#ProjectBeMoreHuman – Week 4

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I officially dub this week “DNF Week”. While I’m already scaling all the workouts at CrossFit to meet my ability level – I’ve always been able to finish before the time cap on workouts (20 minutes most days) in the past. Sometimes barely squeaking by at like 19:55 or something but still under 20.

Not so much this week. Tuesday, the WOD consisted of the following:

Rep Scheme – 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1
Deadlift (I did 95lbs – because you know, I’ve never deadlifted… lol)
Lateral Burpees over Barbell (so instead of facing the bar and jumping with both feet you have to jump sideways over the bar. Which somehow is worse than the other way)
Toes to Bar (or as I like to do – knees to chest)

So for those not familiar with CrossFit the “rep scheme” means that I would do 10 reps of a movement, then move to the next and do 10 reps, then 10 reps of the last movement and then start over and do 9 of each of the movements and so on until you finish.

At 20 minutes I had worked my way down to the “3” set and had completed 3 deadlifts when I fell to the ground to try and get the burpees when the buzzer went off. Laying face down in a pool of my own sweat, gasping for air, I wondered if this WOD was actually going to kill me. Like, I was thinking how horrible it was going to be for my obituary to read, “John C. Massie – Death by burpees on April 14, 2015”.

After I managed to find my way from the ground to upright I staggered to my car where I sat for a few minutes trying to figure out if it was safe for me to drive. Like, I no joke was trying to think of people to call to see if they could take me home. I had given my all and then some apparently during the WOD. I made my way to Starbucks and hoped that some caffeine in my system would help keep me moving. I made it home safe and sound and spent most of the rest of the day in a chair, by the pool, working on my laptop (yeah, rough life, I know).

Today’s workout was like some new fresh torture I had yet to experience. It consisted of Hang Squat Clean Thrusters (or HSCT for short) and then sprints. I made it through my 5, 10 and 15 HSCT and my 800 meter sprint and my 600 meter sprint before time ran out (I still needed to do a 400 meter sprint, 20 HSCT and 200 meter sprint to finish).

So while I’m not going out for runs – I’m for sure getting plenty of running in. I hope that will be enough for my upcoming races next week.

On a positive note – my squat form (air, front and back) is impeccable. I’m able to actually squat all the way down until my butt is practically touching the ground with and without weight. I can also sit at the bottom of a squat for days which I didn’t realize people struggle with (and I’m not really sure what that skill gets me but… celebrate what you can, right? lol). It’s nice when you struggle with 99% of everything in CrossFit that there is one movement that you’re good at and people complement you on.

We’re not discussing my weight because, well, it hasn’t changed really. One thing that I have been very good about is my water intake though. I purchased a Camelback Chute 1 liter water bottle and I carry it with me everywhere. My goal is to drink 4 of them per day and so far I think my worst day I only got in 3 but then I ended up with 5 on another day so it all balances out, right? I’m not sure it’s the placebo effect or not but I do feel like I can tell a difference.

I’ll be in Houston next week so no CrossFit. However, I’ll be with my buddy Scott and his family so I’m sure Scott will find something to keep me moving those few days I’m there next week.

So until next time folks!

#ProjectBeMoreHuman – Week 3

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Where the magic happens every week!

Where the magic happens every week!

There I was laying face down on the floor. I can’t breathe, I’m soaking wet with sweat and all I could think of was, “I actually pay to do this?” I was in the third round of burpee wallballs and I felt like I couldn’t get up off the floor. I had nothing left to give.

“Come on John – you got this”

Someone yelled from somewhere else in the box. I don’t know what it is but just that simple act of someone cheering you on seems to allow me to dig deep within and find strength I didn’t know I had. So I wobbled my way back to my feet and finished out the next 6 burpee wallballs to finish my set of 15 before starting on my box jumps (which became step-ups because I was certain that my legs were going to give out during the jumps).

I dug deep and worked through the last round. It took all I had to make it through but I did it and managed to finish under the 20min time cap!

That’s a glimpse into what my CrossFit workouts are like. It’s really funny how I can ride a bike for 100 miles or run 10 miles which takes hours and it does tire me out but I could do that any day of the week. You give me a 20 minute workout at CrossFit and it’s like I’ve never done anything athletic a day in my life.

I finally stepped on a scale. I’m down a whopping two pounds. I could be discouraged but I’m trying to teach myself, however, to measure my successes in things like setting PRs (personal records) for different weight lifting movements, finishing WODs within time limits, reducing my mile times running, increasing my speed on the bike, and all the other little successes I experience (like being able to jump rope consecutively for more than 5 times around). Even the success of making it to 3 WODs this week felt good.

This week I set some PRs from my last time I was in CrossFit a little over a year ago:

Front Squat: 95lbs
Back Squat: 115lbs
Strict Push Press: 65lbs (have I mentioned that my shoulders are super weak)

They’re nothing to write home about for most people but when you used to struggle with these movements while using an empty 45lbs bar – it feels pretty great.

I’m sure you’re thinking, “Um, before you moved didn’t you do stuff that didn’t involved CrossFit?” So let’s see, I haven’t “ran” this week per se. Wednesday’s CrossFit workout I did 5 x 400 meter sprints in which I wanted to perish after the second or third round. So I’d say I technically got a run in there. Providing that I can walk tomorrow morning I plan on doing at least a 5k around the neighborhood. If I’m feeling especially good then I might go for a 4 miler.

I’m still trying to get up the nerve to go cycling. I’ve been a bit hesitant to go riding because I don’t know the roads around here and I don’t want to get lost and/or hurt. I haven’t found a group to ride with either so it’s on my to-do list to seek out a cycling group to go riding with.

Ok! Onto the next week!

#ProjectBeMoreHuman – Week 2

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Here’s me today after my CrossFit workout. Still smiling… but covered in sweat. The thing that this picture doesn’t capture is the fact that my shirt is completely soaked from a short 20 minute workout at the box.

So after my post last week I proceeded to workout at Hill Country CrossFit one more time and squeeze in another 5k run. This time I adjusted my intervals and actually increased my speed as a result. I also discovered last week that my 5k route that I’m running is… are you ready for this… about 300ft of elevation change. As a comparison – my half marathon was about 150ft across 13.1 miles. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger though, right?

Besides me walking like someone caned me on the knees and dreading having to sit down or stand up or raise my arms above my head or bend my arms at the elbow – I haven’t really noticed much changes. I’ve selected Friday as my day to go run so I’m hoping that I’ll see some improvement in my time.

It’s a busy week around here. My friends have family coming in from out of town and it’s Easter so I’m really hoping to get in another CrossFit workout on Saturday and *maybe* a run or ride Saturday if it doesn’t rain.

Haven’t been on a scale either – I think I’m going to limit that to every other week so I don’t become obsessed with weighing myself.

Until next week!