020-01-28T12:45:22-04:00
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Alex Parker & Meredith Root

ALEX PARKER & MEREDITH ROOT

EPISODE 43: Co-Founders, Tactic Nutrition

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Episode 43 features the Founders of Tactic Nutrition, Alex Parker and Meredith Root. We cover a whole mess of topics on how they got into CrossFit, Pursuing the business full time, thoughts on nutrition, why they are not competing in this years CrossFit Open and much more.

Hope you all enjoy this wide ranging conversation!

Find Alex Parker and Meredith Root online:

Tactic Nutrition Website: https://tacticmethod.com/

Tactic Nutrition Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/tacticnutrition/

Alex Parker Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/aaparker1/

Meredith Root Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/meredith_root/

And…Dont Forget to Follow Alex’s Mom on Insta -> https://www.instagram.com/alexsmombrenda/

About ALEX PARKER

  • 2015 CrossFit Games Individual Athlete
  • 2013, ’14, ’15, ’16, ’17, ’18 CrossFit Regionals Athlete
  • 5 years experience CrossFit Coach
  • Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology
  • Lawyer

I have always had an interest in sport performance and a strong desire to learn about performance nutrition and health to apply to my own life. As a nutrition and lifestyle coach, I use my knowledge to help others reach their own health and fitness goals.

I have always been interested in human behaviour. The fact that there are many facets involved in a person’s relationship with food, makes nutrition coaching a gratifying and desirable field.

I am a lifelong athlete, having competed in a variety of high level sports including alpine ski racing, golf and soccer. I am now dedicated to the sport of CrossFit. I have competed at The Crossfit Games and many times at Regionals.

My own experience in sport and life has helped me realize how important it is to fuel your body properly. I have experienced significant benefits from eating basic, healthy food in the right amount to support my lifestyle. I was able to greatly improve my sport performance, health, daily wellbeing and relationship with food. It’s true, you are what you eat.

It is incredibly rewarding to help others experience the positive effects of eating right and eating the right amount, while also maintaining balance and flexibility in doing so.

About MEREDITH ROOT

  • 2018 CrossFit Games Individual Athlete
  • 2015, ’16, ’17, ’18 CrossFit Regionals Athlete
  • 5 years experience CrossFit Coach
  • CrossFit Level 2 Trainer
  • Biological Engineer

With a background in engineering, I take a scientific approach to performance and nutrition which I combine with my experience as an athlete and coach to help people achieve their fitness goals.

A scientist and engineer by trade, I spent six years working in research and development within the biopharmaceutical industry. This experience taught me to think and observe objectively and cultured my keen attention to detail. In addition to being a lifelong student, I am a lifelong athlete as well! The combination of these two passions has led me to where I am as an athlete and coach. I have competed at The CrossFit Games and many times at Regionals. I was ranked top 10 as a USAW Olympic weightlifter (53 & 58kg) with multiple appearances in the American Open and Nationals. I have a particular interest in the performance impact of sports nutrition as well as the mental component of coaching and training.

I have seen first hand the benefits that a practical and appropriate diet can have on performance. It is my goal to share my knowledge and experience in a way that helps people fuel their bodies and rebuild their relationship with food.

……..

If you enjoyed this interview you may also like my Just Get Started Podcast Interview with Dr. Zach Long, Creator of The BarbellPhysio.com

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Alex Parker & Meredith Root2021-11-13T20:45:16-04:00
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Dr. Sean Pastuch

DR. SEAN PASTUCH

EPISODE 40: Founder, Active Life RX

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Had a blast in Episode 40 chatting with Dr. Sean Pastuch about his journey in fitness, being a Chiropractor, going into Personal Training, and growing his business successfully over the last several years. Sean absolutely brings it in this episode and provides a ton of advice around fitness, business, and personal growth. Can’t wait for you all to listen in!

About Dr. Sean Pastuch

Dr. Sean Pastuch, DC, grew up around the fitness, health, and wellness industry. And when he graduated Chiro school, he ended up opening a clinic and a CrossFit gym. He didn’t want to be that Chiro who tells you, “You need to this exercise and be on “X” program.” Then, pat you on the back and say see you next week.

He works with people and athletes, who don’t want to deal with pain and injury anymore. And at the same time, don’t want to stop their training or don’t want to keep modifying their workouts every time there’s a workout that has overhead movements.

With hands-on experience running a gym that does functional movements and treating people with injuries or previous injuries, which surface from having to move functionally, Sean started getting busier. And because of his unique approach, he also started getting requests from clients that used to see him but moved to another city asking for workout programs.

Find Dr. Sean Pastuch Online

Active Life RX websitehttps://activeliferx.com/

Active Life RX Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ActiveLifeRx/

Active Life Podcast: http://activelife.libsyn.com/

Dr. Sean’s Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/drseanpastuch/

……..

If you enjoyed this interview you may also like my Just Get Started Podcast Interview with CrossFit Games Champion, Lindy Barber

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Dr. Sean Pastuch2021-05-09T11:00:52-04:00

CrossFit Journey – 2018 Year in Review

2018 has been an incredible year for my health and fitness and I couldn’t have done it without the help of CrossFit.  The goals I set at the beginning of the year have been met and I am excited for the next chapter in my fitness journey come 2019.

2018 was a great testament that consistency wins.  I certainly didn’t see the big gains out of the box but after months and months of consistent hard work, reshaping my nutrition, and seeking out valuable advice, I was able to improve dramatically and reach new PRs along with become more technically savvy with some of the complex moves.

A couple notes to bookmark for the year end:

PRs

1 RM Split Jerk – 135 lbs (12-16-18)

1 RM Clean – 145 lbs (12-12-18)

1 RM OHS – 100 lbs (12-10-18)

1 RM Deadlift
– 307 lbs (12-20-18)
– 300 LBs (9-20-18)

1 RM Front Squat
– 175 Lbs (12-16-18)

1 RM Back Squat
– 200 Lbs (Nov)
– 170 lbs (7-9-18)

5 RM Back Squat
– 165 lbs (12-18-18)
– 135lbs (4-16-18)

Strict Pull-ups
– 8 (7-9-18)

Karen
14 LB Wall Ball – 8:19 (12-23-18)

14 LB Wall Ball – 9:20 (July)

14 LB Wall Ball – 9:40 (May)

I have some sights on huge gains next year but overall it’s that my body and mind are in the best position they can be in to crush each day.  I think that is the overall motivation so when I continue to age my body doesn’t break down and limit me.  That’s one of the big things that keeps me driving forward.

What about you?

Hope you all have written down your goals for 2019, both long and short term, and are focused to achieving them.

Have a great new year and start to 2019!

Brian

 

CrossFit Journey – 2018 Year in Review2021-03-19T10:40:06-04:00
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Nick Shaw

NICK SHAW

EPISODE 33: CEO and Founder, RP Strength

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Episode 33 features Founder and CEO of RP Strength, Nick Shaw. I had a blast learning about Nick’s journey and how he realized at an early age through high school athletics the importance of consistency was to achieving tremendous improvements in his overall athletic performance. Loving training and performance along with some serendipity led Nick to meet his Co-Founder and it’s been a steady trajectory upward since. It didn’t come without hurdles or many years of patience and Nick shares some of the early days of RP Strength and how they were able to scale and achieve the success they’ve found today.

About Nick:

Nick is the Founder and CEO of Renaissance Periodization, a training and diet services company for world-class athletes. Nick is also a competitive powerlifter and bodybuilder and has had the opportunity to work with numerous national level physique athletes as well as world class strength athletes. Nick holds a B.A. from the University of Michigan in Sport Management. Nick currently resides in Charlotte, NC with his wife and two kids.

As part of our team of coaches, Renaissance Periodization has 20 PhD’s in the fields of Sport Physiology, Sport Performance, Sports Nutrition and even Cellular/Molecular Biology with an emphasis in Nutritional Physiology. The RP team also has 7 Registered Dietitians on staff. Their combined knowledge is unrivaled in the industry, combining the academic credentials with world class athletes as the foundation of their company. Renaissance has worked with several all-time world record holders in raw powerlifting, Olympians, international medalists in weightlifting, multiple American record holders in weightlifting, several National Champions in weightlifting, as well as a large number of CrossFit Games athletes (including individual men and women, teams, and Master’s athletes) not to mention tens of thousands of everyday men and women looking to get into better shape.

