Thursday, April 30, 2009

I want you BACK!

For cereal... who DOESN'T love a little Jackson 5? C'mon... these were the good years before Michael got all sorts of crazy... :P

After watching this I really miss the 70's... ;)

Well, if you couldn't guess from the big capitalized letters in my blog post title today, we hit back squats again. I wasn't going to come in today because Thursday is normally my rest day, but with the horrid diet issues I've had going on, I really felt like an extra wod this week. I'm glad I went in though because I'm really starting to like back squats. They usually feel pretty good, as opposed to my cardio, so I really enjoy doing them. This is only the third time I've officially back squatted and only the second time I've gone heavy. My form is still not perfect, but there's room to grow. I like that. I watched my final attempt today and realized that I was still, despite how far forward I felt, trying to maintain an upright torso.

It feels weird to intentionally lean forward when we always preach being upright, but it's cool to do something different. My trials today went like this...

35 X 5
65 X 5
85 X 3
105 X 3
125 X 3
145 X 3
165 X 3
175 X 3
185 X 3
200 X 1 (F)

I took a gamble when I jumped from 185 to 200. I felt like after the 185 set I had more in me. I think I had 190 or 195, but to jump to 200 was just too much. I got down and about 1/2 the way back up before I just couldn't budge. I was too far upright and wasn't using my glutes. I have to admit, I've never been stuck in a place where I couldn't dump the weight and it really freaked me out to be stuck down in a hole like that with no way out really. When Keturah and Sean (my side spotters) grabbed the weight, what I should have done was finish the lift. What I did was panick and step forward. I feel horrible because what I did was then dump 200 pounds on them. Sorry guys. More work with the back squat needs to be done, especially on how properly lose a lift, but for now I have a new goal. I REALLY want to back squat 200. That's my new goal. I think that would just be totally cool.

Tomorrow is the first Friday of the month. I'm not sure yet what hero or girl I'm going to do, but tomorrow will be a doozy. Woot. Can't wait... ;)

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Run Forest, scratch that, I mean Katie, RUN!

Guess what we did today!!!!! You can't guess?! Ok well fine, I'll tell you. We were running! :P

Unfortunately, I don't run nearly as fast as Forest, I don't have near as cool of kicks as he does, and my hair is nowhere near as awesome. Not to mention, I also don't sport a 1980's windbreaker or a haircut circa ZZ Top. But, regardless of my lack of cool, I certainly feel like I ran as much as him today. Ok, ok fine... so maybe not quite as much as him..... but close! (Ok Brand, Michael Jackson didn't use the bathroom at my house... but his sister did!) Tehehe...

Today's WOD was all about the running... with some max rep pull-ups thrown in there. Did I mention that it was amrap in 22 minutes? Oh yeah. Good fun times. I'm actually pretty please overall with my work today. Well, aside from the fact that my running was really slow. I mean, I'm glad I did it, and it was some good work, but it was SLOW. Here's what I looked like today.

800 M run
50 AbMats

AMRAP in 22 minutes
Max Pull-ups
400 M run
Total rounds 7
Total pull-ups 93

I was stoked about the 21 pull-ups today. I haven't maxed on pull-ups in such a long time, and getting used to the new fixed bar took forever. I'm glad to see that my strength is finally coming back. It felt good to be that close to my Blue Room PR. I think I def have more in me than 21, but I felt my hands sliding and I knew that it was amrap too, so mentally I quit a little earlier than I should, but nonetheless, 21 is a good number.

I also got a fairly decent amount of running in today too. 7 rounds X 400 meters is 2800 M plus I did that 800 so a nice total of 3600 M today. Figuring that meters are longer than yards and banking on the yards to miles conversion of 1,760 yards to the mile, you figure that's a little bit over two miles. Close to 2.25 maybe? For someone who is icky poo puppies at running, that's a lot of running for one day. I'm glad I got it in though. It didn't feel as good as Monday's running, but it felt good to get it in.

As an aside, I'm noticing a definite difference in my performance since coming back into the 0515 realm. Working out before the stress of the day is definitely way better for me, and I should avoid working out at night when possible. I understand that working out at night also has its benefits, ie pushing through exhaustion to strengthen yourself even at that point, but it just FEELS better to be in in the early AM. Tomorrow should be a rest day, but we'll see how work goes tonight. I may not take one this week. We'll see. I'm feeling the need for a 6 day CF cycle. We'll see though. I've picked up another permanent shift at the restaurant on Wednesdays so two sleep deprived mornings back to back is rough, especially combined with 17 hour work days. But, like I said... we'll see. :P

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

You can't play on broken strings...

I borrowed the title of my blog post today from James Morrison. He has a great new song out called "Broken Strings" which features Nelly Furtado. (Sean, stop gagging at my musical taste, I happen to enjoy the song despite the lack of heavy death metal in it.) In the song, they are talking about not being able to play a guitar when the strings are broken. Of course playing on broken strings is a metaphor for not being able to make a relationship work when something in it is broken. Now I'm sure you're wondering where I'm headed with this, but if you've been around long enough you should know that eventually I'll get to my point. Sometimes I just like to take the long way to it.

