Thursday, May 24, 2012

Finally!!

May 21, 2012

There is almost nothing more satisfying than reaching a goal... what comes a close second is "almost" reaching it! Proving to yourself that the commitment, dedication, practice and hard work is paying off! Of all people, I know how frustrating it can be to work at something for hours and hours and see no improvement. Its hard when you actually understand what it is you are doing wrong but cant seem to correct the problem.

I have been struggling with double unders for a while. When I started CF 9 months ago the thought of getting the rope around twice on one jump was a far far far fetched goal. Finally after a few weeks I was able to get one here or there, and eventually I could link a few together. All of a sudden it ended, I was frustrated beyond belief that my double unders were gone. I had no idea what happened. Every workout with them in them I was pissed by the time I was done with them and the more frustrated I got, the harder it was for me to relax and get them.

Working week after week on my double unders, taking every single piece of advice I can that everyone is giving me... nothing was working. We did a few drills a few weeks ago with M one morning and I started to catch on and allow my body to relax. I have been trying to work on them outside of WOD's because with less "pressure" I am more likely to get them.

Hard work is paying off!! My relentless work every Thursday and Saturday... the never ending coaching of M, K, R, Hubs and everyone else who tried to give me double under tips... I am finally able to string together double unders again!! I am up to 40 in a row, which is awesome!! It allows me to do them in WOD's and thats exactly what I did this morning!!

I was with G and T this morning for the WOD. The three of us worked our butts off to crush this one! It was a lot of hard work! I decided to attempt the hand stand push ups without the bands on the wall. I got through the first two rounds doing that with 2 abmats under my head than I transitioned to the bands. Sometimes I feel its easier against the wall, I lose my ability to kip with the bands... but I muscled through all 15 minutes of work. It felt amazing and I was VERY happy with my final score... I did all REAL double unders and even had a few rounds unbroken!!

Things are looking up and moving forward! I am a happy lady!!


WARMUP:
3 Rounds
- Run 200m
- 15 Air Squats
- 10 Shoulder Dislocates
- 5 Pullups
2 Minute Frog Stretch
Group: Med Ball Plank (4 for 45 seconds)

WOD: Gambit
15 Minute AMRAP
- 30 Double Unders
- 20 Abmat Situps
- 10 HSPU (2 rounds with 2 abmats, 3 rounds with bands)
(5 Rounds + 30 *all double unders)

SKILL/STRENGTH:
3 X 3 Rope Climbs
2 Minute Rest Between Climbs

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Ellipticals

May 20, 2012

Sunday Funday!!

Open Gym

May 19, 2012

Saturday at the gym are used as "open gym" we are able to complete a WOD that we missed during the week or we can work on our skills. I know that I have plenty of work to do on skills so I opted out of my make up WOD. This isnt really like me, as I typically do what I missed, but with the comp coming up I need to take as many opportunities as I have to work on my goats and skills.

I am glad that I did too. I did a round of "death by pullups" which has pretty much been my staple for working my pullups. I set my timer for 10 minutes and do 1 pullup the first minute, 2 pullups the second minute, 3 the third and so on... the idea is to get as far as you can in the minute so if you can get 12 pullups in a minute you keep going. I am right at the 1 minute mark getting 10 pullups in, so this is something I need to get going on seeing as how there is a 15-12-9 of pullups and cleans in the competition... with a 5 minute cap... so it would be nice to get the 15 in less than a minute. I was finally able to connect 5 kipping pullups in a row without letting go of the bar. We are getting somewhere!

I toyed around a bit with the calorie row... and than did some double unders and some 65lb thrusters. Than I decided to join in with someone doing a cleaning exercise. We did 3 cleans on the minute every minute for 10 minutes. Felt great and I used 105lbs, which is the weight for the 15-12-9. A few more weeks of training hopefully I wont be so afraid to not finish it.

As usual Saturdays are fantastic energy wise. There is lots of conversation, lots of cheering, encouragement and coaching. We love our gym and the friends and family we have built here!

http://kidtestedfirefighterapproved.com/2011/11/07/crossfit-a-little-side-note/

WARMUP:
400m Run

SKILL/STRENGTH:
- Death by Pullups
- 3 Min Calorie Row (52 Cal)
- 3 X 5 Thrusters (65lbs)
- 10 Minutes of Cleans (105lbs)
   (three cleans on the minute for 10 minutes)

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Commit

March 18, 2012

One of the most important lessons I have learned while crossfitting is the importance in focusing 100% on the task at hand. It is not enough to just go to the gym, or perform a WOD, work on a skill or go for a jog here and there. You have to submerge yourself in whatever it is you are working on and give 100% if you want 100% results.


We all know the common "its not working" excuse that a lot of people have. I had it too at one point in my life, it really wasnt that long ago... but it feels like a lifetime ago. The problem was, I was going to the gym, but I wasnt giving my 100% all the time. I was going through the motions, but not committing. I had a problem saying "no" to cakes, cookies and take out... when I knew it was going to hinder my performance and progress. I would "kind of" do a workout and if I was "tired" I would let it take over. I didnt push, I didnt really want it...

I am not saying that there is not time for cheat meals, relaxation and what not... but what I am saying is, if you want results and you only give 50%, that you are only going to see 50% of the results.

During not just a skill or strength session, but also a WOD, its so important to practice good form and really pay attention to the movement. Its better to have perfect form and a slower time or weight. Its better to perfect the steps that will get you to the finish line than it is to get to the finish line quickly and have an injury.