Find Nick Online:

Personal Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/nick.shaw.rp/

RP Strength Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/RPSTRENGTH/

RP Strength Website – https://renaissanceperiodization.com

Link to their eBook – The Renaissance Diet 2.0

……..

If you enjoyed this interview you may also like my Just Get Started Podcast Interview with CrossFit Games Champion, Lindy Barber

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Nick Shaw2020-11-12T19:14:01-04:00
  • Lindsey Schwartz Profile Headshot

Lindsey Schwartz

LINDSEY SCHWARTZ

EPISODE 31: Founder, Powerhouse Women

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Episode 31 features the Founder of PowerHouse Women, Lindsey Schwartz.  Lindsey is the exact type of person that this podcast is geared toward.  Someone that wanted to make a change and had a different purpose in their mind then what they were doing at the time and decided to take the first step.

Her passion is breathtaking and wonderful to see how she has progressed her mission over the last few years and excited to see how she impacts the world in the future.

Find Lindsey Online:

Instagram 

https://www.instagram.com/llindseyschwartz/

https://www.instagram.com/powerhouse_women/

Website 

https://www.lindseyschwartz.com

http://powerhousewomen.co

Her Book – Powerhouse Woman – How to get out of your own way, fulfill your unique purpose, and live a powerful life

About Lindsey

The Powerhouse Women event and online community were born out of the belief that women are designed to create, and that when women get into action around their big ideas, the world works better (because it does!)

Founder Lindsey Schwartz is a wellness entrepreneur and best-selling author of Powerhouse Woman: How to get out of your own way, fulfill your unique purpose, and live a powerful life. After seeing numerous women in her life stop short of pursuing their own entrepreneurial dreams because of fear and self-doubt, she saw the need for more honest conversations about the ups & downs of entrepreneurship in order to show women that they don’t have to have it all together to get started.

From there, the Powerhouse Women community, annual event, and podcast were born, with the motto that we’re not meant to do business (or life) alone!

Join the #GirlGang and attend an upcoming event by visiting www.powerhousewomen.co.

……..

If you enjoyed this interview you may also like my Just Get Started Podcast Interview with Justin Lafazan, Co-Founder of Next Gen

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Lindsey Schwartz2021-10-26T20:41:55-04:00
  • Lindy Barber Profile Heasdshot

Lindy Barber

LINDY BARBER

EPISODE 30: CrossFit Games Champion | Founder, LindyBarber.com

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Had a phenomenal time speaking with CrossFit Athlete Lindy Barber about her incredible journey getting to the pinnacle of the CrossFit sport.  She takes us all the way back to childhood and discusses her active upbringing and how sport and fitness has always been a huge part of her life.  We go in depth on her battle with lower back issues and the incredible story of anguish and then perseverance to overcome the doctor’s prognosis and achieve her goals.  We also have a neat discussion around nutrition as well as her own fitness coaching business and the next chapter in her career.

About Lindy:

Lindy Barber has a Bachelors in Exercise Science and has been competing in CrossFit for 7 years. She has been to the CrossFit Games twice as an individual (2013, 2015) and three times on a team with CrossFit Mayhem Freedom, winning the games in 2016 & 2018 and coming in second in 2017.  Lindy now resides in the northeast and is a full time fitness coach working with students both in person and online to help them with their overall fitness & nutrition.

Find Lindy Online:

Website: LindyBarber.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lindybarber/

Email: TrainingWithLindy@gmail.com

……..

If you enjoyed this interview you may also like my Just Get Started Podcast Interview with Nick Shaw, Co-Founder of RP Strength

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Lindy Barber2020-01-28T13:04:25-04:00

Weeks 38-41: CrossFit Journey – Back and Hip Health

Now that I’ve gone to write these CrossFit posts once a month it’s giving me a chance to sit back and reflect a bit more on the bigger picture.  My life has changed a lot recently and it has made me have to alter my entire schedule and has completely shaken up my world.

However, when you have motivation followed by an intent to achieve certain goals nothing should keep you down.  You have to keep pivoting and make it work and do whatever it takes.

One of those areas is around your overall fitness health.  I’ve never seen a Chiropractor but with some encouragement from neighbors I decided to at least go to a sesh or two and see what they had to say.  It was quite an eye opening experience.  First, Dr. Staker and his staff are phenomenal and really know their stuff.  I knew I had a family history of back problems but didn’t realize until I got X-rays that my L4 and L5 vertebrae were fused together from birth.  Certainly explains a few things but Dr. Staker did compliment me on my overall back health and that I didn’t have too much to be worried about if I was smart about it.  My main issue was my right hip that was just overturned inward and probably why I felt imbalanced at times.

So, taking Doctor’s orders I’ve been stretching and foam rolling a ton over the past month and after a couple sessions recently he’s been pleased with the improvement in that hip and lower back area.  I have to say, I can definitely tell.  My workouts seem easier especially with my squat and I just feel I don’t have as much pressure in that area any longer.

Only time will tell but the morale of the story is this.  Don’t think you know it all.  If you are curious about something go seek out answers and find the truth as you never know how it might impact your life for the better.  I never thought I needed to go see a Chiropractor but my newfound knowledge will help me reach my fitness goals and give me overall better health in the lower back / hip region for years to come.

I hope you continue on your journey to better health and seek out wisdom in areas you might struggle or need more insight.

Keep grinding!

Weeks 38-41: CrossFit Journey – Back and Hip Health2021-03-19T10:40:07-04:00

Week 33-37: CrossFit Journey – Triangle Invitational

I had been dogging it on my CrossFit journey posts lately due to some personal challenges on this end and only getting to the gym 2-4 times a week the last several.  But, my focus is back and I was reenergized today by spectating at the Triangle Invitational hosted by the gym I belong to, CrossFit RTP.

It was amazing to see the teamwork and camaraderie across the various events and was awesome to see our team, the RX team from CrossFit RTP bring home 1st Place!

I believe the reason I was so inspired is that it reminded me that getting in great physical shape and becoming more healthy is not a short sprint but a long journey through many obstacles.  These athletes competing didn’t just show up but they had been working toward this for many months and years.  It was a culmination of perseverance, patience, and positivity…all factors leading to success.

I’m proud to call CrossFit RTP home and it was a tremendous effort by all of the volunteers from our gym and our winning squad!  Excited to be involved some way next year…heck, maybe I’ll even compete!

Keep grindin’

Brian

Week 33-37: CrossFit Journey – Triangle Invitational2021-03-19T10:40:08-04:00

Week 32: CrossFit Journey – Be Smart!

This past week was a short week due to Hurricane Florence ripping through North Carolina and that brought about cancelled/postponed classes.  However, it did teach me an important lesson about overexerting yourself.

On Saturday, they had an open gym as the weather was starting to clear up but there was still a threat of bad storms.  I went in for a short period of time and did the prescribed WOD.

The first part was to do a 5 Rep Max of Deadlifts.  This was another milestone day for me with Deadlifts as my 1 Rep Max 10 weeks ago was 300 LBS and on Saturday I did 5 Reps at 295 LBS.  I felt good and was pumped that I was able to push that out.

However, here was my mistake I learned from.

The next series of exercises were Over the Shoulder Stone throws followed by Pull ups in a 15 x 12 x 9 breakdown.  I’ve always had problems with the Over The Shoulder Stone Throws because of my height and I tend to not always get into a full squat but cheat as I get tired by using more upper body/back.  And, I am trying to go from the 70 LBS weight to 100 LBS.  Well, I sure did something to my back after completing this because when I got home my lower back was really sore and couldn’t move it for most of the rest of the day.  Luckily, I iced it and stretched it out and by Sunday night I felt pretty good again.

Lesson learned: Proper form is the most important.  Don’t try to be a hero and lift heavy weights just because you have confidence.  Your form might suffer and that might knock you out for several days or longer if you get injured.  You can have great gains even with a lower weight and still get a tremendous workout it.  Be smart!

Until next time, keep grinding!

Brian

Week 32: CrossFit Journey – Be Smart!2021-03-19T10:40:09-04:00

Week 31: CrossFit Journey – Back Squat PR

Well, this weeks post spilled over by a day as I wanted to share a quick story that was a big accomplishment for me.

