New Skills

This morning, I awoke to something new at the box: my very first Skills Plus class.

I have been wishing for this to happen for a while now and the day was finally here. These class focus on olympic lifting and work through the progression and form of the lift in more depth than we do in regular class. Up to now, these classes were only offered in the evening and it was impossible for me to attend them as I’m too busy / tired with the girls in the evening. However, the box has now created a 0600 Skill Plus class and Coach Cam has agreed to let me attend even though I don’t quite fit the criteria : you need to attend 6 months of 3 days/week training  (I have 16 months at 2 days/week) and be able to do most WODs at the Rx level (hum, say what? I do FG most of the time).

I must admit, I was glad to see all familiar faces as I walked in this morning since I felt like the biggest fraud showing up for a Skills Plus class. We needed to know our 1RM for the squat snatch(35#) and squat clean and jerk (65#). I know. My numbers are not impressive, but I’m here to learn and what better place to improve than in a lifting class!?! On the other side, Ben thought it was hilarious whenever I said snatch or clean & jerk when I came back home and was talking about my lifting session today. For once, he didn’t stop me from talking about Crossfit! ;)

I had so much fun working on these this morning. The squat snatch DOES NOT come naturally at all. I was going to warm-up with the 15# bar and Coach Caleb stopped me dead in my track and told me to warm up with an empty 35# bar. Yikes! Warming up with my previous 1RM. I was afraid of tiring quickly, but I managed to increase my weights by quite a lot on this one. Here were my reps:

45-45-50-55 and a very ugly rep at 60# so I’m no-repping myself on that one and therefore achieving a new 1RM at 55# (20# PR)

The squat clean & jerk came a little bit easier and it felt way more natural. Here were my reps:

55-60-65-70 and, again, one failed attempt at 75#. Coach Caleb made me repeat it as I didn’t even get the clean part properly. On the repeat, I managed to do it, but it was all broken down into sections and not flowing at all so, I no repped myself again and still come out with a new 1RM (5#PR). I’m very much looking forward to going to these classes again. I’m so glad I finally get the chance to attend and improve on my lifts! If you can’t already tell, I am one very happy Crossfitter right now! :)

I came back home and got the girls downstairs while I got breakfast ready. I was hoping to give Ben a break since he stayed home with a nasty cough last night and coughed for most of the night. I really wanted him to sleep in, but he got up quite early (0800) all things considered. I made pancakes for Rina and eggs for myself (a version of huevos rancheros and scrambled for Béa).

I’ve been reading up on the Zone diet and although I’m not done reading all the principles and calculations behind it, I’ve tried to apply it to my menus with the help of menus suggestions provided by Formula Zone. I’m not quite there yet, but I’ve lost 1.5lbs this week and 0.5% body fat. Hopefully, I’ll get the hang of things and it will become second nature quickly!

Once I was done cleaning and doing laundry, I took the girls to play outside and ride their trikes around the block and around the house. I love the perfect fall lighting after it’s been raining, it makes for the best lighting for close-up portraits!

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Team Throwdown

 

Today was my first Crossfit Team Throwdown. It was an in-house team competition and was meticulously run by Coach Cam and his lovely wife Michelle. I’m always impressed at how well-put-together and on time these events are run. Today was no different. My first event started at 1215 and I showed up a little earlier to warm-up and meet my teammates (Jaclyn, Matt and Kristjan). I knew some of them from seeing them around the box, but had never formally introduced myself so once we got the official introductions out of the way, we decided to talk strategy a bit. Someone asked me if I had the girls with me today and I replied:

No, today is my me-time. Although, I’m not sure what it says about me that I want to use my me-time to come and compete in a Crossfit Team Throwdown, but here I am!

Here were the events:

We were to do WOD 1a, followed by a rest of 5 mins and then move on to WOD 1b. Jaclyn and I warmed-up for the strict presses and then off we went. I finished with a 1RM of 70#, which is a 5# PR from my previous one. I had one very slanted attempt at 75# in which my left arm kept going up higher while the right one just stayed about eye level. I eventually gave up on that one and tried for a second attempt at that weight, but failed again. Still a PR though! :)

I then moved onto the strict pull-ups and although I did mine with the red and blue bands, they would count towards a tie breaker if there were such a case. I managed 11 banded pull-ups.

