Tuesday, March 30, 2010
Saturday, March 27, 2010
"Regularly learn and play new sports"
Earlier this month, our very own Paul Warren-Tape fought his first amateur boxing fight. I will let him take the story from here:
I stand at the top of the stairs, deep in concentration, psyching myself up, whilst my opponent makes his way to the ring. The music is now blaring with my intro music whilst the crowd cheers as I make my way down the stairs and into the ring. The nervous energy and anticipation is at a maximum as I put on my gloves and headgear to go three rounds. Nowhere to hide now. Three months preparation has come to this. Ding, ding, round 1… It’s on…
How did a guy, who works in the city for a financial services company, has a double barrelled surname and far from a boxing nose end up having his first ever amateur fight? That is still a question I can’t fully answer, but something which is now a thing of the past. After starting up doing CrossFit in the off-season after rugby and training for a few months, one of the rugby guys accosted me to be part of a boxing night. It would be three months of free group training (so long as I promised to fight), ending up with a night to remember for my mates and 3 x 2 minutes round in the ring for me. It didn’t sound too bad all in all and the training would be something different. Also, what red-blooded male doesn’t want to try his hand in the ring?! So I put my name down.
The boxing training started in late November and I didn’t have a bad level of fitness already. Training would be 3 sessions per week with a professional boxer. I had just completed 2 months of training with CrossFit Bondi (~4 times per week) and also had just completed a 40 day paleo food challenge. So I wasn’t in bad shape to start training for my first fight. Boxing training is tough as it does require a good level of anaerobic fitness, plus it was actually surprisingly tiring being punched as well! We had an initial fitness test to see where each of the boxers where and I came out on top and this was after a morning WOD as well! This was a good sign to where I was positioned amongst the boxing group. I put this down to my CrossFit training.
We had our first big sit down and talk through after we had completed the first 2 weeks of training. What we were told, winning came down to fitness on the night. This really made me focus on my training. So outside of the normal training, I really got stuck into 6 days training per week with CrossFit Bondi. I found that this was the sort of training that was really aiding that short, sharp, explosive power and energy that was required when in the ring. I think with the CrossFit training as well it made me mentally stronger, as the WOD’s were a case of you against the clock and how far you could push yourself. This was perfect to get used to pushing yourself through the pain barrier and not quitting if it got hard. You can’t rest or quit in the ring as your opponent would make you pay. BJ Penn was correct in naming Fight Gone Bad as well! That is so tough both physically and mentally. I did the Fight Gone Bad Task Priority a couple of weeks out in the gym on my own as well. That is perfect training for a fighter’s strength and will-power. I hated it but loved it at the same time!! One of the challenging things of either getting into the ring or doing a CrossFit WOD is the unknown. When you’re in the ring, you have to really fight what’s in front of you. When you get to a morning WOD you don’t know what to expect, so again it is something that you can’t really prepare for. You don’t have a lot of time to prepare mentally, so this really aids you focus.
Doing the morning WODs in a group seemed to make you push yourself more and also, during the WOD you would encourage others to keep going. That really helps you push yourself harder.
I also spoke with my trainer about nutrition and really started to dial what I was eating going to a pretty strict paleo zone approach. This was a must as this gave me the energy to keep training at a high intensity and also able to recover quicker. I found I had more energy and felt healthier with it. So that was a win/win. People did think that I was odd with the way I was eating, but that is always the case when you stray from the norm.
I really got stuck into the boxing training and listened to everything that the boxer trainer had to offer. Outside, I was doing everything I could to put myself in the best possibly shape for the night, continuing with around 6 CrossFit session per week and staying as strict paleo as possible. That is certainly tough over Christmas and New Year, I can tell you!! Some of the other boxers, also, started attending CrossFit Bondi as could see the merit in doing additional training.
So it with 3 weeks out, I really got stuck into training, training at least twice sometimes three times a day to make sure I was ready. I think you also train harder when you have a definite goal in place and something to strive towards, i.e. not getting beaten up in front of all my mates!
