Saturday, September 23, 2023

Strongman Saturday

Saturday, September 23, 2023

Iron Titan Gym


Warm Up

Hip Hammy Flow
Reverse Hyper

Sandbag Squat




Frame Carry (Dry Dock Timber)

6 runs at about 25-30 feet each run

About an hour total workout.  Still having a little bit of a hard time fitting in. There are some serious strength athletes that train there.  Still a lot of fun.

I will continue to pop in and try to play with something new every time.

Friday, September 22, 2023


Friday, September 22, 2023

Garage Gym


Warm Up

Reverse Hyper
Crossover Symmetry
Hip Hammy Flow


2023 Games test: “Intervals”

For time:

21 box jump-overs( (♀ 20-inch ♂ 24-inch box, step-down)
15-calorie row
9 burpee box jump-overs (♀ 36-inch ♂ 48-inch box)
21 box jump-overs (♀ 20-inch ♂ 24-inch box, step-down)
15-calorie row
9 burpee box jump-overs (♀ 36-inch ♂ 48-inch box)

Rest until 6-minute mark, then:

9 burpee box jump-overs (♀ 36-inch ♂ 48-inch box)
15-calorie row
21 box jump-overs (♀ 20-inch ♂ 24-inch box, step-down)
9 burpee box jump-overs (♀ 36-inch ♂ 48-inch box)
15-calorie row
21 box jump-overs (♀ 20-inch ♂ 24-inch box, step-down)

I scaled this to 21-15-9-21-15-9 using a 20" box for the box jump-overs and burpee box jump overs.  The first series took me 11:05 and I took a 2 minute rest per the first tier scaling option.  Starting back up at 13:05, I opted for 6-9-15 which was roughly the beginner rep scheme and finished the workout at 21:25 (8:20 for the second set).

This was a great workout for me and a very good test piece that I would like to repeat in the future.  Programming was from CrossFit main site 230920.

I am still challenged by my the congestion in my garage gym and something really needs to give.

Concept2 Ski Erg

Concept2 Ski Erg for sale in Lakewood for $800 (Sarah McGravni).  It appears to include the base and is in good condition.  I have been interested in one for a while, but have hemmed and hawed for a couple of reasons.  
  • They are large items
  • I already have one cardio piece
Retail from Concept2 is $850 for the ski erg, another $220 for the base, $100 for shipping and $50 for tax which puts a buyer right at $1220 to the door.  $800 is a fair price and if I decided that I was not using it enough, I could likely sell for $700 without much trouble.

I would use it to train for Hyrox and also as an alternative to setting up my Concept2 rower which has a similar foot print when not in use, but a larger foot print when in use.

I have near zero interest in a treadmill and some interest in an Echo Bike or Assault Bike which can usually be found for between $500 and $600.  Bike Erg from Concept2 is $1100 (shipping and tax is probably another $150) and I have not seen many on the secondary market (UPDATE, one was listed 2 days ago for $900).  The Bike Erg is only 68 pounds versus the Echo Bike which is pushing 123 pounds.

I ended up meeting meeting the seller at a nearby Walmart and the erg was in great shape and only had 198,692 meters (17:26).  She had organized all of the hardware and the only thing not included was the manual and the torx driver.  If I want one, I could purchase from Concept2 for $2.90 plus shipping.  Turn out that I knew her from the rooms and could trust that the rower was received as a gift during Covid and she is selling because it is collecting dust as she has two gym memberships.  It took less than 15 minutes to assemble and will be a great addition to the gym.

Vintage Olympic Weights

The time has come to thin the herd which includes 835# of Plates.  I listed the above 315#.

If I am successful liquidating I will be down to 310# of York, plus 90# AFA Falcons, plus 70# Bronco's painted Billard/BFCO, plus 30# International, plus 20# USA for a total of 520#.  That being said, there is no harm in having 3 sets of 45s plus 2 sets of change (25-10-5-2.5) = 440#.

York Plates (310#)
45x2 keep
35x2 keep
25x2 keep
10x4 keep
5x10 keep
2.5x4 keep

Billard (140#)
45x2 sell
25x2 keep

AFA Falcons (90#)
2x45 keep

Schisler (90#)
2x45 sell

Universal (90#)
2x45 sell

International (75#)
45x1 sell
10x2 keep
5x1 keep
2.5x2 keep

BFCO (20#)
2x10 keep 

USA (20#)
2x10# keep

Thor Strength Showdown - CANCELLED

I had started training for the Thor Strength Showdown and even 12 weeks out it was slow going and I was nervous.

Event 1 - Trap Bar Deadlift & Carry - 420# (I tested up to 335# and it was heavy)

Event 2 - Log Press - I could not break 165# off the ground.  With a barbell I was at 115#.

Event 3 - Flip, Carry , Drag - Untested, but some days I struggle to lap 125#

Event 4 - Conan's Wheel - Untested carry of 400# implement

Event 5 - Sandbag Squat - Felt good at 100#, but could only do single reps at the starting 125# weight

With my Iron Titan membership going through at least October 11th, I will continue to work on these events and some of the other toys.  I definitely need to continue to work with heavy weights at near max effort to develop overall core stability and strength.

Wednesday, September 20, 2023


Wednesday, September 20, 2023

Garage Gym


Warm Up

Reverse Hyper
Crossover Symmetry
Hip Hammy Flow


10 air squat
5 push-up
1 pull-up
30 sec rest

I was pleasantly surprised to get through 15 rounds and moved well the entire time.  That is great volume for me in a relatively quick workout.  150 air squat, 75 push-up and 15 pull-up.

Unloading York Equipment

A local York legend and transplant from the East Coast is starting to move some items from his personal collection.  Unfortunately (or fortunately) I am not in the market for any of it.  

While it is a cool piece of history to own some Iron Islands.  I am out at $3/pound which is well below market value.  I would sooner own Rogue Arnold plates.  

The 45kg and 100lb do not interest me as they are too heavy for me to move around and really only useful for USAWA lifting.  

The dumbbells were really enticing.  First they are all Pre-USA stamped which is awesome.  Second the $5000 price point is very reasonable.  The smalls (1,2,3,4,6,7,8,9,12) would conservatively price to $1100.  The 5-50 would conservatively go for $1.50/pound or $825.  The 55-90 would go for $2/pound or $2320.  The 95s could command $570 and the 100s could command $800.  The (3) racks could go for $500 each.  All in, you are talking $7,115.  Not to mention that I have not seen a full set offered in Colorado.  In the country, I have only seen full sets come across the block about once a year.  Definitely a premium find for some lucky individual.