It was only 6 weeks ago when I stopped doing squat therapy (normally squatting with plates under my feet) and was able to move to no plates and doing a normal squat.  The squat was tough for me and my 1 Rep Max for the Back Squat (with plates) was 170 LBS.

But, with continued practice AND now having the proper nutrition I have been able to crush numbers especially my squat.

Tonight we were working on Back Squats and I just went for it because I felt good and energized.  Not only did I beat my PR but crushed it by 15 LBS from 170 to 185 and with no plates to support the squat.

If you couldn’t tell I was ecstatic over the result but more importantly it gave me confidence to know that I am continuing to make smart choices outside of the gym as it relates to my overall health including sleep and nutrition.

Moral of the story: Don’t be settled with status quo and the way you have always done things.  If you feel your energy is low, for example, investigate and try to A/B test how you can improve it with changing up your routines or habits.  It will only help you in the long run and the gains you might have could be incredible to your performance and your lifestyle.

Keep grindin’!

Brian

Week 31: CrossFit Journey – Back Squat PR2021-03-19T10:40:10-04:00

Week 30: CrossFit Journey – Motivation

Anyone that strives for anything needs motivation.  That is certainly a blanket statement but it is important to remember.  Motivation, the cousin of Momentum, can help you excel to another level and improve your performance beyond your current capabilities.

The reason I bring this up this week is a conversation I had with a fellow CrossFitter this week.  She had been away all summer in NYC but has now returned to town to go back to school and, of course, get back into the CrossFit RTP scene again.  I had been very confident this summer with my change in nutrition and gains I knew I had but it was a simple kind gesture and comment by her that helped keep me motivated.  She said something along the lines of “You’ve really improved this summer…your deadlift has gotten much better…”.  We all strive for our own internal motivation and “chip on the shoulder” mentality but often times, if we aren’t afraid to admit it, it is the compliments of our peers that can bring about additional motivation and that extra to reinforce all of the great work we’ve been doing.

I think many of us are capable of much more but it is generally the “negative talk” that we listen to and often follow…the “You can’t do this” or “You’ll never make it” appears to have a much greater impact on us than the positive reinforcement.  What I have found through many years of listening to this negativity, often by others and my own internal doubts, is that there is no place for it.  No need for it at all.

We need to focus on the positives and present an attitude that is positive to combat the negative but also fuel the motivation that we might be given by others to ultimately help us to that next level.

To end on a funny note, a classic scene that often gets lost in a classic movie, -> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OAs2PBL1RsA

Keep grinding!

Brian

Week 30: CrossFit Journey – Motivation2021-03-19T10:40:11-04:00
  • Morgan J. Ingram Profile Headshot

Morgan J. Ingram

MORGAN J. INGRAM

EPISODE 23: Motivational Speaker | Sales Coach | Host, The SDR Chronicles

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Had an awesome time connecting with Morgan on Episode 23 of the Podcast and we covered a lot of ground in a short period of time.  Morgan provides some great insight into how he leveraged his learnings from being on 2 State Championship Basketball Teams to help him be a better coach and mentor to young sales professionals.  We also discuss how he started his SDR Chronicles show and some different ways he’s developed his chops as a sales professional which might be helpful to younger sales reps out there.  I know you all will love the energy and positivity Morgan brings to the show!

About Morgan:

Morgan J. Ingram is a motivational speaker who has been nominated to the final round for TEDxSBY and TEDxUGA. His clients have begun to nickname him the “Liberation Sensation” because of his powerful messages.

An avid fan of social media and communicating on-line, Morgan has been featured in the Red and Black and OnlineAthens for a previous startup company Collegiate Gaming LAN, written college articles for CampusSports, and has done sales and marketing research for a start up shoe store that Dunta Robinson started and has also done Partnerships for a start up music company which helped promote artists in Athens,GA such as Judah and the Lion and the Shadowboxers.

In addition, Morgan won two state championships in basketball during his high school years.

Morgan’s mission now is to liberate others from their negative thoughts to turn them into positive thoughts by using motivation and social media. Through his speeches Morgan teaches students how to remove negative thoughts from their head and to cleanse their environment to unlock their potential to strive for excellence as a scholar.

In Morgan’s free time, he enjoys a good book, watching The Flash or Arrow, and going on a hike.

Books He’d Recommend:

“I Got My Dream Job and So Can You” by Pete Leibman

“The Law of Success” by Napolean Hill

“15 Invaluable Laws of Growth” by John C Maxwell

Where to Find Morgan Online:

Website: https://www.morganjingram.com/ 

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/morganjingram

Twitter: https://twitter.com/morganjingram

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/morganjingram

SDR Chronicles: https://soundcloud.com/thesdrchronicles

……..

If you enjoyed this interview you may also like my Just Get Started Podcast Interview with John Barrows, Founder of JBarrows Sales Training

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Morgan J. Ingram2020-02-12T03:00:19-04:00

Week 29: CrossFit Journey – Consistency

Over the last several weeks I have started to think about different aspects of fitness and how they all work together and will certainly get back to the training aspect in upcoming weeks but I did want to layer in on the topic of consistency.

My schedule has been a bear and very weird.  Somedays I was going to CrossFit at 5:30am while others I had to make it to the 6:30pm class.  The word “consistency” comes up time and time again when you are looking at successful individuals and that “success” can be a number of things.  What rarely happens is someone try something for a short period of time and think all of a sudden they will see a huge leap.  It never happens.

This is why diets don’t work.

But, anyways, the reason I thought this post was relevant was that whatever you are doing you must stay consistent with it even through the tough times especially if other competing priorities come into play.  You need to be looking at the long game and understand that some sacrifices will have to be made or changes may have to happen but you need to stack rank what are MOST important and what can be brushed aside even if it feels like you are giving up something really cool.

In regards to CrossFit, being consistent with 4-5 days a week always me some flexibility where I am not going all 7 but also keeps pushing me later in the week if I have new things pop up on my schedule.  I wouldn’t have near the gains I’ve had in 6 months had I not been committed and stay consistent with my schedule.  I’d encourage everyone to take a look at their day or week outlook at what things will set you up for long term success and which ones are merely “time robbers” in the short term.

More to come on this in the future but certainly relevant at this point as Football is starting back up, kids are back to school, and holidays are right around the corner.

Stay focused!

Brian

Week 29: CrossFit Journey – Consistency2021-03-19T10:40:12-04:00
  • Dr. Zach Long Profile Headshot

Dr. Zach Long

DR. ZACH LONG

EPISODE 22: Creator of TheBarbellPhysio.com | Board Certified Sports Specialist

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In Episode 22 I get a chance to sit down with Dr. Zach Long, a Board Certified Sports Specialist and the creator of the industry leading fitness website, TheBarbellPhysio.com.

I reached out to Zach after coming across some of his content online and was blown away at the amount of great insight and knowledge he puts out there.  He has a really cool story about how he got involved in fitness and physical therapy and his path to starting and building upon his website, The Barbell Physio.

His Dad was his high school football coach and probably the biggest influence on his life and had a great quote he used to say, “Don’t ask yourself what the world needs, ask yourself what makes you come alive”.  Very fitting for this episode and the entire Just Get Started Podcast series!

We get into a whole lot of different topics where we crush a few myths and learn a little bit about “Dry Needling”.

I know you all with love this conversation and if you get a chance to listen I hope you enjoy!

About Dr. Zach Long

Dr. Zach Long is a physical therapist and CrossFit coach located in Charlotte, NC. He attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he majored in exercise and sport science, and East Carolina University, where he earned his doctorate in physical therapy. He specializes in improving athletic performance and injury rehab of athletes from Olympians to weekend warriors.

Find Zach Online:

Fitness Website – https://thebarbellphysio.com/ 

Carolina Sports Clinic Website – https://carolinasportsclinic.com/

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/thebarbellphysio/ 

……..

If you enjoyed this interview you may also like my Just Get Started Podcast Interview with Nick Shaw, Co-Founder of RP Fitness

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Dr. Zach Long2020-02-01T20:03:21-04:00

Week 28: CrossFit Journey – Reflection

This week was a big learning week for me and it made me reflect on the last 6 months and this CrossFit journey I am on.

I look at my progress and where I came from and it again reinforces that old Tony Horton saying “Rome wasn’t built in a day, neither was your body”.  The commitments I make each and every week to get to classes and my increased focus on nutrition has allowed me to accomplish many new goals that I never thought possible.

