Icebreather Classic recap

I feel like I’m just getting back to normal at the end of the day after yesterday.  What an experience the day was.  I can honestly say that I had a blast, but it wore me out.  Walking into Capital City CrossFit I knew I was in for a marathon of a day but I don’t know that I had prepared myself for it fully.  In the end I’m going to try and highlight some of the best moments of the day.  First was actually being a competitor myself with the best guy I could imagine taking on the day with, Tony, you did great and we did our best I can honestly say that.  P1010613

Here we are kicking off WOD 1 with our 50 Cal row.  For a couple guys that didn’t get to practice the movements together to put a strategy together based off that I really think we did well.  And for two big boys those broad jumps were not our strongest thing but we still did great.  The second WOD we took on Wall Walks which I hate and were the death of me.  I failed four attempts to get my second round done and that killed us for that I’m sorry man, but you are the best, if there’s another chance to team up, we need to do it again.

Secondly was judging, I loved meeting all the pairs that I was judging and although in some of the female heats I had a bit of a creeper feeling as I was staring at your midsections to make sure you were getting your bellybuttons to the wall it was still a great time.  You all did great and the Rx women were crazy impressive.  You intimidated me to no end, and more than one of you I would’ve killed to ask out at the end of the day.  Seeing the hard work you put in inspires me to keep on pushing and getting better.  I can’t wait to take some of you on as competition again.  2013 is going to be a year full of me killing it whenever I can in competitive exercising.

Third was the chance to be the eyes and ears for two companies and talk about their products and rep them a bit, as well as hashtag them as much as possible.  Seriously it felt like it was a AMRAP hashtag for Blonyx and KillCliff.  I hope that I did you both proud and that you will give me the chance to rep you again at things.  Let me just throw this one out there for you both, North Central Regional dual company booth.  You let me know and I’ll be there to pass out swag and rep your companies to the best of my abilities.  I loved talking you up, and the people couldn’t get enough of the Tasty that KillCliff sent me, seriously it was gone by the time the first heat started.  I wish I had gotten cases of the stuff to sell, I would’ve made a mint.  I am hoping to do more with both companies, currently I’m an affiliate for Blonyx, they have great recovery through their HMB, and I’m going to start taking the HMB with Creatine for strength gains going into the open.

At the end of the day we gave away a lot of great stuff to the winning teams, including gift cards to Blonyx, Rogue Fitness and a can of Kill Cliff.  

Leaving after 12 hours I was exhausted and hadn’t really eaten anything all day.  A quick stop for some food and I was headed back home.  This trip back to Springfield was far too short but I’ll be back soon, and hopefully this time it will be just to hang out, spend far too much time playing at Capital City CrossFit and will include a fun Strongman Sunday of picking up heavy things.  I can’t say enough about how awesome this experience was, and if you have a competition coming up in the midwest, make sure to let me know.

 

 

What a day, the Icebreather Classic

Wow what a day, after spending 12 hours at Capital City running around between competing, judging other divisions and doing social media for Blonyx and KillCliff to promote their products I am a beat man.  I’m back at home and I will post a full recap tomorrow but let me say that it was an amazing time and that I had a blast.  I can’t wait to do it again, and I’m going to leave this post with a couple pictures of me doing my thing during the WODs.

Prepping to Compete

Tomorrow I’m headed down to Springfield for the first competition of 2013, and my first team competition ever.  Tony and I will be in the Intermediate division of the Icebreather Classic at Capital City CrossFit.  First event has already been announced and based on it I’m hopeful of our chances to do well.  Tony and I are pretty similar so in terms of strategy in team making we didn’t really think it through.  If WOD 2 has burpees or a long run we are done for, but for now I’m a good rower, and I’m pretty good at the other movements.

WOD 1:

For Time: 
  • 50 Calorie Row
  • 40 Standing Broad Jumps (6’/4′)¹
  • 30 Toes to Bar²
  • 20 Hang Snatches (95/63)³
The 50 Calorie Row may be broken up in any manner the team wishes, this can include 1 teammate rowing the whole 50 Calories
 
¹Standing Broad Jumps are to be broken up in any increment the team desires, with each person performing at least 1 rep
 
²Toes to Bar are to be completed in any increment the team desires, with each person performing at least 1 rep. While one person is performing the reps, the other person must be hanging from the bar
 
³Hang Snatches are to be completed in any increment the team desires, with each person completing at least one rep. While one partner is performing snatches, the other partner must be in a chin-over-the-bar hold. Their chin may not contact the bar at any time.