Pre-USA Marked York Roundheads - $5,000

I’m selling my complete collection of York, Roundhead dumbbells. These are pre-USA marked. Set includes 1 to 10 pound pairs, a pair of 12 pound dumbbells, and  pairs from 15 to 100 pounds in 5 pound increments. Heads are tight. Handles on 90’s or 95’s are a little bent, but can be straightened. All but 95’s have been repainted. Included, are three legend fitness dumbbell stands. Will not sell individual sets.

These are rarely in complete sets and very hard to find outside of the East Coast.

York 100 pound pair - $750

I’ve got a pair of hundred pound, York barbell single sided powerlifting plates. These have a very find milling on their backs. Local pick up strongly preferred.

York 45kg Pair - $750

A beautiful pair of 45 kg single sided powerlifting plates. These plates typically come in gold or black. As you can see, these are black what makes them even more unique is that the backs are smooth not milled. York did not mill plates when the plates were within tolerance from the foundry.  no cracks some marks from wear and tear over the years and perhaps a little bit of surface rust. 

York Iron Island 45s - $1,250 (pending within hours)

I’m selling a pair of Iron Island Olympic plates custom made for the late Ken Leisner‘s Iron Island gym by York Barbell.  Only a few hundred pair of 45s were made for the gym. These plates have been repainted, and are milled. Have not decided on whether I will ship or not. If I do prices exclusive of shipping costs

Tuesday, September 19, 2023

Pool Swim - Bench

Tuesday, September 19, 2023



Pool Swim

500 FR
100 BR
100 BA
100 FR
100 BR
50 BA

Total - 950 yards (30 min) - First pool swim in a long time.  I was crap swimming without a wetsuit.



King Kong Grip Challenge Tests

Monday, September 18, 2023

Gym Inventory

My wife started talking about moving and I started getting anxious about another gym move.  I have really enjoyed the spaciousness of a garage bay and slice of an unfinished basement and have expanded accordingly.

My $5,500 gym that was moved in Summer of 2021 has ballooned to $12,000 + $3,000 in vintage weights.  That number needs to come down.

Primary Gym Equipment:
  • Basics - $5,000 (flooring, barbells, weights, dumbbells, rack, collars, bench)
  • Cardio - $1,000
  • CrossFit - $1,000 (kettlebells, med balls, plyo boxes, pull-up bar, misc)
  • Strongman - $1,000 (yoke, log, axle bar, stones, sandbags, farmers carry)
  • Misc - $4,000 (storage, large accessory, dc blocks, OKE, timer, decorations, misc)
  • Olympic Iron - $1,000
  • Standard Iron - $200
  • Dumbbells - $500
  • Misc - $200
Mentally, I want to be back in the $10K range for the complete gym.

Proposed Primary Gym Equipment ($8,500):
  • Basics - $3,000 (40% cut)
  • Cardio - $1,000 (OK)
  • CrossFit - $1,000 (OK)
  • Strongman - $1,000 (OK)
  • Misc - $2,500 (40% cut)
Proposed Vintage ($1500):
  • Olympic Iron - $500 (50% cut)
  • Standard Iron - $200 (OK)
  • Dumbbells - $600 (OK)
  • Misc - $200 (OK)
One of the problems is that I still have a want list including Thompson Fatbells and another cardio piece (Bike Erg or Row Erg).

Goodbye Heavy York Roundheads

I have been struggling with my increasingly unused and incomplete roundhead collection.  I haven been purchasing pairs as I could find them locally and via Facebook swap group and then took in a big haul of 1050 pounds for $1200 about a year ago.  I needed a 45, 55, 65, 70, 75, 80, 85, 90, 95 to finish the set.  But then...

I sold the 100's for $800 a few months ago.

I decided to list the 80, 85 and 95 for $2/pound on Facebook Marketplace and got a lot of interest.  I eventually sold 680 pounds for $1360 (Friday morning).  My return on the 1050 pounds I bought was complete, with some money made in the process.

The buyer was planning to blob them.  Keeping a set for himself and flipping the other half in the secondary marketplace. I was actually surprised when I saw them for sale Monday morning for $1000 (about $3/lb) for the 10 blobs weighing about 340 pounds and then marked pending within hours.  I feel like I missed out on an opportunity, but am happy that the seller was happy.

For his end, he probably took them to a machine shop, spent maybe $100 and had a near full set for himself for less than $500.

Interestingly, the last time I sold a spare 40 pound roundhead, the buyer was a climber who intended to blob it.

In all likelihood, my 60 and 75 pound roundheads will go that way as well.  (UPDATE 9/22/2023 - Sold 60 and 75 pound dumbbells for $270)

Now, would like to finish a 1-50 set when I find a pair of 45s, but I am not in any hurry.

Saturday, September 16, 2023

Strongman Saturday

Saturday, September 16, 2023

Iron Titan Gym


Warm Up

Hip Hammy Flow
Reverse Hyper



Sandbag Squat


Moving well with the 100 and good progress at 125#

Overhead Press

8x45 strict
5x95 strict
5x95 strict
2x105 strict
2x105 strict
2x115 push press
2x115 push press

70 minute workout

Met Jeremy and the crew.  There were about 15-20 people in the gym training frame carry, yoke press, sandbag to shoulder, powerlifting and farmers walk.  Overall, a really fun bunch.  It will take a little hanging around to get used to the flow and meet some more people by name.

Rogue Calibrated Pound Plates

Full set 0.25 to 45 plus (7) pairs of 55s is 2450 plus shipping and tax which could be another $840 without a shipping deal was offered for $1750 on Facebook Marketplace.

The buyer is flipping (3) pairs of 55s for $250 each or $750 for all three.

55 pound pair from Rogue is $285 and shipping and tax is another $100.

Thank goodness I am in a paring down phase or I might have grabbed a set.

Friday, September 15, 2023

Squat - Metcon

Friday, September 15, 2023

Garage Gym


Warm Up

Reverse Hyper
Hip Hammy Flow
Crossover Symmetry
PVC Pass Through


5-5-5 Overhead Squat
3-3-3 Front Squat
1-1-1 Back Squat

Programming was from CrossFit main site during Adrian Bozman's week of programming.

