CrossFit Twofer

This week I hit CrossFit two days in a row. And I felt like a badass! Hahaha

Here was Tuesday’s workout:

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WOD:
100 Doubleunders (300 single jump ropes)
50 Handstand push-ups
40 Toes to bar
30 Overhead presses (can be thrusters, push presses, etc.)
100m lunges with overhead plate
For time

We partnered up, so the first person would start and do their double-unders and then start their handstand push-ups while the other waited (this way there wasn’t much overlap). I’ve determined that I need to start pushing myself to do double-unders, so that’s a goal of mine for June I think. Of course I still did the handstand push-ups on the box, and I did knees to chest/waist. I was feeling strong with the knees to chest/waist, since we did them Saturday morning. I broke them up into 4 sets of 10. Then I did the overhead presses at 45lb. Thinking back, I should have tried a little more weight, but I was getting tired towards the end of the 30.

Then I only did 50 meters of lunges–the knee wasn’t going to let me do much, so I only did 50 meters, then came back and did 50 sit-ups to make up for it. I finished in around 17:35.

Wednesday’s workout:

CF529Strength:
5 sets of 5 Back Squats, increasing weight as you go.
5 sets of 5 Jump Squats, just with the bar

WOD:
Every Minute on the Minute
2 Wall climbs
5 Wall balls
10 minutes

My knee was not happy with me after the 50 m of lunges Tuesday and then running 3.6 miles Wednesday morning. So Taylor worked out a different strength workout for me:

5 sets of 8 each
Kettlebell swings (20lb)
Rows (bodyweight)
Push-ups

I pushed through and felt awesome! I did all of my push-ups on my toes, too! (I might not have gone very far down, but that’s a big improvement for me.) After I was done, the rest of the class was still doing their strength, so I got out a rubber band and worked on my pull-ups–4 sets of 10. Little did I know that the WOD was going to burn up my arms even more after that arm workout!

If you’ve never done a wall climb, let me tell you–they’re fun, but they are hard!! Your shoulders burn the most. And you have to keep yourself from laughing at your neighbor next to you. These are definite something I won’t mind seeing more of in class, though! (Here’s a video on how to do a wall climb.)

The wall balls I didn’t go very low in my squat because of my knee. But I still did them, and they can be added to my monthly total (which is now around 600 I think).

I”m loving learning all these new maneuvers -I just wish I had more time to really work on my form and perfect them so I’m ready when they come up in a new WOD.

What is your favorite CrossFit maneuver? 

 

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Grilling Season!

I love grilling season! Actually, I don’t mind grilling during the Fall/Winter, too, as long as I don’t have to stand outside in the cold for very long. I grew up with my father who grills year-round, so I never see a problem with that. But there’s something about grilling in the summer–be able to hang out around the grill, smelling the food as it’s cooking, relaxing.

The funny thing is, I never grilled before until last year. And now, I love to grill. M and I will marinate meat for grilling, and I’ll come up with flavor combinations to grill veggies, too. In fact, I think that’s my favorite part is grilling veggies!

Last night we had our first grilled corn on the cob of the year =  it’s officially summer now!

Perfect grilling!

Perfect grilling!

I usually stick the same thing with grilled corn on the cob: clean the husk off the corn cob, spread Bumble & Bumble Yogurt Spread on the corn, then I’ll shake some different seasonings (plain salt and pepper, garlic powder and parmesan cheese, garlic powder and pepper). Roll up in some aluminum foil, and grill for about 20-30 minutes (rotating every five).

Last night’s combo was garlic powder and pepper, but my corn had a little too much pepper–whew! Luckily it was cooled off by the potato salad that accompanied the burger we had for dinner.

Even the pups love corn on the cob–Dally and LaMesa will eat corn like humans do, plucking off the kernels with their teeth. They’re so talented. 😉

Next time I'll try to get a video of them eating the corn.

Next time I’ll try to get a video of them eating the corn.

