Sunday, July 31, 2011

Day 49: I Finally Took a Rest Day....Kinda

Last night my friend Breanne and I went to see Britney Spears in concert, and it was amazing!  One really funny thing happened that I just have to share. 

I think I mentioned in one of my older posts that there is a specific song that I've heard during most of my WOD's because for whatever reason, when Mike puts his iPhone on shuffle, it always comes on.  So now when I hear that song outside of Crossfit, I want to cover my ears and cry.  There was no chance in hell hearing that song performed at a Britney concert right?  WRONG!

Nicki Minaj was her opener and me not being a huge fan, had no idea that she is featured in "that" song.  So when it started playing, I was like "are you freaking serious?" and just had to text Molly:

Karen:  Annnn Niki Menage (Spelling?) just sang the song that makes me think of crossfit.  I want to cry.

Molly:  Haha! R U in fetal position with your hands over you ears??? Cause that might be awkward. hahah

Molly:  Hey now I know who sings your most hated song!

I've kept my most hated song a secret from Mike and Molly for obvious reasons, so please accept that as your first and last clue.  If either of you correctly guess the song, I will do Burpees and Double Unders for the length of the song.

I got home SUPER late that night and slept through the Sunday WOD.  It probably was best that I didn't go, as I had gone to 7 WOD's in a row without a rest. 

Sunday Dennis and I had to clear out one of the guest rooms in our house since it is being redone (which included a Treadmill, a 3 part corner shelf, and a cabinet) and I have to say we did a great job.

Just that same afternoon I was talking to Dennis about how one of the affiliate Crossfit websites had a discussion about why should people do Crossfit and their answers were spot on.  It talked about how crossfit prepares you for any type of physically demanding activity.  Whether it's running from one side of the airport to another, competing for a medal, or carrying groceries to your car, crossfit does exactly that, makes you Cross Fit. 

So we had to move these HUGE pieces of furniture that in the past we had to get friends to help.  Not this time.  Dennis and I were able to lift that insanely heavy Treadmill into the other room, with little struggle on our own.  I remember a time when we moved I was simply the "supervisor." Not anymore!

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Day 48: Hello Weekend!

Last night I went to the Iron Pigs game with my company and I treated myself to a night 32oz beer.  It was nice hanging out with co-workers, enjoying the game, and of course enjoying  my adult beverage.  Dennis wasn't able to join us because he had a softball game, which was fine, but what I find funny is the text message I sent to him before I fell asleep:

July 29th 10:05pm "Going to sleep wake me up for crossfitttttt."

Something is taking over me!  I have gone to a WOD 7 days in a row, and depending on what time I get home tonight from Philly, I may try to keep the streak going.  I think that I've been trying to get extra WOD's in to offset my eating. 

I've been doing the best I can with the give situations, but for some reason the past two weeks I've been in more restaurants/social situations/parties than I have in the past two months. 

I've learned that cheating on a day that I haven't worked out is like a double whammy and cheating on a day that I have worked out doesn't give me as much guilt, but trust me I still feel some.

There is only one week left of The Best Shape of My Life Challenge and I am hoping for no surprises here.  I have earned enough points to get my entry fee of $50 dollars back, which was my main goal, and I have lost about 7 pounds.  (This should adjust with the final weigh in).  No matter what happens, I have to be proud of myself.

I have learned a great deal about having a healthy life style and challenge or not I'm going to try to be as healthy as I can.  I know that if I continue to work as hard as I have been inside and out of Crossfit, I will always look and feel my best. 

I decided to make this experience public by having this blog, so it's only fair that I include my before and after pictures once the challenge is over.

I hope everybody is enjoying this beautiful Saturday day!!


21 Turkish Get Ups (R Arm)
50 Kettlebell Swings
21 OHS (L Arm)
50 Kettlebell Swings
21 OHS (R Arm)
50 Kettlebell Swings
21 Turkish Get Ups (L Arm)


Friday, July 29, 2011

Day 47: Running and Push ups...YAY

Today I knew that if I didn't go to the WOD in the morning, I wouldn't be able to go at all.  There wasnt' much pressure to go again since I was on a bender, but no harm in going if I was up for it. 

I woke up and tried to convince Dennis to join me, but he was too tired so I went alone. (Actually he was being whiney that the WOD was going to take 30 minutes + and would make him late for work). 

The WOD was all running and pushups and I very much enjoyed it.  During the runs I walked if I needed to and if I needed a quick rest during the push ups I took it.  The impressive part was that I was able to make up time during the push ups.  My arm strength is really increasing. 

I had a long conversation with Molly the other day and we've both noticed that my recoveries have become much quicker than they used to be.  I can remember having to stop after only a few reps and have to take 30+ seconds to muster up the energy to keep going.  Now, I can get a good amount of reps in before I have to break and my breaks are 20 seconds at the most.  This is a good thing!

I feel as my breaks get less frequent and shorter, my endurance will build.  Eventually I'd like to do WOD unbroken and not have to walk during the runs.  This would be a huge win for me. 

500 Meter Row
5 x 7 Front Squats 55lbs

1600 Meter Run
25 Hand Release Push Ups
1200 Meter Run
800 Meter Run

Time 30:29

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Day 46: Bender!

Today was my 5th WOD in a longest streak yet.  BENDER!

I think the Crossfit Gods were looking over me because today's WOD was focusing on stretches, some pull up work, box jumps, and more stretching.  I kept calling the day a "gift". 

