Imagine

“A change of feeling is a change of destiny.” – Neville Goddard

There’s a lot of talk about Goal Setting recently. A lot of talk. At this point I’m not sure which came first, the deep nagging need I’ve had in the past few months to write down my Goals being very, very specific, or the Crossfit Goal Setting Seminar this weekend with CF Legend, Greg Amundson.

Oprah once said, ‘When you’re on the right path, the universe rises up to meet you.’ I believe it. I didn’t know about the course until days before, and debated whether or not to go. But, so glad I did. Aside from Greg’s dynamic, passionate, powerful presence, this was a day of forced soul searching on a Saturday. It was much needed. If you’re like me and work 9 to 5 during the week, most Saturdays are usually filled with errands and get togethers and other non-goal oriented items. Good or bad, however you view it, these items can be just that, time takers, gap fillers, while perhaps fun and entertaining, nothing that will ultimately get you towards your Goal. That is, if you actually know your Goal. Can articulate it. Which I do not, not specifically. Not down to the wire of execution. And therein lies the problem; you must be able to speak to your Goal in absolute detail, to each exact step you will take to reach it, to the point where you can taste it, smell it, feel it, as if it is happening right now.

“If you would like to accomplish something, you must first expect it of yourself…. Everything that you can experience with your senses was once in someone’s imagination.” – Dr. Wayne Dyer.

“Live and feel as if your future dreams are a present fact.”

Now to only put into writing, those future dreams.

Tonight’s warm up bears mentioning, because it felt just as hard as the WOD. Thought my arms were about to give out. But, then working the arms, upper body strength, is a part of my goal. So, it’s good to work these things.

Warm-Up:

3 Rounds:

15 Wallballs

10 Burpees

Wall Climbs

 Completed: Wall Balls at 14lbs. 2 Rounds before it was time to begin the WOD.

WOD:

I. 4 Rounds For Total Time:

10 Unbroken Fronts Squats at 70% 1RM

Run 400m

*Rest after each round as long as it took to complete the previous round

Completed: in 19:49. Avg. 3 minutes per round. Front Squat at 85lbs. Felt like a good weight, I was working almost to failure by reps 9 and 10. My laps actually grew faster in rounds 3 and finally 4.

II. 3 Attempts

Max Toes-to-Bar

Behold. Paleo Pad Thai.

Behold the strength of a food processor! Who the heck knew! I suggest, upon newly purchasing a food processor, and it being your first, practice with veggies you’re not necessarily feeling too attached to, or.. err.. hungry for.

Behold pepper, cucumber, celery puree! Bletch. Need to google some recipes for this. It’ll keep for a few days.

Second attempt, not so much of a fail. Used the slicer blade. Ohhh.. ahhh… But damn it’s quick. And when you’re slicing for one person, its more like, oh, and… well, that’s it. When you’re used to slicing by hand, and then suddenly utilizing your brand new shiny stainless steel Cuisinart 9 Cup food processor, well, let’s just say, the shi*t gets done. Quickly.

The real point of this story, is to highlight probably one of the best damn Paleo dishes I have ever, ever, had the pleasure of preparing, and then… wait for it…

Eating.

Paleo Pad Thai. Taken from the front runner of best Paleo cook books to date, Well Fed. OMGG. Better than the non-paleo version. True Story. Total, complete, pure joy.

Sometimes I’m just too tired at the end of the day to cook. Not going to lie here, eating healthy takes work. Lots of prepping and chopping and more prepping, and small food containers of left overs and unused singular ingredients.

I like sauces. There’s only so many times a person can use olive oil and Frank’s Hot Sauce. Whilst this is an excellent combination, particularly as salad dressing, it can get old. In an effort to add more variety to my current Whole30 food plan, I’ve been experimenting with pre-preparing sauces to have on hand so less time spent chopping and mixing when the time comes that I’m just really hungry and don’t have the patience to food prep. This happens quite often. You know the feeling. You get home after a long day of work, and ideally a WOD, and there’s still a ton of shi*t to do. And you’re freaking hungry. Lately, when I get hungry, lately as in… the healthier I get, and harder I work/the stronger I get, when I get hungry it feels as if I need to eat IMMEDIATELY. This is the worst, if you don’t have anything on your food plan available.

Today after work I came home and put the spaghetti squash in the oven and pre-mixed the Sunshine Sauce for the Pad Thai. Turned off the oven just before the squash was cooked, and headed out to WOD and Strongman. Nicely, when I got home tonight, there was still some to do, but not quite as much, and the task and time to prep something good to eat did not seem too arduous. Being able to prep pre-WOD is not a luxury I usually enjoy, but when I can, it’s a nice indulgence.

