The CrossFit Open ended a few weeks ago and it was a roller coaster ride. I’ve had some time to reflect, refresh and refocus the past two weeks and I wanted to share my experience.
Before I dive into the workouts, I think some background information is needed. I have been working hard in the gym and on my nutrition (counting macros) for the past year because I had set a goal to do the 2017 Open workouts Rx. A few weeks before the 2017 CrossFit Open, I had an old glute/hamstring injury flare up…YIKES! I made a decision that I was not going to let this injury prevent me from reaching my goal.
When 17.1 was announced, I had a mini panic attack. Dumbbell snatches, burpees and box jump overs…yikes! I actually dreamed the night before that I tore my hamstring on the first burpee…thank goodness that didn’t happen. I decided to stay calm and go at a steady pace so that I could “baby” that leg on the burpees. I survived 17.1! I didn’t finish within the time cap, but I did get 214 reps Rx (11 away from completion). My strategy of not blowing up my hamstring week 1 was accomplished. I stuck with my plan and gave it my all. After the workout was completed, it was hard not to second-guess everything, but I had to look forward. I felt lucky to have finished the workout without causing further injury and I thought there was too much risk if I tried to do the workout again.
Dumbbells again?!?!? What is Castro thinking? This workout was all about surviving the walking lunges with 35# dumbbells. My goal was to focus on technique during the lunges and complete 2 rounds plus the 16 bar muscle ups in round 3. I was so happy when I exceeded that goal and finished 3 rounds plus 4 reps Rx (106 total reps).
Squat Snatch is not my jam. I haven’t worked on this movement a lot and I can actually Power Snatch more than I can Squat Snatch. Anyway, I was content to get to round 4 and Squat Snatch 95# 4 times. This has been added to the list of things I need to work on in 2017. Exposing weaknesses is one of the reasons I did the CrossFit Open this year.
So many emotions when this workout was announced. I hadn’t deadlifted in the past 4 months because of my injury and Dave Castro is now telling me I had to deadlift 155 lbs 55 times?!?!? AND deadlift is just the first movement. Before the clock started counting down, I told my coach that I wanted to cry. Instead, I calmed my nerves and went for it. My goal was to survive the deadlifts and push through the other movements to get at least 1 handstand push-up…but 13 minutes later I had completed 55 155 lb deadlifts, 55 14 lb wall balls, 55 calories on the rower and 16 handstand push-ups. To say I was elated is an understatement.
Then came 17.5….
Double unders are my kryptonite. I have been working on them for 5 years…yes, 5 years! I’m naturally uncoordinated and I’ve pushed out 2 babies that were over 8 pounds. Let’s just say neither of those bode well for being great at double unders. My goal was to complete all of the workouts Rx and I wasn’t going to let this workout or double unders stop me. So I said a little prayer as the clock started counting down 3, 2, 1, GO. Thirty six minutes and fifteen seconds later I completed the most physically and mentally grueling workout I have ever done. My double unders did not show up and I spent a lot of time doing single/doubles or just one double at a time. My calves cramped during round 5. It was horrible….
I “willed” myself to finish and refused to give up. When it was over, I went to a corner of the gym and cried…ugly cried. I felt defeated and was mentally and physically exhausted. My amazing gym family let me have a small pity party and then we went out for margaritas to celebrate the completion of the 2017 CrossFit Open.
The next morning I decided that I would not let one workout define me as an athlete or overshadow the accomplishments and gains I made over the past year. I went to the gym with a renewed fire and a positive mindset. “Diane” was on the menu and I crushed it setting a new personal best time.
As I looked back over the 5 weeks, I was very happy about how I performed on some of the workouts (17.2/17.3/17.4) and disappointed in others (17.1/17.5). In retrospect, crashing and burning on 17.5 was one of the best things that could have happened to me. This “failure” made me take a hard look at my weaknesses, set goals and focus.
My theme for this year is “Turning Weaknesses into Strengths”.