Wednesday, November 30, 2011

I'll Rest When I'm Dead

Probably not the most appropriate blog title after yesterday's post.....

I really need to learn to stop taking so many frequent and long breaks during WODs.  I will take advantage of anything that will give me a quick rest.  Before pull ups, I'll put chalk on my hand.  Lifting a bar, I'll "reset" it as much as possible.  DU, my pony tail needs tightening.  I have to stop resting!!

I beat myself up about this after almost every WOD, but when I'm doing the work, I freaking need to rest!  What we do is hard, and it takes a lot of strength and endurance, things that I am trying to work on.  I know when I rest for too long, Trainer Molly will make it known that she is watching me, which in turn gets me to stop resting. 

I'd really like to do more WODS with little to no rest. 

Everybody is on the floor after a WOD

3 Deadlifts on the Minute for 10 Minutes

20 Minutes AMRAP
5 Power Cleans (75lbs)
10 T2B
15 Wall Balls (14lbs)


Cash Out:
GHD Day 1
3 x 10 Hip Extensions
3 x 10 Sit Ups

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

On a Serious Note....

Back in January 2010 I almost died. 

I woke up one morning having incrediable chest pains when I took a breath in and out.  I struggled to wake up my fiance Dennis, and he immediately saw that I needed to go to the ER. 

What seemed like hours to me, we made it to the hopsital (a 5 minute drive) where I was put into a wheelchair and Dennis had to give them all of my information, because I was still unable to get a good enough breath to talk. 

What was happening to me?

After a while at the hospital the doctors had narrowed it down to two things; pneumonia or pulmonary embolisms.  To me, the answer was easy, pneumonia....simply because I didn't know what a pulmonary embolism was, and that is what I thought I had had for the past couple of weeks.  

Let me back up here.....

Me being me, wanted to lose weight starting January 1st for my upcoming March wedding.  I had three months to work as hard as I could to lose any extra weight to be a stunning bride.  My friends and I decided that we would all do PX90 together...PERFECT!!

All was going well for the first two weeks and then I started to feel sick.  It started with a congestion, no biggie there.  I braved on and still worked out.  Then things got weird.  I would walk a few steps and become insanely winded.  I would walk from the kitchen to the bedroom and have to stop and rest.  THEN when I took deep breaths, my chest would me this sounded like pneumonia.  

So I called out of work on a Friday and rested all day, and did the same over the weekend.  By Sunday I wasn't feeling better so I took Monday off and went to the doctors.  I explained to him everything that I was feeling and suggested I had pneumonia, but he simply wrote it off as allergies.  (Seriously?).  

The next morning was the morning I woke up in sheer panic because breathing both in and out was causing me intense pains.

OK Back to the story.

When I got back from the chest X-Rays the doctor told me that they had ruled out pneumonia and I had very large pulmonary embolisms in both lungs and that I needed to be sent to the ICU immediately.  The doctor oh so gently told me that if I had waited any longer to come to the ER, I would have died. 


1. I still do not know what "pulmonary embolisms are."
2. I don't know what the ICU is. 

And that is when I learned two very scary facts.

1. A Pulmonary Embolism (PE) is a bloot clot that forms in your body, most commonly in your legs, breaks off, travels through your blood stream and goes into your lung, blocking you from getting oxygen, which often causes sudden death. 

2. The ICU stands for Intensive Care Unit where they send patients in critial condition and/or patients that are in baaaaaaaad shape. 

By this time, I was hooked up to an oxygen tank since my oxygen level was at 30% (yes my lungs were functioning at 30%) and I was already getting weighed for my heporin IV. 

After poor Dennis called my parents and friends to tell them I was in the ICU, we finally got some information about my situation.

Basically, somehow, bloodclots had formed in my body.  Then (probably a week or less ago) they broke off, traveled through my blood stream and into my lungs.  One of the clots was large enough to saddle my air passage and suffocate me (causing death), but thankfully it broke in half and went into both of my lungs instead.  That is the one part of the WHOLE ordeal that I can't wrap my head around.  One stupid little detail of the clot breaking in half or staying in one piece was the difference between me living and dieing.  End result, I was still alive, but just barely. 

After a few days in the ICU and a couple weeks in the regular hospital, I was released.  I was at first put on a liquid blood thinner to prevent any new clots from forming, then a pill verison, and evenutally my lung function was improving.  There is no way to get rid of the clots in my lungs, they go away with time, and the blood thinners were a way of preventing new clots from forming. 

