Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Dennis' and I's 1st Century Bike Ride

The day was finally here where Dennis, our friend Chris, and I were going to be putting our mental and physical abilities to the test.  Ride our Bikes for 100 miles.  

Doing a Century Bike ride was always something Dennis and I toyed with doing but the stars had never aligned.  But this was the year and ready or not it was time.  

The bike race started in Palmyra NJ and ended at Ocean City NJ so since we live in Virginia, we had to figure out the logistics of this whole trip.  We were able to find a babysitter (thanks Brenda!) who would take Shane for the weekend and once we dropped him off, we headed to our hotel 8 miles from the start line. 

The first wave of bikers were to start at 6:30am, which is the wave that we wanted to be in.  The reason?  The direct route to Ocean City was actually 80 miles but in order to reach 100 miles there was a 20 mile loop that the Century bikers take to gain the 20 remaining miles.  The catch?  You had to enter the loop by 11am or else you are forced to only do the 80 mile route.  So we figured if we started at 6:30am, we would have plenty of time to bike 46 miles and stop at the 3 rest stops (including lunch) and make the loop.  

Well, unfortunately it didn't pan out that way......

The 8 mile drive took way longer than expected.  Traffic was horrible getting to the start line.  Every other biker had the same idea as us apparently.   We pulled into the parking lot just as the 6:30 wave was released and we had to wait until our corral was opened.  This immediately added to my anxiety of the entire ride.  So there we were just waiting, and waiting to start.

Dennis was not happy!

So finally at about 7:10am we were off which gave us just under 4 hours to get to the loop.  A lofty goal, but nothing out of our reach. 

To be honest, I wasn't sure if I was going to do the full 100 miles, so if we didn't make the loop, I personally wouldn't have been as upset as Dennis and Chris would have been.  

Going into the ride we all decided that we had to go faster than 10 miles per hour to finish the ride before the 5pm deadline, and that anything between 12-14 miles per hour would be comfortable.  

I'm not exactly sure what happened on the first half of the ride, but we were booking it.  It possibly had to do with the time restriction we had, but for some parts of the ride we were going more than 17 miles per hour, which was super fast for me.  We quickly stopped at the first rest stop to use the bathrooms and regrouped.

Back on our bikes, and the next stop was lunch.  I use the word lunch lightly because it wasn't even 9:30am when we got to the lunch stop.  Now granted we were up at 4:30 in the morning, but still, nothing like chicken sandwiches and chips at 9:30 in the morning.  We quickly ate and headed back, knowing our window to make the loop was closing quickly.  At this point we were literally within minutes of the cut off.  We decided to skip the next rest stop and it's a good thing we did.  With only 10 minutes to spare, we made the loop!  The only issue was that we were now going on 20+ miles without a stop.  

Finally there was a rest stop at mile 55 and I was just about toast by that time.  I think it was mostly because we had to go so fast the first 40 miles to make the loop, it was seriously daunting to know we still had 45 miles left on this ride.  But there was nothing else to do but to refill our water bottles, eat some snacks and keep moving.  
We Made It!
Now that the pressure was off, we slowed down our pace quite a bit.  By the end of the trip our average pace was just over 13 miles per hour which is what we hoped it would be before we began.  

At this point my wrists, arms, shoulders, neck, back, and legs were screaming at me and I was in a great amount of pain.  I would do whatever I could to ease it, adjust my peddling, adjust my grip on the handle bars, but when it seemed as if when I relieved one pain, a new one would occur.  The 2nd half of this ride was going to be a real challenge.  

At our next rest stop, for whatever reason, I just went to down on all the snacks I could.  Goldfish, chips, nutri-grain bars, whatever was in front of me, I was devouring.  This did give me some power for the next 12+ miles,  but again, I was so grateful to have these rest stops to just get off the  bike and shake it out and stretch my body.  

When we reached mile 80, I had my predicted mental break down.  I knew we had over an hour more or biking, my body was in such pain, and I literally couldn't keep up with my thirst.  I asked Dennis to ride next to me and I lost it.  I was crying and begging to stop.  I felt like 20 miles was asking too much of me, but Dennis assured me that I had it in me and that I just needed to keep pushing for a little longer.  

I snapped out of my mental block and (well with no real choice) I kept peddling.  When we finally neared the beach, I was so happy.  Until i saw what was ahead of us.  

Two freaking HUGE bridges that we had to bike over to get to the finish.  

