Whole Life Challenge


I live in the South which means that it doesn’t get cold until later and when it does, it isn’t all that cold. It also means that some leaves have started to fall off the trees, but there are plenty more where those came from.

Today is sunny with wispy clouds streaking a bright blue sky. It is also windy. My wind chimes are making lots of noise outside my window as I type. But I knew it was windy before because as I was leaving the development to get to the store, the leaves were falling like rain. It was such a pretty sight. They were swirling through the sky like large snowflakes and without the bitter cold.

Part of the Whole Life Challenge was to appreciate the world around me. I have tried, although not consistently, to notice the beauty of the world, the simplicity of nature, and the wonder of living here and now. Today I was struck by the who shebang.

I was buying food and once again I noticed that while the WLC is over, I have actually incorporated many things into my life over the eight weeks. I bought a second small saucepan today which doesn’t sound very momentous, but it is. It was a conscious choice to eat different stuff. Dick hated the quinoa and I liked it. He doesn’t want to eat it ever again and I do.

Tomorrow, I want to have ham and broccoli and then have quinoa. He can have rice. I have three different saucepans already, but how do you cook one serving of either of those in a two or three quart pan and not burn it to death. I needed another smaller pan. I spend money like we have it. Okay, it was $8 and not going to break the bank. The bigger problem I had at the store was deciding if I had a good place to keep it when not in use.

I also bought some more natural, no sugar added, peanut butter for me and some Jif peanut butter for him. This is a choice. I have learned how to make the stuff without sugar taste good buy stirring in some Stevia. Duh. But it tastes wonderful on my apples and so, I enjoy it.

I have butter for me and margarine for him. He eats bread and I don’t. While I was on this challenge, Thomas’s changed the recipe for their English muffins and they simply do not taste right which I thought at first was just me after eight weeks of no bread. But they don’t cut right either and so I don’t think it is me. I’m trying to decide what to do about no bread with my eggs and I think I will just have to scramble them.

I’m still drinking almond milk and have no problem with it. I like it in my coffee and I’ve tried cooking with it and it seems to work okay. I’m sure when I go to make the next batch of Beer Cheese Soup, I will get my regular pint of 1/2 and 1/2 and make the soup the right way because I sure don’t want to ruin a batch of that.

I’ve been eating dried fruit and been less diligent about the sugar added to that. The dates are fine but the dried cranberries aren’t. I’m not on a point system, so I’m not as fanatic about stuff. I’m still eating lots of cashews, almonds, and pistachios but some of the almonds had flavored sugar around them.

And the drop in fanaticism or lack of points led me to a bit of a problem this past week. I didn’t mobilize for two days in a row because I have no idea why except I was too lazy to actually do it. Somehow, taking ten to fifteen minutes seemed like a struggle and instead I was tight and sore and didn’t really need to be. I know better but I chose poorly because of – no good reason. Laziness, slacker status, dumbness – all are possible.

I don’t know exactly what percentage of my food is “good” or “Paleo” or whatever designation. I’ve been eating Honey Mustard Dressing (homemade) on my salads, but after a few weeks of that, I’m ready for some vinaigrette again. My salads themselves stayed exactly the same. I bought some rice crackers which were better than wheat crackers inside my head, but I don’t know about anywhere else. I made olive dip/spread again. I’ve eaten some cheese.

Dick brought me back some taffy from his trip to Florida. I don’t know how much there was, but I ate it all. Every single piece. It was delicious and tasty but I didn’t need it. I have asked him to not do that again, not because I don’t like taffy, but because I do. I would have enjoyed ten pieces and been happy but instead I had at least a pound of the stuff and feel guilty and like I have no willpower or am ruled by appetites that should be controlled.

All that said, all the badness foods, four weeks after the challenge, and I’m back up a pound. So I need to rethink some of that. Mostly, I need to remember that life is for living and some bad foods are wonderful. The three bowls of ice cream with Velvet Fudge Sauce were worth every morsel. Even some of the taffy was. Eating out with friends and not obsessing about the menu was priceless. Knowing how to choose better was, too.

Appreciating not just the scenery, but the freedom to choose foods is something we all take for granted. There are some places in the world where food is so scarce, you eat what you have and hope there will be more tomorrow – which is truly Paleo, but not the way I want to select my diet.

