First and foremost, who hates handstand pushups? If you aren’t super speedy and efficient with them, my guess is that you despise HSPU as much as I do. These have been giving me continuous problems for the past couple of weeks and when I saw them come up today in the wod my heart sank.
I used 95.
I used 125.
12 MINUTE AMRAP
Well, there was no running, so that was awesome. I love AMRAPS and workouts like these. Pistols have become a new favorite of mine so I was pretty excited to do all of those unbroken as well as the pullups. Being that there were only 5 HSPU’s, I fly WAY too quickly through the first few rounds and when I got to around the 7th round, I COULD BARELY PUSH OUT 2 HANDSTAND PUSHUPS! >:[ Let me tell you why (it’s a number of things):
1) I haven’t been practicing them. I kind of pushed them under the rug because I can’t stand them and I’ve been focusing all of my attention on the many other things that I suck at. Because of this, they have become nearly impossible for me to do and put a major damper on my mood every time they rear their ugly head!!!
2) I’m not strong enough. My overhead pressing strength is pretty weak and that is a major factor in not being able to do these well. I think that unless you are able to press your body weight (STRICT press), and press it comfortably, you will not be able to knock out strict HSPU’s like the pros. Sure, kipping is fine and dandy, but it is slower and takes a lot more time to develop than just a regular, strict handstand pushup. Clearly, I can not comfortably press my body weight. I can’t even struggle and pop every blood vessel in my body and strict press my body weight. That being said, I nearly blow a gasket just trying to get 5 consecutive strict handstand pushups. The kip is fine but after a while it gets incredibly exhausting and hard to keep your balance.
3) I haven’t been PERFECTLY practicing. My coach noticed today that my back was insanely arched and my hands were way too far away from the wall. I have been practicing like this for weeks so when it actually came to down kipping these the CORRECT way, it was a soaking wet attempt. I was falling all over the place and I’m pretty sure it took the last 90 seconds of the wod to get 2 handstand pushups…. OUCH!
So that’s what I have to say about that. Moving on to something that I think EVERYONE should become comfortable with (including myself)…..the fun layer.
When I say “fun layer”, I am referring to a nice layer of fat. No, I’m not talking about a spare tire of some heavy saddlebacks or chicken wings. I’m talking about a modest layer of fat that someone like Camille Leblanc Bazinet has:
Now, i don’t want anyone to get confused here: I am in NO WAY, SHAPE, OR FORM calling her fat. She clearly isn’t fat at all. BUT, she is definitely not shredded like you see a lot of other crossfit athletes. This is a good thing! That extra fat layer can provide you with energy that is absolutely needed when enduring such brutal wods. There was an MMA fight on yesterday. There was a humongous black guy with not an ounce of body fat on him and there was a smaller white guy with a layer like Camille’s. Everyone thought the crazy ripped, shredded, and huge black guy would win. Guess who won? NOT THE BLACK GUY! He got his ass beat to a pulp! So here’s what I’m saying: your fat layer isn’t a bad thing at all. I won’t lie, it is a bit uncomfortable for me to sit around with this extra layer when for so many years all I cared about what being shredded. But, given that my priorities have changed (thank god), it gets easier everyday…. especially when you’re hitting PR’s like no other! Unless you’re a genetic freak like Rich Froning, you’re probably going to have to choose one or the other: being extra shredded or being a straight beast.
I think I’ll go with the second option….