So after my post about falling off the wagon, I got seriously nauseated and the treadmill just made it worse. I ended up hitting the sack by 8:00 pm, not the norm for me; I’m a night owl who thinks morning people are seriously misguided (of course, the hubby is the opposite; he thinks breakfast is the best time for socializing). That hypocrite Ben Franklin, author of aphorisms such as “Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise,” was a notoriously late riser, as was the highly quotable Winston Churchill (but I can’t remember any quotes in which he advocated being an early bird).

In the short period I had after I’d pretty much decided to ditch my workout and before I could no longer stay awake, I watched Gary the hubby-coach do his workout. He’s been telling me all along that it’s scalable, and that he did the same thing and had the same struggles, just at a higher degree of difficulty, but on some level it hadn’t really clicked until I watched him. He pushes himself and grunts and struggles and occasionally cusses out the workout equipment. Wow; it really, really isn’t just me. (Why did the infamous Sally Fields Oscar acceptance speech suddenly pop into my head?)

Anyway, the next day I woke up late and found that my knee was better; not 100% yet, but better, and the nausea had quelled to an acceptable level. Gary cheerfully told me that it was a good thing I’d taken a break and that I probably needed an extra day for the knee to heal. I was all ready to tackle my CrossFit regime of the day. Not a WOD (workout of the day) yet; but my regular exercise.

We tried using the exercise bands, but he’d broken out the 35 lb. ones, which didn’t make as much difference as moving back up to the plyo box, which stands 19.75″ from the ground, as opposed to the shorter box (which is actually for stepping on; I’d just turned it on its side), which stands 18″ from the ground. That made a huge difference in terms of the angle my knee had to overcome and it only whined a little and screamed not at all.

But since my arms were fine, Gary upped my weight on the medicine ball to 20 lb. I remember now why I thought the shrug was a primo bitch the first go round. We tried a few oompa-loompa knee dips to try to get me ready for a push-press, but that really made the knee unhappy, so we stuck with the regular press for the time being. Gary then decided I should up my reps to 10 each round, and was emphasizing speed.

Speed freaks me out. I start losing control of the form because I still have to think really hard about what I’m doing. However, Gary was supervising the whole deal and was telling me where I was losing control, particularly on the press: “Elbows out” or “Don’t lose control on the way down,” or “Open your eyes,” or “Head up.” I don’t know why I look down or close my eyes when I exercise, but if I’m not thinking about it, both things seem to happen of their own accord.

But damned if I didn’t finish the round in a PR (yeah, that’s right, I’m going to use CrossFit jargon — PR=personal record) 12 minutes and 18 seconds (plus 10 minutes on the treadmill).  I don’t know if the fact I had done better than usual prompted the coach’s next decision, but after I’d caught my breath, he was on the phone with his buddy Kenny asking what they did for clients at the box for a baseline test. The baseline is repeated every six months to measure overall progress.

So today I did the baby-step version of the baseline, which is apparently standard operating procedure for anyone unable to do the regular version. First up should have been rowing, but we don’t have the rowing machine (although I think Gary would really like to get one at some point), so Gary came up with the next best thing: a Sumo deadlift highpull. Say that three times fast. Here’s what it looks like:

They were using pvc pipe to show the form, but I used the hyperlite with bumpers for a total of about 10 lbs.

Then I did a 400 meter “run,” which is about the same as a quarter mile. I actually did run, albeit very slowly, for short sections of the distance. The course that my kids and husband use is from our driveway uphill on our street and back. Not surprisingly, I ran more downhill than up, but I was a little surprised to find I could run at all. This took me almost 4 minutes, which sounded good until Gary noted it was a 16-minute mile. I’d really like to see that drop to a 12-minute mile the next time we do this.

Then on to situps. Situps are the only exercise I’ve done as long as I can remember,  but with the huffing and puffing from the Sumo deadlift highpull, I wasn’t able to do the full 30 without stopping several times to catch my breath and drink some water.

Gary was great about cheering me on through all of it. He doesn’t want to be spoken to while he’s working out; I want the encouragement. In buckets. Bathtubs-full, even. At this point he’s telling me to move along to the push-ups.

Blergh. I couldn’t do a push-up when I was in grade school and they did the Presidential Exercise evaluation. Still can’t do a real one, but I got through knee push-ups. Sort of. I couldn’t touch my chest to the ground without losing control, so I just got as far as my belly. But I did them.

Then the last hurdle: the ring rows:

My angle was about 30 degrees from the rings. 10 of them. Not nearly as bad as I thought.

Total time: 11 minutes and 47 seconds.

I don’t even want to think about how long it would have taken me three weeks ago. Yep, that’s right. I’ve just broken the three-week rule. Some rules are definitely meant to be broken.


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