Monday, June 30, 2008

CrossFit Old Town is my Easy...


Before you get bent out of shape reading my title today, please go back and reread it. It does not say "CFOT is Easy". No. It says CFOT is MY Easy. So you're probably thinking that it sounds like I can't use correct grammar and that I'm rambling and making no sense. Well, I am rambling, but it will make sense, or at least I hope it will. Today is another rest day for me thanks still in part to my 4 mile walk the other night plus my double shift yesterday, so that means that on my workout front, there is nothing new to report. However, you know me and my ability to leave my blog alone for a day, and that's about as good as me leaving CrossFit alone for a day. So, here I am with my rest day ramblings. Ooh, that was almost alliteration. :P

You know, ever since I dated Bobby, I guess you could say that I have had a slight fascination, ok, fine, a strong fascination, with the men of Easy Company (101st Airborne, 506 PIR) who served in WWII. I had never dated anyone who had a military background and Bobby is chalk full of knowledge with regards to the military in general and military history. Especially paratroopers since he was trained to be one. Through him, I wound up becoming very engrossed in the story of the men of Easy Company. Now, for those of you reading right now, I'm sure you're wondering how a group of paratroopers could have anything to do with CrossFit. Just sit tight because I'm getting to it.

Since my fascination has gotten going, I have read several books on Easy Company, specific men of Easy Company, and the leaders of Easy Company. The book that I just finished yesterday was one such book about two gentlemen who were part of Easy Company, and remained lifelong friends ever after in south Philly. If you know the story of Easy, then you know the story of "Wild Bill" and "Babe". While I was reading their story, something that Bill said made me stop and think. He said that everyone deserved the credit for winning WWII, not just Easy. He said that Easy wasn't a group of heroes, but what made Easy so unique was their ability to band together, stay together, and stick together during and ever after the war. Until recently, Easy Company men got together every single year to talk to each other and catch up.

What makes Easy Company's story so powerful is that these men banded together in a way few, if any other regiments did. No one stayed together the way they did. Perhaps part of it had to do with the fact that their unit trained together and then stayed together during the war, which was unheard of at the time, but regardless, it's amazing. Before losing both legs in Bastogne (Battle of the Bulge), Joy Toye had been wounded 3 times, gone AWOL from the aid station and hospitals and returned to his unit because he didn't WANT to become a replacement in another unit. Popeye Wynn went AWOL after being injured at Brecourt Manor (part of the Normandy invasion) so that he didn't have to miss the jump into Holland during Operation Market Garden and thus become a replacement outside Easy. These men took the worst of the worst and stayed together. They felt leaving their friends by being wounded was letting them down. Despite their pains and illnesses and injuries, they wanted to stay together because they never wanted to let each other down. They helped each other through the worst of possible times, and were always there to pick each other up. Imagine being surrounded by a group of Germans who had larger and more guns than you did. Imagine that it is below freezing, and you have no warm clothes. Those men were in those circumstances and found a way to support each other. They became a community, a "Band of Brothers".

To me, CFOT is my Easy Company. This group of people has trained together, many of us now for over a year. Everytime I have fallen facedown in the dirt, all I had to do was look around to see the hands of people there and willing to pull me back up. Everytime I look at that barbell and want to quit, I hear the voices of those people encouraging me on. When life has gotten rough, and it looked like things wouldn't be bright again, there were people all around willing to share smiles and help get me to a better place. CFOT is my Easy because they never give up on me. Easy Company never believed in leaving a man behind, and neither does CFOT. Every person calls time, or comes across that finish line. It's the reality of the room. CFOT has created something powerful. Something that I suspect few other affiliates can match. I have heard stories, but none seem to resonate in the same tone that ours does. While in their doors, affiliates seem to have great rapport. But leave those doors, and many seem to fade away. Easy never faded away, and when CFOT leaves the doors, we don't either. Whether we are in the room or not, CFOT is CFOT. We call each other, message each other, blog to each other. In many ways, we have created the same kind of community that Easy has. A very supportive and caring, and yet still ass kicking community. Do we complete heroic feats like the men of Easy did? No, certainly not... although completing some of our workouts may feel like it. But, does CFOT inspire me, and get me through some of the dark days the way the men of Easy did for each other? Absolutely.

I understand that some may think my relation of CFOT to Easy is a bit of a stretch, and some may even be offended. But I want to go back to what Bill said, the bond is what made them unique and that's what I'm getting at. I'm not saying we're heroes, but I think the same can be said about CFOT. I think our bond is very unique. There's nowhere, albeit ocassionally my bed, I would rather be than in the Blue Room at 0600 with my crew. Furthermore, Bill notes that Easy was held together by strong leadership. In particular, that of Dick Winters. Dick Winters was a smart man. He made smart decisions based on his military knowledge, and also common sense, something that some leaders didn't use. He was a mans' man. He looked after his troops and made sure to try to take care of each and every one of them. Hmmm... does that remind you of anyone? I can't think of anyone with better fitness sense, or just a sense of knowing his athletes, not only as athletes but as people, than Jerry. He truly does his best to look after each and every one of us. I can't picture a better leader for CFOT. True leadership begins the process of promoting that community, and Jerry does that. Jerry is our Dick. Hmmmm, that sounds kinda mean, but I think you can see my point. CrossFit certainly isn't Easy... but CFOT is MY Easy. They are MY "Band of Brothers".



PS- If these names, places, groups etc. don't really make any sense to you, here are a few related readings that may help you understand.

Band of Brothers-Stephen Ambrose
Beyond Band of Brothers- Dick Winters
Biggest Brother-Larry Alexander
Brothers in Battle*Best of Friends- "Wild Bill" Guarnere and Edward "Babe" Heffron with Robyn Post
Call of Duty: My life before, during, and after the Band of Brothers- Lynn "Buck" Compton (have not read yet, released May '08)
Easy Company Soldier: The endless combat of a sargent from WWII's Band of Brothers- Don Malarky (have not read yet, released May '08)

Today's WOD...

Work 12.5 hours while dealing with people who don't understand that restaurants sometimes get busy and it will take me longer than 5 seconds to return with your extra butter/refill/napkins/ketchups/foot up the arse... while dealing with said persons, also run up and down stairs frequently to move alcoholic beverages and food from floor to floor... and don't forget, split and do 2 floors of dining to make this day more fun... 3-2-1....

Sunday, June 29, 2008

2nd WOD.....

So the car's not here right? Uh huh... so how do I get home from work? Oh that's right... I decided to walk the 4+ miles home from work tonight... in the heat, and the humidity. I'm guessing from work to home is about 4 miles, maybe a smidge over. It's 2.5 to the metro from our house, and then probably another 1.5 miles to the restaurant. It took me a little over an hour to get home...

This was a bad idea on many accounts... mainly because my knees are now killing me...

Saturday, June 28, 2008

I feel like a waste of space... plus I hate cars...

So today I woke up, and despite the miserable heat and humidity decided that I really needed to go for a run. Baltimore is coming fast, and although my countdown has been down for a few days, I'm pretty sure that I'm down to right around 100 days. Well, there is a beautiful spot south of Alexandria where I like to run called the Dyke Marsh. Yes, I realize the connotation but hush or I'll kick you. (yes I'm feeling fiesty today... read on to find out why... )

Anyhoo, I did my usualy walk to the first mile marker, which is just a little over a half mile, and then started to run. When I bought my new running shoes last week, I also purchased the Nike+ ipod, which I have to say is very helpful. With the chip in my shoes, I no longer have to worry about relying on mile markers to help me and I actually really enjoy the information I was able to get from it. Anyway, the chip told me the mile marker is actually .6 of a mile, so I was just about right. So, at the mile marker, I started to jog. Well, it didn't take me long until I was absolutely spent, I mean literally. I felt like there were lead bricks in my stomach and my legs just didn't want to move. Chris spent a little bit of time yesterday after the workout going over Pose techniques, and I swear I really tried hard to lean forward, but my running felt horrible. After a little over a half mile I stopped to walk. Walk? Walk? Seriously? Yeah, I know. I've mentioned that I've felt like Poo this week, but seriously a half mile? I was trainwrecked. All around me there were men and women with the baby strollers, you know what I mean, where they run and push the buggy thing... they were PASSING me. Talk about not good for the self-esteem. I just felt deflated. I turned around and headed back for the car.

I just didn't have it in me today. I felt awful, I couldn't breathe, no human should sweat nearly as much as I was... I quit. Plain and simple, I quit on myself today. I ran most of the way back, and actually wound up finishing, according to the very LOVELY woman on my I-pod who talks to me, with 2.41 miles. My goal today was to RUN 3. I walked ran less than that. Boo. According to her, my average time was 14:30, which I suppose given that I was walking parts of it, is truly not that terrible. But I just felt rotten that I could not meet my goal today. Well, after I left the marsh, I headed out to help my sister move. I wanted to stop at Old Navy on the way back because they were having their sail on on flip flops (only $1) and so I stopped. Well, after browsing for about an hour, I went out to my car to head home since I have to be at work soon. Well, guess what. I turned the key, and nothing. I got a clicking noise that sounded like me taking something plastic against bicycle spokes. No turning over, nothing. So there I was trapped at Old Navy. Luckily my roommate came to get me and bring me home, and luckily I'm still inside the 3 year warranty on my car.

So, I called roadside assistance and the very nice lady sent a tow my way. Unfortunately they are towing it to the dealership, and I could not wait for them to come, so I had to give them my plate number etc. This means that I will be without a car until at least Monday. I'm not happy about this. I'm also not happy that I called the dealership and tried to tell them what was going on and they kicked me to someone's voicemail. This is why I stopped going to that dealership when I needed work done on my car. I always talked to someone's voicemail. Grr... so all in all, it has not been a great day. I did get my flip flops though. That's always a plus... :(

Friday, June 27, 2008

Don't "Badger" me...



