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Ring Dips | WOD 4.25.16

Ring Dips (or Close DB Bench Press)

Tempo Ring Dips (32X1):
4  x 6-12 Strict, 1 x Max Reps

Perform 4 sets across to 2 reps shy of failure, then 1 max effort set to failure. Perform a full range of motion on all reps. Rest as needed between sets. Goal is to add total reps each week by increasing the sets across and/or the max set.

Tempo Close Dumbbell Bench Press (32X1):
4 x 6-12, 1 x Max Reps

Perform 4 sets across to 2 reps shy of failure, then 1 max effort set to failure. Rest as needed between sets. Start with a load that feels almost easy for 12 reps. Keep elbows in close to mimic the bottom of a dip.

The tempo note (32X1) means control the eccentric (down) portion for a 3 count, pause at the bottom for a 2 count, contract concentrically (up) as fast as possible, then hold the top for a 1 count before beginning the next rep.

Post loads/work to comments.

Exposure 3 of 8


For Time:
50 Calorie Row
50 Box Jumps 24"/20"
50 Russian Kettlebell Swings 72/53lbs
550m Run

Row hard but don't blow up on the first part of this chipper. Box jumps are Rx'd as a two foot take off. Step ups are a scaling option but we'd rather see you jump to a lower box than step to a higher one. The KBS should be on the heavy side. 550m = 1 lap around the block

Post time and Rx to comments.

April Athlete of the Month: Paul Astuto

By Chris Fox

This month brings yet another athlete whose name has been tossed into the AOM mix for a few months now. The coaching staff all agree that he’s coachable, eager to learn, and super committed to improving himself. I had fun sitting down and getting into the head of someone (as I realized early on) was as nerdy about fitness as I am.

Fox: Hey Paul, congrats and thanks for meeting with me! Sorry you had to miss AG for this! Anyway, let’s start at the beginning. When and how did you first start doing CrossFit?

Paul: Thanks so much for the chance to be sitting here, Fox. I’ve been not-so-jokingly saying that being named AOM is probably the greatest honor of my adult life. I started Foundations with you in September of 2013, so coming up on three years now. Steve L. from my group still comes to the gym as well. A buddy of mine had been going to CrossFit Virtuosity and kept telling me about his workouts there. They sounded like fun and hit on notes of competitiveness that intrigued me. The main thing, though, was that it was in a group setting. I don’t do “alone” very well. Like, even on my walk to and from the train I’ll have to have a phone conversation with someone. So I searched Yelp and the reviews led me here to CFSBK. I now realize I was insanely lucky to find such a great place. 

Fox: What were your first impressions of CrossFit like? Did they meet the expectations that your friend’s stories laid out?

PA: Well, funnily enough, it was actually a struggle to get myself into Foundations in the first place! The cycles kept selling out before I would sign up. One day I got a last minute call—I guess someone had dropped out—and I jumped into a cycle. I learned a lot, and I still remind myself of many of the things you said in those six classes (vertical bar path, listen to your body, stay tight, etc.). The workouts were not awful but they were hard enough and they were fun. Since I don’t do “alone” very well, I remember initially starting out feeling slightly detached from the group as I was not only bad at everything (even Single-Unders were an issue), but also felt like there was an “in” crowd of folks who had a tight knit bond with each other that I wasn’t yet a part of. It wasn’t that anyone was cliquey or mean, but I recognized the bond that exists in this gym and wanted to be part of it.

Fox: Yeah, it can be tough entering a new environment and being apart from the crowd. I’m glad you didn’t read that bond between people as exclusive or anything. Seems like you’ve made plenty of friends over the past three years here. What was your fitness life like pre-CrossFit?

PA: To go way back, I was a very overweight, very non-active kid. By the time I got to high school, I’d started to go to the gym and dabble a little bit but nothing that made any real sense. I went to BC and in college I joined a group that was training to run the Boston Marathon, which suited me pretty well (emphasis on the group part). So I ran the marathon and lifted like an idiot with no concept of a program or results. I was fairly devoted, even ascetic about it at times, but I eventually became bored.