I was completely defeated.  No hills on the whole route until mile 95?  Are you freaking kidding me?!?!?!  My feelings were clearly shared as 90% of people got off their bike and were walking the first bridge.  I was so angry about this that I refused to get off my bike.  I've let myself down before by walking during a Half Marathon and I was simply refusing to walk any part of this bike ride.    

So slow and steady I peddled as hard as I could to get over this first bridge.  It was pure torture.  At this point my entire body was in pain, my lips were sunburned, I was thirsty, and I just wanted to be done.    I "enjoyed" the  brief ride down, and then braced myself for the next bridge.  More people walking, but again I refused.  I caught up with Chris and Dennis and I was basically just on a hunt for the finish line. 

The last few miles felt like forever and when we crossed the finish line I was already in tears.  Tears of pain, of accomplishment (but mostly pain) and all I wanted to do was sit down and stretch my poor aching legs.

The biking part took us 7.5 hours along (not including stops) and I'm so so so so so so so mad that my phone died around mile 60, along with my tracker.  

After we parked our bikes and regrouped, we walked around the vendor tents where we got a ton of free food and freebies.  

Originally we wanted to walk to boardwalk, but moving was a challenge and we decided to just catch the bus back to the start line.  I think I was sitting on the  bus for about 10 minutes before I was passed out asleep.  I was spent.  

After all that was said and done I have a few helpful hints and tips for anybody considering doing a Century Bike Ride:

1.  Train.  This is not a joke, Dennis and I semi-trained for this event,  but we should have trained more.  I think it would have better conditioned our bodies for the length in which we would be on our bikes. 

2.  Get there earlier!  I really wish that we had make the 6:30am start  because we really had to hustle to make the loop.  I wonder if I would have been so tired the 2nd half if we had kept a slower pace in the beginning.  

3.  Drink lots of liquids.  I usually NEVER hydrate while biking (or during any exercise for that matter) but I must have drank 2 gallons of Powerade during the ride and I was still unable to quench my thirst 2 days later.  

4.  Stop at all the rest stops to just get off the bike.  I would argue that skipping the 1st rest stop is OK, but any other ones I would not.  I think there were 7 stops in total and they literally come at the right times.  It feels good to just get off the bike for a few minutes, eat something, drink something and sit.  

5.  Bring a phone battery extender and/or separate camera.  Like I said before I was heartbroken that my phone died for multiple reasons.  It was keeping track of my ride statistics and was also my camera.  :(

6.  Wear sunscreen (at the very least on your lips).  Dennis has some killer Bike Jersey Tan lines right now on his arms and my lips and nose are currently peeling from the sun abuse they got on Saturday.  

7.  Enjoy the ride!  It was a really nice course and it was well staffed and very organized (minus the beginning).  The rest stops were very well stocked and the volunteers were awesome!

So with all of that said, Dennis and I have ALREADY committed to doing this ride again in 2015!  Hopefully I will take my own advice and improve on this already great experience!  

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Our Epic August Crossfit Trip - Day 4

This was probably the most hectic day of our "vacation" because our original CrossFit Trainers got wind that we were going to be in New York and demanded that we stop to pay them a visit. And if Mike and/or Molly tell you to do something, you do it!!  (And I do think that Mike owe's me a signed Jersey)

This was not on our original itinerary, but it had been a very long time since we saw Mike & Molly so we said, what the heck!  

Now, CrossFit King of Island Park wasn't exactly on our way to New York City, but we felt that going to Long Island to see them would be worth the trip.  And as expected, it was.  

We left Norwalk, CT very early on Saturday morning to take the train to Grand Central.  We then took the Long Island Rail Road to Island Park and walked to Mike and Molly's facility.  

The place was like a living thing.  There were people everywhere doing pull ups, squats, thrusters, you name it, they were doing it.  And within this moving machine I spotted Molly.  I was so happy to see her and she greeted me which a great big hug.  

Dennis was like the terminator when he saw Mike.  He locked in on him and ran right up to him like a lost puppy running to his owner.  It was cute Dennis, really, really, cute.  

I think the reason we both felt this way is they were the ones that LITERALLY changed us for the better, for ever.  Even though we were just regular average slightly overweight people, they treated us as if we had limitless possibilities and could achieve anything.  The never doubted our abilities even when we thought we couldn't possibly do another rep, they pushed and pushed, and because of them, we succeeded.  

Dennis and I did some accessory work while at the box, as it was open gym, and we basically watched Mike and Molly do work out after work out. 

I was trying to figure out my 1 rep Clean and I got to about 115lbs which I was pretty happy with, considering the condition I was in.  Dennis working on Bar Muscles Ups and with the expert training of Trainer Mike, He was able to bang out a few.  

