Saturday, June 20
Today was a special day worthy of a parade through the streets, raised glasses, and thanks given to God. Why? Today was my one week anniversary of defeating Mickey. However, despite the holiday I woke up completely groggy. I was exhausted from an intense soccer tryout the night before. I clumsily trudged to my computer to check the WOD. It would be the final session in Brookdale Park.
2 rounds for time of:
Sprint the Side line
Walk the End zone
Sprint the Side line
Walk the End zone
Sprint the Side line
Walking lunge the End zone
Sprint the Side line
Wow. It was certainly not the ideal WOD to have after a long night of soccer, but I reasoned that once adrenaline kicked in, I'd fly through this workout and celebrate my anniversary with yet another victory over Mickey.
When I arrived at the park, a number of Crossfitters were in a circle ready to go. Among them was Mickey who seemed especially in the zone. She smiled at me. I could tell she was pumped, though I was unsure as to why. This was a WOD completely up my alley. She might as well have just packed up and gone home. However, something was amiss.
"Sean changed the WOD for today, Pete!" Joe blurted. It was the shot heard round the world.
"WHAT?!" That WOD was important to me. I NEEDED that WOD. Without it, I was nothing. "What are we doing instead?" I said hopefully. With any luck he just took out the end zone lunges.
"It's a full lap around the track of walking lunges. and every 100 meters you have to do 20 burpees." He answered. This would be the death of me. And it was Sean's doing.
Note to newbies: I take back everything good I said about Sean in the last entry.
I grudgingly obliged to the newly doctored WOD and we did a one lap jog to warm up. Along the way, we ran by another fitness group, but they were far from Crossfit. These were a group of 30-35 year old women who wore nice matching Nike dri-fit outfits, clearly shopped at Whole Foods, had dyed blonde hair, watched Sex and the City, and coordinated the color of their finger nails with their hair ribbons. You know the type. Well Ruth, a fellow Crossfitter, didn't take kindly to their sissy approach to fitness. I don't exactly remember what she yelled at them but it was probably something like "GO DO A REAL WORKOUT!"
Note to newbies: She's a mom with a 21-year-old daughter. But despite feeling like she's the "old chick" in the group, she is certainly the most proud of Crossfit, and this may or may not come out for the best when we run by the Sex and the City girls.
After a brief stretch we spread out along the starting line and were off. I could tell after about ten lunges that this workout would be one of the hardest I had done. It wasn't particularly aerobically demanding; I wasn't out of breath, but the burn in my legs reached unprecedented levels as the workout continued.
I was out of the gates early, and led the pack with Rob. A brilliant idea struck me as we reached the half way point in our first 100 meter lunge: maybe we should join arms so Mickey couldn't pass us! I turned my head to the outer track to pose this question to Rob, but quickly abandoned the scheme when I realized Mickey was hot on my heels. (Insert here). After the first 100 meters I was dead even with Mickey, I felt I was doing pretty well.
I was wrong, and I learned it the hard way. I jumped down to begin the set of burpees and did the push-up portion of one before realizing that my legs simply refused to cooperate with the jumping into the air. Interesting, I thought. Maybe I had a cramp? I tried again. Oh man. My legs were completely shot and I was only a quarter of the way through this WOD. This was going to be a long, long day.
I dug down deep and finished the twenty burpees, completely miserable all the while. By that time, Mickey had already started the second 100m by around twenty lunges. Celebrating my one week anniversary with anything but a defeat seemed about as likely as Obama offering me a tax cut. Off I went to begin the second 100m.
If the first 100 was miserable, I don't know how to adequately describe the second with words. All I can say is that after the second 100, I don't know what all the Vietnam Vets were whining about. I'd take bamboo shoots under my fingernails any day if it meant never having to do a quarter-mile lunge again. Luckily, come the second burpee station, I had already foreseen the absence of any strength in my legs to speak of. The only way I made it off of the ground at the top of the burpee was by pushing the ground with my arms half way through. Oh, and what's worse? Mickey was completely smoking me. She was fifteen burpees in by the time I started mine, and was thirty lunges out by the time I finished burpees.
Surprisingly, the third set wasn't that bad. I describe the experience like jumping into a bath of ice water. The first five minutes are complete agony, but eventually you become numb. That is precisely what happened in the third 100. While I'm sure the fact that I could no longer feel my legs was anything but good, I wasn't complaining. As the pain temporarily subsided from my legs, I began to strategize about how I could best Mickey. Sure, she was a machine with a strong lead on me, but I had something she did not: the ability to take off my shirt in the ridiculous humidity. I did so. Maybe she'd overheat and have to stop? If so, I'd go gallivanting by her, fatigue an afterthought, and strut my way to victory. My pleasant daydream was interrupted when Mickey DID take her shirt off, unveiling a red sports bra in addition to washboard abs. The Nike-clad desperate housewife wanabee crowd marveled as the body that they wished would look back at them in the mirror every morning while they pinched their belly fat lunged by them merrily in the lead (well ahead of a college athlete and the rest of Crossfit for that matter). I saw jaws drop and fingers point. Gregg, I wouldn't be surprised if you got a whole slew of new members in the next couple of days. You can thank Mickey.
Returning back to my story; my one hope at an advantage over Mickey was gone. She now was as cool as I and extended her lead. Though I reached the third burpee-break before she finished her burpees, my twenty burpees were not going by quickly. I looked at Mickey as she embarked upon the last 100 meter lunge. She either wasn't tired at all, felt no pain, or had a fantastic poker face. Victory was hopeless, but I could at least make an effort to cut the lead. Though the fourth and final strip was complete anguish, I battled against every nagging pain in my legs and finished the WOD with some pride. Though I was nowhere close to celebrating my one week anniversary with another victory, I pushed myself and felt good at the end of the workout regardless of my loss. Mickey yelled encouragement as I finished the fourth and final set of twenty burpees. "Good work, Pete! 16:26," she said. She continued to stay at the last burpee station and encourage each and every Crossfitter as they crossed the finish line.
While I tried to rub some life back into my gelatinized legs, Rob mocked me in my state of weakness, "no luck this time bud! Hey Mickey, what was your time?"
"Um.." she pondered, "Pete, what did you get again?" she asked.
"16:26" I answered.
She looked back to Rob, "Ok, then I got a 14:22." So it's like that, Mickey? The entire group burst into laughter. Regardless of the torture you put your body through in Crossfit, it's always a fun time with this bunch of nut cases.
In conclusion, as I sit here after the workout, I feel like a prisoner sitting on death row. Not because I'm going to die from exhaustion (although now that I think about it, that's a possibility), but I am sure the DONS is going to hit me so hard, that moving, much less walking, will be completely out of the question.
Note to newbies: The DONS stands for "delayed onset muscle soreness." It's that ridiculous stiffness you experience the day after a very hard workout. Though it can be incredibly painful, I find the feeling very rewarding.
While I usually wouldn't care about getting the DONS, I have a very important soccer game tomorrow. I've tried icing and drinking extra water, but it's inevitable; the muscles in my legs are going to be like concrete. Wish me luck!
My time: 16:26
Next Workout: Monday, 9:00 AM