OHS 35-40-45
FS 95-115-135
BS 155-175-185

All of the weights felt good.  I tried using the vintage York squat stands.  They do work, but you cannot go crashing back into them.


 “Future Sound”
6:00 minute AMRAP
American Kettlebell Swings 70/53lb, (32/24kg)

This was from Vintage CrossFit and I scaled to 35lb kettlebell.  I got through the round of 12 and was quite pleased with myself.  Total of 30 kbs and 30 burpees in 6 minutes.

Pull-up Finisher

I need these, so I did singles on a 40 second interval for 8 total pull-ups.

60 minutes total workout

Thursday, September 14, 2023

Strongman Training

Thursday, September 14, 2023

Iron Titan Gym


Warm Up

Hip Hammy Flow
Reverse Hypers

Trap bar Deadlift

1x405 - fail
1x365 - fail

Sandbag Squat

1x125 - fail
1x125 - fail

Yoke Press

Warmed up with empty barbell
Could not break 165# yoke off the ground

50 minutes total workout

Iron Titan Gym

I decided to start a monthly membership at Iron Titan train for the Thor Strength Showdown.  I have talked to people who train there and have followed their social media.  

The gym truly has no shortage of strongman equipment from logs, yokes, sleds, circus dumbbells, stones, tires, frame carry and a smattering of odd objects.  There is half a dozen power racks and platforms.  Upon entry there are dumbbells and some machines including GHD and Reverse Hyper.  They also have three competition benches.  Overall it is a really gritty old school feel.  On a Tuesday afternoon, two other athletes were training, both of whom were obnoxiously strong.  I felt a little outclassed, but that is the beauty of strength training.  I am only competing with myself.

I am worried about the C Division for the Thor Strength Showdown.  I could not do a single rep with the loads in question and only have three months to prepare.  It might be ugly.

Tuesday, September 12, 2023

Box Pike Push-ups - Metcon

Tuesday, September 12, 2023

Garage Gym


Warm Up

Foam Roll
Reverse Hyper
Crossover Symmetry
Hip Hammy Flow

Handstand Push-Up Progression

Every 2:30 x 6 Sets
6-8 Box Pike Handstand Push-Ups (Kneeling or Feet Piked)

I managed 3 reps of feet pike hspu every round for 6 rounds.  It was good to get inverted.


“Concrete Schoolyard”

10 minute AMRAP

30 Double Unders
2 Dual Dumbbell Box Step-Overs
2 Wall Walks
30 Double Unders
4 Dual Dumbbell Box Step-Overs
4 Wall Walks
30 Double Unders
6 Dual Dumbbell Box Step-Overs
6 Wall Walks
30 Double Unders
8 Dual Dumbbell Box Step-Overs
8 Wall Walks
and so on..

Dumbbell Load: 50/35lb, (22/16kg)
Box Height: 24/20″

I scaled this to 50 single unders per round.  I did the progression of 2-4-6-8-10 on the dual DB box step overs and used 35# dumbbells and a 20" box.  For wall walks, I did 1 partial wall walk per round.  

I managed 4 rounds + 50 DU + 6 DB box step overs in 10 minutes.

It felt really good to add some intensity to my training with a metcon.  Programming was from Vintage CrossFit and suited me well.


I took the time to clean up the Titan Fitness Farmer's Carry Handles that I recently bought.  I hosed them down and wiped down some surface rust.  Then I removed the tape from the handles and cleaned them up with Goo Gone, PB Blaster and a wipe down of 3-in-1 oil.  I want to replace the "quick" pins with screws for securing the handles. Primarily for the aesthetics of a cleaner look.

Garage Gym Competition - Training Tip

Just had a training tip posted on the GGC!  It is not earth shattering, but certainly fun to put my thoughts out to a broader audience.  Time to brainstorm ideas for future articles.

Saturday, September 9, 2023

Littlefoot Triathlon 2023

Fenix 6 Data:

SWIM:  819 yard (22:14.8, 2:43/100 yards)
T1: 2:15.9
BIKE: 8.87 miles (37:12.3, 14.3 mph)
T2: 1:17.2
RUN:  3.11 miles (35:45.3, 11:30/mile)

I woke up at 5:30, weighed in at 197.6 (9 pounds heavier than last year) and started getting ready.  I was a little constipated but pooped twice at home, had an Imodium and then a good bowel movement at the port-o-let on site.

I arrived around 6:30 and felt like I was the last person to park and set up transition.  I set up and then grabbed my timing chip and was body marked (after going back for ID and race bib).

It was around 60 degrees with a solid breeze that was creating quite a bit of chop on the water.  The swim course was counter clockwise starting into the wind, then with the wind and then back against the wind.  Going out was fine (aside from swallowing a mouthful of water).  Siting was tricky after the first turn and everything was tricky heading back to the boat launch.  I was relieved to get out of the water and was happy to be greeted by the wetsuit strippers.  My swim split was 7 seconds slower than last year.  Not bad given the conditions.

T1 was smooth aside from getting my shoes on.  I put down my wetsuit, goggles, and cap.  I put on my helmet, sunglasses and race belt, dried feet and put on my shoes sitting down.  My T1 split was 74 seconds faster than last year.  Considering how much more gear I put on last year, I was expecting to save time.

Bike was smooth with no mechanical issues.  The weather was perfect for a ride.  My 37:12 split was 6 minutes faster than last year.

T2 was smooth.  I removed helmet and cycling shoes.  I put on visor and and running shoes and headed out.  My 1:17 split was half of last years time.  Again considering the cold weather gear last year, I was expecting an improvement.

The run started off slow with a longish break to urinate.  My 35:45 split was nearly 2 minutes faster than last year.  Some of this was weather, but I have been running more.  I was happy that my calves and ankles did not act up.

Overall, my unofficial 1:38:46 was roughly a 10 minute improvement from last year.  I had some pancakes, grabbed some sodas and headed home.  All things considered an excellent event.


1:38:42 (12/13 M 50-54; 140/169 M)
S: 22:13 (11/13) - winner 16:03
T1: 2:19
B: 37:08 (13/13) - winner 27:59
T2: 1:19
R: 35:41 (12/13) - winner 26:28

Tim Sandell and Richard Hendry were battling it out in the 55-59 division taking 9th and 10th overall and finishing a little over a minute apart.  Vickie Mateo was the fastest female at 1:05:17.  Looking at my splits, the biggest opportunity for improvement is on the bike.  The key to a fast bike split is strength to weight ratio and there is opportunity to improve both of those.  Bike handling is less of an issue on this course.

