Friday, February 24, 2012

In a Funk.....Time to get out!

I can't believe it has been 2 weeks since I have blogged. I will start with the fact that I have been in kind of a workout funk. One of my friends at CrossFit wrote about being in a funk earlier this week and I asked her if I could steal her blog, change names, and publish it as my own. She expressed the exact feelings that I had been having, bad food choices, hard workouts, feelings of inadequacy, just yuck. Check it out here: Jess is a wonderful woman, strong and in inspiration. I felt so validated that someone else was feeling this way.
Yesterday I went into workout for the first time this week. After that, I felt amazing. Funk is lifting and I am looking forward to what is coming up in the next few weeks.

So, about the last two weeks. Last week was Valentine's and that is a very busy time for me. I was crazy all day on Monday getting things ready to deliver on Tuesday morning. My back was killing me because of the stress and the way I was standing. Tuesday when I went in to workout, I had to leave right as we were starting to warmup stretch, I pulled my knee into a knee hug and my back seized up. I ended up rolling out and walking the whole rest of the workout. I hoped that by Wednesday morning it would start feeling better. When it didn't I made an appointment for a massage on Thursday. I did Thursday's strength workout and then went to see her. She thinks that I may have a small tear in one of the muscles in my back. I am going to see my orthopedist next week to have it looked at. She found so many knots and kinks in my back that is was crazy. I am going to go back every few weeks to get things where they are supposed to be. The rest of that night I felt better, Friday was worse, Sat and Sun ok, and since then it has been getting better.

I have also started cooking for people at the gym who are doing the challenge. That started on Monday of this week. I didn't workout on Monday because I got an awful night of sleep and I just wasn't up for it. (I have to not beat myself up for this and am learning). I cooked all day on Monday, except when I took a lunch break to get a new part time job (then my mom cooked too!), and was up until 11:30. When I got up on Tuesday morning to workout, I knew my body could not handle it. So I took Sarah in, delivered food, and took a nap in my car. I really think that my body was telling me to take it easy and that is partially why my back is feeling better.

Back in the gym on Thursday.
Thursday's WOD
Level Two
Strength/Make Up Day
A. Cleans x1x5 85-90% or 9-10 RPE Rest 2:00
B. CDL x3x5 @ 66% of DL Rest 3:00
C1. Front Squat x4-5×3 80-85% Rest :60
C2. DB Snatch x5/armx3 Rest :60

Cleans at 75#, Clean deadlifts at 155#. I should have done those at 135 since my DL is 205# and that is 66%, but the 155# felt good so I kept it. Hopefully this means that my DL will go up the next time we do them :)
Front squat 75#, DB Snatch 20#.

Bear with me through a few stories that have happened the last few days. First, I am getting smaller in my upper body faster than my lower body, so my vneck shirts are plunging lower than I really want them to when I workout. I purchased an undershirt to wear with them, yesterday it was so hot and humid in the gym that I just took off my tshirt and left the undershirt. I will tell you that I felt fine doing this and I would not have felt this way a month or so ago. When I got home I put on a tank top that I bought last summer with a pair of jean capri's that I squeezed myself into last summer, the jeans zipped right up, and that top that bunched on my hips last summer, just swooshed down my hips. Nice :)

A few night ago this guy was telling me about his friends who workout. "They think they are all that, buff and everything. The problem is that they only work out with their upper body, I could walk up and kick their legs right out from under them with no problem. I hope you are working your lower body also when you CrossFit" I told him "I can back squat 155#, I think I am good" His mouth just dropped open, and he said "Wow". I loved it and said, "See you later"

A few other realizations have come up, things that a lot of people take for granted and don't even realize that they can do or that they have....I can now write on my lap, I have a lap to write on. My husband can come up and wrap his arms around my waist and pull me much closer than he could before. I can move the car seat up close enough to not drive with my tiptoes because my belly is not so close to the steering wheel, I sometimes look in a mirror and say "well, hello :)" My calves are getting skinny and different muscles are showing in them. My rings are starting to fall off of my fingers and the bracelet that I have been wearing since summer is dangling instead of just residing in my chubby wrist.

My body is changing. Not as fast as I want it, but it really is happening. I know I have been posting about smaller sizes, and weight lost, but my brain has not caught up as fast as my mouth. I am actually seeing it through my eyes, and my brain is recognizing it. No longer telling me that it is taking too long, not happening, etc. My crappy self image is probably going to rear its ugly head from time to time, but I have a great support group in my friends and family cheering me on.

Thanks for that.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Thursday's child is full of strength....

