Archive for August, 2010

“I Think we’re Gonna need a Bigger Boat…”

Posted in Athletes on August 31, 2010 by oldcountrystrong

So over the weekend Neil (The Cooler), Roo (8 Seconds or the Intern), and myself (Z will work for today). Went down to the Crossfit Football certification. It was a blast full of over eating, sprinting, lifting, drinking, stretching, and trips in the dirtiest elevator known to man kind. It all is worth a post on Old Country but while I was down there I got a text from my favorite little problem case.

“Hey Z! I just qualified for Pan Ams!”

What, Let’s rewind…

Nine months before I walk into the gym and hear some girl I know joined up. Hmmmm, I wonder who?

“Well her name rhymes with stamina, think she was making some kinda inappropriate joke out of it.”

Couple days later I run into Amina. “Hey! I know you, you dated so and so and I dated so and so.” Mystery solved.

Little did I now what I was getting myself into. She’d been crossfitting at other gyms and the way we did things was a little different. So she let me know some stuff….

“I have a back injury, and I get wheezy easy, and I’m a firefighter, my hand gets cold and numb, my lips turn blue, one legs longer then the other, I was home schooled, did I mention I was a firefighter, one ear is higher then the other, I like coffee, I may or may not need contacts, some times my ribs pop out and my shoulder is kinda jacked, you have pretty eyes…” (Ok maybe I added the last part but she was thinking it.)

Amina and I became fast friends she couldn’t do some stuff some times but she always tried… Or just did cleans. It wasn’t to long ago she came to me and told me she wanted to make a run at the FireFighter calendar. OH Boy…

I always support my athletes and especially my friends Amina is both and nothing made me prouder then when she text me that she had made it into that Calendar.

Well I thought nothing was gonna make me happier until I got this weekends text. I could fill you guys in on it but I asked Amina to do a little testimonial for me about it. Here it is from “Amina like Stamina’s ‘” mouth.

“Four years ago I qualified for and raced at the Pan American Championships in sprint canoe. That was what would be one of the last competitions I would participate in as a sprint canoeist.  After training so hard for this event I found that injuries would prevent me from continuing to compete.  As months of time off became years I found that coaching allowed me to stay involved in the sport.  Here and there I would enter in a local race but faced the fact that canoeing wasn’t going to be my sport anymore.

9 months ago I joined West Seattle Crossfit. Not my first Crossfit, but the first Crossfit gym where I saw real results. I continued to guard my injuries while and when the caliber cycle was offered a couple of months ago I decided I was ready to give it a shot.  I participated in six weeks of the cycle and for the first time was lifting weight overhead and doing things I never thought would be possible-and especially without feeling injured.  After the CC we followed the Crossfit football daily wods.  I knew I would be going to the National Championships in Canoe and Kayak this year with the team I assistant coach-I didn’t know I was also going as an athlete until a few weeks before the event.  That’s what happens when your brother is head coach and does race entries.

After 3 days of 200m, 500m and 1000m races in singles, doubles and fours I walked away with 7 medals and a spot on the Pan American Canoe Team.  I didn’t paddle my best or even close to my best. I felt unstable, had steering issues, my back hurt from the pain of kneeling in the boat and my form was embarrassing.  I even had to scratch out of a 5k single event because I knew I wouldn’t be able to kneel in my canoe for that long of a period of time. However, with all those negatives occurring because of lack of time in the boat, I still beat every  PR I’ve ever had in a canoe in my 200m and my 500m events.  Crossfit gave the the strength to pull that boat and be right behind people that had been training endlessly and competing internationally and that felt pretty darn good.  It should be interesting to see what happens when I combine Crossfit with time in the boat, I’m looking forward to rising to the challenge and representing CFWS at the 2010 Pan Am Champs in Mexico this fall.”

I know I give you a hard time every know and then girl (well you actually flip me a ton of shit), but I want you to know something. I am so very very proud of you. You walked into that thing without fear and that says a lot about you. You have that same fearlessness in you everyday job and how you look at most things in life. I’m very proud to be your Coach and your friend. Training starts next week…

Posted by: Z

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“This is my safety, sir.”

