Wednesday 10/24 WOD at PCF

Today was my first day back at Crossfit in two weeks. First getting slammed with sickness, and then Tough Mudder this past weekend; I’ve been having a tough time getting in there this month. Today was good though. I took it as easy as I could make myself (which wasn’t very easy at all, actually) and am glad I decided to go, in spite of all the homework I have to finish up tonight.

Strength:

  • Jerk 1-1-1-1-1: 85-85-85-85-85. This is the part where I kind of took it easy. I can clean&jerk more than that, but it’s been a while since I jerked (and since I worked out last) so I kept it pretty light and focused on form. I felt pretty solid up until the last one, where I really pushed my chest out and got all wobbly in my back. Recovered and completed the lift, but it was anything but pretty.

WOD for Time: 7:50

5 Rounds of:

  • 4 Thrusters55lbs. Level I weight, Rx reps. Kept it lightish so I wouldn’t over-do it on my first day back.
  • 6 Pull-upsunassisted. Level II.
  • 10 Games’ Standard Box Jumps20″ Level II. (Great video with Matt Chan)

This was a great one to get back in the box with. Max effort across the board, short amount of rest, really ass-kicking. The thrusters weren’t as awful as they’ve been in the past, probably due to light weight and low reps. The pull-ups felt awesome, and I’m still beyond thrilled that I can do pretty much every WOD with them unassisted now. I was limited by my grip pretty heavily though, since I haven’t been doing any heavy lifting for the past two weeks. And the box jumps were box jumps, with the mindset of “just get through them so you can be done.” On the third to last rep of the last round I totally missed the box and came down weird on my left leg. It feels like I over-stretched a muscle on the outer edge of my shin/calf? It just feels kind of weak now, but not painful. I was able to catch myself before completely falling, so that’s always a plus. I’d really like to start working on cycling box jumps at this height. It’s hard to remember to rest at the top!

It felt so good to get back in there. Sometimes when you miss a few classes, the thought of going again can cause a little anxiety. I was definitely feeling this today, and almost skipped out. Glad I didn’t. I feel great. I just had a lovely bath to rest my sore muscles. Lush and lavender epsom salts for the absolute win.

Tough Mudder: Dominated.

I want to start out with a little background story on my previous views of Tough Mudder. Early on in the year, March maybe, Tyler decided he was going to do Tough Mudder in September. We were talking about it at his mom’s house, and I distinctly remember telling her that I had “absolutely no desire” to do it, whatsoever. And I didn’t. Maybe a 5k Warrior Dash, but never the Tough Mudder. I was working out, but nothing intense, and I wasn’t able to run two miles straight, let alone 12. Finally, a week or two later, I decided that I was going to set this as a goal for myself to get into shape. I still didn’t really want to do it, mainly because of the distance of the course. Over the next few months, I worked my ass off at the gym, supplemented with extra running here and there, and got my diet back in check. I also started watching more videos of the obstacles online, and got progressively more and more pumped about it. The time finally came yesterday, and unlike the first attempt, we were actually about to run it!!!!!! Read through for our amazing experience!

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Not Sleeping Productivity

I’ve still been having nightly issues with sleeping. Usually I get into bed around 10 or 10:30pm, and then just stare at the ceiling until 2 or 3am. Lately I’ve been trying to stay up until I’m actually tired, and then getting into bed. Well, that just never happens. Last night I stayed up until about midnight, and got into bed. I couldn’t sleep, no big surprise there, and I was really antsy. So I decided to get up and stretch and work on some pole tricks. I went into the room that the pole is in (which I’ve been severely neglecting, outside of the weekly class at the studio) and it was full of bikes and Tyler’s telescope gear, and camping stuff we haven’t gotten a chance to put away yet. I moved a few things around, and was able to do bust out some tricks. I went back into bed around 1:30am, but wasn’t satisfied. Got back up, went back into the pole, and decided I was going to get Superman, before going back to sleep.

