Today was another fun one at the Box. I walked in apprehending the work, but other than the last 2 rounds, it was right up my alley. I was reminded once again that I need to work on my snatches, but I feel like I have to start from the beginning. Let me explain:

Warm-up: I was happy I was able to get through this one without any leakage in my pants. Could it be that the days of urinary leakage are finally behind me?

WOD: Metabolic HEAT

This one looked daunting when I peaked at it online last night, but I was determined to give it a go. I was thinking of using 55# for the snatches, but I quickly realized I would struggle enough with 45#. I was also using 4×45# plates as a box in order to really work on not jutting out my hips when I step down.  It feels like I’m starting to control my step-down better, but when it comes to the snatch, I am back to square one. I have to relearn how to squat using my deep abdominals and controlling how low I allow myself to get at the bottom of the squat. In order to do that, I did a few rounds of the WOD using the MedBall as a guide for the depth of my squat. It’s hard to correct something that you have been doing wrong from the beginning and even more so to keep my internal ab muscles contracted when my legs are open at the bottom of the squat. And for all those reasons, I decided to stay at 45# and work on form instead of weight. It made for a fairly easy WOD (we were to use the same bar throughout), but, again, I focused on form and re-learning my snatch, squat and box jumps. I’m still weak in the stepping-down of the BJ, but I met with my physic again today and we’re working on that. It is pretty much a return to the basics for me in all of the lifts, but at least, I’ll do them right this time around.

I got sweaty on round 3 and the last 2 rounds were horrible for the snatches as I just couldn’t drop below my bar fast enough anymore, but I was glad I went and got to work on technique!

On the home front, Ben just got over a bout of food poisoning that kept him in bed, sleeping for 30hrs. Must be nice! When I get sick, I still have to keep up with the house and the kids! Women are the weaker sex my butt! 😉

Our basement is slowly getting dried up from the flood we had 2 weeks ago, then they’ll start the rebuilding and replacing what needs to be replaced. The fans and dehumidifier are going on full blast 24/7 and it’s driving me bananas. I can only imagine the noise level for our tenants who have decided to stay in the chaos for now! They are troopers! I’d be out of there in a heartbeat!


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.

A Day To Remember

Finally, today was the day of my competition.

It started bright and early with the demo of the WODs and then, the different heats of the different divisions were up. This competition was very well run and I have to say, I was impressed with the timing of the events. It was down to the minute!

Here were the events for my division: Novice women

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These WODs were long and challenging. WOD #1 was also followed by a surprise event at the end of 1c.

WOD 1a: I went in with a strategy of just simply going up with my weight with 5# every rep. I did 5×3 E2M with the following weights:


I failed my 1st rep at 90#, reset the bar on my shoulders and gave it another try. Surprisingly, it worked! All 3 of my reps were wobbly and I had to fight for it, but I PR’d my Push Press 5×3 E2M by 10#! I was stoked!

Push Press 5x3 @ 85#

Push Press 5×3 @ 85#

WOD 1b: Again, I stuck to my strategy of increasing my weights for every rep and it worked. I did 5×3 E2M with these weights:


Again, I PR’d my 5×3 by 10# for the front squats

Front Squat at 85#

Front Squat at 85#

WOD 1c: I managed to get 13 burpees for these. They were hard and I couldn’t jump sideways on the box so I lost a lot of time turning to face the box and turning again to do my burpees…

Surprise WOD: 500m row for time.

My previous PR for this was 2:07.3 and I managed to do it in 2:06.1 today. Another PR by a hairline, but I’ll take it!

Other events went on after our 1st one and then it was lunch time. I felt good, put a lot of food on my plate and only ended up eating soup. I was stuffed after that and couldn’t eat anymore.

I even got a little brush with fame when I took this picture:

Lucas Parker aka Toque Luc stopped by to cheer us on!

Lucas Parker aka Toque Luc stopped by to cheer us on!


