I’m sorry there was no post up yesterday! The day just ran away with me and before I knew it it was just too late for me to post I thought so I’ll redeem myself today with this post hopefully. It’s all about 18.4 and the Crossfit Open!
As I mentioned the other day, Faye and I watched the announcement together on Friday morning whilst drinking some tea. I was super excited when I first found out it was deadlifts. Not as excited when the other parts to the workout were handstand push ups and further along in the workout handstand walks! I’m glad I’d been practising handstand push ups and could get a couple but I’d never done it to a target before on the wall. More about that later on!
18.4 for female RX was: 21-15-9 deadlifts (70kg) and handstand push ups. So you do 21 deadlifts, 21 handstand push ups, 15 and 15, 9 and 9. If you got through all of that and you still had time left you started at 21 again but this time it was 21-15-9 of deadlifts (93kg) and 50 ft handstand walk in between each round of deadlifts. All of this in 9 minutes! Yup, 9 minutes and the elite will finish it in less.
I knew already then that if I did RX my workout would stop after the first 21 deadlifts and a couple of handstand push ups. The other option was to go scaled but I knew doing the handstand push ups would challenge me more and hopefully push me to do more than I was hoping for with the time pressure.
This time we all came in on the Friday evening to do our submissions to be able to get our Saturday class back and open gym on Sunday. So no trial run this time. I think that was just as well because ahndstand push ups are really tiring on your muscles.
I came in in the evening and wasn’t feeling good about the workout at all. I don’t know what it was but I felt stressed and really not up for doing it. I had loads of things going on in my head and stuff around me happening in my life and doing this workout all of a sudden felt like the last thing I wanted to do. Faye tried to calm me down but I couldn’t help but feel really horrible and I couldn’t even point my finger at why. I think it got worse when I was practising a couple of handstand push ups beforehand and couldn’t get a single one. Not even close. At one point I felt like I didn’t want to do it at all that evening. I just wanted to go home and try again on Sunday.
I stood there watching loads of people doing their submissions and in the end I calmed down and decided to give it a go. In worst case I thought I could just redo it. We set up for me to do it and off I went. The deadlifts felt so good, I love deadlifts and did the 21 unbroken. If you don’t get through the handstand push ups you will most likely end up tied with someone who got the same number as you so the time you finished the last set of deadlifts is your time breaker time so it’s good to finish them quickly.
I went over to the wall and stood there for a while and stared. I then decided to go for it. I went into my handstand (heels above the line marked out for me on the wall). That was new for me too, starting in a handstand and lowering myself down to then do my first push up. Before I had gone straight into the crouchy position and kicked up. It made a massive difference to where your hands were so I had to readjust them before kicking up into the handstand. I lowered myself down from the handstand, moved my hands slightly forward from my head, brought my knees down, stayed there for a moment and then just pushed with everything I had. “YES!” I heard Ange scream and I got my first rep. After that initial try it felt so much better and I felt my spirits lift a little bit. Maybe I could do this? The nine minutes went by quickly but I got thrown off by a quite a few no reps and in hindsight I realised I should’ve taken longer breaks to avoid spending so much energy on reps I couldn’t complete. I finished with 5 handstand push ups in the end and I felt a lot happier. I was glad I had done the workout.
All weekend I had thoughts about whether to attempt it again or not. Sunday open gym came and I still couldn’t make up my mind. I ended up not doing it then. To be honest it was so cold in the gym on Sunday I didn’t really feel like doing anything at all. I was like an ice cube and just ended up doing 100 calories on the assault bike, some rowing and other bits and bobs to stay warm.
I spoke to Stella about redoing it on Monday morning and later on in the day she said that I could come in in the evening to redo it during the late class if I wanted to. At that point I thought, why not? It’s only 9 minutes and I already had my other attempt on video so if I did worse I could just submit the other one. I had nothing to lose.
In I went once again. I had Carole, Faye and Ange help me (thank you guys!). It felt a lot more chilled this time around with not as many people watching as on Friday. Plus I was in a way better headspace. Faye counted down and then I started my deadlifts. I finished them 2 seconds faster than on Friday (33 seconds), meaning I had a slightly better tiebreaker time! I then went over to that wall once again. It’s funny in these workouts how you feel like you stand about forever staring at it but it’s actually only a couple of seconds looking back on the video. I went in for my first HSPU attempt and got no repped. I think I went in too soon after finishing my deadlifts. Not the best start!
I had told Faye to tell me when every 30 seconds or so had gone after every attempt so I gave myself proper rest. I waited and waited, then it was time for another attempt and I got it! My tactic seemed to work. I ended up getting 6 this time instead of 5 so only one more rep than my attempt on Friday but they felt so much better. Every time I got a rep I felt solid and strong and looking at the video I looked a lot more confident on each rep rather than on Friday when I was all over the place. I still got my reps but the technique wasn’t as good. I was so much happier with that attempt and was glad I made myself do it again and the thing is, it would only improve my positioning on the leaderboard as well.
A huge win for me even in this workout was kicking up into a handstand against the wall as confidently as I did for each rep. Not long ago that wouldn’t have even been possible because I for some reason got scared of the wall. Don’t ask me why haha! It was something in my head screaming no every time I tried. Now I do it as if I’d never had those thoughts in my life because I consistently worked to get past that voice in my head. Now I don’t really think about it much at all anymore and it’s so extremely liberating. I feel proud every time I do it.
I ended up enjoying 18.4 a lot more than I thought I would. Again, because it forced me to get out of my comfort zone and also stop and think about my tactics to get the best performance out of me. In my first attempt I got carried away after getting no repped and immediately tried again for a second rep rather than letting myself rest in between and save energy. I want it to go fast when sometimes taking it slow is the best way to get more out of me in these instances.
You always learn something! I can’t believe it’s already the last week of the Open. We were talking about that we haven’t seen any wall balls, box jumps or thrusters yet in any workouts so we’ll see what comes up. Imagine having them all in the same workout. Thrusters and wall balls are very similar movement so that could be interesting!
After doing our submissions on Friday Stella is arranging for all of us to go for dinner to celebrate the end of the Open. Sounds like it’s going to be a fun night. Let’s hope the last workout is a good one! It’ll be exciting to see all the Icelandic Crossfit queens Katrin, Annie and Sara compete during the announcement of 18.5 and also the latest Crossfit Games documentary of the 2017 Games is released on Friday!! I am so freaking excited to watch it, it looks like it’s going to be epic. I think Faye might be coming over after dinner on Friday and we’ll try and watch it.