Personally I know the things I have to work on and thankfully my coaches know them too. They help to guide me in the right direction and they know my level of intensity and what I am capable of. In the last month or so since I have decided to take a positive approach to everything in life (yes this is a task for me). I have also really been focused on giving 100% to each and every workout. The "pain", sweat and heavy breathing is temporary... I know what I want and I am not going to stop till I get there!

I am committed 100% to my new lifestyle. I have made the "crossover." It is my decision to be paleo. It is my choice to crossfit. No one makes me do what I do... I want it, I have to get it myself. Commitment is key.

I am committed.

WARMUP:
Jog 400m
3 Rounds
- 10 Back Extensions
- 10 Squats
- 10 Situps
Jog 400m
Group: 9 Fundamentals

WOD: Negotiate
3 Rounds for Time
- 50 Double Unders
- 15 Front Squats (95)
- 15 Push Jerks (95)
(13:45 Rx)

SKILL/STRENGTH:
Deadlift 5-3-1+
205 (5), 225 (3), 225 (3)

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Practice Practice Practice

May 17, 2012

Well Hubs and I are officially signed up for the EUROPA Get Fit & Sports Expo, Beast of the East Qualifier! We are very excited and as expected a little nervous. Besides the small throwdown I went to at a local gym before the Garage Games last year I have not even attempted to compete as an individual in a competition like this! We did do the Team Comp so we have an idea of what to expect, but man... when I signed up for an individual woman in the Rx division... I think I about fainted!

Look where I have come from and look where I am going! Its empowering to know that I have come to the point where I feel I can hold my own in a competition. It helps that they have listed the WOD's that we will be doing at the comp on the website so we can train and be as prepared as possible.

I am certainly not one to give up a challenge, so Hubs and I heading down to CT for this competition! Its going to be some major excitement and probably a little anxiety driven at the same time!! I am looking forward to the adrenalin rush that I get during a competition. Hubs and I will support each other and kick some butt!!

Having said all that... the next month is practice, practice, practice!!



Whenever I get the chance for the next month I will be working my goats and my skills to get where I want to be for the competition. I am lucky enough to have great coaching in M, K and Hubs and will be able to get my cleans where they need to be for speed and movement as well as my pullups. I spent an hour with M tonight working away at my cleans. Felt fantastic and I really needed the breakdown of the movement. I need to be able to put more weight up on a clean for this comp so proper form is necessary! I wont be able to muscle through it without risk of injury.

I am really excited to see where I am in a month! The changes coming to CFW are fantastic, the coaching is better than ever and we are growing and getting stronger both as individuals and as a team!

WARMUP:
20 Minutes Double Unders (30 in a row)

SKILL/STRENGTH:
Worked on Cleans

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Wow, She is HEAVY!

May 16, 2012

Damn... Fran got heavy overnight!

Fran is pretty much THE crossfit staple WOD. Its the "how much do you bench" between crossfit athletes. Its not a "hard" WOD, its not a lot of movements or complicated movements... but its pretty much the benchmark for your progression in crossfit. I read somewhere the following quote...

"One of the most anticipated events at the olympics is the 100m dash and the final lasts less than 10 seconds. Fran is crossfit's 100m dash."

So, today CrossFit Wachusett put a special "twist" on Fran. Today we did Fran before she became a crossfit athlete... before she dropped the weight. We did HEAVY Fran!

Typically Fran is a 21-15-9 with 65lbs thrusters (for women) and pullups. When modified to be Heavy Fran we did a 15-12-9 with 95lb thrusters (for women) and had to do either weighted pullups or chest to bar pullups... I opted for the chest to bars.

Wow, what a workout! I am a huge fan of lifting heavy weight (I think I have mentioned that once or twice) and today was no different. It was hard hard hard work, but when I was done I got that giant smile on my face and a feeling in my body... I am so proud of where I have come from!


WARMUP:
Run 400m
3 Rounds
- 5 Pushups
- 10 Ring Rows
- 15 Squats
- 20 Spiderman
Run 400m
Group: Mobility and Thruster Review

WOD: Heavy Fran
15-12-9
- Thrusters (95lbs)
- Chest to Bar Pullups
(10:45 Rx)

SKILL/STRENGTH:
4 X 250m Row
(56.2, 56.4, 55.2, 56.4)

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Push Each Other

May 15, 2012



This morning was another classic example of how the dynamic of a crossfit workout can push you to new limits. Not only is working out with a group of people fantastic because you feed of of other peoples energy but I am lucky enough to have someone at my box that as soon as the timer buzzes the pure push of working together is enough to get us both to do things we never thought we could do.

KP and I have a certain way...its not a "competition" is not about "who can do it faster" or "who is stronger" but the fact is when we are WODing... if one of us is right on the tail of the other, we will do everything in our power to push to keep up with them... and if one of us is just ahead of the other... we will do everything in our power to stay in that position. We both have different body types, we both have different strengths and weaknesses... and in the 9 months we have been working out together we know what "pushes each others buttons."

In a WOD with strength and speed we have a perfect balance... she can plow though some things that I am weaker at and I can plow through some things she is weaker at... but together we are both becoming stronger athletes and better at everything we do.We know where to pick up to "keep up" with the other and when the other will "slow down." Again, its not about beating one another... at the end of every WOD we thank each other for the motivation!

You dont even have to be a CrossFitter to have this... find someone who will push you. Try new things... put yourself out there. You will not be disappointed!

Thanks Kell!