That’s Lucas Parker, who competed in the Crossfit Games multiple times! We talked a little about competitions and how I was doing. I told him my main goal for today was to have fun seeing as it was my 1st competition.

Then, it was time to warm-up again and all I wanted to do was nap. The rush of the adrenaline had worn off and the soreness was settling in. Just before event 2, I rushed to the bathroom to puke. I think it was nerves more than anything else.

WOD 2: This one was actually modified from what’s written above with box push 2 lengths at the end instead of one.This WOD killed me and I misread and misinterpreted it. I was totally parched at the beginning of it and I lost precious seconds at the beginning before I clued in and tried to catch up to the others. It was too late. I DNF’d that one. With the time cap of 12:00, I still had to do my box push 2 lengths. 😦 I really wanted to at least finish all the events today, but you live and learn for next time. I wanted to really push myself in honour of Mamie and I felt like I let her down somehow. I will need to fuel better and eat earlier for the next competition.

I finished in a 3-way tie in 3rd for the Novice Women division out of 5 women. All three of us finished with 18 points.

It was a really well-run competition and I loved that I got to compete with women who share the same passion and enthusiasm for Crossfit as I do!

I also managed to raise another $210 for the Run for the Cure and was truly moved by people’s generosity. A tangent example that Crossfit is a sport, but it’s also a community and I felt surrounded by love today; from my husband and kids who came to see me, to all my friends and family who came to cheer as well as my crossfit family who cheered me on. Your kind words of encouragement gave me strength and determination. I am now sore beyond words and am unsure how I will function at work tomorrow, but I will push through, one rep at a time…


It’s All A Mind Game

After only sleeping for 3 hrs yesterday (post night shift) I was looking forward to a longer night of sleep. When 0500 (aka WOD o’clock) came rolling around, it felt like I could have just rolled over and forget about working out so easily. Instead, I got up and dragged myself to the box.

Skill: Front Squat 7×1 E2M

I was going into this hoping to get 105-110# (my previous PR was 105#, back in January). Thanks to my poor math skills at 0600, I surpassed that  and achieved a new PR of 115#! 🙂 I did my reps as follows:

80#-85#-95# (skipped 90# because I can’t count my plates right early in the morning!) -100#-105#-110#-115#

WOD: Intervohs

I thought I had done this WOD back in May, but it turns out I hadn’t, so this was my 1st attempt at it. To be honest, I didn’t know what I was gonna do for this one. OHS are tough and my thinking was the following: Do them at 45#, so you can snatch them and do the RKBS at 35# for each round. Coach Caleb came by and asked me what I was gonna do. I explained my logic to him and he said to go heavier. He said something along those lines:

It’s better to go higher in your weight and clean and jerk it than lower and snatch it. You can always work on the strength to snatch it later once you’re used to having the heavier weight overhead. I think you can do 55#. It’s just mind-set. Brace your core, look straight ahead because the minute you waver back or forth, the bar will drop as well. Just get in the zone and stay there.

I love how, lately, Coach Caleb has been there every time I needed him to be. He gives me good advice and pushes me without putting me in danger of hurting myself.

I started round 1 at 55#, fell on my butt after attempting the 3rd rep. I picked the bar up again and finished my 2 reps, then moved onto the RKBS I finished with only 24s to spare. I was able to string all my OHS without stopping on round 2 and finished that round with 51s to spare. On my 3rd rep of round 3, my left wrist was becoming pretty painful and I stopped with a groan. Coach Caleb came by, we assessed that I shouldn’t push it today since I don’t have wrist bands and I went on to the RKBS. We also decided to do all the other rounds with 6 front squats instead of the 4 OHS. I managed all 8 rounds and finished with a combined time of 1:42 (slowest time was 1:06 and fastest was 0:36) and we figured out that I did a modified version of TG+.

Afterwards, Coach Caleb came by and re-affirmed that I could have done all rounds at 55#, I have the shoulder strength and mobility, but I need to improve my wrist strength or try it with wrist wraps.

