PR During Rehab

*More about women’s health and pelvic floor stuff in this post. Dudes might want to skip this one too*

Let’s be honest here. I’ve been in a funk. I fairly certain that I have SAD (seasonal affective disorder) and the gloomy/rainy weather isn’t helping a ton. I was also having a little pity party regarding my sciatic pain and I was secretly afraid this would mean the end of me squatting, deadlifting, thruster-ing, clean & jerk-ing and snatching. It made me really sad that I was thinking about giving up, but the butt pain was annoying to no end. Ok, maybe I wasn’t really sad about never having to snatch ever again, but that’s a different story. I have a tendency to keep quiet when I feel this way because my Mom always said to keep your mouth shut if you have nothing nice to say…

So yeah, annoying funk. When I get in a funk, I eat. Not always good food choices. My new jeans are feeling snug and so are my scrub tops again. In order to snap myself out of the funk and emotional eating, I reached out to Kathleen and Courtney and we have embarked on a (second for me) Whole30 together. If one of us falls off the wagon, we ALL have to do 15 burpees… per cheat snack. We started last Thursday and so far, everyone has been on plan! Way to go ladies!

I have also had my 1st appointment with the pelvic floor physic. It was interesting and mildly uncomfortable at times. I mean, where else do you get little stickers (electrodes) put next to your bum hole and vagina, hooked up to an ultrasound and get to see the strength of your inner abdominal muscles and rectal muscles as well. Add to that the presence of an almost 3-year-old who was peeking under my gown and asked A LOT of questions and you have a pretty good picture of my appointment.

The findings were interesting though:

  • I have weak rectus abdominis (front abs)
  • My abdominal muscles remain contracted too tight, even at rest.
  • I can’t hold a deep abdominal contraction for 10s during kegels
  • I get better control of those contractions if I think more about contracting my anus than if I focus on my abdomen.
  • My internal obliques and transversus abdominis are working overtime in order to compensate

In terms of regular physic, here’s what’s wrong with me as well:

  • I have too much mobility and squat too low, curving my spine at the bottom of the squat, resulting in my obliques taking over and adding a toll onto my lower back
  • Too much mobility on the erg as well, resulting in the same outcome as in the squat

What I’m doing to fix this:

  • Lots of kegels (we’re talking 60 reps of 10s contractions with holding and 10s rest)
  • a weird contraction of the deep abs while lying on the floor and opening my legs sideways, then extending the leg out straight.
  • firing the small deep posterior chain before doing any squatting or any heavy lifting
  • contracting my pelvic floor muscles when lifting heavy, or even lifting the girls
  • one-legged step-ups in the stairs and focusing on not tilting my pelvis
  • Squatting down to a med ball to limit my squat depth and ensuring I don’t squat too low (still below parallel, but not ass-to-the-grass

It doesn’t sound like much and when I do my keels and pelvic floor exercises I pretty much look like I’m just standing or lying down and staring into nothing-ness, but it’s a lot of hard work. I also started these on last Thursday.

What I have noticed so far:

  • I haven’t had a flare up in my sciatic pain since Thursday.
  • The numbing I felt in my lower back has decreased tremendously. So much so that I recently sat down and was amazed to notice what it felt like to sit down and not have that low numbing pain in my back
  • I did thrusters today, PR’d my 1RM and there was no leakage
  • I sneezed twice today without crossing my legs and also without experiencing any leakage
  • I’m not feeling any discomfort in my sciatic or lower back at all after doing the thrusters today
  • The pelvic floor PT gave me the green light to start doing my ROMWOD again, now I just have to clear it with the regular PT!

This is huge people! After 5 + years of lower back pain/ butt pain/ sciatic pain, I’m walking almost pain-free and it feels awesome. It has brought back a little of positiveness in my life and it makes the world of a difference in my day-to-day life.

