2013 CrossFit Games Open Workout 13.4 (A Safety Run)

I’m hitting the road back to Michigan early in the morning. It’s been a great 3 months in Phoenix but I’m excited to get home. Since the trip is 3 days I wanted to make sure to get in a score on 13.4 in case I got stuck on the road and don’t make it home as planned. I should get home on Saturday afternoon or right though and be ready to hit this one again on Sunday with my Survival Fitness family.

After doing 100 pull-ups and 100 push-ups in yesterday’s WOD I was really hoping not to see pull-ups in 13.4. I got my wish, but I’m not sure jerks were any better because my shoulders were pretty fried today.

I warmed up with a 500m row, some PVC pass-thrus, and some clean and jerks with increasing weights up to the 135#.

Open Workout 13.4

Complete as many reps as possible in 7 minutes following the rep scheme below:

  • 3 Clean & Jerk (135#)
  • 3 T2B
  • 6 Clean & Jerk (135#)
  • 6 T2B
  • 9 Clean & Jerk (135#)
  • 9 T2B
  • 12 Clean & Jerk (135#)
  • 12 T2B
  • 15 Clean & Jerk (135#)
  • 15 T2B
  • 18 Clean & Jerk (135#)
  • 18 T2B
  • If you complete the round of 18, go on to 21. If you complete 21, go on to 24, etc.

I finished the 12s and got 13 of the 15 C&J for a score of 73 total reps. I dropped every single C&J. I also broke up the 9 T2B into 5-4 and the 12 into 6-6. My buddy Adam, did in with me and we’re usually back and forth depending on the WOD. He did the 3 and 6 C&J as touch-n-go and didn’t break up any T2B until the round of 15, where he finished 13 of them. So his total score was 88. To be honest, this workout really didn’t feel too bad. It’s hard, but I think I’ve felt worse doing Grace because the C&J reps are not broken up there like here where you get a change of pace with the T2B.

I’m confident when I do this again on Sunday I can follow a similar strategy to Adam, maybe even get in a couple of C&J doubles in the round of 9 or 12. I also did mostly push presses like a jackass when I planned to start with jerks from the beginning. If I can do that, it’ll really help save my arms so the later reps aren’t so slow. Getting through those 15 C&J and having time to get back on the T2B is huge because those are quick reps. Every rep in this one is going to be huge for your ranking because there will be so many ties without a tiebreaker. I’m shooting to hit 90+ on Sunday.

After sitting around for a bit, I did an easy 2k row in 8:57 for a cooldown.

Now that I’ve sat around and showered at home, my shoulders and back are getting lit up. The next 3 days will be in the Jeep driving over 2,200 miles. I’ll do some body weight stuff in my hotel room the next two days. My shoulders and grip should be well rested come Sunday morning for a second shot at 13.4.

Work the High Hang

Yesterday morning I walked 9 holes of golf and then went for a 3.15 mile hike in 58:38. I’ve been sore from doing “Karen” in 13.3, but nowhere near the DOMS I’ve experienced from previous run-ins with that bitch. Went it an noon.


  • 2m Row
  • 2 Rounds:
    • 5 Pull-ups
    • 10 Push-ups
    • 10 Air Squats
  • Burgener Warm-up (empty bar)

I did strict pull-ups to work on my strength and did slow quality chest to deck push-ups.


7 Sets

  • Power Snatch
  • Hang Power Snatch
  • High Hang Power Snatch
  • 90s Rest

Each set was done without putting the bar down. Great time to work on the hip extension like last week’s drilling on full cleans. I’m beginning to love the high hang lifts because without the hips you can’t move any weight. It really forces you to be explosive and use your hips, especially being the 3rd lift in the complex. I did 2 sets at 75# and then went up 10# each set, to finish at 125#. I’m really happy to be able to land those three lifts at that weight because my 1RM is still only 155#. My technique was better today than it ever has been and I was getting a lot of hip extension, making the bar move so much faster.


4 Rounds

  • 400m Run
  • 20 Deadlifts (185#)
  • 30 Sit-ups

This was a fun little WOD, with the 20 deadlifts becoming a real challenge. I did 12-8 in the 3rd round to save myself a bit and then really pushed the run in the last round and pushed hard on the deadlifts because I was trying to catch Lance. Ended up 8 seconds behind him, with my time being 15:18.

Fuck the False Grip

All of the squatting from the last two days is catching up to my legs. After the announcement of 13.3 and looking at some videos, I knew I needed to give no-false grip MU a try, so I went in around 8am this morning to open gym.