Mike and Molly are incredible.  They have a work out ethic that I will never begin to understand. They must have done 3 or so "WODs" while we waited for Open Gym to be over and hit the  beach.  

Mike is on the NPGL Boston Iron Team so he has a pretty intense workout regime, and Molly says she "likes to keep up with him."  

We congratulated them both on making it the the CrossFit Games again this year as a team, and they did much better than last year which was cool, and having Mike drafted onto the Boston Iron Team for the NPGL.  We chit chatted and just basically caught up.  We really, really, really wanted to stay the rest of the day with them on the beach, but our schedule just wouldn't allow it.  

It was so so so so (x's 100 more so) to visit with them, even if it was short.  It's nice to know that even with the distance and how busy/hectic they are with their work out schedules and running their box, they still took time out to hang with us, and it was like we never left them!  

Friday, August 29, 2014

Our Epic August Crossfit Trip - Day 3

Now that we were in Norwalk, CT and "settled" Dennis and I planned on visiting Kong Crossfit for a 10am class.  We both had already done a drop in at Crossfit Norwalk, so we were excited to see what Kong was like.  Anytime I WOD in Norwalk, I'm slightly nervous I'll run into somebody I went to school with.  

We walked into the facility and it was HUGE.  Like there was an echo, huge.  

I don't think I've seen a box quite as large as this one before so I was expecting to be in a large class..  But as it turned out, it was only be Dennis, myself, and one other person.  There were two other people in the box doing their own thing, but I found it curious that with such a large facility the class attendance was so small.  But I was relieved because I didn't recognize any of the people there.  

In any case, the first thing we did was a ton of stretching followed by a row, inch worm, and jump rope warm up.  

The strength portion was front squats.  I can't remember the rep scheme, but I know the sets were lengthy, I think 3 x 8 or something like that.  

Then finally the WOD:

10 Minute AMRAP:

3 Push Presses
3 Box Jumps
30 (?) Double Unders

I know Dennis and I both got more than 10 rounds each, but I cant remember the exact score.  There was no white board to take a picture of either :(

The trainer made us take a quick walk outside after the WOD to control our breathing and then he lead a quick 5/10 minute stretching session.  

The trainer was happy we dropped in at their facility and welcomed us back anytime.  

The one thing I wasn't a huge fan of was that the instructor told Dennis and I what weights to use during the WOD (I was a bit confused how he could judge our strength ability without really knowing us) but we did as the Trainer said.  Also, if you were doing step ups, you had to double your reps, which I'm not sure I agreed with either, but again, when in Rome.  

The WOD was an enjoyable one, we were always moving and to be honest was a bit light, but I wasn't complaining! 

We were hoping to add a new Tshirt to our collection but they didn't have any available to sell (this was now a common theme with the boxes this trip) and we were a bit disappointed, but hey that's life.  We were happy to get in another WOD this trip and to add Kong Crossfit to our resume.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Our Epic August Crossfit Trip - Day 2

Thursday morning we woke up, gathered our things and headed up to good ole' Allentown PA to make a few stops before our find destination of CT.  

Stop #1:  South Mountain Crossfit

This was supposed to be a rest day for us, but we arrived just as the class started and Dennis just couldn't help himself.

I resisted the urge to do any physical activity and played with Shane while Dennis did his thing.

With it being an odd time (10am on a Thursday morning we weren't expecting to see too many people that we knew, but Trainer Kurt was there and Jess was in the class, so it was very nice to see them.  We also finally got to me Dre, SMCF's mascot.  

When I posted that we were at SMCF on Facebook, it took no less than 30 seconds for my friend Lynne to harass me about being in Allentown and not seeing her.  ;).  The visit was short, but nice to show face and on we went to stop in Bethlehem to visit the place where Dennis and I met (and where I still do part time work):

Stop #2: Weather Trends International

It was really great seeing my old coworkers and having lunch with most of them.  I hadn't been at the office since I had left back in April 2013, and let me tell my desk was a paperwork nightmare!  

After lunch we had about 2.5 more travel time until we reached MY parent's house in Norwalk, CT.  The rest of that day/night was very low key (as we were exhausted) and it was nice to finally be settled and relax.  

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Our Epic August Crossfit Trip - Day 1

Dennis and I have always flirted with the idea of taking a cross country road trip and hit up as many Crossfit boxes as we could.  