Playing on broken strings can be a metaphor for a lot of different things besides just broken relationships. Since I'm very CF oriented, I like to think that the metaphor can be applied to CF. If you have "broken strings" or a broken diet, it's going to be impossible for you to get better at CF. But if the strings, or diet, are broken, what do you do? Where do you go? How do you fix it? You can replace broken guitar strings. Can you replace your diet?

After putting practically my entire life story on the internet last year, a lot of people read about my personal demons. I've had issues with my weight and food for a very long time. After great success last spring with the Zone, I wanted to tell the world how great I felt, how awesome it was. What I wasn't anticipating was the backlash, the back slap if you will. I did so well for so long, and then... all those things I used to love, drove me nuts. I fell, nay tumbled, head over heels down a slippery slope and I have to admit that I fell completely off the Zone wagon. Seeing the scale register 7 pounds more than I did 7 months ago was, and still is depressing. I felt like the worst possible version of myself. I had done so well, just to piddle all the good stuff away. I wanted those pounds gone, and I wanted them gone 5 days ago.

My attempt to try to step back into the Zone and not go cold turkey is not having the success that I would like. By stepping in, I've been allowing myself too much leeway, and that leeway I thought would be helpful, has become destructive once again. I tried to let myself step in slowly and eventually get back within the constraints of the Zone, but instead I wound up with a half-assed Zone and a lot of negative thoughts. I feel awful for drinking coffee even though I love it. I feel horrible if I eat bread because I love it. Despite the fact that most of my meals are pretty Zone friendly, I have had those thoughts that it wasn't Zone enough or it should have been better. When I eat, it's not food that I'm full of. It's guilt.

The Zone has become what I like to call a "frenemy". I know that when used correctly the Zone can be my friend. But, at the same time, it messes with my head big time. So, where does that leave me? I love reading Melissa Byer's Blog (Byers Gets Diesel) because girlfriend keeps it straight up REAL. She says of her own experience with food that she has experimented, tried a lot of stuff, had a lot of bad experiences, but she's continued to try new things until she found things that work FOR HER. Every person is different. Every person's dietary needs are therefore different. Things like the Zone and Paleo work pretty well, but they need to be tailored to each person, their needs, and also their personal factors (ie work/schedule/avaiability of a fridge). For someone who has some eating demons, like me, such rigid structured eating may not be the best route, but we'll see. I don't have all the answers, but as these weeks have progressed, I am more determined to find them.

First stop on the answer express has to be cutting myself some slack. I'm notorious for being a driven maniac at times, and being incessantly hard on myself. If I'm going to find what works for me, I need to give myself room to fail. Fail? Why you ask? Because it means I'm putting myself out there and I'm trying. It means what I tried didn't work, but it means I gave it a good go. If something isn't working, but you don't bother to change it, then really, you have no chance of success because you didn't even try to BE successful. Failure for many is the first stop on the way to success, and I have got to learn to be ok with that.

The second stop on this crazy train (thank you Ozzy for that one) is learning that I don't look as terrible as I think I do. I was having a conversation with Martha today while getting ready for work in the locker room (down boys it was PG), and I was sharing my weight concerns with her. As soon as I shared my concerns though, I also admitted that I need to be thankful. There are people who would kill to be the size and in the shape I am, who don't have the tools to get started on this journey at all. I need to be proud of what I did accomplish and have maintained, and I need to proud of the fact that I'm taking steps in the right direction to figure out what will continue to work for me. I may only be down 14 of my original 21 pounds, but you know what, I'm still down 14 from where I started last year. I'm still small than I was, and the funny thing is, that I'm stronger now too. I could never do HALF the things last year at my old weight that I can do now. I need to keep that in mind.

The next few stops for my train will be success and failure. I am sure I will find successes temporarily that will work for me, which will lead to failure and frustration, but hopefully will ultimately lead me to my last stop on this eating train.

The end of my line will be finding a food solution that works for me, a zen of eating if you will. I'm not sure what that will be exactly, but I know that the only way to find it is to keep looking. Paleo, Zone, just eating? Who knows. But that's got to be the final stop. Believe me, I fully expect it to take a long time. With my schedule and my issues, I don't anticipate this being easy. I anticipate this being hard, long work. But you know what helps to know? That there are people out there just like me. There are people who have had great success and then suddenly found that success maker, not so helpful anymore. People who have fallen off, but have found a path to better health through better eating that is right for them. So for me, I just need to find the same.

To help me, I have all but stopped measuring my food. I eat Paleo and Zone friendly things, but eat until I'm full. If I'm hungry, I eat again, and try to keep things in a relative balance. As Byers says, no more counting almonds. If I'm out to eat, or at work, I do the best I can, and stick with the idea that at least I'm trying. I didn't give in and have the fried chicken with bacon, cheese, bbq sauce and french fries. But I did the salad and did the best I could with carbs, fats, and proteins.

Our eating habits are something that can both harm us, and help us. I for one would like to be in the latter category. My "strings" right now are broken, but I've ordered some replacements. I can't wait until they get here.