Here’s my question to you:

Do you use wrist wraps? If so, what brand and would you recommend them?

Now, I have to go be a mom and a landlord (yes, we have a tenant for our basement suite and she’s coming today to finalize the details!) 🙂

Just Keep Going


I don’t know if it was the 5hrs of sleep and being woken up at 0400, or if it was the PR on the front squat, but today’s WOD did my little head in… in a bad way!

Skill: Front Squat 5×5 E2M

I love to squat! I warmed up to start this set at 85# and worked up to 100# on my 4th set, but I was done after that one. My form was getting wonky and therefore, I didn’t do a 5th set, but it was still a PR for my front squats! Yay!

Must squat with perfect form! 🙂

WOD: Partner Nurwor.

I had done this one once with Tracey and we both did the Airdyne instead of running back in October 2013, and again when I ran in January that we finished in 29:03. I had also done a Mini Nurwor (6 x 300m row, 300m run)

As for today, I was teamed up with Karen and I felt like quitting on the rows so many times on the rows. Once again, I was able to recover during the runs, even running for 350m without stopping on the last 2 rounds, but it was the rows that did me in. We finished in 29:28 this time around and I was not happy with my performance, both physical and mental. This WOD beats me mentally and I struggle every time to finish it. I guess it’s just one more thing to work on. Thank goodness I had my cheering squad telling me to just keep trucking along, just keep moving. That’s what I did and that’s how I got to finish it!

I guess I should just keep working on things then!

I guess I should just keep WODing then!

Sorry, I’m a bit of a Ryan Gosling memes addict! There’s actually a FB page of Ryan Gosling Crossfit memes, if you’re into such a thing (and who wouldn’t be?!?). He’s just so fine to look at! Kind of reminds me of my hubby a bit! 🙂

(I was gonna post a pic of my hubby on the beach, but I think he would kill me… You’ll just have to take my word for it!)

During the WOD, my left contact lens was bugging me. I had cleaned it before the WOD as is was itchy and it was still bugging me. I tossed it in the garbage post WOD and drove home with just one lens in. After my shower, I opened another new left lens (the one I tossed earlier was brand new) and tried to wear my contact lenses, but it was still hurting me too much to wear them. I took them off, flushed my eye with some saline and waited. The burning pain wasn’t going away, so I made my way to the walk-in clinic.

I don’t have a scratched cornea, but my vision was 20/30 on the left eye WITH my glasses on… Normally, with my glasses, I’m 20/20 on both eyes. So now, I have antibiotic/anti-inflammatory drops to put in today and I need to go back tomorrow if things don’t improve. What a way to end my vacation!

Getting To The Core Of It All

To say that I am sore from the WOD on Wednesday is the major understatement of the year! Yesterday, I could barely move; my traps were beyond sore and my quads were letting me know they were angry with me. I managed to make it through the day, taking care of the girls (i.e., picking them up, carrying them, hugging them) and moving furniture around so the painter could do his work (more on that in a separate post!), but I was glad to go to bed and I rolled and stretched and applied hot bag every chance I got throughout the day!

This morning was a little better, but I was still sore on my way to the box for this:

Before the warm-up, Tracey was kind enough to let me try 2 of her skipping ropes and I was able to get quite a few DUs with one of them so I will definitely order one online TODAY when the girls nap. I will do a review once I get it and let you all know how I’m doing with it! 😉

Skill: Front Squat 6×3 E90S

I love squats. If there is one thing I have going for me in this whole Crossfit adventure is that this girl can go ass to the grass like it’s nobody’s business! I may not be the strongest or the fastest, but I can definitely squat! I managed to PR from 3 weeks ago and got 90#. I think I could hit 100# soon. It felt like I still had some gas in me to keep going. For the first time today, I could really feel my core being engaged when I went down in the squat. I could feel the full effect of the bracing, I got my breathing right and it felt kind of easy. A year into this and I have core strength! I never thought this would happen again in this lifetime. Don’t get me wrong. I don’t have abs showing through my stomach or anything, but I have core strength. A few days ago, Ben and I were just lying in bed and he even commented on how my stomach was now flat when I’m lying down. I will get there eventually, all in due time! Enough rambling, here were my progressions:


WOD: That was a tough one. When I looked at it last night, the weight prescribed were different and I thought, for sure I can do the Rx for the women (65#). When I showed up this morning, the WOD had been revised and the new Rx weight for women was 75#. I tried to warm up at 65# and my traps were just too sore to even think about doing 30 reps at that weight. I settled for FG1 at 55#. I finished dead last by at least 2 minutes, but I got it done and that’s all that matters to me. I finished at 7:12 and did all my burpees granny-style. I think pretty much everyone was done by 5:30… I always say:

I’ll get it done. Maybe not within the time cap, but I’ll get it done!

A friend of mine posted this on her FB page this morning and I absolutely loved it!

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It made me realize that I have come so far mentally and I owe 99% of this newfound mental toughness to Crossfit. I now chose to tackle life like I do WODs. Break big projects into smaller, more achievable ones, taking things in stride. I don’t get discouraged anymore if I try something and don’t succeed, instead, I just keep trying or try a different way of getting it done. Mental fortitude has done wonders for me and it has helped a lot with decreasing my stress levels. Yet, just another reason I am absolutely and totally in love with Crossfit! ❤

A Perfect Day!

I went into work today as I have yesterday and was expecting to be there for a whole shift with my nurse educator for 8hrs and have to do a ton of reading for the last 4hrs. Today was my official “return-to-work” day and it was the day I had to get re-acquainted with old equipment and procedures, get to know new equipment ask questions and brush up on my nursing skills. The day started off just as I had imagined it, I got to meet my new manager who exclaimed: “You are mush shorter and your hair is much darker than I had imagined you to be, but look at you… YOU ARE GORGEOUS!” (I like her already)! I got separated from my educator as she had meetings to attend and other more pressing business to do before she could come back to me.  I didn’t twirl my thumbs though, I had a whole binder of educational material to read through and then, I had some more testing to go through, so I sat down and got to it.

After a late lunch, I was reunited with my educator and we went through the last bit of equipment and computer stuff that I needed to be re-acquainted with and then, she surprised me by saying: “We’re done, go home!” I offered to stay until the end of my shift to keep writing up the tests, but she said I could do that at home and to go be with my girls! Best day ever!

I decided to keep the nanny and go to Crossfit at 1630 instead of tomorrow morning. Rina has preschool tomorrow and I want to help with getting her ready and get ahead in my cleaning for the week and I’ll be able to do so if I go to Crossfit tonight instead of tomorrow morning. Plus, I’ve never been to the evening classes so it’s something new to try! 🙂

I got to the class and surprised Coach Caleb who said: “Val! I’ve never seen you in broad daylight!” Yes, coach Caleb, and I’ve never seen you so awake and full of energy! Just goes to show I’m not a vampire after all! 😉

I was also glad to see a few familiar faces (Angie and Victoria, who both convinced me to register for the Open)

The front squat went surprisingly well. The last time we had done these was back in September and I had done 5 sets of 3 at 85#. My aim today was anything higher than 85#. Here were my reps:

5×55, 5×65, 3×75, 3×85, 1×95 failed. I felt a pinching in my shoulder and bailed out. Coach Caleb came around and we talked things through. He said I should try one more time and if the pinching was still there to bail and we would stop there. I tried and got it without any pinch! I kept going

1×100, 1×105. The 105# was a struggle so I left it at that, but I was impressed with myself! It took a lot of core power to do that!

