Taming the Competitor Within…

Just one more rep.  That’s all I need.  I can do this…

I’ve made the decision to NOT re-do CrossFit Open Workout 18.3 although I’m super close to a ring muscle up.

Why?

Because of my wrist.

18.3 was harder on it than I thought it would be.  It had only been five days, and I pushed it hard.  I had to break up the overhead squats (something I normally wouldn’t do) and the muscle ups attempts took their toll.

Still, the recording of wanting to do my best is playing over and over again in my mind.  I can’t shut it off.  It’s annoying as hell.

There’s no peace within and it’s a battle for sure.

Still, I don’t want to risk being out longer than what I am for one stupid rep that means nothing to no one but myself.

I know I’ll have ring muscle ups by the end of May.  Because once my wrist is healed I’ll be at it virtually every day (given the state of my hands) until I have it.

Same with handstand walks.

I’ll have them consistently by the end of May because it will be a daily workout for me.

Breaks are good.  Giving injuries the time they need to heal is good.  Pushing when I don’t have to and possibly delaying my full return–not good.

This is all a mental game.  Your body will do whatever you ask of it (up to a certain point of course).  If I wanted to re-do this workout, my body would comply.  It wouldn’t refuse.

There is so much coming up in the months ahead that I can’t let this minor injury become something more.  Competitions, running 5k’s, meeting my skills goals of muscle ups and handstand walks, completing my list of having every move mastered so next year in the Open it won’t matter what Dave picks and I’ll crush every one has to stay in the forefront of my mind.

The big picture must prevail.

Those little steps have to happen in order to accomplish great things…

This is one of my favorite books and stories of all time.  I cry every time I watch this because it would be the hardest thing I’d have to do is let go…

Could This Be the First Year in CrossFit Open History with NO Repeat Workout?

Image result for crossfit open 2017

As I’m going through the Open workouts from last year, I realize something:  we’ve done a lot of these moves already this year so if Dave picks an Open workout from last year we’ll be repeating a move.  Double unders, bar muscle ups, toes to bar, dumbbell snatches, rowing.

This, of course, goes against the definition of CrossFit: constantly varied functional movements performed at high intensity.

That’s not to say we can’t repeat a move.

What haven’t we seen yet?  Box jumps, wall balls, deadlifts, and chest to bar pull ups.

Dave Castro always repeats an Open workout from the year before.  But what if he doesn’t this year?  That would be him:  always trying to stay unpredictable.

It’s a possibility I thought I’d throw out there.

Any thoughts on the matter?

“Four Months from Now, Will You Care About Your Open Score?”

This was the response of an athlete at my box when asked whether or not she’d re-do the workout or not.

At first, I agreed.Image result for crossfit open 18.2

However, it has kept coming up in my mind over and over again–a nettle that won’t let go–because deep inside I don’t agree.

The Open for me is about doing the best I know I’m capable of.  This entails re-doing the workouts because there is a learning curve–especially to movements such as the hang dumbbell clean that is not all that frequent of a movement in CrossFit programming.  If I have an opportunity to do better, I’m gonna take it!

This applies to all aspects of my life.  I always strive to do my very best in everything I do because I care about my work and the results.  I want to learn to do things better.  I want to be a better parent.  A better wife.  A better employee.  A better member of society.  A better writer.  A better CrossFitter.  A better person.  This involves practice.

I re-did 18.2 and 18.2a today.  My goal was to do 18.2 30 seconds better.  My goal for 18.2a was to clean 5 more pounds.

I met both of these goals–almost exactly.

All because I knew I could do better.

If I don’t try when I know I have more in me, I’m letting myself down.  And for me I can’t live with that.

So to answer the question:  I care and I will care in four months when the lights dim and the hubbub diminishes what my Open scores were.  I want to do my very best in this competition.  For myself.  To verify in my mind all my sacrifices are worth it.  It’s important to me.  Don’t get me wrong–I’m always in it to win it.  But the competition is within.

Challenges and goals.  Some met, some not.  But always doing my best.  Till the day I take my last breath…

Do I DARE to Hope?

I told you all yesterday how I re-did CrossFit Open workout 18.1 and improved substantially.

Well, that improvement jumped me to the top 20 in my region in my age group…which got me thinking about Regionals?  Could I make it?  Do I dare to hope?  To dream?CrossFit DNR 8

It hasn’t ever been a goal of mine–Regionals–or the Games.  It just seemed so far out of my reach.  The Games athletes are professionals. They spend hours every day working out.

To tell the truth, it scares me because I don’t have muscle ups or handstand walks consistently or pistols.  I would have to work my butt off if I made it to have these by Regionals in a few months.

Whether I make it or not, I’m enjoying the thought of it.

