Behind the Scenes

“Sometimes it’s a little better to travel than to have arrived.” -Robert M. Pirsig

power pose
Arrival at failure or a power pose?

Fair warning, I’m gonna do that thing where I string some seemingly random threads together. Yes! I’m making you an afghan blanket just like grandma used to make. It’s for the summer-in-the-desert Netflix and AC chill. We all know it’s best done sans pants and when the blower kicks on, that ish gets drafty. Brrr!

Oh man, off to a good start, Gunz.

Aight times tres.gif
My weekend ‘flix binge

Let me set it up. The internet went down last week at my office. Then the server. And the phones. The daily dose of streaming music had yet to make my daily moments of gratitude…. Until about noon on day 1 of downage (let’s make that a word). When the only sound in the room is the click of your mouse and the voice of a well-meaning but over-sharing coworker, you become hungry for any noise rapido.

I’m pretty sure this is the only time I will ever say this: Facebook (and unlimited data) to the rescue. The first thing in my feed was this conversation with My Girl Kate (Galliett – not actually my girl, but we’re vibing in a limbic resonance kinda way, at least one-directionally):

Isn’t it interesting, the split screen comparison of the backdrops of each human… Hmm. What’s that say about each? *eye brows* Anyway, I really like what Kate had to say, in particular on the matter of our human desires to go “right to do the handstand” in life – resisting or disregarding all the tedious, boring, crucial, delicious (choose your adjective and your mindset) work it takes leading up to it. The dudes at BBS touched on it this week, too, the “rush to greatness” and the desire to just do the cool stuff. I think we can call that Insta-itis. Friends, I get the fever, too.

The allure of all the shiny, shiny shit on Instagram got me thinking about a dude whose work I was introduced to in a theory of architecture class during grad school, Guy Debord. His work, The Society of the Spectacle, is all about “the gaze”. Courtesy of Wikipedia (which does a way better job of summarizing it than I can. Throw them some bones):

“Debord traces the development of a modern society in which authentic social life has been replaced with its representation: ‘All that once was directly lived has become mere representation.’ Debord argues that the history of social life can be understood as ‘the decline of being into having, and having into merely appearing.’ This condition, according to Debord, is the ‘historical moment at which the commodity completes its colonization of social life.’”

Sounds like the moment is now. Though maybe it’s best we converse on the matter. Maybe over a scratch meal…?

My last random thread (Fuuu… that’s gonna be one comfy blankie) is about the eats, the value of home-cooking. Did you know last year Americans spent more money in restaurants than they did on groceries. (Right. This means zero grounds for bitching about the cost of groceries.) I couldn’t agree more with Tamarkin’s take on meal delivery services, but man, there’s so much more that “goes to waste” when you’re not involved in the process (note that rabbit hole, those of us who gather our meats and veggies from a retailer). Similar to the joys of suffering through a workout, the task of creating with others fosters more that the “thing”, it feeds that connection to your people. It’s like time under tension, but with food. Shared effort for the win.

I’ll leave you with this behind the scenes from the man with the bongos, who totally gets why a person might wanna keep an afghan (little “a” friends) handy on the front porch.


02 June | F
AM | Friday Hike Club!
Piestewa Peak

PM | Globo Mountain
Mobility | 3x
Cossack lunge x 12
Scap press x 10
Rev curl-ups x 10

Warm-up | 3x
Row x 1:00
Slam balls x 7
AYTs x 5 EA

Train | [Repeat]
A. Deadlift 7 x 3 (185, 4@195, 2@200#) [2:00]
B1. SA DB snatch 7 x 3 ea (35, 2@40, 3 @45#) [RI]
B2. SL hip bridge x 10 ea (5@20, 2@17.5#) [1:00]
C. Lat pull downs 4 x 10 (60, 3@70#) [1:00]

Stretch | 15:00

03 June | Sa
Mobility | 3x
Wall slides x 10
GA squat x 10
Pope clammies x 15 ea
TVAs x 15

Train |
A1. Row 3 x 300m [RI]
A2. FLR + taps x 12 [RI]
A3. KBS x 5 (44#)
B. 10 x PC + HPC x 2 (3@115, 4@125, 3@115#) [As req’d]
C1. [Cable] Pallof press 3 x 12 (40#)
C2. Kneeling BU KB press x 6 ea (24, 20, 18#)