 Time will tell how things play out during the day but I’m really excited to get back into town and put some work in with my boy Big T.  I’m also crashing at his place with his pretty awesome lady and two dogs, so it’s going to be a fun time all around.  After the way that I’ve been feeling lately this is just what I need.  Not to get too negative but when on the job hunt and things seem pretty bleak it’s hard to keep yourself motivated sometimes and pushing yourself in other areas of life.  I wonder if the Whole 30 has helped or hurt in that area.  I’m going to venture to guess that it’s a bit of both.  It has kept me from going crazy on “paleo treats” and such and made sure that I’m watching what I’m eating.  But at the same time there’s some comfort that comes from some of that so it’s been hard.  At the same time I’m over the hump with it so I’m not feeling like I’m missing a lot.  Although I will admit to secretly dreaming of a meal consisting of a pound of bacon on day 31.  I don’t care if anything else appears in that meal I just want bacon.  Actually I take that back, I want Coffee, Bacon, and Chocolate.  Even though I have had a little bit of 100% Cocoa, there’s still nothing like a quality dark chocolate bar.  And I’ll be dominating some pumpkin stuff too that first week.  I don’t know what but it will be big.  So this weekend there will be lots of pictures, laughs with friends, and a few dirty words as I lift heavy stuff, work my hardest and try to bring one home for the team.  I’m looking forward to it, and then who knows, maybe I’ll come home to find one of my many applications have brought some fruit to this job hunt.

Week 1 recap

2013-01-13 17.13.06

Sunday night and it’s almost midnight but I have to get this post in to keep myself going on this.  Whole 30 week 1 is in the books and I’ve learned a few things.  First my body is starting to normalize itself and I have way more even energy throughout the day now that my coffee consumption is lower.  I think it’s time that I switch to decaf when this thing is over if I’m going to have any coffee after lunch.  I still love the taste of a good cup of coffee but I’m also learning to appreciate herbal teas so I may have found my substitute there.  Also I’m snacking much less and finding myself to have a better level of fullness throughout the day, I kind of expected this.  So that’s good to see it happen, for a while I felt like I was eating like a horse and it was good to see that I could go to smaller meals but still feel full and not need to snack.  I’m also trying to stay with as little fruit as possible and so far I’ve only had one Larabar this week and one thing of applesauce.  So I’m doing well there, I’ve been having more sweet potatoes, and today I made mashed pumpkin which actually was kind of an experiment that turned out really well.  I’m also getting more variety into my intake by introducing different things and I’m enjoying that as well.  Sunday is a rest day for me so no workout to talk about, and I have to say that I am loving the chance to just chill out for a while and let myself recover.  On Saturday I have my first team competition so I’ll be back in Springfield, can’t wait to get back down there and see how I do in this one.  Also looking forward to taking on another week at DNA and getting into the swing of things now that my body seems to have straightened itself out for the most part.

Day 4 – Active recovery, or spend about 3 hours at the box doing stuff

Day four and I feel like for the most part I’m over the hump getting into the grove of this Whole 30.  I had three good meals, a small snack of Almonds and capped the day off with a little bakers Chocolate.  I love that i can eat 100% it means that for this month I don’t have to exclude it completely from my diet. During the day today I spent some time at my buddy Space’s house, a few weeks ago I hung a bunch of drywall at his new place so it was good to see it finished and him moved in.  We hung a couple shelves for his Star Wars collection and then ran around town a bit.  Time to put some work in at the gym.  It is my active recovery/skill day so into Crossfit DNA I went for about an hour or mobility followed by a skill class working on the clean, and finishing up with more practice on the clean and jerk.  Walking out at 7:30 I was surprised that I had spent 2 1/2 hours there and was pretty starving.  I’ve been meaning to make the Salmon Cakes from Practical Paleo for a while so I gave them a go tonight.  They are pretty good, and I have three more saved for breakfast tomorrow.  In terms of a broader look at my life, I’m still on the  job hunt and trying to stay positive.  There’s a few leads for long term subs here in Chicago, and I’m hoping that I get into the classroom that way soon.  Then I’m looking at finding a classroom to call my own somewhere in the fall and hoping that I’ll land somewhere close so that I can stay near the family.  Pretty good day overall and I’m mostly back to normal from the cold that I came down with post NYC.  Now to take on prep for the next competition on January 19.  I’m excited again playing double duty as a judge for the ladies division and competitor.  Also I’ll be repping the supplement Blonyx that I’m working with and passing out some Kill Cliff that I was sent as well.  Pretty sweet deal overall.  Can’t wait for the next competition of 2013.

