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Shred Ready / Ski Conditioning

A. Party at Sharpe Fitness / CrossFit La Jolla with trainers Brandie and Catherine. Ladies who crunch. Click 2 Enlarge.Everybody knows that AspenSpin has a body that's "built to party".What you don't know;Too much hard-packed snow coupled with the aging process (it's a bi-atch) and too many "good times" led to some serious physical problems for Andy-Party in 2010. Getting 100 ski days is not easy with a dislocated shoulder, a sprained meniscus, a bulging neck disc, a lower back that is majorly f#*ked up, ulnar nerve issues, plantar fasciitis, etc. etc.---sheeesh, dude---- I should have gone to med school. 

 In late July, stumbling home from yet another Carnitas orgy in the Bird Rock neighborhood of La Jolla,we felt the need  for a quick pit stop and ducked into a nearby gym. "Ummmm, do you have a restroom?"  "In the back" answered a slender, upbeat young woman dressed in sweats. A-Spin hustled past  her on the way to the John. We passed the bosu balls, Swiss balls, medicine balls, kettle bells, jump ropes, punching bags, free weights, pilates machines and a massage room.  WOW!! Sharpe Fitness / La Jolla CrossFit has it all.  Looking down, over a paunch that was reminiscent of Chris Farley's, AspenSpin decided  then and there----to get busy.One minute in between sets.

The next morning at 7am we "got worked" courtesy of Catherine Cox the same lady who let us use the men's room.  Catherine is a fantastic personal trainer, certified by Crossfit, NASM and NCSF.  Her assignment; some PT, along with flexibility, strength, power, agility and balance. Ms. Cox considered all of A-Spin's nagging physical impairments, and put us to work .  Issues with diet and weight loss??? ---- Houston....we have a problem---but thats another post.  

Plyometrics---that's the answer.  Catherine and Brandie Sharpe, owner of Crossfit La Jolla came up with a customized plan for AspenSpin.  Stretching, functional strength, fast paced sets, short power bursts, basic movements, Mackenzie presses, "you gotta keep those hammies loose."  Squats, squat jumps, leap frogs, lunge hops, sprints, grape vines---and all dat sh*t is on the beach--on the sand---barefoot.  SWIMMING---lots of swimming.  After a couple weeks they added ball slams, box jumps, bosu and swiss ball exercises, wood chops, thrusters, burpees etc.---it was working. Stretching and range of motion are keys. Barbie and Cindy demo.

"Wanna flip the tire?" asked Catherine.   "Lemme think----NO!!!". I didn't really want to mess around with the 5 foot tall, 500 lb tractor tire. Catherine challenged me--"c'mon --go for it".  My back and neck actually felt better than it had in about 24 months. WTF? ?? No guts, no glory, ---right?  The tire flip is really a pretty basic excercise.  It's a huge thrust from the legs and then the whole body gets fired up. Leverage and positioning are important, keeping the spine straight and your core engaged crucial.  "Yeeeeaaahhhh". It felt pretty good. "Gimme another one" shouted Catherine---SQUAT, THRUST, PUSH, DRIVE---aaaaarrrrrg.  AspenSpin was hooked.

Box Jumps, nice form. Click 2 Enlarge.The point of this story is three-fold.  1) The human body is an amazing creation. With the right combination of exercise and stretching anyone can recover from some pretty nasty stuff. Water is a cure all.  Drinking  it, swimming in it and riding it. The body is approximately 60% water. 2) To all the surgeons and specialists i've seen in the past year who wanted to cut me--- Kish mein tukus.  Please realize that the most important characteristic one needs to become an "excellent candidate for surgery"------is insurance coverage---that pays. 3) AspenSpin is looking forward to some SUPER SICK POW CONDITIONS this Winter.  Hard pack sucks. It looks like the "Brett Farvre of blogging" is gonna be there again when the whistle blows.

Special thanks go out to Catherine Cox, Brandie Sharpe and the folks at Sharpe Fitness / La Jolla Crossfit for pointing me in the right direction, coaching me and helping me "get after it". Thanks to the Pacific Ocean for being magnificiant and to the La Jolla JCC pool for giving me my own lane.  Now I just have to stick to it.

A.Party / OUT.

Wall BallCarmie supervises CC's demo.

Reggie on the rings, as Barbie works the Kettle Bells. Fast paced workouts at Sharpe Fitness in La Jolla. Hugging is allowed, but only between sets.

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