04 June | Su
Mobility | 3x
OHWL x 10
Hip CARs
Glute press x 10
Prone Y raise (abs – check) x 10

Train |
A. Row x 15:00 (Pretty comfy pace, 3457m)
B. Seated hammie curls 4 x 12 (80#) [1:00]
C. Heeeip extensions 4 x 12
D. Zercher reverse lunges 3 x 8 ea (75, 85, 85#) [1:00 btwn legs]
E. Bike or treadmill x 20:00 (bici)


F | Morning hike was pretty fucking sweet. Felt good! Was pleasantly surprised with my capacity and recovery.

day of the donut.JPG
National Day of the Donut… Taco… Pancakes

PM sesh… The DLs felt really strong and easy off the floor. As noted previously, part B is pretty nice cardio. I dropped weight on the SL hip bridges when I noticed I wasn’t able to completely open the hip at the top (a point the emphasized) on the left side. Did the pull-downs with the long bar grip. Yep, felt em.

Decided to hit the scale in the ladies locker room. Results: 163.3. It’s just a number, but I think I’m still gonna do Friday weigh-ins for a while #collectingdata

Questions: I would like to put on some muscle. What do I need to delta to make this happen? What am I missing? Why are my priorities not reflected back? Why does “D-backs” sound like “D-bags” e’rytime? How do they make coffee that has notes of peanut butter and chocolate? And does that still make it Paleo? 

Sa | My butt is real sore from the repeat workout. The cleans felt nice and speedy, so much so that I wanted to see how they felt out the bottom. Dropped some lbs and finished the last 3 sets with a tall clean. I was feeling very “technically proficient” compared to my compadres in the “functional training area”. Do you even know what you’re trying to accomplish there, bruh?

sure would.png
The KnBUKB press (Nailin’ the acronyms – next up greeting cards and paint colors) are pretty solid on the right and crap on the left. Workin’ on it, man.

Su | Low back spoke to me a little during the row… Hike? Deadlift? The combo? But things felt fine on the extensions and lunges. How the eff do people hangout in the hammie trap between sets?!? I lept outta that contraption as soon as I fucking could each round. Fire! Mirrors are totally helpful during the Zerchers.

The Prince Post

“Despite everything, no one can dictate who you are to other people.” -Prince

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Aaand that guitar solo…


24 April | Su
Pillars | 3x
Wall rotation + press x 10
GA squat x 8
Banded clammies x 12 ea
KB dead bugs x 1:00

Warm-up | 4x
Push-up x 7
Sit-up x 10
DUs x 30

Work | A make up O-lifting workout
4 x Clean x 1 + Hang clean x 2 + Push jerk x 1 (105#)
Banded deadlifts 4 x 4 (155, 165#…)
4 sets:
A, T, Y, Face pulls x 8 ea
Tricep push-downs x 25
Frog pumps x :45

Stretch | 10:00


I didn’t push it on the lbs; not quite feeling 100%. The cleans and jerks felt nice and speedy and, oooh that finish at the top of the banded DLs. Had anyone seen me setting up the rig for those, well, comical. And she’s an architect, they say…

The alphabets with the bands always take a lot of mental focus for me to get right. The Y’s in particular are not my jam. I really want to initiate those with my upper traps.

Added in some of these…

Despite the tutorial, that positioning had me like…

whadya do with dees

Maybe….

right there

They’re right there. I remain unsure how that would contribute to glute activation, however. Definitely don’t have the frog pumps down quite yet, but I’ll give ’em another round if for no other reason to keep it awkward in the remote corner. 

Memento Mori

true in bed, true at any social event
True in a fire, and any social event

Have you ever laid in bed and worried about something really dumb? Like, oh man, I wonder how old the water heater in this place is? What if the gas line connection is bad and a fire starts; how will I escape? What could I break the window with? What if I can’t escape because of the security grilles on the window and then I die? What then?

Well, I guess I won’t care because I will be dead.

Go to bed, Leah.


30 March | Tu
Pillars | 3x
Plank raise x 6 @10s
Super bird dogs x 10 ea
Side plank clammie x 60s ea

Warm-up | 4x
Wall ball x 8
Push-ups x 5
Reaching DB x :30

Work | RFESS 3 x 8 @32×1 (5# plates)
Rest x 1:00
3 sets:
RDL x 5 (95,115,125#)
Rest x 1:00
BB step-ups x 8 ea (65#)
Rest x 1:00
– then –
EMOM x 10:00:
KBS x 10 (44,53#)


Inspired by this article, I tried a new variation on the dead bug in my warm up.

The standard dead bugs have gotten less challenging, even the wall-pressing ones. Using the kettlebell really engaged the lower abs.