Well, it's been a doozy of a week since Jerry has been out of town. Two named workouts and a Painstorm. Dang. Today, we hit Badger. I've been itching to have a shot at my 30 chins and today was a good day to try, because Badger involves sets of 30 chins. :P Imagine that. So anyway, Badger fun looks like this...

3 rounds for time
30 chins
30 hang squat cleans
800 meter run

Looking at the board, people brought this in today anywhere from the insane time of 29 minutes, up to 60 minutes. I seemed to fall right in the middle of things today. Let me just tell you, I tried to PR the chins on my first set out. I got to 19 today and that was it. I just didn't have any gas in the tank. I've never felt pressure before when doing a PR, and today I was nervous. Anxious even. I knew the second I grabbed the bar that it wasn't going to come. I wasn't relaxed. I was really tense and the longer I tried to stretch my kip, the more tired I became. I think it's a really important lesson for me that I need to remember. Hitting three PR's in a week and a half is pretty damned near impossible, well, on the same exercise anyway. I also think that perhaps had it been early in the morning, I may have had a little bit better of a showing. I've really noticed this week that there is a definite difference in how I feel late in the afternoon/evening and I don't feel as strong or confident that late in the day. I don't know if it's just because I've exerted a lot of energy to get through the day or what, but I've felt off this week. Not to mention, it was just hot as balls today. I mean, dang. It was like 90 with 100% humidity. Running today SUCKED!

But anyway, back to Badger. Aside from the really craptastic running, the rest of this didn't feel too bad. Even with the deplorable runs, I still hacked 2 minutes off my previous Badger time. I brought this one in in 42:26. My last run at Badger was over 44 minutes. So, not a steller week in the Blue Room. I mean, I did drop time on two benchmark workouts, but I lost my chin record (sob) to Stacey (As if I didn't know that was coming!) :P and in general, the week just didn't feel good. I felt weak. Does that make sense? You know how sometimes a workout just clicks and you feel solid on the movements? That wasn't me this week. I got through them, but it just didn't feel good. So hopefully, next week things will be better when I get back to my normal routine. Nothing against the 5 o'clockers, but I need my 0600 team. "They're my boys Blue!!!"

Now... stop "Badgering" me... tehehehe... I love all the corny ways I can use that word... :)

Stolen....

Ok, so I stole this from CrossFit NSC but I just HAD to. I thought this was really interesting. Somebody needs to teach those guys the lever!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

More Painstorm...

So I was really curious about all the Painstorm workouts that are out there and in my google searching and subsequent blog reading, I stumbled upon this little gem. CrossFit Central Scotland has a list of all the workouts up through April '08.

Since I forgot to post the list the first time... I'll do that now... genius...

I also found a little ditty about where the Painstorm workouts came from. I think it's kinda cool so I'm going to go ahead and post it.

"I dont know if any of you have seen or heard of the PainStorm workouts that are posted on the CrossFit affiliate page. This is a big workout that is posted once a month and is usually a bit of a toughy.

It started a couple of years ago when I would travel don to London once a month to train with Karl, who is now owner of CrossFit Manchester. I would get the bus down on the Saturday, train all day Sunday, then get the bus home Sunday night. Now, if Im travelling all that way there is no way I was just going to do a normal workout - this is where PainStorm came from!"

This was posted by Davie. You can visit Davie at www.FuncKey.co.uk

Painstorm


So Jerry has been out of town this week, and Andrea and Chris have been running things in the Blue Room. I have to say, Andrea has picked a few doozies this week for us, but they've been awesome workouts. We hit Daniel on Monday, and then we hit a Painstorm workout yesterday. For those of you NOT familiar with the Painstorm workouts, just understand that they are LOOOOOOONNNG kick your ass kind of workouts. "Tiger" as RX'd is actually a Painstorm workout.

So, yesterday when I walked in and saw what Andrea had up, I was a smidgen confused, but after awhile, became a little bit worried, then sick to my stomach, and then just finally had to accept the fact that after two days of bad eating and sitting around singing and being cheesy and campy, I was going to get my ass kicked. As RX'd here's what the workout looks like...

Descending ladder starting at 12
Clean and press/sit-up or deck squat complex
Wall Ball
Box Jumps
Pull Ups
KB swings
Burpees
Knees to Elbows
Push ups
Squats
TGU/Lunge complex

Now, I want to say first off that there were two gentlemen yesterday morning who stayed and did the whole thing RX'd. Damn. That's all I can say to that. Just DAMN. For the rest of us... Andrea had us all do the two complex movements. We had to buy in with the clean and press complex and buy out with the TGU complex. Then we got to pick five from the middle. I have to say, I was pleased with my choices and felt I was moving rather quickly through things, except the TGU's. They slowed me down hardcore. I can lift a lot of weight for TGU's, but man, I just couldn't do them quickly today. I don't know why. I just felt very sluggish during that part. But in the middle I picked some good metcon exercises for me, and I was pushing it. I did wall ball, right to box jumps, right to chins, right to KB swings, right to squats, and then into the TGU. My exercises used a lot of legs today so perhaps that's why the TGU was so rough for me. But either way, I got down through the 8's before Andrea called time. Mind you, that was about 35 minutes. So to finish just 7 of the 10 exercises would have taken at least an hour. To do all 10, significantly longer since I suck at push ups, burpees, and KTE.

This one didn't hurt as much as I thought it would, but it still beat my butt in a metcon kind of way. We didn't use heavy weights, so maybe that's also partially why. It was pure metcon for me today. Just a race. I have to say, this one was not the worst I've done. I actually kind of liked this one. Give this one a go if you're feeling frisky. :)

As an aside, only two more days of this stinking class. My instructor is great, but this is sooooooo not my thing. I'm ready to be back with my 0600 crew!!!! :( Miss you guys!!!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

I fall off the Zone, class sucks, and why I was awake at 5am...

Alright, so I hate this class. I have to be here by 8 which is at least a 30-45 minute drive (traffic lights depending) from my house, which means I have not been able to hit team 0600 this week. I'm angry. I'm not pleased, and I'm really really really peeved that I didn't elect to take this class, I'm being FORCED to. I'm creating a list of reasons in my head of why I HATE this county right now. #1 is that it's taking away my CrossFit time! Rawr!!!! Anyhoo, I also hate this class because after the ice cream debaucle this past weekend, I swore that I was going back on my two strict weeks of Zone to kick it back into high gear. Yeah, well, that lasted about as long as I figured out that the lunches and breakfasts they were providing were not Zone friendly, and that everyday there would be "snacks" during class which would consist of cheese and crackers, Tostitos, and CHOCOLATE. BALLS! BALLS BALLS BALLS!!!

All these things I like but should NOT be eating!!! RAWR! So of course I have fallen off the Zone, until today. I went to the grocery store last night, and come hell or high water, everything that goes into my body today will be ZONED! (someone call me at lunch today and make sure I stick to that! yesterday they had dirt... you know, the chocolate pudding with the Oreos and the whipped cream.... :( I ate it... and I loved every bite! Which is very bad!)

Now, since I'm not getting up for CrossFit at 0600, why the crap was I awake at 5am? Wellllll... as it so happens, the teacher who is also the student right now, came home and fell asleep on the couch at 630 and couldn't bring herself at 900 when she woke up, to do her homework. So, she had to get up an hour earlier this morning and finish her homework. I thought you would all appreciate that irony. I now need to go to the cafeteria to sing and pretend to enjoy myself... anyone have a blunt object handy? RAWR!!!!

Monday, June 23, 2008

Daniel: The rematch

Last time I hit Daniel, the blog was short. There was no witty commentary to be had. That's cause last time I did it, I hurt like the dickens and couldn't really type. So I'm comparing this Daniel to the one which we did back in April. April seems like a lifetime ago. So much has happened since then, but nonetheless it's a benchmark. So, let's do a comparison of a few months ago shall we?

Daniel

50 chins
400 meter run
21 thrusters
800 meter run
21 thrusters
400 meter run
50 chins

April 13th-33:13
June 23rd- 26:45

Wait, did I really just write that? Holy balls Batman! (Can you tell that currently balls is my favorite word? It substitutes nicely for other profanity. :P ) Seriously, I dropped almost 7 minutes off this time. Not seconds, MINUTES. That's just sheer insanity. The chins on the first 50 felt AWESOME. I broke into sets of 10 and the rhythm just felt smooth. I'm going to get that 30 chins. I don't know when, but I'm going to get them. Notice I'm not really talking about the thrusters or the running... that's cause they... ew. Just ew. Andrea and Chriss said they looked good, but man it's so hard to feel about thrusters. They are kinda like burpees. As much as I want to like them, I just can't. They're kinda like the kid in class who picks his nose. You know he's not really all that bad, but you just can't like him no matter how hard you try. Humidity really slowed down the runs for me tonight. I think if I would have done this on a less humid day, (ha! we won't have one of those til December!) I may have dropped another minute, but I had a really hard time breathing today. Blech...

I was going to try to hit the 30 today... you know me... I've just got that itch. And you know that when I get "the fever" the only remedy is MORE COWBELL!!! I'm sorry... if you're not in the 0600 class, this probably doesn't make much sense to you, but it seems that we've been referencing the classic Christopher Walken and Will Ferell skit from Saturday Night Live where Will Ferell is supposed to be a member of Blue Oyster Cult a lot lately. If you've never seen it, go to YouTube and search for it. It's hilarious. Anyway, back to my itching. Ew, sorry, that sounds bad. But seriously, sometimes, when I get the itch to do something, I just need to do it and get it out of my system. I listened to Andrea and Chriss today who advised against going with another max set. I know their logic was right, but like I said... I just get that itch and I need to scratch it sometimes. :)

As an aside, Danny came in today, and while we were all doing Daniel, he SMOKED through 50 muscle ups. Folks, homie smoked that in 15 minutes. No, you read that right. 15 minutes for 50 muscle ups.... damn! I told him if he hit 50 today I'd owe him breakfast. I'm starting to learn apparently that breakfast is a big motivating factor around CFOT... ;) LOL. Andrea and Chris suggested Friday for a possible PR attempt. I'm thinking... it's going to be GO time. I need me some breakfast... ;)

Sunday, June 22, 2008

New highs and lows...