Ok, enough about my lady bits and let’s now focus on the WOD today:

1RM Thruster: I warmed up to 65# before the timer went off and I planned on doing those E2M with 5# increases on each rep. I was hoping to hit 90# on my last rep, which would have been a 5# PR. Here’s what I ended up doing

65#-70#-75# with the assist of a med ball behind me in order to know when to stop dropping. I almost tripped on it when I did 80#, so I decided to try without any assist on the last 2 reps. 85# went well and Coach AJ told me I had good speed. I failed 90#. I managed to squat it and get up with it, but I couldn’t press it overhead. I was slightly disappointed. I humm-ed and aww-ed for a little bit and then decided to try for a 2#-PR anyway and go for 87#. I went to get the fractional plates and added them onto my bar. I had about 20 seconds left before the 12 minutes were up and i took a deep breath and went for it! I was so happy to get it up and above my head! I didn’t have much expectations that I would PR while rehab-ing my sciatic, but this was a nice welcomed surprise! 🙂

Double Tabata Row: A Tabata is an interval workout. You do 8 rounds of 20s work / 10s rest. Because it was so intense for my sciatic, I chose to go for the Assault bike instead of the erg. I probably could have done a regular Tabata, but not a double one. I set myself up next to Marika (who was on the Airdyne) and off we went. For the 1st Tabata, I managed to keep my intervals at 4 cals for all but the 7th interval! I was disappointed, but kept going and managed to get 4 cals for the 8th round. As soon as we entered the second part of the Tabata, I was just trying my best to keep each interval at 3 cals. I surprised myself by getting 4 cals for a few rounds, but I mostly stayed at 3. I was glad when It was over and my quads were throbbing nicely and seizing up slowly. I got off the Assault bike, got on all fours and then slumped onto my belly on the floor. I caught my breath and went to write my score on the board. I was shocked when I saw that Marika’s lowest score was 6 cals! Holy crap! I thought I’d worked hard for all my rounds, but my score was a measly 3! Coach AJ told us that they don’t count calories the same way and after doing some research online, I found in some forums that people mentioned the Assault bike was scoring about 1/2 the cals and distance when compared to the Airdyne. Good to know I wasn’t so far behind then!

I’m just happy with how today’s session went. I know you can’t always have great workout days, but it sure start the day the right way when you do well on the Skill and WOD!

Modified Fitness Is Still Fitness

My sciatic has been acting up since Monday and hasn’t let up really. I was limping badly yesterday and even though I did my ROMWOD, foam rolled, LaCrosse-balled it, it is still pinching. I showed up to the Box this morning and didn’t have high hopes of being able to perform the WOD, but after I spoke with Coach France, we came up with a plan of attack on how to modify the WOD and still get a good workout in. The only warning she gave me was: “If it’s not feeling good, don’t push through, just do some push-ups instead.” With those modifications and that one rule, I was ready to go. Anxious, but ready! 😉

I started modifying during the warm-up when the air squats were a bit much for me. I could feel a pinch and therefore, dropped and did push-ups instead.

As for the WOD, here’s what I did instead:

  • 800m run x 1 (non stop, at an easy pace) followed by an AMRAP of
  • 10 x push press @55#
  • 10 burpees (no bar hop for me)

I tried my best to bounce back quickly on the turnarounds on the run, instead of taking a few walking steps, I just pushed off and bounced back into it. I managed to complete only 43 reps of this one, but I was still happy to just be moving at all!

We then had a 10-mins rest before we tackled the second part of the WOD:

  • 1200m on the Airdyne (non-stop and I never let go of the handles either, pretty proud of this new feat!) followed by AMRAP of
  • 10 pullups (blue and purple bands)
  • 10 air squats

I completed 82 reps on this one and it felt good. I know I probably didn’t spend as much energy as everyone else, but like I said, I was sweaty, I worked hard and managed to get some fitness in, even though I had a pretty bad bum bugging me. The air squats felt good on the last part of the WOD, maybe because I was warmed up a bit?

All in all, I was pretty pleased with my work today. The pull-ups were banded perfectly and I was able to string 4 and 3 of them throughout the whole workout. I was in a good place mentally and blocked out all negative self-talk during the workout. The Airdyne was sure challenging, but when it got too much, I just closed my eyes, focused on breathing and kept going. I was truly happy to be able to move and get my heart pumping for a bit!