My other favorite veggies to grill are carrots, zucchini and summer squash, and bell peppers. I’d like to attempt to grill fruit and desert at some point (I’ve heard that grilled angel food cake is to die for!).

At a local restaurant I’ve had a grilled iceberg salad that is awesome. They cut a head of iceberg lettuce in quarters, brush with olive oil, then grill. Add some chopped up bacon and a vinaigrette and it’s heaven. I will attempt to replicate that one day this summer!

What’s your favorite thing to grill? Share some recipes!

Easy grilled chicken recipe:

 

Memorial Day Fun

Who doesn’t love long holiday weekends?? They’re an opportunity to get lots of work done, or even a lot of sleeping done. For me, I chose lots of work and lots of fun for my weekend.

First I kick started the weekend with CrossFit. We did our own special Memorial Day WOD:

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Talk about killer!

Memorial WOD:
Run 1 mile
27 Kettlebell swings
27 Air squats
27 Push-ups
27 Thrusters
27 Toes to Bar
Option: Repeat movements, plus run 1 mile

I did the full workout, as prescribed! (Go me!) In fact, the opening mile was the fastest I’ve ever run–8:01! I used a 17.5 kettlebell, the 35-lb bar, push-ups on the knees (did like 5 on my toes until I started to lose form), and did knees to chest/waist. I broke up the T2B by doing them in sets of 5 at first, then tried to just pump them out in the second round with sets of 10/7. My closing mile was about 8:30. I finished the entire workout in a little over 35 minutes. It was a soaker! But, I did it! We had to give Taylor credit for the theme–the chalk was red, white, and blue, and they were 5 movements (May), 27 reps (Memorial Day was on 5/27). Smart cookie!

Afterwards I walked the dogs and mowed the lawn until it was time to head to Louisville to spend the evening/night with my girl AD and her boyfriend. I was able to bring the pups with me (thanks, Kevin), so M and I didn’t have to worry about pup-sitters since he headed to Indy for the Indianapolis 500 with his uncle. Dinner was sushi–I wish I got pics of the yummy sushi rolls we got, but trust me, they were good! The evening was a blur of much catching up, drinking, and renting Magic Mike for AD to see for the first time.

After taking it easy the first part of Sunday, the Stump Kids and I headed back to Lexington where I proceeded to clean the house, mulch areas that needed mulching, and visiting a friend whom I haven’t seen in a very long time. All in anticipation of M’s return from Indy and hanging out on the porch most of the night.

Monday M (my own veteran who I am very thankful for) and I spent the rare mutual day off together by driving to Clermont, Ky., to tour the Jim Beam distillery. Here are a few pics from that:

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barrels

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The day was beautiful and exactly what we needed–time away from everyone/everything and just with ourselves. We finished off the long weekend with a dog walk and then cookout with some friends (I had homemade naan for the first time–soo good!)

How was your Memorial Day weekend?

Memorial Day: Lifestyle Redesigns, Life Choices – Good Reads 5.25.2013

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Happy Memorial Day Weekend!! This weekend is meant to be more than about cookouts and an extra day off of work. Please be sure to pay tribute to our fallen, injured, or still missing-in-action soldiers, not to mention our living veterans and currently serving soldiers. I’m always thankful for those who have put their lives on the line for our country, but even more so now being married to a veteran and experiencing the loss of a friend.

LinkLove

Now, here are a few posts that should inspire you this weekend:

The Truth About How To Have A Good Marriage: 5 Unconventional Lessons (Illuminate Your Life): I don’t remember how I happened upon this post, but I’m glad I did. Sheila shares a lot of honest insight about her 8-year-old marriage that is applicable to any married couple. Being in a marriage is not easy–at this point I don’t expect it to ever get any easier, and we’re still in the midst of year one! It’s the simple things like these that Sheila points out that should help things be a little smoother, though. I liked her tip about taking the time to write five things you appreciate about your partner when you’re frustrated with him/her. I’ll have to start doing that.