Hmmmmmm.... where shall we start today? The highs? Or the lows? Or the workout? :P Let's start with the workout. I made it out of bed today, and like Georgia and Adrienne keep telling me, sometimes you just get points for showing up. Today was one of those days. Our circuit today should have made me feel good, hang clean to push press coupled with 400 meter runs. It didn't make me feel good. Going home was emotionally and physically draining. Not only did it require me spending over 8 hours in the car, my main reason for going home was not because I was going on vacation.

I don't like to blog about my family because I feel as if it's almost not fair to include them without their consent, but the trip home this week really was because of my grandfather. I've mentioned here and there that he's not been in the best health, and my trip home this week was really so I could go see him. Going home this week I saw just how much he's regressed since I was home last, which was a mere 4 weeks ago. If you have ever watched a loved one at their later stages in life, you can probably understand the things that I was going through. It was awful to see him now and know how he used to be. It was heartbreaking, and I wish that I could help him in some way, but truthfully there is nothing I, or anyone else can do. It's been hard over the last few days just to shake that visit. Not to mention, immediately following that visit, I went to have lunch with a good friend of mine. We've been, not on the outs, but not as close lately as we have been in the past, and we are in the process of trying to mend some hurts and patch fences. While it is great to do that, it also involves delving into a lot of issues, which brought up a lot of emotions, both good and bad. It was great to mend things with my friend, but dealing with all those emotions really wiped me out. So, getting back yesterday just to head to work to deal with people who didn't want to tip me, and didn't want to leave when the restaurant closed was almost more than I could take. So truthfully, I'm giving myself points today for not staying curled in bed in front of my fan in the fetal position.

When I got to the Blue Room today, I decided to jump on the scale to measure the damage I had done with my ice cream binge and my trip home. I have to say... I nearly fell off the scale when I saw the number. Literally. I couldn't believe the scale was right. Before leaving on Wed, the scale read 163.6. Not where I would like to be, but I was also thinking a little bit of that may have to do with *ehem* "being a girl". Nonetheless I was not prepared for the number today. 159.8. That is the lowest reading I have had on a scale in over 6 years. I couldn't believe. I nearly started to cry. Despite falling off the wagon, my grit in keeping my meals mostly Zone friendly, and trying to steer clear of most sweets has paid dividends, and is the result of my new low. My new weight. I have now officially to the T, lost 19 lbs. My Zone journey started when I hit a staggering high (for me) of 178.8 lbs. I am flabbergasted today by how much I've lost, and if anything, today's number is going to encourage me to keep going. I would love to hit 155. I think that would be a good weight for me to hang around, but we'll have to see how the Zoning continues to go.

After I got over the shock of the scale, I went into the Blue Room to get stretched out. Cindy and Tiger definitely left me feeling a little on the sore side. We warmed up for a few hang clean to push presses, and then headed outside with all our toys. Before I get to my commentary, here's what the fun looked like:

Warm-up
Hang cleans to push press
35, 55, 65 X 5

WOD
5 rounds for time
15 clean and press
400 meter run

I have to say, my gas tank was not full today. I had a lot of trouble with this one, and mentally had a hard time staying in this one. I think it's understandable but nonetheless, just wasn't there. The runs felt pretty good, but cleaning and pressing 65X15 was rough. I was the only woman to go 65 today, but all the ladies totally housed me today. I brought this in in 18 something. I wasn't really listening by that point. I was just trying to finish. I guess it's good that I have that mentality of always finishing, but man, sometimes I really do feel like poop.

As we were taking the toys inside, I was thinking about my statements the other day about challenging my 20 chins. The shoulders were a little wonky after the 75 clean and presses, but I really felt like 20 was not my max, and I really wanted to get on the bar. Well, as we were putting toys away and Jerry started to sweep the floor, I decided, "What the hey. I'll get on the bar and see what happens." Cara came over to count for me and watch me. Somehow our numbers got a little off, but I still say I'm right. :) My total? Well, since you asked so nicely, I'll tell you.... it was 24. ;) WOOT! :) That is a new class record, but I can't be too excited about that. There are ladies who will knock that down probably by tomorrow. Stacey will have 26 tomorrown. Guaranteed. However, I want to get to 30. Danny said that if I got to 30 before Stacey, he would buy me breakfast. Now, I don't know about you, but I can think of some pretty elaborate and very non-Zone friendly breakfasts I would like to make Danny buy me... ;) Mimosas anyone? Tehe... just kidding, but 30 is a new goal for me. I'm at that point where I feel so close I can taste it. The bar and I may get a rematch tomorrow BEFORE the circuit. The last two attempts have come after the circuit and have been done with fried shoulders. I'd be interested to see what happens before the circuit... ;)

Friday, June 20, 2008

So much for the rest day... and rest day? : Part Deux...


So, you know how sometimes I get these really great ideas that aren't really all that great? Yeah, so that kinda happened yesterday. I took a nap yesterday afternoon, or well for the whole afternoon, and then decided that going to the globo gym for a bit sounded like a good idea. I've been hearing all week about this "Tiger" workout, but hadn't actually seen it. Well, Darcy posted it up yesterday and I got that itch. You know how I am. When I decide I really want to do something...then I go and do it regardless of whether or not it's actually a good idea... yeah that one. So I decided that I was going to go to the globo gym and hit Tiger. So I headed off to my old globo gym around 8pm. When I got there, nothing. Nada. It was dead. So basically I had all the toys to myself. It was great because the gym is so old that their bars are worn and smooth and I didn't even have to worry about taping the bar or anything. They also had a big bucket of chalk, and I nearly did a little happy dance and clicked my heels. YEAH, that would have been interesting. :P

Anyhoo, I warmed up with a few lighter sets of each of the exercises in Tiger, and felt a little tweaky but ready to go. So I readied the watch on my arm and said a little 3-2-1, which is nowhere near as good as when Jerry says it, and off I went. If you haven't seen Tiger, let me let you in on what it looks like.

- 5 Deadlifts
- 5 Cleans
- 5 Front Squats
- 5 Push Presses
- 5 Back Squats

Looks simple right? Well, not quite. In order for this to count as a round, you must do all 25 reps without putting the bar down. That counts as a round. This is a workout designed to run for 40 minutes. Yes I said, AMRAP in 40 minutes. Balls. Just balls. Now, when I saw this workout, it said prescribed weight was 75 lbs. So, guess what? I did 75 lbs. Now, after the fact, I went and looked at CrossFit Regina's page, and guess what. Women were supposed to use 55 lbs. BALLS! Sooooo... here's how the whole Tiger thing broke down.

Rounds 1 and 2 were ok. But, my feet began to cramp. I'm not used to wearing shoes when I workout, and wearing them while trying to do all the moves made my feet cramp. It was wierd. Small changes can affect you in a big way. I think I said that after the Windy City workout in Chicago and I used some different toys than we do in the Blue Room and it really mixed me up. Swinging bars as opposed to fixed = big difference. Anyhoo, halfway through round 3 I had to drop the bar. I know technically the rounds weren't supposed to count if you dropped the bar, but I was having a hard time. In the globo gym you can't drop weights, and I was really afraid to push it, and then not be able to dump the weight. So I had to break rounds 3, 4, and 5. I also subbed more front squats for the back squats because I wasn't comfortable with my form, and because I know I couldn't dump the weight if I got in trouble. But I did this with 75 lbs, and on day 5 in a row, so I was pretty happy with 5 rounds. Oh yeah, and I backed it off to 20 minutes because the gym was closing. That's why I only did 5 rounds. I know..... you all think I'm psycho, and maybe I am. Really I should stop drinking the flipping Kool-Aid.... but now that I've given up soda.... I have to drink the Kool-Aid... :p Anyhoo... Tiger was an experiment... I hear that there is also a "Bear" and according to Robin, we're not supposed to tell, but "Lion" is coming soon. BALLS!

************Part DEUX (and yes you have to say it with the really bad French accent like they do in Hot Shots: Part Deux)***************

After hitting Tiger yesterday, I was thinking to myself that today would be a rest day. I had a good Zone breakfast, a good Zone lunch, and then, as we sat and chatted after lunch and chatted some more, and continued to sit and chat for two more hours, the dessert menu sitting in front of me wore me down and I ordered a cookie sundae!!! BALLS! And sweaty ones at that two! I was doing so well today! Freakin' ice cream! GACK! So, after I got home (we lunched for a solid 4 hours today..it's been awhile since we've seen each other) I checked my blog (which of course had lots of fun stuff to read!) and then I got to pondering. WWJHD? What would Jerry Hill do? (Second only to my other thoughts, which sometimes go like... WWCND? *What would Chuck Norris do?*) If Jerry Hill had been hit over the head and tied up and then forced to eat ice cream, cause you know he wouldn't do that on his own, what would he do when he was finally released? Or rather, not released but after he had beaten off his attackers using only his pinky toe, and then managed to release himself. What would Jerry Hill do? Well, I figured that Jerry Hill would hit one nasty little metcon circuit to burn off the ice cream.

So I made the plan to hit globo gym tonight and picked a nasty little circuit to do just that. I warmed up on the chin up bar because it was fixed and I knew it would take a little getting used to. I also did a few sets of squats, and made sure to get a good stretch in. Tiger sored me up a bit. So... then I set my sights on.... Cindy. Ahhhh... yes. Cindy. She and I had never been formally introduced... so I figured in an empty globo gym, now was as good a time as any. So I walked over, we shook hands, and gave a kurt little nod, and then the referee rang the bell and gave us a 3-2-1 and it was on. I have to say, I was giving Cindy a run for her money until round 7. Then I hit a wall with the pushups. The squats, and even the fixed bar chins felt pretty decent, but the pushups slowed me down. I'm really really starting to hate those darned things, and it's not nice to hate things. Really. So, all in all, only 10 2/3 rounds. I was hoping for more like 15. I was bummed. The good news is that in the sneaks today, my feet did not cramp. The bad news is, the fixed bar was rough on my hands and I have a few tears coming... I was uber glad to have that chalk bucket today. So... a disappointing set, but nontheless, glad I made it to the gym tonight to get rid of some of the ice cream. I feel a bit better. I've also eaten a nice Zone dinner with some local strawberries to boot. Yum! Nothing like fresh farm produce! Ahhh... central PA. But, no worries folks. I'll be back in VA tomorrow AM. :) Gots to work tomorrow night. Come love me and tip me! :)

A strong positive mental attitude will create more miracles than any wonder drug.
~Patricia Neal

Thursday, June 19, 2008

A rest day...with some rest day discussion...