From squatting heavy weights to my endurance, I’ve been able to get in the best shape of my life and do it by learning a tremendous amount about proper technique, work ethic, nutrition and having a lot of fun doing it.

Short post this week but one of the cool things was I did get to talk with Dr. Zach Long from the industry leading fitness website, BarbellPhysio.com as I had him as a guest on my Just Get Started Podcast.  Check out the episode here -> https://brianondrako.com/podcast/drzachlong

Keep grinding!

Brian

Week 28: CrossFit Journey – Reflection2021-03-19T10:40:13-04:00

Week 27: CrossFit Journey – Welcomed Rest

Week 27 of my journey saw me only hit 2 days at the gym (Monday and Sunday) due to a work event most of the week and wanting to get a round of golf in on Saturday.   But…some of that was intentional and used to give myself a little rest before I go straight for about 2 weeks.

I’m continually coming back to the notion that you must listen to your body and not try to overwork it when you feel a bit off.  I had a sore left should/neck area going into this past week and after the workout Monday I felt that the few days I thought I’d miss might end up being good and not to stress it.

Additionally, I was jacked up to get back there today so it put a little pep in my step as i’d been missing it.

Crushing workouts and feeling fit is always great but it can’t be done if your mind and body are not healthy and recovered.

Sometimes a little rest goes a long way to making your progress even that much more.

Make sure you audit yourself and listen to that internal dialogue.

Keep grinding!

Week 27: CrossFit Journey – Welcomed Rest2021-03-19T10:40:14-04:00

Week 26: CrossFit Journey – Halfway Mark

I cannot believe 6 months of CrossFit is already in the books.  Incredible!

Each week has been it’s own special challenge but I wanted to piggy back this weeks post off of one from a few weeks ago and just confirm that proper nutrition, along with proper sleep, are so important to training.  Maybe more important that I’ve ever realized.  Earlier in the summer and, in fact, in workouts well prior too I definitely didn’t put a lot of thought into how much eating the right amount of calories and proportions of Carbs, Protein, and Fat were to reaching my fitness goals.

Long story short, after tracking my calories for 3 weeks and really focusing on hitting 3,000 calories a day I have absolutely been crushing my workouts and having so much energy to stay powered all the way through.  I’m noticing that I am now starting to keep up with some of the CrossFit veterans in our class (although sometimes I’m doing a much different weight) but it’s still in comparison to my strength.

If you’re reading this and confused on why you are sluggish during the day, always hungry and different points, or just feel like you don’t have the energy to workout then it may be time to consult a nutritionist and put some effort into what and when you put stuff into your body.

I can speak from experience of how it was before and now seeing the after and what it can do for you.

Keep listening to your body and doing the right thing!

Week 26: CrossFit Journey – Halfway Mark2021-03-19T10:40:15-04:00

Week 25: CrossFit Journey – Injury and Prevention

Had some great workouts this past week but thought I’d take an opportunity just to mention the importance of listening to your body, especially when it comes to injury.  I’m not a doctor but I’ve found that logical diagnosis often times wins the day.

During Tuesdays workout I was pushing hard through this RFT workout of 70 cal row, 50 pushups, and 40 wall balls.  I must have tweaked something with my bicep because on Wednesday it didn’t feel all that great.  I had a little soreness but my arm felt weak.

My self diagnosis was “bicep tendinitis” which I realized last in the week.

So, I decided to workout on Wednesday to “test” it out and it was semi-painful to the extent that I couldn’t put 100% into the workout.

With that, I got smart.  I decided to rest for a couple of days and put minimal movement into the arm.

I decided to test it again on Saturday and everything seemed great until we got into some rope climbs late in the workout which ended up tweaking it slightly.

Had a great chat with one of the coaches there and was encouraged to do some maintenance on the arm (ice, massage, etc) whichever I felt I should do as well as stay away from doing major pulling movements for a week or two or at least to resist doing them.

All in all, I iced my arm through the weekend and feel like it will take some time to fully heal but I’m not focused on not overworking the arm and being smart about my level of effort with it.

Moral of the story: Listen to your body because taking a few days off to recover and heal is much better than tearing something more and having to sit out months.  Egos get in the way a lot so being smart about those type of decisions could lead to better results down the road.

Keep grinding!

Brian

Week 25: CrossFit Journey – Injury and Prevention2021-03-19T10:40:16-04:00

Week 24: CrossFit Journey – Nutrition

Had another great week of killer workouts but this week I’m going to focus on nutrition as it has been a big key for me lately.

I’ve been monitoring how I feel in correlation to my eating over the past month or so and realized I’d be spent in regards to energy when I tried to workout in the evening.  What I came to realize was that I wasn’t getting near enough calories a day and lacking very much in my protein intake (which wasn’t helping my muscle gain goal).

I spoke with a nutritionist on Monday and it cleared up many things for me.  It confirmed several of the things I was doing right and highlighted some of my core areas.  I’ve started to track my calories for a period of time to make sure I am hitting some goals.  Right now, I am trying to hit about 3,000 calories per day.  It’s insane how much food that actually is but I know in the long run I’ll put on some weight and start to see my muscles get some growth as well.

Cliffs Notes version of changes:

  1. I was eating a “good” breakfast in regards to nutritious foods like bananas, avocados, oatmeal, etc but was lacking big time in protein intake.  This was putting me behind the eight-ball for the day and I was always hungry midday.

       The Change: I am now eating 2-3 eggs in the morning and having that on top of avocado toast or scrambling up with some sweet potato hash / pepper combo.  It’s kept me full for the last week and I feel I have way more energy.

2. For snack, I was eating mainly fruit and about 1-2 cups of blueberries, strawberries, or a banana.

The Change: I am adding some protein like peanut butter or some yogurt to the snack and still eating the fruit.

3. Since I took away meat from my diet 18 months ago, I’ve been trying to figure out what to replace it with and have come across these plant based items that taste and feel like meat.  I used to eat a lot of this stuff like several servings a weeks.

The Change: I didn’t realize that not only are these heavily processed but they are made mainly of soy.  For males, too high of soy intake adds a lot of estrogen into the body and can mess up hormone levels a bit.  So, I’ve cut back on this drastically to see if I notice any big changes.  I’ve added more fish to my diet to get back to a cleaner protein.

I’ve been very conscious the last several years of my food intake and eating cleaner but didn’t put this level of thought into it.  Just recording my eating habits this week and monitoring how I feel I can say that not only am I full throughout the day but I have a lot more energy when it comes to evening workouts.

Moral of the story is that it’s important to always be asking questions of yourself on how you can improve and get better and don’t be afraid of the answers as hopefully figuring that out will improve “YOU” in the long run.

Keep at it folks!

 

 

Week 24: CrossFit Journey – Nutrition2021-03-19T10:40:17-04:00

Week 23: CrossFit Journey (Test Out Week)

Well – the 12 week Strength Training Program came and went and it was an incredible ride of learning, pushing, and grinding until the end.  Here is the final sheet of the breakdown – Strength Training Program Weekly Breakdown

Overall I was pleased with my mindset going into each workout and focus on improving the movements in order to maximize the weight I can safely lift.  Additionally, just pushing myself beyond my comfort zone, which I’ve written about throughout this program, was something I am proud of and can use as I continue on.

One last piece I didn’t think about during test week but was relevant is that I’ve gained 8-10 LBs of body weight over the last few months.  Some of these numbers (like pull-ups) are even better since I am pulling more weight than during the initial test week.

Some results to note:

Back Squat -> 1 Rep Max @ 170 LBs (max 3 @ 145 lbs12 weeks ago I did )

Strict Pull-ups -> 8 Strict Pullups (7 Strict Pullups 12 weeks ago I did )

Bench Press -> 1 Rep Max @ 170 LBs (1 rep max @ 165 lbs12 weeks ago I did )

Deadlift -> 1 Rep Max @ 300 LBs (1 rep max @ 265 lbs 12 weeks ago I did )

Front Squat -> 1 Rep Max @ 155 LBs (12 weeks ago I didn’t get to establish a max)

“Karen” (150 Wall Balls FT) -> 9:20 time with 14 lb wall ball (9:44 time 12 weeks ago)

Mile Run -> 7:22 (In the past I’d have trouble breaking 8 minutes)

Being over 5 months into this CrossFit thing I’m extremely pleased with my results, how I’ve managed my schedule, and understanding my nutrition to keep energized and gain the muscle mass I’ve set out to gain.

