Weekend Update

Coming off of the work week, cruising into a slow weekend, I thought I’d take some time to reflect on last weekend. A couple of memorable things happened: my first CrossFit competition and my and Jay’s first time zip-lining.

Girls Gone Rx

Girls Rone Rx is a women’s-only CrossFit competition that holds events in cities across the country to raise money for Bright Pink, a non-profit focused on early detection of breast and ovarian cancer.

The event features 4 workouts throughout the day completed in teams of 3, featuring standard CrossFit movements and weights. For Girls Gone Rx Chicago, the workouts included max weight cleans, overhead squats, rowing, burpees, deadlifts, double unders, pull ups, and a traverse across a Ninja-Warrior-style obstacle course. The last bit is a special feature of CrossFit Illumine, a box outside of Chicago.

I competed with two lovely ladies from my gym, Linda (who got me to sign up in the first place) and Ann (who saved the day by subbing for our original teammate at the last minute). Though I quickly realized I was way out of my depth in this (or any other) athletic competition, we still had an amazing time as a team and left motivated to improve.

My favorite part of the competition was the first workout with max weight cleans. I didn’t realize how hard the adrenaline would kick in. I did all of my lifts quickly in unbroken touch-and-go sets. I wish I had aimed for higher weights because I felt like I was flying.

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The next workout included 65# overhead squats. Before signing up for this competition, I would never have considered doing a OHS at that weight in a WOD. I just don’t do that. It’s too heavy. Except, for this competition, there was no scaled option. So over the course of two weeks before the event, I worked myself up to 65#, lifting that weight comfortably and consistently. Though my teammates ended up doing most of the squats in the workout during the competition, I’m glad this event forced me to challenge myself and step up to a heavier weight.

The third workout was deadlifts, double unders, and pull ups. This workout really showed us where we could improve as a team by communicating more effectively. We lost time in transitions and lost efficiency when compromising form on the deadlifts. I’ll definitely keep this experience in mind the next time I compete.

The last workout was a monkey bar relay race which started with a 10-ft cargo net. I’m afraid of heights, so by the time we got to that event at the end of the day, I didn’t have the willpower to tackle that fear. I ended up taking a time penalty and skipping the tallest part of the obstacle course. They say willpower is a muscle – you’ve gotta work it to improve. So that’s another thing to work on for next time.

After the competition, we were all exhausted but extremely happy. It was a fun day. Family and friends came out to watch and cheer. We laughed, we sweated, we did right by our box. And then we ate.

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Lake Geneva Canopy Tours

On Sunday, Jay and I drove up to Lake Geneva WI to go zip-lining, one of my “30 Before 30” bucket list items. We lucked out. It was the perfect fall day: warm, sunny, a slight breeze, and beautiful foliage. The Canopy Tour experience started with “Ground School,” a quick chance to test your gear just a few feet off the ground and learn basic safety for braking. Next, we warmed up our zipping skills with two test lines of increasing length and height. From their, we were off into the canopy, weaving through the trees along a series of zip-lines, rope bridges, and spiral staircases that brought us up to the swaying tree tops.

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I was surprised by how safe and comfortable I felt the entire time. They said the longest line was 800+ feet (you couldn’t see the other end), starting at 60 feet off the ground, with max speeds of 30mph. But I never felt like I was scared or unsafe. Honestly, it was so slow it felt a little bit too safe at times.

Jay and I both loved the experience and were glad for a gentle introduction to zip-lining. We’ll definitely do this again.

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