Is back


Let it never be said that I don't pick up words and phrases from the people around me. Hi, Andy! /me waves!

I have to admit, I had a bit of stage fright as of late. Something about, oh, not being able to see, realizing the world is right outside my door, holy crap, Alex has me on his blog roll, all of that sort of nonsense stuff. When I realized (and, yes, even I need reminding sometimes) that this is for me, consistency is the key, blah, blah, blah, just write already, well, then, yeah, the words just came spooging out, sorta like this. Yeah, like that.

Went to Velocity this morning. Ooooo, boy was that a good thing to do. No, no, not because I exercised, not because I spent time with Kris, no, no, no. Because of the HUMOUR value.

Read: new guy today.

So, the morning workouts are led by Breanne. People come to the morning workouts not because they fit into their schedules, but rather because they're hard. As in HARD. These workouts break people. I've lost count of the number of new people who come to the morning classes, break, and switch back to the noon, afternoon or evening classes. Yeah, yeah, how would I know about that? I've caught up with some of those people in the evening classes when I've missed the morning workout and still needed a workout to do.

You know, when I'm bored.

Today was my first day back in about six weeks. I had been gone so long that my name had been removed from the roll call. A new guy was also there, standing tall, chatting up all the regulars I recognized: the employee, the older grey-haired guy, the macho younger guy who puts on too much bravado, the well-balanced thirty-something guy who works hard and Kris. New Guy was talking to everyone, quite jovial. I leaned over and asked Kris, "Is Breanne going to break him today?"

"Probably," he whispered back.

We started out with the jump rope: warming up by jump jump jumping. I don't know why anyone even bothers to try to keep up with Kris and his jump roping. Do I need to tell you people he can jump 240 steps in a minute? How about his record is over 11000 jump in a row? That it took him about an hour to do? Yeah, the man can jump rope without stopping and without faltering for an HOUR. Just don't try it, okay?

Some people tried to keep up with him. I just tried to jump.

Tried, because some bug kept buzzing around my head as I was jumping. It was incredibly annoying, especially since it started biting me after a few moments.

After a few moments, Kris saw it, too. He stopped jumping and took a step towards me, just as Breanne stopped jumping and started reaching to me.

And I realized that the jump rope was smacking in the top of the head.

I had selected a rope so short that, even though it was clearing my head, it was only barely doing so. The "bug bites" were the rope catching in my hair, and yanking them out.

A lovely welcome back.

So, off to the track we went to continue the warmups. We run down, back, down at a 50% effort level, back with toe-touches and scales. Shuffle down with side shuffles, back with more side shuffles, run down, back, down at 75% effort. Back with more leg stretches, some hand walks to stretch the hamstrings (I swear, all of my instructors know that my hamstrings are killing me, so they work extra hard to help me stretch them!). Along the wall, side stretches, leg swings, back on the floor for stretch twists and mountain climbers, back up, line it up again.

We're all warmed up, so time to run down at 100% effort level. This is where the new guys ALWAYS shine, and New Guy was no exception. This is when the chest thumping starts: a 100% warmup becomes a race. EVERY guy here has done it (except, maybe Kris and the Old Guy, and that's only a maybe), and probably most of the women (including yours truly).

[switch to present tense, it works better]

So, we line up, Breanne makes the calls, "set... go!"

And we're off.

I always work on those first 5 steps. Those are most critical in ultimate, so those are the ones I worry about, I train hardest for, I concentrate on form with. I'd rather be quick than fast in ultimate, so those first five steps, oh, THOSE are the ones where I exert the most effort. THOSE are the ones I care about. THOSE are the ones you'll lose me on if you're not looking.

Oh, poor New Guy. He doesn't realize this.

All he knows is some chick is next to him for those first five yards. How dare she? And the scrawny guy next to him is as fast as he is, if not faster. Oh, he can't stand this.

He starts tensing up and running faster. To his credit, his form does not suffer. He leans from the hips to go faster. He leans forward. Faster. Faster! FASTER!

Until he leans too far forward, and face plants.

I run by, not quite sure what to do.

I want to ask him if he's okay.

I want to tell him not to be a putz, to run within himself, it's a WARMUP not a race.

I want to burst out laughing.

Instead, I do none of this. I let up on my sprint, run by him, give Kris a "whoops" look, like I did something wrong, and finish my sprint. I say nothing as I look back, realizing the guy has fallen and jumped back up immediately to finish the warm up run. Kris looks at me. "Man down!" he hisses. I struggle not to giggle.

Most of us say nothing, but Breanne asks if he's okay. He is. We're all impressed that he popped back up after his spectacular splat. I make some comment about the track jumping up to bite him. We have two more runs to do, we line back up.

New Guy isn't as fast as he was before. I'm ahead of him after my first five steps, and never look back.

[back to past tense]

Today's workout was 4 rounds of:

Sled pull
20 Bradford press
20 box jumps
20 situps
100 rope jumps

Note: Bradford was an asshole.

The sled pull was down 40m and back, dragging the sled with weight. I started with the sled and 45kg, but couldn't lift my knees high enough with the weight, and my knees started hurting. I dropped back down to 25kg, which was light in effort, but good for the knees.

Bradford presses are done with a barbell resting on the shoulders, on the top of the chest. The bar is lifted over the head and back down behind the head to pause on the shoulders. It's lifted up again, back in front of the head, and down to pause on the shoulders at the top of the chest. That's one.

The box jumps were done as an explosive move. One foot on at box (12" or so), other on the ground. Explode up, driving with the top foot up hard and jumping up. Switch feet in the air, landing with the other (previously grounded) foot on the box, and placing the first (previously on the box) foot on the ground. That's one.

The situps were normal.

The jump ropes were normal, preferably with a rope long enough not to pull your hair out on each round.

Instead of progressing through the workout at my own pace, which is admittedly a plod, I went through at Kris' pace. instead of completing 20 of an exercise (or 100), I'd complete as many as I could as Kris did the full number. Keeping up with Kris (at least TRYING to keep up with Kris) is motivating. I'm sure my heart rate never dropped below 120 the entire hour. May not have dropped below 140 for most of it.

Continuing the go-go-go idea of changing things up to fix things, I'm working at the Starbucks over by Kris' work today, seeing if working from a different location will help me be productive. If this post is any indication of productivity, I think this new location is working.

For today anyway.