Fox: BC, huh? The New York Giants love to sign those guys. Are you from the Boston area?

PA: Nope. I’m a NYC kid from Staten Island. My family is still there, my parents and brother and sister. Let’s just say that they better represent what people think of when they think Staten Island than I do, and that I can turn on the accent on command / fist-bump with the best of them.

Fox: As a Queens kid myself, I would never have guessed you were from SI! I know you’re getting hitched soon. Tell us a bit about the lucky lady?

PA: Of course! My fiance, Eve, is from Petersburgh, NY, and we actually met online a while back while she was living in NY. She’s great! We’ve been doing the long distance thing for some time now as she’s in grad school in Michigan, but the day we’ll tie the knot and be together full-time is getting closer (as in a week until the end of long distance and a month until we get married).

Fox: I’m guessing that Eve is often the person you’re calling on the walk from the train to the gym? Any work stuff or hobbies you care to share?

PA: I wish I was cooler than I actually am. By day I’m a Dean of Students at AF Crown Heights MS (a sister school to the one that Allie B. and Eduardo C’.s wife work at), and my life mostly resembles this commercial of a rinse/repeat cycle of work, gym, eat, and sleep. One fun fact is that when I was designing our school’s PM HR system, I decided to implement a portion called “Question of the Day” where kids come up with and answer a question about themselves before heading home that I stole directly from CFSBK's group classes. Moreover, while my day job is ensuring strong culture in our school, I’m also a team-building/management book fanatic and I love thinking about questions like, “What is it that makes a great team where people perform at their best?” that you may have seen me reading books about on the couch. In all seriousness, though, the more I read these academic works about what makes a great organization the more I think to myself, “Man, CFSBK truly is a living example of this,” and the more I can see the intentionality that goes into building the culture that we all feel so strongly in this gym. I’m so thankful to DO and all the other coaches for doing what sounds incredibly easy but is, in practice, incredibly hard. I’m also so thankful to them for indulging me as I tell them about the newest book I read and how the lessons can be applied to CFSBK. (You know who you are, coaches.)

Fox: Sometimes the simple life is the easiest to enjoy and excel at. Do you have any current goals in the gym? What things are you looking to improve on?

PA: I have a few specific goals on a few lifts. I want to take my Squat from 270 to 290. I want to Clean and Jerk 185 and Snatch 135. Modest numbers, I know, but that’s where I want to be. I’m working on improving my Double-Unders and would love to get a Muscle-Up at some point, but that’s not a current priority. To digress a bit from that particular question, I have to say I feel really lucky to train here at CFSBK and I will admit I sometimes get gooey eyed when talking about it. I come here with joy and happily spend way too much time here. I can tangibly see how I’ve gotten better over these years and there are so many options for anyone’s fitness journey. From Anti-Gravity to Active Recovery to Starting Strength and Weightlifting Club, there are so many options to train with a mixture of guidance and autonomy. I love this place so much that, even though I’m currently looking for a new job, one major factor that I can’t get rid of is that I’m scared to take any job that may mean I have to leave this gym.

Fox: That’s really great stuff, Paul. Alright, last question. What should we look for in a future AOM?

PA: I’d have to give 2 pieces of advice that I think our gym does such a great job of striking the balance between:

1. Go First: I got this concept from a podcast with Laird Hamilton and Gabby Reece but the idea behind it is that in life, as you are walking down the street, you have a choice. Do you go first and smile at the person walking towards you or wait to see if they go first? I try to live this as much as I can and wish I had done it more when I first joined the gym. So I think future AOMs should be the type of people who “go first” and bring positivity and joy to our space.

2. Get Better: One of my favorite Instagram posts ever came from Josh Martinez (who used to coach here) who said something like, “the day you start lifting is the day you are forever small.” In my opinion, truer words have never been spoken. I think another important component to being successful here is not becoming complacent and continually pushing yourself to get better, regardless of your skill level. I truly believe that there isn’t a single person in this gym who is “satisfied” with where they are, and I love that motivation and energy.