Started with 15#ers on the RFESS but kept dropping down until I stopped cheating with my support leg. Ended up laying the orange foam roller on the bench and putting my toe on that so I absolutely couldn’t use the balance leg/foot to cheat. Ridiculous! But it worked, so maybe less ridiculous than I thought.

The RDLs and the step-ups felt strong and I woke up nice and sore in my nutcracker. (That’s my booty – squeeze the walnut.)

 

Faux Problems

“What would life be if we had no courage to attempt anything?” -Van Gogh

 

problem solved
Problem: solved. But seriously, visible cords are the worst!

“Faux” has to be my least favorite F-word. This article, “Your Problems Don’t Matter,” by Dave Ursillo, however, is “faux” real! (Yeah. I just did that.) So, not only are our bodies built for adaption, so are our minds, going for the easiest route to purpose, even if it’s invented. Lots of gems in there. Do you have fall-back imitation problems that circle around? I know I do! I mean, I’m pretty certain once I have an impeccably furnished (and cord-free), newly renovated broad-side bungalow with an emerald green ’71 Bronco in the driveway and can rest a cup of coffee on my big ol’ booty, that I will have found purpose in my life. Am I right?


23 March | W
Pillars |3x
GA squat x 7
Super bird dogs x 10 ea
Scaption press x 6 @5s ea
COB hold x :20

Get a little sweaty | Rowing + DUs

Work | O-lifting
Halting (1s above-the-knee) power clean 5 x 2 (115,125,125,125,130#)
Front squat + chains 5 x 2 (145,155,155,165,165#)
4 sets:
Hurdle hops x 2
Death march (25#s)
Partner leg drops x 10

Stretch | 15:00


The jumps are a weakness of mine, but those hurdle hops were a lot of fun. Really dug the leg drops.

booty 5000 goals
But, seriously, let’s continue with the building a booty plans 🙂

The Honesty Zone

“Valid criticism does you a favor.” – Carl Sagan

don't judge me
“The Necessity of Judgement” | Marc Dennis

21 March | M
Pillars | 3x
TVA leg drops x 15
Arch ups x 12
Elbow planks + tap  5 ea
Suspended SL squat x 6 ea

Work | 10:00 @ a consistent pace: (4 +150)
Row x 150m
Bench x 5 @ 65#
Wall pressing dead bugs x :45

– Rest x 4:00 –

10:00 @ a consistent pace: (3 + 37)
Dbl KBS  x 5 (44#)
DUs x 30
Wall walk x 2
TGU x 1 ea (35,44,44#)

– Rest x 4:00 –

10:00 @ a consistent pace: (5)
AD x 10 cals
Body row x 5
GHR x 7

Stretch | 15:00


Not sure if I slept wonky or if it was Sunday’s BTN work, but I had a kinky neck on Monday. Didn’t require me to modify much, just the dbl KBS. The double wall walks kick my ass. It’s fantastic! Especially followed by some heavy get-ups.

The GHRs are pretty easy, breezy for me now; do I just hold a plate to make those more challenging – what’s the upgrade there? More reps? With beer?

Also what’s the scoop with the single leg deadlift? Pretty much a SL RDL? Just curious. “Smoother and tighter”… yes, please.

Ka-Boom!

IMG_4960

This has nothing to do with anything here, but I can’t stop laughing. Solidarity, sista!


15 March | Tu
Pillars | 3x
Wall rotations + press x 10
GA squat x 10
Banded clammies x 15 ea

Work | 5 rounds:
AD x 1:00
Sled pull x 100m @ 115#
Row x 1:00
Farmer’s carry x 100m (44#ers)
Banded hip bridges x 1:00

Stretch | 10:00

π | M
Pillars | 3x
Single-leg elevated hip bridge x 8 ea
Plank + reach thru x 8 ea
Hip hikes x 15 ea

Warm-up | 3x
Row x 1:00
KBS x 10
DUs x 30

Work | Deadlift 5 x 1 (175,185,195,205,210#)
3 sets:
RFESS x 8 @30×1 (10# DBs)
Right into
AD x 1:00
Rest x 3:00
-then-
Banded dead bugs 4 x 1:00
Rest x 1:00 btwn


Tuesday just did a recovery-ish session. Was up ’till the wee hours for work, so just rolled through. 

