This was the sixth year my gym has done the Spartan Challenge, which is traditionally the 300 workout. This year they threw in a twist — Crossfit Total.
I showed up feeling subdued and my voice still on the fritz from laryngitis. I entered the Scaled-Women division. I actually felt a little embarrassed that I was one of only two in my division. Was I really the only woman in my gym competing who needed to scale some of the movements?
I was also nervous about the Total. We were supposed to find out max weight in the Back Squat, Shoulder Press and Deadlift within a 10 minute window. It was our responsibility to warmup as needed before our heat. I was in one of the last heats, so I waited around a while until warming up. In fact, I took advantage of the massage therapist they brought in, and I had her work on my shoulders while I waited.
I didn’t talk to many people. I tend to keep my mouth shut and my eyes and ears open in unfamiliar situations or when I’m nervous. I overheard one girls saying that this would be the first your she was competing RX and she wasn’t sure how she was going to do. My nervousness intensified.
About 30 minutes before my heat, I started warming up. I ran, did some kettlebell swings and presses, and then I found a warm up rack and started putting weight on the bar. I didn’t want to wear myself out, but I wanted to be warm. I tried to strategize and decide what my opening weight would be.
My assistant coach Aaron was my judge, and I felt encouraged. Unfortunately, being sick all weak didn’t help my numbers. I came in well under what I expected in both the back squat and deadlift.
Back squat: 135
Shoulder Press: 65
I had plenty of time between Total and my heat for the 300 workout, and I got to see some really amazing athletes take it on — and it pounded them. I overheard a lot of people talking about it after their heat. The consensus: the 300 is brutal.
50 Deadlift (M 135# / W 95# – Scaled M 95# / Scaled W 65#)
50 Box jumps
Andy shot some video of me during my heat. I flew threw the pullups and deadlifts. The box jumps were a lot slower. The floor wipers murdered me.
I had to break the floor wipers into sets of 5 pretty early on. I remember looking up at my judge, Christine — who had her hand on the bar only to stabilize it and grab it if I dropped it — and saying in a pathetic and pleading voice, “This is the last set, right?”
“Yes, it’s the last set.”
The floor wipers took most of my time. I only had a minute or less by the time I finished. I picked up the kettlebell as fast as I could and did about 8 clean and press.
Andy was right behind me. I signed the competition sheet and literally fell into him, exhausted. My parents and cousins were on the side. I went to them and fell into my mom. I think if they hadn’t been there I would have collapsed on the ground. It took about 20 minutes to stop feeling like I needed to throw up.
Oh yeah. Good times.
But still. There’s something about Crossfit. It’s always dangling a challenge out in front of you — there’s always something to work on. I’d love to be able to do that workout RX. I’d love if next year I could be banging out pullups without a band. Or maybe the floor wipers won’t take so long.
There’s always a next time.