Wright Training Blog

WOW W/ Coach Julianne | Workout for the pocket

Warm Up - 3 rounds

10 x  Push Ups

15 x Sit ups

20 x Squats (hips below knees)

 5 Rounds

10x KB/DB Sumo Squat

5/side x KB/DB Side Bends 

3x Chair Hang (Grasp pull up bar with OH grip, pull up legs so quads are parallel to floor/legs in 90 degree angle; slightly tip pelvis up towards ribs; breath in deeply and exhale slowly through nose 3x's)

Standing Lateral Line QL Stretch  (while standing, place right foot behind left side of body past left leg; stretch right arm over head to left side of body -arching right side out; Take 3 breaths, then switch sides) 

AMRAP (as many reps as possible)

10 x DB thrusters (explosive)

10 x jump squat

20 x mountain climber (10 each leg)

20 x jump lunge (10 each leg)

10 x V sit ups

10 x burpee

(complete 4, 5 min sets (1 min rest between), start each circuit where you finished the last one.)

4 Rounds 

- 30 Sec Side Plank (L side)

- 5 x push ups

- 30 sec Side Plank (R side)

(transition into each exercise without rest and without lowering your body to the ground)

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Alicia Peterson | 5 Summer Races, Postpartum and “THE RUT"

When did you start Training with Wright Training?

Since the gym opened in Victor in January 2020.

How long have you been on a running-specific program?

I have followed a more specific running plan since I returned to sports after my second child in April 2021.

How long have you been a runner?

I had run off and on since middle school when I ran the 100m hurdles. However, I had never run anything longer than three miles before I ran my first 10k about a year out of college in 2008. I got into shorter-distance triathlons while doing my emergency medicine residency in Phoenix since there was a big culture of triathlon training down there. I ran a marathon with my sister in 2017 pre-kids; that was the first time I ever took running seriously. Since moving to the mountains, I have fallen in love with trail running, and it has been my motivation to run more consistently for the past year and a half.

You decided to do five running races in 5 months. Can you tell us about your lineup?

Overall, this is the most I have ever raced in a season (meaning more than one race), but I tried to make my race schedule manageable to avoid overtraining and burnout. I ran a trail half marathon in June, a shorter 11km trail race end of July, a very intense 26km trail race in early September, a road marathon in early October, and finishing off the season with another trail half marathon in early November. Looking back, I crammed too much into the end of the season. However, I wanted to try a variety of race settings this year to feel out what my strengths were and what excited me the most.

You are a mother of 2 and an ER doc; how do you make time to train?

It has sort of become something that’s just a part of my life. It is very hard to motivate yourself to do something every day. I make it happen if it “just is” and has to happen. If you have something that needs to be done, give it to the busiest person. They know how to make things happen and are the best at time management. It’s also about finding something you are passionate about because you will do it. Sometimes it means sacrificing some sleep. Everyone has excuses, but we can make time for the most important things. It takes some deep self-reflection at times to know what that is. 

How has strength training helped your outdoor performance?

Strength training has helped me recover faster after big efforts in the outdoors and after races. It has also significantly helped my resistance to impact with downhill running and strengthing my core to help avoid back pain with prolonged downhill running. 

Do you feel it was hard to come back after pregnancy?

It showed me what I was capable of, while the world tries to say postpartum women need so much recovery time and have to ease back in slowly over a year. This may be an unpopular opinion, but if you have kept up with strength training and exercise during your pregnancy, you can get back to the level you were at pre-pregnancy much faster than others say. This takes consistency and dedication. If you are consistent, you don't need motivation which is often lacking in pregnancy.

Your overall balance and well-being- It made me feel like a whole person and that I still had my own body. Being pregnant and becoming a mom can be all-consuming, but if you take the time to focus on yourself and your health, you can be that much better of a mom. It also teaches our children healthy habits and that mom's well-being is a priority. 

What have you learned through your journey of running, training, and having kids!?

