Tuesday, September 3, 2013

We posted info on upcoming competitions, Integrity’s Revenge and The Apex Games, on yesterday’s blog. When the subject of competition comes up we often get a lot of questions. Many people feel hesitant to sign up for their first competition. “What if I’m last?” “I’m not good enough.” and “I can’t complete all of the events” are many things we often hear. Andrea recently competed in her first competition and has shared some encouraging words for all of you. Read it and consider competing! We’d love for all of you to join us in Charleston in October!

Why should I compete if I’m going to finish 32nd out of 36?


My WOD times are consistently among the slowest in the gym. What business do I have competing? Well despite that, I asked Katie D. to sign up with me for the scaled team division of the Greenville Games this summer. I enjoy doing WODs with her, and I thought we would have fun together. The day was a challenge and a blast, but now, a month and a half later, I have even more reasons I am glad I competed.

Two weeks before the games I was apprehensive. One of the WODs included a one-rep max clean. I consistently did 65-pound cleans but knew I wanted to do much better than that. When I tried to go above 75, I was not very successful. I was also really uncomfortable with full cleans – they felt awkward and despite the fact you should be able to lift more with a clean, I could power clean more. So with my characteristic persistence, I practiced cleans. The Saturday before the games, Katie and I both got 100 pounds with some cheering and coaching from her husband Gaby. Who knew three days could make such a difference? I really wanted to get 105, but Katie and Gaby had to head out. Ian had arrived for open gym time, and with infinite patience helped me for what must have been at least another 45 minutes. He even videoed my clean with a coaching app on his phone and pointed out some problems. I came close, but did not quite hit the 105. The good news: I was now cleaning more than I could power clean, and I knew I could front squat at least 105. 105 became my goal for the games.

But a few days before the games apprehension turned to panic. When I tried to clean 95 pounds again, I couldn’t. On top of that, the insane organizers of the games added a buy-in to one of the workouts: Overhead squats… 30 of them between the two of us… at 65 pounds. WHAT!!?? 65 pounds is NOT a scaled OHS weight for women. I had never done one 65-pound overhead squat (my one rep max was 45) and I would need to do about 15??? I begged Ian to help me some more with both my cleans and overhead squats, and Jessica offered some additional tips while she was working on her 95-pound overhead squats for the Rx division.  With their help, eventually I could string about three together, but there was nothing more I could do before Saturday except rest. I was not convinced we would get through the buy-in.

Game day. Combined with competition adrenaline and incredible cheering from my fellow Swamp Rabbits, all that extra work paid off: I cleaned 110 pounds. Katie and I got through all 30 overhead squats and over one round of that WOD before the time cap. In sum, I PR-ed and completed something that seemed impossible. That is what competition is about for me – personal accomplishment.

But the amazing thing is, that work is still paying off. I am graduating from 65-pound cleans during my WODs and have started using 75 pounds. That was my one rep max just a couple weeks before the games. In our recent one rep max overhead squat MOD, I trounced 65 pounds with 85 pounds. I would not be at 85 pounds if not for the challenge of 65 pounds for the games. Not only did I have fun at the games (Swamp Rabbits know how to have a good time – you should have seen our tent!), what really makes me glad I competed is the continued improvements I am seeing a month and a half later. I am thrilled with all the progress I have made since starting CrossFit eight months ago, but I feel as though I took a giant leap forward preparing for and participating in the Greenville Games.  I want to compete again so I can see what else I can accomplish. And so should you – don’t you want to know what you can do?

Warm Up

Arm/Leg Swings x 10

3 x 10

SPT/Good Mornings/Front Squats/S2OH



3-3-3-3-3, rest :90 between sets


4 RFT of:

10 Power Clean & Jerk 135/95

400m Run

18 Min Cap

SEPTEMBER FIREBREATHER STARTED YESTERDAY. This will be the last month of Firebreather.

We are so excited that SRC has been such a success. But we are quickly outgrowing our equipment and staff.  In an effort to improve the quality and diversity of classes and equipment for our growing gym, we have decided to discontinue Firebreathers to provide us with the ability to grow with you! Our classes are growing and there is great need for smaller classes, more classes, variety of classes(yoga, olympic lifting, mobility, etc), and more equipment. We hope that you find the new things to come in our 2nd year of business valuable to your membership.