WARMUP:
4 Rounds
- 20 Lunges
- 15 Double Unders
- 10 Back Extensions
- 5 Burpees
Group: KB Swing Review

WOD: Intromit
12 Min AMRAP
- 10 Wall Balls
- 15 KB Swings
- 20 Abmat Situps
(6+32 Rx)

SKILL/STRENGTH:
TABATA Hollow Rocks

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Sunday, May 20, 2012

You Say TABATA

May 14, 2012


I have this new thing I do every morning when the alarm goes off. I open my eyes think about the day and go at it full force. I make myself understand "today is a new day" and try to leave behind the thoughts of yesterday. I dont want to loose myself in this as to which I dont pay mind to the things that affect me emotionally, so I still think of all of those "things" but try to approach it with a fresh mindset.

Todays WOD was great. It was something different from what we are used to. It was a typical WOD, a 21-15-9 however with the TABATA clock running we we forced to work for 20 seconds and rest for 10 seconds through the entire WOD. I really enjoyed doing something a little different, if sort made me rethink my strategy of how to complete the work.

My strategy was work work work. Get as much work done in the 20 seconds on, dont stop, push as hard as I can and use the 10 seconds rest for what its intended. I felt like I was on FIRE, I plowed through as hard as I could... and before I new it I was done.

Workouts have been feeling amazing. I havent ended any working saying "that sucked" in a long time... I am loving what I am doing, feeling fantastic and doing my best to keep my head high. I want this and I am the only person that can give it to me!

WARMUP:
Run 400m
3 Rounds
- 5 Strict Pullups
- 10 Inchworms
- 15 GHD
Run 400m
Group: Burgner

WOD: "Strip"
Row 500m
21-15-9
- High Box Jumps (30")
- HR Pushups
Row 500m
*TABATA Timer Running through workout
(My Time 9:48)

STRENGTH/SKILL:
Back Squat 5-3-1+
135(5), 185(3), 205(1), 205(1)

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Mothers Day

May 13, 2012

Happy Mothers Day to all the mothers and mother figures in the world. My mom taught me more lessons than you could even imagine... she still teaches me more and more to this day and I am the luckiest woman in the world to have her in my life as my mother, my best friend, my guide, my rock.

If there is one thing that has hammered home for years and years... never be afraid to be yourself, you can do anything you put your mind to... and never try to be anything you are not.

I love you Mom!! You are my inspiration.


Bradshaw

May 12, 2012

Set a goal... go after it!


Every day is a great day for a challenge and today was no different. Hubs and I both too active rest days on the day CFW posted "Bradshaw" as the workout. We agreed that this was one challenge that we could not resist. It was going to be hard, it was going to be a lot of work, it was going to be tiring, but we knew how much satisfaction we will have when we complete it.

I gave up my "negativity" so I wasnt even in the "this is going to suck" mindset. I was in the "I am going to kick this workouts ASS mindset" when I got up this morning. I was pumped and ready to go when I got to the gym! Couldnt wait to face the WOD head on.

I warmed up and was very happy that it seemed to be a "double under day" and what I mean by that is... I could actually string them together. M has been remarkable with helping me with these week after week reminding me to relax, jump higher, use less arm... whatever it is... so they have come leaps and bounds (pun kind of intended) in a few short weeks. I have a problem when I get tense during a WOD that I lose them... and he keep shouting out "relax" which usually works. Today they seemed to flow pretty well!! Fingers were crossed that they would continue to flow during the 10 rounds of Bradshaw!

Flow they did... as did the hand stand pushups and deadlifts, it was the pullups that were the hardest part of the WOD for me (and  most of the people I talked to about it). There are 10 rounds, which is a lot... however most of exercises of the rounds go quickly, and before you know it you are back at the pullups... seems like there is never a break from them. I used the small blue band for assist on the pullups to help me kip each one.

I knew I didnt want to go out of the gate blazing because of the length of the WOD. I talked to M before and he said to keep a good pace. Asked me what my goal was (there is a 35 min time cap) I told him I wanted to finish in under 30. Thought that was reasonable. I used the Rx weight for the deadlifts (155lbs) and two abmats for the HSPUs, the blue band for the pullups and of course was going to attempt all double unders.

There was a lot of sweating, there was a lot of lifting, there was a lot of flipping upsdown... but there was also a lot of cheering and encouraging... and I was able to finish under my goal time... 29:31... not to shabby!!

After the WOD Hubs and I headed home... I ate some "fuel"and headed out the door to meet up with KP for the Music for Life 5K. Yep, I was about to run a race... again!! KP was the best coach I could have asked for in this race. She stayed with me, pushed me the whole way! The second mile seemed to be entirely uphill... I was struggling and she just kept encouraging me to continue! It was fantastic. We crossed the finish line together and I couldnt have been happier with my 29:00 time. The next one (yes, there will be a next one) will be better... faster... stronger!!

Here is some post race bliss!! Thanks KP!! Your a great friend, coach and athlete!!


WARMUP:
Row 500m
2 Rounds
- 1 Minute Double Unders
- 10 Pushups
- 15 GHD
- 20 Hollow Rock
- 10 Spiderman

WOD: "Bradshaw"
10 Rounds for Time
- 3 HSPU
- 6 Deadlifts (155)
- 12 Pullups (Small Blue Band)
- 24 Double Unders
(29:31)

SKILL/STRENGTH:
2 Minute Hamstring Stretch
2 Minute Lat Stretch

MUSIC FOR LIFE 5K:
29:00

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Girls

May 11, 2012

Ahhhh, you know... I just wrote about strength being not just about being able to lift a lot of weight... but there are days that it in fact IS about that! Those are the days at CFW that make my heart skip a beat! I am a huge fan of strength days as they happen to be my "strength" at the gym. I am not going to say I am the strongest person in the world, as I still have plenty of work to do and I still have gains to make, but there is something about reaching a goal or passing a previous PR with weight lifting that gives me a lot of joy! Putting weight over my head or squatting, snatching, pushing a massive amount of weight gives me a feeling I cant describe!