Monday’s DLs felt pretty good. How can 205# feel pretty easy and 210# feel like [something way really heavier]? Here are the vids:

The RFESS + AD combo was fun times; lots of burning in the legs and flutes + heavy breathing.

stuck at 205
When your RF of the RFESS is trying to do the work

Pretty sore from all the ab work on Saturday, which made it really easy to feel the dead bugs. Doing it with Cons feels like you have some bricks strapped to ya feet.

 

[Re]Write the Day

“There are few of us who have not sometimes wakened before dawn, either after one of those dreamless nights that make us almost enamoured of death, or one of those nights of horror and misshapen joy, when through the chambers of the brain sweep phantoms more terrible than reality itself, and instinct with that vivid life that lurks in all grotesques, and that lends to Gothic art its enduring vitality, this art being, one might fancy, especially the art of those whose minds have been troubled with the malady of reverie. Gradually white fingers creep through the curtains, and they appear to tremble. In black fantastic shapes, dumb shadows crawl into the corners of the room and crouch there. Outside, there is the stirring of birds among the leaves, or the sound of men going forth to their work, or the sigh and sob of the wind coming down from the hills and wandering round the silent house, as though it feared to wake the sleepers and yet must needs call forth sleep from her purple cave. Veil after veil of thin dusky gauze is lifted, and by degrees the forms and colours of things are restored to them, and we watch the dawn remaking the world in its antique pattern. The wan mirrors get back their mimic life. The flameless tapers stand where we had left them, and beside them lies the half-cut book that we had been studying, or the wired flower that we had worn at the ball, or the letter that we had been afraid to read, or that we had read too often. Nothing seems to us changed. Out of the unreal shadows of the night comes back the real life that we had known. We have to resume it where we had left off, and there steals over us a terrible sense of the necessity for the continuance of energy in the same wearisome round of stereotyped habits, or a wild longing, it may be, that our eyelids might open some morning upon a world that had been refashioned anew in the darkness for our pleasure, a world in which things would have fresh shapes and colours, and be changed, or have other secrets, a world in which the past would have little or no place, or survive, at any rate, in no conscious form of obligation or regret, the remembrance even of joy having its bitterness and the memories of pleasure their pain.” – Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray

Oh my god, that’s a long one. But seriously… ❤ Oscar Wilde knows how to assemble the words.

Rules of life_Kirill Richert

I’m a big fan of the new day, new start mantra. The sunrise is the perfect reset. That being said, I am totally guilty of having something from the previous day, or even a crappy dream, carry over into the following day.

This very thing threatened my Saturday morning. I’d planned a hike, but even as I pulled up to the trailhead, part of me wanted to turn around and crawl back into bed. But I kept asking myself, “Is that really how you want to write the day, Morgan?”. I parked the car and it ended up being one of the best hikes of that trail that I’ve done! Good decision.

delta that shit
Don Draperism – because Mad Men is my current Netflix binge, this totally applies. Sort of. Change the convo in ya head

13 March | Su

Peralta Trail @ The Superstition Mountains

 12 March | Sa

Pre-Gymnasium Hike | Mormon Trail @ South Mountain

Pillars | 3x
GA squats x 8
Scaption x 8 @ 5s ea
Prone glute press x 10
Super bird dogs x 10 ea

Warm-up | EMOM x 20:00
Evens: DUs x 30
Odds: SA press x 5 ea + Sit-ups x 10

Work | O-Lifting
3 position clean deadlift 4 x 3 (155,165,165,175#)
Seated press 4 x 3 (55,60,65,70#)
3 Sets:
SL RDLs x 8 ea (35#)
Banded shoulder rolls x 10 ea direction
Hollow rocks x :30

Stretch| 20:00


Such a great vibes weekend. Saturday’s gym session was fantastic; Matty Nice was in the gymnasium! Whaaat. Was fired up from the hike so I did an EMOM workout (stolen from a workout from last week that I didn’t fit in) to prep for O-Lifting. That first position on the deadlifts was… intense. Okay, so were the other two. Really had to focus to keep the shoulders back. Ellie Mayhem and I kept one another in check. Nothing to report on the other movements other than that the hip/back/shoulder/tricep are feeling good.

My Sunday trip to the Superstitions was amazing. The pics don’t do it justice…

Peralta

 

Mas Peralta

Also, I can hike for miles without a misstep but as soon as another human is in visual range, that’s when I’ll fall on my face. True story. It’s like when you’re having a scandalous conversation with your lady friends and as soon as you get to the good bits, the joint goes silent and you’re the one yelling “Anal!” at The Yard.

Lastly, after listening to the latest Barbell Shrugged Podcast Version 2.0, I gotta eat more oatmeal. After O-Lifting.