Look forward to sharing how the rest of the year goes!

Stay tuned!

Week 23: CrossFit Journey (Test Out Week)2021-03-19T10:40:18-04:00

Week 22: CrossFit Journey (Week 12 of 12 of the Strength Training Program)

This was our final week of the 12-Week Strength Training Program and my first week back from a 10-day vacation – See Results here – 12-Week Strength Program Results 

I didn’t take it easy, however, and pushed myself through 6 straight days of workouts to get me back on track.  My body was beat come Sunday but I felt really good and it was a nice “off” day to relax a bit.  Here’s a peak at the workouts I went through this week:

I had a lot of fun this week with some of the workouts and really enjoyed the team workout on the 4th of July called “DT”.  It was pretty brutal and definitely pushed me to the max to finish!

One thing I learned, again, this week is to find the edge of your comfort zone and try to push past it just a little to see what could happen.  On Friday, we had a 10-minute Row for max calories and my goal was to have more than anyone that day in the class.  Sure enough, after pushing through some pain near the end I ended up with 162 and the most for the day.  Those little wins keep you focused on growing and building on each and every day’s workout.

Lastly, I am going to be starting Yoga again this week as I hadn’t done it at all during this Crossfit journey.  I’ve realized I need to get my flexibility back which I know will help me improve my movements. This will be part of my training going forward and look forward to seeing the results as it runs parallel with CrossFit.

Keep grinding everyone!

Week 22: CrossFit Journey (Week 12 of 12 of the Strength Training Program)2021-03-19T10:40:18-04:00

Week 21: CrossFit Journey (Week 11 of 12 of the Strength Training Program)

Well, after 20 weeks of CrossFit I finally took a long break and relaxed for the past 9 days.  Besides a ton of walking (which just offset my poor eating and many LBS of Ice Cream), I really only worked out one time during the vacation.  On past vacations I made it a point to work out more but I’ve changed my thinking a lot on this..here’s why.

I believe it’s good to take a break from your routine and just relax your mind and body and let it rest.  You can continue to push yourself day after day but part of improving is listening to your body and understanding what it needs.  For me, it’s taking time off and “missing it” that gets me recharged and amped up to go hard at it again next week.  It also gives you a perspective to see how you feel when you aren’t working out or eating how you’d normally eat and it can help reenforce that what you are doing is correct and help keep you focused on your goals.

Bottomline, whether you take a bunch of days off in a row or not, I believe it is crucial to rest at certain points during your training in order to let your body and also your mind recover and reset for the next wave of training.

Fortunately, this upcoming week is our last in the program and is a Deload week so it will help me ease back into my training.

Can’t believe 21 weeks are already in the books in my CrossFit journey.  Excited to see what the next 21 hold!

Keep grinding!

Week 21: CrossFit Journey (Week 11 of 12 of the Strength Training Program)2021-03-19T10:40:19-04:00

Week 20: CrossFit Journey (Week 10 of 12 of the Strength Training Program)

Heading into the final stretch of our strength training program and had a short week this week due to a family vacation.

Two big “Aha” moments of the week:

  1. I noticed that my food intake wasn’t the best and I was lacking energy on some of the days.  This has also been a trend the past week or two especially if I am working out after work.  Teh combination of not enough calories along with using my standing desk is making me a bit more fatigued.  The key here is I have recognized this pattern early and will take measures to correct it in the coming weeks.
  2. My strength gains have been solid over these past 10 weeks and nothing shines a light on that more than the fact that I did 13 max rep set @ 245lbs on the DeadLift this week compared to 1 total rep @ 265 just 10 weeks ago.  Insane!

Next week is an off-week due to a vacation and will be a nice chance to recharge the batteries after 20 weeks of CrossFit!

Week 20: CrossFit Journey (Week 10 of 12 of the Strength Training Program)2021-03-19T10:40:20-04:00

Week 19: CrossFit Journey (Week 9 of 12 of the Strength Training Program)

Well we are in the home stretch of our 12-week strength training program and maybe it was the light week that helped from last week or taking a little Shakeology Power Boost prior to some of the workouts but I definitely got back on track with some solid numbers this week.

Here is my updated Strength Program Worksheet Link

This week’s highlights (max rep #):

Back Squats – 11 @ 130

Bench Press – 8 @ 135

Deadlift – 15 @ 220

Also had a couple fierce endurance workouts that I absolutely crushed.  Starting to really understand my limits and where I can take chances to push through in a workout.  I know one of my strengths in Rowing so I can use that to my advantage and pick up the pace there while staying consistent on the rest of the workout.

CrossFit isn’t only about putting up big weights but learning the proper techniques.  On Saturday, I was learning how to perfect the muscle snatch which I’ve rarely done before.  I took a light barbell and worked through it for that particular OTM cadence.  Definitely recommend anyone starting out to take this approach and ease their way into certain movements, especially a more advanced one like the muscle snatch.

Can’t believe next week will be an even 20 weeks of CrossFit.  So amazed with the results and how my body has transformed over these past 4 months and excited for the next 20 weeks!

Keep grindin’!

Week 19: CrossFit Journey (Week 9 of 12 of the Strength Training Program)2021-03-19T10:40:20-04:00

Week 18: CrossFit Journey (Week 8 of 12 of the Strength Training Program)

A much needed “Deload” week during this 12-week strength program but unfortunately when we deload we throw in a ton of endurance so I saw my fair share of rowing and biking!

One of the things I worked on this week was really focusing on less weight and practicing my squat which has been shaky as of late.  I took a step back and realized that I needed to make sure my form was solid before progressing in weight.  The help I had in the prior week with how I thought about the squat position and then some additional insight this week by the owner of CrossFit RTP, Lei, got me feeling really confident about the movement.

18 weeks into this whole CrossFit thing and one of the things I look forward to is getting absolutely roasted during a workout where I feel I’ve pushed myself to the limit but kept going just a bit extra.  Unlike the old days when it was all about throwing around heavy weight, I’ve learned that lighter weights with deeper movement and staying active for a length of time can do way more in regards to building strength and muscle then doing the traditional 5 sets of 6-10 reps with some progressing weight.

Tip to those out there trying to get fit – Weight is great!  You aren’t going to get too bulky but you also don’t have to always do your max.  Lighter weight with more reps will still help you build strength and you’ll also trim the your body fat % too!

…One more thing…If you haven’t tried a team event or team workout I absolutely recommend it.  On saturdays, we normally partner up in groups to do the workout and it is an opportunity to meet and work with people of different skill level and strengths.  Additionally, you get a chance to cheer on your team so you can have the fastest time and they can also motivate you.  It’s a win-win and makes the workout that much more fine.  I’d encourage you to try it!

Until next time!

Brian

Week 18: CrossFit Journey (Week 8 of 12 of the Strength Training Program)2021-03-19T10:40:21-04:00

Week 17: CrossFit Journey (Week 7 of 12 of the Strength Training Program)

After completing “The Murph” on Monday, this week became a tad lighter due to some personal commitments as well as I was very very very sore after Monday and needed time to recoup.  I ended up going to two classes the rest of the week and then did some Open Gym work today to ease back into next week.  However, here is the link to my workout chart and what I am focusing on each week – Strength Training Program 

This was a good week to listen to my body and try not to overexert myself as I maybe would have done in the past.  My pecs were probably sore until Saturday so pushing too hard mid week wouldn’t have been good.  We did keep up with our Strength Training Program this week and we used Thursday for Bench Press which I handled fairly well given the soreness.  Unfortunately I only made it to one of the Strength Days but will get back on track this week.

CrossFit is teaching me to push my boundaries while staying focused on form.  The gains I have had in 17 weeks has been incredible and I’d encouraged anyone needing motivation that it comes in the form of consistency.  Stay active and stay with it.  Even if you miss a day or two that’s fine.  Just don’t have long stretches where you miss and you’ll be fine.

Lastly, on Sundays we have Open Gym to come in and work on things on your own and today I chose to focus on Double unders which are very difficult.  I am fine with jumping rope with single unders but adding a second pass through makes it challenging.  I was becoming a bit frustrated because I wasn’t getting it too well but some words of encouragement from the owner Lei that it took him 18 months to perfect it helped calm me down a bit.  Going back to consistency, I just need to focus on the right motion and with time I’ll be able to bang them out easily!