The great thing is that I still have a lot to learn. I am lucky to have great coaching with M, K and Hubs. They know the ques that help me to succeed, they know what to tell me to make me a better athlete. They have patience and will work with me through my struggles... I will be a better athlete with the help of CrossFit.

WARMUP:
Jog 400m
3 Rounds
- 10 Air Squats
- 10 Shoulder Dislocates
- 5 K2E
- 5 Inchworms
Group: Clean, Squat, Jerk Review

WOD:
Clean 3-3-3
(95, 115, 115, 125)
Front Squat 3-3-3
(135, 155, 165)
Push Jerk 3-3-3
(125, 135, 145(2-Failed the 3rd))

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Too Short

May 10, 2012

Wake up every morning and think to yourself "how do I want today to go." You are in control. If you want to smile, smile, if you want to be sad, be sad... but remember... you never know what life is going to throw your way. Its simply how you handle the chaos, changes, challenges that gives you the quality of life you want. There are days where sadness and frustration happens, its unrealistic to think that you have to be "happy" all the time... however you have to remember that its up to you to turn that around and live the life you want to live.  


Life is yours to live. Every day is a second chance to turn the things around that you want to change. Challenge yourself to be positive... challenge yourself to look for the "bright side." I have been working on this myself and honestly... have become a much happier person all around.

Its contagious. Watch out... I'm coming to get you!

WARMUP:
3 Rounds
- 400m Run
- 1 Minute Double Under Practice
- 12 GHD

Rest Day.

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Good Friends

May 9, 2012


There is so much comfort in knowing that I have made the right decisions in my life as far as who to let in, who to let go of and who to hang on to with all my might. When I think about my friends, there are certainly people (like we all have) who we were the best friends in the world with through a certain time of our lives and suddenly we look back and think "what happened." There are also people that I have been friends with in the past and thought... "why is this so much work?" There comes a point where you just have to let go sometimes.

When I was young I didnt have a lot of friends. In fact when I was in 5 and 6th grade when the wonderful world of "bullying" became a part of my life. I was approached at least once a week with some asshat saying "you dont have any friends do you..." and when I said "yes I do" and told them who she was they would laugh and say "she would never be friends with you."

I was lucky and had an amazing group of friends through High School. They didnt care that I wasnt "popular" and in fact most of them had friends within the popular group. That was the point in my life that I started to realize that no one actually likes the poplar people... except for the other popular people... so I wasnt sure what made them better than anyone else. As long as they left me alone (which sometimes they did and sometimes they didnt) I was ok.

After high school when I started to become my own self even more I really started to see who were those friends that would be with  me for life. Those that I couldnt live without. They were there for me, cried with me when I had tragedy, laughed with me on the phone from our college dorms, we visited each other sometimes.... but really we all knew that it was ok if we didnt talk all the time. That our friendships would always be there.

Years have past. I have left the "drama" behind. I have no use for the talk of "whos your best friend" my friends that are in my life... they are all my "best friends." I have acquaintances, new friends, old friends, lifelong friends... and I have the ability to let new people in to my life and open up to those I feel comfortable with. I do know though... that I am lucky that I still have those friends who I haven't let go of. That I dont have to talk to every day, that I might not see every month or talk to every week... but they hold a place in my heart.

The ability to sit down with friends that I havent seen in years and pick up right were we left off... share in laughs, cry together, support one another and feel like it was just yesterday that we were drinking in the basement after the prom... or sitting next to each other in 5th grade getting in trouble for passing notes... those are the moments that I am so thankful for.

I am lucky.

WARMUP:
3 Rounds
- Bear Crawl (down and back)
- 10 Back Extensions
- 10 Ring Rows
- 10 Around the Worlds
2 Minute Shoulder Opener
Group: Snatch and Push Press

WOD: Pother
10 Min AMRAP
- 200m Row
- 10 Snatches (65)
(5 Rounds)

SKILL/STRENGTH:
Push Press 95, 105, 115, 115

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Tuesday, May 8, 2012

I'm Positive!

May 8, 2012

I have to say... even though I just posted about it yesterday, the change in attitude started the middle of last week. I was given some pretty horrible news, as I mentioned and my mind filled with many thoughts. Mostly about the person who the news was about... when I think about this person I can not help but see her bright shining smile and the twinkle in her eye right away in my mind. She is one of the most influential women in my life, ranks right up there with my mom. Always always there for any person who comes to her... never turning her back on a friend when they need her, giving, loving, compassionate, caring. I have many wonderful thoughts filled with her and she has been there for most of the milestones in my life. My proms, my graduations (from all three schools), arguments with friends when I need an ear to talk to, a good laugh and a smile at a cookout, a family Easter dinner, Thanksgivings, Christmas parties, my wedding... and she is always gathering together the ladies in her life for a fun filled night out, and of course always including "Little Debby" in the fun...

Most of all she was there for me and my family when we went through the most difficult time in our lives. She stood tall and strong for my mom. She was a shoulder to cry on, a friend to talk to, a face to argue "why" with... taking a beating emotionally on the inside and keeping face for us all. Strong, positive and in control. Now even still, with a positive attitude she faces a fight for her life. Its admirable... her positivity... and its contagious.