I started on the floor and got into it to make sure I could hold it, and I could. I tried getting into it from Star and Inverted Pike, but I just couldn’t get that. I also tried from V-Hold, which I saw on a video online, but couldn’t even successfully get into V-Hold, so bagged that. I started to feel defeated, but then remembered my instructor mentioning you could get into it from Dragonfly if you’re really flexible. And I am. Hm. So I tried it, and lo-and-behold, I fucking got it!!!! I jumped down, did a happy dance, did it again, and then grabbed my camera. By this time it was about 2:30 or 3, so it was dark as shit, and there’s not a lot of light in that room. My camera was dying, so I only had one chance to snap a shot on the timer, and it worked!!!

I am so damn proud of this. There are a lot of little ugly things that I can nit-pick on, but now that I can actually do it, I can start working on making it pretty. I am just absolutely elated. This, plus getting thigh drop back and Bow, has definitely kicked up my confidence, and my desire to get better again. I’m going to be switching classes to the Tuesday morning class with the head instructor at my studio, so I can hopefully work out some kinks I’ve been having. This will also allow me to go to squat days on Mondays at Crossfit! It’s a win all around, really. Yay! Progress!

Tough Mudder in THREE DAYS!!!!! Ahhh!

 

A Few Nights of Ranting, Put Together Semi-Coherently.

Yesterday, for the first time in a week I was actually hungry. I had a pretty filling dinner, and then I just couldn’t stop eating! It felt great, and then today I had a huge lunch/dinner. I am so beyond excited to get back into the box and workout, once I fully kick this. Being sick has got me thinking a lot. It might be all the time spent on the couch, or the cough syrup with codeine, but my brain has been very active. After the last week of hardly eating anything, I realized that I have lost a bunch of weight. When I open my mouth wide, my cheeks sink in right below the cheek bones as the jawbone flares out. My hips are protruding and my abdominal muscles have started to disappear. The bones in my shoulders are more pronounced, instead of the muscles surrounding them.

I know I talk about this a lot, but it’s so important. In the past, the sight of these things would probably have left me absolutely elated…which is pretty sad. Honestly, I look unhealthy. I look sickly, which I have been, thanks for bronchitis, strep throat, and an upper respiratory infection. But this is what I always wanted, right? Not anymore. Now, I want to be bigger. I want more mass, so I can support larger, stronger muscles and move more weight. I want to be considered “athletic.” I look at women working out at my box and idolize them for how large and toned their thighs are and how much they’re able to squat, or for how wide their lats flare out during anything overhead, or for how stable their trunks are while clean and jerking well above their body weight. “You look so tiny under all of that weight!!” is the quote said to me that will forever echo in my head. Looking tiny is something that females are supposed to want, thanks to stereotypes and outside influences. I had a past partner tell me not to work towards a 6-pack because girls with 6-packs are unattractive. You can hear women all the time saying they want to tone but don’t want to “be bulky” because muscular women are seen as unfeminine and gross. What few people realize is that it is extremely hard to “bulk up” with muscle as a female. We just don’t have the gene-stuff to enable this without an intense amount of work, way more than most are willing to put in, and way less than it takes a male. I’m willing to put in the work because I do want it. I want to be big and strong and helpful and successful and energized and exciting and adventurous. Why would you not want those for your life?

Crossfit has had more of a positive influence on my body image than I ever could have imagined. And my nutrition. And my whole life. I will never again look at magazines full of photoshopped women (oh yeah, art school kind of ruined magazines for me early-on, anyway) and want to look like them. I will never again see fad diets and fasts and cleanses for weight loss as acceptable means for transformation of my own body (read: do what you want, just my own opinion for myself). I have found something that has screwed my head on straight and I’m seeing better results than I ever have in my life doing anything else, back when I was “trying to be skinny.” Which is something I did. For a long time. Never. Effing. Again.

Anyway, the moral of this rant is that I can’t wait to get back to working out again. I have been thinking about goal-setting; I have a few longer term goals that I am still working on, but accomplished a few of the short term ones fairly recently. Deadlift over 150lbs, 10 unbroken kipping pull-ups, 1 strict pull-up, and squat my bodyweight were all of these. I had time deadlines on them, and met every single one. Set goals with a time line, make a plan to work towards them daily, and make them a reality. The payoff is so great.

