When the third open WOD was announced, I knew this would be the one to really separate the athletes. It was also going to be a WOD where I found myself struggling or being unable to continue because I lacked a certain skill. For this WOD, the scaled version of the workout included pull ups. Before I was pregnant I was able to manage one strict pull up. As I has struggled with pull ups for a long time, I was quite pleased with that feat.
But as you can imagine, post pregnancy, I no longer have my one strict pull up. So I knew this was going to be a weaker workout for me.
The format of the workout went like this for the scaled version:
2 rounds for time of:
20 overhead squats (35 lbs)
100 single- unders
12 chin over the bar pull ups
......... there was much more after the pull ups, but honestly I kind of stopped reading after this point because I knew pull ups were going to be a struggle. There was also a 14 minute time cap to complete this workout.
I did well with the singles. Then I moved onto the overhead squats. I was trying to complete the overhead squats unbroken, but I was getting too unstable after 17 reps, so I decided to set down the barbell and regroup to finish the last three reps. After the overhead squats I moved back to the jump rope and quickly moved through the single unders.
Then it was time to go to the pull up bar. I looked at the clock. I had finished the previous movements in approximately three and a half minutes so I had a long time to try to get a pull up! The first few attempts I made, I felt close, but I just didn't have enough to pull myself over the top of the bar. I tried a few different placements for my hands - narrow grip, wider grip, etc. Then I tried kipping, which seemed less effective so I went back to trying strict pull ups. But at this point, my upper body was really tired from my attempts and I was getting worse, not better. I realized that a strict pull up was not going to happen.
I had suspected that this might be the case for this workout and tried to think positive thoughts instead of being negative. It was also nice to have so many people cheering me on to get a pull up. That made me feel better.
Finally the clock hit 14 minutes and my score was 220 reps without being able to get a pull-up. Pull ups will definitely be something for me to work on this year! While I did not get a pull up during this workout, I did feel encouraged that I was close on some of my attempts. It made me feel like I have something positive to work on moving forward.
The second week of the CrossFit Open is in the books! As soon as I saw the workout announced on Thursday night it made me nervous. The workout went like this:
1 dumbbell squat, 1 burpee over the bar, 2 dumbbell squats, 2 burpees over the bar, 3 dumbbell squats, 3 burpees over the bar..... well you get the idea.
The reps kept ascending until you got to 10. Once you completed this portion of the workout you got to do a one rep max clean. And the kicker was you only had twelve minutes to do all of this.
Burpees have never been a strong point for me, but the past year, they've been really terrible. Also, the front squat with dumbbells feels a bit awkward, especially since the dumbbells must be placed on your shoulders. The format was also a bit of a mental game. I'm not a big fan of ascending workouts. I rather do more reps in the beginning and less at the end. It just seems easier to mentally push yourself when you have fewer rep schemes to complete at the end of the workouts. There are some workouts that I just look at and know that I will struggle a bit. This was definitely one of those wods.
I picked up my dumbbell and completed one squat. I set it on the floor and went into my one burpee. The first few rounds of this workout felt weird. I felt like I could not get into a groove with the movements. By fourth round I finally felt like there was some sort of rhythm to this workout, instead of just switching from one thing to the next thing.
Rounds 5,6, and 7 felt okay.
Then came round 8.
"What the heck is this?" I thought to myself. The squats were starting to really take a toll on me. I felt totally gassed by them and couldn't catch my breath during the burpees. Then the negative thoughts started coming into my mind.
What made you think that you could do this? Why did you even sign up for the open?
I thought for sure that I was going to loose my lunch during round eight and since I was only halfway through the wod, I didn't want to do that. I slowed down. I took my time to get my thoughts together. The panic subsided and I kept going.
Round 8 and 9 were painful. Fortunately I had a great judge who reassured me and encouraged me to kept going. I definitely needed it. I had to break up the set of 10 squats into two sets of five. I could feel my legs spasm and I thought they were going to give out on me for sure. I felt relieved as soon as I put down the dumbbells and did the final set of burpees
When I finished the burpees I looked at the clock. I had finished the first portion in 10:59. I could rest a little before the clean, but not for very long. I only had one minute left. After catching my breath I did my clean at 75 pounds. It felt easy (which I had planned) and I tried to get more weight on the bar. Unfortunately time ran out while I was trying to add more weight and I didn't get to make a second attempt.
Initially I was disappointed with myself after the workout. I had hoped to be finished around the 10 minute mark and have more than one attempt at the clean. However, I do have a tendency to be too hard on myself. I have been working hard on finding the areas where I have improved, rather than relentlessly critiquing myself. I had only been using the 15 pound dumbbells in class, so I had to give myself props for using the 20 pound dumbbell during this workout. It definitely made the workout harder. Also, my son's first birthday was the next day, and I decided that I should be proud of how much I have improved in just the past year.
Bobby went in a later heat and did an awesome job. He also got a personal best in the clean. He told me afterwards that he had no idea how much weight was on the bar and only counted it afterwards. Pretty neat to see what you can accomplish when you don't let your mind get in the way!
Now we move onto Week 3! I've been counting up the movements that we still have yet to do in the open, because the first two weeks definitely haven't been my stronger points. I'm hoping that the next three weeks, we will have movements that I'm a little more proficient with. Good luck to everyone!
Author: Sarah Warman
I like to run, take pictures and write. I've combined all three in this blog.