17.1 is…awful and awesome

Nothing to see here. Just some nerve flossing. 

Nothing to see here. Just some nerve flossing. 

It’s CrossFit Christmas. That time you wait for all year with breathless anticipation, hoping Santa, I mean, Dave Castro brings you what you asked for. But like countless children, most years you end up sorely disappointed and frankly, just sore.

But this year things were different. This year I went into the Open barely healed from disc irritation in my back and a small partial labrum tear in my shoulder that I’ve been working on rehabbing for months. This year I went into the Open with an “I’ll do what I can” attitude vs. an “I need to crush every WOD attitude.” I know, it’s almost like I’m not me.

Like any good CrossFitter, I tuned in Thursday night for the live announcement of 17.1 and expected the worst. Last year I was rewarded with a movement I couldn’t do in the very first week, so I wasn’t optimistic. And yes, I know I can scale, but after 3+ years of doing CrossFit, I’d really like to be able to do the movements as prescribed. So when Dave announced dumbbell snatches and burpee box jumps (BBJ), I was elated. Yes! I can Rx this bitch. I knew it would suck and I knew it would be a grind, but this is my kind of workout. One that requires non-stop movement and head down focus. As my former coach would say, this was a Bitch Can Move workout.

Now, of course with my back and shoulder injuries, these might also be two of the worst movements for me. But I was determined to try. I knew I couldn’t muscle the weight up on the snatches (35lbs is fairly heavy for me), so I’d have to use my legs, which would make me more tired for the BBJ, a movement I’m already slow at. But that would save my shoulder. And BBJ aren’t exactly a party for the lower back either with all their hinging but I knew if I went slow and stayed tight, I should be ok.

My plan was simple. Keep a steady pace and keep moving. I’ve gotten really good at pacing my workouts over the years as I know sprinting out of the gate helps no one. Especially an almost 45-year old woman. But pacing doesn’t mean going slowly either. Patrick Vellner paced the workout Thursday night and it was perfection. He never wavered from his pace from start to finish. It was only after he collapsed in a heap, that you realized how truly taxing his pacing was.

I originally thought I’d set a goal of just trying to beat the 20-minute time cap. But after reading the posts in my Master’s Facebook group this morning, I saw that that might be more daunting than I thought. So I went into it as if it just a 20-minute AMRAP and my goal was to try and finish as much as I could in that time.

Even though I pride myself on my conditioning — I don’t really rest much or take breaks — I did take a quick sip of water due to a stitch in my side and I struggled to maintain my breath in the rounds of 40 and 50 snatches. While I did not finish (or DNF), I came only 8 reps shy of completing the round of 50 snatches and I’m happy with that. I got a fantastic workout (I was dripping sweat on the floor) and the best part? I didn’t hurt. Anywhere! I did my nerve flossing and other Active Life movements after and before the workout and I’m thrilled to say I’m ready for 17.2, which will probably be muscle ups. Cause you suck Santa, I mean, Dave Castro.

What did you think of 17.1?