I am now back home, showered and ready to go to a short meeting at work. When I come back, I will try to book myself a physio appointment and see if they can give me pointers to help out with my sciatic! In the meantime, I will keep up with my ROMWOD tonight, without pushing it. After all, I have my Kitty and Cougar Throwdown comp I need to be ready for with Kathleen! Look for us , we are team Beasty Belles!

What Was That?!?

I went to bed at a decent hour last night, woke up, got Rina ready for school and then even had some time to do a little food prep before heading in to the Box. I had read the workout last night and I knew it was going to be a tough one, but I thought to myself: “It’s DT. You can do it at 65# if you strategize appropriately about it.” RIIIIIiiiiiiight!

That was before somebody pointed out that the warm-up was x3 this morning. I had read it as x1 only. Holy Cow, this was gonna be hard!

Warm-up (aka WOD #1):  3x

  • 500m row
  • 15 burpees
  • 30 light RKBS

Myeah, ok. I’ll get right on that! There was a few of us and in a way, I’m thankful for that because that meant I had to do 0.6km on the death bike for my second round since none of the ergs were available. To say that I enjoyed this much more than the erg is an understatement. At least, I was benefiting from the wind I was generating on the death bike vs. the erg. I did all my rounds with an 18# KB and did all my burpees Rx, but I had to stop twice during my last row. That was intense to say the least and it put me in a foul mood. How was I supposed to use 65# for DT now, when I felt like I had nothing left in the tank? I warmed up to 55# and called it a day. I felt like wiping down the barbell before I got started because it was already full of sweat from the hang power cleans!

Yep!

Yep!

WOD: DT

3.2.1.Go!

I managed all my rounds with unbroken DL. I would go up to 11, take a few breaths and then do my last rep before transitioning to the Hang Power Cleans. Those were the hardest for me. I had to break most rounds into sets of 4-4-1 and that made me waste a lot of time. I just didn’t have the forearms to push through. I did manage to do all push jerks unbroken, which tells me I probably should have stuck to my idea of using 65#, but I was too angry. The amount of swearing I did in my head was pretty phenomenal, even for me! Thanks goodness I managed to keep my mouth shut and just grind through it. I could tell I had my “pissed off” face on and the first thing that came out of my mouth when I was done was: “That was stupid!”

I was really trying to finish before Linda and I didn’t manage to do so, but I hung on to her pretty well and I did whatever it took for me to get over this insane warm-up/WOD. It’s rare that a workout puts me in such a bad mood and I’ve been trying to understand why it has done so. Was it because I felt drained form the warm-up? Was it because I didn’t use 65# like I had originally planned on doing when I misread the WOD last night? Was it because it was a grey/rainy day? I still don’t have the answer to that and I’m still pretty mad at the whole thing. I know I should let it go and I will, but it is surprising to me how upset I am at the whole thing. I finished with a time of 10:25, which puts me right in the middle of the pack (I think) and makes me think I scaled appropriately. I’m just not sure why I had such a violent reaction to that WOD. I spoke to Rob afterwards and he seemed to think like me. We were both agreeing that we HATED this one! Oh well, it’s done and over with and I now have a record for this Hero WOD, but it sure didn’t make me feel like one when I was doing it. Gotta check that mental fortitude and my internal self-talk, once again!

I came home, finished my food prep for the week, finished laundry and now have a luxurious 15-mins break to lounge before I go get Rina at the bus stop. Then, it’s prepping dinner, bath time and ROMWOD for me when the girls get to bed. I’m truly hoping the ROMWOD will help lift up my sourpuss mood!

That's what I should have done today!

That’s what I should have done today!

I’m A Crossfitter

Kathleen is in the process of moving to her new mansion house and she has been wanting to inaugurate Jim’s Gym V2.0 so we all got together today for some special workout she had come up with.