Dennis and I took the day off from work because his sister was having her 2nd child today and we wanted to be at the hospital for moral support.  Even though we had the day off from work, we attended the 6am class. 

Later that evening Dennis and I had a nice romantic dinner in Philly together and it just cracks me up how much of the time we spent talking about Crossfit.  We talked about getting to the prescribed weights, and eventually competing.  We talked about how things will definitely change for me when we start trying to start a family (!!!!) and then Dennis pulled a typical move, he flat out said that he didn't think that I had the right mental attitude to compete. 

Can we just rewind to 2010 for a moment?

Dennis and I were at a friend's birthday dinner and we got on the topic of athletics.  Dennis and I were arguing about Sports vs. Marching Band (of course) and then at the end of one of his famous rants he said, "You are not Athletic or Competitive."  I was shocked!  I had completed multiple running races, two Triathlons, and was a pretty avid gym goer.  So, after a moment of thinking, I decided to give Dennis the ultimate challenge.  I simply said, "Ok Dennis, if you are so confidant that I am not athletic, why don't you put your money where your mouth is?" 

So right there in front of everybody Dennis bet me that I couldn't beat him in the Patriot's Triathlon within 15 minutes.  The Terms:  If I won, he would pay for my flight to Puerto Rico coming up and if he won I would buy him new golf clubs that he wanted....about a $300 wager. 

So after that, I went to what I knew, the 8 Week Triathlon Training schedule and stuck to it.  I trained as hard as I could, sometimes, even going to the gym twice a day.  It was the most nervous I had ever been doing a race, because yes there was a slight chance that Dennis COULD beat me, but I figured if I trained and trained well, I would perform my best and at least have the confidence I needed. 

Dennis was taking a different approach, he wasn't all!  His theory was, that last year he beat me by 15 minutes so he could do that again no problem. 

How did it end?

I am proud to say that I was victorious!  The men start before the women, and I actually caught up to Dennis in the run portion and we crossed the finish line together (with me beating him by a few minutes, no window needed) and Dennis was so proud of me.  He knew and saw how hard I trained and I definitely deserved that win.  (BTW, I had just gotten the doctors approval to workout a few months before the triathlon from a MAJOR health issue). 

So after he said the comment about me competing, I didn't ask him to put his money where his mouth is, I will just know that when I do eventually compete, if ever, it will be all that much sweeter :). 

Dynamic Stretching

3-3-3-3-3 Pull Ups
2 minute AMRAP max height box jump -28 @ 20 inches

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Day 45: Get Out of My Head

Back in High School I was a proud member of the Norwalk High School Marching Band for 4 years. 

Ok are you done laughing yet? Can I continue?

Joining the band meant that I had to give up two weeks of summer for band camp (please no American Pie jokes, I've heard them all since I coincidentally played the flute) and underwent some military-est drills. 

We spent the mornings learning our music, afternoons were spent learning marching drills, and evenings were spent coming together as an entire band (300ish members) and practicing music and drills as a whole.

If you messed up your music or messed up your marching you were punished with either push ups or laps around the field holding your instrument over your head.  This went on Monday - Friday for two weeks, and then a lesser version of this happened through out the school year.  So for a freshman, it was pretty intense. 


I remember after the first few days of Band Camping I would find myself having dreams about it.  How awful is that?  I would spend all day there, and then have nightmares about doing laps and push ups at night.  Well, I knew it would happen, but I just didn't know when it would,  but a few days ago I had my first Crossfit nightmare. 

I don't remember too much detail of the dream, but I knew I had to go from obstacle to obstacle and I received a Crossfit T-Shirt for each station I did a workout at. 

At first I was quite disturbed that I was dreaming about Crossfit, but as I type about it and think about it, I find it pretty neat.  I have 100% embraced myself to Crossfit and clearly its always on my mind.  I go there 4-5 times a week, I blog about it, I wear the T-shirts in hopes somebody will ask about, and now I'm dreaming about it!  Can we say commitment or should we say commit her?  hahaha. 

btw out Marching Band was awesome, we were EMBA champions and ranked 22 in BOA (Bands of America).  We did traveling competitions and performed at the Orange Bowl with the Big Bad Voodoo Daddys when Donovan McNabb played (so I was on the same field as him). 

btw Ask Dennis how he feels about me being in the Marching Band.  Ha!!

2 Rounds
1,000 Meter Row
100 Double Under

AMRAP 15 Minutes
200 Meter Run
Over Head Squats

If you drop the bar, you have to run 200 Meters

Total Rep Count 65

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Day 44: Vegas Watch OUT!

Last night after completing my WOD, I got home, has my post workout snack, showered, ate dinner and then looked in my closet.  I looked at all the dresses I owned and decided to try them all on to see how I looked / felt in them. 

This was a BIG RISK. 

As Dennis knows this was only going to end one of two ways.  One, the dresses were going to fit and I was going to be happy and excited OR they weren't going to fit and I would have a serious melt down. 

I started with the two dresses I have "oh so carefully" chosen for my Vegas Trip in September.   Dennis' 30th is that weekend and we are planning on going to an Ultra Club for some Bottle Service so I wanted to make sure to dress the part.  I put the dress on and I was very happy with what I was looking at.  I was eager to try on the next. 

I always get approval from Colleen before I puchase!

I think I ended up trying on at least 10 dresses, some in which I haven't worn since 2007, and not a single complaint.  The weirder thing that happened to me was instead of focusing on my stomach I kept focusing on my shoulders and upper body.  I would flex my arms to see if there was any definition, and there was pretty cool. 