Warm-Up:

Run 400m

30 Spiderman Lunges

20 Inchworms

Then… “Barbell Smash” On Calves

WOD:

I. 3 rounds for time:

30 Double Unders

10 Front Squats (155/100)

10 Burpees

Completed: in 7:09. Front squat at 65lbs. This was a lung burner. Seems like a while since I’ve done one of these. Not sure though. Had a head cold since the weekend and just now coming out of a fog. It’s uncomfortable not feeling 100%, because you just want to go, but sometimes your body just says, no.

Then onto Strongman. Stones over bar @ 90lbs. Keg press and carry at 57lbs. Perth is coming. Perth is coming.

The Grass is Greenest Where it is Watered.

“Your visions will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.” ― C.G. Jung

Warm-Up:

Snatch Skill Transfer

WOD:

I. Snatch – 5 x 2 – Rest As Needed Between Sets

Completed: focusing mostly on form @ 55lbs.

II. Front Squat 3 x 3 @ 80% 1RM – Rest 2 Minutes Between Sets

Completed: again, focusing on form, working up in weight, 55lbs., 75lbs., 95lbs.

Thanks to Nicole and Richard for being great partners today.  For sharing stories between reps of personal successes, failures, and confusion as to why some people say the darndest things out loud. Rich summed it up pretty well, ‘Some folks just lack a filter.’ Indeed.

III. Chin Ups (Chin Over Vertical Plane) 4 x 15 – Rest 1 Minute Between Sets

Completed: Ring Dips with wrists towards the ceiling, max effort.

Then onto Strongman. A group of us (StrongWoMen, mostly) have signed up for our first Strongman Competition in Perth.  Competitions make me want to vomit urine from fright. Which is all the more reason to do them. This will be my first. Below is the level at which we will be competing:

   Super Yoke Tire Flip Log Press Truck Pull Deadlift Farmers Hold
Women 140+ 310lbs 250lbs Max Weight Ford Ranger 175lbs 110lbs (per handle)

I’ve performed each of these movements at least once. So I got that going for me. Except one, the Truck Pull. But its only a Ford Ranger, so, you know.

The Super Yoke at 310lbs. seems the most intimidating item on the list. We practiced tonight. The Yoke itself weighs 150lbs. We worked our way up from there in 70 lbs. increments; 150 lbs., then 220 lbs., then 290 lbs., then finally 310 lbs. Thank goodness there are no Math WoD’s at ACF, and the fact that Margarite has the ability to calculate the sum total weight of bumpers and steel on the spot. My skill in this department is sorely lacking and I’m okay with that for now.

I’m in a cleansing mood. Been cleansing my diet, 14 days into the Whole30 and going strong. Cleansing my home too, of all clutter. Never was a clutter person to begin with, but now I’m even digging into the little momentos and tokens from the past that have been holed up in the back corners of my closet and shelves. Just feel like getting rid of all of it. Yes, there’s memories there, some cherished, some not so much. Some more like reminders, of a time that indeed helped shape where I am now, but do not write the story of who I am now, or a minute from now, or tomorrow. That story is for me to tell from where I’m standing now. The urge to purge comes from a general feeling of lightness. My mind is light, and clear, and focused. I want my surroundings to be even more so too.

I think sometimes I had the tendency to get weighed down by having too many priorities, too many focus points, too many places I wanted to be. More from a scattered ‘The Grass is Always Greener’ approach, then one overtly movtivated. You can’t split yourself into eight, and take off in hot pursuit into eight different directions with the same fierceness and intensity of applying that force to one united direction. The hot pursuit gets diluted into a luke warm simmer.

Paralyzed by too much opportunity.

Call it mid-life, call it finally settling into what it is that I really want. Call it whatever the F* you want. But, I do know that I like it. And it is all too welcomed. There is a stripping away of non-priorities, and the priorities that remain are few, precise, and crystal clear.

ramping.

“The past has no power over the present moment.” ― Eckhart Tolle

One of the hardest WODs in recent memory. Made it through with the hard work of an excellent partner, Carmen. Not sure what’s going on over at ACF, but it feels as if things are ramping up in difficulty. Maybe I’m just ramping down.

Warm-Up:

Run 200m

20 Goblet Squats

20 “Inchworms”

Run 200m

WOD:

I. With a Partner for Time:

100 Power Snatches (95/65) (total reps as a group)

100 Overhead Squats

100 Power Cleans

100 Front Squats

100 Burpees

*1 Partner moving at a time, must complete 100 total reps between both athletes at each movement before moving on to next

Completed: at 45lbs. in 34:14. Went lighter on weight since overheads squats are truly one of my sucks. Figured better to get the reps then collapse in total failure.

