31 Heroes: Let’s Get It, Nomad Nation!!

Keep their memories alive

Good luck to all who are participating in 31 Heroes tomorrow.  It is, without a doubt, a brutal WOD (but one of my most favorite).

Some advice:
– Be steady on the sandbag run.  It’s upsetting, yes.  But don’t forget: your teammate is relying on you too.  For the Motowners: use the downhill to your advantage.  Lean into the run, let gravity help you.

– The thrusters: be the opposite of an idiot.  155#/105# is no joke.  Scale as needed.  Let’s represent CrossFit the right way: no shit shows.  Once you hit the bottom of your squat: drive up hard, begin the “thrust” when you’re at a half squat position and be VIOLENT.  Remember, it’s HEAVY: let’s get high elbows and a solid front rack position, use the shoulders to support/launch the weight.  Transition to a full grip, neutral wrist, and don’t forget the fierce follow through at the top.- The box jumps: be steady, you can make up time here if you are a little slower on the thrusters and rope.  Rest at the top and rebound at the bottom, if you are comfortable using this method.- The rope climbs: use your legs.  Your grip will be shot within a couple rounds if you insist on muscling yourself up there.  EFFICIENCY is key.  Efficiency means your grip die as badly, and you’ll be able to keep a good pace going up and down the rope.

– Push each other.  Encourage each other.  Be a good teammate to ALL, not just your own.

Friends, I wish I could be there to coach all of you tomorrow.  Please know that I am with you in both passion and spirit.  As I posted in the Nomad Nation Facebook page earlier, y’allz are ready for this.  You are prepared. At the end of the day, this workout is a big game, isn’t it? We do it to better ourselves, to better each other, to keep our heroes’ memories alive, but also to have FUN! So have fun with it.  During the “3,2,1, GO!” tomorrow, I want all of you to crack a big smile.  Let that good positive energy soak in.  You are ready.  You are ready.
Best of luck, y’allz. Let’s fuckin’ play.
Mike D
Posted in Observations, WOD | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Tuesday July 31, 2012: Community


Isn’t it crazy to think that one of the most profound consequences resulting from all the constantly varied functional movement executed at high intensity we do is the formation of strong friendships?  That after all the sweating and grunting, the laying on the ground and panting, we come together to laugh, eat delicious food, and anticipate the next brutal WOD?

It is this sense of community that brings people from all walks of life together.  It allows us to push through every workout, no matter how terrible.  Just think about this past Sunday: people from Motown, Basking Ridge, Princeton, Cranford, and Peapack-Gladstone all converged on the town of Mendham to partake in:

400m run
3 rounds:
50 double unders
40 sit ups
30 lunges (15 each leg)
20 bar dips
10 chest-to-bar pull ups

End with a final 400m run

Nomad Nation came out in full force!  In a short time, the group has grown from a handful of people to a small army ready to conquer any obstacle in the way!

It is important to keep in mind that such communities are not built by one person.  The group dynamic is formed by the collective energy of those taking part in the experience.  Nomad Nation, it is all of you that make our community the positive, encouraging, and fun group that it is.  I just coach; it is you listening, doing the work, and being awesome that has made our Sunday WODs what they are.  It’s when this collective spirit is lost that breakdown can occur.  Selfishness and ego have no place in CrossFit.

I built this.”

No, the people built this.

“This is my community.”

“Owning” the community akin to owning the air you breathe: it is “owned” by everyone.

The ego is a dangerous thing, is it not?  It is ego that has the power to crush the sense of family and friendship that CrossFit is so famous for fostering.  Nomads, thank you for always leaving your egos at the door.  It is you who have made our community so strong.  Here’s to the future of Nomad Nation!

Love ya’s,
Mike D

p.s.- Let’s fuckin’ Play

Posted in Gymnastics, Monostructural Movement, Observations, WOD | Leave a comment

Sunday July 22, 2012: The Past Meets the Present

Part of Sunday July 22nd’s crew. Way to rock Loantaka Park, y’allz! Nomad Nation, where will our adventures take us next?