I think after about a 6-8 months of Crossfiting I became slightly obsessed with going to different boxes in different states to A. Get in a WOD while on vacation and B. Grow my Crossfit Tshirt Collection. 

So in any case, one of my best friends was celebrating her 30th birthday in NYC and I immediately was excited to search for local boxes that would fit into the schedule. 

Since a weekend in NYC calls for much more effort now that we have Shane, we decided to make an EPIC trip out of the whole thing, leaving VA to PA, PA to CT, CT to NY and then back home to VA, with the hopes of going to no less than 3 boxes.  

So Tuesday night after work, Dennis, Shane and I packed the car as best that we could for the traveling week ahead and drove up to Pennsylvania where we would be staying at Dennis' parents house for the night.  

Now last time we stayed at Dennis' parent house we dropped in at Crossfit Royalty.  We really liked that box, but in all attempts to try NEW PLACES we decided to go to Crossfit Valley Forge instead for an 11 o'clock class.  

The facility itself was very unique and nothing like I had ever seen at a Crossfit ever.  The building itself was a sports complex with an astro turf field, a basketball court, a full gym room, and a closed off area with a Crossfit section.  Apparently there was an upstairs too, which is hard to even believe.  

We were a bit early and got to watch the 10am "class" aka one of the trainers do today's WOD.  And gave us time to sign the required wavier.

I was half happy with the WOD we were being asked to do, a 12 Minute AMRAP of Snatches and Wall Balls.  Any guesses on what part I was happy about?  In any case, the class ran like this:

Group Warm Up
12 Minute AMRAP
12 Power Snatches
12 Wall Balls
Cool Down/Stretch

There were more people in the class than I expected for an 11am class on a Wendesday but everybody was very welcoming and friendly.  

It was funny bc when the trainer asked us about our Crossfit background and we said "seasoning" he said very quickly OH THANK GOD!  Which we totally understood because having new people come in on Snatch Day is probably the worst possible situation.  The Snatch is one of the most technical Oly lift and would be extremely frustrating for trainers and new Crossfitters alike.  

I think Dennis and I represented CFC fairly well with our scores:

Sunday, August 10, 2014

The BWI Trail

In all attempts to train for our upcoming 100 Mike Bike Ride and to try out new bike trails in the surrounding area, we decided to venture up to Baltimore to bike the BWI Trail.  And like most of our events, this was no short of an adventure.  

Shane made sure to power up with some blueberries before we got started. 

In the beginning, I was very much enjoying the trail.  It was a gorgeous day, the trail was well marked, and the scenery was very pretty.  

Then we got to a fork in the trail and we together, made a choice to go right.  That brought us into the airport parking which was obviously not the right way.  So we did a little back tracking and headed on our way.  

Then at about mile 10, we continued on the trail, following the signs.  Then at about mile 13 something didn't seem right.

Dennis then confirmed that somehow we got onto the B&A Trail and had to turn around.  So we did what we had to do.  Bike back to the original trail, causing us a 5 mile detour.  

I was a little annoyed at this point because I typically prepare myself for the bike distances that we agree on before we actually go biking.  So adding 5 miles (and the stress of being lost and not knowing where to turn) really throws off my game.  

When we got home and looked up the B&A Trail, we decided next time we are up that way we would combined the two trails to get a longer bike ride in.  As you can see in the map below, the B&A Trail is a perfect way to enter the BWI, do a loop and return by B&A.  

Dennis, Shane and I have really been enjoying our bike rides together, exploring new places, being outside, and getting a good workout in.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Biking and the D.C. Zoo

With all attempts to get more biking in, Dennis and I decided that Sunday would be a day to try out a new bike route.  Our last bike trip found us in Philly on a closed road to motor vehicles.  

Dennis knew that D.C. did this as well for bikes and so we decided to check it out.  

The Rock Creek Trail (northern section) is entirely on road,  but like I said before, on weekends is closed off to cars.  So we drove down to Beach Dr. and started our ride. 

Even though the trail was on road, the road was in pretty bad shape.  Large pot holes, uneven pavement, and oddly enough there were a few cars on one section despite the signs.  

We rode until we got into Maryland and decided to turn around to go back. 

Once we got back to our car, we decided to head the other direction to get to the zoo.  This was an adventure on it's own.  Narrow paths, dirt paths, narrow dirt paths in what seemed to be a jungle, were some of the obstacles we had to face in order to get to the zoo opening.  Once it was in site, Dennis and I breathed a sign of relieve as a hybrid or even mountain bike would have been better for this ride, from start to stop. 