Women’s bodies are amazing and are capable of so much. I feel like I have a mom power now with endurance sports. I have become so much mentally tougher to endure through more than I thought capable.

With all the races, miles, and vertical you did.  How did you feel afterward?  

The biggest race I trained for this summer was The Rut 26km race in Big Sky, MT. This race is the most physically demanding race I have ever done. It was 7,800 feet of elevation gain over an 18-mile course. For training, I ran between 4,000-9,000 feet of vert every week for several months. The uphill is one thing, but you always need to be physically ready for all that descent. This is where strength training comes into play for making you recover faster from all the impact and also prevent injury, which is so common in trail running. Road runners can get away from minimal strength training even though it's not recommended. However, trail runners must have robust strength training consistently if they want healthy, prolonged training and racing. 

Have you ever tried to do that many races/ miles in that amount of time?

I had run a road marathon, but 18 miles with 7,800 feet of vert at altitude is VERY different than 26.2 miles of pounding the flat pavement at sea level. While both are hard, they require very different training. Flat running does not translate to mountain running but building a good aerobic engine in the mountains can definitely help you run a marathon. You do lose some of your faster stride with long slogs up hills, but this can be overcome by tweaking your training to run some flat, fast intervals. 

Do you feel good about your performance with the difficulty of competing in that many races?

I don’t think I truly understood the complexity of training for different kinds of running races. I just thought, “oh, if I can run a trail half in June, I can train up to a trail 26km in September, and if I can run 18 miles in the mountains, I can run a marathon on the roads a month later”. I’ve learned a lot about run training and the types of training you need for the various terrain and lengths this year. It has been super fun to learn and experiment. I have also learned a lot about myself and my own fitness and what type of racing suits my strengths. Spoiler: I feel I can perform the best for trail races that last between 2-3 hours. 

This is all such great insight Alicia; thank you for sharing your thoughts and reflection.  Great Job out there!

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Deirdre Griffith | Winning the Mongol Derby

The Mongol Derby

It was the nerve system of the largest empire in human history, and at its height, Genghis Khan's mighty horse messenger system connected half the planet. For a decade we've been rebuilding this ancient network to stage the world's greatest equine adventure race.

You square up to 1000km of Mongolian steppe on semi-wild horses, changing steeds every 40km. You navigate and survive on your own wits and skill, living among the herders. It's you and your horse vs. the wild.

This is the longest and toughest horse race on earth. This is the Mongol Derby.

Wow! You Won the Mongol Derby? How do you feel?

It's still like a dream. Each day that goes by I have a moment of €œwow, I actually won that thing! €. The feeling of accomplishment I felt crossing that finish line cannot be overstated. To have 2.5 years of work and sacrifices all come together into the ultimate outcome was overwhelming and incredibly satisfying.

Did you think this was a possibility going into the race

It was definitely one of my goals. Primarily to finish, but I wanted to give winning a real go. Going into this you never know who you're up against. Many are professional riders or jockeys. Everyone there was an excellent rider no doubt, but I was confident in my other skill sets that would serve me well during the race.

Tell us a little more about the race?

It's a 1000km (625)mi) race across the steppe of Mongolia. It was originally designed to mimic Genghis Kahn's messenger system (think our pony express). A rider will ride a distance on a horse, get a new horse and continue on. It's designed specifically to be hard on the rider, not the horses. Riders change horses every 20-25miles, pass a vet check, then select a new horse and ride on. I rode 28 horses over the course of the race. It took me 8 days.

I noticed vet checks were a big thing? How did you avoid this penalty?

I tried to ride the horse I had (not the one I wished I had) each leg. The weather also played a big role in how I rode. The horses have a hard time pulsing down in the heat due to dehydration. I was able to ride the morning legs faster than afternoon legs in the heat of the day.

How did you know which horses to choose when you made the switch?