Monday, April 27, 2009

I hate to "run" but.... I have a pressing engagement elsewhere...

Unless I'm mistaken, it was the Mamas and the Papas who sang that Monday was so good to me. Now, I'm going to have to beg to differ here. Because Mondays are never good to me. And you know, the only other thing that I hate worse than Mondays? Running. And what do you suppose came up in our workout today? Running. Running on a Monday.... uggggghhhhhh... Monday was not so good to me. Regardless of the fact that the Mamas and Papas are lying through their teeth, I still enjoy the song.

Running... grrrrr... I know it's a very weak point for me, much like push-ups are, so I've started working the weakness. Last week I warmed up everyday with an 800M run at least, and I told you on Friday that I picked the Metcon wod over strength, so I'm trying to get better. But I can't get better in a week, so having this wod today just made me want to... I don't know, quit I suppose, but I didn't. I ran, and ran, and ran... and I really wish I could have used my title as an escape route, but seeing as how it was 0515, I don't think anyone would have really bought that I had a previous engagement... crap. :P On a positive note though, I think I actually had a halfway decent time this morning. Of course I was no where NEAR Sean and the likes of Todd, but I held my own today. I even went over RX'd for the walking lunges. Chances are my behind is going to feel that tomorrow. Rut roh! But for today, it was some solid work and definitely is helping me work my weakness.

Today's Wod looked like this:
400 M run
15 pull-ups
100 ft walking lunges (20lb)

Time 26:30

Not too shabby. I hate running, really, truly, and for cereal, but I have to be proud of today. I could have quit. I could have done the shorter version, but I hung in there and did all 5 rounds, and I did an ok job with it. I'm not a runner and to get better I need to work it, but man, working your weakness is hard. You so are not enthused that it just kills you mentally. Well, ok at least it does me anyway. But, it was good. It felt ok, and I wasn't dying too god awful bad, although that's not to say it didn't hurt. It did. A sucked very much bad. Jess? Jess. But, embracing the suck in CF is how you get better at it. Soooo embracing the suck I am!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Dear John, uh... I mean Jerry...

Dear Jerry,

I know you are away from CFOT for a few days, and I'm sure you've probably heard the rumors, but I just want you to know the everything at CFOT is just fine. No really I swear. Everything is ok and you don't have to worry about a thing. I haven't come down with a fatal illness or anything, but I really actually did choose a metcon WOD over a strength WOD today. I just wasn't feeling the cleans today (too many long days back to back now) so I did what I thought you would tell me to do. Drop the bar and do the alternate. 4 rounds worth of 400M run, 15 KBHP (45) and 30 air squats. Plus I warmed up with an 800 meter run today too. I think I may have accidentally shifted the universe out of allignment by doing all this though, so I'm sorry about that whole planets alligning thing and in general screwing up the universe. But, BUT, the good news is that the building is still standing... or at least it was when I left. I can't account for anything there after 0640. Have a great time with the family... and I promise... you don't need to worry about a THING. We have it all under control..... or at least I think we do...


Wednesday, April 22, 2009

You can do it, put your "back" into it!

You can do it put your back into... put your back into it... sadly, no one else can hear me singing that song, but I'm sure you're all using your imaginations to hear the tune, and see my wicked awesome dance moves.... oh yeah, I was totally just rocking the shopping cart!

But, no for cereal, today really WAS day to put your back into it! We did max X 5 back squats. This was actually only the 2nd time in my life to have back squatted. No for cereal... all the other stuff was on a machine and totally doesn't count. This is only the second time I've free weight back squatted. I have to say, I felt pretty good for the first time in awhile on a strength exercise (Monday not withstanding) and it felt good to try out the movement.

I am definitely feeling those heavy squats in my legs (especially after running stairs at work tonight!) but I just find it so interesting. A squat should be a squat right? Well apparently not. Shift the bar from the front of your shoulders to the back, and you're playing in a whole new league, and there are all new muscles that apparently just aren't worked that way in a front squat or overhead squat. My legs are tired! Here's what my weights looked like...


By the end of this, I totally had shakey leg syndrome. This was a great opportunity for me to lift heavy and go for it! I love working the back squat... :) WOOT for back squats... jerk better be careful... he may have another contender... :P

Thank you to Sean who reminded me that in the 14 hours that passed between the write up and the workout, my brain had deleted the fact that we did 5's and not 3's... a mind is a terrible thing to waste... geez... what AM I going to be like when I'm 70?

Fight Gone.... Worse?

You know, I didn't think it was humanly possible to make Fight Gone Bad suck anymore than it already does, but, yet again, I was absolutely wrong. Fight Gone Bad sucks, but Fight Gone Bad with set reps sucks even more. Let me 'splain... (no, there is too much. Let me sum up. Buttercup marry Humperdink in little less than half an hour. ;) ) Sorry, random movie reference... but if I didn't, I just wouldn't be me... anyway, back to the 'splaining... ;)

Fight Gone Bad is 3 rounds with 1:00 on each exercise in each round. So literally it's 15 minutes of suck. But, if you're like me... you try to game FGB. You know that rowing sucks the life out of you, so you try to keep a normal amount of calories and then just pick up a few extras somewhere where you are good... like oh say.... PUSH PRESS? Ah... jess, push press my old friend. However, once you take away the gaming aspect of FGB... well then, you are stuck with a whole lot of SUCK because you can't fudge! So, really, you have no choice but to go ahead and embrace the suck... because just looking at it, you know it's going to. The suck looks a little sumptin' like this...

