Sunday, May 31, 2015

Week 5 - Baltimore & Annapolis Trail - 25 Miles

Today's bike riding goal was to get at least (if not more than) 25 miles which would be a challenge since today we would have both kids with us, but Dennis and I were up for it and decided to give it a go. 

Last year, Dennis got us lost on the BWI trail and we ended up on another trail and we always wanted to rediscover that mystery trail, which happened to be the Baltimore and Annapolis trail, 13 miles up and 13 miles back.  Perfect for what we were looking for in today's ride.  

So we loaded up our kids and bikes and off we went!  This trail was amazing!  The first 13 miles were cake.  Slight downhill slant, paved, and lots of shade.  The only issue was that I knew the way BACK was going to be the harder part. An hour later, and at the end on the trail we took a pit stop. 

At the end (or beginning) of this trail there was this neat thing where they put a statue of the sun:

And as we biked back, there were markers for all the planets placed by relation of the sun.  It was a cool little nerdy thing to help pass the miles on the grueling way back.  Yup, I was right, the way back was much slower and harder than the way up and if I were to do this trail again, I would reverse our trip to prevent the burn out I was experiencing.  

The other nice thing about the trail, there was a spot with rear facing food places for bikers to stop and enjoy a refreshment.  On our returning trip we stopped and got some amazing Sorbet to cool us off.  

The return trip took us about 2 hours 20 minutes which was only 20 minutes MORE than the 25 mile bike ride we did last week without the kids.  (I know it says 13 miles and 13 miles, but it was more like 12.5 and 12.5).  

This was one of my favorite trails and I eventually hope to do this trail and then connect it to the BWI trail (which we've rode before) for a lengthy 36 mile bike ride.  I'm not sure my legs are up for that, just yet!!

Week 5 - WODs - 0500

I was completely thrown off this week with my schedule because of the holiday this past Monday.  It extending my weekend, but shortened my week.  

Monday Dennis and I biked, which meant I didn't WOD and I was starting my week on a Tuesday.  Not complaining, but just meant some extra thought into this week's schedule. On top of that, Dennis had a meeting for work that disrupted our normal schedule forcing me to WOD at 5am! Something I've never done before.  

Long story short, I woke up, I showed up, and I WODed!

Coach Adam is usually there at 5am on Tuesday and Thursday for his lifting, so I made sure it was ok with him that I came in and he said no problem!  This also helped him, as normally he lifts at 5am and blows off the WOD, but with me being there, he did the WOD with me and was super pumped about it!

I was happy with myself for not just skipping the work out day all together just because of a schedule change, and with that I got 3 WODs in for the week. 

The OTHER high light was I got another RX next to my name on Wednesday.  Kettlebell Swings at 53lbs and Burpees.  I was a bit apprehensive about the KB Swings, but I got through it, and as usual didn't regret my choice of weight.  

I'm starting to feel as if I'm getting close to where I left off before my pregnancy hiatus, and with that said, my next challenge is to continue on this routine when I start back my full time job.  

WOD: AMRAP 10 Minutes
25 Abmat Sit Ups
10 HSPU - 2 Mats
5 Deadlifts (155) @ 125
Score: 4 Rounds

EMOM 6 Minutes 2 Full Snatches @ 55lbs
WOD: AMRAP 7 Minutes
10 Kettlebell Swings @ 53lbs
10 Burpees
Score 4+16 RX

WOD: For Time
5 Rounds
10 Power Cleans @ 75% Body Weight - 85lbs - 55%
15 Burpee Box Jumps @ 20"
Score: 18:55

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Week 4 - Memorial Day Weekend

Traditionally in CrossFit Memorial Day weekend is the time in which every box does the infamous Hero Wod "Murph."  I have not completed MURPH (Click to Read about it) since May of 2012, scoring a completion time of 97 minutes.  