In the last week, I tapered off and did some light shadow boxing and not a huge amount. Ate right, rested up and stretched. Also, tried to turn my mind off it, as I found that was all I was thinking about, every waking second. Like what would I do when I get in the ring, what would be my first punch, what combinations would I use, what counter-punches would I through, would I be defensive or the aggressor. So much to think about for such a short fight!!!
The night came. There I was in the ring. The referee calls us together. Told us to keep it clean. Ding ding, round 1. We touch gloves and the first thing I do is throw a quick jab just as instructed by my trainer so that I know I’m in a fight. That seems to put me on the front foot. Round 1, we are both feeling each other out and not letting it all go. 2 minutes definitely seems longer than it should and near the end I am blowing, but I look at my opponent and he is blowing more, so I keep pressing. End of round 1. I got through my first boxing round. That was a confidence booster and also relief at the same time. I go back to my corner. Suck in the big ones and sip some water and listen to my trainer. I seem to be doing all the right things and he tells me to keep busy, punches in bunches and it’s there to win this round.
Round 2, I start cagey but suddenly see an opening and just let my hands go. I throw a multitude of punches and combos that have him reeling backwards. That was a massive feeling. He starts to counter and with a few well timed slips I managed to catch him with a few more nice punches. I now seem to be in control of the fight. I am blowing hard but if I’m blowing he must be in a worst state knowing all the additional CrossFit training I had done. This gives me confidence and keeps me able to come forward. Ding, ding, end of round 2. Back to the corner. Suck in more big ones, more water and focus intently on my trainer. More advice. Then it’s into the final 2 minutes…
Round 3, touch gloves, it’s on for the third and final time. The crowd by this stage is really starting to make some noise. The adrenalin is running. The fight is mine to loose, he must knock me out. I see if he comes out hard, but he doesn’t. Again a small opening and I throw some a few combos. I feel confident and strong. This round is tough though because as you tire you must keep your gloves up at all times and keep on the balls of your feet. Can’t be caught flat footed. I’m egging myself on. Using the crowd. I sit back for a second as now blowing hard, but again he backs of more and looks in worse trouble. I just make sure I continue throwing the jab. The more punches you throw the better at this stage. Fitness is the key now. Nothing more. Ding ding, before I know it, it’s over. I just have a great sense of achievement. I’m buzzing, bouncing round the ring. My opponent is hands on the ring, blowing harder. Time for the decision.
We both stand there, the referee holding our hands. I have my eyes closed just listening to the presenter. I can’t hear the crowd, then I hear the words I wanted to hear “…. And the winner is, out of the red corner, Paul “The Bondi Barbarian” War… “ I didn’t hear anymore. My hands are already raised, I hear my mates going nuts. That is the best feeling in the world. You can’t rub the smile off my face for hours, days and even now still smiling at the thought of it.
What got me the win? Staying strict on the training and diet. I would have to say that without the boxing training tips and the hours of sweat on CrossFit WODs I wouldn’t have got there. As I found out, fights are won in the gym or in my case outside doing WODs. Get some!!
5 rounds for time
15 pull ups
Friday, March 26, 2010
Thursday, March 25, 2010
"Attitude is everything"
Jerry was the kind of guy you love to hate. He was always in a good mood and always had something positive to say. When someone ask him how he was doing, he would reply, "If I were any better, I would be twins!"
He was a unique manager because he had several waiters who had followed him around from restaurant to restaurant. The reason the waiters followed Jerry was because of his attitude. He was a natural motivator. If an employee was having a bad day, Jerry was there telling the employee how to look on the positive side of the situation.
Seeing this style really made me curious, so one day I went up to Jerry and asked him, "I don't get it! You can't be a positive person all of the time. How do you do it?"