I drove up to her new place and couldn’t help from swearing to myself as I pulled up the her new place. IT IS MASSIVE! Massive and gorgeous and she will have a library and I can’t wait to see it when it’s all done and it has an awesome gym space as well. Even bigger than her previous one. I told her I’d like to move in. She laughed. I don’t think she understood I was being serious! 😉

There were 4 of us today and  I got to meet Lisa (Kath’s friend) and Keith (Kath’s brother). Lisa joined us a little late as she had a previous engagement and when I introduced myself to her, she asked if I knew Kath from Crossfit. Keith’s answer was: “Of course she does, she has the same shoulders as Kath. Crossfire shoulders.” I never thought of myself as having a “Crossfitter’s body shape”, but apparently, I have the shoulders of one and I totally took that as a compliment! Before Lisa showed up, Kath, Keith and I warmed up with this:

Warm-up!

Warm-up!

I can’t remember which weight I did for the KB hold, I think it was 26# in each hand. That was brutal enough for me, especially on the last round. I was having a hard time catching my breath from the erg and my arms were shaking while Keith rowed his last round. I managed to keep my rowing around 2:02-2:04 for each rounds and I was happy with that.

Once we were all warmed-up, we got into two teams (Keith and Lisa, Kathleen and myself) and went through the workout and strategized as to how to break it down. Kath and I decided to split the group work into 10 reps each, but we broke away from the original plan a bit as we went along.

Kath's masterplan!

Kath’s masterplan!

We set up outside of the garage and it was nice to workout in the last sun of the summer!

3-2-1-GO! Everybody took off running with Kath and Lisa literally gunning it. Keith was in the middle and I was bringing up the rear. Kath go back in first and because there was only 1 box to do BJ, she got dibs on it and the other team had to start on the KBS (we all did Russians). Kath did 15 BJs, I did 15 BJs, then she did 11 and I followed suit and she finished off the rest before we moved onto RKBS where we broke them off in sets of 15 (I was using 35#).

For the carries, I sandbagged it down to 26# because I couldn’t do the overhead carry with 35#. We each did 3 rounds and competition was kicking in with Keith and myself doing a little trot at some point to try to gain distance on the other team.

Kath and Lisa, doing some carries

Kath and Lisa, doing some carries. Do you see how gorgeous it is to workout in that scenery?

Kath and I finished the carries first and I hopped onto the assault bike first (after we fiddled with the seat height, me being the shorty that I am, had to drop it down to 2, while Kath had to crank it back up to 8)! We each did 0.6 on the assault bike and moved onto the GTO with the plates (I used 25#, maybe next time I’ll try 35#?)

We then set off for the last 400m run and Kath stayed behind, but I told her I had this and wanted to run by myself. Keith and Lisa had the crappy part seeing as there was only 1 assault bike, they had to start with the GTO plates, THEN do the assault bike, THEN go straight into the last run. With Keith being the last one on the bike, I really felt for him as he had no rest at all between the bike and the run. I went back out with him to help him finish up his run and he totally sprinted the last part! Well done!

I think Kath and mine’s time was around 23:51 and Keith and Lisa was 24:32 if I remember properly. It was fun! I got sweaty for the 5th time this week and it felt good.

Keith and I stayed in the garage and discussed the Whole30 for a bit (I’m starting a second round of it on September 1st) and he seemed intrigued! I will share some of my knowledge with him!

I came back home to an empty house, received a text from Ben that they were at the pool and went back out to meet up with them. It was a nice way to relax after a sweat fest and I even enjoyed some of the sprinklers in the kids’ pool on my Crossfitter’s shoulders! 😉

As we normally come home after the pool for dinner and the girls’ bedtime, I had only packed my PJs to wear afterwards (sweat pants and a tank top. This is something we normally do as it’s easier to just get the girls in their PJs at the pool, instead of having to change them back once home). Ben had other plans though and we ended up going out for dinner, me in my sweats and all! Super classy!!! Oh well, I didn’t care (too much)!

