Tag Archives: crossfit

i love my MONSTER Mondays

8 Nov

It’s no secret that  Monday is the most dreaded day of the week.  It’s the start of another grinding work week for most people, and has even been given a slogan- “case of the Mondays”- that sums up the dreaded feeling of all that the day brings.  The day starts waaaay too early with an alarm ringing at an ungodly hour, and seems to go on forever until work finally ends and the rest of life has to be dealt with.  Cooking dinner, cleaning the house, picking up kids from school/sports practice, catching up with family/friends, starting to shop for holiday gifts, running errands; you name it, it’s all there waiting for us on Monday.  For most people, Monday is a day that looks best when it’s over.

Up until recently, Monday was not high on the list of things I look forward to.  But this all changed when I started my MONSTER Monday Workout Challenges.  MONSTER Mondays started when my lifting pal sent me the plan for one of our lifting sessions, which happen to be on Monday mornings.  It was a workout developed by Crossfit, and after taking one look at the plan I decided that the workout was going to be a MONSTER.  I blogged about it both before and after and the MONSTER Monday name stuck.  It was an absolutely intense sweatfest that wouldn’t have been possible without the support and motivation of a lifting buddy.  We both loved the workout so much that we couldn’t wait to do something similar again.  We have transformed our Monday morning lifting sessions into intense sweatfest challenges that push each of us to work harder and faster each time.

After a few weeks of MONSTER Monday workouts, I found myself actually looking forward to Monday mornings.  I know, I know, this sounds ridiculous- who actually gets excited for Monday?!  And that’s precisely my point: planting what is undoubtedly my hardest and BEST workout of the week smack in the middle of Monday mornings changed my outlook completely.  Now, instead of dreading the start to the week and the drag of the day, I get really excited to lift with a friend, give 150%, work HARD, get really sweaty, and end the session with a sense of earned pride. 

MONSTER Mondays have become more than just another workout.  They give a jumpstart to my entire week & remind me that if I can handle deadlifting 135lbs for 25 reps or walking up and down 2 flights of stairs x10 carrying 100lbs in extra weight, I can handle ANYTHING.  I have noticed an extra boost in my motivation to continue exercising hard for the rest of the week, as well as complimenting my efforts in the gym with healthy food choices.  My mood is at its best when I’m walking out the door after having completed another great challenge, proving to myself that anything is possible if you put your mind to it.

I challenge you to try to bring something similar into your Monday (or any day that is particularly difficult for you).  Instead of dreading a part of each week that you KNOW you can’t bypass, bring a new positive energy to it and drown out the dread!  Transform the worst part of your week into the most anticipated by adding in something that makes you shine.  When the worst becomes better, the good becomes great!!! 


CrossFit Craze!…my first CrossFit experience

17 Oct

This weekend I tried my first CrossFit workout at CrossFit Boston.  I have been hearing quite a bit about the “CrossFit Craze” from several clients, friends and co-workers; I also have been doing CrossFit inspired workouts on Mondays with my lifting pal.  All the buzz made me very curious so I decided to take advantage of the free trial offer!

CrossFit Boston is in its new home on Western Ave, tucked in the back of a building across the street from Harvard Business School.  I had a bit of trouble locating the actual entrance, as they do not have much signage.  Once inside I joined the other members of my group in a warmup consisting of dynamic stretching, mobility drills and running stride drills.  We then were given our WOD (workout of the day) which had a few different modifications for varying fitness levels.  The 3 levels were beginner, intermediate, and prescribed.  The latter is the legit, real deal CrossFit workout.  Ours was as follows:


100 m sprint [125 m row for those unable to run]

10 squat thrusters [squat w/dumbbell overhead press]

100 m sprint [or row]

10 pullups [or inverted body weight rows on something that looked a lot like gymnastic rings]

30 seconds rest

Weight/Rep Breakdowns:

Beginner: x5 rounds, using 10lb DB for squat thrusters

Intermediate: x7 rounds, using 25lb DB

Prescribed: x10 rounds, using 35lb DB

* The weights are the female amounts…I can’t remember the exact breakdown for the males


We had a quick tutorial and the instructor asked me if I could do a pull up.  I said yes and demonstrated.  He then gave me the go-ahead to do no more than 7 rounds of the WOD.  I was pretty excited to be placed in the Intermediate category.  There were both males and females in each of the 3 categories; I thought it was pretty cool that varying fitness levels were able to workout side by side. He started the clock and music and off we went!  It took every ounce of energy I had to complete those 7 rounds in 31 minutes flat.  What may, at first glance, seem to be 4 simple exercises combined to be a real ass-kicking workout.  I finished the workout sweat-soaked and proud, yet extremely HUMBLED.  It seems that there will always be room for improvement and always someone right there who is just a bit faster, stronger, and fitter.  It definitely got me fired up to crank my workouts up a notch!!!!  I very much enjoyed my first workout at CrossFit Boston and I plan on going back to experience some more craziness.

One other thing that I feel deserves mention is that while I thoroughly enjoyed myself doing this workout, I do not think that CrossFit is for everyone.  To do this type of workout safely [and with any sort of success], one must have a foundation of basic fitness under their belt.  The instructor does not review proper form; rather gives a short demonstration of the components and expects that the participants have a basic understanding of the details that go along with each exercise.  For folks who do not know how to do lunges, pushups, pull ups, squats, overhead presses, etc. properly, this is a MAJOR risk for injury.  As a fitness professional, I would recommend this workout for those individuals who are injury free, and already somewhat fit.

MONSTER MONDAY workout…on Thursday!

13 Oct

Since I ran the Tufts 10k for Women this past Monday, I was not able to do my usual MONSTER Monday workout.  Instead, my lifting pal and I decided to do it today.  Today’s workout was a combo of a Crossfit circuit and some cardio.  It was a quick one, but it humbled me just the same.  I followed it up with 30 minutes of Spinning and finished my workout feeling SWEATY and GREAT!!  Check it out, give it a try, and let me know what you think!


Chelsea + row

.3 miles run (or 500m row) —–> I used the rower as a replacement for running

5 pullups

10 pushups

10 squats (over head squats using 45lb bar)

x5 rounds….  NO REST!


MONSTER Monday Workout Challenge: my results

20 Sep

Yesterday I posted a blog post outlining a workout that I did with a personal trainer friend of mine.  We lift together once a week and this week she brought me a workout called the “Filthy Fifty” which I later found out was created by Crossfit Boston!  IT. WAS. A. BEAST.

The one word we kept repeating during the workout: humbling. This workout was absolutely humbling to two people who consider themselves to be fit!  We managed to give a smack down to every muscle group in approximately 18 hardcore minutes of working out.  We did slightly deviate from the exact way Crossfit executes the workout.  In true Crossfit format, one person performs all exercises in succession w/o stopping while their partner times them; we took turns on each exercise and timed each other.  We also subbed out jumping pull-ups with body weight rows, skipped Burpees, and did box jumps w/step down.  These things were all done to accommodate my ankle which I’m dutifully nursing back to health for my half marathon.  Even with our substitutions and modifications, the workout was NO JOKE.  We were exhausted at the end, and at the same time we felt GREAT.  It was such a great sense of accomplishment!

Try it out for yourself and let me know what you think!!!