Then, it was onto the WOD 1b. I was registered for the event in the FG category. I was the last member of our team to tackle this one and although I was deathly afraid of slowing us down, I decided to go RX for all the moves, except the DUs, which I did TG (60 singles). We had a time-cap of 60 mins for that one and I brought the rear for our team finishing at 58:42. I even managed to keep all my rowing under 2:08 avg/500m which was really strong for me.

I then came back home to fuel up (I hadn’t packed any food with me as I knew I needed a break in order not to get in my head too much) and was unpleasantly surprised to come home to this:

Somebody used our fence as a canvas :(

Somebody used our fence as a canvas :(

That tag is about 5′ long and about 3′ tall. We had just painted the fence back in August too :( I made a report with the police and then fuelled up before heading back in to the Box for our second round of Skills and WODs.

My goal for the front squats was 105#. I warmed up to 95# and that felt heavy already. My sciatica was acting up already and no amount of foam rolling would help. I was surprised when 105# came and went. I ended up at 115#. Not too bad considering I had just PR’d on my 1RM at 120# Another PR for a 3RM for my front squats! Yay!

I tried a HSPU to 1 yoga block and although I was able to get down to the block, I just couldn’t get myself back up. I then had just enough time to complete 1 wall walk.

We had 5 mins to rest (ha!) / set up for the next WOD. I decided to stick with the FG category for this one, which meant, lying rope climbs, 10# wall balls, 20″ over box jumps and 25# plate ground-to-overhead. The first round of box jumps were a bit painful as my legs were still a bit swollen and tight from my fall earlier this week, but I loosened up quickly and managed not to injure myself anymore today! Here’s what my legs looked like this morning. The blood has somehow pooled at my ankles now and it looks a lot worst than it actually is.

I can’t remember what our score was, but I know it was in the 900’s for that one. I know it certainly wasn’t thanks to me because I’m pretty sure I only contributed to about 15-17% of that score, but we apparently won that WOD. I didn’t stay until the score announcement as I was already feeling the general soreness invading my body and wanted to make it home before I wouldn’t be able to move anymore! My teammates just shared the news via Facebook! Go team! I came home to a take-out dinner ready to be engulfed and then this:

Another 20 mins of soaking all by myself!

Another 20 mins of soaking all by myself! Well, almost by myself if you exclude creepy mermaid Barbie stalking me and my bruised up shins!

It was nice to relax my tired muscles by candlelight and soak for a bit before we were treated to meltdown #367 because Rina didn’t have her polka-dot pyjamas pants. They are in the laundry and I was too busy to wash them today. She didn’t want to wear any other pants so I settled the matter by telling her she could just wear her undies to go to bed tonight while I threw a load of laundry in the washing machine. I just didn’t have it in me to fight her for something silly like pj pants. I am currently sitting with my hot water bottle on my lower back while my lovely other half is snoring next to me on the couch. All before 9pm. We live exciting lives, I tell you!

 

Tough Day All Around

* Bloody shins and bruised forearms will appear in this post. You’ve been warned*

Who knew I was going to get up at 0500 for this:

 

Bruised forearms

Bruised forearms

and this:

 

Bloody, swollen and bruised shins

Bloody, swollen and bruised shins

Oh Yeah! The box ate my shins and forearms before I even had breakfast this morning. And I was actually looking forward to a good WOD before all of this happened :(

I’ve been home alone with the girls a lot lately when I’m not at work because Ben’s busy coaching season is in full swing and he’s barely home. I haven’t really seen him since he left last Thursday, even though he came back Sunday evening. I sent him this text last night before going to bed. You can see the following texts were sent this morning.

True love!

True love!

