CrossFit Hope for Cures (a lil late!!!) Sorry!

Hey ya’ll,

So I’ve been a little MIA…my sincerest apologies.  I think the July 4th holiday just really made me a bit lazy and selfish.

This post is actually a post (with slight edits) that I did for my box (CrossFit Gym) earlier this month, and honestly I’ve gotten lots of compliments from box mates; even those that I never met (different workout schedules).  Don’t ask me why I didn’t post it here first…I think I had momentary brain freeze.  I apologize for the lapse.

Please enjoy!!!

—————————————————————–

It was the length of the rope of “hero beads” that first struck me and made my throat squeeze shut and my eyes start to water ever so slightly.  Don’t believe me?  See this video right here: “I Need to Finish This”.  The first 30 seconds are more than enough.  Call me soft, but seeing such a long string of beads – each one representing blood transfusions or operations or pain of some sort – with loop after loop after loop telling the story of Kate Foster and her battle with Leukemia struck me as mightily unfair.  No one should have to deal with that and especially not a kid; but she did, she does and there’s the possibility that she will.

Hope

CrossFit Hope for Cures

Here I am thinking my 4th of July holiday weekend will be full of some libations (#tequilaispaleo), burgers, movies and catching up on sleep.  Instead, moved by a video of a little girl with more moxie at 12/13 than I’ve got at 30-something, I chose to do something more than layabout in the AC on a hot summer day. I chose to participate in Mid Atlantic CrossFit Affiliates for Hope on the National Mall; what’s more is that I got to do it with some of my fave local Crossfitters.

My box came out and we showed other affiliates what we could do; we made some new friends and sympathized with each other  – Crossfitter to Crossfitter- over the pain we were about to endure.  All in the name of charity.  #gottalovethekids

All participants in Mid-Atlantic Affiliates CrossFit for Hope had to raise at least  $30 for CrossFit for Hope benefiting St. Jude Children’s Hospital via hope.crossfit.com.  Feel free to add a few bucks if you can!

Anywho, on deck:

3 Rounds (17 long minutes)

  • Burpees
  • 75/55 pound Power snatch (Natch, I went Rx…smh)
  • Box jump, 24/20 box
  • 75/55 pound Thruster (Again, I chose Rx…smh)
  • Chest to bar Pull-ups
  • 1 minute/station with a 1 minute rest between rounds

So LET me tell you about July 6th.  It was Saturday and it was hot as hell.  Like roaring-flickering-fires-of-Hades-hot, complete with little burning embers raining down on your back, face and forehead in the form of pretty, yet unrelentingly harsh sunlight.  Cue the sunburn, aloe and unforgiving tan marks; and that was at 8:30 in the morning!!!

Eakinwale

I’m a hot sweaty mess; she’s flawless…#mylife

Sidebar: I did however get to meet one of my faves! @elizabethakinwale Ahhhhhhh!!! #whenigrowup #justlikeher)

My Rx’d heat was at 9:30; just consider how much hotter it was an hour later.  No, really.  Think about it…..you just broke out in sweat didn’t you? I know you did…but I digress.

At 97 some-odd degrees, when they counted down “3-2-1” for my heat I went for the gusto; or at least whatever I had left in the tank after two days off from metcons and a double-fudge chocolate cupcake from Crumbs Bake Shop [read: huuuuuuge] the day before.

I actually managed, by the grace of God and via yells of various box mates to “keep going” & “everyone else is hot too”, to eke out 151 reps and not pass out from  the internal combustion that I felt welling up in my lungs, on my skin; even on my freaking hair follicles.

