In this edition:

Habit Challenge Start-Up April 30, 2020

Last SD Tip (#4): The Time is Now

Antidepressant Meds:  DB Power Snatch

Join Us! Habit Challenge Start-Up

Build your mental muscle in the month of May and come out of lock down stronger. Read on for details, then email Shades [email protected] or QuickSilver [email protected] that you are in and we will send you the goods.

Why take this challenge on?  It has been 5 weeks since we could last work out in the gym. Seems longer.   Any aimlessness at hand?  I feel more grounded and am back in the swing of solo workouts but May looms a little large.  I know from experience that extra structure and accountability in unstable times serves me well.  I’ve had some good success with short-term challenges as they’ve helped me re-set by either nipping a bad habit in the bud or ingraining a new daily practice that improved the quality of my life.  For weight loss, short-term changes that made the biggest difference were cutting cream out of coffee (black only nowadays) no booze and a Paleo Challenge (lost 8 lbs). One success built upon another.  For example, 30 days of no booze preceded the Paleo challenge and, at the time, took a Herculean effort to complete.  But if I had not proven to myself that I could go 30 days sans drink, there was no way I would have completed the Paleo challenge.  It would have been too big an ask in the Paleo Challenge to give up booze and sugar at once but knowing I could do one led to the other.  Start small and build! Success breeds success.

The question this challenge poses to you is: “What is one change you can make that is relatively simple to adhere to for 31 days and will get you the best bang for your buck?”  Make it motivating and doable, something that excites you, at least initially!

My habit will be to do a 100 War Bar overhead squats daily, focused, not rushed.  Why? I’ve tightened up in this lock-down and what was once easy has become a challenge.  Plus, I’m a fan of the overhead squat for its multifaceted benefits. Restore love and increase mobility while possibly tightening ass and abs. Can’t lose! These are my reasons laid bare. What are yours? It need not be a diet or exercise related change.  It could be organizational such as open and sort mail daily, make bed every morning or put laundry away as soon as folded.  Another option is a time management focus, such as no social media before (fill in blank time) or only checking email at 3 set times a day.  What habit change will serve you best?

We’ll kick off the Challenge with a 20 minute Zoom call on April 30, 2020 at 7am and 6pm, come to the one that suits.   Links sent out when you email.  If you cannot make Zoom meeting, we’ll bring you up to speed by email or phone.  At this first meeting we’ll talk about our proposed habit changes, answer any questions and strategize next steps.   We will also explain the Health Bingo game we’ll play in conjunction with the habit change. Weekly check-in Zoom meetings set-up thereafter. 

It is going to be a good month.  Hop aboard!

Last SD Tip (#4):  The Time is Now

This is our last SD Tip as it is time to switch gears.  To close out, let us recap. Tip #1 focused on how to shop at off times and avoid crowds. Tip #2 talked about going for walks at the right distance and not letting new regime trap you indoors. Tip #3, touched on self-compassion, an acknowledgement that times are different, and we may not be quite acting like ourselves. Take everything with a grain of salt.  Make kindness to self and others paramount to daily living. Just like you cannot go wrong being strong, same for kindness, maintain the mind to be kind.

Tip #4. Choose something you want to lean into, that will move your needle forward to accomplish and work hard at it now.  You could join the challenge for extra help and support on this one. Some examples of leaning in: Want to improve your conditioning? Add in some extra runs at varying tempos weekly.  Looking to improve your handstands? Identify your weakest link and focus on it daily.  If you have made your reason for not pursuing X a lack of time and you still have not tackled it, take stock of whether this is something you ever wanted to do?  Must you? Maybe let it go.  Reach out to a Coach if you want help developing a personalized plan.  Here for you. Let’s move on it!

Antidepressant Meds: DB Power Snatch

Shout out to the first SYLB WOD for rekindling my love of the DB power snatch and uplifting my spirits.  The DB Snatch has become my new best friend.  It was a tough tackle, that 10-minute first workout and reminded me of the mood enhancing benefits of short intense workouts.  The key component is to find the correct weight to elicit the right stimulus. I can miss the mark.  The weight needs to keep you moving but at same time be a challenge at hand, in that you want to put the weight down but you won’t.  The “choose what works best format” of this event lead to a 25 lb DB Snatch which did the trick and was as close to a searing lung as I have come since Open workout 19.4  Just a hint of a sear was achieved mind you, the push-ups slowed me down.  

I’ve shied away from the DB Snatch, power and squat versions, due to a lack of technical proficiency, prone to muscling it up with DB flung far out from body, but practice, makes perfect and it is time to hone.  Have elevated it to the King of the DB movements at present, works too many important pieces, agility, balance, power, speed, coordination, to let it pass by and worth the investment in time to get it right. The explosive nature of moving the weight from ground to overhead in a fell swoop spikes the heart rate more than the one arm Thruster, my previous fave.  It could be it is simply untrained. I am more accustomed to Thrusters than Snatches, so it is harder.  I salute the Thruster, it is a wicked compound movement, good for the glutes and lungs but seems simplistic in comparison.  Both are key DB movements to incorporate in your training to improve strength and cardio in a confined space but for now, I’m leaning into the Snatch.

Such is love, tested two similar yet different CompTrain Class workouts involving the DB snatch recently at Queen Elizabeth track (a few days apart/WOD details below).   The Shenanigans intervals, done first, pushed me harder. It was good to race the clock and not something I would typically do, but well worth it.  Wedding March is the type of workout I gravitate to, always up for a grinder, the 75 power snatches were a challenge.  All told, Shenanigans wins out, better test of stamina, endurance and power, must move quickly and can’t hide and easy home set-up if needed. It’s shorter but pour moi provided a greater sense of accomplishment.

If you find yourself with extra time to work on your conditioning give one a go.  As always, fight to maintain a tight rock-solid midline throughout all movements, including the run!  

DB Power Snatch

No dumbbell? Good substitutions are a kettlebell, back-pack or odd home-based object like a water jug.


Every 3 Minutes x 7 Rounds:
12 Alternating Dumbbell Power Snatches
6 Lateral Dumbbell Burpees
12 Alternating Dumbbell Reverse Lunges
6 Lateral Dumbbell Burpees

Rounds start at 0-3-6-9-12-15-18 mins.

Managed 30 secs of rest per round though ideally want 2 mins work, 1 minute off. Personally, glad to get any rest. Used #25 lbs.

Wedding March

For Time:
50 Burpees
1 Mile Run
75 DB Power Snatches
1 Mile Run
100 Meter Walking Lunge

Goal: Find a power snatch weight you can complete in 3-5 mins, WOD length should be b/w 25-35 mins.  Did 5 sets of 15 at #25 lbs. Finished at cusp of 35 mins.

To a good training week ahead.