I reviewed the 2022 and 2023 male 50-54 year old times and 8 athletes competed in both events.  5 showed improvements of (5, 7, 7, 7, and 11 minutes).  1 athlete was flat.  2 athletes slowed down by 1 and 5 minutes.  Transition times in 2023 were faster overall by about a minute on T1 and T2.  Swim was slower in 2023 by about a minute.  Bike was faster in 2023 by about 2 minutes.  Run was faster in 2023 by about 2 minutes.  I think weather was the deciding factor.  

Weekly Triathlon Training Volume

I feel good going into the race tomorrow.  My training volume is on point.  

Over a 24 week training cycle from April to Race Day:

Swim - 2023 - 17,000 yards (2022 - 18,800)
Bike - 2023 - 166 miles (2022 - 198 miles)
Run - 2023 - 107 miles (2022 - 55 miles)

The weather will be much nicer with overnight low of 58 degrees and a high of 86 degrees.  Should be about 60 degrees at the start warming up to 70 degrees by the finish.  No jacket or extra gear on the bike and run, but I will grab a sweatshirt for the morning.

5:30 AM - alarm
6:10 AM - depart
6:30 AM - arrive, set up transition, body mark
7:00 AM - pre-race briefing
7:30 AM - Wave 4
9:30 AM - or hopefully sooner (finish)
10:00 AM - awards presentation

Friday, September 8, 2023

Men's Health July/August 2023 Fitness Standards

Test 1 - 40 total feet on  2 rotational medicine ball throws with a 30 pound med ball (30/20/0 feet)
Test 2 - 2X Bodyweight deadlift (1.5/1/0)
Test 3 - Half Kneeling kettlebell windmill with 1/3 of body weight each side (0.25/0.10/0)
Test 4 - 40 consecutive push-ups (30/20/0)
Test 5 - 10 consecutive dead hang push-ups (8/6/0)
Test 6 - Ruck 10K with 35 pounds, finish in 90 minutes (120/250/251+)
Test 7 - Cover 12 feet when doing a double broad jump (10/8/0)
Test 8 - 20 ten yards shuttle passes in 30 seconds (15/10/0)

All of the activities are scored on a 10/8/6/4 point scale.  For example on the deadlift, 2x bodyweight is a 10, 1.5x bodyweight is an 8, 1x bodyweight is a 6 and less than 1x bodyweight is a 4.  I would like to work on push-ups in the short term and maybe shuttle passes.

Tuesday, September 5, 2023

Titan Fitness Farmer's Carry Handles

I came across a nice set of top loading Farmer's Carry Handles on Craigslist which were a 5 minute drive from my house.

I have been using the Rogue Fitness Farmer's Walk Handles which work fine.  They are a pain to load and unload and they do have limited functionality.

Alternatively the Titan Farmer's Carry Handles can be modified with an attachment to allow them to be used as a frame carry.  The negative is that the top loading handles are more difficult to store.

I originally purchased the Rogue handles with OSO collars for $130 (current retail is $205 + $49.95x2 + shipping to Colorado and taxes = $378.22).  With any luck, I will sell my set for $200 and offset the cost of the Titan Handles which were $60.  If that works out, I will likely buy the link connectors for $90 so that I can create a frame carry as well.

He also had a Mike Bartos Stone of Steel for sale for $600 (retail is $1200), but I could not even lap the empty stone (135#).  Part of it was radius and surface texture, but a lot of it was just the absence of raw strength.

Clean & Jerk - Metcon

Sunday, September 3, 2023

Garage Gym


Warm Up

Reverse Hyper
Crossover Symmetry
Hip Hammy Flow
PVC Pass Throughs

Clean & Jerk

Build to Heavy

125-135-145 (felt good)

First time working with the Eleiko Weightlifting Barbell (SN 230302 154327) and it felt really good in hand.  I could do without the shiny chrome aesthetic, but the knurling and spin are quite good.


5 rounds for quality
Every 3 minutes:
1 PU
5 Push-up
10 Air Squat
10 Sit-up
5 Box Jump (24")
1 PU

I originally planned this as one minute rest between rounds, but I was finishing plus or minus a few seconds of 2 minutes and decided to go every 3 minutes.

Wednesday, August 30, 2023

Accessory - Metcon

Wednesday, August 30, 2023

CDOT Fitness Center


Treadmill - 5 min walk

Incline DB Chest Press

Alt Pistol to Target (Inline Bench at setting = 1)


12 min AMRAP
1 SA DB OHS (10#)
5 burpee
5 burpee

I finished 8 and got 2 of 9 OHS.  This was really hard to keep moving.  I tried to stay smooth on burpees.  SA DB OHS were brutal.  I originally thought 35#, then dropped to 20#, 15# and finally 10# which was the correct weight for me today.  It was good to do 40 burpees in a metcon.  Adopted from main site which called for OHS with 125/185 and 10 burpee box jumps to 20/24"

Treadmill - 5 min walk

40 minutes total workout

Monday, August 28, 2023

Run - Accessories

Monday, August 28, 2023

CDOT Fitness Center



2.02 mile run - right ankle felt a little wonky, walked last half mile


3 Rounds

Alt DB Curls - 20# - 20/20/16
DB Lateral Raises - 10# - 10/10/8
Calf Extensions - 15/15/15

Saturday, August 26, 2023

D'Evelyn Dash 5K

In the spirit of the CrossFit Games, the 5K was short and my chip time of 28:05 was about half a mile off.  My actual time of 32:54 (by adding a half mile at the end) was a big annual PR as I continue my march towards 30 minutes.

It was a fun outing and good to see the D'Evelyn families and sponsors.

Thursday, August 24, 2023

Buoyancy Shorts

Thursday, August 24, 2023

Bear Creek Lake Park - Soda Lake


Open Water Swim

500 yards (channel rules)
500 yards (w/buoyancy shorts)

I was inspired by a friend of mine who recently swam a mile without a wetsuit at Chatfield.  This is challenging for a couple of reasons.  First, it is hard to swim a mile.  Second, it is much easier with a wetsuit.  Third, the gravel pond at Chatfield is a commitment with the only bail out point being the sand bar.

