No Curves

I hope that someday we live in a world where women are actually treated as equals. This is not a post about feminism. This is a post about fitness and misconceptions.

While grading papers today, I came across another person (a woman this time) who said something along the lines of women should do resistance training and men should do weight training. I had to step away from it because I was so angry (Ironically, I was also sitting in a Starbucks right across from a Gold's Gym). I will grade this paper and I will be fair. I will also make it clear that women should train the same as men. We might not use the same weights ...actually, there are some women using the same weights as men in our box. But we do the same work the best of our ability, just like men.

I've seen a few CrossFits offer women-only classes. I don't like it. CrossFit is not Curves. We all show up and do the same workout, scaled to our ability. That's CrossFit.

I distinctly remember the first time I did overhead squats at CrossFit. It was a weekday night and I was the only female there. Also there that night was an athlete who has gone to the CrossFit Games, an athlete who is now a coach, and another strong male athlete. And me. And guess what happened when I tried to do an overhead squat with some weight? I fell. On my ass. And I almost started crying. But I got up and kept practicing. And I kept showing up and practicing. And I've gotten stronger. Doing the same workout as stronger younger guys is pretty effing empowering.

Women in CrossFit get stronger.
They don't get bulky.
They can still have curves without going to Curves.
So can we all put away our 8 pound weights and start doing something worthwhile?


Moving from Goals to Achievements

I've used this blog to document my goals and achievements in the past. And I've done a lot in the past couple years (considering where I started, especially). I can RX

  • Cindy
  • Helen
  • Fight Gone Bad
  • Annie (duh)
  • Fran (barely)
My 5K time has drastically improved and I can run a 10K like it's nothing. I need to remind myself that I have done a lot and I have come far, because honestly, it often feels like I'm not making progress.

So I've listed goals on this blog and in the box, thinking that it will help me reach those goals. I want:

  • Handstand push-ups
  • A 125 lb. clean
  • 24 inch box jumps
  • More pull-ups in a row

But what have I done to reach those goals? Not a lot. Do I practice 24" box jumps? I thought about it today, then I didn't. A couple weeks ago, I finally set a PR of 115 for my clean, then mentally checked out when I added 2 more pounds. Come on! That's just dumb! 

So here's the plan. I want to work on my pull-ups and box jumps. These are two moves I can practice before or after a WOD. I just need to push myself (and if someone wants to yell at me while I'm doing it, that will help). I will start with these two moves, then get over my HSPU fear. I have the strength. I just don't have the form.

I've started coaching. So far, it's been fine. No big disasters. Small, manageable classes (mostly people I know and a couple new faces). We've done moves I know well. But I want to become a really good coach. So I'm going to watch videos. I'm going to pay more attention to the other coaches. I'm going to do better. Our athletes are awesome and they deserve it.

Better coaching. Better crossfitting. And lose 10 pounds (more running + veggies). These are my goals. I'm going to get them this time.



Soooooo.....after a lovely (cold) weekend in Portland and a loooong week of waiting for test results, I can now say that I am a CrossFit Level 1 Trainer. Yay! This is something I've wanted to do for a long time. I love writing and I teach writing, so it made sense to me to teach CrossFit since, well, I love CrossFit. So here is a recap of the past week or so.

The Cert
I sat down for the Cert and looked through my binder and notes. Some of us noticed a short guy in a red sweatshirt and a knit cap walking around up front. Then the whispering started. Was that ... could it be...Heck yeah! Chris Spealler was our instructor! Awesome! He's like, as CrossFit as you can get! 

Our first day was filled with lots of basic CrossFit info and reviewing the 9 basic movements of CrossFit. We ended the day with Fran. Spealler joked at the beginning that we were going to do it right then (like 9am day one) and actually, by the end of that day, I wish we had done it earlier. I was pretty tired and hungry but still determined to RX it. And much to my dismay, I was the last person in my heat to finish and EVERYONE watched me do my pull-ups. They even no-repped me a few times! I got a 6 second PR and finished in 9:01. Fran is not my friend.  And, honestly, it kinda looks like Fran punched me in the face a little.
He's a little stronger than me, but I'm catching up!
Day 2 featured more skills practice, a lecture on nutrition (interesting after being immersed in the Whole 30), and a fun workout involving running, double unders, and kb swings. After lots of fun stuff, we took the test. Full disclosure: I didn't really study for the test. I should have. But I didn't. And yes, I passed. But I've also been doing CrossFit for over 2 years. Still, it was stressful. All of the trainers at the Cert were awesome. I came back energized and all full of CrossFit love. I come in on Monday for some Mobility work and to cheer on my friends through Nancy. And then...