I was hot.  Like really, really hot; uncomfortable, sweaty, dirty, smelly, hungry and tired.  Sweat was EVERYWHERE and I so was not on my #prettygirlswag.  I went through 17 minutes of great thrusters/burpees, slow box jumps, ehhhhh snatches and really bad Chest to Bars (it sucks being short sometimes) and got a tan line from my headband as a lovely souvenir for the day.  And I forgot to pick up my free t-shirt!!!!  #sheesh

But here’s the thing: my feeling of discomfort lasted 17 minutes and my “distress” went away after some water, shade, food and a 3-hour nap.  Kate Foster’s discomfort from amputation, surgeries and chemicals being pumped into her system has forever altered her life; and yet she showed up, went hard and put it all out there in the WOD.

Kate Foster – hell, kids in general – simply slays me.  I’m beyond impressed and humbled by the fact that she just wants to WOD, contribute to the community and focus on something bigger than herself.  She has had plenty to fear and yet continues to be fearless; moving forward and living…fully.  That’s something that most adults have yet to grasp.

CrossFit Hope for Cures is one small part of the community bonds we create as we raise money for a good cause, commiserate over WODs and recognize that we have little-to-nothing to complain about when compared to others.The heat, the WOD, the distress that we all briefly felt on Saturday was nothing; the fortitude and drive of donors/participants; the memories and the connections that were forged pre, during, and post-WOD: everything.

Next time come and be a part of that “everything”.  Come out and WOD. Contribute to the Community.  Focus on something bigger than yourself.

You won’t regret it.  Kate didn’t.

M^2

 

Message of the Day

Life, fitness, careers, families, your own sense of happiness…this applies across the board.

You have to “Be Here“; be present by working towards it and living fully. 
There’s not much in this life, worth having, that you get without earning it little by little everyday.

M^2

Paleo date:12813 – D22 – Scared of Donuts

Paleo Trek: The Next Generation

Real Food: The Final Frontier

These are the musings of the CrossFitter M^2 and her 30 Day Paleo Challenge: to explore strange new recipes that do not include wheat, legumes, dairy, sugars and/or processed foods. To seek out new opportunities to learn about her body, eat clean/train dirty, understand a food processor, and boldly go where she has never gone before: her very own kitchen.

CrossFitter’s log, Paleo date:021213 – D22

Today, I smelled, nay; INHALED the sugar associated with decadent, evil, glazed and jelly filled donuts.  Once again, the supervisor, b/c he loves us, brought in treats.  DunkinDonutslogoAnd it was 2 dozen varied donuts…and lord knows that I wanted one. Literally my nose, was on the box, as I breathed deeply…from my diaphragm…multiple times.

Homer Donuts

It smelled soooooooooo good.  I could practically taste the sugar through my lymph nodes.  I could have had one…I mean seriously, who could blame me?  I’ve been doing Paleo pretty well…I deserve a treat don’t I?  It’s just a flipping doe-nut!

Except…for one little, teeny, tiny problem: I’ve been eating clean for so long, no bread, no dairy, no cheese, hardly any sugar beyond the natural stuff, that I am actually scared of eating a donut. I’m scared of the bubble guts that are sure to start up…the cramps that will strike within 2 minutes of inhaling the wheat/sugar combination…the sweat that will surely appear on my upper lip when….er, I’ll leave that last part off.  You get the point; don’t you?

I think one of the biggest benefit of this 30 Day Paleo Challenge, is that I actually don’t want to eat the bad stuff.  I don’t want to deal with the pain or the bloats or the icky feeling that always strikes at some point within eating the *good* stuff.

Another benefit?  I HAVE NEVER COOKED OR BAKED SO MUCH IN MY ENTIRE LIFE!  I, me the chick that would freeze her mom’s home cooking piece by piece so I could stretch it until her next visit, brought a food processor!  A FOOD PROCESSOR!

Say hellurrr to my little friend: BUFFY!

Food Processor

7-cups & powerful blades. Perfect for the single, apartment living cavewoman!

She slices, dices, shreds and purees and damn she’s beautiful.  She is cutting my prep time almost completely in half.  I’m experimenting with more and more recipes.  I have “Go-To” websites that have absolutely delicious, hearty and varied recipes with hilarious, sarcastic chefs.  Really, could you ask for anything more?

