Waiting for it all to get started!
Getting good luck hugs from everyone before going to warm up
Warm up area!
Looking slightly nervous walking towards my lane
Run through of the workout with my judge. Photo by Pete Williamson Photography
Away we go! Photo by Pete Williamson Photography
Haha this photo looks so funny I think! What’s going on with my neck?! Photo by Pete Williamson Photography
Box step ups
And we’re done!
I couldn’t feel my legs at this point!
Carole’s muffins does the job!
Good morning lovelies! Hope you’ve slept well. I finally managed to get some good solid sleep after a very eventful weekend. Almost ten hours! I feel loads better for it!
I did however not sleep well the night before Rainhill. You know when you feel like you’re half awake all night? That was me. When the alarm went off I almost jumped out of bed because of my nerves. I got a quick shower, got dressed, made sure everything I needed was packed and had some breakfast. I made oats in our room with the kettle, super handy! I wanted to make sure I had a nice big breakfast at the start of the day as I knew I wouldn’t really be eating any big meals when competing, you don’t really feel like it and it’s not very pleasant having a massive lunch in your stomach whilst doing a high intensity workout. Deciding on what to wear was difficult because you do perform better when you feel good. In the end I decided for the marbled leggings with my bright pink top to start the day off with. Bring on the colour! I think I was probably one of the most colourfully dressed people there haha.
We then headed down to the hotel breakfast so everyone else could get some food before heading over to Sportcity. Pretty much everyone from the G5 cheer squad were there which was nice. We didn’t stay for very long as I had to be at the venue to get registered so Carole and Faye kindly sacrificed their chilled breakfast time to drive us all over. Faye and I got off and went straight to the registration area whilst Carole and Jamie parked the car sorted out all the bags! I had three bags with me hehe.
Faye and I arrived to a long queue of athletes waiting to be registered but it moved quickly and before I knew it I had signed in and got my wristband. There we were again, Sportcity arena. You could feel the nerves and excitement in the air. I couldn’t believe that I was competing here in front of all these people. What on earth was I doing? No idea! We walked over to the bleachers where Carol who was also competing and a couple of other G5ers were. Lou showed up as well, the Rainhill trio was united. I left my stuff before heading down with the two of them to the competition floor for the athlete briefing. We went though all the movement standards for the first three WODs we would be doing before the lunch break. It all felt pretty straight forward. Once the demo was done it was time for Lou to get warmed up. She was in Heat 1 of the Wood category. She did brilliantly!
Then Carol was in Heat 2 of the Wood category. I didn’t really get to see that much of Carol unfortunately because I was stretching and warming up. There was only one heat in between Carol and I which meant I had to focus on getting ready. I was in Heat 2 of the Rastrick category. A little bit heavier on the weights and stuff.
Carol’s heat was done I got access to the warm up area. Faye came with me and held my stuff. Just I had done for her. This role reversal was very odd. She stayed with me for a bit as I warmed up on the rower and then did some burpees. She eventually had to leave to get a spot before the workout started so then I was on my own waiting for the heat to start. I get nervous just writing about it but at the time I didn’t really feel as nervous as I thought I would be. It was a good level of nerves and I was getting to the point where I just wanted it all to start. I had been waiting so long for this moment and now I just wanted to do it. Rastrick female heat 1 finished and we went to sit in our seats to get picked up by our judges. We had to sit on the same number as our lane, I was lane 5, the same number I seeded as. That’s the order they do it in.
The workout we were doing was an AMRAP of 6 minutes: 15 burpees over erg (rower), 20 box step ups or jumps (20 inch box) and then 20 cal row. Repeat as many times as you possibly can. This was the workout I had my meltdown after a couple of weeks before. When I was super tired and everything felt so hard. It is a really tough workout.
My judge came and picked me up. I’m pretty sure he said his name was Ricky. He was a very happy chatty guy, which made me feel a lot calmer. We walked over to my lane. I could hear and see my amazing G5 cheer squad. They were just in front of my lane, I felt a lot better seeing them. I went and made all the adjustments on my rower to make sure it was ready to go when the time came. Then I was chatting to my judge, not really sure what we were talking about! Then the countdown was on. I was standing next to my rower and the MC said one minute to go. Help I thought, what is going on?! Then 30 seconds, at this point I was like wait, I don’t feel quite ready for this! 10 seconds, there’s no going back now I thought. Then 5, 3, 2, 1!! GO!!!
