Thursday, August 14, 2014

The 2014 CrossFit Games: Looking Back (Part1)

Is three weeks post Games too late to write a blog about it? Better late than never, the trite credo applies. I think I waited a while last year too. But, I am so busy and life is crazy and yadda yadda yadda…blah blah blah...

CrossFit Games appearance number four.

After squeaking into the third and final qualifying spot at Regionals, I was elated by the fact that my season had become a successful one in my eyes. My goal for the year was to make it back to Carson. It could have been easy for me to set higher goals, coming off an incredible 2013, but I didn’t want to get greedy. I also didn’t want to create an expectation that could potentially derail my (and Invictus’ and Gandhi’s) philosophy that satisfaction lies in the effort not the attainment. There are many things that I cannot control, but the fundamental thing that I can control is my effort.

CrossFit Games training was rocky. After Regionals, I was experiencing sharp pain in my right hip. I consistently received treatment that allowed me to continue to train. Influenced by the psychological need for brutal Games training, I pushed through days that I probably shouldn’t have and by mid-June, I couldn’t squat or lunge without a tremendous amount of pain. So, I didn’t… and that scared the shit out of me. How on earth was I going to be remotely competitive with the fittest on earth without training ANY squat or lunge??? Luckily, my dear coach, girlfriend, family, and friends kept my head in the right place. I seriously feared that I would make a fool out of myself not having had the ideal approach into the Games. They all helped mitigate these negative thoughts but they were still there in the back of my mind.

Thankfully, I found comfort in the journey. I was prepping for my fourth CrossFit Games and I didn’t have any room to feel sorry for myself. Keeping my head down and grinding is what I do best. Each day, I fought for everything I could that would help my performance come game day. I also made sure to play it as smart as possible, not pissing off the hip any more.

I spent more time in doctors offices than at the gym, but that’s the path I had to take. Dr. Brad Cole in Memphis always takes good care of me. He knows the nature of my sport and has done an amazing job keeping me healthy and moving well. He saw me nearly every day to treat the hip. He even referred me to Dr. Ben Cowin so that I could get treatment when I was in Denver. Ben went out of his way to squeeze me into his insanely busy schedule. He even saw me at his house on a Sunday! Visits to Ben were good but hardly pleasant. Dry needling isn’t the best feeling ever and I made sure to tell him that as I screamed obscenities at him. During my first visit, I actually screamed, “I hate you.” That’s one heck of a first impression! We did make progress though, as I became capable of squatting with moderate (<75%) weight without pain.

After my Denver trip, I went to San Diego for a final, pre-Games training camp with some of the studliest CrossFit women on the planet. I reached a huge milestone with open-water swimming in Coronado Bay, after CJ lied to me about the distance. Hindsight, I’m glad he did because I may not have done it otherwise. Some of my workouts were modified because of the hip but I still felt good about my training as Games were so quickly approaching...

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