Friday, April 4, 2014

Florida Open at CrossFit Fortress: My Story

March 29-30, 2014. (Read Part 2, Lessons Learned in Competitions)

My first Rx competition.
The division where athletes lift heavier loads and do more complicated moves.

Day 1 of competition
WOD 1. 14.5. Thrusters and burpees. 21, 18, 15, 12, 9, 6 and 3 reps of each. For time. No cap. No "saved by the bell." Finish or DNF. Brutal. Honestly, I had thoughts of wanting to quit. I finished in 16:05. A good time, I thought. Although when I finished there appeared to be just one girl still working. Hhm.
WOD photos from Florida Open Facebook page

WOD 2. A floater. We could compete this workout anytime before 3:30 p.m. A 4 minute ladder of double paralette hops and keg cleans. At each minute we began with 7 double hops over the paralettes, then completed an AMRAP of keg cleans. The first minute was 30 lbs kegs (worth 1 point each clean), second was the 60 (worth 2 points) or 30, the third was 90 (worth 3 points), 60, or 30. The final was 120 (worth 4 points), 90, 60, or 30.


I didn't rest much between WODs because I didn't want to stiffen up, and wanted to approach it like I do daily training: catch my breath and move on to the next workout. I'd never picked up a keg before. Luckily, they were available to practice with for awhile at the beginning of the day. Didn't seem too difficult. Although I realized that there's quite a bit of difference between a barbell loaded with 90 lbs and a 90 lb keg. The standards said the keg had to be above the shoulder and completely touch the ground. I was careful to completely put the keg on my shoulder. A little too careful, as it turns out. After I finished, I stood around watching some athletes who merely tapped their shoulder and had reps counted.

I left pretty much immediately after finishing. This was my son's fourteenth birthday, so we went home to celebrate. After going to church and being met with an awesome sermon on pride (Hhm), I came home and discovered that scores were posted online. What I found was a swift kick to the gut. Eight competitors in my division. My placement? Eighth.  As it turns out, I finished 7th in WOD 1; 8th in WOD 2.

Last place. Oh. OH. Oh NO! I immediately replayed my workouts. WOD 1 was pure death. Not much I could do there. WOD 2 was a different story. My mind flashed back to each careful rep-- resetting the keg before moving on to the parallettes; the no rep as I set the keg down parallel to my feet instead of perpendicular; resting the keg momentarily on my shoulder with each rep-- precious seconds lost.

I was just sick. Really, I didn't want to go back. I was embarrassed (I mean, last place.) As I stared at the scores, I realized it was nearly mathematically impossible for me to break into the top 3. I wanted to cry. (And I am NOT a crier.) I told my husband I wasn't sure that I wanted him to go with me the next day. I couldn't even bear to brag share my thoughts on Facebook. I could only post this verse:
Day 2 of competition
I woke up knowing what lay before me-- an uphill battle to dig myself out of a hole. My husband reminded me of Rich Froning, who finished 30th in the pool event this year and went on to win the Games. But I didn't have days of competition to overtake those placed higher than me. I had 2 workouts. Fortunately, both were more suited to me than the first two.

WOD 3. 8:00 AMRAP. Snatches, box jumps and wall balls. 2-4-6-8... reps. I was positioned between  2 women who were in the top 3. Perfect. Exactly what I needed. I knew I needed to stay with them, and I did. I finished the workout tied for 3rd. And moved into 6th place.

WOD 4. 100:00 cap. 750M row, 50M sled push. 500M row, 50M sled push. 250M row, 25M sled push. 100 KB swings. The one I was looking forward to. I had just done a sled, row and GHD sit up WOD earlier in the week. I regularly push the sled with double my body weight. I regularly row. And more powerful than both those facts was the knowledge that I needed this win. My strategy-- go hard and outlast.
And I did. I came off the first row second and was passed on the sled push. Came off the second row just slightly behind the first place female. I kept telling myself, "This is it. Fight through the pain. I can rest when I'm done. No one has trained harder at these two moves than me. Outlast them." And I did. The only female to make it to the kettlebell swings, and I did 5 before collapsing in a heap.

And once again, I was near tears.

I didn't quit. I fought through the pain. Returned from dead last to finish tied for 4th place.
My first Rx event.

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