I’m not sure Loantaka Park knew what hit it.

I rolled in at 8 a.m., an hour before our Nomad WOD.  So, I occupied myself with drinking Starbucks, finishing The Compound Effect, and mentally preparing for the coaching ahead.  The park was tranquil, filled with cyclists prepping for their long Sunday rides, runners and families.

An hour later, a cadre of Nomads was fully present, ready to rock the Nomad Sunday WOD!  It was another multipart slugfest consisting of the following:

Part 1
Double alternating Tabata intervals
Air squats
Push ups

Part 2
60′ sprint
Deck squat burpees

Part 3
800m (approx.) partner carry, switch places as needed
5 rounds:
10 mountain climbers -to- grasshoppers
20 jumping lunges (10 each leg)
800m (approx.) partner carry, switch places as needed

It was awesome to see the usual suspects present, as well as a few newcomers to Nomad Nation!  Thanks to Manolo, Ashley, Laura, Paul, Sloane, Brett, and Ken for joining the Nomad Movement!  You’re more than welcome any time, every time.

Stay tuned for a post tomorrow, y’allz, something that’s a bit introspective.

Love ya’s,
Mike D

Posted in Gymnastics, Monostructural Movement, WOD | 1 Comment

Wednesday July 18, 2012: Seeking Balance

“The fuck did I do?”

The Wire.  Arguably one of the finest television programs ever to air.  Anyone who knows me is quite aware of my near obsession with this show.  Set in the city of Baltimore (Bodymore, as it’s known to some of its residents), this gritty crime drama was often overshadowed by flashier yet less substance-oriented shows such as CSI: Fargo, North Dakota.  But take an hour to watch an episode, and I guarantee you will be hooked.

The gentleman pictured above, Jimmy McNulty, is one of The Wire’s protagonists.  He is an absolutely brilliant detective…but also tragically flawed.  His success as a cop comes with a price: complete obsession with his work, the sacrifice of his marriage and family life, and a love for a good ol’ bottle of Jameson now and then…or every night.

Now, I’m not taking shots of whiskey when I’m finished coaching for the night.  Nor am I saying I’m a brilliant coach; until I can get on, say, this guy’s level I’m just a drop in the ocean.  But I have lost sight of what is truly important at times.  I’m not a saint, I’ve made mistakes.  As a coach, I want y’allz to learn from them.

  • Take time for yourself, your family, and  your friends.  There’s more to life outside the box (errrm, field/track/wherever).  Yes, hit your WODs hard.  But that’s just a small part of the big picture.  Love of anything (CrossFit, your job, your pickup truck named Daisy) is a lot different than the love and nurturing experienced through relationships.  It seems like common sense…but it’s easy to take people for granted.
  • Play sports, run races, go for a bike ride, whatever.  Sport is at the pinnacle of the CrossFit fitness pyramid; why not use the skills you’ve learned and the fitness you’ve developed to have some fun!

    Check out these Nomads! They used their fitness during the Warrior Dash in Lewis Morris Park.

  • Rest and recovery: TAKE YOUR REST DAYS!  Resting = seeing the favorable adaptations we want from the stimuli we have subjected our bodies to.  Lack of rest and recovery = stunted improvements = frustration = “Fuck this shit!”.  We don’t want you saying, “Fuck this shit!”.  We want you to stay healthy…get healthier…and enjoy life even more!  Have fun with what you do.

Nomads, I’m proud of each and every one of you!  And I love coaching, wodding, and hanging out with y’allz.  Something tells me a Nomad adventure is in the works *hint hint*.  Anyone down for a road trip?  I know I am, and Daisy is too.

Love ya,
Mike D

“Whoooaaa, double rainbowwwwww”
Boulder’s not that far…totally doable.

Posted in Observations, Too much Kool-Aid | 2 Comments

Wednesday July 18, 2012: “So girl, whatchu doin Tuesday night?”

