Christmas Cold

I haven’t posted in a bit. My last night shift, Rina got sick with a fever and a sore ear and Ben brought her to the ER to get checked out. It turns out she is fine and we have been managing her symptoms with Tylenol and Advil, but I finished my night with a sore throat and when I woke up from my nap, I had a full blown cold. So, to recap, Rina is sick, Béa is sick and I’m now sick as well. To top it all off, Ben has finally caught it as well and we are a couching/sniffling/sneezing mess of a family.

A little head cold didn’t stop me from making my way to the Box on Saturday and this morning as well. I probably could have gone lifting on Thursday morning, but Ben was able to come home early and we spent the evening together, just chatting about life and things. It was nice and by the time he reminded me about lifting in the morning, I had missed my bedtime by about 2 hrs in order to get up at 0500, so I chose not to go.

This morning though, the girls didn’t have school so I took the opportunity to go back to the 0600 class and that meant waking up at 0500. It was nice to see the old crew again! Here’s what we did:

Skill: Back Squat 5×3 (Tempo 3-2-1) E2M

I had done these 2 weeks ago and had finished at 100#, with a 10# PR. I remembered I was struggling with these and I wanted to try 105# for a new PR. I paired up with Gail and we got working. Here were my sets:

85#-90#-95#-100#-105#

I was pretty pumped about this new PR!

WOD: Thriller

We had tackled this one last June and I had done FG1 @55# on the 20″ box. Today, I was really wanting to try 65#, but with my cold and being back on the 20″ box for the first time since my rehab, I chose to stick to 55#. Good thing I did too because I kept gripping the bar unbalanced and that screwed up some of my reps. I had to re-adjust my grip at the top of the thruster and it made for some lost time.

The first round went well and I was really focusing on trying to be explosive from the hips on the BJ instead of just pulling my feet up onto the box. It was hard since I also had to focus on bracing my inner abs while stepping down from the box in order not to jut my butt to the side (which aggravates my sciatic pain). Sometimes when I think too much about a movement, it’s almost like it’s too much for my little head and then my body is all wonky. That’s what happened today.

My third round was horrible for my grip on the thrusters and I had to put the bar down after 6 reps. I was also really cramping out at the bottom of the squat on the BJ and Coach Caleb came by to remind me to use my hips. I was tired and not sure I could do just that, but I made a mental note to try it on the next round.

My 4th round was better. I didn’t have to put the bar down, I just rested at the top of the thrusters and kept going and was trying to be more explosive on the BJ. I’m not sure I managed, but Coach Caleb told me he could tell I was at least trying. I guess, that’s “A” for effort! Lol! 😉

Here were my reps today vs. back in June:

  • 1:29 today  vs. 1:29 in June
  • 1:34 today vs. 1:35 in June
  • 2:03 today vs. 1:36 in June
  • 1:41 today vs 1:48 in June

Had it not been for me dropping the bar on my 3rd set, I think I could have PR’d this WOD, but I didn’t do so bad considering I’m stuffed up and coughing a bit. My time for today was 3:32 vs. 3:17 back in June, which is only 15s slower. I’m not too upset about that one and so far, no sciatic pain from the BJ step down! I’ll take it!

The girls are home with me today and surprisingly enough, I don’t have any cooking, cleaning or laundry to do. I had planned on taking them on a short hike, but it’s raining outside so we are doing collages and playing with Play-Doh. I’m hoping to get to wrap some Christmas presents today and tonight and be done with that before I head back to work tomorrow.

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!

Random Béatrice 

For those who know her, you also know that Béatrice can be a little space cadet and random at times.

Today will go down in my little life as one of the shittiest. Let’s see why:

Basement that flooded last Thursday was finally dry, until water started coming in again
I got rear-ended on my way to work by somebody who had expired insurance and registrations. I’m fine, my bumper has a little scratch, we’ll live.
I had to go to work, then pick up Béatrice, rush home, go to physio, go shopping for birthday presents and Christmas, rush back home and decide if I was going to take the girls to Crossfit. I really wasn’t in he mood, but I know Rina would enjoy it so I sucked it up and we went.
It’s been crazy with wind and rain all day and all I’ve wanted to do was curl up on the couch with my hot water bottle and my knitting. Unfortunately, I still have to clean the kitchen, fold the laundry and the girls aren’t even close to being in bed.

