Tuesday, May 4, 2010


Workout of the Day:

12 minute AMRAP

2 power snatch (60 kg)

4 chest to bar pullup

6 ground to overhead (60 kg)

8 pushup

5 x 3 front squat

1 x max repetitions @ 80 kg

Friday night John and I joined Chris Kemp and the crew at CrosFit Northeast England for a few hours up in Newcastle. Their facility is part of the multi-dimensional Faktory gym, home to professional MMA fighters and badass CrossFitters alike. Also joining us in the workout were the new affiliate owners from Carlisle, England, from all indications what sounds like an incredible new place up in the Lake District.

12 minutes sounded like a long time when Kempie wrote it on the board, and it wound up feeling just as long. I burned through the first few sets, wondering why I was so far ahead of the group. Then I realized, to my embarrassment, I had been doing 4 ground to overheads instead of 6. Crushing mentally. I continued on doing the prescribed number but without the fire I started with. Ended up finishing just shy of 9 rounds. This was a great sequence that balanced simplicity with difficulty. Kudos to Kempie for the programming.

Moving to the front squats after the metabolic conditioning was a change of pace. Typically strength sets are done beforehand so I loved this twist. I failed on my last set at 130 kg, literally just a hair’s breath away from getting the 3rd up. Not bad, but not great. The single set at 80 kg brought me back to our super squat days in high school football. I’d never done a max rep set with front squats before at any weight, but this didn’t feel too awkward. I got to 21 before racking the weight, more because of my elbows slipping lower and lower than anything else.

Afterwards we enjoyed a few beers with the guys before grabbing the train up to Edinburgh. My impressions from this gym were tremendous. It has the feel of an old school boxing gym, but with more variety and better music. The guys are great and they demand a lot of their clientele. After leaving I was definitely a bit bummed I hadn’t planned for a longer stay.

Thankfully, Scotland was on the horizon.

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