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14 Oct 2017 – Coach Salt's Lessons from the London Marathon

It's marathon time again! Or at least it's the very daunting time when runners have found out if they have their place in the 2018 London Marathon and eagerly scour the internet for that perfect training plan, read reams of articles on nutrition advice and book into the nearest running shop to have their gate analysed to find that sweet pair of new running kicks. All this excitement has spurred me into writing a blog which I had planned about 5 months ago having just crossed the finishing line of my first marathon. So, at long last, here you go, Salt’s personal lessons from the London Marathon 2017.

Plan your Pre-hab

Many people who take up a long distance running challenge get injured. Running takes a major toll on your joints and ligaments which, if you haven't done much distance running before, they will not be conditioned to. Build pre-hab into your training plan, including solid warm up routines, foam rolling, unilateral strength work, sports massages (if you can afford it) and stick to it. You can’t afford 2-4+ weeks out injured during your training, or even worse missing your event(!) because you didn’t prep your body for the significant change in stimulus.

Running a Marathon won’t make you fitter

CrossFit Level 1 alert: Fitness is a measure of 10 recognised general physical skills. Training for and running a marathon will increase your endurance and stamina, but you will suffer in other areas. I personally did the ‘minimum’ running specific training I believed I could manage, 2 sessions a week. This meant cutting down my CrossFit training from 5 to 3 sessions a week, and favouring sessions focused on Aerobic Capacity rather than Power or Gymnastics. Whilst I was able to get the results I wanted for my marathon, I had to fight to maintain my general fitness level static.

In my experience, a half marathon supplemented my CrossFit training, whereas the marathon took over both my training and a significant portion of my life!

People are really impressed by Marathons

Consider my Grace time and my Marathon time. I’m roughly in the top 15% of finishers for both. When I tell my Mum I PB’ed my Grace time she tells me that that sounds good and she is proud of me, but doesn’t really understand how much commitment has been required to get myself into a position to complete those 2 and a half minutes. Yet, when I crossed the Marathon finish line, it was phenomenal. There was champagne, tears (mostly mine), friends and family got told for weeks on end, it was a clear definition of physical fitness. This isn’t a dig at my Mum, she is lovely, but a representation of people’s perceptions of the input required in achieving your goal.

All you can focus on is your own input over the things you can control. Don’t be steered by others' perceptions of what your goal should be, or their understanding of the effort required for you to make it there. That said; lap it up as much as you can afterwards and shamelessly glug that Champagne!

The London Marathon will trump all other events you do

London is at its very best on Marathon day. The crowds are 6 deep for the full 26 miles, the noise is deafening, strangers even talk to you and congratulate you afterwards! Everyone will have their favourite landmark on the route, and you will see athletes genuinely breaking down in tears as the atmosphere becomes overwhelming. For me there is no better feeling than turning the corner onto Tower Bridge on a crisp bluebird day with the bands playing and the sea of colours from the runners and supporters. You feel like you are flying! I even had the audacity to think I wasn’t going to suffer the inevitable wall in the last 6 miles. I was truly honoured to run in this event and was incredibly proud of London. I can really say it was the hardest, best race I have ever done.


WORKOUT OF THE DAY

"Hard Labour"

In teams of 3, complete as many rounds a possible in 25 minutes of:
150/100 Calorie bike (+50 calories if on rower)
100 Power Cleans (60/40 kg)
150/100 Calorie bike
80 Push Jerks (60/40 kg)
150/100 Calorie bike
60 Front Squats (60/40 kg)
150/100 Calorie bike
40 Clusters (60/40 kg)
* One person works at a time, split work as needed

17 September 2017 – WOD

WORKOUT OF THE DAY

CrossFit (11 am – Noon)

A) Weightlifting: Snatch

A1) Every minute for 10 minutes
Minutes 1 to 5: 3 Halting snatch deadlift (3 second pause in power position)
Minutes 5 to 10: 3 Snatch high pulls

A2) 20 minutes to build to a heavy power snatch

Competition Class (9.30 – 11 am)

A) Gymnastics Test: Muscle-ups for max reps

B) Weightlifting: Snatch

B1) Every minute for 10 minutes
Minutes 1 to 5: 3 Halting snatch deadlift (3 second pause in power position)
Minutes 5 to 10: 3 Snatch high pulls

B2) 20 minutes to build to a heavy power snatch

C) Conditioning

For Time:
800m Run
30/21 Calorie row
25 Burpees
20 Clusters 50/35 kg

Engine Work (8.30 – 9.30 am)

3 rounds @ max effort
15 Calorie assault bike / 250m Row
10 Kettlebell swings (32/24 kg)
10 Burpees
10 Kettlebell swings (32/24 kg)
10 Burpees
10 Kettlebell swings (32/24 kg)
15 Calorie assault bike / 250m Row

– Rest 10 minutes between rounds –

21 May 2017 – One Week until Murph!

Memorial Day Murph is just one week away! Make sure you sign up via Team up and donate to this year's charity, Help 4 Homeless Veterans via their website.

WORKOUT OF THE DAY

CrossFit (11 am - Noon)

A) Snatch Skill Development
A1) 5 sets of hip power snatch + overhead squat
*Start position is slight dip and forward inclination with shoulders over the bar
*Emphasis on vertical torso and straight extension through the shoulders (no over arching on the extension)
*Sets @ 60%, 65%, 70%, 75%, 80% of 1RM Snatch


A2) 5 sets of 2 hang snatch above knee with 2 pauses
*Load by feel ending at no more than 80% of 1RM snatch
*Pause 2 seconds above knee and 2 seconds in overhead squat

A3) Snatch with 3-second lift-off: 12 reps total @ 75%
*Emphasise leg drive and controlled bar path during the initial pull to above the knee

Competition Class (9.30 – 11 am)

 

A) Snatch Skill Work (see CrossFit above)

B) Gymnastics Skill Development: Muscle-ups

C) Conditioning
"Amanda"
9-7-5 reps, for time of:
Muscle-up
Snatch (squat) (60/40 kg)

Engine Work (8.30 – 9.30 am)

A) Conditioning: Threshold
4 x 3 minutes on : 6 minutes off:
500m Row
Max rep dumbbell clusters in remaining time
*Cluster is squat clean into a thruster. Dumbbells start from below the knee
*Each round should be a very hard effort, hold on to those dumbbells

MOBILITY DRILL OF THE WEEK

15 Sept 2016 – WOD

The CrossFit 1864 Crew living the Chalk Dream at the Bacchus Half Marathon

WORKOUT OF THE DAY

A) Conditioning
5 Rounds for time:
5 Clusters (70/45 kg)
10 Chest-to-bar pull ups

B) Strength: Front squat
Every 90 seconds for 12 minutes (8 sets), perform 3 reps

C) Bonus Gainz
5 rounds, not for time:
5 Strict pull-ups
5 Strict ring dips
- As load as required
- Rest as needed between movements/rounds