Thursday, May 31, 2007


0600 hrs

50 reps of:
Knees to Elbows
Kettlebell (KB) Swing
Weighted DB Squat

3 rounds of:
500 m row
50 Wallballs (14 lbs)
For Time

Time: 19:04

This was a tough workout, particularly because I haven't gotten the hang of wallballs. But it will get better!

1730 hrs
Same as 0600 hrs

20 KB swings
2 Ring Pushups
18 KB swings
4 Ring Pushups
16 KB swings
6 Ring Pushups
14 KB swings
8 Ring Pushups
12 KB swings
10 Ring Pushups
10 KB swings
12 Ring Pushups
8 KB swings
14 Ring Pushups
6 KB swings
16 Ring Pushups
4 KB swings
18 Ring Pushups
2 KB swings
20 Ring Pushups
For Time

Time: 9:03

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Sigh it's been a tiring few days. But my fault I guess, I have a tendency to go overboard with training and workouts when I'm left to myself. Like now. It's spring term and so the workload is considerably less than a typical semester, so I only have class on Mon, Wed and Fri, and so I am basically left to my own devices the rest of the time.

Anyway I discovered the amazing wonders of Crossfit slightly over three weeks ago, and having been enlightened as to the principles behind this marvelous fitness philosophy, I will never go back to the days of drudgery in the gym when I spent anywhere between one to two (or more) hours pointlessly lifting weights or doing mindless cardio and things like that. Or even back to spinning sessions. I don't think I ever want to go near a spinning bike again. My goodness, Crossfit has entirely changed my mindset with regards to workouts. For instance, yesterday's workout was one of my favorites so far, because it incorporated deadlifts (which are my forte).

So basically the WOD (Workout of the Day) went like this:
10 deadlifts (at bodyweight - if you weigh 110 lbs, you use 110 lbs)
10 ring pushups (this really forces you to make use of your core muscles because of the unstable nature of the rings)
9 deadlifts
9 ring pushups
8 deadlifts
8 ring pushups
1 deadlift
1 ring pushup

All done for time. I did it at the 6:00 am class and clocked 6:48, and came back again at 5:30 pm and smashed my previous time, finishing in 5:12. Okay I didn't slack the first time alright, it's just that the rings I used weren't mounted properly and so I had to keep borrowing other people's rings. Anyway so you may wonder how you can justify a good workout when it only takes 5-6 minutes. But you can try it for yourself and let me know what you think. And the other key aspect of Crossfit is the way in which warmups are amply emphasized. Prior to the deadlift/ pushup WOD, we did a warmup that took even longer than the workout itself. It went like that:
600 m run
10 pullups
10 squats
400 m run
10 pullups
10 squats
200 m run
10 pullups
10 squats
So basically you feel like you just worked out when in fact you only just warmed up. But that's the beauty of Crossfit. The camaraderie between the people who work out at this Crossfit affiliate gym in Ann Arbor is awesome too. People come from all walks of life - I've met students, teachers, high school kids, grandmothers who can whoop asses, marathon runners, the really fit, the people who're striving to get back after a long layoff... you name it, Crossfit caters to everyone.

Anyway I think I'll start using this blog as a place to record my WODs. I don't care whether anyone reads it or not, but I need to be accountable to myself and for my mental and physical development. So if you're interested in hardcore fitness or want to accompany me on my WODs when I'm back in Singapore (or in Ann Arbor, for that matter), check out


0600 hrs

Set 1: 26 reps of each. Set 2: 20 reps. Set 3: 16 reps. Set 4: 10 reps. Set 5: 6 reps.
Dumbbell (DB) push-press (20 lbs per side for Sets 1-3; 25 lbs for Sets 4-5)
One-arm DB swing (25 lbs per side)
Weighted DB squats (20 lbs per side for Sets 1-3; 25 lbs for Sets 4-5)
Ring pushups
Building Run (approx 230 yds)
For Time

Time: 21:24

Dessert (courtesy of Jen)
100 yds walking lunge, 100 yds sprint, 100 yds walking lunge, 300 yds sprint.

1730 hrs

600m row
30 burpee-plyo box jumps (20'')
30 wallballs (14 lbs)
400m row
20 burpee-plyo box jumps (20'')
20 wallballs (14 lbs)
200m row
10 burpee-plyo box jumps (20'')
10 wallballs (14 lbs)
For Time

Time: 19:38

Dessert (courtesy of Doug):
100 Abmats

Thursday, May 17, 2007

The Mental Aspect of Boxing
By Ross Enamait - Published in 2003 (taken from

Boxing is perhaps the most challenging sport of all. A boxer requires a unique blend of speed, strength, and endurance. In addition to these qualities, he must stand up to the punishment inflicted by an equally matched opponent. To withstand the inevitable pain and fatigue, the boxer must possess a mind that is as tough as his body.