Tough Mudder in 6 days! Hopefully I’ll be in full health by then. I’ll probably be pretty silent on here for the next week, since I still won’t be training in order to get back to being healthy, pre-Mudder. But you can guarantee you’ll be hearing from me afterwards. And whether I had to walk the entire course or not, I will have completed Tough freaking Mudder, another one of my goals.

T-Minus 10 Days…

Here I am again, 10 days before Tough Mudder. I’ve been counting down the days since last month’s fiasco, training hard and keeping up with my workouts, until getting sick this weekend. I’m having serious fears of failure, this time around. My body feels so weak from being ill, my lungs and chest hurt every time I breathe, every muscle is sore from coughing constantly, and the idea of moving at anything faster than a crawl is sickening. I’m sure the fears of failure all come from these feelings; fighting illness has a heavy mental component for me. I have to not let it consume me, while at the same time taking it easy enough to not over-do it. I’m scared of so many things about TM, currently. Will I freak out while crawling through the tunnels and not be able to finish? Will I lose a shoe halfway through? Will I not be able to get up Everest? But most importantly, what if I’m not even well enough to run it? What if my bronchitis cough is still lingering? What if my lungs can’t handle the stress I put them under and I end up really injuring myself?

I’m going to do everything within my power to get better before then. But it’s so hard with the demands of college and midterms, and also battling severe sleep problems, concurrently. I am strong. I am a fighter. But there is only so much I can do with the timeframe of a week and a half, and this brokenass body. Aaaand I’m crying. It’s ridiculous how much running this means to me, and the thought that I might not get to yet again is absolutely heartbreaking. I must stay positive and not stress myself out any more than I already am. This has to be okay. This has to work out in my favor in the end. It just has to.

Friday 10/5 WOD at PCF and Sick Sick Sick.

Well, I woke up on Saturday morning feeling like complete crap. I felt like I was hit by a bus, and couldn’t stop coughing. Friday night I was planning on going to Crossfit Saturday morning to do Fight Gone Bad, which is one of the WODs that I love to hate. That’s how good I was feeling Friday night! Needless to say, I didn’t end up going. Yesterday morning it moved into my chest, so I went to CVS’ Minute Clinic to get checked out. Turns out I have both bronchitis and strep throat! Lucky me. So I guess I won’t be going to Crossfit for a few days, making sure I’m up to par, health-wise, before I put myself under stress again. That totally sucks, because there have been awesome WODs popping up for PCF this week. Bah! I picked up some feel-good foods while waiting for my ‘scrips to be filled, and I’m not even worried about it. I needed some comfort food, and they were delicious. Well, here’s Friday’s WOD, because I was too tired afterwards to post this!

 

Strength:

EMOTM for 10 Minutes of:

  • 2 Deadlifts135lbs. Probably could have gone up by 5lbs, but man they got heavy around the 8th round.
  • 2 Handstand Negativesstuck with 2 for all 10 rounds. Felt way stronger than the previous weeks.

WOD for Time: 11:53

3 Rounds of:

  • Run 400m: Rx. Actually was able to use this as an active rest time. Such a great breakthrough.
  • 21 Russian KB Swings53lbs. Level II. I love using the heavier KB. So much butt and leg action.
  • 10 Ring Dipsone thin yellow band for assistance! Level II reps, Level I scaling. Damn you, ring dips. I’m getting better though!

I’m so happy that for the first time ever I was able to have the running be used for its purpose: active rest. My arms and butt were so toasted from the KB and dips, so when the running came it was such a relief. I’ve never felt like that from running before!! This shit really works. The KB swings were great, and the ring dips were..ring dips. 10 is a lot of ring dips in a row.

Ugh I can’t wait to not be sick and to get the eff back into PCF. Of course, this would happen as soon as I restarted my monthly membership. Oh well, in the mean time I’ll keep doing push-ups, pull-ups, and drinking lots of water at home.