My oldest was born on a Thursday. Today I am a little melancholy because she is at the Austin Fire Department Recruiting office finding out how to proceed with her future plans of being a Firefighter like her daddy. The nursery rhyme about the days of the week says "Thursday's child has far to go", and that kind of fits because she does have some hurdles to get through, but I like my version better. Thursday's child is full of strength, Haley is strong, in her mind, her heart, and she is building more and more strength every time she steps in the gym. I am so proud of her and her decision to follow in her father's footsteps in a career, and finding out the steps to make sure she succeeds. So, kiddo...I love you and pray for only the best for you!

In that same strength spirit, IT IS THURSDAY!! This means STRENGTH day at CrossFit Austin :D Last week we did not really work on strength since we had 3 challenge tests to get through so I was realllllly looking forward to this one.

Thursday's WOD
Level Two
Strength Day
A. Cleans x3x5 @ 75-80% or 8 RPE Rest 2:00
B. CDL x5x4 @ 55-62% of DL Max Rest 2:00
C1. Front Box Squat x5x3 Rest :90
C2. DB Jerk Unders x5x3 Rest :90

When I pulled up my first clean it choked me and I felt the bruises from Tuesday so I knew I was exactly where I wanted to be! Weight was at 65# and felt heavy and good.

Clean deadlift weight was at 135# Becky and I rocked it!

I wasn't thinking and tried to do 95# on my front box squats not thinking that we were doing 5 reps and holding it for three seconds while hovering over that box. After 3 reps, I lowered the weight to 75# and that was much more manageable.

Alternating with the squats were dumbbell jerk unders which I did with 20# dumbbells.

Today felt good. I have also started running for our warmup lap. Right now, I am running down to the end of the building and walking back, but I am working up to the lap and my goal is by the end of the challenge, I will be running the 400m lap with the rest of my class. One thing is for sure, every day I will get stronger, and faster, and have more stamina....but it won't happen if I don't push it a little more each day.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Holy Kettlebells!

Tuesday it was just Sarah and I, Haley opted for a rest day after "Karen" yesterday!

I feel like I slept on the way to the gym, some mornings I can pop out of bed, but today was not one of those days.

Tuesday's WOD
Level Two
A1. Muscle-up Wave 3-2-1-3-2-1 rest :60
A2. TnG Power Cleans Wave 3-2-1-3-2-1 @ 70-80% Rest :60
*Post Notes to comments


1200m Run
40 KB Russian Swings (24K, 16K)
20 Box Jumps (24”, 20”)
10 TnG Deadlifts @ 50%- 55%

Muscle-up wave, I did box dips (tricep dips) 4-5 reps for 6 rounds
TnG Power Cleans I worked between 45# and 65# I finally felt like I got the right position when I smashed my trachea!! And will have beautiful bruises on my shoulders also :)

Ok, I spent the morning before class wondering what I should do for this 1200meter run, I am still having pain in my knee and can only actually run about 300m at this point. Rowing a 1200 and then doing all of the other arm work in this workout would have been torture, so I decided to do the airdyne bike, good cardio with no arm wreckage. I rode until 5 people came in from their run and then moved on to the rest.
40KB swings at 12K (26#)
20 red box stepups
10 TnG deadlifts at 95#

9:47 modified with the bike. Really starting to hate having to modify :/

My challenge is going well, it is stressful to figure out how to make sure all meals qualify for the nutritional part, and make sure that I get enough sleep. I am down to 241 pounds and for the first time in 20 years actually own a scale. Still recognizing that I am more than a number on the scale, but enjoying the fact that it is moving in a downward motion!

Last night I watched my daughters participate in a self defense course with the Austin Police Explorer group. They were both punching into a punch pad being held by 19 and 17 year old boys. girls were knocking those boys back with each hit. I am so happy to see the changes that CrossFit is making in their life as well as mine. I am very proud of them!


Hopefully I can be more efficient soon and stop making two posts at a time, well one can hope :) So here is post one for today...

Monday I woke up feeling great! Full of energy and ready to hit the gym :)

Level Two
Push Press
*appx 70%, RPE 7-8, keep all working sets within 5-10 pounds
*Rest 2:00 Minutes
*Weight recorded

Push-ups (Games standard)
Kip Pull-ups
Wall Balls

Push press 6 rounds of 5 at 55#. Felt good until about the 3rd round when I clocked myself in the chin with the bar. I just shook it off and kept on pressing! I am so proud of myself for pushing through ;) (although I do have a bruise under my chin now that hurts every time I rest my chin on my hand, which apparently is frequently...who knew)

5 rounds of 10-8-6-4-2 reps per round finished in 6:26
knee, games standard, push-ups, jumping pull-ups (felt good today!), and 10# wall balls. I need to work more on my push-ups and getting my wall ball up higher. The stronger my arms get, the better those will be.

After the WOD, we all went and cheered Haley on while she finished her "Karen" (150 wall balls) make up from last week. She did great! Using a 10# wall ball she finished at 9:37.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Saturday= Last test of the Challenge!

