Rouen, Da’esh Lunatics, United We Conquer (and some fitness too)

Where there is Unity there is Always Victory

– Publilius Syrus

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It’s hard to concentrate on fitness and fun when confronted by the brutality of the organisation known in the west as “Da’esh” but who claim to be an Islamic State. Yet another act of despicable brutality (Rouen, France, 26 Jul), the 8th such attack since the message they dribbled on about in May begins to take hold, “Truly, the smallest act you do in their lands is more beloved to us than the biggest act done here.” (I’m not citing the source as I’m not going to provide more airtime to their criminal lunacy). Their message is still reaching the disenfranchised, disaffected, mentally weak individuals keen to believe in some sense of self-actualisation on earth and self-gratification in a fictitious after-life. In response to their physical demolition in Iraq and Syria, they are reacting in the only way available to them; getting others to do their work for them ‘at reach’. The senseless killing of a priest in Rouen today was not at the hands of Da’esh, it was an ‘inspired’ attack by otherwise disturbed individuals. At times like this, it would equally weak of us to blame Islam and all Muslims. This is not the case. Certainly, the Muslim communities have an enormous responsibility to overcome this menace but this cannot, must not, will not cause the overwhelming division in our nations that these freaks want. I put out to any rational Muslims that may read this blog (highly unlikely; my readership isn’t exactly extensive) my hand of friendship and solidarity. We’re in this together. True Islam is being hurt with lies and misdirection. Brits (and other secular westerners) are turning on them because of misunderstanding and because of no other outlet for retaliation. This is not the way. I am not religious and I don’t believe in a higher power but I do believe in the potential of humans for great, collective good in the world. My particular qualification in the UK military was created to counter an especially aggressive, despicable, right-wing grouping during WWII, in support of all creeds, at a very dark time in our collective history. They didn’t win. We did.

United We Conquer

Morning Session

fish of the day

Swimming today! I’ve not swum properly in YEARS!

25m Pool.

16 lengths warm-up

  • 10 x 2 lengths Sprint (resting while partner, who is MUCH faster than I am, did his)
  • 4 x 1 Length Single Arm only (alternating each length)
  • 4 x 1 Length with as few strokes as possible (I managed to get it down from 21 to 17)
  • 3 x 1 Length with as few breaths as possible (Best was 1 breath midway, worst was 2)
  • 1 x Length Underwater (no worries).

I might not be religious but “HOLY HELL!” that was hard! Very quickly realising that I could not sprint 50m, I rapidly reassessed and decided on the first length being an all-out sprint with the second length being a fast-recovery length prior to a pause. I need more of this and will be including pool-time once a week.

Evening Session @ CF 


3 x 3 Front Squat @ 70/80/90% of 1RM

Total: 85kg / 100kg / 1 x 115kg / 1 x 112.5kg

This was a little disappointing. I’d hoped to achieve 3 reps at 115kg today but I’ve not done any Front Squats in a really long time (a squat programme in Sept and Oct will solve this).

Unfortunately, I took the disappointment in to:


25min AMRAP @ 45kg

  • 5 x Deadlift
  • 5 x Power Clean
  • 5 x Front Squat
  • 5 x Push Press
  • 5 x Back Squat

Total: 11 rounds + 16 reps

My heart rate just would not come down during this. I paced it pretty slowly but my heart was racing throughout. It should have taken it even slower, perhaps a EMOM-style, every 2 mins. There was too much negative self-talk during the WOD even though there was another side trying to egg me on. I could have smashed through that last round complete but gave up. Giving myself some credit, I did hammer myself in the pool this morning and know I didn’t eat properly through the day so actually, I did do a pretty tidy job.



Despite the WODs, I’m feeling particularly positive today even though I got up at 0530 for swimming!! The day has been made even better by coming across an empty sandbag…… has inspired me to take such a thing on holiday next week in order to fill it with sand and use it for WODs while away! 😀 (lucky Mrs Nomad!! :D) I’ve ended the day with intentional positive self-talk to bring me back on track. I’ve done a lot over the last 2 days, with at least 2 more days of workouts to go before well-earned holidays.



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