firefighter fitness training

December 17th – 26th, 2012


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December 17th – 26th, 2012

This past week I’ve been up ‘holidaying’ in Sault Ste Marie. Don’t know anyone up this way mind you, but my wife decided it would be fun to come up and work here for a week. As I usually do when I’m not going to be home for more than a day, I worry about how this will affect my workout. It’s my first, and quite frankly, only concern (yeah it’s lame, but so be it!)…

To solve this dilemma, I googled ‘Sault Ste Marie Crossfit’ and came across the following box – Crossfit Catalyst. I contacted the owner, Chris, and inquired about possibly working out there for the week. After finding out a bit more about my background, as any responsible Crossfit box coach and owner should do, Chris graciously invited me over and train whenever I felt like it!

My first day at Crossfit Catalyst was on Friday December 21st – This was the day after spending nearly 13 hours to drive the 800km to the Sault through one of the biggest snowstorms of the past few years. My body needed a workout – ASAP! I pulled up to the gym – a typical nondescript building in a new-ish industrial park in the north-end of town (new-ish industrial parks are emblematic of pretty much all Crossfit boxes!) and was immediately confronted by an awesome sight. Out of the fresh snow, grey skies, and cold-ass weather stood a pile of large tires. A Crossfit calling card if ever there was one! While I could have simply stayed outside and done a worthwhile workout in the parking lot, I decided it best to put this tire-tease aside for the moment and make my way into the building. A quick scan of the place and I instantly knew I had come across one of the best and well-equipped Crossfit boxes I have ever seen! Everything you could imagine was there – climbing ropes, stones, rings, amazing pull-up bar system, log bars, MMA training mat, etc. etc. Within minutes I was already trying to figure out a way to workout here on a regular basis…

The Crossfitters working out here no doubt realize how privy they are to be part of such a great facility. They are a friendly and well-trained group. I have never seen so many people master kipping pull-ups, for example, than at Crossfit Catalyst. The numbers people were lifting were also amazingly impressive. These were all clearly the sign of a Coach who knows what he’s doing. Not only are there numerous traditional Crossfit classes, but this place also has a lot of open-gym time. For anyone training in Crossfit for more than a couple of years, branching out and increasing strength training and toying with your own programming knows how important open gym time is– and unfortunately not too many Crossfit boxes offer as much open gym time as Crossfit Catalyst did. In fact, I don’t know of many who could even meet them halfway on this. No doubt this is a successful gym as many people came and went while I was there – and not once were they a piece of equipment short!

Anyone reading this who is either from Sault Ste Marie, or goes there on a regular basis, I can’t recommend this place enough. In fact, I’m completely and utterly jealous of you and am sad at the idea of returning to my regular gym.

On that note, here was the workout for the past week:

December 18th – Heavy Day A

Squats – Warm up x 3 sets – Heavy weight for 3 sets x 3 reps (did 280lbs on last set) – 2 minute rest between sets

Press – Warm up x 3 sets – Heavy weight for 3 sets x 3 reps (did 125lbs) – 2 minute rest between sets

SuperSet #1 – 5 Sets, 1 minute rest of : Barbell Back Row x 8 reps (165lbs) + Weighted Sit-Ups x 10 reps (30lbs)

SuperSet #2 – 5 Sets, 1 minute rest of: Weighted Tricep Dips x 8 reps (45lbs) + Wide-Grip Pull-Ups x Max Reps

December 20th – Medium Day B

Squats – Warm up x 3 sets – Medium weight for 3 sets x 5 reps (did 245lbs) – 1.5 minute rest between sets (plus one extra set at end of 8 x 135lbs)

Bench – Warm up x 3 sets – Medium weight for 3 sets x 5 reps (did 175lbs) – 1.5 minute rest between sets (plus one extra set at end of 8 x 135lbs)

Power-Cleans – Warm up x 3 sets – Medium weight for 5 sets x 3 reps (did 135lbs) – 1 minute rest between sets

SuperSet – 5 Sets, 1 minute rest of: Romanian Deadlifts x 8 reps (165lbs) + Weighted Chinups x Max reps (35lbs)

December 22nd – Light Day A

Squats – Warm up x 3 sets – Light weight for 3 sets x 8 reps (did 175lbs) – 1 minute rest between sets

Press – Warm up x 3 sets – Light weight for 3 sets x 8 reps (did 90lbs) – 1 minute rest between sets

SuperSet #1 – 5 Sets, 1 minute rest of : Barbell Back Row x 8 reps (155lbs) + Weighted Sit-Ups x 10 reps (30lbs)

SuperSet #2 – 5 Sets, 1 minute rest of: Weighted Tricep Dips x 8 reps (45lbs) + Wide-Grip Pull-Ups x Max Reps

December 23rd – Metcon

Gerkin Protocol : 14:10 minute mark

Maximum Push-ups in 2 minutes: 84

Maximum Plank Hold: 4 minutes

December 24th – Strength Endurance

5 x 105lb Thrusters on the minute for 20 minutes (equivalent to pressing 10,500lbs over your head)

December 26th – Strength Endurance

Murph!!

Run 1 mile

100 Pull-ups

200 Push-ups

300 Squats

Run 1 mile

Apart from doing Murph with one other person – Ty – I have never done Murph as a group. Crossfit Catalyst had tons of people participating in this – it was great! We ran the miles outside in the snow (I didn’t bring proper gear for this so I ran the first mile on a treadmill but ran the second mile outside as I was too hot to bother with the treadmill again) – big mistake as the sweat on my hair froze into ice and certain parts of my body were experiencing the first stages of frostbite – and attempting to warm it up would have gotten me a pass into a Sault prison cell for the day, waiting for my wife to bail me out – lol!!)

Experiencing Murph with that many people was the sweet ending to a fantastic week working out at an awesome gym!!!

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