I’m looking forward to our Thanksgiving feast. Sarah is hosting and is a wonderful cook. So is Dayna and quite frankly, so am I. I know that the food we are eating is not “compliant” and I know it will be tasty. And I’m willing to throw caution to the winds and enjoy the food and the family that surrounds it. What an easy choice to make.

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I had a lovely recovery day yesterday (brisk walk and stretching included). I went to Walmart and bought some junk food. I got teeny, tiny KitKat bars that can be in the freezer. I love those. I haven’t opened them yet, but they are frozen. For breakfast I still had my own best-ever yogurt with blueberries and pomegranate. Lunch was a spinach salad with tuna, egg, and olives. Dinner was chicken with quinoa and sautéed mushrooms and asparagus. All pretty Paleo. Except I sprinkled some Parmesan cheese on the top of the chicken before baking. Then, finally, I had some Talenti banana chocolate swirl ice cream with Velvet Fudge Sauce.

Most of the shopping I did this weekend still brought in healthy food. However, I have no intention of being full Paleo forever. I did feel guilty about each item of junky food, but it is all so delicious. I made Honey Mustard Dressing for my salads this week, but I’m still having salads this week. I will put my topping on them again even though the dried cranberries have sugar added. I ate my eggs at breakfast today with an English muffin and will not be adding eggs to my salads.

I haven’t noticed any health differences since adding back some wheat and dairy, but it hasn’t really been all that much of either. My coffee still has almond milk in it. I had ONE WHOLE M&M yesterday afternoon and it was wonderful – it was a mint one. I love those.

I think the WLC broke me. I was eating horribly and didn’t think too much about it. I knew where the junk food was, but I kept telling myself it wasn’t that much and I wasn’t overweight and it was all okay. And then I tried this stunt and it was eye-opening. At sixty, there is still much one can learn.

But it is now Monday and so I was at the box. The post-WOD had AMRAP sit-ups for two minutes and I only got 52 which shouldn’t have been that bad, but my abs are sore and I can tell each time I engage my core. And I have the wonderful sit-up ass-rash going on, too. Today, I chose to run the 400 meters instead of row and I ran the whole thing. Came back to the box dead last, too. Then lunge down the mat and then shuttle runs. I had just run. What in the hell? Dead last again. Then baby makers and then rolling up to one side and that is where I hit the wall. My ass-rash was not going to have any of that. So I picked something else. Finished off with some stretching and rolling out stuff.

Today’s WOD as written:
3,3,3,3,3 Front squats
Sindy
As many rounds as possible in 15 minutes:
Pull Ups – 5 reps
Push Ups – 7 reps
40 lbs Ball Slams – 10 reps

There were eight of us there and six stations for bars so Ashley and I shared a space. Ricky cleaned his bar before squats, always the overachiever.

Ashley and I started with just 32# and then added incrementally to 37, 42, 52, 57, and 62 which was really more rounds than we needed to do. I managed the three reps at 57 but could only do one rep at 62. I thought it was a PR and so I just looked. It was. My last PR was at 52# so that is another record for me. If it weren’t for these records, I would think the WLC was just the diet, but the diet is helping me achieve. I need to remember that when picking my food items. I like getting stronger.

And then on to the Dorothy Parker part of the day. What fresh new hell is this?

I went with just a green and I guess it is a gray band, the smallest one there is. So I knocked back a bit but it was only five at a time, so I figured it was a perfect time to try it. Then seven pushups and slam balls (insert any and all expletives as needed). The women’s weight was that weenie 25# thing that damn near kills me since those are the only two sizes we have and could be, for all I know, the lightest weight available.

So, I scaled it for myself and made my rep scheme 5-7-5 and still couldn’t manage to get all five slam balls done at one go. Ryan did not make us stand back up on the last rep – Kim had.

I was beeping like crazy and had to keep resting. I managed all five pull-ups easily, got the seven pushups all at once until I tried starting them with too high a heart rate, and had to do three and then two on the slam balls each and every time. I made 7+12.

I actually got the ball to bounce on more than half of the slams and could scoop it up. My squats felt good on all but one and that was just so messy I was lucky I didn’t fall over and smash into Ashley. It is official. After trying this again, I hate slam balls. The only positive is that now wall balls look better. I’m sure there is something hideous, odious, and loathsome that would make slam balls look good. I don’t want to meet it.