So, I think I'm taking a rest day today. Stop, I just heard you all gasp. :P I had a long drive yesterday and a late night last night with some sleep interrupted by the dog, so... I'm a little beat, but we'll see if after a nap I feel like trekking to the nearest globo gym to stir up a little trouble. ;) But to take a page from a few other affiliates' posts, even though today is a rest day, I'm going to start two rest day discussions. One question is for the ladies, and one question for both ladies and gents. But gents if you want to go across the board and answer the ladies' question, feel free. But before I get there, I need to say one thing. Jerry, the poll has closed, and it looks like people would like to see Tony and Sevan at CFOT. Perhaps we could invite the "Ass Whooping Chronicles" to the Blue Room. ;)

Alright, my first question sort of pertains to the Zone and is for the ladies. My question is this, in that God awful week that happens to us all once a month, how do you hold the Zone? While buying groceries this morning for a Zone friendly breakfast, I did a horrible and terrible thing. I also bought ice cream. Seriously, I have not done that in months, and it felt terrible, but while I was in the grocery store, my sweet tooth was SCREAMING. I really thought other people were going to be able to hear it. Seriously, it was that loud. So, what tips/tricks do you have for calming yourself, or do you just tap into your steel resolve and head past all the desserts etc.? My resolve over the last two weeks has weakened, and I feel awful because I have left the world of strict Zone and headed into the world of approximate Zone, with way too much cheating. I keep saying I need to go through the two weeks again, but with a half gallon of ice cream already with a (small) dent in it, it doesn't seem likely that the 2 week refresher will start today. But ladies, or gents if you know of your wife's/so's tricks, please feel free to pass them along because I seriously want to go polish off that entire gallon right now.

Now, my question for both sexes... if you had the opportunity to date someone but it involved distance, would you do it? I put myself on dating hiatus for awhile because I felt like I had just been beaten by the relationship stick way to much recently, and it's been awhile since I've been really interested in dating anyone. I met a very nice man a while back, and would like to start seeing him. Trouble is, I'm not sure I should express those thoughts since any situation, regardless of the seriousness, would involve distance. He is a good guy and would be worth the effort from my end, but I'm curious on others' thoughts on this. I realize this does not pertain to CrossFit, but let's be honest, we all love CrossFit, but it's not the only thing in our lives, and we do have opinions on other topics. Thoughts today are helpful... and you'd better comment quickly and keep me away from the ice cream!!!!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

WOOOOOOOT!

I will create an aptly stimulating and exciting blog shortly, however, my excitement about today's workout is bursting out... and I can't wait to write a whole long thing... so this will be brief... I AM NOW A MEMBER OF THE 20 CHINS CLUB!!!!!! WOOT! WOOT! WOOT! (Picture me dancing around my bedroom and not caring that I'm going to be late to work since it's also my LAST CONTRACT DAY!!!!! WOOT! WOOT! WOOT!) I am not sure if this day can get better... :)

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Handstand push-ups, L-sit chins, and a sneaky little workout...

Woooo boy. I didn't realize it until I went in this morning just how sore my traps were. Holy cow. Apparently cleaning 120 lbs will put a whoopin' on ya. Whoda thunk it? But for cereal... Jerry had us get out some bars this morning, but then had us warm-up with some handstand practice and also some L-sit work for about 20 minutes. I cannot under any circumstances do a strict chin. I can't do it. I don't have the strength to lift my own body weight. It sucks, but I'm working on it. So I kipped up and worked on the negative. I was pretty surprised at how high I was able to kip. Jerry got a shot of me and my shoulders were actually over the bar and I held the L for about 10-15 seconds. I was pretty stoked with that. That's no small feat.

With handstands though, I have no problem getting to active shoulder and holding a pretty good line against the wall, but I have the same problem with the handstand that I have with the L-sit. My weight is too much for me to lift. Now, I've lost about 15 lbs... ok, it's probably still closer to 17 but I'm going based on what the scale said today... and today it wasn't friendly. But anyway, I've lost about 17 lbs, but I still can't lift my own bodyweight. I get close to the floor and it's like I freeze. I'm so terrified of falling on my head that my arms lock up and I just can't get down. I need to work it so I can get used to hitting the floor, so when I then do a full one, I don't panic. So, HSPU's are still on the goal list. As are my 20 chins, but those are getting preeeettty darned close. I'm at 16 right now, and I think I have more in me. I lost my grip on 16. Tomorrow maybe I'll ask if we can hit a set of max chins... ;) Before we hit the circuit though, Jerry yelled that we had a minute and half left. Gar got the idea to challenge me to a handstand contest. Look at this picture. Who do you think won?

However, after the handstand contest, my shoulders were fried, and boy was I ticked! :P CURSE you GAR!:P So anyway, from there we hit the WOD. Today's fun looked like this.

WOD
3 rounds for time
15 reps across the board
Kettlebell swing (35 so I could go overhead)
Box jumps
Push presses (65)
Burpees

Oh, and PS, I did this with an 8 lb weight vest on... :) First one since my birthday. It was actually not too horrific. The burpees with a weight vest were hard becuase the vest was interferring with my range of motion, and cause my shoulders hurt, and cause burpees are just well, ew. Brought this one in under 15, 14:59. ;) Doesn't get closer than that folks. :) This was a good workout for me today. Bar work, handstand work, and a weight vest. We finished with some OEW, Optimal Extra Work. 100 perfect situps, not timed, on an ab mat. I am going to hurt a lot tomorrow. I'm traveling back to PA tomorrow morning to visit with my grandfather, and spend some time with some family, and HOPEFULLY some people I haven't seen in awhile if the schedules allow. I hope they allow. :) So basically, I may be off the radar, but don't fret. I might not. I may do a few CrossFit style workouts at the globo gyms back home in Central PA to see what kind of stuff I can stir up. :) It has potential folks to be a lot of fun... :) hehehe...

*In this picture I am silently telling myself in my head how much I love burpees... clearly from the expression on my face... my delight with them is clear... :P

Cleanin' up the joint...



This is from yesterday's 120 PR. The first two looked pretty solid. The third was so close! I need to dive a bit more.

In answer to Jerry's comment... I felt that I would be doing a disservice if I did not post this... click here.

Monday, June 16, 2008

CrossFit Catch Up: Saturday's run, Dad's Strength, and My Horizontal Love Line...


Alright, so let's start with Saturday shall we? The party on Friday wound down around midnight which should have been plenty of time for me to get to sleep and then wake up in time to run. But when I woke up, well, I just wasn't feeling the run. The party wiped me out and I didn't have any matching socks, and we all know that I can't run if my socks don't match. Everyone else would think I was a total nerd, and well, I can't have THAT! So, I opted for doing my laundry so I could have matching socks for work, and then taking a nap. I know, I know. But, let me ask you guys who are Zoning a question. I think largely the big reason I felt so awful had to do with my eating. Everything, sans Stewart's freakin' cheesecake, was Zone friendly. I don't feel like I overate at all, in fact, I was so busy grilling I think I didn't eat enough! But, since Zoning, I've all but stopped drinking. I just don't do it anymore that often. So, Saturday, I woke up just feeling disgustly. I just wanted to get everything out of my body and just get some strawberries and yogurt with some string cheese on the side. Does this ever happen to you? I just felt like I needed to just go through detox or something. It was gross. I went to work thinking maybe I was hungover, and tried the eat something greasy to settle my stomach trick, and that had the opposite affect and then I felt even worse. So I guess my question amongst this story is, do you feel as if you are now uber sensitive to changes in your daily diet? I feel as if Zoning makes my stomach super super sensitive. It, like me, does not appreciate change apparently. Does anyone else ever find this to be the case? Any ideas on how to cure that issue? I'd like to be able to enjoy my ocassional lapses in Zone and not suffer for 24 hours following.

Well, I got home from work late Saturday night since I closed, and immediately collapsed into bed, since obviously there was CrossFit in the morning. Now, I always stretch and spend about 15 minutes getting loose before CF because I learned the hard way with the hip flexer what a lack of stretching can do. So as I watched Jerry get out our toys, I got a little concerned. There were kettlebells tied to ropes, mats set out next to each other, wall ball stations, weights for the kettlebells on ropes, and then he added that this was a two part workout called "Dad's Strength". I have to say, it was actually fun to get away from the normal routine to pay a tribute to the dads yesterday. All the men in yesterday were dads, and it was fitting for them. Jerry talked about how dads always seem to be able to perform these weird feats of strength. Chopping wood, picking up kids, piggy back rides, throwing kids in the air... so all of our circuit movements mimicked a dad's "strength". Our fun looked like this yesterday.