I decided to go for a swim without my wetsuit.  I did 4 laps, taking a break between each one.  It was much harder and much slower without the buoyancy shorts.  First two laps took me 17 minutes.  Next two laps took me 15 minutes.

Tuesday, August 22, 2023


Tuesday, August 22, 2023

Garage Gym


Warm Up

Reverse Hyper
Foam Roller
Crossover Symmetry
Hip Hammy Flow


For Time:
50 sit-ups
40 DB Snatch (27.5#)
30 Ring Row
20 Push-ups
10 Cleans (115#)

This was modified from main site programming which called for GHD sit-ups, 50# DB snatch, C2B pull-ups, handstand push-ups and 165# cleans.  I scaled it very appropriately finishing in 12:19.

Sit-ups - set of 35 then 3 additional sets (2:40)
DB Snatch - big set then 2 small sets (3:00)
Ring Row - 3 sets (~2 min)
Push-ups - 5/4/3/2/2... (~1 min)
Cleans - all singles (2:40 - 9:40 to 12:19)

It felt good to get a metcon in after all of the explosive strength and mono-structural training.

Monday, August 21, 2023

Octane Overload - October 21, 2023

This would be a good event, but we are currently scheduled to be out of town this weekend.

Tire Medley: The athlete must start hands on the tires, on the judge's command, the athlete must flip the first tire 2x. Then the athlete must run back to 2nd tire, and flip it 2x. The athlete must then run to the 3rd tire and flip it 2x. At the end of the 2nd flip on the third tire athletes time is stopped. The score is based on time or # of flips.

Truck Pull Arm over Arm: Athletes will start with rope in their hands and sit in the tire. At the judge's "go," the athlete will pull a vehicle with a rope by hand for 50 feet as fast as possible for 60 seconds.

Car Deadlift: Athletes will be allowed to strap into the implement. On the judge's "go," the athlete will have to deadlift a car for as many reps as possible in 60 seconds. No bouncing allowed, the athlete MUST wait for the down command. 

Rising Bar Viking Press- Athletes start with hands off the implement. At the "Go,"  the athlete will then grab and press the first weight overhead and wait for a down call. The athlete will then bring the weight down (NO AIR DROPS) and the next weight will be loaded. The judge will give the command to press again. The athlete will proceed until the max weight is reached and will then rep out on the last weight until time runs out. (Ideally, we will be loading engine blocks 1 at a time if everything goes to plan.) 

God of Stones: Athlete will start over the first stone (90lbs) and on the judge's "Go," the athlete will lift the stone over the bar. Once the stone is over the bar athlete will proceed to the next stone and continue all the way down the line of stones until the athlete can no longer lift the stone, time runs out (90 seconds), OR they reach the final 380 lb stone. Scores are given on # of stones completed and total time.

The Stead School
18251 Homestead Trail
Commerce City, CO 80022
View Map
Oct 21, 2023

Start Time
10:00 AM
Meet Director
Andrew Morrison

Price $80

Thor Strength Showdown - December 2, 2023

Thor Strength Showdown is posted and moving up to the Division C will be tough.  420# deadlift, 165# Yoke Press, 175# Sandbag Carry, 400# Conan's Wheel, 125/150/175# Sandbag Squat.  For some of these, I will be lucky to get a rep.  It is time to move up as Division B weights are well within my comfort level.
  1. Trapbar Deadlift & Carry: Athlete will start 5 feet away from bar. At the start, athlete will perform 3 deadlifts. On the third deadlift, the athlete will carry the implement 20 feet. Then, the athlete will repeat the deadlift and carry one more times; ending with a final 3 deadlifts. There will be a total of 9 deadlifts and 2 carries. Each distance will count as one rep to make it 11 total reps possible. Refs will be giving down and up commands. Athletes will get a down command when hips and knees are locked out. If implement is dropped during either carry, the run will end. Scoring will be based on fastest time or most reps completed. Event will have a 30 second time cap.
  2. Log Press OR Yoke Press: Division A & B will be performing the log press for max reps. Division C & D will be performing the yoke press for max reps. Yoke measurements will be taken at check in. Athletes can start with hands on implement. Refs will be giving a down command. Athletes will get a down command when hips, knees and elbows are locked out. Implements must be controlled on the way down. Athletes will receive a zero if either implement is dropped from overhead. Scoring will be based on max reps. Event will have a 30 second time cap.
  3. Flip, Carry, Drag: Athlete can start with hands on tire, which will stand upright. At the start, athletes will perform 5 tire flips. Then, athlete will pick up either a husafell or sandbag nearby and carry it 50 feet and place on sled. Last, athlete will drag the sled 50 feet. Every 10 feet will count as an addition rep for a total of 15 possible reps. There will be no rounding up. Scoring will be based on fastest time or most reps completed. Event will have a 60 second time cap.
  4. Conan's Wheel: Athlete will start will arms under implement. At the start, athlete will pick up and carry implement for as long as possible. Once the implement is dropped, the run is over. coring will be based on farthest distance. Event will have a 30 second time cap.
  5. Sandbag Squat: Athlete will start 5 feet behind the first sandbag. At the start, athlete will pick up sandbag and bring it to their shoulder. Once stabilized, athlete must remove one hand from sandbag and perform a squat. Squats must be at parallel or below. Refs will let athletes know when they can squat. If squat isn't low enough, refs will have you repeat only the squat. After a successful squat, athlete will move to the next. Max repetitions will be done on the last bag. Athletes must clean and squat each time. Scoring will be based on max reps. Event will have a 60 second time cap.
Trapbar Deadlift & Carry - 150, 250, 420, 560
Log Press OR Yoke Press - 70, 120, 165, 205
Flip, Carry, Drag - 100/75/150, 250/125/200, 325/175/250, 600/225/300
Conan's Wheel - 175, 250, 400, 550
Sandbag Squat - 30/50/75, 75/100/125, 125/150/175, 175/200/225

Sunday, August 20, 2023

USAWA Teeth Lifter (Leatherworking)

I made my way over to Tandy Leather to talk about a teeth lifter.  It turns out they have a workshop in the back that is available for use and classes as long as I bring my own materials.

