Barbells, karate

Today I bench pressed up to 3 x 10 at 80 lbs, then back squatted up to 3 x 5 at 165.

Tonight at karate I practiced kihon kata ichi all the way through with no supervision for the first time. It’s fun to have it coming together! Next time I can start focusing on a few details like keeping my arm straight in certain places (prep for down block) and keeping in the same plane without bobbing up and down. I need to “glide.”

I learned today that this karate is the Kataka-ha school of shito-ryu style, one of four schools of Japanese karate.

I want to donate a barbell and a few plates and teach the karate gals the press, push-press, front squat, and bent-over row. I think they could use some pulling in their workouts and some overhead pushing. I wonder if they’d be interested. It’s surely not my place to offer ideas for improvement, but I can’t help myself!


Barbells again

Yesterday, Tuesday August 27: Front squat up to 2 x 10 then 6 and 4 reps at 135 (slightly over body weight). Shoulder press, 3 x 10 at 65. Today my shoulders, chest, and upper back are slightly sore from Monday’s bench press (I assume). It feels good.

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I think my upper body has gotten a bit skinny. I wonder if I can bulk up at my stage in life? If I have the self-discipline, and don’t flake out in favor of regular CrossFit which is so much fun, I’ll do sets of 10 in the barbell lifts for a while, say, through the end of November, and see if I can build muscle. I really don’t know anything about building hypertrophy except do more reps per set. There is dietary advice available, but it’s hard to know how much of it would be inapplicable to me as a 49-year-old woman. I definitely am not going to start drinking a bunch of milk, for example. And I believe I eat high in protein as it is. So I’ll just try to do more reps per set and skip the met-con. (Can I even get away with that?)

Today (so far) bench press up to three sets of five at a whopping 75 pounds (gotta start somewhere and I have not been benching); and deadlift up to 1 x 5 at 200. It wasn’t very hard. I felt great today. When I get back to the gym if I have time I’ll do some good mornings or bent rows.



Updated — later in the day I did 4 x 10 good mornings at 65 lbs. Throughout the day I did many sets of five push-ups and about five sets of five pull-ups.

Catching up lots!

Today, Saturday, August 24: I taught two CrossFit classes then went to karate class. I got to practice kihon kata ichi again with Tracey and it was rewarding — I’m starting to be able to do some parts of it without over-thinking it. But not all of it! I came home and started on the project of re-vamping the garden to the left of the patio, including some digging. I’m excited about this project.

Thursday, 8/22: Back squat up to 3 x 5 at 155. I also did some weighted pull-ups. Then a WOD: EMOTM for 10 minutes, 3 power clean + jerk at 95 lbs with Mike, Dean, and Kyle. Then drove to Alki with my bike for a fun and easy bike ride. Later I taught a CrossFit class and went to karate. A pretty active day, as was today.

Thursday, 8/15/13: I deadlifted up to 190 x 5 then did that day’s WOD:
AMRAP 10 mins:
10 double KB clean with two 16 kgs
20 double-unders
9 rounds + 8 reps
That was the fourth day in a row of CrossFit. I don’t do that very often.

Wednesday 8/14: Back squatted to 1 x 7 at 145 with Tam Holland then WOD: “super thief” 6 rounds for time, 5 x 53 lb snatch + 250m run, 11:28, I am a slow runner and don’t try hard enough on running workouts.

Tuesday, 8/13: The skill was the kettlebell snatch, one of my favorites. I snatched the 24 kg for only the second session — I snatched it for the first time in late July or early this month. This day’s WOD was 4 rounds, 1 min each, for total reps:
kettlebell snatch 24 kg, push-ups, kettlebell deadlift 24 kg, AbMat sit-ups, rest. I had a relatively low score of 266 because I used the 24 kg kettlebell and only did five of those per minute. But I’m proud of this workout because it was the first one where I used a 24 kg kettlebell in a WOD.
Monday, 8/12 I did a strength workout of alternating sets of power clean and push-jerk with sets of pull-ups, not timed. Five clean and jerks, five pull-ups, etc. I went from 63 lbs to 103 on the barbell and from 5 horizontal ring-rows to 5 pull-ups with 20 kg added weight. Then I was changing lightbulbs on the 36″ box jump and realized I was too chicken to jump on it right then–had I lost my box-jump mojo, or was I just fatigued from the clean and jerks?–so I re-warmed up with some lower jumps and eventually hit a single max box jump of 38.5″ high from a standstill.