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I have complained bitterly about the restrictions. I have whined copiously about the amount of water. I have obsessed daily about the food. I climbed out of bed one night at 11.30 to do my mobilization crap because I forgot it and I didn’t want to lose the points.

I have watched each and every point, shepherding them into neat piles. I have nine bonus points left over which means I was harder on myself than I needed to be, but I did the beginner level which means I already had lots of wiggle room.

There were 771 people who ended the game with 605 points – or all of them. I was one of those people. Some of them did harder levels and some used no bonus points and some did both. I am in awe of these people. But quite frankly, I’m amazed at myself. Give me points and make it a game and I will be damned if I lose even if it ends up making me healthier, fitter, leaner, and meaner.

My goals were to lose 5-7 pounds and finally not weight more than I said was my top limit. I was never going to weigh more than 130 and for the last several years, I have. I don’t anymore. While this is nice and it is measureable, it is totally unimportant. It is nice to not feel like I let myself down in my old age, but I was a very nice person even when I weighed more than my young self nine months pregnant. I was just fluffier.

Another goal was to be able to run 400 meters. That is a quarter mile. It is nothing compared to the people who run marathons or even super-marathons (something like 50 miles or more). But for me, it was a milestone. It was a measureable marker of something I simply couldn’t do before and I wanted to be able to do. I’ve done it. More than once.

My last goal was to improve my fitness score.

Today’s WOD as written:
As many 25-yard shuttles as possible in 2 minutes
Rest 1 minute
2 minute AMRAP
5 pushups
10 squats
Rest 1 minute
2 minute AMRAP
Sit-ups
Rest 1 minute
As many 25-yard shuttles as possible in 2 minutes

I managed 12 shuttle runs, 3+2 on the pushups and squats, 45 sit-ups, and 9 runs on the pretest. My score was 198. I wanted to break 200 which was going to be easy, I mean two points – anyone could, right? But my dream was to break 225 because that was a cool marker and also because it was the next lowest score on the board. It’s all baby steps.

Today, I got 13 shuttle runs, 4 on the pushups and squats, 52 on the sit-ups, and 11 on the runs. Each shuttle run was worth five points, the rounds of pushups and squats were 15 points each. That gave me a score of 232. I got my points and improved on each section.

I managed to achieve every one of my goals. Pretest was measuring waist and hips and then do that again at the end. I lost 5.5 inches. I have no idea how or why when I didn’t lose that many pounds. I didn’t suck my stomach in to be as skinny as possible either time. My body composition improved by 8%. My fitness improved by 17%. These are remarkable numbers for eight weeks.

I don’t usually diet, hence the years of being over my top weight ever. But I thought I was eating okay, right up until I tried this stunt. It has been incredibly difficult to stay away from the ubiquitous junk, chemical shitstorms, and all around crap food that Americans consider a normal diet and all of that is true even though I almost never hit a fast food joint or go for takeout. I don’t ever eat anything marked “diet” because that always means “chemical shitstorm” and I trust Mother Nature far more than Big Business Chemists.

Cooking healthy meals was difficult and some days downright discouraging. However, it got easier as time went on. It is not the way I normally cook and I wouldn’t want to keep this up indefinitely. However, I fully intend to watch how things go after this is over and if I see my weight, measurements, fitness level, stamina, or drive faltering, I know what to do.

I’ve never thought of wheat or dairy as evil and yet, I’ve not been this robust in decades – since I stopped playing racquetball. I have eaten an inordinate amount of food in the last eight weeks and still lost weight and inches while increasing stamina and fitness. I think I’ve gone through at least 8 pounds of pistachios, 3-4 pounds of almonds, 1.5 pounds of pumpkin seeds (and that is a lot of pumpkin seeds) and God alone knows how much plain yogurt, sticks of butter, virgin olive oil, and other non-diet foods.

I have not had a host of chemicals disguised as food. I haven’t had high fructose corn syrup. I haven’t had box-o-“food”stuff.

Last night for dinner, we ate clean even though there were no points involved. I had my final WOD today and after all this work I didn’t want to blow it. Fish without tartar sauce (I had cocktail sauce I made myself), sautéed mushrooms with asparagus (mushroom enhanced olive oil), and acorn squash (but I used a point and added some brown sugar to it and it was much better – and I kept the cinnamon and so it was delicious).