This year, I was again avoiding it.  But I had my reasons!  My mom, aunt, and cousin were coming down for a visit which meant that Dennis and I would have babysitters for the majority of the weekend.  Since we NEVER get to do bike rides without the kids, we took advantage without question.  

After somebody overslept and us going on a quest to get me a sesame bagel with chive and onion cream cheese (toasted) we were finally at the trail head of a bike path I've been wanted to go on for a while now, "Peach Tree."  

This 25 mile loop started and ended right off a spot of the Potamac River on the Maryland side.  The ride started out on a main road and up a hill but as I've come to learn, no hill that I've climbed wasn't worth the view at the top.  This bike ride was gorgeous and the weather was perfect, but flirting with it being a little too hot.  We did run into some wind on the back 10 miles, but nothing that made the ride miserable.   

Most of the ride was through country / farm land and it was very enjoyable.  There was an interesting section of the route that took us from country to residential development back to country, and of course at about mile 14, we got to the peaches!

Millions of Peaches, Peaches for Me. 

Even though we weren't trailing any children this time, our bike speed started off quite slow, but after the peaches, our pace picked up quite a bit and ended the 25 miles in 2 hours exactly.  Zero chance we would have made that time towing the kids.  

I was happy to feel that my ass and legs didn't hurt NEARLY as bad as they did on the previous bike ride.  Thank Goodness!  Dennis and I really enjoyed the ride and we were happy we got to do a ride just the two of us.  There were several sections that were on main roads, lots of hills, and sections of the path that were extremely bumpy.  Nothing you'd want to be towing a child on.  

Miles to Date:  77
Miles this Week: 25
WODs this Week: 4
Eating Grade: B

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Week 4 - WODs - My 1st RX!

After I was done with today's WOD, I felt like I had hated every single work out this week.  And the reason was simple:

3 out of the 4 WODs this week had me squatting.  Heavy Squat Cleans, Front Squats, Wall Balls, Full Snatches, and Over Head SQUAAAAAAATs. 

C'mon Man!

The one WOD that we DIDN'T have to squat is also worth mentioning.  I starting going back to Crossfit on April 6th (23 days after having a baby) and on May 20th (about 6 weeks back at it) I got my first "As Prescribed" workout aka RX'd.

The WOD for Time:

800 Meter Run
50 Kettle Bell Swings @ 35lbs
50 Box Jumps/Step Ups @ 20 Inches
50 Shoulder to Overhead @ 65lbs
800 Meter Run

My Score: 20:41

This was exactly the boost of self esteem I needed, at exactly the right time.  CrossFit has this bizarre way of on day making you feel like you are the frailest, most out of shape human being on the face of the planet (which is how I felt on April 6th), and on other days make you feel like you could climb Mt Everest.  It's cray cray!

I can only take partial credit for this milestone.  I will attest half of my accomplishment to my commitment to showing up at the box.  I aim to get 4 work outs a week (no less than 3) with an additional day for a long bike ride.  Since April 6th, I have kept that routine true.  

The 2nd part of this accomplishment belongs to Trainers Dan and Adam.  They both have been completely supportive and patient with my return to CrossFit. They continually push me (safely) to my achievements and hold me to a high standard.  If Adam didn't give me the confidence to do the 35lb Kettlebell on 5/14 (a week before), little to no chance I would have done it for the above work out to get the RX.

I always bitch and moan when I'm pushed before the work out and 9 times out of 10, I'm thanking them when I'm done.  How cool is that?  

THIS IS WHY I DON'T GRIPE about how much CrossFit costs.  The coaches know me.  They know my limits and they know when I need to be pushed.