As I head upstairs for a quick bath, BeZU calls out to me

Béatrice: Mom!… Mom?… MOM!

Me: (exhausted and a little annoyed) Yeah buddy?

Béatrice: I love you Mom!

Well done, clever girl, well done!

Shoulda, Woulda, Coulda

I came home late from a long day at work. I stayed a few hours extra to help out a co-worker who had some family business to attend (don’t worry, she’ll come in early for me next week, so I’ll have a short day!), but that meant I did 14hrs at work yesterday. I managed to squeeze my ROMWOD in during a short break and it felt good to be stretching at the end of the day!

Pigeon pose in my scrubs!

Pigeon pose in my scrubs!

I got home after Ben did and we hung out a bit on the couch before I headed to bed. I fell asleep around midnight and the night seemed very short when Rina came to wake me up at 0600 this morning. I got up, made her lunch, got breakfast going, started with my weekly cleaning and had to leave it unfinished because it was time to head into the Box.

I felt like quitting and heading back home during the warm-up so I knew I would struggle today to get it all done!

Skill: 3RM Front Squat (12 mins)

We had 12 minutes to find out our 3RM on the front squat and although I had planned on reaching 120#, I stopped after I did crappy reps at 115#. Energy was low, I was stripping my butt on the up and I knew the WOD would be brutal (for me) so I saved what little I had left in the tank for the WOD.

WOD: Nancy

I decided to do FG1+ yet again today. That’s what I had done the last time I did this one and considering I felt drained of life, I knew it would be a definite challenge. To add to all that, it was also raining. Perfect weather for my crappy mood and to go running outside!

3-2-1- Go!

There was no way I would keep up with Linda today: she’s a faster runner and I’m pretty sure she managed her OHS non-stop for all her rounds as I had to break mine mostly into sets of 5 (with the occasional 7 in there).

I knew I was in trouble when I started bawling on my 1st round of OHS. I tried to regulate my breathing as best I could on the run and finally got things somewhat under control, but mentally, I had already checked out. You know it’s bad when I get it into my head that “I’ll recover in the run!” Ha! Yep! That thought actually crossed my mind quite a few times during the WOD. Everybody was done by the time I reached my 4th round of OHS, so I kept going and went out by myself for my last run. I came back in with everyone cheering me on I finished at 24:53 and crumpled to the floor to get a good cry. Who knew I was this tired? After I left a puddle of tears on the floor, I got up and put my stuff away, all the while thinking I should have listened to myself and gone home after the warm-up. I. AM. SPENT! It took me 1:36 longer this time around to finish Nancy at the same weight I had done previously. However, apparently our 400m run isn’t 400m. It’s somewhere between 440-460m, depending on who you talk to. Therefore, I guess I PR’d today even though I really didn’t!

Well, maybe I'd done better if Ryan had actually been there for me today! ;)

Well, maybe I’d done better if Ryan had actually been there for me today! 😉

I came back home to finish my cleaning, had a quick bath, made lunch and roasted pumpkin seeds (’tis the season!) Béatrice refuses to play nicely upstairs so I’ll try to fit in my ROMWOD for today and will relax a bit before going for a nap before my night at work tonight.

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!

Long Day

0400: Snoring and emergency vehicle alarms going on. The snoring I can deal with by nudging the culprit, the alarms go on for an unnatural long time.