On Thursday we realized that instead of 2 tests we were going to have 3. They had moved one from Saturday to Thursday so we talked about what kind of crazy workout we would have on Saturday. Friday on our facebook page someone suggested "Name the WOD for Saturday" game. So many things were thrown out that my mind was wrecked. Most of them terrified me! Getting up Saturday morning and finding out it was "Fight Gone Bad" was actually a little bit of a relief. Not that is was an easy workout, but it was not one of the CRAZY (read miles of running and hundreds of other things like squats, push-ups, pull-ups, etc. I am not kidding) ones!!

We got to the gym about 45 minutes early so I could make sure to be there on time and I was able to cheer on some of my morning ladies who were in the 9am class!

All Levels
Test 9: “Fight Gone Bad”
*In this workout you move from each of five stations after a minute. This is a five-minute round from which a one-minute break is allowed before repeating.

3 Rounds of:
Wall-Balls (M: 20 lbs, W:14lbs)
Sumo Deadlift High-Pull (M: 75lbs, W: 55lbs)
Box Jumps (20″ box)
Push-press (M: 75 lbs, W: 55lbs)
Row ( Max calories)

*The clock does not reset or stop between exercises. On call of “rotate,” the athletes must move to the next station immediately for good score. One point is given for each rep, except on the rower where each calorie is one point.

I did the scale 1 option which was 10# med ball for wall balls, 35# Sumo Deadlift high pulls, I stepped up on the 20in box, 35# push presses, and row. My total was 183. We counted how many calories on the rower and reps of each other exercise to reach our total.

It cleaned my clock, but was great feeling!! The atmosphere in the gym was electrical. Everyone cheering and encouraging, pushing you to do just one more! There were 2 heats of about 20 each in my class. Thank you Charlie and Darlene for pushing me and to my partner Brittany for counting and cheering me on! My girls were on the station right before mine so I got to see both of them go through this also. It was a great day!

Thursday's tests

Thursday was one of our Challenge test days.

Level Two
Test 6: 1 RM Clean-to-Thruster in 15:00
Test 7: 5 RM Front Squat (3 attempts)
Test 8:
“Annie ”
Double Unders
S1: Rx
S2: 3 singles
*Clean to Thruster weight, Front Squat weight, and “Annie” time and scale recorded

First thing that I will say is that Wednesday was the actual start of our Challenge which includes no sugar or grains. So I started Thursday with kind of a "I'm not here" feeling. That said I will say that I don't have double unders, which is jumping rope while bringing the rope around twice on one jump, I don't really have many single jumps that I can string together. I was not looking forward to this one, but since I have decided that I will do every challenge test just like I am asked to (even if it hurts my knee) that I would do this one. One task at a time.

Test 6: 1 RM Clean-to-Thruster ~ I got to 70#
Test 7: 5 RM Front Squat ~ 75#

I think I could have done more on my Clean-to-Thruster but my brain wasn't thinking. I am happy with my 5 rep max front squat of 75#.

Test 8:
“Annie ”
Double Unders
Scale 1: Rx
Scale 2: 3 singles

This means 5 rounds of jump rope double unders and situps with the number each round starting at 50 and descending by 10 each time. The scaling option is for the jump rope and means that scale 1 is the workout as written, scale 2 is 150-120-90-40-20 singles. Situps stay the same. So that was what my workout was supposed to be. I made it through 1 full round and 30 or 40 jumps into my second round before the 15 min time cap was called. I was frustrated, could not string together more than 2-4 jumps in a row, lost count, said bad words, and wanted to cry. It was awful and I didn't want to think about it any more after leaving the gym. However, throughout the afternoon all I could think about was how to jump rope better. My sweet husband went out and bought me a jump rope and I have vowed to try to do it every day! So far, I have done 3 days, only for a few minutes at a time, but am building up. The good news is that next time this test comes around, I will not have sugar withdrawal brain and can only do better!

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Sat, Monday, and Tuesday

Saturday we checked in for our "Circle of Awesomeness Challenge" I knew we were doing vertical jumps and 150 wall balls for our tests for the day, and I was a little worried about how that would happen with all of these people! As usual, our coaches have a great plan, three heats. We were in heat 2 and my friend, Michelle, was in heat 1. I counted for her and she counted for me.

My first few weeks at CrossFit there was a WOD where we had to do wall balls and a few other things. I could not even do 10 wall balls without wanting to quit. Well, Saturday I did 150 in 8 minutes and 10 seconds!!! It was awful and awesome! I love the feel of the group cheering each other on, pushing, digging deep, it is so cool.

My vertical jump is 88 inches, I am short and heavy, this will only get better.

The rest of Saturday and all of Sunday my legs were screaming in protest with every step that I took. I was a little worried about working out again on Monday, but knew that I needed to.