My mom is also one of the most positive people on the planet... which is probably why these two women are both the best of friends and are like magnets for others, you just always want to be around them. When together, forgetaboutit... throw whatever you got at them and they have words of advice, a smile, a hug, a laugh and voila... you are in a good mood (unless of course you are 14 years old and totally unreasonable, but I didnt know anyone like that at all and I am sure they cant think of anyone either). 

Positivity... its refreshing to look at every day with a positive eye, even look at the bad and try to put a spin on the things that you can not control. Stop wasting energy on things that arent worth being upset over and focus on keeping a positive attitude... life is too short to spend it on thoughts that are toxic.We are so quickly swept up in life that we forget to be thankful for all that we have. Smile about the "little things," laugh when you wan to scream... relax... have fun.

I am a true believer that everything happens for a reason. Good, bad, happy, sad... there is a plan laid out for everyone. I will never (nor do I ever want to) know what the reason or the plan is... but que sera sera... so lets face life with everything we've got.


WARMUP:
500m Row
3 Rounds
- 5 Burpees
- 10 Toes to Bar
- 15 Shoulder Dislocates
- 20 Walking Lunges

WOD: Sudorific
21-15-9
- Back Squat from Floor (95)
- Hand Release Pushups
- Abmat Situps
(5:16 Rx)

SKILL/STRENGTH:
3 X 3 Rope Climbs (with 2 min rest between sets)

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Monday, May 7, 2012

Maintain That Feeling

May 7, 2012

First off, I have had strict instructions that I need to keep up with my blogging! So for those who read daily I am sorry for the massive bulk publishing yesterday! I hope you enjoy catching up with the new posts (grab a cup of coffee and catch up!). I know (judging by my FB page) that there quite a few readers out there, and lots of new ones, so I just want to say thank you for your support! I started this blog to be a place where I can literally dump my thoughts about my new adventure with CrossFit. Soon after, it turned into something that really means a lot to me, where I try to be as open and honest as I can, so if I can be even a small amount of inspiration to anyone out there just by doing what I love... well thats just perfect! Please feel free to comment either here or on FB and if you have any inspirational material I would love to hear from you! I have also been contacted by a few different places for product reviews and give a ways... so stay tuned!!

I have been thinking a lot about CF lately... and making sure that I am keeping the "fun" going. I dont want to lose what attracted me to it. I dont want to lose that feeling I get when I walk in the door. Think of it as a any other relationship. Everyone knows that there is a "honeymoon" stage when you first get into the relationship, where everything is puppies and rainbows. Than all of a sudden the level of comfort sets in, we start getting relaxed and we stop "trying so hard." That when the bickering starts... where we stop trying to dress to impress ... we are content not going anywhere or doing anything... we forget to tell each other how beautiful or special they are... eventually we stop... well... we stop "trying." This isnt to be confused with the comfort of a Saturday on the couch, or knowing that our significant other can actually stand to see us without makeup... but when that certain "feeling" is missing, its very obvious. Things can tumble downhill fast.

In order to maintain that feeling its crucial to keep things going. With CrossFit I have to remember that this "journey" is about me. Not about anyone else. No one else's scores, times, weights... just me. The way I feel when I am there, the accomplishments that I have made. Hell, nine months ago to this day Hubs called CrossFit Wachusett to see if we could come check it out (at the garage) the next day. I thought I was going to pass out doing pushups, squats and abmat situps... today, I am leaps and bounds from that person inside and out. I want to keep going, I want to keep getting better.  Only I have the power to give that to myself.

My strategy is this. Keep it fun! How do I do that... remember what it is that I love the most. The challenge, the thrill, the feeling... every day, keep "trying" every day.. The comfort had begun to set in. The bitching started, the frustration was all over the place... and why? I would work and work and not see as much of a result as I wanted, I would take a break in a WOD and be pissed at myself when I was done for breaking... but why? Why all of a sudden care so much about other peoples scores or where I "ranked?" I stopped looking at where I have come from and looked to much at where I want to be. Stopped giving myself credit for all the things I have done. Forgot to tell myself that I am kicking ass and taking names... that has to stop.

Today I entered into the gym with a new attitude. I dont do this because I "have" to... I do this because I "want" to. I listen to people tell me that they dont have the "time" or they wish they could be as dedicated or as motivated as me... they can. But no one can do it for them. There is nothing about changing your lifestyle that is easy. However it certainly comes with loads of benefits.

As I ran up and down the street today to complete a 400... and into the gym for 21 squat clean thrusters all I could think of was how much I love to do this. How much I love my body, how much I wouldnt give any of my life away to anyone... I had a bet with myself that I wouldnt take my hands off the bar during the thrusters. I might pause, but I will not let go... and I didnt. When I completed the 3 rounds I laid down on the ground and smiled on the inside... that was FUN!

 
 WARMUP:
3 Rounds
- 15 Air Squats
- 10 Pushups
- 5 Pullups
4 Way Plank (1 Min Each)
Group: Squat Clean Thrusters

WOD: MCA
3 Rounds for Time
- 400m Run
- 21 Squat Clean Thrusters (65)
(14:41 Rx)

SKILL/STRENGTH:
OH Press 5-5-5
45, 65, 75 (5), 85 (4)

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Sunday, May 6, 2012

The Best Day

May 6, 2012


Andele! Arriba! Arriba!

