So this weekend is the big Fight Gone Bad 5 fundraising workout to benefit the Wounded Warrior Project and Lance Armstrong’s Livestrong Foundation. I had to do my WOD on my own a day early, and my goal was to break 300, after scoring 283 last April. I was successful in hitting 313! Here’s what worked for me, hope it helps others to outperform their goals tomorrow:
1. Have a strategy. It’s important to know your strong and weak exercises. This puts you mentally in control when the pain hits. At Crossfit Ignite, the sequence was:
3 rounds of:
- Row 1 minute with the Concept2 on the calories setting
- 75# push press 1 minute
- 75# sumo deadlift high pull (SDLHP, known to rowers as “upright rows”) 1 minute
- 20-inch box jumps 1 minute
- 20-lb. wall ball shots 1 minute
- rest 1 minute
Add up the total number of calories/reps completed and that is your score.
2. Raise some money! That’s what this is all about, after all. I raised a small amount, but it’s something, and Microsoft generously matched the donation so I doubled its impact. I like to think this gave me some good karma for the WOD.
3. Know that you need to average 20 reps per exercise in order to hit 300. Don’t try to blast out your strong points, but rather try to pace yourself to get a few extra points on your strong exercises, while not exhausting yourself too much and crashing on your weak ones.
4. Keep a steady pace, don’t get rattled, don’t go nuts on the first round and kill yourself for the rest of the WOD.
For me, rowing and sumo deadlift high pulls were known strengths, and push press was my big weakness. Box jumps are normally a strength for me, but the sequence of them in FGB right after the SDLHPs for some reason makes them hard for me. Wall balls were a weakness for me in April.
Most rowers don’t use the calories setting on the Concept2 much, so I tested it out at different damper settings for 30 seconds at a time in the warmup. I wanted to hit about 25 calories per row, and I figured I needed to keep it at about a 1500 cal/hr pace to do so. The first time I did FGB, I maxed the row (32 calories, well over 2000 cal/hr pace), but then was dead for the next exercises which were my weaknesses, leading to a big dropoff in performance. I also rowed at a damper of 4 and 40+ strokes per minute, which put my heart rate through the roof. This time I felt that a setting of 8 and a rating of 32-34 was a better bet – using more strength and less cardio so that I wouldn’t be gasping for breath while trying to do push presses.
It worked – my row calories were lower but I was able to click out the push presses in a smooth rhythm. Ditto for the SDLHPs. When I hit about 23 reps on an exercise and still had 5 seconds left, I dumped it and set up for the next station, so that I had those extra seconds to spend on the weaker exercises, which reduced my attrition rate overall. This helped me do better on the push presses and box jumps, and especially on the wall balls. The wall balls were much better this time, and I was able to push out a couple extra reps each round because they were at the end of the round.
I hope this helps everyone in FGB5 this weekend, and good luck!