Getting Back to CrossFit and Making It Happen for 2015

I took about 9 months off strength and CrossFit workouts.  Some women could have had a baby in that time, me, I just couldn’t manage to fit it into my schedule.  Initially when hubby moved to Indiana ahead of the family, I tried to do CrossFit at home.  I called them my “home grown” CrossFit workouts.  I had a 36# Kettle Bell and a few other pieces of strength equipment. I tried to make it work.  But let me say, with kids and dogs to trip over, moving thru one of these home grown workouts was difficult at best.  Plus I was either making the workouts too easy or too hard.  It was a giant flop.  Fast Forward 9 months and I’m trying to get myself back together.  I’m focusing on strength once again.  I’m knocking off the weight I gained last year due to stress and the move.  I’m eating right.  I’m drinking water.  I’m trying to avoiding alcohol.  As they say, muscles are made in the kitchen, not the gym.  But we all know they go hand in hand.

abs-are-made-in-the-kitchen

So muscles are made in the kitchen, not the gym.  And we can’t “outrun” a bad diet, right?  Right! But for those of us who have been “on the run” for a long time, running just isn’t enough.  The body settles into a holding pattern and running becomes normal.  What to do?  Something different!  Use different muscle groups, add in speed workouts to your routine, spin, swim, CrossFit or circuit train.  We can’t do the same thing we’ve always done and expect different results than what we’ve previously recorded.  You want to change something?  You want to run faster?  You want your pants to fit better?  What are you going to change to make it happen?

Make it happen_dale adams

So basically 2014 was a year that I just “let things happen”.  And I didn’t like the results.  Yes, I had a stellar year and ran a lot of races but I gained 23 lbs, if I’m being totally honest, and well, what the hell is left now but honesty?  So in 2015 I’m going to make things happen, not LET them happen.  I encourage you to join me in this journey.  Know that things don’t happen immediately but start thinking about what you want, no what you NEED to change.  Now make an action plan and follow thru with it.  Make it happen. 

For me, I have to get my foot and body in a healthy spot.  I’m working on that and have a plan of action and for the first time in a very long time, I actually confident that I’m going to be healthy sooner rather than later.  Secondly, I’m going all Food Nazi, and yes, I can say Nazi cuz I’m like 100% German.  I’m currently doing the  AdvoCare 24 Day Challenge and I’m KILLING IT.  Third, I’m moving back to high intensity workouts like CrossFit.  However, this time, I don’t have a “box” and a CrossFit coach (miss you Jared!) but a normal gym where I’m making it happen each and every day. 

My high intensity CrossFit workouts for the week occurred at the YMCA of DeKalb.  Normal gym, right?  Let’s look at what I did.  

1)  5 Rounds: 15 – Knees to Chest (or abs if you are me!); 15 – Squats w/ weight bar only (33#s); 30 – Double Arm Battalion Rope Waves; 15 – KB Swings (20#s); 15 – Bicep Pulls (each arm – 17.5 #s).  Time – 25 minutes

2)  5 rounds: 15 Knees to Chest; 8 thrusters – 33# bar only; 20 – side to sides w/ 12# ball; 15 – 20# KB Swings; 30 Double Arm Battalion Ropes Waves.  Time:  24:44

3)  5 Rounds: 20 – Medicine Ball (12#s) Bounces off angled trampoline; 20 – Ab Baskets (12# ball); 20 – Side to Sides (12# ball); 10 – Hand Release Push-Ups; 15 – Squats w/ 25# Kettle Bell; 30 – Double Arm Battalion Rope Waves.  Time:  24:55

I will say that the Y purchased a Synrgy 360 and this piece of equipment has been integral in my workouts.  If you have one at your gym, don’t be scared, try it out.  It’s fun and very useful!!

Synergy 360_3

Synergy 360_1  Synergy 360_2 

Get after it and try something new.  Get that metabolism blazing and confuse those muscles.  Move it and Make It Happen!

