Rob’s first WIN at a Competition!
He’s been on plenty of podiums, but this was his first win! It was amazing to watch him work yesterday. He might not have been the fastest athlete out there (or maybe he was, he is a freakin’ animal), but I’ll be damned if he wasn’t the SMARTEST with the best game plan and it certainly paid off! Proud does not begin to describe it.
Our April On-Ramp Program starts TONIGHT at 6:30pm! Please tell your friends and family!
Coach’s Corner: Smolov Tips by Coach Colin
Ahhh it’s here. Squat Cycle. HELLZ. YEZ. First let me say that we as a coaching staff are all really impressed and proud of you guys. This year’s Open brought with it a little competition, lots of PRs and firsts, and a tad bit of frustration (don’t get me started on you, 14.3…). Many of you signed up for it for the first time. Many of you just did the workouts in class for fun (fun…yeah that’s it…). But regardless of whether you were “competing” in it or not, it gave everyone a chance to try some new things and watch other people experience the suck first hand cheer on some great people.
But it’s over now, so it’s time to actually do some real work refocus our attention. We spend a lot of time exercising. Some of that time is devoted to strength training (think squats, push presses, or OLY lifts before WODS) but most of it is devoted to our metabolic conditioning (the WOD). As Erik mentioned previously, we’re going to shift our focus to getting stronger. This in turn will help our metcons. (See what we’re doing here?)
Welcome to the Smolov Cycle. I’ve dabbled in this a couple times over the past year and a half and felt obligated to give you all some simple tips/advice that I learned the hard way picked up on. As a reminder, it is a three week cycle (it’s actually much longer, but we’ll only be doing part of it) where those following the Fitness programming will be squatting M/W/F and those following the Performance programming will be squatting M/W/F/SAT. The fourth week we will taper off a bit to give our bodies some much needed rest, go for a squat PR, and slap each other on the back as we celebrate with vodka and communism.
Let me just address a few questions I know you have before we start. NO, squatting this much is not bad for you. Squatting is one of the best things you can do for your body, health, and overall strength/muscle development…when done correctly. I have faith in every single one of you that you will be doing it correctly. YES, it does suck. YES, you will be stronger after. NO, three weeks is not a long time. YES, but it’s more of a strawberry-blond. And NO, you are not going to regret it. I’ve done this twice. It’s hell to go through but the juice is worth the squeeze.
If you stop reading and listen to nothing else I have to say, please remember this one thing: BASE YOUR PERCENTAGES OFF OF 90% OF YOUR 1RM. The whole program is based off of percentages of your one-rep max HBBS (high bar back squat). DO NOT USE 100% to set these percentages. If you do it will honestly be the worst three weeks of your life. Life through your eyes will seem like a sick, cruel joke. You’ll curse the day you decided to start working out and alienate yourself from your friends and loved ones suck. I went off of 100% the first time and 90% the second time and it was a world of difference. Like, skipping around in a field of poppies and dreaming of ice cream faries kind of a world. Here are some general tips to crush this thing.
- MIND SET – This program is meant to push you to your physical and mental limits. I refer to this a lot: mental toughness. To do well with this program you’ve got to have it. You’re going to be spending a lot of time under the bar. That’s a lot of time that your body is going to be spent stressed. A lot will go on in your head. Mental toughness is ignoring it. It’s not listening to that voice that’s telling you to stop. It’s pushing through your fifth set of four on Friday when you know you’ve still got three heavy sets to go. It’s taking that voice that’s screaming, “It’s too much weight, you’re not strong enough to do this, why don’t we just go get Ben and Jerry’s instead of going to class tonight?” and punching it right in it’s smug little face. I’m going to be honest: there will be days when you do NOT want to drag yourself to the gym…believe me. Mental toughness is finding the will to go. To say, “Screw this. I can sit at home, eat bags of Doritos and Rolos and watch reruns of Law and Order: SVU (the ones when Stabler was still around, you know…when it was good) another day. Today I squat.” We’re all going through the same thing. Remember: the Facebook page is a great place to reach out to for some motivation. We’re all going to need it at some point so be a superfriend and be supportive of one another 🙂
- EAT – You. Have. To. EAT. A LOT. Now, this does not mean a) use this as an excuse to eat whatever the hell you want (you are what you eat, always remember that…don’t be a pint of ice cream) or b) use this as a “bulk,” which I honestly don’t think any of us are doing. The point is that you are going to be under heavy, heavy load three (Fitness) to four (Performance) times a week. This is very taxing on the body. For you to survive succeed, you need to fuel up. Please don’t find yourself saying “Oh man, I barely had a chance to eat today. Well, I was going to have something at 11 and then I got caught up with blah blah blah.” Listen, I understand that everyone can have hectic schedules at times. I’m guilty of saying that exact thing. But you really need to make sure you are eating regularly or you will find yourself pinned under the bar. As far as nutrition goes just eat what you usually eat, maybe a little bit more, and I suggest adding in some extra carbs. Carbs are your friends. If you’ve been shying away from them recently, give them a call, make up, cuddle, and then devour them.