Monday morning I woke up, looked at the WOD and seriously considered going back to bed. Holy Cow!

Level Two
A1. Ring Dips x6-8 x3 Rest :45
A2. DB Snatch x5/arm x3 Rest :45
A3. MB Walking Overhead Lunges x10/legx3 Rest :45
*Post weights to comments

5 Rounds
200m Run
15 Box Jumps (24″, 20″)
15 Tic Tacs/side (20 lb, 14 lb)
*Total time, Rx or scale recorded

For Ring dips I did something else and I don't remember what it is called, but I sat on a box then lowered myself off of it with my hands stationary, up and down. (crappy description, sorry)
Dumbbell snatches with 20# weights on both arms. I am working my left arm up to be as strong as my right, as of this point the 20# feels pretty heavy on the left.
MB Overhead lunges, I did reverse lunges while stabilizing on the pull up bars. Still working on my lunge mobility.

WOD thoughts. My legs are toast at this point. How exactly am I going to get through 5 rounds of this stuff? Even with rowing through the runs? Throughout the 30 minutes from reading to leaving, I formulated a plan. I would row and ride the Airdyne alternating. I would build my own "box" out of weight plates to make a larger platform than the 12inx12in red box that I have tried to jump on and failed, and I would do each round at a time, then repeat. (My problem with the red box is that I am bigger around than it is, so I have to make sure to keep my feet together and I am terrified of missing it and hurting myself to a point of not being able to continue working out.)

I told Boone that I was going to build my own box and he said ok, so off I went. I stacked 3 35# plates on top of each other and then put another stack right next to that one. A place for each foot. Wider than my body. Just make sure not to jump in the middle where they were not touching. I can do this.

3-2-1 Go! I rowed the first 200m, then walked confidently to my "box" and stood there. Seriously??? What is wrong with me? Just jump! I could not do it, so I just did step ups. Boone was so encouraging, "It's ok, just do what you can" I came back with "I did 150 wall balls on Saturday, apparently it is going to be only one step at a time" Round two came up and I decided I was going to jump on that blasted thing, and I DID!!! He wasn't looking until I had done 11, and by then I felt like flying! Round three I dedcided to put more height on and put a 25# plate on each stack, jump and land, 15 times! On the last round I snagged my toe on one of the plates and fell, in the air all I could think of was "preserve the knee" so I threw my shoulder across and came down on the side of my good knee and did a ninja roll. Those who witnessed were impressed :) Then I got up and jumped back on those plates and FINISHED! The last few tic tacs just about did me in and Caitlyn said "If you don't finish those I am going to make you do Tabata abs" Well that kicked it in, and I finished. 20:48. I felt amazing, but exhausted. As the day wore on, me legs felt everything that I had done the past few days and I really wished for the ability to pee standing up again. I had a moment that I thought I may have to spend the night at Fry's in the ladies room...standing from a sitting position=pain.

As I went to bed, at 8:30, I was wondering what Tuesday had in store for me and if I would even be able to get out of bed to do it. Amazingly enough, when I got up this morning I felt pretty good. Until I realized that we had to do a 2 mile run for time. Both kids grumbled and I said "Let's just go get this done"

Tusday's WOD
Level Two
Test 4: 1-Rep Max Power Snatch in 20 Minutes
Test 5: L-Sit Hold (2 attempts within the 60 Minutes of class time)
Test 6: 2-Mile Time Trial (2o Minute Cap)

1 rep Power Snatch was 65#! I need to learn to get more aggressive and know that I will be able to lift more there.

L-sit hold, scaled down to L hang hold, not really sure about one being easier than the other, either way, I am not to good at this. I hung from the bar and put my legs on the box..Wes said "ok, lift. Go ahead and lift your legs" I said "I did! Didn't you see them?" Well, they didn't move more than a half an inch off the box for a fraction of a second, so I did it for him again. Definitely room for improvement!

2 mile time trial~ hmmmm I don't really have much to say about this except I don't run. My knee is still in it's post injection, waiting for relief, stage and I knew it would really hurt if I tried to run. I didn't fancy rowing 2 miles (3200m) so I just decided to walk until I was told to stop. After the first lap my knee was hurting pretty bad so I told Wes that I would walk another lap and then get on the bike. After that lap, it was still hurting, but not worse, so I decided to keep going. I did 4 laps (1 mile) in just over 20 minutes. Room for improvement there also :)

Tomorrow we start our challenge. I am going to the store today and have recipes ready to go. 6 weeks of no sugar, no grains, eating whole foods, drinking LOTS of water, 8 hours of sleep, deal with stress, consistent exercise, and lots more. I will keep accountability on this blog as well as my daily log for my coaches. I am looking forward to this, will probably complain about it, may love parts of it, and will be changed more than I am at the end of it! Let's bring it!!