** Make It Happen ** Amanda – TooTallFritz

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CrossFit Day 44 & 45 + WOD Motivation

I’m about 6 months into twice a week Crossfit sessions.  I know everyone is wondering if I’m “getting skinny”.  No I’m not.  I am getting strong.  I’m getting fast.  In my world that’s more important than giving up the cookies.  I’m not totally immersed in the CrossFit lifestyle and still don’t know the full meaning of “Paleo” other than the fact that Paleo baked goods are not TTF child approved for consumption.  Maybe that’s not the right way to say it, I’d let them eat it but they don’t like it. 

What I do know about CrossFit is that motivation is key.  It can be as individual or team oriented as YOU want.  That it can make YOU whatever YOU want to be, as long as you  are willing to work for it, are able to map out your goals and able to communicate said goals to your coach.  So figure out what you want and then go get it.  Simple enough, right? 

Speedometer - Reaching Your Goal 

A couple of weeks ago, a new book dropped on my doorstep and it has captured my attention.  The new WOD Motivation book by CrossFit Journal contributor Eleanor Brown. 

WOD Motivation Book

It is as short and sweet as any CrossFit workout.  It’s a compilation of quotes, sayings and motivational pieces to get me moving.  I can pull it out and just read a couple of quotes when I’m in need or go thru and read half the book at a sitting if I want.  One of my favorites so far is:

Anyone Who Says This Is Easy_WOD Motivation

So true in life, running and CrossFit.  Things aren’t easy and if they are then usually we can do better.  That phrase certainly motivated me this week in my CrossFit sessions!

CrossFit Day 44 – Strength – Back Squat 4×6 – I used the bar (33#) plus I think 10#s on each side. 

back squat

5 Rounds: 

  • 10 KB Swings (26#s)
  • 8 Toes to Bar (Knees to Chest in my world)
  • 6 Burpees – These were actually “doable”.  Does that mean I’m getting better/stronger?
  • 4 Front Rack Lunges w/ Kettlebell (26#)

CrossFit_Front Rack Lunges

CrossFit Day 45 – Strength – Front Squats – 7×3 (33# bar, 10# each side)

Front Squat

5 Rounds: 

  • 5 Deadlifts – 33# bar + 25# on each side.  Holy Heck.  So hard.
  • 7 Ring Dips – Can’t stand these
  • 9 Bar Burpees – SO.NOT.FUN.  Burpee on one side of the deadlift bar, then “jump” over the bar to the other side, do burpee there, repeat til 9 burpees are completed.  I was terrified of missing the jump and landing on the bar.  I basically did “step overs” rather than jumps and they still weren’t fun.

How were your workouts this week?  Do you manage “at home” strength work or do you have to leave the house, like me, to “fit” it in?

** Working On My Strength ** Amanda- TooTallFritz

CrossFit Day 37 & 38

Day 37 at CrossFit brought us very cold temps.  Only two of us went outside to run cuz well, some of us would rather run than do anything else.   Smile  Once we got back inside, I noticed that we had a full Murph lined up on the board.  Luckily it was a partner workout and I was able to split Murph with one of my best running friends.  Oh, and instead of the running part of a regular Murph we would be rowing instead.  Uh oh.  That added a new challenge.

Team “Rowing” Murph – 2 Person Team

  • 4 x 400 m Row – Each team member rows 400m 2x

Rowing

20 Rounds of the following – One team member goes thru a full set, then switches.  So I did one round, then waited as my partner did a round.  Each of us did 10 rounds.  I think we were all done 3/4 of the way thru but we powered thru the last 3 or 4 sets.

  • 5 Ring Rows
  • 10 Push-Ups
  • 15 Squats

Then back to the rowing machine to finish out with another group of 400m rows.  Dang that was tough!

  • 4 x 400 m Row – Each team Rows 400m 2x

Our team time was  31:33 and we were pushing.  My quads still hurt and we are two days “post Murph”.  Those “hero” workouts tend to really tear me up! 

 

Day 38 – Mile run then short workout

21-15-9 (Three rounds of the following, first round 21 reps, second round 15 reps, 3rd round 9 reps.

  • Kettlebell Swings – 26# – The Kettlebell has fast become my favorite piece of “equipment”.  It’s such a good builder of strength without actually making me feel as if I’m “lifting weights”.  I’m not a big weight lifter but I WANT and NEED to be strong. The kettlebells work perfectly for that and they just make me happy.

kettlebells

  • T2B (Toes to Bar, or Knees to Chest if your live in my world)
  • Push-Ups
  • Lunges

Then we finished out with 50 sit-ups and 50 superman’s.