What if Work isn’t Supposed to Make You Happy? (Erica D. House): Yet another post that hit the nail on the head when it comes to me and my life! Then Erica followed up with her “Passion vs. Money” post which is just as eye opening. I’ve been struggling, still trying to find my happy place when it comes to my profession (that’s right, even at 30 I still don’t have my life straight). You want to be happy (and proud) in your career, and it doesn’t just fall in your lap (for most of us).

The Redesigned Life (Run to the Finish): There might be a theme to this week’s post, but this is an inspirational post by Amanda about redesigning your life to be able to accomplish your goals and fulfill your dreams. She shares examples of some women who have done just that and taken the leap of faith that everything will work out fine. To do something like this is so scary to me–it’s something I’d like to do, but there are too many what ifs that hold me back. Perhaps it’s time to stop letting that little voice stop being so big in my life…

What posts have you found this week that have inspired you?

Dead Lifts & Zola

Is it the weekend yet?? Sheesh! Why do the weeks leading up to long weekend always seem to drag on forever?

Anyway, I celebrate “Hump Day” in my usual fashion, with a trip to Man O’War CrossFit.

WOD5-22

After a warm-up, we worked on our strength for front squats. Every Minute On The Minute, we did five front squats for 10 minutes. I squatted 55 lbs–not bad, but I can’t wait to get the go-ahead from my doctor to really start lifting and pushing myself.

Then the WOD:

10 Minute AMRAP
5 Dead LIfts
8 Box Jumps

I did 95 lbs on the dead lifts and jumped just under 20″ on the box. (I had to use the smaller box with a plate on top due to running out of regular 20/24″ boxes.) I probably should have lifted more like around 110, but I wasn’t sure how I’d get through. Taylor wanted us to aim for 8 rounds–I did 10, plus 4 dead lifts. I need to not worry about things and push myself out of my comfort zone. It’s not that I wasn’t working hard–I was breathing hard, sweating lots, and I’m already sore–but I just feel like I should push harder. I know my time will come when I’m doing prescribed weights, so I just need to be patient.

The workout was a tough one, but nothing was harder than those darn box jumps! Note to self: Do not think while doing them. About half-way through the AMRAP, I started telling myself I needed to remember to step down with my left foot, not just my right all the time. Then I got to thinking, “How many rounds have I done?” Well, all these thoughts rolling around in my head and trying to jump a box with weight plates on isn’t a good combo. I ended up hopping awkwardly, thus stubbing my toe on the plate and slamming my right shin into the box. Just some bruising (a little blood) and a lump, but how embarrassing!!

After the workout, I rushed to Marikka’s to help out a friend who needed another girl on his sand volleyball team. We split the first two games, then during the third the heavens opened up and poured on us–not fun. We ended up losing (really not fun), and I was exhausted!

But I came home to a fun package from Zola! Inside was a couple of cans of coconut water (with and without pulp) and a bottle of their acai juice. I can’t wait to try them! (The acai is in the fridge already.)

w00t!! Coconut water and acai juice! Whatever shall I make with it??

w00t!! Coconut water and acai juice! Whatever shall I make with it??

And, of course, LaMesa had to try out the fun shades:

LaMesa rocking the neon green Zola shades.

LaMesa rocking the neon green Zola shades.

I’d love to make something with the coconut water. Do you have any recipes for coconut water?

I have my follow-up appointment with my sports medicine doctor today. Yay! Hopefully I’ll have good news to share tomorrow!

One (Running) Step at a Time

After a month and a half away from running, I’m happy to say I’m slowly getting back to hitting the pavement!

It started last week. I was really missing the camaraderie of my two running buddies and the feeling I had after morning runs, so I sent a text asking when their next run was. That next morning I met up with them and we had a nice run/walk for about 3.75 miles. I was OK with the slow pace and the two walk breaks because I knew these two wouldn’t let me push my knee too hard. I came home and walked the dogs for a little over a mile or so, stretched, and readied for my work day.

