good clean fun

Tuesday morning I made my way to Indian Beach bright and early; I arrived there about 5:20, and got dressed and was in the water before 5:45. It was a rising tide, clean, small, fun. Very little wind. Two foot SW groundswell (about 13 seconds). No NW swell or wind-waves at all. I was alone for the first 20 minutes, then was joined by one other surfer… ahh the joys of dawn patrol! I took out my old board and did well with it. Actually… for me, as I caught a bunch of waves, turned into them, etc., all I could think was that nothing beats my Bruce Grant 9’6″ Super Ugly! It was nice to RIDE. So, session #3 of the summer surf safari was a success, and totally fun.

It’s difficult to quantify surfing from a “fitness” standpoint, but I can state pretty well that, at least at my level, one of the main ways that it stimulates the body is through hundreds of repetitions of an arms-only swimming motion similar to the crawl stroke. I don’t spend a whole lot of time working the core or legs in standing on waves… a tiny fraction of the effort is that part. All the burpees I’ve been doing over the past few months easily prepare me for the pop-ups, and my core and legs are strong and flexible enough now to meet the challenge of standing on a wave. It’s the paddling. My shoulders, traps, lats, and triceps were raw and complaining by the end of an hour out there.

monday fun

I was fatigued and tired and completely demotivated as I began the workout today, this monday, first workout of week II. Surprisingly, it went entirely according to plan. I have no complaints about what I did or accomplished. It was fun and, I suppose, actually points towards my getting stronger. I got my burpees in, and managed to do a set of 5 on the chin-ups for the first time in months, which was a nice surprise. I added +10 lbs to the RDL over last week and I added reps on the press. All good.

5 x 90 second intervals: Burpees x 5 & 50 jumprope single unders. When your warm-up is a mini-WOD, you’re eleete by definition. Haterz beware!

3 double interval rounds:
Chin-Ups 3 x max reps @ 90 sec (5, 4, 2)
Ring Dips 3 x max reps @ 90 sec (3, 2 & -2, 1 & -3)

Romanian Deadlift:
10 rounds @ 90 sec.
5 x 105, 3 x 145, 3 x 155, 7 x 3 x 165.

1 x 12 x 70 lbs
3 x 3 x 105 lbs

Conditioning: none.

sunday at oswald

Super early… left at 5:01 am for morning session at Shorties. Grey sky. Light wind. SW swell 2 feet at 17 seconds. Pretty high tide, but falling fast (-1.4 ft/hr) while I was out there. Sunrise at 5:35. In the water by 5:45 am. Initially I was alone. Sounds decent, right? But it was too small. The waves were soft and just ill-shaped enough to make it a tough go. It was choppy on the south end, as it always is. Maybe it was the falling tide, maybe I’m out of shape, or maybe I was just too tired on what should have been a rest day, but it was very hard to find a good spot and stay set up. In short, I sucked. But it was only my second time out this summer.

A bit later one other early riser was out there too. Better than me.

My new wetsuit is so big, thick, heavy, and tight, it takes enormous effort to put on, and even greater effort to remove. I’m starting to think of it as being made out of boa constrictors. It took me almost 20 minutes to get my act together, strip down, pack up, and get back to the car.

Sitting cold on the logs, wrestling with the constrictor, I watched a few more wave chasers take to the flat waters. From the shore they looked like a rippling sheet of black iron.

surf safari 2012 week one update

After one week of my current four week “plan” for surfing safari, I’d say, success. Two simple rules for summer month on the Oregon Coast: (1) no calories between 8 pm and 9 am (2) go to bed early. Unwritten rules: surf whenever possible, dig sand and move heavy rocks a lot, lift three times a week and condition 1-3 times a week. Unwritten rules are habits, so they go without saying. A better interpretation of rule (2) is don’t watch TV and go to bed early, and so far that hasn’t been an issue. As far as rule (1) goes, I’ve really only broken it one time, although I admit to a small quantity of “last minute” alcohol calories between 8-9 on a couple other occasions.

Been in the water plenty but the surfing blows so far, BTW. Have been surfing a few times in week 1. Drove to Indian Beach twice, surfed once, pretty lame. Went out on Kayak and Surfboard in Arch Cape, twice. Kayaking is always a fun time.

Dad, John and I moved a few tons of rock and sand this week, remaking the path, and building a flat sand pad 2/3 the way up the berm. I pushed a 100+ pound wheelbarrowfull of sand up a 20 meter rock and sand path for over 30 repetitions this week, I’d guess. That is an incredible grip, core, and bilateral lunging workout. I also shoveled for countless reps. I spent a lot of time in my combat boots, basically.

In general, the lifting feels awesome. I’m starting to feel like I might be getting stronger after all. I hit all small goals and got my planned numbers and reps on the lifts. I feel good about the plan for this coming week.

heavy day three

Wow the third day of week I of Summer Surf Safari 2012 was super active and heavy. I was dragging by the end, and ravenous. It was Friday, and Johnny C arrived. I extended by eating and drinking window by 2.5 hours to 10:30 and had a bunch of carby crap and EtOH at the end. But still a great day.