I didn't return to work for over a month, and I had to go to the doctors at least twice a week to make sure my blood was at the proper thinness to prevent more clots.

So wait.....what caused the clot in the first place?

Since I was a generally healthy person before this whole ordeal, the only two things that could have possibly contributed to a clot forming in my body was A. Very long car ride from NH to PA with a major traffic situation due to the snow a couple weeks before and/or B. The Estrogen from my Birth Control that I had been on since 2001.  Crazy Right? 

I'm not entirely sure WHY I'm blogging about this and how it relates to my Crossfit career.  I think it just comes to the forefront of my brain around this time of the year.  I still can't drive by that hospital and not remember how long I was there for and all the emotions I went through. 

Anyway, I'm happy to still be here!  (and if anybody has any questions about what happend, I'd be happy to talk about it more!). 

300 Meter Row x 4

3 x 10 Back Squats

5 Rounds
7 Shoulder to OverHead (75lbs)
35 Double Unders


Monday, November 28, 2011

I'm Fighting Genetics Here!

When I don't look the way I want to look, or see people who I want to look like, I get really upset and sad and then eventually I curse my family genes.  Over Thanksgiving weekend my family takes a picture that will later on be sent out as our Christmas card.  As I look at the picture, I wonder if I really even have a fair chance of being as skinny as I'd like.

The Family (plus Dennis)!
 Lets start with my brother Kevin. 

Where on earth did he get his height?  Clearly he towers over my mom, he is taller than my dad, and has the biggest body frame of us all.  Like myself, he was on the heavier side in middle school and high school.  When he started working he thinned out, but since then put on a few lbs.  This is the heaviest I've seen him in a few years.  

My mom!  Clearly she is shorter and stocky.  As far back as I can remember she struggled with her weight.  Which is probably why I have a complex about my weight.  She was always dieting, but never exercising.  She told me when she got married back when she was 19, she was 140lbs.  This, my friends, gives me hope. 

Mako Bob.  My dad has always been a slender person and I always wondered why I couldn't take after HIM more than my mom.  I got my mom's hair color, my dad's eye color, and I dare to say a combo of their body frames.   

Me.  I'm normal height, and I know how to hide my stomach in a fleece!  Especially when it is an important picture that will get sent out to lots of friends and family that don't seen me often. 

I'm not going to talk about Dennis in this pic since he is not related by blood, only by marriage.  The only impact he has on my weight and frame is typically if he is eating poorly, so I am, but the reverse works as well. 

Thinking back to my childhood, I really wish I knew the importance of eating healthy, exercising, and being aware of my weight.  I feel like I am working so hard to undo 20+ years of being poorly and being lazy, which obviously is overwhelming.  I remember thinking this back in College too.

With that said, I've had a HORRIBLE eating week and I feel like crap about it. 


Friday, November 18, 2011

4 Wods

Extra Credit:

Ran 1.67 Miles after Work

Worked on HSPU
Walking Handstands


SDHP (75lbs)
Lateral Shuffle

Time: 11:42

Extra Credit: Ran 2 Miles after Work

Row 500
DU 25
Row 400
DU 20
Row 300
DU 15
Row 200
DU 10
Row 100
DU 5


AMRAP 15 Minutes
9 Deal Lifts (135lbs)
12 Hand Release Push Ups
15 Box Jumps (20 inch)



5 Rounds
20 Mountain Climbers
15 Abmat Sit ups

45lbs Snatch Balance

10 Minute AMRAP
20 Double Unders
15 Power Snatches (55lbs)


Cash Out: 2 Goats
Pull Ups (purple band)


Clean and Jerk

7 Rounds
5 Wall Balls (14lbs)
10 Abmat Sit Ups w/Wall Ball
15 Air Squat

Done w/7 Rounds you have 7 Minutes to find your 1 Rep Max of Clean & Jerks

1 Rep Max = 105lbs

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Halfway Through Hell Week...and I'm Still Alive!

Halfway through the "Hell" week and I am still alive!  I have been true to Crossfit, making it to 3 morning classes in a row and still keeping all my after work commitments! 

I want to get 1 more WOD in this week, most likely an active rest day tomorrow, WOD Friday, and then resting on Saturday and Sunday. 