Lesson Learned

Warm up:

2 Rounds:

15 Kettlebell Swings

15 Romanian Deadlifts (with Kettlebell)

15 Goblet Squats

Completed Warmup: @35lbs. kettle bells.  For some reason I can do kettle bells at or near RX.

WOD:

I. Front Squat

1 – 1 – 1 – 1 – 1

Completed: @ 85lbs, then, 105lbs., 115lbs, 125lbs. Tried for 135lbs and failed. 125lbs is my current PR in Front Squats. Thanks James for introducing yourself as a new coach at ACF. And thanks for all your encouragement and good advice.

So, lesson learned. Admit to yourself and to the four people that read your blog that you cheated, and your whole perspective changes. There was no way I was going to ‘lose count’ and not finish tonight’s WOD. I was so determined, I loaded up my bar to RX at 55lbs. and went. At. It.

II. 5 Rounds For Time:

10 Push Press (75/55)

20 Box Jumps (24/20)

*15 Minute Cap

Completed: in 8:35. RX! woot. woot. Had to resort to some step ups in the middle, but finished nonetheless.  Felt great!!  I think Kim was actually proud of me. I’m just happy her pooches are home and doing better. How we love our doggies.

Bear Complex

I love Team WOD’s. When it was over our team headed back inside and went for an additional 3 rounds of 7 Bear Complex @ 55lbs. Why? I have no freaking idea. Freihofer’s 5K tomorrow. Somebody send for reinforcements.

Warm up:

Group Dynamic

WOD:

I.  With a partner, complete As Many Reps As Possible in 25 Minutes of:

1st 5 minutes:

Hang Power Snatches (95/65)

2nd 5 minutes:

Overhead Squats

3rd 5 minutes:

Hang Power Cleans

4th 5 minutes:

Front Squats

Last 5 minutes:

Push Jerks

*Every time the bar touches the ground, 15 Burpee penalty for each partner

Completed: @ 55lbs. with 3 of us sharing the load. Not sure how many total reps each, or as a team. Lost count. The good news; the bar never hit the ground. It’s amazing what the threat of burpees can do.

II. Stretch and Foam Roll

Memorial Day Murph

“Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear – not absence of fear.” ― Mark Twain

There’s an annual workout in the Crossfit world called the Memorial Day Murph. It is named in memory of Navy Lieutenant Michael Murphy, 29, of Patchogue, N.Y., who was killed in Afghanistan June 28th, 2005. In boxes around the US, athletes gather and perform this WOD in honor of Lt. Murphy and those who serve. It’s not an easy workout. It’s a beast. If you’ve got a twenty pound vest or body armor, you’re encouraged to wear it.  And people do.

All day yesterday and even this morning, leading right up to the actual workout, I was, well, scared. Full of anxiety as I drove into the parking lot. How am I going to do this?

And then I thought about what a soldier might feel; When leaving his family behind, his first steps into battle. The incredible fear he must find the courage to swallow. The absolute unknown of what lies ahead and the total and utter certainty of it. Whatever it may be. It was almost too much to imagine.

Would I ever possess such courage? Here I sit afraid to do some squats and run for an hour? By comparison, its ridiculous really. But fear is a very personal thing. And it comes in all shapes. Whether physically standing in front of you, or creeping through your thoughts when least expected. It’s there. And it can take hold of you.

This morning the sun was shining brightly in upstate NY. And as I watched the parking lot begin to fill, and other athletes get out of their cars and walk towards the gym, I knew I could too.

WOD:

I. “Murph”

For time:

1 mile Run

100 Pull-ups

200 Push-ups

300 Squats

1 mile Run

Completed: In 61:52.

I’ve been talking about Crossfit to friends and family for some time now. In fact if you ask them they might actually tell you I won’t stop talking about it. My brother brought his daughter today and very graciously watched and cheered. He called me later in the day to talk about it and see how I was feeling. ‘I’m really sore,’ I said. And I am. Really sore. But never before CF have I thought I would be capable of such things as were done today. I used to have a tendency to quit. To lag in the middle of large endeavors, and then just let it all fall a part. But somehow not any more. No matter how fearful or full of doubt I become. Over the last seven months I’ve learned that I’m quite capable, actually.

For me it just comes down to putting one foot in front of the other, and then across the triple wide, and then through door.

What we face is never, ever, bigger than what we are capable of doing.

No matter what might be creeping through your head; show it the door and get right back to the work at hand in front of you.