Wednesday 10/3 WOD at PCF

Whoops! Yesterday got away from me. Like I said previously, this week has been absolutely the most stressful, and on top of that I haven’t been sleeping well. By the time 4pm rolled around, I felt pretty good, and hefted my butt to Crossfit. Also, I finallygot back on PCF’s membership with a 3x a week, 3 month commitment, so that’s pretty exciting. Now I can’t slack, or else I’ll be losing money! Eff that! It looks like we’re starting a new strength cycle at PCF, so when they explain what this cycle is all about, I’ll fill y’all in.

Strength:

  • Push Press 3-3-3-3-3: 65-65-65-65-65. I haven’t done push presses in what feels like months! This was a good starting point though, because it was super tough, but towards the end when I got my form more on point, I probably could have gone up a little.

WOD for Time: 7:39

5 Rounds of:

  • 5 Front Squats65lbs, Level 1 weight, Rx reps. Hey, click that link! That’s a video from my box, with one of our trainers, Liz!!
  • 10 Bastards: Rx.

Have I mentioned how much I HAAAAAAATE front squats? I always end up booty-up and not lifting with my elbows enough. For the same reason, I hate thrusters. Bah. I’m working on them, but they’re rough. But! To set up, I put a 10lb plate and a 5lb plate on each end of the 35lb bar, so that when it got too heavy, I’d easily be able to pull off the 5lbs from each end and keep going at 55lbs without a lot of lost time. Well, I pushed through the whole five rounds using 65lbs!! So proud of that! It was really tough, and my butt and thighs are feeeeling it today, but I’m so proud of myself for finishing at that weight. I honestly did not think I’d be able to. The bastards were the easiest part, and I pounded through them very quickly. I also did all of the front squats unbroken, but I’d have to pause at the top to breathe and rest between almost every rep in the last two rounds. So rough!

Today is a full day of classes, and a much needed rest day for my traps, shoulders, quads, and butt. No Crossfit today, but I’ll definitely be hitting my foam roller and lacrosse balls later today. I’m feeling Tuesday and Wednesday’s workouts!

Tuesday 10/2 WOD at PCF

I’m feeling a little worn out today. After the CFT Saturday, white water rafting all day Sunday, and dance class Monday, I’m feeling a little more gassed than usual. I was able to use my wrist wraps for the first time doing snatches and they helped a great deal. I’m going to try to write a post about my favorite Crossfit accessories pretty soon. I’m excited about that one!

Strength:

EMOTM for 10 Minutes of:

  • 1 Snatch45lbs. These were all over the place. My elbow was sore so I dropped down a little more than I wanted to, in order to get good speed under the bar and catch it in a full squat without too much soreness.
  • 1 Hang Power Snatch45lbs. The suggested move was a hang squat snatch, but since I couldn’t get the regular squat snatches consistent I decided to just hang power snatch. These felt awesome, actually.
  • 1 Strict Pull-up: thin band for assistance. I started out doing one strict pull-up and two ring dips, each with one thin band for assistance, but since my elbow was feeling rough, I stuck just to the pull-ups after round 5.

WOD for Reps: 85

3 Rounds of:

  • 1 Minute Ground-to-Overhead: 45lbs, Level II. Started out power snatching, quickly moved to clean and jerks.
  • 1 Minute Rest: Rx.
  • 1 Minute Row for Calories: Rx. Set to 8 on the resistance level for rounds 1&2, 90% for round 3.
  • 1 Minute Rest: Rx, this joke will never get old, sorry guys!

For the GTO, my breakdown went 14-11-11. The 14 in the first round came from starting with power snatches, which are much more time-efficient than power cleans & jerks. Then nice and constant through the last two rounds. For rowing I went 17-16-16. I’m not sure how I managed 17 cals in the first round, but that was pretty awesome. That totaled 85. Pretty happy with that. I was exhausted and sore directly following this workout, and came home and collapsed on the couch for a few minutes before getting some lunch in me. This was a sneaky day!

Gratuitous, post-Crossfit.

Since I’m pretty swamped with schoolwork this week, and damn tired, I might take tomorrow off. It all depends on how much work I can get done tomorrow morning before class!