We parked our bikes and prompted put Shane on the Merry-Go-Round!  He wasn't a huge fan, but I think deep down he enjoyed it.  

After getting a light lunch (and cute little lunch bag to boot) we mounted our bikes and headed back to our car.  

I don't think I'd repeat this trail on a road bike, but it was a nice day to be outside and with the family.  

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Crossfit Chantilly Party

Crossfit Chantilly's Birthday was this past Saturday and oddly enough Dennis and I were going to be in the area to join in the festivities.  There had been lots of talk during the week that the WOD was going to be a doozey, but those rumors both intrigue and excite me all at the same time.  

It ended up being a partner WOD for time.  The last time I did a Partner WOD was in VA Beach while dropping in at a new box,  but this was the first partner WOD in Chantilly for me.  I was semi anxious to see who my partner was going to be and how I'd stack up to them.  

I showed up for the 9am which is the early class on Saturday and to my dismay there were only two other people.  A husband and wife, who I assumed would be partners, leaving the cheese, (me), standing alone.  But as luck would have it, the husband was not doing the WOD and that left myself and Kelley to be partners. 

I've never WODed with Kelley before, but I did know that she's done a few competitions, she likes to yell at people when they are doing WODs and is semi loud when doing her WODs.  I was all ok with that!  I knew I had to step up my game to keep up with her and hopefully we'd make a good team. 


The WOD was a chipper and between the two people you had to do:

100 DU
50 Pull Ups
50 Deadlifts
50 Wallballs
100 DU

Everything was going pretty smooth until the HSPUs.  This was a weakness of Kelley, which is fine, because I was able to knock out 5-7 per attempt and I didn't at all mind carrying her in that event.  Mostly because I knew once we got to Wall Balls, I would be gassed and I'm typically slow on those anyway.  Once through the HSPU, Kelley took the lead on Wall Balls which was greatly appreciated by my legs, and we closed out the WOD in just over 16 minutes.  CONSIDERABLY faster than I had thought we would have done.  

Go us!

The rest of the day was spent at the box hanging out with fellow members and trainers.  I always enjoy getting to know the members and trainers on a more personal level besides what we learn about each other at the work outs.  Thank you CFC for hosting and I can't wait until next party!

Thursday, July 24, 2014

The Beach and Biking

I apologize for the lack in blogging, life tends to get away from me, but know that I do feel guilt!!

This past weekend Dennis and I decided we wanted to take Shane to Ocean City NJ where Dennis went on his very first boardwalk ride, the ladybug.  I was in agreement to such weekend activity as long as we were able to fit in some type of exercise in.  

I did some extensive research (as per normal when we travel) on which Crossfit Boxes we could visit but unfortunately no class times / locations matched up with our weekend plan, so we decided we'd bike around Philly as our exercise.

The beach was a good time.  The weather wasn't perfect, but I personally like overcast beach days over blaring hot sun.  The water was a bit cold, so swimming was very limited but Dennis and I took a nice 30 minute kid free walk down the beach together.  (our friends were watching Shane while we walked).  So even though we didn't get a Crossfit work out in, we still did something.  Shane enjoyed the sand very much!!

After the beach we walked the boardwalk where Shane went on his first rides!  Unfortunately for Dennis, the ladybug ride no longer existed and we had to settle for the boat, fire truck, and buggy cars:

The next day, we drove into Philly and promptly found a parking spot and set up our bikes and trailer.  The weather was perfect!  Much better than the day before and I was happy that we were going to be spending some of it on our bikes. 

Dennis and I had biked TO Philly once before (that was my previous longest bike ride) so we had an idea of where we were going.

Our bike started at the Rocky Steps and we took the Schuylkill River path until we got to a bridge that took us over the river and back to the steps.

It was, in retrospect, a really cool trip down memory lane for us.  We remembered our bike ride to Philly (one the I mentioned before) from Valley Forge park, about a 44 mile total trip by bike.  Then we remembered Dennis and Kyle's Philly Triathlon that they did on a section that we biked on, and then finally at the end of our bike was where I had finished my 1st Half Marathon.  

We had both also ran the Broad Street Run in Philly, and the Rothman 8k in Philly as well.  

Remembering all those specific events was really fun and I can only hope that Shane, when he gets older, will take interest in doing events like those.  

Until then, Dennis and I will continue to cart him around in this trailer like a boss.  