Fight Gone Bad

I went with Maureen to CrossFit Seattle for a workout for the first time in a really, really long time. They were having Fight Gone Bad and a barbecue. The have so much space they were able to set up ten or more lanes. Everyone started on wallball and finished on rowing. It would be nice to be able to organize it that way!

Wallball (12#): 26, 23, 21
KB swing (16 kg): 28, 25, 22
Box jump (20″): 16, 14, 13
Pushpress (25 kg): 15, 11, 14
Row (calories): 13, 11, 13
Total 265 … about the same as always! If I’d done sumo deadlift highpulls instead of swings, and/or used the 24 kg kettlelbell that I believe is normally Rx for women (I forgot this at the time), I would have scored a few lower, I think. That’s what happened in June 2011. Here are all Fight Gone Bad posts back to April 2005

Two workouts today – must be a Monday

Lately it seems I work really hard early in the week and go easier at the end, and now I have karate on Thursdays and Saturdays so that will be a good pattern to keep. Today I did a strength workout of alternating sets of presses and pull-ups, with a goal of five per set even if I broke up the set. I was really happy with being able to do these heavy pull-ups; and 93# on the press is two pounds away from a PR.


Later in the day I worked out with my 6:30 PM class. Good mornings up to two sets of 8 at 80. These are really hard for me – better do more of them! Then the workout of the day was from Jeff Martone’s book Kettlebell Rx. Squat thrust, clean, 1-hand swing, clean, repeat with other hand, every 30 seconds for 10 minutes. I’d done this one before and felt that it wasn’t that hard, so when Mike said I should use the 24 kg, I was ready to try it. I had snatched 24 kg before (on one occasion only so far), and cleaning it is so much easier than snatching, so why not?

The hardest thing is setting down the cleans at that weight. You want to be rid of it so bad but you want to pay attention to your back position on the way down. I love it when after all this time I’m able to do something heavier in a WOD than I’ve ever done. Feels great! Then George and I both got in the lake for a minute to cool off. Had to ride the scooter home with wet shorts on and it felt good — it’s so warm out.


Front squat, deadlift, box jump

Today: Front squat up to 5+ at 90% of 1 rep max. I believe my 1 rep max front squat is about 185 so I warmed up and did six reps at 165. It was really hard — I think my 1 rep max isn’t as strong as I thought it was!

WOD: 21-15-9 deadlift (155) and box jump (20″) for time. 10:44 Rx. A major struggle. My lower back was tightening up and almost feeling numb! Nothing hurt though so I kept going, but very slowly.

I hadn’t worked out in a week! I had karate twice since then and went camping. I did a lot of swimming in beautiful, isolated Blythe Lake. We swam mostly in our super fun inner tubes, with our fins, and kicked all over the lake. I also did some (for me) really good swimming in just my fins. I’m slowly starting to get better at relaxing in the water. It’s pretty satisfying, even though it is taking such a long time. I rarely get “quality practice” because for me, that means a nice peaceful lake where I can relax. Tomorrow I’m supposed to swim here in Seattle with Liz and hope I can swim well again.

Karate is awesome. Last Thursday night I had class for the first time with (sensei) Joanne, who had taught our self-defense class at the gym. She’s an excellent teacher. Also I’m gratified to see my balance improving a little on the kicks, and my memory a little bit on the blocks. Joanne said my left front kick looks like it will eventually have some good snap and power to it.