A few weeks ago I participated in my first CrossFit competition. It was relatively small in size (there were only 24 women in my category) so I felt safe dipping my toes in the water. I’ve only been doing CrossFit since the start of the year so I still can’t master some of the basic moves. But I’m getting strong enough to try my hand at some of the lifting aspects and I’m in good enough shape to hang in the cardio categories. But I was still nervous. This competition, like many, doesn’t allow for age. It’s simply Rx or Scaled. Rx means doing the prescribed CrossFit weights and workouts, which naturally are quite heavy and difficult. I’m scaled, meaning a scaled down version of the Rx. Usually these are easy enough for a more basic athlete but being competitive in the scaled category is no small feat. As my coach says, “These workouts aren’t easy, they’re simple. Big distinction.” Fair enough.
Not anyone can jump into scaled. I would never have been able to do these when I started because the weight amounts are still aggressive and the fitness you need for the cardio WOD (workout of the day) is intense. This competition involved three WODS:
1) Row and sit-ups for 4 minutes – as many reps as possible. This WOD involved rowing as fast as you can for 500 meters, and then once you finished, completing as many straight leg sit-ups as possible in the remaining time (up to 4 minutes).
2) 1 rep max power Snatch – the most difficult Olympic lift there is. You had 12 minutes to find the heaviest snatch you could lift from the power position (not the floor, but essentially with the bar at your hip crease). For anyone this is the hardest lift we do at CrossFit.
3) 7-minute AMRAP (as many reps as possible) – 60 single jump ropes, sprint 30 meters, 10 35lb kettle bell swings, sprint 30 meters, repeat. This one is much harder than it looks. Your heart rate is never given a chance to rest and let’s just say after a few rounds, no one, I mean no one, was sprinting.
My only goal for the day was not to come in last. I’d estimate I was the second oldest woman there, so I just wanted to do my best and not embarrass myself. Well, I’m proud and stunned to say I finished 8th! Yes, 8th! I was 3 people away from making the finals, so pretty stoked and excited. If I can do this in 7 months, where will I be in a year, or two years?
I’ve got my first team competition in September and that one, the biggest in the world, promises to be MUCH more difficult. But all I can do is my best. And that’s my only plan. And not to come in last.