Granted I have a long way to go, but today was a success.  I kept my sanity while trying on dresses and I'm starting to feel MUCH better about my body.  Even though I've been hovering between 149 and 152lbs, I know that I've come a long way and I'm not sure how much lower I can get the scale.

I know there is going to come a point where my body will change as far as muscle, density, and distribution but the number on the scale won't  move. 

As I promised last week I am going to start paying close attention to my weights and start building up more strength.  I think I have lost all my easy fat and now it is time to focus on toning and building more muscle. 

Any advice out there on losing those pesky last 5 or so lbs?

2 Rounds
3 Minutes of Double Unders
1 Minute Plank

5 Rounds
5 Deadlifts (85)
10 Burpees


3 Minutes of Goat: Real Push-Ups 17

Day 43: New Type of Workout

On Day 12 of my blog, I told readers that even after 8 weeks of Crossfit, I was introduced to a new type of workout, flipping ginormous tires. 

Here we are day 42 of my blog and 14 weeks into Crossfit and I'm doing a new workout, Sled Pulls.  How awesome is that? 

The girls RX (prescribed) was 25lbs on the sled, and Trainer Mike's advise was "oh these suck."  Thanks for the tip!  I started out running pulling the sled and I thought, "this isn't too bad" until my legs felt like they weighed 100 lbs and from then on I had to walk to rest of the way.

The rest of the workout I very much enjoyed and felt confident in.  MUCH better mood today than on Sunday. 

2 Rounds
500 Meter Row
200 Meter Run

5 x 10 Back Squats (55,65,75,80,75) 

7 Minute AMRAP
400 Meter Sled Pull (25lbs)
10 Kettlebell Swings (1pood)
5 Hand Stand Push Ups (1 Abmat + 1 45 weight for height)

Score 3 +6

Monday, July 25, 2011

Day 42: I Had Nothing Left

The Sunday WOD was moved from 9am to 11am since Mike and Molly were at "Lockdown" until 8am, which was fine by me.  Dennis had tickets to the Phillies game so I was going alone.

I got to the gym and to  my horror I read this:

150 Pull Ups
150 Kettlebell Swings
150 Double Unders
150 Over Head Squat
150 Butterfly Kicks

Only 1 partner can work at a time. 

LUCKILY it was a partner WOD so you had to down 150 between the two of you except for the Butterfly Kicks. 

I was partnered up with Cassie and it was like I was instantly intimidated. 

I already knew that Cassie is a stronger person than I and I was worried about not being able to carry my own weight.  I lacked confidence in this WOD and I know that was my number one mistake. 

We started off with pull ups, we each did as many as we could and switched off.  That wasn't too horrible, I know that I wasn't using my hips as much as I should be, and that killed my arms. 

onto the Kettlebells.  I JUST got upgraded to the 1pood weight, which is still very challenging to me, but I had to get through it. 

The only part of the work out I felt like I contributed was the Double Unders.  Cassie has been working on them for as along as I can remember and she can get a couple, but has trouble stringing them together.  I am no expert but I was able to get 5, 10 if i was lucky in a row, which helped us get through them.

I don't even really want to talk about the Over Head Squats.  I was first using a 45lb bar and I'm pretty sure after about 10 or 15 squats I was crying.  The heat was incredible and everybody in the gym was soaked to the bone in sweat.  I down graded to the 35lb bar and I felt like I could squat forever.  Mental note, 35 is too easy, 45 is way too hard. 

Finally we got to the last part and I was just grateful that the butterfly kicks are done laying down. 

Final Time:  41:10

I legit didn't move for the rest of the day.  I got some house things done, but for the most part I sat around and did nothing.  I was asleep by 8:30am so clearly I was wiped out from the entire weekend.

Congrats to Mike and Molly who came in 1st (men's) and 2nd (woman's) at the Lockdown.  I am so proud to be a part of the Crossfit610 Family!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Day 41: I Spent 2 Hours Watching Other People Workout

Today I threw my Sister-in-Law a Surprise Baby Sprinkle.  For those of you that don't know what that is, a Baby Sprinkle is a smaller version of a baby shower given to someone who is expecting their 2nd child, especially if it is of the opposite sex. 

With that said I made a batch of my delicious cupcakes:

But I was able to resist!  Even though my house was full of yummy treats, I stayed away from the desserts and ate as healthily as I could.  Any left over cupcakes are going straight to the office for my co-workers to enjoy!

After the Sprinkle was over and everybody left my house, Dennis and I realized we had a Saturday Night with  no plans.  So what did we decide to do?  We thought it would be fun to drive down to West Chester to watch Crossfit610 compete in the "Lockdown."

The Lockdown was a crossfit competition held at CrossFit Explode where you were required to do 12 WODS in 12 hours starting at 8pm and ending at 8am.  Crazy Right? I can barely handle 1 WOD per 24 hours! 

So at about 10:00pm Dennis, Dave (Dennis' Cousin), and I walk into the Crossfit Explode and I was immediately hit with the smell of heat, rubber, and sweat.  We walked in just in time to see our own Mike Abgarian doing a WOD.  He is a machine!

After he was done we said our hello's to fellow 610ers and hung around to see a few more heats.  The whole thing was so amazing to watch. 

On the way home I did have to laugh because I just spent 2 hours watching OTHER people working out, kind of a funny thought. 

Friday, July 22, 2011

Day 40: iPood

Today I went to Crossfit in the morning to get my 4th WOD in and out of the way before a busy weekend. 