My man’s got my back (and eggs and Polysporin)! Here’s how it all went down:

 

Skill: Front Squat 7×1 followed by 4x high box jumps E2M

I was looking forward to the front squats and my goal was to attempt a PR at 120#. I normally do box jumps at 20″ so I decided to go with 24″. I don’t know how I did my calculations, but I ended up at 120# on my 6th set and still had one more round to go. I managed to get up from 120#, but I struggled through the drive. Off to the box jumps I went. Everything was fine until I attempted my 3rd rep and somehow, missed the box, landed on all fours smack on the side of the box and proceeded to howl and cry… :( The pain was brutal and unlike anything I’d ever felt. Labour was probably less painful because, at least, you were prepared mentally for the pain. I was not prepared mentally for any of this, this early in my day! Let’s just say my shin splints were totally not happy about that intrusion in their daily pain afflicting gig. They thought they were reigning in the shin pain department! I wanted to punch back the box so bad, but just had to keep reasoning that I would just hurt my knuckles and was crippled enough as it was already. It took me a while to even get off the box and walk it off. I never finished the 7th round of squats, let alone the box jumps. Still, I’ll celebrate my little PR for my front squats! Almost body weight! Maybe I’ll bridge the 35# gap sometime this year! :)

WOD: Power Lunge

I probably could have done a little heavier in the weights, but my shins were swelling up nicely and getting all tingly. Plus, I knew I had to run with mangled shins + shin splints for 2km, so I went low in the weights. Once I was done with the snot and tears fest, I set up for the WOD. 35# for the bar (empty bar) was enough for me. It was a bit easy on the Hang Power Snatch, but challenging for the lunges. I was wobbly on the lunges on rounds 2 and 4, but I stabilized the bar and managed o get through. I had to rest the bar on my back for the lunges on round 3. I finished round 5 dead last, running all by myself. People stayed and cheered me on when I came back in at 20:31. Yeppers! Slow as heck, but I ran non-stop all the 400m stretches and, once again, I finished!

I came home to finish 3 loads of laundry, dusting, vacuuming and mopping, then picking up Rina from preschool. I may have cried again when I asked Ben to vacuum the staircase and he said he was on his way to work and didn’t have time to do it just then. The throbbing in my shins has slowly decreased and the swelling is going down as the bruising darkens hourly! I hope they feel better by Sunday because I registered last night for our in-house team competition! I am exhausted and have nothing left in me. I cannot wait for 1500 to come around and Nanny to get here so I can go for a nap before heading in to work tonight. I’m pooped and ready to crash. Over and out!

Crossfit, Sparkling Toes and Hot Water Bottles With Friends = Perfect Day

I have been waiting for Saturday since I got off work on Thursday morning. Why you ask? Well, duh, Crossfit is why!

My lovely husband left for the cold Calgary on Thursday and that meant I couldn’t go to my beloved 0600 class on Friday as there was no way I would have gotten the girls ready in time for Crossfit and then manage the mayhem to get Rina in time for preschool. BUT! There’s a huge but (and I’m not talking about my back side here) in this story and my husband was caring enough to book the Nanny for this morning so I could go to Crossfit and get to my pedicure (paid for by the love of my life!) without having to drag the girls with me. :)

The class was huge (16 or 17 of us showed up) and I ran into Victoria and Bonnie! Here’s what we did:

Skill: HSPU practice

We were to do 4-6 reps of progressive HSPU followed by 8-10 ring rows x 6 sets. I managed to get down to 2×5# plates + 1 yoga block on my 5th rep, but I could only muster 2 reps that low before I just crumbled down onto my shoulders. I tried again for the next set, but could only do 1 rep. I was done! I did 8 ring rows for each rounds.

WOD: DL

That was a quick powerful one. I paired up with Georgia (she must be all of 13 years old and kicked my butt royally, but in a good way!) and let her go in the first heat. She destroyed it, doing the FG2 in 4:07. She’s small, but mighty! I tried my best to imitate her, but my old and overweight body just couldn’t do it. I finished in 6:40 for the same category (DL @ 95# and full box jumps for all rounds). Not a bad feat if I do say so myself and I probably would have taken longer had I not been trying to keep up with this little powerhouse!