Keep grindin ya’ll!

Week 17: CrossFit Journey (Week 7 of 12 of the Strength Training Program)2021-03-19T10:40:21-04:00

Week 16: CrossFit Journey (Week 6 of 12 of the Strength Training Program)

Week 16 was a phenomenal week with many great achievements and I completely annihilated any past records on number of Squats I did this week, that’s for sure!

But…For this week (which I am posting the wrap-up on Memorial Day Monday instead of Sunday) is reserved for “The Murph”.

The most grueling workout I’ve ever done in my entire life.

…And it’s a salute to Lt. Michael Murphy who lost his life in Afghanistan and this was his favorite workout.

Thankful to have the opportunities I do and like most of the CrossFit world I wanted to honor Lt. Murphy by participating in this which is my first time.

The workout is simple…

1 Mile run

100 Pullups

200 pushups

300 Air Squats

1 Mile Run

Once you finish the first mile you are trying to complete the middle portion before you finish the workout with the final mile.  My strategy was breaking up into 20 rounds of 5, 10, and 15, respectively to batch this and try to accomplish in under 1 hour.

By round 9 I was feeling toasted but my adrenaline kicked in and feeling the motivation of my peers I grinded til the end.

The folks out there that actually do this with a vest on and complete in an ungodly short time is impressive.

5️⃣8️⃣:4️⃣2️⃣ was my time and couldn’t have been more pleased with it since my entire body was in pain!

Congrats to all who participated and pushed themselves past their comfort zone to achieve success!

The next few workouts should seem simple compared to that!!!

Til next time, keep Grindin’

Week 16: CrossFit Journey (Week 6 of 12 of the Strength Training Program)2021-03-19T10:40:22-04:00

Week 15: CrossFit Journey (Week 5 of 12 of the Strength Building Program)

After a week of “Deload” and a “lighter” week we got back to things and didn’t skip a beat.

This week was intense and I was able to get in 4 workouts and my legs hate me for sure!

I’m going to keep it short this week but a few takeaways to note which are important:

  1. We noticed that my max weight on Deadlifts was a bit low and that could’ve been due to how I felt during the test week.  So, we bumped it up just a bit (10 LBS) and did the specific workout.  Not only did that still feel good, I was able to blow away my Max Set number as I did 17 unbroken reps in the final set at a weight of 215
  2. We noticed my squat wasn’t looking good and we figured to widen my stance a bit as my legs could allow for it.  It was definitely a different feeling but I noticed I had more stability and could get out of the low spot of the squat.  Will keep working on this each week but feel the wider stance may be more beneficial
  3. Still love the competitiveness of CrossFit but also the camaraderie.  I enjoy the Saturday workouts as we generally turn those into partner workouts and it’s neat to be able to pair up with others and push ourselves together and achieve results.  If you like being motivated and pushed to succeed then the partner workouts will surely do that for you.

All in all, each week I continually learn a few things, some big and some small, but all to get a tad better and get closer to my goals.  It’s important to reflect on each day’s workout, both good and bad, so that you can start to map out areas where you can push harder and areas where you need to improve or focus more.

Excited to hit the 4 month mark this coming week and would’ve never believed I could have the gains I’ve had in that short period of time and continue to enjoy the process each and every day.

Until next time, keep grinding!

Brian

Week 15: CrossFit Journey (Week 5 of 12 of the Strength Building Program)2021-03-19T10:40:23-04:00

Week 14: CrossFit Journey (Week 4 of 12 of the Strength Building Program)

We are now 1/3rd of the way through the 12-week strength building program and Week 4 was our “Deload” week although it was anything from easy.  Our Deload consisted of doing 3 sets of 5 of a low weight (roughly 40-60%) just to work on form and keep the movement fresh.  However, it was a week to let our bodies relax slightly in preparation for the next 3 weeks of intense work.  For a reminder of the program and weight you can follow along on my progress here – 12-Week Program Details

Remember, the 4 main moves we are hitting each week are Back Squat, Bench Press, Deadlift, Front Squat.

We focused a lot on core movements and endurance this week and boy was I gassed after a couple of them.

Learning moment for me was this AMRAP (As many rounds as possible) with strict shoulder presses and then a 200 meter run.  I was determined to be the best in the class and accomplished that by doing 6 complete rounds in 8-minutes.  It was a lot of mindset endurance as well as the physical aspects that of course are a part of it.

As I head into week 5 I am continuing to be conscious of my nutrition and sleep and recommend others reading this to make sure you are getting your calories right but also you’re eating foods giving you the right amount of energy.  I can’t stress sleep enough and it’s be so impactful getting at least 7-hours a week.  For those interested, I highly recommend to check out the Joe Rogan Experience Podcast Episode #1109 with Matthew Walker, Author of Why We Sleep.  The most fascinating podcast episode I’ve ever listened to.  It’ll be a wake up call for many, no pun intended – Here is the link to it – Matthew Walker Podcast Interview – Joe Rogan Experience

Until next time….take care.

Week 14: CrossFit Journey (Week 4 of 12 of the Strength Building Program)2021-03-19T10:40:23-04:00

Week 13: CrossFit Journey (Week 3 of 12 of the Strength Building Program)

As we turned into week 3 of this strength building program I was eager to push my limits and continue building muscle and strength in various core areas.  Remember, each week I’ll post my progress here in this updated Google Sheet -> 12-Week Program Details

As I am learning, the time of day I work out has a lot of impact on my gains and it appears that earlier is better in regards to more energy.  Unfortunately, I don’t have that luxury to always do morning workouts so will have to figure out ways to keep my energy at a high level into the evening as normally I am working out after work.

Back Squats this week I did 11 as my max set at 125lbs (about 85% of my max weight).  This has continued to improve each week and it may be that I’ve worked out in the morning on 2 of the last 3 weeks

Bench Press was solid at 7 max reps at 145 lbs.  I also changed my grip up slightly to go narrower as I was way too wide in early weeks (and throughout my entire lifting career).

Dead Lifts were fun and actually really loving them.  Maybe my taller frame makes it easier but they are becoming my favorite movement in this series. Did 12 max reps this week at 220 lbs.

Front Squats have continued to be my nemesis and I think it is because I partially guessed on my max weight and that has made me do a bit more than I should be.  Also, learning from some of the coaches that I may have not been going as deep in the squat as I needed to and that’s why the first week I was able to hit 10 max reps and then past 2 weeks have been barely 2 each time.

Lesson learned this week….It’s better to do the movements correct and have less weight involved than try to push extra and compromise the motion.  My focus this week will be on my squats and making sure I get down the entire way.

I’m encouraged being 1/4 of the way through this strength program and looking forward to seeing where I can push myself in the coming weeks.

Stay tuned!

Week 13: CrossFit Journey (Week 3 of 12 of the Strength Building Program)2021-03-19T10:40:24-04:00

Week 12: CrossFit Journey (Week 2 of 12 of the Strength Building Program)

We are now in the thick of things with this 12-week progression to build a ton of strength in core movements of the Back Squat, Bench Press, Deadlift, and Front Squat.

A couple observations in week 2 that I’d like to share.

  1. Every day is not going to be the same and if you’re body is just off a bit that could really affect your numbers.  If you look at my max reps from week 1 to 2 on both the Back Squat and Front Squat they are completely opposite.  My back squat went up 5 from the prior week even with the additional max rep weight.  Conversely, I was toast on Thursday as I worked on the Front Squat and could only muster 2 compared to the 10 I did the prior week.

2. We had a ton of conditioning this week and a lot of rowing mixed with other movements.  I absolutely crushed these portions of the workout as I’ve improved my endurance to a point where I don’t get nearly as winded as before and can break through the barriers.

Moral of the story: Recognize how you are feeling each day and don’t beat yourself up if you don’t have it.  Stay focused on good technique and get after it next time.  What I learned from the observation is that I worked out at 5:30am this past week for the back squats as opposed to later in the day the week prior.  I’ve noticed that when I work out in the morning (although more rare) I tend to have a ton more energy and see greater gains.  These details can help you improve as well and recognize patterns to improve your overall fitness.