I looked for overall body condition. I wanted leaner horses with markings that it had been ridden (white mark from saddles, worn down hooves, bit marks etc). On legs where I knew I'd have to trot a lot I looked for a long sloping shoulder which allows the horse to have a longer stride.

Did you sleep well during the race?

No. The first night I stayed up recounting my mistakes and going over how I could re-group and do things differently going forward. I then stayed 5 nights out with families not associated with the race. When you're staying on someone's floor and they're in and out of the ger (yurt) while you're trying to sleep, you don't sleep soundly. Also, the Mongolians stay up late in the summer, and we were going to bed early after a long day.

What did you eat?

I ate all local food and had one Gu Stroopwaffel for each day. Each horse station is hosted by a family that will prepare food for the riders. Typically it is rice with pieces of mutton or noodle soup with pieces of mutton. They also have these small pieces of bread (supposed to be donuts) everywhere so I would stuff my pockets with those and eat them while riding. One night out we were served a bowl of boiled sheep leg bones. We cut off what meat there was, put some soy-type seasoning on it and had that. It was pretty tasty.

How was your recovery?

The largest success of my whole race was that I didn't get sore the entire time. My body felt strong and prepared. I came home without a mark! The night after crossing the finish line my body got feverish while going to bed and had a brief bout of overall aches, but everything was gone by the morning. I think it was the final adrenaline let down. I count that as an enormous success.

How do you feel WT strength program contributed to your success?

The base fitness and tailored strength training was paramount in my success. The discipline to show up to one on one sessions twice a week for almost a year also helped me mentally. We focused a lot on muscles used for riding and areas where I typically get sore when riding. my body felt so prepared.

You had injured your hand going into the race? How did this play a factor?

I broke my 4th metatarsal at the end of May. This was hugely disappointing as I looked forward to a summer of long days riding. I wasn't able to do that. I took it as a sign from the universe to slow down and take a pause. I could still ride some, hike, cycle, and run, so I did those things to maintain fitness. I did a lot of hand therapy, acupuncture and cupping to help the healing. Teton Hand Therapy made me a minimal splint to ride with in the race. I was skeptical I'd be able to wear it without rubbing, but I wore it the whole time and never felt it!

You ready to do it again!?

I'd do it again, because it was that awesome, but I had such a perfect experience I couldn't top it. Something else will be on the horizon. I like having goals on the calendar to keep me motivated and engaged.

Anything else you want to add?

I'm posting a day by day recap on facebook and instagram if people want to read! @deirdredoesthederby

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Dawn Mehra | Finding Hope then Less Pain

“When I met Crystal she immediately pegged my knee cap issue and gave me hope.  She taught me how to strengthen the correct muscles to prevent more pain, enhance my movement, and preserve my love of yoga and tennis.  Thanks to Crystal (and her patience- I’m not easy), my legs are stronger and my knees are less painful than they have ever been.  And this is all over Zoom because I don’t live in Jackson! “

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Barbell Back Squat

Aloha ALL, Coach Ryan here to put out some tips on the "Absolutes of the Barbell Back Squat ''. My goal is to provide you, the mountain athlete with the knowledge and support to set yourself up success in gaining strength while back squatting and prevent injury. I wanted to clear the myth that the Barbell Back Squat is for "LEG DAY", well it actually focuses and depends on the stability and strength of your core area. Now here are some tips to set up under the bar, position your body and move efficiently while squatting.

1. Barbell height should be at armpit level. Many times individuals will set bar height too high then it becomes a calf raises or tippy toe off the rack. This wastes strength  needed in the movement  itself, instability throughout the body  and an unsafe position.

2. Create a solid-stable core position when unracking the barbell. Brace core by taking a short breath into the stomach and pushing the abdominal  wall out.

3. Body Position: Hands are generally placed outside the shoulders, bar is right at base of neck along the upper trapezius and along the shoulder. This is known as the high bar position. Common mistakes are bar too high on the neck and creates discomfort to lifters. Elbow along the side of the ribcage and point down to the floor. Feet are generally slightly  outside the shoulder toes pointed forward. Toes may be angled out slightly for different body types to support a great depth in squat.