I got sick.

I never get sick. Stupid cold. I tried working out on Tuesday - double unders and power cleans. Awesome! Not so much! I was exhausted through the whole thing and couldn't get my hips to work. Ugh. I had to take 2 rest days in a row this week! Today I'm feeling a little better and I am going to go in. I know I have other hobbies, but I miss my friends. One of the factors that could have caused this setback:

My Poor Eating Habits
Fine. I did the Whole 30. Then I eased back into my life. Then I just went off the deep end. Dessert every night! And a glass of wine! Moderation? What does that mean?

To give you an example, after day one of the Cert, I went back to my hotel and ate at the restaurant. I don't just get one bad thing. I get:

  • A burger (with bacon and a fried egg - but no cheese!)
  • A glass of wine
  • AND A piece of pie WITH ice cream

Why? Why do I do this? Why can't I get one bad thing? Why do I have to do it all? Yes, I was so hungry after that long day, but I didn't need to do this. And I've started to get take-out more and more, which I know I don't need to do (given, my take out is better than fast food, but still).

So I've decided to do a Whole 10. I need smaller goals and some sense of direction. I need to remind myself that I can control myself. Today is day 2. I can totally make it, because honestly, I need to

Do Better
I haven't made any real progress since Spring. Yes, I've set PRs on some benchmarks lately, but they aren't big PRs (a few seconds here and there). I know I can lift more and run faster. I need to have a period of gains and in order to do that, I need to take this stuff seriously. So I need to dial in my eating, focus on form, and take rest days. Lead by example. That's my goal.


Do Better

It doesn’t get any easier.
You wouldn’t want it to either.
-Greg Glassman

Image stolen from the internets :)
I also wish I looked like this in my short shorts. I do not.

This weekend, I'm going to get my CrossFit Level One Certification in Portland. I've wanted to do this for a long time. When I saw it posted a couple months ago, I figured I'd never really be able to afford it anyway, so I might as well do it now. There's always an excuse not to, so I signed up. I like teaching. I teach writing and sometimes it's amazing. I love CrossFit, so I figure why not teach that, too? I'm also looking forward to spending a weekend immersed in it. I could use a refresher at this point.

I've not been the best CrossFitter lately. I show up; my attendance is spectacular! I do the workouts. But that's all. I don't think a 20 second PR on Helen is anything to get too excited about, especially when my pull-ups are horrible. Just horrible! I did PR on Fight Gone Bad last week, but I also had about 5 people yelling at me the whole time. I also set a PR on Grace, but I still haven't tried to RX it. 

It doesn't get easier. I really want to get stronger. I want to get faster. I also still want to have my wine and ice cream. So what has to give? I haven't had a period of gains in a long time - really since the spring. The cert is coming at a good time. I know how to reign in my eating. I've done that and I know I can do it if I want to. Even last night I could have picked up some take out after a late WOD, but I didn't. I made my own food. So what do I need to do to improve?

  • Work on Mobility. Ugh! My shoulders are so tight lately. So tight. If they felt like real shoulders again, I might be able to kip better, or get under the bar better, or be more active overhead. We depend on our shoulders for so much!
  • Hold on to the bar! My hands keep ripping when I do too many pull-ups. My grip is seriously limiting my workouts. I need to sand my hands and toughen up. And I need to practice my pull-ups. I can only seem to do 5 in a row at this point, and that really isn't going to get me anywhere.
  • Clean heavier! I like to think I'm good at cleans, but I've been stuck on the same weight since April. I can finally lift 110, but once I knock it up to 115, my mind is out of it. I should be able to do 125. I can do do 125. It's all mental at this point. 

So that's enough to work on. Basically, I need to snap out of it. I'm stuck and I need to do better. That is all.