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

2 Lesson Tuesday

1.  My Over Head Squats need work.  My previous 1 rep max is 75lbs and today I couldn't do more than 55lbs.  These were from the ground (which doesn't phase me a bit bc I love Snatching and I can snatch a good amount of weight) but after getting the bar above my head, I would just stand there frozen.  I did a squat at 55lbs and then tried 65lbs and was just stuck.  While standing there with a bar over my head, Shawn did finally notice my creepy over extending elbows that only show while doing OHS :)
2. Ring Dips are hard.  I've been on the band for RDs for years now.  In fact, before today, I had NEVER even attempted to do a real ring dip.  So I figured, what the hell.  I set up, jumped up, lowered down....and was stuck.  Really really hard movement.  But when I use the band, its too easy and more fun than anything.  So during the WOD and going forward, my RDs will not have a band and I will do negatives until I can do them RX'd.  Someday!!
The first part of the core was GHD raises, which is one of my least favorites, so I skipped it and did my weighted sit ups.  Those take me so freaking long but as long as I keep moving, I can usually get the 2 sets done in time.  
Warm Up:
200 meter run
2 Rounds:
20 Dislocates
20 Arm Circles
20 Bear Hugs
20 Leg Swings
10 Air Squats
5 Ring Rows
Counter Stretch or squat mobility
12 minutes to complete 5×3 Overhead Squats (55#)
AMRAP in 9 minutes:
15 Ring Dips
30 Double Unders
Ring Dip Negatives
B. 2×50 Weighted Anchored Sit-ups (25#)

Monday Funday

I wasn't thrilled to see running in the WOD today especially after the 5k on Saturday but I suppose there was nothing I could do about it.  I already knew that I'd be doing the WOD RX'd it was just a matter of how fast I would get through the rounds.
The first set of dead lifts the entire class finished at the same time.  Just imagine hearing 5 bars dropping at the same time, it was pretty comical.  We all headed out for the run (except for Martha who was rowing instead) where Brittney took the lead, Shawn and myself were neck and neck, and Jae was bringing up the rear.
As far as the push ups went, it was hard to tell how fast people were going so it was pretty much a hope you don't fall behind thing.  Round two Brittney held onto her lead and Shawn and myself were still very close.  I followed him out to the run, later accused of drafting, but hey whatever works!
The third round I believe is where I got ahead of Shawn, most likely on the dead lifts, and I was done in 10:29.  Brit had me my more than a minute, and Shawn was close to me, but ended about 20 seconds after me. 
I felt like it was quick WOD (pretty much a sprint) and the only time I rested was between the push ups, laying on the ground in my own face sweat.  I did all the dead lifts unbroken and I didn't walk during the run.  
I'm also trying to take the core work more seriously.  It's very interesting changing boxes as much as I have.  I got used to a certain way things were done.  Strength, WOD, every so often Cash Out.
Now I have to get used to the group Warm Up, Mobility, WOD, Core.  
The Core today was GHD Bench Press, which is super hard!  Basically imagine doing a bench press without a bench under you and using your abs to keep yourself up.  So the first time I used the PVC and thought I was going to die.  I then moved on to the 15lb bar and then today I used the 25lb bar.  Movement is no JOKE! 
Warm Up:
2 minutes jump rope
2 Rounds:
20 Walking Windmills
20 Leg Swings
10 Walking Lunges
10 Dislocates
10 Bear Hugs
5 Inch Worms
Hamstring mobility
4 Rounds:
15 Deadlifts (105#)
200 meter run
15 Hand Release Push-Ups
3×8 GHD Bench Press  (25#)

Courtney and Kyle's Wedding Day 5K

With the Royalty drop in and Rehearsal Dinner done, that left the main event, Kyle and Courtney's wedding!  And in true fashion, the first thing on the agenda was, to run a 5k.  Yup, you heard me right.  This bride-to-be wanted to get her run on hours BEFORE she said I do.  (Courtney is ad avid runner so this was not really a HUGE surprise to anybody).  

Since Dennis and I are pretty active people and most of all good sports, we 100% felt required to participate and showed up to the start line alone with about 35 other people.  I had to laugh because there were some serious runners down to the groom's brother wearing basketball shoes.  The whole event was pretty cute, the start line was at the Starbucks that they went on their first date at and the finish line was at the church they were to be wed later that day.  

With Courtney being, well Courtney, she was bouncing around handing out Wedding Day 5k shirts:

 and once everybody was present, we sand the national anthem:

Dennis and I had talked a LITTLE about strategy.  Me saying "that I didn't really care and if I made it to the end it would be a win" and Dennis saying "I want to PR this run!" we were clearly on different pages.  Then right at the last minute Dennis goes, "let's run this together."  Awesome.

