CrossfitSouthDenver

25 Jul

It is this time, more than ever, that I have a reason to write about my gym, because in one week, my Network Affiliate: CrossFit Denver will close its doors for good.

 

CrossFit Denver (XFD) and CrossFit South Denver (XFSD) have been Network Affiliates for 2 years and just this week members found out that come August 1, XFD will be closing their doors, but memberships will be honored at XFSD. If you trained at XFD, this may be a time when you start to question if you want to continue crossfit, or if it is worth it to make the four mile drive south to XFSD. Let me be the first to tell you that as someone who has trained at both gyms- you will not be disappointed and should really give it a shot. Here is why—

 

For me, it all started at XFD. XFD was a small gym that wasn’t intimidating, the price was right for memberships, and Steve- the owner had been around for a while, and taught me the elements of CrossFit. I liked my small community. Then one day, after a few months of CrossFitting, I couldn’t make it to XFD and decided to try out XFSD since my membership allowed me to train at both gyms. I was intimidated, couldn’t believe how much bigger the space was, and there were some people in the front room making some big lifts to the point that I am sure my eyes got big, my mouth dropped open, and I wanted to avoid it like the plague. Although this all may sound like a bad experience- this was the best thing for me to take my training to the next level. I got comfortable at XFD— I may have even started to slack a little bit. At XFSD, there was some steep competition, and I knew who I wanted to catch, and that lit a fire under my ass. There were girls doing pull ups without bands, swinging 45lb kettlebells like that was the Rx weight, and at that time, could run circles around me. At XFSD, I got my first unassisted pull up, completed my first Rx WOD, and this was the first gym I was affiliated with as a CrossFit Games Open competitor- where although I didn’t contribute to the team score in 2013, the team was only a few spots away from being invited to Regionals.

 

If you were an avid XFD member, I am hoping you give XFSD a try because CrossFit isn’t CrossFit without the community you have surrounded yourself with. There are many of you that I hope to see at XFSD, because as Tom Borak said last night to me, “[The other gym] would have worked, but my family wasn’t there. My home is here [at CrossFit South Denver].” Home is where your family is and for me, my family is now joining in one home- CrossFit South Denver.

LeapsAndBounds

5 Jun

I feel like tooting my own horn today. I mean- when you’ve got something to gloat about, even though we have been taught not to flaunt it, or to be polite and not make others jealous, sometimes you just need some pick me ups and decided to gloat, talk about yourself, and really just boost your own self esteem. Try it sometime. But…. not all the time, people may get annoyed with you.

Anyways. What all started this is that a girl who was new to CrossFit recently asked me how long it takes to see results. My response to her was that you will see some pretty dramatic results right away, but looking back, over time I have seen the biggest results. I explained to her that before CrossFit I couldn’t do 1 pull up, and now I can say I have completed “Murph” which has 100 pull ups in the workout, or do 17 unbroken kipping pull ups, or 9 strict pull ups in a row. Pretty cool right?

Along those lines, I just pulled up a sheet I had created to track my progress from when I first started CrossFit and my lifts have gotten so much better and I have gotten SO much stronger. Check these numbers out:

 

1 Rep Maxes Then & Now

Back Squat:

Feb. 2013: 135LBS

June 2014: 175LBS

 

Clean & Jerk:

June 2013: 100LBS

June 2014: 135LBS

 

Deadlift:

January 2013: 130LBS

May 2014: 245LBS

 

Front Squat:

May 2013: 125LBS

May 2014: 160LBS

 

Overhead Squat:

August 2013: 105LBS

April 2014: 130LBS

 

Push Press:

April 2013: 75LBS

May 2014: 135LBS

 

Snatch:

January 2013: 75LBS

May 2014: 105LBS

 

 

BooYah.

Now go get strong. It’s sexy. I promise.

 

 

ShortHairDontCare

23 Apr

One day in January you are sitting there with your long, full head of hair and decide, “I am going to grow it out long enough to donate it.”

The patience game begins….

