Wow I cannot believe I neglected my blog for a little over a year. I am excited to announce I had found a new “home gym” and have blasted through some mega PR’s in the past year. I lost about 10lbs and really found my inner strength! I have moved on from Crossfit and found a new love and hobby in Olympic Weightlifting. During the days I don’t lift I do Jim Jones type workouts-which are similar to crossfit workouts, high intensity, lower weight, body weight movements. Anywho lets get to the fun stuff, my FIRST (and last) Crossfit competition.
Last June I entered into my first unsanctioned Crossfit competition with Ventura Crossfit/West Coast Strength and Conditioning, and honestly, that is where my love for Crossfit died. I entered myself in the beginner category, I had trained for this for about 3 months prior. If you have ever done one of these competitions you know that they don’t even release the workout, floater or weightlifting movement until a week before the competition. My agenda for the day was as follows: Thrusters to 1RM, then the WOD was “Helen” modified ; which is: 3 rounds of 400m run, 21 KB swings (at 20lb), 12 (jumping) pull ups. I had never done “Helen” and i DESPISE running! Boy was I nervous, there wasn’t enough pre-workout in the world to get me going for this, my adrenaline was pumping I was so nervous I thought at one point I was going to pass out just waiting for our group to be called!
I started my thruster ladder (EW!) at about 9am, the judge I had was awful, it was someones friend of a friend who had no idea what they were doing, or what to look for in a proper lift-I won’t get into this area but if you do a competition make sure its sanctioned or regulated by an association. Anyway I maxed out at 85# (awww cute!). I had more in me but ran out of time-looking at me typing this weight knowing what I can lift now really puts things into perspective. Some of these girls I was up against were strong, like really strong! ANYWHO, next was Helen, as I lined up to start our first 400m run, I look at the line up of “beginners” and I notice most of these girls are ripped, 3 of them not wearing a shirt-just a sports bra and booty shorts-typical! And all I could think was “HOW are these girls qualified for beginner category?! Why aren’t they in intermediate??” which brings me to my next point…this was an unregulated competition there was no standard to what class you register for, thus creating “sandbaggers” which really hurts the whole idea of a true competition for first timers like myself.
I have never pushed so hard in my life for anything up until that day. That is the day I found what was pushed way down in me, my strength & courage to fight for something I really wanted. I finished 2nd to last with a time of 11:04, to me that was AWESOME, I thought it would take me 20 minutes to do. But again, my time is a reflection of the “sandbaggers” I was up against. The best part of that day was the completely random people yelling and cheering me on to finish, what an awesome feeling, there really is nothing like it-to have the support of people who want to see you succeed. The last thing I had was a floater which was a 1,000m row I did in 5 minutes. My overall score was not good, I came in 47th place out of about 60 women. It wasn’t all bad though, I learned so much from that day, about me, about what I was capable of and the sport of Crossfit and what it is turning into. I had learned that day that I didn’t have any desire to be a Crossfit athlete and I wouldn’t enter another unsanctioned competition. Which brings me to what I am doing now, as I am a competitive person and I love the support the community of Crossfit provides.
I now focus mostly on Olympic weightlifting, my coach who is also my friend, and I have been through the journey of Crossfit together, he was my crossfit coach and is now my weightlifting coach. He and 2 of his best friends run a barbell club in Pasadena, CA and they are also personal trainers, with extensive backgrounds in fitness and health professions. in May of last year I went to watch my first weightlifting meet to support my coach and his team and I thought to myself now THAT looks like fun. (If you are unfamiliar with USAW competitions there are many regulations to make sure the competition is fair.) We now focus on conditioning & cycling before having a “PR Day”. All my workouts leading up to that PR are meant to get me the strength I need for the lift. I. LOVE. IT. I am now pushing 120+lbs over head multiple times for clean and jerk, my deadlift is over 205 etc. I can’t wait for the day that all my lifts are higher than my body weight!!
I am so glad I was pushed into entering that competition. I wear my shirt that I received from the competition with pride, because that is the day I found out how strong this girl is. How mentally and physically strong I am, especially when I want something bad enough, nothing will stand in my way from getting it. I hope the few of you who read this that do Crossfit and are thinking about entering a competition, do it. You never know what good will come out of it, I guarantee some good will. Plus they have fun things to do while you’re waiting like lifting an empty keg over head for Over Head Squats AMRAP, seems easy-it was very awkward!! For most of the day I was the only girl who actually got it over head! Though my experience isn’t like most, I still wouldn’t have traded it for anything because it got me to where I am today!!
Live. Love. Lift.
xo, Shila Jane