We are now back home, relaxing on the couch and the girls are already in bed. I think the pool tuckered them out and I will follow suit soon as I have Crossfit in the morning, followed by our suite inspection (our tenants are moving out) and I’m fairly sure I’ll have some cleaning to do in the suit before our new tenants move in! Yay! More cleaning, said no one ever!

I’m Out!

I woke up at 0430 this morning and as much as I tried to fall back asleep for 30 minutes, I just couldn’t. I finally got up at 0500 and got ready for the WOD. As I made my way downstairs, I realized we were out of chicken and I had no back-up plan for my pre-workout snack. This morning was just not panning out as I had anticipated.

I made my way to the Box and warmed-up for the WOD. My hamstrings were still tight from the lifting class on Sunday and I was apprehending the front squats.

Skill: Front Squats EMOM x 10

We were supposed to work to 85% of our 1RM (120# for me) and that meant 102# for me. I warmed-up to 105# and although it felt hard, it was only 1 rep with lots of rest in between, so I thought I could pull it off and so did Coach Caleb. We started the first round and I felt ok. On my 2nd rep, I had a pinch in my right quad. I rubbed it off once I was done my rep and was hoping the rubbing would make it go away. On my 3rd rep, the pinching came back stronger and as I finished my rep, I knew I was done for today. I talked it through with Coach Caleb, went to the foam roller, the Lacrosse ball and the Airdyne (very slow and just as a recovery), but even with all that, I still couldn’t squat more than 25º without any pain. We had to split the class in two heats and Coach Caleb asked me if I was in. “I’m out!” was my answer. I went to sit myself down and ice my quad while cheering on the others.

It was frustrating, but there was nothing I could do about it and I’m smarter than to push through the pain. Maybe my quad was just over-compensating for my tight hamstrings. Hopefully, some rest will mean a quick recovery and I will be able to join Kathleen on our planned WOD over the weekend.

I came back home and shared my frustrations with my hubby. He made things better by making me coffee. There’s no word for how such a small gesture in the morning can remind me how much I am loved. It’s not a big thing, but I am always thankful and I never take it for granted. Babe, you are amazing and I love you! Not only did he make me coffee, but he also helped me out with the cleaning and the laundry and went out to get more chicken as well! That meant I was done with my chores early and was able to spend some time with the girls and treat them to a lunch out. They were pretty stoked and making my girls happy makes me happy in return, so even though the day started on a crappy note, it definitely got better. Now, I am looking forward to rubbing my quad with some arnica gel and relax on the couch before going for my nap and heading in for my night at work tonight.

Warning Signs

I’ve been getting a few warning signs lately and I have been paying attention. Yesterday, on my way home from work, I was stopped at a red light at a busy intersection. My car decided to just completely stop. Nothing was lit up on my dashboard. Panic hit me like a ton of brick as I tried a few times to restart my engine without any luck. Great. I’ll be the dumba** stuck in the left lane and not moving. Luckily, I gave my car a little rest and was able to restart my car and drive home. This morning, it started but my radio was playing static on every station. I’m pretty sure it is my battery dying and I took my car in after lifting class to get a new one and get my car serviced.

After a little sleep yesterday, I still felt dizzy and spinning and was glad I took a sick day from work. I’ve had a hard week with more lady-problems than usual and I just felt so tired from the previous night at work. I went to bed early after a massive allergy attack hit me around 2100. Loaded myself up with anti-histamines and was hoping to wake up refreshed. No such luck, unfortunately. I woke up feeling like this:

Totally empty

Totally empty

Waking up and feeling like I could use a whole other night of sleep isn’t great. Knowing I mentally committed to going to Oly class made it just that much worst. I was still extremely sore from Tuesday’s Boulder Shoulder WOD and I haven’t been able to pick up the girls since then. I was hoping that moving for the lifting class would help get rid of the soreness so I got up at 0500 and showed up.

Photo 2015-06-11, 6 07 17 AM

The warmup almost did me in and I didn’t have any expectations for the lifts.

Snatch Balance + 2 OHS (7×2 E2M @87.5%): I had missed this set 3 weeks ago and I did 85% for the hang snatch (turns out it would have been my 87.5% as well).