May 5, 2012


WARMUP:
3 Rounds
- Row 250
- 5 Pushups
- 10 Walking Lunges

SKILL/STRENGTH
- 10 Min Double Unders (they are coming along great)
- Death By Pullups (kipping)
- 60 GHD Situps
- 50 Abmat Situps

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Feeling Filthy... Again

May 4, 2012

How soon we forget... THIS is the last time I was fortunate enough to do the Filthy Fifty... hey at least it didnt snow this morning!

I can say this with certainty... I actually enjoyed this today! The anxiety was there but it was more abut pushing harder than the last time to get through it. I knew my improvements from last time. I know my weaknesses and I know where I need to push harder to get through. I was not going to let it overcome me!

The filthy fifty starts with box jumps, thank god. The box jumps are typically one of the hard parts for me in a WOD. I have to say with the skills we have been working and our group sessions after the warmup, I have improved on them with huge leaps and bounds (no pun intended). I am quick off my feet, I dont waste time on the ground and I know to rest at the top. Its much more efficient and before I knew it I was done all 50.

Onto the jumping pullups which seem to feel so "funny" after working so hard to not push off the ground on pushups. I took a breath at 25, but for the most part powered right through the 50. The kettle bell swings were next and I had the same approach, dont stop. I know myself better than anyone and I know if I took one break I would be screwed... I did what I wanted to didnt put that KB down till all 50 were complete.

Next up I lunged around the gym really trying to focus on long strides like M had taught us to make sure to not burn out my quads. I didnt make any stops to play up my strengths. I lead myself right over to the pullup bar to get into the knees to elbows. These were by far the hardest part for me. For some reason I couldnt get my rhythm and just felt all over the place. By the end of the 50 I was doing singles and giving every ounce of energy I had to get them done. They were brutal.

The push press was "easy" weight so I wanted to break them up as little as possible. I did the first set of 25, dropped it, than went back in. I wound up doing a set of 10 than a set of 15 to finish. Right over to the GHD's for the back extensions. Again, the thought process was "just keep as little breaks as possible" and I was able to do two sets of 25.

When I got to the wall balls I knew I was almost done, wall balls kill my lungs. I had to push through and get this thing done! I broke it up as little as possible and finally walked to the floor for my burpees... they were as slow as molasses... I hit the floor for the first one and wanted to stay there! K was yelling to just keep moving... and I pulled myself off the floor and kept going. After the burpees I battled through the double unders and successfully completed the filty fifty for the second time... damn...

Ok ok I am sick, I cant wait to do it again!


WARMUP:
Jog 200
10 Grasshoppers
10 Around the World
- Set up Filthy Fifty -
10 Around the World
10 Grasshopper
Jog 200

WOD:
"Filthy Fifty" for Time (35 min cap)
- 50 Box Jumps (20")
- 50 Jumping Pull Ups
- 50 KB Swings  (12kg)
- 50 Walking Lunges
- 50 K2E
- 50 Push Press (65lbs)
 - 50 Back Extensions
- 50 Wall Balls (14lb)
- 50 Burpees
- 50 Double Unders
(My Time 29:05 Rx)

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Strength

May 3, 2012

Strength is not only about how much you can lift, fast you can run or amount you can push...

... strength is in your body, your mind, your soul.


I have been faced with quite a few things in my life that have made me ask the question WHY... and yet again in my short 31.5 years I am faced with that thought today.

I am reminded how short life is, how lucky I am to have the things that I have, the people that I have and the live that I live. If you knew what I have gone through you might ask me if I would change anything... the answer is no.

I was given this life. I am who I am because of this life. I am strong from my losses and struggles. If you knew the wonderful lives and strong amazing people that I have had the privilege and blessing to know and love... whether it was a short time or a long time, whether it was cut short or long and lasting. I wouldn't trade any moment of my life, this is MY life, those are MY memories.

Cherish every moment...

WARMUP:
3 Rounds
- Row 250
- 5 Pushups

- 10 Walking Lunges
Double Unders

SKILL/STRENGTH
Death By Pullups (kipping)
Death By Pullups (dead hang with bands)
10 Minutes Double Unders

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Failure

May 2, 2012

Failure has never been an option for me. I have always strived to be the best at what I do in as short of time it takes me to get there. Than once I get where I am happy I am usually pretty content. So that is one of my many challenges with CrossFit. You are never content... and if you are, there is a problem! Its the best and the worst part about it. Once something gets easier, you add more weight, you shoot to do it faster, you reduce the band size when you scale... there is always room for improvement and it never gets any "easier." What does take the edge off is how willing to accept that that is the way it is... and thats a tough pill to swallow sometimes.

I have a tendency to want to skip the middle. I want to get to the end before passing through. Throw me in the deep end without swimming lessons and I will figure it out. Give me something to assemble and take away the directions, I will get it built. Thats just how my mind works. The challenge with CF is that you cant do that... you have to work up in weights, you have to build stamina, you have to learn how to hit all the spots on a lift and in pullups, muscle ups and other body weight things... if you didnt go through the learning "suck", you would be a miracle... and even those who do have all of those skills, they work on them daily to improve.

Coming to terms with this has been a struggle over the last few months. Of course when I first started I understood that I needed to learn... I caught on pretty well and struggled where most people do, but than I wanted more. Thats when I had to remember what I want to get out of CrossFit. I really want to be a competitor, I really want to get "good" and I really want to learn all that I can. This means there are times I have to step away from the clock, swallow my ego and scale something to do it correctly focusing on my form and not necessarily how heavy the weight is or how fast I can do it. I am trying to use this new fangled thing called "patience..." what a concept...