Then, I rushed home, showered and took off for my pedicure. That foot rub was heavenly and it’s always nice when I have sparkly purple toes! My husband truly knows the way to my heart!

Purple Perfection!

Purple Perfection!

I came back home and had a lovely visit with Victoria! We were both sore and sat hot packs and hot water bottles like the sore Crossfitters we are while catching up and chatting. It was a nice visit and broke the monotony of just me with the girls! :) Now, of course, Rina and Béatrice also want their toenails painted so I will oblige before we go play outside! ;)

 

 

Priorities

This morning, I was really set and ready to go and do the Hero WOD for Remembrance day, but my life had other plans. My husband couldn’t take the girls to their gymnastics class this morning as we had previously agreed upon, so I sacrificed my workout in order to see the girls blossom at theirs! Béatrice is finally able to jump up with both feet leaving the ground (she wasn’t able to do that a few weeks back) and she ran the whole trampoline track to jump into the arms of her coach in the foam pit (She’s always afraid of the foam pit for some reason!) and I was able to see Rina catch some decent airtime on the trampoline today. Sure, I skipped on my “me time”, but sometimes, it can’t all be about me. It will all pay off though…

Last night, my husband texted me,  asking me what I had planned with the girls for the weekend. I told him not much, the usual and maybe try to find something fun to do with the girls (he will be away for the weekend). He asked again this morning. I asked him why he wanted to know so badly. Turns out, he was planning a surprise for me while he was away, but needed to know my agenda.  I asked him what he had in mind and he finally spilled the beans. He will book the nanny for the girls on Saturday so I will at least get to Crossfit once this week (my work schedule doesn’t allow for me to go more than that this set :( ) and then, he will book me a pedicure somewhere. He truly is the best hubby I could ever have. So considerate and loving. A few of the many reasons I married him! <3!

A Good Day

I went to bed last night in the middle of a pretty intense windstorm. Nothing unusual for the island in the fall/winter. The pattern is usually rain for a few days, windstorm, sunny day, repeat. Ever since we moved into our new house, the windstorms make me very uneasy. I don’t know if it’s because we’re not on the lower level of our house and I feel/hear the wind more, but I just keep having to reassure myself that the house has been here since 1918 and it has seen plenty of windstorms. It’s probably sturdy enough to weather a few more! ;)

Once again, I was up way before my alarm (set at 0500). I stayed in bed, trying to fall back asleep and got up in the end to go to Crossfit. I really wish I didn’t have to see 0430 on the alarm clock some days! Sleeping has become a luxury and I long for the days I used to sleep in until 1000-1100!

 

Skill: Kipping pull-ups 5x20sec E2M

I was determined to challenge myself with this today and I decided to forgo the red and blue bands and used the red and purple bands instead. I was happy to manage 5-7 reps/ rounds with these and I really focused on working on the follow-through at the bottom. I managed to do a max of 3 in a row and that was good enough for me!

WOD: Grunt

As we were warming-up for this one, Coach Caleb came by to assess our Hang power snatches and I had planned on doing the TG with the empty bar. Doing 5 reps with the bar alone was challenging enough, let alone 8 reps x 5 rounds. Upon Coach Caleb’s examination, he suggested I added weight to my bar because I looked “very powerful”. Dave got into it as well and I was convinced to add 10# for a total of 45#. I did the first round unbroken, but had to break them into 2×4 reps for all the other rounds. I did all my rounds with the TG modifications:

  • 8x Hang power snatch @45#
  • 10 Hand Release Push-ups (all on my toes)
  • 10 double crunches

I finished with a time of 13:14 and was pretty happy about this. The Hang power snatches were a real struggle for all my second sets (#5-8). I was afraid of dropping the bar on all my last reps, but I pushed through and managed to do it all! Thanks to Dave and Coach Caleb for convincing me to go heavier! :)

Before we started the WOD, I jumped on the rig and attempted a few T2B. I’m not quite there yet, but I,m getting so close, I can taste it!

I came home to shower and decided to do my hair. When I came back downstairs, Rina was staring and saying: “Wow! Beautiful hair mom!” LOL! The girls are not used to me taking time to pretty myself up!