My knee felt just fine through the day, enough to go to CrossFit that night!

Now I’m aiming to get back to running twice a week, with low mileage right now. Tuesday morning, after around four hours of sleep (due to reffing volleyball until midnight), I got up and ran with the crew around my neighborhood. We only did 3 miles, but it was at a good clip, with only one short walk. I then walked the dogs for two miles, stretched, and felt great throughout the rest of the day.

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Thursday I go back to the sports medicine doctor for a follow-up, and so far my knee is doing alright. I’m planning to get a run in the morning just to see how my knee reacts for the doctor. I also plan to talk to him about my heel hurting after my runs, which has been another concern of mine.

My goal is to get my mileage back up in time for the Bluegrass 10K on July 4th. It was a great experience last year, and I want to run it again. Not to mention getting my mileage back up for hopefully a fall half marathon. Before my “injury vacation” I was able to get my 5K time down to the 27 minute mark…I’m sure I’ll have to work back to that speed again, but it’d be great to hit the fall 5Ks with a nice speed.

But don’t worry, I plan to follow the doctor’s orders. This is all dependent on what Dr. Kibler says about my knee and heel. Fingers crossed!!

How have you come back from a running injury?

Healthy Living Survey

I always find surveys to be fun ways to get to know people, plus it can be a change from the usual everyday posts. I found this one on a fellow HealthysELFer’s (and Sweat Pink sister) site…thanks, Lauren!
1. What did you eat for breakfast?
French Toast Scramble and a glass of cold skim milk
2. How much water do you drink a day?
At least 2-3 full 24 oz CamelBack bottles during work, then some more throughout the evening.
3. What is your current favorite workout?
Running and CrossFit. Since I can’t really run, I’ve been loving CrossFit more and more!
4. How many calories do you eat a day?
I really need to keep better track of those right now…
5. What are your favorite healthy snacks?
Strawberries!! I could snack on those all the time! And almonds, too!
6. What do you usually eat for lunch?
Depends. For the most part a simple sandwich with Greek yogurt and Wheat Thins or pretzels. Or leftovers. It varies from day to day.
7. What is your favorite part of the body to strength train?
My legs–I feel like they are so strong.
8. What is your least favorite body part to strength train?
My arms because I feel so weak. Though it’s my favorite to train because I feel weak and I want to improve that. Does that make sense?
9. What are your “bad” food cravings?
Kettle chips from Jimmy John’s, anything chocolate just about (horrible sweet tooth), fresh kettle corn (can’t go to an event in Lexington without some!)
10. Do you take vitamins or supplements?
No, but I know I should, especially some glucosamine and chondroitin for my joints with all the running I do. I do drink protein shakes–does that count?
11. How often do you eat out?
M and I have tried to curtail our eating out. Now we’ll go out to dinner most often only once a week. Most days I have lunch at home, but there are times that I just crave something different and pick something up for lunch.
12. Do you eat fast food?
Yes, but mostly it’s breakfast on the road on the way to dog agility trials, and then it’s usually an Egg McMuffin. Unless you count SubWay as fast food (and I do occasionally enjoy Jimmy John’s).

I was so happy to have my cheerleader to meet me at the finish line.

I was so happy to have my cheerleader to meet me at the finish line.