What I can say is that I know its working. I have developed a spreadsheet with my strength days written out (yep thats the OCD in me)... and I can quickly look and reference weights from previous workouts. Having M back and the gym full time has been excellent. It gives both M and K time that they dont have to be at the gym to recharge and I feel like when they are with us they are really focused on making us better at everything we do. I have also been working on being more patient with Hubs when he gives me advice and direction... he is a saint to deal with my crazy ass!

I am focused, I am ready to go and I am really looking forward to thing things that are to come at CrossFit Wachusett and in my life in the next few months.


WARMUP:
500m Row
3 Rounds
- 10 Inchworms
- 10 Ring Rows
- 10 Hollow Rocks
2 Rounds
- Junkyard Dog
Group: Deadlift, Push Jerk

WOD: Viente
3 Rounds for Time
- 20 Box Jumps (20)
- 20 Push Jerks (75)
- 20 Pullups (blue band)
(my time 12:37)

SKILL/STRENGTH
Deadlift 3-3-3
135 (warmup), 185, 205, 225

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Inhale - Exhale

May 1, 2012

Ahhhhhhh, how did it get to be MAY?! Where did the first 4 months of 2012 go? I think we got a little spoiled with the few 80+ degree weather days we had a few weeks ago. At least I know I did! I am craving a bright sunny 80 degree day where I can sit outside and take in some sunshine!

Now is the time of year that I like to take a deep breath. Try to think of the new life that is budding on the trees the spring air that is surrounding me and the summer that is to come. Things are clearly different for me this year. Since I started CF my life has changed drastically. I have really taken control of the things that are controllable, and begun to let go of those things that I really have no choice about. I have be working on myself a lot and am pleased with the outcome.

Its nice to finally not enter into every month, season, day and think "next week I will start XYZ." I know that I owe the clarity that I have found to CrossFit... but I dont owe my success to anyone/anything but myself. I have said it from the beginning, you can give anyone the tools to be successful, but until you make the choice, dedicate yourself and commit to making a change, wanting something bad enough... there will be no change.

There are no "simple" answers. Life is work... its just the way it is. We have to work at everything that is important to us. Everything from love and friendships to our career, schooling and fitness level. Its your choice to control how happy you are in any of those situations. The harder you work, the better those things become.


I made the choice to improve my physical heath. I have committed 100% to it. If that means that I dont drink at a social event, or choose not to have birthday cake thats ok. Yes, people judge and think things and say things about this, but I know what I need to do to be successful. I want to think that sometimes people wish that they could be that dedicated to something and not cave into the fact that "when you are at a bar you have to have a drink." I have to push aside the negative comments and keep in mind that this is what I want and what I want is all that matters in this situation.

I am strong, I am dedicated and I am more proud of that than I could put in words.


WARMUP:
3 Rounds
- 20 Walking Lunges
- 10 Pushups
- 10 Back Extensions
Group: Burgerner Warmup

WOD: "Decemvirate"
10 Min AMRAP
- 10 Wall Balls (14)
- 10 Snatches (55)
(7 Rounds + 1 R)

SKILL/STRENGTH:
Front Squat 3-3-3+
120, 135, 155 (5)

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Push It

April 30, 2012

For me, when I first started CF there was always a moment in a workout where I just didn't think I could finish. There was a breaking point where either my arms were burning, my legs were sore, my hands couldn't hold on any longer or my lungs felt like no matter what I couldn't catch my breath. I never gave up. I just kept on pushing. Those WOD's might have been slower than I wanted them to be... maybe they didnt have the "best" times, but for me... just finishing them was enough of a goal for myself.

That is one of the most important lessons that I have learned with CrossFit. There is this energy in a CF Box that you really cant understand unless you have been to one yourself. The encouragement, drive and emotions that come out from the coaches and other athletes is indescribable... this isnt just at large competitions or during the Opens, its every day, every 5:30am class, every Saturday afternoon. We are all there pushing, cheering, sharing in each others excitements as well as working with each other through frustrations.

I no longer have the "fear" of not being able to get through a workout. I do still have the "oh god" feeling before one starts... I would be lying if I said I didnt. However, its not so much a fear that I wont be able to do it, its more so a "I know this is going to be a lot of hard work" feeling. I think its just a common thing for us to say "this is going to suck" before a workout... but in reality... we like the suck... or we wouldnt do it!

Today was one of those great days where you had to dig deep to finish each part of the WOD, from the 2k row, to the 50 pistols, to the 30 hang cleans... each had a lot of reps with a lot of concentration to get through it. As I got closer to the end of each I had to push myself to continue the reps. I knew I had it in me.



WARMUP:
2 Minutes Jump Rope
3 Rounds
- 5 Burpees
- 10 Pullups
- 15 Squats
2 Rounds
- 5 Inchworms
- 10 Spiderman
Group: Pistols/Row

WOD: Regional WOD #2
Row 2K (8:15)
50 Alternating Pistols (used rack for stability)
30 Hang Cleans (95)
(My Time 15:38)

STRENGTH/SKILL:
50 Abmat Situps

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Lighten Up

April 29, 2012


Statistics LIE!

April 28, 2012


WARMUP:
3 Rounds
- Row 250m
- 10 Hollow Rocks
- 10 Leg Swings
2 Min Squat Sit
2 X 9 Fundamentals

WOD: "Chop"
400m Run
21-15-9
- Front Squat (95)
- Ring Dips (small blue band)
400m Run
(My Time 10:10)

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Oh what a feeling!