3 Intervals
Rest 1:00 between intervals
20 wall ball
20 KB high pulls (53)
20 box jumps
20 push press (55)
20 calories

Doing the box jumps right after the kbhp and the wall balls was brutal. I kept thinking I was going to miss and hit the box on my shin again. But then, it got better. Once I had NO feeling left in my legs, I had to go hop in on a rower. Speaking of having no legs, I'm really tempted to throw out a Forest Gump reference, but I'm refraining. Be very proud. Anyhoo, where was I? Oh yes, back to the sucking. My intervals looked a little sumptin' like 'dis...

Round 1
Round 2
Round 3

Dang... I'm pleased that I kept this under 7 minutes at the end. I was sucking wind... and I mean sucking... if we ever do this again... I am taking a freakin' rest day... period. For cereal.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Put your hands up, put your hands up...

Monday... ugh. Who likes Mondays? Not me, but when they involve overhead work, eh.... they're tolerable. ;) Since I work Sunday nights, and especially since things have been kickin' up at the restaurant lately which means me staying later, I've been getting in Monday nights more. Contrary to popular belief, I have not abandoned my normal 0515 team, but I've been floating around a lot more these days.

I got in Monday night, and after a frustrating day at work, it was good to see my old friend, Jerk, up on the board. Jerk and I have reconciled after the big break up and subsequent outting of me and my torrid affairs... but Jerk understands that, well, I have more than one favorite in my life. He's ok with that now, not so much then, but we've mended the fences in time. ;)

It's been awhile since Jerk and I have seen each other really... I think the last time I hit jerks to be honest, was not too long after the Helen challenge. Throwing around 100 seemed a lot easier then because we were doing a LOT of overhead work. But lately, especially with my wonkey schedule, it seems that I've done no overhead work, except for squats and they don't really count IMHO because my load has been relatively light.

Anyhoo, I jumped in with the 545 crew on Monday night and worked up to some heavy jerks x 3. I had forgotten, how could I have?, that the bar can be VERY unfogiving to your clavicle... let me tell you... my "hickies" are GREAT! :P I really need to stop making out with the barbell... anyhoo.... weights looked like 'dis.


130X1 is the best jerk I've had since mid-December. I was pleased to get that overhead. Last time we did SINGLES Jerry stopped me at 125 for form faults. It felt good to throw 130 up over my head. I'm not going to lie. It felt good to get my hands up. :)

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Helen Challenge Finals...

I was going to do a nice write up about this... but instead, I think I'll do a photo essay...

Original time- 12:48
Finals time- 12:37
3rd place in the women's division

Two words about this workout... HURT LOCKER.... I highly recommend NOT taking high dossages of antibiotics the night before attempting this...

Thursday, April 16, 2009

"I better not do any, I don't know... LUNGES?!"

Wednesday's metcon was pretty brutal. I'm not even kidding. After the front squat disaster, I knew I needed to get in on Wednesday. So, in I went like a good little lemming after school. This WOD really sucked! Just in case you were wondering.

For time
100 M walking lunges
21 pull ups
21 burpees
100 M walking lunges
18 pull ups
18 burpees
100 M walking lunges
15 pull ups
15 burpees
100 M walking lunges
12 pull ups
12 burpees
100 M walking lunges
9 pull ups
9 burpees
100 M walking lunges
6 pull ups
6 burpees
100 M walking lunges
3 pull ups
3 burpees

Time: 24:27

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Are you feeling "slug"gish?

Maybe it's the rain, maybe it's me... but whatever it is... these front squats SUCKED yesterday. Which is odd because normally I don't do too badly with squats. I love, love, LOVE me some OHS and last week nailed a 150 X 5. So why, when we were doing X 3 could I not get out of the suck lane? I felt like a total giant slug. There is one thing that I have noticed though, and that is that I do not do strength lifts as well in the evenings. I have more time at night, which I like, but I think going through the school day zaps me, so trying to do it at night is harder for me, but I don't want to blame that.

CF says that I should be able to produce on demand regardless of time of day, diet, etc. So why could I just not produce yesterday? I don't know. I really don't, but I just wasn't feeling it. I think part of it may have been that I had my eyes on a pretty high goal and jumped too fast, and then once I failed, just didn't feel like lifting anymore. It was just as much mental as it actually was physical I think, but then again, my brain has made mistakes before, so who's to say that I really know anything?