Warm-Up
Two rounds quick cals

WOD "Dad's Strength"
Interval work
2:00 on each station
Clock never stops until after 5 exercises
2:00 rest
Complete second round

Rope kettlebell swings standing on weights (45)
Sledgehammer slamball standing elevated on mats (15)
Walking lunges (20)
Wall Ball (12)
TGU (20)

This was scored like FGB with one rep equaling one point, except for TGU's which were doubled since they have such a slow cycle rate. I had 289 for my final score and man was I sweaty. Those sledgehammer slamballs really knocked it out of me. Not to mention those kettlebell rope swings. Phew. For the new moves, check out the pics. For some fun at the end of class, we did some farmer's walks to see how far we could go holding the dumbbells by the tops. Wow did that ever make things more challenging. I could barely get my hand around the top of the bell! Then, we finished by throwing some toys. We push pressed and backwards tossed some med balls. What a fun way to end class! :) I love the picture up top that Jerry snapped of me as I let go of the ball. It looks really cool with the ball and the sky in the background. Definitely got full hip extension in that picture! :)





After CrossFit I had time to grab some lunch with a friend before heading off to work. I made a pretty significant obvservation last night at work, based on our steady flow of customers. Dad's like ribs. :P WHODA THUNK IT!?! But anyway, since we were so steady, and since it was floor night where we have to stack the tables to wax the floors, AND it was beer inventory night and I had to count all the beer in our cooler, I didn't get home from work until neigh onto midnight. I finally crawled into bed around 1, and when the alarm went off around 5, I nearly had another "Five more minutes" day. It was rough getting out of bed this am, but I was certainly glad I did when I got to CF. CLEANS!!!! :) Ahhhhh yeeeeeahhhhhhhh... :) I heart cleans. Really, I do. So today Jerry told us we were going to do some form and weight work with the cleans. He set us up to start like this today.

Warm-Up
Workin' the clean
35-55-65-75-85-95
x5

I was hittin' the cleans today and feeling a little rusty at the start, but felt more confident as the weight got heavier. When I got to 95 I was still able to tie about 3 together before stopping for 3 breaths. Lifting heavy really zaps you no doubt. But after 95 I asked how much time we had. I had cleaned 115 before in a squat clean, and just wanted to see if I could get it up. Well, I made a VERY agressive jump and decided to go for it. I dropped to 3's for the 115 set and nailed them pretty solidly. Jerry said we had a little more time to play. I didn't hesitate and grabbed the 2 1/2's for each side and decided to go for the PR. We don't normally just work the cleans. Normally we clean and press, or squat, or jerk. So I really liked just doing cleans today. :) Well, as I put 120 on the bar, Jerry grabbed the camera, and McCall started regressing to her cheerleading days and told me to be aggressive. B-E A-G-G-R-E-S-S-I-V-E... no lie... she cheered. :) I love her. Anyway, I got good tension on the bottom and deadlifted fairly easily into the hang. From the hang I got up rep 1 with little problem. Rep 2 was a little low, but I managed to scoot under it. Rep 3 I lost the left side. It's always the left side, but I def had the height. I think because I did so many trials up I was a little smoked, but I was pleased with 120X2. That's a new PR by 5 lbs. :) Psyched! :) Only thing is that I kept crackin' my collar with the bar. As Adrienne says, I have given myself a "horizontal love line". :) She cracks me up! From there we hit a short little circuit with hang squat cleans today. Collapsed a bit on the bottom of some of my squats but was able to pull in 5 2/3 rounds of this.

WOD
AMRAP 20 minutes
7 Hang squat cleans (65)
9 Chins
11 Push-ups

Push-ups are still a nemesis, but I tied 6 together today. Hooah! :) Ahhhhhh the end is near... and soon there will be more time to play at CrossFit! Only two more days! :) WOOOOOOT! :)

PS- I should be packing up my classroom... but I like you all so much I decided to write a blog for you all instead... ;)

Saturday, June 14, 2008

A mish mash of mindless CrossFit ramblings today...

I have a bunch of things to say today so this post may not be the most coherent, so I apologize in advance. :P First today I want to start out by talking a little bit about this week and how crazy it's been. Now, I posted a little blog the other day saying thank you to everyone who read my story when it was posted on the main site. I think maybe I should have waited a little bit before posting that. I didn't understand that even though it was posted on Tuesday, people would still be reading it and posting it, and posting comments on it, throughout the rest of the week. Don't ask why I didn't think of that... I really don't know... it was a little silly not to, but anyhoo, back on point here. On Tuesday, I was pretty stoked when I wrote that thank you blog because, although YOU can't see it, I do have a counter on my blog, and it lets me know how many people have viewed things, what they're viewing, where they're coming from, where they're leaving to, etc. Well, I was so stoked because when I wrote that "Thank You" blog, 600 people had read that story.

That felt amazing. 600 people? 600 people thought my story was worth a look. Wow. Well, as the week continued, people continued to jump to the link from CrossFit.com. A few affiliates also posted up the link, and as a result, to date....wait for it... wait for it... 1700+ people have read that story. Nope, I didn't stutter... add an extra zero by chance. 1700 people. That's amazing! I never expected any of this to come out of that posting. It's amazing and it feels great to know that people are finding something to relate to in that story. That was the whole point of the post I've gotten tons of comments, a couple emails, and I think I have also gained a few members to the Katie Kult. ;) It's amazing and I can't tell you how much of a roller coaster this week has been. I've been on such a high with all this CrossFit stuff, that the end of school (well with kids) has just added to it, and everything is just, wow. Thank you to everyone who stopped by to read or comment on that story, and especially a big thank you Jerry for submitting it, and CrossFit.com for posting it. I also want to post up a list of the affiliates who have posted links to me. They deserve some shouts for supporting me. They are:

Alamo CrossFit
CrossFit New England
CrossFit Boston
CrossFit NYC: The Black Box
CrossFit Dahlonega
Cynergy CrossFit
CrossFit O-Zone

Before I jump over to talk about the fun had at our BBQ last night, I have to share this story. A little while back, there was a CF cert in Alexandria which brought a bunch of CF'ers into town. Well I wrote a blog because I waited on a bunch of CF'ers at the restaurant that weekend and thought it was awesome. Well, this week, I tried to send notes to the affiliates that posted my things and say thanks. Well, I did that with CrossFit New England and got this as part of a response back...

"I think we might have met. Do you work at Blue Street
Grille (or name similar to that)? I was down there
for the level 1 cert, and I think you waited on us"

Indeed I had! They were trying to get me to do Tabata squats for them, but that was the day I did "Legs", not to mention, I was pretty sure they wouldn't be impressed by my tabata squat number. :( Anyway, it was really funny because when CrossFit Boston posted my link, I thought of that group and actually looked at some of the pics on the Boston site to see if I recognized any of them. Then lo and behold the next day... LOL. How funny is that? It really makes me want to start singing, "It's a Small World After All". Really it is...

Now, enough of this bologna.... I'm sure you're sick of that story stuff, so let's move on to the fun stuff! :) The CrossFit BBQ... oh yes... I'm not going to name any names, but last night, SOMEONE thought it'd be a good idea to do tequila shots... hmmmmm... I also think that the $2.00 I spent on water guns may have been the best money I ever spent. There are a ton of good stories to tell from last night... but I don't think I could fit them all into this post. But some highlights? Keturah and Kara with a K having water battles with the kids, lots of beer and tequila shots, great company, great food, Jerry grilling on my grill, Jerry taking a shot of tequila with the crew (!!!!!!), Keturah trying to arm wrestle Wes, the kids demolishing the m&m's (good! at least I didn't eat them! :) and Charlie and Bryn were left to deal with the sugar high....hehehe) Keturah telling her story about how one time she was teaching a woman to do dips correctly in a hair salon (I'm not kidding... she'll recruit for CrossFit anywhere... ER, hair salon.... ;) ) the kids abusing Danny in water battle fights, lots of good CF discussions and some butterfly kip footage... ahh... it was a fun night! We finally wrapped around midnight, and I think that the neighbors were probably glad... ;) But.... guess what... there's lots of leftover beer... so I think we need to do a part deux some Saturday or Sunday afternoon... any takers? ;) Check out the photos below... :)


Keturah uses the tree for cover...

Keturah taking out the enemy...

Keturah is dangerous with a loaded weapon...

"Uh...excuse me folks. Have you been drinking?" "No officer. We haven't had a sip of anything all night! We're CrossFitters sir. We don't drink."

Kara and Keturah school the kids...

A picture of some good people who stopped by my house... but only because I said I'd feed them... ;)

I'm not sure she has a license for those guns...

Tequila anyone?

I do believe that that is THE Jerry Hill doing a tequila shot with his crew... ;)

Yes folks... THE Jerry Hill touched my grill... I'm now going to have to bronze it and keep it as a momento... ;) (btw... apparently he was commenting as the flames were shooting off my grill that my burgers were not 93% lean... uh... sorry Jerry...)

Pogo... SCHOOOOOOOOOLLLLLLLLL'SSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS OUUUUUUUUUUTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT!!!! Thank you God! I know that sounds terrible... really. But I need a break. I had a very challenging class this year, and I am so ready just for some down time. You have no idea.

I need to run today, but I have no matching socks... hmmmmmm... no run then? Yeah... I know... I'm going to do laundry... *shush* Or... I'm just going to go to Target and buy more socks... ;) That sounds like a better way to solve my problem... ;)

Told you this wouldn't be coherent.... ;)

Friday, June 13, 2008

There's a first time for everything...

So I totally overslept this morning... I woke up when the alarm went off at 5 and then said "Just five more minutes." We all know that that is the kiss of death. It's never just five more minutes. But I was up late cleaning and prepping a lot of yummy food for tonight and was just super tired. I hope there are a lot of you coming! There is a perfect video to detail what I went through this morning. I can't link right to it though, so follow the directions below to watch. *Warning* There is some bad language, so please watch sans children or with the volume low. If you are easily offended... skip this one... Visit this link and scroll down to the bottom row and watch "5 more minutes."

Don't worry though. I'll be back in the saddle tomorrow with a run and Sunday with a CF workout, AND not only is tonight the CF BBQ... today is the last day of school with kids!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Uh... sorry... got a little carried away there. Can you tell I'm ready for this year to be over? We still have 3 inservice days, but I'll take the packing over dealing with these kids right now. They are way out of control. So, anyway, I'll have a lot to blog about over the next few days. Oh and if you didn't happen to read my thoughts yesterday on the end of the school year, please do. They are pretty solid thoughts if I do say so. Shower on the last day! WOOT WOOT WOOT! I think I'll wear my "Funishment" t-shirt today... ;) Tanya if you wear yours... we can be twins....:)

What is "Funishment" you ask? Well as it so happens, Jerry Hill has explained it very well on a T-shirt. It says, "Funishment (noun) Entering into some kind of fun activity that will leave you feeling pretty sore the next day, but with no regrets. Some examples include, stair diving, an audition for American Gladiator, and Jerry Hill's CrossFit Challenge."