Tonight it is all over. Everything is done and the final measurements are in and I’m throwing caution to the wind and going Modern instead of Paleo. I’m looking forward to shrimp fettuccini Alfredo. I am making Velvet Fudge Sauce this afternoon for dessert tonight. I might have a bowl of potato chips. I’m celebrating with the junk food I’ve been missing.

Tomorrow, I intend to pull back and do a small recovery day workout, do my mobilization, take my supplement, and mostly eat clean-ish. I’m making Honey Mustard Dressing for my salads for the next few weeks, but I will still have my salads and some fruit for my lunch. I have English muffins in the house to go with my post-WOD eggs and if I see that isn’t working, I will have to devise something else.

I love the strength and power I’ve found hidden under the garbage food and sitting around old self which has had the opportunity to shine through and show me what an old fart is supposed to be like. Someday, I want a picture of me lifting some heavy weight with all the gray hair and wrinkles in evidence and some not-as-old-fart looking at it and thinking, “I could do that” and getting up and moving. I would love to be able to be an inspiration for someone who was me a year ago.

All this is possible only because my son said, “Mom, there is a CrossFit in Summerville. You should check it out.” I did. It has made all the difference.

Not everyone is lucky enough to have a son who is as wonderful as mine, who is into health and fitness like mine is, and who would care enough to look stuff up like that.

There may not be a CrossFit near you, but there is something. If you want to be a sassy, fit, lean and mean old fart – go there. And eat clean because it absolutely fucking helps. Who knew?

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I’ve scored my last score for the Whole Life Challenge. I’m done. It’s over. It’s all gone. Well, it isn’t all gone. It will never be ALL gone. I’ve learned too much and incorporated too much into my daily choices, my day-to-day living.

From the final blog post at WLC:

Today you are free. Free from all restrictions, rules, and daily reporting. You are free to do anything (or nothing). Eat anything that pleases you.

Freedom is a funny thing. You’ve had it all along, by the way. You had it before the WLC, you had it during the WLC, and you have it now. Up until now, you might not ever have known it.

So, what am I going to do today? I’m not doing the CrossFit Summerville WOD. They are doing Bring Sally Up and I need my legs to work tomorrow for my final WOD for the WLC that we are doing together at 9 AM. I don’t usually do three days in a row and having something that will shoot my legs out from under me seems pointless. I’ve worked too hard to be stupid today. So I will do something else. I will not sit on my no-longer-fat-ass doing nothing all day.

I already took my daily supplement. I’m also going to mobilize later and I have a massage scheduled for this afternoon. I need this old body to be able to do what I ask of it. I want to beat that score I had on the first day.  No, I need to beat that score I had on the first day. I’ve worked hard and I will push myself to see results.

We are going to eat clean tonight for dinner. I know because I’m in charge of cooking it and it will be clean.

Tomorrow, after the post WOD, I am living large and throwing caution to the wind. I will make Velvet Fudge Sauce and have some ice cream when we get home from Alesandro’s feast where I plan to have shrimp fettuccine Alfredo.

Next week on my salads I will be putting Honey Mustard dressing instead of the Balsamic Vinaigrette I have been making.

Post WOD breakfast is going to be two eggs and an English muffin.

I am going to see about making my own granola and having that available for breakfasts. I bought a pasta maker so I can make my own pasta. I want to do more of my own cooking from ingredients that I control instead of having HFCS in everything. I intend to keep buying (in fact I already have the next jar) of natural plain no-sugar gag-you peanut butter. I’ve been adding Stevia to it and eating that on my apples. It is delicious.

I intend to keep making my own fruit yogurt by thawing out frozen fruit (I really like it mushier) and adding Stevia and plain crappy nothing added yogurt to it to make a delicious non-WOD day breakfast. I need more protein after a workout. This just left me starving.

Since I’m having eggs for breakfast, I will no longer put an egg in my salad for lunch. It all evens out eventually.

We have discussed how we really haven’t missed potatoes all that much. I will have quinoa only when Dick has something else. Parsnips turned out to be better than we thought they would be.

Instead of an unlimited amount of pistachios, I will ration them out. I intend to get more calories from some of the above junkier foods and so I need to be aware of the places the calories have come from during this challenge.