Yesterday's Whiteboard: Snatch | Snatches, Muscle-Ups
Pre-Workout Nutrition: What, When, and How Much? CrossFit NYC
Parrots: The Highlight Reel NY Times

Reader Comments (35)

I had a feeling you would be next, Paul! Congrats- this is so well- deserved. Great interview!

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterCharlie

Congrats Paul! Wonderful choice, wonderful person.

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterJay-Star

Congrats Paul! I always enjoy lifting / WODding / chatting with you.

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered Commenterdave p

Congrats Paul!! No better choice! And congrats on the upcoming wedding!

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterBen Lock

Congrats Paul! Great interview! #ForeverSmall...sigh

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterAndré

Congrats Paul!!!!! So well deserved!!!!

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterCam

Congrats Paul!

6am with JB and McDowell

Dips - 10, 10, 9, 9, 10 - 2 more reps total than last week

Metcon in 9:13 - box jumps were rough after the rowing. The run was quite slow.

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterDan L

Congrats Paul!!! Well deserved and much earned!

Tempo Bench: Moved up to 35# and did sets of 7 across. Rep out was 8.

WOD: 9:44 Rx. Goal was just not to fall coming off the row to the box since my shin is still healing from a few weeks ago. Success!!! (Thanks to those who helped cheer on that first jump.) KB swings 30-20. Just tried to make sure Steve didn't catch me on the run.

Pull ups: 4-4-3-3-3

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterKayleigh

Paul! 👍💪

Starting Strength Challenge at CF Gantry yesterday w/ Dan C. Thank you to Margie and Jeremy for coming out to coach. Fun time - love these meets

Squat: 370#, 10# PR --> https://www.instagram.com/p/BEl1eicylBz/?taken-by=brooklynrob
Press: 172.5#, 2.5# PR --> https://www.instagram.com/p/BEmEtomylLQ/?taken-by=brooklynrob
Deadlift: 425#, 5# PR --> https://www.instagram.com/p/BEmSZE4SlPF/?taken-by=brooklynrob

Total: 967.5#, 17.5# PR.

Congrats Paul! Well deserved.

6am with pretty much everyone

Tempo Ring Dips in 7/7/7/7 and 8 for the rep out.

WOD Rxd in 11:54.
Tried to keep the row slow and steady and the box Jumps fast.
My plan was to do 20/15/15 for the swings but my grip started to go so I did 20/10/10/10.
The run was the run.

I also feel like the 6am-ers need to pull a Kasich/Cruz move on Steve H. We just need to unite around not letting him pass us on any runs. A united front is the only way to keep him at bay. Kayleigh and I have already signed the pledge.

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterMattyChm

Congratulations Paul! great stuff.

8AM with McDowell
1 set at 25# bench x 12
moved up to 30# for
2 sets @10 reps
1 @8
then to failure @ 10 reps.

metcon in 10:07
with a 20" box and 24kg kb.

off to my first box visit near Pittsburgh!

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterCharles

7am with JBowell

Dips - 6 / 6 / 6 / 6 / 6
Four more reps than last week. Had to really grind out the sixth on the rep out.

Metcon Rx - 10:55
Really wanted to be closer to ten minutes on this. Box jumps were fast sets of 10. Swings in 15 x 2 / 10 x 2. Would have had to go a little harder on the row and move quicker between stations I guess.

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterBrendan B

Congrats Paul. Great guy to share a bar with.

6am w/ McDowell & JB

Ring dips: 5x5.

Metcon:10:08 Rx. Disorganization at its best.

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterBK

Congrats Paul! Enjoyed watching you crush 16.5

6am with JBowell

6 / 6 / 6 / 6 and 2 on the rep out
Finally got 6's across but that last rep of the last set of 6 took everything I had. Only had a minute break before the rep out so wasn't able to muster anything.

WOD - 9:55 Rx
Row around 1450 cal/hour. Should have pushed harder here
Box jumps at a steady pace
KB swings 25-15-10. Should have done 30-20
Run at a decent pace. Tried to catch Kayleigh on the run but could only cut the distance in half before cramping up.

I see my quest to Make 6am Great Again is off to a solid start.