The WOD was as follows:

3 Rounds
50 Double Unders
25 Kettlebell Swings

Lately I've been using the 35lb dumbbell instead of the 1 pood kettlebell, but for whatever reason, today I graduated:

This is one of the coolest things about Crossfit.  I had been using a 35lb dumbbell and was comfortable, if not confident, with that weight.  I used to look forward to WODS including kettlebell swings because I knew I owned them.

Molly put the 1 pood kettleball in front of me, adding about 1 or 2 more lbs, and I went for it.

My kettlebell swing quickly changed from comfortable to challenging, but that is ok.  If I stayed on the 35lbs I wouldn't be working.  I made it through the WOD with the 1 pood, and from now on, that is what I will used.  The girls perscribed is 1.5 pood, so I'm almost there. 

I love the fact that once you get comfortable with something, Mike and Molly know exactly when to increase your weights to bring you back to challenged.  Crossfit610 has an awesome saying painted on the wall,

"Get Comfortable Being Uncomfortable"

500 Meter Row
2 Minute Rest
500 Meter Row

5 x 10 Front Squats

5 x 10 @ 35
5 x 10 @ 45
5 x 10 @ 50

3 Rounds
50 Double Unders
25 Kettlebell Swings (1 pood)


Thursday, July 21, 2011

Day 39: Less Than 2 Weeks Left

The Best Shape of Your Life Challenge is almost over and as I posted yesterday, I have already reached my goal.  I am still going to take the last 12 days super seriously and I want my final weight in to be awesome! Anywhere in the 140s would be a huge win for me. 

Starting on Monday (July 25th) I am going to keep much better track of my weights so I can build them up on a more consistent basis.

Right now I either do the Strength Session with the group or I do the Endurance Skill.  Either way, I should be keeping better track of my weights to gage improvement. 

Today I took off, I was VERY sore and insanely tired from the Mon - Wed WODS that I had attended this week thus far, most of them being morning WODS.  Dennis was kind enough to take some pictures of me doing some back squats and I honestly cannot believe they are pictures of me.  Not in a million years did I think anybody would EVER see me lifting weights.  Isn't there a saying about doing one thing a day that scares you? 

If these pictures don't scare you there is something wrong!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Day 38: I've Reached My Goal!

As I have stated in previous posts, one of my goals here was to be in the 140's (so 140 - 149.9) before my trip to Vegas on September 23rd.  This morning at 5:00am I weighed myself and to my delight I saw: 149.6!!!

I was beyond excited. 

After my mini celebration in my head, I had to be real with myself.  Just because the scale says im in the 140's today doesn't mean that is my true weight and/or it doesn't mean I will be there tomorrow.  Yesterday (Day 37) I must have sweat-ed out at least 5lbs of water and I worked out for twice as long as I normally do, which could have impacted my scale weight for this morning. 

Don't get me wrong, I was already planning out how I was going to run up to Mike and Molly to hug them to mark the occasion, but I had keep in mind that I still have some work to do before I could really celebrate. 

Dennis and I attending the 6am Crossfit class this morning which leaves me the whole evening to do whatever I want....maybe more working out?

When I got to work I immediately posted my status as "Hello 140's" and the responses were remarkable. 

I know it seems trivial, but to have 9 people like my status and a good amount of comments makes me think that people really do care if I succeed.  Putting myself out there on FB and writing this blog makes me feel responsible for my actions.  In a way it motivates me to do well and to be honest when I dont.  So readers....thank you! 

So from now on, I'm not going to focus on my scale number as much.  I want to keep my weight in the 140s, but now I can focus on building strength and toning up.  I still have 64 more days until Vegas so hopefully I can keep the momentum going!

1000 Meter Row (4:25)
50 Double Unders
1000 Meter Row (4:35)
50 Double Unders

1.5 Mile Run
50 Pull Ups (Green/Purple Band)


Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Day 37: Two A Days

Today I overachieved. 

I attending the 5pm Crossfit WOD as normal and then I agreed to meet my friends out at 7pm for a 10 mile bike ride. 

The WOD was hard and the fact that the gym is 1,000 degrees doesn't help BUT kicking and screaming, I got through it.

My legs were shot after the WOD, but the bike ride actually felt really good.  We rode 10 miles in about an hour and by that time the temperature cooled off a little. 

Not sure how many 2 a Day's I'll be committing to, but I at least know that I have it in me. 

Post Wod, Pre Bike Ride

5x10 Shoulder Press

800 Meter Run
3 Rounds
30 Back Squat (from the ground, 55lbs)
30 Ab Mat Sit Ups


Monday, July 18, 2011

Day 36: Afraid of Success

Dennis and I are different people in MANY ways and one of biggest differences for sure is planning and structure.  I love planning and structure and Dennis, well, he kinda flys from the seat of his pants. 

Before crossfit I always felt that if I wasn't using a workout plan or program, I wouldn't be successful.  Back in college when I started running I used a 10 week walk/run program, I followed the Slim in 6 program, and when I signed up for my first Triathlon, I used a 8 week Sprint Triathlon Training program.  I needed a piece of paper to tell me what to do, and for the most part, I did it.

Dennis was the complete opposite.  He would simply decide what exercise he wanted to do, and did as much as he could do and that was that.  It was completely up to him the distances, the frequency, and the type of exercise.  Not my style at all and this actually caused multiple fights when we trained together.  I would want to stick with the program and Dennis would want to do his own thing.   