Now my natural pace is slow and I left it up to Dennis to either stay with me or not.  I could tell that he was really fighting back to just run ahead of me but he decided to slow down his pace and chat it up.  Which is probably the most annoying thing in the world for me when running.  

I did get a good laugh at the woman that ran about 400 meters, stopped and announced that "Yeah, I'm done running" followed by the girl in front of us that b lined it into the Philly Pretzel factory store after about 10 minutes of running.  Now obviously this was a "fun run" but really people?

The roads were not closed and to my delight we were crossing a railroad that just so happened to have a train going through, all I could say in my mind was safety first, I must stop and let the train pass (and get a good couple minutes rest while I was at it) but noooooooooooooooo daredevil Dennis dashed in front of the train and I stupidly followed.  Side note: the train was literally moving at 1mph.  

As much as I was annoyed at Dennis during the run, he didn't let me walk, he tried to catch me when I tripped and almost fell, and he was super proud of me when we crossed the finish line with a time of about 29 minutes.  One of my better 5k times.  

Besides some very light running at Crossfit, I haven't done much of any running before this, so the fact that I did what I did made me happy.

The run was a success even though the bride to be was a little upset she finished 3rd (seriously who didn't let her win?) the rest of the day went on without a hitch. 

After the 5k, we relaxed, played mini golf, and then watched two of our friends get married.

Congratulations you two, enjoy the honeymoon!!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Crossfit Royalty

This weekend Dennis was in one of our good friend's wedding and we weren't going to miss out on an opportunity to visit a new box while traveling.  This has almost been a game to me.  Once my travel plans are finalized, I find the nearest Crossfit, creep their schedule, and see which WODs would work.  The last time I did this was in Virginia Beach when I did a drop in at North End Crossfit.  Dennis and I had done our research and we planned on visiting Crossfit Royalty at 6am on Friday morning.  Yay!!

And we'll never be roooooooooooyals (royalsssssssssss)

Happy to add another T-shirt to the collection and name to my growing roster on the right side of the blog, I eagerly waiting for them to post their WOD for Friday.  As I visitor in a new box I feel extra pressure to represent my home box (Crossfit Chantilly) as a good Crossfitter and I want to be able to not only do the WODs, but do them well.  

and then this happened:

Pefecto!  The strength was to work on cleans and the WOD was a triplet of  Cleans, Ring Dips, and Box Jumps.  All things I was comfortable doing!  

The strength was interesting as I had never done Cleans with a pause in the middle.  I worked my way up to 100lbs and failed at 110.  Apparently I was getting the bar up to my chin basically, but my mind got the best of me and wasn't communicating to my body that I could get under the bar quick enough to complete the move. Something I will need to / want to work on.  

I decided to stick with 100lb clean for the WOD, as the dude said it should be heavy (which it was).  Even though it was only 1 rep per round, I did fail a couple times, which made me feel good about the weight.  

After 8 Minutes of work I was happy with my score and Dennis was happy with his as well.

The over all feel of the gym was great.  The people were nice, the trainer was helpful, and the facility itself was large, clean, and well, Crossfitty!  

The rest of the day was pretty solid.  I took Shane for a 30 minute walk which he obviously enjoyed:

and then we spent a good amount of time in the pool:

And then Dennis and I were off to the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner!

Sunday, July 13, 2014

4th of July Gettysburg Bike Ride

With no major 4th of July plans, Dennis and I thought it would be a good / fun idea to figure out our next biking adventure.  In an attempt to be patriotic, we decided on biking around Gettysburg.  On the website there was a 19 mile 3 loop trail that we were planning on doing.  

Easy enough right?  WRONG!!

The only "loop" we did (more than three times) was around a dead end, circle-ish parking lot trying to find the freaking trail.  Any how enjoyable was that? Well.  I was obviously mad that Dennis didn't print out the instructions before hand, it was hot, we were towing Shane, on bikes on top of any husband/wife "we are lost" situation.  

Even Shane was feeling the pressure!
But once we did finally get on the path, it was a VERY enjoyable ride.  

We knew that it wasn't going to be for time or for miles, so we took our time stopping and looking at all the historic status and look outs which made for a very nice 4th of July. 

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Mental Games

After my glorious rest day I was back at the 6:00am class on Friday and for a few minutes I thought I was going to be the ONLY person in the class.  I started to panic, how horrible would that be for me to basically have a trainer focused on my performance for the whole WOD?!? And then thankfully a fellow 6amer walked through the doors. 