Summer months come and you are measuring your hair every day to see if it is long enough to chop off because it is SO hot, and you can’t stand this long hair anymore. You tell people that you cannot wait to donate it, and come December it should be long enough.

December rolls around and oh… you think it is a good idea to not cut your long hair to keep you warm during the winter months but then set  a firm date in Spring/Summer for the following year.

That date comes and on your calendar it is highlighted and colored in every possible marker you could find that reads “HAIR CUT” and all of your friends, family, coworkers and even your dog knows that by tomorrow, this hair will be gone.

You cut off just enough hair in order for it to pass for donation and you cannot believe you just donated 10” of your hair. It took so much time to grow it out and now poof- you went from #LongHairDontCare to #ShortHairAndLOVINGit.

This is not the last time you will be cutting your hair short. Believe me- it will get shorter. And shorter. And shorter.

I donated my hair in June of 2013 and the minute I cut if off there were so many things I loved about it, I used a quarter of the amount of shampoo and conditioner, it took me about half the time to blow dry it, and it was just long enough I could still put it in a ponytail. Then July rolled round and I decided, eh- let’s go even shorter. You only live once right? So we went so short that my hairstylist had to bring out the men’s shaver to “clean up my neck line” As a woman, you don’t hear those words very often or even hear the sound of the shaver turn on. Something about it got me excited and since then I have gone a little shorter, played with the neck line of having it be a “hard-line” a “soft-whispy-line” and right now I am rocking the “half moon” neck line. As a woman with short hair there are some things you need to know. And here they are:

-It is nerve wrecking coming home to show your boyfriend “how short you went this time.” He will learn to love it, but you never want him to feel he is dating another man.

-Having short hair as a woman is a little empowering. It will give you a lot of confidence. Maybe not at first, but as the months roll on, the confidence will grow.

-You cannot rock the flannel like you used to with long hair. Unless you like other women, then go right ahead.

-Girls will have hair envy of you and many of them will say, “I wish I could pull off that haircut, I am just too nervous to chop it off.”

-You will have hair envy of them and wish you could just put it in a ponytail or sock bun some days.

-Random people will want to touch your hair. Most of the time when they are drunk- but this will inevitably happen.

-After about 10 months of having it short, you get your hair cut and decide that this is the last time you go so short, and tell yourself that you’re going to start growing it back out.

-And then in 6 weeks you make an appointment and realize you love having your short hair and cut it again. And the cycle continues.

 

I am currently enjoying having short hair and encourage any woman to try it out. Hell, it is JUST hair. Some people are bald at your age; some people have gone through chemo and cannot grow hair.. It is just hair. It will grow back. But you will never know what you would look like with short hair unless you give it a shot. Some girls cannot pull it off. Just like some girls cannot pull of the platinum blonde hair, while others can. It is fun, and it’ll be awhile for me before I can put my hair in a sock bun, or even feel it brush my shoulders. And I am okay with that.

 

Hair:

hair1

When I first donated my hair

hair2

When I decided to go shorter. With Dan back in August 2013

hair3

My current hair cut. See I told you- it keeps getting shorter!

112Days

22 Apr

Guess what. 112 days ago millions of you set a New Year’s Resolution, or as I liked to call it – you made firm decisions to change something about what you do day to day and made goals for 2014. Do you even remember what you said you wanted to do? Do you remember what those goals were? Probably not. Lucky for me, I wrote them down in my January 2, 2014 post titled, “Year2014” and want to reflect how the first quarter of 2014 has gone and if I have even followed through with any of them.