Even though I loved having training programs, there was always one major problem.  I was always afraid to complete the entire program aka afraid of success.  To get even deeper, I was afraid of finishing the training program and not having results that I wanted or expected.  So instead of completing the program, I would quit a week or two before finishing so mentally I could say, "well I didn't finish the whole program, so that's why my Triathlon time wasn't so great." or "well I quit half way through, that's why I'm still fat."

What makes Crossfit work for us?

The reason Crossfit works for Dennis is there is some structure, but not in the traditional sense.  There is no training program per say, but everybody is working towards doing the WODS at RX (prescribed) weight and then exceeding it.  All the work outs are measured in either times or reps.  So even though you aren't directly competing with other people, your times and reps are exposed on a white board for everybody to see.  You can measure up to other gym members and see where your strengths and weakness' are which fulfills Dennis' need for competition.  

The reason Crossfit works for me is that the structure isn't coming from a piece of paper telling me to bike, run, and swim for 8 weeks, it's coming from the daily WOD that everybody has to complete with no exceptions and it's also coming from Mike and Molly.  I'm a compliant person when it comes to authoritative figures, and that is how I view them.  If they say I should add more weight, I may be crying on the inside (and I may cry on the outside later when I get home), but I will add the weight and do my best to lift it.  They aren't there to coddle me and tell me how great of an effort I'm putting in, they are there to push me to my strength limits and they are ultimately there to see me succeed. 

So Mike and Molly, I know I don't thank you enough, but THANK YOU so much for everything you guys do for me.  You are changing me Mentally and Physically and without your help and support I know this would not be possible!

1,000 Meter Row

400 Meter Run
1,000 Meter Row
200 Meter Run
5x10 Back Squats (65lbs)

3 Minutes On
30 Seconds Rest
Row for Calories
Hand Release Push Ups
Dead Lifts (85)
10 Meter Run

Total Reps:  126

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Day 35: My Little Triathlete

Today was Dennis' triathlon but sadly last minute they cancelled the bike portion of the race.  Let's just say that Dennis was FURIOUS!  I know how much these events mean to him and he's done this Tri a few times and he uses it to measure his improvements.  The entire way up to Bath we had to listen to Dennis rant about how incompetent Pirarra Sports is and how unhappy he was (mind you its barely past 6am....way too early for a Dennis rant). 

HOWEVER Dennis channelled his rage in the way I had hoped, in the competition.  I watched as the swimmers took off and right away saw the pack heading towards the first buoy and Dennis veering off to the left.  Finally he realized what he was doing and he was back in the pack.  Once he was out of site, I waited where the swimmers got out of the water in hopes to see Dennis. 

I expected Dennis to get out of the water with the main pack and to my delightful surprise, he was probably the 10th person out of the water.  I was so proud, surprised, and excited!  I stayed and watched my two other competing friends come out of the water, and then I moved to the running finish line. 

About 25 minutes later, Dennis came barrelling down the finish line.  I was so proud and happy for him and in typical Dennis fashion was already beating himself up about  how he could have done better and wasn't giving himself the credit he deserved.  MEN!!! 

You can read Dennis' perspective of the whole event by clicking on "My Husband's More Interesting Blog" on the right hand side. 

The rest of the day we spent watching Crossfit610 play dodgeball which was very amusing and having a very nice dinner later that evening. 

No plans to go to the morning WOD tomorrow morning, but I will sure be there at 5pm. 

Hope everybody got a chance to enjoy this amazing Summer Weather! 

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Day 34: Can We Say Random?

For those of you that know me and know me well, typically nothing is out of the ordinary for me. 

One weekend I am jumping out of a plane, the next I'm throwing a bridal shower, going to Vermont for a Brewfest, or even camping in NY.  So basically I live a very wide ranged and colorful life.  Out of all the weird/crazy things I do, I have to rank this weekend as one of the most RANDOM WEEKENDS of my life. 

My husband Dennis had signed up for a Triathlon on Sunday so we kept the weekend clear of travel plans. 

Random happening #1:  My friend Ricky from CT who I haven't seen in over a year asks if it is ok for him to spend the weekend with us.  No big deal there.

Random happening #2: My friend from New Hampshire that I went to College with that I haven't seen in 6 years and his wife that I've never met just happened to have a wedding this weekend and wanted to stop by to see me on Saturday. 

Random happening #3:  My two friends from Norwalk who haven't been down to PA to see me since I moved here in 2007 were picking up their new puppy in PA on Sunday and wanted to stop in to say hi. 

Random happening #4:  A HUGE tree fell in our neighbors yard which had to be removed on Saturday which caused the biggest ruckus in our neighborhood...aka every person that lived within 3 miles of the tree had to come over and watch the tree removal. 

Friday was a pretty chill night.  As Day 33 said, Dennis and I had already gotten our WOD in so Dennis went to softball and I stayed in with Ricky and just hung out. 

I WAS going to go to the Saturday Morning WOD, but it was the "Karen" aka 150 Wall Balls and even though the work out was named after me, I felt as if I was somehow being made fun of so I boycotted.  :) 

That morning the three of us (Dennis, Ricky, and I) walked down to Cedar Park to watch Crossfit Compete in Sportsfest, which ended up being the coolest thing ever!  There were quite a few participants from 610 and even though Dennis and I weren't in the competition, we wanted to show our support. 

Dennis had golf at 1pm with his friends so Ricky and I went to Dorney Park.  The weather was amazing and surprisingly the lines weren't too bad.  We walked to and from the park which was good exercise in addition to saving us paying for parking.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Day 33: Stupid Tortilla Chips!