In conclusion, even if my legs/thighs disagree, this week was a great one and I hope to have many more weeks like this, but perhaps with a few less squats.  :)

WOD: 5 Rounds for Time
10 Ring Dips - On Box
10 Hang Squat Cleans @55lbs
Score: 9:50

Strength: 6 x 2 Front Squats @ 85lbs
WOD: AMRAP 12 Minutes
5 Deadlifts @115lbs
10 Toes to Bar - Knee Ups
15 Wall Balls - 10lbs 
Score: 5+25

WOD: For Time
800 Meter Run
50 Kettlebell Swings @35lbs
50 Box Jumps/Step Ups @20 Inches
50 Shoulder to Overhead @65lbs
800 Meter Run
Score: 20:41 RX'd

Strength: 7 EMOM 2 Full Snatches @ 55lbs
WOD: For Time
Pull Ups - On Box
Over Head Squats @55lbs
Score: 10:24 (I think)

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Week 3 - Part 2 - Five Day Bender

Tomorrow (Sunday) I am 100% not moving.  At all.  

I took over sleeping both Monday and Tuesday REALLY hard and boy am I paying for it now.  

I WODed: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday.  Which is great because I aim to get 4 WODs in per week.  The problem?  Dennis and I planned a bike ride for Saturday. 

My legs were toast.  I missed my bike ride last week (I was out of state) and I hadn't had a rest day since Monday.  Driving to the trail head I told Dennis I wasn't feeling the ride already, but I knew in order to be prepared for our Century Bike Ride in October, I needed to get my miles in. 

Before we even left the driveway, we ran into an issue:

Some how Dennis ran over an open safety pin and had a flat tire.  The good news was that we caught it before we left for the ride and we were able to fix it in the privacy of our own home.  While Dennis fixed his tire, Shane enjoyed his bike:

Not a huge deal, we were only about a half hour behind our schedule that we had made for ourselves.  We then drove to the trail head and soon we were off!

We were aiming to do 15-17 miles and found a trail that was the perfect distance.  It started on the Mount Vernon Trail, connected to the 4 Mile Run Trail, the W&OD Trail, and finally the Custis trail bringing us back to the start.  

Our first stop was on the Mount Vernon Trail, where we watched the airplanes landing.  It never gets old and is slightly scary:

We had never been on the 4 Mile Trail, and it was pretty nice.  Way less crowded than the Mount Vernon Trail and lots of under passes that seem to amaze Shane.  

The best part about taking this route was that it brought us to the very start of the W&OD Trail which happened to be the part that Dennis and I have never rode before.  

Before we were made the switch from the W&OD trail to the Custis trail we stopped at a playground to let Shane stretch his legs.  I'm going to stick to that story.  It had NOTHING to do with the fact that my legs, thighs, and butt were beyond fatigued and slowly killing me with every pedal I took.  

Go Shane Go!

Soooooooo the Custis Trail will not be repeated by me ever again.  Holy HILLS.  It was constant, they were steep, and I already felt like I was going to die.  I know for sure I walked one of them, and honestly I can not believe I made it up the others.  I know there was cursing involved.  (To the point where Dennis who was well a head of me, turned around concerned and asked me what was wrong).  LOL whoops.  

Finally we were back to the car after a 16 mile ride.  The day was gorgous, I just wished that I felt better physically and mentally.  The lesson learned? I cannot work out at the intesity level that I had been for 5 straight days in a row and expect to perform the way I want to on my bike trailing 40lbs.  

Tomorrow I will not be exercising, and I have high hopes about getting back to my normal Mon - Thurs, bike ride on Saturday routine. 

Miles to Date:  52
Miles this Week: 16
WODs this Week: 4
Eating Grade: B

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Week 3 - Part 1 - Recovery Days

Our crazy road trip that brought us from VA to CT and back on Sunday night, another week was ahead of us and I was all but ready.  Our fridge looked like this:

Yes that is ACTUALLY our Fridge

I really did have all intentions of getting up at 5am and making the WOD, but my body had other plans.  I overslept.  Yes, I could have gone to another class, but I decided to take the day go to Costco and prep food for the next week or so.  If I couldn't get a good workout in, I wanted to at least eat right!