** Getting Stronger – One Workout At A Time ** Amanda – TooTallFritz **

CrossFit Day 25 …. Filthy Fifty

Yes, the damn awesome Filthy Fifty showed up on the white board again.  To be honest, I didn’t even look at all the exercises on the list, just helped get the equipment out and started with the buzzer. 

Filthy Fifty

  • 50 Box Jumps – 12” Box
  • 50 Jumping Pull-ups
  • 50 Kettelbell Swings – 35/26 – 35# for me
  • 50 Walking Lunges
  • 50 Knees to Elbows/Chest
  • 50 Push Press 45/33
  • 50 Supermans
  • 50 Wall Balls – 10#
  • 50 Burpees
  • 50 DU/100 Single Ropes

This workout was hard for me.  I’m not very strong in my upper body the weight bar shows up for anything, I groan internally.  I know I’m there because I WANT and NEED to be stronger but it still sucks isn’t fun.

The box jumps & jumping pull-ups were good.  The kettlebell swings were a hard push for 50 with the 35# bell. 

kettlebell-swings  kettlebell swing_vertical_South Coast Crossfit

Walking lunges & knees to chest were okay but my hands take a beating on the hanging “knees to chest”.  Plus, if I’m honest, I’m really a knees to hip type girl too.  The photo below shows me and my run friends on the “knees to chest” move.  I’m in the green socks.  The photos is a bit blurry cuz we are so amazing.  And fast.  And amazing.  And did I mention fast?

CrossFit_knees 2 chest

Push presses are definitely one of my weakness.  I did 10 with the 45# bar and then Julie M (pink top above) rescued me and traded me for the 33# bar.  SO.MUCH.BETTER but still super hard.  Here is a group of my run friends and I “push pressing” on a different day (I’m in the pink socks).

CrossFit NL_push press

Supermans & wall balls done, even with my wobbly arms from the push presses. Then I got to the stupid  burpees.  OUCH!  I was just out of steam.  So tired.  No energy.  I may have even leaked a tear or two.  Yes, I still “hate” burpees.  And I agree with the lady below, I think this would curb my PSL craving IMMEDIATELY!!

burpees equivalent PSL

I finished strong with 100 single rope jumps.  34 minutes & 45 seconds.  Done. Done.  DONE!!!

Amanda – TooTallFritz

CrossFit Day 21–Tabatas

The WOD for the 5am TUE class was Tabatas.  A Tabata workout always focuses on a group of exercises, normally 5 to 6 different moves.  Each exercise is set up at a particular station.  You are assigned to a station and perform 8 sets of the particular exercise before moving on to the next station.  Each set is timed and you do as many reps as possible in the allotted time.  The time frame for Tabatas is 20 seconds “on” for the movement, 10 seconds rest = 1 set.  Repeat x8, then rotate to the next station.

TUE 5am Tabatas:  Rowing, Hand Release Push-ups, Kettlebell Swings (25 lbs), Reverse Rope Climb & Squats.

Remember, each move requires 8 sets before moving to the next item on the list.   Most of these are things we do a lot.  However, the Hand Release Push-ups were new as well as the Reverse Rope Climbs.

Hand Release Push-Up – Just a drill to get us down and dirty all the way to our bellies before “pushing up”.  Normal push-up stance, go down to belly, lift hands  up (release hands from floor), then push back up.  Great photo of a lady from SnoRidge CrossFit doing the release here:

Hand Release Pushup_snoridge crossfit

Reverse Rope Climb – Way harder than it looks.  I was so relieved to realize that we didn’t have to climb UP the rope that I didn’t think about how difficult it would be to go backwards, or in reverse!  We leaned back holding the rope til it was taunt, then slowly moved down the rope.  In theory, we would get all the way down to the ground where our backs would be touching, then climb back up.  Super hard.  These ladies from CrossFit Camden are really rocking it below.  Let’s just say that I didn’t look as graceful.  “Smile

Reverse Rope Climb

Then we finished the CrossFit session with 25 Knees to Chest.  This is obviously our newest and most favorite move.  We will be rockin’ some serious “abs of steel” by spring so watch out!  I may even get out that pull-up bar that I wasted money on purchased earlier this year and do a few of these at home, on my own.  Maybe.  Or maybe not.

knees to chest

** Working Hard to Get Stronger ** Amanda – TooTallFritz **

Birthday WOD …… CrossFit Day 20

We learned the hard way this morning at CrossFit that if it’s your birthday, or someone else’s, shut up about it OR lie about your age. 

