Getting Over the Initial CrossFit Hump, and Team WODs Suck (for me)

This past week was mostly great, with one exception – I have a nasty ass (literally) stomach bug of sorts. It started a few nights ago, and hasn’t gone away. I’m not rolling around in pain or anything – in fact, I did a WOD on Wednesday (which was a disaster, see below for more on that). And I just finished walking over 3 miles for a Friday night fun-fun time at the track (woohoo!), stopping to do 5×10 pushups and 5×10 air squats along the way. : )

I don’t know what I ate/caught but it’s just made my stomach get some pains once in a while, and cause me to have to go you know what. So, to say the least, it’s impeded my first week of 3x membership at CrossFit greatly. I’m very disappointed to report that I only went twice this week, but I have a legit excuse – last thing I needed to do was show up and shit my shorts mid-way through a WOD : )

Aside from this relatively inconvenient but not-too-bad stomach bug, I’ve felt great this week. My diet is dialed in perfectly – I finally came to the conclusion that heavy dairy, in the form of Greek yogurt nightly, was wreaking havoc on my digestive track. So I finished up what I had last week and have avoided buying any of that stuff and won’t anymore. I am looking forward to weighing myself tomorrow. I haven’t in a week but I feel much lighter than I did a week ago – but stronger. Weird but good. But most importantly perhaps – my recovery time after a WOD is now down to an hour max before I feel “back to normal” and can function and feel good. Just a few weeks ago I was sore for 3 days and lethargic after every WOD. Now I’m fine. I’m sure eventually I’ll hit one that kicks my ass, and soreness is to be expected, but feeling like shit/lethargic the day(s) after a WOD is just not something I want. Not worth it. And, fortunately, I think I’m past that – I’ve been feeling good.

So that’s the good…now for the not as good:

No More “Team” WODs For Me

I’ve done three team WODs now – first one was on July 4th and it was an ass-kicker but a lot of fun. I had the fortune of being on a team of other relatively laid-back folks who were there for a workout and nothing more. I had a lot of fun and heck, just being a part of the ‘event’ and atmosphere was very, very cool. And this video of it kicks ass:

So with that great experience behind me, I had another team WOD – an “Adventure WOD”. It wasn’t really much of an adventure, but it was kinda cool. It was a an outdoor WOD in the parking lot, teams of 4, rotating between stations of sandbag overhead squats, sandbag “ground to overhead’s”, “box” jumps (onto a concrete median thingy designed to impede cars), and running. It was pretty cool but, as usual, I was the slowest runner. One of my teammates stayed with me the entire team – partly because he wanted to encourage me, but I got the sense a lot of the reason was cus he didn’t want me slowing the rest of the team down. We wound up finishing in the middle of the pack.

After that experience, I looked forward to another team WOD that following Wednesday with a little concern.  And it didn’t go so well. It was complicated (as far as WODs go), and I just didn’t understand the way it was supposed to go. I figured I’d get the gist once we began, which was a big mistake. Trying to figure out a scoring system during a WOD that was absolutely killer, starting with a 90lb Prowler, along with lots of burpees, heavy wall balls, and 90lb tire pulls,  was a recipe for disaster.

So the way it was supposed to work, which I eventually figured out too late, was we would rotate stations after the Prowler person finished their Prowler push. So if you were on the burpees, you would tell the guy switching to take over the burpees how many you had and then they should remember that and add their total to it at the end of their burpee round and tell the next guy, who continue adding on, etc. etc. etc. Problem was, we had trouble communicating. And it wasn’t just me. And, quite frankly, I was breathing so heavy and fatigued from the Prowler and tire pulls, let alone the other stuff, that half the time I just forgot to keep count. I really need to bring a paper and pen to these things I guess.

At the end, when they went to tally up our final team score, my teammates were pretty pissed. They figured out, due to some simple math, that someone had screwed up the scores and yelled out the wrong numbers for both the burpees and the wall ball totals – a total number that was lower than the previous guy had achieved so they knew the lower total had to be wrong. I honestly don’t know if I was the culprit but I would be surprised if I wasn’t as I was so out of it. One of the team members was a bit overzealous about things and an argument ensued between a couple of the guys about the score. They asked me again and I basically just gave a “I really don’t know, and don’t give a shit about the score” response. I was beat and was not going to get into it, and went over to the floor and laid down for a few minutes to compose myself. They argued with each other for a few minutes and then went up to the whiteboard and made up a number. It was surprisingly competitive, even though my contributions to the burpee and wall ball numbers were so piss poor that I would be very surprised if our actual score was anywhere near what it was recorded as.

After the cool-down and stretching, I went up to each of my WOD teammates individually and apologized, saying I’m not sure if I screwed up the score but may have. They each assured me that they didn’t care about the score and it was no big deal, but I could tell the score did mean something to them. I was pretty embarrassed and, quite honestly, not too enthusiastic about the WOD.

So I’ll be avoiding the team WODs for a while. I have a hard enough time worrying about myself let alone trying to keep others’ scores, etc. Call me a puss but I just don’t want that pressure!

It would be different if I was fatter. I think people expect more out of me, because I don’t look too out of shape. But with my lack of flexibility, strength, and relatively poor cardiovascular conditioning (in relation to the demands of the WODs), it almost guarantees a poor score/time.

Please don’t interpret my whining in this post as a knock against CrossFit. It’s not meant to be. It’s just a whine that is brutally honest: I’m now two months into this and I really don’t feel like I’ve made great strides. I’m still doing piss poor, lifting lighter weights than everyone else, etc. The coaches encourage me and tell me it’s cus I’m new but then I see other newbies show up and they are lifting lots more weight and running circles around me.

So tonight, in lieu of going to do a formal WOD at the box (because I didn’t want to risk this stomach bug striking me mid-WOD), I did my own little low-intensity WOD at the track, after first doing some serious stretching via this Mobility WOD video, to open up my hips:

It did help some, but not as much as I’d hoped. I’ll keep at it though. It’s the only way I’ll improve my squat depth/comfort, as I am not improving at it by just doing the WODs.

With the stretching done, I went to the track and walked a little over 3 miles (about an hour) and for the first 5 laps, stopped at one end of the track and did 10 air squats to as deep a depth as I could, but with good form, and then at the other end of the track I would stop and do 10 pushups. I learned that the quicker I do the pushups the easier they are. So, 3+ miles walking fast, plus 50 pushups, plus 50 air squats. Not bad for a rest day.

Oh well, enough whining.

One reply on “Getting Over the Initial CrossFit Hump, and Team WODs Suck (for me)”

Good stuff sticking with crossfit. I just started a week ago with a fundamentals course… did 3 sessions… and boy is it hard work!

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