Onto the WOD. It was my 1st experience with a Tabata-style WOD and although it was done quickly, it left me absolutely beat. The double-crunches especially. I had a total score of 71, broken down into:

  • push-ups=15 (all “real” ones)
  • air squats=27 (strongest, all my rounds were 14 except for 1 round of 13)
  • crunches=17
  • strict pull-ups with red and green bands: 12

My biceps felt like jelly immediately after being done and my arms were shaking. Fun times!

I came back home to have a quick dinner, bathe the girls and put them to bed and I need to log off as I have a full basket of laundry waiting to be folded. I’m sure I’ll be dreaming of front squats tonight! 🙂

Holy Thrunky!

It’s Friday! Which means I have 2 full days to recover from Crossfit (trust me, I’ll need them)!

For the Skill, I did 3 sets of power clean + 5 front squats (45#-50#-55#) and once I felt more comfortable, I moved onto the full clean (60#-65#). That was also a new PR for me. 🙂 I can squat more than that, but cleaning is a whole different story!

For the WOD, I was teamed up with Tracey and Shela. Tracey did Airdyne instead of rowing and Shela had to wait for the 2 of us to be done rowing/Airdyne before she could row and vice-versa.I am such a slow rower and I think today was my worst performance to date. I swear, at one point, my 500m average was 2:30-2:33… Crazy slow. I don’t know what happened. A few months ago I was around 2:10 and could even do a few sprints. I guess we haven’t rowed in a while and it showed up in my performance today!

For the rest of the WOD, I did TG+:

4 rounds of :

  • 400m row
  • red and green bands strict pull-up
  • 35# Thrusters.

After doing those clean front squats, I didn’t have much left for the thrusters. I think I probably could have upped my weights to 40#, but not much more!

We finished with a time of 16:47 and for once, I didn’t fall too far off the pack, so I guess our scaling was appropriate.

I came home and had a very noisy shower. I had to wash my hair and my triceps were super tired which meant lifting my arms up to my hair meant a lot of moaning and grumbling on my part. Ben, on the other hand, thought it was hilarious! Thanks for your support and your cheers hun! 😉

I came home and made myself my “treat breakfast” of Oatless Oatmeal with a nice warm Latté made by my lovely hubby! Heaven in my tummy! We will soon be going Downtown to maybe score some deals on Black Friday and I will pop by Beehive to see if I can salvage my Froth Mobiüs for my mom… I sure hope I will be able to, otherwise I will have to frog all that lace yarn and I’m not sure I’ll ever work with it again!

I also made a Everyone’s Hat for Rina that I ended up giving to her aunt Sandy as it was way too big for the little one. I am also working on a few more projects at the moment and I will write a separate post about those knitting projects later. I have to go peruse the website to see if they have a deal on oly lifter shoes 😉

Never Again!

Yesterday, Rina came home from the Squash Club (she was with Ben at a tournament) with a small bag of Cheetos. It’s been a while since we had that kind of junk food in the house and I craved it immediately. I asked Ben to get us a bag as a treat after the girls would go to bed. We ate the whole bag last night.

This morning, during the warm-up, I felt like puking, I was huffing and puffing and the Ring Rows were my arch nemesis. Not to mention the profusion of sweat. I managed 60# on the slow power clean + Front Squat, but I need to remember to stay on my heels more. I’m thinking it might be time to invest in a pair of lifting shoes or at least, more neutral ones than my runners… I totally scaled the WOD too. I had to go TG all the way. It wasn’t pretty, but I made it through with a time of 6:17. Ugh! Never again will I binge like that on empty food. I made up for it today with a healthy peanut butter/homemade jam toast this morning, the Apple Butternut Squash soup for lunch with a kale salad and tonight will be leftovers Lentil Dal on a bed of spinach!

The rest of today will be spent resting. Rina is tired from her weekend at the squash club and I’m beat from this morning’s WOD. There is still a load of laundry to be folded once it’s dry and I think I’ll have a little nap on the couch when the girls go for theirs. I clearly noticed the tremendous effect nutrition can have on your physical performance and