I had to settle for my first actual "no kidding, I suck" strength day in awhile. I couldn't even get 155X3. I didn't like the feeling. I especially didn't like it cause I feel like I just jinxed my spiffy new shoes. I don't want to lift badly everytime I wear them now. Poor shoes. They may just get chucked in the closet. (really and fo' cereal, no pun was intended on that one) :( That's a shame cause they're really cute. Boo... :(

On the upside, to save my spirits after the crappy lifting day, I went to Borders and used my 30% off coupon to purchase NCIS Season 2. I will be the first to admit that I love Burn Notice, and I heart, heart, HEART me some Michael Westen...

but... BUT Jethro Gibbs is after my heart. I am now addicted to the show NCIS. I seriously may need an intervention soon. If you were worried after my Michael Westen duct tape comments before, you may need to be even more concerned now. ;) I may need to have a serious love affair with Mr. Gibbs. Oh Jethro... semper fi. Semper fi. He is a dee-licious older man. Think very Harrison Fordesque. :) Oh... I think I'm in love... at least I'm not thinking about my craptastic front squats... hmmm... I could see my last name being Gibbs. Katie Gibbs... what do you think?

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Don't mess with the farmer's daughter...

So, after a brief hiatus last week to relax and let my blood pressure go down from the stress of work, I returned to the box yesterday to get my butt handed to me. I knew that with being out for four days I was going to feel it. And boy did I. Jerry threw up an AMRAP workout that just whooped me. I swear, I don't know how Jerry comes up with the stuff he does. I think he just sits around and is like, "Hmmmm... what would really, really suck? Aha! I've got it." And the next thing you know, it's on the white board. No, really. I swear this is how it goes. ;)

Regardless, yesterday's real workout was Nate. But seeing as how I can't do A muscle up, let alone several muscle ups (to necesitate an entire rack! ***points if you know where that came from!) in a workout not to mention the HSPU, I decided to go with the alternate WOD. The alternate WOD looked like this.

AMRAP in 20 minutes
6 ring dips
6 pull-ups
DB strict press rep out
8 kb swings (53 lbs)

Really, this hurt my arms very very badly. I was sweating quite profusely at the end of this. I got in 7+ rounds, but it didn't feel good. I'm also back to using a band on the ring dips. Crap. I've completely lost the strength in my triceps. Crap, crap, crap! Did I mention, crap!?! Afterwards, Jerry "encouraged" us to do some farmer's walks. If you haven't been around for awhile, then you may not know that farmer's walks and I, well we get along pretty well. Lt. Col. Dan maintains that it's because I grew up on a farm.... I say that that's a completely moot point... just because the name happens to be Farmer's Walk... :P I went to the rr tracks and back with only 1 drop on 30lb bells. Not too shabby. It's a good thing though cause my forearms were jacked, and I really didn't want to do anymore push-ups. :P Today's fun I'm told is front squats X 3. I'm stoked and can't wait! :) Snazzy shoes here I come!!!!! :0)

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Clean it up!

Today was fun! I got to wear my new lifting shoes... tehehe...yes those all my AWESOME Converse All-Stars pictured above! Today we worked on clean pulls from the floor. We didn't bring the bar to our shoulders, but just worked heavy on getting the bar from the floor into our "pockets" as Jerry calls them. Basically, getting from the floor to the hang, and emphasizing the shrug. I really liked doing this because I feel like my pull from the floor is really what screws me up when we start doing heavy cleans from the floor and not the hang. It's weird that I can hang clean more than I can clean from the floor. That should tell you something right there. The pull needs work. We noticed that I am chasing the bar a lot and moving my hips more like a KB swing and thrusting towards the bar moreso than doing a vertical movement and pulling the bar up. I had an "AHA!" moment, and really spent a lot of time trying to get the bar up instead of out. So, overall good solid work today. My max weight while mainting the clean pull and not going to a deadlift and shrug was 170, which is 30 lbs over my clean PR. Some solid work, especially considering that my arse was VERY sore today. The flexers were tight yesterday, EVERYTHING hurt today. Ouch! Stinkin' metcon nastiness! :P Boo hiss!

Push, Pull, or DRAG it in...

When I lived in PA, I always used to hear this ad on the radio for a car dealership who had a push, pull, or drag it in sale. If you could get your car there they would give you some sort of credit for it. I decided that that should be the title of my blog for yesterday because that's exactly how it felt. There was a little bit of pushing, a little bit of pulling, and a lot of me dragging myself through this workout. After Monday's front squats the old hip flexers were pretty sore so it was no wonder that during this workout they straight up started to burn. Check out this nastiness that Jerry came up with.

For time
50 Wall ball (14)
40 KB swings (35)
30 Jumping lunges
20 Jumping slamballs (10)
10 Pull-ups
800 M Run
10 Pull-ups
20 Jumping slamballs
30 Jumping lunges
40 KB swings
50 Wall ball

Ok, so does anyone else think that this sounds incredibly painfull? Our metcon super master ninjas wailed through this in 15/16 minutes. It took me 23:08. Ow. Just ow. I would just like to state for the record again, that I am NOT, I repeat NOT a metcon super master ninja. Period. Ze end!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Don't be frontin', yo....

Ah, yes. Front squats! It's been a hot minute since we've done any front squats and it felt good to work these again. For awhile there we were hitting front squats by three pretty consistently, and did them I think like three times in 3 weeks. Since then though, we haven't hit them very often. So, since today officially started my spring break.... I slept in (WWWWOOOOOTTTTTT!!!) and then hit the 9am class hard for some front squats. Today's WOD looked like 'dis...