These people started out just like you and me…wanting to eat well, reduce waste and WOD like BillyBadAsses.  They are here to help; you just have to take the kale leaf that’s being offered; and pass on the the french fries that are going to cause “burgles”.

My faves so far:

22 days down, and 8 to go for this challenge.  But this right here is so my new lifestyle.  I’ve invested myself in to it.  I’m losing inches that loved me for years, and it’s only been 22 days.  Let me say that again: 22 days = lost inches.  Ya’ll betta get right and get on it.

M^2

Chitlins and Whole “Get the Eff Outta Here” Foods

So I’m doing a 30 Day Paleo Challenge starting January 20th and I’m attempting to be proactive by developing recipes, grocery shopping and eating my sugar loaded food now.

Sidebar: Most programs or books that I’ve read about Paleo suggest throwing out the bad foods; clean out the pantry and freezer so ypu wont be tempted.  I find that to be absolutely reprehensible and even culturally offensive.  African-Americans were, historically, raised to salvage whatever food was possible and never throw away anything…that comes from hundreds of years of not having an excess of foods to waste.   Its amazing what you can do with leftovers when thats all you are given to eat!

“Chitlins” anyone?

In colonial times, hogs were slaughtered in December. During slavery, in order to maximize profits, slave owners commonly fed their slaves in the cheapest manner possible. At hog butchering time, the preferred cuts of meat were reserved for the master’s use. The remains, such as fatback, snouts, ears, neck bones, feet, and intestines were given to the slaves for their consumption.
Source:  Wikipedia

No, I’m not posting a pic of Chitlins, because in my personal opinion, it’s just nasty.  However, I recognize that when you  have little to no choice in what to eat, it’s amazing what you will do to survive.

The reality is this: to throw perfectly good food away is just plain wrong.  Donate it to the homeless, your church or feed it to your non Paleo friends, but don’t waste it.  We are blessed to even have these “1st World” problems of choosing what types of food we can eat.  Let’s not allow our arrogance to disregard those that would do anything to be in our shoes.

*Steps off 20-inch [soap] box*

So any who, I hit up Whole Foods and dammmnnnn my eye balls popped out at the cost of some of this stuff…

  • Coconut Oil for friggin $17 bucks!  Pass.
  • Almond Flour for more than I care to remember (itty, bitty bag too!).  Pass.
  • Salmon at $26.99 a pound!  Friggin hand-carried and laced in gold!  Pass!

I ended up picking up some organic lettuce (small), coconut spread at $4.99 a pop and some Yogi Green Tea “Muscle Recovery”.

What did this trip teach me?  Trader Joe’s is a God-send, Costco and my freezer will be my best friends and we gonna have to plan very well for this Paleo Challenge…like on an insane, parent of triplets level.

I think I’m about to become my mother…lol (minus the kids and the hubby of course!)

My First Affiliate League Competition

Today was an eye-opening experience.

CFWoodbridge gals-edit

I observed my first Affiliate League Competition at CrossFit Balance in Washington, D.C., and I gotta tell you, it was fun, scary AND exhilarating.  Those are three very different feelings, but at various times I had all three coursing through my body.

Affiliate comp bars and bumper platesCompetitors from four boxes, and family members, were all over the place.  People were amped up, ready to rock and nervous about finishing their WODs.  I saw my role as that of an observer, cheerleader and wannabe; as in “I wanna be” there someday.  Chalk dust floated in the air as competitors chalked their bars and hands. The clock was set, the judges demonstrated the WOD (Snatches, Muscle Ups, Thrusters, etc.) movements, the difference between a “rep” and “no rep” and it was game on!