Mystery Fett

Mystery Fett

And like that I’m back

Wow, I can’t believe that such a break has come to my writing on this thing.  I guess moving cross country, seeing family members you haven’t seen in six months and learning that your sister is going to have her first baby can distract a guy.  So this one will be a bit of a catch all of the last two weeks and then I’ll need to make sure to keep talking about what is going on.  First I came home to spend the holidays with the family and to job hunt.  So I am back in the great Chicago area, if you would like to invite me to visit your affiliate and do a WOD I’d love to drop by, or you can come see me at Crossfit DNA in Dyer, IN.  That’s my new home and the group there has been great.  Jake is an exceptional coach and I’m really liking getting to be a part of a new crew day in and day out.  Also being around the family has been great and I’ve really enjoyed seeing everyone more often than I have been able to in years.  I also have started to make a connection with a lady and while it’s early I think that we are having fun.  Now if only I could get her to eat better and do CrossFit.  Is it sad that these are the things that make me doubt the long term potential of this thing?

I’m still on the hunt for work but there have also been developments on that front as well.  This winter I’m getting my Cert and I’m going to be a CrossFit coach, I’m also going to look for other work in the classroom and get some experience teaching.  I think that I want to teach Jr High, and the plan is that I’ll do that and coach for a couple years.  In 2015 I want to open my own affiliate.  That will give me time to raise capital and scout locations to settle.  So if you’re an owner and you think you might want a guy with a sweet beard and a pretty interesting story we should talk.  I’m also going to be doing some other training such as getting my EMT this winter and looking forward to next summer and figuring out if I’m going to head east again or land somewhere else.  This is a huge change because to be honest I had decided that I would always be a Park Ranger, but the situation in the service right now just makes me think that I need to step away for a bit.  I may return at some point but for now it seems like a permanent job is just not to be.

The past two weekends I have done some other pretty great things.  Last weekend I competed in a competition at my old affiliate and got 5th.  I would have been higher but burpee box jumps hate me and I did horrible in the first WOD, I got second in the other one but it still wasn’t enough to get me a top three.  Yesterday I participated in the Mustache Clash and helped raise over $4000 for Cancer treatment with the crew at CrossFit Bloomington Normal.  Thanks to The Tiki for getting me to come out for it, I had a great time and there are some pictures and videos coming I’m sure.  Lastly I’m also working for the social media side of things for Blonyx, so if you’re in the market for supplements talk to me I’ll hook you up with a discount.

Getting set for my first local Competition

Moustache Clash 2012

Well I’m registering for my first local competition this week.  I need to figure out if I’m going Rx or Scaled so I haven’t filled out the form yet.  I really want to jump in Rx because let’s face it, you need to Go Big or Go Home.  If there’s one lesson that I can take from my Outlaw brothers and sisters  it is that I need to dominate everything.  So I’ll likely put on my big boy pants, jump into the deep end and see if I can swim.  So far the first two events are announced.  First is Bombs Away, sounds awesome right? Well it is, have you ever been so frustrated you want to throw your kettlebell across the room, well now you can, except it’s not across the room but rather in a field event style outdoor area.  Stand in a 4x4ft box, and throw your kettlebell for distance into the cone shaped area.  Longest throw wins, as a former field athlete I kind of think this might be something I’m good at.  But I don’t have a place to practice throwing kettlebells right now so I’ll have to figure that one out.  I don’t think I’ll be shotputing it, but I’m thinking the double handed over the back launch might be the key.  Here’s the demo video:

 Second event was just announces yesterday, thanks to Zack and his Strongman Sunday programming I’ve got some experience with heavy Farmer’s Carry.  Zack’s determination to make me better at picking up heavy stuff off the ground is going to go a long way in this one.  Rx for men is 112lbs in each hand, so 224lbs total.  One attempt, walk as far as you can.  I need to get in some practice with this in the next couple weeks, but I don’t see this being a problem for me.  Here’s the demo video for this one:

 The last three events are, The Big Move, Sled Dog, and X + Y those will be released in the next few weeks and I’m interested to see what they are, but I’m really excited to take this on.  And let’s be honest, who will bring better facial hair than me to this thing, nobody.  The Red Sea will be in full effect on December 8 when I bring my Outlaw mandate to Crossfit Bloomington Normal and show those midstate kids what’s up.

I’ll leave you with last year’s highlight video:

Some of the things that have happened in the last year.

I wanted to take a moment and just write a list of all of the things that have happened to me in the last year, some good and some not so good but all essential to getting me where I am today.   It’s going to be quite a list I’m sure, so let’s get started.

-Finished Student teaching, after five years I graduated college.

-Earned two Bachelor’s degrees and a teaching license.

-Left my first Ranger job at the Lincoln Home National Historic Site.

-Spent six weeks unemployed.

-Went to work for Starbucks, met awesome people and learned a bit about myself.