 

  1. Do not drink alcohol for 30 days
    1. Did this and on day 31 I rewarded myself with a nice beer. It really was not that difficult and maybe I will try this again at some point this year.
  2. Add more vegetables to my diet
    1. I wouldn’t say I am adding more than I already did, but reading this reminded me to get on it and to replace some fruit with veggies to make it more balanced.
  3. Work on my muscle up progression with 9 strict pull ups and 9 strict ring dips for 8 weeks.
    1. I did this progression and still do not have a muscle up, but after watching The Outlaw Way’s Muscle Up progression video, I am going to start this.
  4. To participate in the 90 day YLE Nutrition Challenge
    1. I just completed this challenge and I did drop in body fat, but only by 0.2% and my weight stayed the same. Still happy with the results and this proved that I am doing everything right if I want to stay in the 20% body fat range.
  5. To participate in the 2014 CrossFit Games Open with CrossFit South Denver
    1. Done & Done. Please read any of my “recap” posts from each workout.
  6. Run a 7 minute mile and have a sub-7 minute Fran time
    1. I have run a mile on the treadmill in 6:58, but outside, the best time I have is 7:08. My best Fran time is 6:58 which I am very happy with and may wait awhile to retest that one.

Maybe look back at the past four months and ask if yourself if this is how you pictured your life to be when you were making new goals to better your life in 2014. If it is- then great! Keep at it. If it isn’t, treat today as DAY 1 and start checking those goals off of a list- you still have 8 months to make 2014 YOUR YEAR.

StandingWorkstation

11 Apr

Really think about it.  You wake up, during your morning routine you…. probably SIT to eat breakfast, SIT in the car on the way to work, SIT at work, SIT when you eat lunch, go to Spin class – SIT, drive home- SIT, Eat dinner while sitting, catch up on a tv show or two while sitting. Way too much sitting. Why not change what you can- and try to stand at work.

I have a job that in the ‘Working Conditions’ section of my employee description, it states, “While performing the duties of this job, the employee is frequently required to sit [and] computer aided drafting and other tasks may require sitting at a computer for several hours.” This is a very true statement, because for four years, I would do all of the above activities while sitting, but because I was so active with lunch-time workouts and CrossFit, I didn’t consider myself unhealthy or out of shape. Then I read an article on Runner’s World and learned that I am what you would call an “active couch potato.” What! No way! Lies…. Well maybe they were right.

I starting thinking about how often I sat, and I was sitting for about 10-12 hours a day! This is crazy to think about. So I changed the one thing I knew I could— I contacted my HR department and requested a meeting with an ergonomics person and got measured for a standing desk. And ta-daaaaa I am now sitting for maybe 5 hours a day and loving it. I do have a high-rise chair so that I can sit if I need to or want to, but try to only use the chair for a few hours a day to at least give my feet a break. I absolutely love it and people are catching on. Desks are being lifted almost every week at my workplace and people are realizing that sitting for such long periods of time, no matter how active you are, is unhealthy.

If you have an office job like me, try to see if raising your desk is an option. Your hip-flexors, core, and posture will improve, and you will thank me.

 

A quick excerpt from Runner’s World that struck a chord with me:

“A 2013 survey of nearly 30,000 women found that those who sat nine or more hours a day were more likely to be depressed than those who sat fewer than six hours a day because prolonged sitting reduces circulation, causing fewer feel-good hormones to reach your brain.”

 Desk

Link

Your Life Extraordinary – Find Your Flow

4 Apr

Your Life Extraordinary – Find Your Flow

Every Friday YLE’s owners: Tom & Annah are going to write about finding your flow and today – April 4 – I was featured on their blog. Go check it out, and click around their site while you’re at it. :)

Thanks for the post Tom, it really touched my heart.

14.5Recap

1 Apr

Oh Thrusters… you have probably heard me call them very bad names and have never associated them with anything good or happy. Well 14.5 was announced on Thursday March 27 and for the first time in CrossFit Games Open history- this workout was ‘for time’ meaning that everyone would complete the entire workout and the time you finish would be how you were ranked. The workout consisted of: 84 Thrusters and 84 Burpees in a format of:

21 Thrusters – 21 Burpees

18 Thrusters – 18 Burpees

15 Thrusters – 15 Burpees

12 Thrusters – 12 Burpees

9 Thrusters – 9 Burpees

6 Thrusters – 6 Burpees

3 Thrusters – 3 Burpees

Top athletes finished this workout under 10 minutes. My goal was 20 minutes. I finished in 19:29 with no more gas in the tank. When I finished my last burpee I rolled over onto my back, closed my eyes for a really long time, kicked off my shoes, and just laid there for a few minutes. Catching my breath, gathering my thoughts, and realizing that was the last workout of the 2014 CrossFit Games Open, when I got up,  I walked over to Dan and hugged him – and this is when the emotions started to roll down my cheeks. I compare this workout to my last final exam in college. I worked really hard to get to where I am today and after putting in all of this hard work and dedication, it paid off. I may not be going Regionals, but I did the best I could and I improved from last year.

