Reebok Nano 4

Working Out on the Road

This past week, I traveled to Chicago to visit family for Thanksgiving. With only one full “real” week of Crossfit under my belt (and 2 additional weeks ramping up), I was not happy to spend a week away from my gym. I’m still working on building healthy habits around Crossfit, and a break in the routine before it was even an established routine made me nervous.

I had several offers from Chicagoland friends to visit their Crossfit boxes. I’m not even fully comfortable working out at my own box yet due to the extreme scaling I have to do to (barely) keep up, so while I kept those options open, I never got the courage to go through with it. I didn’t want to take a week off, though, so I looked into some travel WODs. It turned out to be very easy to program an in-room workout that will hopefully keep me ready for Crossfit next week.

It is probably much easier to come up with a suitable bodyweight workout when you’re as low on the strength and fitness totem pole as I am. Since I’m still terrible at push ups and sit ups, those made for likely in-room workout components. Add in squats (which I’m not good at!) and there’s a nice little travel WOD.

I did 5 rounds for time of:
10 push ups
10 sit ups
10 air squats

10:30. I was sore the next day, so I’m calling it a good travel WOD – at least until I build up some strength. Here are some more travel WOD ideas: http://www.noexcusescrossfit.com/2009/12/02/travel-wods/

I did a variation on that workout at home today, substituting a 20 second plank for the sit ups. I fear I’m coming down with the airplane plague, but if Zicam can help me out, I’ll repeat the workout tomorrow, and head back to Crossfit on Tuesday.

In the meantime, I’m awaiting the arrival of a couple new workout gadgets that will hopefully help get me up to speed a bit faster. Let me backtrack a bit… one thing that has showed up a few times in my brief Crossfit career is pull ups. I have never even been able to hang from a pull up bar, let alone do an actual pull up – ever. I don’t think the coach believed me when I said that, but wouldn’t you know – my mom dug up this gem over Thanksgiving. It’s a physical fitness report from gym class my senior year in high school, 1992.

Physical fitness report, senior year of high school, 1992

Physical fitness report, senior year of high school, 1992

I am not kidding! I couldn’t even hang from the bar.

Coach Lauren at Crossfit said that she suspected it was as much a lack of grip strength as anything else, which is probably right. I bought a pair of grip gloves and am awaiting the arrival of a home pull up bar. I went with the Perfect Multi Gym pull up bar after watching several reviews stating that it does less damage to the door frame than its more popular competitor, the Iron Gym pull up bar. Lastly, I ordered some pull up assistance bands, because – like I said – I can’t even hang from the bar, let alone do a pull up! I may need to add a pair of gymnastics rings and do ring pull ups from the bar until I can use the bar, but I’m hoping that with the assistance bands, I’ll be able to start there.

The plan is to work on building up some of my weaknesses at home so that I can bring those improvements to the gym. I also ordered the book Becoming a Supple Leopard. I may be too early in my Crossfit career to benefit from it, but I’m hoping that I can incorporate some of its advice now, and re-read it a year from now and absorb more.

On the shopping front, I also lucked out and scored a half price pair of Nano 4 shoes. I had bought a pair of Nano 3’s in my usual running shoe size (9), and they’re just a tiny bit too small. They’re wearable, but occasionally my right toes hit the front of the shoe. This Reebok Nano 4 sale was only on size 9.5, but that was perfect for me! So I’m good to go in the shoe department.

Here’s to a triumphant return to the gym next week – or at least a return without losing any ground!

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