Another Morning WOD in the books.

Dennis and I decided to go before work today because our weekend is once again, super hectic, and we are trying keep with our 3-4 WOD goal per week. 

The WOD was very strength based, but I did what I could and of course I was happy I went. 

One of our coworkers last day is today and as a company we all decide to go out to lunch, Rich's choice, so he picks On The Border.  Not a HUGE fan of the place, but I am able to get the menu online and pick out a Paelo friendly meal.  I am super confident that I will be ok eating lunch out today.  We sit down and what is the first thing they put in front of us?

Mother F*cker
It's upsetting enough that I have to limit what I am eating every time we go out for food, but they have to place bottomless tortilla chips and salsa right in front of me.  The guy next to me is munching down on these things commenting how he "can't stop eating them" and how delicious they are. 

It took every ounce of me to just sit there gripping my water and trying to not think about how much I wanted the chips. 

Then it dawned on me.  I don't want the chips.  I know that the body and health that I am building will bring me more lasting joy than the quick enjoyment of chips and salsa.  I sat there drinking my water, smirking, as my temptations for unhealthy yet delicious, food is rock strong.

Definitely Couldn't Button that Shirt Up 12 Weeks Ago

5x5 Front Squats (75lbs Max)

30 Clean and Jerks for Time

6:20 35lb Bar

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Day 32: There's No Fun in Crossfit!

As crazy as this sounds, the 6:00am class was actually fun this morning.

Granted it took me about 20 minutes of debating whether or not I was going to attend the class, but with the little pushing of Dennis, I went.

6 people showed up for the class and 4 of which were women and we were just having a good time talking about the movements and our individual strengths and weaknesses.  We helped each other during the WOD to stay motivated and get in as many reps as possible. 

We started out with a group stretch and I really enjoyed it since I was still a bit sore from Day 30.  Then we practiced our "get out of the pools" on the rings and we were ready for our 20 minute AMRAP. 

One of the moves for the WOD was Hand Stand Push Ups. 

In the past, I've done the modified move, but today I took the plunge and did the real thing.  The scariest part is actually getting yourself into position.

You have to trust the wall and be "one" with the wall.  The wall helps your  legs stay up and its up to your arms to move up and down.  I was only moving up and down a little bit, BUT I was very excited not to do the modified move. 

Even though at 5am when I woke up I was grumpy and didn't want to go, I am happy I went.  I knew I had a work happy hour today so if I didn't go in the morning I wouldn't have gotten the WOD in. 

Group Stretch

WOD: "Nate"
4 Get Out of the Pools
4 Hand Stand Push Ups
8 Kettlebell Swings (35lbs)

20 Minute AMRAP


Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Day 31: New Body? Yes Please!

It's always been very hard for me to see changes in my body.  I see myself every day (in the mirror) so when something changes slowly over time (like weight loss) it's hard to notice the differences.  I know that I am losing weight by the number on the scale, but the far more exciting part is the way my clothes are fitting me.

When I started the Biggest Loser Contest in April, I was so excited.  The contest was ending a week before I was in my friends wedding, which of course I wanted to look slim for.  I had already ordered the bridesmaid dress using my "as is" measurements and was hoping for improvements.

After the contest was over, I was 13ish lbs lighter and I had to get the dress taken in, and more importantly, I was comfortable and confident wearing the dress.  WINNING!

I also started taking side, front, and back pictures of myself every few weeks to see the changes.  This was a terrific way to see my progress since it was near impossible to judge them on a daily basis. 

So, after 8 weeks of the Biggest Loser Challenge and 31 days of the Best Shape of My Life Challenge, my clothes are suddenly hanging off me.

Just yesterday I wore a shirt I wasn't able wear before because I couldn't button it up.  Hooray!

I now need a belt for my work pants, and lots of my Jeans have extra space around the waist (aka no Muffin Top).

Weight loss is a funny thing...and by funny I mean kinda frustrating.  Don't get me wrong, I've celebrate each of those small victorys but I really wish there was a way to burn fat in the areas that I want, in the order that I want. 

I know that my round stomach is going to be the last thing to go.  WHY?  WHY? WHY? 

Dennis informed me that you can't "target" where your fat burns, you just have to let it go in it's own time and order.  And since I pretty much believe whatever he says, I, defeated just respond "What the Heck." 

I PROMISE you all that if I reach my goal of 140ish...I will post my before and after pictures. 

Today was a rest day.  If you are wondering why, please reread Day 30.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Day 30: You Want Me to Do What?

Knowing the WOD's the night before can be a great thing or a HORRIBLE thing.  Our new nightly tradition before sleep, Dennis and I eagerly read the workout for the next day.  To our horror we read this:

WOD: Angie
100 Pull Ups
100 Push Ups
100 Sit Ups
100 Air Squats


So of course, all day at work I sat at my desk thinking about the WOD and wondering how long it's going to take me to finish. 

I even post on FB how I'm not looking forward to the WOD and one of my friend commented saying "Suck it up" with Dennis quickly "liking" that comment.  Now I'm in a HORRIBLE mood. 

I show up at the gym at 5pm and my thoughts where CLEARLY written on my face. 

Not only do I have to do the WOD, but as an Endurance Athlete my warm up is a 1,000m Row and 10 sets of 8 Shoulder Press' (not sure if thats the name...basically I was lifting the bar from my shoulders to over my head). 