Michael got me started with leather scraps ($4.99) and making a pattern.  I cut the pattern with a box knife.  Then I cleaned up the edges with the grinding wheel.  Next was closing the edges by moistening the leather edge and using the table or hand burnishing tool.  I then placed the D-ring ($4.99) Next step was gluing by applying across the entire piece, letting it dry to tacky and then sealing.  This initiated another round of cleaning up edges and closing the edges.  Finally for rivets, we punched 1/8" holes and fed rivets through and used the press rivet device rather than the hand rivet process.

I loved every minute of the 2 hour process.  Michael was working by himself and managing clients in addition to coaching me.  For $11 out the door, I am anxious to give my new device a try.  I am also interested in doing more leatherworking.  A guy there was working on a bike tool bag projects.  Personally, I would like to make a quiver for archery, a Scottish Sporran, travel knife roll and I will probably think of numerous other projects once I get going.  I will definitely pop in again and am looking forward to having a fun little hobby for winter.  One of their more popular classes is Renaissance Festival gauntlets, but they have patterns for knife/gun/tool holsters, belts, and bags among other more elaborate stuff.

Tandy Leather is 10 minutes from my house and very friendly.  They had a shop in Arvada, but I never considered popping in. 

Thornton Celtic Festival and Highland Games

I got back after it at the Thornton Celtic Festival in a Men Master class of 4 athletes (Mike and Brent from Colorado Scottish Festival, plus Mike and myself).

I improved nearly across the board:
  • Braemar Stone - 15'-10.25 inches to 17'-6.5"
  • Open Stone - 20'-5.375" to  21'-8.625"
  • Heavy Weight for Distance - 15'-1.25" to 15'-11"
  • Light Weight for Distance - 18'-2.125" to 24'-10.25"
  • Heavy Hammer - 38'-0" to 37'-0.25" (went down)
  • Light Hammer - 45'-0" to 51'-7.875"
  • Caber - 30 degrees to 65 degrees
  • Sheaf Toss - 13' to 14' (still did not clear the minimum bar)
  • Weight Over Bar - 10' (no improvement)
Jeremiah was our judge.  I also met Shannon who practiced with me in Arvada and Karen the scorekeeper.  We competed with the Grand Masters (60+) including Skip, Craig and Ron.  These guys were beasts and were besting me on each of the events as well.
  • Braemar Stone - no coaching cues
  • Open Stone - no coaching cues
  • Heavy Weight for Distance - use one turn, start facing 3:00 position
  • Light Weight for Distance - use one turn, start facing 3:00 position
  • Heavy Hammer - generate more speed, be aware of low point
  • Light Hammer - generate more speed
  • Caber - balance caber in the air, rotate so any bend in facing me, wide stance, bend at waist so light on shoulder, conform body to caber, get low so interlaced fingers are practically under the caber, lift straight up if light enough or straight pop if necessary, regain balance once standing, tip forward with shoulder, chase it and flip.
  • Sheaf Toss - 3 swings and then go from L to drive up, long loose arms, violent explosion to flick the sheaf, all power should be up
  • Weight Over Bar - be patient as it comes up between legs and then drive
Thornton was a nice venue and I would like to compete next year.  It was nice having my own fork, but I definitely need to practice a lot more.  Depending on the offseason, I will buy a heavy weight over bar in the Spring.

To be in the mix, my throws need to improve significantly
  • Braemar Stone - 15'-10.25 inches to 17'-6.5"**Get to 22'
  • Open Stone - 20'-5.375" to  21'-8.625"**Get to 27'
  • Heavy Weight for Distance - 15'-1.25" to 15'-11"**Get to 25'
  • Light Weight for Distance - 18'-2.125" to 24'-10.25"**Get to 40'
  • Heavy Hammer - 38'-0" to 37'-0.25" (went down)**Get to 50'
  • Light Hammer - 45'-0" to 51'-7.875"**Get to 70'
  • Caber - 30 degrees to 65 degrees**Flip it
  • Sheaf Toss - 13' to 14' (still did not clear the minimum bar)**Get to 20' (easiest to practice in the yard)
  • Weight Over Bar - 10' (no improvement)

Thursday, August 17, 2023

Competing with Your Younger Self

My Garmin Fenix 6 keeps track of stats

Fastest 1 mile - 9:50.3 (7/10/2022)
Fastest 5K - 35:31.8 (8/14/2023)
Longest Run - 3.41 miles (9/12/2022)

Longest Ride - 20.29 miles (9/18/2022)
Most Ascent - 938 feet (7/24/2022)

Fastest 100 yards - 2:10:00 (8/10/2022)
Fastest 500 yards - 12:00:00 (8/10/2022)
Fastest 1000 yards - 24:53:00 (10/2/2022)
Longest Swim - 1189 meters (8/20/2022)

This data was combined with an article from my sister that indicated that people slow about 1% per year until age 77 at which point the decline is faster.  This is based on marathon record times.

5K - 36:57 (3/5/2023)
5K - 33:58 (8/27/2022)
5K - 32:15 (8/28/2021)
5K - 31:09 (8/29/2020)
5K - 31:31 (8/24/2019)
5K - 28:15 (5/23/2015)
5K - 24:55 (10/26/2013)
5K - 28:55 (2/23/2013)
5K - 29:11 (1/26/2013)
5K - 28:26 (8/7/2012)
5K - 24:51 (6/29/2012)**
5K - 26:43 (8/10/2011)
5K - 20:00 (high school estimate)

Based on the 24:51 time, I should be able to run a 5K in 27:43.  Taking into consideration that I am 14 pounds heavier at a penalty of 2 seconds/mile, I should still be able to manage 29:45.  A sub 30 5K is a fairly reasonable goal.

Bolder Boulder 10K 2003 - 56:56
Bolder Boulder 10K 2002 - 48:13
Bolder Boulder 10K 2001 - 48:39

Boulder Backroads Half Marathon 2001 - 2:00:37

Motorola Marathon 2002 - 4:32:13

With USAWA we use Lynch Factor.  Weightlifting and Powerlifter use a Sinclair Calculator.

Wednesday, August 16, 2023

Bench - Metcon

Tuesday, August 16, 2023

Basement Gym


Bench Press

12x95 (tough)


Pinch Block
5kg x 10 sec L/R
5kg x 10 sec L/R
5kg x 10 sec L/R

Finnish Ball
10lb x 3 sec L/R
10lb x 3 sec L/R
10lb x 3 sec L/R

50lb x 10 sec L/R


Garage Gym



200 m run
10 box jumps (20")
1 pull-up

Finished with 4 Rounds + Hail Mary run.  Felt really good to mix in some high intensity movement.  In addition to box jumps, I want to start working in burpees, double unders and others.


