Trash Cans and PR’s

Imagine yourself sitting at your office desk with a piece of paper crumpled into a ball, staring at the trash can.

There’s nobody around (or paying attention), so you take aim and fire that paper towards the can.

It flies in a majestic arc across the room…you’re anxious with anticipation.

It hits right in the dead center of the can… MADE THE SHOT!

How do you celebrate? My fav is a fist pump and a “woo hoo”, like Homer Simpson.

What’s yours?

Send me a note and tell me!

While you read through that scenario, did you feel the urge to grab a piece of paper and try it, just to see?

If you actually did it, you’d notice that when you hit a shot and celebrated, you’d immediately want to try it again.

You get addicted to that feeling of success and want to repeat it!

But the feeling of success doesn’t come from making the shot.

It comes from the CELEBRATION.

That little “woo hoo” and fist pump gives you a little jolt of shine, and you want that feeling again!

If you had no reaction to making the shot, you wouldn’t feel motivated to take another one.

What if you had a negative reaction?

Like a sheepish “that was lucky”, or “yeah, but I’ll never be good as Steph Curry”.

You would be motivated to AVOID taking another shot, right?



Now imagine you’re at Hale last Wednesday.

You grab onto the heaviest barbell you’ve ever tried to lift, take a nice deep breath, get it on your shoulders, step back and squat.

You get down to the bottom and drive it up.

It’s heavy…and you struggle…

But you STAND UP!!!

You just hit a new personal record (PR) on your Front Squat!!!

How do you react?

Do you scoff with a business as usual look on your face?

Do you say “My technique was crappy” Or, “It wasn’t as much as David

Or do you shout “HELL YEAH!” As you jump around, pump your fist, and ring the PR bell.

Which reaction do you think will motivate you to try for your next PR?

Which would motivate the people around you to try for their own PR, or help you get to your next one?


The moral of this story?

Success leads to motivation.

Your brain only sees something as a success when you celebrate it.

If you want to make progress in your fitness…

Celebrate EVERY win you get at the gym, no matter how small.

Made it 2 days in a row? <— WOO HOO!

Manage to do 5 lbs more than an empty barbell? <— YESSSS!!!

Made a little progress on your false grip for the muscle up? <— GET IT!!

Hit a new PR? <— HELL YEAH!!!! (Add a jump, a dance, and a fist pump as you run over and ring the bell)

˄ ˄ ˄ ˄ This is what Lily does 🙂

Every time you celebrate a victory, you are re-wiring your brain to seek more success.

To get better at ANYTHING, look for ways to celebrate your small victories.

Coach “Woo Hoo” Jay

PS – I tried this with myself at the Saturday Morning throw down.

Every time I did a rep when I was tired, got a few pull ups in a row, or finished a 400m run, I’d say “Yep”, “Let’s go”, or “Woo”!

I started the workout feeling cold and a bit dour, but by the end I was yelling my celebrations, AND encouraging everyone around me.

The result? I performed a lot better than I expected at the beginning, and It was the most fun I’ve had in a workout this year.

It works.


All of our 4 week trial classes are currently running through 2/9. See videos in last week’s post below!

Metcon: Weekdays (M-F) 6:45-7:15am AND 6:00-6:30pm
Hale Barbell Club: Sundays: 8:00-9:30am
Hale Mobility: Sundays: 9:30-11:00am
Saturday Morning Throwdown: Saturdays: 6:30-8:00am

Holiday Schedule Monday, 1/20

We’ll have our usual holiday schedule on Monday, BUT, there will be additional Open Gym hours.

Class: 8am and 9am

Gym Open: 7am to 11am for you to do the workout of the day or whatever you choose.

Guest Day:

Next guest day is 8am/9am on Saturday, February 1st. Workout will be appropriate for all levels and FREE!

Workouts for the Week

Monday: 8am and 9am only

20 min AMRAP:
1 DB deadlift + 2 Hang power cleans+ 3 front squats (50/35)
6 Toes to bar
9 hops over dumbbell

P1 completes one full round P2 rest. Switch

Scale: (30/20)

This is a quick, spicy DB complex–you shouldn’t have to put it down, but it should start to feel pretty heavy! The Toes to Bar are definitely the question mark here–grip WILL be an issue, especially if you “death grip” the dumbbells. This SHOULD feel like sprint/rest/sprint/rest/repeat. Minimize transition time between movements, since you rest while your buddy goes!

Aim to move FAST but SMOOTH on the DBs–aim for your shoulders and JUMP up the cleans, not muscle through. Link as many rounds of the T2B as possible, and sprint through the 9 hops. 20+ rounds should be doable today.


A. Push Press

#1: 5 reps @ 40%
#2: 5 reps @ 50%
#3: 5 reps @ 60%

Reps should be smooth and focus on nailing form.