4. Getting off the rack. With a braced core, the lifter will place feet under the bar and maintain position  as outlined in step 3. Because the bar will be lower than the chest it will create a "lifter wedge". This is where you will be in neutral spine position and braced core to drive the bar up and off rack. Lifter will maintain a braced core and take 2 steps back off of the rack. Just 2, Just enough to clear rack j-hooks. Many times we take too many steps off the rack again waiting for strength  needed in the actual movement.

5. The Movement. Lifters is now off the rack, while performing the Valsalva  maneuver, breathing  in, pressing the abdominal wall out, holding breath. This will brace the core area. Lifters will lower hips and chest at the same rate of speed. Smooth and controlled. Hips will open, the backside will go back, lifters will maintain that postural integrity with a  neutral spine. Weight on the feet should be equally distributed  onto the "tripod foot". This is very important. Common mistakes or improper coaching cues are to place weight in the heels. Maintain  the equal weight through the "tripod foot". Lifters should be having the mindset of pushing  feet through the  floor throughout the lift. Barbell is lowered  until knees and hips are parallel with  a  hip hinge and bending of knees.   All body types are different. Parallel positions will look slightly different  for everyone. On the ascent while driving the "tripod foot" through the floor and maintaining   a braced core by using the Valsalva technique, the lifter will ascend from the bottom parallel position and on the way up the lifter cna release  breath. During the push the drive should come through the feet to the posterior chain, focusing on being upright with glutes really powering the lift. Many mistakes are that glutes are not "fired" or contracted and this lift becomes a heavy load on the low back and quadriceps.

TAKEAWAYS...focus on setup, body position, toe angle, tripod foot, hip hinge, creating torque, and postural integrity

Stay tuned for the next session with Coach and his movement reviews and disciplines of strength coach!


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Plank Walk Up

Plank Walkup/Up and down plank/”machines”

This week I want to shout out core strength- it is a huge component of every movement we do, in sport and in daily life, and there are many variations that can be easily done with little to no equipment.

This exercise is a variation on the traditional plank, and incorporates dynamic movement to emphasize core stability.

(#1) To begin, start in a high plank, with your hands directly beneath your shoulders and your upper and lower body in a straight line, with your pelvis tucked underneath you.

(#2,3) Lower one elbow to the floor, then the other, so you are lowering yourself from hands to elbows one arm at a time, arriving in low plank position. (#4)

(#5) From here, place one palm onto the floor, then the other, pressing back up into high plank. (#6) Make sure you are alternating right and left arm lowering and pushing back up each rep (lower your right arm, then left, then push up with right, then left).

The key here is to maintain core engagement throughout the entire exercise, and not allowing your pelvis to tilt side to side as you move from high to low and back to high plank. In order to prevent your hips from tilting or swaying, your core needs to be engaged and stabilizing throughout the entire movement sequence. Controlled and steady movement is the goal, and you will get more out of it by moving at a slower pace with greater control than quickly with sloppy form.

This exercise is a favorite because it requires this core stabilization while you are working through a dynamic movement, which is great practice for the movements we do in daily life and sport, including posture, lifting and carrying, running, cross country and downhill skiing.

This movement is a great addition to your core set at the end of a workout, or as an arm strengthening exercise that incorporates core emphasis. Measure by reps (ex: 5 each arm) or for time. Aim to move with consistent pace and maintain good form, trying not to have extended pauses in high or low plank but with continuous movement while maintaining core stability.

To modify this exercise, you can:

-move through the same range of motion but with your knees on the floor, this will still allow you to have dynamic movement with greater control

-hold static high plank, this position is great for maintaining core stability while pushing through your arms

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The Sled Push

The Sled Push/ Pull is an incredible exercise overlooked for its benefits sometimes. There have been studies utilizing this exercise with interval training that improved squat strength, and explosive speed times. A low impact movement that increases leg strength, and power in the complete lower body. Not all strength moves utilize the quad, glute, hamstring, and calf muscles all together.