Sweet -Legs and Arms already Jello for the WOD. 


Not only was I intimidated/angry about the WOD the very first song that came on for the WOD was the one song that gives me Crossfit Nightmares!  For whatever reason this particular song comes up very often during workouts and I have found that when I hear this song anywhere else, I want to crawl into the fetal position and cry. 

Fast forward to 30 minutes into the WOD.  I'm the only person left and when you are the last person still working, everybody cheers you on.  This would be fantastic if you liked that sort of thing, but for some reason it infuriates me! 

FINALLY I am done.  Holy Crap that was hard! 

I'm the 7th Body In (Blue Shirt)

1,000 Meter Row
10 x 8 Shoulder Press

WOD: Angie
100 Pull Ups - Green/Purple Band
100 Push Ups - Knees
100 Sit Ups
100 Air Squats


Monday, July 11, 2011

Day 29: What Came First, The Chicken or The Egg?

The answer to that age old question doesn't matter, because if you are a Rooster you better hide your wives and children.

I have been on the Paleo diet for 12 weeks or 84 days.  Every day, I have eaten 3 eggs.  That equals 252 eggs to date.  Dude, that's a lot of eggs!  

Chicken is also a main part of the Paleo diet.  I sadly don't have a fun way to calculate how much chicken I have eaten, but I assure you it is a lot.  

And being the random person I am, actually asked Dennis if it would make sense for us to raise some chickens in our back yard.  Anybody have any pro's or con's about raising chickens? 

Around 4pm today I got a headache and was debating going to class today.  Luckily I didn't talk myself out of going (with the help of my ultra supportive husband) and of course I felt better after the WOD.  

Today was the halfway weigh in of the 8 week challenge and I held my own at 152.2  down from 159.  I am really hoping to get down into the 140s if not 145 by the end of the next four weeks.  That will have me bikini ready for Labor Day Weekend.  

I have some pretty cool before and after pictures, BUT I'm a bit embarrassed to post them just yet.  I'm not so embarrassed about the afters, its the before pictures that really upset me.  It's crazy what losing 15lbs looks like.  I have also very much enjoyed only having to try on one outfit each morning for work, and not rushing home from work simply to put on "comfy" clothes.

Run 800m x 3 for time
5 x 10 Back Squats

75 Kettlebell Snatches

Not going to post times with these, as my math was wrong for the runs and I was doing a very modified WOD and wasn't sure if I was even doing it right. 

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Day 27 & 28: Crossfit KOP

Day 27: Rest Day!

Day 28: Crossfit KOP

I visited a new Crossfit Box on Sunday and arrived for the Sunday 10:00am class. 

We started with a 400m Warm Up Run (which lead us right by an Ice Cream shop which I just thought was wrong), High Knees, Butt Kicks, and a bunch of stretching with PVC pipes. 

The Skill was to find your Max Back Squat Weight.  I've done Back Squats before, but usually I only use the woman's bar, but the trainer there was excited that no matter what weight I added, I'd get a PR. 

We were supposed to do 5 x 5 x 3 x 3 x 1 x 1.  Does anybody know what that means? 

The trainer gave me some very helpful and useful tips:

1.  Take off your sneakers.  I wear running shoes, which are not good for weight lifting.  Once I did a rep without my sneakers on, I could feel the difference.  My weight was more on my heels rather than my toes. 

2. Take of your wedding rings.  He didn't want me to bang up my pretty rock. 

3. Make sure my ass goes out before my knees. 

4. Make sure to squat all the way down and when I come up to get back into standing position, no cheating!

I also got some nice comments while there.  The gentleman next to me commented on my form and said that even when he could see that I was tired or almost maxed out, I kept my form and my speed very nicely.

The trainer also noted that I am much stronger than I think I am. 

So needless to say, the visit was very positive and I was happy I got in my 5th WOD of the week, scoring me 20 points for the workouts. 

Luckily Crossfit KOP had a shower facility stocked with towels, soap, and shampoo.  The ladies at the Baby Shower that I attending afterwards were grateful for that :)

Find your Max Back Squat Weight
5 x 5 x 3 x 3 x 1 x 1

My Max:  133

5 Minute AMRAP
3 Back Squat (70% of Max)  83lbs
6 Clapping Push Ups

6 +3 

Friday, July 8, 2011

Day 26: Always on the Go

I am notorious for jam packing my weekends and being "booked" months at a time.  This weekend is no different. 

I am visiting my cousin in Conshohocken tomorrow and I am attending a Baby Shower on Sunday.  So for the weekend, I will be living out of this:

Dooney & Burke Suitecase (Cat Sold Separately)

Now normally I would get a Crossfit610 WOD in on Saturday morning, but tomorrow is the gym's Grand Reopening, so the festivities don't start until noon, and I will have already left by then.  So I am faced with a dilemma.  Luckily I have already gotten 4 WODs in this week, so I have already earned 10 exercising points.  Taking Saturday off is fine, BUT I really think I have a chance of getting in a WOD in on Sunday at a different box. 

I love how all the trainers at the different boxes are so nice.  I have alerted the trainers that I may drop in for a WOD and they are always welcoming and friendly. 

Today I went to the 5pm class and despite the bad weather we were asked to run outside.  It was actually refreshing. 

Boomer ALWAYS wants to go to Crossfit with me!

Happy Weekend Everybody!

3 Rounds
750m Row
50 Double Unders

4 x 7 Front Squats

400M Run
Max Pull Up

Score = Total Pull Ups


Day 25: That's Not Sweat, It's My Body Crying

All my life I have considered myself an above average sweat-er. 