I lost 6.8 pounds on this challenge. People lost lots more, but I didn’t need to lose that much. I wanted 5-7 pounds and it looks like I got pretty dang close to my higher number there. More importantly, I’ve been pushing myself at the box, attempting things that scared me. I’ve pushed old limits. I pick heavier weights. I do as much as I can considering my age and overall fitness level.

I’m still playing too many mindless and unimportant computer games. I need to post a schedule for myself for writing the same way I have a schedule for myself for working out. I need to clock so much time per day in the activities that mean something to ME personally rather than frittering away this precious life that is slipping by one second after the next. I can’t imagine laying on my deathbed and being grateful for beating a dumb, pointless game. Doing what matters should take precedence. It is up to me to make that happen.

So, I have a plan in place. I need to work my plan. But for this, other than the final measurements and last workout, I’m done. I’m changed, too.

WLC

I have to realize that my schedule does not influence the world and it is I who must adjust to the world at large. I do not like this. The world should revolve around me and my wishes. But, so far, I’ve not been able to convince the world of this fact and so, I adjust.

Life is a choice. I can choose this or that and when I make the choice, the logical consequences follow and there is nothing else to do but realize the choice was either terrific or another one of those really stupid things I do from time to time. Okay, many times. Often. Okay, I make some really dumb choices, let’s get past this.

I love my new work schedule but it is really difficult on days when there are no clients and the bosses are out of the office and there is simply not enough to do to fill the hours. The day drags on and lasts forever. Yesterday, to avoid being there so late and since it was a recovery day and I was ready for work early without box stuff to recover from, I went in early so I could leave early. And then Mandi and I decided to take the boss’s credit card and go shopping so we got out of the office even earlier and got lots of baskets so we could hide all the junk that is always sitting out being ugly. It was actually fun.

After dinner I walked around the block at a faster than normal pace and then ran the last probably 200 meters back to the house for my activity for the day. I used Cathie’s plan and did my mobilization before I sat back down with a delectable piece of chocolate melting in my mouth. It was a relaxing evening. I looked at the WOD and realized that it was going to be fine to sleep in and that I must make myself go to the 9 AM open gym time. And so that is what I did. I seem to actually go if I say it out loud. “I will go to the box at 9 AM” and suddenly I’m committed and at the box at 9 AM. If I don’t say it out loud, it’s like I didn’t make this promise to myself. Really dumb, right? But I do what I have to in order to make it all work.

The clock was running when I got there so I could time my 400 meter “run” which is really the world’s slowest jog or something. Three minutes exactly to run a quarter mile. Pitiful unless you realize that when I started the WLC one of my goals was just to be able to run 400 meters without stopping. I’m so glad I wasn’t dumb enough to try some time limit or anything.

I did other warm-up stuff for myself and stretched and then, I decided I wasn’t doing the skill that was included in the WOD. They were doing progressions for handstands and walking on hands and what I really wanted to know was what my deadlift PR was. The last time I did this was last spring and I lifted a Monica, my niece, who weighs 112# or at least did at that time. It is okay because she is five feet tall unless she is 5’1″ but I think that might be generous.

The last time we had to do repeated deadlifts, I was doing 83# lots of times. It was difficult, but I figured my PR must be higher by now. So I worked at that.

I did ten lifts with just 53# to warm up and then went to 83# and five lifts. Then was at 93, 103, and 113 when Ryan, who was also working out asked, “What is your PR?” before I lifted that last one. I answered 112, lifted the weight, and said, “113” which was kinda fun. I mentioned my goal today was to lift my bodyweight.

Then I did 123 and got that off the ground. It still wasn’t my body weight because I’m 126# so I added another 5 and got 128 off the ground. I added another five and got 133 off the ground and now I lifted my bodyweight before the WLC. I added another 5 and got it up with full hip lockout and dropped it so I made 138#. Kim had said to keep going until I could get it off the ground. I added another 5# and met my Waterloo.

A 26# or a 23% increase over my last PR on a deadlift. Go me!

Today’s WOD as written:
5RFT
15 wallballs(20/14)rx
200m run

Apparently Henry heard us all bitching about the slam balls and saying we weren’t going to complain about wall balls ever again and wanted to see if that was true.

