Like I’d Coach Anyone

Today’s Workout (No CAP)
Franklin Hill Sprints

3 x 3rd Lamppost (140m)
2:30 rest between sprints

4 x 2nd Lamppost (100m)
2:00 rest between sprints

5 x 1st Lampost (60m)
1:00 rest between sprints

…and coming Friday (CAP)
3 rounds
15 Burpees
15 Knees to elbows

followed by
3 rounds
15 Renegade Rows (45/30)
30 Lateral Bar hops

followed by
15 Push ups
15 Thrusters (65/45)I was by myself one Tuesday afternoon, doing a workout in the empty gym. I had been intrigued by one of the Regional workouts the team did and wanted to give it a shot. Some of you may remember it — in conga line fashion, each team member rowed 1000m, performed 25 pistol squats, finishing with 15 power cleans at 225# (for the men)! First Danny, then Lindsey, then Shirley, finishing with Logan. I wanted to see if I could accomplish it.

So on that Tuesday afternoon I had wandered down to the big room and warmed up slowly, alternating between rowing and cleans, slowly but surely increasing my barbell to 225#. Everything was looking good. I finally reached 225# and although it was heavy, it felt, much to my delight, pretty good. So off I went.

I was went fairly aggressive on the row, but not so much that I got creamed. Then the pistols. A strong movement for me, and although 25 of them slowed me down some, I was pretty happy with where I was going into the cleans. And then…oh, those cleans.

It hit me like a punch in the face. That 225# felt NOTHING like it had in the warm up. I barely made clean number one. I missed the next two and finally had to settle on waiting 45 seconds between reps. At that rate this was going to take me another 15 minutes! As I struggled through the next five, thoughts started to creep in:

“You should lower the weight.”
“No, I can do this.”
“I know you can, no one says you can’t. And you should lower the weight. This workout is not just about making it. This isn’t that Games.”
“Let me get through five.”
“How would you coach someone else if you were watching them do cleans like you were doing them right now?”
“I get it, and I’m different cuz I’m ME! I’m a coach and I know the difference. I know what I’m getting into.”
“That’s nice, Michael. But why are you doing this? You go something to prove something or are you here to get stronger?”
“Shut up.”

And I hideously muscled my way through 5 reps at 225# before finally agreeing with myself to lower the weight. I lowered it to 205#. Cute, right? It took me about 19 minutes. For those of you who weren’t at Regionals, that was as long as it took from Danny (#1) starting to Logan (#4) finishing. If I really had wanted to do the same kind of workout, 185# would have been the weight. I even knew that when I lowered it to 205#.

So the next time one of our coaches says something to you about lowering the weight or doing something different, know that we struggle with exactly the same things. And that the coaching is coming from the experience not only of coaching people, but of consciously wrestling with our own fitness demons.


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