Remember, each week I’ll post my progress here in this updated Google Sheet -> 12-Week Program Details

Onward to week 3 of this Strength Building Program!

Week 12: CrossFit Journey (Week 2 of 12 of the Strength Building Program)2021-03-19T10:40:24-04:00

Week 11: CrossFit Journey (Week 1 of 12 of the Strength Building Program)

Collectively as a CrossFit Gym we are embarking on a 12-week strength building program and this was Week 1.

We are ramping up for 3 weeks and then using Week 4 as a slight recovery before ramping up more in subsequent weeks.

After the initial trial week to get our max #’s, Week 1 was a full go!

Each week we have a similar focus on specific days.  As a reminder they are:

Monday -> Back Squats

Tuesday -> Bench Press

Wednesday -> Deadlifts

Friday ->Front Squats.

I had never worked out like this before where I was doing about 6 progressions and then a max set at the end (as well as adding additional conditioning after these were done).

Remember, each week I’ll post my progress here in this updated Google Sheet -> 12-Week Program Details

Some highlights:

  1. I did a max set of 5 back squats at 135 lbs -> I think I was a bit tired this day and my legs were shot from the get-go so we’ll see how next week goes
  2. We did some conditioning on the rowing machine and I accomplished 2320 meters in a 10-minute window
  3.  We ran a mile and I set my all-time fastest speed with a 7:11 mile!!!

I feel incredibly energized to go into next week and see how I can push myself toward some more gains!

Stay tuned…

 

Week 11: CrossFit Journey (Week 1 of 12 of the Strength Building Program)2021-03-19T10:40:25-04:00

Week 10: CrossFit Journey (Test Week for 12-Week Strength Program)

Week 10 was a test week to get ready for a 12-week training program we are doing as an entire facility.  We wanted to test various movements to benchmark where our gains will happen over a 12-week period.  It was cool to see where I landed on some of the areas and excited to see my progression over the next dozen weeks.

For anyone that is interested to see the chart I am using to access weight progressions you can view the Google Sheet here -> 12-Week Strength Program Details *

*As a quick note to the chart, the only numbers I input are in the yellow boxes (at the top after this test week and then at the bottom as I hit my max for each exercise each week).  The pre-filled numbers on the chart auto-populate based on my 1 or 3-rep max and the % of weight we are doing for that week.  Make sense?  It didn’t to me at first so let me know if any questions.

Some areas of note:

Back Squat (max 3 reps) – 145 lbs (with 10 lb weight under heels)

Dead Lift (max 3) -> 255 lbs

Strict Pull-ups – 7 uninterrupted

Bench Press – 165 lbs

“Helen” -> 3 RFT -> 400 m run, 21 kettlebell swings (35 lbs) , 6 pullups -> = Time -> 10:56

5 RFT 5 DL (135 lbs) and 10 burpees -> = Time -> 5:17

Ab Mat Sit-up (2 min max) – 44

150 Wall Balls FT (14 lb) – 9:40

 

Will update on progress as this moves along!

Week 10: CrossFit Journey (Test Week for 12-Week Strength Program)2021-03-19T10:40:26-04:00

Week 9: CrossFit Journey

Week 9 was a leg burner all week!

I was surprised with myself for pushing through a front squat workout and hitting my 3 rep max at 225 LBs which was more than I’ve ever done for 1 rep let along 3 in a row.

We also had a workout where I had to do an insane amount of wall balls followed by burpees for 5 rounds squeezed in between two 400-meter runs.

This week flew by but I could tell that my strength is continuing to improve when I powered through a workout with deadlifts doing 10 reps @ 135 LB and didn’t get phased.  Back in week one that might have been a struggle.

I worked out for 4 days this week and decided to take off the weekend to do some extra father/son bonding time while I rested and got ramped up for Week 10.

Going to go hard Week 10!  Check back in for more results next week…

Take care

Week 9: CrossFit Journey2021-03-19T10:40:26-04:00

Week 8: CrossFit Journey

Week 8 got me back in the swing of things after a light week 7.  5 Days of intensity capped by a brutal but rewarding Saturday workout.

It was also kicked off by the 35th Birthday.

Fitness is one of those things that everybody knows they have to do to stay healthy but most people neglect.  For me, Fitness has meant many different routines over the past 16 years but this CrossFit Journey has been incredible.  The amount of gains in 2 short months and the level of comfort doing movements I’ve never done before has been astounding.

This all goes back to the one word that people that succeed talk about a lot…consistency.

In fitness, it is so important to stay consistent with your workouts as well as your eating to go along with it.  One bad day or week doesn’t ruin it by any means but taking a long layoff or never working out can have compounding effects on your body as you get older.  You don’t always have to go hard each and every day but finding the right mix is something I believe in and the results speak for themselves.

I’m ecstatic with the improvements in 8-weeks and look forward to reporting back even better results in months to come.

Big challenge I crushed this week….First, I battled through a Part C workout on Friday for 3 rounds OTM and ended up improving each round of Burpees and Biking.  Secondly, the next day I did 12 full rope climbs with no leg assist over a 3 RFT team workout.  It ended the week strong and gave me confidence heading into week 9.

Until next time, Keep grindin’!

 

Week 8: CrossFit Journey2021-03-19T10:40:27-04:00

Week 7: CrossFit Journey

Week 7 was a short week for me based on travel to Tennessee later in the week. (Unfortunately, I didn’t get to go to Mayhem and workout with Rich Froning.)

One of the cool things we did one of the nights was a team workout that was really fun.

We split up into groups of 5 and did 3 rounds.

AMRAP for the first 5 minutes – Pushups

AMRAP for the next 7 minutes – Wall Balls

AMRAP for the final 5 minutes – Pushups

It was intense but cool to be a part of that.  Here’s why: You get the opportunity to not only meet some new people but compare yourself in how you are doing with the movements and are you doing them properly. Plus, the more experiences CrossFitters are extremely helpful to coach on improving technique so you can continue to grow.

Was only able to do 3 classes from Monday-Wednesday but the 4 day break was actually a good things as my body needed to recover after 7 hard weeks of this new fitness routine.

One of the important lessons I’ve learned over time was that REST is so key.  You have to give your body time to recover.  Remember that as you push through your fitness goals and it will help you actually make gains much quicker and prevent injury.

Excited to get into the grind more next week as I hit my 2 month anniversary!

Happy ‘Fitting!

Brian

Week 7: CrossFit Journey2021-03-19T10:40:27-04:00

Week 6: CrossFit Journey

Week 6 was a light week for me in regards to number of workouts I was able to attend due to several conflicts especially the start of my son’s soccer season.  But, with only 3 workouts in, I was still able to manage to feel like I was continuing to expand my comfort zone and increase gains in some areas.

This week had a LOT of rowing and I am really noticing my endurance picking up tremendously.  I was always weak in this area so it feels good to be able to stay strong through a workout with a lot of endurance needed.  One thing I have noticed is that being taller helps but also it is important to remember to keep my knees straighter slightly longer when retracting back towards the machine.  Old habits of knee bend try to creep in from time to time!

My deadlift has improved tremendously (from like nothing) to being able to handle 135 lbs 14 times for 4 rounds during one of the workouts and that also included other movements like rowing and pushups.  My movement is getting really precise since I have understood that I need to keep the bar very close to my body and almost touching at points when I get above my knees.

One big moment in understanding where I have improved was doing Hollow holds to V-ups at the end of the Thursday workout.  In the past I’ve had trouble with these and have worked to just do Hollow holds so far.  But, I did 5 rounds of 7 Hollow hold to V-ups per round really solid (besides a couple poor balanced ones).  This has given me confidence that I have to continue to trust this new fitness process, stay focused on upping weight and testing it out, and not worry about how many workouts I do a week but realize I need to put all my effort in on each of them.

I know Week 7 will be a limited week as well with a trip at the end of the week scheduled so I’ll have to try and be consistent these first 4 days and grind through.

Will update next week!

Week 6: CrossFit Journey2021-03-19T10:40:28-04:00

Week 5: CrossFit Journey

Week 5 was one for the ages!  I was gassed most of the week and had to conjure up some extra mojo to get through my 4 workouts.  I’m very much starting to learn where I can push myself and where I still need to be smart about the weights that I am picking but when I do get “in the zone” I am able to impress even myself with some of the work.