Today, we’re focusing on form. We hit a max last week, so this is the time to reel in any of those “scrappy” tendencies under heavy weight and:
-keep your heels DOWN through the dip
-be patient to press through (more legs than arms)
-Push PRESS instead of your tendency to jerk

B. Mono Madness

3 Rounds for Time:
500m row
400m run

— 2 min rest —

( score is total time with rest included)

Take both efforts at 80-90% clip. Obviously, you’ll want to leave enough in the tank to not DOG the run after the row. Try to keep the row within about 10-15s of your PR time. (i.e. if your 500m PR is 1:45, keep it under 2:00, every round)

Simple. Go. Rest. Repeat.

C. Finisher

15 V- ups
30 Glute Bridge-Ups

Buns n abs. Good accessory work to round out the day 🙂



5 rounds for time:
• 20 pull-up
• 30 push-ups
• 40 sit-ups
• 50 squats

Rest 3 minutes between rounds.

This is a classic CF girl. Pace the first two rounds knowing that it’ll get harder as you go (i.e. the fatigue will set in). BREATHE often. That said, this is the day to turn it on if you’re feeling good. Push the pace, especially through the squats, and resist long rests on the pull ups and push ups–if you can get 5, get 5! If you can get one (push up!) get one, and go for hand release to keep you moving.

It’s a lot of reps. Keep going! 35 min cap.


A. Touch and Go Power Snatch Practice

5 Rounds, on the 90s
3 TNG Power Snatch

*Start moderate and build with small jumps. All reps TNG (Touch n Go). The goal is to work up to a MODERATE weight for your last 3 sets.

Touch and go is a good way to test your positions as they relate to cycling barbells in higher rep workouts. If you lose the bar forward, you’ll have to fight to get it back–multiply that by many, many more reps, and things get REAL HAGGARD.

So, focus on good positions and drive. It’ll help you later!

B. All Worked Up

Against a 15 minute clock:
Minute 0:00 – 5:00

3 TNG Power Snatch (115/75)
10/8 Cal bike
20 UB Double unders /40 UB Single unders

Minute 5:00-10:00

2 TNG Power Snatch (135/95)
10/8 Cal bike
20 UB double unders/40 UB single unders

Minute 10:00-15 min

1 Power Snatch ( 155/105)
10/8 Cal bike
20 UB double unders/40 UB single unders

Minutes 0-5: 3 reps (75/55)
Minutes 5-10: 2 reps(95/65)
Minutes 10-15:1 rep (115/75)

**If trip-up on the rope, start the set of DU or SU over.

This one is a pretty solid mental challenge–it’s not a grind of GO GO GO, but instead, you’ll have to get composed. Each set of double unders and snatches is meant to be unbroken. Hold yourself accountable to sticking to that, and start over if you have to break it up.

Since the other parts of the AMRAPS are the same, you’ll simply keep moving through the snatch/bike/double under cadence, but switch weights and snatch reps at the 5:00 and 10:00.


A. Front Squat

#1: 5 reps @ 40%
#2: 5 reps @ 50%
#3: 5 reps @ 60%

Once again, this is meant to be pretty relaxed skill practice–use this to build confidence back in anything that felt a little off in your heavier reps last week.

B. Go Time

For Time:
Thrusters ( 95/65)
Burpee to target (6″)

— 9 min cap —

Thrusters (65/45)

Yikes, man. This is like FRAN PRACTICE!!!

But really, intensity should be highest for the week in THIS WORKOUT. If you’ve never done unbroken thrusters on FRAN, NOW is the time. (And if you HAVE… you have no excuses… go unbroken! Or, if you did so at a lighter weight, get closer to Rx).

Keep a steady pace/cadence on the burpees to target (jump to hit something 6″ out of your reach) in the rounds of 21 and 15. Once you get to the 9s, it’s all out. You know that pace where you feel like you can’t go any faster? Aim for 10% faster than that 🙂


Saturday Morning Throwdown (6:30 – 8am)

10 Bar Muscle-ups
20 Box jumps overs
30 Deadlifts (225/155)
40 Wall Balls (30/20)

8am and 9am Classes:

4 Rounds for time:
20 Deadlift (275/185)
40 Toe 2 Bar
60 Cal Row

— 32 min time cap–

*P1 works while P2 rests.
Workout must be completed
in order. Split reps b/t
partners anyway.

**Additional Challenge —
Double Overhand Grip for
the DL and no bar slamming.

Kipping Knee Raises or Toes to Something

This looks like a super fun chipper–don’t worry TOO much about the “perfect” strategy–have an idea of your transitions based on your partner’s strengths and adjust from there. You will likely be able to go 10/10 on the deadlifts; toes to bar should focus on unbroken sets (NOT to failure), proportionate to your abilities. We’d prefer you to link 3 and come off for a rest (let your partner go!) than go for a few singles just to round out your sets.

Come off the rower before you slow WAY down–each turn should be a hard effort but not a fizzle out 🙂


8am-9:30am: Hale Barbell Club, programming TBD!

You are welcome to use this time as Open Gym to make up a workout you missed this week, or try one of the Metcon workouts, if you didn’t make it in for class

9:30am-11:00am: Hale Mobility

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