Monday, January 30, 2012

Monday's Workout: Fight Gone Bad

I've been sick for the past few days (hence my absence from the gym on Friday), and was hoping to ease into the week with a nice little 5 a.m. workout.

No such luck. On the menu today: Fight Gone Bad.

Rotate through five stations, spending one minute at each:
  • Wall ball shots (20lbs / 14lbs), 10 foot target. Each rep is scored as 1 point.
  • Sumo deadlift high pulls (75lbs / 55 lbs). Each rep is scored as 1 point.
  • Box jumps (20″ box). Each rep is scored as 1 point.
  • Barbell push-presses (75lbs / 55 lbs). Each rep is scored as 1 point.
  • Calorie row. Each calorie burned (according to the monitor) is scored as 1 point.
Rest one minute, and then repeat the five stations. Rest another minute, and then repeat all the stations again, for a total of three rounds.

The first time I did FGB was in September of 2010, when I eked out 209 points as RXed. It was ugly.

A year later, I attempted FGB again, and improved slightly, with 229 points as RXed. It was just as ugly the second time around.

But while Fight Gone Bad is certainly a grueling ass-kicker, it's really not much worse than any other grueling ass-kicker we've experienced at the gym. The difference is the nervous anticipation. We know months in advance that the Fight Gone Bad fundraiser is coming, so we end up psyching ourselves out. For a week before last September's FGB at CrossFit Palo Alto, I spent a few minutes each day working on my wall ball shots and push-presses in the hopes that the extra practice would pay off. I was excited about FGB, but I was also nervous about it.

A while back, Freddy Camacho wrote about "that anxiety you get when you first read what the workout is. We often experience what I like to call 'The Dread.' Nervousness, anxiety, making up excuses on why you don't need to work out that day...'The Dread' can kick your ass."

I suppose that points to another reason why I prefer going to the 5 a.m. class: The workout doesn't get written on the board until it's time to do it. All the subsequent classes eyeball the metcon as soon as they enter the gym, and I imagine they think about it as they warm up and complete their strength skills practice -- especially if the workout's particularly heinous. In contrast, those of us who show up at 5 a.m. are always surprised; after the WOD's revealed, we have just enough time to set up our equipment before the workout begins. We don't have the time to dwell on "The Dread." There's barely any "Dread" at all.

(Besides, we're barely awake enough to comprehend how challenging a workout's going to be until we're in the middle of it.)

Today, we jumped right into Fight Gone Bad without a second thought -- and it was great. Yes, it still whupped my butt. But even without practicing sumo deadlift high pulls in my garage all week, and despite still recovering from a cold, I set a new personal best.

Result: 239 as RXed. But before I get too carried away with myself, I should point out that a good number of my fellow 5 a.m. nutjobs beat my score this morning, including the Terminator, who competed in the NorCal 40s yesterday, where he finished in 13th place out of dozens of athletes. He found out we were going to do FGB today, and despite having completed 7 crazy WODs yesterday, he still showed up at 5 a.m. this morning. Clearly, the man is insane.