So I had an interesting situation happen to me this morning at crossfit.  Here was today's WOD:

2 Rounds
20 Wall Balls (14lbs)
20 Knees 2 Elbows on Rings
20 Box Jumps (24)

I knew I could do both the 14lb ball and the 24 inch box......sweet!  A new RX'd WOD.  Or so I thought. 

I went through the WOD, and after recovering Trainer Molly comes up to me and goes.  "So I'm not giving you the RX'd."  And I knew exactly why not.  For a wall ball to count, you have to hit the 10 foot mark on the wall, which is a solid red line.  If you don't, the rep doesn't count and you have to redo it. 

There were a few that just missed and/or graced the line, and I stupidly counted them.  Obviously Trainer Molly was not fooled. 

I found myself in a Bitter/Sweet situation.   

I was Bitter that I blew my chance of having the RX next to my name, and I probably missed the target 5-7 times, something I could have easily corrected. 

It was sweet because it made me realize how Trainer Molly was paying attention to me and my performance, and she wasn't going to let me get away with anything less then the standards.  Even though she told me what I did wrong, she also told me to co5rrect the problem, she suggested I slowed down my reps to make sure I make them count.  She also reassured me that its great that I've moved up the 14lb ball. 

You Be The Judge!!!


Squat Snatch
8x1 Working up to 1 Rep Max

65lbs....failed at 70lbs

2 Rounds
20 Wall Balls (14lbs)
20 Knees 2 Elbows on Rings
20 Box Jump (24inch)


Cash Out:
5 Minutes to get your most strung together DU

Score = 16 (not my best)

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

I Have the Best/Supportive Friends...EVER!!

me: Oh I got a new personal record today at Crossfit!

Sarah: ooooooooh for what

me: 500 meter row in 1 minute and 49.4 seconds. I may be on the PR board after today. I'm eager to see.

Sarah: nice nice. I am so inspired by your crossfit stuff.

me: hahahaha noooooooo

Sarah: you are so intense

me: I suck, you should see the other girls. 

Sarah: it's not about the other girls, it's what you've done for yourself

me: Yeah I know but I just feel weird when people say they are impressed with me.  I feel like im at the back of the pack.

Sarah: dedication wise? Well it's the drive I'm impressed with.

me: awww thanks

Sarah: and the progress you have made and keep making and the fact that you keeeeeeeep going.

me: It's cool to see the progress and I like to celebrate my little wins, but it is really hard to balance sometimes. My life was pretty jam packed before and still is, but i just have to work around it

Sarah: yeah and even more so.....crazy.

me: but i do appreciate that compliment, you would be so awesome at it

Sarah: nope

me: hahahahaha

Sarah: first time i felt like puking I'd quit, so I'd quit day 1. lol.

me: i puked today, after my row.

Sarah: see

me: hahahaha

Sarah: I'm not that hardcore about anything

me: i just wish i could get rid of this last bit of fat.  its really emotionally hard to work so physically hard
and still not be happy, Im doing everything i can and sometimes I'm on earth can i keep this up?

Sarah: seriously,  it's intense.

Sarah (MOH) and I @ my wedding
Run 400 Meters
10 Burpees
3 Rounds

TABATA 20 of work, 10 of rest 8 times

Pull Ups - Purple Band   Score 5
DB Shoulder to OH - 25lbs Score 5
Pistols - Score 4
Double Kettlebell Swing - (8kg) Score 10
GHD Sit Ups - Score 3

Score = your lowest # of reps in 20 seconds

Monday, November 14, 2011

Hell Week

I am taking bets on what day this week I crash. 

After a weekend full of drinking, late nights, and little sleep, I am faced with an ultra busy week.  Both socially and physically. 

In light of my now TWO 5k's coming up, I have agreed to run with my co-worker 3 days a week after work.  In order to keep up with my Crossfitting, I have to go to the 6am classes, witch in turn means, less sleep.

Not to mention my dinner plans on Wednesday, trip to CT Friday, and I have to fit grocery food shopping in and I desperately need new shoes. 

Don't feel sorry for me, I do this to myself, and I do it to myself often. 

Today's workout (despite my early morning grogginess) was actually very enjoyable.  I felt very strong on the wall climbs and I felt myself driving up trying to get my chest to the wall.  I was going to attempt doing the Push Press' with the RX 75lbs, but I'm glad I decided to drop down to 65lbs last minute.  I would do 5in a row, drop, and then finish the last 5.  I think secretly I just wanted to clean the bar twice per round.  I heart Cleaning the bar.  The lateral jumps were funny to do with no shoes on, but I was able to do those unbroken. 

