Thursday, August 21, 2014

The 2014 CrossFit Games: Looking Back (Part4)

Friday’s Events

Triple 3

I was excited for Triple 3 event because I knew that I would do well. Coming from a distance running background, I drooled over the three-mile portion. The really cool thing about this event was that the run mattered more than row or double-unders. Well, that’s my opinion anyway. I trailed it solo the week before Games and finished in 39:07. CJ and I agreed that I should go faster come game-time and I did, completing it in 37:39. Motivation and competition create marvelous incentives for me to perform better.

I rowed a comfortable 2:08.5 average 500m pace for the entire 3000m, allowing my double-unders to break as few times as possible. I was relatively fresh for the run and knew I had a lot of ground to make up. Passing competitors fueled more enthusiasm as I ran my little heart out. I was around 30th position starting the first mile and 9th after the first mile. I WISH I had gotten my first mile split! I thought I had hit the start button on my watch but as I peaked down at the first mile marker, all I saw was zeros. So, I hit start, for real, at the beginning of my second mile. After that lap, I looked down and saw 6:40. “Wow, I am cooking,” I proudly thought to myself. I tried to make a move on Janowitz by speeding past her and trying to create as big of a gap as possible but then she reciprocated and buried me. Turns out she has a track background too. Ha! Foucher was in my sights but my mind kept telling me that she was outside of striking distance. Oh, how the mind plays its tricks. Fortunately, a random fan in the crowd yelled at me and said she was only six seconds ahead of me. Now, my head said: Six seconds? I can make up six seconds over the course of a mile. So, I went for it. I caught and passed my fellow and much-respected Central East competitor. As I crossed the finish line, I hit the stop button with 13:40 displayed on my watch. My last two miles were at a 6:50 average. As a “has-been” runner, I will take it! I ended up finishing 5th overall and couldn’t have been happier with the effort. I also couldn’t help but be relieved in not finishing at the bottom. I don’t particularly like getting my ass kicked.

Sleds of Death 1 and 2 (A more appropriate event name, in my opinion)

Want to know the most painful event of the entire 2014 CrossFit Games? It was this one, without a doubt. That 95 pound sled was absolutely brutal to push for 60 yards, let alone, do it again minutes later. My mindset going into this event was to give that sled hell. This was one of the events where I literally slap myself in the face a few times to psych myself up. Heather Welsh knows what I am talking about. Ha!

Ahead of time, I fully accepted that it was going to burn like crazy but knew that I needed to keep my legs moving no matter what type of lactic, quad seizure (exaggeration) I was feeling. Though, I had no idea how bad that would truly feel until it happened. There was one point on Sled (of Death) 2 where I was pushing the sled from my knees. It was moving so I kept going with it for a little bit.

Any way. Any how. I was determined to get that piece of crap across the line.

Afterwards, I couldn’t stand. I wanted to “walk it off” so badly but I simply couldn’t get back on my feet because I was in so much pain. Luckily, it wasn’t hip pain at all. I finished 7th in both.

21-15-9 Complex

Friday night at the tennis stadium is one of the moments that I train for all year long. In fact, the energy and atmosphere give me chills as I type this. Running down the stairs, fist bumping all the fans, and performing under the lights on the biggest stage in CrossFit fires me up like nothing else.

The barbell and pullup bar complex proved to be a really difficult one for me. My bar muscle ups aren’t as efficient as they need to be and it was exposed in this event. The weight on the barbell wasn’t super heavy, but it certainly felt heavy given the sequence of movements. My deadlifts and cleans were fine, but the snatches were ugly. I performed them in singles and utilized the Kinney clean method (when power cleans get heavy, my catching position becomes atrocious) of catching with the widest stance possible. It makes CJ cringe every time. Whoops! It continues to be a work in progress.

At the last station, I knew that finishing inside the time cap was at stake. My right hand felt wetter than my left and in that moment and I remember thinking that was strange. It is kind of crazy the random thoughts that go through my head during the events. I was able to squeak across the finish mat with 15 seconds to spare and 26th place in the event. Gazing at my right hand, I discovered that it had ripped. I never felt the pain in my hand and I don’t recall feeling any hip pain either, for which I was extremely thankful.

Day two was in the books and things looked a little brighter in the Kinney camp.

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