• Recap of 13.5 and Some Thoughts About the Open

    April 9, 2013

    Phew. I’m glad the 2013 CrossFit Open is officially over. It was a ton of fun, and I really enjoyed myself, but I’m ready to get back to my regular workouts. I feel like I haven’t been to a CrossFit class in ages!

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    Last Friday afternoon, Kerrie and I made plans to do 13.5 together:

    Complete as many rounds and reps as possible in 4 minutes of:

    65 pound Thruster, 15 reps
    15 Chest to bar Pull-ups

    If 90 reps (3 rounds) are completed in under 4 minutes, time extends to 8 minutes.
    If 180 reps (6 rounds) are completed in under 8 minutes, time extends to 12 minutes.
    If 270 reps (9 rounds) are completed in under 12 minutes, time extends to 16 minutes.
    Etc.

    There was no way I was going to get 90 reps in 4 minutes, but I was still going to try my hardest.

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    Kerrie and I both knew it was going to be a brutal workout, so doing it together was a great way to motivate and push each other.

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    The Thrusters weren’t too bad. Sixty-five pounds is still pretty heavy for me, so I warmed-up and practiced with 85 pounds before the workout. I didn’t even pick up the 65-pound bar until the first rep of the workout, so the weight would seem “light.” This strategy definitely helped because I made it through two rounds of Thrusters and managed to do them unbroken! Yay!

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    The Chest-to-Bar Pull-ups were a different story. Before last week, I can’t say that I had done too many of them… ok, I’ve done some with bands and jumping, but I definitely hadn’t done too many “real” ones.

    On Thursday night at the competitors’ class, we worked on Chest-to-Bar Pull-ups with different grips, and the mixed grip actually worked pretty well for me. In order for the rep to count, you need to touch your chest to the bar and the mixed grip made it a little bit easier to get there.

    I did the first set of Chest-to-Bar Pull-ups in sets of 2’s and 3’s and then broke the second set into singles. I did one rep, hopped off the bar, and then jumped right back up to do another one. Even though I wasn’t doing the Chest-to-Bar Pull-ups consecutively, I was getting reps and avoiding no-reps (except for one when I didn’t quite touch my chest to the bar). I finished with 54 reps.

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    The final WOD of the Open was a good one, and it definitely made me excited to do Fran prescribed in the coming months. (I know, I’m a sicko, but Fran Rx is one of my big goals for 2013.)

    Now that the Open is over, I wanted to share a few thoughts about it—mostly things that I’ve learned, but also how I’ve changed as an athlete over the past 5 weeks.

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    The CrossFit Open is about doing things I didn’t think I could do.

    So many people—myself included—got wrapped up in the comparison game during the CrossFit Open. I mean, how could you not? You’re competing with top athletes, people in your region, friends at your box… it’s hard not to compare your performance with that of others.

    After getting really down on myself about my performance on 13.3, I gave myself a little pep talk. I reminded myself that the Open is supposed to be fun, and it’s not about other people. (Ok, maybe it is for the elite athletes, but for regular CrossFitters like me, it’s not.) The Open is about doing things that I didn’t think I could do, which brings me to…

    The CrossFit Open pushed me out of my comfort zone.

    Oh, yes, it did.

    Before the Open, I rarely did Rx workouts at CrossFit—maybe once a month and it was usually a workout that involved running or rowing and not much heavy lifting. When the Open rolled around, I knew I needed to complete the workouts as prescribed if I wanted to post a score, so I pushed myself out of my comfort zone on every workout during the Open. Toes-to-bar, 75-pound Snatches, 95-pound Clean and Jerks, chest-to-bar pull-ups… these things were definitely not in my wheelhouse until the Open, but now I can do them, which, honestly, surprised me.

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    The CrossFit Open helped me push past a fitness plateau.

    Similar to above, the Open helped me push past a fitness plateau. I was definitely stuck in a rut and not making much progress at CrossFit. Basically, I was using the same weights and modifications for workouts and not improving all that much. But, as soon as the Open started and I was pushed out of my comfort zone, I started to make some serious gains. And now I want to keep that momentum going.

