I ran into an old friend of mine Wednesday morning at 6am class. I haven’t seen him in a very long time.. matter of fact the last time I spent any significant time with him was 2009 in Wyoming at Bighorn 100 mile Mountain Trailrun. He and I have been close acquaintances since I began running ultras back in 2005. We’ve shared many hours together in the middle of the night on lonely mountain and desert single track. We’ve had long conversations at aid stations deep into a long run, sometimes resulting in arguments bordering on a fight. This friend knows me well… he’s been there watching me puke at mile 75 at 3am… he knows me but not as well as he might think he does. At times he has been my worst enemy and one of the most discouraging individuals I’ve ever encountered. He is the ultimate pessimist and has caused me to drop from races before finishing and been a constant source of anguish and disappointment in my running adventures. I’m not sure why I even keep him around. He’s always been with me on long runs as a training partner, but rarely have I seen him at the gym until this morning. My friend’s name is “Self Doubt”, and he is a dirty SOB. He is that little inner voice that every runner knows well… the one that says “you’ve ran far enough… there’s cold beer in your cooler… just stop and relax.” But like I said, I’m new to him showing up at the gym. Even during a grueling longer hero WOD, he’s always been pretty quiet, because I could usually see the light at the end of the tunnel… not so Wednesday morning. 4 weeks into this Outlaw BB Squatting cycle, the weights have gotten to a very uncomfortable level. On every working set of 3x, self-doubt was screaming “you can’t do this… it’s too heavy!!!” I’m sure we all heard it, but somehow everyone was able push through his giant lie and get the work done. It’s often been said that “real life experiences occur just outside your comfort-zone”, but few dare to go there. We like to stay within our known limits. We shy away from big weights, long distances, or (insert whatever) that we aren’t quite certain we are capable of accomplishing. But here is where adaptation and evolution of the athlete occurs. Regardless of what some fitness “experts” say, your 1RM will NEVER increase lifting weights at percentages typically found in CF WODs (60-70%). These are great for conditioning purposes, but to develop real strength, you MUST dive into the 90%+ range… which, believe me, is scary. This heavy cycle has changed me (and every other Outlaw) in more ways than physical adaptation (strengths gains). Overcoming self-doubt under an extremely heavy barbell has forged mental toughness and self-confidence in every participant. With just over a week left before test-day, I feel fueled with optimism and a new found respect for the iron. Great job everyone. I love my Outlaws. 3, 2, 1, GO!
Today is an active recovery day from yesterday’s heavy squats. Go do something outside away from the gym. Run, bike, walk, swim, etc. DO NOT DO A WOD!!! We test a week from Friday, but the hay is not in the barn yet… there’s more work to do. Mentally and physically prepare (i.e. eat right and rest when you can).
6x Power snatch @135/95#
9x Over bar Burpee