Posted in Syllabus on August 30, 2010 by oldcountrystrong

As some of you may know, Old Country Strong is creating a syllabus of recommended reads and watchs to  better understand the OCS mindset. This list, with selections put forth by OCBC members, has already welcomed several entries: Conan the Barbarian, Into Thin Air and Touching the Void (both novel and movie).

Today we welcome a new entry to the list. Grambo selected Blackhawk Down, the acclaimed novel and movie which retells the fateful Battle of Mogadishu.

Why Blackhawk Down is OCS: This clip best explains why Blackhawk Down is Old Country Strong.

Nuff said.

Posted by Nickay.

HTFU…

Posted in Lifestyle on August 26, 2010 by oldcountrystrong

“Chopper Says…”

That was kinda the idea when we first started throwing posts up on Old Country. Somewhere we could speak our mind without being censored on training, work ethic, hell even movies! A friend of mine was talking to me the other day on why he thought Old Country was important. To me and the guys it’s our little side project that also gives people in the Old Country Barbell Club somewhere to Fuck around.

I was telling my friend how I was having a shitty day but in my words “Whatever, Fuck it.”

“That’s what Old Country is,” he said to me as he tapped me in the chest with both figures (Mike is a hand talker).

I knitted my eyebrows together and looked at him, “What’s is, fuck it?”

“Exactly it’s old school don’t bitch, get your shit done, and have fun. That’s what you guys represent.”

Fuck. Sweet we represent some then, I thought we were just grab ass and offensive to some people. But we’re really not this whole site isn’t just for people in the Barbell Club. It’s for everyone anyone who squats, or shotguns beers, or even just likes shitty old movies (HOLD YOUR TONGUE!). With that being said Nickay started a Syllabus and we are expecting entries from every Club member for it. And if you’re not in the Club and you wanna throw your two cents in feel free!

My buddy Mike took a quote I tossed out to everyone one day when I was pissed and ran with it. “Harden the Fuck UP”, we all say it now. In fact people text it to me when I’m trying to stay in weekend nights, FUCKERS. Mike even found a guy who bases a whole act on HTFU. So I back Mike on bringing HTFU into the syllabus and for bringing Chopper into my life.

Posted by: Z

A Rant that would Make Svend Proud…

Posted in Articles on August 25, 2010 by oldcountrystrong

You may have heard some of the lines from this rant circulating around the Club as of late. We have our own youtube guru to thank for this and with the Warrior Dash fast approaching it seems like it deserves some play time. This is Joe Rogan talking about James Toney making his way into the world of MMA. The good stuff where he talks of a possible encounter with current champion Brock Lesnar starts around 4 minutes and 20 seconds in, Weird…

Also announcing Sean “IceMan” O’Donnell’s entrance into Old Country Barbell Club. If being a raging meathead partier got everyone in well…. Well shit, then a lot of people would be in. It takes a lot more, not sure what it takes some times. But Nickay and I saw a flash of greastest this weekend and no way better way to let him then by double Icing. Feel free to post to comments why the hell you think we let IceMan in!

Posted by: Z

Learning the Riddle of Steel

Posted in Syllabus on August 20, 2010 by oldcountrystrong

In a continuous effort to show what it means to be OCS, it was decided that it would be beneficial to create a list of recommended reading and watching. I wish they had a word for that, guess I will have to make one up. This so called “Syllabus” (copyright pending) will be a work in progess. Its selections will come from those who understand what it means to be OCS.

As a senior silverback, Z has the honor of the first induction and he choose Conan the Barbarian.

Z on why Conan is OCS:

I could go on all day why Conan like a mighty SilverBack Gorilla or a maurading Yeti is Old Country Strong. But that is a Story for another time. Best to let Papa Conan explain.

Conan’s Father – “Fire and wind come from the sky, from the gods of the sky. But Crom is your god, Crom and he lives in the earth. Once, giants lived in the Earth, Conan. And in the darkness of chaos, they fooled Crom, and they took from him the enigma of steel. Crom was angered. And the Earth shook. Fire and wind struck down these giants, and they threw their bodies into the waters, but in their rage, the gods forgot the secret of steel and left it on the battlefield. We who found it are just men. Not gods. Not giants. Just men. The secret of steel has always carried with it a mystery. You must learn its riddle, Conan. You must learn its discipline. For no one – no one in this world can you trust. Not men, not women, not beasts.”