These Boxes competed in individual and mixed (men and women) partners events, on the Affiliate and Social level.  It was pretty dope seeing so many people, but there were some very unique situations that I HAVE to mention:

  1. This is the friendliest group of people I have ever seen.  Let’s be honest: everyone did not complete their WODs under the time requirement, but everyone and I do mean EVERYONE cheered, box mates and competitors alike, and encouraged competitors to give it their all and that was amazing to see.  I met some funny and sarcastic folks, that were all too ready to introduce themselves and chat for a few.  What global/regional gym do you go to that even remotely comes close to that type of atmosphere?20130105_135623
  2. The competitors come in all shapes, size, colors, types, body weights, and levels of expertise.  No matter where you might excel in one particular event, let’s say box jumps (vertical jump onto a 20 or 30 inch box), there is always another event that will slow you down and “equalize” everyone (definitely “muscle ups”).
  3. By far the most awesome moment was watching a competitor that was a double amputee.  His legs were amputated below the knee; with two metal  prostheses and he went HARD in da paint on everything he did!!!  More, he was funny as hell; cracking jokes that would likely offend a more sensitive person [blush level y’all] and doing it with aplomb.  I barely noticed his lack of “legs”; I really didn’t even see that he was different until he decided to change the internal rubber casing that went over his stumps and help them fit/hold the prosthesis.  I don’t know his story; to be honest, I can’t remember his name, but I sure as hell respect his heart and competitive drive.
  4. These men and women trained for weeks, if not months, for something that took less than 14 minutes in one instance and less than 10 minutes in the other.  It takes a lot to dedicate yourself to something that takes so little time to complete.

Sidebar: I bet yClayDavis picou thought, from the post title, that I was actually competing today, huh? See the pic on the left.  Basically: not yet.)

Q: What the hell do I need to do to mentally and physically prepare myself for a potential?

A: Not sure yet. I’m going to ask my coaches; and focus on my weak spots (Muscle Ups, Kipping (butterfly and pull ups), and cleans.  You have to practice what you’re weak in, so maybe try an active rest day, i.e. work on progressions vs. completely taking the day off.  I’m also considering a Paleo challenge to lean out.

Consider this: How much time, effort and sacrifice you are willing to make to attain something that few people even recognize they are capable of achieving?  Are you willing to be uncomfortable?  Confront change?  Sacrifice your hair?  Study the mechanics of the movements to get results safely?

What?

I’m So Gonna Die (CrossFit Newbie)

Hi everyone,

Thanks for having me here!  I’m happy to provide additional insight on BlackChicksWod.com from a newbie perspective.  This is my first post, so it’s a smidge longer, but worth it! Future posts will be shorter, believe me!

My journey began with a longing for change.  Something more than another New Year’s “certain-to-fail-by-day-two” Resolution.  I wanted to modify my lifestyle drastically, to exact a permanent shift in my spiritual, physical and mental health. I decided to focus on a handful of objectives:

  1. Attend Church Regularly
  2. Grow out my Natural Hair
  3. Learn a New language
  4. Improve my overall Health

As easy as these goals sound, and although I had already been making progress on the first two items (church/hair), my attempts at learning a new language and improving my health were completely shot!

Every day I would look at my dusty, unopened Rosetta Stone set for Spanish (not cheap!), and go about my business for the day, it remains unopened. Healthwise, I began making my lunches for work but completely failed by eating Chipotle for dinner. It’s highly likely my language goal will continue to exist as just a goal, but for health/fitness I decided to completely crank up the heat with…CrossFit >:o.

Now, let’s be frank: I don’t consider myself to be inexperienced or a novice at intense exercise. Growing up I was the quintessential tomboy, so I constantly ran up and down the block and beat down the boys. In school, I played basketball, track & field, and soccer…a year-round athlete! However, let’s be frank again: that was HOW many years ago? Like 10 bloody years!

At 29 years old, 5’6″ in height and *cough, cough* 115 lbs in weight, my 60+ hr per week desk job was only aiding in packing on pounds and the sports club/globo-gym model was no longer a motivating, appealing option. I mean seriously, how many times can you jog on the treadmill or deal with the “meatmarket” that is inherent to working out in that type of gym?

