A year of firsts: CrossFit competition

It’s no secret. A few of my favorite things include a glass of wine at home on my couch, Dateline, and lately, binge watching Criminal Minds from the comfort of my bed.

In 2016, I committed to making a conscious effort to disconnect a little bit — leave my phone behind and get outside more, get back to doing Yoga, do more writing, and explore new places on the weekends. You know… do what I used to do all the time that for some reason, I do a lot less these days.

To get myself out of my comfort zone this year, I challenged myself to try something new every week. It doesn’t have to be a “big deal” but it has to be something new.

With that being said… the first *new* thing I did in 2016 was a fitness competition — CrossFit, to be exact. I know, I know, I’ve been doing CrossFit for years. That’s not new. But, I’ve always done it to challenge myself and not worry about what everyone else in the gym was doing. By competing, I knew it would open my eyes to how far I’ve come (or haven’t come) since I started.

Since it was a team competition, I knew I couldn’t do it without my two best workout buddies, Conni and Alie.

We signed up to compete against teams from the three CrossFit Hit & Run gyms in the scaled division. Our team is “scaled” because pull-ups are HARD, folks. Really hard. And doing 100 of them in one event means Alie would be doing all the work since, well, I can barely do one.

The organizers slowly started releasing the workouts and I immediately started to reconsider.

Event 1:
The team has 10 minutes to find a 1 rep max clean total. Each team member’s highest lift will count towards the total.

*Power, full, split…. any version.

Event 2 (for time):
Burpee to a plate x 100
KBS x 200 (American Swings)
400m relay

*The Burpees and Swings may be partitioned any way. Each person runs the 400m in relay fashion.

Event 3 (for time):
In waterfall fashion, each teammate will complete:

Row 40 Cals
Wallball x 30 (14 lbs)
Burpee Box Jump Over x 20 (20″ box)
Ground to Overhead x 10 (75lbs)

*Score is the total finish time for your team. One teammate will begin with the row and the 2nd may start as soon as the rower is available.

It poured rain the entire day of the competition. All of you know I’m not a runner, so I did luck out and the 400m run turned into a 400m row indoors, instilling a new sense of hope in me.

When it was our turn to compete in the first event, it felt like all eyes were on us. Of course, all eyes were also on every other team in our heat. But, those eyes turned into supportive cheerleaders even though we were all competing against one another.

Conni, Alie and I were a little unorganized as we changed out our weights and alternated between lifting… but in the end, we all lifted more than we ever had.

When I started CrossFit, I remember being excited that I could clean 85 pounds. In the competition, I cleaned 135, which is a new personal best, but I felt with more time to build up to it, I could’ve done even more. I expect I’ll set another new PR in a few weeks.

The third event nearly killed me. But, it was also the event that made me feel so blessed to be part of such an incredible community. As I lie there wondering how I was going to pick myself up for another 10 burpee box jumps, I looked over at everyone who was watching and saw people I had never met before cheering me on. Nobody was laughing at me. Nobody was whispering. Nobody was pointing at me. It felt like forever, but I finally picked myself up off the ground and finished the workout.

Finished. I actually finished. And lived.

Conni, Alie, and I ended up placing sixth overall in the scaled division, which included something like 13 teams consisting of both men and women. My personal goal going into the competition was to 1.) Not die. And 2.) Not come in last. But, sixth place overall? I’m going to go ahead and call that a win.

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