Friday, September 27, 2013

SA BeatDown CrossFit Competition Recap

Last weekend my gym banded together and traveled up to San Antonio, TX to take on the SA Beatdown. It was the first stop on a three leg tour put on by several CrossFit affiliates in the San Anontio area. We had 13? competitors and only three of us challenging the RX division.
This event was not my first RX competition, but it was my first individual performance. We were all a little anxious waiting to see what the workouts would be and even more anxious when we discovered what they would be!
The RX girls were pretty squared away when it came to all the moves except handstand walks. HANDSTAND WALKS!!!
I had never even practiced that let alone try and go 25 feet. I had a real need to get my large body up to the chest to bar move for this comp because the strict movement was sporadic and generally terrible on my behalf.
So, lets back up to one week prior to the competition and the announcement of the first workout of 3:

Wod 1:
first 6 minutes- find your 1 rep max thruster
no break:
4 minute AMRAP
30 double unders
10 thrusters 95lbs

This was not a huge concern for me but I wanted to put in a great number here to get me off to a strong start. While thrusters aren't my greatest move, it was my chance to gain reps with a heavy thruster max. The three of us spent a few days testing max with Olympic shoes or nanos. Ultimately, I decided on the nanos and the others went with Oly shoes. I was able to PR in my nanos and knew if I tried doing double unders on my oly shoes I could really hurt my knees.

Wod 2:
3 minute AMRAP
chest to bar pullups
ring pushups

So here is my fear...I was terrible at C2B in the open. It totally destroyed my scores. I had avoided them on a regular basis and still not mastered them. And now, they were there, looking at me again. Monday before the competition I locked myself in the gym and got on the bar with my camera and videoed my technique. After a few it was obvious, I was pulling up and not IN! I was totally high enough but I was under the bar, almost horizontal. A few small changes later and I finally whacked my chest on the bar. Not only did I hit the bar, I hit below my chest and almost at my abdomen! With a little more practice and a change in grip, I was linking 3 together. HUGE breakthrough! I have a 74" wingspan so getting anything overhead can be a challenge.

Wod 3:
25 ft handstand walk
25 calorie row
100ft prowler push 160lb

This was the big challenge but also the huge opportunity to gain points. Row and push are two strengths for me. I just had to get through that handstand walk...

And then, the day came.
We woke up at 5:45am and headed to SA for the 8am start time. We live over an hour away so it was a super early rise for us.
It was unusually cold and windy for south Texas last Saturday. With winds dipping into the 60's I was thinking it could be a wonderful cool day or get really miserable with rain in the forecast.

I began my warmup for Wod 1 about 45 minutes early with a row and some mobility and ended with a few too many thrusters at 125. I didnt want to hit my max projection but for whatever reason, I felt the need to do 125 over and over. I know now I  did too much. I was a little unnerved when another competitor pushed up 145 twice in the warmup area...I knew this was a big event and I would fall in the middle of the pack. still...

I wish I was just a little pretty when I worked hard. First wod started great with me hitting my projected 135 in the first 2 minutes. Since I had some time, I loaded 140 on the bar. Unfortunately, I was unable to lock it out on the left side and had to retry. With only 2 minutes remaining I gave it one more try. Alas, it didn't happen. BUT, 135!! that was my goal and I did it in my Nanos.
My judge must have been new because he seemed nervous about making mistakes. When he told me I had to load 120 on the bar for the AMRAP I just about had a fit. It was supposed to be 95lbs! Was I wrong? He let some time run out and consulted with another judge, yes, 95lbs. Duh!

Good thing I was loaded and done with my max. It didn't phase me much. We hit the 4 minute amrap and I knocked the 30 double unders out fast. Then came the set of thrusters and my arms told me how tired the were. I didn't anticipate being so fatigued. I sucked wind on the thrusters and no-reped the last one, dropping the bar. Boo! I got the last rep and dove into the double unders. I wouldn't see them again. I knew time was running out and I would be lucky to get throughout the thrusters again.
I picked up the bar and was able to get three more before time ran out. DONE!
After reminding my judge how to count and correcting his math, I was satisfied with my score and ready to see my teammates compete. I had an hour or more before I had to get the next wod done (we could choose when to do it as it was a floater wod, meaning we had to just get it done at some point during the day).

Wod 2 was quick and painless with only 3 minutes to get things done. With chest to bars finally in my roledex of skills, it was simply a matter of strength getting me through the levels. The arms were really tired after wod 1 but so was everyone elses. I gave myself about 45 minutes rest and took my chance to get business done when no one was looking directly at me. This is why there are no pictures. I didn't even wait for Mr Dad to show up before starting. I just wanted it over. To my surprise I could hear him yelling at me about a minute into the work. Mr. Dad had arrived in the gym site to see if I was ready. He said he didn't anticipate me starting without him. I felt kind of bad about that but so happy he got to see me work. I did my first two rounds of chest to bar with efficiency and good form. The rings were not nearly as challenging as I thought they would be! But, when I hit the 9s my arms gave in; my muscles wouldn't pull me up consistently. I got to 7 and time ran out. I couldn't do them a week prior but even after the thruster work, I was able to get 16 in under 3 minutes! I was satisfied with that!

The final wod had the three RX girls sitting in 5,6,7 in the division, me sitting 7th. We were able to watch the masters do the wod before us and the men were doing the same weight we would but those lucky guys didn't have to do handstand walks.
 We started the final wod with the walk and I inched along in progress finally getting the full 25 feet in about 5 minutes time. Everyone struggled with the handstand walk but I needed to gain ground where I could.

 I hit the 25 calorie row in  less than a minute sitting in the 1400m range for the pace. I hopped off and pushed the prowler past 2-3 competitors and my butt caught on fire. I started to lock up in the last 5 feet of the push and look a few seconds to get some blood flow before pushing it out and heading back to the walk.
When I finally got there my judge told me I had a few minutes and to get every rep. If I could get to the half way mark, I would gain a rep and score a point. He was hard on me, every time I would come down with a finger inside his instep it was a no rep. This was such a time waster and totally my fault. I managed to will the final rep by getting to the half way mark just as time was called. I was so frustrated and proud of my hard work all at the same time. What a strange way to feel!

That's how it all ended up for me. I was super proud and angry all at the same time. I didn't rule the comp. I didn't shine or get to be impressive for the crowd (who doesn't love that), I didn't really feel like I was much competition for the top finishers, but I did everything I wanted to do. I have to learn to be satisfied with that. I have to realize how many others don't have the ability to do the physical things I take for granted. I'm trying to be patient and thoughtful and grateful for the experience and put the ego aside. It is not an easy lesson to swallow, being great but not the best. It reveals a lot about my character and some of it I'm not very proud of. In the most positive way, I am proud of myself for what I did do and how I performed based on my ability.
Even more importantly, the competitors I have the gift of training everyday took a chance and competed for the first time along with the "RX girls". They were excited and inspiring and wonderful. I cant wait to see how we all progress in the months leading to the next CrossFit Open and our continuing competitions. Our Gym owner was able to move on the the final wod for the women RX and totally put it all out there. She did things we had never been asked to do before (like 1.5 pood kettlebell snatches and overhead walking lunges with a 95lb bar...) she inspired me to get the lead out and get better. As for this competition, I'll settle for 7th place. Pretty impressive to me.


I love feedback!