So…in hearing all the buzz about CrossFit from friends, people I hate for other reasons than their banging bodies and the internet/social media, I thought it would be interesting to try the ADHD workout…because thats what interval training really is right?? Lots of variations in movements and hitting body targets in a very short time frame.  I “pressed the button” and paid my fee (pound of flesh??) to begin this tortuous ride of “constantly varied, functional movement”.

As I got closer and closer to my first CrossFit basics class, panic began to set in and I started to have conversations with myself that would rival the best of them.

What in the heck did I just commit to do?!?!
I’m no longer in my prime 20’s, I can’t run and jump like I’m 12 years old and invincible!! And REALLY, what-is-up with all these monstrous dead-lift weights, kettlebells, and pull-ups? I wanted to get in shape, but not look like jacked-up Barbie.

More importantly, as a Black Chick, I didn’t want to throw up, get man-sized calluses, break an ankle, rupture a kidney or any of that mess!  I didn’t want wanna die! (Seriously…this is how I felt and what I consistently texted and emailed my friends all the way up to the start of my first class).

I resolved to whooo-saaaah and cue the crunkest, ratchet-est Southern music on my iPhone to get amped up for my walk through the fire.

Jan 2, 2013 was my first day of CrossFit, albeit the first of 6 fundamental courses. Walking into the Box (one of the first 50 CrossFit Affiliates *wipes sweat from brow*), I got a serious tingle; a slight, light-headed feeling that morphed into a crazy adrenaline rush…it was time to (wo)man up and bring it! I was intrigued by the no-frills set up; the Box was just that, a freaking big “box” with weight lifting equipment in each corner and along the wall, ropes and rings hanging from the ceiling and no mirrors. I could immediately sense that people were there to sweat and not there to be cute while running on the treadmill. I was temporarily overwhelmed by the cacophony of teeth-clenched-breathing grunts and whooshes of a nearby group completing their WOD. And the sweat, oh I smelled and saw a lot of freaking sweat, lol.
My coach, whom I will call Ms. Gunz, led our session and her appearance did very little to calm my nerves.  Her arms were huge; biceps popping!

She was kind enough to rally our group of five by briefly sharing her reasons for joining CrossFit; which was nice, but all too soon the talk was over and I found myself getting positioned to do push ups. Ms. Gunz’s intent was to show us how to properly execute pushups, situps, and air squats.
Oh air squats.
For years, I’d been convinced that I knew how to properly squat, but this was something else!! This whole “breaking the plane” thing brings to mind images of Lil Kim, but soooo not that nasty.  You’re too busy trying to keep your chest up, heels down and legs moving.

We began our first challenge, my very first “tabata”: 20 secs of work and 10 secs of rest for 16 rounds, alternating between situps and pushups. The goal was to maintain the same number of situps and pushups done in the first round throughout the remaining fifteen cycles. I felt pretty good about the situps, but the pushups were horrible for me and tired me out pretty quickly, but at least the men were dragging by the end as well (he he he).

Next we learned all about executing pull-ups and “kippings”. Needless to say, after killing my arms on pushups I couldn’t do a single pull-up. However, I was fascinated to learn of these nifty elastic bands which support some of your weight, so gradually you progress to assistance-free pull-ups!

I have no shame, I’ll be using the thickest black band for a long time.

Lastly, we rounded off the first day with 2 mins of air squats. On my 70th burning air squat, I had to do an internal check, “Really?!!? You decided to do this ish instead of pilates?!?”.

Ms. Gunz, yelled and cheered us on to finish strong.

I’m sure we were the most miserable, out of shape bunch ever…but thats exactly why we were there…why I was there. I’ve concluded…that yes, I’m probably gonna die…but at least I may learn to do an actual pull-up before doing so :).

