Photo Credit: CrossFit Linchpin
Enjoying Morning Chalk Up? Access additional exclusive interviews, analyses, and stories with an Rx membership.
Pat Sherwood learned about CrossFit in 2005 after a conversation with Dave Castro, and he became a prominent part of the company for several years. He worked approximately 200 seminars as part of the HQ training staff, he programmed some events for the CrossFit Games, and he served as a host/analyst for the CrossFit Games Update Show.
Sherwood’s life is just as busy now, but in a different sense. He programs workouts and creates content for CrossFit Linchpin and tackles some of the community’s biggest topics on a podcast with Adrian Bozman. He is also a husband and a father with two stepsons and an infant.
Sherwood has a limited amount of time to achieve fitness, but he makes the most of these opportunities. Sometimes he has to work out in his living room. Other times he can make it out to the garage and use a variety of equipment.
- “It’s rugged but bearable, you know, a good way to say. And it’s also in a weird way a good proof of concept. People are always talking about, ‘Man, you can get a lot done with 30 minutes in the gym.’ You really can.”
- “And even when life is just bonkers, if you decide that what’s going to be important to you is maintaining your health and fitness, even when life is bonkers, you probably have 30 minutes sometimes during the day.”
A limited amount of time does not mean that Sherwood’s workouts have grown weak. He had a reputation for creating some spicy workouts while at HQ, and he had some willing victims in Tommy Marquez, Heber Cannon, Rory Mckernan, Marston Sawyers, Charlie Dube, and Wilson Tang among others. His programming style has changed in the pursuit of sustainability, but there is still a healthy mix of grueling workouts, heavy sessions, and quick burners.
- One fitting example of the changing programming and the need for balance is a simple workout featuring 150 dumbbell power snatches. Sherwood did the workout while watching his infant, and he finished in 17 minutes due to some child-prompted rest periods.
- A very different workout is Linchpin Test 13, which is a 400-meter run, 20 burpees, 400-meter run, 19 burpees, and so on until you reach one remaining burpee. This grueling test, which features a weight vest, has a 90-minute time cap.
“Just going long, every now and then is nice to have the time. It’s nice to move the body. And it’s nice because quite frankly, it’s just part of variance you need to hit every now and then. But it is good when the schedule frees up and you can get back out there.”
Achieving fitness is only part of Sherwood’s busy schedule. Creating the “Varied Not Random” podcast with Adrian Bozman takes up additional time, and the two hosts use every opportunity to provide a wide variety of information ranging from nutrition to how to approach styles of workouts.
- “Some of the ones that we’ve done recently I’ve really enjoyed because we’ve been basically answering questions from the community. And I think the one that got posted [recently] was like entitled ‘mailbag,’ like mailbag from the community.
- “Instead of just taking one topic that somebody asked to make an entire show out of it for like 30 or 40 minutes, we took three or four topics and just spent maybe five to seven minutes on each one.”
How does he make it all work? Balance is an even bigger focus. Sherwood hasn’t spent a lot of time watching Netflix or going to movie theaters, but he has dedicated enough time to do his work responsibilities, fulfill his family role, and fit in 30-60 minutes of training.
- “We’ve all got a certain amount of hours in the day that we can use how we want to use them. And right now I’m just at that phase in my life where I have the hours needed each day to somehow do all the work that I want to do and need to do to the standard at which it should be done and needs to get done.”
- “I try to be a husband to my wife and then try to be a stepdad to my two boys and a biological dad to my daughter. I try to sneak into the gym for – it’s a tight day, 30 minutes. If it’s a glorious day, and the baby’s taking a wonderful nap, I get 60. Other than that, there’s not really a moment of the day that’s not occupied with some sort of a task.”
Sherwood’s schedule will eventually loosen. It’s inevitable as his stepsons and his daughter grow. For now, he will continue to embrace this tight schedule, which he called a personal choice, and he will focus on using balance and discipline to achieve success.