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterSteve

So glad to see Paul get the nod for AOM! He is a great dude, a tough competitor and worker, and really just one of my favorite people to be around and talk to at the gym.

Congrats, buddy!

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterMichael C.

Yay Paul! Excellent interview! See you back in AG.

@Rob Holy PRs! Nice! Congrats!

7 am with JB and McDowell
one set at 25 then up to 30 for next 3. Rather than adding weight I repped out on last set at 9 or maybe 10.
WOD - I should have grabbed a foam plyo from across the street so that I'd be at 18" because I'm still not on speaking terms with the 20" box box. Instead I took at 16" box and still managed to miss one somewhere in the 40s. Hmmm. Also scaled to 16 kg. 13:34
I"m all backward. Lost 5 pounds just before Iron Maiden; gained 8 since. This will be get with the program week!!!!

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterShawn Campbell

You're the best Paul! I appreciate that you can always be counted on for a good-spirited push.

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterEvan H

Congrats, Paul! "Go First" is such good advice.

And congrats on all the PRs, Rob!

6:30am Strength Cycle
Pause Squat - 172.5 x 4 x 3
Bench - 157.5 x 3 x 2, 140 x 8 x 1
Deadlift - 260 x 5 x 1
Ended with a leisurely 1000m row

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterJack L.

Congrats, Paul! Very well deserved, and I loved getting to know a little more about you from reading that interview. Keep it up, bud!

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterLil JB

Congrats, Paul! Great interview and advice. Nearly every time I see Paul before class, he's carrying his jump rope back after practicing double unders across the street! Speaks volumes about his athleticism and commitment! Can't wait to meet Eve ( and workout with her too!!!)

Wow, Rob! Great work!

Excited to drop into Oly class tonight after having a tough time snatching yesterday. Bye!

And Kayleigh: you're still 6aming during spring break!? You're a beast!

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterAllie B

6am at crossfit PBA in Palm beach Florida... Don't get excited I'm only here for work... Also only for ~18 hours.

Cool gym. I'd traded emails with the coach Steven before coming down. They list a QOD as part of the wod on the blog so I had a sneaky suspicion he was a follower of ITA. Indeed he was so I brought a skull and crossbones tee down for him.

Snatch: 2 snatch grip dl + 1 hang snatch at 65%. 5 reps. Did these at 115.

FSQ: 255x3x1, 225x3x3. Was written as a triple at 75% then three drop sets.

Metcon: 10 min amrap of

5 dl at 135
10 FSQ at 135
30 dubs

Got through 6 rounds + deadlifts + 7 FSQ. FSQ got real spicy. Fun workout though. I love met cons that happen in a 6x6 box and still kick the shit out of you. Running is overrated.

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterBrad D

Love seeing Paul as AOM. Such a solid guy and quietly very funny. Fun to interview him.

11am solo
These were tough today.

WOD Rx'd
Row in just under 3. BJ until 5 and change. KB all 10s, followed by about a 3:30 minute jog.

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterFox

- Well done Paul

Some light bench press today. 35# 8-10 reps

WOD 10:07 Rx - stayed one step behind Michael A the whole time. I hope my footsteps haunt him today.
Row went well. BJ's felt slow but steady. Kettle bell 25-14-11 run was the run.

Dan L was kind enough afterwards to let us know that the secret to this WOD was doing the kettle bell swings unbroken. ::what a brilliant idea::

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterJames A

Just read the "Pre Workout Nutrition" link. The carb recommendations in tips 1 and 2 seem crazy!

"Is it a long, grueling WOD (e.g. Murph, Filthy Fifty, Fight Gone Bad, Hero WODs, etc)?

Prior to workouts lasting 30 to 60 minutes, you will want to increase the carbohydrates in your meal (2-3 g/kg body weight), and still consume moderate protein (0.2-0.25 g/kg)."

For me, for 30 minutes of exercise that would mean about 160-240 grams of CHO and only 16-20 grams of PRO...no way, Jose!

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterFox

Congrats Paul, well deserved.

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterPigeon

Congrats, Paul! Well-deserved. Really great to hear your story and your insights (agreed that "go first" is a really good mentality to have, though it's certainly tough at times).