Boxing is not just about getting into shape and mastering the tools of the sweet science. An equally important aspect of the fight game is having the mental fortitude to succeed. Boxing is unique from other sports, as a fighter must stand alone inside the ring. Even legendary trainers such as Eddie Futch and Angelo Dundee would exit the ring during rounds.

Regardless of your abilities, the time will come when you must battle fatigue. You may be hurt or injured, yet forced to continue. Boxing is not like other sports where you can look to the referee to call timeout. Instead, you must fight until the bell rings. You have the option to quit, but real fighters never will. Real boxers fight regardless of the adversity faced inside the ring.

A strong mind can help during these difficult times. The mind is a powerful tool that some never learn to control. For example, all boxers understand the importance of running, watching their diet, and training hard in the gym. Why then, are some fighters in amazing shape, while others only mediocre? Why do some fighters have difficulties making weight, while others weigh in perfectly every time? The answers to these questions lie within the mental discipline of the fighter. It is easy to cheat on your diet and easy to skip your roadwork. Unfortunately for many, boxing is not an easy sport.

A day in the life of a fighter consists of an early wakeup, followed by a morning session of running. Many fighters are up by 5:30 and running by 6 AM. While most people sleep soundly, boxers are out running the streets. Roadwork often consists of hills, sprints, and torturous intervals. The morning session is far from enjoyable, yet because of its importance, a fighter commits himself to it. There will be days when you are tired, perhaps you stayed up late, perhaps it is raining outside, or the wind is blowing feverishly in the winter. Boxing is different from other team sports, as many of the decisions must be made on your own.

Your coach is not there at 5:30 in the morning, reminding you to wake up and hit the roads. It is easy to hit the snooze button on your alarm and drift back to the dream that was abruptly halted by the annoying buzz.

What makes you decide to run, while others may choose to sleep? The decision often comes from deep inside. The man who wakes to run, runs not to look nice on the beach, rather he runs to inch himself closer to victory. He may be preparing for a regional amateur tournament, perhaps the nationals, or even a professional world title. At some point, you must decide on your own, how bad you want to win.

There will always be fighters who sleep, and others who wake. There will always be those who mess around at the gym, and those who train until the lights go out. You will have days when you’d rather not train. On your way to the gym, you consider driving past, yet you stop and turn towards the gym parking lot. Mentally, you must be strong to succeed in this sport. No one can make the decision for you to train. The decision must be made at the individual level. The best trainers in the world are only as good as the students they train. They can provide motivation and advice, but ultimately, the decision still rests in the hands of the fighter.

When you decide in your heart, that you want to succeed, your mind will take over. You begin to make boxing your sole purpose in life. You have to eat, sleep, and dream boxing to be the best. If you don’t, rest assured that someone else will. This is not a sport you play. This is a sport where you can get hurt. Boxing is a sport for warriors, those that are strong both mentally and physically. We will all face fear and doubt, but with dedicated training and experience, we learn to quell these feelings.

Consider the wait in the locker room before the bout. You are often left by yourself, while your trainer works with other fighters. You try to envision the fight in your head. There are times when you doubt yourself, even question your conditioning. Thoughts race through your head, but you remain calm showing no visible expression. You must hide your concern from the fighters around you. You shadow box to loosen the tightness fashioned from your nerves. When fight time comes, these thoughts quickly vanish. You rely on your training and fight your heart out. Through experience, you learn to overcome the anxiety. You realize that you are not alone, rather one of many who have faced such feelings.

The wait in the locker room is enough to break the average man. Most men have never been involved in a fair one-on-one fight. Most have never been punched in the face. For this reason, most cannot comprehend the feeling of sitting and waiting to do battle with another man, whose soul purpose is to knock you out. He has sweat and bled in the gym for one reason, to hand you defeat. You must face this challenge alone. Your friends and family can only watch from outside the ring.

The mind can play tricks on you. It may convince you to doubt yourself and your training. For this reason, you must train the mind to work for you, not against. The only way to achieve this state of mind is through experience and hard work. Experience comes from actual competition. You must fight and continue to learn.

If you lose, you must make the decision to get back up and fight. When a boxer loses, many are quick to call him a bum or over the hill. These people don’t realize that boxing is just like any other sport. It takes time to learn and master the techniques. You must learn from your losses and live to fight another day. No one can instill the mental toughness and work ethic required to become a champion. You must dig down, deep within and find these qualities on your own.

Train hard and believe in yourself. Through hard work, you will gain confidence in your training. Boxing is a sport that does not involve luck. Boxing is a sport that rewards those who work hard and overcome obstacles. Make the choice. Train like a champion and you can become a champion.