Sweaty post-WOD smiles from the Tuesday night Nomad crew. You guys rock!!

I was late. There was an accident on the Pulaski Skyway and another on 78 west, right as you got on in Newark (sidenote: instead of 20″ rims, a loud muffler, and tints maybe you should consider checking your tire pressure and coolant level, jackass). Driving through Motown didn’t help my blood pressure, either. Thankfully, blasting “Radiation Vibe” by Fountains of Wayne did.

Imagine my surprise when I rolled up and saw 20 Nomad peeps on the track, ready to throw down! The WOD was simple but effective.

800m run
100 double unders
100 sit ups
100 plank presses
800m run

Warm up and mobility were simple. One lap to warm the engine, some glute bridges and cat-camel stretches to further prime it, and some discussion on mechanics (yes there are mechanics in everything including running) and scaling options.

Tonight reinforced how lucky I am in terms of my CrossFit career. I’m part of three awesome families.

  • My Nomad Athletics crew: Goddamn. You guys bring a smile to my face whenever we WOD. Borne from the ashes of my departure from Motown, your hard work, dedication, but (most importantly) friendships mean the world to me. Thank you for everything!
  • CrossFit Hoboken: I can’t say enough about this place. Craig, the crew, and community welcomed me with open arms. The energy Hoboken exudes is contagious; y’allz rock each and every WOD. Thank you!
  • CrossFit Lake Arrowhead: LET’S. FUCKIN’. PLAY. !!!

Lucky? Hell yeah I am. Thankful. You’re Goddamn right. Satisfied? Not by a long shot. A student I will always be.

Hit life hard today! WAR HAMMER.
Mike D


Posted in Gymnastics, Monostructural Movement, Observations, WOD | Leave a comment

July 15, 2012: “400 yard burpee what the fuck?!”

Nomads, one and all! No politics, all fun, just another awesome Sunday Funday.

What’s up, Nomad Nation!  We had a killer WOD today, another multi-part smashfest that was enjoyed by all who partook.  It consisted of…

Part 1:
Partner WOD
100yds, down and back (200yds total)
Partner carry
Every 10 yards: put partner down and each do 5 air squats
Alternate carrying each other

Part 2:
IMMEDIATELY after completion of the Partner Carry/Air Squat WOD
3 minutes of max Pushups -to- Stinkbugs

Part 3:
Sit ups
Body blasters
Double unders

Part 4:
400 yard burpee broad jump

Needless to say, there was no need for a part 5!

Today’s crew was pretty diverse!  We had Kevin Yurchak, owner/badass of CrossFit West Essex, in the house; Sherri Harris, a Motowner who I haven’t seen since my departure; and Joanne, my friend from CrossFit Hoboken.  Every WOD we do strengthens the Nomad culture:

  • We workout wherever, whenever, and with whatever equipment is available
  • No politics: leave that shit at the gates, grass, or wherever we may be
  • HAVE FUN!  Why else would we do this?

Here’s to the next WOD, y’allz!

Posted in Gymnastics, Monostructural Movement, WOD | Leave a comment

Monday July 9, 2012: “He kept his own counsel. He never wanted money. You can’t do anything with a man like that.”

Want to pay me? Just get me some of this and we’ll call it even.

I don’t want your money, so put it away.  I know.  It sounds crazy, doesn’t it?  I suppose it always has, since the days of the BSTA.

So, why do I coach the Nomad WODs?  Simply put: I love this shit, and I love you guys. You’ve been nothing but welcoming, hardworking, and sincere to me since my early days in Morristown.  Nomad is my way of saying “thank you”.  It’s my way of giving back to the people that have shown their support through thick and thin.  And, Nomad isn’t me: it’s all of you, the people who make our workouts so damn fun and special.

Still want to pay me?  Hit every WOD hard: smash it with the War Hammer.

Love y’allz,
Mike D

Posted in Observations | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments