Benchmark Week!

Hi lovelies! 

Hope everyone’s week has been just as amazing as mine has been! Although, I am cursing Mike for how sore I am!! But luckily, I love this feeling, so it’s no biggie. So this week was “benchmark week.” That means that we did a bunch of hard, crossfit benchmark workouts and recorded our times/weights/etc. and we will re-test them again in a few months, to see how far we’ve progressed. These are the workouts we did in consecutive order (M-F): ***If you don’t know what these things mean, just google them- you’ll find them!***
Monday:  “Karen”- 150 Wall Balls (14lb med-ball throw at 9′ target) For time.
Tuesday: “Diane” 21-15-9 Deadlift (165lbs-rx); Handstand Push Ups
Wednesday: A. 1RM Back Squat
                        Rest 5 minutes
                   B. 400m Run for time
                       Rest 5 minutes
                  C. 2 Rounds:
                  L Sit for time
                    Rest 1 minute
                  D. 1min. AMRAP T2B
Thursday: “Fran”  21-15-9- Thrusters, Pull Ups

Friday: “The Filthy Fifty” 35:00m time cap
50 Box jump (24/20)
50 Jumping pull-ups
50 Kettlebell swings(35/26)
Walking Lunge, 50 steps
50 Knees to elbows
50 Push press (45/35)
50 Back extensions
50 Wall ball shots (20@10′/14@9′)
50 Burpees
50 Double unders

Needless to say, it’s been a pretty rough week at the office. I was so incredibly sore following “Karen.” 150 wall balls is the absolute pitts. I was paired up with Christine- the most amazing pregnant crossfit woman ever. She’s due in like 2 weeks, and she is still working out like a champ! She kept score for me while I tried to accomplish what seemed like the impossible. I started out strong- trying to break them up into sets of 10, but around 50- I started fading. I had to break them into sets of 5. Time was ticking, and people were already finished. I felt so bad, because I was taking so long to finish- I’m sure people just wanted to wrap up the class and get on with their day. Luckily, I had Sarah O and Jeff B- cheering me on- because they are rockstars and finished so fast!! But the one person who got me through those last 30 wall balls, was Mike. He stood by me and pushed me- counted me down- let me take a break- then forced me to get back on the ball. There was a point where I almost quit- I was so tired, and the thought of having to do one more, physically made me upset & want to cry. Mike broke it up for me- and he never let me quit. The sense of accomplishment following that wod was amazing. It was my first ever RX wod since starting crossfit. That’s pretty amazing. It took me 24:05 minutes to complete, but I finished- and used RX weight. SO boom. 
The rest of the week’s workouts I had to scale- not ashamed to do it, but I would have loved to get at least one more RX workout in this week. I can’t wait until we re-test this week. It’s going to be absolutely amazing. 
The other WOD that really got to me this week, was The Filthy Fifty. I remember doing this back when I first started and we were in our old space. My, how times have changed. I was reading back at an old post I made when we did it- I was stepping on a plate instead of box jumps- ab mat situps instead of K2E, 15lb push press, the smallest KB, and an 8lb med ball. While I can’t say I’ve advanced a lot- I definitely have advanced. I used a 16in box to step up (I’m still having box jump anxiety), RX one armed KB swings, and RX wall balls. Amy & Marvin came to the Wod to cheer our class on, and Amy stayed with me the whole time- doing each movement with me, when I looked like I was going to quit. She has no idea what that meant to me- I would have NEVER made it through the wall balls without her. ❤ you babe! 
When I looked at the white board and saw burpees were next, I got so upset. How was I ever going to get through 50 burpees in such a small amount of time? I figured I’d just throw in the towel and be happy with my score. But Harrison, Marvin, and Amy were there sitting in front of me- pushing me harder than I’ve been pushed before to get through at least one burpee. And they kept pushing me to keep going, until I got up to 10 burpees & time was called. This time around in the 35:00m time cap, I got through 10 burpees. I planned to finish, even though the time cap was met- but I went down for number 11, and couldn’t really get up. I was extremely dizzy and started to black out. Also, my knees were completely torn apart from the burpees we did the week before. I just started crying. laying face down on the ground- crying. So mad at myself for not being able to finish. Amy had to talk me off the ledge- telling me that I did way better this time, etc. Still, I felt like a failure for not being able to finish. 
But, then she took me to the white board to look at other people’s score- and where they ended, and tried to explain to me that I did fine & I should be proud of my score. After seeing the evidence on the board, I believed her, and was proud of myself for even showing up on a Friday after an extremely long and exhausting week to even do this workout at all! 
This week also brought so many PR’s for me. I’ve never felt better about myself at crossfit in a long time. I’m realizing that my body is capable of some pretty amazing stuff. So here’s a list of all of the amazing PR’s I got this week that I’m so proud of:
1. Front Squat PR- 85lbs- up from 65lbs in April
2. 400m run for time PR- 3:08m. I’ve never timed it before, so it’s automatically a PR, and this was the first time I did the entire 400m run without stopping to walk. So there’s that. 
3. Back Squat PR- 135lbs- up from 115lbs in June (woot!)
4. Kettle-bell clean- 62lbs- up from 53lbs just a few weeks ago! So crazy! I tried to clean the 70lb KB- but it wasn’t happening- close but no cigar!
5. Completed my first RX workout since beginning crossfit in January. 
I would’ve had more, had my wrist not been an issue. Before my injury, I could clean and jerk 75lbs. I’ll get back there at some point, but I’m happy with my progress for now. That’s what’s so amazing about crossfit- you think you fail at something, but in a few weeks, you completely demolish it. None of these PR’s would have been possible without the amazing guidance and motivation from my coaches- Mike, Eats, Danny, & Harrison; Along with the cheers and claps from my amazing community. 
This past Friday, we had a going away party for Amy and Marvin- I mentioned it last time that they are packing up and moving across the country to California. We had so much fun at the party- I may have had a few too many paleo approved tequila drinks, but it was honestly the best time I’ve had in a long time. I am going to miss them so so much. More than they know. Amy is my girl- my first CF friend- the best person to have around you when you feel like shit during a wod. I love you Amy- I’m so proud of you for taking this great opportunity that you’ve been given, but I’m also mad at you for leaving me. Things will not be the same. I’m legit tearing up as I write this- I’m  a mess. Marvin- you’re my number one. You have given me more laughs than I can count- let me touch your fantastic pecs & bum more times than I count, and I love you for that. You make the most hilarious faces at all times, and I’m going to miss seeing them around the box. I’m so happy you’re joining Amy on her journey, but I’m also mad you for leaving too. Who else is going to let me ogle them while they tighten their lifting belt? LOL. I love you both more than you know- and I can’t wait to visit you and skype date with you all the time! xoxoxo
I better hit the sheets- 4:30am comes pretty fast, and I have to be ready to take on “Linda” tomorrow….we’ll see what happens! Also, if any of you feel like sharing this blog with your friends, please do- It helps keep me accountable! 
I love you all more than you’ll ever know. My life is forever changed, and I’m happy to have each and every one of you with me on my journey. XOXO
-A