Morning Surf: left at 5:00 am for Indian Beach and got in the water for the first time this summer. There was a WNW 4.6ft at 10 seconds and light wind, but not enough water, as the tide was rapidly receding towards a 10:00 am low. Dad went with me. We didn’t accomplish much, but we tried. That’ the thing. We were, of course, alone in the water.

Morning into afternoon beach work: shoveled and pushed wheelbarrows of heavy wet sand up the hill of the berm many many many pounds, all morning and until about 12:45, until my entire body was shaking.

Then took a water break, had a bite of watermelon, a half and hour rest, and then, before lunch, worked out.

Afternoon workout: This was done according to plan, on the driveway, of course. Fun.
5 rounds x 5 burpees @ 90 sec

3 double interval rounds:
Chin-Ups 3 x max reps @ 90 sec (4, 3, 2)
Ring Dips 3 x max reps @ 90 sec (2, 1 & -2, 1 & -2)

Main Strength: Hang Power Clean

Power Clean 5 x 3 @ 3 min
5 x 95
3 x 135, 3 x 140, 3 x 145, 3 x 150, 3 x 155. Completed these as planned.

1 x 12 x 70 lbs
3 x 2 x 105 lbs

Conditioning: none

second day on the fourth

Happy Fourth of July! It is Wednesday of Week I, second day of new four week cycle.

Today’s workout was in the afternoon, after the parade, during JZ’s naptime, in the driveway of ACSC. Ahhh, ACSC, where the iron is chinese, the squat racks are pressure treated wood, the platform is gravel and mud, my lifting shoes are vintage jungle boots, and the music is the sound of wind and ocean, and today, the report of a few early firecrackers. At least I have my gymboss and my iPhone.

ACSC (formerly known by other names) is now in it’s third season of operation. I love this summertime gym, although I could use some company. Lifting by yourself with no music is a little too tranquil at times. I had to suck it up to make myself stay on program for today. But it was a sunny beautiful fourth, and the session was good.


5 rounds: 5 burpees, 100m run @ 90 sec



3 double interval rounds:

Chin-Ups 3 x max reps @ 90 sec (3, 3, 3)
Ring Dips 3 x max reps @ 90 sec (2, 2, 1 & -1)

Main Strength: Squat

Squat 2 x 5 @ 1 min & 5 x 3 @ 5 min

5 x 45, 5 x 145, 3 x 195, 3 x 200, 3 x 205, 3 x 210, 3 x 215. Got these all as planned. Felt good about it. Five minute rest felt long at first. Especially with no music. But later on the


1 x 12 x 70 lbs

3 x 2 x 105 lbs. Very pleased to be finally working above 100 lbs in the press. It’s been a long year since last summer here and my broken arm.

Conditioning: Ran route from house to Fire Rock & Walsh and back, time: 7:13 (according to Google Earth, the route is approximately 1318 meters, or 0.82 miles; that’s a pace of 8:47 a mile; loafing, in other words).

the ocean’s roar

Four Week Cycle: Surf Safari 2012. Week I, Monday Workout.

Warm-Up: Beach work while on a walk with the kids (high knees, broad jumps, shoulder mobility, karaoke, bear crawls, etc.)

Burpees 5 x 5

15 minutes or so rest, then…

3 double interval rounds: Chin-Ups 3 x max reps @ 90 sec (4, 2, 2) / Ring Dips 3 x max reps @ 90 sec (1, -1, -1). I.E. yes, I couldn’t even manage a single dip on rounds 2-3. I did negatives.

Main Strength: RDL 10 rounds @ 90 sec. 5 x 95, 3 x 135, 3 x 145, 7 x 3 x 155. One of those sets of 155 was x 4. Accident!

Press: 1 x 12 x 70 lbs / 3 x 2 x 105 lbs

Conditioning: run to Fire Rock Road and back. Time: 5:42 (.6 miles or 1.0 km; 9.5 minute/mile).

Surf Safari 2012

New Four Week Training Cycle begins today, July 1st, and extends until July 28th. Twelve MWF workout are planned, but the main point of the cycle is to surf as many times as possible.

Training plan is simple. Focus on doing triples. Deal with the equipment limitations of being at the beach, which are as follows: I have a jumprope, some rings, an 8 foot pull-up bar, 300 lbs of rusty Chinese iron, and that’s about it. I’ll do RDLs on Monday, Squats on Wednesdays, and Hang Power Cleans on Fridays, plus burpees, presses, ring dips, and chin ups every day. Like my last cycle. I will condition as I feel capable. But surfing could happen on training days or rest days and it will likely leave me WIPED. So no pressure. Not looking to set any PRs this month.

From a body recomposition perspective the point is to not lose ground, and to be more serious and focused than I was, for example, during the last week, this last “play week,” in which I may or may not have gained a pound or two, but during which I definitely didn’t treat myself well.

To that end I have devised three super simple rules that will help me maintain a weight in the 199-201 range, which is where I was at the end of my last cycle.

Rule 1: don’t eat after 8 pm or before 9 am. Duh. Just don’t do it. 7 days a week. Stop with the post dinner, late night snacking.

Rule 2: don’t watch TV or movies. Read instead. Don’t think this has anything to do with body recomposition? Well, my worst behavior around food and skipping sleep is all centered around watching TV late at night. So skip it.

Rule 3: sleep, motherf***er, you got to surf tomorrow.