A couple of key thoughts from this week:

My wrists were sore from doing the workout a week ago where I had to hold hand stand push-up position for 30 seconds for 4 rounds.  On Saturday, We had more handstand push-ups and I could already recognize that my body had built up a bit of a tolerance to it and didn’t have any pain while going through 4 rounds holding for 30 seconds.

I practiced the “kipping pull up” one night and realized not only is it harder than it appears but that the thought is more of a “C” shape with straight arms as I go into the move vs trying to bend my elbows and pulling.  Something I’ll have to continue to practice and improve.

Rope climbs are extremely difficult but something inside me overcomes that challenge as we had to do 4 rounds with a partner each doing 2 per round.  This is more than I ever have had to do and was pleased that I got through all 8 using no legs and got to the top on every one.  My hands were a bit torn up but I’ll chalk that up to building the strength into my hands.

“If you are comfortable then you are not growing” was something one of the instructors said to the group and it was necessary to hear.  I’m there to workout and improve my overall fitness and If you just half-ass it then your body can’t get the gains you ultimately want.

I’m starting to feel more like I belong and I have to continue to believe in myself and my ability to accomplish some of the more difficult workouts.

Thanks for reading.

Brian

Week 5: CrossFit Journey2021-03-19T10:40:28-04:00

Week 4: CrossFit Journey

One month down and I am starting to get in the groove…as well as turn up the volume a bit on my workouts!  Another 5 workouts in the books this week and I recognized that I am understanding my weight patterns better and able to challenge myself with different exercises now that I’ve done them a handful of times.

My squat is getting much better and although I am still getting comfortable adding a lot of weight to front squats or doing overhead squats with more than a light bar I can see the incremental changes.  Flexibility is a tough thing for me and in one of the early classes with Lei, the owner of CrossFit RTP, we discovered that I have minimal shoulder mobility and I will have to work hard over time to increase that to be able to perform some more challenging movements like the overhead squat.  Although I am still a long ways away from being where I want with the mobility, I was able to get a handful of overhead squats completed with a bar in the correct position.

Like anything else, it takes practice.  One of the things I am learning is that a lot of this is new to me and that’s okay.  I have to be content with not having it perfected but try to push through each workout and get the most out of it that I can.  In time, I’ll achieve great results.

Final note through Four Weeks…As a literal “gut check” I took a couple pictures to track progress and I must say the results in just 4 weeks have been amazing.  I am noticing a lot more upper body strength in the chest and shoulders but a slimmer oblique area than before.  Legs feel more powerful than they have ever been and I can start to see the gains.

Week 5 starts tomorrow.  Excited to see what is in store!

Week 4: CrossFit Journey2021-03-19T10:40:29-04:00

Week 3: CrossFit Journey

Week 3 started to get me in my groove.  I attended 5 classes throughout the week and became much more comfortable with the surroundings and working through various exercises.  Going 4 days in a row was certainly a challenge but working out with a group kept me energized.

I remember one moment in particular on Tuesday when we were doing a retched series of Rowing, Burpees, and then Front Squats all in an AMRAP.  It was getting almost near the end and I was on front squats and just toast but with 10 seconds left I could’ve stopped.  At home working out I might of but I heard the instructor call out 10 seconds and I said to myself “2 more…let’s get 2 more”…as the clock struck :00 I exploded up for to hit the “2 more” goal.  It feels great to accomplish the workout but to exceed when I am at the end and burnt out was extra special.

The week ended on a “relaxed” Saturday workout….just kidding!  It was brutal.  Had a chance to partner up with my neighbor on this one and we had fun but boy did it wear us down.  400 m run, 40 front squats, and 40 burpees and then it progressed down from there for 3 rounds.  That was just part one.  In part 2, the mixture of pull ups, hand stand pushups, and double unders was just what I needed to feel like I had an unbelievable week and roll into a nice rest day on Sunday.

Lesson learned this week: Listen to your body!  I almost put myself out of commission with some static presses I did at the end of the workout (in exchange for handstand pushups) and almost tweaked my neck.  Luckily, I was just sore a bit Sunday.  You gotta listen to your body even when your ego gets in the way!

12 workouts down through 3 weeks.  Time to crush week 4!

Week 3: CrossFit Journey2021-03-19T10:40:30-04:00

Week 2: CrossFit Journey

Week 2 was fun.  For 2 reasons.  First, I now have a firm understanding of many of the moves that I need to be performing and am a lot more comfortable doing them on my own and knowing I am doing them fairly well.  Secondly, now having some confidence, I can push myself a bit further and step it up to another level ultimately helping me get to my goals quicker.

I was only able to go 3 times this past week but that is partially due to trying to figure out the best schedule that works for me and also make sure I can work around family obligations.  With some unknowns (like my son getting sick) the latter half of the week got away from me.

But, this is where the learning comes into play.  I am missing it.  I am excited to get back to it on Monday.  And that…that is what I was looking for when starting this and it makes me stay motivated to show up and dedicate myself to the process. So even though I only got 3 in this week (my goal is 4-5) I was able to use that as a motivator to roll it into the next week.

Interesting learning this week: A move called “Skin the Cat”.  This move required you to use the rings and it was the first time I ever had to use it.  The first time seeing the instructor doing it my jaw dropped and I was like “uh, that’s hard”.  But, after getting some instruction on it and trying it I was pleased with how I could get the move down.  However, I realized how weak my core is and the more I work on it I’ll be able to do this move much better.  For those wondering what this move is I found a video on youtube that explains it – https://youtu.be/4i2_ImaWGzs

Onward to Week 3 and will look to share even more stories and some pictures/videos of the journey

Take care

Brian

Week 2: CrossFit Journey2021-03-19T10:40:30-04:00

Week 1: CrossFit Journey

One week down!  What an incredible week it was.  A lot of emotions on many ends.  Couple things I learned in my first week.

  1. Pace yourself.  Even with a lower weight you can get your butt kicked
  2. Challenge yourself.  There were many times I could’ve given up but being in that environment made me push harder
  3. Group atmosphere is awesome!  There is a lot of competition as you go through the workouts and you definitely want to keep up with the others that have been doing it longer
  4. The people are so friggen nice.  Everyone comes up and introduces themselves and are so helpful to make sure you are comfortable in the setting.

This week I participated in 4 workouts and what I loved was that each and everyone of them were different.  Some days there was more heavy lifting or focus on strength building while others were a lot more endurance based and hit many different exercises throughout.   I think every single body part got hit and boy and I sore.  But it’s that good feeling sore when you know you wrecked it!

How I challenged myself this week:

On our Saturday workout, it was a team competition and Rope Climbs were one of the exercises.  This was a fast-paced routine with each of us having to do 2 per round over 3 rounds.  I had never done a Rope Climb before but with some encouragement and sheer will, I did a “leg free” rope climb ALL 6 Times to the top!  My body hated me after but it was a rush to accomplish that mini-goal.

Rest day tomorrow and then on to week 2.

Stay tuned!

Week 1: CrossFit Journey2021-03-19T10:40:31-04:00

My Crossfit Journey: The Beginning

After many years of different fitness routines, working out at gyms and at home, and doing everything from heavy lifting to cardio, I decided to make a commitment to something new.

CrossFit came calling.  I was getting hit from several angles about Crossfit and had thought about doing it in the past put was reluctant to change at that time.  I’m not sure exactly what put me over the edge but I think a key factor was my new outlook on life and approach to trying new things even if they scare me or take me out of my comfort zone.  Starting my Podcast several months back was a recent success of mine to get out of my comfort zone and put myself out there even if I felt I didn’t belong.

It was the first step that was the most important.  And I took it!

Before I get started on week 1, I worked with the owner of CrossFit RTP, Lei Fei, to make sure my mechanics were sound and I had an idea of where I needed to start with some moves.  I was drinking from a firehose in those sessions.  A lot of new terminology and a lot of different moves that were foreign to me.

But, it was a huge help.

  1. We realized my squat was being done poorly which could cause knee issues down the road
  2. We realized my pushup was slightly off as I had my hands a bit too high across the shoulders and needed them more back in line with my chest.
  3. I had zero idea what a snatch, thruster, hollow up, and many other movements were

Now, onto group classes and the beginning of the fitness journey.

Stay tuned…

 

My Crossfit Journey: The Beginning2021-03-19T10:40:31-04:00
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