Front squats 5-5-5-5-5

85 X 5
105 X 5
115 x 5
125 X 5
135 X 5
145 X 5
150 X 5

I haven't done 5's in a really long time so this was def a PR. It felt good to hit this today. I enjoyed the 0900 class! :) Woot!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

A metstrength thrasher...

I love Saturdays! We always have time to play around on Saturdays and really enjoy being at CFOT. We started Saturday with about 30 minutes of pvc work before we got into our circuits. Thanks to the cert we did with Coach B. a few weeks back, we've gotten a bunch of great drills and things to help us work on our lifting. It was great to work on the lifts for awhile, although Jerry served up a choice of workouts afterwards that was pretty brutal.

Choice A
5 intervals
400 m run
21 KB swings
12 Pull-ups
Rest as needed between rounds

Choice B
5 rounds for time
10 OHS (65lbs)
10 Burpees
400 M run

I decided that since I like overhead work, I would do some more OHS even though I did them on Friday. Eh, what the hey. :) I forget what my time was exactly but it was 22 something I think. This was a beast of a workout. I felt so sluggish on the runs. Ugh. But it was good to get some metcon and some strength work in. Yeah for throwing heavy weights over my head! :)

Friday, April 3, 2009

Cold Turkey Or Giving the Bird "The Bird"

As I get older, I'm learning a few things about myself. I hate change. Traffic makes me insanely cranky. I need more than 4 hours a sleep to function properly. I can no longer drink as much as I used to. I actually kind of like the color pink (who knew?). You know, important things. I have also learned that food and I will probably forever be locked in a winless battle. See, I love food, and it loves me, probably a bit too much. Sugar in particular.

The success that I had last year with the Zone was the first actual success I have had in losing any sort of weight. It felt great and I was so glad that it worked. But, as Melissa (Byers Gets Diesel) said in one of her food posts, creating a cycle of punishable behaviors is not going to yield the results (ie eating behaviors) that you want. She is right. It I go cold turkey today, and start Zoning and dropping out things that I've been eating it's going to drive me insane. I'm more likely to cheat out of my frustration that I can't have things, and create this cycle of eating and them ultimately punishing myself for it. This is not healthy. So today, I'm giving the bird, "the bird" so to speak.

What I'm learning about myself as I get older, is that unlike many people, I can't do things, "cold turkey". There needs to be a period of gradual reduction to get used to the changes that are occurring before the complete change over takes place. I HATE change. For whatever reason it makes me uncomfortable. Other people thrive on uprooting their lives and doing new things, but I thrive on routine. Even in something as simple as food, and changing the routine or the bad habits I have gotten into lately is not going to be easy. Changing habits, bad or good, takes time, and that's something that I think everyone going into any kind of eating change needs to remember. It's going to be a fight to change these things because you've been doing them, in most cases, for a long time. I tried to go cold turkey back into the Zone this week, and had only limited success. I did NOT drink ANY coffee over the last four days, which is a major feat in and of itself. I have seriously upped my water intake, and I've only slipped and had one soda (at lunch with teammmates yesterday and it was DIET) which is another serious feat, ESPECIALLY considering that I work in a restaurant where I get to drink all the soda I want..... I did not touch a drop on Thursday. To me, this is a serious step in the right direction. I bet some people are thinking that this is no big deal. Well, again, remembering that everyone is an individual is a big help here, because what you need to understand about me, is that I was drinking a Venti White Mocha (800 cals+) each morning to get me going, AND at least 2-3 cans/bottles of soda a day (another 800-1000 cals+). This is an INSANE amount of extra calories. Eliminating these two things will go a VERY long way towards helping me maintain a healthy weight. A simple solution some would say would be to go to the light coffee drinks and Diet soda. My rebuttal? Light coffee tastes like ca ca, and diet sodas still produce insulin responses in your body because your body thinks it's getting sugar. Even though it's not really sugar, your body has been duped and you're left holding the extra insulin that your body prepared to deal with the "sugar" it thought was coming. This is why people who diet and drink a ton of diet colas don't very often see dramatic results they were looking for. So truthfully, it's no better than drinking regular.

Although I was good about the coffee and soda, I did slip and eat a cookie that one of the kids brought in for Easter (Thursday), and on Wednesday I had a (very small) brownie. Now, the old me would have pummeled myself unmercifully for eating something not Zoned. But, I have to give myself credit. My meals for the most part over the last few days were completely Zoned, and even the meals that weren't because I ate out, were, although not perfect, more Zone friendly than the choices I've been making recently. No more processed pasta (which had again become a go to because it's so quick and easy to make) no more tons of bread or fried foods. I really have been making an effort. And no, it's not perfect. It's not 100% Zoned. But IMHO, Zoning 85% is better than not Zoning at all. I have to give myself credit for taking the initiative, taking the steps, and making some progress. Maybe not the best progress, but progress nonetheless. If I don't cheat for 3 meals, but slip for 2, that's better than cheating all 5 right? It's progress. And after all, in CF isn't that what we're looking for? Measurable gains? This is definitely something that is a measureable gain. It might be a baby step, but it's a baby step in the RIGHT direction. Maybe next week I aim for 4 out of 5. It's progress we're looking for.