Conans Father points

Conan’s Father – This you can trust…

To show your OCS IQ, please post something appropiate.

Posted by Nickay

“People are always asking me if I know Tyler Durden…”

Posted in Lifestyle on August 17, 2010 by oldcountrystrong

“And the eighth and final rule: if this is your first time at Fight Club, you have to fight…”

It all use to be that simple, really it did. “What’s Z fitten to go on a rant about today?”

You probably ask yourself that a lot on this blog.

Barbell Club use to be simple. My whole outlook on Crossfit use to be simple. We’d show up kick the shit out of ourselves maybe a little friendly competition between each other but that was it. That wasn’t why we did what we did.

“Fight Club wasn’t about winning or losing. It wasn’t about words. The hysterical shouting was in tongues, like at a Pentecostal Church.”

It didn’t use to be “cool” to Crossfit, it was for a better word underground. It was a lot grittier, put your faith in some guy online that went just by “Coach” and dive right down the rabbit whole.

The program wasn’t new things but the approach to it was. I want you to move as much weight over the longest distance you can in the shortest amount of time. Fucken sweet…

“Fuck what you know. You need to forget about what you know, that’s your problem. Forget about what you think you know about life, about friendship, and especially about you and me.”

When I was exposed to it you’d have to search on youtube for Crossfit videos. I think I actually watched them all twice. Now you type in Crossfit you could spend all day watching all types of stuff. Back then if you saw someone with a “Smoke you like bad crack” shirt you knew. Other people might not have known but you did. There weren’t a million affiliates then, hell I had like two choices and neither of them was close. So I did shit the Crossfit way, took my workouts to the park, my (freezing ass) basement, and the carport.

“You don’t know where I’ve been. You don’t know where I’ve been. Just let us have the basement, Lou!”

I had more metal then rubber back then. A pullup bar strung between two decks, and basketballs full of sand to work with. It was awesome. Some of the best training times of my life actually. No one cared if you were hung over or gonna sandbag your run cause well shit sometimes you didn’t feel like running. There were also the explanations you had to give people back then when shit cam up like…

“What happened to your hands?”

“Why do you wear those long socks?”

“Do we have to talk about that again?”

“The second rule of Fight Club is: you DO NOT talk about Fight Club!”

Most people didn’t get it back then, in my mind most people still don’t get it. John Welbourn said it best once “Is Crossfit a cult?”

His Answer was yes and he had drank down all the koolaid.

“On a long enough timeline, the survival rate for everyone drops to zero.”

That sums up some of the grass roots that Crossfit has lost. It was bound to happen, inside jokes like…

“Drinking the Koolaid”

 “meeting pukie”

Fuck now you even have random meathead asking you…

“Whats you Fran time?”

“You’re not your job. You’re not how much money you have in the bank. You’re not the car you drive. You’re not the contents of your wallet. You’re not your fucking khakis…”

Things like that use to just be Crossfit. Now you see that shit on like lunch boxes, and painted on jacked up fords trucks trying to promote the next big Globo Box….

“Listen up, maggots. You are not special. You are not a beautiful or unique snowflake. You’re the same decaying organic matter as everything else…”

What do you do it’s good for the sport right? Wait, is that what happened? Did the Games change everything? The first Games were quiet you could practically name everyone of the top of your head that was gonna be there. The last games this year were in LA, they had more sponsors then Tiger Woods and were prodcast live online. Did the Games change things?

“For a second I totally forgot about Tyler’s whole controlled demolition thing and I wonder how clean that gun is.”

No, no I don’t think the games changed anything. Did Crossfit going mainstream help to change it? Was the pure fact that we were underground and wanting people to take us seriously have something to do with it?

“Where’d you go, psycho boy?”

No I’m not saying any ones sold out. There is nothing wrong with wanting your body of work recognized. So where am I going with all of this? I’m not really sure. The whole thing just seems so saturated now. I just remember how it was. It really helped changed my life, changed my career path. Made me want to be the best Coach I possibly could. Try and live up to the guys that built all of this for us. Sometimes trying to get other to understand that is exhausting.

