Monday, 28 May 2012

Flash and Thunder: Training Week 5

To all our tough mudders, brothers and sister,

With a successful completion of one months worth of training we wanted to continue our hard work with a great first week in our second month. Unfortunately Flash sustained a hamstring injury which took him out of almost all running activity for the entire week, but when you are prohibited from exercising in one form do you give up? Hell no! Change your workout and persist with your goals in another way. Flash increased his gym time this week focusing on upper body strength, as tough mudder will test that aspect through rope and wall climbing. You can see in the video below that there is a lot of wall climbing, rope swinging, mud crawling and monkey bar swimming, the 20km run we fear will be the easiest part!

Training as always began on Monday 21st of March down at McGillivray with the North Cottesloe Sprint Team, both Flash and Thunder were feeling good before training, mentally ready and physically able. Unfortunately half way through warmup, Flash sustained what turned out to be a grade 1 tear of the hamstring, but instead of giving up and going home Flash stayed and did a range of core exercises while Thunder took on the sprint session which was 8 x 400m to be completed in under 28s. A really tough session to complete but one that gets you that much closer to your goals.

Wednesday night was a great opportunity for Flash and Thunder, they were invited down to 'The Cell -Real Fitness' down in Cockburn Central. They are professionals in Cross Fit training and were able to push us close to our limits. They type of training they offer would not be too different to our Cross Fit sessions that we undertake down at Scarborough beach on a Sunday morning, however it was always going to be good to be pushed by another fitness professional and given some different insights into training styles. The session began with a warmup of 100 varied kettlebell swings, which ranged from single hand swings, American swings and Russian swings with a 20kg kettlebell.

After warmup was complete we had to complete deadlifts sets, 3 sets x 3 reps at 85% of 1 rep max. Finding out what is 85% of your 1 rep max is easy, prior to the session find out what is the absolute maximum weight you can perform for 1 rep, then take 85% of that. For example a 1 rep max of 100kg would give you a 85% of 1rpm of 85kg. Flash and Thunder were able to set there deadlifts at 95kg and 97.5kg respectively. Technique is important, never overload the weight if it takes you out of performing the exercise correctly, this can lead to injury. Below is a video of Benedikt Magnusson deadlifting 1100 pounds (499kg), idiot.

The next part of the workout was awesome because it targeted what Tough Mudder is all about, teamwork! Firstly we had to carry 2 x 26kg kettlebells and 1 x 16kg kettlebell 400m, we could do this anyway we wanted. The strategy we took was for one to take both 26kg kettlebells and the other to take the one 16kg kettlebell, this meant we were able to run balanced. After the 200m  mark we switched over and made our way to the next checkpoint. First 400m over, second about to begin but this time we had to carry a 30kg sandbag and once again we could do it anyway we wanted. Our strategy this time was again for one person to take the entire weight and switch halfway. With one person working and one person encouraging we became effective and efficient!

The last planned 400m was to carry a 60kg barbell, and my lord was that heavy. We heard from earlier in the day people suggest that you carry the barbell on your back and switch as many times as we needed, however in true Tough Mudder style we both grabbed the barbell, threw it on our shoulders and started to run. No communication needed, we knew what we had to do. First 200m finished, we switched shoulders and made a charge to the finish line. With literally 30m to go, Flash feels an aggravation in his hamstring but with so little distance to go how could we give up. The trainer was so impressed with our time he sent us back on another 400m run with no weight, we were able to not only lap everyone else that was in the class but also set a new record for everyone that had previously completed it. 

Other than our own individual gym sessions no more training was completed this week. Thunder had Surf Life Saving awards down in Bunbury which prevented the usual Sunday morning beach session, but don't fear we will start that back up again rain, hail or shine in week 6.

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All proceeds go to Wheelchair Sports WA which is a non-profit organization committed to providing social and sporting opportunities to West Australians living with a physical disability.

Only 117 days to go!

 - Flash and Thunder

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