0500: Feels like I just fell back asleep. Time to wake up and get ready for the WOD. Looking forward to this one, even though I can barely walk my quads are still so stiff from the squats and GTO from Wednesday. Pre workout fuel-up of cashews and turkey. Out the door at 0530

0600:

Skill: Trap Bar or Axle Bar DL 4×6 E2M

Last time, I had done the trap bar DL, so today was time to switch it up and use the axle bar one. I wasn’t sure where to start weight-wise on the bar so here’s what I did:

90#-95#-100#-105#

I felt good still at 105# and I think my grip could have taken more. Good to know for next time! ;

 

WOD: Three Fifteen

I teamed up with Telsey and Jenny for this one and it was nice to be able to workout with Telsey again. It was my first time meeting Jenny and she was such  sweet woman! I was really wanting to try this WOD FG at 65#, but I was also very happy to scale it down for my team. I remember too well being the newbie in the class and being terrified of holding people back. I didn’t mind lowering the weight on the bar today, it allows me to really focus on form and being explosive at the hips on the thrusters. I had devised a plan of attack for the WOD and we all agreed on it:

  • switch the thrusters every 5 reps
  • switch the BJ every 10 reps
  • switch the DUs every 30s.

I started us off on the thrusters and was a bit slow on the account that I was cleaning EVERY REP! Coach Caleb came by and corrected my mistake! I’m such a keener! The rest of the rounds were uneventful and we moved through the 6 mins quickly.

Onto the BJ, I managed to jump up all my reps and I was super stoked with that. I also managed not to mangle my shins, so bonus there as well! 😉

The DUs is where we slowed down considerably. I was the only one on our team who could get some reps at DUs, but even at that, all my reps were single ones. I couldn’t string them at all today. Oh well, it is what it is! Honestly, I was just happy to be moving today. My body is so freakin’ sore from Wednesday. I know I’ve said it before, but it’s been a while since a skill/WOD combo destroyed my body this much!

We finished with a total of 214 and my personal stats were:

  • 25 thrusters
  • 50 BJ
  • 14 DUs

If you do the math (or if I do it for you), you’ll see that I was responsible for 41.6% of my team’s score. I’m not doing the stats to brag. I remember doing partner WODs over a year ago and wanting to pull my fair share of the work, yet somehow not managing to accomplish that goal. If it was a 3-person team, I would always hover around the 27-29% mark. If it was a 2-person team, I would hover around the 40-43% mark. The fact that I managed to hit almost 42% of our score today lets me know that I am doing something right.

0700: Rush home, say goodbye to Rina before she leaves for school, shower, breakfast and get ready to head out with BeZU to the pumpkin patch at Galey Farms with her pre-school.

0915: Leave 1/2 of untouched coffee behind (still morning this one) to go pick up other preschool mom and son who live 1 street away from us.

0930-1130: Snacks, train ride, hay ride, pumpkin picking in the field and finish it off with a quick trip to The Root Cellar to pick up ingredients I’m missing for my food prep before work tomorrow.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

1200: Getting lunch ready for Béa and making this Paleo fried rice (I subbed the soy sauce for coconut aminos) 

I also wanted to make this, but by the time I was finished the fried rice, it was time to get Béatrice ready and out the door to pick up Rina at the bus stop.

1545: All the family is back home and I now have to figure out dinner. I am done with cooking at this point, so take-out it is for the girls and I have some of the fried rice for myself (needless to say the kids won’t eat it if it’s not orange). Cleaning up the kitchen, unloading the dishwasher, clearing the table, picking up the toys all over the house, another quick shower for myself before I bathe the girls and then a surprise pop-by visit by my sweet SIL who dropped off this little beauty:

She knows me well!

She knows me well!

I packed my food for tomorrow’s work day, put the girls in bed, did my ROMWOD (Thank you sweet baby Jezus it was only 9mins-long) and am now cuddling with the hot water bottle. I have been awake for almost 15hrs, have been going non-stop all day and I’m ready for bed. A few technicalities to take care of (finish this post, floss, brush teeth, set alarm, triple check that I’ve set alarm to AM mode, not PM, read 1 line of my book on my iPad) before I finally fall asleep for what I’m hoping will be a restful night.

There were a few times when I wanted to call it quit today, but I applied my tried and true strategy that I use in Crossfit: it’s just one more rep hour, you can do this. Just finish your meal prep, then you can rest. Just unload the dishwasher, then you can rest. Just get the girls to bed, then you can rest.