I didn't have much expectations for the 500 meter row, hell, I didn't even know we had a Cash Out until after the WOD.  I sat down and just killed it.  Trainer Molly walked over while I was rowing and kept me in line to keep my pace.  She was encouraging me to keep it up, and I know that helped me get a good time. 

I know I've said this in past blogs, but you have to celebrate your wins!!! 

2 Rounds
5 Push Ups
10 Pull Ups
20 DU

2 x 5 Back Squat (65%) 115lbs (which was too much)
2 x 5 Shoulder Press (65%) 45lbs

3 Rounds
5 Wall Climbs (no shoes)
10 Push Press 65lbs
15 Lateral Bar Jumps

11:50 (I think, may have been 12:50)

Cash Out:
500 Meter Row
1:49.4 PR!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Crossfit Total = Best Day of the Year

Move over Santacon (google this if you don't know what this is), Crossfit Total is the NEW best day of the year!!

Millions of Santas, Santas for me, Millions of Santas, Santas for free
Crossfit total is the day that you find your 1 rep max for Back Squat, Shoulder Press, and Deadlift.  It's important to know these numbers, because that is what your Strength and WOD weights are based off.  

And of course Crossfit Total is scheduled on a day I can't make it.  

Knowing that it was important to get this done (and it being the best day of the year) I decided to come to 610 at 5pm to get my Totals done, and then stay after to do the WOD.  

I must say, I was very happy with my results!

So this is how it works.  Starting with the back squat you get 3 attempts to do 1 rep of how ever much weight you can.  So you want to start at a weight that you KNOW you can do, but you don't want to start too low, because you only get 3 times to increase your weight.  

Back Squat: 155lbs
Shoulder Press: 75lbs
Dead Lift: 175

Crossfit Total = 405

According to the Women's Class Rankings, I am between Intermediate and Advance for my body weight.  I have lots of room to improve, but I certainly have come a long way.  

300 Meter Row x 5
45 Seconds Rest Between Rounds

4 Rounds
400 Meter Run (in the freezing rain)
8 "Get Out of the Pools" on the rings
40 DU


Why I Hate Shopping for Clothes

1. I refuse to buy anything at full price. I have to use a coupon or it must be on sale. 

2. I have no sense of style.  I can never decided if I "like" something or not, and typically something that I 100% like is not on sale. 

3. IF I do find something that I like and is on sale (or I have a coupon for) I have to try it on.  9 times out of 10 it doesn't fit my awkward body type or I simply don't like it.  

4. The process starts allllllllllll over again, and with every failed attempt to find something I like, I get more and more upset/frustrated.  

Over the last few months I've been having an issue with my work pants.  They were either too big (both in the waste and the legs) or they were too small.  This was really bugging me since getting dressed for work was something I had to do 5 days a week and I hated it.  

So I decided, that when I saw NY&Co was having a "Spend $200, pay $100" coupon, I would order as many new pants as I could.  Now I've purchased pants for NY&Co before and they have at least 100 different types of pants.  I decided I would order online so I could carefully make my selections and if anything didn't work out, I could just exchange them in the store.  

A few days later my package arrived and I was so eager to see if these pants would save me from my morning clothing dilemma.  


The waists were find, with a little room, but the legs were way to loose.  And this is why I hate my body!!!  My waist, I thought, was a 10.  NY&Co makes it so that if your waist is a 10, so are your legs.  And for me, that is not the case.  

So my plan was to go to a NY&Co store, try the size down and see if those would fit.  I was really doubtful that the 8's would fit but, if I didn't try, I would be stuck with these pants that didn't work.  So after dinner (brilliant move Karen) I went to the store and to my delight, I not only fit into the 8's but the exchange process was easy as pie!  So I left the store with 4 new work pants in the slim size of 8!!!!!  Maybe I will FINALLY like clothes shopping now!!

hahaha, yeah right.  

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Busy as a Burpee!

Here we are in early November and I just looked at my gmail calendar (aka my life). 

This weekend I am celebrating a friends on birthday on 11-11-11 in Philly and then sleeping over my sister in law's until Sunday. 