As the weeks go by, I think I'll dial down even more, and the sugary stuff won't pose such a problem for me, but right now I need to be careful. My body is still going through sugar detox and it wants what it wants based on my past poor choices. As I step down into the Zone, I think I will start to see results, and I will not be as angry with myself as I would have been if I had gone "cold turkey". I just need to remember to keep making good choices, and try as hard as I can. Now, I know others may disagree with me and say no, no, no. For the first two weeks you need to be completely in the Zone and you can't cheat and blah blah blah. But here's the thing. We need to remember that each person is an individual and therefore, so is their diet. Some people may do well with the 2 week crash course into the Zone. I don't. I become very anxious about what I'm eating, if it's not 100% perfect, if I have a slip. It's too much negative reinforcement to something that is supposed to be helpful. Over the next three weeks I hope to step completely in the Zone, but for now, the first big step, is getting over the coffee and soda addiction and going from there. Here's to hoping I can do it.

I'm just "Josh"in ya'!

Every first Friday of the month is choose your own hero or girl workout. Sort of like "choose your own death" like I was talking about last week. ;) It also means that we get to have a social after class. I'm really coming to enjoy the socials because we have so many new people, and so many old people who I just don't get to see very much of since I'm in at 0515, that it's great to be able to stand around and chat with them. It does make me laugh though to see everyone in real clothes because sometimes I don't recognize them. LOL.

So last night's social was great fun, except for the fact that I was EXHAUSTED. Thank God spring break is finally here. Yesterday was a pretty miserable day for about half of it, and when I got to CFOT it was raining. I didn't want to run in the rain because I didn't even want to RISK getting sick while I'm off on spring break, so I decided to hit Josh. I did Josh last month on choose your own day and I landed him in 11:18. I thought that was a fairly decent time and was pretty pleased with that. But of course Jerry said that if I was doing it again, I should try to beat my time. Well crap. :P

But nonetheless I jumped on the clock and went for it. Josh looks like this if you aren't familiar.

21 OHS
42 Pull-ups
15 OHS
30 Pull-ups
18 Pull-ups

It's a doozy of a workout, similar to a Fran feeling because your forearms just get fried from holding the barbell up and from doing the pull-ups. I had a hard time doing more than 3 or 4 pull-ups at a time, otherwise I would have made up some more time there. But regardless, I nailed this in 9:32 and was pretty please about knocking almost 2 minutes off my time. I was pretty stoked. Jerry told me that next time I need to try the 95lb men's rx'd since OHS are so easy for me. Crap. :P Damn me and my swimmer shoulders.....

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

The Good, The Bad, and THE ZONE....

If you are a regular around here, you may have noticed a few things change recently. I've been changing up my blog a little bit and doing some things differently, including adding a few more friends to my blog list. Sean has come onboard the Katie train, and I've found a new blog that I like to follow called Byers Get Diesel. I have to say, I love Melissa's style of writing and she posts a lot of really great stuff. She had an article in the journal this month about Zoning, and had some related posts that really got me to start thinking about the Zone.

Last year, I posted my CrossFit story. It wound up on the affiliate page and was read over 2,000 times. I had tons of great emails and comments, and was glad that despite how scary it was to put my life out there, it resonated with people and they could associate with it. My story was a success! I had lost weight, improved my times, my weights, and my overall lifestyle. Last August, as CF and I celebrated our one year anniversary, I posted a link to a video I made showing just how far I'd come in one year. People were AMAZED that one year with a program could do so much for a person. I was Zoning, my weight was good, my weights were good, and I felt pretty invincible.

But flash forward to now. Real life has sunk in. I'm working three jobs, trying to find a new one, and feeling like there is a lot going on in my life. The Zone has all but fallen away, and I'm left here holding the broken pieces of that woman who existed in months past. I jumped on the scale the other day, and that was all it took. Nevermind the fact that I can deadlift over 200lbs, that I can do chest to bar pull-ups, that I can OHS 140lbs, that I can jerk 140. None of that mattered. I saw that number and nothing else mattered. I felt awful, and my immediate response to get to back in the Zone.

I started Zoning, pretty strictly, last March. There were lots of really good things about the Zone. By April I was seeing changes and noticing gains at CF, and those gains encouraged me to keep going. The motivation to lose weight and feel better about myself kept me eating well. The Zone was great for giving me parameters and for helping me see the light about eating well. I had more energy, felt good about myself, and really wanted to continue to do it.

But, as time went, it took me in a very negative direction. There were times when I was so obsessed with what I was putting in my mouth, that the Zone actually became another added stressor. It wasn't helpful, it wasn't beneficial, and it was actually more harmful for me. I developed a sense of guilt for eating outside of the Zone. I remember being on a WONDERFUL trip to Chicago, and Georgia telling me that I NEEDED to have cheat days and allow myself to try things while I was there. Pretty scary to live your life that much in fear of a few extra calories/carbs.