  • 50-40-30-20-10 DU
  • 30-25-20-15-10 Sit-ups

They were doing “Annie” in class today but doing that many sit-ups would wreck my core a bit, so Emily suggested I cut the number of sit-ups. I only missed a DU near the beginning of the 50 and right away in the 20, otherwise all unbroken. Finished in 5:30, so would have been a PR “Annie” for me had I done the extra 50 sit-ups.


I raised the rings and jumped on! First I did some hip to ring pulls with a kip to get a feel for the motion I’d need. Felt good. Then I went for it and tried the no-false grip MU. Got up there no problem and felt a lot easier than when I’ve done them with the false grip. I have a hard time supporting myself in the false grip, and even more so when I start swinging with the kip. I did a total of 4 or 5 singles and never had a miss. The only thing that sucks a bit is my wrists are in a bad position when I’m over the rings, so then I have to adjust. But I have the strength now where it’s not a huge deal to do. I’ll live with that instead of having to fight with the false grip.

Gymnastics WOD has a great 4 part no-false grip muscle-up progression series that I highly recommend checking out.


  • 500m Row
  • 2m Rest
  • 500m Row

The class was doing 4 but I decided to call it quits after 2. I don’t want to burn myself out with having to do 13.3 tomorrow.

The Light Bulb Moment

I was feeling good today. Pretty well recovered from 13.2. Went in at 3:15 for some Olympic lifting and then stayed for the WOD with the 4:15 class.


  • 500m Row
  • PVC Pass-thrus
  • A few empty bar clean progressions


We started out doing a complex:

  • Clean
  • Hang Clean
  • High Hang Clean

Everything was a full squat clean. I started off with 115# to loosen up and then went 145#, 155#, 165#, 175#, and finished at 195# due to Gayle’s push. The high hang cleans were really forcing me to get into a better full extension. For the first time I started to feel like I was coming out to meet the bar at the right time instead of it hitting so low, just above my knees. Gayle made this cool collage out of one of the videos during the complex and it proves I was finally getting some full extension!


Next, we moved on to doing doubles, with the goal of going EMOM for 10 minutes, but as we added weight, rest more often. Gayle told me to throw 205# on the bar to start. Ok, who am I to argue. She got me to full extension today which has never happened before. I was sticking to EMOM here and went 3 sets at 205#. Then I went up to 210# and stuck to EMOM for 3 sets there as well. Bumped it up to 215# for the next 3 sets and started to take 90s or 2 minutes of rest between sets because after 2 reps I was close to fainting a few times. You know you’re working hard when that happens!

On one of the reps at 215# I hit the best full extension I’ve ever had and the bar flew so high it caught me really off guard. For my last set, I took a little longer rest and went for broke at 230# which I recently did for a power clean, but have never attempted for a full squat clean and certainly never a double. I got it with an ugly 2nd rep, but fuck I was tired at this point. Gayle got a video of it too.

Now, let’s see if I can get this same feeling with snatches, which I really need it.

I skipped the class warm-up because I was pretty beat from those doubles.


18:00 AMRAP

  • 200m Row (or 200m Run if all rowers in use)
  • 15 American KBS (53# KB)
  • 10/10 Walking Lunges
  • 5 HSPU

I started out with a run, but then was able to row every round. Did everything unbroken and minimized my kip on the HSPU because it was only 5 at a time; they felt really good. Finished 7 full rounds and was getting on the rower as time ran out.

Get It Overhead!

I’m feeling pretty sore in my shoulders from the HSPU yesterday and as the day goes on my ass is feeling those plyo lunges. Went in at 3:15 for some special OLY work and then stayed for the regular class.

OLY Warm-up

  • 500m Row
  • PVC Pass-thrus
  • 2 x 10 Pause Jerks with 45# bar


  • 5x Jerk Short Step with 95#
  • Jerk from the Back – Doubles and Triples
  • Jerk from the Front – Doubles and Singles

I started off with 95# from the back, went 115#, 155#, and 185#. This was my first time doing any jerks from the back and they felt really weird. I only did a couple of singles at 185# because I don’t feel comfortable dropping that much weight back to my back and it felt uncomfortable to begin with. I need to do these once in a while to get the feel for them.

I dropped the weight back down to 155# and switched to jerks from the rack, doing a double there. Did a double at 185# and another at 205#. Then I was going to hit 225# for a single and Gayle asked if it was going to be a PR, so figured might as well throw another 5# on to make it 230# for a PR. Hit it easily without even punching under in fully. Upped it to 245# and pushed the weight forward instead of back, so failed. Fought it a bit and it didn’t feel too good on my low back.

Took a rest, made sure to punch under it, and got it up for a 20# PR. It was a little unstable over my head, but that’s fucking heavy. Gayle said I could have gotten my front foot out further too and got under it more. Did a good job of getting my head through though.