Next weekend I am heading up to CT to watch Dennis compete in Festivous2 and then going to a baby shower in PA on Sunday.

The following weekend I have Thanksgiving and my 10 year high school reunion. 

Then, the first weekend in December is our Annual O'Donnell Christmas Party followed by a 5k run in the morning and a beer festival that same day. 

The weekend following that, I am going to NYC for the biggest Santa event ever, Santacon (aka the best day of the year). 


Those are just the weekends!  I didn't even mention all the extra credit stuff I am doing on the weekdays.  LOL. Why do I do this to myself?  Oh right, because I love being social, I love doing fun things, and planning is my true gift in life. 

So how on earth am I going to balance my eating and WODing?  One thing is for sure, I now have my head on straight! 

Thanks to my wonderful sister-in-law and our friend Heather, we have been emailing each other our food intakes and our calories eaten.  The first two weeks I was horrible and I was gaining weight.  Colleen, on the other hand was doing fucking awesome. 

She was staying within her calorie budget and losing weight.  And I was simply jealous.  That is why the buddy system works.  Jealousy is a great fuel for me when I'm on a weight loss quest. 

So here I am week 3 and I am back in business.  I have been working out, and working hard, minding what I eat, and I'm seeing the results.  (I will be taking another set of before/after pics on Monday). 

Which some good planning and self control, I think I will be able to get through the next month or so of weekends without tipping the scale.  I cannot stress enough how much diet and working out go hand in hand for me.  Until then, wish me luck!!!


250 Row
30 Mountain Climbers
5 Rounds

Hanging Clean
3 Per Minute for 10 Minutes

20 Wall Balls (10lbs)*
Bear Crawl
20 Wall Balls
Burpee Wide Hop(?)
20 Wall Balls
Army Crawl
20 Wall Balls
Forward Somersault (?)
20 Wall Balls
Hand Stand Walk

*there weren't enough 14lbs

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Practice What You Hate

After months and months of crossfitting, I am finally able to associate a weight lifting movement with it's name.  And now since I know the names of each movement, I was able to name my two least favorites.  Snatch and Overhead Squats. 

I think I hate squatting in general but the Overhead Squats are the WORST! 

So you could just imagine my delight when I saw today's WOD:

5 Power Snatches
5 Overhead Squats
10 Burpee Pull Ups

Groaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaan! (Mind you this is the 6am class)

I check the WODs the night before so I know what I am in for and I could have easily said, nope, not going.  But I also know that if you never practice the things you suck at and always practice the things you are good will never get better! 

20 Push Ups
20 DU
20 Mountain Climbers
20 Jumping Pull Ups
200 Meter Row

15 Minute AMRAP
5 Power Snatches (55lbs)
5 Overhead Squats (55lbs)
10 Burpee Pull Ups


Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The Tortoise and the Hare

Since back at Crossfit I've had a sinking feeling that my head is no longer in my work outs. 

I show up for the WODs, I complete the WODs, but something is different. 

I look at the white board and think, "not too bad" (which I know I will immediately regret saying) and when that 3...2...1...GO sounds, I feel as if I have gone backwards with my endurance and speed. 

Thinking back to Biggest Loser I was given the WOD and I would simply hope that I could finish.  I would take a break when needed, stop if I had too, and just get through it.  Time didn't matter. 

As the weeks went on I specifically remember not breaking as much and, even though I didn't really CARE about my times, the were improving.  I was still finishing in the bottom half of the pack (pack being people in the same class or people on the white board) but my times were at least getting better. 

Somewhere, somehow I feel as if I have gone backwards.  And I actually caught myself saying "Slow and Steady wins the race."  WTF kind of attitude is that when "Do it Again, Faster" is a common phrase. 

Yes if the AMRAP is 30 minutes and its box jumps and heavy lifting you are going to PACE yourself, but pacing is way different that already accepting having a slow time before the WOD starts.

I want to blame it on the fact that I was out for a week or so and just "getting back into it" but I can't hide behind that forever.  So I guess I just have to get over myself, push myself, and freakin be faster!!!

2k Row - 9 Minutes

3 Power Cleans in 20 Seconds
9 Sets

5 Minute Time Cap

3 Rounds
20 Hand Release Pushups
10 Kettlebell Swings 1 pood
30 DU


Farmers Carry Hold w/Barbell (55lbs)
3 Rounds of Max Effort

Total: 2 minutes