All dolled-up!

All dolled-up and nowhere to go!

Then, I guess Béatrice was inspired to doll herself up as well because she kept asking for a “ponytail”. After Rina had butchered her hair earlier this week and fellow Crossfitter Jordan fixed it up for her, I was skeptical about my ability to pull off a ponytail, but she seemed happy with the end result!

Cutie with a fringe!

Cutie with a fringe!

Now, I get to spend the day with Ben and the girls and enjoy this beautiful sun with the family! :)

Easy Gives Nothing

What a busy two days it’s been.

It started off at 0700 yesterday morning for this:

Skill: HSPU Practice (I did 5 sets of 5).

I started off with a yoga block and 5×5# plates, then I slowly decreased it to a yoga block and 3×5# plates. It was hard to do the reps and I need to remember to push my head through at the end of the push.

WOD: Mindy

I had done this one back in March and I had done so much better back then. I’m not sure what happened yesterday, but I did poorly. Maybe it was because I did 4x strict pull-ups with the red and blue bands for each round instead of 6 kipping one. Anyway, I finished with a score of 183 (6 full rounds + 3 box jumps) whereas I had done 209 back in March. It seemed like I was keeping a good pace too, conscious about not taking too many or too long breaks. I was a bit disappointed, but I still felt good about getting out there and moving.

I came back home to this:

Rina had gotten up to no good while Ben was still in bed and decided to cut Béatrice’s hair. This is what she used to look like:

Photo 2014-09-27, 12 42 59 PM

and now, she looks like she’s sporting the hairdo from Dumb and Dumber. I was lucky enough that  fellow Crossfitter who is also a hairdresser had some free time to try and arrange BeZU’s hairdo today. Her fringe is still very short, but it doesn’t look as bad as it was before. I miss her longer soft hair though!  :(

Then, I had to rush home, shower, stuff my face and take the girls to their gymnastics class, grocery shopping, lunch and nap, followed with play time outside, dinner, shower and bedtime.

This morning, I was up at 0400 and I tried to fall back asleep to no avail. I finally got up at 0500 and got ready for this:

Skill: Tempo Front Squat 6×2 E2M

I paired up with Emily and I worked up my reps like this:

65#-75#-85#-90#-95#-100#

The last rep was hard to get up from the deep squat after 2 seconds at the bottom with 100# on my front shoulders, but I managed to do it and I was quite happy to get 100#.

WOD: Jeepers

I had done this one back in August and I had scaled it like this:

  • 10# wallballs
  • 35# AKBS
  • 200 single unders
  • finished in 17:30

Having re-read my post entry for it, I knew I had to challenge myself more today. I did so by doing these modifications:

  • 1000m row
  • 14# wallballs (all broken into sets of 5. I had to “no rep” myself so many times! They were hard!)
  • 35# AKBS (I failed 2 reps and felt like giving up altogether, but I kept at it)
  • 20 DUs and 80 single skips (I managed the 80 singles unbroken).
  • I finished in 19:52

We had to separate into heats and I was into the second heat. I was still chipping at it by the time the 0700 class started. I then came back home to this:
Rina had been up to no good again and decided to do some wall art with SHARPIES!!! She also decided to put “makeup” on Béatrice and it was all over her face and arms. Ben cleaned up Béa while I was attacking the wall with a Magic Eraser. I had nothing left in my arms after the WOD and it felt like a workout!

 

Once I was done and Rina was ready to go to school, Ben gave me the present of taking both girls with him for Rina’s drop-off while I got cooking on this Chili

I made a few modifications by using

  • 1lb extra-lean ground beef
  • 1 lb lean ground turkey
  • only 3 jalapeños peppers
  • I added 3 carrots 1/2lb mushrooms and 1 medium green bell pepper and 1/2lb crisp bacon

It smells delicious in the house right now and I can’t wait to eat it topped with some green onions, a dollop of sour cream and some grated cheddar cheese! It hasn’t been an easy 2 days, but then again, easy gives nothing!