8 walking lunges (on the grass)

As usual these lit me up.  Hopefully that will be the spark to program them more often.

30 + 30 minute total workout

Wednesday, August 9, 2023

Bench - Metcon

Wednesday, August 9, 2023

Home Gym


Bench Press



4 Rounds for Time of:
400m run
15 Abmat sit-ups
5 push-ups
1 pull-up

Finished in 15:50 and was consistent at around 4 minutes per round.

Finished with 3x10 reverse hyperextensions with 50#

Tuesday, August 8, 2023

Sheaf and Sheaf Fork Order

Based on my Highland Games performance, I really want to work on Sheaf and Caber.  Caber will be tough, but I could order a sheaf fork and start practicing on my own.

Sheaf - 16# - Red Stitching - $80

Sheaf Fork - Starting at $95 (requested recommendations and pricing)

  • 1.25", 0.060 wall aluminum - POSSIBLE
  • 1.125" light weight wood - straight for 10 and 16 pound sheafs - POSSIBLE
  • Combination of aluminum and wood - Going with this per Michael Black recommendation
  • Medium weight contoured ash handles with aluminum at base - 20 pound, but work for everything - POSSIBLE
  • Carbon fiber 30mm diameter x 1000mm in length - NO
  • Carbon fiber 28mm diameter x 1000mm in length - NO
Handle length - Going with 42" per Michael Black recommendation
Grip Tape Color - Red
Paint Color (Aluminum) - Bare
Optional Paracord Wrap on Fork-End Grips - Yes, Red

Looking at my throw, I am certainly not blocking and need to work on that.

Michael Black also pointed out a couple of other flaws:
  1. Gripping the fork too wide
  2. Fork head rounding back to the right
He was kind enough to review my video, provide training tips and even offered the outline of his lesson in Norway.

He has some catching up to do, but will be able to get to my order.

I currently have:
  • 28# WFD
  • 16# Hammer
  • Solid Bar Ring & Shackle - use 28# for height technique
  • Sport Kilt
  • 16# Sheaf
  • 42" 3-tine Sheaf Fork
Items for completion:
  • 42# WFH - $155 (5.625" Cylinder)
  • 22# Hammer - $100
  • Hammer Blades - $45
  • "D" Handle with Shackle - $30 (in order to use WFH for WFD)
  • Trig - Homemade
  • Caber - NA
  • Standards - NA
  • Rolling box
I will likely complete my set up in 1 or 2 stages.  Primary is WFH & D Handle - $185 plus shipping.  Secondary is Hammer and Blades - $145 plus shipping.  In the near term, I need to get 12, 16 and 22 pound stones weighed and marked and build a trig.  I have no plans to acquire a caber of fabricate standards.

Monday, August 7, 2023

Eleiko Hybrid Barbell Recall

I just found out that my wonderful Eleiko Hybrid barbell was being recalled out of an abundance of caution after 3 failures.  Per the disclaimer 1,151 barbells across 20kg and 15kg were delivered.  Eleiko is offering a replacement bar from the XF or Performance lines, none of which meet my needs.

I debated endlessly regarding this purchase and was torn between the Matt Chan barbell and the Eleiko.  I had eliminated the Fringe Sport despite the great specs as I wanted a stronger brand name.

The replacement XF bars do not do anything well and do not have a center knurl.  The Performance bars are either weightlifting or powerlifting bars and do not have dual knurl marks.  All of the bars have shiny chrome finishes which I do not care for.

I may reach out to customer service for a refund and then grab a Matt Chan barbell.  Decisions, Decisions.

UPDATE - 8/24/2023:  I reached out to customer service requesting a refund which they could not provide.  They could however provide an 20kg IWF Weightlifting Training bar which has 1.2 knurling on the outside knurl and passive center knurl.  The only changes will be having only weightlifting knurl marks and a chrome finish.  Considering that I now own a Texas Power Bar, it makes more sense to have a weightlifting bar rather than a hybrid bar that can do both.  Considering the weightlifting bar runs $1,024, I should not be complaining.  Part of the replacement was providing the serial number (210312 123561) which I found only after being told exactly where to look.  In two years of owning the bar, I never noticed a serial number.  I will miss my bar, but looking forward to testing the feel of a true Eleiko weightlifting bar.

UPDATE - 9/5/2023:  I received the Eleiko Weightlifting Barbell and it feels good in hand and I will get used to the aesthetic.  It is SN 230302 154327.

Eleiko SN = YYMMDD of manufacture followed by individual serial number

Sunday, August 6, 2023

59th Colorado Scottish Festival - Athletics

I had the wonderful opportunity to participate in the 59th Annual Colorado Scottish Festival held at the Denver Polo Fields in Sedalia, Colorado.  The venue was amazing with all of the clans, Scottish heritage information, main stage, dancers, pipers and of course athletics.

We were in two groups with the A/B men and all women competing on Saturday.  The C men (Open), lightweight men (under 200), masters men (40+) and grand masters men (60+) competing on Sunday.

Everybody was broken into groups.  My group the masters men was assembled with our judge (Cheryl).  All of my group was experienced and I was the newbie to Highland Games and taken under their wing.

We started with hammers, which is my favorite event.  I managed 38' with the 22 pound hammer and 45' with the 16 pound hammer.  Ryan won both the heavy and light with throws of 72' and 94' respectively.  I have some work to do.  I did have one scratch on the light hammer.  Coaching cue was to open and extend arms.

Next we went to stones.  I managed 15' with Braemar (22 pounds) and 20' with Open (16 pounds).  Dustin won Braemar with a 28' toss and Brant won open with a 34' toss.  Coaching cue position feet to allow full opening of hips.

Next we did weight for distance.  The 42 pound heavy weight was brutal and I only managed 15' and that was with an underhand throw (no spin).  The 28 pound light weight was only marginally better with an 18' toss.  Ryan won both with throws of 32' and 50' respectively.  Coaching cue throw Braemar style without spin.  This was especially effective on the heavy weight as I went 8' and 11' spinning and 15' underhand throwing.

Then we went on to 42 pound weight over bar.  I cleared 8, 9 and 10 feet before failing three attempts at 11 feet.  Ryan and Michael tied for the win at 14 feet.  Coaching cue high in, low out, let weight come drop natural and then drive.  