“When you have insomnia, you’re never really asleep… and you’re never really awake.”

I know my style of Crossfit isn’t traditional. Have I sold out? I like to think it’s not. I still go to .com everyday, get excited when Dave hypes the crowd at the games, and love Crossfit.

I think that I worry about this kinda shit shows I love the sport. Because that’s what it is to me, a sport.

“How much can you know about yourself, you’ve never been in a fight? I don’t wanna die without any scars. So come on; hit me before I lose my nerve.”

But the purity of it was the thing that brought me to it. It wasn’t ever about the money, agro number comparing, it was about the real joy of the system. Every now and then I need to remind myself about that. I still love to turn the lights off at my gym and workout by myself. In fact it’s when I get some of my best times. Competition season is competition season. Money is money and for some it’s the only thing that makes the world go round. But it’s not what makes me happy.

“Strangers with this kind of honesty make me go a big rubbery one.”

 That’s were today post came from really I guess. You gotta find what it is about Crossfit, or lifting, or fighting, that makes you happy. Because I guess when you lose that it doesn’t make you happy anymore.

Tyler, you are by far the most interesting single-serving friend I’ve ever met…”

Posted by: Z

“Know your limits, Master Wayne… Batman has No Limits.”

Posted in Athletes on August 13, 2010 by oldcountrystrong

I’ve been slacking on the posting as of late. If you don’t know as well as being the head trainer there, I also run the CFWS blog. After PipeHitters I spent a week recapping the whole event for anyone who wasn’t there. I also did it to give a shout out to all of our athletes who competed. The posts were long and detailed and I tried not to leave anything out. This effort along with my weekly split schedule to say the least left we exhausted.

You combine this stuff with battling a god damn back injury. And the fact, that there seems to be some event every weekend. I’ve official made a good run at trying to bury myself into the ground. But “Batman has no limits”, right?

Well I might be doing a good job at keeping my nose just above water but I couldn’t have done it without one person. If Nickay hadn’t been picking up my lazy ass slack with his never straight to video posts OCS wouldn’t have updated in awhile. Nickay holds a number of titles Senior SilverBack and the Club’s Consigliere. But one you may not know about is that he is also the Club’s Wonder Lust Eating champ.

Any shit hole diner or fine donut establishment that crosses Nickays path best beware. As evident of the list provided below Nickay will except any challenge.

From the SilverBack himself

“I love my food like my women all you can eat… (actually that part was me)

Beths SW 12 egg omelette in 33 minutes
A KFC family meal (10 pieces chicken,  large coleslaw and mashed pototas, and 4 biscuits) after a bjj tournent.
The Tex-ass voodoo donut challenge in 59 seconds
4 and 1/2 chiptole fajita/rice/veggies/guac/plenty of hot sauce chicken burritos.
Casa d’s super duper burrito in record time of 14 minutes for overall and super hot sauce category.
The triple king challenge at fat burger in 5 28 with burning my mouth so bad in 15 second that steam shot out my nose. Had a large choco shake afterwards.
10 baskets of red robin French fries
(plus the clucks and fries)
24 slices pizza at godfathers buffet, dessert pizza, and a salad
7 bowls pasta at olive gardens never ending pasta bowl, 3 bowls minestrone, and breassticks
70 pieces of assorted sushi at a rehearsal dinner
biggest failure: mancakes challenge stepping stones cafe in Portland

Those are ones I could think of off the top of my head…”

Now you may ask how you’ve never heard of his title before, because few us have had the chance to witness “Jumanji” in action. Now I know videos on Old Country usually go something like this…

But for the first time I have some proof of the man in action. It is but a small clip of him at work, much like the grainy footage of Bigfoot walking across that valley. Because isn’t that what a Senior SilverBack really is? Some kind of barbaric mating of a Yeti and a Mountain Gorilla, a rare and majestic breed indeed. When a creature like that is challenged it throws hay in the air and slams it’s chest. You will for see this for yourself, to the horror of this Club “Boot” in the video. She finds out when you challenge a Gorilla/Yeti/Eating Machine you gotta but your money where your mouth is. Even if it involves ranch dressing…

Nickay “The bane of the ALL YOU CAN EAT”

Posted by: Z