I can’t believe it’s been 6 months…a reflection.

Hey all!
This may get a little emotional and long- just FYI.

So today marks my 6 month anniversary of changing my life. I can’t believe it’s already been 6 months. I feel like time has flown by. Everything has changed so much since this all began. I can honestly say that I am a different person. A completely different person. I am doing things that I never in a million years thought I would do. There are words in my vocabulary that I never thought would be there. I have friends that I consider an extension of my family. The best part from these past few months, is that I feel like my mentality has changed so much. I’m more confident in my everyday life. I’m nowhere near where I want to be, but I can honestly say that I am getting closer every day.

These 6 months have helped me develop a deep admiration for crossfit athletes around the globe; But mostly for the athletes at my box. I have witnessed so many amazing accomplishments- and continue to see them on a daily basis. From Colleen’s first toes to bar, to Michelle’s clean PR, these are the people that continue to inspire me daily. I’ve been at RCFBC since we were in the small back gym. I remember the day that we moved into the new space- and the WOD that followed that. All those burpees. I remember all of the people who did those burpees with me- and encouraged me to keep going, even when I wanted to quit. I remember the group hug following that- people that I didn’t even know- rooting for me to press on. That’s what keeps me going. Every high five, and “good job” is what carries me through. To some people it may seem like just a small gesture, but to me- it means everything.