Class Warm-up

  • 3/3 World’s Greatest Stretch
  • 10/10 Scorpions
  • 10/10 Flamingos
  • 10/10 Legs Swings (F2B, S2S)


3 Rounds

  • 600m Run
  • 25 Pull-ups

I tried to push it harder on the run today and the temperatures are rising fast here in Phoenix, so that makes the running even tougher. Did all butterfly pull-ups again, but I’m having trouble stringing together more than 7 before I lose rhythm. Finished in 12:24.



  • DU
  • AbMat Sit-ups

This was actually part of the class warm-up, but I was finishing up my jerk PR when class started so didn’t do it at that time. Took some rest after the WOD and then knocked it out since there was plenty of time before the next class started.

A Fresh Look On Monday

Don’t compare yourself with anyone in this world…if you do so, you are insulting yourself.

Bill Gates

As time has gone by, I’m feeling better about my performance in 13.1. I looked back at my placing after 12.1 and 12.2, compared to 13.1. I’m ranked higher in the world and there are twice as many registrations. I’d say that’s a win. I’ll know more about exact placement and percentile Tuesday night after score validation closes.

My disappointment in not getting a score of at least 150 is nearly gone. I know there will be workouts that play more into my strengths and I can make up ground. I gave 13.1 my best shot and honestly don’t know where I could have gone any faster to pick up the 45 seconds I would have needed to get the final 8 burpees.

It’s a new week and back to training until the next workout is announced. My body feels good, just a little sore in the upper back. I went in for 9am and there sit Gayle and Adam, just having got done with Saturday’s WOD. They’re starting some 2-a-days, so I did that same workout on my own.


  • 750m Row at 20s/m

I kept right around a 2:15/500m pace.

WOD #1

2 Rounds

  • 400m Run
  • 25 HSPU
  • 400m Run
  • 30 Pistols (alternating)

I finished in 17:10. HSPU were broken down into 10-5-4-3-3 and 5-5-5-4-3-3 I think. I’ve improved my strength for them so much in the last 2 months. My second round of pistols was a lot faster than my first round and felt good. Out of there in well under an hour and home to rest for later.

This wasn’t really too bad because I had quite a bit of rest during HSPU while breaking them up. Solid strength work though with cardio in the mix.

I jumped on the scale after the WOD and was 189 with shoes and clothes on. I ate really bad yesterday as my cheat day after the workout. Usually those kind of days put me up 2-3 pounds on the scale, so I’d say I hit my first goal of leaning out and getting down to around 185 for the Open.

Back at 4:15 for round 2!


  • 600m Run
  • 3 Rounds:
    • 5 Pull-ups
    • 10 Push-ups
    • 15 Air Squats

I did strict pull-ups to work on strength and chest-to-deck push-ups.

WOD #2

5 Rounds (Similar to the “Chief” WOD)

  • 3:00 AMRAP
    • 3 Ring Dips
    • 6 Plyo Lunges
    • 9 American KBS (53#)
  • 1m Rest

* Start each 3:00 round where you left off.

Instead of only doing straight up ring dips, I put the rings up at about eye level, got down with my legs bent under me and on my toes, looking up at the rings. Took a false grip and worked on the MU transition by doing a jumping/strict MU type move from there. Once I got up above the rings I did my 3 dips each time. Now that I’m thinking about it I should have put the rings higher and just done jumping MU or even tried doing a kipping MU each time.

This was a solid WOD and those KBS really started to hurt in the last two 3 minute rounds. I finished with a score of 18+3. To make this a little better, I think I would swap the rep counts for the lunges and the KBS.

Those were two solid WODs today, but not the kind that knock you out for 2 days.

Deads & Cardio

I was originally planning to take a rest day today and do Open WOD 13.1 tomorrow, but things changed. My hamstrings are feeling pretty tight from the squat volume yesterday, but ended up going in for 7:15pm and I’ll make tomorrow a rest day.


  • 3m Jump Rope
  • 50 AbMat Sit-ups
  • 50 Supermans


4 Sets

  • 7-10 Deadlifts
  • 90s Rest

I did a 5 reps at 135# and 185# to loosen up. Then I hit all 10 reps at 225#, 275#, 305#, and 325#. Moved a lot of weight, but didn’t go overboard and end up with a headache that’ll lasts 3 days


  • 750m Row
  • 600m Run
  • 75 DU
  • 500m Row
  • 400m Run
  • 50 DU
  • 250m Row
  • 200m Run
  • 25 DU

Nice cardio WOD today. Struggled with me DU on the round of 75 failing about every 10, but was good on the other sets. Finished in 15:26.