Had to get up at the crack of dawn to go to work this a.m. (even before you, 6 a.m. crowd), so will do Monday's work tomorrow. Looks daunting.

Makeup post from yesterday's OG: snatch up to 125, fitness metcon through the round of 8 + 10 snatches, Rx'ed. A surprisingly good time.

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterChas C.

Paul is the man, a very well deserved CFSBK AOM!!!

@RobU, awesome work on your meet!! Those numbers keep rising

6 Rounds NFT in the sun:
30 Calorie Row
6 Ground to over shoulder 80# DBALL
65m DBALL Carry
6 Ground to over shoulder 80# DBALL
65m DBALL Carry

April 25, 2016 | Registered CommenterDavid Osorio

Paul!!! Hooray, morning crew! Watching you crush 16.5 was one of the highlights of my March 26 :)

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterStella

Congrats, Paul! Well deserved! Love your two pieces of advice!

Icelandic workout (first workout since Wed and no hotel gym)

About 4 miles of walking/hiking during the day. Then this evening:

25 ea leg boulder step-ups (~18")

Alternating sprint (75-90%)/walk (~1/2 of a mile)

steady jog 1/3 of a mile

25 each leg boulder step-ups

Handstand practice for one minute

Alternating sprint (75%)/jog for 1/3 of a mile

steady jog 1/2 mile

25 ea leg boulder step-ups

insta-shin splints

One student joined me. Hoping more will join in tomorrow!

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterKLove

Run to gym: 1.7 miles with Penny the pup. About 16 min, including street corner stops and such. I am so slow. Felt good to run though.

A few rounds of:
5 lateral box step up 24"
10 pvc passthrough
:30 chin up grip hang
8 squat press out, 10#

Front Rack Box Step Up: 20"
3x10L, 3x8R @ 73#
f*ck that still sucks on the L side. but getting there. progress, not perfection.

DB Bent Over Row: 3x12 ea side @ 40#

2x OH Carry one gym length and back @ 20kg
-L side much harder to stabilize, gets tired quickly.

3x8 pallof press each side, focusing on RtoL counter-rotation
3x4 tempo ring dip 22x1... it's been a while

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterWhit H

7:30 AM class at Chikara CrossFit in Tokyo. Love, love, love this box! Will add my review to the travel gym recos shortly.

This is a 1RM testing week for them so the coach told me to do sets of 3-5 on deadlift instead of testing (ha, that would be a joke after both not lifting for 10 days and saying "f*** you macros, I'm going to eat ALL THE THINGS")

Warmup: "dot drills" -- basically hopscotch for grown ups. Surprisingly hard!

Deadlift (kilos...math!)

Then something called RFESS (I'd call it a lunge with one foot on a box). These were SO HARD! Sets of 8, tempo down 3, explode up, 1 at the top. Worked to 27.5# DBs. Did I mention they were hard?!

Finally, max reps chin-ups. I got 7, so at least that hasn't gone away.

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterStella

Congrats Paul and hello Stella! I'll be at Chikara in June. Can't wait to hear all your suggestions on places to go!

630 with Ro and Noah
Closed DB Bench
4x7-8 reps at 25lbs
11 reps on the max effort set

Row 3:05
Box jumps- 20
Kb 16kg

Under 12:30 (didn't catch the exact time)

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterMelody

Paul. A solid gentleman! Congratulations on AOM and the wedding.

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterMo

Congrats to Rob too!!

Weightlifting Club

1.2 x Jumping Snatch Pulls, Snatch, 5 second hold at the bottom.

73 x 5 x 3

I graduated from the hip and am now allowed to try from the floor!!!

Focused o using legs, keeping weight in back of heels and shoulders over the bar.

2.Clean, hang clean, jerk, 5 second hold at bottom

103 x 5

Had some trouble with footwork tonight. Back leg was not bending enough and front leg was bending too much.

3. Snatch Lift-off. New move for me.
83 x 3 x 5

4. Behind the neck snatch grip push press
103 x 3
108 x 3

Fun times!!

April 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterCharlie

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