From the beginning of my time at RCFBC, my coach Mike was/is an integral part of my new life. As most of you know, Mike is the best. Seriously. I know I say it every time I blog, but it’s true! I never had anyone really, truly believe that I could do this. From the first time I met Mike, I knew we were going to be friends. He has such a genuine personality- and the guy remembers everything about everybody. He knows who is having problems with one thing- and who is having problems with something else. It’s amazing. I don’t know how he keeps it all together. I feel more at ease when Mike is near me during wods. I know it’s weird, but I get this sense that it’ll all be okay, as long as he’s there. He pushes me & motivates me more than I think he knows. I’ve always had an incredible amount of respect for him, but when I broke my wrist, that amount of respect grew immensely. He sat with me when I fell off the box until I was ready to get up- and then sat with me even more until I was ready to go home. He checked on me and made sure I was okay- and even offered to drive me to doctor’s appointments, if necessary. I never expected that from someone who was supposed to just be my coach. And that’s what makes him different. He truly cares for each and every one of us. I can’t express how much I appreciate and love him. He’s like the older brother I never had. I hope that this will help him realize how much he has changed my life- I am thankful everyday for him. I’m seriously tearing up right now as I type- he is such an amazing person- words cannot even explain. Thank you, Mike- from the very bottom of my heart. You have no idea how much everything you do, high five you give, words of encouragement you give mean to me. ❤

Our community at RCFBC is a true reflection of our head coach. People are so friendly, and motivating- it’s awesome. I am friends with people that I never thought I would be friends with. I have made so many new relationships through crossfit- with people that I would probably never meet otherwise. I know I’ve said it before, but I never had guy friends. Now I can honestly say I have plenty of guy friends- which is amazing when you need man advice- or just a really strong hug! Probably one of the most unlikely friendships that I have started, is with Colleen Mcd. She is the kind of girl that I would probably avoid in real life- thinking that she would never want to be friends with me, because I’m not pretty enough to fit in with her group. Little did I know, she is one of the most amazing and accepting individuals at our box. She is hilarious- and we are a lot more alike than I thought. Although, she can out-drink me on every level! I’m so happy to have her in my life. Love ya C-dog! Other unlikely friendships that I’m glad to be a part of are with Gareth, Marvin, & Amy. Gareth is awesome. I don’t even know him that well (yet), and he is always pushing me to do better and succeed. And make me laugh- Along with Marvin. Marvin is special. My first impressions of him were that he was just a jerk, meat-head. Boy was I wrong. He is one of the kindest people I’ve ever met. He came from a different box, and fit in with us perfectly. Probably because of his girl- Amy. Amy was my very first crossfit friend! Her and Marvin are moving far away to California soon, and I’m so sad. Our box is definitely going to be a lot different without the two of them there. I’m already so sad to say goodbye. But I was already assured that there is a guest room in there new digs, so I’ll be visiting soon! 🙂 When it comes to wodding- Marvin and Amy are like a superstar crossfit couple- and they are both so nice, to boot. I’m sad now. haha. but seriously…I’m so sad.

Since it’s been 6 months, I figured I would list the 6 things that I’m the most proud of since beginning crossfit/paleo life:
1. I smile way more than I used to, and genuinely feel more happy and optimistic about life.

2. I look forward to exercising (it even feels weird to type that, but it’s true!) I never thought I would find myself refreshing the page to see if the wod was posted yet!

3. I am more confident in every day interactions with people (mostly men). I used to shy away from social interactions, but now I embrace them.

4. I can fit into clothes that I would never even dare try on- and lately, most everything I put on is too big! My scrub pants could fall off at any moment!!

5. I’m stronger than I thought- getting through my wrist injury has definitely proved this. If I were in my old state of mind, I would just quit & blame it on the injury. Luckily, I had everyone in my corner, and Mike concocting one armed wods for me to complete! Also, who knew I could back-squat 115lbs?! That’s so crazy.

6. I am way more cautious about my eating habits. I know the way refined carbs make me feel- and it’s terrible. I’m far from perfect with my eating habits, but I know that I feel better when I eat real, nutritious foods. Adopting the paleo life has changed everything. My palate has expanded & I’m trying different vegetables that I would never even give a chance to!

7. (one for good luck!!). I competed in my very first crossfit open! I can’t wait to see where I stand next year during the open!

So to everyone who reads this- Thank you. From the very bottom of my heart, Thank you. This journey is far from over, but I’m definitely headed in the right direction. I would not be this far, if it weren’t for everyone’s support and love. I only hope that the next 6 months are as productive as these. With all of you in my corner, I’m not sure how they couldn’t be. Thanks again! Love you all! ❤

-A

Left photo is today- Right photo is almost 3 years ago. I may look happy in the right photo, but I wasn’t.

I’ve been trying to fit into this dress for 2 years! FINALLY!!!!!