(Georgia, I capitalized the G for you... ;) ) Until tomorrow!!! Or later today if I have some mindless ramlinbgs... which I very well may... ;) HAPPY FRIDAY!!!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Hang squat cleans and some thoughts on the end of the year...

Ah... yes... some hang squat cleans. My favorite! Well sort of.... :) I'm a big fan of push presses too. :) Anyhoo... even though the neck is still giving me lots of grief, I made it to the Blue Room this am. We hit some hang squat cleans to warm up with before we hit the WOD. I love hang cleans. They are one of my favorites. They weren't always so. When we started working the cleans a lot in March, mine sucked. So for those of you who feel like you can't master this move, yes you can. There are before and after videos of me... hang on while I find them. Ah yes... here we go. This is mid-March to the beginning of May. When I first started I was jumping back instead of just going vertical and going in a jump to land stance. Now, I have a pretty efficient movement. I've continued to work on my form since that video, but I think it's pretty awesome what happens when something clicks. It just takes off. Today we were working more on form and reps of lower weight than on working up heavy. So today my hang squat clean maxed at 85. They didn't feel great though, which kinda bummed me out. But before I get off on a tangent... here's what the fun today looked like.

Warm-up
9 reps of weight
35
45
55
65
75
85

WOD
10 rounds or 20 minutes
18 Push-ups (I did 9 thanks to my twinges)
15 Jumping pull-ups
30 Squats

I got through 8 rounds of this in the 20 minutes and it didn't feel too bad. The push-ups were hard because my shoulder and neck were tweaky. It's weird. This whole week has just sort of felt off. Jerry keeps telling me that CrossFit works like a ratchet (did I spell that right?) Sometimes we need to go backwards a bit and seem to plateau before we can move forward and continue to get stronger, faster, etc. I feel like I'm a bit stuck right now. I haven't PR'd in a few weeks, and I just don't feel on or smooth. I hope that right now this is just a result of the ratcheting back and the end of the year. The end of the school year, while it means that teachers finally get to kick back a bit, also means that we begin to crash down from all the testing stress and all the stress of the kids behaviors at the end of the year. When you are at the end of your leash for so long, when the leash is finally loosened, you realized just how zapped you've been. It's a weird thing. You would think it would be the other way around. So, anyway, I'm hoping that all this is just a result of school stress and it will be done next week and I can focus.

As an aside though, if you are reading and you happen to be a parent, as you wind down your school year, please remember to thank your child's/childrens' teacher/s. I don't necessarily mean go out and buy them something, although we certainly do appreciate gift cards and small gifts. It's just that they're not really necessary. We really don't need more little trinkets and gifts, although like I said we do like them, but when kids or parents write a note or make a card, it means a lot to us. It lets us know that people do appreciate what we do and that we've done a good job. Trust me when I tell you that very often we question that. We get flack from students, parents, administration, colleagues. It's hard to always keep perspective. Sometimes those notes during teacher appreciate week or the end of the year are the validation we need. Teachers do a ton of behind the scenes work that you never see, and while you may from time to time get angry with us because we don't do what you would like us to do, please remember that we are typically busting our butts for 20+ kids and we try to keep everyone's best interests at heart. We do tons of things like grade papers until late, make lesson plans, make tests, copy papers, write evaluations, write referrals, and yes, spend tons of our own money on things for our own classrooms. I know sometimes you may feel like we don't care about your children, but we do. And we wouldn't spend our money and time if we didn't. So please, please, please... be sure to thank a teacher as the next few weeks come to a close. It really means a lot... probably more than you know.

*Katie steps down from her soapbox*

So, I'm hoping that as these next few days draw to a close my ratchet will swing back forward, and I'm hoping that I will continue to see some improvements. BTW, if you haven't checked out my poll this week... do so... and if you don't know what the "Ass Whooping Chronicles" are, check them out on the main site, then vote.... ;)

Alamo CrossFit

If you haven't been to visit Rick down at Alamo CrossFit, you really should. He's one of the funniest guys I know. He's the only person I know who can combine dogs pooping, the latin diet, and barbell chicks all into his site and relate them all to CrossFit. He also comes up with funnier WOD names then me. Catch the name of today's workout in his post... ;) We miss him in the blue room. But Rick had a nice post, of course humorous, about me today, so I thought I'd post it up. Go visit him. :) Tell him I sent you, and then harass him big time. :) Tehehe....

Rick's Post

Thursday, 12 June 08

I got this friend...yeah, I actually do have a few of those and some I din't even pay. But I have this pal, Katie. Katie is part of a great group of CrossFitter's that makeup the crew at CrossFit Challenge in Old Town Alexandria, VA. She's inspiring in a few very special ways. One is that she loves Latin food ( ), but secondly and more importantly is that she's a regular person, a regular gal, who embraced CrossFit in all it's sweat inducing and muscle paining glory, and has become something I think many peeps think they may never be. Does that make sense?

Probably not, so I thought I would have Katie share her story with y'all. Oh, and in case you missed it, Katie was the CrossFit chick featured on CF HQ website on June 10th, 2008. After that, click HERE for "Row, MoFo, Row"

"CrossFit brought back a part of me that I thought I lost several years ago. My strength. Now, I don't want you to get confused. I don't mean my physical strength, I mean my tenacity, my drive, my strength to be able to keep going and persevere when things in life get rough." Read more HERE...

Posted on Thursday, June 12, 2008 at 07:44AM by Rick Martinez |

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Strict press has become my arch enemy...

3rd time is a charm right? Well, this is the 3rd time I've hit the blue room when we've done strict presses to a heavy max, and this is the third time I've wound up with a stinger down the right side and am unable to move my head much at all. I don't know why the strict press gets me. I mean, I do but I don't. Strict press is a lot of upper body strength, which I've got, but I don't understand why it's always on the right side, and it's every STINKING time. Literally, it just is a wave of pain running down my neck and down my back along my shoulder blade. This time, I've got the added fun of it going out onto my shoulder and starting down my arm. WHAT THE CRAP!?! For cereal... what the crap? I have iced it already this morning, and imagine me trying to conduct an "Awesome Authors Cafe" while holding an ice pack on my neck and trying not to move my head. More challenging than it sounds. It's days like today where I WISH I was a cube monkey. I'm not happy with my performance today at all. That freakin' stinger kept me off the chin up bar today. I couldn't look up, I could only do two reps at a time... it sucked. SUCKED SUCKED SUCKED!!! I hate workouts like this where I just feel crappy. But here's what the fun looked like:

Warm-up
Work up heavy to 1 rep strict press max

WOD
Approx 400 m run (due to paving on our usual route)
30 push presses
30 chins
400 m run
24 chins
24 push presses
400 m run
18 chins
18 push presses

I brought this one in in 27:43, a full 8 minutes behind Stacey. Ouch. The running today actually felt pretty good despite the humidity, but that was really the only thing that felt good. Remember me saying last week after my overzealous running that I was going to start listening to my body when it said ow? Well, I lied. My neck and shoulder hurt so bad, but I refused to give up on the the workout. I don't know why but once I start, I can't call "uncle". It's the stubborn German in me I guess. I don't really know. All I know is that it better fix itself by tomorrow... or I will be supremely angry. SUPREMELY.... grrrrrr....

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Some more interval training and many thanks...


Before I jump into our interval training fun from today, I just want to say a big THANK YOU to everyone who stopped by to read my blog today, and especially those who commented. I love writing my experiences down, and it means a lot to me when other CrossFitters take the time to share their thoughts with me. Hands down this has been one of the best days I've had in a long time. I loved hearing from so many people and seeing my post on the affiliate page... wow. That may have just made my year. The only thing that could have made this day better would be an email from Coach Glassman himself telling me that he liked my post. (I'm not holding my breath on that... he is a very busy man... :P ) Everyone's thoughts and support today really made that post worth writing. This community is amazing and I'm glad that I am a part of it!

Now, I feel like I've been waaaay mushy and sentimental lately, so let's get to the pain shall we? Interval training. Should I say it? Dare I say it? Oh what the hell.... GASSER! Ha! I said it! Tami, I'm laughing already. If you didn't see Tami's quote about gassers, go read her comments from my blog last week. Anyhoo... interval training is rough, especially when the clock never stops. I like most of the movements today, and actually felt smooth through some of them, but with others, I had a rough time finding a groove. Here's what we looked like today.

1:00 minute of work on each station
6 stations
4 rounds
Clock never stops

Exercises
KB swings
Box jumps
AB mat
Row
Squats
AB mat

Basically, box jumps, the AB mat, squats, and the row all felt pretty good. But again the KB swings really slowed me down. I said the other day that I need to keep picking up the 45, so I did. I swung the 45 for all of the rounds, but my numbers weren't very high. I'm having a really hard time keeping my grip, and keeping my hip snap strong. I don't know why though. KB swings used to be a good exercise for me, but they seemed to have slipped. I'm not sure how to improve my number of reps, or my speed on these. I feel like I do pull the bell down quickly, but it feels like my hips are not strong enough or are too slow. They're really a bear for me. Push ups are getting better, so I hope I can start workin on these swings. We scored this one point per rep on any given exercise, row of course being calories. I hit this in with 411, but I wish I could have done more. Stacey's total was over 600. How does she do that? She is seriously a machine. She doesn't stop. She is the true definition of a firebreather. Awesome work Stacey. Can't wait for another fun day in the blue room tomorrow! :)

Um guys....?

I kinda made the affiliate page.... :)

Monday, June 9, 2008

CrossFit makes me ponder life's big questions and consider a leap of faith...