Stay tuned!
MemphizBelle “Southern Diva Extraordinaire”

OMSAG

image

3 Rounds AMRAP
1st Round: 4mins 500M Row, 10 Box Burpees, 17 Knees to Elbows; 3 Min Rest

2nd Round: 6Mins 500M Row, 10 Box Burpees, 20 knees to elbows, 15 shoulder to overhead @65lbs, 6min rest

3rd Round: All out 500M Row, 10 Box Burpees, 10 knees to elbows, 30 shoulder to overhead at 65lbs, 40 Kettle Bells (American) @ 30lbs and 50 Double Unders
Final time: 15:25

My body was literally shaking lol

“Puke-worthy”

image

Yup, that’s what my CrossFit coach said.  “This WOD is ‘puke-worthy'”.

Mind you, he wasn’t even talking to me when he said that.  He was speaking with another coach that walked in asking about today’s workout.  I overheard Master Splinter (my nickname for him) use the term.  I mean, be serious!  It’s pretty damn hard to ignore! Especially considering a chick in my class had just finished telling me she might hurl because she ate too much during the holiday. SHEESH.

Todays DuttyWOD:

12 Minutes (1X1) Row for Meters
Meaning: one minute sprint rows, one minute rest for a total of 24 minutes.

There was seriously a part of me that thought we were only going up to 12 total minutes! Imagine my trepidation when we kept going past round 6 and shifted into 7. By round 9 my legs were rubbery and burning at the same time; my forearms tingling as if there was a warm breeze on my skin (there so wasn’t). But then round 10 got me. I focused more on breathing and maintaining my form than if I was going to make it. By round 11 my inner #StrongGyal was on full alert; I’ll be damned if I quit now. I wanted to row that bastard contraption into the ground; I sincerely wanted the most meters. With sweat gathering in the corners of eyes that were closed tightly to prevent the sting, and my teeth clenched, I simply wanted to win. Just one more freaking…pull!

Among the women I came in 3rd; edged out of 2nd place by less than 50M. There were only 4 chicks and 1 guy there tonight (due to the holidays). I didn’t win (this time), but it’s only been 2 mos since I started this adventure. I already know I’ll do better next time because I completed this WOD.

Lessons Learned:
Think less about what you can’t do and more about what you will (not “can”) do.

Just when you think you can’t take anymore; when you think your legs, your arms, or your drive might give out; that’s when you truly see what you are capable of. That’s when you realize lasting results.

P.S. No. I did not puke; but it definitely had me thinking about the upcoming Paleo challenge lol.

Have you had any “puke-worthy” WODs lately? What were they? Let me know below!

“Cindy” you Wench…

Ok, got my Detox in.  Today was my first day back in “da box” after 5 whole days – of mamma’s home cooking – off from my WODS.  Technically, it’s more like 6 days off.  The fact is that I didn’t pass out, however my stomach (full of chicken pesto pasta and sacher torte cake from La Madeline) was bubbling just a bit…I took it as a hint: get back in the saddle or pray to the porcelain gods.

Stay tuned for the food plan..until then:

Today’s DuttyWOD

15 Minutes AMRAP of “CINDY” Power Cleans

1 Power clean – RX 155/105lbs (I did 85lbs so as not to completely embarrass myself lol)

1 Round of Cindy – 5 Pull-ups (blue band), 10 Push Ups, 15 Air Squats

2 Power Cleans  @ 85lbs

1 Round of Cindy

etc.

I finished 8 complete rounds, i.e. worked all the way up to 8 Power Cleans at 85lbs and completed the associated round of Cindy.  That is a grand total of 36 flipping power cleans, 40 bloody strict pull ups (blue band), 80 push ups (the last 30 on my knees *blink*) and 120 Air Squats.

The time is now 11:26 PM EST and my hips, biceps, and hamstrings are singing soprano; oh Cindy, you wench…you definitely welcomed me back with open arms.