And I was off and from then onwards I did not hear or see anyone. The amount of focus and adrenaline pumping through you is one of the weirdest and coolest things you’ll ever experience. You don’t hear or see anyone. It’s like a bubble around you and you hear sounds and people in the far distance but it’s just you in that moment and your body is on autopilot. You don’t even really realise what you are doing, you just do it. You don’t hear anything but at the same time you hear everything. It is bizarre. I for instance couldn’t remember a single song that was played during the workouts the until I looked back on the videos even though the beats were blasting out of the speakers. The only thing I really heard was my judge counting the reps out loud and cheering for me at times. I’ve never been as present and focused as when competing.
I did my burpees at a goodpace, nice and steady and got to my box step ups. Finished them rather quickly and I think I was first back on to the rower. I could see the MC next to my judge in the corner of my eye and I sort of heard him shout out my name. Which I then saw he did in the video looking back. That was pretty cool! I knew that the row was going to be tough. 20 cals as fast as you can is tough. Luckily Stella’s last minute rowing coaching helped me save my legs a bit. I eventually got off the rower and then went straight back into burpees. My god that was the worst part. My legs were on fire, the burpees themselves were fine but jumping over that rower you had to be determined. It’s easy to think you’ll trip over because your legs felt like jelly. The second round of burpees felt like they were taking forever but looking back on the video it actually went a lot faster than I thought. Adrenaline does that for you, it pushes you more than you ever think you could. I finished the burpees and went back onto the box step ups. Doing box step ups was a tactical move because they’re way faster and saves some energy. The first step up I wobbled loads on my leg. I actually couldn’t feel them at this point. The couple after were wobbly too and then it felt better.
I got to 20 box step ups then went back on the rower. That was my goal to get back on the rower because I managed to do that in the gym and I managed to row 9 calories. I was hoping for more. This part was painful I can tell you. So painful. Your legs just want you to stop but in my head I was just thinking keep on pushing!! There was no way I wasn’t going to keep on going. That was an interesting change because usually I say that your mind gives up before your body but here I felt so head strong and so determined to row as much as I possibly could with the energy I had left. I feel like I could’ve pulled for much longer if I had to in the headspace I was in. I was going to give this my all and there was no other option. I remember my judge was standing there shouting and cheering me on to keep on pushing. It helped a lot.
Then the MC yelled “TIME!”. The first WOD was over. I snapped back into reality and all of a sudden I noticed all the people around me and the incredible G5 crew (and Jamie of course but he’s included in the G5 crew). It felt like that workout had passed at the blink of an eye but at the same time that it wouldn’t end. It’s crazy, it’s only six minutes when you think about it but the amount of work you squeeze in is a lot! I got off the rower and wandered over to the everyone and got loads of hugs and collapsed on the ground. My legs gave up haha. Everyone was saying how well I’d done and I couldn’t believe it. I had no idea how it had gone.
Then we eagerly waited for the results to come in and it said I’d come tenth. Tenth out of over 50 competitors. I was in shock. I didn’t think that would be possible considering it was my first individual competition. I had no idea how I was going to handle the nerves and pressure I usually put on myself to do well but I felt like I handled my first WOD really well and ended up getting 6 more calories on my row than when I did it at G5. Quite a big difference. I was so happy with that but mainly I was just so proud of myself to have done it. To go out there in front of all those people and perform to the best of my abilities.
I felt so nauseous and exhausted after that WOD. I didn’t feel like eating anything but then Faye I think it was tempted me with one of Carole’s breakfast muffins and I couldn’t say no. I took one and went outside for some fresh air I think Jamie and Faye were both with me. Everything is sort of a blur. Once I’d had a couple of bites of the muffin I felt loads better. It was now time to prepare for my heavy cleans! I felt hopeful now when I had my nice new weightlifting belt from Faye. I had about 1.5 hours in between to get ready. That time went by so quickly and before I knew it it was almost time.