21 again

If you’ve just started following, I’m a newbie CrossFitter.  I go to CrossFit 2x a week at 5am with my gal pals from the run club.  Although what we “do” does not have a special designation, I’d like to think we are more on the CrossFit endurance path than the hardcore CrossFitters like Jared these ladies:

CrossFit_women

You will never catch us at CrossFit in our undies, in fact most of us don’t wear undies cuz well, we are runners.  And we look way more like this guy below than the awesome women above.  Source:  StudentLive

weight lifter_studentlive

So today it was Michelle’s birthday.  Happy Fucking Birthday, Michelle!!  She was 38 so our workout surrounded her age.  Yay!  Sounds like fun, right? 

Michelle’s #38 Birthday WOD

  • 38 Box Jumps (18’” Box) – I did 19 jumps & 19 step-ups so that I didn’t die
  • 38 Ring Rows
  • 38 Kettlebell Swings (36# I think)
  • 38 Walking Lunges
  • 38 Hanging Knee Raises (Knees to Chest or Knees to waist in my world)
  • 38 Push Presses – Bar only (45# I think)
  • 38 Supermans
  • 38 Wall Balls (10#)
  • 38 Burpees
  • 400 meter Run

This was a rough one for me and my weak arms.  I almost didn’t make it.  But I did so I’m happy on that front.  And no, I’m not really mad at Michelle I’m actually mad at Aunt Julie because she’s the one who brought up the birthday.  A WOD is a WOD in my book.  I’m always glad that I went, even when it’s hard.  So whether is YOUR birthday or not, I’ll still be there.  

** Trying my damdest To Get Stronger ** Amanda – TooTallFritz **

CrossFit Day 19 ….

I’m a bit tardy on this post but wanted to record it before hitting class tomorrow.   Day #19 was last Thursday, I’ve just been busy! 

We are still working on form for proper lifting, getting used to “real” weights verses the machine variety that most runners use when they hit the gym.  So we spent a bit of time on front squats, technique – bar only, then 7 x 3 of bar + two 10# plates = 65 #s.

Front Squats – 7 “rounds” of 3 – Demo from CrossFit the Rack.  No way that I got as low as the chick in the photo but I gave it my best effort.  Kinda fun.  Different.  I’m still not all up on “weight lifting” but do see the benefits and don’t mind it in short burst like this. 

Front Squat

WOD

  • 20 T2B (Toes to Bar)
  • 20 Squats
  • 20 Sit-Ups
  • 15 T2B (Toes to Bar)
  • 15 Squats
  • 15 Sit-Ups
  • 10 T2B (Toes to Bar)
  • 10 Squats
  • 10 Sit-Ups
  • 5 T2B (Toes to Bar)
  • 5 Squats
  • 5 Sit-Ups

Another simple workout.  If you’re tired of used to focusing on workouts with times/paces, then this is a welcome and refreshing change.  The most difficult move, by far, for this WOD was the “toes to the bar”.  Of course, I couldn’t do it and we had to modify it to “toes to chest”, which was still a big “not happening” so for my own purposes, I’ll call it “knees to chest” but that too would be generous. 

Here is a perfect demo from Folsom City CrossFit:

toestobar

Knees to chest  example (source unknown b/c someone pinned the photo):

knees to chest

It was amazing to me, how much wear/tear this put on my hands.  This is a very hard move when you are a large frame person with wimpy muscles!!!  I know, I’m working on that but it was very difficult to even keep hold of the bar, let alone crunch my knees to my chest.  Super tough.

More CrossFit tomorrow!!

Amanda – TooTallFritz