After lunch we started on caber.  Caber starts with a qualifier and then a scored event.  In 3 attempts, I picked the caber twice and launched it once.  I was working with the 51 pound 17'-2" (M2-A) and failed to qualify.  The rest of the group qualified with the 72 pound (15 foot) caber and scored with the 76 pound (18 foot) caber.  Michael won with a near perfect flip.  Coaching cue, get base set, flat back, butt out steady the caber for as long as you need to, pick, get steady again, let caber trot start then flip by keeping hands very close to body.

The final event was Sheaf toss and I could not even clear the opening 14 foot standard (I was scored as a 13 foot throw).  Brant was in a class by himself matching his personal best at 28 feet after everybody else bowed out at 22 and 24 feet.  Coaching cues were too many to list, but Braemar toss was recommended along with driving left arm up and punching with right arm.  I will likely invest in my own sheaf fork and 16 pound sheaf this fall.

Ryan was first overall, followed by Michael, Dustin ("Cuff"), Brant and myself.  Brant had an unfortunate scratch on weight for height which kept him out of contention.  They use decathlon scoring which is very fair.

Everybody had fun with near perfect weather.  A lot of athletes had rolling totes to keep their gear dry, organized and have a place to sit down between efforts.  It was fun to hear everybody's background in athletics and in life.

As far as decathlon score differentials, I was at roughly half of what my peers were at with stone, hammer and weight for height slightly better, weight for distance and sheaf much worse and caber much, much worse.  In addition to a sheaf, I might seek out a 42 pound weight as that was quite onerous.  My open stone technique could certainly use some help as well.

Thursday, August 3, 2023

Rogue Urethane 55 pound plates - $280

These are almost brand new. Barely used. They are urethane coated and will last a lifetime.

Rogue’s color-coded Urethane LB Bumpers are molded from top quality, high durometer urethane—ideal for producing a consistent dead bounce on the drop and maintaining the long-term integrity of the plate. The design of the single-piece, 140MM hard chrome insert also allows for easy loading on the bar with reduced friction on the sleeves. For a combination of performance and durability, few bumpers in the industry can rival these.

This feels like a good deal, I have seen most 55s going in the $300 to $350 range and at $280, these are at a fair $2.50/pound.  The problem is that I really don't need them nor have I ever felt like it would be any easier to load up 55s than it would be to load up 45s.  At a $1-$1.50/pound, I would have to have them, but no sense in throwing a $150 lowball offer out there.  They should sell quickly.

Tuesday, August 1, 2023

Bench Press Cycle

I am finally starting a bench press program after delaying it way too long.  
  • How important is bench press to my overall fitness?  Not much
  • Do I compete in bench press?  No
  • Do I want a bigger chest for aesthetics?  Not really a priority
  • Do I want to bench 225# in order to be a badass?  YES
I took a look at some programs on BarBend and the easiest to follow scheme that made sense to me and my needs was Undulating Periodization to add frequency and fit into a well rounded program.
  • Day 1 (medium):  5x5
  • Day 2 (light):  3x12
  • Day 3 (heavy):  3x3
8/1/2023 - Started with 5x5 (felt good)


8/3/2023 - Completed 3x12


8/9/2023 - Completed 3x3

8/11/2023 - Completed 5x5

8/15/2023 - Completed 3x12

8/17/2023 - Completed 3x3

8/20/2023 - Completed 5x5

There is no shortage of programs out there and I am sure they would all work for me.  My motivation was to primarily increase frequency and also to limit how frequently I go heavy.

Monday, July 31, 2023

MiniGGC Strict Curl

With the MiniGGC featuring strict curl in week 2, I decided to go ahead and give it a whirl.  I was successful at 75#, but failed 77.5#.  Not much of a warm-up aside from building up to the starting weight.

Saturday, July 29, 2023

AFA Push/Pull/Squat

I was looking forward to a "powerlifting" contest which ended up being much more of a friendly throw down.  There was a judge and a spotter, but the rules/commands were basically put together on the fly (no pause at chest, bounce at chest, butt in the air; depth was ok for everybody; nobody was hitching).  I tried to adhere to USAPL standards for my lifts.

Of the 8 people who were interested only 3 of us showed up.  Levi who typically runs these events, was not available so Gabe was the judge/spotter and another staff member was spotting as well.  We all chipped in to help load.

The order was Squat, Bench, Deadlift and only allowed for increasing weight attempts, but rather than an increasing bar, we each did our 1st attempts, then 2nds, then 3rds.  Not a big deal until you realize what a pain in the ass it is to go from 140 kilos to 225 kilos on a deadlift without a deadlift jack.  The other lifters included Diego (23 years old) and a beast and Gabby (31 years old) and very strong.  Both lift in commercial gym environments were calling there lifts in pounds and then the conversion and then deciding on how to load it was pretty entertaining.  I was putting up slightly better numbers than Gabby, but Diego was on a whole different level.

I got there way too early at 8:10 AM. I expected weigh ins at 8:30 and then lifts to start at 9:00.  Instead we got weighed in around 9:00 and starting lifting at 9:15.  It was very casual and aside from the kilo/pound/loading nonsense everything ran pretty smooth.  I did not get a chance to snack/hydrate much as I was expecting to have 30 minutes between weigh in and starts.

I weighed in at 192.4 lb (87.5 kg)

Squat - 90, 100, 110 kg (3 for 3)
Bench - 70, 75, 77.5 kg (2 for 3)
Deadlift - 140, 150, 155 kg (3 for 3) and a PR!
Total - 340 kg

They did not calculate Wilks scores, nor do I recall exactly what Gabby and Diego put up.  Gabby was around 100/60/120 for SBD.  Diego was around 180/110/225 for SBD.

As I keep my records in pounds, this translates to 242/165/341/748 pounds.  Well ahead of my GGC effort in May of 235/170/325 at 197 pounds bodyweight.

I was thrilled to go 8 for 9 with some solid numbers in Squat and I was thrilled to set a deadlift PR at 52 year of age beating my previous best of 325# pounds.  Even the squat was an annual best.  I had put up 235# this year and lifetime best was 264# (120kg).  Bench certainly needs work.  I had recently been able to put up 195# and lifetime best is 205#.

Also, all of the participants got a free sweatshirt and beanie for participating.