Well, this looked daunting to me. That’s 75 squats and tossing around a heavy object. Admittedly, I only do a 10# medicine ball which is a vast improvement over the 4# one I used to use. I hit the line with that probably 80 to 85% of the time. So I know there is still room for improvement. I got into a real full squat with each throw. Those last two factoids mean that I have come a long way, baby.

First round, I was able to get all 15 without stopping. My 200 meter run was a stroll through the parking lot (100 meters) trying to get my heart rate back down enough to do the next round. Rounds, 2, 3, and 4 were all done with a 8-7 rep scheme with me trying to get a heart rate near 165 before the second half of the wall balls. Last round, I really wanted to get all 15 done and just stroll leisurely, but I simply couldn’t get past 10. When I looked, my heart rate was 176 and that may have been the problem. So I got it to 170 and finished the last five. I actually ran part of the way back in to cut off a couple seconds or just to be dumb, I’m not sure which. I finished in 10.54.

I was trying to talk myself into just 12 reps on the wall balls or 4 rounds. But I’m supposed to go all out or stay home. Since I could see I wasn’t in the house, I went all out.

This is a picture of the bar  which weighs more than I do and yet, I lifted off the ground.

This is a picture of the bar which weighs more than I do and yet, I lifted off the ground.

It is Wednesday and so no box. But because I’m still in the midst (last damn week) of the Whole Life Challenge, it is not a “rest” day but a “recovery” day. I hope this is something I bring forward with me. I think it is valuable to remember to keep moving even if it isn’t at a fast pace or with weights. I need to not sit around all day getting stiff and sore.

Cathie, a friend on Facebook, had a good idea for me. I’m worried about not keeping up with the mobilization after this is over. I’m a sucker for points. If there is a grade, I will do all in my power to get an A+ (but can settle for just a lowly A) and so I have been doing this religiously. In fact, for seven and a half weeks I haven’t missed a day. I know it is helping. I didn’t schedule my next massage at my last one and it is has been over five weeks and maybe over six since I was last there. And yet, I’m not all that stiff and sore. Cathie suggested no treats/dessert until after I mobilize. I will do nearly anything for chocolate.

Also, as a plus, I have been more flexible at the box during the warm-ups and WODs and so all in all, this is just a great big bonus. I don’t know how to spread the word on this to the people who don’t believe. Here, either people don’t do CrossFit at all and think I’m crazy or else they are real CrossFitters and already know this so I am preaching to the choir. But it does make a different to stretch and work on pressure point stuff on a daily basis. It doesn’t have to be for a long time, but it does have to be daily.

I mostly speak about diet when I am talking about WLC things and it is very, very important. I learned a lot, but some of what I learned is that I’m not going to keep doing everything I learned. I am not giving up wheat and dairy for the rest of my life. I have seen no problems solved since cutting these foods out of my life. I will, however, be cognizant of the amount of wheat and dairy I’m consuming. I may decide that cheese and crackers are not an adequate lunch. But maybe cheese and a nice crispy apple aren’t as bad. Or maybe, just maybe, that isn’t bad at all.

What I’m doing this week for lifestyle is called Kindness. I’m supposed to be kind to others on a daily basis. Now, as my family and friends can attest, I am one mean bitch when I want to be. But then again, I can be kind and sweet when I want to be. I often (and those close to me don’t need to snort and look derisive here) choose to be kind. I let people into traffic (if they haven’t driven up on the shoulder to cut in at the last minute – those assholes can rot there). See, I can be a bitch.

I have always told little old ladies who obviously put a lot of effort into getting all gussied up before leaving the house that I like their outfit or shoes or something that acknowledges their effort. I smile at strangers who look like they might need a smile. My sister-in-law and I both do this and so we are also what we call “nut magnets” because sometimes this smiling backfires and you get a new friend-for-life because you were nice and get to hear all about their entire existence, which is often bizarre. But even that is okay, because these lonely people need someone to talk to and really, how hard it is to listen and make noncommittal noises while smiling.

I don’t know if I’m supposed to be making some grand gesture of kindness on a daily basis. Am I supposed to go to some coffee shop and pay the next person’s bill for them? I don’t go to coffee shops myself and brew all my own coffee. Am I supposed to stop at a traffic accident? I actually did this once as I was on a country road, a kid was hurt, and I am a nurse. But I haven’t come upon an accident without having the ambulance already there in 35 years (I know the date because I was pregnant with Joe when I stopped).