I'm going to be honest. This post will be long, and it may be one of those things that you have to read in it's entirety before it makes much sense. So, if you feel a little sleepy, maybe grab a coffee, and settle in for a minute.

We all have our own perspectives, our own views on life. Until recently, with regards to the whole destiny/fate vs. making our own destiny debate I've always kind of been one for thinking that we make our own destiny. I've always thought that working hard would bring the results that you wanted. In most cases of course. Obviously there will be times when you work hard and will not get the desired results, but I was always a believer that hard work would see you through, and you could create whatever destiny you wanted to create. I never really believed that there was a series of wheels already set in motion that would create your life for you. I always thought that was a load of bull that people created when they didn't want to take responsibility for things.

I have to say that lately, CrossFit is making me question my own thoughts. I know it sounds a little wonky, but hear me out. I can't help but feel lately like there is a series of events in my life in motion that I cannot control, all sort of revolving around CrossFit. Had it not been for my interaction with Bobbby, I never would have found Jerry. Had I not found Jerry, I never would have made friends with some of the most awesome people in the world. Had I not met Jerry and these people, I never would have started this blog. Had I not started this blog, I never would have had reason to write any of these stories down. Had I not written this blog, I never would have gotten on a plane and flown to Chicago. Had I not written this blog, I never would have run a 5k. Had I not written this blog, I would not have had the opportunity to interact with all the people who have found me.

I feel right now that CrossFit is taking my life in a new direction. I feel as if I'm in a boat on a river, and CrossFit is the current, taking me somewhere downstream. I'm not really sure where it's taking me, but it's becoming a very exciting ride. Everyday I wake up jazzed for the workouts, and even though I usually feel really terrible during (and after) the workouts, I can't imagine CrossFit not being in my life at the moment. It feels as if through hard work I did create some of my own destiny, but at the same time, it feels as if things are just happening for a reason.

This reasoning, these happenings, have caused me to start to examine other things. This is where the whole leap of faith idea comes in. How do you describe a leap of faith? Well, I describe it as jumping into something and having faith that everything will work out well in the end. People take leaps of faith all the time. We trust in a relationship that if we take the leap of faith and tell someone we love them, they'll say it back. We take the leap of faith that the decisions we make in our jobs are the right ones and will be the best for our company, client, etc. We make the leap of faith with our workout programs. We jump and have faith that our work will produce results. We take leaps of faith when we gamble, hoping that the outcome will be better for us than the house. We have leaps of faith when we leave one job, and trust that the next will be better.

Last summer, I took a leap of faith. I left one school for another and had to trust that my decision was the right one for me. My leap was a good one. My new school has a lot to offer their students, and truly has been a great place for me, even if the year has been less than perfect. However, I'm wondering, if it is time to take another leap of faith. A wise man once said that when you cease to enjoy your work, it is time to stop doing it. I'm not 100% sure I enjoy teaching anymore. The feelings that I used to have about making a difference and getting kids to love reading and learning are gone. I feel more like an underpaid babysitter than someone who actually makes a difference in anyone's life. Amnongst tests, and grading, and IEP's, and lesson plans, and spending all my own money in the classroom, and spending 10 hours a day at school, those feelings have disappeared. The feeling of dread in the mornings that has replaced it is sometimes is like a lead weight vest. But, BUT, when I get up in the mornings to go to CrossFit, it's different. There is an excitement there, an energy. I feel like Jerry has given me some wicked cold that I just can't shake. Not that I want to, but I'm trying to make you understand that it's not something that goes away. I may not always LOOK like I have energy first thing at 0600 (cause let's face it, sometimes it's a miracle my eyes are actually open) but I do.

It just makes me wonder, why isn't teaching this way anymore? Shouldn't it be? I should love it, but since I don't, is it time to make a leap and figure out what I should do? The question was raised several times in Chicago about me doing a cert. The thought has crossed my mind, I've indicated interest several times. But I've had some ponderings about making CrossFit more than just a hobby. Sometimes (certainly not always) with this blog and with my words, I feel like I can and do make a difference to people. Not a huge one, but sometimes words can be your enemy, and sometimes they can be your friend. I feel like sometimes my words are people's friends. They help them to understand, or just to get over the hump of a bad day.

I wonder if I would be a good trainer should I make that leap. I would have MUCH to learn if I ever wanted to be 1/10 as good as Jerry, or even Andrea and Chris, and Adrienne, and the other CF'ers who have gone to certs. But part of me thinks I might be good at it. I've tried to answer the question as to why people find my blog interesting, and the conclusion that I've come to, is that I think I'm relatable. I'm not a firebreather. I'm not a wringer. I'm normal. I'm average, and people can relate to that. They can relate to my weight struggles... they can relate to my struggles with our workouts. It makes sense. I question whether or not that would then make them trust me as a trainer. It would be a long road... it would have to be a long term goal.... it's not something that I could change over night... but should I, dare I leap?

My grandfather used to be a teacher. When he discovered that both my middle sister and I were going to be teachers, he was tickled pink. Some of his most fond memories are of the FFA kids he used to teach back in the day. He taught agriculture because he loved to farm, and he loved plants. And he has told me hundreds of times that I'm preparing my students for a 75 year journey. But, even though those are some of his fondest memories, he didn't teach to retirement. He left and went to insurance, and eventually real estate. He realized that there were other things he loved doing. And plants, oh heavens. My grandfather is currently in not so hot of health, but until his recent issues, he could tell you anything you wanted to know. He's a stubborn man, but a smart one. He realized that it's not a failure to switch jobs and do something else. I think part of the reason I fear leaving teaching is because I've always been someone who felt that whatever you went to college for, that's what you needed to do for the rest of your life. But I don't want to run a rat race for the next 50 years. I want to be happy. But happiness sometimes involves risk right? So how do you know when you should take the risk? When do you know that a leap of faith is necessary? How do you know that the faith part won't fail you? Do you ever really know?

These are all of course just some more of my mindless ramblings... but any thoughts are always appreciated...

Real success is finding your lifework in the work that you love.~David McCullough

Sunday, June 8, 2008

A CrossFit Old Town benchmark... and a BBQ! Woot!


Jerry. Jerry, Jerry, Jerry, Jerry. What can I say about the man? Sometimes I think he is very sadistic. :) Like when he writes up workouts like the one we hit today. Andrea informed us after the fact today that 75 snatches alone is a CrossFit benchmark workout called Randy. Interesting. Because here's what our fun looked like today:

Warm up
2 quick rounds 5 reps-Snatch
35
55

WOD
For time
75 Barbell Snatch
75 Barbell Thruster
Pro women-55
Pro men-75
Scale as needed

Now, Jerry did let us partition these, so it really looked like this
12
11
10
9
8
7
6
5
4
3
Of course it was back and forth. 12 snatches, 12 thrusters etc. But seriously, this was just brutal. I brought this one in in 18:41. I can't remember (sans yesterday which doesn't count because that was strictly heat related) the last time I actually sweat that much. I was covered. I knew from the get go that this one was going to suck, and rightfully so it did but there were some seriously steller performances. Especially round 3. Wait for the photos later folks, but Gar and Supersport went head to head as the only 2 left to hit the WOD. It was a flurry, to use Jerry's words. The two of them were awesome. Supersport is consistantly one of our top performers and to see Gar step up and finish before him today was amazing. It truly is a testament to all of Gar's hard work. He has an amazing story, and Jerry has some before and after photos of him up on our site, and his progress is steller. You should really go see Gar's story. This is from March, but I'm sure you can imagine how he has continued to progress. Gar is one of my most loyal readers and I love working out with him at 0600 everyday! :) Way to go Gar! You really rocked out today! Speaking of rocking out, so did Stacy and Andrea who were the fastest two women on the day. Kara with a K was really rockin out today and had some solid form too. Robin did a great job with her form today too and came through strong as well. James and Stewart gave some gutsy performances at the end today. They refused to give up and got 'er done. I'm sure I missed someone, so I'm sorry, but these were the highlights of the day just from the top of my head. Oh! Laura! She was my awesome partner today! I love working out with her! :) What a good workout today!

Now, also to post up is the news that the BBQ has been decided! It's going to be this Friday (the 13th... woooooooo! :P ) at my place. If you don't know where it is, email me and I'll be glad to help you out. (use the email link folks) We'll start when you're done with work (5ish) and go until you feel like leaving. :) We will have toys and some whiffleball will ensue. :) People today asked what they can bring. Like before, I'll be providing some staples. Kabobs (I know you've all been waiting for them) veggies, lunch meats, some fruit, and lots of water. If you want to bring something to add to the party, please feel free. I'm not sure what everyone likes to drink, so please feel free to bring your beverage of choice. We do have MANY more Zoners now than before, so Zone friendly is probably preferred but certainly not required.

***Side note... one thing I am lacking on is space to sit. We have the whole yard to play in out back, but I only have two chairs with my patio table. If you have a pop up chair, you may want to bring it. :)

Now, I know there are some Fairfax and DC CrossFitters who read on a pretty regular basis. If you want to come down and see how we do things at CFOT ( ;) ), feel free to get in touch and give me a holler. I've heard from some of you before, so feel free to connect with our affiliate in a fun way.