Now I rest for a bit. I’m out y’all!

 

When Your Cheat Meals Cheat You!

Artsy shot I took of the sunrise on our condensation-filled bedroom window this morning

Artsy shot I took of the sunrise on our condensation-filled bedroom window this morning

Alright everyone, enough with the artistic distractions. It’s confession time:

My eating hasn’t been on point for the past two weeks and I can definitely feel it in my performance / energy level. I have had pasta, bread and dairy, increasingly more over the past week and it showed up today.

I walked into the Box and felt like I hadn’t been there for 2 weeks. That’s how low my energy level was. Again, I didn’t have high expectations about the skills or the WOD for that matter because I already felt so drained…

I had Béatrice with me and I was a little worried about being able to focus on my stuff with her there, but the Coach AJ parted the skies and brought out the big box of giant Legos! Combined with her snacks, I had a happy, content kid and I was able to really focus on the work to do! Yay for Coach AJ! 🙂

While I was warming up, I managed a very good TTB, followed closely by an almost successful 2nd rep. Rob Black, I’m definitely coming for you! (Rob and I have a friendly competition going: 1st one to manage 10 TTB consecutively. He’s been cheating lots by doing lots of Team comps, so I don’t feel bad at all at practicing my TTB!)

Skill: Back Squat 3×10 E2M

I had gone up to 100# last time on these and managed to get a little higher today with a last set at 105#. My reps were: 95#-100#-105#. The last set was hard, but I tried to keep my chest up as best I could and really keep my knees out as well on the up. I think I managed ok.

WOD: Flash

It was all women except for Mike today and I felt bad for him because we all started talking about bladder leakage and well, he couldn’t really relate, could he? To keep with the topic, I received this email yesterday. My heart always sinks when I get this email from my period-tacking app. Maybe I should just remove the app, but then, how would I track my cycle?

Worst email ever...

Worst email ever…

Ok, back to Crossfit

This looked like it was going to be easy on paper, but man, it did me in. My quads were pretty beat up from the squats and I had nothing in me. I have been trying to up my weights during the WODs to 65# (I used to do 55# all the time) and I’m not sure if it’s because I was using that weight or because of my less-than-desired nutrition, but I did not do very well on this one, at all! Here were my times for each rounds:

1:41 – 2:00 – 2:11 – 2:11

After my second round, Coach AJ told me to start again at the 5min mark so I could get some rest. It was a blow on the ego for sure, but I had a cutie who kept smiling at me and kept cheering me on with her enthusiastic “Go Maman!, Go maman! so I really didn’t have any other choices than to smile back and pick up the darn barbell back up. Ugh! Kids! Can’t fail in front of them and certainly cannot give up either, because what would I be teaching them then?!?

That’s exactly what I did, I picked up the barbell and managed through my 3rd round. Thank God Coach AJ was there to tell me to pick it back up. I’m honestly not sure I would have otherwise. That was such a hard WOD for me. 3 round wasn’t better so I took until 8mins to rest and then picked it back up for the last round. It was ugly, but I finished it and added my best and worst rounds for a total of 3:52. Before the WOD started, we were joking that I could easily bring this WOD to 10-mins, even though there was a time cap of 8min. See Coach AJ, I told you I would do this one in 10 mins! Lol! Who’s part of the special Crossfit class now?!? I am!

I cleaned up after Béatrice and came back home, ready for a shower.

Sweaty and tired, but yet, I still have to entertain this little munchkin!

Sweaty and tired, but yet, I still have to entertain this little munchkin!

Once I was done with the shower, it was time to go get Rina new running shoes as well as a mattress cover for Béatrice’s new mattress. She has now graduated to a big girl bed and we have new furniture for her room as well. I’ve been cleaning bed sheets, etc and my legs still haven’t fully recovered from the skill/WOD. I am very much looking forward to sitting on the couch and not doing anything after the girls have gone to bed. Until then, I mother on and plan on cleaning up that diet of mine (aka working on paleo)! Lol!