Tuesday was another day.  Except, I overslept AGAIN!  This time I was much more upset about it, and I knew that if I didn't work out today it would ruin my routine for sure.  So, I strategically kept Seth awake all morning, gave him a nice feeding at 9:30am, and headed to Crossfit Chantilly for the 10:00am class.  
As planned, Seth fell asleep on the car ride over, now all he had to do was stay asleep for the class.  

The strength was Snatches and the WOD was 5 rounds of Kettlebell Snatches and Wall Balls.  (Vom) but that's the way the cookies crumble.  Seth stayed asleep for the workout and I was happy to have put an end of my "rest" days. 

 Besides having a good workout, I ate fantastically!  (Is that even a word?).  The only thing I ate that was non health was a side of pasta with my home made shrimp scampi.  And the only reason I had that was to get rid of the pasta.  

Today has been another successful day, I made it to the 6am WOD and have been having a great eating day as well.  No pressure for Seth to stay asleep this time and I even tried out a new recipe for Brussels Sprouts and I really like it!

Monday, May 11, 2015

Week 2 - Mother's Day Week

This week provided a larger struggle than normal.  Dennis had to travel a few days for work and I decided to take the opportunity to drive up to Connecticut and introduce Seth to the rest of my family.  Now the fun part began, the planning.

I wanted to make sure I got 3-4 WODs in during the week and I knew I wouldn't be eating as well as I would want while being on the road and visiting family.

I was able to go to my home box Monday - Wednesday and I was planning on doing a drop in at a new box in Norwalk on Thursday, giving me Friday and Saturday off, and then travel day on Sunday.  

I was excited for the drop in at Crossfit Revel because I had never been there before and I love trying out new boxes.  I looked up the work out the night before and I was already unhappy.  It was a benchmark workout, Kelly, which of course includes wall balls. 

The facility was really nice and the trainers and other WODers were supper nice and supportive.  

We started class by going around stating our name, our limits, and if there were to be a reality show about yourself, what it would be called.  

We then did a group warm up, and then went through the WOD.  The trainer had some very specific requests for the work out which I thought was pretty interesting.  The work out was as follows:

5 Rounds
400 Meter Run
30 Box Jumps
30 Wall Balls

Trainer explained that no matter what scale you did, you needed to be able to do 10 reps unbroken of that scale.  For example, if you couldn't do 10 box jumps without breaking, scale down to step ups.  Same with wall balls when picking the weight. 

This was a huge goal for me for the wall balls, because usually I can only do 5 reps and then breaking, but my goal was to keep myself at a 10lb ball and do 3 sets of 10 reps each round.  

He also put a 35 minute time cap on the WOD which was a HUGE relief for me.  


Now I know we've talked about WODs with time caps before, but I've never ranted about the 5 round WOD.  I hate them.  I think Coach Dan had perfectly illustrated the metal state of a 5 round WOD.  

That is pretty dead on way to describe a person doing a 5 round WOD.  I tried to glance at the clock after each round to see if I was going to make the cap, and all I kept thinking was that it was going to be close. 

The good news was I did not stop when it came to the box step ups.  I was already scaling the move so I refused to rest during that set.  30 unbroken every time.  As far as the run, well, the run was up a hill and by round 3 I was over that and had to walk.  And the wall balls, at 10lbs, I made sure to do at least 10 reps before breaking. Sometimes I did more than 10, but never less, and that held true for all 5 rounds, which I think was my biggest win. 

I finshed the WOD at 34:11, with a little less than a minute to spare, I was happy to get my 4th WOD in for the week.  

The rest of the weekend I "reveled" in my life.  

Dennis and I spent Friday day drinking in New York City.  We Bar hopped in Hell's Kitchen which was so much fun!

Miles to Date:  36
Miles this Week: 0
WODs this Week: 4
Eating Grade: C

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Week 1 - A Week in Review

Since giving birth to my 2nd child, I told myself I was on a mission to use my maternity leave (12 weeks) to jump start my quest back to fitness and then hopefully continue it upon returning to my full time job.  

This week was a step in the right direction for sure.  