Jerry replied, "Each morning I wake up and say to myself, Jerry, you have two choices today. You can choose to be in a good mood or you can choose to be in a bad mood.' I choose to be in a good mood. Each time something bad happens, I can choose to be a victim or I can choose to learn from it. I choose to learn from it. Every time someone comes to me complaining, I can choose to accept their complaining or I can point out the positive side of life. I choose the positive side of life."
"Yeah, right, it's not that easy," I protested.
"Yes it is," Jerry said. "Life is all about choices. When you cut away all the junk, every situation is a choice. You choose how you react to situations. You choose how people will affect your mood. You choose to be in a good or bad mood. The bottom line : It's your choice how you live life."
I reflected on what Jerry said. Soon thereafter, I left the restaurant industry to start my own business.
We lost touch, but I often thought about him when I made a choice about life instead of reacting to it.
Several years later, I heard that Jerry did something you are never supposed to do in a restaurant business: he left the back door open one morning and was held up at gunpoint by three armed robbers. While trying to open the safe, his hand, shaking from nervousness, slipped off the combination.
The robbers panicked and shot him.
Luckily, Jerry was found relatively quickly and rushed to the local trauma center.
After 18 hours of surgery and weeks of intensive care, Jerry was released from the hospital with fragments of the bullets still in his body.
I saw Jerry about six months after the accident. When I asked him how he was, he replied, "If I were any better, I'd be twins. Wanna see my scars?"
I declined to see his wounds, but did ask him what had gone through his mind as the robbery took place.
"The first thing that went through my mind was that I should have locked the back door," Jerry replied. "Then, as I lay on the floor, I remembered that I had two choices: I could choose to live, or I could choose to die. I chose to live."
"Weren't you scared? Did you lose consciousness?" I asked.
Jerry continued, "The paramedics were great. They kept telling me I was going to be fine. But when they wheeled me into the emergency room and I saw the expressions on the faces of the doctors and nurses, I got really scared. In their eyes, I read, 'He's a dead man.' I knew I needed to take action."
"What did you do?" I asked.
"Well, there was a big, burly nurse shouting questions at me," said Jerry. "She asked if I was allergic to anything. 'Yes,' I replied. The doctors and nurses stopped working as they waited for my reply. I took a deep breath and yelled, 'Bullets!' Over their laughter, I told them, 'I am choosing to live. Operate on me as if I am alive, not dead."
Jerry lived thanks to the skill of his doctors, but also because of his amazing attitude. I learned from him that every day we have the choice to live fully.
Attitude, after all, is everything.
5 rounds for time:
Lunge walk 40m
25 Jack kife sit ups
350m hill run (175m up/175m down)
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Monday, March 22, 2010
Sunday, March 21, 2010
Friday, March 19, 2010
Thursday, March 18, 2010
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
Fran is coming...
"Death by Push Press"
With a continuously running clock do one 40kg push press the first minute, two 40kg push presses the second minute, three 40kg push presses the third minute... continuing as long as you are able.
Use as many sets each minute as needed.
Max reps of jumping pull ups in 5 minutes
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
Playing With Ring Pushups (Nicole) [wmv][mov]
40 Ring push ups - 40 Jack knife sit ups
30 Ring push ups - 30 Jack knife sit ups
20 Ring push ups - 20 Jack knife sit ups
10 Ring push ups - 10 Jack knife sit ups
50 Ring Rows
100 Abmat sit ups
Run Waratah Street Hill
Monday, March 15, 2010
Saturday, March 13, 2010
Friday, March 12, 2010
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
Monday, March 8, 2010
Saturday, March 6, 2010
Friday, March 5, 2010
Wednesday, March 3, 2010
Tuesday, March 2, 2010
Monday, March 1, 2010
"The Bear" (Refer to video above)
7 cycles of the following barbell complex:
1 power clean
1 back squat into push press - return to start position
x 5 sets. Rest as needed between each set. Barbell can only touch and go off the ground during each set.