Thursday, October 6, 2011

"It always seems impossible until it's done." - Nelson Mandela

Spartan Shape-Up, Day 77:

Ow. I am Aja's angry, entire upper half. OW. I have this sneaking suspicion that tomorrow I am going to wake up feeling like I got hit by a mack truck. At least this is what my shoulders are telling me at the moment. DAMN you, "T-rex" arms. LOL.

Allow me to tell you WHY I may be suffering from exertion-induced-paralysis tomorrow. It was another Crossfit class today. Nearing the end of these mandatory "skills building" classes, then I can join the regular WOD's. However, today worked all my Achilles heel muscles... yes, muscles plural. I have never been particularly burly in my arm/upper body strength. You'll note that my goal on the right is to do ONE, unassisted pull-up. ONE. That's a big thing, people.

Today in Crossfit, we did a vigorous warm-up (Which made me think of that quote, "Your workout is my warm-up!"), and then moved onto the skills building with the lifting. I struggle with overhead squats. I currently do not easily posses the flexibility in my shoulders that would allow me to keep the bar right over my head. I can do it, yes, but while everyone's legs are shaking at the squat part of it, my shoulders and back are burning from trying to open them up and keep them back. I also do not naturally (perhaps related) want to straighten my elbows. I have to repeat that mantra to myself every. single. time. Shannon (badass dude crossfit trainer) made me do squats, with my hands up, with my nose like 3-6 inches from a wall. You laugh. Try this. Harder than one might think... but apparently, it's useful in developing that squat flexibility.
I tell you, though, I can back-squat like it's my JOB. Thank god my genetics gave me a burly lower half. LOL. It keeps me from getting really frustrated, because there are some things I can naturally do well. Remind yourself of those and hang onto them.... Especially when you then hear the words, "Great! Now we're going to talk about Knees-to-elbows!". I tried, BlogLand, I DID. I tried HARD. Can't quite manage the elbows, though.... YET.

So, we did about 45 minutes of sweaty skills building... I was practicing with 40# on the bar, which was way too easy, all things considered... but it was good to get the skills and form down. And be able to concentrate on Elbows Straight! and keeping that bar over my head and not in front of it. I did extra reps (per instructor direction), to make up for it, and get more practice. As we approached somewhere around minute 47, and I was in the down portion of an overhead squat, eyes straight ahead, brain yelling directions, inhaling a breath, ignoring the fatigue in my quads, while trying not to focus on the intense, screaming burning in my shoulders and back.... I realized how much fun I was having. Wait, WHAT? Yes, I was having fun. Capital F.U.N. This was my idea of a good time. OH MY. It's a good thing I have some of the people around me that I do... People that appreciate when I get really excited about weird things ("You should SEE the rubber-mat-burns I have from doing knee-pushups!").

Anyway, then we moved into the actual short WOD:
It was a 7-7-7, AMRAP in 5min. 

  • Wall Balls (14# ball)
  • Pushups (on my knees. Grr.)
  • Ring Rows (almost horizontal! Yeaah!)
I busted through 7 rounds, solidly. RAWR. Which was a whole round faster than anyone else in the room. Although, it was a bit of an unfair advantage - I've been practicing my push ups, where many of these people in the intro class have not. I was able to save a lot of 'rest' time there. And the sprints between stations. YEAAaahhh (SO glad I've been running. It all comes together!). 
In a nutshell, it was a good time. I felt good about what I did today.  I pushed hard in areas that I hate (uuuugh, push ups.... or really anything upper body), and I gave a solid performance. 

I am beginning to be mad shoulder-sore, though, yo. LOL. I fear waking up tomorrow morning. They're going to be ANGRY. Thankfully, tomorrow is a Run Day. I can give my lower-body hell, instead. 

If only I had a tub big enough to ice bath all the way up to my neck. I'm pretty sure that would feel awesome right now. 

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