Monday, November 11, 2013

The Games Week, Sunday...

It's been a long time since I've had time to sit down and write the final post to the Games but here it is...

The final day...

Sunday - July 28th, 2013
Sprint Chipper
Rise and shine for the final day of the 2013 CrossFit Games. The first event for the day was the Sprint Chipper: 21-15-9 of MedBall GHD Sit-ups, Power Snatches with 100# and 9 burpees over a wall. This workout was a quick one. How fast can you move through these three movements?

I remember sitting in the GHD, getting ready for the horn to buzz, looking up in the stands and smiling. Soaking up the moment as the next few minutes would be a fast pace hustle to the end. I was calm and collected one moment, feeling my heart beat within my chest. As soon as the horn blew, the high pace competition began and my heart started to beat faster. I reached down and picked up my MedBall and tapped the top of the GHD. I made sure to hold on tight for all 21 reps.

As I finished the GHD sit-ups, I dropped the ball to the left and climbed out to the right to minimize my transition to the snatches. I ran to my barbell that was set up on the platform in my lane. I had my mind set on doing all 15 snatches in a row, but as I got to the 8th snatch I was not able to hold on to the bar. I dropped it to platform. Before the event Alex and I had talked about the plan, go for 15 snatches in a row; if I wasn't able to keep going, drop to doubles or singles, but keep moving. I picked the bar back up and finished the snatches as singles.

As I finished the last snatch, I dropped the barbell behind me and ran to the next obstacle, a 6 ft. wall built with Plexiglas and wood frames that we had to climb up and over. As I approached the wall, I dropped my chest to the floor, pulled myself up and jumped up and over that wall. I threw myself to the floor as fast as I flipped over the wall. I told myself one more burpee, one more burpee, all the way to the 9th rep.

As I finished the last rep, I sprinted my way to the finish line, pumping my arms back and forth, moving my body as fast as I could. I finished with a time of 3:27, landing in 30th place for that workout. As I stood in the field with the sun shining down on me, I could see the crowd in the stands.  I saw my friends and family in a sea a red, cheering me on, waving their arms in the air. The handmade signs that were held up by friends brought a huge smile to my face. I threw my arms in the air, waving my hands and blowing kisses to everyone as I was so grateful to have all of their support.

Cinco 1 & Cinco 2
My goal for the Games this year was to make it to the final workout on the final day. The top 30 athletes after the sprint chipper were selected to move on, and I was one of those athletes. I was excited and thankful to have made the last workout. All of the training that I had put in this past year paid off. All the hours in the gym, working on my weaknesses to get better, stronger and faster was all worth it to make it to the final event. I proved to myself that I could do it, that I was able to do everything that was put in front of me. It had been a long week, but one with some fulfilling moments and experiences.

Cinco 1, the first part of the event was composed of three rounds of five deadlifts at 265# and five weighted pistols (one-legged squats) on each leg with a 35# kettlebell hold. Once the three rounds were finished, we had an 80 ft.  handstand walk to complete. All this work needed to be done within seven minutes. Once the time was up, we had a one minute of rest, which then started the second part of the final event.  Cinco 2 was three rounds, of five muscle ups and five deficit handstand push-ups. After the three rounds were completed, we had to complete an overhead walking lunge at 100# for 90ft.

Going into Cinco 2 I knew that the deficit handstand push-ups were going to be very challenging, but I told myself that I would try my very best.

The first part, Cinco 1 was fun for me, as I like to lift heavy weight and the pistols are an easy movement for me. As I stood in the arena for the last workout, I looked up in the stands and smiled to everyone. This brought a feeling of calmness in me. I knew that in a few moments that may change but I made sure to take a deep breath and enjoy that moment.

As the horn blew, I pulled the 265# bar off the floor and those first five reps felt smooth and easy. By the last round, the bar felt like plus 300#. As fatigue started to set in, my back started to round and my neck started to arch. I knew that my body and mind would be tested to it's limits. I had prepared for this and put in the days, weeks and months of training to be able make it to the final event.

As I finished the last set of pistols, it was on to the handstand walk. The goal was to complete that walk and I got close. Kicking up into a handstand after 15 heavy deadlifts made the walk more challenging and was hard to stabilize. I felt the heat of the sun on my skin and the sweat rolling down my face as I kicked up into a handstand. As I started to walk down the black mat on my hands, I could feel my heart pounding through my chest. I told myself, one more step, just one more step. I kept trying to cover more ground, but I lost my balance and came out of the handstand. I shook out my arms, closed my eyes for a second and took a deep breath. I stayed calm and kept kicking back up into the handstand to complete the walk, but time ran out. I made it past the half way mark and finished with a tie for 20th place.

As the minute of rest started, I got ready for the next event. Even though I didn't finish the handstand walk, I let it go, as it was already in the past. The focus now was to perform single muscle-ups so I would be able to complete some handstand push-ups. I followed my plan for the muscle-ups and moved to the deficit handstand push-ups. I placed my hands on the blocks and kicked up into a handstand. I lowered myself until my head touched the floor, brought my knees to my chest and kicked my feet up, but I fell away from the wall. No rep for my first attempt. I rested a little, filled my lungs with air and then tried it again but I couldn't lock it out and fell off. I had hope that if I could get at least one rep, then that would maybe lead to another rep.

One attempt after another I would fall off that wall, but I didn't give up. I could feel my emotions run high, I could feel the tears swell up in my eyes. I looked up to the crowd and saw the people cheering for us, screaming and waving their arms. I saw one lady who was right in front of my wall encouraging me to keep going; I smiled at her, took a big breath and kicked up again. As I kicked my feet up, I tried to press my hands against the blocks, but I again, fell away from the wall. My judge offered some words of encouragement to me to help as I had yet to complete one rep of the handstand push-ups. I appreciated the help and said thank you.

At the end of the seven minutes, I had only completed those first five muscle-ups. I thanked my judge, signed my score card and turned to the woman in the crowd that had cheered me on. I waved to her, said thank you to her and everyone else in the stand. I walked up to the other athletes and congratulated them, hugged them and gave them high fives. I finished with a tie for 29th place.




As I started to walk across the arena, tears started to fill my eyes and my chest felt as though I had a heavy sandbag wrapped around my shoulders. I poured all of my energy into those last seven minutes and felt exhausted both physically and mentally. Was I defeated? No. Was I disappointed in myself? No. I was overwhelmed with emotions because I wanted to complete at least one handstand push-up, but no matter how hard I tried, it wasn't there for me. I could feel my tears swell up and start to roll down my cheeks, but as I looked up to the crowd, I gently wiped them away and smiled. I achieved my goal of making it to the final event on the final day at the CrossFit Games. I was proud of myself for accomplishing the goals I set out.

The CrossFit Games to came to a close for me, but it was one of the best experiences ever. I am forever thankful for all the encouragement and love from Alex, Jane, Roberto, Remy, Martha, Rafa, Marisa, Cristi, John, Amy, Austin, Lynnie, Marco, Marco Jr., Steve, Connie and Diablo. I am appreciative of all the support from my friends and family from DCF, back home and around the world, thank you!

So, what's next? Practicing more deficient handstand push-ups.

~ MCA