Four ways you can do the Sled Push

  1. Straight arms- most common gaining core engagement.
  2. Bent Arms – gaining an isometric strength benefit in the shoulders biceps and triceps
  3. Hooking it up so you can pull allowing for arm movement to encourage sprint capacity
  4. pulling backwards with arms- working in a plain we don’t often utilize, engaging back muscles.

To utilize all lower body muscles make sure you get up on your toes driving for speed and you also tap into that number one muscle the HEART. Doing a quick sled push interval at the end of a workout can be a great way to quickly tap more strength and power into your legs. If you want to train the heart and lungs more for work capacity go with a lighter weight.

Interval workout:

75% of your squat max weight on sled

6 rounds – that's only 6 minutes!

30 second sprint with sled push

20 second recovery

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Life after Ski Fit

As ski fit is coming to a close it does not mean that your training has to be over. I am a firm believer in training year round and consistency lowers your chance of injury and increases your performance in sport. The sport maintenance classes we offer focus on what sports are in session and the program flows nicely if you are skiing, biking or hiking. It is important to keep your core strong and all your other muscle groups! This workout is an example of a sport maintenance class!
It starts with some good movements and right into Curtis P which is a great total body exercise. Gets your butt, core and upper body firing. Then we move into some single leg work which is really good to alleviate compensations through the winter. We then end with a quick work capacity hit which is really good because we don’t get the anaerobic hits we need during the winter sports. We end with a good core crusher!

Curtis P movement in Video below


Crystal Demonstrates a Curtis P


Coaches orders

6 rounds

4x curtis p
3x burpees
instep with twist

6 rounds

4xea sld
6x tuck jumps

4 rounds

30 sec sled drag
30 sec box up
30 sec bosu plank
30 sec waiter walks
30 sec calf raises
30 sec sprint
30 sec rest

3 rounds tabata

up with twist, boat, plank hops, flutter

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Beverly Boynton | NOT Dead in the water thanks to Wright Training

Happy to brag about Wright Training (which I do with my friends).

For decades I was an obsessive  climber, an off-trail-up high-remote hiker, backcountry skier, and canoe paddler of arctic rivers.   This past February I had a total hip replacement, which went very well as far as the hip goes, but resulted in a complete, permanent drop foot ( Foot drop, sometimes called drop foot, is a general term for  difficulty lifting the front part of the foot. If you have foot drop, the front of your foot might drag on the ground when you walk. Foot drop isn't a disease. Rather, foot drop is a sign of an underlying neurological, muscular or anatomical problem) This effected my balance, stability, and power, and required a brace.    Although there is no possibility of directly strengthening the muscles that are no longer innervated  (primarily for dorsiflexion and pronation), plenty of other body parts are involved in balance, stability and power, and I'd be dead in the water without Wright Training!    From day one, I knew that to continue my mountain lifestyle, fitness would be key.

Since the injury (and consistent Wright Training), I've done a number of steep off trail hikes to over 11.000'. Early on I fell quite a bit, since I couldn't edge my foot when traversing a slope, and had trouble on steep, hard, gravelly slopes. Finally just a couple weeks ago, I did such a hike, with no falls--YEAH! Consistent training has improved my core and balance, recoveries, and my uphill stride.

This past week I figured how to put my brace on a nordic skate boot, which are in no way designed for a brace.   I'm looking forward to clipping my ice skating blades on soon, and later my skate skis.   More of everything  Wright needed!

I lifted weights off and on for a long time, but Wright Training is a different take on fitness, in attitude and in using complex movements to strengthen all the little stabilizing muscles. Additionally, I love seeing how strong the other women and men are, and it has been important to me to have their support and interest in my progress. It's fun and I'm committed!

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