After Wednesday's fiasco with the 95lbs cleans, I mentally decided that I was going to go well below RX for the front squats and just deal with it.  I quickly looked up my 1 rep max just to see where I was and it was 135lbs.  RX'd was 95lbs for this particular WOD, but I knew that wasn't going to happen.  I loaded the bar to 65lbs and decided that was what I was going to use.  

3 Rounds for Time
200 Meter Run
7 Hand Stand Push Ups
14 Front Squats 

In my mind, I mentally prepared for this WOD to take me at least 20 minutes finish.  I wasn't worried about the running, but the HSPUs and front squats for sure.  I knew I was going to have to break up the Front Squats into a couple sets per round, and I knew that I'd have to chip away at the HSPU for at least the last round.  

Let's just say I under estimated myself on this one considering I finished sub 10.

I really surprised myself on the HSPU  because I did all 7 unbroken each round.  I was using 2 ab mats, so next time we have HSPUs I will only use 1.  YAY.  I know that I complain about all the shoulder work we do here in CFC but CLEARLY it's working. 

I wasn't able to do all 14 reps of the front squats unbroken, but I told myself not to do less than 7 at a time.  I didn't want to spend all my energy cleaning the bar up to get into the Front Squat position so 2 sets of 7 each round is what I did.  It wasn't easy, at all, but I felt ok doing 2 sets of 7 and of course getting a time like that, I was wondering if I could have gone heavier. 

I'm like the freaking goldie locks of weights here. 

I was very surprised how sweaty I was for under 10 minutes of work.  It was short, but super exhausting, and I loved it.  

Thursday, June 26, 2014

I Should Have Scaled

Yesterday's WOD was one that I  barely blinked an eye at when I read the post on the website.

8 Minute AMRAP
10 Hang Cleans @ 95lbs
50 Double Unders

Cleans are my very favorite lift so I was assuming that 95lbs was not going to be an issue for me. 

After the warm up, I loaded the bar to 65lbs.  Got in a few cleans without any issues at all.  I was confident that 95lbs (or RX'd in this case) would be a good weight for me to go.  I added 30 more pounds, cleaned and thought about it for a minute.  It was heavy, but I did it, so I should be ok.  Feeling slightly challenged by the weight, I cleaned again and I failed.  Crap, it may be too heavy.  


After 5 reps I knew I had bitten off more than I could chew.  I dropped the bar to shake out my arms while everybody else proceeded to the jump ropes.  Crap.  My form was disintegrating and I was fighting for every rep. 

The good news was that I did the WOD Rx'd.  The bad news was that Rx'd meant nothing to me because I finished the WOD with a pathetic 1+9 rounds. 

Being really upset with myself and the whole situation really, I logged into my blog to see what my 1 rep max was for Hang Cleans.  Just to see if I was in the right ballpark with weight.  And what do you know?  My 1 rep max was, yup you guessed it, 95lbs.  

What does this mean?  It means that I went too heavy on the work out and that I now need to figure out my new 1 rep max for hang  cleans,  because I basically just did 19 in 8 minutes.  

This just goes to show it is important to record your work outs as detailed as possible.  IF i knew that 95 was my 1 rep max, I would have looked at the WOD and said ok, if I can do 1 at 95, I should probably do this WOD at about 75lbs.  

Stupid Stupid Stupid.  

As for today, it was my "glorious rest day" as I like to call them and I plan on getting back at it tomorrow morning at 6am.  

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Too Sore for More

Even though yesterday's WOD was pretty intense, I was feeling pretty good through out the day.

My coworker and I typically take a 2 mile walk at lunch to get out of the office and be outside.  This helps my body a TON staying loose during the day. Otherwise I find myself sitting for almost 9 hours and simply stiffing up.  

It was at 9pm last night when the 6am WOD hit me like a ton of bricks.  I went to yawn and immediately thrashed forward because of the pain in my abbs that it caused.  My legs (mostly my thighs) were sore from the squats, and then finally my shoulders started to scream as well.  I was also dealing with ripped callouses and band burn on my stomach.  Meh.  

Not to mention a fellow 6am'er was feeling chills and had a high fever all day.  She never gets sick, so obviously I blame Angie!

This already gave me a pre-excuse not to go to today's WOD, but I reluctantly packed my gym bag anyways just in case I felt inspired in the morning.  And I made it!

7 Rounds
10 Wall Balls (14 lbs)
10 Box Jumps (20″ Step Ups)
10 Ring Dips (Purple Band)
15 minute time cap

Karen: 13:39