13. Who is your biggest supporter?

My parents have always been my biggest supporters in everything I’ve ever done. I’m very happy to have big support from M. I greatly appreciated seeing his face after I crossed the finish line of the Run The Bluegrass a couple of weeks ago.
14. Do you have a gym membership?
Yes. I use my membership for treadmill runs when the weather isn’t the best, plus I enjoy participating in the group fitness classes and spin classes now and then, not the mention the weights. I’d be lost without a gym membership! Though I just started CrossFit, so I’m thinking of canceling my membership to my regular gym and just do CF.
15. How many hours of sleep do you get a night?
I always feel like I didn’t get enough sleep. The amount of sleep a night varies from 5 to 7 hours a night. But even on days that I can sleep in, my body/mind doesn’t let me.
16. Do you have a “cheat” day?
I used to do cheat days with one program that I did–they were scheduled. Now it’s more like “cheat meals” if it’s something special. I’m trying to keep a balanced lifestyle, especially when it comes to eating and I feel like cheat days made me feel allowed to go crazy for 24 hours–not the most balanced lifestyle.
17. Do you drink alcohol?
Yes, but not as much as I used to. I enjoy a beer (or two) on the weekends while at agility trials, and maybe a glass of wine or bourbon and Sprite Zero to wind down after stressful days, but not that often.
18. Do you have a workout buddy?
I have running buddies for some days, and now I workout with people at CrossFit, but a lot of times it’s just me, myself, and I.
19. What is the best thing that has changed about your life since committing to a healthy lifestyle?
When I’m being active and healthy, it gives me a new confidence in myself. I realize the control I have over myself and my own life.
20. What was the last healthy thing you did?
Walked the dogs with my husband after eating lunch. I love my lunchtime dog walks because they’re a nice break in my day at the office.
Your turn!

Good Reads 5.11.13 Preakness Day!

Just like how the first Saturday of May is the Kentucky Derby, the third Saturday of May is the Preakness Stakes–the second jewel of the Triple Crown. I’m not working it (it’s held at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Md.) but I’ll be cheering on Orb from a Buffalo Wild Wings in Ohio after my agility trial.

LinkLove

My week has been very busy and stressful–so much so I haven’t been able to do as much reading as I usually like to do, but here are a few posts I have been able to find worth sharing:

Tips for Backpacking with Your Dog (Just a Colorado Gal): I have to think Lindsay for this find–she tweeted it Thursday. M and I love hiking with the Stump Kids, so this is nice to know. Though we don’t usually take them on long hikes (Dally’s stumps can only take her so far), but we make sure we bring plenty of water for them no matter how warm it is.

The Best WordPress Plug-Ins (The Lean Green Bean Blog): Lindsay has been awesome with helping fellow bloggers make their blogs better and stronger with her social media tips and blogging advice lately. This is a really neat tool for those getting started and trying to grow their blog, like myself. Thanks so much, Lindsay!

Before You go on a Hike (It’s a Harleyyy Life): I love hiking! I love going with M and friends, especially with the dogs, but unfortunately we don’t get to do it very often. Danielle shares some quick tips for those who might not be that experienced with hiking.

CrossFit 2 Days in a Row? Yes!

An email came through from my dog agility instructor that our class on Thursday was cancelled, which meant I had a free evening. So what to do with it?

I was feeling like yoga, but my other gym wasn’t offering it until 7, so when I saw that the WOD at Man O’War CrossFit was “core” I decided to push for two classes in two days!

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We warmed up with doing 5 sets of 5 reps of wall balls and ball slams. Because of my knee I didn’t go as low as you should for the wall balls, but I squatted enough to warm up the body.

WOD:

AMRAP – 5 minutes
15 Scoops
15 Reverse Scoops
15 Combinations (each leg)
15 Tuck Jumps

Rest 3 minutes (long enough to set up your bar)

AMRAP – 12 minutes
5 Dead Lifts (Rx 75/65lbs)
10 Push-Ups
15 Air Squats
Then, once the timer goes off (no rest) 800 m run

To save my knees, instead of doing the tuck jumps, I stayed flat on my back and just tucked my knees into my chest and out for 15. For the first part of the WOD I was able to get in almost 2 whole rounds (I had just started my second set of knee tucks when the timer went off).

Again, to save my knees, I didn’t go very deep in my air squats. But I did do the Rx for the dead lifts–65lbs! w00t! It was a hard ending to the WOD! I was able to get in 12 rounds (Taylor was pushing us to get at least 12), with push-ups on my knees (arms still sore from Wednesday’s workout). I had done the 13th set of dead lifts when the timer went off. The 800 m run seemed longer than it was, and my knee was a little ouchy from the workout.