The whole point of the Open for us lay people is to see how much we’ve improved since last year.  Based off of Workout number one, I’m VASTLY improved. This does wonders for the mind because sometimes it feels as if I’m wasting my time with all this hard work.  Being sore all the time.  Tweaks here and there.  Massages and muscle activation just so I can move again.  Hours and hours dedicated.

Results?

Priceless.

Currently, I’m sitting in 33rd place.  I’m very excited about this.  I will probably fall down as the workouts emerge.  But all the blood, sweat, tears, soreness, pain, anxiety, sacrifices and heartache are worth it. Even if it doesn’t last.

But for me I won.  In my heart and mind I’ve won.

This is better than any expectations I could ever have.

So I’m going to enjoy Cloud 9 while it lasts.  Savor the moment.  Then get right back to work!!

I’m Glad I Didn’t Listen…

“You gonna re-do it?”Image result for crossfit open workout 18.1

“Nah, I’m good.  I’m happy with my score.  If I re-did it, I’d only improve by a few reps.”

This was the reply I heard most frequently when around the internet community if they were going to re-do CrossFit Open Workout 18.1.

Ben Bergeron’s advice:  You’ve spent one whole year training for the Open.  Why wouldn’t you re-do it?

So I followed Bergeron.

And I’m SO glad I did.

I re-did 18.1.  I gained 30 more reps!  Almost 2 whole rounds above my old score.

I was hoping for 3.  I got 30.

So what changed?

Two things:

  1. I figured out the hang cleans and had all clean reps.
  2. I pushed harder.  I knew in my head I didn’t want to re-do this workout without improving my score so I kept thinking the entire time, “You gotta go, Jen.  You gotta do better.”  And I did.

Furthermore, I knew because of the dumbbells and the no reps in the first 2 rounds I could do better.  I knew it.  And I did.

I’m proud.

I love Bergeron now more than ever.

He was right.  I’ve spent so much time, effort, and energy over the past year training for this.  I HAVE to try it twice. Every time.  NO matter what.

I owe it to myself to do so.

Don’t you?

Friday Night Lights

Image result for crossfit open 18.1

I just returned from doing CrossFit Open Workout 18.1:

AMRAP 20 min:

8 Toes to bar

10 dumbbell hang clean and jerks

12 calories on the rower

My score:  267

It was okay.  I wanted 10 rounds and didn’t quite get 9 rounds.  I may re-do it, but I’m unsure.  The row seemed to go on forever.

The atmosphere was great.  We all supported one another and cheered one another on.

Still, something was missing, and I can’t put my finger on it.  It was different than last year.  I think I had all this hype built up in my head, and it was a bit of a let down.  I’m unsure.  I have such high expectations of myself, and I was disappointed in how I did.

All I know is the Open is different for me this year.  It will probably be different next year.  And the following…

Tips to Crush the Open…

Jingle 6Today is the day a lot of us CrossFitters have been waiting months for.

18.1.  The announcement.  What will it be?

I’m not here to predict (we’ll all find out soon enough).

I’m here to offer up tips and advice so you can “crush” the Open.  We all have different goals for the Open and different ways we’ll crush it.  Some of us it’s doing all the workouts RX (or as prescribed).  Some of us want to beat our score/rank from last year.  Most of us want to test our fitness against others.  Most of us want to do our best.  So read below for tips to achieve your best:

  1. DON’T CHANGE ONE THING!  Keep your workout routine the same and approach this WOD the same.  Eat the same way.  Sleep the same way.  Workout the same way.  It’s just another workout.
  2. DON’T IGNORE THE MENTAL GAME.  Understand what you can control and what you can’t.  You can’t control others.  You can’t control what the WOD will be.  You can control how you perform.  Don’t psych yourself out over this.
  3. BE IN IT FOR THE LONG HAUL.  This is a 5 week competition in essence.  5 workouts you need to do your best on.  That being said, there will be one or two workouts that will play to your strengths.  Maximize these.  There will be one or two workouts that won’t.  Minimize the hurt potential on these.  Go into each WOD thinking you will crush it.
  4. WAIT TILL AFTER WEEK 5 TO CELEBRATE.  Have a beer after week 5, not week 1, 2, etc.  Don’t waste a day or two of training because you’re hungover or ate junk food.  Respect the process.
  5. SLOW AND STEADY WILL WIN THE RACE.  Don’t be so hyped up with the hype that you go all out in the first 2 minutes of the workout and then have nothing left.  Be conservative.  Your score will reflect your patience.
  6. HAVE FUN!  Most of you will do this on Friday Night during Friday Night Lights with the community that drew you to CrossFit in the first place and the reason you keep beating up your body day-in and day-out.  Enjoy the party.  The atmosphere.  The camaraderie.  The magic that happens once a year.

I keep telling myself to breathe and relax because I REALLY want to beat my ranking from last year.  I’m trying to sleep enough.  Eat enough.  And not do anything stupid.

Believe in yourself.  Because in the end that’s all that matters.