April 27, 2012


Today was a fun day at the gym. Fridays have been pretty uplifting lately! Its funny because at 5:30am when we all arrive its quite quiet and we start into the warmup with not much of a word. Eventually we open up and there is laughter and talking. Usually Fridays the chatter starts a little sooner than other mornings. Today I was lucky enough to not have to go to work after the gym so I was a little more relaxed than usual. I was ready to "flip" into the WOD!

I am very excited that my hip has been feeling great so working speed squats was not painful at all. I am really happy that I was able to recover this injury on my own. M has been great when it comes to pinning down the techniques that I need to improve on. I have been really stressing my form and trying to improve as much as I can. It gets harder every day to improve. I knew eventually this was going to happen.

After the gym I came home and had a nice few hours on my couch doing NOTHING. Its been a long time that I have had the time to unwind without anything on my mind. I had a few things that I wanted to get out and do, but first the ME time was needed.

The best part of the day was shopping. I had to run to Staples and get the fliers printed for the golf tournament and knew that since staples was right next to Marshalls that I was going to stop in to see what they have! I finally am not afraid of shopping... or even trying things on. Its funny I used to go shopping and try something on and when it didnt fit I would get all frustrated and annoyed... it would pretty much ruin my day. Today was the total opposite. I tried things on, they didnt fit... oh well. I am happy...  I am finally happy with my body, comfortable in my skin and if it dosent fit me, its not the end of the world.

Wow... that feels good!!

WARMUP:
Sampson Stretch 1 Min Each Leg
Jump Rope Circuit 2X
- 10 Singles
- 10 Each Leg
- 10 Side to Side
- 10 Front to Back
- 10 Crossover
- 10 Double Unders
2 Rounds
- 5 Pushups
- 10 Pullups
- 15 Squats
Group: Shoulder Prep / HSPU Instruction

WOD: "Flipped"
12-9-6-3 with 3 Abmat Situps on the min every min, for time
- SDHP (75lbs)
- HSPU (black bands)
(My Time 3:34Rx)

STRENGTH/SKILL:
Speed Squats 5-5-5-5
45, 95, 95, 95

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Life is a Daring Adventure

April 26, 2012

Today I was lucky enough to have been invited to an event with one of the furniture companies that I am working with on a job. When the invitation came over I was excited not only to be able to attend a fantastic breakfast conference where I would be able to network with some vendors and co-workers, but included in the invitation was a bio for the speaker that would be highlighting the event.

"Dr. J.P. Pawliw-Fry is an author and performance coach to Olympic athletes and business leaders. He melds innovative research with powerful inspiration to create thought-provoking and moving keynote presentations. An expert in emotional intelligence, he is one of the world’s most highly sought-after speakers on the topic.

Using cutting edge research and personal stories from the world of sports and business, Dr. Pawliw-Fry teaches his audiences the principles of emotional intelligence and high performance; he inspires and challenges them to take their careers, businesses and personal lives to the next level."



Let me tell you, this guy was one of the most amazing speakers I have ever heard. He talked for almost an hour and a half and it seriously felt like 10 minutes. The conference was for emerging business leaders and the room was filled with well over 200 interior designers and architects of all levels. The title of his seminar was "Being Your Best When it Matters Most." He hit on so many key topics that really made so much sense. I am really going to work on incorporating them into my daily life as well as my work life.

The first thing he had us do was write down the 6 most valuable characteristics of a leader in our business. Immediately I wrote organized, compassionate, intelligent, trustworthy, knowledgeable and patient. He than went on to discuss the difference between IQ (intelligence quotient) and EQ (emotional quotient). Explaining that our IQ is not what makes us a "star." That he would bet that the majority of the characteristics that we listed above were related to a persons EQ, that their emotional connection with their employees was more relevant in this sense than their intelligence. Personality is very important when becoming a leader.

We did a second exercise where we had to rate ourselves and where we thought our spouse, boss and direct supervisor would rate us on the same scale in regards to three questions;
- I freely admit to making mistakes
- I pay attention and listen without jumping to conclusions
- I engage in difficult conversations
I very quickly realized that I act must more instinctively and impulsively outside of the workplace than I do in situations that involve my career. In all three situations I had Hubs on one end of the scale and my boss and supervisor on the other end with myself in the middle. Certainly made me stop and think of why that might be and how I might be making people feel.

Of course he did some talking about the human brain, how we think and which part of the brain processes what information. Most people already know and understand that we "feel before we think." He broke down what it is like to have a "amygdala hijack" which is when we have to make sudden/unexpected decisions, do something against our will or be forced. This is when part of the brain is overloaded and we have a decrease in working memory, which in turn results in impulsive decisions without much thought. We have to learn to be cognitive of those triggers in our lives to control this.

Finally we discussed "building bridges" with others, understanding that no two people think the same and we often confuse impulse with intent. We let our emotions drive our behavior. The most important thing he said was "we judge ourselves on intention and we judge others on their impact." This clearly shows that we have to try to understand that a person more often than not has a different intention in their actions, but we understand it differently on the other side of the "bridge." He said "its not about being right, its about getting the results that we desire. We must clarify our intentions"

When bridging the gap we must walk to the other side and build the bridge backwards to our own side, try to understand what the other persons intent was. We judge when we have less than 5% of the total information. He made it clear that there were three steps in bridging the gap;
-  Voice: People want to be heard
-  Value: People want to be valued
-  Feedback: People want to know where they stand.

You must learn to show value. "Say what you mean, do what you say, finish what you start and start on time. The average person has 60,000 thoughts in one day, how clear are your thoughts?

If you want more information on Dr JP Pawliw-Fry you can see it here... www.ihhp.com/jp.htm

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