    The CrossFit Open got me fired up.

    Remember 13.2? I got a tad fired up during that workout, which, at first, I was a little embarrassed about, but now I think it’s totally okay. I found something that I care about a whole lot, and getting fired up showed me that I have a competitive side to me.

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    The CrossFit Open showed me that my hard work paid off.

    At last year’s CrossFit Open, I couldn’t even do the workouts. I made it through 7 minutes of Burpees, but after that I didn’t post a score. Granted, I had a pretty bad flare during that time, so I missed a couple of workouts all together, but I actually couldn’t do the workouts as prescribed, so I didn’t post any more scores after the first one. This year, I did all 5 workouts as prescribed and posted scores. Basically, what I’m saying is that I’ve come a long way in a year and my hard work has paid off. It was definitely nice to see!

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    The Open made me fall in love even more with CrossFit.

    I know, this is super cheesy, but I seriously love CrossFit. It’s so damn fun and it’s benefited my life in so many ways. Falling even more in love with CrossFit during the Open made me want to share it even more with others and help them discover why it’s so great, which is the main reason I’m going for my Level 1 CrossFit certification.

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    { 47 comments… read them below or add one }

    Ashley April 9, 2013 at 1:17 pm

    I’m Glad you’re enjoying the workouts so much!! I love crossfit too. When I first started exercising I started with crossfit. Crossfit really allowed me to see that I could do anything I truly wanted to accomplish!! It helped me build confidence. Go, Tina and good luck with your ceryification!

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    Claire @ Live and Love to Eat April 9, 2013 at 1:23 pm

    It’s awesome to find something you’re passionate about!

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    Chris April 9, 2013 at 1:24 pm

    “I reminded myself that the Open is supposed to be fun, and it’s not about other people.”

    Had to do the same thing. Especially important because:

    a) Judging standards are not uniform.
    b) People do WODs more than once.
    c) Some out and out cheat.

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    Mommypage April 9, 2013 at 1:41 pm

    Wow, that looks really intense! I’ve heard great things about Crossfit, but haven’t had the opportunity to try it yet. Great photos!

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    Meghan @ After the Ivy League April 9, 2013 at 2:00 pm

    Awesome post, you’ve learned such great things from the open this year! Doing all of the workouts prescribed really is amazing. You should be super proud of yourself for how far you’ve come. Falling into the comparison trap is easy to do sometimes, you just have to remind yourself that you’re not a professional athlete who gets paid to train and work out. Comparing yourself to someone like that is just so unrealistic! Plus, everyone has different talents, and you can’t be the best at everything. All you can do is work on getting better little by little. The only comparison you should make is the one between present-you and past-you. Major crossfit improvements between the two!

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    Hillary | Nutrition Nut on the Run April 9, 2013 at 2:01 pm

    Congrats, it must feel so wonderful to see your passions and successes collide. I love hearing about how CF has changed your life. You’re such an inspiration from in the box ;)

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    Shel@PeachyPalate April 9, 2013 at 2:11 pm

    Well done Tina! I admire both your physical and mental strength! Powerful stuff and totally inspiring!

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    Alba @ abbeltreviews.net April 9, 2013 at 2:22 pm

    Very inspiring Tina! I used to work out with weights often. I always enjoyed it…you make me want to start again.

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    Jen April 9, 2013 at 2:27 pm

    I definately have that same cheesy love for Crossfit. Every time I talk about it I’m sure I sound crazy but it has really been such a life changing sport for me. I now go to the gym because I love practicing lifts and improving myself. I have you to thank for that because your blog is where I heard about Crossfit and what made me decide to try it. Thank you!

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    Tina April 9, 2013 at 2:36 pm

    Yay! So happy to hear you’re enjoying CF! :)

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    Miranda @ Miranda Runs April 9, 2013 at 2:50 pm

    Crossfit is crazy intense! Seriously you guys are all badasses ;) Way to go Tina!

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    Melisa April 9, 2013 at 2:56 pm

    The picture from 13.2 cracks me up. Your passion for CF is inspiring.