I went to CrossFit 4 days this week (Monday - Thursday) at 6am, and got a Long-ish Bike Ride in on Sunday. 

I REALLY enjoy our family bike rides.  Dennis and I have our 2nd 100 mile bike ride coming up in October and these mini trips are our training for it.  Besides our rides on weekends, we are both doing CrossFit and trying our best to keep each other on track with our eating (which is currently our biggest hurdle). 

Since yesterday was our community Yard Sale and I participate in this even every year, our bike ride would be on Sunday rather than Saturday.  No big deal.  The weather was supposed to be perfect, and I assure you it was. 

We woke up normal time and were headed out an hour earlier than expected, which is always a plus.  Today's ride was going to start at the National Harbor.  I had only been here once before, for our anniversary dinner, and the place is really cool.  Obviously there is water, lots of restaurants, a huge ferris wheel, and cute little shops.  

View From our Table at Lunch
The trail started off not great.  It was a "crushed coral" surface that hugged the harbor.  After about a mile, we were on smooth pavement and immediately battling the uphill that was bringing us up onto the bridge   As we got to the top, I made sure to tell Dennis how much I appreciated that "warm up."  

The Ramp Connecting us to the Bike Path on the Bridge Behind Me

After we completed the Bridge, we had the choice of going towards the Baltimore Airport or Mount Vernon.  I decided to go towards Mount Vernon for not particular reason.  The goal of the day was to get at least 15 miles.  The path was moderately busy with bikers, walkers, and runners, but everybody is super cautious of each other and honestly it was fine.  

The weather was SO nice we decided to let Shane ride with the top down (and shoes off, so we wouldn't lose any), which I think must be somewhat fun for him.  Seth cried a few times during the ride, but as to be expected from a 7 week old baby. 

After the bike ride we had lunch at Redstone American Grill which was nice.  After lunch we walked around the pier a bit to let Shane stretch his legs.  Overall it was a fantastic bike ride and the weather couldn't have been better. 

Miles to Date:  36
Miles this Week: 15
WODs this Week: 4
Eating Grade: C

Friday, May 1, 2015

Hello World

I feel a little sheepish crawling back to my blog like this after so much time has gone by.  My last post was in October of 2014 talking about Dennis and I's first Century ride and let me tell you, a lot has happened since then.  

I must confess, in August of 2014, Dennis and I found out we were having another baby!  Surprise!

So for the months of July 2014 - March 2015 I was pregnant, which means that I was CrossFitting and Biking with a stowaway in my tummy!  Learning from my last pregnancy, I wanted to keep active, eat right, and try my hardest to keep my weight gain in the suggested window of 35-45 lbs over the 9 months.  Obviously this is easier said than done.  

A few months into the pregnancy, we learned that Little Seth's heartbeat was irregular and it was suggested by the doctors that I reduce my exercising from Crossfit to walking and/or anything "light."  So I made the final decision to freeze my membership until after I delivered and was cleared to come back.  

To sum it up, I was miserable.  I hate being pregnant.  Something was potentially wrong with Seth's Heart, and I couldn't Crossfit.  Fantastic.  

I tried to stay positive about everything that was going on and bottom line, Seth's heartbeat eventually regulated on it's own, I did as much light exercising as I could, and I kept myself within the weigh window that the doctors and myself set.  I had a lot to be grateful about.  

The Last Picture of me Pregnant

After delivering Seth and feeling good enough to get back at it, I made a promise to myself to use my maternity leave to jump start my health and fitness routine.  Having a toddler (Shane, who is 2.5 now) and an infant has proved to be one heck of a challenge, but I knew I would be so disappointed in myself if I wasted my time off by not focusing on myself just a little.  

On Monday, April 6th at 6:00am I committed.  Since then, I've gotten at least 3 WODs in per week, plus a bike ride for 4 weeks now.  

I'll save all the mental anguish for another blog post, but for right now, I wanted to start my blog back up and hopefully I can keep this up as well!