I chose 55# and stuck to it. I was really trying to commit and landing the bar over my head while at the bottom of my squat. The OHS were mostly good, except for 2 that were wobbly, but I’m really getting comfortable at this weight! 🙂

Power Clean & Jerk 6×2 E3M: I was aiming to finish at 80# on this lift and worked my weights backwards from that. It felt really good until I hit 75#.

55#-60#-65#-70#-75#-80#

The power cleans were getting hard and I totally screwed up my last rep at 80# on both the clean and the jerk. Meh! I was done! Had absolutely nothing left! I did, however felt like I could at least raise my arms overhead, so that was a win on mobility, compared to how sore I was when I first walked in the gym this morning!

6am and already at the bar!

6am and already at the bar (almost feeling hungover too)!

Now. Confession time. I’ve been cheating. I know I said I was starting my Whole30 on June 15, but I have slowly been weaning myself into it. I have to say, I did read about the timeline and quickly discarded it to the back of my already full little brain. I am probably on day 5 today and now, my week and how I’ve been feeling is all starting to make sense.

The feeling hungover on Tuesday, me being short-tempered with Béatrice at bedtime last night and the absolute zero energy this morning. It’s all starting to make sense now. I hadn’t thought about it, but now it all makes sense. I am a day ahead of “schedule”, but it still makes sense. Let’s just say I am very much looking forward to “Tiger blood” day.

 

 

 

 

AML

You know how some people use FML when something goes wrong in their lives? Well, How about we change that to AML? What does AML stand for you ask? Airdyne My Life. Seriously. Let’s be honest here, the Airdyne is way worst than the F-word. I also think it should become a new swear word. I’m starting a new trend, who’s with me?

My thoughts, exactly!

My thoughts, exactly!

I went to bed after passing out on the couch at 9 pm last night and had a somewhat decent sleep when I woke up this morning. My shins were in pain from the box jumps and all my DUs practice. Hello shin splints, I didn’t miss you when you weren’t there and now that you’re back, I’m not enjoying your company at all. AML!

Here’s what was awaiting me at the Box:

 

WOD: Rowed Under

Of course, I would be part of the only team on the Airdyne because we don’t have enough Ergs. Seriously, I cannot remember the last time I sat on the Erg, it’s been that long since I’ve rowed. Because we were on the ‘dyne, we each had to do 8 intervals of 0.3mi on it in order to get the equivalent work done as all the rest of the people on the Ergs. My right quad kept seizing up and I kept having to massage it when my partners were pushing on the bike. I was not looking forward to doing DUs after. My shins are so sore already. I decided to scale down to FG2 for the DUs because of the pain and did all my rounds at 5 DUs followed by 15 single skips. The max I managed to string in a row was 2. I was teamed up with Neil and Tracey. I started the interval and they would go second. We made it under the time cap and finished in 24:43

Whipped elbow, I'll spare you a picture of my whipped butt. You're welcome!

Whipped elbow, I’ll spare you a picture of my whipped butt. You’re welcome!

I wasn’t disappointed because I was trying to forget about the shin pain. I will definitely ice my legs when the girls go for a nap.

I feel so low in energy, it’s annoying. I’m on phase 2 of my Fast Metabolism Diet which means it’s meat and veggie day. Only meat and veggies for 2 days, no fat, no carbs. I will be making a batch of the garden meatballs and will have that on a bed of zoodles (zucchini noodles) tonight. Can’t wait! Sometimes, I feel like my days are filled with laundry and cooking only. Although, I have to admit that I would rather be at home to do said laundry and cooking instead of being at work. It’s just that I feel rushed on my days off to do all this housekeeping, just to get back to work. Sometimes, I long for a day off. A real day off. Do moms ever get a real day off? If so, I’d like to know how they manage it all!

Bleh! I’m tired and whiney. Sorry, not the best post, but a real one!

Yep! Tomorrow will hopefully be better!

Yep! Tomorrow will hopefully be better!