-Applied for over 200 Ranger positions all over the country, spent nervous days hoping to hear back.

-Competed in the Crossfit Open, was shown that I am definitely not elite.

-Started going to Strongman Sunday, embraced lifting odd heavy things a lot.

-Flipped my first tire

-Ran my first mile.

-Came in second in my first Paleo Challenge

-Did my first pull up.

-Spent New Year’s in NYC with some awesome people and a band called Phish.

-Accepted a Ranger job in PA, moved myself 700 miles from home to work for six months at Allegheny Portage National Historic Site and the Johnstown Flood National Memorial.

-Attended my first Paleo meet up.

-Visited numerous other Crossfit Affiliates, met great people and learned about how other people have been changed by Crossfit.

-Was interviewed for a yet to be published article for the Crossfit Journal.

-Met Rudy from Outlaw, tried not to Fanboy out too much.

-Had The Outlaw Way kill me day in and day out and keep going back for more.

-Lived by the phrase Moar Squatz and embraced the idea of Lift Big Eat Big

-Visited Richmond for the first time.

-Saw Washington D. C. if only through the eyes of my windshield as I made my way through traffic.

-Wrote my first book review, and was asked to do a second one.

-Started this little blog and got into the habit of writing almost every day.

-Went strict paleo again and experienced the effects of putting more structure in my life.

-Learned to sleep on a twin size bed again.

-Had three shots at dating different ladies, all did not end well.

-Rode my first roller coaster in over eight years.

-Visited my brother at school, got closer with him over the rest of the summer.

-Competed in my first Beard Competition.

-Learned to hew logs and cut stone by hand.

-Bought a used car, learned the joys of used car ownership firsthand.

-Tackled the highs and lows of being far away from family, grew to appreciate them much more than I have before.

-Lost a friend to an ultimatum.

-Learned that an on and off ex of mine is engaged to her current guy, still processing that one.

-Experienced jealousy about another friend that I didn’t know I had feelings for.

-Went back to NYC, saw some stuff, got a parking ticket.

-Had my first real paleo date, that’s a topic for another post.

-Attended the September 11 commemorative service at Flight 93 National Memorial, sat next to the representatives of the flight crew.

-Found a new Crossfit Affiliate to attend here in PA, met a whole new group of people to struggle with day in and day out.

-Starting to do double workouts to try to push myself even further.

-Turned 30, became an old man.

-Learned to coupon and work inside a budget.

-Stopped drinking, don’t know that I’ll go back.

-Rediscovered my love of cooking.

-Lived with a cat again, why do people do this to me?

-Was in only 1 wedding now that I’ve lost all this weight.

-Went to my first Major League Baseball game since I was a kid, had great seats and went with my parents which were the best company for the game I could have asked for.

-Attended concerts, slept in my truck, and enjoyed the best of Pittsburgh life more than once this summer.

I’m sure that there are many more things worthy of this list, this past year has been full of an amazing amount of experiences that I can’t even think of them all.  The people in my life have managed to help me to get the most out of every one, there’s too many of you to list, maybe I’ll get to a post where I thank each of you. But you have all been a huge part of my last year, I can’t say thank you enough because I owe you all a lot.

Three weeks down and one to go

Finishing up the third week strict, and it feels good.  There’s something about challenging yourself by placing limits on what you’re doing to make you more mindful of the day.  This past week has shown that to me more and more.  I think about things more, from what I eat and when, to how my body is reacting to just how I spend my time.  It has been a good week and a week that had a lot of things happening.  I have some other thoughts that I want to put into other posts, I’m going to give them their own page I think because they are something that I don’t want lost in the shuffle of my rambling about the project.  This post will discuss one of the best things to happen to me in a long time.  I competed in a beard competition.  Yeah that’s right a competition about beards, it was awesome, I met other people of admirable facial hair development and while I didn’t win I had a good time and got a sweet t-shirt.  I’m going to post up the pictures and let you see just what I’m talking about.

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I don’t even want to try to caption all those pictures, but here’s a basic rundown of the night.  There were 10 categories that were judged with a first, second, and third in each.  I competed in the big category, full beard natural.  No products or styling aids allowed, just year beard and it’s growth and it was under 12″ in length.  I had a great time there and hung out with people from a few different groups.  It was good to see so many people who loved having a beard and while I would have loved to have won, just being around such a great group of people means that I will definitely be looking to do more of these events in the future.  Just one more thing that I would have never had the confidence to do a year ago, here I am taking it on.  Thanks to the new confidence I have in myself from this past year of Crossfit and Paleo.  I don’t know when my next competition will be, but if you’re around Chicago I may be trying to rope you into starting a bearding club when I get back.