Great workout–I was soaked with sweat! After we were done I did a little foam rolling on my quads, calves, and IT band (holy ow!) and stretched before heading home to take the pups on a 3-mile walk with M to enjoy the gorgeous evening (no rain–yay!).

How do you kick off your weekend, fitness-wise?

Making CrossFit Work, Even with a Bum Knee

So I’ve been a bit of a bad blogger and have been MIA lately. But, I have a good excuse! You see, on top of my regular 8-5 job, I have a second job as a volleyball ref for a bar league a couple nights a week (6 pm to midnight), plus I am a freelance writer for a few different equine magazines. Lo and behold, I had three big features all due on the same day (May 15) and other things in my personal life going on that made blogging not very important at the time. But, my articles are submitted, so I’m hoping to be back in action. (I hope you can forgive me!)

Anyway, last week I failed to blog about my class at Man O’War CrossFit, so I figured I’d combine this week’s class with last weeks.

First up, last week’s class:

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Last week’s class was a trial in pride for me. We worked on push presses and trying to get 70% of our max so we could do four sets of 10, along with 10 medicine ball throws for our strength portion of the workout. I’ll be the first to admit that I have a weak upper body–a lot of women do. But I didn’t realize how weak until we started this exercise. After many attempts, I ended up doing the push presses with a 35-lb woman’s bar. (Hey, at least I have a starting point to build from!)

After the strength portion, we worked with a partner to do the WOD:

10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1
Thrusters (rx 95/64#)
Lateral bar jump
Sit-ups
For Time

Working with a partner, one did 10, you did 9, partner 8…until you hit 1, then you switched and went back up, so partner would do 1, you 2, partner 3… I did the thrusters with the 35-lb bar, but jumped over my partner’s bar that had 15-lb weights on it. Part-way through the WOD, my knee started bothering me. I figured maybe it was just doing the later bar jumps, so I tried to take it easy. Unfortunately, I think too many squats (with the thrusters) and heavy weights, plus the jumps wasn’t the best thing. Later that day, and the next day, my knee was sore, so I didn’t go back for my Friday class like originally planned.

Now, last night’s class:

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Before class I contacted Taylor (coach) about my knee and how I was concerned about the strength portion: 8 reps of split squats on each leg for 5 reps. He told me not to worry, that he’d come up with something for me to do in replace of the leg stuff and to come on to class.

My strength workout? 12 reps of body weight pull-ups and chest-2-bar pull-ups, 3 sets each. (I told him I really wanted to work on my upper body strength, so he listened!) I used the wide band on my pull-ups. Those are tricky little things–you start off feeling so strong for the first couple, then quickly you’re starting to struggle to get your chest to the bar. But, I did it!

Our WOD:

10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1
Dumbbell Thrusters
Handstand Push-Ups
1 50m Farmer Carry

For me, I did dumbbell push presses instead of thrusters to save on my knees. Then, for those of us who couldn’t do handstand push-ups (yet), we worked off of boxes. You set your toes in the middle of the box, then got in a plank position for your push-ups. The closer you got your hands to the box, the harder it was. Also, the higher the box was, the harder the exercise was. But you didn’t want to get your body in less than a 90* angle at the hips. I used the 24″ side of the box and tried to get my hands close. But I know I’m going to need a lot more work on push-ups, period, to get the strength for HSPU!

Here’s a great explanation of the progression training you can do for handstand push-ups:

Taylor wanted us to finish in no more than 15 minutes. I finished in 10:33 with 15lb dumbbells (for push presses and farmer carry). I rounded up the workout with 100 full butterfly sit-ups using the ab mat, since I wanted to take it easy on my knee and not do wall balls for the day.

What’s one CrossFit exercise you’re afraid to try? I think HSPU are going to be my big fear! Haha