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    miriam April 9, 2013 at 3:16 pm

    I love the final thing you learned from this experience: even though the fates have been against my running a marathon, I feel just the same way. Running has changed my life in a ton of ways, and I just love it so darn much! Glad you shared your insights.

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    Ashley @ Coffee Cake and Cardio April 9, 2013 at 3:22 pm

    Great job during the open Tina!! It sounds like you learned a lot about yourself.

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    Rachel @ Undercover Diva: A Sitcom April 9, 2013 at 3:27 pm

    You rock, chic! Super inspiring :D

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    Kelly@BalancedDaily April 9, 2013 at 3:51 pm

    Awesome. I only ended up doing one of the open WOD’s (13.2) but I know what you mean about wanting to do it prescribed and having that push you out of your comfort zone. Its one of the best feelings ad greatest parts of CrossFit to finish a workout using a weight you didn’t think you could or should use.

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    Renae @ MissFit Mixed Chick April 9, 2013 at 3:52 pm

    Your blog always reminds me that i need to go back to Brodie Park Crossfit. I loved it when I first went and I would go to their occasional free Saturday’s, but other than that I haven’t gone lately. I love the push that it gives. I did my heaviest lifts EVER b/c of crossfit.

    Good luck on your certificaiton!

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    Beth Sheridan April 9, 2013 at 3:55 pm

    I still haven’t had the opportunity to try CrossFit but I would love to soon! It looks incredible!

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    Hannah @ CleanEatingVeggieGirl April 9, 2013 at 3:57 pm

    You are seriously awesome!! :)

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    Annette@FitnessPerks April 9, 2013 at 3:58 pm

    Nice! It’s always fun to hear about different ways people get excited about fitness. Seeing results but also feeling the strength of being pushed outside a comfort zone is so powerful!

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    Brittani April 9, 2013 at 4:00 pm

    I love, love, love this post! I pushed myself and proved to myself that I could do way more then I thought I could!

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    Corrie Anne April 9, 2013 at 4:02 pm

    Love these thoughts. I’m hoping by the time next year rolls around I’ll be able to post a score on all the workouts as well, but I better keep working hard!!

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    Sara @ fitcupcaker April 9, 2013 at 4:04 pm

    I love crossfit too! Im glad the open challenged you, it def challenged me too! It was so fun to see everyone push themselves!

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    M. Love April 9, 2013 at 4:04 pm

    I LOVE this post — the Open – even with my ankle breaking haha — made me love CrossFit even more then before!! Nice work on all the improvements and everything you’ve done!!! Love following your CF journey!!

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    Ericka @ The Sweet Life April 9, 2013 at 4:32 pm

    Love it! I’m glad I wasn’t the only one playing the comparison game. Was thinking of doing an Open “thoughts recap” this week as well. It certainly took me out of the comfort zone — which was good and bad. Either way, still in love with crossfit and I actually have you to thank for inspiring me to start in the first place. Your enthusiasm is what really intially peaked my interest :)

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    Tina April 9, 2013 at 4:33 pm

    Yay! :)

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    Megan April 9, 2013 at 4:37 pm

    Great post! It’s awesome how you can look back, reflect, and be totally honest with yourself and us. Your passion for CF has inspired me to give it a try (thanks to a Groupon, I can’t afford it any other way), which I plan to, soon.

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    Julie / Bound April 9, 2013 at 6:28 pm

    So impressive! This blog honestly is a major resource in terms of keeping myself accountable and engaged in fitness. I really appreciate you sharing the ups and downs. It’s all fodder for success, man!

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    MegG April 9, 2013 at 7:11 pm

    I totally hear you on the “loving CrossFit even more” I didn’t do particularly well in the WODs but it certainly lit a fire in me to work harder and get stronger for next year. Congrats on finishing strong.

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    Nicole April 9, 2013 at 7:12 pm

    Great post.
    It’s always rewarding when you can track progress and know you are stronger.