- RECOVERY – this is probably the most important aspect of this short, yet intense cycle. Muscle/strength (#GAINZ) is built by tearing down your muscles, in this case via squatting, and then your body rebuilding them even stronger. Due to volume of squatting we’ll be doing, we want to maximize our recovery time so we’re as close to fresh as possible every session. Basically, spend a lot of time on recovery or you’re going to feel like doodoo. These are the most important aspects of recovery for this program.
- Stretching/Foam Rolling – Work them wheels! Not only before a workout but, more importantly, afterwards. I consistently see a lot of people run out of the gym right when class is over. If you have the time, I beg you to stay an extra 10-20 minutes to stretch and foam roll. Stretching will help circulate blood through your muscles, speeding up the recovery process. Foam rolling will loosen up that tight fascia and help you become mobile again. Please people, you’ll be beating the hell out of your legs, give them some TLC.
- SLEEP – sleep is by far the most important aspect of recovery. You skip out on sleep and your squats will suffer (not to mention your energy levels, mood, attention, cognitive function, etc.). Aim for AT LEAST 8 HOURS. More if possible.
- Supplements – I’ve spent more money than I ever care to remember on Jack3d supplements that I gave them up completely a couple years ago. But there are a few that will not only aid you in your quest for giant PRs but should really be considered to be additions to your everyday routine.
- Fish Oil – Fish Oil is the king of recovery supps. It lowers inflammation, it’s EPA and DHA (Google it) are great for the heart, and it helps increase oxygen flow through the bloodstream (it’s like taking stretching pills!), among many other things. We sell an amazing fish oil from SFH at the gym. It’s top notch quality (never a fishy burp), comes in multiple flavors (I like mint because it tastes like Christmas and sugarplums), and even has a daily dose of vitamin D. It’s pricey, but you pay for what you get, and it’s quality. For those with a more conservative wallet, I highly recommend Pure Pharma’s O3. Seriously, if there is one supplement to take, it’s this. If there was one time to try it out, it’s now.
- Vitamin D – humans obtain vitamin D naturally from direct sunlight, so before you throw the shades on, lather up, and forgo buying some, let’s remember some things. We’ve had a crappy winter; it’s still cold outside; and I can guarantee no one is going out there anyways, without sunblock on, to soak up the recommended 10 minutes worth. Again, Pure Pharma makes a good product called D3, which has coconut oil mixed in the formula (vitamin D is fat soluble).
- Magnesium/Zinc – Magnesium and zinc are something that almost everyone is deficient in. These minerals help with a whole heap of recovery aspects. They’ll even help you sleep more soundly. While I’m on a Pure Pharma kick (sadly, I’m not getting anything for all this endorsement), they make a sup called M3. Now, by no means are Pure Pharma the only brand of these vitamins/minerals that will work, I just know from experience that they work very well.
- GLC 2000 – It’s one of the best joint support products I’ve found. It’s glucosamine & chondrotitin potency is crazy good. If you ever have knee or general joint pain/achiness, give this stuff a whirl. It’s a miracle worker.
I don’t know about you all, but I’m really excited for this. Strength is the key to success in any fitness plan, and we’re going to nail that down. I can guarantee you’ll all be surprised at the amount of things you’ll be better at after this that aren’t squats. Let’s get after this!
Template for the Next Month
Just as Colin said, Fitness peeps will be squatting Monday, Wednesday, Friday. Yup. Performance peeps will be squatting a 4th day, Saturday. Performance people, look at the work for Fitness to understand what work is being done in class. The “extra” work that doesn’t line up with the Fitness work is the stuff you are expected to do OUTSIDE of class time. (BBG stands for Barbell Gymnastics, aka Weightlifting, aka Snatch and C&J). Here is a fairly accurate outline of the next few weeks (some minor changes may be made):
Monday – Squat, Metcon
Tuesday – BBG, Metcon
Wednesday – Squat, Upper Body Strength
Friday – Squat, Metcon
Saturday – Metcon
Monday – Snatch, Squat, Metcon
Tuesday – C&J, Metcon
Wednesday – Squat, Power BBG, Upper Body Strength
Friday – Squat, Metcon
Saturday – Squat, Metcon, ME BBG (in BB Club)
WORKOUT OF THE DAY
1. Smolov 1/1 – here is the Smolov Calculator. PLEASE HAVE YOUR WEIGHTS CALCULATED BEFORE COMING TO CLASS!
HBBS 6X6 @ 70% – rest at least 2 minutes
10 rounds for total calories of:
30 seconds ME Row for Calories
90 seconds Active Recovery (Row) @ 55-65% RPE
7X1 Snatch + 3 Snatch Grip Push Press – heaviest possible, rest 60-90 seconds
2. Smolov 1/1 – here is the Smolov Calculator. PLEASE HAVE YOUR WEIGHTS CALCULATED BEFORE COMING TO CLASS!
HBBS 6X6 @ 70% – rest at least 2 minutes
15 rounds for total calories of:
30 seconds ME Airdyne or Row for Calories
90 seconds Active Recovery (AD or Row) @ 55-65% RPE
*Notes: Airdyne is the preference (I know, we only have two). During each 90 second recovery interval try to record the exact same caloric total, but make sure you allow for a true max effort interval after. Yes, this is a 30 minute piece.