After taking a trip up to DC to watch the Regionals competition for the CrossFit games and cheer on the College Hill CrossFit gang I guess I was ready to jump in and try a competition. I'd read a few magazine articles about how competitions are for everyone, how much fun they are and how much you can learn from them. Anita at the gym had the same sentiments when I asked her about one she was doing.
I'd been looking at some of the competitions and most have an Rx (prescribed weights and movements) and a scaled division. No chance I would be doing Rx and scaled is still plenty tough, and has some movements I am still working hard to get the basics.
College Hill posted some local competitions on the facebook page and I found one called the Firestarter Challenge, held at Triangle CrossFit near Raleigh.
From the Firestarter Website: (The Firestarter Challenge offered by Triangle CrossFit in Raleigh, NC, is a fitness competition designed for athletes with novice and intermediate level abilities. The event is a great opportunity to test your competitive spirit on an even playing field. In other words, no Firebreathers allowed!)
(Firebreather = A popular term in the CrossFit community for an extremely fit person who has extraordinary power output.)
I thought, that sounds fun. I looked over the standards and fell into the novice catagory. After thinking about it a few days I signed up.
I waited a few weeks to tell anyone I'd signed up. Maybe I didn't want them to think I was crazy. Maybe I was still trying to convince myself that I wasn't crazy. Either way. I started asking some questions about pacing, how these things go, refueling, etc. The first 3 WODs were released a few weeks before things and the 4th (and 5th if you were in the top 5) was kept secret until the event. I ran the 1st and 3rd ones once in the weeks before the event.
Getting some instructions
10 Min AMRAP
15 Dumbell Thursters (35)
The Run is 1 Rep
A thurster is a thruster. Not an easy movement.
I finished with something like 12 more reps (including a run) than I had achieved in my practice run of this workout. 12th out of 17th in the Novice men as well.
And then assumed the position I always am in after Thrusters (okay, most WODs)
8 minutes to get a 3 rep max Overhead Squat
As soon as I saw this WOD released online I started working on mobility and overhead squats with a PVC pipe. I didn't have high expectations because this is my weakest weightlifting movement we do in CrossFit.
And sometimes you learn from the pictures, huh? How about some weight in the heels?
I far exceeded my expectations for this lift. I'd discussed it with Spencer and he told me to start with a weight I knew I could do and build from there. 85 was my previous PR on this lift so I started with 65. Moved to 75, then 85, then 95. Still had time so I hit 3 at 105 and would have went to 115 if I'd had more time or plates avilable. As it was, i had time to add 2.5's to both sides and get 110 with about 20 seconds to go. I came in 15th out of 17 but was really happy with my efforts. A 35 pound PR and getting a lot more comfortable with this lift was a big win for me.
Cash In - 100 single jump rope skips
Deadlifts (155) / Burpees
Cash Out 100 Singles
I'd run this WOD after another WOD a few weeks priorto the competitin and it took me 13:29.
Time: 10:07! 3 minutes and 22 seconds faster than my trial run. I was pumped about that time. Placed 13 out of 17 for that workout but kept to my plan until the last set of deadlifts. 7-7-7 on the first set. 5-5-5 on the second set. I did quick singles on the last though. And broke the burpees into 7-7-7 with a short break between sets, same with the 5-5-5, and kept moving through the last 9. First set of jumprope was unbroken. I broke twice on the last 100.
...because I'm happy (about the time and the fact that WOD is behind me)
WOD 4 wasn't announced until all the heats / divisions had finished 3.
We gather around to find that since we'd lifted things in every wod so far, WOD 4 was all body weight.
21 sprints of the competition area
7 Wall Walks (novice to 36", intermediate to 24")
42 box jumps / steps (24")
10 bear crawls
I'm glad they had someone showing what each movement looked like becuase I'd never done a wall walk or a bear crawl. I'm also glad I didn't have to wall walk my chest to the wall. And I'm glad I made a friend there who had done plenty of wall walks and had some advice. They had some set up time where you could practice. I went out, did a few wall walks and was good to go.
This one had a 15 minute time cap, and I had no expectations other than finish under 15 minutes, and hopefully closer to 10.
That one was also tough but I did it in 10:07 and was happy with that. 13th out of 17th for this one as well.
Final Placement was in a tie for 14 out of 17. Results at Breeze Scoring
I had a blast a this competition. Triangle CrossFit did a great job keeping things on track and everyone was in good spirits. Thanks to Triangle CrossFit. I got in a lane with a new judge each time just to be able to thank someone else for being there and donating their time to judge those of us competiting. To Eric, Matt, Katie??(I forgot this one!), and Matt - a huge thank you. Thanks to College Hill CrossFit for the past 4 months of fun and training, I would have never imagined just a few months ago that I'd be doing something like this. And a very special thanks to my dad for going with me, being there to hang out and talk to and as always taking such great photos.
I exceed my expectations in every event and had a blast. Can't ask for much more than that. I wasn't going with the expectation of winning, I went with the expectation that I'd work my ass off, have fun and learn some things. I did all 3. I'm looking forward to future competitions and future gains on my part, but if I always have fun, that's going to be a great measure of success.