In high school (when I exercised the least) I would sweat standing still.  It was embarrassing and I had no idea why it was happening.   

In college, I realized that if I drink lots of water and exercised, I would only sweat during my work outs and not during my normal day. It was a revolution and a pretty cool benefit of working out. 

Now, I only sweat during Crossfit, but it is almost out of control.  Today was no exception.  After I complete my Skill I was dripping like a faucet.

During the WOD, you could clearly see my "Sweat Angel" where I was doing the pushups and the modified Toe2Bars.  My clothes were soaked through by the end of the session and could be ringed out. 

Crossfit in the AM + Humidity + Super Hydrated Karen = SWEATY MAN TANK

After the WOD I downed a 32oz serving of water without hesitation and continued to drink water through out the day.  That's a lot of water. 

4,000 Meter Row for Time  19:31

Hand Release Pushups
Double Unders


Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Day 24: Home WOD

Here is a perfect example of how you can not always have control over things.

Last night, Dennis and I were going to go on a 20 mile bike ride with a friend after work, so we agreed to go to the 6am WOD. 

5am, I talk Dennis out of making me go to the WOD.  I don't bring any gym clothes to work because I'm going home before the bike ride. 

4pm, life happens and we can't go bike riding, Dennis has already gone to Crossift and I have NO EXERCISE plans for the evening.  If I hurry home, get changed quick, and hurry to Crossfit, I could make the 6pm class, but I get stuck at work and there is zero chance of making it to a WOD. 

What's a girl to do?

I remembered that Mike posted a Home WOD on the 4th of July since Crossfit was closed.  So that's what I did!

It's a good reminder that you can plan things as best you can, but things don't always work out that way.  And when things like that happen, you just have to make the best out of it. 

10 Box Jumps
8 Hand Release Push Ups

6+10 Rounds

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Day 23: Endurance Athletes

The Biggest Loser Competition is long since over and from now on I am considered an "Endurance Athlete" at Crossfit, which is just a really nice way of keeping me in the weight loss group. 

The "Endurance Athletes" will have slightly different work outs than the main group, meaning instead of finding my max reps of cleans, I will do a row for time, or some other cardio based exercise.  No Problemo!

Row, Row, Row Your Boat...

I like my progression here, Biggest Loser to Endurance Athlete.  If I get down to the weight I want, then MAYBE I will consider doing the more intense strength, but nothing to be worrying about just yet. 

3,000m Row (18:29)
5 x 10 Back Squats

800m Run x 3
3 minute break between each round

3:27, 3:30, 4:04

Monday, July 4, 2011

Day 22: Fourth of July


I fell a bit off the bandwagon Monday, BUT, I am only human and I'm a social drinker, what can I say?

I was dreading weighing myself on Tuesday morning, but I did anyway and...

I, deceivingly so, set myself back from being in the 140's to almost 155!  UGH.  Those beers and treats were not worth it.  If I get drunk, I'm more likely to eat foods that aren't Crossfit approved.  :(

Mentally I am ready to work very hard from this point on.  We are starting the 4th week of the competition and we only have about 4 weeks left. 

I hope everybody had an enjoyable Holiday Weekend!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Day 21: Team WOD

Even though Dennis and I were sunburned and sore from our Epic Bike Ride yesterday, we were both able to get up and attend the Sunday work out.

On Sunday's the WOD's are with partners, which is actually very fun.  Laura was my partner today and here is what we did:


Hold & Go

While Partner A (Karen) Holds, Partner B (Laura) Go's


Saturday, July 2, 2011

Day 20: Valley Forge Park to Philly Art Museum by Bike

Today Dennis, Kyle and I woke up early (for a Saturday) and rode our bikes from Valley Forge Park and rooooode all the way to the Philly Art Museum.  A bike trip totaling 44 miles. 

The day was exceptional beautiful.  Blue skys, shaded spots on the ride, and I felt like a beast on my bike.

I'd LIKE to give Crossfit a lot of the credit here even though the WODs are short workouts, I truly believe the high intensity of them contribute to my new awesome endurancece. 

The ride to the Art Museum we made fantastic time, making it to Manayunk in just over an hour.  It was too early for lunch, so we decided to bike to the Art Museum where we decided to feel a bit accomplished:

We each took a picture with our bikes over our heads representing our challenge of the day. 

We rode back to Manayunk, ate lunch and started a 15 mile ride back to the car.  Those last miles were VERY hard, but we made great time.  At some points I was going as slow as 10 mph BUT some points I was going as fast as 17.  Regardless of the speed, we rode for 44 miles which I highly doubt I would have been able to done without the training from Crossfit. 

Friday, July 1, 2011

Day 19: It's Friday, Friday

Last night (day 18) I went out to dinner with some friends at Tapas on Main, and I did as best as I could.

I did not have the bread they served when we sat down, I drank water, not the delicious Sangria, and stayed within my restrictions of Paleo. And while all my friends indulged in dessert, I just sat their enjoying their company. 

Today is the last work day before a 3 day weekend, and my boss has decided to let us out at noon!  At first I was gung ho about making it to a WOD, but after coming home and doing some cleaning, I decided to skip.  I felt a little guilty about it, but I wasn't in the best mood so it was prob best I skipped.

I went to Dennis' softball game and resisted the urge to drink with the team after the game.  yay! 

Tomorrow Dennis, Kyle, and I are going on a 44+ Mile Bike Ride!