I try to be nice as often as I can without the mean bitch stepping in the way. I give credit to others even when it would be easier and better for my ego to take credit for myself. I believe this is just karma in action and have done it ever since my mother would smack the back of my head lightly while saying, “Be nice.”

I am impatient, especially with idiots who should know better. My favorite literary quote of all time comes from Dr. Seuss: “Come now, come now/ You don’t have to be so dumb now.” I don’t even know which book that was from, but it often goes through my head as I watch some adult do something childishly stupid. I have trouble being kind in these types of situations.

I’m not exactly sure what this Kindness is supposed to entail. What I do know for sure is that I can still hear, quite often, my mother’s voice saying “Be nice” which to me is the same thing as being kind. I hope, perhaps against all hope, that she can be proud of me.

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It was a long day at work yesterday, but I got a lot of stuff off my desk and out the door, so it was all good. Working all day makes the time pass quickly and that was a good thing, too.

Between taking a nap in the car on Sunday and not being able to fall asleep and then having to get up in the middle of the night to get to the box, I was really tired. I was reading and fell asleep on the couch. I had my book on top of me and my glasses on when I woke up but I was too tired to do more than grab a blanket and sleep there for a while longer. I finally could get myself to bed.

Luckily I had done mobilization early in the evening or I would have just had to lose a couple points because I simply was too tired to do anything more than sleep. When the alarm went off this morning it was still too early. But I dragged myself out of bed and got to the box.

Warm-up began with a 1000 meter row again. I think I’m rowing a slow boat to China. Very slow boat. Rest of the warm-up was pretty standard and ended with incremental moves to a snatch.

Today’s WOD as written:
15 min working on snatch technique
7 MIN AMRAP
3 PUSH JERK (175#/115#)RX+(135/95)rx scaled
10 SLAMBALLS (40/25) [link goes to video showing delightful slam balls being done correctly)

I can do a perfect snatch move with a PVC pipe one out of ten tries. I can even do it with the sand filled PVC pipe which weighs three pounds. I cannot fall under the 22# bar and catch it in a full squat. I’m not sure how long this is going to take to learn, but I hope I don’t die of old age before it happens.

They bought some slam balls a while ago and they have been sitting there looking ominous for a few weeks. Today was the day to learn how to use these damn things because wall balls aren’t bad enough. They have 25 and 40 pound slam balls. I’m a 10 pound wall ball person, myself. Are we noticing a problem?

We watched a video (see above) about how to do this with unbouncy balls bouncing up into your hands as you squat and slam and catch and look all powerful and graceful. Well, someone else might look like that. I could barely get the thing overhead. I looked pitiful and I got about zero bounce going on my best slams. I looked more like I could use some rehabilitation than anything remotely graceful.

Coach Kim said I could cut the reps to five. I was beeping like crazy. This thing is really hard work. Who knew? I have friends who see slam balls on the WOD and get all exciting and love them. It is lucky they are part of the blogosphere because if they were standing in front of me saying that, I would have to hit them with a bat. Hard. Many times.

Back to the WOD and away from these delightful daydreams.

I used a 42# bar for the push jerk and had to remember not to do a push press and give that final dip. I may have done that 3/4 of the time but I’m pretty sure I did a few push presses. The slam balls were pitiful even only doing five. I think I might have got a real bounce once in there. It shocked me and almost make me fall over. I think with practice this move might get a bit more ingrained, but it is still heavy for a weenie little old lady.

Even with the lower reps, I had to keep resting because I beeped all the time. As I finished a round, there were 90 seconds left and I was beeping and had to get my heart rate down to I didn’t have to clean the bar twice for three pitiful push jerks. Time was slipping by, but I couldn’t help it. I got to 157 and figured I could get all three done without getting too high of a heart rate.

I managed that and there was less than a minute left when I could start the slam balls. I had had to rest in the middle of the five each time because I was beeping too much. But I really wanted to finish the round. I managed five and had a heart rate of 175 with ten seconds left on the clock. I simply could not pick up the bar again and had to be happy with 4+0 rounds.

The best thing about this is that now, wall balls look better. Cindy said she would never complain about them again but Todd piped up, “I will” and that’s why I love this CrossFit stuff. There is always something to bitch about.

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