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2009-08-30 9:40 PM

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Helena, MT
Subject: Montana State [CrossFit] Games "Race Report"

There are CrossFit competitions all over the country which accomodate all different levels of athlete. I just wanted to share my experience at one with you all since I know there are a lot of CFers around here. I'm pretty far from a firebreather. I've been doing CF somewhat inconsistently for 3 years now. However I've only been back at it about 3 and a half months after a year+ layoff that included a back injury, a broken foot, then a pregnancy and the postpartum period (my son is 6 months old now).

For details on the competition, go to There were 3 scaling options available. I was really right between the middle and lowest option in strength and skill. I decided to go ahead and risk looking completely pathetic and just go for the middle option. I decided I could do it, so I would. I'm a fan of biting off more than you can chew, athletically.

WOD #1
800m Run
15 Squat Clean and Jerk, 75 lbs
800m Run


WOD #2
3 rounds
10 hang squat cleans, 45 lbs
20 Burpees
30 Wallball, 8 lb ball, 10 foot target
120 jump rope (or 40 double unders, but I can't do a double under to save my life)

Hit the 26 min time cutoff with 15 wallballs in the 3rd round.


My first heat was at 9:30 or so and was the first to go. I went out at a slower and steadier pace on the 800, something I knew I could maintain and would leave me with something for the clean and jerks, since 15 reps at 75# was at the very end of my anticipated abilities. At the end of the 800, I was in last place but was about to pass another woman in the last 50m or so. She heard me coming and turned it on at the end. I just maintained my pace. I wasn't about to get in a race in the first 800. Eric said the first 800 took me about 3 min.

The clean and jerks were very tough for me, as I had anticipated. I needed 20 or so second recovery between reps after the first few. My form on the front squat portion of the clean broke down after the first few reps and I was dropping my chest pretty significantly. I know better, but it was all my body could manage at the time. Everyone else in my class had a much easier time with the weight and I ended up starting my last run well after they all took off (I think the top girl finished while I was still c&j-ing). Eric told me that the c&j's took me over 7 min, though he wasn't sure exactly.

The last 800 was tough. My legs were extremely fatigued. My nearest competitor was a little more than 200m ahead of me. I just grinded it out. Finished as fast as I could, but I was full minute behind the nearest girl. Eric tells me that my runs were on par with most of the girls, except the top could of ladies, that it was really just the c&j's that left me in the dust.

The first few minutes after finishing the WOD, I felt like dying. Could barely breathe, felt like I'd left a lung or two out on the course. I was completely spent, plus a little embarrassed that I'd come in last.

My next heat was about 3 hours later. My lungs still felt a little tender and my legs were still somewhat fatigued, but I felt like I had good energy. The time cutoff for the second WOD was 26 minutes and, though I wasn't really sure how long it would take me, I knew it would be tight.

After the 3-2-1 GO, I went strong and steady through the hang power snatches and the burpees. The wallball, however, surprised me. My target at home is about 8.5 feet and this target was 10 feet at the BOTTOM! I'm shocked by the difference two feet makes. In Fight Gone Bad, I can usually get 23-25 wallballs each round, so I thought the wallball wouldn't be too bad. Man, was I wrong. By 20 reps into the first set, I was doing a single, 3 big breaths, then a single, etc. The jump rope was really a chance to recover a little. I didn't try to jump fast, just tried to steadily keep going, figuring I wouldn't make up more than a few seconds if I tried to jump as fast as I could and would then be going into the next set completely winded.

The second round was a bleak place. I had fallen just a few reps behind the girl who had finished just in front of me the first WOD. I was able to get in front of her each round on the burpees (she was very tall and pretty big, so burpees are a lot more work for her than for me). Then she would pull just a little ahead of me on the wallball (our height difference put her at the advantage here). Anyhow, during the second round the wallballs felt interminable and I was giving everything I had and missing a lot of reps (you HAD to hit the target, didn't matter if you threw it high enough, but missed to the side or over or under). During the last round I was pulling ahead of the other girl, who seemed to be hitting the wall. I had to crawl rather than jump out of all my burpees. It was flop down, crawl out, jump-clap, and repeat.

I was feeling like I could just steadily make my way through the wallball, then push the jump rope for all I was worth and finish, when my judge told me there was a minute left until the cutoff. I was a handful of reps into the wallball at that point and the other girl was just starting. I turned just decided to get as many as I possibly could. I ended up with 15 wallballs, the other girl had one. She had apparently sprained her ankle in the toward the end somewhere, but Eric said she was blowing up besides. She hit the deck inside and then went outside and puked for awhile. You have to admire how hard CrossFitters are willing to push themselves. Amazing. I too was completely wrecked after that WOD. I was able to get outside then could do nothing but lay in the grass and heave away trying to get in a breath for a few minutes. I felt woozy for some time afterward.

There was another girl in our class who went in a different heat. She was having a horrible time making it to the wallball target, so late in the first round, they let her start going to the 8 foot target. I'm a little miffed that the rules were changed so that she was given a chance to finish when the other girl in my heat and I got DNFs. But that's water under the bridge. Anyhow, I feel it's pretty clear from the amount of trouble that she was having hitting that target that I would have been further into the WOD at the cutoff than her. So I'd say I was 3 from the last in that WOD.

I'm proud of my performance at the Games. Yeah, I didn't exactly dominate in my class, but I put it all on the line and did everything I possibly could do. I also had a great time, met so many nice people, and saw some really incredible and inspiring performances.

I would really encourage anyone interested to compete in one of these CrossFit competitions, or at the very least, go watch. It was an incredible experience and it's always good to step out of your comfort zone every now and then. Plus, it turns out that CFers really are a super-nice, wonderful and encouraging group of people.

Edited by kimj81 2009-08-30 9:45 PM

2009-08-31 6:59 AM
in reply to: #2379557

Subject: ...
This user's post has been ignored.
2009-08-31 3:56 PM
in reply to: #2379557

Subject: RE: Montana State [CrossFit] Games "Race Report"
Dude, you're awesome. I want to be like you when I grow up.
2009-08-31 7:23 PM
in reply to: #2379557

Denver, Colorado
Subject: RE: Montana State [CrossFit] Games "Race Report"
What makes this impressive is that you did it while caring for a 6-month old.
2009-08-31 8:29 PM
in reply to: #2381458

Helena, MT
Subject: RE: Montana State [CrossFit] Games "Race Report"
MikeTheBear - 2009-08-31 5:23 PM What makes this impressive is that you did it while caring for a 6-month old.

Nurse, WOD, nurse, nurse, WOD, nurse. Thanks guys!
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