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    Lisa April 9, 2013 at 7:27 pm

    Omg I’m tearing up a little reading this! GREAT great job on the open and for doing 13.5 RX. That is NO JOKE!!! Having just finished the open myself, I have to say that it totally intensified my love for crossfit too. The open also made me realize how much harder I can and should push myself in daily wods. Hello RX workouts and forcing myself to always do one more rep when I feel like letting go of the bar. I also LOVED the sense of community the open fostered. Crossfit we LOVE you!!

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    michelle kim April 9, 2013 at 8:03 pm

    I would totally get my competitive juices flowing by going to a class like that. As long as it just makes you work harder and push yourself (without getting upset or injured), then it’s all good. And it’s so exciting that you are getting the certification! It only makes sense :D

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    Emily April 9, 2013 at 8:11 pm

    Glad to hear you enjoy it so much. It’s great to find an activity you can just dive into and get all wrapped up and happy with it.

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    mi-an dela cruz April 9, 2013 at 9:10 pm

    i love this post!! i only posted scores for 13.1-13.3, 13.4 and 5 i had to scale… but seriously… i’m proud of what i did after only doing cf for 2 months! i know i’ll be stronger next year!! i love cf so much and your cf blogs has played a major role in my cf life. so thank you!! i start residency in the summer but i really hope i will have time to be cf certified in the next few years too!! loooove cf!

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    Patricia D. April 9, 2013 at 10:50 pm

    Awesome post, Tina! I completely agree with everything you wrote above and can totally relate! :) Thanks for continuing to be an awesome inspiration…and fellow CF addict! I, too, am excited to go back to non-Open WODs, but thankful for the experience and privilege that is the OPEN! :)

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    Jan @ Sprouts n Squats April 10, 2013 at 8:18 am

    Well done on getting through it all!

    With every post I think more and more about trying cross fit for the first time :)

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    Annie Atherton April 10, 2013 at 10:39 am

    I was waiting for your 13.5 recap :)

    If you had asked me 2 months ago to do 65# thrusters I would have laughed. Now I know a lot of it is mental! Great job on all of your Open WODs! You kicked some CrossFit butt.

    My goal was to not finish last in the world, and to post a score for every workout, and I did just that! Next year, my goal will be to not be held back by movements I cannot do, like T2B and Chest 2 Bar. Love how it has pushed me!

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    Allison Schnake April 10, 2013 at 10:42 am

    So glad you got to enjoy the competition this year! It really stinks when you have to take time off.

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    Chelsea @ Chelsea Eats Treats April 10, 2013 at 12:53 pm

    I’ve seen you talk about your love for Crossfit so many times, and it’s really something I’d be interested in trying, except for the darn cost!! Can you do a post where you break down the pricing for Crossfit and how you fit it in with the rest of your budget? I’d really like to see that :) Thanks!

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    Morgan@Healthy Food Newsletter April 10, 2013 at 1:54 pm

    You are such a superstar! 65 to 85 pounds? I have such horrible upper body strength, I can manage pushups but that’s about it!

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    A Pillow for Your Thoughts April 10, 2013 at 5:53 pm

    You are a very inspirational person! Cross Fit training is very difficult, but you make other believe that they can do it too! The best part about exercising is that you are constantly healthy. For me, whenever I’m healthy, I’m always really happy! Wouldn’t you agree?

    @pillow4thoughts

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    Haley @ fullnfit April 10, 2013 at 6:11 pm

    54 reps?? That’s awesome! I got to 30–which I was psyched about! Nice work, Tina! xoxo

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    absolute health training April 11, 2013 at 10:13 am

    Well done. That was such a great work out! :)

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    Caleb April 11, 2013 at 6:54 pm

    You gotta admit though… it’s easier to love a workout routine when you’re not paying for it. When you save hundreds or thousands a years on workout fees, you best be lovin’ it! And I say this as someone who doesn’t pay gym fees b/c of some loophole… and yes I love my gym =)

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    Tina April 11, 2013 at 10:12 pm

    Well, I am paying (a lot) for CrossFit and LOVE it, so I think that definitely says something about it! :)

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    Caleb April 12, 2013 at 10:11 am

    Ah ok, my bad I thought you said Reebok or something covered your fees.

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    Tina April 12, 2013 at 10:57 am

    They did for a few months in 2012, but not anymore.

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