BTW, this is like my 5th post in 2 days... so feel free to go back and get caught up! :P LOL... gotta love my mindless ramblings!!! :)

Mr CrossFit Getaway to Chicago Day 4: Shedd Aquarium plus I miss my flight




Ah yes... it was inevitable. I got behind this week and haven't had an opportunity to post day 4 of the Chicago trip. People this morning were asking about Day 4. I hope you can forgive me. I'm sorry for failing you... :(

Well, needless to say, after Day 3 and the incident at the bus stop sign, I was not ready to rip and tear on Monday morning. I stayed in bed for a little while until Tanya called. Then I hopped the train to meet up with her. We headed out to Shedd Aquarium which was a ton of fun. As you can see by the photos, Tanya and I had ourselves a blast! After that we took a little trip uptown to go get some Chicago style pizza. After all, how could I be in Chicago and not try the pizza? :) So Tanya took me to one of her favorite spots, and had me some deep dish Chicago style pizza. Now, sadly you can't hear my voices that I was using as I said Chicago, but imagine me with a very funny accent! :P

I have to say, I really liked the dough on the Chicago style pizza (we all know I'm a HUGE fan of bread... which is why I'm NOT allowed to keep it in the house) but I wasn't such a fan of the sauce. Just my preference, but the shop used a sweeter pizza sauce, whereas my tastebuds and their delicate sensitivities (*snicker*) like marinara style sauces. What can I say? I'm a wee bit traditional. :P So Tanya and I stuffed ourselves silly on pizza and cheesy garlic bread (no this meal was not Zone friendly... it was the only one in Chicago though! Cut me a little slack... :P) before attempting to walk back to the hotel. I say attempting because I was in that place where you are so stuffed that the only thing you can call is "food coma." You know, where you eat and immediately fall asleep? I really wanted to, but I had a train to catch to get to the airport. So we got my bag from the hotel and headed for the train. Tanya walked me to the Blue Line and it was a very bittersweet parting. I had a TERRIFIC time in Chicago and was sad to leave, but at the same time, I was ready to be in my own bed and with my CFOT crew. Aww... :) I heart you guys....

Well, the train had several stops before O'Hare, and as time crept by I was getting more and more nervous about missing my flight. It took the train almost an hour to get to O'Hare. I hauled ass through the airport, trying to get to the United counter, which of course was in terminal 1, all the way across the flippin airport, and of course also had the longest line. I finally go to the counter to check in, and it wouldn't let me. It said I was too late. I started to panic and waved the woman over, who promptly told me that baggage check ends 45 minutes before take-off. My flight left at 6:00. It was 5:21. Of all the ****(**#&@)@A_A*@*#& So, she sent me to another really long line, and there I stood for more time, trying to be patient. Well, I finally got to the counter and the dude was all, well I can confirm you but you're going to have to pay. Well, I didn't have a sub scheduled for Tuesday and I needed to get home, and there wasn't another later flight, so... paying up it was. Damnit. By this point it was after 6 and the later flight was leaving at 7. So I hauled backside through security and made it to gate with 15 minutes to spare until boarding. Seriously... I really was aggravated with United. Yes I realize I should have been earlier, but who has 3 attendents working? Eesh... apparently I have enjoyed the joys of flying... :P

Anyhoo, I finally got to board, and the flight back was pretty smooth.... until drink service. I didn't get a drink before on the plane because I didn't want to have to get out of my seat to use the bathroom. Well this time I was still not feeling so hot, so I got a Cranapple juice. No sooner did the flight attendant serve me, that we hit turbulance. Not the shimmy and shake kind, the kind that drops you a few feet before the plane catches. I had all my report cards out frantically bubbling them in, and thinking that if I spill my juice on these I'm so dead. Thankfully, I didn't spill a drop, but the guy who was yapping about Fairfax County schools the entire was back from Chicago was covered in hot coffee. That was a little bit of revenge for me... ;)

We finally hit down and I spent 20 minute in baggage claim looking for me bag before they announced that they had told us the wrong carousel for our baggage. So then I had to go to another one. Thankfully it was there, and I immediately headed for the cabs. I was going to metro then cab (cheaper) but I just wanted to get home. I finally got home just shy of 11, and I was exhausted, but very happy. Overall it was a great weekend and it's hard to believe that it was over a week ago already, but it's not the last time I'll see Chicago. I'm pretty confident that Tanya misses me... and will be begging me to come back soon! :) Tehehehe. And ladies and gentleman, this concludes my CrossFit Getaway to Chicago. Thank you for flying on the Katie Express. ;)

Some more Zone math and some Zone travel tips from... moi!

Well, as many of you know, a while back I decided that for me, it was necessary to give up soda completely and eradicate it from my diet. For someone who could seriously be described as a soda junky, this was no small feat of arms. It was really rough for me. Well, here I sit this morning at day 32. I have OFFICIALLY broken the one month barrier. I'm not going to lie, this was unbelievably difficult, and when I started doing this, I really didn't think I was going to make it to this point. Soda has long been a vice for me. When the kids are wonky in the afternoon, the sugar boost would get me through. It would also get me up and running in the morning. It's insane just how much I relied on soda. So, per my new feat, I decided to do some more Zone math. So just in case you needed some reasons, say different than the fact that Coke cleans RUST!!!!, to give up soda, here are a few reasons I can think of.

Cans of soda saved
32 days X 3 cans= 96 cans

Amount of money saved
3 cans/day x $.75= $2.25/day
32 days X $2.25= $72.00

Amount of calories saved
150 calories X 3 cans/day= 450 calories/day
32 days x 450 calories= 14,400

Grams of sugar
42 grams/can X 3 cans/day= 126g/day

126 g/day X 32 days= 4032 g

Now that we are at the month mark, let's break this down a bit. In one month, but not drinking soda, I saved almost $100. Wow! Holy cow. Talk about amazing. And if you want to hear something even crazier and perhaps more amazing listen to this. I am calculating my soda intake based on what occurs at school. I was also drinking soda outside of school at dinners or at work. Or if I would get groceries, I would allow myself to buy just one 20 oz. soda. So I probably actually saved over $100. Holy bananas! I could get a mani/pedi (which I am in dire need of!) for that amount of money! I could get a massage (mmmmm massage). Or go on a Dick's shopping spree. Oooh, how I heart Dicks. (I am now a rewards member... yeah, I get the coupons and the gift cards for $10 when I spend money. And I have about 30 coupons for there from other teachers' mailboxes... what? They weren't going to use them... so I say.... YOINK!) :) Anyway, back on track here. I don't keep soda in the house, but I do drink it away from school. Especially at the restaurant. The fountain is free to employees and we have HUGE classes. Probably roughly around 16 oz, and I could easily down 4-5 of them per NIGHT. So you can also figure those numbers into the soda that I saved myself from drinking. Seriously, this soda thing was not a small problem. It was a big one, and I am very happy that it's a habit I've managed to change.

Now, the biggest part of this experiment. The calories. Figure that the average person basis their diet on the 2000 calorie pyramid. If you go by that figure, I saved myself 14,400 calories, or roughly 7 DAYS worth of food. Let me say that again. 7 DAYS. That's an entire weeks worth of food that I was not eating, but drinking in addition to my normal diet! So I was really ingesting enough calories for 39 days, in 32 days. That is insane!!!! Holy balls Batman! Furthermore, look at the sugar intake. I have saved myself over 4000 grams of sugar. No wonder my body is now speaking to me and not so angry with me all the time. Wow. I just can't get over these numbers. I think in order to keep going, I'm going to need to do this every so often, just to remind myself why I started this. Now, I have had some ice tea since I gave up the soda, but it's minimal, and nothing compared to the amount of soda. I will have to be careful though that I do not replace soda with Starbucks. That is actually even worse. I do love their lattes and mochas though... yummmmmmmm..... but back on track again here.

Now that I've kicked the soda habit, I really need to ramp up my Zoning more. I'm sneaking little cheats in, but not adjusting to account for the cheating. So I really need to get stricter and stop justifying things by saying stuff like, "I can eat this. Really. I ran 5 miles this morning and walked another 2. It's fine." ERRRR! Wrong answer. It's not fine and it takes away the balance my body is trying to create. The start of the summer means that Zoning becomes trickier because we are on the road, at weddings etc. But again, ERRRRR! Wrong answer. I've been traveling around a decent amount lately, and I'm finding it easier and easier to stay in the Zone while I'm on the go.

First things first, read the Zone guide to dining out. Many people think if you are going to eat out while you're in the Zone, it means that you have to order a salad or cheat. Not so. There are plenty of things you can do. If you order entrees, most places will allow you to sub extra veggies or a salad for the potatoes. Lots of places also have things like fruit cups that you could even sub in. So, don't feel like you need to get locked into a big salad and nothing else. Usually the protein is more than you need, so just ask the server to box it. We don't mind, and it's great for lunch/dinner the next day. Seriously. It doesn't get much easier than that.



Ok, that's great and all, but what do you do if you're not dining out? If per say you are on the road traveling. Certainly you don't always stop to get a meal at a sit down place. How do you cope? Alright, well in my travels in the last month, here is what I've figured out. The invention of gas stations like Sheetz and Wawa has all but saved the Zoners. Both places do MTO (made to order) food and you can get things like fajitas, chicken sandwiches, salads, and now, Sheetz has started offering apple slices as well. That totally made my day to see as I was traveling back to PA a few weeks ago. The bag was roughly one block. So two packs, plus a block from the wrap on the fajita, plus the chicken and cheese from the fajita, and the sour cream, and I was Zone friendly! It was really pretty simple. Now, Wawa (from what I remember) actually has a larger selection than Sheetz in terms of offerings, so it too can be Zone friendly. I know that these are two of the biggest gas stations on the East Coast, so they should be found in most places around. There may be others too that I don't know about, so feel free to let me know if I don't.

If you get in a pinch and there is no such thing around where you can do a MTO or there are options, drive through BK or McDonalds and order a grilled chicken sandwich. Ditch the bun, and then order a parfait. It's not perfect, but getting some carbs from the yogurt would be preferable to getting them from oh you know, the fries?! :P So really, it is possible. I know that maybe this sounds crazy, but think about it. You don't want to undermine all your hard work during the week with your weekend trip out of town. You can even do Chinese, but you need to order something veggie heavy (Chicken and broccoli) and not fried, and ditch the rice. You just need to keep in mind what the friendly foods are, and I bet you'll find that most places will have some way to make things friendly. Wraps are even ok, you just need to watch the amount of lunch meat you eat, plus the carbs from the wrap, and if you're using mayo as your fat, ask for it on the side. Servers also do not mind things on the side. Well, unless they really suck and they just hate life in general. Then they hate you for being picky. :P

So, stick with it. You can do it, and keep in the Zone. I hope that my travels can help you be Zone friendly even on the go. :)