The Zone became a bit of a monster for me. Shortly after my race last October I hit some pretty big speed bumps in my personal life, and fell off the Zone completely because I was, to be honest, only eating once a day. There were days where I went without eating an actual meal AT ALL. Talk about a very dangerous mix for a CrossFitter and someone who has long had weight issues. Since then, life has just gotten crazy. Three jobs have kicked in, and blah blah blah. And now, I find myself not Zoning for a few different reasons. Some of them being the reasons I loved the Zone before.

I loved the Zone before because it gave me parameters and really gave me some structure for eating. Now, I find it constrictive. I don't want to go out with friends and need to be difficult about everything that I order so that I can stay in the Zone. I don't want to have to avoid things that I love because they don't belong in the Zone. I am disgusted with myself as I look in the mirror and see pockets of fat where two months ago there were none, but I get frustrated with the idea of going back to the Zone because I don't want it to not allow me to have my own life. I can't spend time blocking, and planning, and counting. Melissa makes a great point on her blog and talks about finding a balance. I agree with that wholeheartedly, but here is where I run into my big "BAD" point on the Zone.

To say I'm very busy right now is pretty accurate. A lot of days I don't get home until 8 or 9, sometimes even later when I'm working the other job, which means that I only have about an hour to finish any work I need, cook dinner, pack bags for the next day, and pack all my meals and snacks. And I'll be honest, there have been a lot of nights lately where, I just don't have the energy to do it all. The Zone has gone out the window because my solution is to simply stop and get something to eat on the way to school the next day or call out for dinner. I simply cannot strict Zone sometimes. So basically, since I've had so many days like that lately, I've said F U to the Zone and have just been going on a feeding frenzy.

I know the motivation to Zone must be internal, but here's where I struggle. For the people like me who sometimes just CAN'T get all the blocking and planning and measuring down, what can we do? Why isn't there a sort of "Eat This, Not That" for Zoners like me? People who care, people who want to, but people who are so wrapped up in so many things that it seems like adding one more thing will make the house of cards collapse. I'm not saying I should be able to get results without doing work. I'm not looking for a cheat, but I'm looking for the best alternatives when I can't do it in my own kitchen. The book, "Eat This, Not That", shows you how to save calories if you're going to eat something. If you must have ice cream, eat Bryers. It has the most all natural ingredients, and is therefore, the most Zone friendly ice cream if such a thing exists. These sorts of things save you calories in the long run.

I'd love a Zone book like this, because sometimes the choices I think aren't bad, really are. I didn't think that Yogurt was that bad for you, but now I understand that it has a lot of sugar. It's deceptive. So, what are the best alternatives for Zoners when they can't stand in their kitchen and do the weighing and measuring themselves?

I am a girl who will forever have weight issues. The Zone has helped me to lose some long needed weight, but at the same time, I need to be careful not to let it run my life. There are good things about the Zone, and there are bad things about the Zone. If it's going to work for me a second time, I need to find a balance.

It's how dirty girls get CLEAN...

You know, blame advertising for this one. I can't talk about cleans, or clean and jerks, or squat cleans, or what have you without thinking of those STUPID Axe bodywash/hair gel/body spray commercials. It's how dirty boys get clean... yuck! Dirty boys really just need a hose and a freakin' pine smell car freshener! Ah, well... anyway... so guess what WE worked on today? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller? Aha! You're right! It was push-ups! Fooooooooolllleedddd you... we really actually worked on cleans today. Ah yes, working on cleans is how dirty girls get clean. ;) LOL.

Today was a max clean day. I missed the last max clean day because I think I had done something stupid the day before... oh that's right. I fell into a plyo box and it ATE my shin. I'm not bitter or anything, but again... off topic. (Are you really surprised... come on now... this IS me we're talking about here.) Anyhoo, today, max cleans... yes... right. I did some rope climbs and a little bit o' jump rope to get the 'ol heart rate jumpin', and then we had a quick review of the cleans before we jumped in and started throwing weight on the bar. I was trying to be conservative and feel good before I moved up to fast, and this is what my numbers looked like.

55 X 5
85 X 3
95 X 1
105 X 1
115 X 1
125 X 1
130 X 1
135 X 1
140 X 1
145 X 1 (F)
145 X 1 (F)
145 X 1 (F)
145 X 1 (F)
145 X 1 (F)
145 X 1 (F)
145 X 1 (F)

I'm not kidding you. I really attempted 145 that many times today. It may have actually been more, but I lost count because I was so freakin' frustrated. I could get the bar to my shoulders and couldn't ride it up. I was so mad. Jerry noticed that when I got to 145 I was jumping VERY far forward of the tape line where I started. I'm not sure why I started to do that. It may have been fatigue, because in all honesty, I was a little tired by the end of things, but regardless, it was making me sooooo mad. 140 is a PR tie, but not a new PR. I haven't worked cleans in a while, and really I should be happy with this, but I got so frustrated with that stupid 145 that it's hard to be happy. I know I have a 145 pull in me, maybe a 150, but I just can't land it. FRUSTRATING!!!!! GGGGGRRRRRRRRRRRR...