 

2013 CrossFit Games Open:

Southwest Region Placed: 1722/1989 (top 86%)

World-Wide Placed: 23235/27819 (top 83%)

 

2014 CrossFit Games Open:

SW Region Placed: 1134/3301 (top 34%)

World-Wide Placed: 15357/52543 (top 29%)

 

There are a few people I want to thank and mention, so here it goes:

 

  1. Dan: You are an amazing athlete and I love you so much. Every workout you did, you amazed me and so many other people at the gym. Thank you for judging me on most of the workouts, keeping me calm and getting me through them. My most memorable moment of you judging me was during the 14.4 ladder, where during the Cleans you said, “Do you want to be a top girl athlete? Prove it.” This made me push harder and pick up that bar 16 times before the clock expired. Thanks for always pushing me and being such a motivator. I think your two top sayings to me are, “Mental Toughness” and “Don’t Stop.” I am not ready to stop and this year and am working on that mental toughness all because of you. You are 2015 Regionals bound. xxoo
  2. Kelli: This was our second Open together and the first year- you had to talk me into it and this year I couldn’t wait to sign up. You have been a great partner to workout with and right before 14.5 started, when you came over and gave me a hug it was the first smile I had on my face all day. I was so nervous for it to start, but I was so happy to be doing it side-by-side with you. You kept me going and make every workout we do together fun.
  3. Jim: Thank you for judging me on 14.1.1. I put a .1 after this because it was my first attempt at 14.1 and as Dan Bailey would say, “This workout was my jam.” I was excited to have you judge me, and you really kept me calm and pushed me.
  4. Hallie: 14.1.2.3. I do this, because I knew in my head that I could do 14.1 with unbroken double unders, and when the clock went 3.2.1 I got 6 double unders, fucked up, got 10 more, messed up and looked at you and said we are redoing this. 14.1.3 started, and how about that- unbroken double unders and a better score. Yes!!! I also want to thank you for sponsoring me for 14.4 and doing my hair. I love the cut and your new salon (Starling Salon). You do amazing work!  One more thing- you are my idol at the gym. I look up to you and everything you do to prepare for the Open. Hopefully next year I can be at the top with you in at least one of the workouts. Training starts now. Like Dan… you are 2015 Regionals bound, and I want to help you get there.
  5. Emily: Holy shit. I knew you were a great athlete, but you really stood out to me this Open. As Katie would say- you have a motor and your lungs are amazing. Yes you are strong- but for the Open, you need lung support and need to be able to turn the brain off – both of which you are great at doing. Good job and congrats on being in the top three at the gym for four of the workouts.
  6. Veronica. Veronica. Veronica. Even with slamming your finger in the car door you still managed to get the best time on 14.5 on the women’s side. Holy crap woman. I know I pushed you to do the Open this year and I am about 100% sure you are not going to do it next year, but you should really be happy with yourself. You are an amazing athlete and a true inspiration.
  7. Shelby: I judged you on 14.2 – chest to bar pull ups and overhead squats and although at the 3 minute mark you didn’t move on, you pushed yourself for that entire time. 3 minutes feels like an eternity when you are trying to just get one rep. On 14.5 you surprised the heck out of me because I know that 65lb Thrusters are heavy for you. Finishing in just over 20 minutes was amazing to judge. You are on your way to do great things in the following year. And you can cross off your goal of ‘competing’ on the Goals white board. Because you are definitely a competitor now.

 

I am sure there are many more people I could give shout outs too, but I want you all do know that I am very proud of the people who stuck to it and completed all five workouts during this year’s Open. It is over and we all got better. Let’s prepare for 2015!!

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